Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Dealing with meds fiasco

Lately i have been dealing with medication issues. you see i recently discovered my insurance was changed. the new insurance decided it was only going to cover 20mg of Lexapro per day and 40mg Focalin XR. I have been taking 400 mg of Neurontin twice a day for a few months prior to that it was three times a day, Lexapro 60 mg per day, 60mg of Focalin XR ( which i took two 20mg capsules when i wake up and one in the afternoon), 20mg of Ritalin in the evening as needed, and 100mg Trazodone in the evening as needed. I have been at these levels with continued effectiveness for years.

Well I have been taking 40mg of Lexapro a day for a little over 15 days and now i am almost out, I have also been taking 40 mg of Focalin XR per day. Now fortunately the Focalin XR is closer to my normal dose, but my lexapro isn't and it is showing. Lexapro is my antidepressant and my lack of it is definitely showing up in several places. 

While I am trying to get a 10 day supply of my lexapro to tie me over until I can remedy the situation with my meds, the pharmacy and the insurance, I am reviewing my strategies for dealing with depression, anxiety, and overfocused/stuck attention that I've used in the past to augment my treatment. I recently wrote a blog post about strategies to ease depression. I realized while playing jigsaw puzzles that I have a toolbox already in place for dealing with this strategically. No i probably wont get as much done, but at least i wont spiral down or waste a bunch of time. 

I have been using some of these strategies, including eliciting support, watching funnies, getting down time, asking for help and so forth. I can get through this even if my brain is functioning at 100%. At least I do have my other meds and I can work out my needs, it just might take longer than I hoped. Fortunately it is Thanksgiving Day weekend, so I have a chance to gain enough strength and momentum to solve this issue.  I continue to focus on self-care and self-compassion and do the best i can do for now. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

strategies to ease depression

I know this blog is mainly about ADD/ADHD, however, depression is a frequent traveling companion to ADD/ADHD. I am very familiar with this companion as I treat for depression as well as my ADHD. As with my ADD/ADHD I take medication for it and I use strategies to help make it less of an issue and more of an asset.

So what type of strategies can help depression. We know that for ADHD we develop strategies to help us manage our life at work, at home, in self care, increasing our self-awareness, learning to listen to our bodies, focusing on the positive, and develop systems that work with our ADD/ADHD. Well some of those strategies also help with depression. For example, getting enough sleep, drinking plenty of water, and breaking overwhelming tasks down to more manageable, less overwhelming bites. 

Here is a list of things I have done to make my depression better.

  1. drink plenty of water every day
  2. eat regular health diet
  3. try getting enough sleep
  4. limit your exposure to depressing news stories
  5. don't watch movies that are depressing, scary, or essentially traumatic
  6. spend time with friends, who will and can encourage you and allow you to cry on their shoulder
  7. allow yourself to cry out your emotions
  8. get exercise if you can
  9. watch comedies regularly or read funny jokes
  10. get involved in a supportive community online and/or through an organization
  11. remind yourself of your accomplishments and strengths
  12. get down time 
  13. do activities that are creative, fun, and replenishes and nourishes your soul
  14. learn to challenge your thoughts and beliefs
  15. learn to have compassion for yourself
  16. look for the positive
  17. spend time with those who love you for who you are
  18. make sure you rid yourself of abusive people
  19. make sure your self-talk is empowering
  20. get sunlight and make sure you have at least one non-fluorescent light in your house
  21. read stories/biographies of really amazing people, who have struggled with challenges
  22. take a fish oil/flax seed oil supplement
  23. celebrate your achievements
  24. remember to love yourself
  25. take time to be a human being
  26. read, draw, write poetry, listen to positive music
  27. use a body double for jobs that are hard
  28. ask for hugs from those really special people in your life
  29. learn to breath
  30. watch your blood sugar
  31. don't isolate yourself
  32. get support
  33. learn to be your authentic self
  34. separate yourself out from guilt and shame
  35. don't let yourself to get too cold
  36. make sure you don't get overheated in hot weather
  37. Don't forget to replace electrolytes when you are sick or overheated
  38. when loafing around the house or sleeping wear what's comfortable
  39. know that you are worth it
  40. learn how to get centered
I realize these things don't replace professional help, but they can go a long way toward helping you get through the bad times and when you need to regain your strength. I also found coaching can help too. Anyways that's my 2 cents on overcoming/recovering from depression.