Meeting with pdoc and nervous about what will happen.

Hi all, I’m new here, but I have been lurking for a while. This community is postive and supportive. I feel that people here can understand eachother in ways our ‘real-life’ connections sometimes cannot.

In about a week I’m going to see a psychiatrist and a caseworker. I’m not a DX’s schizophrenic, but I do wonder if I might get that diagnosis when they see me.

When I was about 17/18 I started smoking weed. A few months into it, I started to notice strange things I had never noticed before. Walking around the hallways of my school or the streets of the city I would hear people commenting, usually from behind my back or from a short distance. People would say things like “is he wearing the same pants as yesterday?” or “That guy’s high as hell”. I shared some of the experiences with my buddies, and they said that ‘weed just makes you paranoid bro, don’t worry about it’. I knew it wasn’t garden variety anxiety, though, because there had been a handful of occasions where I snapped at people: “stop talking about me!” I would say to their face.

Usually, it was very clear after I confronted these people that they had never been talking about me. Those times were humiliating, and I strained very hard to avoid such outbursts.
These came to a crescendo where I was having some pretty vivid and disturbing delusions and hallucinations. It was worse while I was high, but even sober they would continue. For a while I started to wonder if I had super-hearing, or if I could read people’s thoughts. Once I had the strong feeling a TV show was trying to tell me something. I’m sure some of these experiences will be familiar to many of you.

At first I suffered in silence, never seeking help. I quit weed on my own and the symptoms slowly attenuated. Now they are still with me, and I have a few coping strategies, but it’s been ten years now and I’m quite frustrated. To this day I have a lot of trouble going to public places because I have the persistent feeling that people are observing me and denigrating me.
Once I went to see a psychiatrist and she prescribed Abilify. The akathisia was bad enough that I quit taking it. That was years ago, but I think I am ready to try again, so I’ve booked an apointment with the mental health services in my area.

Two things are making me fret, which I want to get off of my chest. I hope some people here might have some kind words or advice regarding them.

My first worry is about diagnosis. I think a diagnosis of schizophrenia would be a bit of a blow to me, yet at the same time it would make me feel less alone, less inept, to know the reason why my life has gone the way that it has. I’m as afraid of getting a diagnosis as I am of not getting one.

The other worry is around anti-psychotic meds. I know they are potent, which is why I have avoided them until now, yet I can’t deny any longer how debilitating it is to avoid public spaces as fiercely as I do. I’ve lost many jobs and friends because of this. My symptoms are relatively mild, but if the meds could reduce my paranoia, it would be life-changing, yet I also worry that once I try them I"ll never be able to live without them. What if they even made the psychosis come back stronger?

Anyways, thank you so much for reading. I’ve read many of your posts here and I
look forward to our conversations.

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Welcome to the forum! Good luck at your appointment

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Please let us know how it goes and welcome.

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Welcome. I hope it goes well.

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Good luck at your appointment. I think antipsychotic treatment particularly in first time psychosis is neuroprotective. That means it can help reduce further damage and increase your chances of recovery.

Please stay away from marijuana!!!

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Welcome to the forum!

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Welcome to the forum :smiley::smiley::smiley:

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There’s quite a lot of meds available. I’m on Abilify myself (15mg). I take supplements to reduce the anxiety it causes and so I make it work.

But you could try Rexulti which is like Abilify but it’s supposed to cause less akathisia/anxiety.

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Thank you all for the kind welcomes :slight_smile:

@everhopeful
What supplements do you take? Did you have to ‘taper on’ to Abilify? What’s the deal with the '5mg is not a therapeutic dose of Abilify tag?

It looks like Rexulti is made by the same company which makes Abilify. I wonder what the difference is. Fun fact: That company, Otsuka Pharmaceutical, also makes the popular sports drink Pocari Sweat :laughing:

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L-theanine 750mg a day in 3 doses throughout the day.

https://www.iherb.com/pr/doctor-s-best-l-theanine-with-suntheanine-150-mg-90-veggie-caps/12959

Broccoli sprout extract
2 pills on waking.

https://www.iherb.com/pr/source-naturals-broccoli-sprouts-extract-250-mg-60-tablets/2456

And as a PRN to calm me down:
Beta alanine
1 or 2 capsules a day.

https://www.iherb.com/pr/now-foods-sports-beta-alanine-endurance-750-mg-120-veg-capsules/13949

If I wasn’t taking those supplements, then I’d be taking benzos for sure. In fact I was taking benzos until I switched to the supplements.

As for the my tag (“5mg isn’t a therapeutic dose”). It means exactly that. 10mg is the minimum dose for schizophrenia according to clinical trials.

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Welcome to our forum! I hope you stick around. Good luck with your pdoc appointment.

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Welcome! 1515151515151515

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Wanted to give a little update here:

I went to my psychiatrist consultation yesterday at my local clinic. Things went well, I’d say. I had a long conversation with the psychiatrist and my caseworker about my medical and psychiatric history. They were good listeners and experienced professionals.

My diagnosis is ‘unspecified schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorder’ or something to that effect. Apparently, I don’t quite ‘clinch’ a textbook presentation of schizophrenia. My initial episode of psychosis had a lot more delusions and hallucinations, but now I just get very frequent ideas of reference (feel like other people are talking about me in public all the time).

We decided I ought to try CBT and anti-psychotics. In a few weeks, once my SSRI has had a chance to start working, we will start on the APs.

Feeling very hopeful about my situation now :slight_smile:

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I’m glad things are going well with your treatment @dappled.

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Welcome @dappled !

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Good plan :slight_smile: I hope it helps

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