Should I take medication to manage my mental health symptoms?!
The common question... "Do I take meds or not?". You will meet many mental health professionals who have different opinions on this topic. Medication can be complicated, and often times clients are stuck wondering what the right option is. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has done therapy with all ages, so the following is solely my opinion based on personal experience, clients experiences, and some research.
IT IS UP TO YOU! No one can make you take medication, and if they are pushing for it, just remind yourself that YOU have control of what you put into your body. You have to outweigh the pros and cons for yourself in taking the medication. Some clients who take anti depressants often report a "zombie like" feeling where they do feel better but they also feel out of touch with other emotions. Other people take the same medication and report feeling energetic, happier and more productive! So it really just depends on the person and how their body reacts to medications.
IT IS NOT BAD IF YOU TAKE MEDICATION. Obviously, there is STILL stigma from anything related to our mental health. Some people still don't believe in it or may even think your symptoms are a cop-out or excuse. THATS INSANE! Every single person has "mental health". Sometimes mental health issues or symptoms can be managed by solely changing some habits, or things in your lifestyle. However; sometimes mental health issues can be more deep rooted through complex trauma, or cognitive changes that have happened in your brain. Medication can help with any of the above, and can be used either short term or long term. If you use medication, you are deciding that this is going to be beneficial to you and your mental health, and that is BRAVE! So don't let anyone make you feel bad for taking them :)
THERE ARE TONS OF CLASSES OF MEDS: Meaning, that if one does not work well for you, it doesn't mean all won't work for you. Unfortunately sometimes it takes some time to find some that work well for you.
MEDICATION x THERAPY IS THE BEST WAY TO GO. There are many clients who decide to only take medication and forego the therapy process. This can be somewhat of a band-aid, where you are covering up the symptoms but not getting to the roots. Therapy IS WORK! It's not an easy process but it gets to the core of why you are having symptoms in the first place, which may help with a long term solution. Therefore, if you are considering taking medication, please consider therapy as well! Make sure you are ready for big changes if you do sign up for therapy, be ready to work!
DON'T FORGET--YOU GOT THIS :)