She's not crazy; she's my mother.
February 20, 2010 8:40 AM   Subscribe

Do you have any solid recommendations for a prescribing psychiatrist in Beaumont, Texas (or surrounding area)?

My mother suffers from depression and anxiety and has been under the care of a psychiatrist in Lufkin, Texas for the past several years. This doctor was recommended to my mother by my mother's general practitioner. The current psychiatrist did help my mother quite a bit at first, but for the past year, he's become increasingly deafened to her escalating issues. Mother is now on three mood altering medications, still spends 5-6 days a week completely in bed, is more anxious than ever, and has developed a verbal tic (sort of a quiet grunting). Mother has told her current psychiatrist about all of this, but he is, she says, non-responsive.

My mother doubtlessly needs therapy, as well, but right now, our primary concern is that her medication be evaluated and adjusted (if necessary). So my question is specifically about prescribing psychiatrists. I can Google search and look at her insurance provider's doctor directory, but I would like to have some solid recommendations.

I am in the Dallas area, and I've called my former psychiatric clinic, but I haven't heard back. My parents do travel to Houston often for cardiology and dental appointments (they live in a small town sort of between Beaumont and the Houston area), so recommendations in that area also would be appreciated.
posted by girlbowler to Health & Fitness (5 answers total)
Best answer: I don't have a specific recommendation, but from what you wrote you need to become your mother's advocate and get her assent to communicate with her physicians about her medications.

If she were essentially bedridden with a virus, you'd send her to an emergency room. Psychiatric hospitals also have such provisions and there are a number of them in Houston. It doesn't mean commitment, it isn't an admission of craziness, it is a critical, untreated disease which needs attention.

Good luck with it, at least it sounds as if she's interested in being better; that goes a long way.
posted by fydfyd at 10:22 AM on February 20, 2010

Aren't all psychiatrists doctors who can prescribe medication? Or is there something I don't know about Texas?
posted by rokusan at 1:56 PM on February 20, 2010

Response by poster: Aren't all psychiatrists doctors who can prescribe medication? Or is there something I don't know about Texas?

You are correct. I'm not sure why I phrased it like that. I think because I wanted to emphasize that at this point, my immediate concern is getting her medication in line and then work on getting her into therapy.

fydfyd: I was thinking the same thing. She really needs to check into a hospital and be properly evaluated. I've explained this, even sent her blog entries and from people who have done so and been happy with the results. Mother, however, is convinced that I am just trying to commit her.

Would I need to have a legal decree of consent, I wonder? I'll have to look into that. Thank you.
posted by girlbowler at 3:18 PM on February 20, 2010

Best answer: A legal affidavit of consent would be helpful if you are going to be communicating at a distance. I was only thinking of the same sort of (implied) consent you'd have if you were in the room with mom and the doctor, but having a paper signed by mom witnessed by dad would be better than nothing and it being notarized better still. It need not be much longer than a sentence or two:
I {mom} allow {junior} to be apprised of my psychiatric medication program and to speak as my agent with any prescribing physicians.
As for fear of commitment, this is still a (mostly) free country and no adult can be involuntarily committed unless there is clear and convincing evidence that she is a danger to herself or others. That still may be a hard sell to mom, so think outpatient evaluation first. I'm guessing the prospect of staying overnight is the point where "they're locking me away" begins to feel more present.
posted by fydfyd at 4:56 PM on February 20, 2010

My mother was helped greatly my Dr. Raul Isern in Beaumont. My sister made the appointment and had to "make" her go. She was not much interested in her own recovery at first, but became quite fond of Dr. Isern in a short period of time. He was able to get her to agree to a two week evaluation stay at Beaumont Neurological Center. The evaluation was thorough, and designed to rule out underlying health issues, and create an observation based treatment plan. She continued to see him once a month for a year or so, then quarterly for many years. She looked forward to their "visits", and told all her friends what a help he was to her. But it was my sister, bless her, that received the most help, because she was the nearest caretaker. Mother was so much easier to communicate with, and could participate in her own care. I could sense her improvement even over the phone. I checked the phone book, and he is still practicing. Do call him, if he cannot take new patients, I would trust him to recommend someone competent.
posted by woman at 8:59 PM on February 21, 2010

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