Lamictal (lamotrigine) is an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer, which is not approved by the FDA but is used for treating anxiety disorders. It is recommended for treating seizure and bipolar disorders. During the clinical trials for Lamictal, anxiety was reported as a side-effect by about four percent of participants, but three percent of the control group has reported anxiety as well. This is viewed as a rare effect. Even though Lamic5otal is not approved for treating anxiety disorders, some physicians prescribe it to patients with conditions like social anxiety disorder and anxiety disorder, among others.
How does Lamictal work?
After lithium, Lamictal is used as a secondary choice, to be approved by the FDA for use as a treatment for bipolar disorder to be used as a mood stabilizer for prevention of depressive, manic or hypomanic episodes. It is typically used for treating seizure-related disorders like epilepsy. The drug works by lowering abnormal activities in the brain and appears to be particularly efficient for depressive episodes linked to comorbid anxiety and bipolar disorder.
It is occasionally also used for the treatment of other mood disorders which are not treatable with other drugs, including schizoaffective disorder, borderline personality disorder, depersonalization disorder, and depression. Although Lamictal displayed potential benefit in a small study of people who are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), mood stabilizers, in general, are deliberated as uncertain to treat PTSD, which is a disorder as a result of trauma. As with other mood-stabilizing drugs, one should be careful about Lamictal Withdrawal symptoms when thinking about going off the medication. Always keep your physician in the loop.
The most commonplace side effects of Lamictal are:
- Weight loss
- Trouble speaking
- Loss of balance
- Double vision
- Rapid eye movement
- Loss of appetite
- Painful or missed periods
- Trouble concentrating
The side effects mentioned above may go away in time, but if they persist or become troublesome, contact your physician.
Severe Side Effects
If you are undergoing any of the following severe side effects while taking Lamictal, contact your doctor right away:
- Stiff neck
- Chest pain
- Abnormal seizures
- Swelling of the feet, arms, hands or legs
- Light sensitivity
Before taking Lamictal, first discuss your health history in detail with your physician. Probable issues to consider are:
- Allergy to lamotrigine or any of the other ingredients found in Lamictal.
- The drug can interact with other medications, whether prescription, over-the-counter or mere supplements and vitamins. Be sure to report to your doctor if you are presently taking any drugs so that the doses can be monitored and adjusted when necessary.
- If you fall pregnant while taking Lamictal, speak to your physician immediately.
- Drinking alcohol can make drowsiness worse that you may already be experiencing while on the drug.
- Don’t operate heavy machinery or drive while you’re on Lamictal for a while since it tends to lead to drowsiness.
- Notify your physician if you have previously had an autoimmune disease like a blood disorder, lupus or liver or kidney disease.