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Everything posted by Geek

  1. My wisdom teeth were pulled when I was a teenager - by an oral surgeon, not my dentist or orthodontist. My mouth isn't big enough for my other teeth, so getting the wisdom teeth out made a lot of sense. I had a palate expander as a child and even with that painful appliance, my right lateral incisor came in behind the canine. I don't remember, but it may have been pulled in the same procedure as the wisdom teeth.
  2. Both my pdoc and tdoc use https://doxy.me/ which is a free, HIPAA-compliant telemedicine site. Tech-wise it's okay. I appreciate that I didn't have to download any software or create a login. They sent me a personalized URL. I went to the URL a couple minutes before my appointment, and there's kind of a "waiting room" - and it let them know I was there. When they were ready, they switched things on. The picture was clear and so was the audio, little to no lag. I wore a headset for the sessions, so that the mic wouldn't pick up the audio, but neither of them did that so the software seems to be smart enough to not require a headset. So... tech-wise, it's okay. I hate it though. They both wear glasses when they're doing this, I suppose because they need readers to see the screens - but they don't normally wear glasses in session. Also, these glasses then show reflections of the screens or windows or whatever so it's even harder to see their eyes. I hate that I can't see their whole body. I rarely look at my tdoc's face (I tend to study her shoes), but now there's no choice. And when I try to talk about something hard... I can't feel them in the room. So I'm still alone, and that sucks.
  3. @Catnapper, I am about to start ECT this week, hopefully, for the second time. I live alone too. I intend to get at least the first 6-ish treatments (about 2 weeks) while inpatient. When I did this 4 years ago, I was discharged after 10 days into the care of some friends who then promptly left me alone for the weekend. I was so overwhelmed with a poor memory and self care I went back and got re-admitted for the remainder of the index treatment. Which is not to say your experience will be the same, but don’t be afraid to go IP. It’s a safety thing, if you don’t have the social supports. They can get insurance to cover it because of that. The other thing is even if it has memory impacts like that, the worst will get better very quickly as you reduce the frequency of the treatments. My Pdoc would say, to your fears, that ECT is by far the most effective treatment and the fastest treatment for treatment resistant depression. There’s also some evidence that it can cause some changes that improve response to medications.
  4. Keep lots of lists and use alarms on your phone. A list on the fridge saying what and when you last ate. An alarm (ideally labelled) for when to take meds and which ones. Start doing these things now to develop the discipline to actually use them and not brush off with “in a minute”. Lists are useful because you (or others) can reference them later and see that you did (or didn't) eat, etc. Do you have someone you could call or text with briefly every day? To check in with, to orient you, etc. Also to help you I couldn’t remember what I did the day before. It was worst when I was getting more frequent treatments (2-3x/week). Keeping a journal of how you're feeling and when will be helpful to direct treatment. You won't remember, so write it down. If you have appointments with other doctors (e.g. your outpatient pdoc) while you're getting the index treatment, take a friend and a notebook. Write everything down. Expect to sleep most of the day of treatment. If you have breathing issues and use a rescue inhaler, you may want to use it prior to treatment. That helped me a lot. If you have had anesthetic before, let the docs know what your experience of it was. For example, I got zofran in my IV and a painkiller, because even the small amount of anesthesia was enough to get me vomiting and/or leave me with a horrid headache. Adding this to the IV means it's already working when you wake up. During prep, when they tell you to go pee - make sure you really do empty your bladder. Otherwise you'll be sad later It's really scary. It's okay to be scared. Let the nurses and doctors know that you're scared - even if you're in a kind of assembly line (as is typical at the hospital I had treatments at), they're still caring people. My first time I was so scared I was nearly in tears but then the nice nurse who prepped me came in and held my hand while they put me out.
  5. Weekly pill boxes for each time of day. I fill them on Thursday nights because I see my pdoc on Friday. If I need a refill, I know then. My pharmacy is in the same building as pdoc's office. I currently take meds 4x/day. I try to tie the dosing to routine times. Getting up (take when I use the bathroom after waking in the morning), going to bed, lunch time and when I get home from work. The middle doses are harder to manage with a flexible schedule. I use an alarm on my phone to make sure they happen at the same time every day, no matter if I'm working or not. Like someone else, I hit snooze if I can't take them right then. It takes discipline to not dismiss the alarm. It's worth it. I still miss my meds sometimes. The pill boxes let me know if that's why I feel poorly - or, conversely, if it's not why I feel poorly.
  6. Yup! They're solidly normal I saw that doc later... after a full hour with her, answering really uncomfortable questions, she told me that I tick all the boxes and have all the thought processes of an anorexic, except for the weight part. She wanted to do some metabolic testing to see what's going on... but she was out of network and I had no money. So we still don't know what's going on. The nutritionist she wanted me to see was similarly expensive, and I wasn't ready to do the work so... *shrug* maybe one day. I've also since been diagnosed with PCOS, which may also contribute to difficulty losing weight. My gdoc wants me to try a hormonal IUD for that. I have texture issues with some foods, so I get that in a way. Also... when we met up I will admit I thought some of how you were talking about (or maybe thinking about) food sounded possibly ED? But I'm no expert. I know it's hard to find the balance. Although my balance must include steak
  7. Traditionally, we Canucks would say that as "sorry, eh?"
  8. I'll have a big dry erase calendar that shows the whole year. It will get hung on my cube wall. Branded with the logo of the company I work for. I'll mark it up with days I'm off, and major days relating to my project(s). Do you continue any <insert holiday of your choice> traditions from your childhood and what are they?
  9. My new gdoc recently recommended I consider a hormonal IUD. She says it would help with my PCOS-related irregular periods - and that lots of people with them end up with no period. I can't say I'm opposed to no period. I also get pretty bad PMDD some months, so that would be helpful too I guess? I don't need birth control. But... shrug. Does anyone have one of these? The Planned Parenthood website listed like 4 different ones that last anywhere from 3-7 years. How do you choose? Did it hurt getting it placed? I am really not excited about shoving something up my cervix. I have trouble with just a speculum. 😓
  10. I have recently had this conversation with my Tdoc! A couple of times. She would say this: Thinking about what your Tdoc would say or do or recommend in a given situation is called internalizing them, and it's the goal/a good thing. Thinking about your Tdoc between sessions in general - wanting to see him, tell him about how things are going - that's normal too. Your Tdoc is an important part of your life. Thinking about wanting to hang out with your Tdoc as friends, wanting your Tdoc to be your parent, and/or feeling sexually attracted to your Tdoc is also normal. There's nothing wrong with the thoughts, and again, kind of indicate you're making progress in some ways. It only becomes inappropriate if you or he act on those thoughts. It's a good idea to try to talk about these thoughts with your Tdoc, to address/analyze the unmet need behind them.
  11. Wondering how you’re doing. Like @jarn I take gabapentin for anxiety. It does seem to help, mostly with the kind of constant underlying panic. I take 600mg at breakfast & lunch, then 1200mg when I get home from work (so it can help reduce post-work anxiety enough to sleep).
  12. Early 30s here. Never been in a relationship. I want to be - desperately, sometimes. But depression, social anxiety, and almost non-existent self esteem get in the way. I can't even figure out how to do face-to-face friendships, so... No advice. Just commiseration.
  13. I've been taking gabapentin for anxiety for a little while. I titrated up to 600mg 2x/day (breakfast & lunch), and 1200mg when I get home from work in the evenings. The effect, for me, is subtle. But I do have less overwhelming anxiety on a daily basis and I have an easier time settling down for sleep at night. Less dread about the upcoming day.
  14. Cheese - what if they can help? What if they can get the messages from the universe to tone down? Or confirm to husband how bad is bad? Worried about you. Phones suck, I totally agree. But it sounds like you're in a lot of pain and overwhelmed and maybe you can try to pull together just a few seconds of being really brave to initiate the phone call that might help change things.
  15. jarn, it sounds like for all that he's conservative, your new pdoc is responsive and that's good. I'm really glad you have Toby, too. Happy thanksgiving. Keep us updated.
  16. It is my opinion that the French line is what really makes the joke... I mean, it's funny without it, but with it, it's true.
  17. My experience is different. I take stims for ADHD. I have been taking stims for over ten years, and, after finding an adequate dose, the only reason I've changed doses was because of other changes to my med cocktail (stop Vyvanse to take MAOI, for example). I have not had much tolerance build-up at all with true stims like Vyvanse or Ritalin (Strattera was different). Additionally - I do not do med holidays. I want to be able to focus in the evenings, on weekends and on holidays - not just when I'm at work. It makes such a difference to my mood to be able to focus. I've never understood not giving these meds every day. I may find the ADHD more disruptive than some people, I suppose. I want to say that I've heard that my experience of limited or no tolerance effect is consistent with an accurate ADHD diagnosis - that the way it effects those with ADHD is much different than other people, and tolerance is not an issue (or is less of an issue). I don't have a source on that though, so take it with a handful of salt.
  18. Definitely stimulating, but not in a way that helped my ADHD. It just confirmed my need for a sleep aid (and increased dose of that). At 300mg, I started getting daily headaches bordering on migraines. I only managed that for about a week.
  19. I had no friends in public school. There were a few people I met online, in a place similar to CB... but we grew apart when it came time to go to university. They went to private liberal arts schools. I was overcome by depression and isolated myself. I went to a small state school and got an engineering degree. I had some friends at university - a couple of guys I would meet with to do homework, primarily. Not people I was very close with though, and I don't know where they're at now. I'm a mechanical engineer, and a project engineer. I run the mechanical design and engineering portion of a project, and provide technical/field support during the manufacturing, construction and commissioning phases. I could never be a project manager... but I do a lot for them. In many ways I am the right arm for them - they do higher level coordination, but I get involved in solving the everyday problems. The project I'm assigned to is actually under construction in my city, which is highly unusual - my company has projects all over North America and Europe. It's just coincidence, really, that this project is in my city - though it is why it was assigned to someone from my office. As a result of its proximity (about 20 min drive from the office) I am expected to have greater than usual contact with the field. I have been instructed to schedule visits every other week, for 2-4 hours at a shot. The PM is not out of my office/city, so I will be doing more of their job simply due to proximity. In my field (or the industry in which I work), individual contributors do no design work. They simply do drafting - they create installation drawings from 3D models created by my team. It is very dull - no critical thinking required and highly detail oriented. I find it torturous to do. I do take stims. I have ADHD and the stims make a big difference in my ability to focus. Unfortunately, the Emsam I'm currently taking interacts with Vyvanse. My pdoc is letting me try some anyway - 20mg dose right now. Enough that I don't get much sleep... but not enough to help my focus. I am scared to leave my current city. At least here I have a few people I know. My chosen family, my tdoc and my pdoc. If I leave here - whether to return to Canada, or out to the UK where my brother is... I have nobody, or almost nobody. My brother is not living in a big city, and I doubt I could get work where he lives. He commutes hours each day to the big city where he works (managing software developers). I cannot live or even temporarily stay with my brother - I am very allergic to cats, and they have 3. I'm just... trapped. I don't know how to stop and be okay. I'm not sure it's possible. I want to ask my pdoc to dope me up so I stop caring. Load me up on seroquel, zyprexa... haldol... I'd rather be a zombie than this.
  20. I didn't qualify either - too high functioning, apparently. My doctors and medical history must be lying about my MI...
  21. I have no friends in Canada (barring a couple of CB-ers I've met once). I was a loser in high school (and middle school, and elementary school). I know nobody who is not connected to my parents. My brother and his fiancee were it, and he moved to the UK two months ago (she moved a year ago for school). I have nowhere to go except my parent's or a shelter. I have never worked in Canada except as a minor. I don't know if I would qualify for disability benefits it's possible I would, because of agreements between Canada and the US, but even if I did... as we all know, those are never much. I do know that it would be 90 days after moving back before I would qualify for public health care. I know wait lists for psychiatrists are 1 year or more. I know therapy is not covered in the public system. At the moment, amazingly, no one is upset with the quality of my work. But the stress, the pressure, the expectations... I nearly cried at work yesterday in front of multiple people (only one of whom is my supervisor, and I was not being scolded or berated or anything). No matter how hard I try, I can't get out of there after only 8 hours. It was a full hour later today than I said I'd stay from the moment I walked in. I manage less experienced engineers in order to run projects. Doing their job I would be bored out of my mind. Doing my job, the pressure is too great. I don't know how to find an in-between. I have been at this company for 14 months. I was told this would be better than my last place, I was told that they don't want us working OT. When I have a project assigned, it's been very unusual to not work OT. On the plus side, they do pay me (straight time) for the hours, despite my being salaried. It's not worth it though. Outside of work, I am no better. Just as depressed. Just as fucked up. I can't (or won't?) properly care for myself, my apartment or my dog. I stare at the wall, or I sleep. When I think about work, I panic and meltdown. Everything else just... I disengage. I saw my pdoc at lunch today. She either doesn't believe me or doesn't know what to do. She doesn't seem worried. I wasn't doing very well at answering her questions. Sat there staring at the floor or the wall as I try to tell her that I can't keep going. That the long weekend was horrible, that work costs me more energy than I have. That I can't keep this up. She asked if I had self-harmed in the last week, and if it helped. I said that at least I could breathe afterward. She just nodded. I called my tdoc one night this week. I'm supposed to practice good self care and have compassion for myself. She said in my session on Tuesday that maybe the reason meds don't help much is because my depression is less chemical than "intra-psychic". Doesn't that mean that it's my fault then? If I were trying hard enough, doing the right things, it would be... better. Tolerable, perhaps. I am weak for not making myself... function more. I can't have compassion for myself. I know she disagrees, and I know she would point out that I have compassion for people of all life situations. But it's different when it's me. And now it's another weekend. Not a long one, for better or worse. But still two days of no people, no distractions, no nothing. And then it will be back to work. How do you keep going? Or, why bother keeping going? I'm sorry for the essay. I'm sorry for wasting your time and attention and everything. I'm a selfish, attention-seeking prick.
  22. I had a horrible day at work. It was bad and yet, it was par for the course. I can't do my job. I can't handle the pressure. I'm such a failure and a fuckup. Due to <<reasons>> I cannot get disability in the US, where I currently live. I cannot work part-time. I have limited options for finding new work -> please, just trust me that US immigration law is fucked up and there's only so much I can do. I refuse to return to Canada and live with my parents. My brother, who was the only good reason to go back to where I grew up, moved to the UK. I am socially isolated and I can't get any kind of grip on this depression enough to try to work on the increasingly debilitating social anxiety. It's not that I want or need a lot of people in my life, but right now I have very few people and it's not enough. I really think I'm done. There's no quick answer. I can't even take time off work because of the status of the project I'm in charge of. But if I did take time off... what the fuck do I do? I can't, at that point, seem to make myself get out of bed and I just end up lost in my head and swimming in the pain of just being. When work is less bad, it is usually a distraction. I can't live or work to my full "potential". I'm just this gigantic failure.
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