Dealing With Psychosis
Dealing with psychosis may be the most difficult symptoms to deal with when we are talking about mental illness and to be honest it is not a lot of fun for the person trying to deal with it either. When I was first diagnosed with depression the proper title was Severe Major Depressive Disorder with Psychotic features which was a bit scary the first time I heard it but not as scary as actually dealing with the psychosis of my illness at the time. In this article we are going to take a closer look at psychosis and what it feels like to lose touch with reality
The definition of Psychosis is the following “a severe mental disorder in which thought and emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality”. Psychosis can affect people suffering from all types of mental health disorders including BiPolar, Schizophrenia and severe cases of Depression among others.
Psychosis Episodes From My Experience
I was driving home after a game of golf with friends. It was a good day and nothing really triggered what was coming next. Somewhere along the drive home I had this intense feeling of doom and I began to drive a little faster. As soon as I reached my house I basically ran up to my room and hid under the blankets. When my wife asked what was going on I told her that death was trying to find me. Needless to say this scared the heck out of her. For the next two hours with my heart pounding out of my chest I was convinced that at any time the Grim Reaper would find me and my life would end. To this day I do not what triggered this psychotic break.
The most common psychotic features I dealt with for a number of years, until they finally figured out the right medication, was voices that came from no where that told me to do all sorts of thing with the majority telling me to end my life. Depression is a hard enough mental health illness to deal with but when you throw in psychosis it reaches a whole new level
Psychosis Experience Brought On By Antidepressants
I went to see my family doctor when I first started to realize that I was losing control of my depression and he prescribed the antidepressant Paxil. Well within a couple of days this particular antidepressant pushed me over the edge and I reached a manic state with added psychotic features that was scary to everyone around me.
To make a long story short I was referred to a psychiatrist and five minutes into the appointment I was sent to the psych ward where I remained for the next three months. In the end after going through an endless series of different medications ranging from antidepressants to anti psychotics to anti anxiety meds to who knows what else they finally figured out the proper drug cocktail and I finally stabilized and checked myself out of the psych ward.
Unfortunately the only real way to treat psychosis and psychotic features is through the use of medication. Counseling and therapy are not going to be helpful when you are walking the thin line of reality and psychosis. When it comes to anti psychotic medication they can be pretty nasty in terms of side effects. There was one whose name escapes me at the moment where you basically gain twenty pounds the second that you fill the prescription. I do not remember the exact amount of weight that I gained over three months but it was close to fifty pounds.
Eventually I found Seroquel which is the medication that I have been taking since 2010 and it has made all the little voices go away and it has been over a decade since the last psychotic break. I still have to deal with the depression of course and chances are I will always have to take medication due to the funny mix of chemicals in my brain but sometimes that is the choice that you have to make when you deal with mental illness on a long term basis