Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Miserable but anti-depressants not working

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 5 Replies
  • Posted By: simmer
  • August 4, 2010
  • 11:21 AM

Basic details:
Mid-30s male, BMI 26, BP borderline normal/high, never smoked, drinking moderate, nothing major in family's health history or mine, reasonable diet but probably not enough exercise.

Symptoms:
Last year diagnosed with depression. Tried 3-4 different anti-depressants but none did any good - in fact made it worse because of the side effects of each one. Gave up after 9 months with consent of doctor. Blood tests (quite a wide battery of tests) normal; also had sex tests because of an itchy penis (turned out to be the soap I was using!), also normal.

Various times in the past I've had ear problems, mainly to do with drainage; I sometimes need irrigating after a heavy cold. Possibly related, my balance is impaired sometimes - last week I took my son on a bouncy castle, did a somersault which I used to do all the time as a trampolinist, and felt decidedly drunk after each somersault (no alcohol).

I used to sing (amateur) but my voice would literally give up after less than half an hour with tickly throat or feeling of a frog in the throat. Saw an ENT specialist, stuck a camera through my nose, couldn't see much wrong, put my on Omezaprole (acid reflux) but 6 months later it's no better.

Also have bouts of IBS, mostly consists of ******g a lot but sometimes I have phases where I go for weeks at a time with a painful abdomen. Eventually it goes away. Biscopan etc doesn't really help.

The worst part is my mood. I used to be easy going, patient, and friendly. Now the smallest thing can put me into a bad mood, and I stay that way all day. I rarely laugh or smile, in fact try to suppress it if I'm in a bad mood. I have little patience for people whether in a good mood or not. I've always been a bit of a loner anyway so maybe I need some space, but it's a bit difficult with a wife and toddler. I'm impatient and have an annoying habit (to me at least) of wiggling my feet or tapping. My mind wanders easily.

I get tired easily, yet it often takes me a while to get to sleep. I can get a good 7-8 hours yet still feel tired (same if I only have 6).

Sex drive is limited to 1-2x per week.

I do have various stresses, nothing major but perhaps the sum of them could be a factor.

So, several symptoms above, perhaps completely unrelated, but listed in case there is any connection. The neurological symptoms do scream "depression" yet nothing worked and I hated them - maybe something else like mood balancers or whatever they're called?

Thanks for any ideas.

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5 Replies:

  • Some things in your post really caught my attention I've always been a bit of a loner anyway so maybe I need some space, have an annoying habit (to me at least) of wiggling my feet or tapping.My mind wanders easilyI get tired easilyyet it often takes me a while to get to sleep All the above are Asperger Syndrome traits. The tapping/wiggling of the feet is a very common repetative body movement that many with Asperger's subconsciously do for self stimulation or do as a calming thing (eg happens even more in response to stress). It's called "Stimming behaviour". Those with Asperger's more easily get mood issues and depression than the Average population...possibly cause life is harder for them then average due to trying to fit in etc. If you do have Asperger's it would be playing a part in how you are. Asperger's people do need more space to relax and wind down. Do you find yourself more clumsy then most people? Only have one or two close friends at a time? Often find it hard to understand jokes? Think in a black and white kind of way? Dont like small talk? Asperger's people are often more sensitive to things then the average person eg soaps.. (I dont know if they tend to higher rate of ear issues too??) I only recently got offically diagnosed by a couple of Aspergers specialists (Im 39 yrs old) ... all my psychologists had missed that i had Asperger's and the therapies I'd been getting werent working. Most will miss Asperger's in adults as by adult most of us have learnt to blend in quite a bit. If you want to know more about this condition.. I suggest the www.wrongplanet.net forums (that is the biggest Asperger site online). I dont know if this is a part of your issue but from those things you said, it well could be and hence a good idea if you look further into this to see if you can rule it out as possibly being so or not. If it is Asperger's.. some lifestyle modifications may help eg realising you do need a lot more time out due to this and hence getting more. Asperger's people often need extra sleep time or they may find they are night owls and be unable to sleep. Also the always thinking which takes place in Asperger's (we spend a lot of time in our heads).. often can make getting to sleep harder.
    taniaaust1 2,267 Replies Flag this Response
  • Do you find yourself more clumsy then most people? Only have one or two close friends at a time? Often find it hard to understand jokes? Think in a black and white kind of way? Dont like small talk? Not clumsy, or at least nobody's told me. I have quite a few close friends though I am shy, the sort of people you can have a beer with and confide in, both sexes. I usually understand jokes well before they've finished being told as I can see the punchline (or whatever) coming. Black and white, perhaps yes. Small talk, yep, get to the point. Asperger's people are often more sensitive to things then the average person eg soaps.. (I dont know if they tend to higher rate of ear issues too??)I don't know whether you mean mentally sensitive or physically sensitive - the former I am, the latter not. I will look into this a lot further. Although I've heard of Asperger's, I've never really known what it was, so I ought to do some reading. Thanks for that.
    simmer 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • I think you do have many symptoms of depression......but I would also see about testing to find out if you may have adult ADD. It doesn't have to mean you are hyper-- most adults with it (and many children) are more the inattentive type. I suggest this because of the foot tapping, lack of patience, mind wandering, etc.. It's something to look into at least. You may have both depression and ADD. As for the meds not really working.....they don't work on everyone. Really, they never worked on me (I used to have Major Depressive Disorder). I found changing the way I think about things, becoming more flexible in my attitude and letting the "small" stuff roll off my back to be the things that allowed me to get over the MDD. My point is....a pill is never going to be the sole solution for depression. There must also be cognitive and behavioral changes-- you have to want to change these things and actively try to change them. A form of therapy called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy really helped me because I'm not one for blaming my past for all of my present moodiness. CBT just teaches ways to deal with the day-to-day stressors in a more productive way. Various times in the past I've had ear problems, mainly to do with drainage; I sometimes need irrigating after a heavy cold. Possibly related, my balance is impaired sometimes - last week I took my son on a bouncy castle, did a somersault which I used to do all the time as a trampolinist, and felt decidedly drunk after each somersault (no alcohol).I used to sing (amateur) but my voice would literally give up after less than half an hour with tickly throat or feeling of a frog in the throat. Saw an ENT specialist, stuck a camera through my nose, couldn't see much wrong, put my on Omezaprole (acid reflux) but 6 months later it's no better.Sounds like an inner-ear issue (would cause the drunk feeling/balance issues). Chronic ear infections can cause this. It can also be something as simple as wax build-up in the ears. Your ENT found no issues with your ears? If you are having ear infections, nose infections or allergies kind of go hand-in-hand with that. Allergies would explain the throat issue (snot running down the back of your throat, tickling your vocal chords and itching/cause a frog-like feeling). In any case, I would think the ear/throat issues are separate from the other issues.Also have bouts of IBS, mostly consists of ******g a lot but sometimes I have phases where I go for weeks at a time with a painful abdomen. Eventually it goes away. Biscopan etc doesn't really help.My IBS (diagnosed by a gastro) went away completely when I improved my diet and got control over my depression. I think the depression has a lot to do with IBS in many cases. So to sum up (sorry for the long post)-- I would recommend addressing the depression with therapy (CBT) or methods other than meds. There are lots of ways to help yourself out of depression-- meds are just one tool and really, if you look at the studies, they don't do better than a placebos (but do tend to cause LOTS of side effects!). Depression is really something you have to actively try to change-- only you can help yourself out of it. I would also look into seeing if you have ADD, but really I think most if not all of your symptoms will go away when you heal your depression. Best wishes to you. It's a hard journey, but so worth it.
    Harmonium 322 Replies Flag this Response
  • Harmonium's post was good.. ADD i didnt think of that, could that be a possibility in your case? ADD would explain some of your symptoms. I also had another thought about the foot tapping and that.. maybe you dont just have depression (or Asperger's or ADD) but maybe you have anxiety as well hence this symptom. Anxiolytics (anti-anxiety) drugs are sometimes used for Anxiety issues. Ask yourself if your issue could be anxiety (on top of the depression). Anxiety may make it harder for you to get to sleep. (your post thou wasnt coming across as someone who was highly anxious). best luck
    taniaaust1 2,267 Replies Flag this Response
  • Harmonious gave the best advice. When we are depressed, there are reasons and we need to improve our problem solving skills. Stress is simply a part of life and we just have got to figure out fast how to best solve problems.It really ticks me off when I see people who are naturally so even tempered lol!Our ways of looking at things can really make a difference though. I wish wish wish I had recognized my similar problems at your age.I am a totally different person now. Your toddler needs a patient dad who deals with stress in a mature way. You will want to go get therapy asap for that reason alone. You do NOT want to look back with regret over the way your child was treated or for the poor example that you were. He/she will end up paying you back for that starting at age 14 and maybe from then on lol!There are a lot of good books out there too as I am sure you know.My most recent good ones were "Flight Plan" by Brian Tracy and "A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle. Good luck : )
    huflungpu 5 Replies Flag this Response
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