Psychiatry & Psychology--General/Bipolar?


I've been going to a psychiatrist for 2 months with mood swings (currently 'manic' as they say) and anxiety issues. my psych has diagnosed me 200mg quetiapine (Seroquel) but she says she doesn't like to diagnose or put a label on things, I am 17. I do not feel like I am getting any help besides mood charts and medication which I don't see the point. She is telling me it's just anxiety which I think is a joke I know it's two separate things as stupid as it sounds. I am not desperate for a diagnosis but also I don't want to be left in the dark. Do you think I should try and stick it out? Thanks In advance

Hi Don

Of course you don't want to be left in the dark, but that's not what's happening. It's just that the modern trend in clinical psychiatry is to label less and help more.

Why? Psychological conditions tend to be vague and overlapping, changing, and often subject to some interpretation. And specifying a label by itself does no good whatsoever. Instead, the emphasis is on fixing what is subject to cure, and teaching adaptive ways of coping with what is not so easy to change.

Even if for some reason you needed a diagnosis, it can never be provided on the basis of a self-descriptive paragraph.

But what I can tell you from your description is that you are far from alone, and the best course of treatment is a combination of medication and psychotherapy -- which is exactly what you're getting. If you can be a little trusting and patient, it will go better and faster, but not overnight.

Thanks for asking us, and I hope life gets better for you reasonably soon. I also hope that my non-answer seems sensible and helpful to you. Just being 17 is tough enough.


Psychiatry & Psychology--General

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Alan Auerbach


Taught psychology for 30 years, authored four textbooks. Specialize in introductory and industrial/organizational psychology, but will tackle wider range of areas.

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