Withdrawal Symptoms and Mental Health

“Despite what appears to be a low risk of addiction in naïve, chronic pain patients, it is reasonable to ask how much harm is actually done to patients with chronic pain by withholding opiate analgesics.” ― Howard L. Fields

About a week after I was discharged from the hospital I started having migraine headaches. Usually when they happen it means I have ate something that triggers them. For the life of me I could not think of one single thing that had changed in my diet. I am very careful about processed foods that may contain tree nuts, they are one of my triggers, the other is raw onions.

Then several days ago it dawned on me what might be the possible trigger. Before my discharge the surgeon instructed me to ask my GP to wean me off of the pain killers. The doctor started slow by reducing them by 3mg each week on renewal. This is what I believe is happening in my body.

The last time I came off of opioids it was with Oxycodone and Fentanyl. For that I asked my GP and my psychiatrist to admit me to the mental health ward while being weaned from those opioids. Withdrawals are real, whether it is from prescribed medicines or street drugs like heroin.

I am happy that I am being weaned from the pain killers, but I can sympathize with those who after coming clean fall back to the use of the drugs.

So dear reader, let me ask, have you ever gone through withdrawal symptoms, if so can you describe them for me and other readers?

Affordable?

It’s critical that we lower the cost of prescription drugs and develop a health care plan that works for all Americans. Mike Braun

I am Canadian, but this could be applied to Canada.

I am not really sure when I started noticing the price of everything. Debating with a company over the cost of their services. Look through all of the flyers to see which store has the best prices. Is it something that happens when you grow older, I don’t remember noticing the prices of everything before buying.

The bill for the repair made on my furnace arrived in the mail. Glad that they will let me make payments. Then over the past couple of weeks I have been having a change with my pain killers and something to help me sleep better. I had to call my doctor and explain that I couldn’t afford the medications. I had to ask him to once again change my medications.

If a person cannot afford something, something like their medications, it could sit on the lowest shelf in the store, but, it would still be inaccessible. I am on assistance from the Provincial Government. I called my pharmacy that I deal with and asked if there were any exemptions available, the reply was, “no”. So, I asked about generic brands, turns out I have the generics. These medications have to be renewed every seven days. For a month of the prescriptions would cost me just under three hundred dollars.

My thoughts have been wandering all over the gambit. Thoughts about what I could change to afford the medications. Thinking about the prices doesn’t inspire a person to write!

I have read many reports about innocent people were given Oxycodone after surgery. They become addicted to the medication, a medication they cannot afford to keep on taking. So they turn to the streets, heroin for it gives the same euphoric high, but the cost is much cheaper.

I read a report about overdoses and how pharmacies are teaching people how to use naloxone, if they have people around them that use needles. The number of overdoses in a day is climbing and the stuff on the street is deadly. You are playing roulette with the stuff.

So, dear reader, this old guy has been wondering what the fix is, a fix to the cost of medications so that they are affordable!

Mental Health, Mental Wellbeing – Some Facts

“Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable. When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary.” Fred Rogers


A couple posts back I wrote a post titled “Mental Health & Access To Health Care“.

In the comment section Chelsea Owen wrote the following:

It all gets paid for, one way or another. The U.S. health system bothers me because health insurance companies are clearly for-profit entities yet everyone talks about them in NewSpeak like they are not. Still, a socialized system like yours gets its funding from somewhere. The medications that companies use often come from the megalithic pharmaceutical process in the U.S.; expensive, but thorough.

How do we pay for it? Save up. Does mental health get coverage? Not usually. If it does, it’s a percentage or a copay or a “you can see these doctors but not these.” A FB friend posted about how she cannot get good help for her daughter unless she pays $1600 a month…

Well that comment started me thinking. So, hello Google here I come. So the following was inspired by Chelsea Ann Owens. Thank you Chelsea!


U.S. News ranks top 10 countries with the most well developed healthcare systems

Alyssa Rege – Wednesday, January 11th, 2017

Top 10 Countries By HealthcareBest Country Overall
RankingCountry 
10Switzerland1
9Netherlands9
8Australia5
7Japan3
6United Kingdom6
5Germany4
4Norway10
3Sweden8
2Denmark13
1Canada1
The United States Did Not Make The Cut

What Is Mental Health and Mental Wellbeing

Mental Health Definition:

“Mental health is not just the absence of mental disorder. It is defined as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”


Mental Wellbeing Index Definition

DeveloperPsychiatric Research Unit. Mental Health Centre North Zealand, Hillerød, Denmark.

Year: 1998

“The WHO-5 Well-Being Index is a questionnaire that measures current mental well-being (time frame the previous two weeks).” Originally developed to assess both positive and negative well-being, this five question version use only positively phrased questions to avoid symptom-related language.

Mental Wellbeing Index

  1. United Arab Emirates
  2. Indonesia
  3. Mongolia
  4. Kenya
  5. Thailand
  6. Israel
  7. Iceland
  8. Malta
  9. Canada
  10. United States of America

So dear reader, once again thank you Chelsea Ann Owens for inspiring this post!

p.s – *** I am tossing around the thought of writing about the word “Socialist”. There is some confusion about what that term means. I can pretty well say that what it meant when it first came into man’s vocabulary compared to today are very much different.***

Prescriptions And Blood Tests

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I thought for this post a brief alert.  I have suffered with blood clots in the past and it is for that reason I take Warfarin.  It requires frequent blood tests, preferably monthly.  

The blood test is called I.N.R, it tests for the clotting factor within the blood. Yesterday I had blood work done.  The results were expected due to the fact I have been on some new prescriptions.  It was a very high number, normal rate they like to see is around 2.5. Mine was 4+, so adjustments had to be made to my daily regiment of Warfarin.

I am writing this post to bring attention to those who take prescriptions, who need blood tests.  If your blood work is coming back with strange results maybe you should speak with your physician so that he can adjust your regiment of medications.

When I was first put on Warfarin over ten years ago I did not understand the correlation between Warfarin and the I.N.R. For more information about I.N.R   you can find it here: Health Direct

A short description is this: An INR test measures the time for your blood to clot. It is also known as prothrombin time, or PT. It is used to monitor blood-thinning medicines, which are also known as anticoagulants. The INR, or international normalised ratio, can also be used to check if you have a blood clotting problem.

So dear reader from my experience prescription medicines can affect blood tests. Do not be alarmed, speak to your physician and your pharmacist!

Medications – Be Informed 2

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This is the last of the medications I take to treat me being bi-polar.  My medications is what keeps me stable.  A lot of mood stabilizers!



Medications Continued

Quetiapine

Uses

This medication is used to treat certain mental/mood conditions (such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, sudden episodes of mania or depression associated with bipolar disorder). Quetiapine is known as an anti-psychotic drug (atypical type). It works by helping to restore the balance of certain natural substances (neurotransmitters) in the brain.

Side Effects

Constipation, drowsiness, upset stomach, tiredness, weight gain, blurred vision, or dry mouth may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor promptly.

Dizziness or light headedness may occur, especially when you first start or increase your dose of this drug. Dizziness and light headedness can increase the risk of falling. Get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.


Information from:  WebMD.com