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The 2-week rule of depression - who actually believes that?! *poss trig*

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Enough of the 2 week rule!
When you go to the GP and ask for help with depression they give you the two-week depression checklist and seem to base all of their treatment on that.
The thing is I don't know how to answer it! If I answer it for the last 2 weeks then according to this I'm fine I have no problems. But that ignores the seven months hell of suicidal depression including a suicide attempt that I have been through and the hard work I have put in to make things better!
I don't know about anyone else but my depression is very variable - I can be fine one week and hell the next. For instance, my suicide attempt came from a sudden crash after a couple of weeks feeling better.
What does anyone else think about this? Just because I am feeling a bit better it doesn't mean that it's over or that I don't need help - it probably means that I am actually better placed to accept help. And I know that without help I will end up back there again.
The other thing is that they use the checklist to judge the effectiveness of the therapy - but I always end up exaggerating how bad it is at the beginning in order to make sure that I get help, so when I fill in the end one it looks as though I've improved when there's actually no difference.

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think the 2-week checklist is a guideline for GP's to follow. I guess they can't be seen to hand out medication or do a referral until they know what they are working with.

    I think you need to be really honest with the checklist but maybe add to it underneath about how your emotions can change. The more information the better.

    Let us know how you get on :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    milou wrote: »
    Enough of the 2 week rule!
    When you go to the GP and ask for help with depression they give you the two-week depression checklist and seem to base all of their treatment on that.
    The thing is I don't know how to answer it! If I answer it for the last 2 weeks then according to this I'm fine I have no problems. But that ignores the seven months hell of suicidal depression including a suicide attempt that I have been through and the hard work I have put in to make things better!
    I don't know about anyone else but my depression is very variable - I can be fine one week and hell the next. For instance, my suicide attempt came from a sudden crash after a couple of weeks feeling better.
    What does anyone else think about this? Just because I am feeling a bit better it doesn't mean that it's over or that I don't need help - it probably means that I am actually better placed to accept help. And I know that without help I will end up back there again.
    The other thing is that they use the checklist to judge the effectiveness of the therapy - but I always end up exaggerating how bad it is at the beginning in order to make sure that I get help, so when I fill in the end one it looks as though I've improved when there's actually no difference.


    I think there are pro's and con's about questionnaire style assessment tools.

    On the positive side, when feeling depressed it can be hard for people to communicate necessary information to their doctor because their thinking processes are not working as they need to be, and so they may forget to mention some important facts. I also think it?s good that a well-informed record is kept on the patient?s file.

    On the not so positive side, I think giving someone a few sheets of paper to tick boxes on can be depersonalising and fail to transmit a sense of care.

    Research done by MIND over 20 years ago showed that regular visits to a sympathetic GP taking time to listen by people suffering with mild to moderate depression were as effective as anti-depressants in a high number of cases.

    Face to face assessment can be seen as part of the treatment, not just a precursor to it.

    Also, research done by MIND, and other bodies, has shown that there is a high risk of suicide during the recovery phase following an episode of clinical depression. The explanation being that although people often feel suicidal when experiencing serious bouts of depression they can lack the energy and motivation to do anything about it. But when they begin to recover, and if they find they are still contemplating the idea of ending their life, which may be because of the issues that triggered their depression, rather than their depressive illness per se, they may act on such thoughts. Sadly, just when supportive resources are being withdrawn because the person is seen as being: ?cured?, a substantial number of people take their lives. The same research found that the suicide success rate of people in this phase was far higher than during any other phase of depression as a clinical illness.

    Politicians and the media are currently obsessed with the: ?obesity crisis?, and very little attention is being paid to the mental health crisis that is sweeping through Britain, mainly due to high levels of stress and depression.

    Well-established research shows that national rates for depression fall during times of war, but rise during times of recession.

    One explanation for this statistical fact is that during times of war people pull together and there is a collective sense of togetherness and unity against a common enemy.

    However, during times of recession, the focus falls on the ?enemy within?, such as unemployment, lack of positive activity, and lack of financial clout, and people tend to become more divided, and also critical of others.

    You don?t need to be a doctor to work out why people without jobs, money, and hope, might fall into depression. Record numbers of young people are now presenting with depression and other stress related mental health issues.

    Asking people to fill out a form so that they can obtain medication for personal relief of the symptoms of depression is a necessary individual remedy, but increasingly, the depressive illnesses that people are presenting with can be traced back to a sick society.

    I don?t blame GPs for sticking up for their pension rights, but I would like to hear them speaking up more for those people they are treating for illnesses that can be traced back to the ailing society that we live in.

    There is an increasing tendency within the media to blame unemployment on the unemployed, and to stigmatise those people needing to claim welfare benefits, and this just adds to the problem.

    We need to think more intelligently along the lines of people in systems, and come up with some answers to the sick society we are living in, instead of blaming the individuals that fall victim to it, i.e. less tabloid right-wing ideology and more common-sense and practical thinking.

    Jed
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The diagnosis for depression involves the last two weeks, though. That's the difference between depression, dysphoria and just having a bad day.

    If you tell the truth you'll be listened to, but be impartial when grading yourself.
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