What it’s really like behind the doors of a psychiatric hospital Lucy Dimbylow Writer and mother, passionately outspoken about living with mental illness. In hospital, there was no need to pretend I was OK, no need to hide my scars or sugar-coat my feelings. I have been in inpatient full time before for an eating disorder but I am now beginning a six week course of intensive … My main survival strategy was to keep myself to myself, but there was a certain solidarity in being among other people who were in crisis. What It Was Like for Me to Stay in the Mental Hospital In my case, as I was in a non-locked ward and I had signed myself in, I could sign myself out for short periods of time too so while I was “in” the mental hospital, I actually spent a lot of time in the park next door. On one occasion, all hell broke loose when a patient was banned from using the microwave to make chocolate crispy cakes: a trivial matter that ended with the police being called and the ward in lockdown. Inpatient psychiatric treatment will vary based on the unique needs and mental state of the individual. Every half an hour, a nurse or healthcare assistant (HCA) would open my door to check I was safe. The only difference is that the doors are locked and there are bars on the windows. There is … Most of us have very specific, vivid ideas about what staying in a psychiatric hospital looks like. My mental image of what to expect was based mainly on films like One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest and Girl, Interrupted; surely I wasn’t mad enough for that world of locked doors, maniacal nurses brandishing syringes and empty-eyed patients shuffling along the corridors in slippers? Every day in the hospital was different. While I was fortunate to be in a modern, well-equipped psychiatric hospital, the strain that the NHS is under was all too evident in the staff and their attitude towards us patients. But while those weeks in hospital rank as some of the worst of my life, a part of me is thankful I was admitted. the thing im most terrified of is ever being sectioned which i dont think i would be but i was just wondering what it is like!?? The first thing I see when I enter the psychiatric unit is a girl, Becca, mumbling to herself and shuffling up and down the hallway. What It's Like to Be Restrained in a Psychiatric Hospital Editor’s note: If you experience suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide, the following post could be potentially triggering. A doctor who works in psychiatry is called a psychiatrist. Being isolated within a hospital psychiatric unit may seem contrary to what you need when you’re not in a stable frame of mind. I’d obviously realised that my freedom would be restricted on the psych ward, but I, perhaps naively, hadn’t fathomed how much. I am writing a play for my university coursework that is set in a psychiatric ward. MOST of my patients had committed violent crimes. 4 a.m. Experiences in mental hospitals vary from extremely positive to very negative and this often depends on the individual's situation and the specific mental health hospital (Types of Mental Health Facilities).Before you enter a mental health hospital, though, it's important you get the facts on what it's like inside mental hospitals. Anything I could possibly have used to harm myself was confiscated: my phone charger, my dressing gown cord, my tweezers. Health services have an equal duty to keep all these patients safe. Writer and mother, passionately outspoken about living with mental illness. Everyone hears stories about psychiatric hospitals and I fell for them too. What it's like to be in a psychiatric hospital during Covid-19 'Being alone in a single room for that long is enough to send anyone crazy, let alone someone who is already psychotic.' I imagined padded cells, straightjackets and a prison-like culture. I think the thing that makes psych hospitals sound so scary is their history of being horrible places that systematically mistreated and … Stacey is going to work in Springfield Hospital, one of the oldest mental health units in the UK, to see what life is really like on the front line of mental health services. I wake up and it is still dark. She was first diagnosed with the condition in 2019, but had been suffering with recurrent episodes ever since. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741. Answer Save. It depends on whether you are going to a Private Psychiatric Hospital or one run by the State. It sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie about nuclear disaster. The walls are white and bare, in stark contrast to the other hospital hallways, painted a muted, compassionate shade of beige and decorated with strategically placed art and various memorials to rich benefactors. Read about our approach to external linking. Time after time I was left waiting for my meds long after they were due and, with the exception of one or two lovely nurses, there was not a single staff member I felt I could talk to. The ward was staffed mainly by agency nurses, and their lack of commitment to and interest in their role – presumably linked to pitiful rates of pay – couldn’t have been more obvious. Unlike many mental health inpatients, I was lucky enough to be given a bed in a hospital just a few miles from home. I was mistaken – it couldn’t have been further from the truth. Friday 20 Oct 2017 11:30 am MORE : What happened when I came out about my mental illness on Facebook, MORE : The truth about parenting with a mental illness, MORE : Why self-harm isn’t ‘something just teenagers do’. Seablanco1. They have a huge range of psychiatric therapies. She had been suffering with psychosis. Whats it like in a psychiatric hospital? Relevance. im being sent to a mental hospital and i want a idea of what its like. One well-meaning friend commented, after my discharge, that it must have been nice to have a break. What Is Inpatient Psychiatric Care Like? My en suite bathroom had no plug in the basin, and the taps and shower switched themselves off after a matter of seconds, presumably so I couldn’t try to drown myself. Here is an example of a day in my life there. Lv 6. I asked what you would like to see for my next video and someone requested that I did a video explaining what it’s really like in a psychiatric hospital so I thought I would explain my story. For these reasons many psychiatric wards are locked, so if you are in hospital by choice you might feel like your freedom is more restricted than you would like. More than just observing, she will be working directly with staff, dealing with patients, and taking part in making incredibly tough decisions on what is best for patients. Stacey is going to work in Springfield Hospital, one of the oldest mental health units in the UK, to see what life is really like on the front line of mental health services. Yes, it was horrendous, lonely and frightening, but it kept me safe until the crisis had passed. Whatever our diagnoses, we were all in the same boat. Still, even if you think you know what it's like in a psychiatric hospital, the prospect of going is slightly terrifying because you're not exactly sure will happen. Cheryl Hole tries the salsa, Watch Stacey Dooley: On the Psych Ward on iPlayer. One thing was for certain: this was not a psychiatric ward - and as a doctor working on one, I found myself acutely aware of what my own patients’ bedside tables looked like. 12 Answers. The windows were covered with a mesh grille to prevent any attempts to escape. Barbara Taylor is an academic known for her brilliant books on history and feminism. I’ve never been as scared as I was on the evening I was admitted to a psychiatric hospital. Without the security of the psych ward when I most needed it, I wouldn’t be here today. Essentially, a psych hospital is like a nursing home. This was intrusive during the day, and even more so at night, when they’d switch the light on and, more often than not, leave without turning it off. I’ll admit I had my own irrational meltdown when, yet again, I went to get my dinner to discover all the vegetarian food had been eaten. I would like to make it clear that people do recover from mental illness. I felt like the tiniest fish in the biggest ocean. Favourite answer. It's very important to me that I get the details of such an experience correct, like what psychiatric drugs would be administered, what the procedure for … In this video, I discuss some of my experiences with psychiatric facilities such as wards in hospitals, or psychiatric hospitals. She is also a former psychiatric patient. It is cold and the hall is wide. Even my shampoo and conditioner were locked away; if I wanted to wash my hair, I had to wait for someone to supervise me. That episode led to me being on 10-minute obs for the rest of the day and, believe me, there’s nothing fun about having an HCA following your every footstep and wedging your bedroom door open to keep tabs on you. I worked on a forensic unit which meant that all of my patients had been accused of committing a crime. can u describe ur experiences.. No, this hall is the kind of bright white you feel like … Ovie Soko: People tend to forget that I’m an athlete first, but I can’t forget that, Being British East Asian: Sex, Beauty & Bodies, 'I found a lump in my breast when I was 28 weeks pregnant', Every question you ever had about female ejaculation, answered, The Rap Game UK winner Graft: 'The more rappers from the North, the better the scene will be', We Are Who We Are: 'I've moved 10 times and been to 11 different schools', Strictly Frocked Up! The fear of the unknown consumed me. Nevertheless, the ward was explosive at times, something I found extremely intimidating. Like all hospitals, psychiatric ones are places of healing. Psychiatry is a medical field concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental health conditions. Depending on the profile and of the patients and the quality of the staff members, some wards can be peaceful therapeutic places. ?? What I found was both better and worse than I’d anticipated. if u were sectioned what is the place like where they take you?? In case of an emergency, it is likely that the patient will have very limited personal freedoms. It takes a while to realize that a siren woke me. I was placed in a mixed disorder unit. Surge in Covid vaccine misinformation ‘could cost lives’, Arsenal ready to speak to Manchester City misfit John Stones over January transfer move, Trainee church minister forced himself on mentally ill woman in hospital, Harry Styles mocks the ‘bring back manly men’ trolls as he eats banana in a frilly suit, Taylor Swift debuts re-recorded version of Love Story for Ryan Reynolds’ hilarious Match advert, What happened when I came out about my mental illness on Facebook, The truth about parenting with a mental illness, Why self-harm isn’t ‘something just teenagers do’. A few weeks before her admission, her antipsychotic medication was changed. The facilities and clinical expertise there is very good. What's it like to be in a psychiatric day hospital? But these are the extreme cases. They may even be in a locked hospital ward or restrained for a while. I'm a nurse and I worked at a psychiatric hospital for years and years. Some were floridly psychotic, one girl to the point that she thought she was a dog and crawled around the ward on all fours. I was also lucky in that it was a newly built hospital, with single occupancy en-suite bedrooms: more reminiscent of university halls of residence than the lunatic asylum I’d pictured. It may seem like the moments are going on forever, but just remember, “This too shall pass.” So, while you’re waiting for discharge, cooperate, and work on you. We inpatients had landed ourselves in hospital for a variety of reasons. 1 decade ago. Anna*, who would like to remain anonymous, was admitted to a psychiatric hospital on 29 April 2020. 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