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What if the depression is always circumstancial


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OK, you guys this year I've tried Cymbalta, Effexor, and Wellbutrin and they either didn't do anything for me or I couldn't handle the side effects. I was having problems with my marriage and I got help for us, and now things are great. I HAVE NO DEPRESSION.  Also, I think the sun is helping, and I'm working on getting an Apollo lamp for next fall.

But isn't the depression supposed to be cyclical or constant with bipolar? I have a new pdoc starting tomorrow evening, and I'm going to tell him this, but I also wanted to ask you guys here. What do you think about being bipolar and dealing with the depression on an as-needed basis, without ADs?

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Guest Vapourware

Hmm, interesting question. As I obviously don't have bipolar, I guess I shall answer you from the depression point of view.

Depressive episodes can be triggered by both hormonal or chemical changes, circumstances or both. Depressive episodes can be cyclical as well [this is my second Major Depressive episode in three years]. I think if you are already pre-disposed to depression [biologically or otherwise], then negative circumstances can definitely trigger you into an episode.

Before you decide for certain that you want to be off your anti-depressants, ask yourself whether you can avoid another depressive episode in the future without the use of medication. Treating depression on as as-needed basis may cause you more angst in the long run, because you may find yourself in the grip of depression, then have to wait for the anti-depressants to work. This may sound clich

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Mellow Yellow,

There are all different flavors of depression, and whether your  unipolar or bipolar, the more episodes you've had, the more likely you are to have another. The best reason to find a med or cocktail that works is relapse prevention. Gotta love that kindling. At first, depressive episodes are usually triggered by something stressful in life. Later on, they don't need a reason, they just happen.

That said, no pill is going to make your life's situations better. But it's a whole lot easier to fix what's wrong in your life when you're not depressed.

And, by the way, yay to you for working on your marriage and feeling good about it.

Greeny

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What do you think about being bipolar and dealing with the depression on an as-needed basis

IMAO, the only way to deal with depression on a long term basis when you are bipolar is to prevent it, if possible.  Maybe ADs aren't the answer for you.  Maybe all you need is a mood stablizer.  I am hoping that once my Lamictal gets to the right dose for me, I won't have to take any ADs.  But I don't know that trying to deal with it on an as-needed basis is a good idea.  I spent years thinking that this would be my last depression.  It never was.

But hey, what do I know?  Talk to your pdoc and see what he thinks. 

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Thanks, all. Never thought about prevention. But, due to the horrid side effects of all the ADs I've tried, I'm going to give the Apollo light box lamp a good, long try before I reach for the pills again.

I DO always stay on a mood stabilizer, but none of those has ever helped my depression.

Thanks for giving me the idea of relapse prevention. I'll think about it!!

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