Well the start of a new year (2016) deserves a blog post. The evidence is here to show that I had over done it towards the end of last year – I have had flu for the past 10 days and currently have a bad chest, don’t want to say chest infection. So if I didn’t already know it , the flu confirmed that I had done to much for me, which triggered my dark thoughts and difficult period in November and early December.
Wow, it has been a month and quite a bit has happened.
A month ago, I blogged that I recognised I was stuck in a cycle with anxiety feeding IBS feeding anxiety, which was at the least hindering my recovery. So I have had a string of appointments over the past month, which included, GP, Psychiatrist, Gastroenterologist, and an Endoscopy.
So, to start, an anxious visit to the GP: who as usual seemed to lack empathy. I explained my bowel symptoms and link to anxiety. He concluded that I displayed the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and suggested I discuss it more at my next Gastroenterologist appointment.
Sorry everyone – bowel talk! So I have now worked out that my bowel control problems are not necessarily a symptom of my Ulcerative Colitis, (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) and have now been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
I have been taking 150mg of Trazodone at night for a week now, the good news is my head / mental health seems to be a lot better, I feel less anxious and depressed.
BUT I am suffering with aching joints, particularly my knees and back, find it difficult to physically get out of bed because I ache and feel so ‘heavy’, to the point I am close to calling my wife to help me out of bed.
Here is an update on my medication, therapy and what I am trying to do to manage my colitis and anxiety:
The medication I take of Trazodone, Pregabalin and Asacol Mesalazine tablets are working for me so I will continue with them
I am attending Solution Focused Brief Therapy every two weeks and find that very helpful; I always come away feeling more positive, happy and motivated.
I have been on Trazodone 150mg for a week now.
Firstly Trazodone has stopped the awful side effects I was getting from Duloxetine withdrawal – which is great because the nightmares, dizziness, brain zaps and sleep problems where getting to much. So lesson learnt is always do what the doctor tells you
I don’t know whether I am making a big mistake but I am trying to come off Duloxetine (Cymbalta). I have not taken Duloxetine for 5 days now, having slowly reduced my dosage over three weeks
Very difficult to explain, but got regular sounds in my head, like a camera shutter and sort of pressure noise when I move, extremely tired / exhausted, hard to move, limbs heavy, extremely irritable/nasty, dizzy/faint, nausea, emotional, increased nightmares, increased thoughts of harming myself
Anyway, my daughter has just expressed her and the families concern over how I am, so thought I had better check it out a bit more.
I had my appointment with the Psychiatrist on the 19th December and we reviewed my medication.
I was taking:
Apparently whilst a low dose of Duloxetine can help anxiety, a higher dose (ie 90mg) can increase anxiety!
Things I do to manage my Ulcerative Colitis which is Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD):
- I have my Colitis ‘kit’ which I take out with me (spare underpants, baby wipes and couple of nappy sacks, in case of any accidents)
- Take my medication regularly
- Use the enema when I have an attack
- Try and drink lots of water and/or squash
- Go to bed if an attack is to bad, sleeping it off, eases UC
- Think about my diet, wheat and spicy food are bad news
- Talk to my wife and family about it.
- I have managed to get a disabled parking Blue Badge so I can park easily if I need to dash to the loo
- I am going to look into getting some Incontinence pads or pants, to help me feel safer when out.