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Dr. Olsen
Dr. Olsen, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2336
Experience:  PsyD Psychologist
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My 28 yr. old son is spiraling out of control again because

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My 28 yr. old son is spiraling out of control again because of drug use. His father is taking him to a rehab. center tomorrow. However, in my opinion, rehab. facilities have low success rates, especially if the person needing help is not seeking it for themselves. He also battles with mental illness, is under doctor's care, and takes the prescribed medication zyprexa. As a parent, I feel totally powerless, and desperately need advice, help and suggestions. Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX
Hello. I am sorry to hear your son's situation. Let me ask you a few questions before I offer an answer. Does he have any medical condition? What is his mental diagnosis if there is any?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.



No, he does not have a medical condition. My son lives in another state, and I have not been able to talk to his doctor directly. However, I will make an attempt tomorrow. When he lived with me, I saw him as dilusional, paranoid, and depressed. It began several years ago when he started believing a chip was put inside his brain to control his thoughts and behavior. Because of the chip, he constantly heard voices in his head, and felt people on his job, etc., were conspiring against him. The majority of his time at home was spent in his room, where he either slept the days away, or watched movies. It was because of these symptoms I concluded he suffered with the three mental illnesses mentioned above.

Hi It sounds like your son may need comprehensive treatment for both mental health and drug abuse problems. Let me work on my answer for a while. Thank you for patience.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.



I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you.

Hi, Let me say I can imagine how sad, worried and anxious you must have been about your son's situation. It sounds like your son may have drug abuse problems, depression and psychotic features like delusion and paranoia. I am not sure as to circumstances his illness developed for years. It sounds like he had depression and social withdrawal for a while. I wonder if his excessive drug use may have worsen depression and caused psychosis. So my question is as to whether your son had psychotic features OR drug abuse problems first. If drug/substance use may have worsen depression and caused psychosis, his diagnosis may be substance use disorder as drug use and intoxications may involve additional impairments in social or occupational functioning. These impairments might include: suicidal and other self-harm behavior, assaultiveness, belligerence, impulsiveness, inappropriate sexual behavior, social withdrawal, apathy, depression, anxiety, excessive suspiciousness (paranoid ideation), hypervigilance, ideas of reference, impaired jdgement, interpersonal sensitivity, indiscriminate sociability, and stereotyped behaviors. Perhaps, your son may have had depression since adolescence. Depression is a state of disease that affects body and mind. Depression can disrupt the nerve impulses that carry a constant stream of orders from the brain to the muscles. When the depressed brain slows down, so do the signals to all parts of body. Depression affects memory, problem-solving ability, language, perception and is accompanied by nervous tension, anxiety, and profound fatigue. It can generate pain and aches. If untreated over time, Depression may cause Psychosis.
Medical reasons for Depression may include thyroid hormone abnormality, Vitamin B12 Deficiency, Chronic pain, Stroke (Brain injury), Alzheimer’s disease, other medical problems such as kidneys, heart, lung, epilepsy, migraine headaches, brain injury. Malnutrition/brain damage can dull mood further. Excessive drug/alcohol use may aggravate depression and cause Psychosis. Some medication can cause or contribute to depression.
Whatever his primary diagnosis may be, your son may need: (1) drug rehabilitation (detox and treatment); (2) medication; (3)Psychosocial rehabilitation including counseling; (4) Social skills training; (5) Assertive community treatment (ACT); (6) Hospitalization if he is at an imminent risk.

Detoxification is a first step of treatment. Residential rehabilitation programs may be beneficial in providing a safe, contained, therapeutic, and supportive environment while getting started on the road to successful recovery. Support is essential. Twelve-step groups are one type of support system especially designed for recovering addicts. Your son may require medical detoxification. She may need to undergo detoxification with medical supervision. Detoxification is only the beginning of treatment - the preparatory phase of treatment and recovery. For treatment, medications like Buprenorphine is used for Heroin and prescription medication addictions. Alternative treatment options for your son is Biofeedback, Acupuncture, Hypnosis, Aromatherapy, Homeopathy, Herbal therapy, Nutrition, Meditation, Yoga, Guided imagery, Creative Art therapy, and Outdoor therapy. Faith-based treatment programs like a Twelve-step Residential program may be effective for him. For your reference, you may check the link ( to find facilities for drug abuse.

Once his drug problems are treated, he may start working on other areas of his problems. Your son may need to work with a team of mental health professionals - primary care physician, psychiatrist, psychotherapist/counselor in a community mental health clinic (inpatient or outpatient services). He will benefit from ASSERTIVE COMMUNITY TREATMENT (ACT). ACT is a multidisciplinary team based treatment approach to providing comprehensive, community-based psychiatric treatment, rehabilitation, and support. Services include case management, ongoing assessments, medication and medication support, supportive counseling, employment, housing assistance, family support, education, substance abuse services, and other services as needed to support an individual's ability to live successfully in the community. Clients and family members are viewed as collaborative partners in the treatment planning and intervention process. ACT services are available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Your son also may need PSYCHOSOCIAL REHABILITATION and SOCIAL SKILLS TRAINING (Integrated psychological therapy, social/communication skills etc.). His family - you and his father may also need support and education from a family therapist regarding his condition.

In order to find an inpatient or outpatient treatment center for him, you may call The United Way toll free # XXXXX to find the community mental health centers in your area in which he can get treatment described above even without health insurance. Additionally, You can also check out HRSA (U.S.department of Health and Human services) (Website - health centers care for you, even if you have no health insurance. You pay what you can afford, based on your income. Health centers provide • checkups when you're well • treatment when you're sick • complete care when you're pregnant • immunizations and checkups for your children • dental care and prescription drugs for your family • mental health and substance abuse care if you need it. Type in your address and click the 'Find Health Centers' button to find health centers near you. To find a group therapy or a support group for him, contact a local hospital or a clinic by asking if they offer a group for adults. For any question on depression, psychosis and Substance abuse disorder, and ACT, contact National Institute of Mental Health/ Phone Number:(NNN) NNN-NNNN Toll Free Number: 1-866-615-6464/ Fax Number:(NNN) NNN-NNNN Email Address:[email protected]/ Website URL: If he is dangerous to herself or the other OR is unable to take care of self due to mental disorder, ask him to go to an emergency room of a local hospital. If he does not, call A LOCAL MOBILE CRISIS TEAM or PSYCHIATRIC EMERGENCY RESPONSE TEAM designated by his City and County for psychiatric evaluation and involuntary hospitalization. If he is in crisis now, seek help immediately. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to reach a 24 hour crisis center or dial 911 for immediate assistance. I hope your son gets treatment. Please let me know if I have overlooked any or you have more questions. Warm regards,

Edited by Dr. Olsen on 11/2/2010 at 8:04 AM EST
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