Latuda for Bipolar Disorder: A Personal Review

03/23/2017

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Latuda: My personal review

This is not a sponsored post nor are there any affiliated links in the entirety of this post. Just my personal, and honest review of this product.

latuda-bipolar-disorder-review

Finding the right medication for bipolar disorder can be a challenging experience. It’s time consuming, and can be quite scary when you start reading the side effects. That’s why I wanted to share with you my experience of taking Latuda for bipolar 1 disorder. I started taking Latuda back in September of last year. Although, I have only been taking it for 6 months, I’ve had tremendously positive results with this medication.

I spent two years trying to find a medication that would work without all the crazy side effects. It was not fun, let me tell you. One of the prescriptions I tried caused me to wake up at work without even knowing how I got there. I had absolutely no recollection of getting dressed and driving to work. Pretty scary, right? Another one I tried caused me to go all Hulk-like. I just felt incredibly angry and irritable, and the thought of developing some life-threatening rash caused me too much anxiety. (I’m choosing not to call these companies out. They didn’t work for me, but they may work for you. Just remember, every medication is going to react differently with each individual.)

It’s inevitable that you will find the PERFECT medication. There will probably be some annoying side effect, but you just have to outweigh the pros and cons. Choosing medication to treat your bipolar disorder is a very courageous act. Not everyone wants to take pills to help with their mental illness, but sometimes you need more help. And that’s okay! You have to do what’s right for you, and don’t feel ashamed about it. I’ll admit, taking Latuda has changed my life. I can honestly say that it truly works, and I have very minimal side effects. The idea of taking medication isn’t flattering, but it is helping, and that’s all that matters.

What is latuda?

Latuda (lurasidone HCl) is a prescription medication that is taken once a day to treat adults with bipolar depression. It can be taken alone or with lithium or valproate. It is, also, used to treat adults with schizophrenia. Latuda is an atypical antipsychotic, not an antidepressant.

How do i take it?

You only have to take Latuda once a day with food of at least 350 calories. I highly suggest taking it at night before bed because it can cause drowsiness, which is good if you have sleeping problems. I sleep so much better now! I get at least 8 hours of restful sleep, and I no longer need to take sleep medication. Make sure to stock the fridge and pantry with some healthy snacks.

important tips:

  • Take it every day! This is really important.
  • Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice.
  • Try to avoid alcohol!
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Stay cool. Take caution in hot temperatures or heavy exercise.
  • Remember to eat at least 350 calories when taking it. I love to eat Greek yogurt with fruit and honey!
  •  Use caution when driving or operating heavy machinery until you are used to taking Latuda.
  • If your symptoms get worse, please see your doctor. Consult with your doctor before stopping this medication.

Side effects:

It is important to note that you may not experience these side effects at all. Side effects may be different for many people. If you feel you are experiencing a side effect, talk to your doctor. The most common side effects of taking Latuda are:

  • sleepiness or drowsiness
  • restlessness or feeling the need to move around a lot (akathisia)
  • difficulty moving, slow movement, stiffness in muscles, or tremor
  • nausea

Personally, I have experienced drowsiness after taking it, but that’s why I take it before bed. When I wake up, I no longer feel drowsy. I can get overheated if I’m exercising or out in the sun. So, it’s important to take breaks to breath and cool down. Also, I have noticed that I urinate a little more often than usual, but it’s the price I’m willing to pay to not be so depressed. I have not had any unusual weight gain either. Compared to other bipolar medications, Latuda has given me the chance to live again with the least side effects.

Other important safety information

It’s important that you, a caregiver, or a family member monitors your behavior when starting Latuda. Keep note of any side effects or worsening symptoms, and report them to your doctor immediately. Click here for more safety information on Latuda.

What’s the cost?

Latuda is still new on the market. Since there are no generic forms of Latuda, it is still very pricey. Most health insurance companies will cover this medication. Call your health insurance provider to see how much you will have to pay for your prescription. They can give you all the information you need on the costs of Latuda.

If you have a deductible to meet, your insurance provider may not pay any of the costs until you reach your deductible goal. I’m in that boat right now. My husband’s employer doesn’t offer the best of private health insurance, United Healthcare. I have a $1,500 deductible that I have to meet every year before insurance will pick up on the costs of Latuda. My health insurance company expects me to pay $1,001.62 every month for my prescription, and I cannot afford that!!!! Hopefully, this will not be your case!

Luckily, I have an amazing doctor that gives me FREE samples of Latuda every month! I’m beyond grateful for this because this medicine has worked so well for me. If your insurance isn’t wanting to cover your Latuda prescription, then talk to your doctor to see if they can get you free samples. More than likely, they will do everything they can to make sure you have it!

There is, also, a Latuda Savings card that can help save you money on your co-pay.

How latuda has changed my life

  • I no longer have suicidal thoughts, and have had no suicidal attempts since taking Latuda.
  • Depression isn’t beating me down anymore!
  • My anxiety has decreased.
  • I finally get some sleep!
  • Even manic episodes are easier to manage.
  • I’m motivated, energetic, and happy!
  • Spend more time with my family.
  • I’m more productive- I even mustered up the courage to start this blog!
  • Take better care of myself- exercising, eating healthy, positive coping outlets, meditation.
  • Have a better relationship with my husband.
  • I feel like I finally have a better grip on my diagnosis.
  • I can finally give my doctor good news for each check-up.
  • Stopped taking anxiety medication and sleeping medication.

My life has changed in so many ways since I started taking Latuda. Every day may not be easy, but I am able to manage with the help of this medicine. Remember, you should never feel ashamed for wanting to use medication to help treat your mental illness. If you want more information about Latuda, click here.

If you’re thinking about trying Latuda to help with your bipolar depression, let me know about your journey! Already on Latuda? Tell me about your experience. If you have any questions, you can email me anytime at natalie@thatsnatalie.com or comment below.

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  • Bryce Skelton

    Latuda is seriously the best med I’ve been on! The only sucky part about it is it’s cost…

    • I’m so happy to hear that Latuda is working well for you too! I agree, the cost is definitely a downfall, but, hopefully, a generic form will be available soon to help with that. Thanks for commenting, Bryce!

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