It’s a crapshoot. And if you’re taking meds for your mood or anxiety disorder, you know just what I’m talking about. You also know this game of chance is the primary reason you even have to think about changing meds. Let’s talk it over…

How will you feel – what will you do – if there’s no change or you feel worse?

You know you need to take meds and you’re fine with it – that is if they work. And not tearing up your life with side effects and financial distress would be a bonus.

Hey, change is good. However, when it comes to psychotropic meds, it requires thought. I’ve been there, and I know there’s a lot to consider – because there’s a lot at stake.

For reasons all your own, you may be kicking around the idea of making a meds change. As you’re doing the footwork, maybe this will help…

12 things to think about when you want to change your meds

my meds aren't working

“The SSRIs aren’t cutting it anymore. I went through the list. It’s time to make a change.”

Well, you’ve gone from kicking it around to seriously considering changing your meds.

Maybe you’ve tried multiple SSRIs and they aren’t cutting it anymore. Who could blame you for looking at alternatives?

You may have all your ducks in a row regarding the change, but just in case you don’t, or you missed something, I’m serving some food for thought.

You’ll see that 1-5 address you in the present, including possible barriers to the effectiveness of your meds. The remaining seven deal with the potential change. I’ll be using the word “meds,” though you may only be taking one.

Let’s do it…

  1. Be absolutely sure about the reason(s) for wanting to change meds. Consider: they aren’t working, troubling side effects, difficult dosing protocol, required lab work, too expensive, you just feel like it.
  2. Have you given your current meds a fair shot? Consider: taking as prescribed, sufficient time to hit a therapeutic dose, mitigating side effects, alternative dosing protocols, cost reduction options, address boredom.
  3. Are you taking good care of yourself? Consider: diet, exercise, recreation, rest, relaxation, sleep.
  4. Is using or abusing substances, including prescription and over-the-counter meds, interfering with the action of your meds?
  5. Are you participating in therapy? A meds/therapy combo works best.
  6. If you have family members dealing with the same emotional/mental circumstances, what meds have worked for them?
  7. Take the time to research other meds, including those for augmenting purposes.
  8. Would genetic testing for meds selection be a fit for you? It isn’t always what it’s promoted to be, but it could still be helpful.
  9. If visiting online forums is part of your research, be careful with the comments. What’s good or bad for someone doesn’t necessarily apply to you. And their situation may not be yours.
  10. Prepare a meds change plan and present it to your prescriber. Consider: why you want to change, meds to propose, genetic testing, be open-minded about recommendations, it’s your decision.
  11. Are you willing to go through what may be a rough go as you come off your current meds and start new ones?
  12. How will you feel – what will you do – if there’s no change or you feel worse?

A lot to think about, right? But again, there’s a lot at stake.

Think it through

The psychotropic meds crapshoot is reality. So we have to go with the flow. And that may mean multiple episodes of meds change thinking. That’s the game of chance we play.

So wanting to change meds is understandable, perhaps necessary. But no knee-jerk reactions allowed. We really need to think it through.

Speaking of which, think about what Chipur articles you might enjoy. But you’ll have to peruse the titles.

Bill White is not a physician and provides this information for educational purposes only. Always contact your physician with questions and for advice and recommendations.

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