Trick-cycling for Beginners:
Allow me to tell you about some of the side effects I have experienced over the years.
One drug made me sleep for up to 20 hours a day.
One caused violent headaches and nausea if I forgot to take a single dose.
One made my mouth so dry that no amount of water or chewing gum could prevent my lips and cheeks from constantly sticking to my teeth from lack of saliva.
One caused restless legs. If you have never experienced this, I'm not sure that I could begin to describe the frustration of lying in bed and feeling uncontrollably compelled to shake your legs like a marionette. If you don't, it's like being tickled in restraints...
I owe those horrible pills an awful lot. I would not ask anyone to risk subjecting themselves to the potential side-effects of medication if I didn't consider it necessary. They improve many people's lives beyond measure. Anti-psychiatry opinion that psychotropic drugs do more harm than good is a dangerous myth.
My message is this: Patients - tell your doctor about the side-effects, especially if it's bad enough to make you want to stop taking the medication. I wouldn't advise following my example - don't just quit the medication without a discussion. There may be alternatives. Don't compromise your own health.
Doctors - ask your patients about side-effects, especially the embarassing ones. Most of your patients won't want to say anything about them. Have some empathy. You might think the side-effects of meds are minor in comparision to the alternative, but it is not you taking the stuff. Please listen.
Oh, and by the way - don't bother recommending prunes. They don't work.