Hello. I'll try to keep this brief.- I have clinical depression and moderate anxiety disorders, diagnosed 3 years ago. Was on Mirtazapine for 2.5 years. Caused weight gain and didn't help much despite psychology, lifestyle changes- weaned off over 2 months to try something else, namely Valdoxan. We (doctor and me) havent tried SSRI's or SNRI's because they tend to cause GI upset and I have enough problems with that as it is. Obviously they're still a possibility but we wanted to try other stuff first.
Was drug-free for about 2 weeks in-between meds and established that I can sleep perfectly fine 8-9 hours per night without meds- insomnia has never been a problem for me unless things are a disaster.
Getting to the point of my post...
I started on Valdoxan 25mg 4 weeks ago and now I'm in some super-anxious insomniac nightmare. I think 5 hours sleep was the best I've had on one night in 4 weeks. I've tried several over-the-counter remedies to help, and am not interested in "sleeping tablets"- not when the insomnia is medication-related.
I'm obviously beyond exhausted (though still pretty cheerful, considering), but I just cant sleep! The GP and i have been hoping that at the 4-6 week mark things would start to work out but its not :( So what next, is the question. It's not as simple as "switch drugs".
We've seen massive improvements in my mood, thats the thing- I actually feel cheerful, happy, better able to socialise, less withdrawn- no more crying/ weeping spells, no more "blue" moods. I can't remember the last time I've felt so cheerful and not subject to sudden mood swings. But my anxiety has gotten WAY worse.
So taking me off this drug is not necessarily something we want to do, considering mirtazapine certainly didnt have this effect. But the lack of sleep and the worsening of my anxiety issues, plus the side effects of sleep deprivation (headaches, nausea, exhaustion) is obviously unbearable. And my good mood is starting to take a serious hit from the lack of sleep.
So: the doctor is discussing the idea of taking a second-drug to counteract the side-effects of the first- I have no idea what shes thinking of, she was going to get a consult with other doctors and get back to me. No, a psychiatrist is not involved nor do we want one to be involved at this stage (we both agreed on this). Long story, but basically they're expensive and super-complicated here.
My question: has anyone else got experience with taking more than one medication for a depression/ anxiety combination? Like it kinda makes sense- both my anxiety and depression can get pretty bad independent of one another (i can be sad/ calm or anxious/ happy), so maybe there isn't one magic tablet that would provide relief of both symptoms. Is it a common thing to have two drugs that each focus on the anxiety or depression?
I am concerned because obviously the more drugs a person is on, the more chance there is of side-effects or risks. I don't want to pickle my liver. More realistically- I dont want my poor sensitive tummy to go nuts.
And obviously I'm also aware that we've only tried 2 antidepressants- and they were both atypical antidepressants- Mirtazapine and Valdoxan. As much as i've been worried an SSRI would only make my tummy problems worse- it might not, it might even help since my tummy problems are anxiety-based. And they are supposed to be good for anxiety as well as depression.
Has anyone got any personal experience with taking 2 different things, or any ideas?
Thankyou for reading, I hope this post wasn't too long. Looking forward to your opinions!