Friday, 8 February 2013

Mental Health and Medication

What do you really know about the drugs you are taking? A lot of the medication given to mental health sufferers contain toxins and sedatives. Yes sometimes mild sedation may be the best and safest option for the patient but, is it right to sedate a person to the point that they can no longer talk let alone function in any other way? I don't think so, do you? So how do you stop over medication from happening to you?

Family members can make decisions for you while you lack capacity and usually this works fine but, what if there are disputes within the family about the medication or treatment being offered, what happens then? The doctor can then ignore all of the advice being offered by relatives and give you whatever he decides and if anything goes wrong he has a get out clause. He can reply that in his or her opinion it was the best thing to do. Would you like your future care and treatment decided by someone who did not even know you or your likes and dislikes etc. I'm sure I wouldn't.

Next option. Have a power of attorney drawn up. These are very powerful documents that need very careful planning before you consider getting one. They can cover your welfare while you lack capacity as well as your finances. From experience my advice would be, never consider getting a lasting power of attorney. Things change, people move on and families break up. We would all like to hope that this will never be the case with our families but, what if it was? If a document has been drawn up years before it is easy to forget about it in the midst of a family break up, if you become ill during this time and the person who holds the power of attorney disagree in any way with other member of your family. The ones you are now living with and know your recent wishes etc. It would still be the one with the document making your decisions for you, even if they have not seen you fro years. How can they possibly know what you want?

The way to avoid this kind of situation is to have a document drawn up on a yearly basis. This way if you should require hospital treatment you know it's the people around you who know what your wishes are and know how drugs have affected you in the past.

My sister was subjected to being tried on various medications which she had been prescribed before. I knew the serious side effects she had endured in the past but, because I was not the one who held the power of attorney my wishes were over ruled every time. Each time I was proved to be right but it made no difference. She was given them anyway because the attorney said they could. She died on the 20th of September 2012 aged just 51. The cause of death was put down as heart failure due to her body having just given up.

If you don't want this to be you or possibly someone you love take action now to make sure it never can? Sign the petition and get the mental health laws changed! Stop Over Medicating Mental Health Patients