Psychiatric medications...who in our community has taken them and...

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by MidwestMom, Mar 27, 2013.

  1. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    list your medications, if you don't feel unsafe doing so.

    Has anyone, like me, felt worse on certain medications that the psychiatrist swears will make us feel better? Anyone feel they were overmedicated sometimes or not listened to?

    Don't go into any more detail than you feel comfortable doing, but I'd like to talk about psychiatric drugs and how they do not often do what they are supposed to do and even make us sometimes worse t han before...until/if we find the right medication, which can take ten years.

    If you are on a good medication combo, how many years did it take you to find that combo?

    Anyone quit taking psychiatric medications altogether because of how they made you feel?

    Again, just post to the degree of your comfort level. I am fairly open, but realize not everyone does. Here's a list of the medications I can remember and what side effects I got from them until my journey to the medication combo that has changed my life for the better for over twenty years.

    Ritalin--a bust. Made me very high until I was shaking then I crashed into a long depression caused by one little pill!

    amitriptylene--I had an unusual reaction that is very much like an LSD trip. Colors blended together. I heard things like they were on slow or fast speed. I couldn't speak coherantly. My throat was closing up (this was dangerous), I hallucinated and know what it feels like to be psychotic.

    tofrinil=worked at first, then had a reaction similar to amitripytilene, but much, much, much faster done and milder.

    senoquen--depressed, caused some hallucinations

    Lithium--scared me. Dulled me. Made me feel as if I was unreal and walking in a dream. Extreme depression and cognitive dulling.

    nortiptylene--Did not give me side effects!!!! Worked against my depression about 50%. I still had my depression symptoms, but was bascially able to function some of the time.Val

    Valium-killed any panic attack, but took 30 minutes or so and the effect didn't last. No side effects.

    Prozac--Lifted me out of my depressed quickly and in a few days, made ma a little manic. I felt great until two months later when it pooped out, leaving me more depressed than before. Upping the dose just made me more depressed. Prozac never worked for me after it pooped out. Gave me nightmares and ,although this is not supposed to be a side effect, I could hardly keep my eyes open while taking it. Fell asleep at work.

    Zoloft--After two weeks on this drug I was in the hospital with a heart racing so quickly they couldn't count my pulse, extreme agitation, akathesia, and other not-fun symptoms. Never will touch that one again. This was on only 50 mgs.

    Clonazapan--Fantastic medication that gave me no side effects and tempered my panic attacks to the point that I don't have any anymore.

    Tegretal--Spacy, sleepy, out-of-it, that dream like state I felt on Lithium but not as bad, depression, I didn't like it. I felt funny on it.

    Inderol--spacy, dream-like, depressed, no thanks.

    Paroxatene--my magic pill that made almost all of my symptoms go away. They have not come back. My miracle pill. I LOVE PAROXATENE!!!! But a lot of people can't take it.

    I have been on Paroxatene and Clonazapan since age 40. I am almost 60. I will never go off of them. My life on these medications has been great, as opposed to chronic depression/anxiety/panic attacks without them.

    Note: Every time I would tell a psychiatrist I felt a medication was making me feel worse, he would poo-poo it and say I actually needed MORE of the drug. After trying that a few times and feeling even worse, I learned to trust my own instincts and to say, "No. I'm right."

    Don't know what kind of response I'll get. Not sure people want to share this. But I put it out there because many of our kids complain about their drug side effects and often we don't listen...
  2. TeDo

    TeDo CD Hall of Fame

    I haven't been on any medications for about 15 years and don't even remember the LONG list of ones I was tried on. I know it was a lot, and in varying combinations, and pretty much all of them either put me to sleep, made me physically ill, or "altered" my perceptions in some way. I've had everything blurred, moving in and out of focus, shaking (what I was seeing was shaking), and I can't remember all the rest. Most of them were NOT fun or even helpful and I got the same response from the psychiatrists as you did. Prozac, and it alone, was my "miracle drug".

    As for not listening to our kids, I am the opposite. difficult child 1 has been tried on many medications and each of them has been discontinued the moment he reported any side effects to me. After watching my 3 year old react to his first medication by going on a "drug trip" on a stimulant, I have never taken any chances.
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Methylphenidate... on it for years, can't function without it, and I don't even get the side effects that I want to get out of this medication (appetite suppression... lol).
  4. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    I won't go on psychiatric medications ever again. I'd rather use my brain to work through whatever's hammering me. And yes, I was one of those that was told "You need to take these forever."

    I tried Prozac. Standard dose made me hilariously manic, so I switched to half dose. Stopped when I felt I had worked my way over the anxiety hump. Weird side effect - I lost all cravings for chocolate.

    Severe depressive episode, Zoloft. This was about 10 years later, maybe. I was seriously non-functional, I needed something to make me Not Care until I could get a handle on my life and Kiddo's autism and Spouse's own depressive porn-addictive behaviors along with the stress he was dealing with at work.

    (Note: I think the porn habit was him just going nuts as a collector personality, not anything dangerous in and of itself. It frankly could have been comic books (and for a long time it was) or collectible plates or railroad spikes or anything - he just picked something free he could download that was enough of a distraction that he could refrain from thinking about work and the company buy-out by German Competitor Company.)

    Well, Zoloft worked all right. I didn't give a s*** about much of anything. I took a standard dose, lost all my empathic skills but maintained socially acceptible behavior out of habit, started paying bills late, was told again and again through therapy by the pshrink who kept the scrip up that I'd Need These Forever, tried hard to work with the ptherapist to keep myself functioning and stable, then started taking Ritalin too out of a desire to stay focused (part of the Zoloft was that I didn't care, thus didn't care about staying on task, whatever, I'll get it.)

    Ritalin - well, I reflected on that in a previous post. Like legal coke, I loved the stuff, it shut off the inner narrator completely and I was getting stuff done just this side of manic and sleeping better than I'd ever slept in my life. I was supposed to take 4 a day but I'd "bank" my pills and use it harder on weekends or whenever I felt like it.

    I was able to cut the Ritalin cold turkey, but I had to taper off the Zoloft against medical advice. (Because DEX lost his job and we were running out of insurance coverage.) I did that in steps, I had a routine going.

    1. Stop taking Zoloft.
    2. When the withdrawal fog starts, resume 1/2 dose.
    3. When fog lifts, stop pills again.
    4. When fog returns, resume at 1/2 of the above.

    I kept doing this for about a month, until I was out of pills.

    Then a week after my last 1/8th dose, some jerks knocked down the World Trade Center towers. I was watching this on TV, and in the midst of the horror I started that kind of hysterical laughter you can't fake. DEX looked at me, and I said in my best Lloyd Bridges voice ("Airplane!")...

    "I sure picked the wrong week to give up antidepressants."

    So no. I'd rather have the occasional s***thank you days than have to feel that ever again.
  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Nerfherder, lost your desire for chocolate? THAT drug should be banned!!!! lol.

    Funny/sad story about giving up your medications and then watching the towers go down ... I think we all had panic attacks after that.

    MWM, my difficult child had the exact same symptoms you did when he took Zoloft. Scary! I do NOT like your dr! Anyone who poo-poos that kind of thing and then tells you to take more is full of it. I hope you switched!
    I tried Zoloft many yrs ago for stress and headaches. It gave me even worse headaches and I almost went to the ER. I'm glad it works for some people but I'm not going near it again.

    Nerfherder, I'll be staying away from Prozac too ... I love chocolate ...
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member In all my years from 23 to almost 60, I've had at least twenty Only two of them really impressed me. One was the awesome, brilliant man from the University of Chicago where I stayed for ten weeks. He was way ahead of his time. The other was the one who gave me paroxatene because he gave me paroxatene and it But it took a good ten/fifteen years to get on the right drugs.

    I shudder at how many medications some doctors put our kids on, let alone us! I just wondered if a lot in our community had experience taking psychiatric medications. They are no picnic.
  7. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Zoloft, about 18 years ago... No effect.

    Wellbutrin, 10 years ago - psycho witch from hell. I didn't even want to be around me.

    Celexa, 3.5 years ago - miracle drug. MIR-A-CLE. 20mg. Upped to 40 after about 6 months. AWESOME stuff. For me. First few days I was a bit spacey.

    Accidentally took one of Onyxx's Seroquel... SUPER spacey.

    Chantix - to stop smoking - made me angry and nauseous. Anxiety attacks got worse.

    Back on Celexa now. May be time to return do 40mg (on 20 now)... Or not, depending on Onyxx... Sigh. PPD is AWFUL but I wonder how much was hormonal and how much was external.
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi CD Hall of Fame

    Zoloft and Pamelor combo as a teen - helped me through a severe depression. Gained about 30lbs though.

    Wellbutrin XR in late 20s - did very well on this, gained no weight. No I didn't quit smoking, but it did help with depression.

    Effexor - never f'ing again. Night terrors. OMG. Two nights of that and I called doctor and said I was never taking it again.

    Ativan - took it for panic attacks and insomnia after Katrina. Worked well. Took it again recently for social anxiety, panic related to PTSD. Worked well.

    Latuda - I took it and don't recall why it didn't work for me... got switched to Saphris.

    Saphris - for PTSD. Helps level my moods and manage my PTSD so I can handle Storm better. Works okay, i.e. I don't get angry as easily (I'm not a patient person and I have a short temper, as does she - bad combo).

    Neurontin - for mood leveling and pain management. I have a lot of general aches and pains in my joints and bones. Doesn't do anything for breakthrough pain like weather-related pain, but for the basic everyday pain it's been great, or was before I got sick. I'm still recovering from all that. Still not sure on the mood thing.

    Topamax - for anxiety. Works pretty good. Has also decreased my migraines (nice side effect!).
  9. cubsgirl

    cubsgirl Well-Known Member

    So far Geodon, Wellbutrin and clonezpam has been a godsend for me. I tried Paxil (didn't work). I feel really even out on the combo I have now! For what's is worth I'm also on synthroid.
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    The Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) gave me symptoms similar to bipolar for a while. Plus outrageous anxiety that was so bad I preferred never to leave the house, couldn't ride in a car without spazzing every time I detected something out the corner of my eye (didn't help that I have excellent peripheral vision), getting to sleep was next to impossible as my brain flat out refused to shut up. I would "lose" myself in the computer. Didn't really mean to........but yeah hours and hours and to me it was just a few minutes.

    So I got klonopin for the anxiety. Worked wonders. No stoned feeling and my muscles between my shoulder blades relaxed for the first time in 2 yrs (since the accident) Didn't do a whole lot for the spazzing in the car or not wanting to leave the house though.
    Trazadone to sleep.......also to hopefully help some of the zoning out stuff. Helped me sleep for about a month, then stopped working.
    Seroquil also for the same thing the trazadone was given for.......I slept again. I also realized after a few months my emotions were flat. Didn't feel happy. Didn't feel sad or depressed. Didn't feel a darn thing about anything to be honest. Didn't like it but wanted to sleep.

    psychiatrist removed the klonopin afraid I'd get addicted. Got to have it a whole month.......gee whiz. omg Muscles between the shoulder blades have been tighter than ever, even now. He didn't put me on another anxiety medication. Instead we worked on the anxiety itself. That was fun, not. But it worked and got it under control.

    doctor decided to try lamactil (sp). I might as well have taken nothing. But then.......I also wasn't truly bipolar either.

    Weaned myself off all of them before enrolling in school 7 yrs ago. I couldn't concentrate on them and they made my memory toast. (which I already have major issues with short term memory so yeah) Knew the proper way to wean so that wasn't too bad. Just some sleepless nights.......lots of them.

    Chantix to stop smoking.

    Not a side effect for any of them, not even the chantix which worked great until Fred informed me he'd not put back the cash to refill the script which ended that. ugh

    Oh welbutrin once to quit smoking........made me homicidal as all get out.

    Prozac makes my family suicidal, so no psychiatrist will script it.

    Zoloft made my non violent Travis suddenly go for his sisters throat simply because she walked into the room.

    Nichole had some side effects but when she took her medications she needed them. She weaned herself off about a year after Aubrey was born and has done better without them. in my opinion She just has to stay away from hormonal BC as it will put her on an awful emotional roller coaster.

    Waaaaaaaaaay back as a child I took whatever they were scripting for ADD/ADHD. It put me to sleep.......a dead sort of sleep that scared my Mom so bad she flushed it and refused to give it to me or anything else ever again.
  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Heavens....medications? I dont know if I can remember them all especially if you want me to include the kids.

    I think I first got prozac back in the mid 90's because I was so stressed out over the kids, work and my mom and it was simply awful. It made me feel like I was wearing a plastic mask over my face and couldnt feel anything. I didnt take it long at all.

    Then in 99 a therapist suggested that I ask my family doctor to put me on I believe the medication was called Serzone. OMG. It was newer AD that was supposed to be better because it didnt have the problem with decreasing libido. Well, let me tell ya, I found out quick I was bipolar to the nth degree because I went on a manic trip...better known as Mr Toads Wild Ride but I wasnt at Disney. About a week after I started taking it I stopped sleeping and I became so hypersexual that I was stalking sex chatrooms on the internet. I was working full time and not sleeping at night while I chatted with strangers on the internet having cyber sex. Eventually I planned this hook up out of state with one. I couldnt even think straight. I actually planned to leave right after Tony left for work in the morning. This was an awful plan because I actually passed him on the interstate! This almost broke up our relationship. I came home and confessed all...almost. Went to the doctor and told them these medications were killing me and they took me off them and sent me to a psychiatrist. I was off medications for several months after that because I was scared.

    Next I went on neurontin because they said it would help both the bipolar and the fibro. By that time we had discovered the fibro. I was just on the neurontin for about a year or so. I called it my six shots of tequila medicine. Every time I started it or increased it I felt like I took six shots of tequila. Odd it doesnt effect me that way now.

    Eventually I gave up the neurontin to start topamax and wellbutrin which was a very good combo for me for a long time. In 03, I added ativan and lamictal came in probably somewhere around 01 maybe. I think I added klonipin somewhere in there too around 03. I was also on ambien and trazadone for sleep for a long time but I found out in 06 that trazadone is related to serzone and that is why it wasnt working for me.

    Oh...I was on seroquel for a short time around the time I had the meningitis for help with both sleep and I came home with some leftover delusions from the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Seroquel caused my cholesterol to go through the roof. Im still on medications for that.

    Right now Im on: lamictal 400 mgs. Topamax 600 mgs, Xanax ER 3 mgs, Ambien 5 mgs, Neurontin, Oxybutin, Prilosec, Synthroid, Lipitor, Morphine ER 45 mg twice a day, lorcet prn
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Cubsgirl, Synthroid can make a huge difference.

    This is where I am now, at my age, sigh ... "I wonder how much was hormonal and how much was external."
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Lisa, you're hilarious but you brought up ain interesting point. Lithium made me the walking dead. No emotions. No feelings. Not able to react to anything or care about anything...that on top of making me feel as if I was walking in a dream and I wasn't sure if I was awake or dreaming. I never agreed to try a mood stablizer since then. My daughter complained about feeling exactly the same way on Depakote so, being 19, she tossed it down the toilet. She also said it made her unable to learn and she was in cosmetology school, which isn't as easy as it sounds. I will do ECT before I ever take a mood stabilizer. The only emotion I could feel on Lithium AND Tegretal was a black depression. Yech! And when I told the doctor, what did he do? He upped my dose so that I felt even worse. Finally I tossed the Lithium and slept for three days. I guess it can be dangerous to just quit Lithium cold turkey, but I didn't know and, at that point, I am not sure I would have cared. I woke up clearheaded and rational and angry at my doctor.

    The LSD-like experience was very informative. I got to see what hallucigenics do to teenagers and have no idea why anyone would want to experience psychosis. Not sure LSD makes your throat close up though...that was the scariest part. It lasted for three days...the hallucinations, not t he throat closing up.

    Maybe doctors should listen more?

    Janet, wow! You sure have a high tolerance to medications :)
  14. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    For what it's worth:

    I did some things in the early 80's, LSD once and Mushrooms twice. (Wow, that was 30 years ago!) Neither time did I experience anything like psychosis, when hallucinations occurred I knew they were hallucinations and never lost a sense of what was real and what wasn't. Frankly, LSD was like a very long movie that was kind of fun for the first two hours, then I got bored and spent time reading a stack of Reader's Digests while I waited for the effects to clear.

    The data I got out of that, when comparing experiences, is like this: If you're already broken, it won't fix you and can likely make you worse absent the appropriate "Set and Setting." (c.f. the writings of Leary and Lilly on the subject.) Also bear in mind that your chances of actually *getting* what you're paying for in an illegal street drug setting is pretty sketchy if not impossible.

    Apologies to the moderators if this is inappropriate.
  15. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I have been on more than a few, as has Wiz. Jess tried a couple during a really bad time and we didn't keep her on any of them for long because of side effects. I mean more than 2-3 days for the duration of medication for Jess.

    I did super well on prozac except it made my stomach burn for up to three hours after a couple of years and no stomach medication was able to stop this, so I stopped taking it.

    I was put on effexor and a few weeks later saw that doctor for the last time. I hated that because she was awesome. At the starting dose effexor was helpful. The dose was increased after three weeks and threw me into a living nightmare. I couldn't leave my home with-o shaking and crying. I was supposed to go help erect a playground at the school my kids attended for three years and I was a MAJOR force behind raising enough money for this playgound. I couldn't go. could NOT get out of the car and had no clue why. I just shook and cried and cried and panicked over I have absolutely no clue what. I called my doctor and her nurse told me to go check into a psychiatric hospital because it was OBVIOUS that all the medical issues including my migraines and the flu I had three weeks before were signs that I was psychotic and not safe to have living anywhere but a psychiatric hospital. She told me that if I wouldn't go to a psychiatric hospital I should find a way to do my kids a favor and kill myself.

    I honestly thought I was hallucinating until I looked at my husband. I had the phone on speaker and had him listening because I didn't trust myself to rememer accurately if she gave me directions on tapering the medication or another medication to take. He was IRATE. The nurse did something nasty next. For over three months I would get a call the day before an appointment with the doctor saying my appointment had been cancelled. Twice I was not told this ahead of time, showed up, and there was NO sign of my appointment in the dr's schedule. That nurse was erasing my appts or cancelling them so I would not tell the doctor what happened. husband's appts got cancelled to.

    Effexor did more than give me fears and panic over things that had NEVER bothered me before. It also made me feel bizarre things. If I was 30 min late for a dose, I knew it and it HURT. BADLY. It made me feel very strange electric shocks in my brain. It actually felt like a little electric shock a few times an hour. If I turned my head fast, it felt like my brain was still moving when I stopped. That was odd but kind of fun at first. Then it just got annoying.

    The withdrawal was gut-wrenching. Wiz was on the same medication and didn't have all the side effect I did, but he did ahve problems with withdrawal and the electric shocky feeling. We came off it together. I apologized over and over because I had no clue it could make you feel that bad. He said it wasn't nearly as bad for him, which made me feel a little better.

    I did learn how to cope with SSRI/SNRI withdrawal. Prozac has the longest half-life of any of this type of medication. Effexor had the shortest at the time I took it (no clue about newer medication half lives). The half life is how long it takes for half of the medication to be out of your system. A short half life means a lot more withdrawal symptoms because your body is used to having the medication and doesn't have a slow taper off of it. A long half life gives your body enough time to learn to cope with less of the medication so you don't have as many withdrawal problems. I took one prozac every 4-5 days for 2 weeks, then 1 per week, then 1 every ten days, and on down until I didn't need them. We did this with Wiz also.

    The prozac gives enough of the medication for your body to adust so that the withdrawals are not hideous. I would do that with many ssri's if I took them again. I did go back on prozac a year or two later but stopped again because the stomach issues.

    As for Wiz, he didn't do well at all off medications. We ended up with him at the psychiatric hospital for a couple of days and they put him on luvox, which is very close to prozac but much stronger. It is one of the medications that helped him turn his life around. Eventually.

    I did find it odd and very upsetting that neither my doctor, the nurse, Wiz's psychiatrist, or even the psychiatric hospital staff would admit that some psychiatric medications had withdrawal issues. Not one of them gave any sign of believing ether Wiz or I. The literature about the medications is clear, and I don't believe for a second that we were the only patients suffering while on effexor or while stopping the medication. That is why I read all the info I could find on effexor withdrawal and on ssri/snri withdrawal and went with the prozac (thankfully I had several mos left over from when we stopped the prozac.

    I have tried other medications for other things, but those are the only 2 that made a real difference one way or the other.
  16. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    Susiestar: But NO there are NO withdrawal symptoms, because these aren't "addictive!"

    Excuse me while I laugh hard enough to puke. Note my comments about Zoloft. I don't remember any kind of withdrawal effect from the Prozac, but I was a completely different person at that time, it was simply for ADHD-related anxiety. And for the transient nature of the stressors, it worked just fine.

    I knew someone who did medical transcription jobs years ago, that person heard on one of the tapes pharmaceutical reps dismiss the concerns of weight gain side effects in psychiatric patients as "...the fatties won't care anyway."

    Frankly, while I'm at the point of OK'ing anti-anxiety medications for Kiddo, the reality I see is that the human brain is a big greasy dartboard, and the pharm researchers and psychiatrists are basically throwing chemical darts at the brain to see what sticks. I'm just not going there again - heck, I have on my records that if you have to give me steroids for any life-threatening condition, be prepared to strap me to the bed because of how they affect me. Vodka is about the strongest psychoactive drug I'll allow in my body these days. :)
  17. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    I have been on way too many medications to list here. Antidpressants, mood stabiizers, anti psychotics, and benzos. I have tried just about every antidepressant on this planet and was still depressed for four years. Finally I went off my Geodon and that helped lift this depression. Current medications are Tegretol, Paxil, Saphris, Adderall XR, and Xanax as needed. I think I finally found a good medication combo but not too sure about the adderall yet. It wears off and I get anxious and irritable. Don't know if it will just take awhile for my body to adjust to it or what. I am going to keep taking it another week or so and see if I feel better. So far it does help me focus and kills my appetite so I do like those benefits. Just don't know yet if the benefits outweigh the side effects.
  18. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    nerf, I think you need to do some homework on SSRI withdrawals. Please...don't invalidate what we have experienced. Thank you. Here is just one of so many articles about the syndrome.

    As for your mind expanding psychogenic recerational drug experiences, I question your information...and really am trying to talk right now about psychiatric medication.
  19. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

  20. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    That's probably only the tip of the iceberg.
    I wonder what "they" say about... our aspie-isms, our ptsd-induced (or sleep-deprivation-induced) psychosis, our secondary mood disorders...