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Hey, I'm new here and just started a starter kit of Lamictal.  How does it interact with alcohol?  I know that I've been self-medicating over the years, but nonetheless I hope to still have your occasional glass of wine etc.  Will it work OK or do you find you have cut down with the booze??

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Ashamedly, I get completely trashed several times a week (which takes 6+ drinks in less than an hour for me), and this has yet to have affected the pharmacokinetics or end effects of Lamictal.  For what it's worth, I shouldn't be doing this.  Perhaps I'll stop doing this once I actually get a job that everybody else thinks I deserve. 

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Hi! Glad you made it here!

I know there was a thread on just this topic recently, and I've tried to find it; haven't been able to so far. I might be wrong, but what I remember is this: Some people on Lamictal have a problem when they drink...the alcohol effects them more, feel more hungover the next day. Others have no problem drinking occasionally.

I'm a lightweight drinker. Don't do it very often anyway, and when I do it's just a glass of wine or a small brandy. I didn't have a drink for the first four months after starting Lamictal. When I did, I was pleasantly surprised to find I had no ill effects. And I've had the occasional drink since then -- no problem.

Keep asking questions! There's plenty of people here willing to help.

Best,

revlow

Edited by revlow
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well, of course I celebrated my first dosage of Lamictal with half a bottle of excellent red wine, but of course, nothing happened whatsoever.  i'm hoping for the best, and not sure that this medication is for me -- but two psychs seemed to think i was bipolar (i thought more ADHD, but they were afraid to give me adderall because i am a bit manic).  since i am going to mardi gras in nola, and it'll be one month into the medication, i just know there'll be lots of boozing down there, so just want to be ready.

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my uncle is a pharmacist and for ME PERSONALLY told ME that I"M allowed a glass of wine-sometimes 2, per day on my crazymeds. he just said not to exceed 4 a week. i rarely drink and don't get near 4 very often. when i do it is all at once. so far it seems to not have any interaction with my meds.

don't try this at home, as a medical prof who you trust. my uncle is just someone i trust.

-------DISCLAIMER-------------

-------loon------------

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I haven't noticed any particular interaction, but I drink very rarely (not really a good idea since I'm on valium, but I have issues with alcohol anyway).  Last time was on a 9 hr plane trip last week when we hit a snowstorm and I honestly thought we were all going to die.  Downed a gin and tonic in record time, passed out and woke up with no hangover.  The G&T thing is highly unusual; I'm more likely to have an occasional glass of wine.  My pdoc has never given me any warnings about drinking on lamictal specifically. 

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well, of course I celebrated my first dosage of Lamictal with half a bottle of excellent red wine...

...since i am going to mardi gras in nola, and it'll be one month into the medication, i just know there'll be lots of boozing down there, so just want to be ready.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Maybe this'll just seem plain ol' naive of me to say, but just 'cause they'll "be lots of boozing down there" doesn't mean you need to partake. And you can moderate what drinking you do.

Really, especially in the early stages of getting to know how you are going to react to a crazy drug, adding booze into the mix is not a great idea.

In your original question you said, "I hope to still have your occasional glass of wine etc." That's one thing. An entire bottle of wine, or a druken bacchanal, is quite another. Be careful. You do want to give this new med the best chance you can to work, right?

Edited by revlow
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revlow -

An entire bottle of wine does not a 'Bacchanal' make.  It takes me at least two bottles of wine within 2-3 hours to make me drunk enough to notice.  As a roommate of mine (a wine shop purveyor no less) once said, "you've had two bottles of wine?!?!??!".

and FYI for anybody who asks, I'm about 5'7" and weigh in the vicinity of 135 pounds. 

I am particularly good at acting sober whilst drunk off my ass.

Edited by herrfous
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Guest FrannyNZooey

I would not even know blackouts for me bipolar and alcohol do not mix

I would be obnoxious, flagged first drink, bizzaare anything after, and surely would not want to know or tell, remember, jailed would most likely be best result there after.

The chemistry just does not do it, sooner we face it better off we are.

Aly

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I take a cocktail of Lamictal, Effexor XR, Zoloft, and Risperdal, so I don't have any idea which drug does what.

I can have 2 beers and I'm feeling pretty happy. Three beers and I'm drunk. I cannot even image more beers than that. I used to be a pretty hard drinker with a pretty high tolerance. Now I usually have 2 beers and that is it. I don't have any hangover if I stick to two. I drink pints of import/micro-brew by the way.

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When I started lamictal I would get punishing hangovers with severe gastrointestinal problems. We own a wine shop and I was concerned. After a year on the meds, however, and I'm up to 150 mgs, that side effect has gone away, and I have no bad reaction to alcohol. Other than the kind you get when you drink too much. Before I was afraid to go to a wine tasting.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I drank quite a lot and quite often on Lamictin/lamictal when i was on 200mg ... no side effect whatsoever (maybe a lightened hangover, which is always a good thing)

But since we're on the topic, recently (today) started Trileptal at 600mg, not sure if I can drink on it without side effects .... anyone taking it with a couple of drinks that can help me?

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Hi. An interesting range of responses here. I noticed, that for me, Lam.  seemed to interfere with the rewarding property of alcohol but only partially, such that one glass of wine felt like half, so I drank 2! I been on 200mg for a month and it seems to be working!! The longer I spend on it the more I think that it takes a Long time to truly get used it and past any weirdness. I guess I don't get as much of that breif warm fuzzy glowey feeling from alcohol but I'm carefull not to double it up now. More to your point, alcohol hasn't interfered with Lam's functioning; but too much drink can mess up anything if you try! Good luck.

Hey, I'm new here and just started a starter kit of Lamictal.
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  • 1 year later...
Guest freddydontsmoke

I drink an occasional beer, one of those silly frozen things, a glass of wine and all I get are a flushed face, a hot feeling (temperature), and sleepiness. So it's not any fun at all. Why bother?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

What's up with the wine and the flushing? I really enjoy wine. I belong to a wine club and enjoy reading about it but when I do have a glass now, my chest, cheeks, nose and ears get really red, hot and flushed. I wonder why?

Allergy to gluten most likely. Makes me a raving, insatiable madman.

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Ashamedly, I get completely trashed several times a week (which takes 6+ drinks in less than an hour for me), and this has yet to have affected the pharmacokinetics or end effects of Lamictal.

6+ drinks in less than an hour? For you? To get completely trashed? I should damn well think so! For pretty much damn near anyone! That's like, um, hitting anout .15% for you. Dude...that's pretty fucked up. Even for a hard-core drinker like me, that's tuned.

If you're drinking that much, that often, I shouldn't think you ought to be talking about whtether or not it's affecting any of your meds--you can't know until you sober up. For, like, more than a day or two, y'know.

Drinking while on any med is always iffy. Most meds, ACs especially, are CNS (central nervous system) depressants. So is alcohol. Combine the two, and especially if (like a whole lot of us) if you're taking two or more of these meds, then you could be asking for a lot of trouble.

Anybody that knows me, well, knows I'm not above having a drink (or sometimes 12) with my meds. Whc=ich is why I try to know this shit. I like to know why I wake up in the night hardly breathing for instance (maybe, don't take so much seroquel?) or why everything starts spinning; hey, it didn't use to spin so much when i had so little to drink...

Now generally...a drink or two or three doean't hurt. Generally. But...if, say, you're taking lamictal for an antidepressant (as i am) then you have to remember that alohol can affect your moods and there may be a rebound tomorrow, even off one drink. And while a drink or two may not fuck you up or stop your breathing, you may feel like emotional shit tomorrow.

Oh, fun BAC info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_alcohol_content

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I drink an occasional beer, one of those silly frozen things, a glass of wine and all I get are a flushed face, a hot feeling (temperature), and sleepiness. So it's not any fun at all. Why bother?

What's up with the wine and the flushing? I really enjoy wine. I belong to a wine club and enjoy reading about it but when I do have a glass now, my chest, cheeks, nose and ears get really red, hot and flushed. I wonder why?

Allergy to gluten most likely. Makes me a raving, insatiable madman.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over. Raving madman alert: Just for the record, wine is gluten-free...unless they started making it with something other than grapes while I wasn't looking. The vast majority of beer, on the other hand, is chock full o' gluten, but most "silly frozen things" have none. Same with anything distilled. I have a strange feeling that it's probably due to alcohol or sulfites or something else that's actually in wine.

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an inquiry here is in order."Just for the record, wine is gluten-free...unless they started making it with something other than grapes while I wasn't looking."

if a grape was even within miles of a thunderbird or wild irish rose manufacturing plant, i'd be struck silly. that sort of blend constituted "wine tasting" on a quantum scale.

you tasted it for days after brown bagging it. if one was unlucky, you tasted it for a brief second time while it exited with gusto.

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* point of order: Remember this thread is TWO YEARS OLD *

That's right. It won't be able to legally drink for another 19 years.

for what it's worth: some people have a genetic sensitivity to alcohol that causes them to flush red on their face neck and chest. This is very common among the Japanese.

Where by Japanese, I believe you mean a whole lot of Asians in general. Part of it is also that they metabolize it differently.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest corkdork

I drink an occasional beer, one of those silly frozen things, a glass of wine and all I get are a flushed face, a hot feeling (temperature), and sleepiness. So it's not any fun at all. Why bother?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

What's up with the wine and the flushing? I really enjoy wine. I belong to a wine club and enjoy reading about it but when I do have a glass now, my chest, cheeks, nose and ears get really red, hot and flushed. I wonder why?

Allergy to gluten most likely. Makes me a raving, insatiable madman.

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I drink an occasional beer, one of those silly frozen things, a glass of wine and all I get are a flushed face, a hot feeling (temperature), and sleepiness.
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  • 4 months later...
Guest Kevin

I drink an occasional beer, one of those silly frozen things, a glass of wine and all I get are a flushed face, a hot feeling (temperature), and sleepiness. So it's not any fun at all. Why bother?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

What's up with the wine and the flushing? I really enjoy wine. I belong to a wine club and enjoy reading about it but when I do have a glass now, my chest, cheeks, nose and ears get really red, hot and flushed. I wonder why?

Tannen. Or is it Tannin?

Oh well. I just started Limictal today. Hope it works. ;)

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THe flushing is usually blamed on sulfites - but check this and this out.

I learned about this last year and lo and behold, many things fell into place... like my lack of sulfite allergy and my bright red/flushed face with certain wines.

(It's not always an alcohol dehydrogenase thing.)

Edited by Silver
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heh, you revived a really old thread.

So, it turns out I really can't get drunk on Lamictal/bupropion. I still display physiological effects (trouble walking straight), but it doesn't affect me cognitively. I feel no different, and my friends can't tell either. Alcohol isn't really any fun anymore because of it, so I've pretty much stopped drinking.

For the record, bupriopion's seizure warning is overrated. The likelyhood of having a seizure on the standard does of bupropion (300mg) is roughly the same as the seizure risk of sertraline. (.2%) Neither of my doctors seemed concerned about alcohol consumption; I admitted drinking to both of them.

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For the record, bupriopion's seizure warning is overrated. The likelyhood of having a seizure on the standard does of bupropion (300mg) is roughly the same as the seizure risk of sertraline. (.2%)

The thing is, the risk goes up exponentially, not linearly. It's substantially more than 50% higher at 450, the current approved max, and at 600 (which used to be approved but isn't anymore, for this specific reason), it's much, much higher. At low to medium doses, it's actually pretty comparable to most ADs in general, as you say, but once you get higher than that, it gets much worse (over 2% in some situations) much faster than most seem to (although things like amitriptyline are similar, with a .1% chance at normal doses and absurdly high at toxic levels; the same page also says that sertraline is .2%, but buproprion is "as low as .4%", not .2%).

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Bummer. I turn 21 this month, am on both Lamitcal and Seroqual, and it looks like I can't drink on my birthday. :)

hey oe,

I just turned 21 less than a month ago and had the same dilemma, except my cocktail is lamical, wellbutrin xl, zoloft and adderall. I decided that I'd have one or two drinks over the course of the evening when out with my friends (they insisted that I *must* get carded at least once on my birthday) and it turned out just fine with those plans in place. I wouldn't worry too too much about getting a token drink because of the occasion, as long as you know that you can stick to nursing one over the course of the evening and not get carried away, you know?

I don't want to sound like I'm encouraging drinking on meds-- by no means do I think it is a good idea to go do shots, down beer and get drunk (or plastered. or comatose.) on meds, even if you have some pressure from over-eager friends because "hey, you're 21 now!!"-- but I don't think that you need to forgo a nice champagne toast or small umbrella drink in celebration if you feel like it. Drink water, eat well, sip slowly and take a 'raincheck' for those who offer to buy you a drink and have a nice mellow birthday, you know?

moderation, baby ;)

happy early birthday, congrats on making it to 21 (I know I feel like I accomplished something after all the tough patches I made it through!),

m

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Happy birthday openembrace. I totally agree with Meg that a drink or 2 should be fine. I took Lamictal for a year an a half and it didn't change and of the effect that alcohol had on me. Seroquel, I don't know. Now, I will cop to being a problem drinker ;) that's another story.

With a good dinner in your belly, you can nurse a drink for a while or have beer it's high water content.

I hope you have a good one, and buy something nice for yourself with all the money you won't be dropping in bars :)

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  • 1 month later...

Hi stumbled upon this forum while googing aroung a bit....

anyways I have TSC(tuberousis sklerosis complex) all my life and take lamictal against seizures for about 6 years now(dossage of 350mg)... when i got 16(legal drinking age in austria)(so about 3 years ago). i started to ask my self the same question can i mix alchahol with lamictial? So i started to experiment with it.. i started with small dosages of alcahol( 0.25L of cider) and gradually increased the amount i would drink when i go out... personally i never had in these 3 years any problems with it... and i had nights where i had way too much even for a person who takes no medication. If u consider drinking start slowly, and if u dnt experience any problems u can raise the amount u drink in a night BUT be careful every one reacts differently. Besides the hangovers are quite unpleasant if u over do it ;)

-patrick

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. If u consider drinking start slowly, and if u dnt experience any problems u can raise the amount u drink in a night BUT be careful every one reacts differently. Besides the hangovers are quite unpleasant if u over do it :) [/ end quote]

OK, my personal experience? Tegretol would play with the alcohol....I couldn't get drunk, or it waited till I had too many and I got ultra drunk all of a sudden. But LAMICTAL ??????????

The kiss of death. One night with only about three drinks I was falling down staircases and the like and have no memory of any of it. If that wasnt bad enough I tried again. This time the booze fueled a three day manic bender which left me talking to invisible people.....several of them, among other wonderfully psychotic break moments.......so for me? Lamictal and Alcohol = ;)

Just my two cents tho I've seen others mention similar horror stories........hence the general warning that alcohol and pysch meds don't mix.

cheers

Edited by Dr.Faustus
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  • 4 weeks later...

I quit drinking completely when I started Lamictal but started (socially) drinking again a few months later as I became more comfortable on the medicine and my dose started to stabilize. However, I went up to 200mg a few months back. Now when I drink more than maybe one drink, I will have for the period of maybe an hour to an hour and a half shortly afterwards a terrible moodswing. I still have moodswings now and then but since starting Lamictal they have changed such that the lows are not as low and they don't last nearly as long as they used to. I also get less angry and frustrated at things. Anyhow, I haven't been able to find any documentation that says Lamictal can do this with alcohol - I'm guessing that the alcohol's depressant effects are simply amplified by the drug. I am not supposed to drink anyhow because alcohol lowers the seizure threshold and effectively renders the medication ineffective, but one or two beers doesn't tend to cause problems.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest smortown

I quit drinking completely when I started Lamictal but started (socially) drinking again a few months later as I became more comfortable on the medicine and my dose started to stabilize. However, I went up to 200mg a few months back. Now when I drink more than maybe one drink, I will have for the period of maybe an hour to an hour and a half shortly afterwards a terrible moodswing. I still have moodswings now and then but since starting Lamictal they have changed such that the lows are not as low and they don't last nearly as long as they used to. I also get less angry and frustrated at things. Anyhow, I haven't been able to find any documentation that says Lamictal can do this with alcohol - I'm guessing that the alcohol's depressant effects are simply amplified by the drug. I am not supposed to drink anyhow because alcohol lowers the seizure threshold and effectively renders the medication ineffective, but one or two beers doesn't tend to cause problems.

I had two drinks about 3 months after starting Lamictal. I had a seizure after 5 weeks of being seizure free. I have not tried it again. ;)

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Haven't had a problem with it so far, but I am still titrating up. Until I find the proper cocktail to make like bearable, I am a self-medicator. That being said I have Bipolar I (with sever depressive episodes, as well as sever manic ones), severe OCD, and DDNOS. I am not stable enough to get on a real anti-depressant, but after begging my pdoc for a month, I finally got the Lamictal Starter Kit. Hopefully it will help with the depression, I don't know about the OCD (but Klonopin has helped a lot with that, at least anxiety wise). I have hopes, and patience, because the other alternative is going back to teh way I used to be, and even on the little bit of medicinal help I have been on, I cannot go back there...

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Ashamedly, I get completely trashed several times a week (which takes 6+ drinks in less than an hour for me), and this has yet to have affected the pharmacokinetics or end effects of Lamictal. For what it's worth, I shouldn't be doing this. Perhaps I'll stop doing this once I actually get a job that everybody else thinks I deserve.

Herrfour:

Fuck what people think, do what's best for you. If you know you shouldn't be drinking, try to STOP at once. Speaking from experience, don't do shit that you can be ashamed of.

Edited by kei13
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I'm a 24 year old female, and I have been on Lamictal for 3 years and I found that at first, drinking just sucked, I felt terrible and had hideous hangovers the next day. I am definitely not a big drinker, only at parties... I have always had a really low tolerance for alcohol, but I have found that at this point I alcohol has much less of an effect on me, but it's not as pleasurable, I don't really want a drink.

I can drink 8-10 drinks at a party, mainly shots, and I feel fine, a little tipsy, compared to my friends who drink the same and are trashed. I am pretty clear-headed at the end of the night, and people are like "why aren't you even drunk? I do have less coordination, and I'm clumsy but I think pretty clearly. I think that it's due to the lamictal, but I don't really know. It is not something that I seek out at this point, because it really doesn't feel very good, I don't get as happy as I used to get from drinking.

I do smoke weed occasionally, and I enjoy it the way I have always enjoyed it. Hallucinogens such as mushrooms and acid have the same effect, and so do downers like Klonopin. Coke is also just as pleasurable as it always has been (not that I do that very often, maybe 1-2x a year tops, but I live in San Francisco and it's readily available at parties, etc)

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I'm a 24 year old female, and I have been on Lamictal for 3 years and I found that at first, drinking just sucked, I felt terrible and had hideous hangovers the next day. I am definitely not a big drinker, only at parties... I have always had a really low tolerance for alcohol, but I have found that at this point I alcohol has much less of an effect on me, but it's not as pleasurable, I don't really want a drink.

I can drink 8-10 drinks at a party, mainly shots, and I feel fine, a little tipsy, compared to my friends who drink the same and are trashed. I am pretty clear-headed at the end of the night, and people are like "why aren't you even drunk? I do have less coordination, and I'm clumsy but I think pretty clearly. I think that it's due to the lamictal, but I don't really know. It is not something that I seek out at this point, because it really doesn't feel very good, I don't get as happy as I used to get from drinking.

I do smoke weed occasionally, and I enjoy it the way I have always enjoyed it. Hallucinogens such as mushrooms and acid have the same effect, and so do downers like Klonopin. Coke is also just as pleasurable as it always has been (not that I do that very often, maybe 1-2x a year tops, but I live in San Francisco and it's readily available at parties, etc)

Me again, I forgot to say that I've been diagnosed as BP II for the past 5 years, have had lot of depression, anxiety, and really uncomfortable hypomania, but except for occasional mild depression, I have been mostly symptom free since I started lamictal. I've even been able to stop taking lithium. All hail Lamictal ;)

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  • 1 month later...
Guest mom of 5

well i have drank on it before, but last night i did and have been VIOLENTLY ill all day. Im shaky, puking, hot flashes, cant hold anything down.

so, for me, screw that, i used to be quite the little whiskey girl, and i have NEVER felt this bad from a hangover. EVER. i dont puke when i drink either. shoot, i may have stopped years ago if i felt like this after a night out!

nomore mixing for me,not worth it

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Guest Guest_D18

This thread is extremely interesting to me. I've been on Lamictal and Wellbutrin XL for approximately 2.5 years now. The most taken was 200 mg of Lamictal and 150 mg of Wellbutrin during this time period. Currently, sitting at about 150 mg of both daily. Treating what was possibly BP1, I'm skeptical having not had any symptoms for a few (3-5) years.

Used to be a fairly heavy drinker (10-12 drinks an evening/5'8" ~150lbs), 1-2 nights a week on the weekends but my current work schedule dictates not drinking for roughly a month at a time and then having 1-3 of these heavier nights over a two week period of leisure time.

Does anyone one else experience what I consider Lamictal "cutting out" after they drink for a night or two? For example, once resuming a period of non-drinking, do you have extremely vivid dreams for the first night and wake up feeling any different (in my case, much more sleep, more tired) the next day? I just find it odd, after being climatized to this medication for awhile that the same thing continues to happen. Also, after even a mild night (1-3 drinks), I tend to sleep alot less (~5 hrs) naturally and feel much sharper the next day until what feels like the medicine resuming the next night of not drinking.

I'm past using any other types of recreational forms of enrichment at this point in my life so I can't really comment on anything else.

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i get too sick to function mixing alcohol and lamictal. usually i have to work the next day, and the unpleasantness is too much to bear. it's not worth it to me.

never noticed this thread before!

yup susan you said it. any more than one or two (three if it's a really weak girlie drink!) and i can't even continue, or i know i'm going to be sick. and even if i have three and don't get sick that night, the next day sucks.

some kinds of alcoholic beverages are worse than others (for me). the higher the alcohol content, the worse i'm going to feel (even if i just have a little bit).

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest Christie

I'm a 24 year old female, and I have been on Lamictal for 3 years and I found that at first, drinking just sucked, I felt terrible and had hideous hangovers the next day. I am definitely not a big drinker, only at parties... I have always had a really low tolerance for alcohol, but I have found that at this point I alcohol has much less of an effect on me, but it's not as pleasurable, I don't really want a drink.

I can drink 8-10 drinks at a party, mainly shots, and I feel fine, a little tipsy, compared to my friends who drink the same and are trashed. I am pretty clear-headed at the end of the night, and people are like "why aren't you even drunk? I do have less coordination, and I'm clumsy but I think pretty clearly. I think that it's due to the lamictal, but I don't really know. It is not something that I seek out at this point, because it really doesn't feel very good, I don't get as happy as I used to get from drinking.

I do smoke weed occasionally, and I enjoy it the way I have always enjoyed it. Hallucinogens such as mushrooms and acid have the same effect, and so do downers like Klonopin. Coke is also just as pleasurable as it always has been (not that I do that very often, maybe 1-2x a year tops, but I live in San Francisco and it's readily available at parties, etc)

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I am a 26 year old and have just been diagnosed with bi-polar/depression. Lamictal is the drug I have been given along with clonazepam. I am one to self-medicate (I guess) after reading all these blogs. I like to drink and party here and there and I am a little afraid to now. The past few years drinking has usually lead to a little craziness...not remembering things, "doing things" I would not do without the drinking. Not each and everytime, but I am usually the fun and crazy one as I have been told by my friends. Sometimes I do not remember hours of the night. I do not want to cut that part out of my life completely...sounds crazy but I like to go out and have fun and I guess going out without drinking doesn't really sound appealing to me? I am just wondering if my whole life is going to change with taking these meds and I am afaid I wont be me anymore? Just wondering if anyone has any advice for me cause I feel so nervous about everything now, and I didn't before this. I have a lot of very supportive people in my life but I think they would all be very angry if I even spoke about drinking or anything else.....This is all new to me and I am just feel so blah..... haven't returned to work yet after the had a severe low and took many pills t take my own life and ended up in the Er and was near death. I do want to live, be happy, but I still want to be me....

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  • 3 weeks later...

I went the route of trying to quit drinking and using recreational drugs when I finally ended up being prescribed Lamictal, Wellbutrin, and Seroquel. If your question is "Do these medications change you?", my answer is yeah. I experienced some of the bad things with Lamictal like headaches, nightmares, and the inability to remember shit and spell as proficiently for about the first 1.5 yrs (been on these meds 3 yrs now minus the Seroquel).

You have to remember that these medications are being taken for a reason. If you were completely happy with yourself, then why subject yourself to taking super expensive, powerful, pharmaceutical medications. The point is, whatever your system was prior, it wasn't working. Yeah, your personality and lifestyle will take a drastic change if you stop using recreational drugs and alcohol. Will you miss your old self? Um Yeah. I think it's a helluva lot more entertaining/exciting to be the life of the party instead of the guy nursing his only brew of the night. So what's the tradeoff? For me, I've traded away the agonizing months of depression and suicidal thoughts for more stability and less partying. Is it more fun? No, but it's certainly less traumatic than hiding out in your house trying to figure out the best way to off yourself.

People will always test out how these things mix so at least this site provides some insight in regards to the effects. Read all of the posts though. Some people feel like shit, some people can drink more now, some people can drink less, some unlucky people have had seizures.

It's kind of a mixed bag considering that other people are taking different meds and have different biological systems. Roll the dice on the table if you want to play. Most people aren't completely self-destructing from what I've read.

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My, that was a bit off the point. Yeah, I've mixed it. With alcohol, the hangovers sucked badly while on my way up to 200 mg/day. After taking it for a couple years, the massive hangover effect has slightly diminished (still worse I think). Also, hangovers don't seem to be as bad the second day if you ended up going out and drinking both nights on a weekend.

I wouldn't drink on it unless you are already climatized to the medication and feeling decent and stable. Obviously, it depends on how much you drink as well. I'm speaking more from the perspective of people drink to get drunk (or end up drunk sometimes). Even my psychiatrist says you can have 1-2 drinks on it occasionally if you aren't using it for epilepsy. Under those circumstances, the effects aren't too noticeable for me.

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  • 1 month later...
Guest eyoitzkubz

I'm treated for bipolar disorder and i'm taking 200mg of lamictal every evening and .5 mg of risperdal in the morning and in the evening. I smoke marijuana occasionaly with no side effects. Is it safe to drink while taking these meds?

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  • 1 month later...

Hey, I'm new here and just started a starter kit of Lamictal. How does it interact with alcohol? I know that I've been self-medicating over the years, but nonetheless I hope to still have your occasional glass of wine etc. Will it work OK or do you find you have cut down with the booze??

I think a half a glass of wine would put me to sleep with these meds im taking, especially after starting lamictal.

So, for me...I never would drink on it. however, I don't really drink to begin with.

...Why is lamictal so popular on this forum?

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest sabrina

hey im 18 and im on lamictal (200mg/ day) for epilepsy for like... 3 months now. I don't have seizures but i have what's called myocolonic jerks where you loose muscle control. theyre basically "seizures" if you wanna call it that but theyre for like .5 seconds. i go to college parties alot and i started with drinking 1 beer, then 3, then like anywhere from 5 beers and 2 shots and i havent had any side effects. if i get enough sleep i'm fine i don't "twitch" or drop stuff. however when i get like 3 or 4 hours of sleep i do. then again, people with epilepsy are supposed to get their rest, avoid strees, alcohol and street drugs.

im not gonna lie. i smoke weed. not alot but i do. and i drink. and it hasnt affected anything and believe my i am TERRIFIED of having a seizure. literally. sometimes i cant sleep at night because i have an anxiety attack about having one. but i never have one lol.

i know people read these forums for reassurance (i know i do). and this is my story.

is there anyone who has these "jerks" who is taking lamictal?

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is there anyone who has these "jerks" who is taking lamictal?

yes, but they are no better or worse than before i took it. they're really annoying, and they scare me in the moment, but then i just forget about them. sucks when it happens when you're holding something and it goes flying though. ;)

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im not gonna lie. i smoke weed. not alot but i do. and i drink. and it hasnt affected anything and believe my i am TERRIFIED of having a seizure. literally. sometimes i cant sleep at night because i have an anxiety attack about having one. but i never have one lol.

If you're that TERRIFIED, you may want to be cautious with the alcohol. That doesn't mean you can't have any ever, but they're not kidding when they say it makes seizures more likely. I have first-hand experience with that and tend to be more careful about it than when I was younger. Technically alcohol is an anticonvulsant to some extent, so the problem can end up being when it wears off (which is especially a problem for alcoholics in withdrawal, but it's still not the greatest thing if you're prone to seizures in the first place). Having half a dozen drinks at a time can be kind of like giving your brain a swift kick to the crotch when it comes to stuff like that. Less so if you're otherwise healthy and getting good sleep and all that, but it's still not entirely benign.

On the other hand, marijuana may prevent seizures, at least for some people. There's been some research into how the cannabinoid receptors are involved in the hope that it'll turn up new treatment ideas or directions for research for meds, so at least from a seizure point of view, you're probably not at much risk there (unless you're one of the special people who has some kind of paradoxical reaction to it...). It may or may not cause other problems, but that's not generally one of them.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest justsaynocliche

My, that was a bit off the point. Yeah, I've mixed it. With alcohol, the hangovers sucked badly while on my way up to 200 mg/day. After taking it for a couple years, the massive hangover effect has slightly diminished (still worse I think). Also, hangovers don't seem to be as bad the second day if you ended up going out and drinking both nights on a weekend.

I wouldn't drink on it unless you are already climatized to the medication and feeling decent and stable. Obviously, it depends on how much you drink as well. I'm speaking more from the perspective of people drink to get drunk (or end up drunk sometimes). Even my psychiatrist says you can have 1-2 drinks on it occasionally if you aren't using it for epilepsy. Under those circumstances, the effects aren't too noticeable for me.

Reply: My boyfriend of two years is on 200mg of lamictal for bi-polar disorder. He takes it at 9:00 am every day. He eats breakfast at 11:00 am every day. He leaves for work at 1:23 pm every day. He starts work at 2:00 pm every day. He is loving and kind and thoughtful and works very hard to control his anger and unreasonable responses to "normal" stress (having to wait in line at jack in the box used to send him into a rage of yelling and beating the steering wheel and basically LOSING IT). I have noticed a HUGE improvement in his overall happiness. THEN HE STARTED SMOKING WEED.... ;) he detached from our relationship slowly but surely, he started getting annoyed by everything and anything, being very distant and void, and after about 6 mos started major depression, having crying fits, bursts of rage over the tiniest thing (not returning a movie to blockbuster a day early for him would induce punching-a-hole in-the-wall anger). He was a complete stranger and I had to leave him for a month before he realized what was happening and quit for good. He hasn't touched weed since. I have noticed a HUGE improvement and he thanks me every day. We went through the same thing with alcohol. He is so fun and charismatic and we would have a great time drinking, a glass of wine with sunset or saki bombs at the local sushi restaraunt. I was very unfamiliar with bi-polar and meds for it before all this. I began doing research when he started getting really moody and when we would wake up, i would be fine and he would be so depressed. It was like he wasn't taking the medication at all. I actually sat him down and asked him if he was taking his meds or if he had gone off them and was hiding. He listened to me as i asked him " when was the last day you didn't struggle all day?". He realized that he had been struggling so hardcore and it was largely due to the alcohol. After 2 weeks of not drinking he was a whole new man. we used to have a blast getting buzzed and dancing and being silly but nothing could be more rewarding for me than seeing him wake up feeling good and being able to sleep 8 hours at night and making love to me and having more good days than bad days. there are still bad days but he/we is/are able to get through them in one piece now.

After doing research I learned that alcohol can basically counteract or subtract the affect/benefit of lamictal and increase the symptoms of bi-polar. Also, since scientists don't actually know exactly how lamictal works, it doesn't surprise me that so many people have such a varied reaction. You may think it isn't affecting you but you may want to sit a partner or a loved one down and ask them to be honest with you. He didn't even realize how much more miserable he had become until it was right in his face.

All said and done, his quality of life, happiness, success at work and in friendships, health, self esteem, our relationship, is SO much better sans alcohol and rec. drugs. We find highs in life (i know it sounds so corny) but ziplining, rafting, salsa dancing, naked hide and go seek..... there a million more rewarding things to do than jepordize your life and relationships.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Argh, I don't want to hear that! I use Medical Cannabis for acute migraine pain, and just started Lamictal for bipolar tonight. ;)

And the worst part is, the pot just touches the pain, it doesn't get rid of it; but I am not allowed to take enough narcotics as often as I would need to to deal with how many I get. :) I might be, if Drs. didn't risk losing their licenses for properly treating chronic pain. But they do, so I can't. Gah.

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  • 3 months later...

I had exactly the same experience. I had a glass of wine, then another, and another, and suddenly a bottle and a half, and I felt nothing. The next day I decided to have a beer. Which turned into a 6 pack, and I never felt any different. Until I woke up in the morning and saw the recycling bin. So, I just stopped drinking. Which is actually kind of odd for me.

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  • 3 months later...
Guest Meinemo

I had exactly the same experience. I had a glass of wine, then another, and another, and suddenly a bottle and a half, and I felt nothing. The next day I decided to have a beer. Which turned into a 6 pack, and I never felt any different. Until I woke up in the morning and saw the recycling bin. So, I just stopped drinking. Which is actually kind of odd for me.

I don't feel much of the fun effects of alcohol, either. I do get more clumsy, unfortunately. I take 200-300mg lamotrigine (Teva generic only--the others don't work as well) for PTSD and MDD. If I have an empty stomach, I may get a buzz, but that's it. If I keep drinking, the room will start to spin before I feel drunk.

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I wonder how much alcohol I can have on New Year's if I take 10 other sedatives and medications ;)

Lol, I'm being facetious, but I would expect we're all questioning how well we can celebrate new year's on our meds, hehe.

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  • 2 months later...
Guest StepfordWife

i have the horrible hangover effect on lamictal if i haven't drank for awhile. Eventually if you drink regularly you don't get them anymore. i have no idea why or if this means the drug isn't working anymore. i just know i was able to continue in my alcoholic adventures on lamictal but had to work up the amount i drank slowly and then start over whenever the dose was increased.

i recently went a couple of weeks without alcohol and the last 2 times i have drank i have had the hangover from hell. i'm not planning to get another one. For me this is going to be a good reason to just knock that shit out.

However if you aren't ready to stop self medicating...

Water will not help a lamictal+alcohol hangover much. The headache feels differnt than a dehydrated headache for me. Its more in the front, instead of all over.

Also... if you are a regular partaker of morning caffine do not forget to have some, or an excedrin. Its really easy to skip the caffine because your hangover is so bad and then not realize the headache is actually hanging on because you are going through caffine withdrawl. This is an easy mistake to make with any kind of hangover if you are caffine dependent. The hangover from caffine withdrawl is a bitch so if you keep chugging sports drinks and the headache isn't abating it could be your body just needs its caffine fix to come right.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I haven't noticed any ill effects of alcohol while taking Lamictal and Wellbutrin. I don't think I feel the effects of alcohol as strongly as I had before being on meds. I am a regular drinker, a beer or two only with dinner or in the evening, but an occasional glass of wine. If I am at a social event (as mentioned earlier, Mardi Gras) I will drink more and I just don't really feel it as long as I pace myself. I got some really bad news last week and freaked out and drank 3 beers in about an hour. usually that would make me falling down drunk, but I only felt mildly dazed, a strong buzz. Not drunk at all. Weird. It did freak me out that I went for the alcohol like that during a time of stress, and I didn't drink anything for a week after. Had one beer last night and felt fine. I will note, however, that if I have taken or plan to take an ativan, I avoid alcohol completely.

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I may switch from Lamictal to Topamax. Does anyone have any experience drinking while taking Topamax?

Topomax is working really well for a lot of people. So I am just telling you why it didn't work for me, you have to see what your body does with it.

It damaged (slightly) my kidneys by screwing with my kidney function.

I had horrific gastro-intestinal side effects (when I say horrific, I am a bit over the top, but it was constant): diarrhea, constipation, acid reflux, and just not feeling "right" in my intestinal regions.

And it gave me the stupids.

Again, it works REALLY well for some people. Please give it a try, if Lamictal is too activating.

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  • 5 weeks later...
Guest Dustin

Lamictal and alcohol are not a good combination for me:

1. Hangovers are worse, almost feeling like I've been beaten in the head.

2. Makes me manic sometimes when really drunk

3. More irritable the next few days

I'm going to taper off this drug actually. I really don't suggest drinking more than one or maybe two glasses of wine with a meal while you're on this medication.

Also... I used to smoke marijuana occasionally, and when I did, on Lamictal, it made me a bit crazy. Not just your normal paranoia, but really, very terrible.

Good luck to all who are trying this!

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  • 2 weeks later...

New to this whole MI thing-- still trying to understand it all. I knew something was "off" for years but never wanted to admit it-- things got scary and attempts at suicide forced me to face reality-- now I at least have a working name for my brand of crazy but I can't say I expected bipolar--

That being said--anyone on the Lamictal (100mg) and Seroquel (50mg) combo care to share their experience? The people I work with all go out to have a few beers on Fridays (teaching will drive you to drink if you don't already). Last week I didn't want to mess with it at all seeing as I have only been on these meds like 3 1/2 weeks (Lamictal only then-- added Seroquel this week). The problem is EVERYONE was asking why I wasn't drinking-- and then the go-to question... are you pregnant. Not that it's their business but our school has been a baby factory the last 2 years so it's the running joke. Rather than having to make excuses for not drinking and because I do enjoy a beer or two I am looking for input. The most I ever drink is maybe 2 beers anyway-- never a hard core drinker.

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  • 3 months later...
Guest butterflygurl

Has anybody taken Lamictal and Tompax together here ? How well did they work and did you feel like drinking on them ..

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Guest ernie88

Ive been taking lamictal for about 7 years and I can honestly say that at first wen I would drink with it, I had no hang overs. After the years I have TERRIBLE hang overs, my stomach will hurt for the entire next day. I can definitely attest to the fact that I believe my stomach and some internal stuff is damaged..I cant do a shot without gagging..my body rejects alcohol now and the hang overs are just brutal. It sucks because Im 21...I space out the times I get drunk...dont be dumb like me if at all possible

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I feel like alcohol doesn't "work" as well for me since I started taking Lamictal. I'll still get drunk, but I get more nervous and angry than happy and relaxed. This doesn't stop me from drinking, but it does bother me! I can't really say whether or not the combination gives me terrible hangovers because my hangovers have been pretty bad for awhile now. If it has worsened them, I haven't noticed.

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  • 2 years later...

Hi. 

 

I am also new to crazyboards. I have been on lamictal for 6 months, and also am having complications when drinking alcohol. I was never a heavy drinker, but am really frustrated that I cannot have even 1 drink unless I skip the drug for 1 day. When I combine alcohol and lamictal, I get a  painful throbbing sensation in my heart. It does not beat faster, but it hurts for hours until the alcohol leaves my system. If I skip the medicine for 1 day I can have 1 or 2 beers without the pain (I did that twice only this month). If I skip the medicine for 2 days, I can have 4 drinks with no pain (I also did that only twice this month, and had a total of 10 drinks for the month of August). 

 

Is it just because I am physically sensitive to this drug, and/or because I am on a dosage of 200mg per day? I don't need to drink a whole lot of alcohol, but it is frustrating that I can't even have an occasional drink without going off the medication. Any feedback is welcome - thanks! :wall:

~Anthony 

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Don't skip medication to drink. Have a half drink, or a quarter drink, or don't drink. But swapping alcohol for Lamictal is ludicrous.

 

I am on 400mg, and can have a drink now and then. Like two a month, if my head allows it, which it usually does not.  Everyone's different. I can put up with side effects well enough that sometimes I have taken meds longer than I should have to be a compliant patient. To the point of damaging organs. I know I'm not the only one here that is true of.

 

If you are going to fuck around with your meds to drink, you need to tell your pdoc that, so you don't have a seizure, or so at least someone knows why if you do have one. Seizures are not good. And tell your pdoc the sensation you have when you drink.

 

If you are that unwilling to forgo alcohol for something that is helping you, you may need to think about what that means.

 

Zombie-thread, by the way.

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