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Is Anyone Tired On Lithium?


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#1 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 05 May 2008 - 01:50 PM

I can't sleep enough! I'm on 900mg (.8 s/l) and want to sleep all the time. But I can't find anywhere that I should be feeling this way. I'm also taking 1mg of Valium for tremors and this did not make me tired when I first started it. GOD THIS LITHIUM IS SO HARD TO TAKE!

Any thoughts?

Patty



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#2 sorrel

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Posted 05 May 2008 - 01:53 PM

It's not that uncommon. How long have you been taking the lithium? Sometimes people feel sleepy or lethargic when adjusting to it, but it often goes away.
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#3 In_Remission_Jasmine

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Posted 05 May 2008 - 07:13 PM

When I was first diagnosed with Bipolar they gave me Lithium because I was flying so high they had to peel me off the ceiling.
I was on it for three months and I was exhausted and achy all the time.

However, I know people who are on Lithium, that are doing great with it.

That is the art of this illness. Each med plays out differently for everyone.

#4 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 06 May 2008 - 12:00 PM

I've just been taking it for 2 months. I talked with my pdoc and he thinks it may be the Valium building up in my system. I guess we'll try propanolol (or however you spell it) next. I absolutely love and hate this medication! I was on SSRIs for 17 years with no side effects to speak of (besides the weight gain, which, if you ask me, goes along with any of these meds). I feel great mood-wise, but hate the poops, the exhaustion, the tremors and the mind-lapses. Oh and sorry Jook for thinking you were a girl. Maybe that was part of Lithium too?

Patty
BPII, Lithium 900(.8s/l), Tegretol 400(for epilepsy)

#5 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 06 May 2008 - 07:19 PM

Yes, he does. In fact, he was the one who suggested to the Neurologist to put me on Tegretol in 1990 when I overdosed (and almost died) from phenobarbital, which is what I was on for epilepsy previously. He was my doc at Menninngers. My neurologist wants to take me off Tegretol cause I haven't had a seizure since 1994, but it works so well with mood stabilization that I refuse to!

Well Jook, today I decreased the Valium (only took 2 in the morning, 7 and 11) and I was still just two sheets to the wind by 7pm. I'm really starting to think it's just the Lithium. I know I'm such a cry-baby about the side effects, but it almost makes me depressed to have them. And then I think I have absolutely nothing to cry about when my mood is so nice and stable. I keep telling myself to just ride it out, just ride it out! Can you remember when you were first on it and hated the side effects?

Patty

#6 dymphna

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Posted 07 May 2008 - 05:32 AM

BTW- Li can lower seizure threshold


And many docs do not believe this.

My last Pdoc was going to put me on Li and I refused, due to Jerod's experience with the drug. Pdoc had never heard of such a thing, and he is v. well qualified and works in a big urban area.

(While Jerod and I don't have the exact same things going on, there are enough similarities that, even though I didn't have my epilepsy Dx at the time, I knew it would be bad. My digging in my heels on the Li was the nail in the coffin for the Pdoc to send me over to a neuro and, voila, I do have epilepsy.)


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Yes, my name really is Dymphna.

 

I'm not a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or therapist.

I can find you an answer and I won't blow smoke up your ass.

 

St. Dymphna is the Patron for brain maladies.

 

I'm the Enforcer.

 

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#7 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 07 May 2008 - 11:25 AM

Being ill is NOT fun.

jook


No, it certainly is not. I'm sorry about your experience.

On top of everything, my back has started hurting. And I'm so out of shape that I can't really blame it on Li before I look into the overweight/out-of-shape angle.

I may have to go off the Li just to be able to function. I can't get enough sleep. Jook and others, does this side effect go away? How long do I give it before I call it a day?

The really sad thing is, is that I don't know what else we'll try if it isn't Li. We've done all the SSRIs (which of course made me totally Hyper and only worked for Depression for a month or so at a time). I got the rash on Lamictal. I can't take more Tegretol or other anti-seizures because they make my knees go out from under me. I tried Geodon and wanted to die from those side effects (Ok, I am reminded that there is worse than Li!).

Enough ranting, I get to go see my therapist now.

Patty

#8 ponyespresso

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Posted 08 May 2008 - 03:43 PM

Being ill is NOT fun.

jook


No, it certainly is not. I'm sorry about your experience.

On top of everything, my back has started hurting. And I'm so out of shape that I can't really blame it on Li before I look into the overweight/out-of-shape angle.

I may have to go off the Li just to be able to function. I can't get enough sleep. Jook and others, does this side effect go away? How long do I give it before I call it a day?

The really sad thing is, is that I don't know what else we'll try if it isn't Li. We've done all the SSRIs (which of course made me totally Hyper and only worked for Depression for a month or so at a time). I got the rash on Lamictal. I can't take more Tegretol or other anti-seizures because they make my knees go out from under me. I tried Geodon and wanted to die from those side effects (Ok, I am reminded that there is worse than Li!).

Enough ranting, I get to go see my therapist now.

Patty


I might be more tired because of Lithium -- it's hard to tell. One, I can't remember how many hours I slept at night this time last year. I sleep 9-10 hours a night, preferably 10, and every afternoon around 2 -3 I want to lie down and take a nap. I think that 9-10 hours of sleep may well be what I need every night. I'm trying to accept that, instead of feeling like a lazy bum!

In the last month or two I've stopped drinking caffeine in the afternoons. And I know I used to get tired in the afternoons before Lithium.

I do feel like maybe I'm more tired overall now. I just can't stay up very late, and it used to not be so hard. But maybe I was always hypo back in those days. :-)

FYI, i've been on Lith since Jan now, I have .6 blood level. Probably shows up in my profile...
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#9 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 10 May 2008 - 08:18 PM

Well, it turns out that my Thyroid levels are LOW LOW LOW! And of course, we all know the culprit! So they doubled my synthroid and my pdoc is hoping/thinking that this will make all the difference. Of course, it takes 5-6 weeks to check my thyroid levels again.

Patty

#10 In_Remission_pattyyc

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Posted 12 May 2008 - 07:21 AM

Yes, Jook, it helps to know why I'm so darned tired! Doesn't help that it could take 5-6 weeks to turn this around, but at least I know it's not JUST the Lithium.

Patty

#11 Webbydeb

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Posted 12 May 2008 - 11:31 AM

I'm at 2 1/2 wks on 600 mg of lithium (I take it only at night) and I woke up this morning with quite a quiet brain. I'm hoping that this is the way it will stay.... :mad:

EDITED TO ADD: I'm a bit tired as well, but with the quiet brain, I'll just take naps and call it even!

Edited by Webbydeb, 12 May 2008 - 11:33 AM.

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#12 niko

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Posted 03 May 2009 - 06:46 PM

I'm at 2 1/2 wks on 600 mg of lithium (I take it only at night) and I woke up this morning with quite a quiet brain. I'm hoping that this is the way it will stay.... :mad:

EDITED TO ADD: I'm a bit tired as well, but with the quiet brain, I'll just take naps and call it even!



I'm new to this forum but am becoming a big fan. I have checked things on the crazymeds site though for a while. I just signed up for a name/account because it wasn't letting me view the boards without having a name. So I guess now its time for me to jump in and participate and get the full use out of this service.

First of all I was wondering is there anyway to privately email somone from this forums for matter related to meds and specific mental illness and such. I really love learning things about psych medications and various mental issues. Since I have been diagnosed bipolar one for over ten years of course I tend to focus on that mental disorder. Anywhoo currently I take three medications for my bipolar. Lithium 600mg, Seroquel, 200mg, Risperdal 1mg all at bedtime. I'm curious what my levels of lithium at 600mgs will be because I have only been on this dose for 3-4wks. I was on 1200mgs before and the most I was at one time was 1500mg. I wanna make sure that my lithium amnt will be therapeutic (meaning effective at preventing episodes of depresson or mania or mixed( by the first week of june because I'm taking a trip to greece for two months with my family. I figure I can get away with taking a lower dose of lithium because I'm on two other psych meds that treat mania but I don't want to take unneccessary risks. I am tired a lot it seems which is probably the main side effectss of these meds. The 200mgs of seroquel does seem to help good with sleep issues. I use to get by with 100mg but now it seems I need to do 200mgs to feel less depressed and sleep good at night. My pdoc also gave me ambien prescription to take PRN but I only took it a few times when I was trying to taper slowly off the seroquel. Well I suppose thats enough for first post. Hope everyone is having a fun and peaceful weekend.
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#13 SarahTX

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 07:50 PM

I can't sleep enough! I'm on 900mg (.8 s/l) and want to sleep all the time. But I can't find anywhere that I should be feeling this way. I'm also taking 1mg of Valium for tremors and this did not make me tired when I first started it. GOD THIS LITHIUM IS SO HARD TO TAKE!

Any thoughts?

Patty


Patty,
Glad to hear your thyroid levels were low!! Well, not really glad but you know what I mean. Maybe if they can fix that, it will help with you being too tired. I was really tired on lithium too. At least until I started Abilify 2 wks ago and now I'm not tired nearly as much!! I actually think the Abilify is making me somewhat hypomanic with my other 2 AD's I'm taking but that is another post. (over on the abilify board). But, I do know I've been really tired alot too and I do think it's the lithium.

I've been on it since October of last year, so 6 months. But only 3 months at a higher dosage. I'm at 1800mg now and hopefully I'll have a .8 reading. Last time it was .6. It's crazy how different everyone's dosage is for the same blood level.

Remember that you don't have to throw in the towel and ditch the lithium if you are having side effects that get to be too much. You could try (with your pdoc) just lowering your dosage. .8 is a good blood level but from what I know, you can have a lower level and still have it work very well at controlling your symptoms. It just varies. My pdoc says he looks at not only level but symptoms and how you are doing. If you took a lower dose, the tiredness may vanish.

Sarah
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#14 Austin

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Posted 11 May 2009 - 08:47 PM

I can't sleep enough! I'm on 900mg (.8 s/l) and want to sleep all the time. But I can't find anywhere that I should be feeling this way. I'm also taking 1mg of Valium for tremors and this did not make me tired when I first started it. GOD THIS LITHIUM IS SO HARD TO TAKE!

Any thoughts?

Patty


I can relate. Waking up in the morning is ridiculously difficult. I feel like I was given sodium pentathol the night before.

I am at 1200 mgs and am dropping it cold turkey -- not saying that I recommend this for you.

Talk to your doctor. Maybe he/she can prescribe something to counter the effects. For me, I'm just tired of it.
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#15 heatherdn

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 03:22 PM

So I have been on lithium 600mg for a little over 2 months. I'm also on Zoloft 50mg. I increased my zoloft from 25mg to 50mg about a month ago....since increasing the Zoloft, everyday I continue to get more tired! It doesn't feel like a depressed tired it feels like an extreem sleepiness. I sleep 9-10 hours a night and that is what I HAVE to get if I could, I'd like to sleep atleast 12. I'm barely able to function during the day and feel pretty foggy and slowed down mentally. When I look in the mirror it looks like I'm stoned. It feels like there is something seriously wrong with me like I'm dying or something! 600mg is a low dose of Lithium but what happens with you combine it with Zoloft? Oh and I've had a headache for the last 4 weeks as well. I need some help here.

Thanks,
Heather
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#16 Anna

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 09:36 PM

So I have been on lithium 600mg for a little over 2 months. I'm also on Zoloft 50mg. I increased my zoloft from 25mg to 50mg about a month ago....since increasing the Zoloft, everyday I continue to get more tired! It doesn't feel like a depressed tired it feels like an extreem sleepiness. I sleep 9-10 hours a night and that is what I HAVE to get if I could, I'd like to sleep atleast 12. I'm barely able to function during the day and feel pretty foggy and slowed down mentally. When I look in the mirror it looks like I'm stoned. It feels like there is something seriously wrong with me like I'm dying or something! 600mg is a low dose of Lithium but what happens with you combine it with Zoloft? Oh and I've had a headache for the last 4 weeks as well. I need some help here.

Thanks,
Heather


Both meds can cause sleepiness/zombification. Can you try decreasing the zoloft back down any to see if it helps?

What does your pdoc say?

Anna
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#17 heatherdn

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 12:03 PM

Thank you for replying. I just moved to a new state a month ago and have been unable to get in to see a psychiatrist any sooner than next week. I did go to a primary care doctor yesterday and she ran a whole bunch of tests including my lithium levels, thyroid and some others. I almost wonder if I'm not getting too much seritonin? All I know is I feel physically ill and it isn't getting any better. I'm scared and feel like I'm over medicated but too scared to do anything about it until I can get in to see a psychiatrist. I'm very sensitive to medications. Has anyone had seratonin syndrome and what was it like?
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#18 Luna-

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 02:23 AM

My lithium tiredness, which was bad, did fortunately go away, if I remember right in about 2 months.

But I am having enormous trouble with lethargy, apathy, lack of energy and the will to do anything at all. How do people here manage with the tiredness, lethargy and apathy at work???
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#19 heatherdn

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Posted 15 May 2009 - 04:31 PM

So I have been on lithium 600mg for a little over 2 months. I'm also on Zoloft 50mg. I increased my zoloft from 25mg to 50mg about a month ago....since increasing the Zoloft, everyday I continue to get more tired! It doesn't feel like a depressed tired it feels like an extreem sleepiness. I sleep 9-10 hours a night and that is what I HAVE to get if I could, I'd like to sleep atleast 12. I'm barely able to function during the day and feel pretty foggy and slowed down mentally. When I look in the mirror it looks like I'm stoned. It feels like there is something seriously wrong with me like I'm dying or something! 600mg is a low dose of Lithium but what happens with you combine it with Zoloft? Oh and I've had a headache for the last 4 weeks as well. I need some help here.

Thanks,
Heather


Both meds can cause sleepiness/zombification. Can you try decreasing the zoloft back down any to see if it helps?

What does your pdoc say?

Anna


I saw a new psychiatrist today. I gave him my whole history (I have written down a mental history and med history). I just moved a month ago to a new state so this is a new doctor. He is decreasing my lithium to 150mg. He said I sound toxic and doesn't think I'm bipolar. I'm scared to decrease it but I'm scared of being toxic too and feeling psyically aweful. I haven't been able to get my blood test back yet. UGH I'm so tired of all these medications I just want to feel healthy again. It has been soooooooooooooo long!

Edited by heatherdn, 15 May 2009 - 04:34 PM.

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#20 SarahTX

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Posted 16 May 2009 - 08:26 PM

So I have been on lithium 600mg for a little over 2 months. I'm also on Zoloft 50mg. I increased my zoloft from 25mg to 50mg about a month ago....since increasing the Zoloft, everyday I continue to get more tired! It doesn't feel like a depressed tired it feels like an extreem sleepiness. I sleep 9-10 hours a night and that is what I HAVE to get if I could, I'd like to sleep atleast 12. I'm barely able to function during the day and feel pretty foggy and slowed down mentally. When I look in the mirror it looks like I'm stoned. It feels like there is something seriously wrong with me like I'm dying or something! 600mg is a low dose of Lithium but what happens with you combine it with Zoloft? Oh and I've had a headache for the last 4 weeks as well. I need some help here.

Thanks,
Heather


Both meds can cause sleepiness/zombification. Can you try decreasing the zoloft back down any to see if it helps?

What does your pdoc say?

Anna


I saw a new psychiatrist today. I gave him my whole history (I have written down a mental history and med history). I just moved a month ago to a new state so this is a new doctor. He is decreasing my lithium to 150mg. He said I sound toxic and doesn't think I'm bipolar. I'm scared to decrease it but I'm scared of being toxic too and feeling psyically aweful. I haven't been able to get my blood test back yet. UGH I'm so tired of all these medications I just want to feel healthy again. It has been soooooooooooooo long!


Toxic at 600mg???? Seems unlikely. And nothing should happen if you combine Zoloft with Lithium to my knowledge. I was on both for a short time, and now am on lithium, remeron and lexapro. (2 other AD's). Other meds like ibuprofen and some blood pressure meds can mess with your lithium serum level, but not antidepressants.

It seems a little odd to me that this new pdoc would say right off the bat that you aren't bipolar (what was it that made your other dr say you were? Did you request your records from his office for the new pdoc to review?) I saw a new pdoc for a 2nd opinion last month, and my current pdoc not only sent my records but typed something up for her too.

And it seems odd that he backed your lithium down to 150 mg from 600 mg. That is quite the reduction. I would think he'd reduce your lithium much more gradually and back off the Zoloft as well. You had said you had worsening symptoms when you increased the Zoloft.

when you get your bloodwork back, what was your lithium level? That will tell you right there.

Sarah
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