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PhilD

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Hi,  I've been trapped on Seroxat off and on (mainly on) for 25 years.  Some positive changes in my life have led me to have another go at getting off them.  I tapered off really slowly over the course of a year and haven't taken any now for about 2 months.  I didn't expect it to be easy, but it's going better than it has in the past.  There are dark, hopeless days and yesterday I was tempted to go back on them, but didn't.  I just went to bed and felt better for an hour's rest.  It's hard work on my wife with me being morose, lacking in humour and argumentative, which makes me feel very guilty.  It's often been this that's made me go back to the pills.  I'd really like some reassurance from anyone who has successfully broken free of this drug, that there is light at the end of the tunnel - that life will get better if I can just hold on.  I'm not really used to forums, but feel I need to reach out about this as it has dominated my life so much.

nearly 25 years on and off seroxat (mainly on).  2 months off them now.  Tapered off over a 6 month period from 20mg.  Experiencing anxiety, irritation, lacking in energy or inspiration, feelings of dread.  But functioning OK on a day to day basis.

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  • Altostrata changed the title to PhilD New member
  • Administrator

Welcome. @PhilD

 

We have many people here tapering paroxetine, which is a particularly difficult drug to quit. Yes, people do finally recover from withdrawal syndrome.

 

Irritability is a common withdrawal symptom, as are spells of moodiness and other waves and windows of symptoms. How's your sleep?

 

Many people find these to be helpful:

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker 

Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) 

 

You might try a low dose of one at a time to see what it does for you.

 

 

To help us out, follow these instructions Please put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature You may need to use a computer to do this.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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I didn’t come off paroxetine but I did come off venlafaxine which users report is just as difficult (or close to). All I can say is, for me, the mission was DON’T LOOK BACK! I told myself that once I was off that was it, I’d never touch another one of those pills again. I’m 20 months off and while I still feel a bit wobbly I’m definitely far past the worst of it. I was on it for 20 years and I definitely questioned daily whether it was the drugs or some “underlying condition” that was hurting me. But after a decade of being tortured by the side effects (and getting akathisia) I could never risk that again. I’m so glad I never buckled. I’m slowly getting back to the person I should have been without these drugs. It’s a slow and very difficult process but the rewards are worth it. We all have to make our own decisions on this, but I can definitely say that in time you will heal. All my prayers are going your way. 

2000 - 2020 - Effexor 250 mg

November 2020 began Nardil 60 mg

reduced Nardil from January 2021 to August 2021 to 0 mg. Drug free. 

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@PhilD hi and welcome to SA. You are in the right place! You are definitely experiencing withdrawal so if you were to reinstate after 2 months you would want it to be a microdose. The moderators could suggest the dosage if you decide to do that. Then you would taper no more than 10% of the current dose every 4 weeks, til you could jump off at 0.016mg. But if you are functional you might want to stay the course. Can you make a drug signature with your drug history? That would help. Tysm 👍

20 yr+ Paroxetine/ Dec2018-May 2022 20 mg/ May 2022 30mg/2022.07.28-2022.08.24 30mg to 0mg/ August 24-29 2022 10mg Prozac/2022.11.28-2022.12.04- 5mg Paroxetine/December 5&6 10mg Paroxetine/ December 8&9 2022 10mg Prozac/ 2022.12.07 to 2023.07.01 5mg Paroxetine

TAPER 23.07.02-58mgpw/4.9mgai/ 23.07.21-4.8 mg/23.07.28-4.73 mg/23.08.04-4.65 mg/21.09.23-4.58 mg/27.10.23-4.56 mg/5.12.23-4.54 mg/2.1.24-4.52 mg/9.1.24-4.51 mg/17.1.24-4.49 mg/26.1.24-4.47 mg/6.2.24-4.46 mg/19.2.24-4.44mg

8am-probiotics/9am-paroxetine, 200mg magnesium bisglycinate/ 1000mg Vitamin D/75mg DGL/ noon-2 x 1000 mg algae oil (500mg DHA/10mg EPA/620mg Omega 3)/5pm-75 mg DGL/200mg calcium citrate/8pm-.25 mg melatonin

I am not a medical professional just your peer. The suggestions I give are based on personal experience and/or the well documented experience of others.

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Thanks everyone for helpful comments.  I'm taking an omega 3 supplement and am sleeping OK.  I'll try the magnesium.

Everywhere I look it says that exercise is good, which I suppose it is for most things.  I have to make such an effort to do this, though - it's never come naturally!

If it can help, even a little bit, that will hopefully be enough inspiration to get moving.

nearly 25 years on and off seroxat (mainly on).  2 months off them now.  Tapered off over a 6 month period from 20mg.  Experiencing anxiety, irritation, lacking in energy or inspiration, feelings of dread.  But functioning OK on a day to day basis.

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sorted the signature thing!

nearly 25 years on and off seroxat (mainly on).  2 months off them now.  Tapered off over a 6 month period from 20mg.  Experiencing anxiety, irritation, lacking in energy or inspiration, feelings of dread.  But functioning OK on a day to day basis.

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  • Moderator
47 minutes ago, PhilD said:

Everywhere I look it says that exercise is good, which I suppose it is for most things.

Exercise is very good. But light exercise. Do not overdo it. It could trigger symptoms when you go too extreme.

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 32,3mg

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

  

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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Yes, light exercise can be helpful. If you feel that's too much, or triggers too many symptoms, at least make sure you sit outside as much as possible when the sun is out.

 

At least that will get some natural vitamin D into your system, as well as a host of other benefits that supplements don't provide, plus no side effects.

Oct 2018 - Jun 2020: 10 mg per day generic Escitalopram in pill form.

Jul 2020 - Aug 2020: Switched to 9 mg per day of Cipralex drops to aid tapering.

Sep 2020 - Oct 2020: Taper to 8 mg.

Nov 2020 - Dec 2020: Taper to 7 mg.

Jan 2021 - Feb 2021: Taper to 6 mg.

Mar 2021 - Apr 2021: Taper to 5 mg.

May 2021 - Jun 2021: Taper to 4 mg.

Jul 2021 - Sep 2021: Taper to 3 mg.

Sep 2021 - Jan 2022: Taper to 2 mg.

Jan 2022: Stopped taking altogether.

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It's got to the point that I can't go on in this state, so I'm going to go back to the pills.  Everything is just so relentlessly sad and hopeless.  Things coming up in my life (that I'd normally not be worried about) are filling me with dread.  I'm eating well, stopped drinking 6 months ago, am taking omega 3 supplements.  The pills are calling louder and louder and I know they'll bring relief.  The side effects and dependence on these awful tablets is preferable to the bleakness of my life.  I feel like trying 10mg daily, but someone above suggested a microdose if reinstating - not quite sure how much that would be.  I have 20 and 30mg pills that can be cut in half, so my options are 10, 15, 20 or 30.  I thought I'd try the lower of these and hope it just lifts me up sufficiently to make me able to function.  Any suggestions?

 

nearly 25 years on and off seroxat (mainly on).  2 months off them now.  Tapered off over a 6 month period from 20mg.  Experiencing anxiety, irritation, lacking in energy or inspiration, feelings of dread.  But functioning OK on a day to day basis.

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@PhilD you should just try a reinstatement of 1mg. You have been off for a couple months so too large a reinstatement can make things worse. There are threads on making your own liquid on measuring the dose with a syringe also using a scale to cut and weigh the pills. @Go2zero can verify how to reinstate safely.

20 yr+ Paroxetine/ Dec2018-May 2022 20 mg/ May 2022 30mg/2022.07.28-2022.08.24 30mg to 0mg/ August 24-29 2022 10mg Prozac/2022.11.28-2022.12.04- 5mg Paroxetine/December 5&6 10mg Paroxetine/ December 8&9 2022 10mg Prozac/ 2022.12.07 to 2023.07.01 5mg Paroxetine

TAPER 23.07.02-58mgpw/4.9mgai/ 23.07.21-4.8 mg/23.07.28-4.73 mg/23.08.04-4.65 mg/21.09.23-4.58 mg/27.10.23-4.56 mg/5.12.23-4.54 mg/2.1.24-4.52 mg/9.1.24-4.51 mg/17.1.24-4.49 mg/26.1.24-4.47 mg/6.2.24-4.46 mg/19.2.24-4.44mg

8am-probiotics/9am-paroxetine, 200mg magnesium bisglycinate/ 1000mg Vitamin D/75mg DGL/ noon-2 x 1000 mg algae oil (500mg DHA/10mg EPA/620mg Omega 3)/5pm-75 mg DGL/200mg calcium citrate/8pm-.25 mg melatonin

I am not a medical professional just your peer. The suggestions I give are based on personal experience and/or the well documented experience of others.

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  • Mentor

I’m sorry to hear you are feeling so bad. Unfortunately it sounds like you tapered too fast off these meds.  A 10% taper of the most recent dose takes around 3 years to complete and your taper was 6 months. 
 

A mod will be able to advise you a very low dose to reinstate and you would do well to try a very low dose first as having had two months off the drug your body will likely find a large reinstatement too much and you’ll feel even worse. The more you go on and off these drugs the larger the toll on your body, so you really do only want the minimum dose to relieve the symptoms and make them bearable. 
 

To reinstate you will needed to make your own liquid and get hold of a syringe. I got one from Boots. I recently started making my own liquid and wrote about it here on 24 March. 

You might like to read this thread about reinstatement. 

 

Please do not despair. Once you stabilise we will be able to help you taper off so that you don’t get these awful withdrawal effects. I am doing a very successful taper following a few failed attempts, the last one I was very ill.  It is possible to get off, but much more slowly than you have tried in the past.  Hopefully as the US gets going today someone will be along to suggest an amount to reinstate, it will likely be 1mg. And you will need to take that consistently for a week to start seeing any effects as it takes about this long for it to register in the body. 

am not a medical professional. I provide information and make suggestions based on my own experience and SA guidelines. I am unable to respond to private messages. 

Mirtazepine 15mg Nov 2018 -April 2019  April - Sept 2019 Mirtazepine down to around 6mg - skipping days to taper

October 2019 - Dec 2019 unwell from failed taper including jumping about in doses 

15 December 2019 to 13 June 2021 15mg Mirtazepine 

14 June 2021 started brass monkey Slide.  
2021: 23 August 12.3mg, 28 October 11.1mg, 6 Dec 10mg

2022: 12 Feb 8.5, 25 Oct 4.5mg

2023: 16 Jan 3.6mg, 28 Sept 1.8mg

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  • Moderator

Hi PhilD,

 

Both @LostInCanada and @Faure gave great advice above!.

 

Please understand that reinstating a higher dose may make things worse and may create an effect called kindling 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/27800-hypersensitivity-and-kindling/

 

Paroxetine is  a difficult drug to taper. And when one stops too fast or stops Cold Turkey, extreme withdrawal symptoms may occur.

 

The best way to try to treat this, is a very low dosage reinstatement. Best is to start very low and see if that helps to enlighten the symptoms. Do not expect miracles within some days. This needs to settle, which will take time.

 

Do understand that reinstating a higher dose most often does not enlighten the way one would think. After stopping or tapering too fast, it will not help (most often) to go back to a dose where one was doing OK with before. He is where kindling can come in....! So please beware.

 

If I were you I would start reinstatement at 1mg and wait at least 10 days to see if some improvement comes.

 

It may be helpful to make daily notes for yourself how you are feeling and what symptoms you experience and in what degree. You may also write them here. 

 

You can make a 1mg instatement by taking liquid paroxetine (oral solution). Which is available in the UK. As alternative, you could also make your own liquid yourself from pills if you would prefer that.

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/2693-how-to-make-a-liquid-from-tablets-or-capsules/

 

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 32,3mg

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

  

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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Thanks everyone for advice here.  I've made liquid and am on 1mg a day, which seems to be taking the edge off the withdrawal symptoms after a couple of days.  In the past, I've jumped back on a higher dose after giving up, which has worked, but it feels a lot more positive to be on a microdose.  

nearly 25 years on and off seroxat (mainly on).  2 months off them now.  Tapered off over a 6 month period from 20mg.  Experiencing anxiety, irritation, lacking in energy or inspiration, feelings of dread.  But functioning OK on a day to day basis.

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  • Mentor

Hey @PhilD, thanks for letting us know what you’ve done and how you’re feeling. I hope it continues to take the edge off after some more time. Keep us posted as to how you’re doing ☺️

am not a medical professional. I provide information and make suggestions based on my own experience and SA guidelines. I am unable to respond to private messages. 

Mirtazepine 15mg Nov 2018 -April 2019  April - Sept 2019 Mirtazepine down to around 6mg - skipping days to taper

October 2019 - Dec 2019 unwell from failed taper including jumping about in doses 

15 December 2019 to 13 June 2021 15mg Mirtazepine 

14 June 2021 started brass monkey Slide.  
2021: 23 August 12.3mg, 28 October 11.1mg, 6 Dec 10mg

2022: 12 Feb 8.5, 25 Oct 4.5mg

2023: 16 Jan 3.6mg, 28 Sept 1.8mg

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