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  #1  
Old 01-11-2010, 11:03 PM
pkbites pkbites is offline
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Medications that cause "vivid dreams"

When I went to India I had to take anti-malaria medicine. The pharmacist warned me that one of the more common side effects were "vivid dreams".

Vivid dreams, indeed! That stuff gave me the craziest, whacked out dreams EVER.
I've had some real doozies in my life, but the dreams those pills gave me put anything Stephen King or Clive Barker ever wrote to shame. They were a real hoot.

I've noticed recently some meds being advertised that state the side effects also being vivid dream.

My questions are, what is in some medication that causes such dreams. And, would it be feasible to market a pill whose sole purpose was to cause such dreams?
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  #2  
Old 01-11-2010, 11:19 PM
jasonh300 jasonh300 is offline
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Nicotine. Not from cigarettes so much, but a steady dosage over 24 hours, such as from a nicotine patch, will give you some really vivid dreams.

I had dreams on the nicotine patch that I wasn't sure whether they were real or not a couple of hours after I woke up.
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Old 01-11-2010, 11:47 PM
sweetie pea sweetie pea is offline
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I must say that while I don't know the answer to your first question, I really kind of like it. Also, I'm pretty sure the answer to your second question is, "Maybe, but somebody would put a stop to it." And, garlic.
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  #4  
Old 01-11-2010, 11:53 PM
myskepticsight myskepticsight is offline
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My dad took Chantix, the anti-smoking med, and he reported odd, vivid dreams. Apparently that stuff can have some other shitty side effects like making you want to kill yourself/others. We joked that dad was gonna kill me and mom in a drug-induced homicidal rage. And he went back to smoking after taking it anyway
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:20 AM
Zhen'ka Zhen'ka is offline
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This is a side effect of Wellbutrin. Sucked.

ETA: Also used to quit smoking.

Last edited by Zhen'ka; 01-12-2010 at 12:21 AM..
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  #6  
Old 01-12-2010, 12:29 AM
toofs toofs is offline
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Yup, doxycycline causes really vivid dreams. I was ordered to take doxycycline when I was in Africa. Crazy dreams.
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:40 AM
Freudian Slit Freudian Slit is offline
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Originally Posted by toofs View Post
Yup, doxycycline causes really vivid dreams. I was ordered to take doxycycline when I was in Africa. Crazy dreams.
Weird. I had to take it a lot for skin probs in the past but I never got any strange dreams. I kind of wish I had...I like weird dreams. Sometimes I have crazy ones even now, off meds.
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  #8  
Old 01-12-2010, 12:54 AM
statsman1982 statsman1982 is offline
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Well, I never had any crazy dreams on Paxil, but going off Paxil, well...
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  #9  
Old 01-12-2010, 01:03 AM
Salmo Trutta Salmo Trutta is offline
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I used Chantix about a year ago to stop smoking. I rarely, if ever, remember my dreams. When I do they are all about really boring tedious stuff like packing for a trip or bargan shopping for groceries. (anyone want to take a stab at what that says about my sub-conscious!?)

So, on Chantix, at first my dreams were extremely vivid and bizzare and I could remember them clearly. After about a week I started being able to have lucid dreams. Never could before or after. But during the 3 month time I was on it all I wanted to do was sleep because of the cool stuff (and people) I could choose to do.

Man I miss flying above the snowy town to my love nest with Kelly Kapowski!
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  #10  
Old 01-12-2010, 01:04 AM
Argent Towers Argent Towers is offline
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Lortabs/Vicodin make me have krazy dreams. Cough syrup containing DXM will do it too, and can also make you mildly trip at lower doses (and wildly trip at higher ones.) Indeed, I always take a little extra of the stuff whenever I have a cough, and enjoy the low-level hallucinations before I drift off to sleep. You sort of have "waking dreams" for a while, like dream-y stuff will flow through your head but you'll be conscious and fairly lucid at the same time.
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  #11  
Old 01-12-2010, 01:59 AM
squeegee squeegee is offline
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Originally Posted by Zhen'ka View Post
This is a side effect of Wellbutrin. Sucked.
This is a possible (and in your case actual) side effect of Wellbutrin. I've taken it and my dreams were no different. The panic attacks, on the other hand...
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  #12  
Old 01-12-2010, 04:30 AM
Scissorjack Scissorjack is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonh300 View Post
Nicotine. Not from cigarettes so much, but a steady dosage over 24 hours, such as from a nicotine patch, will give you some really vivid dreams.
Yeah, when I was quitting smoking on patches, the instructions said take 'em off at night: if I forgot and left 'em on while I slept, I'd get incredibly lucid, almost hallucinatory dreams. I'm prone to nightmares, but these were quite different.

Last edited by Scissorjack; 01-12-2010 at 04:30 AM..
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  #13  
Old 01-12-2010, 04:37 AM
Wallenstein Wallenstein is offline
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Mefloquine (anti-malerial) did the trick for me re. vivid dreams.
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  #14  
Old 01-12-2010, 04:41 AM
WarmNPrickly WarmNPrickly is offline
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Xanax

I've no idea if that is a standard side effect, but without fail it's a pretty wild ride. It's always good dreams too.
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  #15  
Old 01-12-2010, 08:04 AM
KarlGauss KarlGauss is offline
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FWIW, here are nine pages of patient reports of vivid dreams associated with a whole host of medications (just search the pages for the phrase "vivid dreams"). In addition to SSRI's (Paxil, Zoloft, Prozac, etc), doxycycline, nicotine replacement, and anti-malarial drugs, another fairly common culprit in this regard are meds of the beta blocker class, e.g. metoprolol, atenolol, etc.
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  #16  
Old 01-12-2010, 09:14 AM
Bill Door Bill Door is online now
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I had undiagnosed sleep apnea and extremely vivid hypnagogic episodes when falling asleep. Since treatment they've stopped, and I kind of miss them.
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  #17  
Old 01-12-2010, 10:00 AM
irishgirl irishgirl is offline
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I had to take a patient off beta-blockers because his nightmares were waking up and distressing other patients on the ward.

Nothing like lying next to a guy who wakes up screaming several times a night to make that whole hospital experience feel really therapeutic!
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  #18  
Old 01-12-2010, 10:08 AM
Spiff Spiff is offline
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I'll chime in and confirm that hydrocodone in its many forms (like the Vicodin mentioned upthread) can cause lucid dreaming and in one particularly disturbing personal instance, sleep paralysis (when I took a Percocet and a slow-release form of Oxycontin).
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  #19  
Old 01-12-2010, 10:19 AM
CT_Damsel CT_Damsel is offline
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I take B6 to relieve PMS symptoms and notice that when I take it close to bedtime I experience XtremeDreamn (my new made up word ) I know B6 is not a drug.
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  #20  
Old 01-12-2010, 11:03 AM
davekhps davekhps is offline
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Ambien. Take it and it suppresses dreams. Come off it, and you enjoy "rebound REM." Most vivid dreams I've had in *years*.

Interestingly enough, I took Ambien to help me sleep while on Wellbutrin. Wellbutrin alone never gave me vivid/crazy/bad dreams, but it *did* give me wicked insomnia when I first started taking it, so the Ambien counteracted that in the beginning.

(Other than that, I will *swear* by WB... miracle drug for me, minimal side effects).
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  #21  
Old 01-12-2010, 11:10 AM
Kevbo Kevbo is offline
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No idea the mechanism, but I was once given a megadose* of steroids in an attempt to cure a hearing loss. WILD dreams, as well as exaggerated temper. ('roid rage)


*IIRC it was 10 pills the first dose, tapering off to one pill over about three days. Didn't fix my hearing BTW.
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  #22  
Old 01-12-2010, 11:49 AM
bellybean bellybean is offline
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I take Effexor for depression. When changing doses or getting used to a new dosage I get the vivid dreams. I wake up exhausted, as if I had done everything I dreamed. If I forget a dose, I have a night of super-vivid dreams, TONS of them, and the next day I am all out of sorts. It doesn't sound like a bad side-effect, but the dreams can be quite disturbing and you can forget for a moment now and then that they weren't real.
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  #23  
Old 01-12-2010, 11:54 AM
Kelby Kelby is offline
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Not a medication per se, but Melatonin (dietary supplement/sleep aid) gives me vivid and mainly enjoyable dreams. I seem able to sleep for less time and feel refreshed as well. My guess is it sends me into REM sleep quicker.
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  #24  
Old 01-12-2010, 01:59 PM
teela brown teela brown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelby View Post
Not a medication per se, but Melatonin (dietary supplement/sleep aid) gives me vivid and mainly enjoyable dreams.
Melatonin made me dream vividly, too, but not pleasant dreams. I was going through a bad time (my mom had Alzheimer's), and the melatonin gave me horrific nightmares. That's when the doc prescribed Ambien, which gives me dreamless sleep.
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Old 01-12-2010, 02:05 PM
Vinyl Turnip Vinyl Turnip is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelby View Post
Not a medication per se, but Melatonin (dietary supplement/sleep aid) gives me vivid and mainly enjoyable dreams.
I've also experienced vivid dreams/nightmares from melatonin. Another OTC (here in the U.S., anyway) supplement purported to cause vivid dreams is 5-HTP.
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  #26  
Old 01-12-2010, 02:07 PM
Kelby Kelby is offline
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Originally Posted by teela brown View Post
Melatonin made me dream vividly, too, but not pleasant dreams. I was going through a bad time (my mom had Alzheimer's), and the melatonin gave me horrific nightmares. That's when the doc prescribed Ambien, which gives me dreamless sleep.
I'm sure Ambien gets the job done...but do you feel more dopey in the morning? I imagine is has more sedative effects than milder sleep aids.
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  #27  
Old 01-12-2010, 02:10 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is offline
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I've experienced vivid dreams with melatonin as well as hydrocodone (and, like many other say about opioids, it's the few times I've dreamed in color, which is the biggest difference between melatonin and hydrocodone for me.)

Also I'd like to add when you stop taking alcohol. But it isn't so much more vivid dreams as it is an increase in dreams (and a bigger increase than for melatonin or hydrocodone, just not as vivid. I'd hate to stop drinking and also take opioids and melatonin at the same time.)
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  #28  
Old 01-12-2010, 02:16 PM
teela brown teela brown is offline
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Originally Posted by Kelby View Post
I'm sure Ambien gets the job done...but do you feel more dopey in the morning?
Nope, I actually feel quite wide-awake and rested. The only side effect is I feel a bit wobbly and uncoordinated upon first getting up. Therefore, I plan no weight-lifting or other hazardous activities the morning after.
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  #29  
Old 01-12-2010, 02:17 PM
Kelby Kelby is offline
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Originally Posted by Ludovic View Post
I've experienced vivid dreams with melatonin as well as hydrocodone (and, like many other say about opioids, it's the few times I've dreamed in color, which is the biggest difference between melatonin and hydrocodone for me.)

Also I'd like to add when you stop taking alcohol. But it isn't so much more vivid dreams as it is an increase in dreams (and a bigger increase than for melatonin or hydrocodone, just not as vivid. I'd hate to stop drinking and also take opioids and melatonin at the same time.)
So, does alcohol, like other sedatives/depressants, reduce quality of sleep by blunting the REM phase of the cycle? That seems to have been my experience.

Though sometimes in life, any sleep is better than no sleep.
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  #30  
Old 01-12-2010, 03:02 PM
Jake Jake is offline
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I take Buspirone, or Buspar, for anxiety. They let you have very vivid dreams.
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  #31  
Old 01-12-2010, 03:26 PM
Markxxx Markxxx is offline
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Any kind of anti-depressent I've ever taken has cause vivid dreams for me, for a few days when I went on it, or came off of it.

I guess it's just your brain adjusting, but I've never had the effect go beyond a few days coming on or off of it
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  #32  
Old 01-12-2010, 04:34 PM
elfkin477 elfkin477 is offline
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Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
I take B6 to relieve PMS symptoms and notice that when I take it close to bedtime I experience XtremeDreamn (my new made up word ) I know B6 is not a drug.
Interesting. I ought to take some today for the same reason (I forget to 90% of the time, so I couldn't say if it does anything for pms), so maybe I'll wait until just before bed...
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  #33  
Old 01-12-2010, 07:10 PM
ducati ducati is offline
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If I take a Claritin during the day nothing untoward happens, but taken just before bedtime it gave me the scariest, most violent, and disturbing dreams I have ever had. If I could remember them and write them down, Stephen King would cry and ask what's wrong with me.

It took two nights to figure that out and I haven't done it since.
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  #34  
Old 01-12-2010, 08:30 PM
pkbites pkbites is offline
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Thanks for the many responses folks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
I take B6 to relieve PMS symptoms and notice that when I take it close to bedtime I experience XtremeDreamn (my new made up word ) I know B6 is not a drug.
I'd never heard of that, but after a web search it appears to be true. I checked my multi-vitamin and found the amount of B6 is minuscule compared to the amount available in straight tablet form. I bought some this afternoon and am going to give it a try. It's actually quite inexpensive ($5 for 120 200mg tablets).


Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelby View Post
Not a medication per se, but Melatonin (dietary supplement/sleep aid) gives me vivid and mainly enjoyable dreams. I seem able to sleep for less time and feel refreshed as well. My guess is it sends me into REM sleep quicker.
Bought some of this today, too. $3 for 60 5mg tablets. I love a bargain!


Now, does anyone know what the mechanics are that certain drugs/supplements cause funky dreams?

Last edited by pkbites; 01-12-2010 at 08:31 PM.. Reason: You're just dreaming this!
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  #35  
Old 01-14-2010, 01:32 PM
pkbites pkbites is offline
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Originally Posted by CT_Damsel View Post
I take B6 to relieve PMS symptoms and notice that when I take it close to bedtime I experience XtremeDreamn (my new made up word ) I know B6 is not a drug.
IT WORKS!!!

On Tuesday night I took 100mg of B6 with no effect. Last night I took 300mg and had an extremely vivid and f*cked up dream! A huge aircraft of some sort was flying low to the ground sucking people up and grinding them up in it's jet engines. People were running in a panic towards the woods as this thing was chasing us. I ran into the woods and crawled under some rocks but I got stuck. The roar of that thing flying over me was deafening. I woke up shaking like a leaf. It seemed so real I had to think for a while if that actually happened or if I'd just been dreaming.

Far out!
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  #36  
Old 01-14-2010, 02:02 PM
Guinastasia Guinastasia is offline
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Lamictal. I've been known to wake up and yell something from my dream. (A few times my mother got pissed at me for screaming at her).

Weird dreams don't really bother me. If anything, they're kind of entertaining. And one nice thing about nightmares is you always feel better when you wake up and realize it was just a dream!
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  #37  
Old 02-24-2012, 09:37 AM
WScott62 WScott62 is offline
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Hydrocodone and nightmares

I recently took two Narco 10/325 (Hydrocodone/Acedemediphine) and had 2 vivid and disturbing dreams during the night. The first involved the Devil, acid dripping from the ceiling and other disturbing imagery. The second was a movie length visit to NYC that ended with my being assaulted in a bar by bat-wielding thugs! Yow! I'll take the pain! The thing that got me was the detail and length of the dreams. They seemed to go on and on and I can still (2 days later) recall details that usually escape me. Not all of the dream sequences were terrifying but still, VERY VIVID!
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  #38  
Old 02-24-2012, 10:04 AM
jjimm jjimm is offline
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I used to smoke marijuana every day and when I stopped I dreamed vividly for about a week afterwards (not about zombies).

Same happens if I've been drinking for several days in a row then stop, usually nightmares. To address a question by someone who may no longer post here:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelby
So, does alcohol, like other sedatives/depressants, reduce quality of sleep by blunting the REM phase of the cycle?
Yes it does, and that in turn has knock-on effect on other cognitive functions:
Quote:
When REM sleep is altered by long-term alcohol abuse, the patient does not convert his short-term memories into long-term memories. Emotions and stress are also dealt with during REM sleep. Alcohol abusers can feel more stressed and emotional due to the lack of REM sleep.
(Can't find the original article unfortunately but it's referenced all over the place.)

And despite people saying cheese before bedtime is a myth, I find it really does bring the weirdness on.
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  #39  
Old 02-24-2012, 02:38 PM
Ambivalid Ambivalid is offline
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I think I've had weird dreams in reaction to certain meds; I just don't remember any of them.
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  #40  
Old 02-24-2012, 03:52 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Originally Posted by pkbites View Post
IT WORKS!!!

On Tuesday night I took 100mg of B6 with no effect. Last night I took 300mg and...
You can overdose on B-6.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B6#Toxicity
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  #41  
Old 02-24-2012, 04:31 PM
Lasciel Lasciel is offline
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It's a zombie, but an interesting one.

I'll contribute Lexapro. SSRIs are notorious for causing sleep disturbances, but Lexapro is the only one that I know from personal experience. Solid Nightmares. Terrible terrible hyper-real vivid awful "oh my god why is that stuff in my head I must be a horrible person" type dreams. I managed for about a month before I went paranoid-suicidal and they had to take me off of it.

Melatonin has never messed noticeably with my sleep, nor has Hydrocodone or Oxycontin (I will comment that I NORMALLY have vivid dreams, as well as purposeful lucid dreams, and often will wake partially just to trigger that fun "drifting off to sleep" in-between state.) I've taken B-complex all my life, so I've never noticed that one doing anything either.

Funny that anti-malarial drugs will trigger vivid dreaming. I wonder what's up with that?

And yes, the rebound-REM is really noticable with Ambien. My mother takes it during the week, but not on weekends, and she always calls me to tell all about her "Saturday Night Specials" that she gets.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:49 PM
jayjay jayjay is offline
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Originally Posted by KarlGauss View Post
another fairly common culprit in this regard are meds of the beta blocker class, e.g. metoprolol, atenolol, etc.
That's interesting...when I was hospitalized the first time this year, they had me on metoprolol because of something to do with the way my kidneys were handling my infection, and I had some really vivid dreams, bordering on hallucinations (I can remember a period where I was convinced that my CPAP was actually blocking my breathing that, on reflection, was probably an example of this).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Door View Post
I had undiagnosed sleep apnea and extremely vivid hypnagogic episodes when falling asleep. Since treatment they've stopped, and I kind of miss them.
I used to have hypnagogic episodes in the middle of the day...I was taking bookkeeping classes at the time and the instructor called me into his office to tell me that he couldn't recommend me to any employer until I got a sleep study done because if I wasn't falling asleep at my desk, I was obviously and vocally hallucinating as my brain tried to force some REM sleep whether I was ready or not.
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:29 PM
Lazlo Lazlo is offline
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Originally Posted by KarlGauss View Post
...another fairly common culprit in this regard are meds of the beta blocker class, e.g. metoprolol, atenolol, etc.
Yep, the atenolol has been doing it and I absolutely love it. Vivid dreams are fun (for me, at least).
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  #44  
Old 02-24-2012, 06:54 PM
Tabithina Tabithina is offline
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Singulair for asthma gave me bizarre and intricate dreams if I took it near bedtime. The dreams could range from the entertaining to the terrifying. Thanks to the neti pot, I have better control of my asthma and haven't needed any oral meds for a long time. I don't miss that stuff.
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  #45  
Old 02-24-2012, 10:39 PM
dzero dzero is offline
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Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
Absolutely, even 100mg is too high in my opinion. I did experiment with B6 for depression and took up to 100mg in 2 divided doses of 50mg. For what may (or may not) be a safer alternative, look into P5P - a metabolite of B6 can that you can get in any health food store/vitamin shop.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazlo View Post
Yep, the atenolol has been doing it and I absolutely love it. Vivid dreams are fun (for me, at least).
I take 75mg at bedtime and have never noticed an increase in dreaming but did see that with B6. That is particularly remarkable since I almost never remember my dreams. However since they tend to be uniformly unsettling, I much prefer keeping it that way.
=================================
I'll add a very new antidepressant to the list - Viibryd (villazadone).

This is a very interesting drug since it is the only SSRI that has ever helped me, but only at low doses - <= 20mg.

At sub-therapeutic levels (therapeutic is generally considered to be 40mg), it acts as an SSRI but also as a 5HT1a antagonist. As long as I stay in the subclinical range, it seems to be extremely helpful, but as soon as I try to go to 25 or 30mg, I get terrible anxiety with dizziness, phantom neuropathies and a host of other issues.

But back on topic, if I take this med before bed, especially as I get up into the therapeutic range, I seem to dream continuously through the night. Of course I'm sure I don't, but it seems that way. As long as I stay in the lower 5HT1A antagonist range, things are copacetic unless I take it right before bed. That theoretically shouldn't happen since it has a roughly 24hr half life and a 3 day titration period to reach steady state plasma levels, but that's been my experience.

Last edited by dzero; 02-24-2012 at 10:40 PM..
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  #46  
Old 02-25-2012, 03:14 AM
Leo Bloom Leo Bloom is offline
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Originally Posted by Guinastasia View Post
Lamictal. I've been known to wake up and yell something from my dream.
Me too.
Quote:
.... And one nice thing about nightmares is you always feel better when you wake up and realize it was just a dream!
You're weird, that's all I have to say.
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  #47  
Old 02-25-2012, 09:39 AM
monstro monstro is online now
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Originally Posted by Zhen'ka View Post
This is a side effect of Wellbutrin. Sucked.
It can suck if you're used to having dreams. But after having not had dreams--or at least ones that I could remember upon waking--for more than two years, even scary dreams are welcome. I just switched to XL and it's light bulbs like have been replaced in my brain. Sometimes I'll wake up in the middle of the night to pee, and I'll think to myself, "I better hurry up and go back to sleep before I miss my stories!"
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  #48  
Old 03-01-2012, 09:54 AM
[cc] [cc] is offline
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The herb Valerian Root will absolutely give you ridiculously vivid dreams. Not necessarily scary or anything, just way more surreal and easy to remember on waking. Available in just about any pharmacy/large grocery store, smells quite pungent though.
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  #49  
Old 03-01-2012, 02:13 PM
MrSquishy MrSquishy is offline
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I've been told that a teaspoon of MSG (dissolved in water) at bedtime will give you crazy dreams. I've never tried it.
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  #50  
Old 03-01-2012, 06:47 PM
sniffo sniffo is offline
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Some years ago I was prescribed Paroxetine, aka Paxil, Seroxat etc. For the first 3-4 weeks I had very vivid dreams. Many a night I found myself as the lead in dreams that were like trippy, full throttle, thrill a minute, blockbuster movies. On one hand it was really quite amazing and exciting on the other it was rather exhausting. Thankfully things calmed down after a while.
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