Monday, June 10, 2024

Do I Go To My Doctor For Depression

How Can I Help The Doctor Make A Proper Diagnosis

How to Talk to Your Doctor About Depression

Before your appointment, write down your concerns about depression and specific symptoms of depression you might have. Itâs also helpful to get an in-depth family history from relatives before meeting with your doctor. This information can help the doctor make an accurate diagnosis and ensure effective treatment. Before your visit, think about and write down:

  • Your mental and physical health concerns
  • Symptoms you’ve noticed
  • Causes of stress in your life
  • Questions you have about depression and depression medications

You’re Dealing With Unexplained Aches And Pains

“Emotional pain from depression that you aren’t getting help for can be channeled throughout your body and show up as physical ailments, like headaches, stomach problems, neck and back pain, even nausea,” says Thomas. “I see this with many of my patients they’re holding so much sadness and distress inside, these feelings end up playing out in other ways.” Not every cramp or twinge is a symptom of depression, of course. But if you’re suffering from a chronic ailment you can’t attribute to another cause that isn’t clearing up on its own, “see a doctor to get it checked out, but also consider it a possible sign of depression too,” says Thomas.

Signed Off With Depression: What Are My Rights

So you have been to the doctor, you have followed all the advice and you got your fit note to stay off work for a few days or weeks and you have already considered starting your treatment. This is very positive and having some time to yourself can help you work through your depression.

However, you may or may not be feeling guilty at this point because you got to have some time off work without having really a valid reason or that is what some of your colleagues or even your boss might think. Even though there are no visible signs or just because people cant actually see your depression, it doesnt mean that is less valid than having a stomach bug or the flu.

On the contrary, it is a tremendously valid reason and it is actually considered a disability. You are protected by the Equality Act 2010, which states that:

A person has a disability if:

P has a physical or mental impairment, and

the impairment has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on Ps ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.

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Why A Mental Health Professional Is Best

It’s very importantespecially if this is your first time seeking treatment for depressionthat you obtain a referral to a psychiatrist or other mental health professional if your general practitioner suspects depression.

Though your family doctor or general practitioner may offer to prescribe you an antidepressant, they are not always the best-qualified doctor to treat depression. They do not possess the training to offer you psychotherapy nor are they experienced in the nuances of prescribing psychotropic medications the way that a psychiatrist is.

Psychiatry is a blend of art and science. Treating depression is not quite as simple as giving someone a prescription for Zoloft or Prozac and sending them on their way. Some individuals will need several trials of different medications to find one that best relieves their symptoms with the least amount of side effects.

Some people will need more than one medication to counteract side effects or to boost positive effects. Most will likely benefit from adding psychotherapy to the mix. Discussing options with your psychiatrist will determine the best path.

Depression Discussion Guide

Besides the medication specifics, you may have a completely different mental health condition and not depression. Bipolar disorder is one such disorder that may be initially misdiagnosed as depression but requires a very different course of treatment.

Questions To Ask Your Doctor

How to Talk to Your Doctor About Depression
  • What type of mental health problem might I have?
  • Why cant I get over this problem on my own?
  • How do you treat this type of problem?
  • Will counseling or psychotherapy help?
  • Are there medicines that could help?
  • How long will treatment take?
  • What can I do at home to help myself?
  • Do you have any brochures or other printed material on my condition that I can have?

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Getting A Sick Note In The Uk

In the UK, if you want to get a sick note, you have to be assessed by your GP or a hospital doctor, who will conclude that you are not fit for work. However, you should know that you do not need a sick certificate in the first 7 days of your absence. Only of your condition deteriorates, you will need a fit note.

Sick notes are medical certificates signed by your doctor, which state that you are either fit for work or not. Sick notes need to be presented to your employer and he will make a decision whether he finds it reasonable or not.

What Does The Doctor Look For To Make A Depression Diagnosis

A doctor can rule out other conditions that may cause depression with a physical examination, a personal interview, and lab tests. The doctor will also do a complete diagnostic evaluation, discussing any family history of depression or other mental illness.

Your doctor will evaluate your symptoms, including how long you’ve had them, when they started, and how they were treated. Theyâll ask about the way you feel, including whether you have any symptoms of depression such as:

  • Sadness or depressed mood most of the day or almost every day
  • Loss of enjoyment in things that were once pleasurable
  • Major change in weight or appetite
  • Insomnia or excessive sleep almost every day
  • Physical restlessness or sense of being run-down that others can notice
  • Fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
  • Feelings of hopelessness or worthlessness or excessive guilt almost every day
  • Problems with concentration or making decisions almost every day
  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide, suicide plan, or suicide attempt

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What Do I Need To Avoid While On This Medication

Some should not be taken with certain types of food such as grapes, or other medications, says Dr. TSarumi. Your doctor needs to know what other medications you take, either prescribed or herbal medicines. Certain antidepressants if taken with certain medications, can complicate into serotonin syndrome, a life-threatening drug-drug interaction. It presents with symptoms of tremors, high body temperature, sweating, and diarrhea. Hence, sharing and updating the current list of medications with your doctor is very important.

In addition to medication interactions, some antidepressants should not be taken with alcohol.

Each medication has its own dont list, so this is an important question to ask instead of making assumptions based on your experiences with past medications or your general knowledge of antidepressants.

Your doctor or provider may also want to check if you are pregnant or nursing, or plan to be.

Will The Doctor Sign Me Off Work With Stress

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Yes, your doctor can sign you off work with stress if you have been suffering from significant levels of stress that are now affecting your performance at work and your personal life.

However, consider how stress is not considered an illness but it can contribute to developing other health conditions and mental illnesses.

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When Should You Choose To Have A Negotiated Leave

You might feel like you cant work in your current job anymore due to the stress that you constantly feel. You can do this by taking a negotiated leave with your employee by going through some conditions.

You and your employer can agree that you can have a mutual termination of employment. If the employer finds your stress a reasonable cause, you may be given a financial incentive and job reference for your future endeavours.

This can only occur if you agree to the employer that you wont make an employment tribunal against the employer for your work-related stress. You can do this by hiring an employment solicitor who can help with some legal issues that may surround this kind of agreement.

This can help you and your employer to come at an agreement in legal means. It also comes with you being fairly treated for your stress reason for getting terminated from your current job.

You can learn more about what an employment solicitor can do for you by buying this book here.

How Do I Know When To Seek Help

The biggest hurdle to diagnosing and treating depression is recognizing that someone has it. Unfortunately, about half of the people who have depression never get diagnosed or treated. And not getting treatment can be life threatening: More than 10% of people who have depression take their own lives.

  • When depression is hurting your life, such as causing trouble with relationships, work issues, or family disputes, and there isn’t a clear solution to these problems, you should seek help to keep things from getting worse, especially if these feelings last for any length of time.
  • If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts or feelings, seek help right away.

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How To Talk To Your Doctor About Your Anxiety Levels

First, it is important to schedule an appointment with your GP. When you go in for your appointment, it is important to be upfront about how you are feeling, clearly communicate any symptoms you may be experiencing and what you feel are the root causes. Also, be open to receive your doctors advice and available options for you.

Ask any questions you may have to clear your mind of any doubts respecting your mental health and the available options, especially if you have been suggested medication . If your doctor considers it is necessary for you to take some time off then you may receive a fit note.

Subsequently, after your appointment, your doctor may recommend booking in follow-up appointments to check up on you.

Are There Physical Signs Of Depression

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Yes. In fact, a great many people with depression come to their doctor first with only physical issues. You might notice:

  • Back pain
  • Gut problems
  • Constant tiredness
  • Sleep problems
  • Slowing of physical movement and thinking

You might notice these symptoms and signs even before you notice the mental health symptoms of depression, or you might notice them at the same time. Your doctor can help you figure out the source of your symptoms.

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Work Related Stress: Employers Responsibility In The Uk

Work-related stress is defined as a negative experience of a group of workers who are accompanied by complaints or dysfunctions of the physical, mental or social aspects. Work-related stress must be prevented or alleviated collectively. These actions are

responsibility of the employer, who must:

  • analyze the work situation

The safety and occupational hygiene committee should supervise such actions, with the participation of both employers and employees.

How Do I Ask My Doctor For Anxiety Medication

Is excessive fear, worry, or anxiety affecting your daily life? You are likely suffering from an anxiety disorder.

Help is out there. Many people are relieved to learn that you dont need to see an expensive psychiatrist to receive mental health help.

Primary care doctors are able to treat many common mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. Initiating a conversation about starting anxiety medication can be nerve-wracking, but theres no need to be intimidated. Remember the doctor is there to help you.

In this article well go over how to ask your doctor for anti-anxiety medication so you can feel prepared to get the help you need.

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Rule Out Other Conditions

If you identify with the symptoms of depression, your next step should be a visit to your family doctor or general practitioner for a thorough exam and screening. Your provider will ask you about your health history and risk factors and may use written questionnaires to assess your symptoms.

Your family doctor or general practitioner will also want to rule out several medical conditions that can contribute to symptoms of depression, such as vitamin and mineral deficiencies, female hormonal changes, and thyroid conditions. In addition, several medications may have depressive symptoms as a side effect.

If your general practitioner doesn’t find any of these factors as a cause of your depression, they may prescribe an antidepressant or refer you to a mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or counselor.

In 2017, an estimated 17.3 million adults in the United States experienced at least one episode of severe depression, or 7.1% of all adults. For adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 years old, the percentage is even higher, with an estimated 3.2 million adolescents in the U.S. experiencing at least one major depressive episode in a year.

How To Deal With Employees Who Are Signed Off With Stress

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The concern is the detriment of physical or mental health due to excessive pressure in the workplace to finish up work that might be too much. The employer should place the health of the employee in his or her business plan.

This is why some employers have the Employee Assistance Program to take care of employees. If you cant attain this kind of program, you can always refer your employee who is signed off with stress to a professional.

With this referral, you can at least save your employee and find some flaws in your business plans that may have caused the concern in the employee. This can also make sure that the employee is signed off with stress will be able to recover with the time out.

In a referral, you can manage this through support. This kind of referral is needed when the following conditions are met:

  • The managers connection with the employee is complicated and needs a new avenue to solve.
  • The employee is dysfunctional with absenteeism for long periods of time.
  • There are health concerns that need addressing like anxiety or depression.

Another typical concern is that with the fact that work-related stress and pregnancy can have an impact on the female employees and making motherhood difficult. As mentioned before, the employer should give them the time off by being signed off with stress.

You can try to ease your stress in pregnancy by learning some exercise moves by buying this video on this website.

Have a meeting or talk with the employee

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Questions Your Doctor May Ask

  • Are you sleeping more than usual or having difficulty sleeping?
  • Are you having trouble concentrating or making decisions?
  • Do you think of death or have thoughts of suicide?
  • How long have you been feeling sad or down?
  • How is your appetite? Have you lost weight or gained weight?
  • How is your energy level?

Your answers to these questions will help your doctor pinpoint whether or not you have major depressive disorder, often referred to simply as depression. Before confirming a diagnosis, however, your doctor will need to rule out other health problems.

Symptoms of several medical conditions can mimic those of depression. This is especially true in older adults with new-onset depression. These conditions include:

  • Anemia
  • Kidney or liver problems
  • Vitamin deficiencies

While blood tests cannot be used to diagnose depression, they can rule out some of these above conditions. Less commonly, your doctor may order an imaging test, like a brain MRI. This can rule out structural brain diseases, like stroke, especially if the doctor notices evidence of cognitive problems or neurological signs upon physical examination.

Some medications may also cause symptoms of depression as a side effect. Be sure to tell your doctor all of the medications you are taking, including both prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

How Does A Doctor Make A Depression Diagnosis

We’ve gotten used to doctors using special blood tests or other complex laboratory tests to help them make a conclusive diagnosis. But most lab tests arenât very helpful when it comes to diagnosing depression. In fact, talking with the patient may be the most important diagnostic tool the doctor has. The recommendation is that doctors routinely screen everyone for depression. This screening might take place during a visit for a chronic illness, at an annual wellness visit, or during a pregnancy or postpartum visit.

To effectively diagnose and treat depression, the doctor must hear about specific symptoms of depression. They may use a series of standard questions to screen for depression. While a physical examination will reveal a patient’s overall state of health, by talking with a patient, a doctor can learn about other things that are relevant to making a depression diagnosis. A patient, for example, can report on such things as daily moods, behaviors, and lifestyle habits.

A depression diagnosis is often difficult to make because clinical depression can show up in so many different ways. For example, some clinically depressed people seem to withdraw into a state of apathy. Others may become irritable or even agitated. Eating and sleeping patterns can be exaggerated. Clinical depression may cause someone to sleep or eat to excess, or almost eliminate those activities.

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Can I Stop Taking This Medication When I Feel Better

The answer to this is almost always nobut ask the question anyway. Your doctor or provider can give you information on how to safely stop taking your antidepressant. The same precautions need to be taken when switching from one medication to another. Some antidepressants need to be tapered off for months to avoid rebound, the worsening of the symptoms from abruptly stopping the medications. Make a plan with your doctor or provider before stopping your medication or changing your dose.

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