To Stay on Meds, or Not to Stay on Meds

That is the question.

The age-old question that every mental illness suffer will face in this life, will I be on these medications forever?

I am not a medical professional and all medication changes need to be through your doctor.

I wish I could say that medication is not forever, but there is no cure for mental illness, and there is a good chance that you and I will always be on some form of medication unless they find a cure. Yes, some people in the mental illness community have found success getting off medication, but they all turn to alternatives like marijuana (which makes sense if that works for you.) But, medication has its place in mental health. It is just the truth of it, almost twelve years in this mental illness life for me, and the only medication I have successfully gotten off on is anti-depressants. Medication can be the best and worst thing. I have been through just about every anti-depressant in the market, and yet they always stop working, eventually.

That is not to say that I am not making plans to begin to make changes and possibly get off some of the major medications in my life. It starts with talking with my doctor. Right now, I would love to find a way to get off Seroquel. It is the one medication that I see as the cause of a lot of nighttime anxiety. I am torn between the need, I can’t seem to sleep without the medication, and the need to not have the side effects be a major part of my life.

The Struggle to Stay on Medication

When they say the struggle is real, they might have been talking about the mental illness struggle to stay on medication.

What I struggle with is do the side effects outweigh the effectiveness of the medication. I often turn to my Seroquel because it is my main struggle medication. The positives are that it is effective as an antipsychotic medication, and it is the only thing that has been effective as a sleep aid.

The downsides of Seroquel are plenty. I take a max dosage, so in the mornings it can take up to hours to fully wake up. It takes two to three hours to get to sleep. It causes me nighttime anxiety, and while not always, it is more often than not. It affects me throughout my day because of the high dosage. The worse part is there is no alternative according to my psychiatrist, and it makes me feel worse more than making me feel better.

This life that we were given will never be easy. There is a good chance that you will struggle with one of your medications, and there might now always be an answer to the question: “to stay on medication, or not stay on medications.” That is something each one of us must answer for ourselves. Stay active in the fight.

Always Keep Fighting

James

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10 Replies to “To Stay on Meds, or Not to Stay on Meds”

  1. Boy do I feel that struggle. I just had a conversation with my doctor recently about medication and what I could possibly get off of with my four…or is it five now?…meds. Some days it feels overwhelming having to take so many. I take a few that make me exceptionally tired as well. Keep up the fight!

  2. I understand, I used to work in a facility with mental illness patient. And to tell you they are the ones with the bunch of medications. Cause they need those combinations and it’s really hard to get a balance. And the sad part, the side effects are no fun. 🙁 🙁 those nightmares are real, I have a patient before she even had nightmares with ambien.

      1. That is really scary, but I believe you. Those drugs are really strong.

      2. All because of Seroquel? That is crazy. From the previous facility I worked with our patients are taking Seroquel, Trazodone, Temazepam and the likes like candies. 🙁

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