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  #1  
Old 06-29-2011, 02:43 PM
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Default WRAP: Wellness Recovery Action Plan

One of the questions people frequently have is how they can help a person with mental illness. If that person has been in extreme states before, been hospitalized, or has experienced difficulties, encouraging them to produce and getting involved in their own Wellness Recovery Action Plan is a good way to go. Here are a few resources:

Mind Freedom link to the primary book on the topic
http://208.106.160.3/zencart/index.p...83f0f20bd81b02

basic workbook:
http://www.drsampirozzi.com/userfile..._adults_1_.pdf

Basic Info from Psych Central
http://psychcentral.com/library/id239.html

Now, the limitation here is that it assumes that the person has already been through the worst of it, and can identify the stuff that makes their psychological problems worse. It doesn't really help when a person is first experiencing symptoms, and you can't really design a plan of recovery if you've never recovered. But, it does form the basis for taking some control over the things that you know make things worse, or make things better. Putting it in black and white, and being able to discus it will facilitate conversations that should help people, loved ones especially, understand what's going on, what to look for, and how to help.
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Old 06-30-2011, 08:35 PM
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I was going through boxes of my sons things today and found this this program that he had apparently just started. I know he had been in this program as a group with his county mental health team. I remember that he had said that he was asked to participate in this group with others who were all doing very well at the time.

Wondering if this might be helpful for my son now while in prison. He is not doing well at all now. I could only get him the book and workbook if it was sold by one of the DOC approved book venders, but not all the organizational tools.
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Old 06-30-2011, 09:25 PM
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I'd think that anything that gets a person to look at triggers, look at the things that makes him feel better or lessens symptoms, and focus on a way to deal with things that are otherwise overwhelming and scary is good. Even if you can only send him an outline and encouragement, it's a start. If you can keep him on task and talk about stuff with him, that's even better because it allows both of you to really talk about the nuts and bolts of what's going on, what his resources are, and how he can help himself. And, you'll have a spectacular education on his whole process.

Anything that helps him gain control over his symptoms is a good thing, even if you can only send him in a list of topics, and a page or two of documentation at a time, it'll help him get grounded.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:10 AM
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While in prison I see a problem with reaching out for help when one is having symptoms or triggers that are worrisome. The mental health staff at my sons facility, and I assume most facilities, are understaffed.
I had alerted my sons prison nurse when he was started on a new anti-psychotic and was having problems. She didn't notice anything. He spiraled down fast at that point and ended up in Acute Care Stabilization. If the nurse wouldn't listen to me bringing this problem to her attention, that doesn't leave much hope that my son would be listened to. The nurse said they get once a month evaluations. Handing out meds twice a day is more task orientated for the nursing staff. No time to evaluate patients in med line.

But I do agree that making my son aware of his own triggers may be helpful even if the action plan is not as able to accommodated with his personal plan.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by sandymom View Post
While in prison I see a problem with reaching out for help when one is having symptoms or triggers that are worrisome. The mental health staff at my sons facility, and I assume most facilities, are understaffed.
I had alerted my sons prison nurse when he was started on a new anti-psychotic and was having problems. She didn't notice anything. He spiraled down fast at that point and ended up in Acute Care Stabilization. If the nurse wouldn't listen to me bringing this problem to her attention, that doesn't leave much hope that my son would be listened to. The nurse said they get once a month evaluations. Handing out meds twice a day is more task orientated for the nursing staff. No time to evaluate patients in med line.

But I do agree that making my son aware of his own triggers may be helpful even if the action plan is not as able to accommodated with his personal plan.
That's a problem everywhere. However, beyond knowing his triggers and knowing his symptoms, I think WRAP has some effect if the MH people he has to deal with get familiar with it. I'm not sure how possible it is, but if he talks with his counselor and his shrink about it while he's not in crisis, and gives them whatever he's comfortable giving them of the WRAP, maybe it'll 1. open a dialogue about his crisis experiences and symptoms with people in position to do something, and doing it outside of crisis will help everybody understand
2. alert them that they can actually do something to help BEFORE it gets to crisis. That way, they might be able to modify schedules or do other things that will help him before he goes crisis.
3. get them in alliance with him so that both he and they can approach the subject, triggers, and symptoms at every stage, so maybe they can deal with each stage more effectively and efficiently, and shorten or avoid some crises states.

It's a problem - doing WRAP and not communicating it to the people in power to help or harm. It's a risk, and requires a great level of trust. BUT, if he can trust his counselor, or somebody in MH, it's a start, and he can feel out whether dialogue with those in the system about his WRAP is worth it.

I do hope he's communicating some of this with you, and is open to your observations of his symptoms and triggers, and what helps and what doesn't. Being able to talk to you about it would also be helpful, and help him formulate a plan for talking with relevant people in his prison.

I'm sorry he's already experienced Acute Care. Prison sucks enough without having that kind of crisis, especially if it could have been avoided. So, the question is, is there anything he can do to try to avoid that sort of intervention in the future, or at least minimize the amount of time spent there, and the trauma of that kind of event. I'd think the prison would get behind it, if they understood, and realized that dealing with him as he's getting symptomatic can help them avoid crisis, and save them money.

I'm glad he's doing better. The more he's able to do with prison staff, his counselor, etc, the better. I keep your son in my mind frequently. I do hope things are swinging around so that he can manage better, and get something beneficial out of prison, rather than just a string of acute incidents.
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Old 07-27-2011, 08:41 PM
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My son has been to the crisis stabilization facility three times. Crisis stabilization is pretty similar to being in the hole for three months. Fed through a slot in the door, absolutely no belongings not even a paper and pencil, tv, radio, zilch. I believe he has PTSD from the prison acute care facility.

He is not doing well, some days better than others. He is functioning but hearing voices constantly and audio and visual hallucinations. His therapist says he just has "magical thinking". He is on enough prolixin for a horse.

He does have groups and is in a residential treatment unit. I am very happy that he is not in general population. I am just worried about his lack of progress. The medical staff do not know what he was like before he went into prison. They do not know his baseline. He went to this facility right from the first stay at the Acute Care Facility, the best they have seen him is very symptomatic.

I am very discouraged as he has been out of his last Acute Care stay over a year and a half. I want him in a real psychiatric hospital with a therapeutic environment, where he is a patient and not an inmate.
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Last edited by sandymom; 07-27-2011 at 08:44 PM..
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Old 07-27-2011, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandymom View Post
My son has been to the crisis stabilization facility three times. Crisis stabilization is pretty similar to being in the hole for three months. Fed through a slot in the door, absolutely no belongings not even a paper and pencil, tv, radio, zilch. I believe he has PTSD from the prison acute care facility.

He is not doing well, some days better than others. He is functioning but hearing voices constantly and audio and visual hallucinations. His therapist says he just has "magical thinking". He is on enough prolixin for a horse.

He does have groups and is in a residential treatment unit. I am very happy that he is not in general population. I am just worried about his lack of progress. The medical staff do not know what he was like before he went into prison. They do not know his baseline. He went to this facility right from the first stay at the Acute Care Facility, the best they have seen him is very symptomatic.

I am very discouraged as he has been out of his last Acute Care stay over a year and a half. I want him in a real psychiatric hospital with a therapeutic environment, where he is a patient and not an inmate.
I hear you. RTU is better than nothing, but not much better. Getting him from a prison to a mental hospital isn't that easy, and state mental hospitals can be just as scary and oppressive as prisons, especially with the MH budget cuts.

In the interim, since he's hearing voices and seeing stuff, you might want to get him some information from the Hearing Voices Network, http://www.intervoiceonline.org/tag/...voices-network They are people who've come up with non-medication methods of dealing with voices. Some of their techniques may be helpful for him while he's hearing voices. Trying to make peace with the voices may give him a bit of peace, and a bit of space so that he can better cope.

I'm so sorry your son had to discover his mental illness through the criminal justice system. I wish it were easier to identify and help people before it got to that point, and I work and vote towards that end.
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