What is lithium carbonate prescribed for?

This medication is used to treat manic-depressive disorder (bipolar disorder). It works to stabilize the mood and reduce extremes in behavior by restoring the balance of certain natural substances (neurotransmitters) in the brain.

Why would a doctor give you lithium?

Lithium is used to treat mania that is part of bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness). It is also used on a daily basis to reduce the frequency and severity of manic episodes.

What disorder does lithium carbonate treat?

Lithium is a mood stabilizer medication that works in the brain. It is approved for the treatment of bipolar disorder (also known as manic depression). Bipolar disorder involves episodes of depression and/or mania.

What does lithium do to a normal person?

Lithium helps reduce the severity and frequency of mania. It may also help relieve or prevent bipolar depression. Studies show that lithium can significantly reduce suicide risk. Lithium also helps prevent future manic and depressive episodes.

What are common side effects of lithium carbonate?

Drowsiness, dizziness, tiredness, increased thirst, increased frequency of urination, weight gain, and mildly shaking hands (fine tremor) may occur. These should go away as your body adjusts to the medication. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Does lithium help with anxiety?

In fact, some patients start feeling less anxious, irritable, and depressed just days after taking low-dose lithium. Despite the evidence supporting the benefits of low-dose lithium, it is still underused as a supplement in psychiatry.

What does being on lithium feel like?

The most common side effects of lithium are feeling or being sick, diarrhoea, a dry mouth and a metallic taste in the mouth. Your doctor will carry out regular blood tests to check how much lithium is in your blood. The results will be recorded in your lithium record book.

Does lithium change your personality?

Substantial affect and mood changes are induced by lithium carbonate. Lethargy, dysphoria, a loss of interest in interacting with others and the environment, and a state of increased mental confusion were reported.

Is lithium an antidepressant?

Lithium compounds, also known as lithium salts, are primarily used as a psychiatric medication. They are primarily used to treat bipolar disorder and treat major depressive disorder that does not improve following the use of antidepressants.
Lithium (medication)

Clinical data
Drug class Mood stabilizer
ATC code N05AN01 (WHO)
Legal status

Why do you take lithium at night?

Take your lithium each night at the same time. You need to take it at night because blood tests need to be done during the day, 12 hours after a dose (see Section 4 ‘Blood tests after starting to take lithium’).

Is lithium good for sleep?

Conclusion: Lithium reduced rapid eye movement sleep and prevented memory impairment induced by sleep deprivation.

What drugs should not be taken with lithium?

Avoid taking lithium supplements and NSAIDs at the same time. Some NSAIDs include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin, others), indomethacin (Indocin), naproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn), piroxicam (Feldene), aspirin, and others.

How do you know if you need lithium?

Seek urgent medical attention if symptoms similar to diabetes (such as excessive thirst or excessive urine production) occur. Stop lithium and contact your doctor urgently if symptoms of lithium toxicity such as diarrhea, vomiting, tremor, drowsiness, muscle weakness, or confusion occur.

How long can you stay on lithium?

The NICE guidelines for bipolar disorder recommend that you gradually reduce your dose of lithium over at least four weeks. Ideally, you would reduce it over a period of up to three months. This is to lower your risk of relapse.

What happens if you stop lithium cold turkey?

Lithium – When abruptly discontinued, people who have been taking lithium to stabilize moods may experience mood instability and a relapse of mania.

Does lithium cause weight gain?

The mood-stabilizing drug lithium remains an effective mainstay of treatment for bipolar disorder—but unfortunately, it can cause weight gain. Although the possibility of gaining weight while taking lithium is well known, this side effect does not affect everyone who takes the medication.

Does lithium make your hair fall out?

Lithium causes hair loss in 12-19% of long-term users. Valproic acid and/ or divalproex precipitates alopecia in up to 12% of patients in a dose-dependent relationship. Incidences up to 28% are observed with high valproate concentration exposures. These pharmaceuticals also can change hair color and structure.

Does lithium affect appetite?

Lithium seems to influence appetite slightly although it is responsible for the gain in weight in a fourth of the treated outpatients. Half of the subjects consider that lithium modifies their sexuality towards a decrease of the desire without modifying their capacities of realization.

Does lithium cause memory loss?

Lithium has been associated with impaired memory, word finding difficulties, and impaired recall. Often, my patients have reported a cognitive “dulling” and a loss of cognitive “creativity” with lithium use that they found most disturbing.

Can taking lithium cause dementia?

One study suggested an increasing risk of dementia with increasing numbers of lithium prescriptions,7 whereas the other study found that patients receiving long-term lithium therapy had decreased prevalence of Alzheimer disease compared with patients not receiving recent lithium therapy.

Do bipolar get worse with age?

Untreated Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar may worsen with age or over time if this condition is left untreated. As time goes on, a person may experience episodes that are more severe and more frequent than when symptoms first appeared.

Does lithium prevent dementia?

Lithium treatment for 1 year reduced cognitive decline, compared to placebo. Moreover, long-term lithium treatment was associated with a significant reduction in the CSF concentration of phosphorylated tau. Therefore, lithium may exert a protective effect on the progression of cognitive impairment in dementia.

Does lithium reverse Alzheimer’s?

In a new study, a team of researchers has shown that, when given in a formulation that facilitates passage to the brain, lithium in doses up to 400 times lower than what is currently being prescribed for mood disorders is capable of both halting signs of advanced Alzheimer’s pathology and of recovering lost cognitive

Can bipolar cause you to forget things?

What’s more, many people with bipolar disorder report memory loss and or difficulty remembering things. These individuals may have trouble with short and long-term memory, struggle to think things through at a quick speed, and have difficulty thinking outside of the so-called box.