Discouraging talk with my family practitioner yesterday.
Although he wouldn’t admit it in so many words, no cure or fix exists for my chronic anxiety, nightmares, or insomnia. There never has been.
All the medications and talk therapy over the decades has only been to help. Not cure.
Some of those drugs and talk have helped me for a while. Perhaps. Because its difficult to know if I got better on my own (spontaneous remission) or whether I got better from a treatment.
For the majority of people like me suffering long term mental health problems, however, cures are not forthcoming and never will be.
It is in a doctor’s nature to want to help. They do that by prescribing treatment after treatment, even when the problem is insolvable
Medicines for most mental illness just tamp down or help control symptoms, they don’t root out the problem.
I’ve always envisioned electroshock or electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) as a method to reset or change my brain in a fundamental way but no doctor I’ve talked to will prescribe it. I haven’t checked overseas.
Failing that course of action, I’m not sure what’s next. Other than my conditions continuing while old age problems add to my misery.
Compounding all of this, the insurance industry would now like to see everything through the lens of depression or anxiety. Anything outside these two conditions is too complex, untreatable, and therefore not worth covering to the extent those problems need.
Myself aside, what about the mentally ill homeless people who haunt our streets? No fix for them either or perhaps even treatment. Without insurance, what happens? Who covers them? If they did get their meds, though, would they take them on schedule? And what if they drank?
I no longer drink but I used to. I had to quit alcohol each time a doctor asked, to make sure they knew I wanted to get better. Many of the powerful drugs I took were contraindicated by alcohol. I don’t know, therefore, how these meds could help someone who has a drinking problem.
Everyone seems to need help.
Given my forty plus years of dealing with mental health problems, I think a better approach to the craxy expensive and unavailable mental health system would be a network of advocates.
People assigned to patients, people that could be called at two in the morning to listen or someone to go with the patient to anxiety crippling events like blood draws or dental appointments.
People oriented management may be a better approach or an adjunct to all these short term fixes which in fact are no fix at all.
Louis Wain’s drawings of cats as his schizophrenia worsened.