Getting Help without Insurance

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia at age 15 but the doctors at the mental hospital did not even bother to look into the problem very well they just diagnosed me after my 2nd admission because i was hearing voices and seeing demons in the dark. Now im 19 years old and its gotten a lot worse but its not just paranoia and hallucinations anymore now i also seem to have hard time understanding things i could be told one thing and i will understand it all wrong and by the next week i will have completely forgot it and i have extremely hard time learning.I also cant seem to remember anything about my own life recently i started having visions of my past and not being sure if its real or not i ask mother and she verifies that it did happen exactly how i saw it so is my memory returning and why in visions? I now remember i always had this memory problem since a child but not to such a severe extent also showed many of the childhood schizophrenia symptoms but everyone always just passed it off as normal child behavior so i never got the treatment that could of prevented this.I seem to do unusual things like repeat a series of movements over and over completely unaware of it while its going on until i finally realize what i’m doing and stop or i will just begin to repeat weird sounds out loud over and over for absolutely no reason then stop and carry on like nothing happen until days later i’ll realize what i did.And i have these delusions that seem so real i jump from delusion to delusion from thinking im being watched by everyone in the world threw cameras in home and being listened to threw bugs in my phones and t.v, thinking tv shows are based on my life thinking music artist music is based on me or made to send me a secret message, Or thinking im the devils son and its my rightful place to rule the underworld and because i’m his son i have been given the gift of telepathy this ones hard for me because i will hear voices of loved ones talking to me as if i really am talking to them they have their personality and everything so i believe i have this unique power no one has because i’m the devils son. its all so real it has me left confused what is real and whats not i get reality confused with none reality and vice versa i also cant show emotions correctly if i show them at all.Also ever since i was a child always been very anti-social i was forced to socialize at school but rarely hung out with people outside of school until i was expelled then it all went down hill because i was always alone they began telling me to do awful things to others so that caused to pull away from others even the slightest thing would throw my mind into sick mood were demons would graphically explain to me what to do to the individual i began to like the idea of doing these things so i withdrew from everyone for everyone including my own safety it helped to stay away after awhile it went away but now i’m used to being alone but its not healthy i dont even trust my own family very much because of what the voices tell me and it seems like when they tell me something they have so much prove on the delusion if its even a delusion.I have been able to master the skill of hiding this disorder i could be losing my mind inside and hide it so it appears nothings going sometimes i will show no symptoms besides not having the ability to learn and understand the world around me but it does not stay dormant very long. I need you therapists opinion what exactly is happening to me and how much worse will it get. oh and i didnt add the meds never really helped me all they did was sedate me severely to the point of me not functioning they said it would go away but i was on them for year and a half of nothing but switching them over and over.So all im asking for is an honest opinion on whats happening with me and maybe some actions i can take thank you.

A. I’m sorry you’re experiencing so much distress. It seems as though you are experiencing symptoms of psychosis. It’s not clear from your letter whether or not you are currently taking medication. You did say that you’ve been on and off of medication but nothing seems to have worked. If you’re currently not on medication, then in all likelihood it would be the case that you are experiencing psychosis. You have many of the signs including delusions, hallucinations, hearing voices, experiencing paranoia, and so forth. These symptoms need to be controlled. Medication is typically needed to decrease or eliminate symptoms of psychosis.

I understand that medication can make you feel sedated. Many people have this complaint. It is a matter of finding the right medication in the right dosage. For many people, this takes time and a concerted effort on the part of the treating physician and the patient. My advice is to find a psychiatrist whom you trust and who is willing to take the time to find the right medication for you. Once you find the right psychiatrist, ask him or her to start you on a low dose of medication and adjust it accordingly, depending on your symptoms and how you react to the initial dose.

You may also want to consider going to the hospital. You may or may not be a candidate for admission but a hospital stay would allow a team of doctors to assess your symptoms, attempt various medications and adjust the dosage accordingly. The ultimate goal would be to stabilize your symptoms and find a medication that you could tolerate.

It’s also important for individuals with schizophrenia to live in a stress-free environment. Some theories of schizophrenia suggest that stress has the potential to cause psychotic episodes. We know that in many cases, it exacerbates one’s symptoms. Ideally, you should always be attempting to decrease or eliminate stress. You should also be searching for the right psychiatrist who could assist you in finding a medication you can tolerate.

Finally, I would also recommend gaining support. Is there a family member who could assist you? Try to gain as much support as possible. It might be difficult for you to navigate the mental health system when you’re experiencing symptoms of psychosis. Ask your family members or those who are willing to assist you to help you gain access to the proper mental health treatment. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle
Mental Health & Criminal Justice Blog

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Apr 2013

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2013). Getting Help without Insurance. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 28, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/04/30/getting-help-without-insurance/