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Embi: Trying to recover from dropping dose too fast


Embi

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Hi, I have been back and forth on posting here but decided to go for it.

 

I was originally put on sertraline nearly 4 years ago due to extreme depression. I had a lot of traumatic events happen to me between the ages of 18 and 22 which I was still trying to cope with years later. I had been through many rounds of therapy and was still having a really hard time, especially after a bad breakup, so my doctor decided meds were the next option.

 

I had to taper up fairly slowly to 100mg and the side effects at the start were awful. I couldn’t eat, I was borderline manic, generally all over the place. After I settled at 100mg though I have had the most stable period of my life that I can remember. Although I have still had bad episodes (one of my oldest friends committed suicide, work stress etc.) I agreed with my doctor that these were understandable reactions to life events and we wouldn’t change my dose.

 

As I’ve been doing particularly well the past year my doctor wanted to decrease my dose. She suggested in late May that I alternate between 100mg and 50mg for a few weeks and then drop to 50. Alternating sent me all over the place so I just dropped directly to 50 and was fine throughout June and most of July. 
 

During July I had some big life decisions to make, and a lot of stress. After some triggers bringing up old trauma, realising I had made some bad choices etc. I started to have a lot of anxiety and breakdown. The anxiety was very intense, but I found that talking to people and making new plans eased it for a while. Then a week later, after a relatively stable week, I started having really bad panic that wouldn’t ease no matter what I did. This lead to a really bad episode of depersonalisation and derealisation that was the scariest I’ve ever had. My doctor wanted me to go back to alternating between 100mg and 50mg but instead I started taking 75, hoping that this might even me out. 
 

I have been on 75mg for just over 2 weeks now and I feel awful. For the first week I was entirely numb to everything, which was somewhat of a relief after the intense anxiety. However, since then I now wake up with intense dread and anxiety that lasts until at least noon if not all day. Waking up my heart is racing and I feel like everything is awful and always will be. I can’t eat until the evening. It exhausts me and I can’t do anything else afterwards. I’m going to work still but it is so difficult, I just want to crawl out of my skin. I’m trying to stay at 75mg and level out but I’m so scared that I never will. Before this I was so stable and having one of the best times of my life. Now I can barely function. 
 

I’m questioning whether I need to stay at 75mg, go back to 100 or drop back down to 50. It has only been a month since this all started and I can’t keep living like this.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • Moderator

Hi Embi,

 

Welcome to this support site.

 

I am so sorry what you are going through. There is a lot of information to be found on this website and the members here can offer a lot of support.

 

Reading you story, there are a few clear points to mention:

 

Your doctor made a big mistake by suggesting you should alternate dosages. This is really asking for trouble! It sensitizes the nervous system and destabilizes the (at that moment) existing brain chemistry. 

 

This link is about why we should not skip dosages. Alternating dosages does about the same (if not worse).

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/22958-never-skip-doses-to-taper/

 

By going up and down in dosages (after the alternating), your system probably got further sensitized. Also going down from 100 mg to 50 mg is a much too big step. We suggest tapering by maximum 10% of the last taken dosage per month!

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/

 

But please understand, we nearly all have made mistakes like this. Since doctors most often do not advise right about tapering or adjusting dosages.

 

The more often we change dosages up and down, the more our nervous system gets deregulated. This can and will stabilize again and finds a natural balance ! But this needs time. And most important a stable dose over time.

 

As we all react differently on dosage changes, I cannot give you the golden answer what dosage to take. But I read a few important things in your post. You say that you felt quite OK on 100mg (which is twice the standard dose). On 50 mg you went all over the place. Not so weird after a 50% drop in dosage and experiencing stressful life events.

 

Stress is nearly always a big trigger for anxiety and panic when in withdrawal! Keep that in mind. Changing dosages is not the best reaction then, since that can activate more stress. Better try to wait until stress levels drop again, instead changing dosage.

 

The problem with changing dosages over a relative short period of time, is that our system gets deregulated. When we would go back to a dosage where we felt good before (in your case 100mg), this does not automatically mean that you will feel good again with that dosage. The CNS is disturbed and going back to the old dosage may even create more disturbance.

 

The 2 magic words are: Stabilize and give it Time!

 

Taking all into account what you said, I would think that stabilizing on 75mg is the best thing to do right now. You may keep feeling bad for some time. Nobody can tell you how long. Again, we all react and heal differently. But you will find that WD symptoms will go. Others may come. That is how healing from WD from AD's works unfortunately. But symptoms will get less and less over time. This often happens in a wave and windows pattern.

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-stabilization/?tab=comments#comment-183

 

 

 

 

1993    Anafranil (Clomipramine) for a few months. Later in 1993 Paxil for a few months 1993- 2006      No medication

2006   Effexor, Cymbalta, some Benzo’s. All for short periods. Later in 2006 Lexapro (escitalopram) 10 mg and shortly after Wellbutrin XR 150mg, against side effects Lexapro 

Since 2006 until end of 2015: Several times on and off Lexapro and Wellbutrin and several slight dosage changes. Mostly taken dosages: 5mg Lexapro and 150mg Wellbutrin

2016  Dosage change Lexapro from 5mg to 2,5 mg. Wellbutrin stayed om 150mg

November 2016 – April 2017 Down from 2,5mg to 0,6mg Lexapro (in steps) without much problems. Wellbutrin down from 150mg to 66mg. Also without much problems.

April 2017 – March 2019       Lexapro 0,6 mg        April 2017 - August 2018       Wellbutrin in small steps down from 66mg in to 37,5 mg . Quite heavy WD after each step.

March 2019 – May 2019 Lexapro down from 0,6 to 0,3mg then Prozac to 0,6 mg switch because severe discontinuation effects (may also have been from Wellbutrin..)    

Wellbutrin down from 37,5mg to 35,3mg 

October 2019        Seroquel 12,5 mg for 4 weeks because of extreme sleeping problems, then weaning off in 2 weeks       Prozac up dosage to 1,2 mg

March 2020     Wellbutrin in 2 steps down from 35,3mg to 33,3mg   Extreme withdrawal effects during 8 months. Stopped tapering Wellbutrin  until total off Prozac. 

February 2020 – November 2020   Prozac down in steps from 1,2mg to 0,57mg. 

Jan 2021  Prozac down to:  0,55> 0,53>0,51mg,   Feb 0,47mg ,  Mar 0,42mg,   Apr 0,37, longer hold because of WD symptoms July 0,36 and hold again, Sept 19 0,35, Sept 26 0,34mg, Oct 3 0,33mg  Long hold of 172 days until March 2022

January 20, 2022:  Wellbutrin from 33,3 to 32,4mg

March 22, 2022 Prozac down from 0,33mg to: 0,30mg, Apr 0,29, May 0,28, 0,27, June 0,26, 0,25, July 0,24, 0,23, 0,22, 0,21, Aug 0,20, 0,19 Sep 0,18, Oct 0,17. 0,16, 0,15, Nov 0,14  Jan 2023 0,13, 0,12, 0,11  Feb 0,10, 0,09 Mar 0,08 ,  June 0,07 , July 0,06,  0,05, Aug 0,04, 0,03, Sept 0,026, 0,024 Nov 0,022, 0,019, 0,016, 0,013 Dec 0,012, 0,011, 0,010, 0,009   Jan 2024 0,008, 0,007,  0,006,  0,005, 0,004, 0,003, 0,002, 0,001, Feb  0,0007.  0,0005,   0,0003, 0,0001,  

Feb 23, 2024:  0,00000

Wellbutrin resume tapering: Apr 2024 31,6mg, 30,8, 30,0 , May 29,1, 28,2, July 23,7

  

Supplements: Fish Oil (3000mg), Magnesium 100 mg, 2 drops of Lavender Oil, only when feeling extreme anxiety. 50mg of L-Theanine only when severe discontinuation effects caused by Wellbutrin

 

Please note this is NOT a medical advice. Discuss all your medical issues with a doctor who understands psychical drugs and really knows how to withdraw from them. I wish that you will find one.

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Hi Go2zero,

 

thankyou for your advice, I really appreciate it. I am going to try stick on 75mg for at least 3 months in the hope that things calm down. It’s just so hard to keep things the same when I want to change things and try everything to feel better. 
 

I also reduced my caffeine intake a lot over the last 2 weeks to try and ease the anxiety. I’ve started to get headaches but I can’t tell if it’s from the sertraline withdrawal, caffeine withdrawal or the fact that I’m barely eating and drinking. I guess I will just have to keep going. I have been getting windows in the evening where I feel more normal, but they’re not reliable. I’m hoping if I can stabilise and hold at 75mg then I can start a 10% taper next year. 
 

I’m hoping that my doctor will be reasonable and not push to continue the super fast taper or alternating. 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • Moderator

Headaches can come from caffeine withdrawal. But they are a very well known WD symptom for SSRI's as well. Eat healthy, drink a lot of water, some light exercise (do not overdo!), meditate or do yoga if these fit to you. All these things can help in stabilizing and healing.

 

In the end you should decide, not your doctor. If he/she does not respect your choice it may be time to find a doctor who does....

Edited by Go2zero

1993    Anafranil (Clomipramine) for a few months. Later in 1993 Paxil for a few months 1993- 2006      No medication

2006   Effexor, Cymbalta, some Benzo’s. All for short periods. Later in 2006 Lexapro (escitalopram) 10 mg and shortly after Wellbutrin XR 150mg, against side effects Lexapro 

Since 2006 until end of 2015: Several times on and off Lexapro and Wellbutrin and several slight dosage changes. Mostly taken dosages: 5mg Lexapro and 150mg Wellbutrin

2016  Dosage change Lexapro from 5mg to 2,5 mg. Wellbutrin stayed om 150mg

November 2016 – April 2017 Down from 2,5mg to 0,6mg Lexapro (in steps) without much problems. Wellbutrin down from 150mg to 66mg. Also without much problems.

April 2017 – March 2019       Lexapro 0,6 mg        April 2017 - August 2018       Wellbutrin in small steps down from 66mg in to 37,5 mg . Quite heavy WD after each step.

March 2019 – May 2019 Lexapro down from 0,6 to 0,3mg then Prozac to 0,6 mg switch because severe discontinuation effects (may also have been from Wellbutrin..)    

Wellbutrin down from 37,5mg to 35,3mg 

October 2019        Seroquel 12,5 mg for 4 weeks because of extreme sleeping problems, then weaning off in 2 weeks       Prozac up dosage to 1,2 mg

March 2020     Wellbutrin in 2 steps down from 35,3mg to 33,3mg   Extreme withdrawal effects during 8 months. Stopped tapering Wellbutrin  until total off Prozac. 

February 2020 – November 2020   Prozac down in steps from 1,2mg to 0,57mg. 

Jan 2021  Prozac down to:  0,55> 0,53>0,51mg,   Feb 0,47mg ,  Mar 0,42mg,   Apr 0,37, longer hold because of WD symptoms July 0,36 and hold again, Sept 19 0,35, Sept 26 0,34mg, Oct 3 0,33mg  Long hold of 172 days until March 2022

January 20, 2022:  Wellbutrin from 33,3 to 32,4mg

March 22, 2022 Prozac down from 0,33mg to: 0,30mg, Apr 0,29, May 0,28, 0,27, June 0,26, 0,25, July 0,24, 0,23, 0,22, 0,21, Aug 0,20, 0,19 Sep 0,18, Oct 0,17. 0,16, 0,15, Nov 0,14  Jan 2023 0,13, 0,12, 0,11  Feb 0,10, 0,09 Mar 0,08 ,  June 0,07 , July 0,06,  0,05, Aug 0,04, 0,03, Sept 0,026, 0,024 Nov 0,022, 0,019, 0,016, 0,013 Dec 0,012, 0,011, 0,010, 0,009   Jan 2024 0,008, 0,007,  0,006,  0,005, 0,004, 0,003, 0,002, 0,001, Feb  0,0007.  0,0005,   0,0003, 0,0001,  

Feb 23, 2024:  0,00000

Wellbutrin resume tapering: Apr 2024 31,6mg, 30,8, 30,0 , May 29,1, 28,2, July 23,7

  

Supplements: Fish Oil (3000mg), Magnesium 100 mg, 2 drops of Lavender Oil, only when feeling extreme anxiety. 50mg of L-Theanine only when severe discontinuation effects caused by Wellbutrin

 

Please note this is NOT a medical advice. Discuss all your medical issues with a doctor who understands psychical drugs and really knows how to withdraw from them. I wish that you will find one.

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At the moment I’m just trying to put one foot in front of the other and eat whatever I am able to. Today was difficult. I just keep thinking that there’s no point in anything.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Hi @Embi 

52 minutes ago, Embi said:

Today was difficult. I just keep thinking that there’s no point in anything.

 

Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone in feeling this way - things feel pointless to me too.  From reading the Success Stories on this site, I've gathered that this feeling is common for people in WD (especially early WD).  I try to recognize it as a lie that my brain is telling me as it tries to heal from CNS destabilization (easier said than done!).  

2004 - prozac then wellbutrin (don't recall dosages)

2005 - 150 mg Effexor Rx (or generic equivalent)

April 28, 2021 first day without Effexor after very rapid titration off (probably equivalent to CT).

July 23, 2021 Reinstatement of ~3mg of Venlafaxine ER (~8.9mg of capsule material).

 

50 mg Chelated Magnesium, 4X a day

1000mg DHA+EPA Fish oil 2X day

 

 

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Thankyou @Yersinia, I really appreciate your reassurance. It can be so hard to not give in to that feeling. My brain just keeps spiralling down really bad pathways about everything.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Oh yes @Embi I am familiar with that!  Check out the Symptoms and self-care forum for ideas on how to begin to distract your brain (meditation, etc.) 

 

Please be kind to yourself and try to remember that this temporary (even as I type that last statement, my brain is telling me that it's temporary for everybody except me - my poor broken brain).  Hang in there.

2004 - prozac then wellbutrin (don't recall dosages)

2005 - 150 mg Effexor Rx (or generic equivalent)

April 28, 2021 first day without Effexor after very rapid titration off (probably equivalent to CT).

July 23, 2021 Reinstatement of ~3mg of Venlafaxine ER (~8.9mg of capsule material).

 

50 mg Chelated Magnesium, 4X a day

1000mg DHA+EPA Fish oil 2X day

 

 

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3 hours ago, Embi said:

Hi Go2zero,

 

thankyou for your advice, I really appreciate it. I am going to try stick on 75mg for at least 3 months in the hope that things calm down. It’s just so hard to keep things the same when I want to change things and try everything to feel better. 
 

I also reduced my caffeine intake a lot over the last 2 weeks to try and ease the anxiety. I’ve started to get headaches but I can’t tell if it’s from the sertraline withdrawal, caffeine withdrawal or the fact that I’m barely eating and drinking. I guess I will just have to keep going. I have been getting windows in the evening where I feel more normal, but they’re not reliable. I’m hoping if I can stabilise and hold at 75mg then I can start a 10% taper next year. 
 

I’m hoping that my doctor will be reasonable and not push to continue the super fast taper or alternating. 

You should decide what is best not your doctor. Just a quick peak around this board you should see how uneducated they can be regarding withdrawal.

IMO at best a doctor can be sympathetic and stay out of the way. I was fortunate to have this, they let me do my own thing knowing I didnt want their help.

If they put up resistance it is either time to look for another doctor who is willing to do what is best for the patient or if it comes to it and refilling a prescription is in question they dont need to know.  

40 yo Male. Started Paxil about 15 years ago. 10 mg (pill weight .125 - .129 g). 5 yrs wanted less side effects, doctor took me off Paxil over couple week period and put me on Wellbutrin. Not good. Went back on Paxil. Relieved my symptoms, but didn't work as well and more side effects. Severe reaction between Paxil and Zomig Summer of 2012. Head was affected during warmer days (cloudiness, confusion, pressure). Began 10% withdrawal 10/24/12.

Withdrawel helped many symptoms, but also added side effects: nausea, dizziness, tiredness. Hyper-anxiety started January 2014.

Went through a 2 year period of de-realization (2016-2018).  Rarely any windows.  
Current dose: 0.00 as of 4/10/21.  Made a lot of progress in my withdrawal symptoms the last 2 years of my taper.  I think doing a liquid taper helped stabilize things on the lower doses.  A lot of my symptoms have reduced significantly.  Hoping for even more improvement now that I am off.
My thread: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/8909-rusty1-paxil-withdrawal-help-and-advice-welcome/#entry150222

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Today things are really bleak. I have been wondering whether I can go on anymore. I started seeing someone about 5 months ago but now I feel like it’s pointless because it will inevitably end. I am waiting for a call back from my doctor but I don’t know what they can do. I don’t know whether it’s worth calling the crisis team. 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Hi - you need to get out of your head. Are you able to go out for a walk? 30 minutes or so in a nice part of town? Go outside and walk - focus on the natural world. When your mind starts to predict doom, gently acknowledge that you are “thinking”, let the thought go and return your attention to the natural world. You can do this. 

 

 

2004 - prozac then wellbutrin (don't recall dosages)

2005 - 150 mg Effexor Rx (or generic equivalent)

April 28, 2021 first day without Effexor after very rapid titration off (probably equivalent to CT).

July 23, 2021 Reinstatement of ~3mg of Venlafaxine ER (~8.9mg of capsule material).

 

50 mg Chelated Magnesium, 4X a day

1000mg DHA+EPA Fish oil 2X day

 

 

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I’m at work so there’s nowhere I can really go. It is hard to challenge these thoughts when objectively it’s true - everything will end and there’s no point to it. I am considering taking some time off of work but I don’t know if it’s feasible. 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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I agree with the idea that “everything will end” but disagree with “there’s no point to it”.  Even if experiences/events end, they change us. They have a lasting impact.
 

 

2004 - prozac then wellbutrin (don't recall dosages)

2005 - 150 mg Effexor Rx (or generic equivalent)

April 28, 2021 first day without Effexor after very rapid titration off (probably equivalent to CT).

July 23, 2021 Reinstatement of ~3mg of Venlafaxine ER (~8.9mg of capsule material).

 

50 mg Chelated Magnesium, 4X a day

1000mg DHA+EPA Fish oil 2X day

 

 

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@Yersinia Thankyou for talking with me while I struggled this morning. This afternoon I’ve been a lot better, almost like I feel like a person again. It’s just so difficult getting through to the evening

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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You're welcome.  

2004 - prozac then wellbutrin (don't recall dosages)

2005 - 150 mg Effexor Rx (or generic equivalent)

April 28, 2021 first day without Effexor after very rapid titration off (probably equivalent to CT).

July 23, 2021 Reinstatement of ~3mg of Venlafaxine ER (~8.9mg of capsule material).

 

50 mg Chelated Magnesium, 4X a day

1000mg DHA+EPA Fish oil 2X day

 

 

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  • Mentor

@Embi  I am glad that you found SA.    I am sorry that you are going through this.  I can hear the panic and despair in your voice. It pains me to read post after post of the panic, and desperate cry for help.  These doctors really need to learn more about the drugs they are prescribing and how much they affect your brain.  Most do not know how to correctly get off of them and send their patients into such mess.

 

.  You will need to take a deep breathe and know that you will heal.    Tell yourself I am okay right now,  I am breathing and my heart is beating. I know that is hard  do right now, but you can do it.

 

When your brain is not working right and the thoughts get all distorted you panic and spiral out of control.   When your dwelling on your thoughts you are fighting them.   Acknowledge the thought, do not engage in the thought, turn your attention on to something else. (something on your desk), go for a walk to the bathroom, refocus on what you are doing, really think about what you are doing.  Say the steps in your mind.  You will have to do this repeatedly over and over.  

 

Do you meditate?  I would recommend meditation.  This is a good tool to help you redirect your brain and not get caught up in thoughts. If you would like I can help you with that.

 

Yersinia has some really good ideas to help you cope. 

 

Something that is empowering is 

I made it through yesterday, I can make it through today, and tomorrow will take care of tomorrow.

 

Please know that you are not alone. 

Do not hesitate to post and  let your pain be heard.  This is a scary time for you, most of us have felt panic and overwhelmed several times. We are always there to give you support and encouragement.

Hang in there, you are doing great☺️

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/24894-greatful-is-this-withdrawal-or-to-many-med-changes-at-once/

1995? Prozac,  tried several Paxil, Serzone, St John's Wart back to Prozac and Trazodone ct:d Traz

 Lexapro. Tried to stop Crash in 2015  Kindled   Hospitalized, Vybrid, Seroquel, Effexor, Abilify  Pristiq, Wellbutrin-- 2016  ended back on   Prozac and Lamictal 200mg

5/2020  thru 12/2020 taper from 20mg  Prozac  down to 3mg.  Crashed  12/13/2020 Zoloft 50mg 1/29ct  1/29/2021 Seroquel 50mg ct  2/12/2021 Wellbutrin 75mg.  Became hypo manic 2/1  6ct Trazodone 50mg 4/25  25mg 2/5/ 2021 Lamictal 150mg.  2/24  100mg   4/9  75mg   4/21 37.5 

2/16/2021 Seroquel 50xr  3/3 100mg  3/17  150mg  side effects ct   4/3 2021 Lexapro 5mg  4/14  7.5mg  4/30 10mg  5/10  7.5mg 

2021/ 5/16  5mg Lexapro   37.5 Lamictal   25mg trazadone,   xanax  .0625mg  3x a day   

Lexapro  Taper> Sept/01/2021  4.90mg>  Sept/25  4.75mg>   Oct/19 4.69mg > Nov/14 4.2mg    Jan/30/2022-- Split dosing 2x a day All liquid  4.2mg  (2.20mg at 8am & 2mg at 4pm) 2/17 4mg>  2/24  3.8mg  slow taper to  Aug/12/2022 2.04mg  2023> 2mg,  1.90mg, 1.80mg, 1.70mg, 1.5mg, 1.4mg, 1.3mg 1.2mg, 1.1mg, 1mg, 0.9mg, 0.8mg, 0.7mg 0.65mg, 0.6mg, 0.55mg, 0.5mg, 0.45mg, 0.4mg, 0.35mg, 0.3mg, 0.25,mg, back to once a day dosing 0 .1mg, 0.07mg , 0.05mg 4/1/2024   0

Lamictal  taper  4/17/ 2022 25mg, 9/9/ 22 -20mg, 9/25/22- 15mg , 10/20/22-   0

 Trazodone..2023.>down to 14mg, 7mg, 6mg  July 2023   0

Xanax  0.0625mgai 3 x a day,  2023>  0.042mgai 3x a day  2024> 0.034mgai 3x a day

Supplements  Magnesium glycinate, Omega 3, D3, vitamin c , zinc, NAC 

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  • 2 months later...

Hi everyone,

 

sorry that I didn’t reply to previous messages. I read them and appreciated the advice so much, I was just in too much of a bad place to be coherent.

 

I’ve now been on 75mg for three months. Most of my worst symptoms subsided after around a month and since then I’ve been up and down. The worst part for me is this occasional certainty that everything is pointless and meaningless. It makes everything feel hopeless and nothing brings me happiness. Even happiness itself seems pointless. I still have bad restless legs also. 
 

I am mostly stable now and wondering if I should start transferring over to a liquid dose so that I can taper. I’m cautious to do this because I still don’t really feel like myself a lot of the time. On the other hand, I really want to be on a lower dose and make some initial progress on my taper.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Today is too much. I started to try and move over to liquid from Monday. I could only start by dissolving 1/3 of my dose, not a quarter, because of how my dose is split between tablets.

 

Today I feel like I can’t do this. I have cried all day. I have such intense anxiety and derealisation. I don’t see a point in anything. I just want everything to end. Everything good ends, it’s just pointless.

 

I don’t know what to do. I feel like I’m going to be stuck on these meds forever. I can’t stick with it. I just want out.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Today I am still incredibly anxious. I am moving back to just taking solid doses until I level out. I don’t think I will try to change my dose again until next year. I can’t deal with the intensity of the anxiety and depression.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • Mentor

@Embi

 

20 hours ago, Embi said:

Today I feel like I can’t do this. I have cried all day. I have such intense anxiety and derealisation. I don’t see a point in anything. I just want everything to end. Everything good ends, it’s just pointless.

I can relate to the ups and downs of WD.  I am glad to see that you are stabilizing to some degree.  Unfortunately that is the power the drugs have in our system and little changes generally shows up for a little while until your systems adjusts to it.

I can assure you that most of us have felt this way many times over.  All the scary WD symptoms and the panic really can be hard to take.

How are you doing with coping skills, meditation, tapping, breathing exercises, mindfulness, and it does help to let things out here on SA to feel validated and heard.

Reading success stories in the forums section, connecting with some of the members that are on the other side of this nightmare is very encouraging.  It is a bust in energy to know that you are healing everyday and that one day you too will be writing your own success story and helping the ones that are just starting out, in uncertainty, pain and panic. 

 

As the saying goes around here "One day at a time"

By the way you did a great job in the last several months, stabilizing. 

You can see that you are stronger then you probably ever thought💪😊  So just keep putting that one foot forward everyday.❤️ 

  

 

 

4 hours ago, Embi said:

I don’t think I will try to change my dose again until next year. I can’t deal with the intensity of the anxiety and depression.

It is a good idea to hold until you get to a point that you can handle the dip.  

I see in your signature that you are not taking any supplements.  You may want to try Magnesium and omega 3s here is some information on them both If you do try them start with one at a time and at a  low dose to see how your system tolerates them. Many here take them and find some benefit from them.

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/15483-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/?tab=comments#comment-11734

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/?tab=comments#comment-44

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/24894-greatful-is-this-withdrawal-or-to-many-med-changes-at-once/

1995? Prozac,  tried several Paxil, Serzone, St John's Wart back to Prozac and Trazodone ct:d Traz

 Lexapro. Tried to stop Crash in 2015  Kindled   Hospitalized, Vybrid, Seroquel, Effexor, Abilify  Pristiq, Wellbutrin-- 2016  ended back on   Prozac and Lamictal 200mg

5/2020  thru 12/2020 taper from 20mg  Prozac  down to 3mg.  Crashed  12/13/2020 Zoloft 50mg 1/29ct  1/29/2021 Seroquel 50mg ct  2/12/2021 Wellbutrin 75mg.  Became hypo manic 2/1  6ct Trazodone 50mg 4/25  25mg 2/5/ 2021 Lamictal 150mg.  2/24  100mg   4/9  75mg   4/21 37.5 

2/16/2021 Seroquel 50xr  3/3 100mg  3/17  150mg  side effects ct   4/3 2021 Lexapro 5mg  4/14  7.5mg  4/30 10mg  5/10  7.5mg 

2021/ 5/16  5mg Lexapro   37.5 Lamictal   25mg trazadone,   xanax  .0625mg  3x a day   

Lexapro  Taper> Sept/01/2021  4.90mg>  Sept/25  4.75mg>   Oct/19 4.69mg > Nov/14 4.2mg    Jan/30/2022-- Split dosing 2x a day All liquid  4.2mg  (2.20mg at 8am & 2mg at 4pm) 2/17 4mg>  2/24  3.8mg  slow taper to  Aug/12/2022 2.04mg  2023> 2mg,  1.90mg, 1.80mg, 1.70mg, 1.5mg, 1.4mg, 1.3mg 1.2mg, 1.1mg, 1mg, 0.9mg, 0.8mg, 0.7mg 0.65mg, 0.6mg, 0.55mg, 0.5mg, 0.45mg, 0.4mg, 0.35mg, 0.3mg, 0.25,mg, back to once a day dosing 0 .1mg, 0.07mg , 0.05mg 4/1/2024   0

Lamictal  taper  4/17/ 2022 25mg, 9/9/ 22 -20mg, 9/25/22- 15mg , 10/20/22-   0

 Trazodone..2023.>down to 14mg, 7mg, 6mg  July 2023   0

Xanax  0.0625mgai 3 x a day,  2023>  0.042mgai 3x a day  2024> 0.034mgai 3x a day

Supplements  Magnesium glycinate, Omega 3, D3, vitamin c , zinc, NAC 

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Hi @Greatful! Thankyou for your kind response, I really appreciate it.

For coping skills I usually try to go for a walk and focus on that, but the nights are getting darker now which makes it more difficult. I have varying success with mindfulness, mostly because it’s hard to remember it when my brain goes into full panic mode. I’m finding it a challenge because I have methods to deal with more ‘normal’ levels of anxiety but these withdrawal symptoms are off the charts. Last night I contacted a helpline which was good just to have someone unrelated to talk to since I feel like this can put a lot of stress onto my relationships.
 

I have actually bought a magnesium spray and some fish oil tablets :) I’m using the magnesium spray, but I haven’t started on the fish oil tablets yet. I think I might try to get into good habits with those and with my coping skills before I try to change anything with my dose again. 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • 4 months later...

Hi, I just thought I’d give a quick update. 
 

I finally started tapering this month after spending some time switching part of my dose over to liquid. I’m ten days into my new dose (67.5mg) and so far I feel okay. I have the usual anxiety and depression but none of the super intense symptoms I had when I crashed last year. 
 

Part of me wants to speed up my taper because I feel okay but whenever I get the urge to do that I think of how many people here would tell me not to. So instead I’m trying to just focus on my health in general.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Hi @Embi

Glad your latest drop is going well so far.  I'm also tapering Sertraline and I know the feeling of wanting to speed up very well!   😬

I've had a rough couple of weeks though so it's been a reminder to me of how quickly things can spiral when life gets a bit crazy.

Focussing on your general health sounds like a plan!

Sertraline (Lustral):  2014. Sept 50mg. Oct 100mg. Dec 150mg. 2015-2019. 150mg. 2019  Apr-May 0mg. Beg May 150mg. End May 100mg. Late June 125mg. Late Aug 100mg. 2020 Jan 75mg. April 50mg.

2022  50mg. 1Jan 45mg. 1Feb 40.5mg. Water T24Feb 39.5mg. 3Mar 38.5mg. 18Mar 38mg. 25Mar 37.5mg. 22Apr 37mg. 5May 36.5mg. 18May 36mg. 1Jun 35.3mg. 15Jun 34.5mg.  30Jun 34mg. 15Jul 33.5mg. 22Jul 33mg. 5Aug 32.5mg. 19Aug 32mg. 1Sept 31.5mg. 1Oct 31mg.  27 Oct 30.5. 16 Nov 30mg. 30 Nov 29.5mg. 14 Dec 29mg

2023. 2 Jan 28.5mg. 6 Feb 28mg. 10 Mar 27.5mg. 1 Apr 26.5mg. 1 May 26mg. 1 Jun 25.5mg. 1 Jul 25mg. 1 Aug 24.5mg. 17 Aug 24mg. 5 Sept 23.5mg. 9 Oct 23mg.

 

Desogestrel:  2014 -  present:  

Supplements Magnesium. 400mcg  Vitamin D. 10mcg.  Multivit/min. 1 tab. B Complex

 

Certirizine:   2022 May 10mg. Dec 20mg. 2023. 15mg.

 Omeprazole.:  2016 20mg. 2022  20mg.  15Jan 15mg. 9Feb 10mg. 25Feb 6.5mg. 15Mar 3mg. 3Apr 1.5mg.  15Apr 0mg   2023. 20mg. 15 Sept 15mg.

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  • 11 months later...

So, I’m back. After nearly a year!

Over the last year things have been fine. I haven’t followed 10% per month, I found that at higher doses I could actually taper by larger amounts, or more regularly (not both at the same time), which I have reduced as I got to smaller levels. I want to be a lot more careful at lower doses. I’ve been pretty much symptom free for a year and decided to stay at 1.25 for a long time to make sure I was truly stable before any further reductions.

 

The problem began when I decided to be assessed for ADHD. I have shown a lot of the symptoms and I decided I wanted to know for my own peace of mind. I guess I didn’t really think this through. I had the assessment and was told that I do have adhd. I am offered medication and I figured that stimulants are different from antidepressants and I should maybe just try it and see. I didn’t want to be medicated for the rest of my life but I wanted to see if it helped. 
 

I started elvanse (vyanse in US) at 30mg. Things were fine, I didn’t see too much of a difference but it was easier to initiate tasks and change tasks (my main problem). During all of this I start feeling weird about my diagnosis - do I really have adhd? Feeling depressed about having adhd. Feeling like i regret getting the assessment. Wondering if the assessment was thorough enough.

 

After a week on 30mg I am upped straight to 50mg. I was told not to have caffeine but I did (bad move I know). This is where things started going really downhill.

 

The first day I felt pretty wired, but kind of okay. A bit robotic. The second day was similar, but I started to crash and feel anxious/depressed on an evening. The third day I was very ‘on’ all day, couldn’t stop my thoughts from fixating on one thing, couldn’t relax. Then it didn’t seem to wear off, I felt constantly wired, super anxious, racing thoughts, palpitations, feeling of impending doom. I slept 2 hours that night. The next day I didn’t take it and the anxiety has remained, I had panic attacks. Today I also didn’t take it and feel slightly more normal but still pretty bad.

 

In hindsight it was all a bad idea. I’m going through a very stressful time right now at work and in my personal life. I am also learning to drive. I was stupid to add the stress of a diagnosis and stimulants and caffeine into the mix. It had just been so long since I’d struggled with these symptoms. 
 

in addition to all of this I am terrified. I keep reading online that medication is the be all and end all of ADHD treatment. That I will be forever stressed and slowly descending into burnout without it. That I’m stupid for wanting to be medication free. I’m even starting to doubt if it is ADHD, even though previously I was so sure that I was willing to pay a lot to be assessed.

 

So I am struggling and I really don’t know what to do. Do I restart elvanse at a lower dose? I don’t want to switch between a load of different medications. Can I be med free? Am I doomed to live a sh*tty, stressful, burdened life?

 

I’m writing this trying not to cry at my desk at work. Everything feels pointless and awful. I regret getting assessed, I wish I had never done it. 

 

Does anyone have any insights on tapering and being on stimulants? Or adhd and tapering? Or adhd in general? Anything would be appreciated 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Today I picked up magnesium tablets, fish oil tablets and a magnesium spray. It doesn’t feel great to be back here but checking this site again and reminding myself of these things that help has been reassuring. I am cycling through windows and waves again.

 

The psychologist wanted to put me on a different stimulant right away but I said I didn’t want to and I would reconsider in a month. I asked about non-medication options and hopefully I can do that.

 

I feel so bleak right now but I know it can get better. I just hope I haven’t really messed my brain up.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Feeling very up and down. Lots of trauma memories coming up and anxiety over things I thought I had gotten over. Feel so hopeless. I can’t do this. I can’t do this. 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • Moderator
On 3/7/2023 at 8:48 AM, Embi said:

Does anyone have any insights on tapering and being on stimulants? Or adhd and tapering? Or adhd in general? Anything would be appreciated 

 

Stimulants can increase anxiety so taking them while tapering may contribute to withdrawal symptoms. I found this out the hard way when I was taking Vyvanse and unintentionally withdrawing from Latuda.

 

Drugs are not the end all for those with ADHD. There are coping mechanisms one can learn, and rely on, to function with ADHD similar to non-drug coping skills for handling anxiety. I am happy to share some of mine if you think it would be helpful.

 

57 minutes ago, Embi said:

Feeling very up and down. Lots of trauma memories coming up and anxiety over things I thought I had gotten over. Feel so hopeless. I can’t do this. I can’t do this. 

 

As we drop in dose, feelings can become more powerful and contribute to a sense of hopelessness. You can do this. It will pass.

 

Pre- October 2022: Wellbutrin, Escitalopram, CitalopramSertraline, Adderall IR, Vyvanse, Propranolol, Buspar, Ativan, and Latuda

Oct 13, 2022 - Oct 24, 2022 and Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Zyprexa (2.5 mg). Jan 14, 2023 -> Began transition to liquid suspension. Jan 29, 2023 = 2.375mg -> Feb 12, 2023 = 2.25mg -> Feb 27, 2023 = 2.14mg -> Mar 12, 2023 = 2.025mg -> Mar 27, 2023 = 1.93mg -> Apr 10, 2023 = 1.82mg -> Apr 23, 2023 = 1.74mg -> May 7, 2023 = 1.64mg -> May 21, 2023 = 1.56mg -> June 4, 2023 = 1.48mg -> June 19, 2023 = 1.4mg -> July 2, 2023 = 1.33mg -> July 16, 2023 = 1.26mg -> July 31, 2023 = 1.2mg -> Aug 13, 2023 = 1.14mg -> Aug 27, 2023 = 1.08mg -> Sep 13, 2023 = 1.02mg -> Jan 22, 2024 = 0.97mg -> Feb 4, 2024 = 0.92mg -> Feb 19, 2024 = 0.87mg -> Mar 3, 2024 = 0.83mg -> Mar 17, 2024 = 0.78mg -> Mar 31, 2024 = 0.74mg -> Apr 14, 2024 = 0.7mg -> Apr 28, 2024 = 0.66mg -> May 12, 2024 = 0.63mg -> May 27, 2024 = 0.6mg -> June 9, 2024 = 0.57mg -> June 24, 2024 = 0.54mg -> July 6, 2024 = 0.51mg

Oct 14, 2022 - Present: Prozac (40mg) upped from 20mg on Nov 1, 2022.

Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Gabapentin (300mg 3x day) -> May 3, 2023 = 300mg 2x day -> Oct 1, 2023 = 570mg -> Oct 15, 2023 = 540mg -> Oct 29, 2023 = 510mg -> Nov 13, 2023 = 484mg -> Nov 27, 2023 = 460mg -> Dec 9, 2023 = 436mg -> Dec 24, 2023 = 414mg -> Jan 7, 2024 = 400mg

 

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  • Mentor

Hi @Embi

So sorry to see that you are feeling decouraged and hopeless. It’s not a good place to be at. 
When we lower our medication it’s a given that memories and a lot of feelings and emotions are about to come up. As these  drugs are ment to numb us, this is absolutely normal. 
Try not to let your thoughts over power you, remember these are only thoughts and you have the choice to shift them, or distract from them. 
You were doing really good until you got these adhd meds put in the mix. I am not familiar with those, but sure a mod with that knowledge will assist you.

19 hours ago, Embi said:

I just hope I haven’t really messed my brain up.

No you have absolutely not messed up your brain. Our bodies are incredible machines that always work hard on getting us to a stable baseline. 
 

 

On 3/7/2023 at 1:48 PM, Embi said:

Everything feels pointless and awful. I regret getting assessed, I wish I had never done it. 

Please don’t beat yourself up. 
We all experience having done mistakes. If you can try to think of it as a life lesson. If we don’t make mistakes we won’t move forward and grow. 
This is a hard journey, not everyone can walk through it, but you have shown strength and resilience. That’s something you may never forget.  
 

 

56 minutes ago, Embi said:

. I can’t do this. I can’t do this. 

Yes you sure can. If you just take a moment to look at how far you have come, that’s speaks volume at how you will tackle this obstacle.


Nothing is impossible until it’s done!!!

 


1999-2020  20 mg Paxil

Bridged with Fluoxetine to help me get off Paxil.

2022 Fluoxetine 15 mg 12/12 14mg 27/12  13mg jan 12mg feb 11mg mars 10mg, 9 mg 8,5 mg 7.6mg 7.0 mg 6,3 mg 5,6 mg 5,0 mg 4,5 mg 4,0 mg 3.6mg 3,2 mg 2,9 mg 2,6 mg 2,3 mg 2,0 mg 1.8 mg 1,6mg 1,4 mg 1,2 mg, 1,0mg 0,9mg 0.8mg 0.7 mg 0.6mg 0.5 mg ( holding) everything is going smoothly!


I am not a medical professional nor is this a medical advice. I only talk from my own experience.

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  • Moderator Emeritus
On 3/7/2023 at 8:48 AM, Embi said:

I keep reading online that medication is the be all and end all of ADHD treatment.

A very useful counterweight to doctors touting the drug paradigm is Robert Whitaker's Anatomy of an Epidemic.  In Chapter 11, he assesses stimulant treatment for ADHD in children, and the evidence against using these drugs is overwhelming.  From p. 228 (paperback):

 

"With any medication, there is a risk-benefit assessment to be made, and the expectation is that the benefit will outweigh the risks.  But in this case, the NIMH (National Institute for Mental Health) found that in the long term there was nothing to be entered on the benefit side of the ledger."

 

He goes on to list in a long paragraph the physical, emotional and psychiatric adverse effects of ADHD drugs.  In sum, these drugs are very bad news.  

 

 

 

Here's a video book trailer by the author, Robert Whitaker:

 

 

 

 

Edited by Gridley

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg Valium

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper of 18.75mg Valium 

End 2021  year 1 of Valium taper at 6mg

End 2022 year 2 of Valium taper at 2.75mg 

End 2023 year 3 of Valium taper at 1mg

Jan. 24, 2024: Hold at 1mg and shift to Imipramine taper.

Taper is 95% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan.-Sept. 2016 tapered to 14.4mg  

March 22, 2022: Begin 10%/4 week taper

Aug. 5, 2022: hold at 9.5mg and shift to Valium taper

Jan. 24, 2024: Resume Imipramine taper.  Current dose as of June 28: 5mg

Taper is 93% complete.  

  

Supplements: multiple, quercetin, omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg, iron, serrapeptase, nattokinase, L-Glutamine


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

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@FireflyFyte thank you so much for your response. Right now the anxiety is pretty bad, odd things are making me anxious and panicky. I would really appreciate it if you could share some of your adhd coping methods.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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@Hanna72 thank you so much for replying, I really appreciate your encouragement. I am feeling really bad this evening, so reading your reply has been reassuring.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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@Gridley thank you for providing an alternate view of these meds. Whenever I see adhd groups or forums online they all tout medication as being amazing and that people who don’t take it are holding themselves back. Right now I’m not even sure if what I have is adhd. It’s confusing.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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Today was mostly okay with some low level anxiety. This evening is bad, I’m having an anxiety attack and can’t bear to have layers of clothes on but it’s too cold to not have them. I feel trapped wearing a hoodie and then also terrified that I’m going to feel this way about wearing hoodies forever. Even when my anxiety is lower the thought of putting a hoodie on makes it spike again. It’s so weird. I’m going to spray some magnesium on and try not to have a full blown panic attack. I am so scared that I’m stuck like this. I feel trapped even being in this house, but I can’t put on more clothing to go outside in the cold. 
 

I don’t know why I ever thought being put on any more psych meds was a good idea.

 

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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  • Moderator
2 hours ago, Embi said:

Right now the anxiety is pretty bad, odd things are making me anxious and panicky.

 

Anxiety is, sadly, a very common withdrawal symptom but, I have found, that focusing on it tends to make it worse so if at all possible would recommend trying to do something to occupy your mind - watch a light TV show, read a book, color, or work on a crossword puzzle. 

 

2 hours ago, Embi said:

I would really appreciate it if you could share some of your adhd coping methods.

 

One thing I use is a weekly calendar planner on my fridge where I write daily tasks and use different color markers to denote if the task is a "must do" (like give my cat her medication), a "should do", or a "nice to do" (yoga). I check the tasks off as I complete them so I have a visual representation of where I am with tasks for the day.

 

I also try to utilize blocks of time to get work done. I'll plan a 15-30 minute block of time to dedicate to a specific project and afterwards will reward myself with something small like an afternoon coffee (I wouldn't recommend additional caffeine with how anxious you are currently), a short walk, or a few minutes to play a video game.

 

Pre- October 2022: Wellbutrin, Escitalopram, CitalopramSertraline, Adderall IR, Vyvanse, Propranolol, Buspar, Ativan, and Latuda

Oct 13, 2022 - Oct 24, 2022 and Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Zyprexa (2.5 mg). Jan 14, 2023 -> Began transition to liquid suspension. Jan 29, 2023 = 2.375mg -> Feb 12, 2023 = 2.25mg -> Feb 27, 2023 = 2.14mg -> Mar 12, 2023 = 2.025mg -> Mar 27, 2023 = 1.93mg -> Apr 10, 2023 = 1.82mg -> Apr 23, 2023 = 1.74mg -> May 7, 2023 = 1.64mg -> May 21, 2023 = 1.56mg -> June 4, 2023 = 1.48mg -> June 19, 2023 = 1.4mg -> July 2, 2023 = 1.33mg -> July 16, 2023 = 1.26mg -> July 31, 2023 = 1.2mg -> Aug 13, 2023 = 1.14mg -> Aug 27, 2023 = 1.08mg -> Sep 13, 2023 = 1.02mg -> Jan 22, 2024 = 0.97mg -> Feb 4, 2024 = 0.92mg -> Feb 19, 2024 = 0.87mg -> Mar 3, 2024 = 0.83mg -> Mar 17, 2024 = 0.78mg -> Mar 31, 2024 = 0.74mg -> Apr 14, 2024 = 0.7mg -> Apr 28, 2024 = 0.66mg -> May 12, 2024 = 0.63mg -> May 27, 2024 = 0.6mg -> June 9, 2024 = 0.57mg -> June 24, 2024 = 0.54mg -> July 6, 2024 = 0.51mg

Oct 14, 2022 - Present: Prozac (40mg) upped from 20mg on Nov 1, 2022.

Oct 31, 2022 - Present: Gabapentin (300mg 3x day) -> May 3, 2023 = 300mg 2x day -> Oct 1, 2023 = 570mg -> Oct 15, 2023 = 540mg -> Oct 29, 2023 = 510mg -> Nov 13, 2023 = 484mg -> Nov 27, 2023 = 460mg -> Dec 9, 2023 = 436mg -> Dec 24, 2023 = 414mg -> Jan 7, 2024 = 400mg

 

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@FireflyFyte thank you for sharing your techniques. I am trying to just walk about and breathe deeply and stop thinking about things at the moment for the anxiety. 

 

I noticed that you mentioned in your sig that you’re taking a mushroom complex. How is that working for you?

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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This morning I am low level anxious but able to still do things. I am going to buy some Epsom salts so I can have a bath tonight, get some medicine for this cough that is giving me anxiety, maybe buy an gua sha and see my friend. 
 

I never tried eft tapping before but last night I finally managed to sleep after following a video on it. Tonight I will be on my own which is a big trigger for anxiety when I’m like this, so I’m hoping the bath + some massage + tapping will help. Also some nice food to try and get me to eat and I will buy treats for my cats because giving them nice things improves my mood.

Sertraline 100mg: dec 2017 - June 2021 / 50mg: June 2021 - July 2021 / 75mg: July 2021 - March 22 / 67.5mg: 7th March 22 - 27th March 22 / 61mg: 28th March 22 - 16th April 22 / 55mg: 17th April 22 - 01 May 22 / 50mg: 02 May 22 - 14 Jun 22 / 45mg: 15 Jun 22 - ? / 1.25mg: ~01 Feb 23 - 17 Mar 23 / increased to 1.3mg 18 Mar 23 - 21 Aug 23/ 1.17mg: Aug 23 - ? / 0.7mg: 10 Dec 23 - Jan 24 / 0.6mg: Jan 24 - Feb 24 / Attempted to jump off early Feb, reinstated 17 Feb 24 0.3mg / 0.25mg - ~April 24 / 0.2mg - May 24

 

Elvanse 30mg: 24 Feb 23 - 02 Mar 23. 50mg: 03 Mar 23 - 05 Mar 23. Crashed. CTed.

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