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And I was doing so much better, too...


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I have been stable more or less since January when I had a knock down drag out manic episode. But now, all of a sudden it seems, I've been feeling more edgy, irritable even. I feel like I'm on the verge of tears all the time. I messed up my kids' dinner last night (too much salt) and I said, I'm just a failure at life, and started crying. Overreaction? In retrospect, it kind of sounds like it.

I also have been feeling a building up of that feeling like I gotta get away, like my life is just "not right" and I'm just not happy. The other night, I took off in my car and drove around and ended up driving down the hills into the San Fernando Valley at 90 mph, not caring what happened. Where the hell is this coming from?

I just quit Tegretol because it was reacting with everything I was taking and was put on Lamictal. Why am I feeling worse on Lamictal? Is this normal? Is this going to pass? Damn. I want this drug to work. I'm only on 25 mg right now, day 11, and am going up slow to what's supposed to be a 200 mg dose six or seven weeks from now.

I don't want to call my doctor. She's in Tahiti anyway. And even if I did talk to her, I'm afraid she'd make me give up on the Lamictal and I really want to give it a chance! And I don't want to up the Seroquel again. I get so zombie. ;)

I hate therapy. I hate talking about myself. I hate my stupid problems. I hate that every time anything changes in my me, every single person in my life gets "that look" or says "are you okay?" in that certain way that says to me, umm, you're a little nutso, aren't you? Why do I have to be like this?

Thanks for listening.

~Cat

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Cat ~

I don't know what to say for comfort, I'm going through a lot of the same things. *HUGZ* Hang on, I know you can make it through this. We are all here and listening. I'm wearing in new meds too and they just upped my Zoloft.

Lamictal takes FOREVER to get to the point where it's helping you and you feel better. It didn't work for me with my other meds and just made me more anxious and cranky, but you should give it some time. I really don't know a lot about meds, so don't take my advice by its self. Would a couple of weeks of Ativan help you adjust? Something to help you feel more in control until the Lamictal kicks in?

I don't even know if bezos help with Bipolar cycling...sorry I'm not being a lot of help.

Do you know if Tegretol has any withdrawal symptoms? You might want to talk to a phamacist about it.

Take care of YOU, your kid will survive the salt incident, you need to cut yourself a wee bit of slack...I am having the mid afternoon teary fits, so I understand what thats like...I have no idea why i'm bawling my fool head off it just happens. Every little thing sets me off.

Take care, be safe

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Don't worry about the food, I'm sure your kids are still alive after a mild OD of this naturally occuring substance.

It soulds strongly to me that you are going through a bipolar hypomania. you're going to need mood stabilization. I don't think (i am NOT a pdoc or any med pro) that the lamictal is doing anything. I think it is a hypomania that is breaking through your medication.

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I wasn't stabilized on Lamictal until I hit 300 mg. Before that I was a mess. Seroquel really helps me w/ my bad mean mania-something to consider-better a zombie than recklessly endangering yourself. And kids forgive. Trust me- I have a 4 and 6 yr. old and they don't seem to even remember or care about what it was like before dx's and rx's. And, of course, as much stabilization as you can hope for being BP. Don't be too hard on yourself. That's really easy to say to other people! mel1

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Don't give up on that Lamictal. 25mg is nothing. You'll likely need the PDoc to eventually ramp you up - I didn't get optimal effects until about 400mg.

Lamictal does help remove the sand, if you get my drift.

P.S. I had a habit of speeding up and down Page Mill Rd. and CA-9 in the Santa Cruz Mountains (Bay Area) while going insane with Zyprexa-induced akathisia. 10+ consecutive hairpin turns down a 9% grade, rinse, repeat, wipe hands on pants. Too bad I didn't have the little pocket rocket I drive now (back then I had an old purple boat), otherwise I could have really had fun. Or killed myself. =P

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So it's patience with the Lamictal then?

You mean she won't take it away if I tell her what's happening? I don't want her to take it away. I don't want her to start talking about Depakote or whatever else.

I think maybe I should take extra Seroquel, mel1. 'Cause yeah, you and Loon are probably right, it's probably a bit of hypomania here. Drat!! Why can't it be the hypo I like where I get to clean the whole house? I love that kind. This just sucks. I have cried all day.

Herrfous, you are the bomb. I know it's wrong to talk about daredevil driving, but yeah, I DO drive a pocket rocket, I have a little red convertible that I drive like a demon when I get into mania territory. Someone should probably take my license away during those times.

I have a bottle of Ativan in my nightstand, a prescription I had filled when I was going to take a plane trip that I got too anxious about and never took...anyway, I still have the pills and my pdoc says to take them for bad anxiety when necessary. I'm scared to take them because I'm afraid I'll really like them. Ha. I used to drink/self medicate up until two years ago. Sigh. Maybe just one...

Thank you guys SO much for writing. You all are so so great.

~Cat

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So it's patience with the Lamictal then?
Yep, I think so too. It's very early days with it and I can't quite remember, but I think that I only stabilised on it once I got over 200mg (currently on 400mg and it's doing its job). Your pdoc is probably being cautious with the titration because of the risk of the (very rare) rash. Don't give up on it yet!

Otherwise, to get through this stage -- do you actually have room to adjust your seroquel dosage a bit? I agree that this would be a good, even if temporary, step. If the idea of the grogginess (which always amazes me, since I need at least 400mg just to sleep and can happily go up to 800mg + and still wake up without cottonwool head in the morning) really bothers you, then perhaps it IS a good idea to try some ativan. Can you give it to your spouse/partner and have it dished out to you in appropriate amounts so that you're not tempted to swallow too many? (Gawd, I hate that b/c it's like relinquishing some basic control, but we do what we need to do I guess)

I hate therapy. I hate talking about myself. I hate my stupid problems. I hate that every time anything changes in my me, every single person in my life gets "that look" or says "are you okay?" in that certain way that says to me, umm, you're a little nutso, aren't you? Why do I have to be like this?

Sorry to laugh, but I could have written this myself. Sums up my state of mind perfectly.

Take care of yourself!

S

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Guest espressogrrl

Hey Cat!!!

i am RIGHT where you are on Lamictal.... apparently, i was too sensitive to start on 25mgs. I was crying non stop, and I am still not sure the drug is right for me...

now i know for some of you, 25 IS nothing, but in the very beginning, it can be a lot of something.

Now, unlike you, we are not sure if I am BP. So this is a screening thing. BUT, starting at 25mg kicked my ASS. cry cry cry. my pdoc is an idiot. she was basically like "ummm and you want me to do what about it?" so i had to throw ideas at her until she agreed with one, and go from there. So i suggested that we start lower if she was so sure I as BP.

so instead of 25 one time a day, progressing to 25 two times a day, I suggested we start with a half a pill once a day (12.5mg).

Then after 3 days i went to half a pile (12.5mg) twice a day.

Starting yesterday, I was able to start the 25 all at once without crying my eyes out.

I will go to 25 twice a day in a week or two.

but 25 all at once in the beginning was HORRIBLE.

So yes, i think it is normal for lamictal to kick your ass in the beginning. I think some people need to start even slower than 25.

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Hey Skittle...

Thanks for the thoughts on things. I can handle much more than my 100 mg of Seroquel, actually, when I'm ramped up without the cottonwool head as you said (I like that description)...it's when I'm doing okay that the higher dose makes me worn out and blah.

I don't like going up so slow on this Lamictal because I guess I feel kind of, I don't know, unprotected or something. Like my brain is just sitting there with no armor against the big BP blue meanies lurking about. I know, I know... the RASH. Ahhhhhhhhhh! I don't want the RASH. Okay. Well, slow it is. I go up to 50 mg on Tuesday. Happy 4th of July to me.

And thanks, too, Esspressogrrl. I appreciate knowing someone else is crying their silly eyes out on this Lamictal. As I like to say, commiseration is a form of medicine. I'm sorry you're crying, too, because it sure sucks. But it's good to know that we can point to the Lamictal and say, Aha! It' YOU! Damn you!

And I love your signature, btw--the note on your office door: Go ahead and knock. I'm already disturbed. Fantastic! I'm going to steal it.

I'm feeling a little better today, actually. I got a decent night's sleep last night after cleaning the kitchen at 1:30 a.m. Yeah, I did end up getting a little something out of that hypo. And I sent the kids off with their dad this morning. So I get a little break. Sigh.

~Cat

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espressogrrl ---

I had the same problem with titration side effects, though they didn't hit hard at my initial dose (50mg). The hardest increase for me was 50mg to 100mg.

This initiated what I termed the "post-Lamictal" period (yeah I should be shot for that joke...), which involved me bouncing off the walls. No literally, I'd partially lose my balance while walking through narrow hallways and doorways and literally grab onto something to prevent myself from crashing into the walls.

100 to 200, 200 to 300, and 300 to 400 were relative child's play, though...

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Guest espressogrrl

espressogrrl ---

I had the same problem with titration side effects, though they didn't hit hard at my initial dose (50mg). The hardest increase for me was 50mg to 100mg.

This initiated what I termed the "post-Lamictal" period (yeah I should be shot for that joke...), which involved me bouncing off the walls. No literally, I'd partially lose my balance while walking through narrow hallways and doorways and literally grab onto something to prevent myself from crashing into the walls.

100 to 200, 200 to 300, and 300 to 400 were relative child's play, though...

JESUS. what the hell is this shit? I am telling you...this is meds mismanagment....i swear we are part of some coverup experiement having to do with biological weapons ....

paranoia much? yes i am.

i would be GRATEFUL to bounce off a wall. after the weepy period (in which i didnt know WHY i was weepy which REALLY made me weepy) now i am in a fishbowl. everything is slow and watery. does the ADD have me still scattered at a 100 miles an hour? No. not at all, now i just float from topic to topic at .2 miles an hour. but I am still scattered. not really latching onto any thoughts. And does the mood swingies go away? no... i no longer boil until suddenly the stew runs over the pot edge and burns up the stove and sets off the alarm...but the mood swings are slow moving, like a croc pot slow roast...and while sedated for the painfullness of it... i am not really healed, just hiding.

i HATE it.

oh Cat, i am with you. hold on to something and cry like a river. but if it gets too bad i BEG of you to call your pdoc and tell them. the journey of how to get to a good meds coctail is JUST as important as the goal of getting there, if you cant function in the unarmed period, Pdoc needs to know.... its about being able to function all the time, not just tomorrow, but today too...

all my love to you both...

oh yes...

and try some fish...

fish are great at this period...

bettas....they are so flooooooooooooowwwwwwyyyyyyyyy...pretty tail. pretty.

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espressogrrl--

Actually guess I didn't tell you the outcome. 400mg Lamictal is working quite well thank you very much. I may have it ramped to 600mg+ for purposes of decreasing sand.

And as far as bouncing off the walls, I think you need to read what I said more carefully. Think LITERALLY, slamming yourself against each wall you can find since you can't keep your balance... ;) '

And more importantly, those side effects were only during dosage increases. They ended a few days following the increases.

If you REALLY want to see conspiracy theory in action, hop on over to the antipsychotic forum (I've put in something there)!

fishiiiiiiiiiieeeeeee,

--herrfous

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