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bipolar- I need more help.

(12 Posts)
ButteryPie Thu 28-Jul-11 19:23:05

I'm now on 200mg lamotrigine/day and I feel awful. Either its not working or I would be even worse without it. I'm not even sure if Im high or low or what. Travelled home from my parents today, had to have a diazepam (one of my last ones-apparently i won't get another prescription) just to stop myself shaking with stress when the kids were messing about. Was ok on the trains, but as soon as we got home I turned into shouty mummy again. Now the house is a mess and I just can't face even making a brew. I'm so drowsy.

The doctors all want me on anti psychotics, but more as a sedative than anything, although I suspect I might be leaning towards needing them properly again - atm is just what most people would call having an overactive imagination, but it really scares me. Pretty sure it is stress related though, and not the proper full on psychosis that I used to have, so I'm reluctant to go on drugs that I know will severely restrict my life (apparently I have an usually high tendancy to side effects - new doctors always think I'm exaggerating till they see it)

I need something stronger though.

What I would love would be something that doesn't involve feeling like I am on medication, lamotrigine is brill for the lack of side effects, but it doesn't seem to be working. Then again, dh and the cpn both said they have seen a huge difference. I have had cbt loads, doesn't seem to work, and I don't have any deep seated trauma for any other type of therapy.

Last time I was on antipsychotics they made my entire body feel heavy, so I went from size 8 to 18 in six months through eating to try and get energy. I always felt 'drugged'.

Oh, and I still had psychosis and mania anyway.

I'm at the point now where I need to try something though. My poor kids :-(

I asked for gelp at surestart ages ago, said they would refer me to the hv, but nothing yet. I told my cpn I am having trouble coping with kids, she just asked if thier basic needs are being met.

I don't think anyone understands just how bad I feel. Even in hospital they didn't.

madmouse Thu 28-Jul-11 20:02:43

Hi Butterpie sorry that you are struggling again (or still) sad

I had a weird reaction to ADs this weekend and got very agitated. eventually I was given a low dose (25mg) of quetiapine. I blindly assume that you have had this before? Is that what makes you overweight and heavy-feeling? I'm mentioning it because it made me feel very calm again very quickly. I never took the other 19 tablets I was given as things settled down, but it made me see why you may need something like that when you are bipolar and ''high''.

Any chance of a discussion with a psychiatrist to see what is best/least bad for you?

ButteryPie Thu 28-Jul-11 20:29:15

I've had many discussions with psychiratrists, and they all suggest different things. I go away, think about it, then the next one has totally different ideas, so I think I need to take charge a bit.

I have had rispiridone and arirpriprizole for a year each and quetiapine for two days (then refused it from then on). None really seemed to work.

Thing is, I have very rapid cycling bipolar- it would not be usual for me to do a full cycle in a month or two and often it is much quicker, so unless something works immediately, just taking something when needed is no good. But I want to feel normal when I'm normal, if that makes any sense- I have precious little respite as it is, I don't want to ruin that by being too drugged up.

I might have to though - my priority has to be the kids and I'm going to end up traumatising them at this rate.

philnteds Thu 28-Jul-11 20:53:50

Hi i am not a doctor but i know someone who is on Depakote as a mood stabiliser can you take this? I am sorry you are suffering so.....children are resilient but you need to be happy and calm.

madmouse Thu 28-Jul-11 21:18:02

why did you refuse the quetiapine? For me they worked totally in 15mins where not long before I had been so agitated that dh worried I would end up sectioned, but then I had just proven to be very sensitive to drugs hmm. It did make me feel heavy.

ButteryPie Thu 28-Jul-11 21:31:34

I found the quetiapine did nothing to stop the agitation, but stopped my body moving. So I was still having a full on panic but was unable to move to get help. Then I spent the next day asleep, but not getting refreshed in any way.

I've had tranquillisers that stop me moving, but they mostly stop my brain and I get a few.hours of being calm, which is bliss - not the depressed slowness, but just calm, like being by a still lake, as opposed to the dark cave of depression, or the stormy clifftop of mania, if that isn't too wanky

madmouse Thu 28-Jul-11 21:33:57

hmm that sounds like a good reason not to take the stuff sad

fedupandtired Thu 28-Jul-11 21:44:18

I'd urge you to try the quetiapine for longer than 2 days as it can work really well. I have rapid cycling bipolar (cycles range from weeks to a day so very variable) and it works really well. It is very sedating but that should ease as you get used to it.

midnightservant Thu 28-Jul-11 22:45:15

oh butterpie so sorry sad

Lamotragine seemed to work for me (main problem continuous low level depression, diagnosed with bp) to begin with, then I got worse and worse and ended up cycling within a day. It was horrible.

Am off now, and on paroxatine. Well enough to be discharged back to GP. But I seriously doubt my diagnosis. I truly believe I have Aspergers, with ADD - the ADD stops me getting started, then I get depressed cos not doing anything. If I do get started, often can't stop. Self medication with cannabis in very stressful circumstances in the past - couldn't stop and ended up in hospital with psychosis - this I believe led to my misdiagnosis.

Don't know how helpful this post will be, but at least it's more info.

ButteryPie Fri 29-Jul-11 13:44:35

I've texted my care coordinator and told her I'll do or take anything, no reply, and no answer on the office phone. Have rung mind,vwho just directed me to leaflets, same with rethink, the local mind are getting someone to ring me back but suggested massage hmm and the bipolar organisation have groups that will be three buses away that are shut till september.

I need to be better. Apart from the kids, I will put everything else to one side. There must be something.

JinxAndFluff Fri 29-Jul-11 14:21:42

I was diagnosed with bp start 2005 (tho had been seriously manic but in denial for most of 2004). It took from then until maybe 2009 to get my meds right. During that time I tried so many ADs and antipsychotics and mood stabilisers that I now cannot remember them all. The worst times were every time they put me on a new AD and it interacted with the others, and sent me high again.

I became extremely effective at identifying the early symptoms thank god. I spent those years feeling dead inside, like an empty shell, pointless. All I can say is that every time things were going 'wonky' in any way of not coping, I learnt to harrass my GP until I saw the psychiatrist again and ideally another one. Sounds like you have seen plenty. But when you do find the one and they experiement and are persistent with you and adjust the dose........ THE RELIEF.

I started to feel like me about 2 years ago. Yes, have gained weight due to meds, yes I have the ability to sleep any where any time for the odd hour, yes I have lost a bit of my spark/verve/whatever was that extra zing, but I am so glad I persisted with the last shrink (who has now needless to say moved on.....). My DD thinks I am 'Mad' but normal, great relationship. I work again. I've moved house. I dealt with the divorce from hell.

I'm on 1000mg Depokate, 800mg Lithium, 300mg Quetiapine (plus thyroxine). Hate and love the meds equally. Can't live with or without you U2 type situation.

I completely sympathise. It sounds like its the meds you need help with. I understand how it can seem like you are trapped in a nightmare beyond your control or resolution. Is there an alternative GP in your practice who would see you - they do vary and serveral of mine came up with different perspectives. Shrinks again vary. I remember seeing one at a midnight emergency hospital service when I thought I was going high and hadn't been sleeping, I was contemplating drinking to resolve the matter (!) and he commented that I was on a very heavy set of mood stabilisers (that's the current lot) and then prescribed some Chlormazepine, another antipsychotic, to resolve the matter! I still have the large prescription of them.....

ButteryPie Fri 05-Aug-11 09:34:13

I don't think I'm allowed to go to my GP- I'm still under the early intevention in psychosis team. Although they are going to discharge me to the normal cpn team soon.

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