Bipolar Disorder Community
Safe non SSRI Anti Depressants
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Bipolar Disorder is also known as "Manic Depressive Disorder". This forum is for questions and support for people with, or for loved ones of people with Bipolar Disorder. The forum covers topics ranging from Aggressive Behavior, Affect on friends and Family, Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Appetite Changes, Chronic Pain, Denial, Depression, Difficulty Concentrating, Euphoria, Guilt, Manic Depression, Medications, Mood Swings, Poor Judgment, and Sleep Disorders

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Safe non SSRI Anti Depressants

I am in a rough place right now and started suffering depression for the first time in a very very long time - Im very resistant to drugs but it looks like I am going to need an AD drug as well as Lithium - im using Valium for anxiety and Temazepam for sleep but theyre not really going to cut it, Valium works for a given defintion of works (bombs you out) and its addiction profile makes it something my doctors are reluctant to keep prescribing long term.

As SSRI's are bad for many bipolars and as I tried to suicide when last on Prozac which sent me into psychotic mania Im looking for the thoughts of the community on Non SSRI AD drugs they have used and their side effects that people have experienced - I really do not know where to start with these drugs as I had such a bad experience last time and its been so long - I want to have some info before I see my doctor and she grabs the script pad.

What has worked for other people?  Any thoughts on Lithium interactions?
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9 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Hey, try looking up info on Lexapro.  DON'T do Cymbalta - that's my suicide experience..it numbed me too much - mixed with Adderall (adderrall).  

Have you ever tried the Lamactical for the BiPolar?  The Pdoc took me completely off of the AD, and put me on this (which is used for mood stabilizing and also has been used for epeliptics), and it scared me to NO END to not be on an AD med, after having it for over 15 years.   He chose to try me on the Lamactical before going to Lithium.  He explained that it had severe side effects and wanted to try this first - which seems to be leveling me out pretty good.

What about Klonipin (klonopin) for anxiety?  I took that once for panic attacks and anxiety and it worked well with an antidepressant.  

Any drug changes are so scary - kind of makes you feel like a guinea pig, huh!?

I have a horrible time with sleep, and would love to take something but my Pdoc is afraid to give me one because of my suicide attempt in March.  (Overdose - horrible combination of Cymbalta, Aderall, muscle relaxers, Tylenol PM, phenagran [keeps you from upchucking], over the counter sleeping aids, lists go on and on... he couldn't believe it didnt' kill me, and yet it didn't - hurt like crazy though for 3 days!  I don't have the suicide thoughts as much now, but he still won't chance it - yet.

Weird that we all know the drugs, huh?  We could be pharmacists!
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610665_tn?1237851648
Hi!
I have only ever been prescribed sodium valproate (which for me makes me very very tired) and with this I need to take sertraline (zoloft) because i was very very depressed and valpro alone was not helping in that area..
My doc and I have come to realise that the month of August is a trigger for me also...
as i seem to go into depression around that time of year. (weather is a weird thing) so she upped my sertraline and that is when I found myself going manic again and immediately lowered my dose and saw her agian and we adjusted the sertraline as to what suits me best...

talk to you psychiatrist and work with her to get you on the correct med and listen to yourself also to pick up on any changes or manic behavior as you will be the best judge of this also...

I have never ever been on any other meds before besides these two and I hope I never have to change them one day (due to them not working for me anymore) but who knows hey???

Take care
bp13 xxx  
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553995_tn?1332022440
Hi, Sorry you're in a rough space.   I've been rattled with sooo much **** hitting me lately.  

I've gone numb but that is ok to me considering the other options like what you are dealing with.  I had fleeting thoughts of escape, just fleeting.  So I would say the meds I'm taking are working.


I have additional neurotransmitter shortages (I sound like a fuse box) and my pain sensors are set to high with the other illness I have.  This adds to when I have emo. problems I really freak.

All that said I take Wellbutrin a NDRI  with a speck of effect on serotonin and Topamax which is an antiseizure med which calms the excitement of the brain.

NDRI -is a relatively weak inhibitor of norepinephrine and dopamine, and does not inhibit monoamine oxidase or the re-uptake of serotonin.

It may not be good for you because the dopamine has a stimulant effect, I need that with my other illness.  The Norepinephrine has an effect on pain, I need that too.  They both effect depression.

I have always been more depressed than manic but have been both.  Lately Zythromax for an infection set me off manic., You helped me through that., Thank you.

Try the Topamax, it calms.

Lithium I was on for a short time and it did nada, nothing zip.  My sponsor is on it and she has come completely out of the woods with her depression.

Ya never know.

Keep in touch, Be as good to yourself as you can. Sit on a hill in the sun.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi there! I think we are in the same boat, I've been through most of the ssri's and all the snri's (both caused me to be suicidal) . I was told that Lithium only really works on BP1, and little affect on BP2 and Cyclothemic BP. Since my diagnosis in July, I have been slowly being upped in dosage of  Serequal and Lamactil.  I do notice the Serequel is helping with the anxiety big time, I'm much calmer. I take ativan when I get break through anxiety, and it doesn't really dope me out, (maybe I'm used to it,  hmmm) I find I am cranky in the morning the worst, so in agreement with my pdoc, I take 50mgs of Serequal in a.m, 25 mgs in afternoon and 50 at night.  I am still struggling with the depression, and still get suicidal thoughts, but I don't do any "planning" which made me walk into my local hospital for help. I'm still mostly feeling bottomed out. I have some good days, but anything can trigger me to bottom out again.

I was on Lithium when I was 16, at the first diagnosis, it turned me into a zombie @ 1200 mgs/day, I ended up having petit mal seizures, so I took myself off that drug.   My next pdoc said I had the wrong diagnosis, and went on the ssri merry go round.  I have now been fully diagnosed as rapid cycling, clyclothemic BP2. My pdoc is considering putting me on Wellbutrin for the depression along side the Lamactil. It seems to be such a balancing act..  I do hope you can hang in there until they can figure out a good drug cocktail. I'm hoping mine works.. hugs n' love, Jane
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212753_tn?1275076711
Ya gotta make a commited lifestyle change. My hubby told me if I was that tired of being bi polar then I needed to do something about it.So after episode 3I did decide to make some lifestyle changes.
I take better care of myself,I eat healthier(although I am planning to pig out at red lobster for my anniversary tonight.) I exercise. I get regular sleep pattern I take my medsfor throidlessness and bi polar. I am getting a new head doc at the base.
So my pooint to all of this is you are bi polar for life but it can be managed.  you just gotta ask yourself how committed youare to becoming stable.(notice I dont say normal whats normal for you isnt normal for me and vise versa)
I do pray that you get some relief from your depression.I know only too well how debilitating it is.I have been suicidal and my first thyroid cancer treatment I had to go off my throid med for almost a month and I nearly didnt make it back it was that bad.
Take it one day at a time Everyday is a victory with us.
Vee

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607502_tn?1288251140
I have not had time to get back to this...

First on Lifestyle - I have actually changed my lifestyle completely about 2 years ago due to Diverticulitis - I could not change it much more at this point because I already eat a healthy diet and exercise, I have a regular everything pattern as much as possible because, and this seems to be something some pdocs miss telling patients, routines and structures are vital for BP's..

I manage my BP very well and I am stable as all hell - I work a full time IT job in a demanding environment as a leader.  What I cannot manage right now is my situation, and this is causing depression and suicidial thoughts - these are not serious but they are deeply unsettling as I cannot work through the causes - thats what I do, I work through what is causing the problem and thats how I stay sane but short of machine gunning my in laws thats not going to happen.

2nd I guess is Lithium works for me, it keeps me stable and level and I dont suffer major side effects - right now I would not remotely be willing to make a major med change like an MS - the risk of having a major manic attack right now is far to great for me under the stress load I am carrying.

Its just that I now need an Anti Depressant and it cannot be an SSRI.  Thank you for the people who suggested Wellbutrin which is an SNRI and from what I have read would be a good therapy drug which I will ask my doc about if i ever get to see her - right now thats 20 days away...

I take Valium for anxiety, I take phenurgan every night as well as ranitidine 300mg for my stomach and as needed Temazepam as a sleeper, these work for me but the Valium of course is a problem for some doctors as its addictive (name me one AD or AA drug that is not addictive please...) I like valium as I can take it during the day and still function unlike Atavan which makes me feel like a zombie.

I am going to investigate Seroquel as I wake angry and I did not realise this was a symptom of BP.

Thanks everyone for suggestions, Im sort of in the dark as without access to my pdoc I have to get a GP I do not know to try and work with me for an AD but at the rate I am going the depression is deepening and I need to do something.
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607502_tn?1288251140
I have not had time to get back to this...

First on Lifestyle - I have actually changed my lifestyle completely about 2 years ago due to Diverticulitis - I could not change it much more at this point because I already eat a healthy diet and exercise, I have a regular everything pattern as much as possible because, and this seems to be something some pdocs miss telling patients, routines and structures are vital for BP's..

I manage my BP very well and I am stable as all hell - I work a full time IT job in a demanding environment as a leader.  What I cannot manage right now is my situation, and this is causing depression and suicidial thoughts - these are not serious but they are deeply unsettling as I cannot work through the causes - thats what I do, I work through what is causing the problem and thats how I stay sane but short of machine gunning my in laws thats not going to happen.

2nd I guess is Lithium works for me, it keeps me stable and level and I dont suffer major side effects - right now I would not remotely be willing to make a major med change like an MS - the risk of having a major manic attack right now is far to great for me under the stress load I am carrying.

Its just that I now need an Anti Depressant and it cannot be an SSRI.  Thank you for the people who suggested Wellbutrin which is an SNRI and from what I have read would be a good therapy drug which I will ask my doc about if i ever get to see her - right now thats 20 days away...

I take Valium for anxiety, I take phenurgan every night as well as ranitidine 300mg for my stomach and as needed Temazepam as a sleeper, these work for me but the Valium of course is a problem for some doctors as its addictive (name me one AD or AA drug that is not addictive please...) I like valium as I can take it during the day and still function unlike Atavan which makes me feel like a zombie.

I am going to investigate Seroquel as I wake angry and I did not realise this was a symptom of BP.

Thanks everyone for suggestions, Im sort of in the dark as without access to my pdoc I have to get a GP I do not know to try and work with me for an AD but at the rate I am going the depression is deepening and I need to do something.
Blank
607502_tn?1288251140
I have not had time to get back to this...

First on Lifestyle - I have actually changed my lifestyle completely about 2 years ago due to Diverticulitis - I could not change it much more at this point because I already eat a healthy diet and exercise, I have a regular everything pattern as much as possible because, and this seems to be something some pdocs miss telling patients, routines and structures are vital for BP's..

I manage my BP very well and I am stable as all hell - I work a full time IT job in a demanding environment as a leader.  What I cannot manage right now is my situation, and this is causing depression and suicidial thoughts - these are not serious but they are deeply unsettling as I cannot work through the causes - thats what I do, I work through what is causing the problem and thats how I stay sane but short of machine gunning my in laws thats not going to happen.

2nd I guess is Lithium works for me, it keeps me stable and level and I dont suffer major side effects - right now I would not remotely be willing to make a major med change like an MS - the risk of having a major manic attack right now is far to great for me under the stress load I am carrying.

Its just that I now need an Anti Depressant and it cannot be an SSRI.  Thank you for the people who suggested Wellbutrin which is an SNRI and from what I have read would be a good therapy drug which I will ask my doc about if i ever get to see her - right now thats 20 days away...

I take Valium for anxiety, I take phenurgan every night as well as ranitidine 300mg for my stomach and as needed Temazepam as a sleeper, these work for me but the Valium of course is a problem for some doctors as its addictive (name me one AD or AA drug that is not addictive please...) I like valium as I can take it during the day and still function unlike Atavan which makes me feel like a zombie.

I am going to investigate Seroquel as I wake angry and I did not realise this was a symptom of BP.

Thanks everyone for suggestions, Im sort of in the dark as without access to my pdoc I have to get a GP I do not know to try and work with me for an AD but at the rate I am going the depression is deepening and I need to do something.
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607502_tn?1288251140
It appears servers are throwing a spit - sorry for triple post
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