Coping with PTSD?

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Buddha443556
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Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/20/2008 1:18 PM (GMT -7)   
I've been told what everyone kept telling me was just normal grief is actually PTSD. Fine. How do I cope? I have nightmares, flashbacks, panic attacks and even blackouts. My triggers are my mother and anything to do with hospitals. I even have "white coat" hypertension, even the sight of people in scrubs on the bus send my blood pressure through the roof. What can I do? Any advice?

badgenetics1
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Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 146
   Posted 8/20/2008 1:29 PM (GMT -7)   

I suggest talking to a psychiatrist.  Perhaps mediation can help these physical symptoms?  As is has with many others :)

There is no need to suffer

 


stkitt
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   Posted 8/20/2008 2:16 PM (GMT -7)   

Buddha

I agree you need to find a therapist to help you with this disorder.  It is real and it is devestating for you.

When looking for a therapist for PTSD, look for a  mental health professional who specializes in the treatment of trauma and PTSD. Beyond qualifications, it’s important to find a therapist who makes you feel comfortable and safe, so there is no additional fear or anxiety about the treatment itself. Finding the right treatment provider can take time, but a good place to start is with your doctor. 

Treatments for PTSD relieve symptoms by helping you deal with the trauma you’ve experienced. Rather than avoiding the trauma and any reminder of it, you’ll be encouraged in treatment to recall and process the event that caused your PTSD. In treatment for PTSD, you’ll also:

Explore your thoughts and feelings about the trauma

Work through feelings of guilt, self-blame, and mistrust

Learn how to cope with and control invasive memories

Address problems PTSD has caused in your life

In addition to offering an outlet for emotions you may have been bottling up, treatment for PTSD will also help restore your sense of control and reduce the powerful hold the memory of the trauma has on your life.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is believed to be the treatment of choice for PTSD. There are several types of cognitive-behavioral therapies. Your therapist will be the one person to guide you to the right choice for you.

Please keep posting and know we are here to support you.

Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
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Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Buddha443556
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Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/21/2008 7:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks. I don't have a doctor and I'm on public medical assistance. Finding a doctor or therapist I can trust may not be easy. Mother had the best insurance in the world, Tricare for Life and Medicare. I had a hard time finding doctor I trusted for her and I could choose any doctor for her. I would prefer therapy over drugs, about the only skill I have, computer/internet programming, requires a clear mind. I'm also hypersensitive to medication.

I get the feeling from people I talked to I should not be trying to avoid these episodes?

P-Fit
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Date Joined Jun 2008
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   Posted 8/21/2008 1:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Buddha443556 said...
Thanks. I don't have a doctor and I'm on public medical assistance. Finding a doctor or therapist I can trust may not be easy. Mother had the best insurance in the world, Tricare for Life and Medicare. I had a hard time finding doctor I trusted for her and I could choose any doctor for her. I would prefer therapy over drugs, about the only skill I have, computer/internet programming, requires a clear mind. I'm also hypersensitive to medication.

I get the feeling from people I talked to I should not be trying to avoid these episodes?
I agree with the others. You need to find someone to talk to. I understand your desire to avoid meds, but sometimes that may be the only option. It really depends on how much the PTSD is affecting your daily life. I'm sensitive to meds too, but was able to find a dosage that worked and didnt leave me in a fog. Good luck.
Dee-38yrs old 
Diagnosed with UC in 2004-PTSD/Panic Disorder/Depression in 2007 & Fibromyalgia 2008
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nervymeg
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/21/2008 7:02 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Budhha,

PTSD is a very traumatic thing to live with. I agree with Kitt (great advice BTW) that you need to find someone who is a specialist in this area. It may be a good idea to look up specialists in your area and ask if you can speak to them on the phone before making an appointment.

If you can "feel them out" on the phone and make sure they are going to adress your issues you may feel more comfortable when you start treatment.  They would probably be able to advise you as to whether or not they think medication is the right thing for you.

Be gentle with yourself. This is a hard thing to go through. Don't try and avoid the trigger situations, but don't put yourself in harms way either. You need to do that under the care of a good therapist.

Please let us know how you go.

Meg


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


badgenetics1
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 146
   Posted 8/22/2008 6:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I also am very sensitive to medications, but there may be something that can help you get over the hump so you can truly deal with these issues. No one truly wants to be on medications, but when quality of life is deteriorating it can be a good, if only temporary option. :)

A year ago you couold not have paid me to take an SSRI, but when its life or death (as it was for me ) you have to make a choice.

MMMNAVY
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 8/22/2008 6:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Budda,
Are you a military dependent? (tricare? made me wonder) How old are you?
There are places you can find low cost mental health care, if you are in the states. Try a local county health department for suggestions or
http://mentalhealth.samhsa.gov/cmhs/
http://www.nimh.nih.gov/
and research on these sites for low cost health care.
How about googling your state mental health services? Also put PTSD in there.
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease
We will find a way, or make one.-Hannibal (crossing the Alps in the 15th Century on war elephants) 
Make sure your suffering has meaning...
All suggestions/options/opinions are caveated with please consult with your local health care provider...


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/22/2008 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   

Thanks Navy !  The sites you posted may be helpful to other members too.

You are the best..............
Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~*
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/22/2008 11:13 AM (GMT -7)   
I tried to reply this morning and lost about an hour to a fun little scream fest. I think that's five flashback/panic attacks for the week. I'm pretty sure the number is related to the fact I had to fill out my SSDI/SSI paperwork for an appeal. I've really been trying to avoid doing it because it sets me off. Of course, just walk through the house does it too. I actually keep all the lights off so I don't see anything at night ... ain't that crazy.

Anyway, MMMNavy, I'm 40, a little old to be a military dependent. My father was a Marine, 20 years of combat. He had PTSD too, but it was nothing like this. Once in a while he would just go ballistic, me and mother just got out of his way and wait till it was over to see what was left. Even at 74 years old I never walked up behind my father unannounced. Don't get me wrong, my father was a good man, good father but he was a Marine first, something not to be forgotten. I took care of both my parents for the last ten years, father died in 1998 and mother June this year. Kept them both out of nursing homes, did my duty.

I've already looked up the public mental health care available, actually worked at one of the place as security officer, Suncoast. I use to tie people to beds, posy them. Which brings up another problem, I'm too honest, I'm sure Suncoast would lock my butt up for a 72 hour observation at the very least and the other place probably would too ... same for ER. Being confined to a hospital scares the hell out of me.

I realize I need help, I've put a call into a Bereavement Counselor at Hospice. Not sure she can lock me up, which is about as good as I can get. My mother was only in Hospice for less than 24 hours and the Hospice closed a couple weeks later so I thought I lost any support from them. The Bereavement Counselor called me Monday or Tuesday out of the blue.

nervymeg said...
Be gentle with yourself. This is a hard thing to go through. Don't try and avoid the trigger situations, but don't put yourself in harms way either. You need to do that under the care of a good therapist.


I figured I needed a doctor and a therapist before I tried that especially with the blacking out.

I have three prescriptions from a ARNP, can't really say I trust the nurse that wrote the prescriptions. One of them is for Paxil. Check the prescription, its not the lowest dose available. I think I can fix that. The last two prescription I had from an ARNP nearly killed me. So I'm weary of ARNP's with pen and pad. The thought of dying doesn't bother me but I rather not be tortured to death.

Thanks for the links MMMNavy.

Post Edited (Buddha443556) : 8/22/2008 12:30:56 PM (GMT-6)


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/22/2008 12:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Talked to the Bereavement Counselor and found out she can lock my butt up too. I don't think she will. Anyway, she'll be here Monday just got to get through the weekend.

MMMNAVY
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 8/23/2008 10:30 AM (GMT -7)   
I think going to some kind of professional therapy is a good thing, it is a way to get thru this. about the locking up thing, only if you are a danger to yourself or other people.
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease
We will find a way, or make one.-Hannibal (crossing the Alps in the 15th Century on war elephants) 
Make sure your suffering has meaning...
All suggestions/options/opinions are caveated with please consult with your local health care provider...


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/23/2008 3:46 PM (GMT -7)   
I talked to the Bereavement Counselor about lock up too and she agreed with me after a moment of thought about the black outs.

I was hoping to clean up around here but I did my community service (food stamps) today and my back is out now. Happens just about every time I go down to the rescue mission, I always over do it. Guess she'll get to see me ol'naturale. Well if I can get out of bed by Monday. Now it's time to hobble off to bed and pray for mercy.

Thanks everyone.

nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/23/2008 6:45 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey,

I'm sorry you put your back out doing good for others. That's not the way it's supposed to work! I'm glad you've got a bereavement counsellor assesing this for you. The black outs are not something you should be tackling on your own. I hope you wake up feeling better tomorrow. Have you put some heat on your back? Please let us know how you go with all of this okay.

Meg


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/24/2008 6:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the concern Meg. At the moment, I doubt I could get in and out of the tub to take a hot bath. I did feed the cat, who threaten to jump up and down on my back if I didn't feed him ... rotten little fur ball.

I'm going to start these prescriptions today, well two of the three, the ARNP told me I had hyperthyroid and gave me a prescription for hypothyroid ... oh that would have been fun. I'd tell you these ARNP are out to get me but I wouldn't want to appear paranoid. Totally missed that the other day I was checking these scripts. Paxil seems fine at 10mg but the Norvasc is high a 5mg so I'll cut that one in half. I really don't like the idea of taking these as it feeds right into my fear of everything medical but I'll do it.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/24/2008 9:27 AM (GMT -7)   

Buddha443556

Good Morning, I agree with Meg re your doing community service work. That is awesome as it is so appreciated and need in todays world.  I am sorry you hurt your back.

I am not sure what an ARNP is.  I know RNP in a nurse practioner.  Is there any reason you cannot be seen by the medical doctor?

Also there are laws in each state about locking people up and laws about tying people down too, so please don't let that stop you from seeking help.

Take care and keep posting.
Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~*
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/24/2008 4:11 PM (GMT -7)   
I have an appointment with a actual doctor Sept 15 Kitt, still not my PCP because she's on maternity leave till Oct. Never actually met my PCP yet. I'd change PCP but at least this way I can get an appointment with any doctor which means I don't have to wait months to see a actual doctor. I'm just hoping another doctor goes on maternity leave by Oct.

I had a weird flashback. Didn't shed a single tear and it came out of no where. Must be the Paxil.

nervymeg
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 8/24/2008 5:00 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey,

I'm glad you checked those prescriptions before you had them filled. I had a doctor last month try and give me a tri-cyclic antidepressent for IBS?! That would have been an utter disaster! I hope that Paxil is improving things a bit for you. It may also be that you are getting some coping strategies around the flashbacks, don't let your medications take all the credit.

It's a shame we can't get our cats to give us some accupressure treatment instead of just walking all over us!!

Here's hoping things are on the improve for you.

Meg


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/24/2008 5:45 PM (GMT -7)   
nervymeg said...
It may also be that you are getting some coping strategies around the flashbacks, don't let your medications take all the credit.

What I didn't mention was the rage and anger, usually the tears and grief cause a flight reaction (I'm introvert, that stuff scares me), take those away and I'm ready to throw down. Not good. nono I'll ask the councilor tomorrow about it. Besides an obsessive compulsive counting thing and keeping my eyes closed my coping skills are kind of limited.

Oh ... my back slip back in to place this afternoon too. I've seen hockey pucks with less wiggle than disk in my back. tongue

Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/25/2008 9:11 AM (GMT -7)   
Seen councilor for two hours, next appointment Friday. She recommended I call Dept of Vocational Rehab which I did as promised. Very tiring experience.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/26/2008 12:11 PM (GMT -7)   

Whoooo hoooooo, you made it to your appointment and you did get some advice.  I know how tiring it is to bare your thoughts and feelings to a stranger but remember it is in confidentiality.

Hopingyou get some rest and know we care.

Hugs

Kitt


 

Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety/Panic & Depression
& GERD  Forums
*~*
http://www.healingwell.com/donate *~*
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
Clickable Link: Anxiety-Panic Resources


Marie-Claire
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Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 900
   Posted 8/26/2008 2:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Buddha.... I can sooo identify with what you are going through. I suffer from PTSD as well as my 2 daughters. My youngest used to have horrible black outs.... I know the rage , the fear and tears... and all about the fight or flight reactions. I've lived with all of this ( myself, about 20 years) and my girls about 13 years or so....
With all our therapies we've learned to recognize some of our triggers... That is half the battle... sometimes the trigger is so subtle it is impossible to pinpoint.... a smell... someone's tone of voice... a taste.... etc...
We all still get flashbacks... but what the therapy has helped with is coping skills. The flashbacks don't go away.... but we've learned how to get through that 20 minutes or however long... without hurting ourselves or someone else. It is still really difficult for my youngest who also suffers from Dissociative disorder( multiple personality disorder).
I sure am glad you made it to your appointment... remember that things may actually feel like they are getting worse for you instead of better. It is so hard to face those memories and horrible events , but avoiding them leads to a life of nothing.... all you do is worry about 'not remembering things' when in reality there are triggers everywhere.... so PTSD is something you have to learn to live with.... When you go THROUGH all this with your therapist... the memories will lose some of their power over you... You'll survive... you'll talk about it some more... and you'll survive that.The meds helped all 3 of us from completely falling apart. You can't work at something constructively if you're hiding under your blankets and avoiding life all together. The meds are not a crutch... they are most likely only temporary. My one daughter is off all meds now... but my oldest is still on a small dose of antidepressant. I still have to take something for depression and anxiety.
I will keep you in my prayers Dear Buddha
Mary
51 yr.old retired RN,Crohn's D for last35 yrs..severe esophagitis, migraines,strictures,urethral stricture,depression,probable MS.,RLS, arthritis, PTSD ,general anxiety disorder.
 
 


Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/26/2008 6:47 PM (GMT -7)   
Not hard to make it to the appointment, the councilor came to me, Kitt. I get the feeling this is not normal way it works? Well I ain't going to ask! Ain't looking no gift councilor in the mouth ... or is that horses?! Either way. confused

It was extremely tiring, took a two hour nap afterward. I'm sleeping more but the nightmares are back which I thankfully don't remember but which make me wonder what use sleep is when you wake up feeling like you ran a a marathon.

I thought I had a handle on the triggers till the Paxil, now these things come out of no where. I finally lost it in public today, thankfully no one to see though ... or. Anyway, I preferred the other flashbacks which I had some handle on and made me want to crawl under the bed, they seemed safer.

Mary the thought of a child suffering this is making me cry ... even with the paxil. They're certainly in my prayers, as are you.

Thanks everyone.

Post Edited (Buddha443556) : 8/26/2008 7:50:36 PM (GMT-6)


percycat
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Date Joined Jul 2005
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   Posted 8/26/2008 7:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey, Buddha, I don't have any familiarity with PTSD, but I feel for you. It sounds like this is a devil that will take lots of slow, careful work to defeat. Good luck to you, and I hope you find the comfort and support here that so many of us have come to value very much!

percycat

Buddha443556
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 8/28/2008 4:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Percycat.

I think the stress is getting to me. Not being able to find a job, not having enough money to pay the mortgage, not knowing what's going to happen next. I thought the flashbacks were bad when I had them once a week, now it's every day, had three yesterday and one lasted more than 30 minutes. Thought I would relax and take a hot bath and forget about the mortgage ... big mistake. Thirty minutes of shear hell.

The Paxil is helping me sleep but I'm waking up exhausted from the nightmares which thank God I don't remember. I've exactly started taking a full dose of my hypertension medication because when I wake up my heart is pounding and racing and I'm shaking like a leaf in the wind and bed is soaked and wet.

Oh ... and the headaches are new, they seem to come with the flashbacks now. Close to being a migraine but not quiet that bad thankfully. Got to count even the smallest blessings.

I'm tired. I know I'm not thinking straight. I got to go out today and I'm dreading it.
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