What do meds feel like?

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UC Dude
Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 438
   Posted 10/10/2009 4:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Waiting on confirmation of dx with PsyMd in a couple of weeks. He is going to discuss meds at that time.

Curious how you would describe it.

Thought is I am BP II. I hate to say it, but I "like" my creative, high energy upside, but loath my depressive flip side.

Can meds help negate the depressive side while maintaining the creative, energetic upside?

Thanks for all the help so far.

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 10/10/2009 2:37 PM (GMT -7)   
It depends on the meds--Anti-depressents will usually do what you say and negate the depressive side while leaving the highs (sometimes they may even make the highs alot more extreme though), on the other hand mood stablizers or antipsychotics will make you feel all around even diminishing the highs and lows. The only problem with mood stablizers is that they may make you feel too flat, a feeling that I've felt frequently. When it comes down to things like I said before it depends on the type of meds that you take and overall how you react to them individually because everyone's body chemistry is different.

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 10/10/2009 4:45 PM (GMT -7)   
I think I am just as creative now as ever. In fact, I am trying to tap more into it by taking a painting class.

In my view, only problems that meds cause are cognitive-related (memory, attention, etc). Plus, they have documented other side effects but never do you read 'loss of creativity'.

There are plenty of actors and actresses that are bipolar and they do just fine. I think Sting is also bipolar and he has always been creative. Whether he is medicated or not is beyond me.

Bottom line, I wouldn't worry about loss of creativity.

Does anyone know what part of the brain creativity comes from?


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   Posted 10/10/2009 6:09 PM (GMT -7)   

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   Posted 10/10/2009 6:13 PM (GMT -7)   

I haven't found that taking medications has impacted my creativity. Quite the opposite. I am so unable to work when I'm depressed that having a more even mood has greatly improved my creativity.

Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

"Bipolar disorder can be a great teacher. It's a challenge, but it can set you up to be able to do almost anything else in your life." - CARRIE FISHER

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 10/11/2009 8:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Thats a good point in that antidepressants taking you out of depression would help creativity. Makes sense.

I want to add to my comment that anxiety probably plays a role too. Like when depressed, if I am highly anxious, I wont be very creative because my mind is spinning and worrying me to death. Anti anxiety drugs can help with that though.
BP I, ADD, and taking Lithium Eskalith, Abilify, and Lexapro

“Speak your mind and fear less the label of 'crackpot' than
the stigma of conformity.”
-Thomas John Watson, Sr.

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Date Joined Feb 2007
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   Posted 10/13/2009 10:50 AM (GMT -7)   
I take both a mood stableizer and an antidepressant. If I compare my creativity to what I put out durring my lows, of couse I am better off here- but I did not write in my lows. I processed the stats in my lows. I cleaned my office in my lows. I had to wait for a high to write, but when I got there I put out a lot of work. It was like I couldn't stop writing. WHen I got off the "swing" I would have all this work to polish off. I wasn't great on grammer in a high, but I could come up with awsome ideas. Without the highs I don't write anymore. I can't think of the ideas anymore.
The thing is- I will gladly trade anything I loose with the highs to get away from the crushing lows forever. If the psy said I needed to stand on my head to keep out of the crushing lows- I would do it.
Even though I do not understand where I am going on the path that God has laid out for me, I must submit to His plan and trust that He will take me where I need to be. 
Current medications:
Bipolar treatment-Lamictal, 200mg, Mood stabelizer, daily(main side effect: brain fog) Bipolar treatment-Cymbalta, 40mg, Antidepressant, daily(main side effect: GI upset, decreased clotting, insominia) Anemia, Fatigue treatment- Iron supplement, 65mg, daily(main side effect: constipation) Insominia treatment- Ambien, 10mg, daily(main side effect: amnesia eppisodes between taking pill and falling asleep) Mania treatment- Alprazolam, .25mg, Very rarely(main side effect: fatigue, slowing of thoughts, depression of CNS, can't take ambien or vicodin when on it) RA treatment- Plaquenil, 400mg, daily(main side effect: GI upset, decreased clotting) RA treatment- Methotrexate, 25mg, 1X weekly(main side effects: hair loss, stomach upset, mouth sores, sore muscles, fatigue, brain fog, compromised immune system, decreased Folic Acid absorption) GI upset treatment- Leucovorin Calcium, 10mg 1x weekly(main side effects: ?) Folic Acid defintioncy- Folic Acid, 1mg, daily(main side effects: ?) Multi-mineral Supplement (main side effects: constipation, GI upset) Constipation treatment- Docusate Sodium, 200mg, daily(main side effects:?) pain control- Motrin, 800mg, PRN Q6hours daily(main side effects: GI upset, decreased clotting) Pain Control- Vicodin, 5-500mg, PRN Q12hours 3-4 times weekly (main side effects: brain fog, fatigue)

O Buddy Boy
Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 10/13/2009 1:22 PM (GMT -7)   
UC Dude,

I am quite definitely BPII. I've been through the wringer with many meds. I am not a fan of anti-depressants; many have been tied to suicide. I feel they work for a bit, but then drop me off a really big cliff.

I even tried lithium and a couple of related drugs. Hated the blood monitoring and felt it harmed creativity.

I understand some of the drugs some are describing as mood stabilizers were originally used as anti-convulsive drugs. And maybe somehow that BP and epilepsy are related.

I take 50 mg of Seroquel to sleep at night. 90 minutes after taking it I must be in bed. Dropped the Ambien, which doesn't seem to work after a while.

I also take 100 mg of Lamictal in the AM. That drug has to be ramped up or a rash can occur that is sometimes fatal. When I first started taking it I felt a coffee-like jolt, but somehow more cerebral. Just odd.

Now those two drugs work for me. My PsD tells me that Lamictal has a reputation for reducing lows without as much effect on mania, and that is why he recommends it to me. I still feel just slightly manic and proven to myself and my clients that the creativity is still there.

Drugs treat everybody differently. That is what happened to me and after forty years I have finally found steadiness and happiness.
55 yo
DRE: Susp
PSA: 3.5
Gleason: 3+4/7
6/12 Cores Positive
1%, 3%, 8%, 15%, 12%
RALP: 10/0/09
PATH: Not back yet

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 76
   Posted 10/14/2009 4:22 PM (GMT -7)   

O Buddy Boy, I am so looking for that place in the middle, a bit on the high side. I tried Lamictal and was starting to feel better. Then I got the dreaded rash before I even got through my second week of the starter pack. I'm hearing that Abilify tends to work the same, so at my next appt, I'm going to ask for that. I'm taking effexor xr now, which is not recommended for BP, but I am still circling the black hole. I would love to have my hypomanic days back because I was focused, creative and extremely productive then. When I crossed the line into mania, I was as worthless as I am when I'm down. Meds are a coin toss for me. Most mood stabilizers really made me feel like I was trying to think through mud. I'm glad you are in a good place now. Hopefully I'll see you there one day soon!

UC Dude, it might take quite a few tries before you find the right meds for you. Don't give up on them. Just keep trying different combinations until you find one that works for you. I'm still searching for my magic combo!

Just a quick note on antidepressants and suicide. Sometimes you can be too depressed to commit suicide. If that is the case, then as you go on the antidepressants, you will get raised to a level where you have enough energy to be suicidal before you get to the feel good level. If you are that far down, chances are you will be in intensive out-patient therapy or an inpatient. If this is inappropriate to say here, please delete it moderator!!

Major depression; Bipolar Disorder; Fibromyalgia; Spinal Stenosis; right arm and leg nerve compression; cataracts; glaucoma; IBS; RLS; hypothyroidism; B12 deficiency ... that's enough or I'll get more depressed.

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