First psychiatrist appointment?

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 9/1/2009 7:51 AM (GMT -7)   
I have an appointment on Friday of this week with a Psychiatrist for the first time, can anyone tell me what to expect?  What sort of questions he will ask etc please, if anyone has any advice I would be grateful!

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 9/1/2009 6:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi gling,

It's a doctor's appointment, essentially, but without the stethoscope. He/She will ask you a LOT of questions about your mood and your behaviors and it's really important that you're honest, even if something is embarrassing. Remember they've heard it all and just want you to get well. After seeing you for a while, they MAY diagnose you, they may not; they may decide they need more visits to get a good understanding of your condition. Then, they'll prescribe you something for your symptoms. That's pretty much it. Some docs are very cut and dried and no nonsense, others may want to know more about your background and history.

Hope this helps,
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 9/1/2009 10:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you for your reply Serafena , it does help a little. X

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1441
   Posted 9/3/2009 12:39 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi gling,

Welcome aboard to our bipolar forum.

I agree with everything serafena explained.  She has practically covered everything and very well too.

The only other suggestion that I have for you is to bring notes. 

Jot down things that you go through.  The types of moods you have, how high and how low they go, if you have anythings that trigger a certain mood.  What changes if any that your family members or friends see in you.  Things that are difficult for you or hard to deal with.  Or lists of things that really excite you.

I would also like to stress the importance of being totally honest.  If you're're not helping yourself, only hurting yourself and wasting your time.

Good luck.  Keep us posted.

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 9/3/2009 12:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for your reply Sukay, you have no idea how much I appriciate all the replies, I have felt so alone for so long, no one seems to 'get' me! I wrote a list yesterday of the Bad and the Good, the bad came out with 68 points and the good only 9! I'm not sure if anyone is interested but I will paste the list I made below! It's rather long winded I'm afraid!

The Bad…
1. I want some peace, peace of mind.
2. Using all my energy to calm down. Spending all my life trying to cheer up or calm down.
3. It’s not funny anymore, I used to laugh at myself and say “well this is it, it’s just me, just the way I am”.
4. Not caring what people think of my behaviour.
5. The uncontrolled thoughts.
6. Disco in my head.
7. Endlessly finding myself counting.
8. Racing mind, disrupting everything I try to do.
9. Wanting to isolate myself from the world and everyone in it.
10. Feeling jumpy.
11. Feelings of waiting, always waiting for something to happen.
12. Irritated, agitated feelings.
13. Feeling guilty for not achieving things or not finishing things.
14. Never feeling sexually satisfied.
15. Uncontrollable unspecific pressure to do something!
16. Missing memories of hours, days, months and years!
17. Do I butter my toast or close the back door?
18. Anxious about each little task to the point where each is a mountain of difficulty and I give up because each task feels absolutely impossible.
19. Going for a social night out and being loud and noisy but being unable to stop my own actions, even though I know I want to!
20. Knowing that the stuff I need to take to the tip is going to require two trips but I have to do it in one because it needs doing NOW!
21. Forgetting then remembering what I’m doing is so frustrating.
22. Next door neighbours little boy skipping up and down the drive initiates a fight and flight reaction and I pull away and cringe.
23. The sound of the TV adds yet another source of stimuli to overreact to.
24. Every change in the tone or volume causes me to twitch or jump.
25. Knowing what I am supposed to do and being unable to do it.
26. Imagine knowing what I am not supposed to do but doing it anyway.
27. No control at all, no choice, just riding with the actions, riding with life, and then riding with the consequences!
28. Unable to concentrate, unable to hold thought patterns together.
29. Unable to sleep.
30. Vivid dreams!
31. Waking up and jumping out of my skin, like someone has sneaked into my bedroom and you realise they are there!
32. Can’t go out, paranoia sets in about driving and crowds and how it makes me feel.
33. Driving becomes difficult and hazardous. I overreact to oncoming or overtaking vehicles and often overcompensate by swerving out of the way. I am distracted by all the cars whizzing by and by things that I pass by. My memory failure makes it difficult keep a mental picture of traffic around me. At junctions, if I look for cars in one direction, by the time I check the other direction I have forgotten if there are oncoming cars from the first direction.
34. Getting slightly twitchy and driving is difficult; I react to every single little distraction on the roads. This includes cars on both sides of me, trying to read signs on the sides of the road, admiring the colour of the grass shrouded in rain. I also try to change a CD when driving on the road in high speed congested traffic. I know this is stupid but I do it any way. Don't actually play the CD, turn on the radio instead and spend the remainder of the time switching between two radio stations. Every 20 or so seconds. I cannot concentrate on any one thing and one of the effects is that I cannot watch the rear view mirror long enough to make sure that I actually see what is in it. Can’t hold a mental picture of the vehicles moving in front of, behind, or at the side of my car. The overreacting to stimuli has reached the point that I feel like I’m going to physically swerving my car to many of the things that I see, even if they are not near to my vehicle or a threat. The twitchiness isn't helping in controlling the car. I am expending a lot of effort damping these reactions.
35. I spend 99% of my energy fighting myself and 1% being productive. On really bad days I spend all my energy and all my reserves just being present and appearing acceptable to society. If by chance anything gets done it’s a godsend!
36. I feel as I if I am an observer of my own life, standing behind a piece of glass and watching myself stagger through daily life. I know exactly what is wrong but I am unable to reach through the glass to get ‘the me’ who is living to change habits or actions.
37. Getting myself into dangerous situations and not caring or even realising what I’m doing.
38. Screaming at Nigel, then not remembering what I’ve said or done. I don’t want to hurt him I love him to pieces.
39. Not being able to decide whether to brush my teeth or get a bath first. Can't brush my hair because I get caught in the back and forth thoughts of brushing my hair /getting a bath that eventually I give up and don’t do anything. After having a bath, I can't decide whether to put on my top or jeans first. Put on my top, but then I can't decide whether to put on the right shoe next or the left sock next. Can't remember where the car keys are, and have a foreboding, every morning, that I am forgetting things, important things to do. Every day is like this. I've been living like this for years and years and accepting it as a normal part of life.
40. Having to apologise to people for how you acted the day before, the feelings of shame and guilt for the things I’ve done or said, even if I can’t remember!
41. Muscles becoming tight and tense when things irritate me.
42. My heart feels like its going to jump out of my chest it’s beating that fast. The panic that this causes.
43. Getting twitchy, have to fiddle with something.
44. I don't feel like going to sleep. I have all this energy and I can go until 3 am without feeling drowsy or muzzy headed. And then I'll get up at 6:30 am feeling perfectly refreshed.
45. Picking up or putting down stuff can become a bit spastic, and can be really irritating.
46. I tend to feel jittery, as if my hands are shaking, but if I hold them up to check them, I seem to be able to hold them steady and I feel like I’m shaking inside.
47. Verbally twitchy. I talk to myself, repeating the words to myself. Usually it is quiet, but it's also fairly common for someone to ask me if I was speaking to them.
48. Saying things out loud when I actually thought I was thinking them.
49. There is a tendency when speaking to have sentences trail off without finishing them. More frequently, I would be in the midst of a sentence and forget the next word or phrase I wanted to say.
50. I forget all the words I need to use to show the point I was trying to make. I would be able to visualise what I want to say, but not be able to think how to say it.
51. I get the intense urge to do stupid or silly things to people, even if I know it will irritate them. I will say inappropriate jokes or comments, or try to poke / tickle people, or interrupt others in the middle of their conversation, or butt into conversations I am not a part of.
52. I happily say hello to strangers in the street. I smile at the things people do. I go out of my way to be helpful, even involving myself in conversations that I am no part of.
53. I have difficulty being in a crowd. Every thing that happens catches my attention and I get so confused trying to see and listen to everything simultaneously that I can't focus on the conversation with the person in front of me.
54. I react to incidents way out of proportion to what is needed, either by becoming too excited, or too angry, or too happy, or too anxious.
55. I can escalate arguments or turn simple incidents into major ones.
56. I get irritated about the smallest things.
57. I argue with waiters.
58. I get annoyed with shop assistants.
59. I get short tempered with my friends and my family.
60. I argue about truly petty things at home.
61. I even quarrel because I may find things aren't being done quickly enough to suit me.
62. I can easily become loud and vicious and say mean and cruel things.
63. I get easily confused or distracted if I have more than one thing to do. Everything becomes equally urgent and I find myself swapping between doing 5 things at once (and getting none done properly). I cannot concentrate enough to do one thing because I feel I need to get everything done now! I start walking back and forth between two locations to get two things done simultaneously. And often, when I finish them all and I realise I still have three hours left, I feel odd, as if I was pushing against a hurricane wind and it has stopped and I've fallen flat.
64. The number of things I am thinking of can get so numerous and intense that they can halt any functionality I have as I sit down and think on them instead of getting ahead with what I have to do.
65. I will suddenly decide to start a lot of projects in a one or two day period in the desire to put into action all the good ideas I am having. However, very few of the projects I start will be followed through or finished.
66. I can’t read documents or letters because I cannot concentrate. After a few minutes I want to get up and walk around, or I sit and think of unrelated things, or I get excited and start thinking of a grander plan.
67. If someone wants to help me to do something, I quickly become impatient with their slowness or inability to do the job right.
68. Memory about facts or items fail. I can't remember dates, names of things, or when I met people, or telephone numbers. I often can't remember activities that I have done unless strongly reminded. I forget things I have to do, appointments, etc.
69. When I do sleep, I get vivid realistic full colour dreams. I feel as I am actually living these dreams as if they are real life. In real life, sometimes I'm not certain if my memories are from real life or from one of these dreams.
The Good…
1. My energy level rises and anything I want to do, I just do. I feel confident about my decisions. Nothing is problematic - I can fix anything. I feel good about myself and I'm happy. I have the best of all possible lives. This is like the feeling you get when you've just successfully pulled off a great project. Except it stays with us all the time. And it's wonderful, if I could have this feeling all the time, I would.
2. I can persuade people to follow my lead. I can see what needs to be done and will take charge in a group.
3. If I'm out partying, I'm a centre of attention. I have no problems chatting with strangers, and I can always pick up someone if I wanted to. I'm can be the best date anyone’s ever had thoughtful, funny, romantic, willing to do unusual or wildly silly things for you. You'll probably get poetry too, I have a way with words. My world would revolve around you.
4. I want the best things, and I'm willing to pay for them. Show me the newest gorgeous boots and persuade me to buy them. I will. And price doesn't matter. “It’s one of those she’s got to have it”.
5. I can get focused on one project almost to the exclusion of everything else. I visualise with crystal clarity what needs to be done and I can't wait to get back to working on the project.
6. The intensity of good feelings, music, taste, smell, sex, the sun on my face, it’s like feeling the sun for the first time ever!
7. If the crowd is in good spirits, I pick up the mood and magnify it so that I may become to the most boisterous, funny, witty, daring, person present. I can be either the life of the party or the clown.
8. I can get loads of things done as I think more clearly, and move faster.
9. I get ideas on all the things I want to do, good ideas. Wonderful ideas that will transform my life.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 553
   Posted 9/3/2009 7:24 AM (GMT -7)   
you put words to so many of my own thoughts. I am on the down side most of the time, butg when I am up it looks a lot like that.
Even though I do not understand where I am going on the path that God has laid out for me, I must submit to His plan and trust that He will take me where I need to be. 
Current medications:
Bipolar treatment-Lamictal, 200mg, Mood stabelizer, daily(main side effect: brain fog) Bipolar treatment-Cymbalta, 40mg, Antidepressant, daily(main side effect: GI upset, decreased clotting, insominia) Anemia, Fatigue treatment- Iron supplement, 65mg, daily(main side effect: constipation) Insominia treatment- Ambien, 10mg, daily(main side effect: amnesia eppisodes between taking pill and falling asleep) Mania treatment- Alprazolam, .25mg, Very rarely(main side effect: fatigue, slowing of thoughts, depression of CNS, can't take ambien or vicodin when on it) RA treatment- Plaquenil, 400mg, daily(main side effect: GI upset, decreased clotting) RA treatment- Methotrexate, 25mg, 1X weekly(main side effects: hair loss, stomach upset, mouth sores, sore muscles, fatigue, brain fog, compromised immune system, decreased Folic Acid absorption) GI upset treatment- Leucovorin Calcium, 10mg 1x weekly(main side effects: ?) Folic Acid defintioncy- Folic Acid, 1mg, daily(main side effects: ?) Multi-mineral Supplement (main side effects: constipation, GI upset) Constipation treatment- Docusate Sodium, 200mg, daily(main side effects:?) pain control- Motrin, 800mg, PRN Q6hours daily(main side effects: GI upset, decreased clotting) Pain Control- Vicodin, 5-500mg, PRN Q12hours 3-4 times weekly (main side effects: brain fog, fatigue)

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 9/3/2013 10:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Holy moly,gling. I'm right there with you on all of that. Heading to my first appointment today...In about 30 minutes. Pretty much everything you said I can absolutely identify with. Wow.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 335
   Posted 9/7/2013 12:20 PM (GMT -7)   
I know I'm a little late to jump in on this but, if he/she asked about drugs, drinking, sexually inappropriate sexual behavior, they were Not being a jerk, you would not believe the amount of addiction in MI people! Not to mention the danger of mixing the legal and illegal. This is NOT a judgement or a diagnosis, just my experience. If you looked an an Addiction Intake form for Rehab it would look alot like your list, because the symptoms and brain chemistry are similar not because you are doing anything, they would be similar if you were a Bi-Polar Nun or Monk. I hope you had a positive experience and are getting closer to some peace of mind.
Craniotomy/Meningioma 12/02,Bi-P. 04,SMI 06, Glu./Wh./La. Int.,IBS 06, Mig. w/ps.-seiz. 07,Dev.Sep.Sur. 9/07, 2nd Men./Tu. Gam. Kn. Rad.12/08, Rad. Hyst. 09/09, w/Meno, Fibro. 09, Disab. 09, EBV/CFS? 11, Vom., D + C w/Vertigo 12, C-diff, spas. col., Chr. Fat. Mod. 13, Lots of Meds they ch. often + herbal meds + alternative when I can afford it.
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