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Finally going back to a dr after 6 years!! Question...

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Old 10-16-2006, 06:08 AM   #1
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Location: Florida
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hjjasnell HB User
Finally going back to a dr after 6 years!! Question...

So after many years of fighting this on my own I've decided to go back to seeing someone and probably back on meds. I was diagnosed BP2 in college (just under 10 years ago). I was on Celexa, Eskalith, and Ambien. I stayed on the meds for about 3 years and was seeing a psychiatrist and the school counselor (who is a psychologist). I met who is now my husband and felt so great I thought I didn't need to be on my meds anymore. I thought I could control the mood swings on my own. I never had extreme manic phases and the depressive phases were bad but I thought that life was so great there was no way I could be depressed enough to want to kill myself. So I stopped the meds. Well 6 years later and I've been fighting the swings for a few years now and have finally admitted to myself I need to do it all again (meds, doctor, etc.). I can't take the swings anymore, the stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, depression, crying, and everything else. The manic phases have me stressed and hyperactive to the point my whole body trembles and I can't even keep my hands still long enough to write a sentence. My hair is falling out in clumps due to the anxiety and stress. I can't concentrate on anything and forget everything! I'm a mess. I even went and got all kinds of bloodwork done hoping it was all thyroid related or some other problem...nope everything checks out fine (which in the back of my mind I knew it would but secretly hoped it wouldn't).

I don't know why I've fought the meds for so long but I guess at least I've come to the realization now that I do need them, before it's too late. I have two wonderful little boys that need me to be whole and well. I love them with everything in me and it is for them that I am going to "fix" myself. I guess I just wanted to share since I know it's always a good thing to have someone to go through this journey with and others who understand. It's not always easy to explain it to others, even my husband, who haven't experienced it themselves. They'll never understand the lack of control you have over your emotions and moods. That you can't just smile and make it all better.

Now after some background info and my reason for finally going back I'm just curious. Do I have to see both a psychologist and a psychiatrist or can I just go to a psychologist? My insurance is outrageous and I can't afford to see both just for med mgmt but I found my old psychologist (he was my school counselor) and I am scheduled to go see him this evening (he has evening hours! I was so excited about that because then I don't have to leave the office early) but I need someone who can prescribe the meds. Can a psychologist do that or do I HAVE to go to a psychiatrist? Is there any way around having to see two separate docs? Thanks!!

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Old 10-16-2006, 11:01 AM   #2
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: london uk
Posts: 337
jgr01 HB User
Re: Finally going back to a dr after 6 years!! Question...

Hi there,

not sure if the US is different, but a psychiatrist is an MD, a psychologist isn't and doesn't have the medical background. A local family doctor can diagnose certain drugs (but not for BP) or help after diagnosis with med management but not changing the amounts etc. That's the UK at least.

Good luck!


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