Maybe one can manage moodiness or the blues without medication, but not mental illness. Mental illness is a disease, not just a bad mood.
This person should try to go through her or his local health department to get the needed medication at a reduced cost.
People who are prescribed such medications need to be forewarned against discontinuing them abruptly and given guidance if they ever need to stop. Sometimes a longer-acting drug like fluoxetine can help with gradual withdrawal.
Mental illness is serious and deserves appropriate treatment. Sometimes nondrug approaches can be helpful.
Q: I have burning-mouth syndrome. For at least two months, my mouth and tongue have been burning as if I had scalded them.
I’ve seen my dentist, dermatologist and primary-care physician. They can find no disease.
I tolerate only tepid drinks and bland foods; I brush my teeth with baking soda, as toothpaste burns.
I’ve tried rinsing my mouth with coconut oil, salt water, peroxide rinse and a mouth rinse for dry mouth. Nothing helps. Do you have any remedies?
Some medications may trigger this problem; reactions to blood-pressure pills such as enalapril, eprosartan and lisinopril have been reported in the medical literature.
A vitamin B deficiency (B-1, B-2, B-6, B-12 or folic acid) also may be responsible. Low iron or zinc levels might contribute. Ask for a blood test to check your status. If any of these nutrients is low, a supplement might help.
An objective review of research found that alpha-lipoic acid may be helpful (Cochrane Library, Jan. 24, 2005).
Vitamin D deficiency
Luckily, I was seeing an endocrinologist for thyroid problems, and the deficiency was detected through blood tests. I take supplemental D and have had no recurrence of the pain that made it so hard for me to crawl out of bed each morning.
Reach Joe and Terry Graedon at PeoplesPharmacy.com.