Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 384290

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alcoholics and antidepressant question

Posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 18:51:58

My brother has a drinking problem. He also has a serious depression problem. What antidepressant do pdocs prescribe to alcoholics - Wellbutrin?

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by partlycloudy on August 30, 2004, at 19:10:52

In reply to alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 18:51:58

Yup - that's what this one takes. And effexor, and ambien, and xanax. I don't drink very much anymore, because when I do I it takes me three days to get over it instead of a couple of hours. AD's and alcohol don't mix at all. I still do it, but that's because I really AM a loser!!

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question

Posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 19:40:52

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721, posted by partlycloudy on August 30, 2004, at 19:10:52

You aren't a loser, PC. You are admitting you have a problem and you are trying your best to deal with it.

I am glad that you are taking meds to help you. That's a step in the right direction for sure. I was thinking about getting my brother started on vitamin replacement too in addition with the medications + counseling. Vitamin deficiencies can cause the cravings to begin too. Also, going to tell him to curb the caffeine. It too causes an increase in alcohol cravings.

Are your meds helping the depression? I don't know why, but I thought I read it some where that alcoholics could take wellbutrin.

Here is a link that I thought was good about the many things I hope will help him. Maybe you might find something informative too.

http://www.hrcamerica.com/Biochemical_Restoration.html

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question

Posted by King Vultan on August 30, 2004, at 22:24:59

In reply to alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 18:51:58

> My brother has a drinking problem. He also has a serious depression problem. What antidepressant do pdocs prescribe to alcoholics - Wellbutrin?


When I was on Wellbutrin, I noticed it severely limited my desire to drink. I simply couldn't drink more than two or three beers because it seemed to make me feel full or something. No doubt this is the same dopamine effect that also allows Wellbutrin/Zyban to have some efficacy in helping people to quit smoking.

Todd

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question

Posted by SAW on August 31, 2004, at 0:58:35

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by King Vultan on August 30, 2004, at 22:24:59

When I started Effexor for severe major depressive disorder and GAD, I had hoped it would curb my desire to drink. (My pdoc has NO idea I have a drinking problem). I drink every night and am saddened to say that although I get drunk quicker and have a tendency to function well with complete loss of memory, there has been no change whatsoever. Not in my desire to drink less or in the way I feel the next day. The next day always starts with a pot of caffeine!
Regards
Sabrina

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by partlycloudy on August 31, 2004, at 5:00:53

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 19:40:52

Thanks, Shadows. The Wellbutrin helped curb my appetite for food, but the alcohol is a craving from my soul. Being less depressed thanks to effexor, and 2 therapists, helps too. I know that the root of my problem is deep in my psyche that no medicine can touch.
I cut out caffiene, most sugars, and decongestants which helped with the anxiety. I take vitamin supplements every day.
I've also heard that Topamax is helpful for those craving alcohol, but I haven't yet pursued it.
I know that your loving care for your brother is something very special.
pc

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by theo on August 31, 2004, at 11:38:21

In reply to alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 18:51:58

Paxil helped me. It helped me get help and start a program, AA meetings, etc. I've been sober for 14 months now and Paxil helped tremendously in warding off social phobia, anxiety and OCD which were big drinking triggers for me.

I now take a mood stabilizer which would also be worth looking into, but remember, some sort of program like AA is a must, meds alone won't solve the problem, but will help you through it.

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question partlycloudy

Posted by ellen2 on August 31, 2004, at 12:59:15

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721, posted by partlycloudy on August 31, 2004, at 5:00:53

I hope it's ok that I enter this conversation. I am on Topamax and it has eliminated my desire to drink. I can't even finish a drink when I try. But honestly, I'm just not interested anymore. I'm on Wellbutrin too, so I don't know if that figures into the equation at all.

Best wishes,
Ellen

> Thanks, Shadows. The Wellbutrin helped curb my appetite for food, but the alcohol is a craving from my soul. Being less depressed thanks to effexor, and 2 therapists, helps too. I know that the root of my problem is deep in my psyche that no medicine can touch.
> I cut out caffiene, most sugars, and decongestants which helped with the anxiety. I take vitamin supplements every day.
> I've also heard that Topamax is helpful for those craving alcohol, but I haven't yet pursued it.
> I know that your loving care for your brother is something very special.
> pc

 

Thanks, Ellen I'll ask about that!! (nm) ellen2

Posted by partlycloudy on August 31, 2004, at 13:31:44

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question partlycloudy, posted by ellen2 on August 31, 2004, at 12:59:15

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by AuntieMel on August 31, 2004, at 14:43:29

In reply to alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 30, 2004, at 18:51:58

While I was actively drinking, I took paxil, then effexor. Neither made a difference in the drinking, but the combination didn't seem to be lethal either.

My depression predated the drinking and drinking was a way of self medicating. Interesting enough, my everyday functioning was fine while drinking - it was only the home life that had problems. Even my hubby said I was more functional while drinking.

After a few months of walking around in a sober fog, I finally - thanks to the babble archives - ended up finding an online article about the possiblity that for a small percentage of the heavy drinkers alcohol *increases* dopamine and has an *antidepressant* effect - the opposite of most. I got my doc to add wellbutrin to the mix and things are a lot better. Not perfect, but better.

I was lucky to find a program that started with a few days of detox, followed by 5 weeks of intensive outpatient - 3 hours of group with a counselor, 4 days a week.

The vitamins recommended by the detox were B-12 and folic acid - drinking depletes those - and a good multi.

As for AA being necessary - that is true for a large percentage of the population. I'm just not one of that percentage either. I go to occasional meetings, but I'm for sure not a 12-stepper. But I do a lot of the same type of personal work in therapy, so it is getting done.

It's been 16 months.

Mel

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question

Posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 31, 2004, at 15:08:07

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721, posted by AuntieMel on August 31, 2004, at 14:43:29

I just wanted to praise all of you for sharing and recognize the hard work you have done towards this serious condition.

I talked with my brother last night and he blames the family for "the way" he is. Well, a lot of that is true. He has a major anger issue too. I still feel that the depression has to be addressed, but last night he said he feels fine.

I am on topamax, lexapro, buspar, and trazodone. It has taken a lot of meds to even my PTSD to a point that I can live with people. I was hoping to get him on Wellbutrin and topamax from what I read here. But, everything that I have read about this is that he has to be willing for treatment.

What really got my attn was that he was hit in a bar and has a face fracture on the side and a major limp now. He thinks nothing will be done and he repeatly says, "I DON'T CARE. I DON'T WORRY ABOUT NOTHING. I COULDN'T CARE IF SOMEONE KILLED ME." My mother immediatly wanted to get life insurance on him and he refused the drug screen. He is a small man with a major anger issue. This isn't good at all.

He constantly forgets or loses things really bad. He has lost jobs for falling asleep. I believe there is much he isn't saying. I am a nurse and I see it in his fingernails that his health is suffering from his hidden habits.

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by partlycloudy on August 31, 2004, at 15:20:17

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 31, 2004, at 15:08:07

You have hit the nail on the head. Your brother has to admit there is a problem before it can even begin to be addressed. You, however, might benefit from a visit to an Al-Anon meeting - for the family members of alcoholics. I went to one when I was still a teenager, and it helped me then.
peace.
pc

 

Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question Shadowplayers721

Posted by ellen2 on August 31, 2004, at 15:59:02

In reply to Re: alcoholics and antidepressant question, posted by Shadowplayers721 on August 31, 2004, at 15:08:07

> "I talked with my brother last night and he blames the family for "the way" he is. Well, a lot of that is true. He has a major anger issue too. I still feel that the depression has to be addressed, but last night he said he feels fine."

-------------------------------------------

I feel for you and for your brother. I often blamed my family for my intense anger, my emotional problems, and my attempts to escape the pain (alcohol and such). Like in your brother's case, there was much truth there!

At some point, I realized that this "I am a victim" mindset was really harming me and that this was not how I wanted to spend the rest of my life.

I realized that I had no choices & no power as a kid, but as an adult, I have both. This is when my life turned around and changed for the better.

I hope your brother gets ready for help soon. Please TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.

From someone who learned that I would rather be happy than right,

Ellen


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