Need Help Badly

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Hello, I’m 20 years old just had my first baby and I’ve been struggling what i thought was depression and severe anxiety since I was 12. I’ve tried every depression medication was on medication to help me sleep (which is another issue) and for my anxiety and nothing has seemed to work for me. I stopped talking all medication when i was 17 and shortly after stated medicating myself. I did this for about 2 years and stopped completely on my own then found out i was pregnant. I then got on depression medication again because i did not want to live that life style anymore. I really don’t believe depression is my problem i don’t want to harm myself or anything like that i’m more manic then anything and you can never tell which way i’m going to be that day or that hour even. Sometimes i’ll be fine for days other times it’s only hours you never know, so when i’m at my high and everythings fine i know that the low is going to follow and that frustrates me. My anxiety is very bad and i have attacks even when i’m laying down to sleep. My heart will pound my vision will shake, my chest will hurt, and i’ll feel as though i have a lump in my throat. Theres no reason for this to happen to me when all i’m doing is sleeping. When I’m going somewhere i’ve never been or going to be around alot of people it gets very bad as well and i usually get diarrhea with all those symptoms. I don’t want to live like this anymore I went and tried to get in with my dr. to try and get on a medication that’s right for me and unfortunately i can’t been seen till the 15 of july. I can’t wait that long I try to be as normal as i can for i’m the only one taking care of my 8 week old son right now. I’m able to function enough to take care of him. I’m not sure what i need to do to get in with someone faster to start me on the right medication. Could you please tell me what your opinion is on my condition and how i could go about gettting help faster. I live in florida by the way.

A. The symptoms you have described including: heart palpitations, shakiness, chest pains, feeling as though you have a lump in your throat, severe anxiety, and diarrhea seem consistent with a panic attack or panic disorder. Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder.

Another possibility is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS is a medical condition commonly associated with stress and anxiety. You also reported having a history of depression and possibly mania, a symptom of bipolar disorder.

It is difficult to provide an accurate diagnosis over the Internet. My recommendation is to have both a psychiatric evaluation and a medical evaluation. The latter is important to rule out the presence of physical health problems.

You have an appointment to see a doctor but you can’t be seen until July 15th. You did not specify which type of doctor you plan to see. If you would like to be seen sooner, call the doctor’s office and inform them of your concerns. You could also make an appointment with a different doctor. A different doctor might be able to better accommodate your needs.

I would also recommend making an appointment with a mental health professional. This could be with a psychiatrist or a therapist, or both. Psychiatrists can prescribe medication but therapists cannot. A therapist can provide talk therapy. If you have not tried talk therapy, you should. Medication alone is often not a comprehensive approach to treatment. In most cases, treatment for mental health disorders requires both therapy and medication. I hope this answer helps you to decide how best to proceed. I wish you the best of luck. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 2 Jul 2011

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2011). Need Help Badly. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 2, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/07/02/need-help-badly/