Tag Archives: impulse control

I took a big step, I called a Crisis Line

Yesterday I broke down.  My anxiety consumed me.  I tried to use my copings skills – I went out, went to Michaels – bought some more canvas and paint to come home and paint. I couldn’t handle it though.  “Hurt yourself.” “Cut yourself” “Hit yourself” “Break a bone” My brain kept wanting to find a way out of this feeling of extreme dread and torture that was going on. 

The minute I got home I knew I couldn’t do what my brain was saying. I had done that before. I did that for two years and all it did was get me put in the hospital, in the ICU, the ER, and the psych hospital.  I couldn’t go back to that.  I cant go back to that.  I am trying to stay in recovery.  I am trying to get my life back and stay on track.

I called 211.  It connected me to the local crisis line.  It is easier than dialing the suicide hotline, all I have to remember is 211 rather than a bunch of numbers, plus the suicide crisis line would connect me to 211 anyway, since it just connects you to your local crisis line.  For those of you who don’t know what 211 is – it is a free and confidential informational and referral line available in most cities/counties in the United States.  They can connect you with resources to find help with food, housing, employment, health care, counseling and more – and in my area also provide the crisis/suicide line. 

Anyway, I spent 33 minutes talking to a wonderful volunteer.  Probably 15 minutes crying my eyes out.  Eventually we came up with a plan, had some laughs, and I am feeling better.  Thank goodness I got my mind set straight because I do not want to end up back in the hospital!

I was assured I could call back as many times as I needed, 24 hours a day, and they could help me. 

Today was a rough day, and I suspect it is going to be a rough week.  Honestly, I think it is going to be a rough few months.  I don’t think my meds are working right, or not well enough anyway – perhaps a dosage adjustment.  I don’t think my doctor is getting my anxiety under control at all – at least not quick enough.  I know that I can’t give up though.  I know not to go back to my old habit – which was just not thinking and just doing.  I know I cant be impulsive anymore.  Not that it is that easy, impulse is impulse, but I can still keep working on it.

 

If you are in a crisis reach out for help:

National Suicide Prevention Line: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Lifeline Crisis Chat

IMAlive Crisis Chat

Veteran Crisis Online Chat

Call: 211

In the UK? Call the Samaritans: 08457 90 90 90

In Australia? Call Lifeline: 13 11 14  or chat with them

In New Zealand? Call Lifeline’s Warmline: 0508 927 654 or Suicide Crisis Line: 0508 828 865

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You Don’t Make Me Pull My Hair Out, But Seriously, I Do Pull My Hair Out

“You are going to make me pull my hair out!”

Well, let’s be honest, you may get angry or frustrated, but you aren’t going to pull your hair out because of someone.

For some people though, they really do have an urge to pull their hair out.  They have a disorder called trichotillomania – or trich – for short.  The most common places they pull hair from are the scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes.  This will leave noticeable bald patches.

Depending on who you talk to, there is a debate on how trich is classified.  Some say it is an impulse control disorder, some say it is related to OCD, others say it is a body focused repetitive behavior (BFRB). 

It can be found in all age groups, including infants!  However, most commonly it appears in the tween – teen years. 

According to the DSM V the symptoms of trichotillomania are:

  1. Recurrent pulling out of one’s hair, resulting in hair loss.
  2. Repeated attempts to decrease or stop hair pulling.
  3. The hair pulling causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
  4. The hair pulling or hair loss is not attributable to another medical condition (e.g., a dermatological condition).
  5. The hair pulling is not better explained by the symptoms of another mental disorder (e.g., attempts to improve a perceived defect or flaw in appearance in body dysmorphic disorder).

There really is no known cause of trich.  It is thought to have a neurologically predisposition.  It is also thought to occur as a coping mechanism during stressful events.  I personally tend to pull out my eyebrow hairs during times of stress when I get anxious.  I do not do it all the time though and have learned to cope with it better when I have something to do with my hands such as play with a stress ball.  I tend not to notice I am doing it though unless someone points it out.  Many people with trich cannot control their urges though. 

Some treatment options have been used.

  1. Therapy is the most common one.  Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is often used.  Other forms of therapy can also be used depending on your psychologist (or other type of therapist you see) and how you feel the best way of going about it is.  There are clinics around the US that specifically specialize in treating trich.
  2. Some medications have been thought to help trich although none are officially approved for it at this time.  Naltrexone and Topomax are two that some people have tried. Others have also been prescribed SSRI’s. 
  3. Support groups specific to trich are also important to gain connections with those that are dealing with the same problems you might be going through.

If you want more information on trichotillomania, a wonderful site to go to is http://www.trich.org/index.html

Some other sites that give general information about trich include:

 

***(There is also another disorder called dermatillomania – this is similar to trichotillomania.  It involves skin picking though, where a person will pick at there skin such as scabs until the skin is bleeding. If you would like more information about this, go to: http://www.skinpick.com/dermatillomania.)