Anonymous asked this question on 4/27/2000:
Do you feel that Manic Depression is caused by or made worse by the onset of a monthly period? My friend is still breast feeding her baby, has suffered from 'depression' for years, but has had a bad experience recently of wanting to commit suicide. It seems she got her first period after the birth of baby, at 8 months. She is not coping very well at all at present. Please help us to understand what could be going on within her brain. She has been taking Zoloft but it seems not to be working effectively any more. Would Prozac be a better option. She is going to see a psychiatrist but is getting desperate as the waiting list for these people is so long. Thankyou for any help at all.
Imagika gave this response on 4/27/2000:
I'm also Manic Depressive and on Zoloft, so I hope I can shed some light here from my personal experience. Because of the hormone shift with periods, a slight "increase" in mood shifts is pretty common. Keep in mind also that your friend just had a baby 8 months ago and could still have lingering post-pardom depression. Your friend needs to be very careful about changes in her meds. I would go through times where I felt that the Zoloft wasn't "doing it" for me, so my doctor would increase my dose. I'd be fine for a few weeks, then I'd want another increase, and another increase. What that did was trigger the worst manic episode I had ever had in my life (it lasted 6 months). She should really consult with her doctor about changing or "upping" her meds. As her friend, maybe you could help her in monitoring any behavioral changes with the meds change or increase, since we can't see our own Manic symptoms. There's also this great book that my therapist gave me called "Living Without Depression and Manic Depression" and his has some great "activities" to help her feel like she has some control over her depression. It's by Mary Ellen Copeland, M.S. It sounds like you would be her perfect buddy for helping her through this book. Good luck!