I have decided to go to see my GP about my anxiety and depression, so thought it best I pull together a history of medication I have been prescribed over the past 9 years. Here is the medication I have been prescribed for anxiety and a link to a description on the Mind website:
Following my mental health breakdown in 2009 I was prescribed Citalopram an SSRI antidepressant, by my GP, starting at 10mg and increasing to 40mg a day.
Dartford Mental Health Team reviewed my medication in March 2010 and prescribed Quetiapine 100mg a day, second generation antipsychotic. and Citalopram 60mg
East Northants CMHT changed my medication to Pregabalin (Lyrica) 300mg which is an anticonvulsant drug which is sometimes used as an anti-anxiety medication and Citalopram 40mg in Dec 2010
My medication was changed to Pregabalin (Lyrica) 300mg and Duloxetine (Cymbalta) 90mg an SNRI antidepressant, by East Northants CMHT in April 2011
In December 2012 my medication changed to Trazadone 150mg a tricyclic related antidepressant and Pregabalin (Lyrica) 225mg by East Northants CMHT
In 2014 I stopped taking the Trazadone and continued to take Pregabalin (Lyrica) 300mg a day
In December 2015 my GP increased my Pregabalin (Lyrica) dose to 600mg a day, that is what I have been taking ever since.
So I have been on Pregabalin since December 2010, i.e. over 7 years, I think it is time for a medication review!
I have a lot of time for Martin Lewis of Money Savings Expert, for his advice on consumer finance and his annual debt advice booklet for people suffering with mental health illness.
He is also the face of the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute, based in London UK. I am proud to contribute to their research by being a member of the research community. This involves completing online questionnaires and surveys from time to time. There is no obligation to complete all surveys and there is also an opportunity to partake in online discussion groups.
The Money and Mental Health policy Institute have recently completed their research into how people are able to deal with financial institutions, including banks and utility companies and the impact having a mental health illness has on that. You can read the research report Access Essentials here
I had been receiving DLA and then PIP for the past 5 years or so, because of my mental health and Ulcerative Colitis. Following a mid award review which started in August 2017 and a medical assessment by Capita in November 2017, my PIP award ended on the 11th December 2017.
I have been reflecting on this a lot over the past 6 months. Financially the impact was significant, as it meant I also lost my Tax Credits award from the 11th December, and any day I expect a bill for £500 over payment following the year end tax credit review.
I have been lucky and been able to earn a little more money through the work I do and been helped by family.
I think the assessment found me no longer eligible, because I have moved into an acceptance phase of my illness. I accept the limitations of what I can do, because of my Anxiety and Colitis and have found a way to live which suits those conditions. Continue reading “Reflection about losing PIP Award”
I attended a DWP Medical Assessment with Capita in Northampton following a review for being submitted in August.
During the Assessment the assessor said that she was not there to advise but she thought I should go back and see my GP.
Having talked about my illness with the assessor I have realised that my anxiety has got worse. I can separate my mental health illness into three areas Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) , Social Anxiety and Depression.
The depression will mainly be a result of the impact of GAD and social Anxiety
Social anxiety is relatively easy to explain: I have suffered with social anxiety most of my adult life, I feel uncomfortable in groups and crowds and don’t find conversation easy, unless with immediate close family members. This has now grown to mean I avoid all social events and a gatherings, I am scared to answer the telephone
In honour of World Mental Health Day on Tuesday the 10th October 2017, which this year focuses on workplace well-being, our friends at MyTherapy have put together an info-graphic to share some pretty surprising facts about mental illness in the workplace.
I have in the past pondered whether my anxiety in the form of Generalised Anxiety Disorder and Social Anxiety was a disability. As I also have Ulcerative Colitis (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) and receive Personal Independence Payment, now, if I am asked in a questionnaire etc whether I consider myself disabled, I do usually end up ticking yes.
I thought I would share with you what I have learnt about the financial help that is available to those with a disability. This blog is based on my experience of claiming benefits and getting financial help as I have a long term ill health in the form of a mental illness and Inflammatory Bowel Disease. I have linked the benefit types to relevant part of disability benefits on GOV.UK website
Occasionally I miss a dose of Pregabalin, my mental health medication for my anxiety. I take 300mg of Pregabalin (Lyrica) twice a day and have been for about 18 months now. Saturday night I fell asleep early and forget to take my medication. Sunday I felt, well all I can really come up with is odd. I was more touchy and short tempered – sorry family. But what I really noticed was that I was so itchy.
Early in August I received a Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Review form dated the 6th August 2017, which is called a ‘PIP Award Review – How your disability affects you’. This came as a surprise (shock) because my PIP award is to August 2018. I have felt anxious and overwhelmed by the prospect of completing the form and the implications of the review: will it change my PIP Award, which could then effect my Tax Credits award (which I now claim as I work part time at home on a self-employed basis).