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uniquecorn: Introduction


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Hi, I have been on Paxil 40mg for 22 years. I have also been on Ambien 10mg for 7 years. About three weeks ago I reduced the Ambien by half to 5mg. Once I am off the Ambien I plan on tapering off the Paxil.

Edited by scallywag

Paxil 40mg since 1995 for depression and anxiety

Ambien 10mg since 2009 for insomnia

10/3/16 decreased Ambien to 5mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

uniquecorn -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)
I'm glad to read that you've held the Ambien dose steady for 3 weeks after a 50% reduction.  For most neuroactive medications, we suggest a slower taper (10%/month); for z-drugs like Ambien, we suggest starting with at most 25% per week and monitoring for symptoms. For more information about this please read:
Tips for tapering off Z drugs for sleep (Ambien, Imovane, Sonata, Lunesta, Intermezzo, etc.)

A request: Would you summarize your history in a signature -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-18 months particularly?

  • Any drugs prior to that can just be listed with start and stop years.
  • You don't need to include symptoms or diagnoses other than the initial condition that led to prescribing the first drug.
  • We ask for this information in your signature so that we can see it at a glance. A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs.
  • You can find instructions in this topic: Please put your withdrawal history in signature
  • If you are using a phone, please see the instructions and screen captures in Post #8 and Post #9

I mentioned monitoring for symptoms of withdrawal. You can find information about symptoms in these topics:
What is withdrawal syndrome
Glenmullen’s withdrawal symptom list

A couple of general and *important* topics about tapering off neuroactive medications:
Before you begin tapering -- what you need to know
Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

For future reference, Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

I hope you'll find the information in the SA forums helpful for your situation. I'm sorry that you are in the position that you need the information, but am glad that you found us.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here

scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

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Both my doctor and pharmacist recommended trying to cut the Ambien to 5mg. They indicated that recent research shows that women do better on the lower dose. They didn't know that I had just attended my first NARPA conference and Robert Whitaker was a keynote and did a breakout session. I have read both of his books since the conference in September and have decided to begin my journey to reduce and hopefully eliminate my medication.

Paxil 40mg since 1995 for depression and anxiety

Ambien 10mg since 2009 for insomnia

10/3/16 decreased Ambien to 5mg

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