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      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   06/04/2017

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sianhutch93

Melatonin use for an 18 year old on the autism spectrum

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Hi I currently take Melatonin 3 mg capsules two at night ,OK I was justs wondering why isnt Melatonin medication licensed in the UK ?. And Ive only take the unlicensed form by my GP.Ive heard that there is only one licensed brand by a friend who gives there son who is also on the autism spectrum whitch is called Ciradin witch is slow release verison of Melatonin ?

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This is what I was wondering too, I have been advised to take this stuff by a psychiatrist and was wanting to know a little bit more about it (as in does it work and the question about licensing you asked).

 

Darkshine

 

Ps - I've already read about what it is and what its supposed to do/supposed to work...

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Hi,

my son is 10 and has been on 3mg of melatonin for about 5 years almost now... We've never had to increase it and we notice a huge difference when he doesn't have it.. ( by that i mean- he will literally be up past 1 am, but sometimes past 2-3 am, but with taking the Melatonin at 9.30- 9.45 at night, he's asleep mostly by 10.30-10.45pm.. he struggles, full stop, to go to bed any earlier... and he's up at 7.45am)..

 

we live just in the suburbs of London and have had no problem obtaining the Melatonin, we also have to have it in a powder (capsule) form as it's hard for my son to take tablets.

It works by helping the body go into it's natural sleep pattern, it is not a sleeping pill at all. we have found over the years that there is a "window of opportunity" so to speak also, in that my son has to take it about 20 minutes to 45 minutes before he goes to bed or it doesn't "work" as well... Because it helps your body go into your natural sleep pattern, you have to take it when you are ready for bed. it is now a regular part of his bedtime routine.

 

I don't know what to say about the licensing, other then our pharmacist mentioned that it hasn't been "cleared" yet for it's use with children and especially those on the spectrum, but that doesn't mean it's not "safe".. just that the licensing is behind here as it's already licensed in the states. ( I'm actually from the states but live in the UK permanently)....

 

I have heard of stories from others that say in higher doses it can interrupt sleep with vivid and sometimes disturbing dreams, but again, this was with quite high doses. I also should stress that my son has never experienced this in any way and again, we've not had to increase his dose of melatonin either. 3mg works perfectly for him.

 

I hope that helps a little in your decision... :)

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Thanks from me :)

 

Although as far as I'm concerned it's not really a decision at the moment, I'm being steam-rollered into it by psychiatrist's suggestion and carer leaping onto it.

 

Personally I absolutely hate pills and hate taking them, but this one sounds pretty harmless and if it works it might help I guess.

 

I currently get to sleep between 3 am and 6am and then I get up everyday by 10:30 at the absolute latest, and I have to have a series of strategies in place relying on other's to wake me (plus 3 - 4 alarms) cuz i don't wake easily either.

 

I'm intrigued that it is supposed to help people to have natural sleep and that there is a window of opportunity with it. I wonder if it works on non-autistic people as well cuz someone told me it doesn't... and if that's true, why?

 

Thanks

 

Darkshine

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Darkshine,

 

Let me assure you it works very well on "non-autistic" ( neuro-typical, as they also say) people.. It works on me- 3mgs. I've used it after experiencing bad jet lag after a trip to the states and back...

I understand your hesitancy to taking meds (pills) I'm the same personally as well as for my son. I, as a "rule" avoid medication if i can... However, I realised that my son seems to be missing whatever it is that helps him with his natural sleep pattern and the Melatonin works perfectly... I don't know if i would be so happy with it if we had to increase it over the years, but as i said, we've used the same dosage since he started it and again, have had no issues at all with it.

However, I have to say, that it really needs to be your decision.. as it isn't a sleeping pill and won't "knock you out" you have to establish a routine and stick with it for it to truly work, so you have to comply... If you are being coerced, it won't work, you know what I mean?

I really think you need to look into it further and speak to your carer and doc more about it all...

 

hope that helps alittle...

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Thanks for your honesty mortisha, and your right, I'm definitely gonna have to look into this more and think about it more as well. I don't want to be coerced into this, and appreciate that it should be my decision. The routine part is gonna be hard as I need to find a complete routine in life that is different from the one I have now, so this is gonna have to operate on more levels than just sleep I think.

 

Its good that it works for your son without having to increase the dose and I find that good to hear.

 

I am curious to how the melatonin adds the thing that is missing for a healthy sleep pattern too.

 

Thanks again

 

Darkshine

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Darkshine,

 

I found this link that might help explain it way better then I can...

 

melatonin

 

And yes, a good bedtime routine will help you in many many ways and something to consider now... you can start gradually, especially if the routine you want is radically different to what you are doing now... I personally think, to just suddenly change your routine, probably won't work... why not slowly introduce something now- like, just an example- making sure you have your bedclothes on at a certain time...or just something little you do, that you can slowly change to part of your new routine. I hope that made sense...

 

let me give you an example with my son... just one part of his bedtime routine- regardless of if it is a school night or not, is that he can not play a certain type of game ( shoot 'em ups) after 9pm. and he has to get into his bed clothes (pj's) by 10pm. ( this may seem really late for a 10- going on 11 year old- but I know you understand me when I tell you, this literally is the earliest he will go to bed)...

these two parts of his routine were established and he sticks to them regardless of where he is ( if we are on holiday) or what day it is...as well as other parts of his routine as well... but we try to have a routine that can be as flexible as possible, where possible. but certain parts are not flexible and that's ok.

 

establishing a good bedtime routine is not easy for a heck of a lot of people, including those not on the spectrum and as my mom always told me, being able to go to sleep and sleep well is actually something many have to learn and it's a great skill to have once you've learnt it...:D

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Darkshine,

 

I found this link that might help explain it way better then I can...

 

melatonin

 

And yes, a good bedtime routine will help you in many many ways and something to consider now... you can start gradually, especially if the routine you want is radically different to what you are doing now... I personally think, to just suddenly change your routine, probably won't work... why not slowly introduce something now- like, just an example- making sure you have your bedclothes on at a certain time...or just something little you do, that you can slowly change to part of your new routine. I hope that made sense...

 

let me give you an example with my son... just one part of his bedtime routine- regardless of if it is a school night or not, is that he can not play a certain type of game ( shoot 'em ups) after 9pm. and he has to get into his bed clothes (pj's) by 10pm. ( this may seem really late for a 10- going on 11 year old- but I know you understand me when I tell you, this literally is the earliest he will go to bed)...

these two parts of his routine were established and he sticks to them regardless of where he is ( if we are on holiday) or what day it is...as well as other parts of his routine as well... but we try to have a routine that can be as flexible as possible, where possible. but certain parts are not flexible and that's ok.

 

establishing a good bedtime routine is not easy for a heck of a lot of people, including those not on the spectrum and as my mom always told me, being able to go to sleep and sleep well is actually something many have to learn and it's a great skill to have once you've learnt it...:D

 

and I found this link too.

Melatonin hormone

Edited by mortisha69

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Thank you for the links :thumbs: I've saved them in my favourites to read later (have to go and study soon or I won't do it :rolleyes:)

 

Also thank you for the tips and for thinking about this - its a total hassle having to change your entire routine in order to find a more healthy one - and I do believe that a big part of the problem is that I just love the night time - I love the peace and stillness of it - which is in stark contrast to the noise/racket and hectic aspects of every day. Another huge problem is that my routine is not healthy and I have had long ingrained bad habits.

 

I have tried so many things over the years and I mean all the typical answers people gibe when you say sleep is a problem - so I think it's important that I start to find ways of changing this now.

 

In all honesty my efforts over the past year haven't been that great, I've pretty much given up on it and do everything wrong, so I definitely need to figure out what things are keeping me awake and what things are making it harder to sleep - as well as changing my routine in light of these things.

 

I also need to acknowledge how I am willing to change my aims so that I remember why I am doing this, because I see it as a key part of moving forward - but one step at a time eh? :P

 

I also think I am going to have to come up with a rule for myself as to time - because previously when I have developed routine I have one night late (usually through stress or illness) and then my routine is ruined and I abandon it (because the next night I can't sleep at all and then it takes weeks to bring it back round)

 

I will consider this melatonin thing, as I can see that I won't know if it can help unless I try and it potentially could be an added reminder of the routine (like 10pm take pill) so I know what I'm supposed to be doing next.

 

Thanks again

 

Darkshine

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hiya

 

I really Do understand and am a bit of a "night owl" myself. I have always been a night person, vs a day person... meaning I find it easier to stay up late then get up early and always have, even as a child..

I do think sometimes it's just our personality also.. but when it impedes on your life, makes things harder, then something has to change a little at least...

 

In my early 20's I was even a night time manager for a large hotel as the hours and the quiet suited me perfectly... but then I wanted something more and my career led me to day time work and there I stayed... I've had a variety of careers from working every position in a bar/restaurant, to managing a pub-here in London to working as a professional makeup artist to now working as I may have mentioned with children on the Spectrum... I have to be wide awake and alert for that let me tell you!

 

Good luck with your endeavors and really do believe that you can make a change if you start with small steps, gradually... you just have to find a routine that works for you, whatever it is...

:)

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hiya

 

I really Do understand and am a bit of a "night owl" myself. I have always been a night person, vs a day person... meaning I find it easier to stay up late then get up early and always have, even as a child..

I do think sometimes it's just our personality also.. but when it impedes on your life, makes things harder, then something has to change a little at least...

 

In my early 20's I was even a night time manager for a large hotel as the hours and the quiet suited me perfectly... but then I wanted something more and my career led me to day time work and there I stayed... I've had a variety of careers from working every position in a bar/restaurant, to managing a pub-here in London to working as a professional makeup artist to now working as I may have mentioned with children on the Spectrum... I have to be wide awake and alert for that let me tell you!

 

Good luck with your endeavors and really do believe that you can make a change if you start with small steps, gradually... you just have to find a routine that works for you, whatever it is...

:)

Thank you for you kind words and your helpful advice, I feel like I'm in a better place to make a reasoned decision about what I want to do regarding this sleep problem since talking with you. I feel it will make a good difference for me in the long run (plus I have like a million other routines to put in place so sleep seems a good start place).

 

Regards

Darkshine

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Hi darkshine, I know it's hard to get out of habitual patterns, what about reading before bed. I find it a great escape when my minds is in overdrive about what is happening in my life. The internet can be a real pain because it's easy to waste time late at night, it's kind of overstimulating when I just go on to check my mail I end up checking other sites and my mind goes off on a tangent checking ebay, holidays, film ratings,discount voucher sites etc.

Somewhere on here you have said you are on meds, these may not be helping with your sleep patterns changing the time of day you take them may make things better.

My daughter takes melatonin and though I wish she didn't have to it works well, there are two kinds of sleep problems people who can't get off to sleep but sleep soundly when they do and those who constantly wake during the night. Melatonin works for the former as there is a window, once that is closed the melatonin has no affect. It's about 2 hours for my daughter but probably varies from person to person.

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Thank you for you kind words and your helpful advice, I feel like I'm in a better place to make a reasoned decision about what I want to do regarding this sleep problem since talking with you. I feel it will make a good difference for me in the long run (plus I have like a million other routines to put in place so sleep seems a good start place).

 

Regards

Darkshine

 

Darkshine,

Anytime! my pleasure! I am really pleased to hear you feel more positive about it all... It will make a difference in the long run and you know that, it's just getting you to that place, so to speak...

It will take time, take your time... this is a routine that you can have for life, as it were, and it needs to be individual to you, what works for you...

Through posting here with you, it reminded me of just how important sleep actually is and how having a good bedtime and sleep routine can affect the rest of your day....

it's helped me, put things into perspective and make sure I also get a good night sleep!!! As I mentioned, it's easy for me to stay up late as it is and even easier to get into a pattern of going to bed late!

So I'd also like to thank you as this discussion has helped me as well!!

Best of luck and I'll keep an eye out of any more links I find that may interest you...

all the best,

Mortisha

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Hi darkshine, I know it's hard to get out of habitual patterns, what about reading before bed. I find it a great escape when my minds is in overdrive about what is happening in my life. The internet can be a real pain because it's easy to waste time late at night, it's kind of overstimulating when I just go on to check my mail I end up checking other sites and my mind goes off on a tangent checking ebay, holidays, film ratings,discount voucher sites etc.

Somewhere on here you have said you are on meds, these may not be helping with your sleep patterns changing the time of day you take them may make things better.

My daughter takes melatonin and though I wish she didn't have to it works well, there are two kinds of sleep problems people who can't get off to sleep but sleep soundly when they do and those who constantly wake during the night. Melatonin works for the former as there is a window, once that is closed the melatonin has no affect. It's about 2 hours for my daughter but probably varies from person to person.

Hi coolbreeze, readings a definite no for me (I end up having to read the whole book so only do this in the day ;) ) but your right about the internet - bad thing for losing hours at times (and not always the best times either). The meds I take are at night, the are beside my bed as a visual reminder to take them - I've changed the times on them a few times over the years and found evening to be best.

 

My sleep problem is 2 things: I struggle to get to sleep + I then struggle to wake up

 

I have melatonin on order so just waiting on mr. postie now then I'll experiment cuz like it or not there are some things that are crucial to improving my life and I reckon sleep is a pretty big part of that cuz of the roll on effects, including routine, energy, mood etc...

 

If I've got to fins an optimum window of time I think I'm gonna have to get a watch with an alarm on it or it won't work (time is not my best area), so thanks to everyone got plans in place, now just to see if it works... time for patience I feel :P

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Darkshine,

Anytime! my pleasure! I am really pleased to hear you feel more positive about it all... It will make a difference in the long run and you know that, it's just getting you to that place, so to speak...

It will take time, take your time... this is a routine that you can have for life, as it were, and it needs to be individual to you, what works for you...

Through posting here with you, it reminded me of just how important sleep actually is and how having a good bedtime and sleep routine can affect the rest of your day....

it's helped me, put things into perspective and make sure I also get a good night sleep!!! As I mentioned, it's easy for me to stay up late as it is and even easier to get into a pattern of going to bed late!

So I'd also like to thank you as this discussion has helped me as well!!

Best of luck and I'll keep an eye out of any more links I find that may interest you...

all the best,

Mortisha

:thumbs::D

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Hi coolbreeze, readings a definite no for me (I end up having to read the whole book so only do this in the day ;) ) but your right about the internet - bad thing for losing hours at times (and not always the best times either). The meds I take are at night, the are beside my bed as a visual reminder to take them - I've changed the times on them a few times over the years and found evening to be best.

 

My sleep problem is 2 things: I struggle to get to sleep + I then struggle to wake up

 

I have melatonin on order so just waiting on mr. postie now then I'll experiment cuz like it or not there are some things that are crucial to improving my life and I reckon sleep is a pretty big part of that cuz of the roll on effects, including routine, energy, mood etc...

 

If I've got to fins an optimum window of time I think I'm gonna have to get a watch with an alarm on it or it won't work (time is not my best area), so thanks to everyone got plans in place, now just to see if it works... time for patience I feel :P

 

Forgive me- but had to respond...

:thumbs: sounds like you are on the right track!!!!

let us know how it goes! :pray: "crossing my fingers" for you!

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Forgive me- but had to respond...

:thumbs: sounds like you are on the right track!!!!

let us know how it goes! :pray: "crossing my fingers" for you!

Thank you - I will let you know ;) x

Edited by darkshine

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philipo   

As a very anti drug person ,I'd like to say that the use of this drug appears very positive.the most intrusive thing about as/asd whatever in all my years has been sleep patterns and I've tried with varying success to control my sleep patterns.

the use of a drug that helps 'natural' sleep patterns seems very promising.i am in complete agreement about the 'window of oppertunity' and it seems to strike a chord with me.if I don't try to sleep at a 'normal' time then i easily get my second breath ,and like Darkkshine get into a sleep pattern thats' more to do with physical exhaustion.

 

i 'll ask my quack about it,my biggest mistrust with medication is that there is an overhelming pressure from the nhs to treat asd/as/autisim as if its a mental health condition and to prescibe drugs that were designed for serious illnesses.

 

thanks for all the posters help.i've no problem eating my hat if it works!unlike most of the nhs.

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As a very anti drug person ,I'd like to say that the use of this drug appears very positive.the most intrusive thing about as/asd whatever in all my years has been sleep patterns and I've tried with varying success to control my sleep patterns.

the use of a drug that helps 'natural' sleep patterns seems very promising.i am in complete agreement about the 'window of oppertunity' and it seems to strike a chord with me.if I don't try to sleep at a 'normal' time then i easily get my second breath ,and like Darkkshine get into a sleep pattern thats' more to do with physical exhaustion.

 

i 'll ask my quack about it,my biggest mistrust with medication is that there is an overhelming pressure from the nhs to treat asd/as/autisim as if its a mental health condition and to prescibe drugs that were designed for serious illnesses.

 

thanks for all the posters help.i've no problem eating my hat if it works!unlike most of the nhs.

 

Good luck!!:)

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Well it's arrived and I've spent a while looking at it suspiciously :P have created a schedule for organising days and times of things and will implement schedule and start taking it this Monday - since I've done schedules many times before I'll get a pretty good idea as to how much the melatonin helps.

 

I guess I'm a pretty good test subject for that since I have little belief in pills so there's substantially less placebo effect on me :lol:

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Looking through the links, it looks like I should really get a prescription rather than just buy it (history of severe migraines as well as the anxiety and depression that most ASD adults have). Can a GP prescribe is or do I need to see a psychiatrist? Or should I speak to my neurologist if there's an issue with the migraines?

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Looking through the links, it looks like I should really get a prescription rather than just buy it (history of severe migraines as well as the anxiety and depression that most ASD adults have). Can a GP prescribe is or do I need to see a psychiatrist? Or should I speak to my neurologist if there's an issue with the migraines?

I think that's part of what my problem is - you can't buy it over the counter here (in this country) or get it on prescription which means finding a reputable online supplier...

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philipo   

I think that's part of what my problem is - you can't buy it over the counter here (in this country) or get it on prescription which means finding a reputable online supplier...

 

Have just got precription for melatonin and will be experimenting on myself tonight!!!!The negative effects of insomnia seem to severely aggravate many of the other symptoms.Thank you decent,intelligent patient overworked doctor!!!

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Darkshine, Philipo,

 

how's it going with the melatonin??

 

also if it helps, my son has his prescription through his psychologist/psychiatrist (educational) but I'm sure CAHMS can prescribe as can any psychiatrist...

It is more readily available in the states... Please be very careful getting it through the internet, I really strongly advise against it...

you can get it on prescription in the UK- ask your GP..

 

hope all is going well and you are both getting restful good night sleeps..

 

all the best

 

smile.gif

Edited by mortisha69

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Lynden   

How did it go Darkshine? A friend of mine tried it herself, but found if she took the same dose as her son, 3mg she had really bad nightmares, however if she took a much lower 1mg dose she got off to sleep no problems!

 

It definitely works for L. He has 6mg though. He has it around 9.30pm if we want him in bed for 10pm. A 10pm bedtime means he'll generally sleep till 5am (we get 7 hours). Sometimes after he's gotten into a routine we'll have a few weeks off. We can definitely tell if he hasn't had it though as it can take him up to 3 hours to actually be able to get to sleep (last time he didn't take it we were up till 3am :/).

 

Lynne

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Hi mortisha and lynne :)

 

I can't believe how long ago this was in some ways... I totally messed everything up, my course got too much for me to handle so my routine went out the window in order to finish what I needed to finish for the course. This meant odd hours all over the place (at the time I just did anything and everything I could to get it done). This went on until the beginning of October.

 

Then, I changed medication and have not been getting on with it very well but am stuck with it as the reactions aren't life threatening and I need to reach the 6 week mark which is apparently a huge illustration of whether I have given the new meds a chance to work (its been 4 and a half weeks now). To be honest I feel like ####, the tablets have made me lose so much that I had gained and I feel stuck between a rock and a hard place, my moods are very erratic and I feel like hell. Actually everything feels pretty bad and I'm like a jeckyll and hyde figure... On top of that I am tired all the time and wake up angry every single day, it takes a long time to feel awake and calm down. So its bad basically.

 

I might give the melatonin a try when things are more stable and everything isn't so near impossible to do...

 

Best

 

Darkshine :D (trying to stay cheerful) :D

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Lynden   

Oh dear :/ Sounds like things are a bit rough at the minute! I hope you feel better soon. Will you have to change meds again after the 6 weeks that they've said you have to stay on your current ones?

 

Lynne

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Am already on new ones :) have to stick with them for 6 weeks and I've a couple left to go until I've given them a proper chance - plus gotta wait for review appointment at the end of the month - have already seen GP about this struggle on new meds and that was a total waste of breath :rolleye: so waiting for other app at end of month is the best option (that or stop all meds which would probably be more stupid...) so I'm hanging on in here with the horrid new meds... :(

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Am already on new ones :) have to stick with them for 6 weeks and I've a couple left to go until I've given them a proper chance - plus gotta wait for review appointment at the end of the month - have already seen GP about this struggle on new meds and that was a total waste of breath :rolleye: so waiting for other app at end of month is the best option (that or stop all meds which would probably be more stupid...) so I'm hanging on in here with the horrid new meds... :(

 

oh dear... I hated that with my son, when we first tried meds and then when they suggested increasing dosages.. luckily, we realised last time it was the increase of one med and reduced it and all (cross fingers as I'm saying this) has been really good... he is on melatonin 3 mg- no increases- Risperidone 0 .25mg (it was this increase he had so many problems with and was reduced back to 0.25mg) and equasym XL ( he has ADHD as well) this has been slightly increased once, slightly since he started them.

 

it's the "hanging in there" part that's the hardest and I honestly feel for you... that last increase, for my son was horrible, he also woke up angry and took him along time to be fully awake.... so I sorta understand how you feel, though I could never fully understand it... though I have to say really, practically, if these meds are creating so much turmoil, maybe you need to contact whomever responsible in regards to your Review appt and request an appointment sooner then the end of this month.... We did for my son... we couldn't wait the any longer- it was affecting too much for him.

just a thought? but maybe you should contact them??

hope things get better and easier very soon, Darkshine...

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Thanks :) I think that now the suicidal self-harm urge phase has passed things are better - its just so hard to bear when all the progress I had made has been undone. (obviously I didn't commit suicide and I'm happy to say I managed not to self-harm either). I spoke with a GP about it and he thinks that I should stick with it :wallbash: I'm trying to tell myself its only for 2 and a bit weeks but every day feels so long. Hanging in here is not great but I guess I can at least say that I did it when they ask - its so stupid - its almost like I'm doing this so the psych knows I trust him - which is stupid - but its what it feels like cuz when I "don't try properly" (or indeed don't try at all) they moan that I'm not putting in the effort - so saying "well i gave it a go" might help even if its torture in the mean-time....

 

Is anything positive happening with anyone else cuz this feels like such a downer? :blink:

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i have been waking up early hours struggling get back proper sleep rest relax give my head break everything keeps going round i feel so tired worn out fed up with myself and sleep patterns is anyway my doctor if told him situation would prescribe melatonin (i'm 21) 22 soon?! got do something driving me mad crazy?

 

XKLX

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I know this thread was a while ago, but wanted to add...

 

I'm sick too of ASD being treated as a mental health problem, and/or a learning disability as it seems to exclusively be by health & social services.

 

It leads to patronising, stigmatising treatment, but worst of all incorrect treatment in my opinion.

 

This whole tendency to push strong psychiatric drugs on us at the drop of a hat, which take ages to 'work', if at all, with all the risks (and so-called 'paradoxical' side effects e.g. increased risk of suicide, anxiety etc. in some people) seems ridiculous, especially when a simple, naturally occuring, cheaper hormone like melatonin in small doses could have an immediate beneficial effect on the one thing most of us would like help with - getting to and staying asleep.

 

I happen to believe that a whole lot of the perceived 'mental health problems' associated with ASD come from the expectation to be normal in a way we can never, and may not even want to be. We are being pushed into being medicated on strong risky drugs for the convenience of wider society, and the profit of drug companies who seem to have a lot of GPs round their little finger.

 

Why should we go along with this just so GPs feel better thinking they are helping us back to being 'normal'?

 

I believe a lot of the depression, anger, anxiety etc. would be better solved by more support, understanding and acceptance of our different needs, in education, work, society generally. Not by trying vainly to drug us into being normal. It is victim-blaming and abuse, damaging to us and not really solving anything for the most part (I'm prepared to accept that maybe some psychiatric medications do work for some people), I'm just concerned it has become the catch-all response to any justified distress felt by AS people trying to cope in society without reasonable acceptance and support.

 

Sleep is a very personal thing, it's one of those few things you can't fake even if you try, yet we all need it to function.

 

I happen to believe that a wide variety of sleep patterns amongst humans is an evolutionary advantage - if everyone went to bed and got up at the same time, then in the past the whole tribe would have been vulnerable during their sleep, wheras if you have a few night owls you have a warning system if any problem or threat occurs. I think it's normal for some people to sleep differently and it's really just up to you how you feel about it, don't try to go to bed at 11pm and get up and 7am just cos you think that's what everyone else does so you're terrible if you don't. Experiment, and work your sleep round what you truly want to do/acheive and don't feel bad about it. If melatonin gives people a tool to do that then that's self-empowering, a million miles away from having psych drugs pushed on you. The key is working out what you want to do, not what others think you're supposed to do.

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Mihaela   

Welcome to the forum, Flyingmoccassin!

I'm sick too of ASD being treated as a mental health problem, and/or a learning disability as it seems to exclusively be by health & social services. It leads to patronising, stigmatising treatment, but worst of all incorrect treatment in my opinion.

I totally agree. I'd never take a psychiatric drug for the very reasons you give.

 

I happen to believe that a whole lot of the perceived 'mental health problems' associated with ASD come from the expectation to be normal in a way we can never, and may not even want to be.

So do I... and no, I don't. I'm perfectly content being who I am. My abilities far outweigh my disabilities (mainly executive dysfunction). Even my disabilities are no big issue for me. The real problem is how the NT world blames, villifies, insults and stigmatises me for my disabilities, rather than supports me, and organisations do this in their official capacities.

We are being pushed into being medicated on strong risky drugs for the convenience of wider society, and the profit of drug companies who seem to have a lot of GPs round their little finger.

True, and for the convenience of a wider society which is itself highly dysfunctional, arguably far more than we are ourselves, yet that society doesn't even attempt to address so many its negative traits, such as greed, ruthlessness, selfishness, dishonesty, discrimination, hypocrisy, etc. This failing is itself an example of hypocrisy.

 

I'm prepared to accept that maybe some psychiatric medications do work for some people.

So am I (especially in the case of psychoses, where either psychoactive drugs or secure confinement are the only realistic alternatives). They should certainly not be given for treating the effects caused by NT society upon people on the autistic spectrum.

 

You have a good point over the possible evolutionary value of varied sleep patterns. I sleep well but my sleeping pattern is hardly neurotypical, but one time it was, amongst peasant farmers, and still is in closed religious orders. For me, getting up at around 4am and going to bed early is normal and feels right.

 

The key is working out what you want to do, not what others think you're supposed to do.

 

Indeed, and we must be firm over this by refusing to be 'treated' by having dubious chemicals or fashionably lucrative 'therapies' foisted up us.

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Laddo   

I feel the same way flyingmoccassin. All too often my GP has refused to refer me for psychotherapy in favour of putting me on an antidepressant which I know won't work for me. If you look up how most modern antidepressants work, you find that all they really do is slowly release serotonin. The euphoria produced by serotonin is only really effective if either accompanied by dopamine release (which is dangerous as it can lead to addiction) or if it is released in high doses. If you know exactly what the antidepressant does it makes them pretty ineffective - I'm pretty sure most antidepressants rely on the placebo effect, which is unlikely to work for intelligent, logical aspies. I know that just offloading some of my worries and training myself to think about them in an alternate light is the best way to treat my depression, and yet my doctors will always assume they know best.

 

I would be very interested to hear a GP give an accurate description of exactly how the antidepressants they always palm off on people actually help with depression. Like every single detail on how the pill stimulates production and release of serotonin in the brain, the half-life of the drug, the other effects it has on the body etc. Also, does anyone find it odd how so many medications are regularly prescribed to people when they are essentially just slightly different versions of various illegal drugs? For example, ritalin, a drug often prescribed for ADHD, is very similar in chemical composition and effects to cocaine and carries all the same risks, including heavy addiction. Yet one is deemed safe while the other is not. It makes you wonder who gets paid off by whom to advocate the so-called 'safe' drugs

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