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I did a poll on Twitter asking if you would be interested in a series of posts on my experiences on several different medications that I'm taking to aid my mental health problems, 87% said yes so here's the first installment. (I've also just had my room decorated and I'm obsessed with the brick wallpaper.)

I used to sleep like a baby every night until I was about 16 when my anxiety really got severe, and since then I've really suffered with insomnia and night terrors. My mind is very active at night, I can't relax or really turn off my brain because I'm so anxious. It's a problem I've told psychiatrists and doctors about for years and nobody did anything about it, it started affecting my moods, my appetite and pretty much every aspect of daily life. 

When I turned 18 I was discharged from my adolescent mental health services, so if I needed any medication I had to now just go to my usual GP. I was first prescribed Beta-Blockers, (or Propranolol,) to help with my anxiety and my anti-depressants had already been doubled but neither helped my anxiety at night and I was suffering with night terrors. Night terrors are such weird experiences, I used to have really scary dreams and scream, like, I'd be screaming in the dream but I'd actually also be screaming out loud, waking myself up in a huge panic and sweat. 

After months of telling my GP about my problems she finally give me some medication, her excuse for not giving me some sooner was that she didn't want me on so many pills whilst I'm still so young, and sleeping pills are really addictive. I pretty much had to beg her for them but I was so happy and relieved when I got prescribed Amitriptyline. 

Amitriptyline is used to treat several mental illnesses, improve mood and relieve anxiety. It's mostly used for depression but it can be used to treat Insomnia. It's a special type of anti-depressant called an tricyclic. I was prescribed 10mg a day to take a few hours before bed time. Annoyingly I'm only given 2 weeks supply each time I go for some because they can be fatal even if I was to overdose on the fourteen, and I'm still classed as a risk to myself. 

I usually take my tablet at 9pm and get into bed around 10:30, but I have to bare in mind what time I need to wake up, because If I take it at 9pm and have to be up for 7am, it's nearly impossible because I'm still so drowsy. But most of the time I don't ever have to be up for a certain time so it makes life easier. I'm now in quite a healthy good sleeping pattern of falling asleep around 11-12 and waking up at 9/10.

I was so overjoyed that this medication worked for me, (and still does,) but my GP was right and I am already very dependent on them and I definitley feel the difference in my mood, sleep and energy when I run out. I've not had a night terror since I started taking these and I can fall asleep so easily, I feel so relaxed and generally tired so some nights I pretty much fall asleep as soon as I hit my pillow, which is a miracle for me.
I'm already taking another type of anti-depressant called Fluoxetine, I take 40mg a day of that, and with the added bonus of the Amitriptyline I feel very happy and elated on a morning, I find myself feeling more productive and getting out of bed is so easy. 

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