I just want to begin by thanking those of you who expressed their support for my recent blog post regarding self-nurture and feeding my inner child.
If you are following my Instagram account, or have read my newest blog publications, you’ll likely be aware of the fact I have battled mental illness for many years, however recent months have been particularly difficult as I am in the midst of a relapse with my chronic depression. I’ve witnessed people show confusion, or sometimes even anger that I use the term relapse to describe depressive episodes, however the term isn’t specific to addiction.
DEFINITION OF RELAPSE
Upon ringing the doctors I realised that you were only able to make appointments in the mornings, and the phones were turned off half an hour later. You could leave a message if necessary, but to make an appointment you had to ring at 8AM, and hope that the appointments wouldn’t be taken by others in the queue. You can’t visit the surgery solely to make appointments, and you are unable to book online anymore. It’s an issue which only came to be in the pandemic, but the decision to remove the ability to book appointments online was certainly…a choice. It may not be a widespread problem, however these types of decisions in healthcare are certainly not limit to one particular practice. It exists within a mentality which fails to truly consider disabled service users discounting the fact that 20% of the population have a disability, and 1 in 4 people have a mental health condition in their lifetime. Being able bodied is finite, therefore the failure to make sufficient changes and impliment accessible resources and practice means that it won’t just affect the current disabled community, but it will have a ripple affect into health and social care practice in the future.
Once I managed to get an appointment after a week or so of trying, I got to speak to a GP regarding my mental health and the issues I have been facing. Because I haven’t been vaccinated, along with a lot of other younger disabled people, I feel very unsafe going for face to face appointments as I’m susceptible to covid, and would suffer significantly from any affects it would have, if I would even survive it at all. Therefore, speaking over the phone about mental health was unnerving to me, as I wasn’t able to truly gauge body language and responses to the difficult topics I was discussing. This of course isn’t the doctor’s fault, more so the issues surrounding young disabled people and accessing the vaccine (something I made a whopping Instagram post about). Again, this is an individual hold up, but I know others with mental illnesses who feel the same way, and it is why I have been so hesitant and off-put at the thought of this conversation. Although it became increasingly obvious that I had to talk to someone as my mental health is in pretty dire straights.
CORRELATION STATS FOR CHRONIC ILLNESSES AND MENTAL ILLNESSES
Thankfully the doctor was very receptive regarding my mental health and the types of feelings and experiences I am enduring as of late, and how it’s affecting my quality of life. After a year of shielding my headspace is messy, I have (unrelated) developed PMDD and this has triggered a major set back of my mental health. So we are trying a different approach, initially I was looking into changing my contraception (which I used for period regulation) – the contraceptive implant, and instead using a combined oral pill, however because I experience migraines and cervicogenic headaches with aura I am at an increased risk of a stroke. Therefore we are increasing my SSRI anti depressant medication and she advised I seek talking therapy, although I know that the waiting list for CBT is incredibly long, so I am sceptical of how I will get this referral, and have decided that for now I shall see how the medication adjustment goes.
BLOG POST LINK