Lucid Dream + Maxalt = 12 hour Deja Vu?
March 6, 2013 12:19 PM   Subscribe

Does Lucid Dreaming or Maxalt cause extreme cases of Deja Vu? Details Below...

I have lucid dreams about 3-4 times a year. They usually happen in 2 instances; 1. If I am exhausted and take a nap during the day; 2. If I am woken up from a deep sleep in the middle of the night and am unable to fall back to sleep with in a few mins. These dreams used to scare the crap out of me when I was younger. Now I can kind of relax when they happen and can even exert a little bit of control over the dream so for the most part they are no big deal. I usually wake up exhausted and will usually have a headache just as I typically do if I do not get enough sleep. I had a lucid dream a few nights ago, I woke up with the beginnings of an awful headache. I have never taken Maxalt in the morning because it usually doesn't work unless I can lay down for a half hour or so. I took a Maxalt that morning hoping to fend off a nasty headache. The headache went away but about an hour or so later I started experiencing the most extreme case of Deja Vu that I have ever had and it just went on and on and on. It almost felt like I was still in the middle of the lucid dream the whole day. Everything I did that day I felt like I had done it before. When I think about that day its like thinking about a dream its foggy and it feels like I am missing pieces of it. Is this a side effect of the Maxalt, a side effect of the lucid dream, or a combination of both? Maxalt also recently went generic and this is the first time I have ever taken the generic version. Has anyone else ever experienced this before? I'm on no other drugs this has never happened before.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Even though it's not listed in the main side effects, memory loss and memory related side effects seems to be pretty common with Maxalt.

Deja Vu is thought to be an overlap" between the neurological systems responsible for short-term memory and those responsible for long-term memory.

Google Maxalt and memory loss, you aren't the only person that has had this experience or something close to it.
posted by bobdow at 12:45 PM on March 6, 2013

The headache went away but about an hour or so later I started experiencing the most extreme case of Deja Vu that I have ever had and it just went on and on and on. It almost felt like I was still in the middle of the lucid dream the whole day. Everything I did that day I felt like I had done it before.

See a neurologist now. Tell them what you experience exactly. I have had temporal lobe epilepsy since 1988 and that is an exact description of what happens to me when I have ictal (epileptic) activity. "Everything I did that day I felt like I had done it before" is a dead giveaway, as well as the feeling that it is part of a dream. The headache is the the key, it may be a small migrane, which is sometimes associated with epileptic activity.

At worst it is nothing--but get yourself checked out, stat!

I'm assuming you already have migranes, because that is what maxalt is for.
posted by Ironmouth at 12:47 PM on March 6, 2013 [2 favorites]

Have you ever noticed the déjà vu feeling preceding or coinciding with the onset of a migraine, regardless of whether or not you take Maxalt? Déjà vu is a not uncommon symptom of migraine so perhaps it might be that and unrelated to the Maxalt?
posted by hapax_legomenon at 12:51 PM on March 6, 2013

Also, while I definitely agree with Ironmouth above that you should tell your doctor about this, migraine with aura (which does not have to consist of visual disturbances as many think) can mimic epilepsy and shares several symptoms. I know this, since I was misdiagnosed with epilepsy as a child: I'd started having migraines (although didn't know it) and was finally taken to the doctor when I scared my mom one afternoon by telling her I "didn't feel real" and that my head hurt and that I was seeing "fireworks" (which turned out to be migraine aura.)
posted by hapax_legomenon at 1:00 PM on March 6, 2013

I would like to put a vote in for the both option. I am NYD, nor use Maxalt, but I am looking at the chemistry right now, and am the occasional host of spectacular, 5-hour occular migranes and lucid dreams.

Although maybe, now that I ponder, it was not so much the dreaming its-self, but that you say they leave you in a sleep-deprived, poorly functioning state.

Your experience reminds me of the time my doctor recommended vitamin d supplements, in the dead of winter. When i proceeded to take her recommended dose, within days the late afternoon light was causing such an eerie, oppressive feeling that i scaled way back on that plan. It went beyond a physical, whoa-getting-a-head-thingy sensation to having some usually-happens-in-dreaming-only thinking states going on.

Perhaps look at your diet and see if there are any tweaks you could make, in a general balanced vitamin-mineral-nutrition! sort of way or a helped-the-migranes way? (Though, based on my experience, ease in to supplements!) Esp. if you are located somewhere you are transitioning winter to spring.

As to getting through the weirdo sensations when they happen, I think your lucid dream philosophy still applies — relax, go with the flow, if something is especially trying to get your attention let it present its-self while maintaining a bemused detatchment.

And of course if your medication is making life livable I am in no way advocating stopping to 'go natural.' But I agree with above posters that even once OMG-superweird-side-effect is enough to look into different dosages or alternatives or whether there's some other issue going on with your doc. Take care!
posted by Rube R. Nekker at 1:19 PM on March 6, 2013

I recently underwent a very thorough workup attempting to discover the cause of some severe vertigo, and one of the questions they asked me was if I'd ever experienced any extended bouts of deja vu. I hadn't, but in googling just now, I see that they trying to get evidence for or against temporal lobe epilepsy. I agree with Ironmouth, I think you ought to take this to a neurologist or your headache doctor, if you have one.
posted by KathrynT at 2:25 PM on March 6, 2013

My sister has temporal lobe epilepsy and before I read any of the responses here I was going to say that what you described sounded like what she was experiencing before she got on the right medication. Just worth checking out.
posted by jessamyn at 7:23 PM on March 6, 2013

« Older Linux CLI Filter: Complete Linux Command Line...   |   Suggestions for how to write a privacy policy. Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.