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Mushaboom: Venlafaxine for almost 10 years


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Posted (edited)

Hello,

 

grateful have found this space.

 

i am currently experiencing withdrawal from

venlafaxine. I started taking 150mg in 2015 at age 20. In 2018 I CT from 150, to 75mg to 0mg and returned to the med within two months due to very scary withdrawal.

 

Last year, I began a taper in June. I was feeling detached, flat, passionless, and deeply unable to focus. After years in therapy, exploring yoga and mindfulness, really trying my best to face my depression head on, I knew I had to get off of Effexor. I don’t know much else. I joined a discord about Effexor withdrawal and learned a little about slowly tapering. I thought an 8 month taper would be night and day from the 150-0mg in two months in 2018. It wasn’t slow enough.

 

I had a lot of stressors at the end of my taper that I pushed through. I was taking beads out of my capsule for months. I stopped tapering and stayed on a dose (something like 50/100 beads) for a few weeks, and continued the taper even when the withdrawal symptoms increased.

 

i didn’t know what I was doing, and I rushed because I hoped the hell would come to an end. It got so much worse.

 

I don’t have a trusted relationship with a psychiatrist. I was prescribed by my GP and have been uninsured for the past few years. I have limited access to providers. I tried to connect with a provider at the beginning of my tapering last year, and was invalidated and alienated. My therapist that I have been seeing for 6 years supported my tapering, but honestly had no clue what was to come. We were both ill informed. 
 

after my last dose January 24 2024, my life began to spiral. I immediately became overwhelmed and quit my job (I am back to working since early April). I became very panicked, like clockwork, extreme in the mornings and gradually a little less by the evening. I began feeling totally detached from those around me. Completely disconnected from the person I felt like even a month prior. Despair, panic, extreme restlessness(akathesia?), nausea, loss of appetite(I lost 15 pounds). I am still suffering from much of this, just in intervals. It felt the same as it had when I CT and I am so distraught that I found myself in the same place.

 

in December 2023 I started ketamine, recommended by my therapist. It helped with the symptoms until I was completely off the med. Now it only seems to temporarily relieve my symptoms on the day of my session, sometimes. I am discontinuing its use.

 

a few weeks ago I started neurofeedback. The suicidal ideation and panic are unbearable on the bad days. I have one more session today, and after browsing here, I think I will stop this as well.

 

two days ago, the same psychiatrist prescribed me 25mg of sertraline. I’ve taken it for two nights(before bed, pharmacist recommended). I slept terrible last night. Yesterday I found this website after broadening my search to other snri or ssri, rather than limiting it to venlafaxine withdrawal. I’m questioning taking sertraline.

 

im overwhelmed. I feel like I am suffering and using all of my energy to battle the rumination and the suicidal ideation. I’m just in so much pain and discomfort, mentally and physically. I’ve tried so many things and I’m feeling so hopeless and exhausted. I don’t feel like any of the specialists or my therapist or anyone around me knows what I’m going through. A lot of people tell me that ‘this is life’ and maybe ‘this is just what it is like for you to feel feelings now’ and I feel so disempowered and lost. Finding this website has helped validate my experience, but I’m so scared of the reality of what is happening to my brain right now.

 

anyways, that’s where I am right now. Any feedback is appreciated. 

 

 

Edited by Emonda
Name to title

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Moderator

Hi @Mushaboom

I am in a hurry on a deadline so this first post will be brief but if I were you, I would stop the sertraline and reinstate a small dose of venlafaxine. In your signature, can you pls put in when you quit and how you tapered in much more detail? That will help us find the right dose to reinstate. Do you have any venlafaxine at home? Can you try taking about 1mg and see how that works? 

 

If you go to the Symptoms forum here you will find a thread on reinstating. You can also search for this. 

Please read it carefully. Reinstating is the only thing that works but it may not always work. Chances of it working are highest if the reinstatement is within 1 month. However, reinstatement can also cause side effects so that is why we generally recommend a low dose so that you can then stop if the side effects are too strong. 

 

I will get back to you in the next couple of days. Please hang in there. You are not alone in this and these are not you feelings your feelings. This is iatrogenic harm from a drug that thousands of people have gone through. You can get through this. 


OMW

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

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@Onmyway thank you for your response. Today I woke up with extreme panic, nausea, and discontinued the sertraline.

 

I tried to update my signature as best as I could. I have the exact dates of the bead tapering somewhere but I can’t find them.

 

I have lots of beads of venlafaxine; I’m not sure how to measure 1mg. I’ve read the reinstating forum and understand that the timeline is uncertain: I’ve been off venlafaxine for about 15 weeks. 

 

I felt so numb, like a shell of myself on that drug. This is certainly not better, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say how scared I am to put it back into my body. 
 

Do you have a recommendation on reinstating amount based on what I have shared?

 

truly thank you so much.
 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Moderator

Hi @Mushaboom

The signature looks good. Why don't you start with 0. 5mg. No idea how to get that amount from beads correctly.

 

In the Tapering forum on this site, pls look up venlafaxine. That thread has some tips on do sage sand how to get them correctly. You might need a scale to help you measure things. But you need to remember that the weight of the pill is not the same as the weight you are reinstating as the pill has lots of filler material. 

Omw

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

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  • Emonda changed the title to Mushaboom: Venlafaxine for almost 10 years
  • Mentor
10 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

I have lots of beads of venlafaxine; I’m not sure how to measure 1mg.

I suppose you have a xr capsule. You need to count the beads in at least on of your capsules and then calculate the average amount of active ingredient per bead. For example, let's say you have a 37.5mg xr capsule containing 150 beads. This would average 37.5mg/150 = 0.25mg per bead. If you would like to reinstate 1mg, you would put 4 beads back into the capsule and take it. It's more accurate to count several capsules and then calculate the average ingredient per bead. You can buy gelatin capsules and fill them with the rest of beads.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

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I had an adverse reaction to the sertraline, waking up with extreme panic and dysphoria like I haven’t had in weeks. I slept all of 3 hours the night before. I tried to take a Benadryl and sleep for the day but the symptoms did not let up. 
 

I’ve spent the past three days reading more about protracted withdrawal. Learning about my brain’s hypersensitivity— I’ve decided to take a few days to ‘dry out’, so to speak, before deciding to reinstate venlafaxine. My last ketamine session was a week ago, passive neurofeedback two weeks ago. The sertraline really shocked my system. I typically take a small amount of cannabis to help me sleep but I’m pausing that for the time being.


I’ve slept a lot in the two days since. Though I still wake with anxiety and feel deeply sad and hopeless a lot of the day, I am wondering how coming to terms with the protracted withdrawal will impact me. I’ve spent months trying to do everything in order to ‘fix’ myself and get ‘back to normal’. I’m understanding now that I need to adjust those expectations, and focus on healing.

 

anyone have any thoughts on when to reinstate? I know it’s a personal decision but I also know I have a tendency to push myself hard. 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Mentor
3 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

anyone have any thoughts on when to reinstate?

In general they say the sooner the better:

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/forums/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/?tab=comments#comment-33809

 

I think reinstating helped me. However the first 4 weeks of reinstatement were quite tough with a lot of anxiety and insomnia.

 

I am not sure if I understand your history of Venlafaxine correctly. It might be important for choosing your reinstatement dose. You are completely off Venlafaxine since the end of January 2024, you were at 150mg in July 2023 and 37.5mg around October 2023? On 37.5mg you felt ok and symptoms started on about 20mg? When did symptoms start?

 

Did you count out some capsules and calculated the average active ingredient per bead? Did you get empty gelatin capsules? Many people use a black cloth on which they count and divide the beads with a knife or something like that.

 

I am no doctor and this is no medical advice. I have seen a senior member in this community that supposedly was in a similar situation like you and reinstated about 3mg Venlafaxine (should be around 10 beads). After reinstating you should not jump doses (if at all adjust slowly and gradually), observe yourself and try to stabilize.

 

P.S.: A lot of threads/subjects here on SA deal with coping methods for anxiety and insomnia and other symptoms. You should have a look and/or discuss those issues here in your thread.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

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@Alfred1977 thanks for your input. I’ve spent some time in the reinstating forum and I’m still unsure what to do.

 

My symptoms started sometime after dosing below 37.5, I’m not exactly certain when. I didn’t know what I was doing at all. I did buy gelatin capsules and counted out my beads. I don’t have those numbers right now but I stayed on the same dose (about half the beads) for a few weeks. When the symptoms didn’t go away I just panicked and did a three bead a day taper until I was off completely in January. I, like many others I’m sure, just wanted it out of me and didn’t know increasing my dose would help stabilize me.

 

I’m really nervous about the adverse effects of reinstating. I’ve spent the last four/five months just pushing pushing pushing to be better. I’ve been functioning, holding out hope that one of the treatments I was doing would help. Without that hope I’m having a hard time face the reality.

 

i have been taking omega 3s and magnesium glycerinate leading up to the taper and consistently now. 
 

I wake up with all of the panic and slowly come down throughout the day. Functioning (working 30+ hours a week) is exhausting me. 
 

again, thank you for your reply. Right now I’m kind of stuck in a limbo of getting my life to a place where I can prioritize healing. Feels like I’m holding all of the pieces together with all of my strength 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Mentor
1 hour ago, Mushaboom said:

I’m really nervous about the adverse effects of reinstating.

 

1 hour ago, Mushaboom said:

I wake up with all of the panic and slowly come down throughout the day. Functioning (working 30+ hours a week) is exhausting me. 

 

It's difficult to judge from far away. Managing 30 hours of work per week sounds like a good sign to me. Do you think your situation is improving or getting worse?

If it's improving, you simply might want to hold out.

If it's rather getting worse, reinstatement might be the choice. You could then try to begin with 1-3 beads (0.5-1mg) and thus try to mitigate any disruption from the reinstatement. Determining a reinstatement dose seems to be more art than science. If you are suffering from withdrawal, reinstatement is supposed to be the only thing that can lead to a faster recovery...at least this is what I read here and this is also what doctors like Mark Horowitz are saying. It also seems to make sense to me. However determining the correct dose is difficult. You somehow have to balance out the expected relief from withdrawal with the expected stress from reinstating.

 

You said that you tried 25mg sertraline. Did it give you anxiety and insomnia? This happened to me when I reinstated a pretty high dose of Venlafaxine. I felt "wired and tired" for 4 weeks. I imagine this is not unusual if you reinstate too high with some SSRI. 25mg sertraline are supposed to be roughly equivalent to 37.5mg Venlafaxine. This could give you a feeling for the reinstatement dose you might wanna choose. Venlafaxine is supposed to be more activating than sertraline...however people here say that it is your best bet to reinstate the same SSRI that gave you withdrawal. Small doses of SSRI are more powerful than one might think (therefore also the need for hyperbolic/exponential tapering), but 1mg Venlafaxine should feel very different than 25mg sertraline.

 

This is a difficult decision you have to make. If you feed us with more information and questions we can try to help you, but we cannot decide for you.

 

I think the most important questions you have to answer are

1) Am I suffering from Venlafaxine withdrawal?

2) Is my condition improving or worsening?

 

If it was me, I would try reinstating in the case of a worsening Venlafaxine withdrawal. Since you got a job, I would be careful and start at the lower end of what might be a good reinstatement dose.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

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@Alfred1977 honestly it’s difficult to judge from here, too. The waves and windows are hard. The SI has increased, so I suppose that’s an indicator of things getting worse.

 

The job I have is a WFH job. I don’t think I’d be able to do it if I had to mask in person. 
 

I did have anxiety and insomnia from the sertraline. Pretty immediately. It got worse on the second day, and I had just found this forum, and made the choice to stop. The emotional pain was Insufferable. 
 

I do think I am suffering from venlafaxine withdrawal. These are the same symptoms I’ve had for months. Crying, derealization, low energy, high anxiety, muscle twitches, agitation, trembling, loss of appetite. 
 

I thought it was getting better, which is why I started work again. I’ve only been working for 3-4 weeks and things feel pretty rough. the stress of being productive to make money to live with my roommate, pay off the thousands of dollars in debt I am from treatments and therapy, family not being supportive, and me just trying to hold it together and ‘tough it out’ like I’ve always been taught; it’s all very heavy. 
 

thank you for all of the input you’ve given me about tapering. The counting of the beads and making capsules has sounded really daunting to return to. 
 

 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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I want to correct some things I stated in my introduction, as I was stressed and awake all night and not fully clear. 

On 5/9/2024 at 6:15 AM, Mushaboom said:

 

after my last dose January 24 2024, my life began to spiral. I immediately became overwhelmed and quit my job (I am back to working since early April). 

My taper was relatively mild from June until November when I began tapering below 37.5mg. I had brain zaps initially, tapering from 150mg to 112.5mg, but they stopped almost altogether after the first month or so.  my anxiety started to increase but it was manageable.
In December of 2023, the panic started to set in. I began waking up with panic attacks, 0

to 1000. When I chose to complete the taper, 3 beads a day, the symptoms never went away. In February I started to wake up and feel that I had to immediately jump out of bed. It felt like my body was on fire from the inside. If I stayed in bed I’d twitch and shake and terrible self loathing thoughts would fill my head. I started a new full time position on a Monday, and the stress of showing up after waking up in pain every day, and trying to push through it all broke out hives on my scalp. I quit the same week. 
 

After that I spent my days applying for jobs. Walking and walking and walking. I couldn’t lose my apartment, so I couldn’t stop and slow down and see that I was in crisis. I’d go to an interview and crash for several days afterwards from the exertion.

 

my story is very complicated by outside stressors. I was separated from my partner, my contract work was unusually slow causing financial stress, I was offered a full time position before my symptoms were out of control— but it was delayed for two months and began when my symptoms were at their worse. All of this made it very hard to get a clear picture of what was going on.


However, my partner and I have reconnected, and my job has given me WFH contract work that can stabilize my financial stress— the symptoms are still here. The panic is still cyclical. I feel like I start over every single day. 

I read others stories of withdrawal and resonate deeply. I immediately saw myself and what I have been trying to explain to those around me for months. 
 

This may read as careless bad decisions that exasperated already very difficult circumstances. I have been desperately trying to search around in the dark without a lot of guidance. When I began my taper I was numb, disconnected and couldn’t understand why people wanted to live. Now I am feeling so much, I’m finding reasons I want to be alive, and my body feels like it’s fighting against me.

 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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So how are you feeling today?

Enlafax (Venlafaxine) 225mg Feb/4 187.5mg Feb/18 150mg Mar/3 112.5mg

Mar/17  75mg Mar/31 37.5mg

April/14th 37.5mg crush/.166g May/3 .150g

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  • Mentor

@Mushaboom

 

I am sorry that you are in such a tough situation.

 

5 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

The SI has increased, so I suppose that’s an indicator of things getting worse.

 

(What's SI?)

 

5 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

I do think I am suffering from venlafaxine withdrawal. These are the same symptoms I’ve had for months. Crying, derealization, low energy, high anxiety, muscle twitches, agitation, trembling, loss of appetite. 

 

1 hour ago, Mushaboom said:

my story is very complicated by outside stressors.

 

I am no medical expert and this is no advice in a legal sense, but I think the quotes above speak all in favor of trying to reinstate. Since you been off for a couple of months and cannot afford further disruption, I would start low at 1mg. If you cannot tolerate 1mg either it should be relatively easy to drop it again. I would try to give it some time, at least a week. If you tolerate the 1mg or even feel some relief, great. You could then think about dosing gradually up, e.g. 1.5mg the next 10 days and 2mg the next 10 day and so on.

 

I also tried to "fight through" withdrawal and it crushed me. I feel like I am begining to recover somewhat now. It took me about 4 weeks that were really tough. I reinstated much earlier than you and supposedly much higher. Try to be gentle on yourself and try to get as much help as possible in this situation.

 

 

 

 

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

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  • Mentor

@Mushaboom

 

SSRI withdrawal is an absolute crisis. It is paralyzing. It is insidious and deceiving and manipulates the way we are thinking and feeling about the world and ourselves...even to the extent that we are not noticing how deeply effected by withdrawal we are. I am not aware of having felt about one and the same situation so differently like I have in the last weeks. SSRI withdrawal is a severe illness that comes with very little to no support and understanding from society.

 

Don't judge yourself on what you are feeling or accomplishing right now. This is not yourself. Your life today will not be your life in the future. You will recover and be able to sort things out...even if you have to forgo a lot getting there. If you somehow are able to buy you time, do so. Recovery should be your number one priority. Try to find faith. Try to find help...for example in this community, but also among family and friends. Help others to understand what you are going through.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

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@Alfred1977 I tried to reply this morning-- not sure what happened to that entire post. Here goes again.

 

Thanks for sharing your experience and helping me feel less alone, less panicked, and less 'weak'. I have been fighting through so much in the past several months. My mother is a strong lady who can push through nearly anything, it seems. I inherited that strength but found it hasn't served me here. I'm trying to be gentler and kinder to myself. 

 

SI - suicidal ideation. It's mostly a passive knawing when the pain is so great and I feel like I don't know what to do, where to turn. It has been a companion for months but one I shoo away and take a walk to clear my head. I hope I'm not out of line talking about it in this space. I'm not ideating, not planning. I want to be alive. I want to get to the other side of this. The irony is, I wanted to get off of Effexor because I felt like a shell of a person who didn't understand why people wanted to be alive. Now I am finding reasons, I am feeling love and kindness and compassion, I am looking longingly at those around me and wanting to bad to enjoy life alongside them, and it feels like my body and mind are working against me. Now I'm in so much pain and it feels like I am fighting for my life.

 

I opened my new 37.5 venlafazine capsules to find that there are only 40 beads. each bead being .94 est. I popped one into a gelatin capsule today and took it about an hour and a half ago. 

 

Thanks for your kindness

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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Hi @Tuikea. I am feeling the normal panic and racing thoughts. No appetite. I started wearing an eye mask, which has helped ease the anxiety in the morning, rather than waking up so shocked by it. 

 

I'm feeling overwhelmed. I'm hopeful that reinstatement can help me find some stability. 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Mentor

@Mushaboom

 

I wish you all the best and hope you find somewhat relief. Keep us updated on how you are doing!

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment

I took .94mg venlafaxine around 8am yesterday. My usual fear/panic peaked around 9/9:30. I had a work meeting around 11am so I frantically stormed out of the house in the rain to try and walk to clear my head. 
 

The panic became less after noon, which is usual on a good day. I became nauseas after lunch and the feeling stayed with me all evening. I also noticed my arms were itchy?

 

I took my second .94mg dose today around the same time. Will update as the day goes on.

 

lots of twitching this morning.

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Moderator
Posted (edited)

Hi @Mushaboom

are any of these symptoms new or more intense than they were before? It would be helpful if you can keep a log of your symptoms and rate them because when we are in the thick of it, it seems like we have always been that way or a new symptoms can look more intense because we are hypervigilant and it is good to track symptoms daily so that we know how they develop over time. This is especially important as we make changes. 

 

Also, can you please update your signature so we keep track of these changes and we can see at a glance what is happening. 

Edited by Onmyway

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

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@Onmyway Updated my signature. Also added the supplements that I have been taking for over a year. I stopped a couple last week after reading some in the forums, also because the B-50 usually helps me with energy during the day, and I'm trying to get more rest. 

 

The nausea was worse than it had been in a while. But not unbearable. The panic felt pretty usual. I will keep a log rating my symptoms each day. You are sure right about the hypervigilance.

 

Thanks a lot. 

 

 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

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  • Moderator

@Mushaboom, that level of vit D is excessive and vitamin D can be very activating. Given that you're struggling with that, you may want to cut it out completely. If you've been taking it for a while you've likely got plenty stored in the body.

 

Some Bs can also be activating (anxiety like feeling). Unless you have an absorption issue or you are not getting enough from your diet (I. E. If you were vegan) you might want to stop them as well. However, do this one at a time so the change in symptoms, if any, is not attributed to something else like the reinstatement. 

 

Pls keep us updated on how you're doing. Hope a bit of smooth sailing is in your future. 

 

Omw

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

Link to comment

@Onmyway I ran out of the vitamin d last week, and stopped the b-50 complex last week so I could get sleep. Do you think I should continue the b-50, and quit that in a few weeks time, or continue without both?

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Moderator
Posted (edited)

Just continue with both (not taking them). Let's hope that this also helps calm your system down. 

 

What things help you recalibrate? Walking used to help me, especially in nature - park, tree-lined streets. I used to love being covered by trees (forest bathing). Still do tbh. 

 

Omw

Edited by Onmyway

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

Link to comment

@Onmyway Usually walks do it for me. It's feeling like very little helps. Walking, talking to loved ones, spending time with my family or my partner's family. During this process, it feels like nothing helps 'long term'.

 

 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment

Another .94mg today.  Little nausea yesterday. Normal twitching in the morning. 

 

The depression was pretty high yesterday and this morning. I'm having a rough go of it. I feel so sad and exhausted. I have been pushing through all of the discomfort and pain for months, walking, yoga, meeting up with friends, trying new treatments, talking to therapists, group therapy. Where are the reserves, where do I get a second wind. My clothes don't fit. My acne is back with a vengeance. I look in the mirror and I don't see myself. it's heartbreaking.

 

My friends and family are being really supportive. It's hard to see how this all impacts them. My mom wants me to receive inpatient treatment somewhere. I'm too afraid to be given a bunch of medication. 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Mentor
25 minutes ago, Mushaboom said:

My friends and family are being really supportive. It's hard to see how this all impacts them. My mom wants me to receive inpatient treatment somewhere. I'm too afraid to be given a bunch of medication. 

I am happy your family and friends are supportive.

 

You could tell about your experience with sertraline and say you want to carefully updose Venlafaxine. So possibly there is only disagreement about the height of your dose or the speed of updosing. Getting back to 37.5mg Venlafaxine wouldn't be the end of the world. In fact if you stabilize with it faster, it would be worth it and you could try getting completely off again later from a position of stability and better knowledge.

 

Getting sick leave in your situation probably would help a lot. Could you lose your job? Maybe you can somehow find out how inpatient treatment would look like before you decide?

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment
24 minutes ago, Alfred1977 said:

 

You could tell about your experience with sertraline and say you want to carefully updose Venlafaxine. So possibly there is only disagreement about the height of your dose or the speed of updosing. Getting back to 37.5mg Venlafaxine wouldn't be the end of the world. In fact if you stabilize with it faster, it would be worth it and you could try getting completely off again later from a position of stability and better knowledge.

Do you mean tell the inpatient facility? Is there any way they are really going to taper me gradually? I feel like it’s likely they will just throw me on 37.5mg and I’m afraid of the effects?

 

should I try to take more than .94mg? This is my third day at this dose. 
 

i could lose my job. I don’t have enough money to get rent settled for a couple of months.

I really have to start thinking about losing my life. I’m afraid of all of these things but I’m most afraid of losing my life. I just feel paralyzed with fear.

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Moderator
Posted (edited)

Hi @Mushaboom

now is not the time to worry about long term. We never know how things will turn out in the future so that is a pointless exercise. Right now you can focus on living day by day, hour by hour. It seems like you have a supportive family that will provide a safety net if you need it including housing you or helping with rent. Can your partner help out with expenses instead? The point in the next few months and a year is survival, please focus on that - the weight, the acne, the job - they can fall by the wayside so that you can focus on survival the next few months. 

 

Regarding inpatient treatment you will be unlikely to have control over the treatment if you tell them you are in danger and they are unlikely to believe this is from withdrawal. However, if you are in danger of hurting yourself, you need to do anything possible to survive. That is priority number 1. 


OMW

Edited by Onmyway

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

Link to comment
  • Mentor

@Mushaboom

 

4 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

Do you mean tell the inpatient facility? Is there any way they are really going to taper me gradually? I feel like it’s likely they will just throw me on 37.5mg and I’m afraid of the effects?

I don't know much about the US. In Germany you would get some money from "social security" if a doctor gives you a sick leave and I would ask for sick leave and tell him that I would want to gradually increase my dose (or agree on taking 75mg/150mg again and then simply don't do it). If somebody throws you on 37.5mg, you would probably get like me a couple of tough weeks with lots of insomnia and anxiety. I would try to avoid that...but if it should happen, you will recover too.

 

4 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

should I try to take more than .94mg? This is my third day at this dose. 

 

I don't know. We opted for the smooth and save variant, which means that there is supposed to be no disruption from reinstatement and that it will most likely take some time before you find relief. The right dose is difficult to find. Jumping higher might work well but can also end in some (maybe lighter) version of what you experienced with Sertraline. I think somehow buying time and getting sick leave/rest should be a priority now. If you get a time out for a couple of weeks, it would also be possible to take higher risks with your dose.

4 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

i could lose my job. I don’t have enough money to get rent settled for a couple of months.

Can you ask your family or partner for money? Could you live with your parents for some time?

 

4 hours ago, Mushaboom said:

I really have to start thinking about losing my life. I’m afraid of all of these things but I’m most afraid of losing my life. I just feel paralyzed with fear.

This is withdrawal, this is not you. You will be fine in the end...even if you have to go through a difficult time!

 

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment

@Onmyway Surviving is priority 1. I needed that reminder. The waves of suicidal ideation are intense in the mornings. By afternoon I feel depressed but the absolute hopelessness eases up a bit. 

 

I find it incredibly difficult to make the tough decisions as my 'windows' and 'waves' are daily and I always cling to hoping the window will last longer; give me some relief, some strength that impacts the next wave. The next wave is always just as hard.

 

I've been struggling with some denial of the longevity of this process. Eight days ago I found this space and felt validated and seen and finally like I had a better idea of what the knawing of 'something not being right' is. But with it has come so much grief. I'm doing my best to keep moving through this. I know I'll ask for help if I feel I am going to hurt myself. 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment

@Alfred1977 I'm a contract worker (hired by the hour for a contract duration here in the US), so I don't have access to sick leave or social security. I may be able to pause the work and return to it, they have been pretty understanding. I may be able to ask for some financial help from my family while I take a week or two off to try to experiment with dosing. I don't have anyone who could be with me around the clock, and the extreme anxiety makes it hard to be alone. Some things to think about.

 

I live in an apartment with my roommate/good friend. We just signed another lease-- before I had a clear idea of my symptoms. I've been staying with my partner often as he is a great comfort. The weight of staying at home, trying to continue as I once was, while trying to sort of 'mask' my symptoms from my roommate most of the time is immense. I need to bite that bullet and have a conversation with her about the severity of my situation, and try to move in with my partner or my parents. I keep holding out for 'what if the tapering helps and I can function and pay my bills?' but the stress of trying to keep all of these plates spinning is too much. 

 

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Mentor
5 minutes ago, Mushaboom said:

I need to bite that bullet and have a conversation with her about the severity of my situation, and try to move in with my partner or my parents.

This is definitely worth a try. If you had broken a leg, everybody would understand that you need rest to heal (at least your leg would need rest). I think with our nervous system it's the same...however we often feel pressured to carry on. Dragging on might in the end cost you time (and money), whereas concentrating on your recovery might in the end save you time (and money). If you got your back covered and are able to rest, you can also dose up somewhat quicker.

 

I wish you all the best!

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment
  • Mentor

@Mushaboom

 

P.S.: As I said, I don't know much about the US. And in Germany a lot of things don't work. However, I am very thankful to live in a country where there seems to be a pretty broad social consensus that people who are sick get basic healthcare and support. I don't understand why you would not want that, because anybody could get into a situation where you need this. Furthermore it's cruel to deny sick people basic healthcare and support.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment
  • Moderator

@Mushaboom

one thing that helps a lot with these symptoms is accepting that this is happening and not trying to fight it or fix it or wish it away. I am not saying that you shouldn't do the reinstatement and instead give up. I am saying that you should accept this as how things are now. It doesn't need to be how things will be in the future. But for now relax into this knowledge that this is happening and your only option is to get through it. You can't strive out of this. Your body will heal when it heals.  And in the meantime you will manage. Just breathe and walk through it minute by minute, hour by hour. You will find support in friends and family. You may want to find someone to take over your portion of the lease. Or take a respite from work. There is always a solution. Don't be afraid to ask for help. 

 

I like the saying: "When you're going through hell, keep going." And now is the time to use up all your joker/help cards. 

 

Pls keep us updated. 

OMW

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

Link to comment

Reinstating Update. I took .94mg (one bead) of venlafaxine for 5 days. I had increased nausea for the first few days. My skin felt very itchy for the first couple of days-- which could have been a side effect of stopping my B-50 Complex vitamin the week before. The twitching in the mornings decreased. The panic in the mornings is less debilitating. 

 

Saturday May 18, I increased my dose to est 1.88mg (two beads). Saturday was a good day. I had moments of terror/panic, but they passed. Suicidal ideation isn't so constant. I'm feeling hopeful. I plan to continue the 1.88mg for a couple more days and increase to est 2.82mg after 5-7 days if symptoms don't come up. I know the power of these little beads but I'm still astonished at how my body can react to so little.  

Venlafaxine, 150 mg, 2015-2018 abrupt discontinuance from 150mg>75mg>0mg in 2 months
Venlafaxine, 150mg, 2018- Jan 2024 7-8 month taper, 4-6 weeks 112.5mg, 4-6 weeks 75mg, 4 weeks 37.5mg, removed 5 beads a week (from 100 ish beads per 37.5mg capsule, 7 doses of the same amount), stopped and held at about 18mg for a month when symptoms became intense, then continued to take 3 beads out a day until January 24, I took a capsule with 1 single bead

Sertraline, 25mg, May 7, 2024 (two doses in when I found this forum) discontinued May 9 after extreme anxiety and insomnia

Venlafaxine, .94mg, May 13, Reinstating to try and mitigate withdrawal symptoms

Supplements:

2023- Present 400mg Magnesium Glycinate

2023- Present 4800mg fish oil 1728 EPA, 1152 DHA

2023- May 8 B50 complex vitamin 

2023- May 8 5000 ID Vitamin D3

Link to comment
  • Moderator

Good idea to increase slowly. This is good news @Mushaboom

 

"Nothing so small as a moment is insurmountable, and moments are all that we have. You have survived every trial and tribulation that life has thrown at you up until this very instant. When future troubles come—and they will come—a version of you will be born into that moment that can conquer them, too." - Kevin Koenig 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information and recommendations provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

In the next few weeks I do not have a lot of capacity to respond to questions. If you need a quick answer pls tag or ask other moderators who may want to be tagged. 

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week (off by 4/14/19- no tapering)

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785, 8/18/22 - 0.59, 12/15/2022 - 0.48, 2/15/22 - 0.43, 25/07/23 - 0.25 (mistake), 6/08/23 - 0.33mg

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

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