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Thread: Uses for lithium orotate

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    Uses for lithium orotate 
    #1
    I bought some lithium orotate to test it out. Right now I have some mild benzo withdrawal symptoms so I'm wondering if lithium will help with that. I don't really feel bad emotionally, the main symptom is this stimulation/aggitation feeling which makes it hard to relax and sleep. Besides that, I get the odd wave of dysphoria. Will lithium help with that?

    As for depression, is lithium only used to suppress emotions (i.e. for bipolar disorder or the kind of depression that causes negative emotions and sadness etc.), or does it have additional uses for treating depression? I read that lithium orotate has neuroprotective properies but haven't researched that yet. I also read that lithium orotate is far superior to traditional lithium salts because it penetrates cells much easier and thus, a much lower dosage of lithium is needed so I'm guessing it has much less side effects but does the orotate salt have beneficial properties that the traditional salts (i.e. lithium carbonate) don't have?
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    #2
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    Lithium therapy is a special one for sure. I have zero experience with this mood stabilizer although I do know it can have some nasty interactions with common drugs (like ethyl alcohol).

    As far as I know, its only really used for bipolar disorder - specifically mania in bipolar disorder (somebody feel free to correct me here....). I don't know if its effectiveness in treatment of just depression and/or the depressive stages of bipolar.

    Are you taking this on a prescription or are you just trying things out yourself? I would err on the side of caution when playing with these types of psychiatric drugs. A friend of mine was on lithium therapy for a long time for bipolar disorder and had seizures when combining the lithium with alcohol.

    BDD Guidelines! - BLUA - BL Search! - Conversions for Opiates & Benzos - Save Your Liver Do a CWE
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    #3
    I use to be prescribed Lithium Carbonate for depression and cyclothymic disorder . It's a tricky drug to "get right" , it's not for everyone that's for sure.
    I had to have my blood checked once a week (?) or everytime I was prescribed a new dosage, for the amount of Lithium in my blood. It has to be low or balanced , if the concentration in the blood is too high it might be toxic for the patient and you will experience adverse/negative effects.
    This did happen to me. Wasn't pleasant in the least, some very extreme panic attacks to the point of breaking down, crying and just having an unbelievable amount of paranoia and fear overwhelm me, also I felt like I was on "speed" most of the time with the higher dosage that was prescribed.

    I was on Lithium Carbonate for 2-3 months and I do remember it helping me in the beginning, but as time went by and dosages were increased it started to lose it's benefits. So I stopped because I just didn't want to go through all that again .... (personal reasons).

    Just be careful with this stuff in terms of "self medicating" .
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    #4
    Due to my profession, I am “well-equipped” to address your questions.

    Right now I have some mild benzo withdrawal symptoms so I'm wondering if lithium will help with that.
    No. Lithium oratate and other anticonvulsants will not attenuate your benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms; in fact, very few things will— besides, of course, a tapering strategy. I always suggest a tapering strategy. (I’m assuming this is irrelevant for you.) Benzodiazepine withdrawal is still as vexatious for patients on lithium carbonate; in fact, any drugs with purported attenuation mechanisms are simply “masking” your symptoms. If you’re searching for treatment that will ease your withdrawal symptoms, please seek medical attention for a tapering schedule. Beta blockers may only inappreciably succor symptoms. Tapering and time are your only solutions. I would not hesitate to write a chlordiazepoxide tapering schedule if you simply can’t medically endure this “cold turkey”.

    I don't really feel bad emotionally, the main symptom is this stimulation/aggitation feeling which makes it hard to relax and sleep. Besides that, I get the odd wave of dysphoria. Will lithium help with that?
    Seek psychological counseling and other psychotropic treatment for the initial reasons you started benzodiazepines. There are a plethora of drugs that will help you “mask” the issues; essentially, any non-stimulating recreational drug and antihistamines. One thing I will advise is gabapentin/pregabalin. This is really the only thing anxiolytic I’d suggest. It may help you with these symptoms. It is a good drug. There are plenty of resources here on Bluelight that will provide advice on the use of gabapentinoids.

    As for depression, is lithium only used to suppress emotions (i.e. for bipolar disorder or the kind of depression that causes negative emotions and sadness etc.), or does it have additional uses for treating depression?
    Lithium carbonate can induce an antidepressant response with its effects on sodium channels similarly to how a plethora of other mood stabilizing agents can provide different anti-depressant mechanism through mediation of voltage-gated ion channels; psychopharmacologically, these are very “interesting”.

    I read that lithium orotate has neuroprotective properies but haven't researched that yet.
    Yes, it depends on how much inflammation you have. There are much better neuroprotective drugs out there.

    I also read that lithium orotate is far superior to traditional lithium salts because it penetrates cells much easier and thus, a much lower dosage of lithium is needed so I'm guessing it has much less side effects but does the orotate salt have beneficial properties that the traditional salts (i.e. lithium carbonate) don't have?
    Lithium orotate is inefficient in metabolism comparatively to lithium carbonate. There is a reason why carbonate is used in professional medical practice.

    Do not self-medicate with lithium orotate. It can cause serious health complications. Seek the advice of a medical professional.

    Let me know if you have specific questions, I’m not sure why this wouldn’t cover all of your basic assumptions, however. I do not have the time to write a research paper.

    Good luck!
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    #5
    Bluelighter Swimmingdancer's Avatar
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    I just want to make it clear that lithium orotate is different from lithium carbonate. They are used for slightly different reasons, in different doses, and low-dose lithium orotate is available OTC whereas high-dose lithium carbonate is Rx. Lithium orotate is often sold as a "dietary supplement". Trace amounts of lithium are present in all organisms, but it apparently does not serve a vital biological function, since we can survive without it; however, nonvital functions have not been ruled out. We normally get lithium from vegetables/plants and from drinking water. Long-term use of high-dose lithium carbonate or citrate (for example for bipolar) has been associated with health complications and should be considered as a last resort treatment. Low-dose lithium orotate supplementation is considered to be much safer (when taken in recommended doses). The therapeutic amounts of lithium carbonate (not orotate) used are only slightly lower than toxic amounts, so with lithium carbonate the concentration of lithium in the blood is carefully monitored during treatment. A lithium overdose can be serious. One study in rats did find that lithium orotate gave higher blood levels of lithium dose per dose than lithium carbonate, but other studies have been unclear or contradictory. It is suggested by some than even people taking lithium orotate may want to drink extra fluids (as lithium can be dehydrating) and monitor their thyroid function, since high-dose lithium carbonate has been linked with abnormal kidney and thyroid function. I am only aware of one reported overdose on lithium orotate, which was in a person taking a far higher dose than the recommended amount (she took 18 pills in one dose) and her only complaints were nausea and mild tremors [source].

    I am not aware of any studies using lithium orotate as a treatment for benzodiazepine dependence, but there was one study that concluded it was helpful in alcoholism [source]. I have heard a few anecdotal reports of people finding it helpful with SSRI withdrawal and benzodiazepine withdrawal. One person even said their doctor had suggested lithium orotate to help with their benzo taper.

    Lithium is distributed in the CNS and interacts with a number of neurotransmitters and receptors, for example decreasing norepinephrine and increasing serotonin. Although lithium is best-known as a treatment for bipolar, it is prescribed by doctors for a number of other disorders, including depression, certain types of psychosis, ALS and other neurodegenerative diseases, cluster headaches, and more. Some doctors, as well as many "alternative" health care practitioners, prescribe lithium orotate for an even broader range of conditions. In a study in Japan, intake of lithium through drinking water was found to be correlated with an increased life span [source]. Lithium treatment is well-known to decrease suicidal ideation and suicide, but even low-dose lithium intake in the normal population has been correlated with decreased suicide: Another Japanese study found reduced suicide rates in people who had higher levels of lithium in their water [source], as did a study in Texas [source]. It has been suggested that lithium may increase normal function in people who have a mis-set/disrupted internal clock [source]. It also increases inositol levels [source] and low inositol has been linked to poor memory and depression.

    Quote Originally Posted by Geaux Tigers!
    Lithium orotate is inefficient in metabolism comparatively to lithium carbonate. There is a reason why carbonate is used in professional medical practice.
    Really? I thought it was the other way around, that there were fears that lithium orotate might be more effecient in metabolism (the studies on metabolism are unclear) and that there just isn't nearly as much research on lithium orotate as there is on lithium carbonate or citrate, so no reason to start replacing lithium carbonate/citrate with orotate. However, lithium orotate actually is used by some medical professionals (doctors, psychiatrists, naturopaths), often in lower doses and as a treatment for the same things lithium carbonate/citrate are used for and also for a number of other purposes.

    I would suggest that if you want to take lithium orotate it would be best to take it under the advice of a psychiatrist or health care practitioner knowledgable in its use. It has not undergone any controlled human trials but it is widely available and there have not been any widespread reports of serious side effects with normal use.

    Sorry this is so long and hope it was helpful
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    #6
    (the studies on metabolism are unclear)
    This.

    Good response as well.
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Geaux Tigers! View Post
    Due to my profession, I am “well-equipped” to address your questions...
    For some who is "well-equipped" to address my quesitons, you gave a pretty terrible answer. Why would someone taper if they are already off the substance completely? That makes absolutely no sense, that would simply slow down my recovery significantly. I know plenty of things to suppress the symptoms, I started this thread to ask about "lithium". You're right about gabapentin but there is more than that. Baclofen for instance is a selective GABA_b agonist which exhibits no cross tolerance with benzos. I know plenty of non GABAergic drugs that will alleviate the withdrawal symptoms too, not to mention substances to help accelerate recovery such as bacopa monneira which causes upregulation of GABA_a receptors. You seem to have developed a know it all attitude which is evident by you feeling that you are qualified to make a statement like "Tapering and time are your only solutions.". Believe it or not, there are more solutions than tapering and time. Tapering in my case would not be a solution at all since I am talking about minor PAWS, not acute w/d symptoms. You might mean well but when you're talking about something like this you need to really do your research because less knowledgeable people might believe every word you say and thus, be limited in their ability to recover. This attitude seems to be a virus which infects medical professionals. Always remember you do not know everything, you still have a lot to learn. He who knows everything, has nothing to learn. He who knows nothing, has everything to learn. I'm no doctor but I clearly know more than you about how to effectively treat benzodiazepine PAWS. I know little or nothing about lithium though so I don't have the knowledge to determine whether what you said is valid or not.

    Swimmingdancer: Thats exactly the kind of info I was looking for. I learned a great deal from your reply, thanks a lot.
    Last edited by Mycotheologist; 10-08-2012 at 21:18.
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    #8
    Bluelighter Swimmingdancer's Avatar
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    Also I don't know if you're interested in hearing about other supplements that are good for benzo withdrawals but if you are I would recommend L-Lysine. (Maybe 500mg once or twice a day). L-Lysine is known to reduce anxiety, according to studies appears to have CNS depressant-like characteristics similar to benzos or barbituates, and affects some of the same receptors as benzos, but it is a healthy essential amino acid. Many people do not get enough lysine.
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    #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geaux Tigers! View Post
    Due to my profession, I am “well-equipped” to address your questions. No. Lithium oratate and other anticonvulsants will not attenuate your benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms; in fact, very few things will— besides, of course, a tapering strategy.
    For someone well equipped to address this question you give more then abit of false advise. The major one being is that although lithium is a mood stabilizer like lamotrigine (the only other true mood stabilizer) it is NOT a anti-convulsant. Lamotrigine, valproate, carbamazepine, etc are mood stabilizers, anti-manic drugs and anti-convulsants but lithium can actually cause seizures in people susceptible to them as it lowers the seizure threshold.

    So lithium is beyond useless for benzodiazepine withdrawal. You need a taper such as using diazepam to come off benzos. This really has to be done under the care of a doctor as benzo withdrawals are no joke and can in very rare cases even be fatal.
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    #10
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    i'm bipolar and lithium just made me so depressed i ODed on it lucky to be alive
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    #11
    Bluelighter RhythmSpring's Avatar
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    Lithium orotate or lithium carbonate?
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