The train was tarnished from soot. The engineer, Jack, grimaced over the craft, while he hauled wood into the fiery oven hidden in her belly. She was a steam engine and her whistle sounded through the air like a shiver breaking ice.
Indians watched from a bouldered distant peak. They saw the smoke and marked its passage with each puff.
Just then, a mischievous current sucked up that chimney-spew like a genie to her lamp and the loud wind masked the sound of her turning wheels. To the unfamiliar natives looking on, the tiny far off train appeared to have stopped, silent to them now and no smoke to ribbon the air.
Not so, though. Jack did not know they were watched, he and his steely lady. He did not know he was described in the mind’s of others.
Moving. Not moving. Progressing. Stopped.
But the sensory descriptors were misleading.
Music please. (Perhaps tom-tom pow wow drums.)
As in this tidy little parable, we think that when we get relief from symptoms, it means that the disease process is better.
Anxious? Have a beer and vuala! Better. Can’t sleep? Smoke some weed and, “Aaaah.”
No? “Of course not!” we say. “We don’t do those plebeian substances. We use our medications as prescribed. We don’t abuuuuse them. If we need more, we ask for more.”
This dialogue is usually regarding benzodiazepines. “Doctor, I can’t take antidepressants or those other meds! Why is everyone always pushing drugs on me? I’m just taking klonopin.” Or, “Doctors over-prescribe! I just need xanax!”
Brain disease runs something like the steam engine train.
The steam coming out of the chimney is what we see in symptoms, such as, anxiety, inner tension, fear, insomnia, irritability and so forth. Get rid of the smoke and we think the disease is dealt with. However, the train is still going. The disease is still progressing, although not as notably disruptive as before. To stop the train, we must stop the engine, or the disease process. I’m not saying we must cure the disease, rather, just slow or stop the disease progress to treat it effectively.
Our goal is more than symptom management. Our goal is to treat the underlying illness to preserve brain health and prevent against further injury.
Self-Care Tip: When medically indicated, consider medical therapy.
Question: When your symptoms improve, how do you continue toward treatment goals? How do you go past getting “better” to full treatment? Please tell us your story.
- When You Treat Only the Symptoms and Ignore the Cause (longversion.wordpress.com)
- Mistaken Expressions of Freedom and Medication Compliance 2012/10/30
- Fighting For Brain Health Is At The Core Of Being A Friend To Yourself 2011/09/16
- What We Will Do For Brain Health – Looking For Heroes 2011/11/06
- Medications and Being Chosen by Fear 2012/01/04
- Other Fears of Medication For Brain Illness 2011/06/15
- Fears of Addiction To Medications for Brain Illness 2011/06/14
- Where Do You Think Behavior and Emotion Come From? 2011/04/05
- Go Toward Mental Illness and Take It To The Floor 2011/01/13
- Say Yes to Medication And No To Drugs 2011/07/13
- Eating the Right Foods – part 2. (drchana.com)
- In 1967 A Plan Was Made To Medicate You Into Submission (Watch This and Read). (afteramerica.wordpress.com)
- The Little Train (Mr. Small #4) by Lois Lenski (blueonbooks.wordpress.com)