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Depression and Weight Issues Have you been diagnosed with depression, are possibly on depression medication, and find it affects your weight loss efforts? Post here for support!

Do I need medication?

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Old 11-01-2013, 11:53 AM   #1
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Default Do I need medication?

Hi, I have a family history of depression and I have seen 2 therapists who have indicated that they think I suffer from mild depression as an adult. I've refused medication and have tried to work through it with talk therapy. But in the past couple of years I feel like my anxiety level is extremely high and that my depression might be worse. I don't have problems with sleeping which is supposed to be a key indicator of depression I think? I can totally get out of bed and sleep fine at night, I do feel fatigue but I attribute that to my weight and/or eating habits. Most recently I've been feeling a lot of anger which is a new thing.

Does this sound like I need medication? I'm so scared of being medicated. Are there ways to fight depression without medication?
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Old 11-01-2013, 02:42 PM   #2
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Hi Wannabeskinny-

I used to have Clinical Major Depression, then it manifested into Bipolar. I was on meds for the depression, some worked very well but others didn't. There are side effects with all meds and it has taken me awhile to find the right meds. I am on the least amount of psych meds now that I have ever been on while being diagnosed, it is liberating to not feel overly dependent on psych meds. I think that there is a lot to be said for how one deals with challenging times, aspects of one's illness and I find that using healthy coping techniques is very important. Meds only help to a certain degree, at least in my opinion.

Are you still in touch with the therapists? Maybe they can refer you to a psychiatrist to get an opinion.

Good luck.

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Old 11-01-2013, 03:29 PM   #3
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Thanks for sharing your story. I suspect that I have a mild depression and that it can be dealt with without drugs. I don't have a therapist at the moment and have been thinking a lot about finding one. Some things that are keeping me from getting to it is that I'm a busy mom and there is nobody around to help me with daycare. So I have to schedule all my "me" activities at times that my husband is not working. I already go to physical therapy twice a week, work on the weekends, take a dance class, and go out with friends every couple of weeks. I don't want to bite anymore into family time. It's so hard!
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:32 PM   #4
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Hi! I, too, am recovering from major depression and anxiety. After one manic episode years ago, I was diagnosed bipolar (and apparently will always have the diagnosis and meds to go with it). I have been on anti-depressants, mood stabilizers, and anxiety meds for a very long time now, and ~ while one horrible side effect has been significant weight gain ~ I thank God that the medications (along with long-term therapy) have helped me to cope and be (somewhat) productive in my daily life. It sounds like maybe you would benefit from an anti-anxiety med (I take Buspar daily and Klonopin only as needed) more than an anti-depressant, but I am no doctor. Tell your therapists and doctor about your anxiety and if you feel any tendencies toward depression, so that they can guide you in the right direction. I highly recommend cognitive behavioral therapy for depression, anxiety, and weight loss! It has taken awhile, but I finally found the right combo of meds for me and after years of therapy with a few different therapists, I finally feel like myself again. I couldn't have done it without therapy, meds, and especially (last but certainly NOT least) my strong faith. That is just my 2 cents. I understand your hesitancy to go on meds, but if they can enhance the quality of your life, it might be worth it. If you do go on meds, ask the doctor to first try meds without weight gain (or with minimal weight gain) as a side effect. And, whatever you do, DON'T go on Zyprexa!!! I gained 60 pounds in less than a year because of the drug and the insatiable appetite it gave me. Still trying to get the weight off! Best of luck to you!!! Trust your gut and your doctor (if he/she is trustworthy)!!!
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:34 PM   #5
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P.S. ~ Research has shown that consistent and vigorous EXERCISE can be at least as effective as medication for depression and anxiety!
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:39 PM   #6
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Thanks IBelieveinme, you have both mentioned manic and bipolar, is this something that is innevitable with people who suffer depression? Like if depression goes unchecked it leads to bipolar? I'm unclear about that.
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:40 PM   #7
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Talking Me again.....lol!!!

I just noticed that we have very similar stats, except you are ahead of me in weight loss. Let's keep in touch and cheer each other on to VICTORY!!! We can do this!!!
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:47 PM   #8
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NO, absolutely not, depression does NOT inevitably lead to bipolar. Bipolar depression is another category of depression, characterized by episodes of mania (very high/euphoric feelings) and/or deep depression. Please do not worry that you will "become" bipolar. It doesn't work that way. Some anti-depressants can trigger manic episodes, though, so you might want to discuss that with your doctor as well. Lots to think about I know. Just take a deep breath and remain calm. And talk with your doctor and a good therapist! You will be okay!
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Old 11-01-2013, 04:01 PM   #9
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We hear a lot about new medicines but not as much about new talk therapies ... but there are some good ones. I recommend going back into therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy was great for me and I believe it can help with a lot of conditions. Personally, it does more for me than any medications ever has, but that doesn't mean everyone will have the same reaction. My emotional issues do not have a strong biological component, but many people's do, and medication is great for that.

When you see the therapist, be honest about your medication concerns, and he or she will take that into consideration, but understand that if he still recommend medication it's because it's really something you need.

Good luck!

Addendum: I see a lot more replies since I started writing my post!

I will add one thing: treating mental issues without medication takes a lot of time. For a while I was seeing my therapist twice a week. Medication is a lot less time consuming.

Something to think about if your schedule is really busy, medication may be appropriate merely because it's a better fit to your lifestyle.
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Old 11-01-2013, 04:44 PM   #10
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Hi wannabeskinny-

I understand what you are saying with regards to the 'me' time. Although I have a lot of time on my hands now because of recovering from my ankle surgery, for awhile I had almost no time to myself and that can be really frustrating. Maybe you can try to carve out little bits of time to take care of yourself, like the positive coping techniques idea I mentioned in my earlier post. So maybe that could be: a mani/pedi, bubble bath, going for a walk, things that help you relax and re center.

I used to be in physical therapy too and I will have to do something like that soon, I know that can be time consuming. I found that it helped a lot for me, and that is a good way to take care of yourself. If you have at home exercises, maybe try putting the radio on or watching TV while you do it, I have found that makes it seem more enjoyable. I completely agree, exercise can be very uplifting, I can hardly wait to go back to swimming laps, long walks, etc.

Good luck!!
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Old 11-02-2013, 09:55 AM   #11
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Thanks everyone for your input. I am not opposed to medication, I am just weary of it being used uncessarily and I'm not sure if I actually have depression or not. I guess the best way to address it is to go see a therapist. It's a long arduous road finding someone who is right for me. Last time I found a therapist I had to see several people, most of whom were terrible. My last therapist I stopped seeing her after 2yrs because I didn't like her anymore.
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:15 AM   #12
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There are supplements that can be extremely effective - like SAM-e - but it's best to do some research and try it with the supervision of someone qualified.
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desiderata View Post
There are supplements that can be extremely effective - like SAM-e - but it's best to do some research and try it with the supervision of someone qualified.
What is it and is it over the counter?
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Old 11-02-2013, 03:33 PM   #14
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Wannabeskinny-

I hear you on not liking a therapist after awhile, I think that is perfectly fine to move on from a certain therapist, I feel like I have outgrown certain therapists and sometimes it is healthy when one feels the need to move on. I hope that you do find a therapist who you click with. I had taken a break from therapy, I am going to go back to a different place for therapy, but less often. For me, therapy has seemed like a place where I can vent, get insight from the therapist and work on goals.

I don't know much about Sam-e, maybe ask your pharmacist or doctor about it.

Take care.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:44 PM   #15
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SAM-e is over the counter and I believe it is a natural supplement to help with depression/mood. There are many supplements out there for you to try before you go the medication route. Maybe one would work to at least take the edge off for you, which might be all you need. You mentioned in your first post that anxiety was your biggest problem recently. I would make sure to discuss this with your doctor or a therapist, as anxiety meds are different than depression meds. If anxiety is your issue, then your therapy should also be targeted toward that and not depression so much. Different strategies for two different issues. I know of a supplement called Tranquility Kare through Kare N Herbs that you might want to try. (I am not affiliated with this company in any way; just mentioning it in case it could help you.) I am on a daily anti-anxiety med and have never tried Tranquility Kare, but I do get another supplement through them for energy, which I love. Have always been curious about the Tranquility supplement, but I am already taking tons of meds and supplements. Again, best of luck to you! Hope you find what works for YOU!
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