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going off meds cold turkey?

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goldentoad97

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what are the risks of going off your mood stabilizers cold turkey? my friend did this completely cold turkey bc they were tired of feeling like a zombie, and i didn't really notice they were acting different until like 2 months later when i REALLY noticed. how long can it take for your symptoms to come back / worsen? is it the longer you go off your meds, the worse off you get or does it fluctuate?
 
OmniscientNihilist

OmniscientNihilist

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what are the risks of going off your mood stabilizers cold turkey? my friend did this completely cold turkey bc they were tired of feeling like a zombie, and i didn't really notice they were acting different until like 2 months later when i REALLY noticed. how long can it take for your symptoms to come back / worsen? is it the longer you go off your meds, the worse off you get or does it fluctuate?

when going off meds it can be hard to tell the difference between withdrawal symptoms or illness symptoms
 
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siliconom

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You should never go offa any psych meds cold turkey. There is nothing to gain.

The really really lucky person can get away with it. But most of us can't

Even if you don't been on the gear that long, you need to reduce real slow but reduce. The good news is that you can get off any drug that way, even heroin. Just do it real slow
 
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lifecangetbetter

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yes the brain is very delicate. you have be very careful. not recommended to go off cold turkey, you're just asking for trouble
 
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goldentoad97

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yes the brain is very delicate. you have be very careful. not recommended to go off cold turkey, you're just asking for trouble
that's what i think. my friend just started being REALLY irritable and critical of me when they were the complete opposite before. it makes me sad
 
Wishbone

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what are the risks of going off your mood stabilizers cold turkey? my friend did this completely cold turkey bc they were tired of feeling like a zombie, and i didn't really notice they were acting different until like 2 months later when i REALLY noticed. how long can it take for your symptoms to come back / worsen? is it the longer you go off your meds, the worse off you get or does it fluctuate?
First you should ask why someone would want to go off their meds. You say she was tired of feeling like a zombie but you hadn't noticed a change in two months. Think about that, what does that tell you? It could mean that the 'zombie' feeling is internal, i.e; not feeling emotions in the normal way, not being happy, not being sad, not wanting things, just...blah! Some people go off their meds because of other reasons like weight gain, but most will go off them through feeling dead inside (zombie), or from feeling like they're well and no longer need them anymore. Your friend clearly doesn't like not feeling anything, which means it's going to be tough to keep her on her meds, especially if she has had really 'good' manic episodes in the past as opposed to this more recent irritable one (they are not fun!). If feeling is what she needs then it may be that she needs to find another interest somewhere, something to keep her going and not leave her spending too much time ruminating about things. Think about possible things you could do together so as to be a sneaky way to keep an eye on her and how she is. The gym, a new sport, walks, social catch ups etc.

How long? There's no definitive answer as everyone, and each episode, can differ. What you WOULD expect is that once in an episode it gets treated and then managed, but she needs to keep going with that management by playing ball and sticking to the meds, any other treatments, regular routines, sleep pattern etc.
 
Wishbone

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I've just thought, once she's out of this and you've got to a stage where she will talk to you about meds (hopefully), you can always discuss with her the idea of changing to a different medication if she's still saying she doesn't like being a zombie. For example, if she's on a mood stabilizer, let's say Lithium, but it's making her a zombie too much for her to stick with and is getting tempted to quit them again, she could always end up changing to a different mood stabilizer, she doesn't have to stick with the one they have offered her. One might not be acceptable but another might be tolerable, so she can explore other avenues; it's not one medication or nothing.
 
Zana

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From experience, don't bother trying. You'll empty your stomach vomiting and just start throwing up your stomach acid and that won't even be the worst of it. Talk to your psychiatrist, be patient and come off your meds slowly.
 
daffy

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Staff note

Always seek the advice of your doctor, psychiatrist or other qualified health professional before making any changes to your medications or with any questions you may have regarding drugs/medications. In considering coming off psychiatric drugs it is very important that you are aware that most psychiatric drugs can cause withdrawal reactions, sometimes including life-threatening emotional and physical withdrawal problems. In short, it is not only dangerous to start taking psychiatric drugs, it can also be dangerous to stop them. Withdrawal from psychiatric drugs should only be done carefully under experienced clinical supervision.
 
HLon99

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Terrible idea. Not only will you get withdrawal symptoms which may be dangerous, but you also have a high risk of a relapse. There are many options out there in terms of medication, many of the modern drugs do not turn you into zombies. Tell your friend to discuss this with his psychiatrist.
 
Wishbone

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Oh I'd always advocate for coming off them slowly and always meds at your doctors say-so (you're not gonna get them any other way anyhow!) but you can change, as I did from Lithium to Depakote, without issue. I understand that I'm just one example.
 
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siliconom

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Staff note

Always seek the advice of your doctor, psychiatrist or other qualified health professional before making any changes to your medications or with any questions you may have regarding drugs/medications. In considering coming off psychiatric drugs it is very important that you are aware that most psychiatric drugs can cause withdrawal reactions, sometimes including life-threatening emotional and physical withdrawal problems. In short, it is not only dangerous to start taking psychiatric drugs, it can also be dangerous to stop them. Withdrawal from psychiatric drugs should only be done carefully under experienced clinical supervision.
Just wondering whether the wording of this necessary warning isnt a bit too scary for folk just starting out

Instead of words like 'life-threatening' and 'dangerous', how about 'there is a considerable risk of ....
 
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siliconom

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I'm reminded of them serotonin syndrome warnings what you get offa doc google if you search an AD
Most real. docs never come across a single case of. it in their entire life
 
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Gratefultobewell

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I went down just 25mg of seroquel (down from 650mg to 625mg), and within 2 days was so depressed I could barely get out of bed. Totally not worth it.
 
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