Discussions By Condition: Mental conditions

Frustrated, embarassing symptoms...advice needed please!

Posted In: Mental conditions 1 Replies
  • Posted By: flic2702
  • August 7, 2008
  • 07:13 PM

Sorry for the long list but its the best way to describe my feelings.

Below I have listed how I have felt at varying points for the last 2 years. More recently it feels like they are all present at the same time!

Lack of concentration
Lack of energy, motivation
Loss of self confidence, avoiding people so I don’t have to speak to them
Nervousness when talking to people, even friends, for fear of not being able to have a conversation, awkward silences among friends because I can’t think of anything to say, nervous tic when I realise everyones attention is on me, like if i am telling a story

Feeling withdrawn, introverted, not being able to relate to people
Sadness and crying, coming out of nowhere, no trigger, mood swings - high to low very quickly

Getting angry at the smallest things very quickly , for no reason
Not taking pleasure in the things I used to, hobbies feel more like a chore
Memory loss, so much so that I have to make a list everyday before I leave the house so I don’t forget my plans for the day. These lists make it seem that every day is regimented, and if there is too much on my list I worry and stress about getting it all done.

Forgetting what I was saying halfway through a sentence or conversation , completely losing my train of thought, mind just goes completely blank

Easily confused, stupid things like putting something down, going to pick it up and although it’s right in front of me, not being able to see it

Muddling of words, not being able to complete a sentence, having to repeat it a few times to get it right, which happens everyday.

This is badly affecting my work life and social life, for example, I can’t concentrate at work, if I am asked to do something, 2 minutes later I’ve forgotten what it was.
If I’m looking for a job I’ll brush off jobs I could easily do 2 years ago because I have lost confidence in my ability, or it involves something everyday such as making conversation with people.

Relationships seem harder and I find it hard to have conversations with people and meet new people because I don‘t know what to say. People seem to think I don’t care but I just find it hard to show my feelings or pick up on how others are feeling. I come across as rude and arrogant to people when I can’t help the things I do and the way I act. If I do do something that may offend someone I can’t tell that I’ve done it, I can’t seem to pick up on people’s emotions and feelings.

I don’t know what to do, nobody can understand because I can’t explain these feelings to anyone. Its getting to the point now where I’m stuck, I’m just existing and not enjoying life.
I feel like I have dramatised the whole thing by making such a huge list but it’s really started to affect my everyday life and the way I do things.

If anyone can suggest anything for these symptons I would be grateful.

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  • It is difficut to differentiate here between depression, or a form of bipolar disorder, but there are quizzes for these via sections 2, and 10, at http://www.ezy-build.net.nz/~shaneris (also section 1). Ask yourself: "Why do I feel depressed, and when did I first start to feel this way: can I associate this with any recent change in my life?" (if so, it is probably situational depression: counselling, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is indicated). Or, was it a more gradual thing, with no apparent cause? (nutritional deficiencies, hypothyroidism, environmental toxicity, or reactions to some medications, etc., becomes more likely as the cause). Depression: I KNOW, from experience, how difficult it is, but once you drag yourself out of bed, throw on a dressing gown, and have a little time in the morning light, preferably doing easy stretching exercises, then have a shower, a cuppa, and either fish, or scrambled eggs, and possibly bacon for breakfast. These provide a lasting energy boost: no carbohydrates for 2 hrs, or extremely little; a teaspoon of sugar is OK, but Xylitol is preferable, (health food stores) or fruit sugar (fructose, such as "Fruisana", from supermarket sugar aisles) or even a LITTLE honey. Splash cold water on your face, to revive you, as needed. No daytime sleeping; only 8 - 9 hrs at night. Overall though, low to moderate levels of protein suit most people best, with considerably more of the complex carbohydrates, preferably from wholefoods, and a smaller amount of fat, or oil. Antidepressants work quicker than the following; 2 - 6 weeks, but you may have to adjust dosage, or types, whereas St. John's wort is effective for most people, tolerance doesn't develop, and the few side effects don't occur often, and even then are normally not severe. It doesn't cause sleeping problems, or weight change, but usually takes at least 2, and generally 4 - 6 weeks to become effective. A recent, independent German double blind study showed it to be as effective as Sertraline (marketed in the USA as Zoloft: a commonly prescribed antidepressant) in cases of major depression, with far fewer side effects, and those were generally better tolerated, with a lower rate of discontinuation. Unlike antidepressants, where sexual dysfunction is a common side effect, it happens much more rarely with St. John's wort (I have noticed no effect in this area). Remember back to a time when life was full of promise, or a day when you felt particularly good, or possibly excited from a good result. Emotional states are associated with memories, and if it isn't major depression, this method can help. A multidimensional approach to treating depression without medication follows. All except for no. (7.) are safe to use with medication, but not St. John's wort, because of interactions, and it's sensible to check out anything else first with your doctor. (1.) Take 4 Omega 3 fish oil supplements, daily: (certified free of mercury) it is best if consumed with an antioxidant, such as an orange, or grapefruit, or their FRESHLY SQUEEZED juice. If vitamin E is added, it should be certified as being 100% from natural sources, or it may be synthetic: avoid it. Also take a vitamin B complex which is certified as being 100% of natural origin; a deficiency in vitamin B9 (folic acid, or folate) is known to cause depression. Around 30% - 40% of depressed people have low vitamin B12 levels. Depressed females using the contraceptive pill may benefit from vitamin B6 supplements. (2.) Work up slowly to at least 20 minutes minutes of exercise, daily, or 30 - 60 mns, 5 times weekly. Too much exercise can cause stress, which isn't wanted when dealing with depression. (3.) Occupational therapy (keeping busy allows little time for unproductive introspection, and keeps mental activity out of less desirable areas of the brain). (4.) Use daily, one of the relaxation methods in sections 2, 2.c, 2.i, or 11, and/or yoga, Tai Chi, and/or the EFT, in sections 2.q, 2.o, and section 53, at http://www.ezy-build.net.nz/~shaneris whichever works best for you. (5.) Initially, at least, some form of counselling, preferably either Cognitive Behavio(u)ral Therapy, or Rational Emotive Behavio(u)ral Therapy. (6.) Maintain a mood chart, and daily activities schedule, as per page R, in section 2, at ezy build. (7.) As options, if desired, either a known, effective herbal remedy, such as St. John's wort, (the strength varies, but the supplier should be using a standardised hypericin content, so follow the directions) or supplements, such as SAMe, or Inositol (from vitamin and health food stores, some supermarkets, or mail order: view section 55). If 5HTP is used to boost serotonin levels, (which are low in depressed people) it is best taken with a high carbohydrate, minimal protein meal, like pasta with tomato & basil, and avoid protein for 90 minutes, before, and after, to maximise the amount crossing the blood/brain barrier. Also, 80% of people in the Western world have low magnesium levels, and these are known to cause depression & anxiety. Try the magnesium supplement types shown in http://www.real-depression-help.com/ Some of these will be available in pharmacies, or supermarkets. Low levels of calcium, and potassium can also cause depression. Have your blood tested, and correct any deficiencies, preferably through improved nutrition. An improvement can be noticed in as little as a week, if a deficiency is the cause. Also, iodised salt is much preferable to regular salt (one of the treatments in books on depression is iodine drops). Try to imagine, as vividly as possible, a time in the not too distant future, when you have overcome this temporary setback, and things are much better. Most depressive episodes last for around 6 months, which is why treatments should be maintained for at least that long, and preferably 1 - 2 years. Then wean off medication, or herbal remedies, over at least 2 weeks, with medical advice, and see how things go, but I would maintain the other treatments, with the possible exception of therapy. Even then, realise that depression recurs in about 50% of cases: know your early warning signs, and be quick to act at the first hint of it returning. This is a shortened version of the much more comprehensive post, which may be seen on page R, in section 2 of ezy build, above, but to gain full appreciation, it's really best to view the whole of section 2. If you are already taking antidepressants, and want to use the wort, I suggest that you taper off the antidepressant, over at least 2 weeks, with medical advice as to how long to take, before beginning the wort, which is believed to act by increasing the availability of serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, moderately, rather than selectively giving the serotonin levels of the brain a large boost.
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