Aug 4, 2014

What I'm going through to get better

I'm sure that among my readers, there are at least a few who have battled depression. What it does to you is sometimes devastating. You simply forget how to live they way you used to live and forget how to love what you used to love. It's incapacitating. I still remember that only a few years before, I was interested in going out to a movie and eating out and simply having fun. Two years back, I was absolutely in love with traveling and look forwarded to go to new places and have exotic experiences. The list goes on and on.

After being on a relatively ineffective pharmacotherapy cocktail for approximately two years, I consulted my present shrink, who switched to the present the pharmacotherapy cocktail (below) and guided me to talk/behavioral therapy. During the course of psychological testing, I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD), anxiety disorder, stress disorder most probably as an effect of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) due to childhood trauma. Yes, it sounds like a lot. Hence, along with the medications, I have started an efficacious, albeit debated, psychotherapy method called eye movement desensitization and reprocessing for PTSD.

As pharmacotherapy for depression, I'm on the following cocktail:
  • low-dose amitryptiline (a classical tricyclic antidepressant)
  • medium-dose bupropion (an atypical antidpressant mood stabilizer)
  • low-dose clonazepam (an antianxiety agent)
  • low-dose haloperidol (an antipsychotic agent)
Apart from that, I'm taking Vitamin B and Vitamin D supplementation.*
As part of pscyhotherapy, I have undergone/am undergoing the following:
Wondering the reason behind why I'm posting all these details? To be honest, I have come across several people suffering from depression who are simply unaware of what they can do to get themselves and their lives back on track. By being open about what I'm going through, I hope to bring more awareness regarding depression and PTSD so that more people can help themselves.

An important point to note is that the bullet about reading and learning about depression, PTSD, and cognition in general need not be limited to who are suffering from depression or PTSD. I would recommend this as a useful exercise to just get accustomed to the concepts and the phenomena underlying these conditions. Especially, those who are close to those who are the sufferers.

In the last few weeks, I have recommended these the first two books to several people and I have gotten very positive responses regarding the same. I hope that I can get my family (my sister and my mother at least) to read these books.
If you are reading this and if you know someone who shows signs of these conditions, please encourage the to seek help and/or read these books.

*I was diagnosed with Vitamin D deficiency a couple of years back.

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