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Forum Name: Psychiatric Topics

Question: Agoraphobia - How to get help questions


 liveinhighheels - Sat Jun 12, 2010 4:36 am

I am 23 years old and have been agoraphobic for 5 years now. I live with my alcoholic mother and i need help getting over this as i cannot live here anymore. I do not contribute financially to the household period, as i can't work because of my condition. Here are some questions i have if someone could help me out that would be great!!

Counciling:
How do i find a councilor?
Are there free councilors who could help me over the phone?
How much does counciling cost?
What do you do if you cannot afford a councilor?

Financial:
How can i get government funding?
Is 'agoraphobia' considered as a disability?
Who sends the recommendation letter that you need government funding?
(example: A mental health councilor, a psychiatrist, or a family doctor)

Medication:
How can i get medication prescribed? (I cannot see my family doctor in person)
What is the best medication to take for agoraphobia/depression/anxiety/social anxiety?
Are there any good books with exposure homework assignments you would recommend?

Those are the questions i have as of now. If anyone could help me i would appreciate it so much.. thanks in advance!! :)
 Faye Lang, RN, MSW - Fri Jul 02, 2010 7:46 pm

Hello, liveinhighheels,

Do you have a regular doctor? If so, call and advise him or her of your situation and concerns. Your local mental health agency would be able to help you with all of your questions and help you connect with the appropriate services in your community. Public mental health agencies generally charge based on your ability to pay. Some agencies have outreach workers that can do an initial assessment in the home, but overall treatment would require your attendance at the agency for treatment and any psychiatric reviews, with part of the contacts being done by telephone if necessary. It is not likely that a physician would prescribe medication to you without actually seeing and talking with you. Generally, anti-anxiety and antidepressants are used in the treatment of agoraphobia.

You are likely thinking that all of this is impossible because you can't leave your home. I understand that your fears can be overwhelming. However, if you prepare yourself by telling yourself repeatedly that you can do what is needed to get help, and plan how you will get to your doctor and to the mental health agency, calling someone to accompany you if needed, and talking yourself into it, it will be scary but you CAN do it. It takes commitment to making the first step.

Overcoming agoraphobia by yourself through reading books while staying totally at home is not realistic or advisable. There is much information available on the internet, which will help you be informed, but does not constitute treatment. That brings us back to you having to take the firsst step. Call your doctor and ask for help. Commit to doing what is necessary.

Good luck to you.

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