Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Getting the ball rolling: Primary Care

I finally feel like I'm just about ready to start Trauma Focused CBT. This is offered through my local Primary Care Mental Health team, and I can self refer for assessment. Last week, I rang up to give my details and was offered a telephone assessment last Thursday. They originally wanted to give me an appointment for last Wednesday, but after discussion amongst themselves, they decided I needed to speak to someone more senior because of my complex needs.

The telephone assessment went really well, and I managed to remember everything I needed to say (prompted by my notes as well, of course). The first part of the assessment was the more "objective" part; where we went through my answers to the PHQ9 and GAD7 questionnaires, as well as questions on specific phobias, functioning, employment, and recent appointments. My scores for the PHQ and GAD questionnaires were quite high; indicating my levels of Depression and Generalised Anxiety are quite severe. I knew this beforehand, and the complex issues that form part of my mental health problems just exacerbate those levels too. It's like my brain is constantly battling itself!

I was asked how I had been feeling recently (awful to be honest), how my family life was (ok, but a lot of stress about various things), my aims for therapy (to be able to talk about my termination with others, and help people who have been through similar experiences) and why I decided to contact the service this time (I was fed up of how easily triggered I got, and I want help to change this).

The telephone assessment was only supposed to take about 30 minutes. It ended up taking an hour, 10 minutes! Thankfully, I was given time to explain everything, and I certainly wasn't rushed! I do hope this helps them to get an idea of my needs and aims though.

The day after the assessment, I received a phone call to say they'd accepted me for CBT (I'm hoping they mean Trauma Focused, but we'll see).

I seem to have a lot of ideas for blog posts, and not enough energy to get them past a very rough draft stage! I can't promise my next post will be about my mental health, but you should hear from me, for updates on that subject, soon.


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