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College, antidepressants and type 1

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by skyleysmom, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. skyleysmom

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    My daughter is going off to college in a month. She has been dealing with a lot and is clearly depressed. She has been in talk therapy on and off for a while now. I am planning on trying to get her an appointment with a psychiatrist ASAP. I am so worried about her. I'm worried about her going away. I'm worried about her taking care of D. I'm worried about her taking antidepressants. I'm worried sick about everything. Has anybody had experience with antidepressant medication and type 1? I'd really appreciate any advice and support.
     
  2. njswede

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    I'm not diabetic, but I do take Zoloft for depression and anxiety. It's worked wonders for me! Society and pop culture condition us to be scared of anti-depressants and put a stigma on it. It's considered an unnecessary crutch and an unnatural way to achieve happiness. Everyone responds differently, but for me it did exactly what it was supposed to do: It just turned off the inner tape constantly playing doom-and-gloom scenarios of how my lovely life would come crashing down. That's it. No side effects (apart from slight stomach upset).

    Only your child pediatrician and endocrinologist can tell you if anti-depressants are compatible with her condition and treatment, but if they are, I would encourage her to at least try.

    Whatever you end up doing, seek some kind of help. I was struggling with anxiety for years, even decades before I worked up the courage to ask my doctor for help. I'm upset with myself that I didn't address it earlier.

    Hugs to you and your girl! I hope it all works out!
     
  3. sugarmonkey

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    I agree with njswede, antidepressants can be a real life saver when needed. I was also like njswede and took too long to seek help. I hope your daughter gets the help she needs. Just remember, if she does go on meds, it can take trying a couple of different ones before you find what works. The first meds I took were horrible, but the second ones have worked well.
     
  4. Megnyc

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    I'll send you a PM later tonight.

    Also, is she going to school where her brother goes? If so, I know a GREAT psychiatrist (who also has a psychologist in the office for counseling) who deals with teens with chronic diseases in the area. This is assuming I am remembering the school correctly....
     
  5. Lakeman

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    It can be difficult to find the right anti-depressant but a qualified psychiatrist should be able to after a few tries. Some anti-depressants may cause weight gain and may even change the way glucose is metabolized which makes me wonder if it might make one insulin insensitive. Will she have to adjust ratios? She should continue to see her therapist even after starting with the psychiatrist and many psychiatrists are not very good at talk therapy. Thoughts of suicide are a possible complication of some anti-depressants and all her care-givers will be aware of this. In general anti-depressants do a world of good.
     
  6. Beach bum

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    I don't have T1, nor do I suffer from depression, but I do suffer from anxiety. I've been in a relationship with it for years. I went off for a while, and ended going back on. My big mistake was that I went to my GP the second time around. She said "take this (med I had already taken)." Well, I ended up OD'ing (not life threatening) on the med. Went to a psych after and he put me on same med, but in a step up pattern and it has worked wonders. I found that talk therapy was incredibly helpful, but only to a point. Yes, she gave me some great coping mechanisms, but the meds are what really helped me over the hump.

    I think the big thing is getting her the help she needs, and come up with a plan for when she's away at school too. Work with your team on this, and you probably can bring in the psych on this also. It really does take a village. And, to ease your worries, you might benefit from talking to someone too. Nothing wrong with it at all.
     
  7. jenm999

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    Great advice here. Just thought I'd be another person to come out of the woodwork and say I too take an antidepressant (effexor - used to take zoloft but I developed insomnia) for anxiety. You/your DD are not alone. xo
     
  8. skyleysmom

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    Thank you for all of your replies. I too suffer from anxiety and I am in talk therapy. I have taken antidepressants in the past. I am very worried about the things that Lakeman mentioned. The fact that she is going to be sleeping in a dorm room in a months time and I won't be able to keep an eye on her while adjusting to a new medication frightens me. I do know that antidepressants can do a world of good and I hate seeing her like this.

    Meg, I am looking forward to your PM. Your insight has always been so helpful and reassuring. She is not going to the same school as my son. She is going to be here in California about half an hour to an hour away depending on LA traffic, but she will be in the dorms. I don't think I could handle it if she were on the East Coast!
     
  9. skyleysmom

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    Thank you jenm999
    I haven't been in the forums in a long time and I am glad I reached out for support. We've been through a lot lately and I have been to overwhelmed to even reach out. :cwds:
     
  10. Lee

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    My Type 1 is on her third medication for severe depression. She is not in college yet, but she knows that she needs to talk to her Psychiatrist if the meds are causing issues. She started a new one and it has had her sleeping for 20 hours a day, and then two weeks later, she popped out of it and is doing much better mentally.

    Does she take her meds everyday? No. Does she have issues, both physical and mental when she skips? Yes. Has being on depression medication made her take better care of her diabetes? Yes.

    My oldest daughter is in college and the best advice I can give is to keep in contact with your child.
     
  11. skyleysmom

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    Thank you Lee. One of my concerns is finding the right medication for her before she goes to school. We are running out of time. I have a call in to the Psychiatrists office and am waiting for a call back. I am worried about her being at school and being on a med that is not the right fit. She is going to a school with an amazing medical facility on campus and I am very grateful that she will be close to home. I would like to see her take better care of her D. At my therapists suggestion I have stopped checking and correcting her blood sugar during the night in an effort to make it her responsibility before she starts school. As a result her A1C has gone from 7.1 to 8.3 :(
     
  12. KatieSue

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    I don't know if she's open to this, mine wasn't until this summer, but the school may have some diabetes support groups. Mine is starting a College Diabetes Network chapter at her school. Honest before this year she was very opposed to any kind of diabetes group and I wouldn't push it if she's not interested. But it is nice to have some other people to talk to who are in the same boat.

    Mine is living at home but her A1C has jumped considerably since she's adamant that she do it all herself. I know if she were to be in the dorms I wouldn't know at all so I just help when asked, she'll have me do night checks if she's worried. She also became more receptive to a dexcom, we'd had one and she'd not used it for a year.

    I hope you can get it all figured out.
     
  13. Riley's Mom

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    My 17 year old daughter is also named Riley! She was diagnosed this past January. She has been on Zoloft since 2010. Off and on, but back on again as of last summer. I cannot comment on if it affects glucose or insulin sensitivity/resistence because she's been on it prior to being diagnosed. She is also on Librax, which is an anti-spasmodic/benzo med for IBS/anxiety. We had talked about trying to wean her off of these drugs, but after being hit with D, we think she'll be on them for a good while...
     
  14. skyleysmom

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    Hi Riley's Mom! It's good to meet another one! Mine are Skyler and Riley which is how my username happened :) Sorry to hear about Riley's diagnosis. It is so hard to be a teenager in general without being hit with something like D. Mine was 11 when she was dx. Did you notice any side effects when she began taking Zoloft? Was that the first antidepressant she tried? We have an appointment with a psychiatrist on Thursday at 1:00. I'm wondering if we should have explored meds sooner. She says she has been depressed since middle school. She was dx the first year of middle school...
     
  15. Riley's Mom

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    I am so sorry your Riley has been suffering with both D's also... Yes, Zoloft was the first and only one she has tried. She has always been on 50mg and it has worked well. She has suffered with tummy issues her entire life and her ped put her on it after her gastro found a slew of issues with her first endoscopy in 2010. She has also always been a perfectionist/over-achiever, so anxiety plays into her issues as well. I think her diabetes went undiagnosed last summer - her tummy issues came back tenfold and her ped and gastro just put her back on Zoloft and added the Librax. This allowed her to function through the first semester of her junior year until she was ultimately diagnosed with T1D in Jan. I would say try it, but give it time to work - at least a month.
     
  16. skyleysmom

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    Wow, our Rileys have a lot in common. Mine has anxiety and has always been an over achiever too. She is incredibly hard on herself. Comes home in tears convinced she is going to fail a class and always pulls the A or at least a B. Total perfectionist and always thinks she is not doing well enough. She is already convinced that she was accepted to the university that she is going to as a fluke because it is not an easy school to get in to. Meanwhile she has always been on the honor roll and scored very high on the SAT. I don't know what to do to help her not be so hard on herself. Hopefully meds will help her. The only thing she is not a perfectionist about is caring for her D. I think she is rebelling a little bit with regard to that. Is your Riley going into her senior year of high school? The
     
  17. Riley's Mom

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    I think Zoloft or some type of anti-anxiety/depression med would really help her. My Riley was so doom and gloom and expected the worst in every situation and worried herself sick over everything. Zoloft has helped tremendously with that. And now that she has T1D, she probably wishes worrying about a test was her only concern. She is #9 out of 600 students in a 6A high school and has been on the varsity Pom squad since she was a freshman - she is captain this year! She can get into any school she wants, but the D has kind of side-tracked her. Some days after a rough night, she will feel like there is no way she can leave town. Other times, after a smooth week, she is ready to be on her own. It's so hard. She also has Hashimotos and has tested positive for RA. A new functional medicine doctor has her on a ton of supplements and a VERY restrictive diet per her food allergy test. This will be her senior year, so hopefully we will get it all figured out soon. We are in West Texas. Where are y'all and is your Riley heading off to college next month?
     
  18. skyleysmom

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    My Riley was dx with JRA when she was 4 but has been in remission since she was 8. I hope you have a smooth year and the transition to college is a smooth one. I will definitely ask about an antidepressant that has an anti-anxiety quality as well. I was really worried about her leaving town and I'm glad she chose a school nearby, but I guess wherever she is she will have to take care of herself. We are in Southern California and Riley is heading off to USC so she will be very close by. I am really wishing that we explored the possibility of meds sooner as she has been showing signs of depression for several years. It really got a lot worse this summer though. She went through her first break up at the end of the school year and things really snowballed with that and the transition from high school to college. It's been a tough summer. I am really hoping if meds are prescribed it is a good match for her. I hate the idea of her starting school on a new medication that may not be the right fit for her.
     

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