We all know the function of anti-psychotics, they are used to decrease psychotic symptoms. They can be very effective against these symptoms, even though the experiences and opinions vary. The cause of these psychotic symptoms is often not clear and they are not targeted directly by these medications.
From more recent research it seems that people who are suspectible to psychosis consist of genetically different groups. Personally I have heard so many stories that I am convinced there exists a whole complex of causes and that every person who is suspectible to psychosis has a personal story.
My acute psychosis has been over for years. Since 2013 I only need to take a low level of medication for maintenance (around 1 mg Orap). I have always had the wish to be able to stop taking medication completely, but never managed that. More recently I got interested in a more biological approach; there might just be a chemical inbalance or hormonal inbalance that is causing problems.
Omega fatty acids
In my network of people with the same background there is someone who has been happy for years now with Omega fatty acids. They are available in fatty fish and in some other food sources, while also being available as supplement over the counter. They have a strong effect on proper functioning of the brain.
She tells that mostly because of Omega fatty acids she could stop taking anti-psychotic medication. She does have to put more focus on avoiding stress and also accept the fact that she is more vulnerable without medication, but for years now she has been stable without medication.
In 2014 (if I have the year correct) Iris Sommer gave a presentation about anti-inflammatories at the yearly day of Anoiksis. People who recently had a psychosis seemed to be responding well to simvastatins, which besides decreasing cholesterol also have an anti-inflammatory effect.
Me myself ended up with glycine. This amino acid is a natural part of the protein collagen, which is part of skin and connective tissue. In our modern diet this has mostly disappeared (who still eats chicken skin and chicken bone?). A shortage of glycine can result in inflammation, also in the brain, which can lead to psychotic symptoms.
My experience with glycine is very positive. When I let a teaspoon of it dissolve in a glass of water and I drink that, the next part of the day I feel my head clear up a lot. For some years now I take this twice a week.
Histamine is an organic compound that has several functions in our body. With people who are suspectible to psychosis, histamine is more often inbalanced than in the general population.
Me myself had some physical problems and my search on the labyrinth that is called the internet seemed to point towards allergic rhinitis. I had an allergy for citrus fruit, a light form of post-coïtal asthma, together with itching and bad sleep. These problems can happen when the level of histamine is too high. I started with antihistamines, which are sold as hay fever medication or anti-allergy, in my case Cetirizine. It made me very drowsy, and the evening was the right time to take them. My psychotic and allergic symptoms decreased a lot, more than I had dared to expect. I have been using this now for a month and my dosage of anti-psychotics is lowered to an amount that was never feasible before, and the last month symptoms have only further decreased.
There are some anti-psychotics that have an antihistamine effect, like Zyprexa (Olanzapine) and Seroquel (Quetiapine). The drowsiness that I experience from Cetirizine is very similar to the drowsiness of these medications.
Just likes histamine it is possible that Taurine is inbalanced, especially with people who are suspectible to psychosis. I have no experience with it myself and I don’t know anybody who has. I do think it can be a good supplement to try out.
I think that for people who are suspectible to psychosis, it can be good to investigate if there is something here that might be good for you. I can imagine that besides these approaches, there might be more possibilities. The body is a complex machine where things can get inbalanced easily. If you can find such an inbalance and know how to improve that, you might improve your health.
Update October 2020
It is now a few months later. The antihistamine pills have done their work well. Problem with them is that they block the receptors, but they do not decrease the release of histamine. In the last two months, and with that aim in mind, I started taking supplements that might have that effect. Currently I don’t use antihistamine pills anymore. Supplements that I am using:
- Omega-3 fatty acids, including olive oil
- Calcium + Magnesium
- Vitamin K
- Zinc + Copper, in 8:1 combination
- Melatonin (good for sleeping as well)
The melatonin I use daily, the other supplements only once or twice a week. When you have a reasonably varied diet you should only use supplements in a limited amount, I would think overdosing is unwanted.
I started taking Taurine, but I am not sure what the effects are :) It is somewhat similar as GABA, but I have the impression that I can tolerate it better.
I also started taking Tryptophan, which is a precursor to Serotonin. I was a bit worried about psychotic symptoms, but it turns out it is not causing them.
All together I am not in need of anti-psychotic medication anymore while also experiencing less psychotic symptoms. Profit :)
Update December 2020
Some things came together in an unfortunate way. With the supplements that should decrease histamine I moved to once a week instead of twice to lower the risk of overdosing it. In the course of a few weeks I did build up some psychotic symptoms. I think it was also caused by tryptophan/serotonin and melatonin, which can cause hallucinations. Back to twice a week and without tryptophan and melatonin things went back to normal again. In hindsight I did not notice and added value with tryptophan and melatonin, not in increasing them or after stopping them.