Exploring Treatment Options for Depression: Medication
Before And After
The alarm went off at 6:30 but I had already been up since 4:00 am an amazing feat for me, one I haven't pulled off since becoming disabled 15 years ago. I suffer from manic depressive illness and severe clinical depression. The past 15 years have been like a bad ride ride on a roller coaster, medications have helped and others have hurt. For the past 2 months I have been on a medication called Wellbutiron. The change is amazing.I have unboundless energy, not irritable but most important to me the depression lifted within a week of starting it. My family and loved ones call it my "happy pill". The name describes it perfectly.
Before taking this medication I could not function at all, the days were endless. I didn't have the energy to get out of bed, clean my house or even bathe and take care of myself. I think it has been over a year since I have published a hub. Everything that was important or interesting to me lost all importance. Writing, Law School, and my surroundings meant nothing to me. I felt like the living dead, literally. I spent the day in bed in pajamas, not bathing and crying for no reason I could find.The depression that hung over me was like a huge boulder with the darkest storm clouds blocking my vision and the mental pain unbearable. I considered suicide many times but couldn't get that right either.
The New Medication
To a person suffering from depression the world can seem a dark, scary and terrifying place. They will usually be willing to try anything to make it go away. On my visit to my doctor he recommended the happy pill (Wellbutrion) at this point I would try anything. The first few days I didn't really want to take it. I was scared. Finally I started at 100 mgs a day, there was definetely a change within 3-4 days. A little surge of energy would force me out of bed to clean the house or bathe. Little by little I was coming alive again.I enjoyed long bubble baths, started putting on makeup again. Everything was a little brighter. I couldn't believe it. There was no side effects like weight gain, drowsiness, or feeling stoned. It also took away the desire to self medicate with alcohol, cigarettes or xanax. It really has been a miracle for me. I was happy and smiled and laughed for the first time in years. I had found my happy pill.
Artificial Happiness, Good Or Bad ?
I called my sister and immediately started telling her about the amazing changes and my happy pill. My sister suffers from the same maladies as I. I was shocked when she told me she had her own happy pill (prozac) which gave her the same transformation.I Immediately thought of the lyrics in an old Beatles song "Mothers Little Helper". Then I started to wonder. Is the new found happiness I had found real or an artificial? Am I really happy or is my happiness based on taking my happy pill every morning? If it is artificially induced is it that bad? My days are still good as long as i take the meds but are terrible without them. Do we live in a society where happiness is so elusive that we depend on pills to obtain it and if so is this wrong?
From my perspective I'll take it anyway I can get it . I don't meant to sound flip about this but after the past two years of being so so depressed I couldn't function happiness sounds good. I still wonder at times what part of my new personality is me and which is the medications. I have also been quite and reserved and that part still remains but I am no longer social and outgoing. I panic in a crowd and still have the ambulance at my house at least twice a month.
My outlook on life has changed however. I am able to feel joy normally, not just because I'm manic. I can also suffer from sadness without falling into a spiral of depression. The medication has made a definite difference. The advances in medications have advanced a long ways since I was first diagnosed and I am grateful for this.
The ability to regulate the range of human emotions is still debatable and there are many different opinions. My view is that my mood disorder is like high blood pressure, if I take my medications I am able to control it, if I don't life is not so great. God willing one day maybe I will be able to control my emotions on my own. Until then I will continue to take my happy pill and enjoy life.
Is medication induced happiness wrong?
Do you or someone you love suffer from depression?
Three years later
It has been three years since i started the medication for my depression and things have gotten a wee bit better.
The medication is not a magic cure the Wellbutrion worked great for about six months. Then I sank into a depression that was so deep and so black that I spent almost three years just laying around in bed unable to even care for myself. My doctor added another pill to the mix of medications I already take.
This one was Prozac and together they slowly brought me out of the fog I was drowning in. There are I know side effects, risks and other things associated with taking these medications but if it comes to choosing this over having no life I am willing to take the risks.
Sometimes it takes months or even years of trying to find the right combination and sometimes changing the combination if it stops working. But as I stated earlier in this hub, when it comes to living with a mood disorder and the crippling depression that comes with it I'll take my happiness any way I can get it.