Hi everyone. It's been a couple weeks. I promised to update after my genesight test results came back. I was OCD about getting the results because I was so deeply depressed, and desperate. I titrated off lamictal which was making me suicidally depressed while waiting on the results.
The mood stabilizer green winner for me...or in my case AAP...GEODON.
My pdoc immediately stopped seroquel, and put me on 20 mg geodon in the morning and 40 mg at night. It doesn't make me sleepy. At all. That's the only issue I have so far. It's in the green column, and so far I've had zero side effects. My mood lifted almost overnight. I had a sweet spot of about 4 days where I felt completely normal. It was amazing.
My problem, at least I think it's a problem. He also prescribed 20 mg of Prozac to help with depression and OCD thoughts. I historically cannot take antidepressants. They always make me hypomanic. Always. I've been on prozac before, but that was much earlier in my illness. Before I started rapid cycling and having paranoid features. After about a week, I started noticing hypomanic behavior. Most notably, spending way too much money. Not concentrating as much. Taking on big ideas for fix it projects I can't do alone in my condition right now. That kind of stuff. I'm also taking deplin 15 daily, but I seem to manage that with niacin, but I'm wondering is it the Prozac, the deplin, neither or both causing the hypomania?
I've consistently stayed on .5 mg klonopin and 50 mg topamax. I want to up the topamax to 100 and start reducing klonopin.
One thing notable, I weaned off 300mg gabapentin. I was paranoid it was causing the suicidal depression, not accepting it was the lamictal which has done that in the past. So, my pdoc said ok. Since I weaned off fully about 3 days ago, I've had more anxiety each day. Don't blame geodon on that. I have terrible panic and anxiety problems. So, today, I realized there is no way I can wean off klonopin if I'm already feeling like this or I will start dissociating again, and that is horrific. So, I took gabapentin today. I was supposed to see my pdoc today, which is the longest I've waited to see him. 2 weeks. But...he broke his arms and nose somehow, so my appointment is postponed to next Monday.
Meanwhile, sleep is awful. I'm maybe sleeping 5 or 6 hours a night taking Tylenol pm. I have a very limited amount of time doing this before I go full on hypomanic or get very unstable and rapid cycle again. Although, none of this is as bad as it was before, I cannot take anything with Benadryl long term. It has an opposite effect on me. I either need my pdoc to up geodon and add a sleeping med or help me figure something out.
I'm not keen on trazadone or vistaril, because doxepin made me rapid cycle severely because it's an AD, and vistaril did the same thing.
But, I can say, I think I am one of the oddballs that Geodon loves. Thank goodness. I need at least my main med to work. I am scared if we up it I could get akathesia, but since it was in the green column on my genesight, I think that's unlikely.
Any insight or advice for me going into my appointment next week? I loved those 4 days of feeling normal. I know I am so close.
I am going to start IOP 3 days a week after I see him next Monday. I think it's time for counseling to deal with how to cope with this disease on a day to day basis, not just during a huge episode like I've been in.
I may go to my internist tomorrow and ask for ambien for a week to get me through to my appointment though. I don't know if I can do 5 more nights of Benadryl and not go into orbit.
Edit: I've also been doing B12 injections weekly which maybe contributing to hypomania. I'm going to skip next week's dose and take more niacin this week to flush some out.
Hi everyone. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve had my meds changed. Some things have happened.
id like you advice and input because I’m very scared right now.
#1 my employer has deemed me to disabled to work and filled out short term disability paperwork on me. They’ve been nice. I’m not terminated, but I’m not getting any pay and have to switch to cobra insurance at the beginning of the month. I see my pdoc tomorrow to go over the paperwork.
#2 this process has made me more paranoid. I think I’ve read the previous-existing conditions exclusions in my policy and previous policy 500 times since last Friday. I’m not kidding. I’m terrified of not being covered even though I had a disability policy since 2/1/17 and I’m just now being deemed totally disabled. My last policy and my new one didn’t have a gap in coverage. My current policy says if I satisfied the pre-existing clause in my last policy I will be covered. So what do I do? Psychotically read and reread the one policy terminology. It had a 3 month lookback before the policy started. I wasn’t on any meds and I didn’t see a doctor during that period. I literally just paused posting this to read it again. I can’t stop the spiral of anxiety and fear about this. I’m driving myself even more insane. I’m convinced since I’ve had treatment in the last 12 months they will deny me but it seems pretty clear pre existing is just for that 3 month lookback. But my brain is not letting up and I’m freaking out.
#3 other random illness that may be autoimmune or aggravated by meds. I’ve had a ton of medical problems this last year and it’s all looked like lupus or something else autoimmune or autoinflammatory. My cousins kids have a very rare genetic autoinflammatory disease. So naturally I see my internist on Monday explaining how I have a rare genetic disease and it originated from Scotland and my aunt was a heterozygous carrier so my mom must be therefor I have the disease. He said point blank I cannot put any of this down because no doctor will ever see you because this is nuts.
My meds are working and I am able to at least go slow and realize I am sick. I do recognize when I am paranoid, but the more I learn about short term disability the worse I get. I’m afraid the insurance company could come on this board and look up my posts. I’m afraid they will do surveillance, which apparently is something they do. I’m afraid my claim will be denied. I’m afraid they will see I just bought a house and think I’m fine. Buying a house took months and months and many many many years of hard work, and that stress plus my very public, high level job threw me over the edge. I don’t know if I can do anything to make a little extra money, like mturk or not because I’m afraid I’ll get denied.
This has been a long post, but I’m really scared. The best thing I’ve done is to not give af what people I know think because mental illness sucks and it doesn’t discriminate. The only people that know about this are my parents and my boyfriend. I deactivated Facebook out of paranoia. My sisters don’t know. I know I need to be on disability but damn, I didn’t think the process would make me sicker.
I have bipolar II, and I have been hypomanic for about two weeks. I would like to come down now, because the lack of sleep is getting to me and I'm not that euphoric or even productive anymore. I'm trying to utilize the extra energy while making reasonable choices to not go higher up, but at this point I would just like to come down and get some sleep. I'm wired physically and sitting still is close to impossible, but it feels like something in my brain is tired and needs to rest. Evidence says I'm not at my best right now, at least I don't code as well as I usually do, even though I have a lot of ideas and every thought that comes through my head feels like the best idea ever.
I'm not taking a mood stabilizer and I don't think I really need one most of the time. Most of them wouldn't be worth the side effects, since antidepressants actually helped somewhat with the depressive episodes while not preventing all of them and hypomania is infrequent. I rapid cycled in the beginning, but I don't since switching to Wellbutrin from Zoloft. Also I stopped doing insanely stupid things while hypomanic after I understood what it was and got some practise dealing with it, and I don't tend to crash into severe depression although it has happened.
I would have considered cutting the Wellbutrin in half if my 300 mg pills were splittable, which they aren't because they are sustained-release. The only thing I have on hand that could help me sleep is Remeron, but I don't know how smart it would be to take an antidepressant just for the antihistamine side effects. It helped a great deal in the past when I was depressed, so that's why I'm unsure about taking it now.
If anyone has ideas about how to get down from here safely and preferably soon, I'm all ears. I could use more than two - four hours of sleep tonight, and the time says that's probably not happening. In an ideal world I would be discussing these things with a psychiatrist, but I don't have one since moving six months ago. I have a therapist, and I have an appointment with her this Friday. I could ask her to ask a doctor to prescribe something for sleep, we talked about it last time I was there, but I don't know what and I won't just take anything. I'm never taking antipsychotics again, not even at a low dose. I have tried four, and I tend to get terrible akathisia at low doses, and then sleep most of the day at higher doses. I got them while I had depression with psychotic symptoms before I was diagnosed bipolar, and they didn't even help with that.
The thing is I'm not prepared to take medications with life-altering side effects just to prevent hypomanic episodes that are far between and usually don't end in long-lasting depression. Maybe just a short-acting sleeping pill for a short period of time or something like that. I don't know if the whole antidepressant monotherapy thing is a good idea either considering I'm hearing voices from lack of sleep right now (don't worry, I've been there before), but it's been way better than atypical antipsychotics at preventing depression with none of the side effects and Lamictal literally did nothing for preventing depression or anything else. Any ideas about what I could do after this long ramling post is greatly appreciated. Medication-wise or non-medication-wise.
Ive been taking anti psychotics for ten years and throughout it Ive had horrible issues with sleep and struggled to wake up at any regular "human" time. So much so I have not been in college or work throughout those ten years.
I'd take my meds around 10/11/12(PM) and wake up around 1/2/3(PM). 11 hour sleeps are probably the minimum. 14 wasnt that weird a thing. In winter time this becomes even more of a problem because I am not seeing sunlight.
I've tried all sorts of things to combat this sleep problem:
A deaf persons alarm
A light alarm (which was definitely helpful but didn't fix the problem)
Drinking copious amounts of water before bed
Depriving myself of caffeine/chocolate/alcohol/(life itself) for a couple of weeks
Not using TV/PC/phones in the evening
And of course the classic: "why don't you just take the drug at 8PM and then you could wake up in the morning". (Yes and why don't I just kill myself while I am at it. All my friends are working adults and I will happily take shitty lifestyle over never having the ability to meet up with friends. I did try it for one summer and it just upset me leaving get-togethers and events before they barely got started. I would say it made me feel suicidal. I may as well be walking around with "lunatic" printed on my forehead. Add to that I do music in a band and often don't get home until 10PM so Id have to give up my passion too.)
Recently I got a mood lamp (for Christmas), it shines all kinds of colours and varying degrees of brightness. For the last week as soon as I go to bed I turn the lights off and the lamp on to a dim orange/red and keep it on until I wake up in the morning. I have to say every day I am waking up early. No more 3PM starts. No more 1PM starts. I wake up when I set my alarm. Often even earlier. Its so weird. Its like its erased the problem absolutely. I also actually feel tired in the night and that I want to go to bed so I can sleep.
Now it could definitely be complete fluke. Also I have considered the fact that I may have just reduced the quality of sleep I am getting, thus waking up to my light alarm more easily.
I will definitely make sure to post an update in 2 weeks time, and perhaps another 2 weeks beyond that to see how things progress.
If it does stay like this I will be writing to my mental health services and telling them that the need to be prescribing this to people who have sleep problems induced by anti psychotics
At the moment has literally changed my life and I cant emphasise that enough. I wish I got one ten years ago when I first started taking anti psychotics.
Hi, my new doc told me I should give olanzapine a try because of lack of sleep. Has anyone else tried this med? I don't really dig the idea of taking something that is tagged as "sedative" and "anti-psychotic". Why would I need an "anti-psychotic" for sleeping? What kind of "sedative" effects does this pill create? I don't want to go around all numb'd down.
The meds they give me usually don't work, anti-depressants have all been useless. Only lamotrigine has made me feel better. I really don't trust this olanzapine thing, I don't even like it's name, sounds trashy.
Also, has anyone felt psychotherapy does help or have any kind of benefit beyond "venting out"? I could get it for free because of the mental health program in my country (just as the meds). I have tried it before and it was really a waste of time and it is frustating to hear someone just turn thoughts upside down and pretend it is some kind of insightful and constructive feedback, life if that wasn't something someone neurotic (as me and I guess some of you are since we share some kind of mental trait*) does all the time. At least that was my experience. To the ones here with good experiences with psychotherapy, how do think it helped you? My old doc once told me psychotherapy made a difference between people with mental problems getting a career and stuff like that. The difference was that the ones who did psychotherapy were 80% more likely to develop some kind of stable career. I think the thing is that 80% of every group of people will most likely be able to develop a career, regardless of psychotherapy or MI, so the stadistics just putted the "psychotherapy made this possible!" watermark to it. idk.
*: That made me question if people with bipolar or other mental illness share some traits beyond the diagnosis? Have you guys noticed some kind of pattern? this is not really important, just thought it was interesting
Thanks for reading (: