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Antipsychotics

Aahbut

Aahbut

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I have been hearing voices for about three months and it looks like I am going to have to take an antipsychotic. Could someone explain how they work and what they do. What are the side effects etc. I'm a bit worried I am going to end up waking round in a haze, and I find it bad enough as it is being able to concentrate etc now.
 
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Dollit

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I take antipsychotics from time to time and I've found that if the dosage is built up carefully and in a considered fashion then I tend not to get fogged out. If I feel like a zombie I'm taking too much and I go down a step. I worked this out with the consultant and I find them really useful. Side effects can change from drug to drug so be sure to talk all that over first.
 
yakuza

yakuza

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I take the antipsychotic 'chlorpromazine' which is in a class of drugs called phenothiazines,they work like all antipsychotics,by changing the actions of chemicals in the brain.
The information leaflet explains to use caution when driving,using machinery or performing hazardous activities as per normal with meds.
I think there is a misconception that antipsychotics take away one's 'free will' although I must admit that the sedatory affect can be overpowering at times but it really depends on what dosage you may take.
There are many potential side effects as with most meds and the severest I can report is insomnia and drowsiness,not a great combination.
Apparently taking anti-depressants can also increase the side effects of antipsychotics which is worth bearing in mind.
The meds have reduced the level and severity of my hallucinations,I'm still working out whether the psychosis is improving but as my GP informed me,the point of taking them is to give me the opportunity to deal with the world more rationally.
I've been on them for over a year now and find that I am in a far worse place if I happen to miss a dose.
 
Aahbut

Aahbut

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I have been on Seroquel 200mg at night for almost 6 weeks now. It knocks me out and I never wake until the alarm goes off. I have not tried it but think I would sleep until gone midday if I didn't set the alarm. I find the morning is a struggle to stay awake and it is so easy to just doze off again.

Taking it has not really stopped the voices, calmed them down a little but they have not gone. In fact I have a sneaking suspicion there is another in there somewhere. I sort of hear a third voice, but it's always hiding behind one of the others. It is more manageable now though. If only I didn't feel so tired, I don't really feel awake until about mid afternoon. And I also feel very weak in my joints, this changes from day to day. This morning my hands felt so weak I didn't feel I could hold anything heavy. I guess it is like arthritis must be, aching and burning feeling in the joints, not nice at all.

On the plus side I feel a lot more human, the depressive mood seems to have lifted some. Hopefully this is not one of those blips I get.
 
lucid scream

lucid scream

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Jan 22, 2008
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ive taken seroquel for 5 years now. ive also taken risperidone and haldol in the past. it does what its supposed to do, but ive also put on a lot of wieght (it gives you carbohydrate cravings, especially at night). it also gives me a mad case of the restless legs if i go over 75mgs. and i smoke like a fiend (theres some connection between it and nicotine).
ive worked out the lowest effective dose, which for me is only 25mgs twice a day and 50 at bedtime, right now, but during 'episodes' i may take much more. my doctor has given me the go to pretty much set my own doseage, because as far as he knows ive been stable for 2 years now. i have in the past taken as much as 900mgs a day.
anyway, im babbling for sone reason. ill stop now.
 
yakuza

yakuza

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My GP and Psych have also given me the go ahead to sort out my own dosage of the anti-psychotics.

Aahbut and Lucid Scream..I'd just like to say thank you for the above info as it's given me some answers to questions that have been running through my mind recently with regards to the effects and cravings with these meds (y)
 
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Apotheosis

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I stress that this is my (subjective) - experience & opinion -

At 17 I was sectioned & put on a lot of heavy medication. After 4 odd months I was discharged & I stopped all the meds after a couple of weeks. I was off them until 21 when I again landed in the bin. This time I again took an anti psychotic, as well as anti depressants - I had a bad side effect where I could only walk short distances before my legs would freeze up & I would have to sit down. When I was discharged I again stopped the meds. At 25 I was again sectioned & put on high doses of an anti psychotic. I took it for a year at very high dose > my weight increased by about 6 & a half stone. I was apathetic & spent most of the day in bed; the rest of the time I chain smoked & watched TV. I was a Zombie - after a year of that I stopped the meds & was again sectioned - this time I refused meds for a while; but eventually agreed to take a minimum dose after they threatened me with a section 2 & depot injections if I didn't comply; despite no abnormal behaviour on my part in the hospital. In the past 10 years since I have tried stopping this med again twice; once with a 2 year reduction. Over a year ago I managed to successfully reduce further. I have refused any other meds & previous attempt to increase the dose. At a psych appointment earlier in the year when I was going through a bit of a rough patch I suggested going back up to the dose I was on before the last reduction - & the psych refused.

I don't know the outcomes of chicken & egg, & what if scenarios - but I firmly believe that I would have faired much better had I never had any contact with psych services in the first place & been given no meds. This will not be the same for everyone. Given my history of 2 decades of having being medicated for a lot of that time; most of it against my will - my present circumstances are that I accept now taking a med - the alternative, without proper support, & withdrawal reactions do not bear thinking about. I am almost utterly dependant on this med to function & likely will be for the rest of my life.
 
Aahbut

Aahbut

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I can answer my own question now. Seroquel makes me feel a bit sleepy initially but it wore off after a few weeks. I get the occasional day where I feel like waves of lethargy crash over me, so much so I need to rest for an hour. I don't feel like a zombie or anything, if anything my mind is clearer. The constant churning of thoughts is fading away, and my two little chattering chums are less intrusive now. On a bit of a downer I seem to hear a third voice, it sounds like it hides behind the others, lately it is becoming more noticeable. My psychiatrist wants to up my dose from 200 mg to 300 mg, I put it off for a while, now having weighed up the pros and cons I will up the dose next time I see him. It has also had a marked effect on my depression in a way the venlafaxine never did. The fly in the ointment is I now believe I am surrounded by angels. Why, and good or bad I have no idea yet.
 
yakuza

yakuza

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chlorpromazine

I feel very much in the 'danger zone' with these meds right now,I've experimented with skipping a dose,usually at midday,my theory being that I would be able to stabilize myself and have a relatively 'free' day but I feel I am either withdrawing from them rapidly or I just cannot exist without them anymore.
I was given the go-ahead to take these meds as and when I needed them but the problem with bad episodes is you obviously increase the dosage and when you're feeling relatively okay again and decrease you're body has become so used to the higher dose!
 
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Apotheosis

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.....but I feel I am either withdrawing from them rapidly or I just cannot exist without them anymore.
.......you're body has become so used to the higher dose!
It's a big problem for me. I am utterly dependant on the drug they give me. Originally placed on very high doses of this stuff, I think my mind was altered to such a degree as to not being able to function without this drug. Although I have attempted getting off them & stopped three times over the past 10 years; I have been unable to escape them. I reduced to an even lower dose around two years ago - & I still feel like I am adjusting to that. If I miss a day, I can feel very odd, anything over a few days & I go nuts, which I put largely down to a withdrawal reaction. I don't think the mental states I get into in withdrawal have much to do with any original problems; but are rather the reaction of my brain to a dependence on very powerful chemicals. This is not addiction; but it is a chemical dependence to function. I would love for the right support & opportunity to get off this stuff.
 
yakuza

yakuza

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I would also love to be living a life without these meds but feel ever more dependant on them.

If I happen to miss a dose I become very disorientated which only confirms to me that I am reliant on this medication.

There must be people who live with these quite successfully but I've yet to meet or hear from them.

I feel that when I initially started with them they had a certain stabilizing effect as I'd been taking anti-convulsants for 4 years prior to this which had'nt helped at all at the time,but as the dose increased and now taking them 'as and when',I find that I cannot operate to any level of 'normality' without taking double the original dosage in the mornings.

The long term effects are worrying to say the least,there are some horror stories to be found but I suppose we can say that about many medications in the worse case scenarios.
 
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Danage

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Worcestershire, Great Britain
A bit like...

I feel very much in the 'danger zone' with these meds right now,I've experimented with skipping a dose,usually at midday,my theory being that I would be able to stabilize myself and have a relatively 'free' day but I feel I am either withdrawing from them rapidly or I just cannot exist without them anymore.
I was given the go-ahead to take these meds as and when I needed them but the problem with bad episodes is you obviously increase the dosage and when you're feeling relatively okay again and decrease you're body has become so used to the higher dose!
A bit like an addiction?
 
Rambuie Perspecador

Rambuie Perspecador

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Since these anti-psychotics are not habit-forming (-unlike some anti-depressants-), then it would be nothing like an addiction. drawing parallels with anything vaguely addictive is a non-starter! How many Addicts measure their dosages of self-applied fixes - with Any regard for the complete package of the effect on them - from Paranoia to cold turkey - no comparison whatever. Why did you suggest that, as a matter of interest?
 
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Apotheosis

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Since these anti-psychotics are not habit-forming (-unlike some anti-depressants-), then it would be nothing like an addiction. drawing parallels with anything vaguely addictive is a non-starter! How many Addicts measure their dosages of self-applied fixes - with Any regard for the complete package of the effect on them - from Paranoia to cold turkey - no comparison whatever. Why did you suggest that, as a matter of interest?
I beg to differ - this "type" of drug is dissimilar in that the person taking them is not doing so to get high; but in other respects it can be classed as a dependence.
 
lucid scream

lucid scream

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I beg to differ - this "type" of drug is dissimilar in that the person taking them is not doing so to get high; but in other respects it can be classed as a dependence.
i wholeheartedly agree. addiction and dependence happen when a substance is used to the point where the brain needs it to function properly, when it wasnt necessarily needed for that before a person started taking it.
i had a few problems functioning normally at times before i bagan taking antopsychotics. but it was no where near the physical need i have for them now.
 
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