Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?

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Rebel62

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Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« on: December 18, 2016, 10:19:29 AM »
I posted my introduction several months ago. I have never been formally diagnosed with C-PTSD, but I am pretty certain that I have it. Briefly, I have a long history of witnessing and experiencing all types of abuse over a long period of time. I am hyper-vigilant, socially inept, I disassociate (in the past willfully as a coping mechanism), need to know where all exits are when I enter a building, scope out any social event to find a place where I can stand or sit with my back to a wall. I have a very strict 3 foot plus rule. On and on.

I have always been able to control my stress reactions until the aftermath of my daughter's suicide attempt in March of 2016. A few months after that I found this site and became a member.

Things did get better and my stress/anxiety decreased back to "my normal" and life went on. I was seeing my therapist whenever I could fit into my schedule, my daughter was seeing her psychiatrist, her therapist, started college as a commuter student riding with me since my work is next door to the college.  Then in mid-October, she attempted again, followed by 29 days in the hospital, 25 of them in the Behavioral Health wing.  She was diagnosed with Bi-Polar 2.

She is home, is very depressed, and her psychiatrist is working to adjust her meds. My anxiety and stress have reached a new level of intensity. My therapist recommended in November that I see my medical doctor to see about meds, at least on a temporary basis, I balked at that idea, because 1. I just changed doctors over the summer because my old doctor moved, and I've only seen her once and she doesn't know me that well, and 2. I have strange reactions to meds (advil knocks me out). 3. I need to be able to drive. 4. I need to keep my hyper-vigilant  edge. And on and on. I had a conversation with my daughter's psychiatrist the other day and I mentioned to him that I was experiencing severe anxiety and my therapists recommendation and my reaction to that and he basically told me that, 1. He was aware from our discussions about my daughter's meds that I had an anxiety issue and that If I found something that worked for me, it may work for her (hmm -- his way of pushing me to go through with it?).

Anyway -- the conversation with my daughter's psychiatrist triggered a 3 hour long anxiety attack and made me realize that yeah, I think I need to do this. So I have been researching treatments and meds for C-PTSD and have found that meds that are commonly used in General Anxiety Disorder, tend to be in the same class, but are different meds. For example Lexapro is not on the recommendation list for PTSD, while Paxil is. I guess I'm looking for input on what meds people have found relief with. A lot of treatment guides indicate that the best treatment for C-PTSD is therapy, actually preferred over meds, so I guess that's part of my hesitation. Will meds just make it worse? Is it a good idea to have your medical doctor prescribe these (that's how this started with my daughter and I really think if we had taken her to a psychiatrist sooner we may have had better results from the beginning.

Thanks in advance for any advice.


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Three Roses

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2016, 02:31:22 PM »
If my memory serves me, I think the most positive outcomes have been achieved with a combination of therapy and medication. I've been on fluoxetine (Prozac) for many years and feel more like myself than when I'm off it.

I've also started using medical marijuana, which is legal where I live, for the anxiety I still experience and it's helping immensely! There are many different strains these days and they all have different effects. The one I'm taking is higher in CBD's than in THC.

I see nothing wrong with taking meds; if we get a headache or an infection we take them, so why not a chemical imbalance? Just my opinion. But with your sensitivity to medications, I can see why you are hesitant. That's another reason I like cannabis, because it's a natural thing (the human brain has THC receptors).

Best wishes to you and your daughter! :hug:

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mourningdove

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2016, 04:36:36 PM »
I see nothing wrong with taking meds; if we get a headache or an infection we take them, so why not a chemical imbalance?

C-PTSD has nothing to do with any kind of chemical imbalance (and neither do any psychiatric diagnoses). The whole chemical imbalance story is a myth used to sell pharmaceuticals and attempt to legitimize the profession of psychiatry.


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radical

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2016, 05:47:27 PM »
I agree with you, Mourning Dove.
Medications can be helpful or not as the case may be, but the chemical imbalance model in relation to any kind of mental illness, injury or suffering is simplisitc bo^"**cks, imho.

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Dee

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2016, 01:53:57 AM »

My meds help me.  My antidepressant does help.  Trazadone helps me get to sleep.  Clonadine helps me get back to sleep and makes me remember my dreams less.  Now with that said sometimes it is not worth it.  Both Tazadone and Clonadine can make me feel like a zombie.  I think for Clonadine to stop my nightmares I would have to be at a higher dose and I just cannot tolerate it.  So while I take the meds I am also working hard in therapy.  The antidepressants get me to a place that therapy can help.

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Rebel62

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2016, 08:00:14 AM »
Thanks for all of your input. If I had spent a little time digging I would have noticed some other discussions about meds in this same board, but that seems to be part of my anxiety disorder these days. I think my goal if I do decide to allow "them" to put me on meds is to keep it short term, but that is easier said than done. My younger sister, who has some sort of anxiety disorder and depression had an acute panic attack years ago, has been on paxil ever since then. She tried to wean herself off of it once but her anxiety returned full force so she went back on it. It works for her. It was prescribed by her medical Dr and to the best of my knowledge she hasn't done therapy.

Part of my hesitation is that meds might make me sleep better and if I sleep better I can't watch my daughter as much to make sure she is ok.

I also think that part of my hesitation is that I will lose that "functional level of anxiety" that I've always had, that really made it possible for me get things done. It's all I've ever known.  What replaces that? Definitely a lot to think about and consider.

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Kizzie

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Re: Meds -- how helpful? Possible triggers?
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2017, 08:35:28 PM »
How are things going now Rebel with you and with your daughter?  FWIW I am on meds and I function better without the extreme hypervigilance and anxiety  I used to feel.  I think much more clearly without the adrenaline, cortisol, etc streaming through my system constantly so I am able to make better decisions, stay present,  and feel more stable overall.