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Month: March 2017

Essential Oils and Mental Illness

Essential Oils and Mental Illness

Essential Oils Help Lessen Many Symptoms of Mental Illness

 

When my son was first diagnosed with schizophrenia I looked far and wide for anything that would help.  I stumbled across essential oils long before they became the rage.  Vetiver oil helped with insomnia.  Lavender and Frankincense helped keep him calm.  I bought a good atomizer that diffused the oil without diluting it with water.  I sprayed a 50/50 mix of vetiver and lavender on his pillow and rubbed it directly on his feet to help him sleep.

This is the diffuser I bought….its very good and the company really stands behind their product: I bought the aroma ace model.

http://store.diffuserworld.com/?_vsrefdom=adwords&gclid=CjwKEAjw8OLGBRCklJalqKHzjQ0SJACP4BHrTL_dcqVJmtZhc67AF18QY6GH6OInaVRAd060mAF62BoCVwbw_wcB

This is where I buy all my oils…if you buy in bulk it is cheaper:  http://www.bulkapothecary.com/?gclid=CjwKEAjw8OLGBRCklJalqKHzjQ0SJACP4BHrGwWKDaawDq1ea4tOgBLVDVvRuIGQ1SBkqie7eLVxQBoCt_zw_wcB

 

This is the book I use for application and dosage: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1623154243/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

Questions or Comments?  Email me Currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

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National Resource Guide for finding a Social Worker

National Resource Guide for finding a Social Worker

Link to a Good State by State Guide for Finding a Qualified Social Worker

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2738337/

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Consult a Nutritionist to Reduce Symptoms of Mental Illness

Consult a Nutritionist to Reduce Symptoms of Mental Illness

A Good Nutritionist is a Must Have

 

Did you know that most people suffering from mental illness are lacking magnesium, B-12, Omega 3 Fatty Acids and essential amino acids?  These nutrients have a direct effect on the severity of many symptoms. Does that mean go out and buy a bunch of supplements and guess at the dosage?  NO WAY!! You can do real harm just guessing.  Many of these supplements can interact with anti-psychotics.

Ask your medical provider to recommend a qualified nutritionist.  Get base line blood work done before you see him/her.  Make sure you have a list of all meds the patient is currently on as well as any they have taken in the past.  Document all symptoms, the severity and how often they occur before AND after your scheduled visit.  Of all the Meds my son took, properly dosed supplements helped ease his symptoms the most.

Below is a link to a very good article on psychiatry and supplements.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2738337/

 

Got a comment/question relating to mental illness?  EMAIL me  Currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

 

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You Can’t Take Care of Anyone Else if You Fall Apart

You Can’t Take Care of Anyone Else if You Fall Apart

The Caretaker MUST Take Care of Themselves!

Taking care of a loved one with mental illness is the most difficult thing I have EVER done in my life.  I am a fixer.  Up until schizophrenia slapped me in the face there was nothing I couldn’t solve. I found out slowly, not only couldn’t I fix it, but I couldn’t get my son to cooperate in any way.  He was unwilling to take meds, go to therapy, meet with his social worker, accept SSI, you name it…he wasn’t doing it.  What he WAS doing was allowing his disease to completely disrupt himself and our family.  It was harrowing and heartbreaking.

Three years of trying to force him to help himself took it’s toll.  I began to drink, and drink I did.  I resorted to destructive behavior because I was NOT taking the time to make sure I was OK.  I got myself into therapy.  I found a good woman who walked me through the stages of grief.  Face it, the Nick I knew, loved and had hopes and dreams for was gone.  In his place was a destructive, frightened and confused zombie I could no longer relate to.  Grief was what I was going through.

I cannot stress enough the importance of taking care of yourself, the caregiver.  Join a NAMI support group.  Go to yoga.  Learn to box.  Walk every day. Get a therapist.  Whatever it takes, make sure YOU matter!

 

Got a question or a comment? EMAIL me—-currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

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Gluten and Schizophrenia

Gluten and Schizophrenia

A Gluten free diet will lessen symptoms of Schizophrenia

There are several scientific studies that link increased severity of  both positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia to Gluten.  What are positive and Negative symptoms?

The name refers to the two types of symptoms in schizophrenia, as defined by the American Psychiatric Association: positive symptoms, which refer to an excess or distortion of normal functions (e.g., hallucinations and delusions), and negative symptoms, which represent a diminution or loss of normal functions.

Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale – Wikipedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positive_and_Negative_Syndrome_Scale
When I found out about this link, I removed all Gluten from our family diet.  My advice?  Remove it SLOWLY.  It won’t make a damn bit of difference if no one eats that rock hard loaf of rice flour bread.  Cooking with non wheat flour is an art.  I invested in a Zojirushi Bread Machine because it has a gluten free mode.  I cartwheeled all over pinterest for simple recipes at first.  Pancakes, muffins & cookies made with almond flour were the easiest to start with.  Eventually I reduced our gluten intake by 90%.
We did see a difference in Nick’s behavior.  In addition there was an improvement in our health too.  Below you will find a link to an overview of a study on gluten done by the AJOP.  There are hundreds of similar studies.

 

Another look at gluten in schizophrenia.” American Journal of Psychiatry, 135(11), pp. 1417–1418 http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/1979-26475-001

 

Got a comment or question EMAIL me–currykate1@gmail.com

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The Mentally Ill Diagnosis: A guessing game

The Mentally Ill Diagnosis: A guessing game

How is a Diagnosis of Mental Illness Made?  Hint….Its a cross between a checklist and a Ven diagram.

There is no test for mental illness.  No blood work or cat scan or anything for that matter can identify this debilitating disease.  When my son landed in the psyche ward the first time the staff ran a tox screen.  When that came back negative they interviewed him for FIVE minutes and based on a checklist came back with a diagnosis of stress.  After my son’s third visit to the hospital, based only on a pattern of behavior, he was given the diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia.  They came to this conclusion by using a Ven diagram.  Does the consumer exhibit behavior X and Y but not Z…Bipolar.  Z & Y only?  Must be schizophrenia.  X,Y & Z?  Gotta be PTSD.

The way the come to their determination was archaic. Why in this day and age is there not a better way?

 

Got an opinion or question?  EMAIL me  currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

 

 

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Dialing 911

Dialing 911

How to Call the Police When a Mentally Ill Person is in Crisis

There is a right way to alert the police when dealing with mental illness.

 

I was lucky.  I had an astute enough social worker who knew that I would eventually have to involve the police in my son’s care.  He suggested to me that I pay my local police a visit, introduce myself and give them Nick’s background and history.  If the police know what they are walking into a hospitalization is more likely than a physical arrest.

Alert 911 that they are responding to a call dealing with mental illness.  Many police departments have trained some of their officers how to respond, talk to and handle the mentally ill.  That is the officer you want them to send.

If no one is in immediate physical danger, ask them to turn off their sirens and lights.  The consumer is stressed and frightened enough.  A calm approach will also increase the chance of a positive outcome.

Many state ordinances will NOT allow an involuntary hospitalization unless the consumer has threatened to harm themselves or others.  IF YOUR GOAL IS TO GET YOUR KID COMMITTED (AND I CAN’T STRESS THIS ENOUGH), LIE, LIE & LIE.  Look, my son needed to be committed to get him the help he needed because he was so non-compliant.  I had to lie and tell the police that he threatened me to get him through the psyche ward door.

If you have any questions regarding Mental Illness EMAIL me currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

 

 

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Guardianship vs Power of Attorney

Guardianship vs Power of Attorney

The Difference Between Guardianship and Power of Attorney

My Schizophrenic son is impulsive and not able to make decisions in his own best interest.  BUT since he is over 18, we have no right to dictate his medical care or his financial decisions.  Not a great situation when you consider his level of psychosis.  What to do……

If you have the means hire an attorney.  This just about always gives you more leverage in court.

Power Of Attorney is a document voluntarily signed by the consumer giving a named guardian the right to make decisions on their behalf if they are deemed incapacitated.  My son does not believe he is ill, so the thought of signing a POW seems ridiculous to him.  Even if we were to get a POW, unless he is in a coma HE gets to decide if he is incapacitated.  Fun Times.  The best part?  He can cancel the POW whenever he chooses.

Guardianship is a court ordered document naming a guardian to act on behalf of the consumer at all times.  It can only be cancelled by the court.

As you can see Guardianship gave us the right unconditionally to make the best decision on Nick’s behalf.

Got A Question Relating to Mental Illness?  If I don’t have an answer, I will find one.

Email me@ Currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

 

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Definition of a Consumer

Definition of a Consumer

I hate the word, he has a name and it’s Nick!

Consumer: The Patient’s Title

When my son, Nick, was first diagnosed there was a lot I did not know.  The Doctors, Social Worker and Hospital staff were using words I didn’t understand.  The Psychiatric Community has it’s own lingo.  I kept hearing this word consumer.  A consumer is the patient.  A consumer is anyone who uses social services related to Mental Illness.

Got a Question about anything relating to Mental Illness?

Email me currykate1@gmail.com

Peace, Protection, Hope & Happiness

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How to set up your will to provide for your mentally Ill Child

How to set up your will to provide for your mentally Ill Child

Setting up a Special Needs Trust for a Mentally Ill Family Member

Face it, we are not going to live forever….so how do you provide for your mentally ill family member?  That’s where a Special Needs Trust comes into play.  Its basically a will with provisions in it to provide for someone who is disabled.

It will allow my son to inherit my estate without losing his social security disability insurance.

It will protect my child’s financial future, a trustee oversees his assets. He won’t be able to buy a Ferrari, nor will anyone be able to take advantage of him.

Since my son is difficult, I chose the attorney who wrote the trust to be the trustee.  Just be sure to choose a firm that will be around for a while.  It is a big can of worms if the Trustee dies before the beneficiary.

This is a VERY specific document.   FEW attorney’s are legally qualified to write one.  Do your homework.

 

Got a question relating to mental illness?

Email me–currykate1@gmail.com

Peace Protection Hope & Happiness

 

 

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