My doctors are having a hard time determining if I am Bi-polar. I go through weeks of depression to the point of considering suicide than come out of it. I have panic attack where I get very nervous and angry but I am not sure if that counts as a manic episode. I will start breathing very quickly till the point of not taking in any oxygen, driving dangerously down the roads, cutting myself, threatening my boyfriend (the main one who takes care of me during these times) and generally I cannot remember much or any of the event. These sessions last about 3-4 hours and happen about 4 times a month. I am on prozac for my depression but since taking it I have gotten worse. Is there anything I can do to help this situation? My parents are not supportive of medication or being bi-polar so it’s hard for me to get help for a doctor.
I am sorry to hear that your parents are not supportive of your receiving help. Even so, don’t let that stop you from seeking help. Understandably you’d probably rather have their support than not have it but you don’t have that option right now. Fortunately, your boyfriend seems supportive but he alone is not enough. Mental health problems require professional treatment, especially when self-harm and suicidal thoughts are involved.
Regarding your medication, it might be that you haven’t taken it long enough for it to fully work. Some medications can take four to eight weeks to take full effect. It may also be that you’re taking the wrong medication. It’s important to report your worsening condition to your prescribing doctor. He or she can make adjustments accordingly.
When meeting with your doctor, ask for a referral to a therapist. A therapist can determine your diagnosis and provide the necessary treatment for your symptoms. Medication is helpful in treating many mental health problems but often, it’s not enough. Therapy is a necessary component in the treatment of most mental health disorders. Often, you should not have one without the other.
With therapy and the right medication, your symptoms can be controlled. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle