Mood stabilisers - Other considerations
What else should I consider before taking mood stabilisers?
Medication can affect sexual desire (libido), arousal and your ability to have an orgasm. If this happens, talk to your doctor. Changing the dose could help with this problem.
If you are thinking of trying for a baby, speak to your doctor about your medication.
Your doctor should give you information about the effects that medications can have during pregnancy.
If you are pregnant and need to take a mood stabiliser speak to your doctor. Some mood stabilisers can cause problems if you take them whilst you are pregnant. It is important that any decision about treatment during pregnancy weighs up the individual risks and benefits.
Taking lithium during pregnancy can cause heart problems in the foetus. Lithium should be not be taken when you are pregnant if possible.
Valproate can harm an unborn baby. There is a link with spina bifida.
Recent studies show that taking lamotrigine during pregnancy does not increase the risk of harming the unborn baby. But NICE says you should be checked regularly if you are pregnant and taking lamotrigine.
NICE guidance recommends antipsychotics that are used as mood stabilisers are better than other mood stabilisers if you are pregnant.
There is not much information about the safety of mood stabilisers while breast feeding. The benefits and risks of breast feeding should be weighed up. Speak to your doctor or psychiatrist about this.
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