Anxiety / Coping Strategies / Medications

To Abilify, or not to Abilify?

Well hello there blog-world. Readers. Writers. Mental health blog-reading junkies.

I’m reporting today from “mentally altered” land. Where I’m pretty sure I’ve taken a slightly too high dose of the Abilify that I was prescribed yesterday. Geez, I’m med sensitive.

My first round of medical inquiries has basically come to an end, as of yesterday, after two months of data gathering and excruciating waiting. I have more issues that I want to dig into (what exactly ARE my hormones doing?!) but for now, one conclusion has been reached: Stress, for me, triggers a lot of weird shit. Weird mental health shit. Weird neurological symptoms. I basically have a set of highly odd migraine phenomena that are stress triggered, as well as what appear to be tiny seizures, that are also triggered by some psychiatric cause, most likely stress.

So of course…the neurologist referred me back to the psych prescriber. Whose first prescription for me was one that theoretically, I loved: EXERCISE. I love having a prescriber that understands that healthy habits are important, and can improve our mental and physical health. However, it was clear to me that she wasn’t understanding how BAD I was feeling, and have been feeling, for most of the past two months. I often appear “normal” when I’m at my worst. I could be shot through 80 times and be reluctant to ask for help, and compelled to just charge ahead. Well I was at my wits’ end here…and all I could do was cry. And I explained that I just couldn’t take it anymore. The mood swings, the anxiety, the depression, nope, couldn’t tolerate this level of feeling terrible, any more.

I told her that I would really LIKE to follow through on the exercise prescription, but that I will not be able to until my mood is more stable. I’ve fallen below that magic line where basic functioning just works and getting some exercise sounds like it might be fun.

Prescriber isn’t quite sure what’s up with my moods, exactly. Is it a mood disorder along the lines of cyclothymia? Is it a hormone issue like pre-menstrual dyphoric disorder? Is it a result of the toxic levels of stress that I live with on a daily basis, every single day? Is it a combo of these? I don’t know either right now. I just know that I can’t function consistently, and that’s just adding to the stress part, and the stress…is triggering the migraines and possible seizures. That cannot be allowed to continue. Prescriber summed it up as “mood disorder, unspecified”. Seems accurate enough, at the moment.

We needed to take a stab at breaking the cycle. So I’m trying a prescription for Abilify. We’ll see how it goes (at the moment I’m just really drowsy…which is annoying). I’m also making a plan for exercise, because I think that’s very important.

But the big lesson here, is about stress, and the degree to which your body and mind can be literally poisoned by it. My body is manifesting freaky health issues because of it – um, NO THANKS.

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13 thoughts on “To Abilify, or not to Abilify?

  1. I hate cliches, but that’s all that is coming to my mind right now. Hang in there! Your persistence and desire to be healthy (body & mind) will eventually lead you and your medical providers to finding a proper diagnosis and treatment.
    Thanks for sharing all of this with us. I wish I could be helpful to you instead of only being a reader. Hang in there!

  2. Katy, I hope you’re feeling better enough soon to go get some exercise. Exercise is probably the most important thing a person can do to deal with stress. Stress creates adrenaline and adrenaline requires physical action to be properly metabolized, otherwise it wreaks havoc in your body and mind. And I say this all with the intent to be as encouraging and sincerely genuine as possible. Really, I cannot even *be* judgmental on this topic, because that would make me the biggest hypocrite ever. Seriously. I know that multiple issues I am struggling with right now have been proven to be greatly helped by exercise–but I currently feel too crippled by my issues to go out and get some exercise. 😛 Hang in there. And thank you for sharing yourself and your discoveries in this space. You are a help to me. ❤

    • YES…I am WAY into this idea of exercise. It’s just that I’ve been feeling so bad that when she said “exercise” I was like “omg noooo, I can’t even bathe” LOL. However, a few days and a handful of mgs of Abilify later, I feel MUCH closer to able to deploy part B of this healing mission – the EXERCISE!

  3. I’m on Wellbutrin, which I think is similar to Abilify. I was prescribed it for my ADHD. I don’t think it helps much with ADHD symptoms, but it does help a lot with my depression! I hope the meds make a positive difference!

  4. It’s so frustrating to feel the way you describe, though hopefully by now you’re starting to feel better. I have a good friend who has had great success on Amblify — hoping you’ll have good results.

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