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jack831: Tapering off of Prozac


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This April I began having debilitating, terrifying anxiety. I took Celexa for 3 days before I became suicidal. I was switched to Prozac and had great results from it.  In October I was feeling so great that I would only remember to take the Prozac 2 or 3 times per week. I decided that since I only took it a few times per week and had no relapse of my symptoms, maybe I didn't need the pill at all, so I went to my doctor to begin tapering my dose down. He gave me a 2-week tapering schedule. I followed the schedule the first week, then quit cold-turkey and never finished tapering. The next week I felt a little anxiety, so I decided to start taking the Prozac again. I was taking Prozac for about one week when I found out I was pregnant on November 17. I stopped taking it again because I didn't want to be on it during pregnancy. I was off of it for about 1 week and I crashed! My raging anxiety and paranoia returned. With my doctor's blessing, I restarted the Prozac...again. I have now been taking it faithfully for 12 days, but still feel horrendous anxiety. I imagine that the repetitive starting and stopping really messed with the levels of Prozac in my blood. Will the Prozac ever work as well as it used to? Are the pregnancy hormones messing with my anxiety? I just want to feel better. SOON! I just need some encouragement that the Prozac will level out in my system again. Has anyone gone through this?

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  • Moderator

Hi Jack-- Welcome to SA.  I'm sorry that you're having such a rough time, but very glad you found us.  Congratulations on being preggers.  There are several things at play here contributing to your anxiety.  Yes the hormones will be a factor both because of the pregnancy and also because these drugs really effect them too.  The really big contributor though is the stopping and starting numerous times in the past several months.  Now that you're back on it, it would be best to stay at the same dose at the same time of day until things stabilize.  That could take some time, I'd give it several weeks at least.  But things will settle down.


We have a ton of information here.  These links will get you started


What is withdrawal syndrome? 


Tips for tapering off Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)


There is also some information about ADs and pregnancy around here somewhere, one of the other mods will be along and can help you there.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017


"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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  • 1 year later...

Jack any update.

Hows the baby doing?

We'd love to hear from you.


Thought for the day: Lets stand up, and let’s speak out , together. G Olsen

We have until the 14th. Feb 2018. 

URGENT REQUEST Please consider submitting  for the petition on Prescribed Drug Dependence and Withdrawal currently awaiting its third consideration at the Scottish Parliament. You don't even have to be from Scotland. By clicking on the link below you can read some of the previous submissions but be warned many of them are quite harrowing.


Please tell them about your problems taking and withdrawing from antidepressants and/or benzos.

Send by email to petitions@parliament.scot and quote PE01651 in the subject heading. Keep to a maximum of 3 sides of A4 and you can't name for legal reasons any doctor you have consulted. Tell them if you wish to remain anonymous. We need the numbers to help convince the committee members we are not isolated cases. You have until mid February. Thank you

Recovering paxil addict

None of the published articles shed light on what ssri's ... actually do or what their hazards might be. Healy 2013. 

This is so true, with anything you get on these drugs, dependance, tapering, withdrawal symptoms, side effects, just silent. And if there is something mentioned then their is a serious disconnect between what is said and reality! 

  "Every time I read of a multi-person shooting, I always presume that person had just started a SSRI or had just stopped."  Dr Mosher. Me too! 

Over two decades later, the number of antidepressant prescriptions a year is slightly more than the number of people in the Western world. Most (nine out of 10) prescriptions are for patients who faced difficulties on stopping, equating to about a tenth of the population. These patients are often advised to continue treatment because their difficulties indicate they need ongoing treatment, just as a person with diabetes needs insulin. Healy 2015

I believe the ssri era will soon stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine. Healy 2015

Let people help people ... in a natural, kind, non-addictive (and non-big pharma) way. J Broadley 2017



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