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Am I doing all I can?


shesU
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Hello to all. Like many I have been reading I was recently diagonsed with Bipolar Disorder. I have been diagnosed with depression before. I went in to a Family Dr. for a physical and to ask if the depression med (Effexor XL) I was taking was right since I have had little if any relief latley. So after some blood work and a ton of questions the Dr. said it is Bipolar. She said to continue the Effexor and to check back in 2 months. Not wanting to..... I don't know but I didn't object at the time and now know I cant wait 2 months more to get some relief from these manic episodes! I just applied for Medical in CA since I am currently unemployeed and don't know if I should go back to the Dr. I saw or if I should find a psycologist or phyciatrist or what? I do know I am totally exhausted trying to keep it together. If anyone has any helpful ideas I would be grateful to hear them. Thanks to all for being here.

ShesU

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Hi shesU, and welcome!!! You will find many people with bipolar here that can lend you a hand. I am not bipolar, but I can definitely say that you need a therapist to help you!! Medication is important for your diagnosis, but you also need the support of a therapist to help you find healthy ways to cope. Is that something you can do? There are many possibilities for you in dealing with this condition. You can lead a healthy, creative, productive life with the right strategies. Tell us more about the trouble you are having and maybe some one here can help you:)

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You have to be pateint if you are trying to deal with the disorder, I have had it for two years and have not found the right medicine yet, i would prob recommend u stop effexor or w/e it is as it has sexual side effects, maybe try abilify and zoloft(sertaline) together they seemed to do the trick for me for awhile

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Thanks so much for the post! A little background about me... Although I was just diagnosis Bipolar looking back I'm sure that I had it as a kid. My parents always said I was so overly dramatic... "Their little actress". In my early 20s I was diagnosis with depression. I spent a lot of time looking for the right medication but could never find the relief I so desperately wanted. So I took things into my own hands and began self medicating. From my early twenties until 9 months ago I self medicated with everything from alcohol to crystal meth. Sadly in meth I found I could quite myself and actually focus. I was able to complete tasks and at least in the beginning I felt better. But somewhere towards the end of my 20 year run it all stopped working and I new I would die crazy or high. It took about 6 months of being clean and sober until I really started to pay attention to how I really felt. Before I had always blamed my extreme highs and debilitating lows to my drug use. So imagine my surprise when clean and sober my episodes where still happening' I went for a physical and told the MD about my symptoms and a few tests later she said I was bipolar. That was 3 weeks ago. I have episodes approx. 2x a month and they are awful! I don't usually feel the manic stage come on so before I know it I am so "excited" about whatever.... I try to tell myself to hold on and not get "excited" but before I know it I’m talking so fast no one can understand me, I find myself doing silly stuff, last week I went to the park at 11:30pm to swing and had a blast. I have written bad checks for things I wanted while "excited" also. Last year I signed up online to go to college and committed myself to thousands of dollars in loans. I’m usually up for 1-2 nights catching up on bills or cleaning the house because I know in a few days I'll all be over. Then I start coming down... and when it’s over I can basically stay in bed for 3-4 days. Sometimes longer. I have a 14yr old daughter who is great about it and without any meds I do what I can to prepare myself and my family for what might come. I’m not working and have no insurance right now so next week am applying for Medical and will tell them I need to see someone soon. I just wasn’t sure what or who I should see. I am afraid if I don't see someone soon though anything could happen. Thanks for any ideas anyone has.

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Hi shesU

I have a 14yr old daughter who is great about it and without any meds I do what I can to prepare myself and my family for what might come. I’m not working and have no insurance right now so next week am applying for Medical and will tell them I need to see someone soon. I just wasn’t sure what or who I should see. I am afraid if I don't see someone soon though anything could happen. Thanks for any ideas anyone has.

How the hell can you manage without any meds? I am Bipolar & I know I couldn't manage without meds, but like Steven said, it does take a long time to get you settled on the right meds... I'm still in-between swapping & changing...

Do you not have what we call a safe net that you could turn too? With you having a 14yr old daughter, there should be something you could do, like Social Services, any day care center's... Can you not phone any Advice lines up, the Samaritans etc... Surely, they cant leave you without meds, just after diagnosing you, can they?

I'm sorry but I can't really advice you, as I live in the UK & the laws over here are different than over there!

I wonder whether anyone else can help her on the right track, on this site...

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I can relate to your situation as I have as of last yr been dx Bi-Polar. I also am not able to access the Co. MH sys for meds as I have been out for 4 months. I am in conflict with my denial systems...and using my tools of recovery for mental illness and addiction.

While I understand being told to go to a rehap...then get a ref frm them if my symtoms warrent. I am a pot head, w/ a 4 yrs Sober and Clean...

I stopped meds as I changed states...and lost coverage. And I started smoking again. Sorry if I am babbling..

Go to your local Com. Mental Hlth facility. With your current systoms, I am sure you will be helped when the right people are told.

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Its pretty obvious the Health Care system here is America is quite different than in the UK and God only knows how I am manageing Thank you. I am in the process of applying for State services but believe it or not in addition to dealing with the normal buerocratic stuff currently my state (CA) is broke. Last week they didnt issue Welfare checks due to no money and no buget aggrement reached. So while the politicians argue (and have health care) I do my best to get through each 24 hr period without loseing complete control. Its funny the things you will do to cope. I will be at our Medical office first thing tomorrow until I have some sort of coverage no matter how long it takes. I'll check back in when I have some sort of plan. Thanks so much for all that are here so that I dont feel like Im going crazy all by myself. It really does help.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hello ShesU,

Yes, one of the things you can try, in order to get help for yourself, is to go to the emergency room of your local hospital and let them know that you are in need of psychiatric help. I have not read the other things you may have posted here but I assume that you have a Bipolar disorder and have no medication or psychiatric help. The emergency room might be able to give you some temporary.

Allan:)

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Dale48,

I believe that you are new here and I want to welcome you to our community.

Yes, I have known of other cases where it took years before a correct diagnosis of Bipolar was made and, even worse, before the best medication or combination of medications were found.

Can you tell us more about yourself and how Bipolar disorder has affected your life?

Allan

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Its pretty obvious the Health Care system here is America is quite different than in the UK and God only knows how I am manageing Thank you. I am in the process of applying for State services but believe it or not in addition to dealing with the normal buerocratic stuff currently my state (CA) is broke. Last week they didnt issue Welfare checks due to no money and no buget aggrement reached. So while the politicians argue (and have health care) I do my best to get through each 24 hr period without loseing complete control. Its funny the things you will do to cope. I will be at our Medical office first thing tomorrow until I have some sort of coverage no matter how long it takes. I'll check back in when I have some sort of plan. Thanks so much for all that are here so that I dont feel like Im going crazy all by myself. It really does help.

Hi ShesU,

My heart goes out to you. I too have had all kinds of diagnoses, the next to last was Major Depression. After seeing the psychiatrist for a couple of months with a number of adjustements in meds, he also diagnosed me with Cyclothymia and Social Phobia! Well, thankfully we finally have the meds right. Right this moment I am in a motel--I'm stopping overnight in the middle of moving from NY to Florida. I have a psychiatry appointment in March. On this new pdoc's website he has helpful resource links--there are pharmaceutical companies that will give people with limited resources meds at greatly reduced cost, or even free if the need is great. If you know who makes your particular meds, it may help to contact the company and ask how to apply for the company's assistance. Here are the the resource links my new pdoc has listed:

Free/Cheap Medication Programs

Free meds: PhRMA *NEW* / WebLink

RxAssist program / WebLink

Walmart $4 generic drugs / WebLink

Xubex cheap generic mail order / WebLink

RxOutreach cheap generic mail order / WebLink

The free Medicine Program / WebLink

Needy Meds (Free Meds) / WebLink

If they don't work, you can access his site and scroll down the page until you see the section called "Free/Cheap Medication programs". Here is his website address: http://www.msheehan.yourmd.com/

I wish you well and hope you can find the help you need. You are not alone.

Bipolar disorders, whether severe or a milder form, are all difficult and each has its own unique challenges. Some of us, like you, have extra disorders which complicate things further--where does one condition end and the other begin--what do we do when one complicates the other? Find a good doc with whom you can actually have an intelligent conversation. You need someone who listens and who actually wants to answer your questions. They are out there--I was fortunate to have one. I haven't met my new pdoc yet--I hope he is as good. Ihave to admit, I am a bit anxious. Do come here to get peer support--it is very important to your health to know you aren't going crazy--others share you experience in some form or another. We all need each other and that makes a community.

Wishing you all the best--Journey

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi journelyupward,

I want to welcome you to Florida. We moved here just 6 months ago and the weather is just wonderful. I hope you enjoy it here.

For any of you in the United States who may be having trouble obtaining medications you need for your mental health please remember that you can go to the emergency room of your local hospital and they will meet with you and provide, at least temporarily, assistance to you.

Allan:)

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