First Aid Kit

Being a holistic thinker, I believe that whatever works for an individual, works. I remember going to a mental health conference a few years ago and one of the hosts recalled his experiences of being in hospital and virtually crawling up the walls. It turns out he was allergic to chocolate milk, which was given to the patients every day, so he wasn’t as poorly as originally thought. That in itself is madness eh?

Whilst I’ve been really ill in the past, medication has simply treated a list of symptoms and being a sensitive sort, I’ve really struggled with side effects. Hair loss, weight gain, Parkinsons style shakes, neutral, zombie like states, lack of concentration, insomnia, too much sleep; a pretty broad range of unpleasantness. 

Medication is absolutely a place to go, though like with many things, including coffee, I have a bit of a traffic light system in what I use and when and it’s always for as long as is necessary. Often I use more complementary therapies which include reflexology for general wellbeing; acupuncture seems particularly helpful with anxiety and mania, whilst reiki is wonderful for depression. As I say, whatever works for the individual, works 🙂

To manage my condition, I’ve tried many things and use different treatments at different times. I love the Eastern philosophy of health; the yin and the yang, that mind is matter, so it’s a case of looking after yourself, within reason… and as with many things it’s a case of prevention rather than cure.

Thinking about the latter, if cure is possible from mental illness, for me therapy is an essential part of the recovery process; dealing with past trauma and reintegrating lost parts of the self seem entirely necessary for building a better future. Prevention is obviously key, where possible.

It’s an obvious one, but stress is a massive trigger for me and that can be good, exciting stress or other stuff stress. Ultimately, not only is this difficult for the system to manage, it leads to lack of sleep and then things spiral, up or down, quickly. It’s a tricky one to manage as some stress is frankly addictive, so it’s a case of learning to reel it in even if something is fun. Stopping before it’s too late, literally, in the day; preventing some sort of hangover.

Sleep is so important, particularly so with looking after a small person whose sleep patterns are developing. Absolutely the best advice is sleep when the little one does, sod the domestics. Restorative, sound sleep is essential for anyone.

Insight into your own behaviours are a good thing, acting upon them and their warnings are better.