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Question
Posted by: Johny | 2011/08/05

How long before mood stabilizer take effect?

Hi Doc

I have been struggling with a severe depression/anxiety problem for a year now and haven''t responded well to AD''s. After more thorough investigation and tests it was established that I have Bipolar disorder 2. I recently started on a course of anti-convulsants to stabilise my mood. I want to know whether the anti-convulsants, like AD''s take a few weeks before an effect is noticable.

regards
Johny

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

There's really no clear answer for that - so much depends on the exact nature of the mood disorder, and how untable it is. If you were, for instance, having episodes roughly every 6 months, it might take a year or more to see if you had less than usual, or less often. If you had problems every month, in 3 months or so, it'd be pobvious whether this was improving.
So the sort of effect one would be wanting to notice, would be different.
If you car was breaking down every 3 months, how long would it take before you'd feel sure the new mechani was looking after it better and there were less breakdowns than usual ?
In a sense, though such drugs can be very valuable, its harder to appreciate the benefits in that, in a way, you'd be looking for the ABSENCE of further frequent attacks, rather than something more obvious

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

3
Our users say:
Posted by: Anonymous | 2013/10/03

I have been battling with severe anxiety. My dr prescribed Lamotrogine and I have to say that within 2 weeks I started to feel much better and after about a month the attacks had stopped completely. When I felt good, I stopped taking it. That was the biggest mistake I made. Months later I relapsed. However, the dr has put me back on Lamotrogine and I've used it for 3 days. I can already feel a difference. I believe that in a week or two my panic attacks will be gone completely but the golden rule of a mood stabiliser is DO NOT STOP!

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Johny | 2011/08/05

I forgot to mention, the mood stabilizer I take is Valproic Acid.

Reply to Johny
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/08/05

There's really no clear answer for that - so much depends on the exact nature of the mood disorder, and how untable it is. If you were, for instance, having episodes roughly every 6 months, it might take a year or more to see if you had less than usual, or less often. If you had problems every month, in 3 months or so, it'd be pobvious whether this was improving.
So the sort of effect one would be wanting to notice, would be different.
If you car was breaking down every 3 months, how long would it take before you'd feel sure the new mechani was looking after it better and there were less breakdowns than usual ?
In a sense, though such drugs can be very valuable, its harder to appreciate the benefits in that, in a way, you'd be looking for the ABSENCE of further frequent attacks, rather than something more obvious

Reply to cybershrink

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