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Does bipolar disorder cause sleep paralysis?

A month ago, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and was put on a combination of antipsychotic and antidepressive medications (Abilify 5mg, Lexapro 10mg). Although these at first affected my regular sleep patterns, after about a week and a half these symptoms disappeared and I have now been sleeping normally, with no other side effects. Last night, however, I had very vivid dreams with two episodes of sleep paralysis. This was a terribly frightening experience, and I would like to know if it has anything to do with either my condition or with the medication I am currently taking.
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First Helper Cindyrelli57
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replied July 27th, 2010
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Hi Young and Restless,

I was diagnosed 5 years ago with BPD. Since I am on the right medications I am leading a normal life. As normal as life can be LOL. Bipolar as far as I know does not cause sleep paralysis. I would do some research on the drugs you are taking and see what side effects you have. I am surprised though that they put you on Ablify immediately. Lexapro I believe is an antidepressent. As far as I can tell you are only being treated for depression. The effects you are describing is most likely linked to the medication. Abilify is a drug they use when an antidepressent in not helping. I am very suprised they did not put you on a mood stablizer. I am going to do some research myself on Abilify and Lexapro. It seems to me your doctor (I am hoping he/she is a qualified psychiatrist) is not treating you for mania which causes sleeplessness. Although I have medications for sleep when I am in my manic phase I have a very hard time getting any sleep at all. I am on klonopin for sleep. It is 5:35 AM and am still awake. One month is really to early to tell if the meds are working well but I would definatly contact your doctor and tell him about these episodes. They do sound very terrifying. I have never ever had this symptoms in 5 years. I will get back to you after I do some research. Please call you doctor tomorrow and let him/her what symptoms you are having. I had to try several medications before I found the correct combination that has worked well for me. Other than insomnia at times I do not go on spending sprees, indulge in alcohol, gamble, etc. The only symptom is the insomnia. I do have some depression but my daughter passed 2 years ago. So the sadness I do feel is related to something anyone would feel down about. Please keep me up to date on how you are doing.

Cindy
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replied July 27th, 2010
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I just read on this site someone started taken abilify and had their first experience with sleep paralysis. Others have said abilify has stopped the problem. Also other have said since starting abilify they have had very vivid terrifying dreams. Perhaps you cannot tolerate this medication. If you have never experienced this before I am inclined to believe it is the medication.

Cindy
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Users who thank Cindyrelli57 for this post: youngandrestless 
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