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About alen

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  1. I’m going to try to reach him on Monday. Waiting two more days won’t hurt. Thanks!
  2. Hey, y’all! I’ll start with the basics: I have Bipolar 1 with psychotic features; I’ve only had one extreme manic episode turned psychosis about a year ago. Been depressed ever since until recently. Haven’t been manic or psychotic since. I’m taking Lamictal 450 mg and Seroquel 600 mg. I’ve been taking the Lamictal since September and the Seroquel since November. I’ve been having extreme fatigue and haven’t been able to wake up early enough to function and maintain my schedule. I thought it was depression but my sleep hygiene is good and I’ve been tested for sleeping disorders (I don’t have any). I don’t feel depressed mood-wise except that I feel numbed out when I’m tired. I’m meeting with my psychiatrist in 11 days but I don’t want to wait that long to get taken off Seroquel, which I will bet money on is the culprit of my fatigue. I don’t have any physical illnesses, drink a lot of water & eat three meals a day, and I sleep at least 8 hours every night. It has to be the sedative Seroquel that I’m taking. I’m planning on halving my dosage to 300 mg for the next 11 days. I wanted to confirm my decision on here and ask: is there a risk of withdrawal or mania? I’m pretty set on tapering down and my psychiatrist doesn’t have a voicemail so it’ll me doing it without his approval. I’ve been on 300 mg of Seroquel before and wasn’t manic. I’m asking because I don’t want to have another manic episode or psychotic break at all. That shit was traumatizing. Thanks all!
  3. I’ve been on Lamictal for a solid 4 months now, titrating to a dose of 450 mg. I’ve been on Seroquel for about 2.5 months now, reaching a dose of 600 mg. The problem is, I’ve felt flat and apathetic before, during, and after taking these meds. I think my mood episodes have gotten shorter and I don’t feel depressed all the time; I track my moods and I’m usually okay with occasional extreme dips. I can still achieve good moods and feel happy, but good/okay moods are still devoid of passion, ambition, and sexual desire. I feel something missing all the time and sometimes I can’t even pinpoint what I’m feeling because it feels empty. I can function during my okay moods but they’re still not where I want to be at all. It’s a mediocre baseline where my emotions are usually flatlined. I still can’t access anger or passion or ambition. I know it’s a good thing that the mania is gone but my baseline still sucks. I’m pretty sure it’s the depression causing my emotional numbness and my meds aren’t working enough to help. That’s why I’m hoping the Wellbutrin can help my lack of pleasure and lack of feeling intensely. My psychiatrist said we could scale back some of the dosages if necessary. I’m just sick of feeling half-alive. Trying to immerse myself in activism did nothing for me and I can’t seem to believe in something larger than me; the benefits of psychotherapy are somewhat limited because my brain chemicals are imbalanced and need pharmaceutical intervention. Talking about my empty feelings won’t restore them. I can remember how I used to feel and my emotional capacity is disturbingly narrow.
  4. Ever since my Bipolar diagnosis, I never realized how much I took emotions for granted. I never thought I would lose the ability to feel certain things. I didn’t think it was possible to lose emotions like you would lose your keys or your wallet. Ever since my severe depression hit, I haven’t been able to access passion. Anger. Even sexual attraction. It feels like I always have emotional novacane injected into my brain. (I’m taking Seroquel and Lamictal.) When I do feel these emotions, it’s in very short bursts and I can’t seem to remember feeling them after the fact. I don’t feel motivated to get a job. At all. It’s like a switch went off in my brain and apathy rules over all else. I can’t seem to care about career or academic goals. I don’t have dreams or aspirations anymore. I don’t get revved up about political issues anymore. My spirituality disappeared. I’m not interested in dating or sex. I don’t feel creative anymore; I barely write and I used to be an avid writer. I rarely (if ever) feel inspired. I don’t feel like I have a purpose in life; I used to be a passionate activist for years which gave my life solid meaning and purpose. I don’t feel very connected to my friends and family. My short term memory sucks and I’m not as mentally sharp as I used to be. I haven’t been manic in months but my depression clearly robs me of feeling natural things like attraction, ambition, passion, anger, and creativity. I’m not sure if the psych meds are flatlining me, either. All in all, I’m really sick of living a sub-par life. My psychiatrist is going to put me on the antidepressant Wellbutrin next month (I have to wait three more fucking weeks) and I’m hoping to God that it can restore my long dead feelings and reduce my chronic apathy. I don’t want to feel like a zombie anymore. I want to feel passion again. I want to want again. I want to feel deeply and wholly. I want to fight for something and feel that warm spark in my gut again; it’s barely a flicker right now. I don’t want to accept any of this as my reality but I have to because it’s where I’m at right now. I don’t want to accept this mediocre sense of feeling. I won’t give up until I feel better. Has anyone experienced this, too? I want to hear some success stories. Peace and blessings.
  5. @browri No, I am sticking with those two for now. Fingers crossed! And thanks, Iceberg!
  6. Exciting updates!! First of all, I really like my psychiatrist. He's nice, practical, listens to me, and cracked a joke about Seroquel at the end of our session, stating, "It can be sedating so just be careful if you're operating a chainsaw." lol Secondly, we threw out the Abilify since it's done nothing for my depression and kept the Lamotrigine at 200 mg as a back-up mood stabilizer. Starting tomorrow, I'm titrating up to 300 mg of Seroquel XR and crossing my fingers that I'll feel better. Honestly, I just want my appetite back and to stop feeling like shit every day. Let's hope this works! Thanks again to everyone that replied!
  7. @GreenTea I'm curious: how are you feeling now after months of titrating?
  8. @browri Thanks for all the info! I am now leaning towards trying out Seroquel because my depressive symptoms have yet to be managed and it's FDA approved for Bipolar depression like you said. I tried Latuda in the past and didn't feel a difference in my symptoms, either, but maybe two months wasn't enough to test it out. Bipolar depression is such a monster to treat! Maybe starting a new thread about Rexulti could help you read about others' experiences, too.
  9. @Iceberg After reading about the sedation related to Seroquel, I've decided to ask for Rexulti instead. Does it treat Bipolar 1 depression? How did it work for you?
  10. @looking for answers To be honest, none of the meds have actually dented my depression. The Lithium and Geodon pulled me out of my psychosis and I haven't been manic since...but the Abilify, Lamictal, and Latuda have done very little for my fatigue, lack of appetite, flat moods, and lack of motivation/disinterest. That's why I'm hoping that a Lamictal increase and the addition of Seroquel could help me out. The only side effect I've had is excessive thirst due to Lithium. How has the Seroquel helped you? I'm curious. Does it make you tired? I don't need any more fatigue in my life.
  11. @looking for answers I was on Lithium and Geodon for 2-3 months (my depressive cycle still hit me hard while on them), I gave the Lamotrigine and Latuda about two months, and gave the Abilify three months. Looking back, I probably didn't give the Latuda/Lamotrigine a chance to work but I was so desperate to feel better that I asked for a med switch. It was actually my idea to go back on the Lamotrigine and give it more time to work to see if higher than 200 mg will help me. I am leaning towards switching my antipsychotic to Seroquel since Abilify has done nothing for me but I'm worried about the drowsiness factor because I'm already tired all the time. I don't struggle with insomnia; in fact, I sleep too much (10-12 hours a night) and so I'm looking for a med that'll help me get back to an 8 hour regimen. All in all, I'm hoping that my depressive symptoms get better with a higher dose of Lamotrigine and with the addition of Seroquel.
  12. @Wonderful.Cheese I would love to take the Prozac by itself but my psychiatrist warned against antidepressants when I asked for Wellbutrin the last time and said it was too risky; I guess the Zyprexa part of the Symbyax cocktail wards off mania? I also wonder: is it necessary to take antipsychotics while on a mood stabilizer? I only had psychosis once during my manic episode and I'm in a very long depressive cycle right now... I will ask about Seroquel at my next appointment, too. Thanks for the info!
  13. @Blahblah Thanks for the response. Symbyax is a combination of the antipsychotic Zyprexa and the antidepressant Prozac. Since I've been on antipsychotics since my psychotic episode, that could be contributing to my flat mood and sedation. I guess I won't know until I try getting off Abilify and seeing how I feel.
  14. Hey, all! I know I've posted about my medication struggles before but I wanted to ask for help again since my meeting with my psychiatrist is coming up. Long story short, in April, I was diagnosed with severe Bipolar 1 disorder with psychotic features after having a mania-induced psychotic episode. In May, my depressive cycle hit me like a ton of bricks: I could barely move, was extremely exhausted, my appetite vanished, my libido plummeted, and my motivation and drive disappeared. I was on Lithium and Geodon, then switched to Lamictal and Latuda, then switched to only Abilify, and now I'm on Lamictal 200 mg and Abilify 15 mg. The Abilify has done nothing for my symptoms so I'm going to ask to get taken off of it. The Lamictal really hasn't done anything for my energy levels (my fatigue is better but I think that's because of time) and my psychiatrist doesn't want to prescribe an antidepressant because he said the switch to mania was too risky. Since I only meet with him once a month, I have no clue what to ask for besides a Lamictal increase and to be taken off Abilify. I want my appetite back and my energy back. I googled Symbyax and it seemed like a good start but the weight gain issue could be a problem. Does anyone have any advice? Any anecdotal experience with certain meds for Bipolar depression? Thank you!
  15. In April, I had a massive psychotic break induced by my first manic episode. Starting in May, like Bipolar clockwork, I lost all my energy, motivation, and focus as my appetite completely disappeared. For five months now, my stomach does not rumble to notify me that I'm hungry. My hunger cues have completely disappeared. I still enjoy food and eat on command but I've lost around 30 lbs from how little I eat now. Will my appetite ever return? I thought it would by now but I guess depressive episodes can last for months and months...I wonder if the right medications could restore my appetite. I have no clue. Has anyone else experienced such a long-term appetite loss? Did it ever return?