Recovering from a mood disorder

Get fit for riding.
Kazoo
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Postby Kazoo » Sat Apr 21, 2007 16:46 pm

Not pushing people away is a must (i know i'm guilty of doing that when i'm feeling low)actually having a frank conversation with your nearest and dearest will help as you all then have a better understanding of where you are coming from and can make allowancces when needed.

Wine is made to be drunk, I am drunk......

Am I wine?
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cookewmb
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Postby cookewmb » Sat Apr 21, 2007 17:30 pm

Here's my story. Some of you may remember me from last year. On 20 jan 06 i had a nasty crash where a horse bolted onto main road, pitch black, throwing it down on a poorly lit road---I didn't see the horse as it was too dark---I hit the horse and lost control of car into oncoming traffic---doing a combined speed of 100mph (lucky i'm still here really)! I ended up in A+E for some hours and discharged home in agony no discharge advice and no help what-so-ever. About 2 weeks after this I started getting pains in wrists, then feet and constant pins and needles in both hands. Went to GP who assumed it was just ongoings of crash as did I-put on pain killers and told to come back if no improvement. Week later no improvement and went back to GP who didn't really have a clue what was wrong-so referred me to orthopaedics. Here I had bloods, mri's, xrays etc carried out-nothing major discovered just some changes to bones in left foot ? cause. Went off again with pain---no diagnosis. This went on for several months, during which I got married (best day ever), mum and Dad split up after 35 years of marriage, had to go on sick at work, became severly depressed and started seeing a psychiatric Dr---throughout all this i still had severe pain and no pain relief. Finally 7 months later after a lot of upset, mega depression and a lot of pain ---I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (which i feel was brought on by crash, but can't prove it). A diagnosis was made and medication was prescribed. After being on meds for about 5 months now and only just really coming to terms with my depression i'm finally---thank god---on the road to recovery---something which i never thought would be achieved!!!
Exercise had always been a big thing for me as i used to be in forces so enjoyed running, climbing, cycling and just being YFS. Since my crash I have not been able to do much of anything---but finally just got back in the saddle and loving every minute---I pay though the next day with my pain in wrists and feet but there ain't nobody ever coming inbetween me an my bike again. I'm lucky my hubby loves MTB-he's a star!
I can fully relate to the posts here-and i'm just glad i've found such a class forum!
Thanks a lot fellow mountain bikers and happy riding to you all.
Cookie[:D]

cookewmb
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Postby cookewmb » Sat Apr 21, 2007 17:46 pm


cookewmb
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Postby cookewmb » Sun Apr 22, 2007 08:58 am

Yes, it was---but i'm almost top dog now! Thanks.
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guilliano
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Postby guilliano » Wed Apr 25, 2007 12:06 pm

3rd councilling session today. Hard work, involved going back over the last year step by step, through my first panic attack, through how I felt about work via my first conversations with Kazoo. Ended up in floods of tears (still feeling tearful now) when talking about my mum dieing and other things surrounding that), failing in trying to start up my own charity last year and how I feel about myself personally and professionally. I feel like absolute crap right now, but actually feel like I've made a breakthrough. I'm being referred as a possible for berievement councilling, but will continue with CBT as well. I've been warned to expect a possible regression before things start getting better. This scares the hell out of me, but I have to keep my thoughts on the long term goal of recovery. I may go into more depth about what is going on with me in the near future, but for now I'll just let you know that I'm nowhopeful of getting to the bottom of my depression and making a full recovery rather than just "coping" with it and getting back into my life as it was.

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Marky Mark.
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Postby Marky Mark. » Wed Apr 25, 2007 12:13 pm

Mate, you have my full respect and I take my hat off to you, it takes more balls to confront things than it does to bury it all away, it shows real strength of character and I know that I am not alone in saying that I'm rooting for ya and I know that you'll come through the other side of and make a full recovery.

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I'll get some better ones soon! Photos that is, another bike will mean divorce.

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jackfeeder
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Postby jackfeeder » Sat May 26, 2007 22:42 pm

Just to let you guys know that things are looking up at last, bike wise and lifewise.
Ordered a Marin Nail trail through cyclescheme and getting excited about getting back on a bike, especially this shiny new one. Going to go back for some more counselling but trying to take positive steps to keep my moods up. Having a few good days at the moment, hopefully they will continue and become more frequent.
I hope everyone else on here is feeling more positive as well.
See you on the trails soon!

guilliano
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Postby guilliano » Sun May 27, 2007 14:29 pm

I actually forgot this thread existed.

I've been having a bit of a downer over the last couple of weeks. Either unable to sleep or sleeping too much, no in-between. Feeling very self conscious and insecure and not been out on the bike, despite all my good plans, due to feeling panicky when I do go out. May just be that stupid irrational side of my mind cutting in again now that I am trying to find a new job, and telling me that no-one is going to employ someone who's been off sick for so long.

So far the councilling has brought a few things to light though, and at least now I know (or seem to) what has brought on the depression. However it also seems to have been going on a lot longer than the 6 months I've been off (couple of years at least, it just reached breaking point). I am trying to work through things now, and getting a new job is a big key for me to get me back into the "real world" and back in a routine. I know that it is going to be a really long slog, but now the only one that can help me is me. Some things work and make me feel better, some things just need more time, but thankfully I now know what I need to do and there is no pressure in terms of timescales, it's just one step at a time.

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CURWENATOR
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Postby CURWENATOR » Sun May 27, 2007 18:53 pm

exercise is good because it increases serotonin levels (happy chemical) in the brain and endorphins which give you energy! plus fresh country air and enjoyment of a ride is only going to have a positive effect both mentally and physically!

you'll find alot of people who train and exercise religiously do it simply to counter depressive moods

Eagles sore but weasels don't get caught in jet engines....

Aux1
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Postby Aux1 » Tue May 29, 2007 08:20 am

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by guilliano</i>

I actually forgot this thread existed.

I've been having a bit of a downer over the last couple of weeks. Either unable to sleep or sleeping too much, no in-between. Feeling very self conscious and insecure and not been out on the bike, despite all my good plans, due to feeling panicky when I do go out. May just be that stupid irrational side of my mind cutting in again now that I am trying to find a new job, and telling me that no-one is going to employ someone who's been off sick for so long.

So far the councilling has brought a few things to light though, and at least now I know (or seem to) what has brought on the depression. However it also seems to have been going on a lot longer than the 6 months I've been off (couple of years at least, it just reached breaking point). I am trying to work through things now, and getting a new job is a big key for me to get me back into the "real world" and back in a routine. I know that it is going to be a really long slog, but now the only one that can help me is me. Some things work and make me feel better, some things just need more time, but thankfully I now know what I need to do and there is no pressure in terms of timescales, it's just one step at a time.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/guilliano/
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Heh, I felt panicky at the beginning too, like, "I'm going to lose consciousness", and "what if something happens", tried to nail that problem, thought about it and then I figured out something WILL happen sooner or later, I'll be a goner, bite the dust, get old and die whether I'm anxious and depressed or not, the moment in the panic attack when you think you'll die and it gets sooo freaking scary WILL actually happen one day and you will die. Damn, how do you cope with that? There's no ambulance that will get there in time, there will be no medicine, friends and family won't be able to help and you will die. And thinking about those things when you actually experience that fear is really different than doing it just like that in some moments and forgetting about it when the next thing occupies your attention. It's the absolute terror. I looked for consolation in religion but it looked like I couldn't really believe in those things now when it got really serious, and I lived in that state of terror for a few weeks, like an empty shell, but then suddenly, in one day, I remembered it, somehow it didn't hurt as much, that day I actually went for a walk (there was light rain, green forest, mist, fresh air and me) and felt little tiny drops of normalcy again, looked at the trees and leaves, though about if someone created all that and me too, and that day it started to make real sense again, I could believe life goes on after death and I could explain that with reason and everything, did a lot of thinking, it took months to calm the fears but the moment when I started to have faith happened in a single day and the journey to recovery started again. That's how I conquered panic and fear, there were times when I felt like the next attack is coming but I just ignored it and had none take me over since. I could prove to myself that I'm healthy and can take a lot and climb mountains, and even if something bad happens I know God makes it all good for your soul in due time if you hang on. Sorry guys for bringing in religion again, but that's the thing that made me enjoy life, work, go out with girls, ride my bike and have no fear, people saw me being like a ghost before and now they're surprised how I can make them be positive... It worked for me, with visible results, against such a dreaded and hard-to-treat condition. So I pretty much guess that proves it for me, that He exists and that life is actually designed to go on forever and always be interesting, meaningful and fruitful, and never get boring or empty, even in eternity. And yes, we'll have mountain bikes in heaven too! [:D]

So, in effect, the worst and scariest thing that ever happened to me is proving to be the biggest blessing in disguise. What if something really bad happens on the outside? God can make wonders inside the soul, I saw that on my own self, so next time I have a really hard time, it will help me to endure patiently and reap the true treasure afterwards. Sorry again for getting into that again, the last time we argued about religion it wasn't all that rosy and stuff [:D] but it works for me, that was my cure, honestly... if you can find your own cure that really works, I'll be happy for you [:)]

Back to the point, I still do have some problems, some "conversive" (my psychiatrist calls it that way) chest pains, some feelings of uneasyness, but they seem to be diminishng. They can happen when I ride alone on an unknown trail and am not quite sure where the place I wanted to go to is. I mean, anybody would feel dissatisfied but I feel uneasy and uncomfortable too, but it's just the anxiety talking... I feel better now than when I started this topic. I'm down to 2 xanaxes a day instead of 3, and I sometimes even forget to take them so that's pretty good too! The recovery goes slow, I generally notice an improvement in monthly steps, but I think I'll be 100% shiny and new after the summer vacation because that kinda speeds the good things up a bit! [:)]

Uhh, so I guess that's it. I spilled my inner self here. Wasn't that hard though! [:D]

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parkpre
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Postby parkpre » Fri Jun 01, 2007 21:07 pm

Get a book called "Stop Thinking and Start Living" by Richard Carlson- it really helped me a few years back when I had major problems with stress/depression. In addition, get yourself some "VegEPA"- very high strength omega 3 fish oil pills- I've been on them for about 12 months and have felt musch better since (a lack of omega 3 does your brain no good whatsoever)- By the way you'll need to google this brand name- pretty sure its mail order only.

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punkypossum
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Postby punkypossum » Mon Jun 04, 2007 23:13 pm

I got really depressed earlier this year, a whole list of things such as hating my job, financial problems, relationship breakdown, etc. all got on top of me. Didn't realise how bad it was at the time till I went to the doctors for something totally different and ended up having a full blown panic attack and cryfest in the surgery. Unfortunately the doctor I saw wasn't my usual GP, she managed to make me feel rather stupid and as we were getting to the end of my allocated 10min slot, sent me away with some anti-depressants and told me she would stick me on the nhs waiting list for cbt (as I have always suffered from anxiety quite badly), but told me this could take years.

The anti-depressants did not help at all, in fact the side effects made me feel worse, so I went back to see my normal doctor who told me she was fine with me coming off them as they clearly weren't working for me. She advised me to get some physical exercise and counselling. Funnily enough I'm actually training to be a counsellor myself and the person development at college as well as through seeing clients and having my own person-centred counselling have really helped (so has jumping on the bike and just going out for a ride and let the wind blow all the black stuff out of your head).

But as for nhs counselling, like people said before there are usually free (or very cheap alternatives). The organisation I'm doing my placement with for example is run as a charity and works on a voluntary donations basis. We manage to see clients with an average waiting time of only 3 weeks which is loads shorter than the NHS and most of them pay nothing or very little (and about 60% have been referred by their GPs who realise that they would have to wait too long for nhs counselling). I think finding CBT for free is a bit harder, most of what we do is person-centred, but even then, there are usually alternatives to the nhs in most towns. Checking out leaflets at gp surgeries or ringing up community centres or even places like surestart, etc. is well worth it as a lot of them either offer it themselves or can tell you where to go.

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punkypossum
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Postby punkypossum » Mon Jun 04, 2007 23:36 pm

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by supersonic</i>

Doctors can be very quick to hand out the anti depressants, but for me they have made a big big difference. Of course it has to be in conjunction with lifestyle changes, and I still need to see a counsellor and ME specialist, but they work for some. They often take a few weeks to kick in though. I find rather than just make you feel better, they help you <i>want</i> to get better and go out and do stuff. I had my dose increased in March, and the difference has been remarkable.

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Yeah, definitely. I wasn't trying to say that anti-depressants are useless, they certainly have their place and can be a life-line. I know a lot of people they work for, although it can be a bit hit and miss to find one that suits you. But personally I was better off once I had come off them and, like you said, sometimes doctors are very quick to hand them out, and often it seems to be mainly to get rid of you, when listening to their patients would probably do a lot more good.


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guilliano
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Postby guilliano » Tue Jun 05, 2007 08:07 am

I have my last of 7 CBT sessions tomorrow and I'm finding it is helping me to regain some part of a normal lifestyle, but the problem is it hasn't been in conjunction with "normal" councilling, meaning I still haven't really got to the bottom of what made me depressed in the first place. I had a major breakdown at the start of my illness where I just ran away from everything for a week, then when I came back I just fell apart mentally and emotionally. I can't go back to my current job, but financially can't afford to just up and leave it, so this burden sort of just hangs there prolonging everything even more.

Anti-depressants are OK in that they can help you concentrate and help you get a more natural sleep pattern, but they don't cure anything and I do find doctors are very quick to hand them out as to be honest there isn't much more they can do.

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