My main goal is to tell you there is hope. There is a possibility of life after lithium. By all means we can make lives for ourselves beyond barely existing or putting up with a bad deal. In fact, you can even leave the mental health system and return to a life that is vibrant and thriving. I did! When I found this life for myself the one thing I wanted to do was to share what I had learned. I hope you find the information useful and helpful.
I notice a lack of information about lithium available to the general public. Even people who have been on lithium for many years are unaware of the possible consequences, or unaware of the likelihood that damage may occur. Some are noticing damages starting even after being off lithium for years.
People who have been damaged by this drug have very few places to turn for information. Typically, a prescribing psychiatrist might downplay the dangers of psychiatric drugs, or fail to inform their patients that they are drug-damaged. Patients may seek counsel from their own family doctor, and eventually, a nephrologist, a doctor who specializes in kidneys. I am shocked upon speaking with nephrologists and other doctors that many aren’t familiar with the curious combination of damages produced by lithium. Nephrologists often recommend a cookie-cutter course of treatment that isn’t applicable or is even harmful, or they fail to suggest any ways to improve the quality of patients’ lives.
This short book is written for anyone who was ever given the pharmaceutical called lithium carbonate, for their families, and anyone who cares for someone who took lithium. What you read here will not be the typical mental health book, if there even is one. This book might also be useful for anyone who has kidney disease, those who are considering the drug, or who still take lithium. I am also including a considerable amount of material about how to live independently of the mental health system. Lastly, I am including some kidney-friendly fun recipes separately in the Appendix, and as a bonus, the recipe I use to make my own dog food for my dog, Puzzle.