Amitriptyline Side Effects
Prescription Sleep Aid Information
Ask A Healer Side Effects Series
Common Side Effects of Amitryptyline - Please read if your mental health professional has prescribed amitryptyline for depression or insomnia. This is only a partial list but includes some of the most common reactions people report.
by Ask a Healer
Amitryptyline and Me
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Update, June 17, 2018: I found a link on the Mayo Clinic website which offers a fairly huge list of potential side effects when taking amytriptyline. If you just want to know the main things to look for, this article covers basic information and common side effects. However, if you want to know all there is to know about how this prescription medication may affect you, read the Mayo Clinic side effects page
I also wanted to mention that I took amitryptyline myself, about 20 years ago during a period of struggling with depression. It worked extremely well for me and though I had some of the side effects mentioned, in particular I remember having a really dry mouth), the real problem for me started when I tried to stop taking it. I would not advise stopping this drug cold turkey. I would strongly advise enlisting the help of your doctor to wean off slowly. I sank into a terrible fatique and could barely get out of bed for days. Am I sorry I took amytriptyline? No. Even though I have rarely ever taken prescription medication in my life, this drug helped me a great deal at a time when I needed help. However, I am very sorry I didn't get help to come off of it gradually. Don't make my mistake.
There is a long list of possible amitryptyline side effects. THIS IS ONLY A PARTIAL LIST. Before we get into side effects, here are a few warnings specific to this particular prescription drug: Let your doctor know if you are on MAOI therapy or if you have a history of seizures. From all I've read, a person normally should NOT take amitryptyline if on MAOI therapy or have a history of seizures. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have liver problems. Most prescription drugs are processed by the liver so any liver problems should be reported to your mental health professional.
If you have a longterm habit of medicating with alcohol, or typically drink more than 2 alcholic beverages more than 2 times per week, ask your doctor to check your liver before going on amitryptyline. This is a good idea even if you don't think you have a liver problem. Your counselor can't read your mind so let them know if checking the liver is important in your case.
Also, let your mental health professional know if you have been previously diagosed with any type of heart problems or thyroid problems and report any prescription drug medications you may be taking for those conditions. If you are under treatment from a medical doctor for heart problems or thyroid issues, it's important to get all your medical team in the loop of all medications. Too often, patients do not tell different members of the medical team all the medications that may have been prescribed by other members. In this age of medical specialization, it's important to network communication between all those you choose to treat you.
You should know that there are strong concerns when giving amitryptyline to anyone under the age of 18. Some resources I checked even say amitryptyline should not be given to children under the age of 12.
If your child's doctor has prescribed this drug, it's vital to monitor
the behavior of the child very, very closely because reactions can give way to thoughts of harming themselves or others, quickly worsening depression, and more.
One of the most common side effects when taking chemical sedatives such as amitryptyline is dry mouth. Ask your doctor about moisture-increasing mouthwashes or other ways to combat this very common side effect of amitryptyline.
Other things you should know about this drug:
1. Amitryptyline should not be discontinued abruptly
2. It may take several weeks on this drug before you feel better
3. Tell your doctor if you take MAO) inhibitors (Nardil, Parnate, Propulsid, etc.)
4. Inform your doctor if side effects you experience persist or become severe
THIS IS ONLY A PARTIAL LIST! Talk with your pharmacist for other potential side effects of amitryptyline.
Common amitriptyline side effects you may experience include but are not limited to:
Becoming too drowsy
Feeling weak or tired
Feeling overly anxious
A tingling feeling in the extremities
Feeling confused or addled
unexplained weight loss or weight gain
Feeling unsteady on your feet
Having nightmares at night or other sleep problems
Feeling restless for no reason
Having trouble urinating or becoming constipated to point of discomfort.
This is only a partial list of amitriptyline side effects. If taking this medication, check with your doctor if you have any troubling symptoms.
Part Two: Spiritual Factors to Consider
Part Three: Ayurveda For Fibromyalgia
Important Health Care Disclaimer: Prescription drugs such as amitryptyline are not without risks. Please discuss these risks fully with both your pharmacist and your mental health counselor. Suggestions for natural pain relief are educational in nature and not intended to replace any needed mental health evaluation or medical treatment.