That’s the way it seems.
Went to see the doc on Monday. He suspects one of the drugs I was taking was actually causing some of my anxiety. Nice. Why would he prescribe it if it’s a known side effect? Because lots of these damn psychotropic drugs can make the problem they’re supposed to treat worse! So now I’m off that drug. He upped the dosage of the other med and switched when I take it from morning to evening. Hard to believe it, but it actually seems to be working. TMS will be on hold for as long as this holds.
I have to be careful about getting too excited that it’s working, though. That chest cold I referred to in my previous post actually turned out to be a nasty case of the flu. The doc told me that my body chemistry is temporarily different due to the flu and it might have an impact on where this winds up. Not likely, but possible. Wouldn’t that be a hoot – it may turn out I need the flu to “feel better”.
I probably won’t be posting for the next couple weeks or so. Lisa and I will be off on vacation.
In case you’re wondering, I wound up on a slightly modified version of the last drug change. Those half days I referred to earlier were a killer. Very high levels of anxiety, so we had to do something. Things seem to be settling in now. Sometimes I wonder if there will ever be any real stability.
A good friend asked me to talk about what tools I use to cope with the depression. For me it depends a lot on the character and severity of the depression. By character I mean, is it depression plus anxiety or solely depression. Anxiety driven depression I treat with Xanax. A single pill usually does the trick. If not, a second one a half hour later has always worked. Not much of my depression is anxiety driven, though.
For “regular” depression my coping mechanisms vary by severity. If the depression is mild to moderate, I find distraction usually does the trick. I’ll read news on the internet, play around on the computer, take a drive, etc. Usually within an hour or so, it passes. For more severe depression I try to go to sleep regardless of the time of day and “sleep it off.” If I can’t get to sleep, I read. Most of my regular depression is mild to moderate, fortunately.
Lupron and Casodex bring their own unique style of depression. Prior to my radiation treatments, their depression always hit very quickly, came out of the blue, and was mild. I readily dealt with it as described above. After the radiation treatments, Casodex caused severe anxiety driven depression. I had a very difficult time controlling it. Xanax eventually did the trick. We didn’t even consider going back on Lupron as it’s a one month minimum shot. Casodex is a pill that is out of the system a couple days after use is discontinued.
My current anti-depression cocktail is working quite well. Because of this, in about two weeks I plan to go back on Casodex. I’m hoping I’ve recovered enough from the radiation and get enough help from the cocktail that instead of severe anxiety driven depression I get mild depression at worst. Fingers crossed.
If others out there would be willing to share their coping mechanisms, please jump in.