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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!

I am sad to inform you that, I, who wrote this topic long ago - http://www.dpselfhelp.com/forum/index.php?/topic/41561-top-8-mistakes-dpdrers-make/ have relapsed into depersonalization again.

NOW, please, before many of you start getting discouraged by this, you must know that, as opposed to me, my friend and two acquaintances have been stable ever since applying that advice from that topic I wrote.

Why is that? It turns out that my occasional depersonalization episodes come as a symptom of my dysfunctional brain (I have something like Bipolar Not Otherwise Specified) and for my friend and acquaintances it came just as a result of a stressful life situation and for one of them it came as a result of trying marijuana.

Therefore when they got out, there was nothing intrinsic to their brain that was about to provoke the episode of depersonalization again, whereas for me there is this dysfunctional brain that I had my entire life that causes me to repeatedly relapse in many symptoms, one of them being depersonalization.

So for me depersonalization seems to be neurological in it's core, and the surface (the amplification of the core) is caused psychologically by fear, by obsessing over it and by being sick of it.

I plan on doing EEG scan sometime in the near future and if I do I will post the results here. The problem is that EEG is not the most accurate tool to tell what's going on in the brain (I guess fMRI would have been better but I don't have an access to it nor can I afford it) but it's better then nothing.

If you are like me, who has it neurological and has it appear on it's own without any external triggers starting it, then medication or other physical treatments like Deep TMS definitely seem to be the most effective route (btw I just started taking Lamotrigine yesterday).

However, the real change for all of us might happen in a decade from now when Optogenetics in humans become more spread, when functional neuroimaging becomes more high rez, real-time and portable (similar to Obelab's NIRSIT device, except encompassing the entire brain, including the limbic system, not just the frontal lobe), and when TMS becomes truly deeper, way more selective, and with much more effective frequencies. Especially when these fields of neuroscience are used together to aid one another, then we will start seeing some potentially revolutionary results.

Till then, let's hope that we will get to the right medication combo just by trial and error or to benefit from some sort of TMS treatment.

As for those of you who generally have healthy brains, and who have recovered, you should not worry too much, you are highly likely to stay that way or to bounce right back up very easily from any occasional upcoming stress/relapse.

So that's it, I just wanted to let everyone know about my relapse and I hope I didn't discourage anyone by this, because I know there are many people who have relatively healthy brains and who will be just fine once they get out of it ;)
If you have any experiences with Lamotrigine or some other medication/treatment that worked for you, please feel free to post it here, I will appreciate it (even though I've read a lot about that on this forum and other places).
 

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So sorry to hear that :( I haven’t relapsed yet, and anxiety was my since you’ve been through the first bit of it, you already know how to get out again, and I certainly know you don’t feel hopeless :) Hang in there and give us updates!
 

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I dont believe that there is something "dysfunctional" about your brain. I have the same symptoms but didn't relapse, because it just won't happpen if you don't overthink and worry. If you say that it came without worrying and thinking about it, like: oh no am I this body, is this real? - then I dont believe you.

For me, it rather seems as though you try to find answers even though you know that it is caused oftentimes by worrying and as you have already recovered, I am sure this time it does not differ from the last time you got this.

However, I am sorry that you are in it again, but please do not dismiss the steps you already followed back then. It might cure you again, everything else is just believing, you will never clearly know if your brain is "dysfunctional". So, you want to suffer or try your best again to get out of it? I feel like you are a bit of an lazy thinker (not to sound rude), and blame it on your brain, even though there are for sure other parts of your life that do not work as you wish and have caused you to get DP again. That is what I think.
 

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Hello everyone!

I am sad to inform you that, I, who wrote this topic long ago - http://www.dpselfhelp.com/forum/index.php?/topic/41561-top-8-mistakes-dpdrers-make/ have relapsed into depersonalization again.

NOW, please, before many of you start getting discouraged by this, you must know that, as opposed to me, my friend and two acquaintances have been stable ever since applying that advice from that topic I wrote.

Why is that? It turns out that my occasional depersonalization episodes come as a symptom of my dysfunctional brain (I have something like Bipolar Not Otherwise Specified) and for my friend and acquaintances it came just as a result of a stressful life situation and for one of them it came as a result of trying marijuana.

Therefore when they got out, there was nothing intrinsic to their brain that was about to provoke the episode of depersonalization again, whereas for me there is this dysfunctional brain that I had my entire life that causes me to repeatedly relapse in many symptoms, one of them being depersonalization.

So for me depersonalization seems to be neurological in it's core, and the surface (the amplification of the core) is caused psychologically by fear, by obsessing over it and by being sick of it.

I plan on doing EEG scan sometime in the near future and if I do I will post the results here. The problem is that EEG is not the most accurate tool to tell what's going on in the brain (I guess fMRI would have been better but I don't have an access to it nor can I afford it) but it's better then nothing.

If you are like me, who has it neurological and has it appear on it's own without any external triggers starting it, then medication or other physical treatments like Deep TMS definitely seem to be the most effective route (btw I just started taking Lamotrigine yesterday).

However, the real change for all of us might happen in a decade from now when Optogenetics in humans become more spread, when functional neuroimaging becomes more high rez, real-time and portable (similar to Obelab's NIRSIT device, except encompassing the entire brain, including the limbic system, not just the frontal lobe), and when TMS becomes truly deeper, way more selective, and with much more effective frequencies. Especially when these fields of neuroscience are used together to aid one another, then we will start seeing some potentially revolutionary results.

Till then, let's hope that we will get to the right medication combo just by trial and error or to benefit from some sort of TMS treatment.

As for those of you who generally have healthy brains, and who have recovered, you should not worry too much, you are highly likely to stay that way or to bounce right back up very easily from any occasional upcoming stress/relapse.

So that's it, I just wanted to let everyone know about my relapse and I hope I didn't discourage anyone by this, because I know there are many people who have relatively healthy brains and who will be just fine once they get out of it ;)
If you have any experiences with Lamotrigine or some other medication/treatment that worked for you, please feel free to post it here, I will appreciate it (even though I've read a lot about that on this forum and other places).
Can relate so much...Mines been coming and going since the early 90s...Various serious relapses since I first developed this crap for various known and unknown reasons...Only medicine keeps it under some kind of control for me (Atypical / Anti Depressant combo) Sulpiride low dose gave me my life back....But ive never been completely DP free...My good times are 6 out of 10...My bad times are a suicidal zero out of 10....I firmly believe my DP is the result of a chemical imbalance that needs medicine to treat it...Ive never had any success with therapy, trauma processing, meditation, diet, exercise etc etc as regards getting back my functionality. when ive been very ill with chronic DP....Only my medications do that for me...I then apply the rest on top of the meds to improve my lifestyle and overall health....I have to be very very careful to keep myself on a reasonably steady path....It means being very aware of ALL my stress levels in all areas of my life...Stress is DPs best friend...
 

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It's kind of fascinating how many "relapse" when it comes to DP.
A total lifestyle change is required post DP...I mean its our way of life that got us there in the first place...So the solution is to improve it and change it for the better completely...There are too many DP sufferers absolutely obsessed with getting back to EXACTLY how everything was before DP...This not only fuels extra anxiety and stress and hence the DP but its also not going to happen for many....You never actually lose sight of your true core self because of DP but the fact is it is a life changing condition.....I have found over the years that accepting it as part of me was a much better way to deal with it than constantly wishing it away...It helped to take its power away...Fact is some of us ("SOME OF US") will have to deal with DP for life...

"DISCLAIMER" !!!!!!!!!!!! ..............Everybody is different and "SOME" also do recover completely.....

Just in case I trigger thousands LOL
 

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Thank you everybody for being so nice and compassionate!
smile.png


@Nadosa, No, trust me, I know this, I've been into this for way too long, and I have carefully observed every symptom I ever had, it's beginning, peak and dawn and I know that my problems are NOT psychological at all.

You can choose not to believe me, that's your opinion, but I guarantee you I have not been thinking about depersonalization at all and my life altogether has been going pretty well, there were no reasons for me to relapse at all and yet I completely did all of a sudden :/

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely believe you and a few of my friends/acquaintances that tell that such thinking (that I wrote in that thread) really got them out and got them stable to this day, I know that, because none of them had any mental illnesses prior to DP, and it was just purely stress-induced (or Marijuana-induced in that one case). It makes sense why it works for them continuously, but for me, it comes and goes on it's own without any triggers, because I've been mentally ill since as far back as I can remember.
It's like a person with one-time acute inflammation of some sorts telling a person who has CHRONIC inflammation - "just practice the healthy lifestyle and follow the philosophy that got you out of this the first time and you will not relapse!"
But it doesn't work that way for someone who has it CHRONIC.

What I managed to cure at that time was a residual DP that was lingering around because of anxiety and stress and confusion of how bad the whole episode was, NOT the root that started it all...the root that started it all passed on it's own.

Anyway, I hope you don't have it like I do and I hope that that thread will help all of you if you ever get an episode of acute DP again. That's certainly been the case with a few of my friends/acquaintances (for over 4 years at least) if there's any encouragement in that for you.

@eddy1886, it's interesting how similar we are. I relate to everything you wrote, especially with "My good times are 6 out of 10...My bad times are a suicidal zero out of 10". I've been writing a journal every day for a few years now and I use the scale from 0 to 10 and I say the SAME DAMN thing when people ask me about my good days and my bad days, yes I say 6 and 0 respectively.
Another thing is that Aripiprazole (antipsychotic) has also been one of the rare things that kind of calms me down and makes me a bit more grounded (although another antipsychotic - Risperidone, as helpful as it was in some other ways, made my anhedonia and depersonalization even worse, but I'm still not 100% sure about this, I'll have to test it once or twice more to be sure about this correlation).
The difference is that, antidepressants have never done anything for me, although I never took them together with antipsychotics, mostly them alone.

Ive never had any success with therapy, trauma processing, meditation, diet, exercise etc etc as regards getting back my functionality. when ive been very ill with chronic DP....Only my medications do that for me...I then apply the rest on top of the meds to improve my lifestyle and overall health....
EXACTLY, this sounds as if I wrote it. Because if DP or other mental symptoms come back on their own, NOTHING except medication will help, unless we are talking about the residual symptoms that are already greatly subsiding on their own (and that's exactly what happened back then when I wrote that thread, i.e. at the time I started practicing those 8 steps, I was already greatly improved, having only the remainder of DP. Of course, DP is so bad that even a small remainder of DP feels pretty horrible).
Of course this does not mean that I should ever stop with healthy habits. I ALWAYS eat healthy, always exercise at least a couple of times a week, and I never took any cigarettes, alcohol, drugs (except the prescribed ones of course).
I'm sure that not following that would make my suffering even worse, but that doesn't mean that it helps me cure DP. It just doesn't.

Stress definitely exacerbates many of my symptoms, but it's absolutely not the cause of them, because I definitely had periods of remission when some stressful things were happening, and I also had relapse periods with everything being just fine situationally in my life (and thankfully it is like that 90% of the time).

So I'm pretty sure that my brain is unhealthy and has been like that my whole life. Probably not structurally, but functionally I'm pretty sure.

Anyway, I REEEEEALLY hope this will not discourage anyone, because I know many many of you are not intrinsically mentally ill and I'm sure you'll be just fine following those psychological principles, but I just want to make sure that you also understand that there are those of us who are intrinsically mentally ill and who have it truly chronic, and as such, we absolutely need medication/TMS or some other physical type of therapy.
 

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I apologize if I should not double post, but I just wanted to make sure that people who are interested in this thread could see the update.

So, I just want to let everyone in this thread know that I've been on Lamotrigine for 19 days now (14 days on 25mg and 5 days on 50mg) and am starting to feel my depersonalization slwoly subsiding, although, of course, I am not sure whether this is due to Lamotrigine or just depersonalization passing on its own. I need some more time on Lamotrigine to be able to tell.

Thanks to everyone for the support and compassion I wish you too all the best in your recovery! ;)

P.S. I don't want to even consider that this might have been a placebo effect, as I STRONGLY believe that placebo effect is one of the most overrated psychological effects of all time. IMO it's just a mere short-lived excitement about the potential success of the treatment, as simple as that.
 
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When it comes to a serious condition such as DP Meds either work or they dont...There is no in between..You will know when a med is working because you wont be walking around in absolute hell and you will be functioning again...

With mental health issues the difference between sick and well is at the everyday level of functionality...

When your truly sick you can do nothing....When you feel better you start to get on with everyday life again...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
@eddy1886 I'm not sure if I can agree with that. I would definitely say that there is a gradient between meds not working and them working, because, honestly, not a single med so far has been JUST SIMPLY WORKING, all of them just partially helped, but I still appreciate every bit of help of course.

I also think that you can get BETTER and yet still be pretty dysfunctional...because the depth of mental suffering is sooo deep that a gap between "completely suicidal" and "better but still completely dysfunctional" might be quite big.

I am a type of sufferer who doesn't need psychotherapy at all, I don't have any psychological problems or any trauma's (aside from my mental symptoms), my life is very good situationally, I just need some damn med that can truly stop those symptoms (depression, anxiety, depersonalization, derealization etc.). If I found such a med, I would IMMEDIATELY go right back on track in a matter of a couple of days and everything would function almost as if I never suffered from those (this DID happen the last time I was in a remission).
This is why I'm sooo pissed of by people who are insisting that mental disorders have no biological cause and that they are all psychological in nature...I think that is RIDICULOUS, illogical, non-scientific and it borders with some loony ideologies like "law of attraction" and such...

Now I would like to update on my progress:

I've been on Lamictal for exactly one month. Two days ago I increased the dose from 50 mg to 100 mg.

I've been on Seroquel for exactly 13 days, and 7 days ago I increased the dose from 50 mg to 100 mg as well.

Lamictal's effects: I noticed that it did help my depersonalization quite significantly but it has made me more grumpy in general. It also helped me speak more fluently, so I no longer have that much of a tough time recalling suitable terms, using the correct order of words in a sentence etc. (this stands for both English and my native language - Serbian, because it is about the fluency of my thoughts not about my proficiency in those languages).

Seroquel's effects: It has definitely helped some other symptoms of mine, but it has worsened my anhedonia. However, usually I need to wait for exactly 14 days for antipsychotics to start working for me fully, so I'll wait for a couple more days.

Many people suggest using Lamictal with an SSRI to get the best results for depersonalization, however I've used two SSRIs in the past (Zoloft and Celexa), although I didn't use them together with Lamictal, and they did exactly nothing even on the highest doses. Therefore, I'm not sure if I am a candidate for such type of treatment, or are there any people who didn't find SSRIs beneficial at all, yet have found Lamictal + SSRI combination beneficial?

I've been quite busy these days but I'll try to keep you updated further.
 

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I have generally found that SSRIs on their own are useless for DP (Just my own experience)

But in combination with low dose Anti Psychotic I have found them very useful..

The AntiPsychotic does all the hard work whilst the SSRI acts like a mood booster and an anxiety deterrant...

Again just my own personal experience......
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you so much Eddy! I'll consider taking Citalopram once again but this time with an antipsychotic and Lamotrigine (and I do already take an antipsychotic with Lamotrigine now, it's Seroquel XR).

The thing, however, is that I didn't feel ANY effects of SSRIs (neither Zoloft or Citalopram) even at highest doses, besides some strange sensation in ears/throat when yawning.

So I'm not sure how they will boost my mood and diminish anxiety if I take them with antipsychotic and Lamotrigine...

Did they alone boost your mood and deter anxiety?
 

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SSRIs do nothing for me on their own but in combo with an Antipsychotic (Low Dose) I get good anxiety and depression relief from them...

The anti psychotic acts as an overall DP treatment...It completely takes the power out of my DP (whilst not eliminating it totally) This i find alllows the SSRI to work on the anxiety and depression...

If I was in the middle of full blown chronic DP SSRIs would be useless to me on their own....Without low dose anti psychotics im basically screwed
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you so much Eddy! You've been really helpful and straight to the point :)

I'm still tweaking Lamictal and Seroquel to get the best of both worlds, but as I'm starting to see that I can't marry them too well, I'll definitely start introducing Citalopram (Celexa) into the combo at some point.

I hope you're doing well nowadays!
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I just want to inform those of you interested - Lamotrigine (Lamictal) seems to have helped quite a lot but I had to stop taking it because it made some other symptom of mine waaaaay worse and I hate that symptom just as much as I hate DP. I can only talk about some od those symptoms of mine in PM.
Next one in line for me to try is either Lithium or Topamax. I've tried both of those in the past in hopes to treat those other symptoms but instead I got some type of "calm" from Topamax (which might be helpful for my DP) and Lithium did nothing noticeabe but I didn't suffer from DP at that time either...so we'll see.

I encourage everyone who suffers from DP to give a try to Lamictal! It seems to be the only officially clinically tested treatment for DP and I am just another testimonial of its benefits for DP.

As for those of you who are not chronically mentally ill, stick to the "relax and distract yourself" mentality as that might be the only thing you'll ever need to get out once and for all.

Eddy, and the rest, let me know how are you doing nowadays?
 

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Hey there people! I hope you're all doing well!

I've slowly recovered from DP mostly thanks to Lamotrigine and Memanine + Magnesium Citrate, and I guess thanks to the good old time too.

I'm pretty unstable nowadays, in the sense that I can have a day with almost full blown DP, and then the very next day can be decent. However, overall, on average, I'm doing kind of ok...it's acceptable (5 of 10).

I'm currently testing a solid dose of Green Tea because for quite a while I seem to have been noticing some calming benefits specifically from Green and Black teas (I guess it could be about L-Theanine...? but I can't find it here in Serbia...). Caffeine is probably not the reason, as Coffee just gives me energy to cope with bad stuff but does not bring me a dramatic the betterment of mood itself, just a small one. Maybe it's a combination of Caffeine and L-Theanine. Or maybe It was all a correlation due to a random chance.

In any case, I hope you are doing well and I'm glad to be somewhat recovered from this horrible depersonalization. 6 out of 10 sounds good for my standards Eddy!
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That's my short term goal. Keep it up! :)

Also, I wonder if anyone with DP tried the ketamine treatment and how that affected them...?
 
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