Depression and Weight Issues Have you been diagnosed with depression, are possibly on depression medication, and find it affects your weight loss efforts? Post here for support!

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Old 10-26-2011, 09:56 PM   #1  
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Default Just diagnosed

It's finally official : I have bipolar disorder. I've suspected for some time now, but now I have a pschiatrist's agreement and some prescriptions. I'm really hoping this helps me avoid the binges that always come with my down periods.

But it's hard to be hopeful right now... I started on my pills last night, and promptly couldn't sleep because of continual feelings of panic. I'm on Divalproex and a tiny dose of Lamotrigine, and my body is Not Happy about it. The doctor says it's psychological rather than side effects, and that I should try to punch through if I can. I trust his judgement, but... panic is not a fun feeling.

Please let it get better. I'm tired of the ground dropping out from under me.

Last edited by Jo Kittibuck; 10-26-2011 at 09:57 PM.
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Old 10-27-2011, 01:20 AM   #2  
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Best of luck adjusting to your medication. I do not live with bipolar disorder, but I have a sister who does. I have watched her adjust, try, and drop MANY medications.

It is very possible that your panic is from the disorder and not the side effects. You are on a new journey with the medication and I would assume have not had enough cognitive therapy to have an selection of tools to process the anxiety of a new drug regiment.

I have certainly watched side effects - coming on and off medication. Generally they would recommend giving the medication some time. There was the occasional "no way" but for the most part I saw her level out the side effects over time.

Best of luck.
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Old 10-29-2011, 02:44 PM   #3  
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I'm bipolar too. I found out a couple of years ago, and I've been on a couple of different meds. I think that the meds that I'm on now contributed to my weight gain, which is not cool, but they are helping me manage my life and helping me to be more stable.
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Old 10-29-2011, 04:18 PM   #4  
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I'm on Lamictal (lamitrogene) too. I'm not bipolar but borderline. Though I've found it's really decreased my impulsiveness without making feel dull or blah like lithium did. I haven't had any side effects from the Lamictal. I've never been able to tolerate a med for more than 6 months without it making me worse. I've been on this one for 2 and 1/2 years without any problems. It keeps me to stay level enough to work on repairing my life and the mess I've made of it.

Also, Lamictal takes a long time to start working so you have to be patient and give it a chance.

Last edited by LovelyLeah; 10-29-2011 at 04:22 PM.
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Old 10-29-2011, 05:22 PM   #5  
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I'm on Lamictal as well for a mood disorder. My additional cocktail of abilify and wellbutrin is to help supplement the depression. Because apparently, according to my doctor, is that sometimes Lamictal just evens you out, but evening you out could push into just depression instead of the highs and lows. I'm still not convinced that it all works. But there were some bad incedents that happened when I stopped the medication which proved to me that it's doing something. When I went back on it, I didn't have the huge monumental depressive episodes that I have when I'm not on it. But I will say that I don't get the boost of energy from abilify or wellbutrin that I hear from others. I'm jealous of that. But I guess if this helps me get my life back in order then it's worth it.

The thing that sucks about medication, as someone mentioned above, is that it can take awhile to take affect. And some times you do have to push through the side effects. It can take a long time to realize whether something is or isn't working for you. Sometimes even just getting the dosage right takes months. I've been on this journey for 5 years now and I think I'm about on a stable dosage. I think. I wish I had the magical drug that would just make me feel really good. But I'll take stable over unstable.

I guess my point is to be patient and don't expect a miracle. Sometimes just feeling even is the best that you can hope for. And sometimes you don't even recognize that you're doing better until you look back to where you were. Mood logs help although I'm terrible at filling one out. But if you can journal your journey then it may help you identify how things are going. However, if you don't feel comfortable on the medication either then don't let your doctor push you around. Only you can decide what's best for you and there are many different drug/combos and doctors out there. I will say that Lamictal/Lamotrigine is the most stable that I've ever been on so I do recommend it.

I wish you the Best of Luck! Drop me a line if you need some extra support. This isn't an easy process, but it's usually a necessary one.
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Old 11-07-2011, 04:32 AM   #6  
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hi! i also have bipolar disorder, i was diagnosed 3 years ago and have tried many medications since then. don't be afraid to talk to your doctor if you find the meds you're on now aren't working well for you, almost everyone i know on mood medication has a different pairing/cocktail of drugs which works for them.

i'm also on lamictal for a mood stabiliser and zoloft for an antidepressant. honestly, this is the best mix i've tried so far and i've been on these two for about a year. before this i was on zoloft and lithium (awful, i felt like a zombie) and zoloft and epilim (even worse, i gained 20kg in 4 months! and subsequently felt like crap). give it a go, i've heard lamictal is one of the best for not gaining weight. this is especially important for overweight people or those who suffer from eating issues - my psychiatrist (different from the one who first diagnosed/prescribed me) is very aware of this as i also have had an eating disorder since i was 11 (about 13 years now) and he was very upset that i was prescribed epilim first. so be aware of weight gain and if you notice it is fairly rapid, talk to your doctor. it's a side effect of many mood stabilisers (mostly anti-epileptics) and some antidepressants.

as far as mood goes, lamictal has been awesome for me. i've never stayed so stable for so long.

anyway, don't get too down! if you have any fears, talk to your doctor - i'm sure they've heard it all before!

Last edited by Satellites; 11-07-2011 at 04:33 AM.
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Old 11-14-2011, 07:45 AM   #7  
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Just wanted to come in and give you ladies a cyber hug. I have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, but my 5 year old stepdaughter has what they believe to be early onset bipolar.

It's been a rough ride, that is for sure. Her mother, at the current time, refuses to treat or even believe that she has the disorder...even though two separate doctors have now openly said that she is outside of the range of normal, for sure. We are just hoping that when she starts school next year, that the school will force treatment.

(In children it affects their learning, social skills, development, etc. She currently is 5 but is, intelligence and learning wise, more along the lines of how all my kids were at age 2 1/2, and we have many behavioral issues with her, she still isn't fully potty trained, etc.)

I have never treated my OCD with medication, even though I have had it since childhood, but my doctor believes at this time, that I need to start medication, because of the situation with my I start medication next month at my next counseling appointment. The past couple of years have been too much for me to handle, apparently, because our disorders "clash" (Imagine a child forcing herself to vomit everywhere on purpose because she is mad, in the home of someone with OCD...) to the point where I have been losing my hair due to the stress and my OCD has been getting worse.

I'll be thinking about you, and hoping that your meds level you out over time...and I'll try to think of you all next month when I'm starting mine.

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Old 11-14-2011, 10:14 AM   #8  
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My gosh, Aphil that is a tall order you have with your stepdaughter. I hope her Mother will listen to her Doctors, or your stepdaughter and those around her are going to have a miserable existance. Good luck !
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Old 11-15-2011, 01:47 AM   #9  
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hey all!
im 19 and was recently diagnosed manic depressive.
i take citalopram. I dont mind it. I used to be on effexor i believe its called and the pills made me so bloody nauseus.
im pretty sure my meds have made me gain weight, but the only advice i can give to you jo, is just dont give up. Give the pills a chance. I expected results right away and it just didnt work. Ive been on my meds now for 5-6 months and am finally seeing results!
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Old 11-15-2011, 03:36 AM   #10  
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hi y'all,
I was diagnosed as bipolar going on sixteen years now. After a brief stint on Depakote (where I gained a lot of weight and suffered from Depakoma) and a couple of tries on Lamictal, I am now on lithium plus other drugs. I have PTSD too, which complicates things...

to OP: the drugs do take a little while to take effect. You may be having a panic attack and the drugs may not be helping because they are not at a theraputic level in your system (depakote requires blood draws)... You may be paniced about the medication or it may be something else entirely. Try relaxation exercises and being mindful. Know that your body will change on the medication, but your mind will definitely change for the better... it's a long road.. but it has to be taken..
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Old 01-22-2012, 03:08 AM   #11  
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Reviving my thread for an update. It's a mix of good and bad news. The bad first, the dosage I ended up on for Lamictal made me so numb to the world that my eating went completely out of control. I just couldn't care. But, the good news is we recognized that and I'm on a lower dose now, and it seems to be working well. No ups or downs whatsoever. The panic attacks were indeed psychological... they hit whenever my medication level changed, and then disappeared after two days.

And my weight stayed still, thank goodness. I'm actually rather surprised about that, considering some of the severe binges I had. Hopefully I can now push forward on my plan.

Also, thank all of you for sharing about yourselves. It's great to know I'm not alone in this.
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