BP2 Looking to wean off Zoloft (Sertraline) and Lamictal (Lamotrigine) Combo

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I am looking to wean off my current medications which are used to treat my Bipolar Disorder II, which include:

100 mg Zoloft daily

100 mg Lamictal daily

Xannax on an as needed (emergency) basis - about .25mg - .5mg every other week.

I have heard all the scares of being sure to wean off slowly with the Lamictal (10-25% every 2 weeks), but I haven't seen much about how to do so with the combination of meds. Should I do so with the Zoloft as well?

I tend to have more issues with mania (especially insomnia, racing thoughts, and anxiety) than depression. I am ok with continuing the Xannax as needed, but would like to get rid of the constant daily meds. I have side effects immediately when I miss a dose, and I am not feeling comfortable relying on this with my Insurance being set to expire in a few months (looking to treat with more natural/organic means).

I would very much appreciate your thoughts! Thank you!


1 like, 4 replies


4 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Jamie--I'd like to think that I, too, have a milder BP2, high functioning, as they say, and have had the desire to get off of the meds. It's natural. I talked this over with a psychiatrist (not my own, a friend) and he said that substitutions can be made but to do so, individualize medicine, would be too costly. He mentioned that a careful lifestyle change would be necessary and not something almost anyone would be committed to doing. Such as finding guidance to take the specific supplements; develop a reliable daily exercise program; meditation--all the things we hear of as ideally healthy.

    For me, the nature of BP2 is unreliable behavior. I have not been able to follow any plan for very long, and will kind of wake up and think--oh, when did I stop that?

    I know that lamytal becomes more effective in stabilizing mood over time, not less effective as most medications can be.

    Someone I know who is very ill with borderline personality disorder told me that she has to keep a mood diary, every day. That would probably help us a lot. Then, if you do decrease medication to go off of it, you would keep track of how you are feeling.

    Don't mean to lecture; hopefully sharing. It's been 25 years since I was diagnosed and started medication. My life since has been far far more stable, and I still have to work hard at positive mental health.  Elizabeth

  • Posted

    Hi Jamie,

    I am just curious as to why you want to stop taking your medication? Do you not feel as though it helps? 

    Just a word of warning though with zoloft if you are going to stop it I would stop it very gradually over a longer period of time and by the smallest decrease as possible each time.  Do not just half the dose overnight. 

    I know everybody is different but i used to be on 200mg and when they decided to take me off it, as it isn't recommended for bipolar patients here in the uk, due to the ability it has to induce mania or hypomania. The withdrawal from it was hell. Don't make the same mistake i did. If you must stop taking your meds for whatever reason (only you can make that decision) then please wean yourself off over a longer period of time with small reductions each time. 


    • Posted

      Thanks for the tips on everything, I really apprecaite it.

      Yes, the medication does help but I hate that I have to rely so obsessively on it (or I get bad side effects). I have relocated to another state and will probably be switching insurance coverage shortly and am worried I will not have the same coverage/have access to get medications I am currently on.

      I guess lots of reasons. I am tired of putting this stuff into my body every day.


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