Bipolar and pregnant

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Maddz's picture
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Bipolar and pregnant

So I wanted to go without my bipolar (type 2- hypomania not hypernmania) because I know that they are usually pretty heavy drugs. My medication is Lamictal it is safe while pregnant, unsafe while breastfeeding. I still wanted to try to avoid. However my mood swings have come back and I have started my meds again- unfortunately i have to start at a lower dosage and it takes a couple weeks to kick in. Any similar situations or just words of encouragement... I wanted to bf but idk if i can. I might look into switching so I can after LO is born.

MJDttc's picture
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Did you go cold turkey or did you ween off of the meds? It may just be the extreme if you went from cold turkey, if the lower dose works I would stay with that and see if you can switch to another med while BFing.

But if the switching to BF is not possible then don't let it bother you. Sane mommy is important, your hormones will be all over the place, and that's hard enough as it is. There is always things like a milk bank if you want breast milk, and there is nothing wrong with formula.

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I agree with Mary, nothing wrong with formula at all. Do what you can to stay sane.. you want a happy mommy and a happy baby and it's both combinations that will work!

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I would say it's better for you to stay healthy so if taking the meds help you I would stay on them.
As for breastfeeding, if you really want to do it, I would switch medication at that time. b/f releases the "feel good hormone" so maybe that would help you also!

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I'm lurking, but I have Bipolar 2 and have been able to mannage for several years on a low dose of Zoloft which is safe while pregnant and breastfeeding. It's not ideal, to be sure, but it helps and might be worth looking into. Ultimately, a sane mommy is more important than breast milk, so take care of yourself first.

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1. HUGE HUGE hugs to you for reaching out for support and guidance! :bigarmhug:

2. I've been on Andi-Deps for a ridiculiously high number of years.. very high doses due to suicidal attempts throughout my life but dropped them cold turkey when I found out I was pregnant. It was one of the hardest things I had to deal with in the following weeks because of the complete drop off. But here I am, weeks and weeks later and still successfully off the medications. It's been a huge challenge but I have to pat myself on the back in the fact that I have reached out and gotten the help I needed from DH and family to stay focused on why life is worth living..

And that's my point in responding... Stay focused on what life is about.. and that is the happiness, health and well being of you, baby and family. If that means you can do it with no meds, by all means you've got support here for sure!! But if you feel you need them, then you have ALLL the support in the world for that route, too! Being in the right frame of mind as well as feeling up to par to handle the issues life throws your way is first and foremost.. all else will work itself out.

As said earlier.. this sums it up for me..

Ultimately, a sane mommy is more important than breast milk, so take care of yourself first

HUGS HUGS HUGS!!!

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Adriana really said it well.
Big hugs and do what YOU feel is right, like pp's said - a healthy, happy you is the MOST important!

Maddz's picture
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Thanks Ladies. so much! I went off them completely cold turkey. I know it wasn't a good idea but I didn't even know if they were ok to be on while pregnant and I thought they weren't... and then when I went to the Dr. 2 weeks later he said it was fine but I didn't wan tot take them for baby and I figured since I was off them already it was best to just stay off. I can't wait for them to kick in though... Sad I did some searches on my lamictal to see. One of the sites said it is known to transfer through all milk (I saw that all the pschomeds do) but that the amount really varies by woman and stuff and that there haven't been an reported effects to the baby.. I'm going to keep looking into and talk to a psychiatrist and pediatric doctor and see what their professional opinions might be. But I do know that I REALLY want to bf... at least for awhile.. and that I'm ok mixing it with Formula but i want mainly boob.

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Lamictal is one of the testable on blood levels, I know a lot of what they test on blood can also be done on breast milk. If maybe you are an early lactate-er maybe you can get your doctor to run the test and see if it is at a safe level?

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Very difficult decision, best of luck to you. I know that breast milk is ideal, but many, many people (including me!) have been raised on formula and turned out quite functional and healthy, and just fine. Smile So regardless of what you decide, healthy and happy mama and baby is the #1 most important thing. Smile