I sometimes I browse the internet and hear people asking questions whether they are hearing voices or is it their own thoughts doing that to them. Mostly these are people who haven’t got a diagnosis of psychosis and are debating whether to see a doctor about the issue. So I thought I’d put my input into the question and maybe help someone who might have that question.
Your own voice - A pretty good indication is it your own voice talking to you in third person or is it someone else? If it’s your own, you are probably not experiencing any voices talking to you but you are a subject of negative thinking. If it’s another persons voice? Well it might be an indication you are having auditory hallucinations. Though I do want to point something that may be an exception of the fact. Thought Broadcasting is an experience some of us people who experience hallucinations may have (myself included), this is when you externally hear your voice ‘in the real world’. Though typically this will be delayed by a couple of seconds or milliseconds; it’s not an instantaneous thought.
The volume of the voice - Try thinking to yourself in your own mind, you do it everyday right? Now try whispering in those thoughts or shouting, pretty hard? Sometimes us voice hearers hear voices shouting at us or even whispering. We aren’t trying to think about it, we can hear that whisper or shout so naturally it isn’t something ‘hard to do’.
Internal External - Ah yes, a good debate. Typically the voices are external as we hear them in the real world as if you are talking to someone. These voices may have a direction, someone talking to us from behind, in front, bellow or in our left or right ear. Internal voices are those that happen in our head and we do not hear them in the external world, ie. our internal monologue. Though this may be debated about internal hallucination or external ones.
This is just somethings I wanted to share with those unsure in the world. But I do want to put forward if you still have question or are still worried about your mental state PLEASE DO GO AND SEE A DOCTOR. They are there to help and in my case they will believe you, as I believed if I told a doctor what I was experiencing they wouldn’t believe me. I’d also just like to add I am no professional and I have just got plenty of years of experience in having psychosis, but also heard stories from other people and have researched this for a better understanding of my own illness.
I get that some of y'all are really against pharmaceuticals and even I agree that many are over prescribed. but honestly. think carefully before you tell someone not to take antidepressants, or antipsychotics, or mood stabilizers, or whatever, because of your beliefs. many people taking these medications do so because without it they may be a danger to themselves, or others. if you don’t know their situation, then don’t bring your big pharma shit into it, because severe mental illness doesn’t give a fuck about big pharma. I mean, sure, people can have success with alternative, natural methods. and it’s not to say that these methods are not credible, but they are also not for everyone, and you should be conscious of this fact before playing internet psychiatrist.
Med Rankings- Ask for a Dumb Fuck Review™ If You’d Like a More Honest One
The following are my personal rankings of psychiatric medicines, including antipsychotics, antianxieties, antidepressants, and mood stabilizers. I do not have any reviews for sleep medication or stimulants, though some of these medicines may provide sedating effects and be used as a sleep medication. I am not a doctor, just a psych patient with a big mouth! My personal favorite medicines are put in the color of their respective category.
Rexulti (8.5/10): least side effects for most power. However, bc it’s newer, insurance won’t necessarily always pay for it!!! If you have bad insurance, this probably isn’t the best option.
Saphris (1.5/10): expensive, hard on the stomach, and left a bad taste in my mouth… literally. I’m usually not a fan of sublinguals as they can be difficult for me w my sensory triggers, and this was no exception. It supposedly has less weight gain and other side effects, but I found it made me super dizzy and my tongue would swell and my stomach would ache if I took it.
Thorazine (4/10): effective but the side effects outweighed this. It worked really well for me at first actually, just made me really sleepy. Eventually, I was up to 700mg a day, and I don’t remember much during this time, but I was reported to have very odd behavior. I would stare at walls, drool, and fall asleep in the middle of conversations- literally in my charts from the day treatment center I was in! It also caused me to have extreme akathisia and other nervous system side effects (mainly being stiffness in my jaw).
Latuda (4.5/10): expensive and not nearly effective enough. I didn’t experience any side effects on Latuda, but it just didn’t work for me. It wasn’t strong enough. It was also one thousand dollars a month with GOOD insurance.
Vraylar (2/10): expensive, ineffective, and gave me terrible akathisia! I had to quit immediately because my anxiety got so bad on it that I hallucinated bugs in my food and refused to eat for three days straight.
Risperdal (5.5/10): effective, inexpensive, and terrible side effects. I had no period for six months, had no sex drive, gained seventy lbs, and terrible acne. It did work with the dosage I was on (6 mg a day), and it was inexpensive.
Abilify (3/10): ineffective, expensive, and akathisia side effects. This was one of my least favorite meds. I took 25 mg a day, in addition to 3mg of risperdal by the end of my time on Abilify. The risperdal was the only thing keeping me sane. Abilify caused terrible akathisia for me, and it required prior authorization
Seroquel (8/10): This was my favorite medicine. It was inexpensive, effective, and the only really bad side effects I got at first were sleepiness and hunger. Unfortunately, my liver enzymes came back high after being on it for a few months, and I had to stop it.
Vistaril (9/10): This really is a wonder drug! Originally used for allergies, it works wonders on anxiety! I rec it to anyone under the age of 18 or people who just want something more mild. I started on 25 mg a day, as needed for panic attacks. It’s inexpensive, effective, and the only side effects you’ll experience are drowsiness and dizziness (and even then, these are much better than when on a benzodiazepine drug).
Ativan (4/10): I found this drug to be ineffective for the most part. It made me a little less anxious, but it was too much work for so little results.
Klonopin (5/10): The True Neutral of the anti-anxiety drugs. It’s mildly effective, in my experience. What people like about this drug is that it stays in your system so long. Where Xanax may last about three hours, this lasts up to eight! It can be used for sleep as well.
Xanax (8.75/10): This is my favorite of the drug in the benzodiazepine category. It’s fast acting and will wear off in about two and a half hours so you’re not sleepy for the rest of your life when you take it! The reason it doesn’t have a higher rank is because it’s a pain in the ass to deal with, and it can cause depression for people who get dependent on it.
Prozac (2/10): This review is going to be different for me due to the fact that I have bipolar disorder and not major depressive disorder. Prozac induced my first manic state, to a point where I was engaging in impulsive behaviors and hallucinating. At first, I thought it was just helping my depression.
Lexapro (2.5/10): I didn’t feel like this was an effective drug, and I also felt like my sex drive was severely effected by it. I was very unhappy and didn’t have a dex drive, which was unsettling.
Zoloft (3/10): I felt like of the SSRI’s, this was my favorite. It made me gain weight and lowered my sex drive, though, so it definitely wasn’t the best fit for me. I felt happier when taking it, but I also felt unhappy with the side effects.
Wellbutrin (.25/10): This is another one where it’s going to be different for other people. As I have a high amount of dopamine in my brain, giving me more made me have severe psychotic distress on this drug. I was hallucinating very frequently and could not sleep if I took this drug.
Pristiq (7/10): This has been my favorite antidepressant so far. I have felt much happier when taking it, and I am experiencing life much better. The problem with this drug is that people under 18 are usually not prescribed it, so it was inaccessible to me for years.
Trazadone (6.5/10): I use this mainly for sleep, but it is technically used for depression as well. I feel a lot better on the days I do take it, and I haven’t experienced any side effects except dry mouth (unless I don’t sleep long enough after taking it, in which case I feel like Crap).
Trileptal (6/10): For someone under the age of 18, this is a good starting point for mood stabilizers. It’s one of the anticonvulsant varieties, and I found it to be pretty helpful. The only problem was that it wasn’t effective enough for me, and as my psychiatrist put it “you tried to kill yourself all the time when you were on this.”
Lamictal (0/10): This is a biased ranking. I don’t actually know whether or not this medicine is effective. I got a rash and was immediately taken off of it.
Topamax (7.5/10): My current mood stabilizer. I like it most out of all of the others, but it’s not without side effects. I feel numbness in my face and hands most of the time, and I literally shit out my mood swings when on it.
Lithium (1/10): I really loved Lithium at first. And then, all of a sudden, I wanted to die on it. I gained weight, went through countless blood tests, had terrible acne, and eventually tried to take my life with it. It was by far one of the worst on this list for me, and an overdose can be fatal.
What Happens When You Choose to Stop a Medicine on Your Own? 2/19/2016
This is a really, really, important post. I’m writing it not just so I have something to refer back to, but also in hopes that this will encourage more people to take their medicine on time and every day in order to stay in top health.
So what could happen if you don’t take your meds? A lot of people may assume you can get by just fine by going cold turkey off a medicine (by “cold turkey” I mean completely stopping taking the medicine very suddenly). I admit, I’m guilty of thinking this way, too (as recently as yesterday morning!). But I’m telling you the honest truth when I say choosing to go cold turkey off medicine is a very, seriously dangerous thing. Let me tell you some stories about when I’ve gone off certain meds:
1) Xanax. Xanax is in a class of medicine called benzodiazepines, commonly referred to as “benzos”. In March of 2015, towards the end of the month, I was admitted to a psych ward. The doctor there took me off all my meds and put me on solely Xanax, 0.5mg four times daily. The Xanax kept me calm, but it did nothing to quell my psychotic symptoms. So the doctor put me on an antipsychotic called Loxapine and continued the Xanax four times a day. I got out of the hospital April 2 after 10 days in the psych ward. I had only received two doses of my Xanax that day. I got all my prescriptions filled and went home. This doctor, we’ll call him Dr. M, and I never, ever got along. I assumed I knew better about what I needed than he did. So, I assumed “Hey, I’m on antipsychotics again. I don’t need Xanax!” So I stopped it cold turkey right then and there. Three days later, on April 5th, at my boyfriend’s parents’ house, I had a seizure at the breakfast table. I remember finishing my waffles and fruit for breakfast, then the next moment paramedics were examining me and I had no idea what the hell was going on. I asked my boyfriend why there were paramedics looking at me, and he said “Brigette, you had a seizure.” I didn’t remember anything that had happened in the last 20 minutes. My mom came and took me to the hospital where I stayed the next two nights and got out April 8th. Needless to say, that was shitty time spent. But the worst part? In Michigan, the law says a person cannot drive for 6 months after losing consciousness. So, in my decision that I was smarter than my doctor, I had a seizure on Easter morning, spent three days in a hospital, and lost my independence for 6 months.
2) Latuda and Geodon. February of 2015, I was taking both Latuda and Geodon (I actually am on the same combination again, but at different times during the day). One day late that month, I got pretty suicidal. Not enough to attempt, but enough to seriously consider ending my life. So I was admitted to a psych ward. That night, I was not given either Latuda or Geodon. It was easily the most bizarre night of my life. I had no clue what was going on. My reality was very, very distorted. I was talking to inanimate objects and shadows, going so far as to name them and give them personalities (the only one I clearly remember was Jamison, the shadow caused by a box of tissues on the nightstand). I went to pull my blankets over my body so I could sleep, but I was severely hallucinating and the blanket looked like it was alive. In a fit of rage, I threw my blanket to the ground and kicked it, trying to make it stop moving. I eventually gave up and went to lie down on my bed. I slept for a little while, and woke up feeling different. I thought the hospital staff had injected some kind of serum into my brain while I slept to make me feel different. Now I was really, really enraged. I almost went out into the hallway, yelling, “What are you doing, giving me living blankets and putting stuff in my head while I sleep?! WHAT?!” But I knew the rules of psych wards even at my most psychotic moments, so I kept my mouth shut and laid on my bed, very cold and shivering because I refused to use the “living” blanket (It would take three nights for me to be convinced that the blanket was not alive and was not trying to kill me). The next day, I was hardly able to function. I could not eat, I could not keep my head up, I was not very responsive when people talked to me. Keep in mind this was all withdrawal from not having the meds for one night. Eventually I was put on Trilafon and discharged. But that night without my meds has stuck with me very clearly about a year later.
3) Various other meds, such as Loxapine, Geodon, Latuda, and other antispychotics. Going off these meds has lead me to do dangerous things like cut my arm in a severe delusion, eat very little, drink very little, sleep very little, and make my symptoms get worse for days even after I get back on the med.
I could post a little more, but I don’t want this post to be too long. My point in telling these stories is that very serious and dangerous physical, emotional and mental side effects can occur if you do not take your medicine as prescribed by your doctor. I am telling you this as someone who has suffered those different types of side effects. I’m not trying to scare you into take your meds, but I want you to be well aware of what could happen if you choose to risk your health by not listening to your doctor.
My best advice to you is:
1) Find a psychiatrist you get along with, trust, and who knows you and your reaction to certain meds.
2) Take your meds as prescribed by that psychiatrist.
3) If a med seems to not be working or causing undesirable side effects, talk to your doctor before stopping it. It may be a med where the best way to get off it is to slowly taper your intake of it until it reaches zero.
These three steps will keep you safe, healthy, and on the road to a quicker recovery from your illness.
What do anti-psychotics do to people who aren't hallucinating? What happens in the long term? What if you suddenly stop taking them? My character is 28 and has been on anti-psychotics since he was 14 because he actually was seeing monsters but obviously nobody believed him and thus, drugs. If he stfu and took the pills (because due to Plot, they actually did mute the monster thing significantly), how likely is it he'd still be on them at 28? What would happen if he suddenly went cold turkey?
Being honest, Anon, your character is looking at some serious side effects. Here are some of the most notable / dangerous ones:
Feelings of inner restlessness
Tardive dyskinesia (which is irreversible, even if your character stops taking the medication!) I can go into TD in more detail if y’all want - I did a presentation on it recently!
Type II diabetes
Other important side effects:
Sedation (often extreme)
Increased chance for arrhythmia (with specific drugs)
And those are just the really serious ones! There’s a lot of other different ones too.
Certain classes of antipsychotics are more associated with different symptoms. For instance, the typical antipsychotics are more associated with movement symptoms, and atypical ones with metabolic ones. That’s not to say that an atypical antipsychotic can’t cause movement symptoms - it just does so at a much lower rate than a typical antipsychotic does.
Something really important to note - your character would likely not be on antipsychotics continuously for 14 years straight. Usually, a year or two after the first episode of psychosis, they’ll try to taper down and see if the antipsychotic is still necessary. If they have another episode, they’d go back on it, and they’d reevaluate after 3-5 years.
Oh, another thing - nowadays a lot of people taking antipsychotics long term actually don’t take pills; they get an injection. How frequently they get the shot depends on the drug, but it ranges from once every two weeks to once every three months.
Going cold turkey will indeed cause withdrawal symptoms - these symptoms are more specific to the drug in question.
Do Antipsychotic Medications Affect Cortical Thinning?
People diagnosed with
schizophrenia critically rely upon treatment with antipsychotic medications to
manage their symptoms and help them function at home and in the workplace.
But despite their benefits, antipsychotic
medications might also have some negative effects on brain structure or
function when taken for long periods of time.
In fact, “the role played by
antipsychotic treatment on the pathophysiologic trajectory of brain
abnormalities in schizophrenia is currently a matter of lively debate,”
explains Dr. Antonio Vita, Professor of Psychiatry at the
University of Brescia, Director of the Psychiatric Unit at Spedali Civili
Hospital, and first author on a study addressing this topic in the current
issue of Biological Psychiatry.
It is clear from
cross-sectional and longitudinal magnetic resonance imaging studies that
patients with schizophrenia show progressive structural brain abnormalities. The
findings indicate that lower gray matter volume or greater gray matter loss over
time are associated with the duration of antipsychotic treatment or cumulative antipsychotic
However, most of this prior
literature did not take into account the potential impact of whether a patient
was prescribed first-generation or second-generation antipsychotics. These two
classes of drugs are equally effective treatments, but have different
pharmacological properties and therefore, work differently in the body.
Vita and his colleagues
compiled data from eighteen imaging studies, resulting in a total of 1155
patients with schizophrenia and 911 healthy control subjects, in order to
evaluate the influence of antipsychotic type on gray matter changes over time.
As expected, their analysis
confirmed that patients with schizophrenia show progressive cortical gray
matter loss relative to healthy controls, which is related to cumulative antipsychotic intake
during the interval between imaging scans.
Interestingly, greater gray matter loss was correlated with higher mean
daily dose in studies including patients treated with first-generation
antipsychotics, whereas the opposite effect, i.e., less progressive loss, was
observed in studies including only patients treated with second-generation
This is consistent with the results of several studies in animals
and some clinical studies with patients indicating that second-generation
antipsychotics may have a neuroprotective effect on the brain.
“The possibility that
antipsychotic medications might have long-term effects on brain structure or
function that might be beneficial or detrimental is an important issue
deserving further study as many people treated with these medications will
remain on them for several decades,” said Dr. John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry.
“Although this is a clinically meaningful result, many issues remain to
be clarified: for instance, we
still do not know whether the effects on the brain of antipsychotics vary as a
function of age and stage of illness, or whether they may occur only when a
certain threshold of exposure (daily dose or cumulative dose) is reached,”
“Clarification of these
issues will have crucial importance in the clinical management of schizophrenia
and will allow a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the
progression of structural brain abnormalities in the disease.”
Researchers Use Brain Scans to Predict Response to Antipsychotic Medications
Investigators at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research have
discovered that brain scans can be used to predict patients’ response to
antipsychotic drug treatment. The findings are published online in the
latest issue of The American Journal of Psychiatry.
Psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, are
characterized by delusions, hallucinations, and disorganized thoughts
and behavior. They are estimated to occur in up to three percent of the
population and are a leading cause for disability worldwide. Psychotic
episodes are currently treated with antipsychotic drugs, but this
treatment is given without guidance from lab tests or brain scans, such
as functional magnetic resonance imaging or functional MRI (fMRI).
Doctors often use “trial-and-error” when choosing treatment for
psychotic disorders, without knowing if patients will respond well. This
lack of knowledge places a large burden on not only patients and their
families, but also healthcare professionals and healthcare systems.
Led by Anil Malhotra, MD, director of psychiatry research at Zucker Hillside Hospital and an investigator at the Feinstein Institute, and Todd Lencz, PhD,
associate investigator at the Zucker Hillside Hospital and the
Feinstein Institute, researchers used fMRI scans obtained before
treatment to predict ultimate response to medications in patients
suffering from their first episode of schizophrenia. Connectivity
patterns of a region of the brain called the striatum, which tends to be
atypical in patients suffering from psychotic disorders, were used to
create an index. This index significantly predicted if psychotic
symptoms were decreased in the studies’ patients. What’s even more
significant is that the researchers applied this index to confirm their
results in a separate group of patients with more chronic illness –
those who were hospitalized for psychotic symptoms. They found that
treatment outcome could be predicted in the replication group as well.
“This study is the first to report a predictive fMRI-derived measure
validated in an independent study group of patients treated with
antipsychotics,” said Deepak Sarpal, MD, a lead author of the study.
“The results we found from this study open the door for contemporary
‘precision medicine’ approaches to psychiatry, and more specifically,
the use of fMRI scans as important players in the treatment of
Check out this video for some examples! (Note - there is a full description of this video behind the jump at the end of this post. Feel free to use the way I describe the movements in your own writing!).
While TD is usually pretty noticeable, it can be subtle in the early stages (note the lip puckering in #5 and the cheek muscle in #7 in the video above).
Symptoms of TD get worse when the person is more emotional, and they mostly disappear when the person is asleep.
What causes TD?
The current theory is that TD is caused by a dopamine blockade at the D2 receptors, which causes a compensatory supersensitivity to dopamine.
I know I’ve lost you. Hell, a few months ago I would have been lost too!
So I have a story that will (hopefully) clear things up a little.
Reece has just gotten a new roommate, Anne. This is a pretty sweet deal for Reece, as he gets to save money and thus overall improve his quality of life.
However, it soon becomes clear that Reece and Anne aren’t a good fit. Anne is a bit of a slob and doesn’t do chores.
While he at first tidied up after her, Reece eventually can’t take it anymore. He confronts Anne, and she doesn’t take it well. She tells him that she’s not going to change, and that if her messiness bothers him, he should just clean up her messes for her.
After this conversation, Reece and Anne are no longer on friendly terms with one another, and now resent each other so much that they’ll never be able to be friends again.
Now, the little things that Reece used to let slide (like leaving dishes in the sink) become grounds for a screaming argument. He has become supersensitive to the things Anne does, and the slightest thing can activate his rage. The longer Reece lives with Anne, the worse things are going to get.
Reece eventually kicks Anne out and tries to find a new roommate. However, Reece’s normal state now is that of being supersensitive; even though Anne is gone, he’s still wary of future roommates, just in case they’re going to be like Anne. Reece becomes so intolerant of messiness that he’ll even yell at his friends and family if they so much as track a tiny bit of mud into the house or leave a cup on the table.
After living with Anne, Reese’s low tolerance for messiness never goes away.
Reese is your D2 Receptors and Anne is an antipsychotic. The “messes” Reese cleans up is dopamine. Reese’s permanent low tolerance for messiness is compensatory supersensitivity to dopamine. The angry outbursts whenever Reese has to deal with messes are what cause tardive dyskinesia.
There are a number of factors that can increase the risk of developing TD, but the most important one is how old the character is. Elderly people are ~3 times more likely than younger people to develop TD.
Another big risk factor is what medication your character is taking, as well as how big a dosage it is.
Older antipsychotics (aka typical antipsychotics) like haliperidol (Haldol) and chlorpromazine (Thorazine) are associated with high rates of causing TD. While generally atypical antipsychotics don’t cause TD at anywhere near the same rate, using a high enough dose of an atypical antipsychotic means that it actually becomes just as likely to cause TD as a typical one.
Note: One atypical antipsychotic, Clozapine, is notable for its extremely low rate of causing TD (it’s so low that it’s at the point that many researchers describe it as never causing TD). However, it has a potentially deadly side effect that requires getting regular blood tests as long as you take it. As such, it’s not frequently prescribed unless other antipsychotics aren’t working or someone already has TD and they’re trying to keep it from progressing.
Why are typical and atypical antipsychotics different?
The fancy psych answer is that typical antipsychotics have high affinity for dopamine D2 receptors, and atypical antipsychotics not only have a lower affinity to those receptors, but they also work on serotonin receptors.
WTF does that mean? Well, let’s go back to the roommate analogy!
A typical antipsychotic is like having a roommate that rarely leaves the house. It’s a lot easier to get overwhelmed by their messiness, because they’re constantly there creating it.
An atypical antipsychotic is like having a roommate that has a significant other and stays over at their place half of the time. It’s still possible to end up with a bad roommate, but because they’re not always around, it’s not as likely you’ll reach that point of no return.
What treatments are available?
CW: brief suicide mention
There is no cure for tardive dyskinesia once it develops. Taking someone off the antipsychotic quickly can prevent TD from getting worse, but that can result in a relapse of the symptoms that necessitated taking the antipsychotic in the first place. Your character may need to be switched to a different medication that has a lower rate of causing TD (see Clozapine above).
There are some ways to manage symptoms once they’ve developed:
Valbenazine is a brand-spanking-new drug that was only approved a few months ago! It’s really promising, and doesn’t seem to have that many side effects.
Tetrabenazine - this was traditionally used to treat TD, but it can have some serious side effects and can increase the risk of suicide.
There are other medications, but they seem to have mixed support as to their efficacy.
Also, interestingly, if someone has smaller, simple, more localized movements (think the cheek movements in #7 in the video), botox can actually be used to paralyze the affected muscle.
Why bother writing about this?
Well, it adds an element of realism to a character who’s taking antipsychotics. Even if you don’t want your character to develop tardive dyskinesia, it could be something your character worries about while taking the drugs, or even be given as a reason they don’t want to take them!
It’s the kind of detail that the Shrink never sees addressed in media, and I’ll automatically give bonus points to anything that includes a detail like this.
Pet peeve: when someone has a bad experience with a psych med so they tell everyone else not to take it. Everyone reacts to meds differently, and just because you got the side effects doesn’t mean that person will. It’s just wrong to try to scare a person away from their treatment plan
It must be hard for you going through a reality different from other people. It must be hard pointing something out that other people cannot see. It must be hard believing that your neighboor controls you or that your damn computer is trying to communicate you something or that your dead mum visits you at night before going to sleep or that your girl/boyfriend wants to poison you or that the goverment is after you and even if you understand somehow that it cant be real, you cannot believe otherwise.
It must be so hard and yet harder it is when people dont understand. Harder it is when people dont know what delusions and hallucinations are, telling that you are faking it, calling you a creep or a freak, ignoring you.
But I really hope that there are people close to you trying to understand your reality, trying to fight along with you every monster haunting your mind, holding your hand, shouting together with you to that shadow which always follows you to go away, making you believe that they love you even when your delusions show something different.
I really hope you are not getting the phrases: ‘it is not real’, ‘you are just imagining it’, ‘its only on your head’ because it must be FUCKING HARD to see something and to be told that its not there when your whole being feels it.
To each psychotic person: Know that you are unique and you can be stronger than you think. You are fighting the worst battles from us all: that with yourself, your mind, your and others perception, your and others reality and I am with you through all this. Please be strong.
Yo Sam! So i read in some article that antipsychotics might interfere with testosterone levels, but i couldnt find any proper or trans specific info on this. So im wondering if any of ur lovely followers has any experience with being on antipsychotics and t at the same time, and if so, could they contact me? Thank u!
i had a dream last night that was really fucking overwhelming and scary. it felt SO real and it went on for what felt like an entire real-world day. there was like really upsetting stuff going on and i woke up really fucking rattled
do… do antipsychotics do that to your sleep? or did i just have a shitty night?
I’ve been tried on a shit ton of meds so I figured I’d give my experience on them. My diagnoses are: schizophrenia, PTSD, generalized anxiety disorder, and borderline personality disorder.
Trazadone- WORST. SLEEP. MEDICATION. That I have EVER taken. Sent me into a psychotic break (thankfully I was inpatient at the time) and was overall a bad time. Made my psychosis horrible.
Vistaril- Same experience as Trazadone except a little less severe and made me a tiny bit less drowsy than trazadone did.
Remeron- It was most likely just my body, but I had a dystonic reaction to it and had hella leg jerks so I can’t take it.
Atarax- Was just like taking 50 mg of Benadryl. Made me drowsy but didn’t help my sleep at all.
Zoloft- This is the only antidepressant I’ve been prescribed for depression/anxiety and it really mainly helps my anxiety but at least it helps right? Dont cold turkey it if you don’t want to end up inpatient.
Abilify- Weight gain. Twitches. Sleep. One of the worst I was prescribed for my schizophrenia/psychosis. Even months after I’ve been off it I still have minor twitches in my neck/head area and put on 20 pounds I probably won’t lose. Helped my hallucinations the most but the side effects outweighed the benefits.
Risperdal: WEIGHT GAIN. Once again made me put on even more weight (about 10 pounds, so not as much as abilify). Made my brain foggy and I couldn’t concentrate on anything. Slightly toned down the voices, increased my paranoia.
Seroquel: Actual hell. I’m not bipolar but it ended me up in the hospital as my psychiatrist was worried it had made me severely manic. Constantly sleeping. Not much difference with psychotic symptoms.
Geodon: I wasn’t on this long, it just gave me severe anxiety. As for helping my symptoms, quieted voices a little bit, increased paranoia.
Latuda: made me VERY angry after only two days of being on it. Didn’t notice any difference in helping my psychosis.
Vraylar: This is what I’m currently on and have been on for about three weeks. It works almost as well as the abilify did as for psychotic symptoms but the twitches are worse than on the abilify. Still hearing and seeing things but not as severely. No weight gain so that is a plus!
Ativan- I’ve only ever taken Ativan as needed and it works wonders. Helps me sleep, calms me down, and helps the twitches from side effects of antipsychotics.
I hope this was helpful in some form in helping you chose and understand how meds might affect you!
1/2 I'm sorry for adding to your inbox but I really need to talk to someone about this. My new psychiatrist put me on atypical antipsychotics on top of my prozac because my depression was barely responding to my prozac, with it only taking away the suicidal symptoms. But I don't think I need them and I don't want to be on them. I can't explain why but the fact that I'm on them makes me feel awful and scared. I know some people need them and there's nothing wrong with that but I don't want them.
2/2 (antipsychotics anon) Plus the list of side effects scares me. And I think they’re starting to lose effectiveness after the first few months. This new psychiatrist also took me off of a medication I truly believe I need because he was afraid of side effects that I never experienced in the year I was taking them. I know it’s a lost cause with that medication but should I talk to him about the antipsychotics? I at least want to know why he thinks I need them.
You are always entitled to what your doctor’s reasoning is behind prescribing your drugs; if you feel this new psychiatrist isn’t acting in accordance with your best interests, let him know! Let him know that you think your prior medication was better suited to you inspite of the side-effects, and that your new medication is making you feel scared. Never assume that what you’re taking is necessarily what’s best for you!
While there’s a requirement to have a certain amount of trust in your medical professionals, never rule out getting a qualified Second Opinion if you feel you’re not being listened to or taken advantage of; no profession is exempt from incompetence, neglect or greed. There are good mechanics, and there are ones that will overcharge you and fill your car with garbage; they all have licenses too!
Use your own wiles as well; look up your drugs online to see how they interact — it’s always in your best interest to know things for yourself, especially when it applies to medication affecting your mind. Be smart, get secondary resources and medical opinions…
But that all comes after you tell your psychiatrist first that you don’t like your current meds; see what the response from him is before proceeding.
The only psychiatrist that I’ve been able to find in this damned country that specializes in dissociation and neurological disorders doesn’t even believe in DID. It did come up in the conversation, and he acknowledges that I have all of the symptoms, but he will only diagnose me with bipolar and borderline personality (Which I don’t disagree that I have), because it’s apparently not a real thing.
He made me feel so stupid when I tried to explain my alters to him and how they started presenting themselves to me and how they are not just voices but like actual people. That they take over my body sometimes and I forget what they do. They don’t just say random gibberish or insult me, I and other people on the outside can have fluid full conversations with them, etc. He just gave me an anti psychotic pretty much and told me to stfu and gtfo. Well, he was a little bit more professional than that but you get the idea.
I would be OK if a doctor told me I didn’t have DID/OSDD IF that doctor actually believed it was a real illness in the first place. Which I think would be really unlikely to happen because of the fact that I have all of the symptoms of DID/OSDD.
I asked him “what if I take this medicine and the voices don’t stop?” and he seemed so sure of himself that they were just psychotic delusions that would disappear with drugs.
Hopefully I can find someone more reasonable in this country, or maybe someone from america who can help me over skype…
hey. im sorry if this int alright to ask but what anti psychotica have you been on? i feel like anything that i try is bullshit and makes me tired and hungry and not able to cope. are they all like this?
uh i’m on latuda, and i’ve tried rexulti and abilify, and both of them made me fucking eat non-stop like i literally could not fucking stop eating at all, latuda doesn’t make me fucking hungry all the time … but i can’t lose weight on it either, not until i got this prescription for valium … and started drinking coffee… the worst part about latuda though is … though it balances me out it fucking KILLS my motivation absolutely decimates it.
whereas abilify and rexulti i was like manic and could do a million things at once… but i gained 10 pounds in a week so i was like fucking bye. not that weight gain is bad, but like i have a fatty liver when i gain too much weight and its really really bad lmao, its not good, so like for ME PERSONALLY its a health risk plus it makes me depressed, because i’m like body dysmorphic, so I stay on the shit tier latuda, which makes me tired and lethargic and blah all the fucking time but it does balance out my moods, and keep most of the hallucinations and thought disorders away… for the most part,
like i’m still fucking crazy, but significantly more balanced about it now? Plus this is the longest I’ve been able to maintain the same weight in my life … so pros and cons you know. because like I have a significantly bad eating disorder lmao … and it does help with that too … i just fucking wish … i could .. do more shit? like…..
I feel like I have to choose between massive amounts of weight gain with LOADS OF MOTIVATION, or no motivation, and stable weight … which yeah may not sound like a big deal to some people they’d pick the first one but uh I can’t do it. it just depresses me. because people absolutely fucking treat you different if you aren’t average/skinny. idfk and it’s literally doctors faults too lmao. theyre like let me put you on this shit that makes you gain weight, and then give you shit for gaining weight.
Right now I’m on a huge mix of pills though, and I think maybe I might go back to the rexulti now that I’m on valium, because I’ve lost a fuckton of weight on valium [which is bad, despite my eating disorder being like yeah this is a good thing] I don’t want to do that lol, so I’m thinking, if I combine one thing that makes me lose a bunch of weight and not hungry at all, with another thing that makes me gain a bunch of weight and constantly hungry … maybe I’ll just be balanced out? and can have the motivation without the constant hunger/weight gain?
cause like most fucking antipsychotics make people gain weight, same with a lot of antidepressants, and then our doctors give us shit for it smh.
But like if you haven’t tried latuda, it might not make you constantly hungry? It doesn’t make me constantly hungry, and everything else does, like on rexulti I literally could not stop eating … at all. I would just fucking binge, and then fucking exercise for 8 hours … and still gain a fuckton of weight, cause i couldn’t stop eating. so it really wasn’t … good
LONG STORY I KNOW I JUST HAD A LOT TO SAY ABOUT HOW I FEEL ABOUT ANTIPSYCHOTICS.
up side) balance to life down side) that balance can lead to exhaustion with everything.
The dark side of the second generation antipsychotic drugs: what the medical companies aren't telling you.
Estel is here with some disappointing news, folks. The British Journal of Psychiatry recently published an article about the efficacy of antipsychotic drugs. It has been discovered that many studies have found that the ‘new and improved’ second generation of antipsychotic drugs may not be so 'improved’ as they were hypothesized. It doesn’t end there though: drug companies have been enthusiastic in selling these antipsychotics as illusory advances in medical science without providing adequate information about potentially deteriorating side-effects of the drugs.
Unfortunately, this is a relatively new article and still under the folds. Hence, it is locked away from the likes of scientists and eager students alike for now. The good news is that it is set to be published during this month.
However, here is the last paragraph of the kick-ass editorial that managed to be released to the interwebs:
In creating successive new classes of antipsychotics over the years, the industry has helped develop a broader range of different drugs with different side-effect profiles and potencies, and possibly an increased chance of finding a drug to suit each of our patients. But the price of doing this has been considerable – in 2003 the cost of antipsychotics in the USA equalled the cost of paying all their psychiatrists.
The story of the atypicals and the SGAs ['second-generation antipsychotics’] is not the story of clinical discovery and progress; it is the story of fabricated classes, money and marketing. The study published today is a small but important piece of the jigsaw completing a picture that undermines any clinical or scientific confidence in these classes.
With the industry reputation damaged by evidence of selective publishing and its deleterious effects, and the recent claims that trials of at least one of the new atypicals have been knowingly ‘buried’, it will take a great deal for psychiatrists to be persuaded that the next new discovery of a drug or a class will be anything more than a cynical tactic to generate profit. In the meantime, perhaps we can drop the atypical, second-generation, brand new and very expensive labels: they are all just plain antipsychotics.
Anybody else feel that our health care system has become nothing more than a money-making business that preys on the vulnerabilities of individuals who are trying very hard to find constructive solutions to their illnesses? Faith can only be restored in health care if an individual feels that their health is a vital issue that needs proper care, attention and respect. In the wise words of Ms. Elizabeth Bennet: “the more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of either merit or sense.”
Here’s to hoping that future health care workers, investors and business owners alike have got more than money on their mind.
Does anyone taking antipsychotics (specifically Clozapine maybe?) have random muscle spasms?? I’ll be walking and almost fall because my leg spasmed, or I’ll pick something up and immediately drop it because my hand released.
I’ll PROBABLY ask my psych about it, but I kind of don’t want to because I’m worried she’ll take me off of Clozapine and I DEFINITELY do not want to stop it.
Friendly reminder to all my followers or fellow tumblr users that are currently taking antipsychotics, July & August are very hot months, and antipsychotics can cause severe dehydration! Remember to drink lots of fluids & stay safe! Have a nice summer!
Is anyone here on Risperidone for impulse control/mood stabilization? Would you mine briefly discussing it with me? I was prescribed it and I start taking it tonight to see how I respond to it. If I respond well in the next couple of days I start on celexa. Anyone mind discussing this with me????