SIDE EFFECTS OF BIPOLAR MEDICATION AND HOW TO TREAT THEM
Rigidly sticking to a treatment plan, including taking bipolar meds as prescribed every day, is critical in successfully treating bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, there are many side effects of bipolar medication that people find intolerable. Sometimes these bipolar disorder medication side effects make people stop taking their medication. But stopping medication can make someone rapidly worse, possibly manic or suicidal. There are better ways of dealing with bipolar medication side effects.
Suicide and Bipolar Medication
While suicide associated with medication is rare, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has mandated that a warning be placed on anticonvulsant medication. The warning states that their use may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
A similar warning has been placed on antidepressants, particularly emphasized in adolescents and young adults. Antidepressants are used less frequently in the treatment of bipolar disorder due to the risk of inducing rapid cycling or manic episodes.
For anyone starting these medications, mood should be carefully monitored and any changes (either worsening bipolar depression or bipolar mania) should be brought to the doctor’s attention immediately. Patients should not alter their medication schedule without talking to a doctor.