This is a decision that should be made by each individual, in consultation with his or her doctor. However, some important factors should be considered. If you have had just one episode of illness, it is now generally recommended that you say on your medication for at least nine months. If you have had severe, frequent, or long-lasting episodes and it was difficult to find an effective treatment, most psychiatrists suggest you remain on your medication for at least 2 years or longer, possibly for life. Age can be a factor in determining the length of treatment. It is also important to tell your doctor about how you are tolerating your medication and if you are experiencing side effects. An alternative medication, or different way to take the medication, might be the answer.