I take a lot of medication, and I really mean a lot. I take medication for both my mental health and my physical health. I already take Lithium, Tegretol XR, Deplin, Clozapine, Mirapex, Cytomel, Valium, and Inositol all for my mental health. I also take Zofran, Percocet, Depo-Estradiol, and Depo-Testosterone for my physical health. This doesn’t even include my multiple inhalers and breathing treatments. I’m hoping that I can decrease the meds over time. The first medication I want to go off of is the Deplin. It’s really expensive and I don’t think it’s been doing me any good. I have to wait until I’ve been off of ECT for a while before making any changes to my mental health medications.

A doctor told me this past week that a certain medication may help my bladder condition, but it would be a lifelong medication. I laughed, sarcastically, and told her that wouldn’t be a problem for me. I’m already on a lot of other meds that are lifelong ventures, adding one more to that list is no big deal. Plus, it would be awesome if I could eventually stop getting bladder installations done every week. The new medication is called Elmiron, and the problem is that it’s very expensive. The cheapest I found it was $224 a month. Luckily, my aunt found a patient assistance program that I’m qualified for. I have already filled out my portion of the paper work. I will have my doctor fill out the rest of the documents (which isn’t much) and then I can send it in. I’m excited to find out how much this program will help me.

I often wonder how much is too much. It’s hard to get off medications once you start them because everything has to be done slowly in order to know what medication is causing or helping each issue. Most of my medications are for my mental health, but there are still many that I take because of my physical health. Also, a couple of my meds from both physical and mental health are taken only as needed, so I don’t take them every day. For example, I only take the Zofran when I’m nauseous, the Percocet for pain, and Valium for anxiety attacks. I try to take these meds as little as possible; I don’t want to become dependent on them. I’m sure that I’ll always be on medication, but maybe one day I won’t have to take as much as I do right now. I wonder how many other people take as much medication as I do.

12 thoughts on “How Much Medication Is Too Much?

  1. Great Post! Extremely Insightful and an IMPORTANT TOPIC that needs to be addressed!!!!
    I was recently admitted into the Austin Heart Hospital for what a nurse, EMS, hospital staff, and I thought was a heart attack. I had recently been to a cardiologist who stated that I had a minor heart attack on the back wall of my heart.
    When in the ER, and after they took me to a room for the night, I was going through the list of medications I was taking for bipolar disorder, and bronchitis. The nurses and doctors were shocked that a general practitioner would prescribe me the antibiotics I was given for bronchitis. I am already being treated for high blood pressure, but some of the antibiotics I was given had a severe interaction with other medications.
    The doctor finally printed out the list of medications I was taking as of Friday, and it contained 10 different medications (3 Blood Pressure, 3 Bipolar, 1 Anxiety as needed, and at the time 3 Antibiotics / Cough Treatment Pills). I usually only take 6 medications for blood pressure / bipolar disorder, and one medication as needed for anxiety. I was immediately told to stop taking all of the antibiotics / couch suppressant pills because it was raising my blood pressure, and anxiety.
    The problem I have with this situation, is the doctor who prescribed me the antibiotics clearly knew the medications I was taking, and still prescribed me all of the antibiotics. I did research the antibiotic side effects before taking them, but my research didn’t clearly indicate interactions with specific blood pressure medications / antibiotics / cough suppressants. I also asked the doctor specifically: “will these medications interact with the blood pressure, and bipolar medication I take”, and he said “it might raise your blood pressure for a short time, but other than that, you shouldn’t have any problems with the bipolar medication.
    I had been having anxiety attacks before I was prescribed the antibiotics, but after I was told I may have had a minor heart attack at some point, the combination of everything sent me into a massive anxiety / panic attack.
    In this whole event, results were found that my blood clotting disorder was effecting my blood flow, as it thickens my blood, but I think this could have been concluded through different means.
    Bottom Line: 9 Medications is insane for a person to take, especially when the antibiotic is one of the strongest on the market.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. One thought for everyone who takes a lot of medications is to download a reliable drug interaction checker on your phone. It will give you the ability to check for interactions yourself. Keep in mind that these are tools and not gospel as they are not always updated with the latest and greatest. Some of the best used by docs and pharmacists are: Epocrates Plus, Medscape Mobile and Skyscape RX.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Gosh, that is a LOT of medication to have to take. I hate to imagine all the different side effects you have to tolerate from all of those. I have noticed in the UK they don’t prescribe nearly as many different meds for mental health illnesses. I think it is partly because the national health service foot the overall bill. We just pay a token cost towards the meds. I only take a mood stabiliser, antipsychotic and antidepressant. I wonder if it is different in your country, because you as the patient have to pay for the meds yourself?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s a good question. I don’t know the answer. I’ve always been on a lot of psych medications. I’m on more now because of my physical health. I have to take the two depo meds because of my hysterectomy. The Zofran is to treat the nausea side effect, and the Percocet is for the bladder pain. We are going to work on decreasing my meds in the future, it just has to happen very slowly.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I have published my list before on my blog of medicines and dosages that I take. My family laughs and says that I have a “pharmacy” at my house. They think it’s funny…I don’t. I hesitate when the doctor adds a new medication. But I do the best that I can. I’ve wondered how much is too much, but I’ve seen what happens to me when I go off my medications too. I can’t handle it – physically or emotionally.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I understand and relate. I often think I take too many meds, but when I’m not on enough medications, everything goes awry. While I don’t like taking meds, I’d rather take them than deal with the consequences of not taking them.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. If you were diabetic and needed insulin as well as orals no one would expect you to go without them, nor would they dream of making fund of you for taking so much medicine. They would applaud you for taking care your meds, and if you were also staying on an appropriate diet and exercising they would say how wonderful it is that you are taking care of your health. This is no different – it just doesn’t show up in blood levels the way that diabetes does, but brain chemistry is just as challenging to balance as someone’s blood sugar. So the next time someone says anything about your medication ask them if they would say the same thing to you if you had diabetes.

      Liked by 2 people

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