20130505

Update on my Medication: Sleep Deprivation versus Adequate Sleep

Psychiatry is the only profession where sometimes the doctors prescribing the drugs actually have never had any experience with them. My experience with mirtazapine is a good example of this: the psychiatrist described side effects of SSRI antidepressants which mirtazapine actually moderates due to its sedative effects.

As well, mirtazapine's sedation makes it possible to feel sociable because it's not a tranquilizer.

Though, my current usage of 200 mg of gabapentin and 10 mg of flexeril at bedtime is an improvement over the mirtazapine since even when I miss doses, it doesn't impact sleep quality. The only exception to this is when I do graveyard shifts.

In response to sleep deprivation in recent memory, I experienced a few pseudo-hallucinations, none of which actually were severe enough to warrant more than the usual rationalizations I use to treat them as exaggerations of explainable phenomena.

The pseudo-hallucination consisted of "seeing" the electric field of the power cord to my computer. Being well-rested now, I can explain this in two parts: when seen by the eyes, a black power cord could leave an after-image of lighter color. In my sleep-deprived state of mind, it is possible for the mind to add colorful detail that gives the impression of "seeing" the electric field of the power cord.

Though, I'd be happier to see a Buddha appear out of the blue. That's never happened to me ever. Most likely, this is because a Buddha is a metaphysical phenomenon while my pseudo-hallucination is the result of an overtired mind playing with a physical phenomenon.

Given the power of the mind when tired to conjure a hallucination I knew not to be real — which is what a pseudo-hallucination is — imagine what the mind could do when well-rested: analyze the recent experience of sleep deprivation and provide a rational explanation for it.

To explain how this has come about, I am going to attribute this to two causes: getting daily exercise during work shifts this week and getting regular sleep.

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