I get a lot of questions about bipolar medications and, in this video, I answer them; including how they changed my life for the better.
If you’re recently diagnosed, one of the biggest problems is finding the right medication for bipolar disorder that works specifically for you. Unfortunately, this can be extremely difficult and exhausting.
After my diagnosis of bipolar 2, the first step was trying various medications to see what worked and what didn't. Unfortunately, the side effects of many of these bipolar medications can be severe, such as weight gain, extreme drowsiness, and other effects that hinder a person's ability to function.
There was a point that the bipolar medications seemed to only increase my depressive and emotional behavior. I was incapable of communicating properly with those around me. Finally, I went to my doctors and demanded to find the right routine of medications. It took me around 5 years to find a steady regimen of medications that efficiently managed my bipolar disorder without dampening my personality and increasing my weight. I still experience highs and lows on medication, however, I have more control over it, whereas before my condition was in control of me.
Hopefully, in the future, research will uncover new treatment methods with fewer side effects. Until then, do not lose hope and continue communicating with medical professionals seeking the right routine of bipolar medications for you.
In the comments, I hope you'll share your experience with bipolar meds and, in what ways, have they helped you.
Hannah posts a new video every Monday morning on the HealthyPlace YouTube Channel. You can help spread awareness and understanding by sharing this video or playlist. And if you find the video helpful, I hope you'll give it a thumbs up.
I'm Hannah. I Have Bipolar 2 Playlist: http://ow.ly/RR99305UIxg
BIPOLAR MEDICATIONS INFORMATION
Bipolar Medication: Types, How Bipolar Meds Work
Medications for Bipolar Depression
Side Effects of Bipolar Medication and How to Treat Them
Medication Side Effects Suck, Why Take Bipolar Medications?
Well.... PLEASE tell me what your meds are? I am currently on Zoloft and hate everyday Im alive. I am thinking about starting Latuda. have you taken it and did you or do you benefit from it? Thank you!!
+HealthyPlace Mental Health Thank you.. I do see a psych. I started taking my Latuda , this is the third day and I feel much much better. I wasnt manic at all quite the opposite. I think my antidepressant just needed a little boost. However I have had trouble sleeping the last two nights but thankfully my hubby bought me some melatonin and I am going to try that tonight. Thanks again for the info. #bipolarsucks :)
Hi coco. If you've been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, the Zoloft could be making you worse. Antidepressant medication can flip a person with bipolar disorder into mania. That's something you should discuss with your doctor. As for which bipolar medications I take, it doesn't matter because what works for me may not work for you. That's the unfortunate truth about psychiatric medications. It isn't like taking an antibiotic for an infection and it works for a vast majority of people. That's why people with bipolar disorder frequently have to try different medications and dosages to find the right mix and, even then, you might have to change again. I don't know if you're seeing a family doctor or a psychiatrist. If possible, I always recommend that people with bipolar disorder see a psychiatrist - a specialist in psychiatric medications. Thanks, Hannah
hi Hannah, I'm Phil from Australia, I also have bipolar 2, I'm on epilum and efexor xr capsule, I've just been informed to go off the efexor because its a depression medication not a mood stabilizer, I feel a little frightened mate
Hi Phil. Welcome to our channel. I hope you'll subscribe and join us. Obviously, I'm not your doctor and I can't comment on what medications are good for you. Some people with bipolar 2 do take an antidepressant medication along with a mood stabilizer. The general rule of thumb is that antidepressants alone can kick a person with bipolar disorder into mania. I would strongly suggest that you talk to your doctor about your concerns. Take care. Hannah
HealthyPlace Mental Health all my disastrous decisions were during untreated manic phase. Some were so outrageous I surprised myself.
The two worst incidents were when I took myself off mess and spiked, also crashed.
Hello John. I understand where you're coming from. Living with bipolar disorder makes life extremely challenging. If you don't mind me asking, did some or all of these events occur while you were untreated? Thank you for sharing. Hannah
I received my Bipolar type 2 diagnosis about 9 months ago. After a few attempts at finding the right medication, I've found something that worked and have been on it for about 6 months. These have been the greatest 6 months of my life. I've never felt so stable, calm, and just normal. I'm not elated like I was when I had periods of hypomania but I have such a deeper overall satisfaction with life. I'm no longer afraid of social situations because I don't know what my emotions are going to do to me. It has helped my career, my family life, my marriage, and my personal relationships. I've come to realize that first and foremost I had a chemical imbalance and while therapy has also played a huge role, there's nothing I could do about my chemistry without the help of medication. I went from sleeping 3-4 hours about two weeks a month (with some nights zero sleep) to sleeping 8-9 hours every single day of my life. It's really more than I ever hoped for and I got my life back.
Hi Olle. I never mention the brand name of the medications I take simply because it doesn't matter. Unfortunately, what may work for me, may not work for you and vice versa. It's really a matter of trying a medication and working with your doctor to find the best dosage, lowest side-effect profile for you. And if the one you're taking isn't working for you, then switch to another one. Thanks, Hannah
I’m taking latuda 40 mg for like the past week and at first i had no side effects but then i started getting increased anxiety and muscle stiffness in my mouth and racing thoughts. I take it in the morning, should i break it in half and take it at night instead??? I can’t talk to my doctor yet because she only works thursdays
Hi yuliet xo. I'm sorry, I can't give any kind of medical advice. I would definitely call your doctor for that. Even though she doesn't work until Thursday, most doctors have another doctor on call for emergencies. Hannah
Hello Jamie. I was diagnosed with ADHD after being diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder. It was clear that my inability to focus was a major problem, and prevented me from completing tasks or projects. Medications have improved my ability to focus tremendously. I finished school and received my degree. Meds have also improved my ability work. Thank you, Hannah
please please listen to me i have to say just for leagal reasons it is in my opinion that your better off without the medications any that are for bipolar.. If you want to go threw life having every doctor saying that you have A.L.S. then take the meds. I took the medication for pain because I didn't want narcotics. when I got off 3 years later I could no longer keeps my body from tremoring. i almost lost my voice. i have to drink for breakfast lunch and dinner. I have met many many people at the MDA that did the same as I did. if you think im ok because there's nothing going on now, just get off the meds and you will see in a couple of months. PLEASE SAVE YOURSELVES from this. I owned my business grossing over 3 million a year. now im living off of social security. DONT LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU PLEASE! for the love of everything HOLY dont do it please.
Had sub-clinical OCD since childhood, and still have several Asperger traits even though T and PDoc says it's not quite relevant at this age (33).
Got Anxiety and Depression worsened by relationship problems. Was on SSRI and SNRI for years, on and off, and now my PDoc says I need a mood stabilizer.
Though I can live with emotional suffering, my GI shuts down when I'm in low mood, so I can't eat, digest or poop, plus nausea; and that's when I usually go to my PDoc.
Oh, so I forgot to tell the bright side. I'm a Software Engineer, researching into Enterprise Intelligence and machine learning.
I'm quite good in Archery, I used to practice as a sport, currently not playing, but will continue soon, when I get a little more better.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar type 1 years ago. But recently I’ve been getting these paranoid feelings and delusions that someone is out to get me or I hear things. Not sure whats going on. I feel scared something bad might happen to me for no reason sometimes. I am also having trust issues. All this just started about 1 month ago. I’ve read that it might have been the medication I was taking because of the fast jump increase I did that make me get these emotions but Ive stopped talking it and still feeling something.
Thank you so much Hannah , your advices is very important for us thank u again. Plz I wanna an answer to this question # haw I know my self that I found the right medication!?? / and how long the effects of meds take to give results !!??
Ok thank you Hanna , but my doctor give me the medication for at least one month and for your learn all these medications witch I took doesn't make a different i dont know if my doctor is wrong in his diagnosis for me……
Hi English with moussa. I know I've found the right medication when I feel better than I did before. I know that sounds simplistic, but that's it. Doctors say it can take 4-8 weeks before you can feel the full effects of the medication. If you're switching medications completely, the doctor may have to wean you off one before starting another. Hannah
Hello Fatma. I do not take antidepressant medications. I do take antipsychotic medications for bipolar 2. From talking with various people who have taken one or the other, I've found that there are common side-effects. Drowsiness, upset stomach, nausea, dry mouth. If you have any concerns about your medication, you should always discuss them with your doctor. Thanks, Hannah
What do you think about herbal supplements for Bipolar illness such as omega-3 fatty acids or other types of herbal remedies? Have you tried any of them to treat your bipolar II disorder?
Hi! Medication changed my life. I have been compliant with my med program for 6 years and things are better. I have a really good therapist and I am able to focus. I've also had the same psychiatrist for 6years. Consistancy helps.
Its inspiring to hear about others who have been successful in dealing with bipolar disorder. I've only been on it for about six months and always worry that I'll fall back into my bipolar swings. I've also found a really good therapist and psychiatrist. Glad things are going well with you.
Me again. I wake up everyday, paranoid, depressed, groggy, confused, isolateted, in despair, and basically lifeless-!! My dreams are also very disturbing-!
I am 56 years old, and this is getting really, really OLD--!! I take trazadone, (100mg) for sleep, and helps a little. However, my mouth is extremely DRY and parched every single morning-!! I DO NOT self-medicate with (drugs/alcohol). I have NEVER DONE THAT--!! Maybe I should try that-!! This way isn't working AT ALL-!
I live alone, (widowed) and the absolute worst part of this disturbing situation is that I feel that NOBODY really cares-!! I have very little social contact, and I know this is NOT healthy at all. I am substitute teacher, and school year is currently in summer break-!
In closing, I spent the vast majority waking my time alone, using a computer. This aspect of my life has really NEVER changed, since I was a teenager-!! Any suggestions would appreciated--! Thanks for the video--!
I know how exactly how you feel. Ive isolated. My computer..or phone is my best friend. I dread leaving the house. I'm not widowed but watched my Dad die. You never forget that pain. I've suffered with anxiety and depression since 15. Many meds...most don't work. Counseling or just talking helps a bit. Maybe a brisk walk. It's a fight everyday. You are. NOT alone. Although we feel like it. Prayers to you.🙏
+K R the Trileptal DID HELP with the Severe Depression! It was initially prescribed at 300mg, tid! Along with it, I took Diazepam 10, tid. Over the years, I've got the Trileptal to once or occasionally twice a day and I completely wearned myself off the Diazepam, a few years ago, because of another medication I had to take for an unrelated problem!
I really wish you'd tell me what meds you're on. I was prescribed lamictal and I haven't taken it cause I'm terrified of getting the flesh eating rash that you can get. Risperdal makes you fat because of hormones and lithium can cause toxicity. I don't know what to do.
Hi there! I was just diagnosed with Bipolar 2 and I’m currently taking Lamictal. My Psychiatrist is great because he started me with a low dosage to a higher one, just to make sure my body does not react to the meds with the “rash” you mention. So far it’s been pretty good to me... I finally feel in the middle if that makes sense. I haven’t gotten any rashes but I have had less episodes. I’ve never known what it felt like to stay on one straight line, and since bipolar is such part of who I’m my energetic crazy me I was really afraid to lose that. The good news is that I’m still me and my personality hasn’t changed the only difference is that my moods are not all over the place like a roller coaster, I still have problems finishing stuff, and concentrating, but I know that will come in time as my journey has just started. Hope this helps!
Tish, I started Lamictal about a month ago when I was diagnosed with BP2. I started at 25 mg for 2 weeks and then went up to 50 mg for the next two weeks and now I am at 75mg. I had to Titrate slowly because of the rash but have not had any signs/side effects from this medication. If you start low and slowly increase your dosage, the chances of getting the rash are very low. I can say after a month I have already noticed an extreme decrease in my irritability and outbursts. I am still titrating up to 100 mg, but have already seen this drug work wonders for me already and cannot wait to see how else it is going to improve my life.
Hi Tish. I promise, it wouldn't matter if you knew what medications I was taking because what works for one person may or may not work for another. It's one of the great treatment issues when it comes to bipolar disorder and other mental illnesses. There is no one size fits all. And, for most of us, there's a lot of experimentation until we find the right meds and right dosages. And even then, things can change where the medications aren't working like they used to and you have to start in again.
Regarding medication side-effects, they are real and some people do get the worst ones. However, most do not get the worst ones. In any case, if you have side-effect or other concerns, you should share them with your doctor right away (even share that you are scared to take the meds). Don't ever be afraid to share your concerns and get your questions answered. You are paying the doctor. You deserve good treatment. It's as simple as that.
I think that most of us with bipolar disorder have been where you are now. When it comes to medications or any treatment, it really comes down to this: Are you willing to deal with the side-effects or are you better off without the treatment? Thanks and I hope you'll subscribe and join our community. Hannah
Try the Carnivore diet maybe you have a autoimmune disease. Gluten free diets have pulled ppl out of scitzofrenia you know like >thats not supposed to happen<.. maybe it could work for this bipolar stuff is aswell 👍
Hello Hannah--! First off, i want to thank you kindly for responding to my COMMENT-! This illness/disorder/or whatever, has taken my entire life away-! I have no friends, social life, anything close that resembles a life! I just exist! That is no way to live.
I am a college graduate (teaching), but have never been able to attain full-time employment in that or any other field for that matter. I congratulate YOU immensely for attaining your college diploma--!!
I am 55 years old now, and diagnosed with bi-polar depression in May of 2016-??- Furthermore, when spoke on the video about creating your own reality when u were a teenager, I know EXACTLY! what you MEAN--! My own father, who verbally and emotionally abused me, accused me many times of using drugs in high school--due to my low moods and behavior-! I did no such thing ever-!
I am currently taking Latuda now, after using seroquel & lithium for quite sometime. It always seems the longer I take any psych medication, the less effective it becomes for me. I have been in many psych hospitals in my adult life, and always diagnosed with SEVERE depression--??
As for managing my symptoms, I was able to do that better when I was younger, and my spouse was still alive-! I have always exercised, but that doesn't seem work as well at my advanced age-! lol-
Also, as I have gotten older, I am noticing the lows accompanied with this illness, are A LOT, LOT, WORSE! Any suggestions from you would be greatly appreciated-! Many thanks for your outstanding, informative, video--VERY well done-!
PS-I hope this wasn't to long- and finally, I sincerely want wish you a happy & successful life, you are definitely on the right track, and that is wonderful-!! Mr. Ernie T.
Hello Ernie. I'm sorry that's the way it is right now. I know that, for some people, current bipolar medications do not work. Let's hope that something new comes along that does work. So how do you manage your symptoms? Thanks, Hannah
It is the last option for most people. Nobody willingly take in chemicals that have horrible side effects if there is another option. Most of us have tried several of those alternatives before making peace with the fact that we have to take meds to function normally.
Mike Parry : I have been told about Lithium OROTATE and sharing that info (I first got from my clinical nutritionist/naturopath). I tried it for about 2 months and I gained weight and didn't feel any better (or maybe a tiny bit but not worth it). Any side effects on your end so far, if you don't mind me asking? Weight gain? I'm SO freakin' scared because I also tried Lamotrigine -at only 25mg!- and felt awful. I'm super sensitive with meds and supplements in general.
Hundreds of millions of people find it incredibly useful and helpful. I used to think the same way because I had an abusive hippie boyfriend that would stigmatize medication. If we didn't have medication we wouldn't have progressed as much as we have. And a lot of people would actually die without their mental health medications from suicide
Ana, natural does NOT work for everyone. For me going natural was the dumbest thing I ever done. Now that I'm on several meds my life has changed over 100%. Until your our shoes you have idea the hell we live through. Those chemicals that you talk about SAVED MY LIFE. Educate yourself before you speak because you have absolutely no idea what so ever...
I was undiagnosed during college and got a BA in psychology and minor in public health. I wanted to do premed but I struggled with the upper lever courses. I have a learning disability but I'm gifted in math and science.
I am going in-patient this monday for treating bipolar disorder and adhd. I am really nervous, but I am glad I am getting help for it so early. I am only 17 so I am hopefull they will find the right solutions and treatments for me. I dropped out of high school, but I will try again this fall, and hopefully it will go great. Thank you so much for this video, it gave me hope <3
Thank you so much for your reply! It truly means a lot to me. I am still in that confused situation, and I am not 100% sure what is going on and how the disorders affect me, but I know I will find out sometime. Right now I have just accepted that it will be a long ride, and that I have to be patient. I had a grandfather that had bipolar disorder, struggled with alcohol and took his own life. I was so afraid that it would happen to me, so I kept denying to my self that I might have the disorder and ignored every symptom. When my psychiatrist would bring it up, I would just yell "I don't have it, shut up!" just because I was scared. Right now I am past that, trying to accept who I am and my main focus is to take it as it comes. I also hope you are doing well xx
Hello Elida. I'm glad you found us and I hope you'll subscribe and stay in touch. I was officially diagnosed with bipolar 2 when I was 19. I was sent to a psychiatric hospital and received the diagnosis. I went through a lot of turmoil and it took several years after my diagnosis before I was able to begin to really understand what living with bipolar and ADHD was all about, what it meant for me and how I fit in because of it. I get that you're nervous and scared but you also have a good attitude about wanting to get help. There will be challenges along the way but know that things can and do get better and there are many people living with bipolar disorder and other mental health conditions who are living good lives. "Good lives" doesn't mean that you won't experience symptoms and setbacks, but that you will learn to manage your symptoms and deal with the setbacks and live your best life. Take care, Hannah
HealthyPlace Mental Health ive learned to control the mood swings with 5htp...omega 3 and lithium orate. all over the counter. yes before my medications that I was prescribed it wasn't intense like now lol. stay strong minded and focused don't let the meds dictate your life😉
Sorry for late reply.. it was 2 years ago but i remember it was the most awful feeling of distress.. i could NOT lay down i felt like i had to keep moving and keep busy otherwise i had this overwhelming feeling of discomfort. I felt so sick and like i couldnt stop moving.. it was so bad i wanted to die because u couldnt stand the uneasy feeling. Extreme restlessness. it was very scary. I went to ER and they told me to stop taking the medication.. i was back to normal within a day or so. I hope to never experience that again. It was terrifying.
Akathisia may be what your experiencing .. i was diagnosed with type 1 bipolar 2 1/2 years ago... its been a wild ride and its a struggle to find the right medication... ive tried nearly everything .. no medication is perfect and there are side effects with every medication.. so it basically just ends up coming down to you picking the medication with side effects that you can deal with and live with the most. The worst side effect i experienced from a couple different medications was akathisia.. it was very scary. Im on depakote now and although its a struggle everyday to accept my disorder and have to take medication for the rest of my life.. i feel this is the one my mind and body can function on the best. There are side effects that i dont like but nothing nearly as bad as akathesia...
Hi Alanna. Welcome to our community. I hope you subscribe and join us. What you're experiencing could be a side-effect of starting the medication and it may disappear once your body adjusts to the medication. Either way, I would share this with your doctor. Maybe he/she has a suggestion on how to handle that. Thanks, Hannah
hi again hannah thanks for ur reply!!look as for bp 2 like our condition u know very well that its about stabilizing our mood !!what im really intrested that i need to know if ur taking a combo or only a mood stabilizier!!!im sure u have more experience than me i ve been only 3 years on my meds !!!im telling u since i started taking them i just felt that i was born again!!!thats why i hope to know what brand or combo of meds that changed ur life also!!pls help me in my research im hoping for ur cooperation.thank u hannah
Jhony, yes I am on a medication combo and I do take a mood stabilizer. I want to emphasize here that each person is different and it's important to work with your doctor to find out what helps you the most. Thanks, Hannah
Emily A what meds work for you? I currently am on day 2 of lamictal. I just started taking them again. Curious what others take. I don’t see good things about lithium but I could be wrong. I am Type 2... lots of depressive states and mood shifts. I’ve always been unsure about taking prescription drugs. But then again, that’s sort of how I was raised to think. Any advice would be helpful. Hannah you are such a blessing. I love tapping into this community.
Hanna I am not bipolar but I am in love with a woman that is. I would like to share my story and ask for your help. Right now she is locked up for a dui. Quick story of how this happened. We had an awesome relationship then she started working at a local bar. I work out of town a lot and as I was gone she was being feed lies from other women at the bar and consoled by another man who also worked there. To keep this short I’ll paraphrase they got involved, she was lying to me about him I found out came in one night to her work. I hit him and got asked not to come back for a while. She ran off with him that weekend. Got drunk and High and got pulled over for speeding. Illegal registration on truck and a dui. Since she has admitted she loves me and that I am probably the best thing she’s ever had. I know she is the one for me I love her but she is still stuck with feelings for him. He locked up in another county on other charges. All her true friends know he is wrong for her but I do not know where to turn. I truly love her and she says she wants a normal life and I want to help. Please if you can help me help her what can I do?
HealthyPlace Mental Health thank you for your reply and I do understand you are not a professional. However, your videos have helped me understand more about her condition. She came to me wanting me to understand why she had gotten to where she was and that if she had told me up front this might (and she believed) that our situation could have been avoided. I appreciate your reply and I do understand your position. Just know that your videos are helping people and I hope to have the opportunity to share them with her. I know she loves me and she knows I love her. Just wanted your opinion on it and again thank you for your reply.
Hi Al. This is a complex question and I want you to know that I am not a therapist or mental health professional of any type. And I don't know you or your friend. So I'm not really in a position to give that kind of advice. From the sound of things, your friend might need some time and space to straighten out her own life. You might also want to consider what kind of relationship you can look forward to if she remains in this condition. Finally, I have found that love doesn't cure all and that you can't make a person better. That is really your friend's responsibility, not yours. Thanks, Hannah
After many many medications of failing or making my BP2 worse I realized the one I thought was the worse (Lithium) was actually the one I needed to be on...it was my alcohol drinking that was making my anxiety and depression WORSE
With that said—the lithium is NOT a cure all I have learned to excerise regularly rly, eat a very balanced diet, and take time to myself with whatever relaxes my mind...everyday is a struggle but we have to keep going
You're right, Jessica. It takes a whole lot more than just bipolar medications to keep going and, even then, it can be a struggle. Out of curiosity, were you drinking to manage your mental health symptoms? Thanks for sharing. Hannah
Hi Michael. From what I've read it's not an unusual thing. Here are some articles I came across. I hope they help. Thanks, Hannah
Difficulty of Diagnosing ADHD and Bipolar in Children | http://bit.ly/2eDYvZq
Bipolar or ADHD With Depression? | http://bit.ly/2uKTRPA
Bipolar Disorder Misdiagnosis Leads to Overdiagnosis | http://bit.ly/2uKabQG
I fucked my whole early years being a little shit taking risks ie in trouble with the police, at school, with my parents so on and so fourth, I've currently been semi diagnosed with bipolar and looking back it all makes sense, used to go from being an emotional cry baby and feel outcastes to main man of the bunch doing crazy shit not thinking about consequences and not gna lie love it when I'm like that! However the more depressive side started to be the dominant part of my life in my late 20s early 30s and got to point wheee I saw a doctor, I was sent from doc to doc some saying one thing others saying another, while on fluxitene? Well after that I was up n down more regularly either wanting to get even with old foes or being shit scared of everything n thinking I should exit the world... I've since stopped taking fluxitene and I've been fine...I've just read it's a big no no to give bipolar folk these....I'm actually fuming in the fact I've seen so many doctors and no1 picked this up I've kost my relationship with a lot of my friends and more importantly my son moved back to his mums..we were thick as thrives, tbh I'm lucky I'm not in jail or dead because of those things and I didn't even see what I was like until I stopped taking them!!! So please people don't take them without people watching over you, it could ruin your life like I feel it has mine. Hope you are all well as you can be xxx
HealthyPlace don't take this the wrong way I'll stop by every now and then but I don't want reminding by subscribing on my down time about my head weather in case you catch me on a rainy day. Nothing wrong with what your doing just personal preference that's all. Thanks for kind words and keep up the good work your doing for everyone that's subscribed x
dan simpkins Hi Dan. Thank you for sharing part of your story. I read somewhere that, on average, it takes 7 years before many with bipolar are correctly diagnosed. In the meantime, that means many people like us go through a lot of troubled times. Hopefully you're getting good care now and one day your son will understand what you were dealing with. I want to invite you to subscribe and join our community. Hannah
hello.. i want to know if your creativity and iq has gone down after meds? I used to be on valproate and flux for 2 years and they really made me numb and dumbed me down. My doc now recommends lamotrigine. What do you think?
Yes Waleed, when I was on the wrong medication. No, when I began taking the right medication. When I started on the routine of medications I am currently on, my IQ is higher, as well as the creative side of me. My doctor and I worked together to explore the ADHD aspect of my condition. This is seen in many cases of people with bipolar disorder. It turned out the reason I struggled academically in the past was because I could not focus. I couldn't absorb information or act on it. The same goes for creativity. The ideas have always been there, but I couldn't complete anything. My advice is to be assertive with your doctors in a respectful way. Tell them, "I can't think. I have lost my ability to be creative or think. How do we change this? And when do we start? I am open to your suggestions and will do whatever it takes." Thanks! Hannah
I am living proof that medication CAN be beneficial to a happier life. currently 25, I was diagnosed bipolar 2 at age 15. the first dr I went to was crap and made me feel like a test dummy because I knew nothing about what was going on. he put me on a pill for every symptom! trileptal, Zoloft, welbutrin, and Adderall. it scared me away and for years after I'd self medicate with marijuana. it worked for a long time. until about a year and a half ago...most of my life I'd dealt with manic and hypomanic issues. I'd only ever be truly depressed as a child but I kept it hidden in journals and poetry. well, recently id hit the worst depression of my life. I couldn't hear people talking even while looking them dead in the face, and I'd cry every time I spoke. this lasted 2-3 months before I couldn't stand it anymore. some days I felt like I was going to pass out or have a heart attack from my anxiety so I knew I needed to go to the dr. it took weeks to find the right place to go because now I had expectations and knowledge about my condition. I told the psychiatrist straight up. "I only want a mood stabilizer...well start there" he suggested that I pair a mood stabilizer with trazadone to help me sleep at night. he first offered me Seroquel which kind of offended me because I thought it was for crazy people because it's an antipsychotic. we decided to go with lamictal. it worked for my highs but not my lows. I read more about the Seroquel on their official website and they suggested it to help with bipolar depression. I spoke to many people and it got a lot of trash talk. I then spoke to several people at the drs office like my talk therapist and the nurses and asked them if they've seen good things come from other patients which they replied "you'll have to speak to your psychiatrist, but yes, I've seen the benefits." I spoke more to my psychiatrist about it and decided to switch the trazadone to Seroquel because they both put you to sleep. I haven't had any issues with depression, anxiety, anger, or even hyperactivity since I found the right regimen. I no longer need a therapist which saves me lots of money. I went from seeing the therapist and psychiatrist every two weeks to only seeing the psychiatrist every 8 weeks for a check up and a new prescription. you WILL feel lost and hopeless and angry at first. but PLEASE keep trying. even if you have to go through a few different doctors. my best advice is to learn as much as you possibly can so you don't get bullied into trying medication you don't really need by bad drs who don't truly care. I hope my experience inspires you not to give up hope and to fight for the help you deserve!
HealthyPlace thanks for the reply!! I very much admire you sharing your journey with us. makes me feel not so alone and better understood because SO many people don't understand and can't empathize with me on this. lol. I hate when people automatically assume I'm crazy or like if I'm having trouble that day, say with feeling sad or angry, they can't accept that nothing has happened to me and that I just feel that way and don't know why. they think I'm lying or shutting them out by not telling them what happened. which in turn makes me feel worse. lol. so, thank you again. it's certainly not easy to talk about because a lot of times I can't be too honest about things because then people worry or think I'm nuts. 😂
Wow, Cadence! Thank you for sharing that part of your story. It is inspiring. I agree that the most important things you can do are: 1) learn about your condition, 2) the various treatments, 3) and finding a good psychiatrist. Even with all that, one may have to go through different treatment regimens to discover what works best for them. But don't give up hope. There are many people living better lives because they found treatment that works for them. Thanks again, Hannah
I was diagnosed with bipolar 2 twelve years ago, and for the first 6 years I struggled to find stability. I didn't want to accept that I had the disorder, and didn't think I needed the meds, so alternately I would stop taking them. I always ended up getting sick. Finally in 2009 after my worst episode, I finally decided I'd had enough and needed to accept my diagnosis and embrace medication. So I did. 7 years later, I have not had any episodes! It is possible to thrive on medication. If you don't like what your on, talk to your Doctor. If your Doctor won't work with you, find a new Doctor!! (within reason, don't just dump them for something silly) It's as simple as that. Listen to your body and journal what your feeling on different medications. Also, adjust your doses as needed. You may not need to be on an extremely high dose of Lithium. I take all my meds at night, and I'm on the lowest doses I've ever been on. And it's been like that for two years. Find a good Dr. who will work with you. Living on medication doesn't have to suck. ;)
I like your advice, Brianne. If you're doctor isn't helping you, find a psychiatrist who will. For various reasons, people stay with doctors who aren't helping them make progress. There's one caveat to that, you have to commit to the process. If you don't do everything you can to try and improve, there's a strong likelihood you won't get the results you were hoping for. Hannah
I'm on Latuda right now and am doing really well no side effects unless I drink within 2 hours of taking it but it's kinda way pricier than Quetiapine was
it replaced the quetiapine which helps me sleep but is too sedating in high doses but I've also been helped by Lamictal although it takes months to get to a therapeutic dose so it's not a good emergency med. I haven't tried a lot of different mood stabilizers because some like Zyprexa had side effects I just was not willing to deal with but now like Hannah I'm going to finish college which I had previously dropped out of
Hi Natalie. Thanks for sharing your bipolar medication experience. Psychiatric medications can be challenging because there are so many things to consider. I'm glad to hear you have one that working for you right now. And congratulations on going back to college. That's an accomplishment in itself. Hannah
Hi Ashley Rose. Some doctors treat depression and bipolar using Tegretol. Here's info on HealthyPlace about Tegretol. http://ow.ly/FVbt3080fK3 and it's use as a mood stabilizer http://ow.ly/43XV3080fQV I hope that helps. Amanda
Sorry, I don't discuss which meds I'm taking in public because I don't want to give people the impression that just because something works for me that it will work for them. Unfortunately, psych meds are such an individual thing and what works for some may not work for others. Hannah
Hi maciesky. I do take bipolar 2 medications but I don't discuss which ones. Why? Because, unfortunately, what works for one person may not work for another and I don't want people to think there's some "one pill for all" treatment out there. I spent a few years trying out different meds, different combinations of meds, and different dosages. Yeah! It's a mess. And even recently, I had to have another med adjustment. What I do want people to know about medication treatment for bipolar 2 is that it helps me and it may help you too, but you have to be patient and persistent...which is really hard at times.I'd be interested to know if you've tried medications for bipolar 2 and how that worked out for you.I hope you subscribe to our channel and join our community here on YouTube. Thank you, Hannah
I was diagnosed with Bipolar type 1 in 2012, it took me 4 years to be on lithium regularly. it took me 4 years to accept the fact that if I was going to live the life I wanted to live I needed to be on medication. Does lithium have side effects? yes, I'm lethargic, apathetic and some say i'm a little bit cold and unemotional and of course weight gain. However in the past year being on lithium every single day, I been able to live on my own, keep a full time job and maintain a healthy relationship with my girlfriend. All these things were non existent while I was off them struggling to keep my moods in check. Great video, subscribed!
You're so right Hannah! meds help! The problem with some meds is that sometimes they stop working after several years.
I am bipolar 1,schizophrenia spectrum, and ADHD. I take medz for all, but they just don't work like they have in the PAST - TIME TO ADJUST THE TYPE OF MEDZ OR UP THE DOSAGE.
THX for posting this on YouTube!
I appreciate your comment, Ramon. It is a big problem. Just when you think things are stable, then you may discover your med no longer works like it used to. It happens across many psychiatric medications, not just medications for bipolar disorder. I hope the adjustment works for you. Hannah
define what it means for a med to "work". It looks like I'll never have a full-time job again, even on meds, and the only relationship I ever had was with a person whose career and life revolved around her mental illness. So that won't change. But being seriously suicidal and obsessing over worst case scenarios much of the time: the medications help me a lot with that! Adderall also helped me in certain employment, but different prescribing psychiatrists had different things to say on the appropriateness of that
Hi Kewanna. Stress definitely plays a role in managing bipolar disorder, but you know what, it wouldn't hurt to get a second opinion on whether no medications would ever work for you. Thanks for sharing. Hannah
Let me make one of these videos. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, rejected my diagnoses, refuse to take medicine, and basically destroyed my life with a pretty severe manic episode followed by a crippling episode of depression.
Antidepressants are medications that can help relieve symptoms of depression, social anxiety disorder, anxiety disorders, seasonal affective disorder, and dysthymia, or mild chronic depression, as well as other conditions.
They aim to correct chemical imbalances of neurotransmitters in the brain that are believed to be responsible for changes in mood and behavior.
Depression Medications (Antidepressants)
These are the most commonly prescribed type of antidepressant.
Serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) are used to treat major depression, mood disorders, and possibly but less commonly attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety disorders, menopausal symptoms, fibromyalgia, and chronic neuropathic pain.
SNRIs raise levels of serotonin and norepinephrine, two neurotransmitters in the brain that play a key role in stabilizing mood.
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the most commonly prescribed antidepressants. They are effective in treating depression, and they have fewer side effects than the other antidepressants.
SSRIs block the reuptake, or absorption, of serotonin in the brain. This makes it easier for the brain cells to receive and send messages, resulting in better and more stable moods.
They are called "selective" because they mainly seem to affect serotonin, and not the other neurotransmitters.