Joined March 2008

Dayonda … “Dandy” / We’re cat people, living in the US Pacific Northwest. I’m a teacher… with...

Bad Medicine caused DEPRESSION

In the couple of days after Wooly died I went to a Neurologist, who read but didn’t think about the current meds I take when he prescribed something to calm the nerves that makes my feet and legs kick and bicycle when I’m trying to go to sleep at night. I read the possible side effects, and they were not very nice.

I take a few medications (meds) that are supposed to help me stay out of depression (bipolar, here), as well as some Over the Counter (OTC) meds for allergies such as Benadryl, Zyrtec. These work by calming the nervous system so that it doesn’t react so strongly to the allergen, and by causing my body not to produce the histamine that’s not produced in people without allergies.

In addition, I routinely take an ovoid pain med. This “depresses the central nervous system” (CNS), that is, slows down and “calms” the pain receptors, and helps keep them from transferring pain signals up to the brain.

The recurring theme here is “depress”, they depress the nervous system, and they all depress me each in their own way, and each adding their own bit to the mix. The new med added its bit to the pot, and I not only noticed that as time went out from Wooly’s passing, I became less and less in control of my grief. This, I knew, wasn’t the way grief worked; after all, I’ve lost friends, and my parents. I know a bit about grief.

But, when I had the thought, once and one time only, that now that Wooly was gone there really wasn’t anything I should reasonably do but join him, I pushed that thought away, and stopped the meds. Next day I contacted my own primary medical practitioner regarding the problem this other doc’s meds had apparently caused,

It was a “good” medication he wrote for, my doc (Julie) told me, “so what’s the problem, I wonder?” We read through my “med list” which I have printed out so that I have it with me everywhere I go, all the time. Finally, she asked me if I was still taking the Benadryl. “Yes,” I was. In addition, the other allergy meds? “Those too.”

Tapping her foot, she said, “I think we’ve found the problem, then!” And cautioned me to just go off the OTC allergy meds, and stick with the one she had prescribed for me, which worked differently than the two I’d been taking on my own. “Sniffle if you have to, but stop taking them. They don’t do well together at all, as you’ve found out.”

From then on I began to feel better… better every day. Not back yet, because there’s stuff in my system I still have to sweat (and pee) out, but I’m drinking about 4 litres of water a day, and more if I can get it down myself. Things should return to normal quite soon. (Have to cut back on caffeine, too. It dehydrates very efficiently, just what none of us needs.)

BTW, if you take a medication that makes you itch, and your doc says to take Benadryl or some allergy med, talk to your pharmacist. This is a sign of an allergy to the medication, and it should be changed. I could go into anaphylactic shock from something like that, where my throat, mouth, tongue swell, and I can’t bet a breath in past them. I can die if not treated by emergency technicians. I can’t drive or have somebody drive me to a hospital in such a case because I could die on the way. It’s an ambulance thing. Air ambulance (helicopter) if I were out in the wilds and it would take more than a few minutes to get me to hospital by car.

My cats’ vet told me to read a book called YOURE NOT SICK, YOU’RE JUST THIRSTY, and I’m going to go on a hunt for it in a discount Site, maybe Amazon has it.

Meanwhile, as I nursed cats that were sick almost a month ago, I got myself (and hubby) back on a ‘graveyard shift’ where I come awake about 10pm, and we go to sleep about 5am. Not conducive to nice, nondepressed behavior.

So, things to possibly glean from this rambling:
Write down your medications, vitamins, and ‘natural’ or herbal meds, including the strength (mg), dosing schedule (sig) such as one tablet by mouth every six hours, and what the med is for. If you don’t know, ask the doc you got it from. (A phone call should do.)
… Entitle this list like mine, which says, MEDS for DANDY STRIBLING CORRECT AS OF …. DATE…
…print this list out and carry a copy with you in your wallet or purse everywhere and everywhen you go, keep another at home, and if you have a person living with you in your home (my hubby) as well as day help (our caregiver), they should all have an up to date list of medications. If you pharmacy has ‘hard copy’ records, fax or take in a copy to them, too. NOTE: If one med or two change, line them out with a pen, write the date and reason the med/s were stopped.)

Read the information that comes with your medication. If it’s not included or if it’s too complicated, “google it”. Make notes and memorize meds and reasons you take them even though you’ve listed them on your MED LIST.

Be aware of the common side effects that indicate an allergic reaction. “google” that, too: common indications of allergic reactions to medications.

Be aware of your own conditions: I’m bipolar, ADHD, and a few other things they threw into the pack when they kicked me down the chute on my way to be born.

Fax updated MED LISTS to your doctor/s and dentist, and if you’re in hospital or Emergency Room/Department, fax to their RECORDS DEPT, too. Don’t forget to put in the new date!!! Take one with you when you’re admitted to hospital for illness, voluntary surgery, whatever reason.

You’re in charge of your medications and of your body. Doctors, dentists; they’re here to help us as we notice problems or curious situations in our daily life, including in our daily life.

I repeat, know what your meds are for. For instance, I take Depakote as a mood leveler. If I don’t have that written down on my MED LIST as being for my BIPOLAR DISORDER, they’ll think I have an epileptic type of disorder, wrong diagnoses will be written into my records, and I’ll have more problems than I do now. (I don’t trust them to read the list properly, either; I read it with them and make comments as we go along. They’re nurses or even technicians who take my information, with no drug training at all. I know more than they do, and that’s the system, so I live with it by educating myself.

Well, I haven’t proof read this… I can never proof my own stuff right away. So I hope it makes sense!

Best to you and yours!
17 Oct 2011

P.S.: I seldom use the search engine named Google because they and all but one of the other search engines only list what is currently most popular, and what outfits pay them to be listed by them.
“”: is the only one that lists absolutely every instance of the keywords or phrases that you typed into the search box. If you’re an internet old timer, you may remember the search engine called ALTA VISTA. Same engine, upgraded and a few new names along the way. So that’s why I don’t “google”.

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