daughter Bipolar

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TEYA1966
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/5/2007 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   
 My 15 yr.old daughter was recently diagnosed with Bipolar, manic depression, ODD and ADHD. She also suffers from insomnia.
 The Dr. had tried her on Seroquel and after several weeks had to take her off due to some bad side effects. I now have one week to decide what I want her on or he takes matters into his own hands. I am lost. He gave me a list of some meds, so that I could look them up and I have done that. However, I would rather hear from people that have been there done that...so to say.
 I am scared. I guess maybe because I have never been faced with something like this. I don't want to agree to a drug that may hurt her in the long run.
 Also, is there other therapy offered to her along with the med therapy?
 Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Savvy63
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 450
   Posted 1/5/2007 4:16 PM (GMT -7)   
What are the list of meds?
 
depression                                                combivent
DDD- MRI confirmed                                    probiotics
Arthritis-xray confirmed                               Neurontin
disc slippage in neck-MRI confirmed               Oxycodone
Fibro- night sweats                                     Zoloft
IBS-D-gas                                                 cortisone shot
Ulcers-endoscopic confirm                            Lortab
dishydrotic eczema                                     Lunesta
Costochondritis                                          B-12
 


allie1644
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 1/6/2007 1:49 AM (GMT -7)   
I am 16 and got recently diagnosed. It is hard to say what your daughter would work well with, especially as a teenager when our bodies and minds are changing so rapidly. But, I am very surprised that your doctor put her only on seroquel seeing as though she has many things to deal with.

Getting diagnosed in September, it has been a emotional and uphill battle dealing with medications. We tried a few, like Depakote (a wonderful anticonvulsive) and Lamictal and Lexapro, among others. And after a while, the medications gave me such bad side effects and changed my personality so much that I took myself off of them and decided to go with a different approach. A book called "The Natural Medicine Guide to Bipolar Disorder" by Stephanie Marohn is an amazing book. It shows how to treat the underlying unbalances in the body and HEALING bipolar from the source, instead of merely enduring it and suppressing the symptoms as other medications do.

An example that my homeopathic doctor told me - If your oil light in your car comes on the dashboard and keeps dinging and annoying you, what would you do -- go out and find out what is causing the oil light to be on and fix it so the light goes off, or simply putting a piece of tape over the light and putting cotton in your ears?

That is what medicine does. Unfortunately, most cases of bipolar disorder cannot be treated without medications, but getting into a doctor that wants to heal your symptoms and not cover them up is a great start. Instead of being on over 12 medications I am now only on 2 plus the special probiotics and supplements that he has me on. Not only am I feeling much better and healthier, my side effects from my medications have gone almost entirely away!

But, from a medication standpoint, what does your daughter have trouble dealing with? The major manic episodes? Maybe Depression? Rapid Cycling? Concentrating problems or obbsessive annoyances? I know LOTS of wonderful meds that have few side effects. Reply back!

TEYA1966
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/6/2007 9:44 AM (GMT -7)   
First let me say thank you for the replies.
The list of meds the Dr. gave us were as follows...
Abilify, Depacote, Geodon, Lamictal, Topamax and Lithium.
My daughter is a rapid recycler. She goes from very happy to very angry at a flip of a dime. She has problems concentrating and insomnia.
I have also looked up the "natural" way to go and found info on fish oils and flax oils. Any ideas on that?
I am not sure how her Dr. will take it if I suggest natural remedies.
Also let mke add that my daughter is in a place called The House of Good Shephards. She was placed there through the court system for truancy and severe behavior problems. She comes home weekends. This is where they had diagnosed her. She has to be there until May.
Once again, thank you.

allie1644
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 1/6/2007 3:14 PM (GMT -7)   
the first place to start with natural remedies is amino acids and fish oil (omega 3). Most say that those two remedies help a lot with mood swings and severity of them. They are just simple vitamins that some people say help a lot to balance out the internal part of BP and also ADHD.

I had taken Depakote as my very first medicine with BP. Depakote is an anticonvulsant and works as a mood stabilizer. This is the first drug (and Lithium) that are the major medicines that doctors turn to for treatment of BP. Unfortunately, I was one of the people that got many side effects associated with Depakote. D has quite a few of side effects, but almost all being mild to moderate. Side effects that I got was increased appetite, hair loss, troubles concentrating, and sleepiness. Side effects associated with the general public include hair loss, concentration problems, sluggishness, sedation, and impairment of mental function. Your daughter may not get these side effects as severe, or maybe none at all; it depends on the person. Depakote can be a wonderful drug for the right person so consider it as one of your options.

Lamictal - This is also a mood stabilizer. I have heard MANY amazing things about this medication; everyone that I've talked to just loves it and loves having little to no side effects, unlike Depakote. Unfortunately I take it right now and it hasnt kicked in yet. I would def. consider giving these two medications a try; they are both highly talked about and both have their pros and cons, but the con to Depakote for me was the side effects, and for Lamictal in general takes 3 weeks - 10 weeks to kick in; I've heard patients taking it that it took up to 6 months to work. Hense the reason I'm still staying on it.

Lithium is the first drug most Doctors turn to because it helps control all aspects of BP, from concentration to rapid cycling and even hallucinations and delirium. This is the oldest, and coicidentally the "miracle" drug for most BP patients. Like depakote, anticonvulsants work as mood stabilizers. In studies, Lithium produces no effect in 30 percent of people and some cannot tolerate the side effects. In a recent article, Lithium is the only drug approved for the treatment of both acute mania and maintenance therapy; however it has a poor response rate, high relapse rate, and less than great side effects. Most doctors in AZ aren't even allowed to administer Lithium unless completely needed as a last resort. Lithium also has a high rate of toxicity in patients. If you don't drink enough water, Lithium can produce toxicity in the body. If you drink too much, Lithium ends up producing no effect whatsoever. But carefully monitered, Lithium can be a great medicine.

I do not know much about Topamax, Abilify, and Geodon, but I do know that Topamax is a mood stabilizer, so it has primarily the same effects as Depakote and Lamictal.

If you do decide to take a mood stabilizer and they are not working as well as planned, consider talking to your doctor about an anti depressant to balance out the negative side effects associated with these drugs. Most doctors say that they don't want to put an antidepressant on a BP patient because it could send the patient into a manic state, but if their manics are productive and hypomanic anyways, who wouldn't want the perfect happy child? =) Once you find the right balance with drugs, which may take a while, most of her issues with OCD, ADHD, and bipolar will learn to work together and diminish all at the same time.

Hope this helps a little. =) And I hope the best with your daughter; I know some friends that have gone to places like your daughter is and they learn SO much about themselves and dramatically ( and positively) change their behaviors. I will be keeping her in my thoughts!

God bless, -Allie

TEYA1966
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/6/2007 9:05 PM (GMT -7)   

 Thank you so much for all of the info. It is certainly a great help and very much appreciated. I think I would like to try the fish and flax oils first, if the Dr. will agree. If not, then maybe the Lamictal.

I will talk it over with my daughter in the morning and see what she thinks. Once again, thank you.

 


otterheart
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/6/2007 9:35 PM (GMT -7)   
My heart goes out to you. You have quite a journey ahead of you. My 16 year old daughter was diagnosed when she was 14 with bipolar and ADHD. She is  now an AB student, has a job, a boyfriend and a dog. Her life was not so cheery before her diagnosis and during the first year trying to sort things out. What I want to say to you is this. Give each med a chance, including altering doses. Make sure you give each one enough time to prove itself useless, annoying, mind numbing or anything else these meds can be. Keep a journal because you will forget her med history. This helps the Psychiatrist emmensly, down the road as you make changes or adjustments. Note that when she stays up late how that throws her treatment off, so do energy drinks with tons of caffiene. Together, my daughter and I have journeyed this new territory. I admit she was over medicated at first but now, for this time being ,we have a program that is working. She took Lamictal for a long time but now on 15 mg. of Abilify her personality is fully back. Teenagers are too young to be on Lythium. Thier hormones are raging and changing and you have to make room for that as you interprete what a med is doing. I decided early on that the most important thing I had to do was keep my daughter alive. I let her take well days off from school. I am lax on chores as long as they get done sometime during the week. If she wants to change her hair color 2 times a month I'm fine with it. Choose your battles and never give up fighting the ones that matter in the big picture. You two will find you way. Blessings.

TEYA1966
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/7/2007 6:30 AM (GMT -7)   

 Thank you, Otterheart. I can only imagine what is ahead. Thank you for the input on the Lithium. My sister works at a DSO house and said that a majority of their clients are on Lithium and she also strongly disagreed to my daughter being on it. My daughter doesn't want to take anything, but we both know she needs something. She is so afraid of walking around like a zombie or having irreversible damage from the meds. The Seroquel really scared her. On that med, she began rocking and had involuntary movements and the worst nightmares imaginable. Usually of her or a family member dieing. It was driving her crazy. I will give the meds a chance... it is so scary for both of us. Especially when you begin reading through the side effects. This is why I wanted input from the people have experience with these meds rather than looking them up online.

Thank you so much for the info.


otterheart
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/7/2007 10:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Well, we are sisters on this path. My daughter is a gothish-type and still does irresponsible stuff BUT she isnt on the ceiling anymore nor is she on the ground. Abilify is a new drug and it comes from a class of drugs that have been used for 25 years or so, usually in institutional environments. This class of drug, over time and usually in higher doses can cause permanent tic's and tremors. Our goal is to get thru the teen years on an even lower dose than she is taking now. Then we will look at Lithium and other new possibilities. I have bipolar disorder, as does my mom and my moms dad. I come from a family with a long history of suicide. I take my care very seriously and I look at my daughters situation as a life or death matter. My diagnosis came later in life. My path was so painful. I am so grateful that my child does not have to suffer like I did. My daughter takes Focalin for ADHD and is thriving on it. Her grades jumped. She had been on Straterra for years, then we tried Adderal and she liked that a little too much (she was taking 2 or more a day until she sadly ran out or she got more from her friends who had extra) for what she described as "the best caffine high ever". Oiy. I highly recommend a great read entitled"Bipolar Disorder Demystified" by Lana Castle. Being a bipolar person herself, she brilliantly and accurately describes the bipolar experiance. Her book also includes a very thorough medications appendix. Blessings.

otterheart
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/7/2007 11:02 AM (GMT -7)   
In conjumction with the very articualte Allie I would like to say thet we use flax oil on our salads and toast (instead of butter) and when it isnt in a meal- a spoonful of it each. Its affordable, lasts a month or more (then its no good, very volitale). My daughter and the family take high doses of probiotics for a healthy gut too. We like the Garden of Life products. www.gardenoflife.com
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