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How to get back on track w/ diagnosis and medication?


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I was initially diagnosed w/ BP 1 & psychotic episodes in my early 20s. My diagnosis has changed throughout the years but the noticeable repeating pattern has been BP - Depression (bi polar depression). 

I guess I never fully accepted the diagnosis and have always been in denial because of the toxic relationship/substance abuse that began after another. I somehow seemed to think that the diagnosis was incorrect because drug use coupled with an abusive relationship would justify my own crazy behavior. Well, after the relationship ended and I was clean/sober I sought help. I needed it. Eventually, I guess I came to a point where I unconsciously reasoned that "oh see, I'm doing fine and I'm not bi polar. I don't need medication" and then tapered off. 

About a year later, life starts to fall apart again. Go to a new doctor and they prescribe Prozac for depression. It  had horrible side effects and I felt like a zombie. Doctor didn't agree with the BP diagnosis and was convinced I have depression. So, I was prescribed Ritalin IR and LR to help with overall function even though an ADHD diagnosis was questionable. I ended up taking 3 times more than what I was prescribed for a daily dose and fell into a deep deep depression (extreme suicidal ideation). I'm afraid of abuse potential and would like to re-introduce the possibility of my previous (from different price) diagnosis of BP depression. Though, I also don't want to lose the LR prescription. That thought alone worries me. (I have since stopped the IR because it had too much risk for falling back into the slippery slope of addiction/abuse)

note: I am currently taking the LR as prescribed and foregoing the IR  

Im debating on attempting to skip my stimulants on a day I have off and see how I react/adjust. 

Any comments or suggestions? Or own experience? Advice? I could use any help

Edited by noonday
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Ask for a second opinion on your diagnosis and treatment. Your current doc should be able to refer to a colleague or somebody else for that. You could also ask questions about whether mood stabilising meds (Lamictal, Abilify, Seroquel etc) could help your depression, as they often are used when regular ADs fail or used along side an AD when it is not enough on its own. 

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Be totally upfront with your doctor (Never be afraid to ask for a second advice)  If your not honest with your doctor its so impossible for them to navagate your treatment.

And last.  Never (Please) decide to go off anything without at the very least telling the doctor that prescribed the drug.   Mine said that was the single worst problem she had with her patients and the only thing that made her mad.  

I think the most common problem for people with MI is that we find something that makes us feel ok and for some reason we all assume it has nothing to do with the meds we've been taking.   Then its a long reset to where it started and your back and forth.   Does that make any sense?

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I think the bigger problem here is that if you have bipolar, you're on some medications that, by themselves, can be kind of dangerous. Definitely advocate for yourself and seek another opinion, especially if you feel your current treatment isn't working. That's the most important thing.

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