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Help with manic episode!

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So, my psychiatrist fired me about a month or so ago, so I've been using my family doctor to some degree of success.

 

Anyway, I've been having what I think is a hypomanic episode for the past couple weeks.  I don't sleep, I am really irritable, I drive like a crazy person, I meet up with all these people and do these risky things.  I haven't spent a lot of money though.

 

I've been taking Ambien and Seroquel at night to sleep, but I still can't sleep... also I'm really irritable its so hot, and I can't sleep when it's hot.

 

What other things can I do behaviorally (besides meds like Seroquel) to stave off this episode?  I know sleep is important, but if I continue to not sleep even with sleeping pills, I don't know what else to do.

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You definitely need to sleep. You need to get your Seroquel increased or get another antipsychotic added on. You need to explain to your doctor that the Seroquel dosage is not strong enough and you need an increase. 

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Untill you get your meds tweekd (ask your GP, for a referal to a pdoc), try to do things that calm you down. For me its yoga, watching baby goats on youtube, and journaling. Others i'm sure will add more sugestions. Maybe tuckering yourself out with healthy excersise. Sleep is super important to me, and I wish I could send you sandman dust but trying to practice good sleep hygine is so importatnt. I hope sleep comes your way soon!

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Pending a doctor visit:

 

1. The first order of business is the driving!  You do not want to hurt anyone. It can happen. If you must, give someone your keys.

2. No caffeine, no alcohol.

3. I'm glad the money isn't an issue yet. That doesn't mean you shouldn't plan ahead.  Leave your debit/credit cards and checkbook at home, and except for bills, only pay cash.

4. I talk a lot, and social contact gets me going. I have said things that I regret. You may want to get more quiet time.  You can write your thoughts down if they are making you uncomfortable.

5. That said, there are places where, and people with whom, I am relatively safe. If I've been reckless somewhere, it's off limits.

6. Stay away from anyone with whom you might have an inappropriate erotic relationship. I saw a person ruin her life this way. If it's meant to be, the person will still be there when this passes.

7. Moderately intense exercise will buy me some time.  Past a certain point, for me, it becomes part of the problem.

 

Three more thoughts. Please don't respond, just consider:  (1) 900 mg gives some people a substantial lithium level, and others not; yours should be checked; (2) Does the person who is prescribing your Keppra (which of course you MUST NOT touch on your own) know about your mood? and (3) while it may be good riddance to that psychiatrist, it usually takes a substantial problem to get them to fire you; consider whether something happened there that you'd like to do differently with a new prescriber).

 

Good luck, and sleep well.  A cheap fan does wonders for me.

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You might consider dropping the Effexor till it stabilises, if you're still on it (says so in your sig).

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I really hope you can get into see someone soon. Can you call a mental health hotline maybe ask for some tips? I'm glad that you realise that you are in a mood episode, insight is good and you need to use that to your advantage. I agree do not drive. Don't put yourself in any danger. When I'm manic the worst thing that could happen is that I go outside, going outside of your house might provide too much stimulation + too much temptation. I highly recommend staying as low key as possible.

 

Try and sleep whenever you can, if you can have little cat naps on the couch that helps too. About the heat, can you get one of those small fans and put it near your head? Or you can wet a flannel / towel and lay that on top of you to sleep.

 

Try to do things that you find calming. Can someone check in with you every now and again to make sure that things are okay? Even if you can get someone to call at regular intervals (a trusted person, whom you can't get into any worrying situations with). 

 

Have you told your gdoc yet? It might speed up the process of referral. 

I hope you feel better soon.

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Call your GP. Say what is going on.

 

Get your Lithium level checked.

 

Make your room dark and quiet at night, and then lie quietly (without computer or tv) even if you cannot sleep.

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Actually my GP just started the Effexor about 6 weeks ago, replacing wellbutrin and zoloft.

 

I haven't checked lithium levels in a long time, 900mg gets me just to the bottom side of therapeutic... at any higher a dose it tends to aggrevate my acne.

 

I think more Seroquel in the evening would be a  good thing in the meantime.

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How much seroquel do you currently take? I think if you are not maxed out on it it would be a good idea to talk to your doc about increasing the dose til at least you feel more level.

 

I am experiencing some mania warning signs right now as well. It sucks.

 

I hope you feel better soon!

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I usually take 50-100mg seroquel at night when i have these issues.  Tonight I took 200mg.

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Channel the mania into something positive, like art.  Mania/hypomania increases motivation and creativity, which is part of why bipolar disorder is seen in a lot in artists, musicians, and poets.  Edgar Allen Poe, Vincent Van Gogh, and Kurt Cobain were all bipolar.

Edited by LordoftheMonkeys

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Channel the mania into something positive, like art. Mania/hypomania increases motivation and creativity, which is part of why bipolar disorder is seen in a lot in artists, musicians, and poets. Edgar Allen Poe, Vincent Van Gogh, and Kurt Cobain were all bipolar.

IMO you are romanticizing bipolar disorder.

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Channel the mania into something positive, like art. Mania/hypomania increases motivation and creativity, which is part of why bipolar disorder is seen in a lot in artists, musicians, and poets. Edgar Allen Poe, Vincent Van Gogh, and Kurt Cobain were all bipolar.

IMO you are romanticizing bipolar disorder.

 

 

And why is that a problem?  People romanticize Asperger's syndrome.  Why not BP?

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Bipolar is a disease that has destroyed my life completely and the lives of many others as well. It is not fun or cool. It is not something to be romanticized. Mania may bring creativity for some but it also brings loads of consequences.

This is getting off topic. If you wish to continue this discussion please PM me out of respect to the OP.

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Asperger's syndrome has had some pretty negative effects for me.  Because of it, I have been taken advantage of by many other people.  I have some Tourette's syndrome tendencies that get me into a lot of trouble.  I can't make any real friends because my weird behaviors and nervous tics freak people out.  I suffer from a lot of anxiety and phobias that have rendered me completely nonfunctional at times.  I'm lonely and scared.  So no, Asperger's syndrome is not fun or cool either.  Both BP and AS are life-altering disorders.

 

Also, my posts are not off-topic.  You were the one who started this argument with your post about me romanticizing bipolar disorder.  I'm just trying to give the the OP some useful advice, since medication doesn't seem to be working.  Drugs are not a universal cure; in fact sometimes it's best to try to use other methods of dealing with an illness because many of them have serious health ramifications.  The woman who runs my bipolar support group had to get both her kidneys replaced because lithium caused them to solidify and stop working.  When I took lithium it caused nausea and vomiting, and the nausea kept coming back even after I stopped taking it.  I have to take Promethazine now because of what lithium did to my body.  Also, no mood stabilizer has had any effect on my symptoms anyway.

 

My hypomanic episodes have serious consequences for me as well.  Sometimes I drive 20 or 30 MPH above the speed limit.  I say things to other people that I normally wouldn't say; I make everyone around me hate me.  But recently I've learned to take advantage of my illness and put it to good use, to channel my manic states into increased productivity, creativity, and outgoingness.  I thought I might help the OP by sharing this with them.

Edited by LordoftheMonkeys

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Seriously, LordoftheMonkeys fuck off. You're a disturbance to the boards and you're breaking the pro-treatment and pro-medication aspect of CB.

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I feel like I got a good night's sleep last night with the seroquel and ambien.  I'm still pretty up there though :(

 

It's hard to just "channel" my energy into something positive and great, because the hypomania affects me at work, when I drive, etc.  And, I can't whip out an art project at work... I have to stop myself from yelling at people or changing everything and coming up with new systems because I just have all these brilliant ideas.  so, those are the practical issues I'm having right now.  It's not really a problem after work and at night, besides the not sleeping part.

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I suffer mania and acne, and I'd pick the latter if I could stave off mania. Get thee to the GP about the Lithium. I agree that coping skills and positive use of your mania is great, but you need to keep a lid on it or it will become unmanagable. Being without a pdoc is a dangerous place to be (why were you fired, can I ask?) so take good care of it.

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Work can be a problem.  I'm afraid I have no solution for conducting yourself while at work.  But at other times could put yourself in a setting where your manic energy with be channeled into creativity and productivity rather than impulsive, reckless behavior or whatever problems you may be having.  If you're having a long manic episode, you might want to call work and ask for medical leave.  And try to drive as little as possible.  I can't do that because my hypomanic episodes start almost instantly and I have no idea when the next one's going to hit, but most bipolar people have at least some warning signs when it's coming on.

Edited by LordoftheMonkeys

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Seriously, LordoftheMonkeys fuck off. You're a disturbance to the boards and you're breaking the pro-treatment and pro-medication aspect of CB.

 

If my anti-med stance is causing a problem I will try to tone it down.  Just don't expect me to give advice about what meds to take because I have had bad experience with almost all of them.  I am not anti-treatment.  I just favor alternative treatment, in addition to a minimal cocktail of meds.

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