Posts Tagged ‘Depression’

In this, the second & last episode, following six people suffering from OCD. We see how they finish their time at extreme OCD camp & there is a brief ‘how they’re doing one month on’ at the end too.

This has definitely given me a better insight into living with OCD.

There are more episodes to go in the mental health series & I’ll keep posting them on my blog.

As ever let me know what you think of this episode.


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I read this on Bipolar Out Load. It’s a great article Nellie has written about, well, ‘Building Your Own Happiness’. I sometimes struggle to read large posts, as this one is, but it’s definitely worth reading part of it, leaving it & then coming back to read the rest.

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I read this post explaining why people with bipolar may live quietly with it for so long, due to the stigma associated with it.. It also lists areas of our lives that bipolar can affect.

The post is Not An Island, from bi[polar] curious.

I’ve pasted below the post in case the link doesn’t work for you.


Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about why I lived silently with bipolar disorder for as long as I did.

There was, of course, the terror that people would reject me…

Or that, even worse, they would want to bar me from doing the things that I loved.

As much as that fear was an integral part of my silence, there was something else that I think played a larger role.

I didn’t think bipolar disorder, or the inner workings of my brain anyway, was affecting my life in any significant way. Especially when I was in more stable periods.

I thought of myself as an island, and the only parts that would be effected would be the ones that knew about this hidden illness.

Of course, I was one hundred percent wrong. My mood swings were affecting everyone around me, and were effecting my own life in a very significant way.

I’ve been attending a peer recovery class the last few weeks and early on we made a list of the ways mental illness affects our lives.

It can affect

  • our relationships (with friends, family, co-workers, etc)
  • our ability to work (for better (hypomania) or worse)
  • our ability to complete schooling (at practically any level)
  • our housing situation
  • our financial situation (both via working and due to medical costs)
  • our physical health (depending on how well we can take care of ourselves)
  • our ability to take care of others (children, pets, etc)
  • our spiritual lives

And I’m sure there are more that I’m forgetting! Looking at this list really made me aware of how many aspects of my life are affected by bipolar disorder, not just work and relationships. I know that I’ve experienced every single one of the things on this list, and not in a minute way.

I think that only after being open and honest about what I experience could I get the help that I needed in all of these aspects of life. The result? Though these areas are all affected, I am able to lead a more stable life.

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I read a post by a fellow blogger earlier called An Open Invitation, he writes the blog bipolarblogging. In the post he discusses how a lot of the search terms he has come across on WordPress are around bipolar relationships. He has requested that we discuss our own experiences of a bipolar relationship, so here is mine…

I’ve been with my wife for 14 years & married for nearly 10 of those. As with most marriages, we’ve had our ups & down, so mix that in with me having bipolar, we may have had more than most. I was only diagnosed with bipolar 3-4 years ago, but had been diagnosed with depression prior to that for nearly 10. So who knows when the bipolar thing actually kicked in.

We’ve known from the start that we love each other deeply. I’m lucky, in the sense that I’ve read plenty of instances where bipolar relationships have broken down, and yet here we are still going & more importantly still wanting to go. One thing I do wonder though, is that as there is a high divorce rate these days, who is to say that those marriages that have broken down, wouldn’t have broken down anyway, whether or not one of the couple was bipolar. I also wonder if that last sentence made any sense 🙂

One thing I do know, and it may sound clichéd, is communication is key. That was the most important lesson I learned from my parents relationship. Theirs failed, but from the get go with my wife & I, we were adamant we would tell each other how we feel. It might take a while to realise what it is we’re feeling, but we tell each other when we do.

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As some of you will know I’ve been feeling out of sorts for the last month or so. If you’ve time, take a gander at this post, Balancing Myself Out, for the background. The good news is, over the last week I feel pretty much back on track. I’ve found out that my father’s parole has been put back until November. However the details as to why or even if he had the hearing & was rejected are sketchy. Personally I’d prefer it if he just came out, so I can get closure on all this. All putting it back a few month does, is put everyone on hold & leaves everyone involved hanging in the air.

Don’t get me wrong, in my opinion, a life sentence should mean life. Not life, but the offender the will be out in 8 years, which was initially what he was given.

The issue with the house is moving along, but still there is no concrete plans in place. Me & D did speak to P about it & told him outright we want to sell it, so he’ll need to start making plans for finding somewhere else to live. More accurately D did most of the speaking on my behalf as I was knackered due to not sleeping well. P was all ‘Oh, I didn’t realise you wanted to sell sooner rather than later?’. He’s been living there for 13 years! Personally I think he is just stalling to eke out as much easy living as possible.

Although I didn’t do much talking when we met up, I did sort out the meeting in the first place. P was still ignoring all my texts and calls. Though he did respond to D during this period, which pissed me off no end! So I took it out of his hands & went to the pub where he works :). He claimed he’d left his phone at a friends house. A load of garbage, but I let it lie, as he agreed to meet up. Know when to fight your battles & all that.

Anyway that’s the situation at the moment & as I’m feeling fairly good, I’ll take it for what it is. It’s a shit situation, but I’m handling it well, so that bodes well for me controlling my bipolar. Woopiest of woops!, a big fat Yay & a pat on the back for me 😀

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I’ve pasted below a blog about the benefits of drinking water I came across on Reaching Utopia.

We all know it is good for us to do so, but it still surprises me how many of us don’t drink it enough. Myself included on occasion!

I’ve tweaked the post slightly in the ’14 Things Water Helps With’ section. I’ve highlighted numbers 7, 8, 12 & 14 as I believe these are things those of us who have suffered from depression would benefit from. Ummm not having the symptoms…drinking more water to alleviate those symptoms 🙂

Anywhoozles I’ll shut up now & let you read the article.



glass of waterThe Most Overlooked Liquid

People simply do not get enough water in their diet. The majority of us will trade water for any other kind of beverage packed with unnecessary additives and sapping the health qualities of water on it’s own.

Water takes up around 60 percent of our body weight . This liquid contributes nutrients needed for cells, flushes toxins  out of vital organs and creates the perfect atmosphere for tissues in the throat, ear and nose. Every system inside your body relies on water. So what do you want your body running on? It’s funny to joke around and say “Yeah, my body runs on coffee”, but it’s an entirely different thing when your body is literally fueled by it!

Now it’s true that all liquids are comprised of some amount of water, but the problem is some beverages actually work against waters original capabilities. More on that later!

Does it matter if I lack water?

One of the most common conditions that people incur is dehydration due to a lack of water. Even a minor level of dehydration can leave you feeling sapped of energy since you don’t have enough water in your body to carry out it’s normal functions.

14 things water helps with:

  1. Digestion
  2. Weight loss
  3. Kidney health
  4. Headaches
  5. Replaces potential food so you feel full and don’t overeat
  6. Younger and healthier looking skin
  7. Relieves fatigue
  8. Preventing sickness
  9. Exercise productivity
  10. Reduces risk of cancer
  11. Work productivity
  12. Improves mood
  13. Preventing cramps and sprains
  14. Helps with regular bowel movements

Consuming an appropriate amount of water will aid your heart in pumping blood and deliver essential nutrients to your cells more efficiently. It also helps to transport oxygen in your blood.

Boosting your muscles and preventing cramps is also a helpful trait of water. This can be a fairly significant property if you find yourself always feeling tired while working out. You should be chugging back a couple cups of H2O around two hours before you exercise. Water will reduce fatigue during exercise and and activities  in addition to helping you keep more alert and awake. If you tend to work often and for long hours this can be one of the single best things you can do to keep in check.

different drinks in convenience store

Water vs. Other Liquids

Some companies try to sell the idea that their drink product can be better than water. This is not the case! There’s a major difference between drinking water and drinking something thatcontains water. Some positive effects of water on it’s own are masked because of added ingredients.

Caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea and pop are frequently chosen before water. Although it may taste better, the water contained in these beverages does not help the body as effectively as just drinking water on it’s own could. These processed liquids stimulate the adrenal glands in the body and act as diuretics. High amounts of phosphorus are found in soft drinks which could result with calcium depletion in your bones.

Even a lot of fruit juices that we associate with being healthy can have harmful effects on the body. Pop and fruit juices can stimulate the pancreas due to their high sugar content. Blood glucose is converted by your body to energy through a hormone called insulin. Eating too much sugar in one sitting isn’t too big of an issue as your pancreas can handle the extra insulin. However, if you frequently eat too much sugar, your pancreas may “age” faster than the rest of your body. Ultimately, this can result in pancreatic failure or diabetes. An average can of pop contains over 9 teaspoons of sugar, not to mention a decent load of calories. These particular beverages can therefore cause some undesired effects.

Some people like to consume sports drinks especially after an intense workout. Now this can be useful however they contain syrup and among several other ingredients that aren’t beneficial to your body in the long run.

There are a fair amount of people who don’t like drinking water because of the lack of flavour. Although it’s highly recommended to drink this precious liquid on it’s own, here are a few healthy ways to improve the taste of water if you really must:

  • Add some fresh lemon, orange slices, lime or mint to your water
  • Put a handful of frozen berries into your water bottle. As the day passes on the frozen berries will help keep the water chilly and infuse the fruit flavour.
  • Make natural herbal iced teas without adding sugar to use in place of plain water.
  •  Fruits on their own can be up to 90% water content so one of these suckers can boost your fluid intake on it’s own

dry cracking skin dehydrated

Lack of water?

Thirsty? You may already be dehydrated!

When your thirst mechanism kicks in, your body is signalling that you are already dehydrated. When exercising you ideally want to be drinking water before, during and after the exercise. This ensures that you don’t reach the stage where you feel thirsty.

Pitting edema is when a section of your body (usually a limb) is so swollen that when you press your finger down on their skin, the finger print hole stays for several minutes. It is an additional symptom that occurs with dehydration in some of the elderly and needs to be checked every so often if they are on prescriptions that might reduce this.

Signs and symptoms for dehydration in adults and teenagers:

  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Dry lips
  • Nausea
  • Low blood pressure
  • Dry eyes
  • Vomiting
  • Muscle cramps
  • Lack of sweat
  • Dark urine (orange/yellow coloured and an especially strong odor)
  • Inability to urinate

Dehydration signs and symptoms in children and infants include:

  • Crying without tears
  • Over three hours without a wet diaper
  • Dry mouth and tongue
  • General fatigue
  • Irritability
  • High fever
  • Sunken eyes cheeks or abdomen
  • Pitting edema

glasses of water filled

How much water is needed per day?

You have probably heard  that you should be drinking eight 8 ounce glasses of water per day. This isn’t necessarily accurate but is at least an easy thing to remember and to have as a base amount. The Institute of Medicine determined that an adequate intake (AI) for men is roughly 3 liters (about 13 cups) of fluids per day. The AI for women is 2.2 liters (about 9 cups) of fluids per day.

Every day you lose water from breathing, perspiring, urinating and bowel movements. For your body to function properly it’s important to replenish this water supply. If you spend time in hot or dry weather, exercise or consume a significant amount of caffeinated drinks you may need more water!

Can you drink too much water?

Realistically you can take in too much of any liquid or solid than your body can physically handle.

It’s pretty rare but there’s a condition called water intoxication. Drinking too much water will dilute the electrolytes in your body which can affect your heart. There’s even been athletes getting heart attacks because they consumed too much water, but it’s extremely uncommon. Don’t worry, your body won’t get over hydrated drinking 15 cups of water a day. You’d have to be drinking a ridiculous amount of water to reach that level of extreme.

Wrap Up

On average, people aren’t getting enough liquids in their body and even less are primarily consuming pure water on it’s own. This is a critical and essential asset to your health. Keep your body running on the cleanest liquid fuel around and it will do wonders. Don’t forget most fruits primarily consist of water so you can never go wrong with indulging in them!

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I’ve decided I want to go one further than having my own blog. I haven’t decided how I want to do this just yet, so I’d appreciate feedback on this post. I’ve been thinking about joining one of the group blogs that are out there, where I could guest post. I’m not too sure how they work, but I’ll look into it more to figure it out.

Please comment on this post post with advice/tips or email me at bpshielsy@gmail.com


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