Where to look for help

Posted by joy7576 @joy7576, May 29, 2019

Hello! This is my first attempt to break out of my isolation. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder five years ago. I've been hospitalized twice. I received excellent care in the hospital which aided in my recovery. Upon leaving I was placed on 20mg Trintellix. It was like a miracle drug for me. For five years I've done fairly well with only small, brief relapses. No hospitalization.
Unfortunately, the trintellix is no longer effective. I feel exhausted, unmotivated and joyless again. There are physical symptoms, as well.
My former psychopharmacologist has moved away. My gp is clueless. Where can I go for help?

20190519_143139

@jakedduck1

@bookysue
I’m just curious about your thoughts of depression being a learned trait in families with depressed parents siblings etc.
Jake

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Hi Leonard. Learned trait – environment with mom locked in room ( darkened due to migraines)- severe) and no real interaction except ad friendship based. Never confided about bullying and other issues. My parents told me stuff like their friends did not want their kids playing with me and marriage issues – etc . Mom sparked/ dad spanked . I have trust issues. – do not let people close. My grandfather let my mom know he did not like her- he was great with me though. Lots of bad family issues. My brother was expected to go to college and do well. Honor student – and was at George Washington university – drop out I st semester and stayed at job since 1971-2018. I was not expected to thrive in college but did .San Francisco state in psy- 1978 . My brother disassociated from me in 1997 after our father died- saw each other once or twice a year. He is shallow but has a good marriage with his guy -30 year plus .
Depression is chemical as well. I know I fight everyday even with so called good days
I feel the imbalance in me. Severe depressive

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@jakedduck1

@gingerw @hopeful33250
You mention “chemical intervention to help balance the brain. That’s been proven.” I assume your talking about a brain imbalance.
It’s my understanding that that there is no reliable way to test brain chemicals. Even if there were it’s believed those chemicals are constantly changing. So if true I wonder how reliable the tests would be. There is a scientist in LA who is supposedly getting close to a way of measuring those chemicals. I hope she’s successful. But currently as far as I am aware the brain chemical issue is nothing more than a theory. Please enlighten me.
Take care,
Jake

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@jakedduck1 Medicine is not an exact science. In my opinion that covers both physical and mental medicine. The body is a wonderous machine and is constantly readjusting itself, making all of the systems work in a more or less functional way. Being able to balance your brain and be aware of when a solution is not working [whether it is medical intervention with chemicals or not] is invaluable. From my experience going onto a mild SSRI, there were periods of adjustment as we re-evaluated the effects of the current level and would decide to increase or decrease dosage. I was always the one who made the decision to titrate off. For those who need chemical intervention, nothing can be more rewarding when the correct combination for the moment is found. We all know that for the most part things change, and that includes the different medicines and our attitudes. Don't be afraid to step out and reach for help. Don't be afraid to say "this isn't working and I need help" or "I need to change things up". Whatever we have to do to live our best life, we should attempt.
Ginger

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@joy7576 How are you doing today? We care here at Mayo Connect.
Ginger

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@jakedduck1

@gingerw @hopeful33250
You mention “chemical intervention to help balance the brain. That’s been proven.” I assume your talking about a brain imbalance.
It’s my understanding that that there is no reliable way to test brain chemicals. Even if there were it’s believed those chemicals are constantly changing. So if true I wonder how reliable the tests would be. There is a scientist in LA who is supposedly getting close to a way of measuring those chemicals. I hope she’s successful. But currently as far as I am aware the brain chemical issue is nothing more than a theory. Please enlighten me.
Take care,
Jake

Jump to this post

@jakedduck1 the chemical serotonin is one drug that used by the brain to regulate how we feel. There are set limiits for serotonin . Serotonin can be measured. Science has advanced a lot in recent years and so now things theorized are now becoming known. It is hard keeping up with all the latest advances. I just recently found out that they now classify MS as an autoimmune disease. I guess this has been the case for a while, but the last I knew was MS was of unknown cause.

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@bookysue

Hi all. I come from a family of depressives . I did not know the meaning until my 30’s. My feeling is that I can handle being depressed by being active ( hard making that first move) and reading/ critter time, In my late 50’s, I realized I needed to do something . My mom was on meds for migraines / depression and my dad for Anginia, pain, etc. Both had their own nmedience cabinet full of meds. I did not want to go meds. I have been in research studies doing them and they helped me make the decision. And I am better for it. I still have bad days because life is hard with medical issues but I am better for it because of meds..

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Your story is one that many of us share, @bookysue, and I appreciate you speaking out on this topic. Many people simply need meds to deal with depression and/or anxiety. It is true, as @jakedduck1, indicated that positive thinking, being involved with helping others can lift your mood. However, it is not often enough when there is a history of depression in your family.

While I'm not a mental health professional I have observed that if we grow up with depression we probably learn a lot of depressive behaviors. Many of these behaviors and thinking patterns can be unlearned and replaced with more healthy thinking (like with Cognitive Behavior Therapy) However, some of them may be rooted in a chemical imbalance in our brain and this is where we see the value of mental health meds.

Congratulations on finding the right meds that have helped you live a more productive happy life!

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@hopeful33250

Your story is one that many of us share, @bookysue, and I appreciate you speaking out on this topic. Many people simply need meds to deal with depression and/or anxiety. It is true, as @jakedduck1, indicated that positive thinking, being involved with helping others can lift your mood. However, it is not often enough when there is a history of depression in your family.

While I'm not a mental health professional I have observed that if we grow up with depression we probably learn a lot of depressive behaviors. Many of these behaviors and thinking patterns can be unlearned and replaced with more healthy thinking (like with Cognitive Behavior Therapy) However, some of them may be rooted in a chemical imbalance in our brain and this is where we see the value of mental health meds.

Congratulations on finding the right meds that have helped you live a more productive happy life!

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We learn from each other. Yes I grew with behaviors that were self centered/ self serving. Dark thinking patterns. And I am a severe pessimist (that thing in the White House does not help) I have always being active and that helped a lot. Being outdoors with nature and / or critters helps a lot . I grew up with the woods in back of me and that helped me. I cannot get into positive mode because the future is bleak for me. I can have some positive moments with reading/ walking/ biking/ wandering drives weekends.

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@bookysue

We learn from each other. Yes I grew with behaviors that were self centered/ self serving. Dark thinking patterns. And I am a severe pessimist (that thing in the White House does not help) I have always being active and that helped a lot. Being outdoors with nature and / or critters helps a lot . I grew up with the woods in back of me and that helped me. I cannot get into positive mode because the future is bleak for me. I can have some positive moments with reading/ walking/ biking/ wandering drives weekends.

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I so understand, @bookysue. Developing optimistic behaviors takes work, doesn't it? Sometimes the work is that of an active nature, including volunteer work, exercise, meditation, helping others, reading helpful literature. Sometimes the work is that of a restrictive nature, I have learned the value of using the remote control when the national news comes on, it is too dysfunctional for me. Sometimes it means avoiding some people who just don't value a healthy lifestyle.

So we all find a way to develop peace in a turbulent world with the memories of a dysfunctional past nearby.

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@johnhans

@jakedduck1 the chemical serotonin is one drug that used by the brain to regulate how we feel. There are set limiits for serotonin . Serotonin can be measured. Science has advanced a lot in recent years and so now things theorized are now becoming known. It is hard keeping up with all the latest advances. I just recently found out that they now classify MS as an autoimmune disease. I guess this has been the case for a while, but the last I knew was MS was of unknown cause.

Jump to this post

@johnhans
Serotonin can only be measured in the blood, hardly the the same as measuring it in the brain which by the way isn’t possible. So my question is how do people know they have an imbalance. To me it sounds more like an excuse to justify a possible condition. There was a study I read the results of in mice and that one study showed Serotonin was not responsible for depression in mice. It was only one study and I haven’t formed an opinion either way. Besides, the cause of depression and for that matter Mental illness is still unknown. As far as the propaganda of serotonin and depression there is no proof serotonin is responsible for depression. Yes Serotonin and other neurotransmitters sometimes has an effect on depression but it’s not known why. Some researchers believe it’s a side effect, who knows. But it’s good it works for some. As far as brain chemical imbalances are concerned I’d like to see some proof. Many years ago the Pharmaceutical industry claimed (Without proof) Serotonin and neurotransmitter imbalances were the cause of depression. Soon the doctors jumped on board. As far as I know, to date these claims have never been substantiated. If you have proof otherwise please share it. Someone mentioned Seizure medication earlier. Some Anticonvulsants are similar to Antidepressants in that although they control seizures in some people they don’t know why some work. Obviously we are all entitled to our opinions but I want more to go on than conjecture. I hope we can agree to disagree.
Jake

Liked by bookysue

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@bookysue

We learn from each other. Yes I grew with behaviors that were self centered/ self serving. Dark thinking patterns. And I am a severe pessimist (that thing in the White House does not help) I have always being active and that helped a lot. Being outdoors with nature and / or critters helps a lot . I grew up with the woods in back of me and that helped me. I cannot get into positive mode because the future is bleak for me. I can have some positive moments with reading/ walking/ biking/ wandering drives weekends.

Jump to this post

@bookysue My mother was depressed most of her life, and at age 17 was placed in a sanitarium for some time. We were not aware as youngsters, that what we experienced was abnormal. Not until I was about 14 did it dawn on me something was amiss. My best guy friend's mother took me under her wing, to give me the guidance she felt a "present" mother would offer. My mother hater her for that. I moved out at 18 and never looked back. In the last 15 years [I am now 66] I have learned more about depression and mental illness, and the effects on family. Unfortunately, it is still a taboo subject for my siblings.My hat is off to you for being so brave; I can learn so much from you. Thank you.
Ginger

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@jakedduck1

@johnhans
Serotonin can only be measured in the blood, hardly the the same as measuring it in the brain which by the way isn’t possible. So my question is how do people know they have an imbalance. To me it sounds more like an excuse to justify a possible condition. There was a study I read the results of in mice and that one study showed Serotonin was not responsible for depression in mice. It was only one study and I haven’t formed an opinion either way. Besides, the cause of depression and for that matter Mental illness is still unknown. As far as the propaganda of serotonin and depression there is no proof serotonin is responsible for depression. Yes Serotonin and other neurotransmitters sometimes has an effect on depression but it’s not known why. Some researchers believe it’s a side effect, who knows. But it’s good it works for some. As far as brain chemical imbalances are concerned I’d like to see some proof. Many years ago the Pharmaceutical industry claimed (Without proof) Serotonin and neurotransmitter imbalances were the cause of depression. Soon the doctors jumped on board. As far as I know, to date these claims have never been substantiated. If you have proof otherwise please share it. Someone mentioned Seizure medication earlier. Some Anticonvulsants are similar to Antidepressants in that although they control seizures in some people they don’t know why some work. Obviously we are all entitled to our opinions but I want more to go on than conjecture. I hope we can agree to disagree.
Jake

Jump to this post

@jakedduck1 I can only speak for myself. It has taken me time to learn that being aware of how the days are for me, how my interactions w/ people and situations play out, when interest or joy that was there isn't anymore. These are signs to me that I need to work on myself. I don't need a scan nor bloodwork. I don't try to justify anything, nor use a condition as a crutch. I know my realities, my limitations.
Ginger

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@gingerw

@bookysue My mother was depressed most of her life, and at age 17 was placed in a sanitarium for some time. We were not aware as youngsters, that what we experienced was abnormal. Not until I was about 14 did it dawn on me something was amiss. My best guy friend's mother took me under her wing, to give me the guidance she felt a "present" mother would offer. My mother hater her for that. I moved out at 18 and never looked back. In the last 15 years [I am now 66] I have learned more about depression and mental illness, and the effects on family. Unfortunately, it is still a taboo subject for my siblings.My hat is off to you for being so brave; I can learn so much from you. Thank you.
Ginger

Jump to this post

I will be 65 next week. Amazingly what little we knew what little we knew. I put my mom in a facility and her doc says next day not that day- I got her in. She was in for a week. Mid 80’s. My parents a year before divorced after 38 years . Hard time .
Yes we learned from each other. My brother did help a few times in our kid/ teenage years. But we never talk about our parents. Folks were around but no one did anything. . Family and depression was not part of my major in Psy. Only after graduating, I learned things that I wish I learned. Be careful and control the stressors in your life. I would not have brought a house . And knowing I am a great procrastinator; depressed being/ lefty/ curly/ short/ deefie . Whatever the reason, I would not have been in a urban city although I am more social.;
Gosh I learned a lot today
Thank you all- Leonard, Ginger…

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@bookysue

I will be 65 next week. Amazingly what little we knew what little we knew. I put my mom in a facility and her doc says next day not that day- I got her in. She was in for a week. Mid 80’s. My parents a year before divorced after 38 years . Hard time .
Yes we learned from each other. My brother did help a few times in our kid/ teenage years. But we never talk about our parents. Folks were around but no one did anything. . Family and depression was not part of my major in Psy. Only after graduating, I learned things that I wish I learned. Be careful and control the stressors in your life. I would not have brought a house . And knowing I am a great procrastinator; depressed being/ lefty/ curly/ short/ deefie . Whatever the reason, I would not have been in a urban city although I am more social.;
Gosh I learned a lot today
Thank you all- Leonard, Ginger…

Jump to this post

I thank you for your honesty and openness, @bookysue. I've learned and reflected a lot after reading your posts.

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@jakedduck1

@johnhans
Serotonin can only be measured in the blood, hardly the the same as measuring it in the brain which by the way isn’t possible. So my question is how do people know they have an imbalance. To me it sounds more like an excuse to justify a possible condition. There was a study I read the results of in mice and that one study showed Serotonin was not responsible for depression in mice. It was only one study and I haven’t formed an opinion either way. Besides, the cause of depression and for that matter Mental illness is still unknown. As far as the propaganda of serotonin and depression there is no proof serotonin is responsible for depression. Yes Serotonin and other neurotransmitters sometimes has an effect on depression but it’s not known why. Some researchers believe it’s a side effect, who knows. But it’s good it works for some. As far as brain chemical imbalances are concerned I’d like to see some proof. Many years ago the Pharmaceutical industry claimed (Without proof) Serotonin and neurotransmitter imbalances were the cause of depression. Soon the doctors jumped on board. As far as I know, to date these claims have never been substantiated. If you have proof otherwise please share it. Someone mentioned Seizure medication earlier. Some Anticonvulsants are similar to Antidepressants in that although they control seizures in some people they don’t know why some work. Obviously we are all entitled to our opinions but I want more to go on than conjecture. I hope we can agree to disagree.
Jake

Jump to this post

There is a difference in my life before and after meds. I feel the anxiety/ depression fighting within ( on Low dose Effexor) and settled with meds. And my mind not able to relax unless on meds. . Once a while, I still have that. And when I was on research studies with various drugs, I have felt better and none whereas I was on placebo . I noticed the difference very quick. I had a bad experience once whereas I was a zombie- yuck. And another where I felt like I was having heart issues. I feel family history of 3 generations having depression – my parents both depressed … my father perhaps situational- after retirement/ heart issues. Although weekends with him as a child and teenager; spend entire weekends watching sports on tv- um.. He did not like my mom leaving the house. Something strange there.
FYI

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Hi, @joy7576 – just wanted to check in and see how you are doing? You'd mentioned you felt exhausted, unmotivated and joyless, plus some physical symptoms, as well. How has this past week been?

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@bookysue

There is a difference in my life before and after meds. I feel the anxiety/ depression fighting within ( on Low dose Effexor) and settled with meds. And my mind not able to relax unless on meds. . Once a while, I still have that. And when I was on research studies with various drugs, I have felt better and none whereas I was on placebo . I noticed the difference very quick. I had a bad experience once whereas I was a zombie- yuck. And another where I felt like I was having heart issues. I feel family history of 3 generations having depression – my parents both depressed … my father perhaps situational- after retirement/ heart issues. Although weekends with him as a child and teenager; spend entire weekends watching sports on tv- um.. He did not like my mom leaving the house. Something strange there.
FYI

Jump to this post

I admire the way you are looking at your family history and behavior, @bookysue. You are certainly getting some good clues as to the origins of the depression in your family.

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