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Takingitslow: Tapered fluoxetine too fast


Takingitslow

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Hi,

 

so this is my first post even though I have been struggling with withdrawal for more than a year already. 
 

last year I tapered Sertraline over the timespan of 3 months (much too fast but Docter said it was ok, what did I know?).

 

6 weeks off I fell into a black hole, could not sleep, extreme constant anxiety, extreme depression, feeling like I was going to die. So on the docters advise I reinstated 50mg, which made everything soooo much worse. 
 

Because of my bad reaction to the reinstatement my psychiatrist thought I might be Bipolar, so she put me on seroquel. As this was not working and I could not handle it anymore she put me on Lithium a couple of weeks later instead of the seroquel. 
 

(now the circus had started)

 

They threw medications at me like Candy’s and I was only getting worse. Eventually 3 months later I got off all medication and was severely depressed. 
 

I got hospitalized and they slowly introduced fluoxetine and lithium (again.

 

eventually I was on 60mg fluoxetine and 800mg lithium. I finally started feeling better, started therapy and life became kind of normal again. I had a lot of side effects from the lithium so we slowly reduced this over a couple of months to 0, without much of a problem.

 

6 months after being on 60mg of fluoxetine me and the doctor decided to go down because I had a lot of Spasms. 

 

And this is Where I am now.

 

As stupid as I am I listened to my doctor and went from 60 to 40 mg fluoxetine on may 11th. First three weeks were ok, fourth week I got very tired and clouded (out of it). And now the last 4 days have been full hell again. Severe anxiety, heart rate through the roof, no energy, tearfull, depressed, tinnitus, headaches, lost appetiteand just very scared.

 

Is this ever going to end? What am I supposed to do. I just found survivingantidepressants and only now It’s becoming clean what had happened to me over the last year. 
 

Reading all the stories just makes me feel super anxious. I cant hande this much longer, it is just too much.

 

What am I supposed to do. Is it too late to up the dose again. Will I not only destabilize my nervous system any further by doing this. And how much should I take then.

 

I am just so scared, I thought this period was over but I am still in the middle of it. I really want a life without AD’s but realize this might take a long long time.

Edited by Emonda
Name to title

Jan 2013 - Jan 2023: Sertraline 50mg jan 2023 - feb 2023: Sertraline 25mg feb 2023 - mar 2023: Sertraline 12,5mg Apr 2023: Sertraline 0mg 05/23: reinstated 50 mg Sertraline  06/23: 150mg seroquel 07/23: 1200mg lithium 

08/23: 50mg clomipramine (just 2 weeks), 1mg risperidone  09/23: -

10/23:- 11/23: fluoxetine 10-20mg, lithium 800mg 12/23: fluoxetine 40mg, lithium 800mg 01/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 800mg 02/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 600-400 04/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 200-0 05/24: fluoxetine 40mg

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  • Emonda changed the title to Takingitslow: Tapered fluoxetine too fast
  • Administrator

Welcome @Takingitslow,

So the moderators can best help you, please complete your drug signature by following these instructions. Adding a signature ensures your drug history appears at the bottom of every post, making it more efficient for those trying to assist.

This link should go directly to your own signature: Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

15 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

last year I tapered Sertraline over the timespan of 3 months

 

The approach recommended here is: Why taper by 10% of my dosage? The reductions should get smaller and smaller each month, for example: 10mg, 9mg, 8.1mg, 7.3mg etc. Importantly, if you develop unpleasant side effects from tapering, halt the taper, give yourself time to settle, and once stable, taper more slowly and by smaller amounts moving forward.

 

17 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

weeks off I fell into a black hole, could not sleep, extreme constant anxiety, extreme depression, feeling like I was going to die.

 

Given how quickly you stopped your AD, I'd expect you to have very unpleasant WD symptoms, as you've described: Daily Checklist of Antidepressant Withdrawal Symptoms (PDF) 

 

18 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

the docters advise I reinstated 50mg, which made everything soooo much worse. 

 

Reinstating is best done at a low dose: About Reinstating and Stabilizing to Reduce Withdrawal Symptoms to try and avoid Kindling...sounds like you may have experienced kindling.

 

19 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

They threw medications at me like Candy’s and I was only getting worse.

 

More drugs are not the solution to WD symptoms. I'm sorry you've been put through all of this.

 

20 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

6 months after being on 60mg of fluoxetine me and the doctor decided to go down because I had a lot of Spasms. 

 

So, a direct jump from 60mg to 40mg? If so, can you identify with the items of the WD symptom checklist? What you describe sound like typical WD symptoms:

 

22 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

Severe anxiety, heart rate through the roof, no energy, tearfull, depressed, tinnitus, headaches, lost appetiteand just very scared.

 

22 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

 

Is this ever going to end?

 

WIth time and patience, things will certainly improve.

 

25 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

What am I supposed to do. Is it too late to up the dose again. Will I not only destabilize my nervous system any further by doing this. And how much should I take then.

 

Please compete your drug signature as someone will try to assist.

 

23 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

I just found survivingantidepressants and only now It’s becoming clean what had happened to me over the last year. 

 

I actually hope finding this site gives you some relief/comfort...it's not you, it's the pills you been exposed to and the rapid changes.

 

24 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

Reading all the stories just makes me feel super anxious.

 

Why not visit the success story section and spend some productive time there. You'll soon learn that others have recovered from this, and so will you.

 

26 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

am just so scared, I thought this period was over but I am still in the middle of it. I really want a life without AD’s but realize this might take a long long time.

 

Understandable to be scared. A life without ADs is certainly possible. Yep, it takes a long time, but with time and patience, you will succeed.

 

Some other useful links:

Windows and waves pattern of stabilization

Emotional Spirals

Non-drug coping strategies

Melatonin for sleep

We don't suggest many supplements, but two that many of us find helpful are magnesium and omega-3 fish oil. Here are the links for info about those. Add one at a time and start with a low dose to see how it affects you. 


Magnesium

and

Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

 

Avoid alcohol.

Don't change the manufacturer of your AD.

This is your own Introduction topic.  Each member has only ONE Introduction topic.  Your own Introduction topic is the best place to ask questions and the place to journal your progress.  This keeps your history in one place and means you do not have to repeat your story. 

Once again, welcome to S.A.

Emonda

Please don't send me PMs. I am not a doctor. My comments are based on my personal experience with ADs and tapering. Consult your doctor about your own medical decisions.

Start of taper: Jan ’22 Vortioxetine 15mg, 

End year 1: 4.5mg, 

End year 2: 2.38mg, 

Year 3: 19 Jan 2.33mg, 26 Jan 2.28mg, 2 Feb 2.24mg, 8 Feb 2.19mg, 29 Feb 2.15mg, 7 Mar 2.10mg, 14 Mar 2.06mg, 21 Mar 1.99mg, 10 Apr 1.95mg, 17 Apr 1.91mg, 24 Apr 1.87mg, 1 May 1.83mg, 23 May 1.80mg, 30 May 1.76mg, 8 Jun 1.72mg, 13 Jun 1.66mg, 3 Jul 1.62mg, 10 Jul 1.58mg, 17 Jul 1.54mg

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Thank you so much @Emonda.

 

My psychiatrist thinks it is all in my head so I have no clue what to do or tell her now.

 

Do you have an idea of what I can propose to her or convince her that what is happening to me is due to the medication. Also if I ask her to go up, she probably puts me on 60mg in once again?!

 

 

Jan 2013 - Jan 2023: Sertraline 50mg jan 2023 - feb 2023: Sertraline 25mg feb 2023 - mar 2023: Sertraline 12,5mg Apr 2023: Sertraline 0mg 05/23: reinstated 50 mg Sertraline  06/23: 150mg seroquel 07/23: 1200mg lithium 

08/23: 50mg clomipramine (just 2 weeks), 1mg risperidone  09/23: -

10/23:- 11/23: fluoxetine 10-20mg, lithium 800mg 12/23: fluoxetine 40mg, lithium 800mg 01/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 800mg 02/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 600-400 04/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 200-0 05/24: fluoxetine 40mg

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  • Administrator
2 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

My psychiatrist thinks it is all in my head

 

Sad, but all too common.

 

3 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

Do you have an idea of what I can propose to her or convince her that what is happening to me is due to the medication

 

I don't think you need to do this. It will probably be a waste of time.

 

You just need the ongoing prescription for the medication.

 

So you've been at 40mg of Fluoxetine since 24 April? I know it can take longer with this AD for WD symptoms to hit. You mentioned a 4-week delay above, and that sounds about right.

 

Do you take a tablet or capsule?

 

Can you find stability at 40mg, or should you increase a little? I can't answer that question. I certainly wouldn't jump to 60mg. What I can say is that its better to make small adjustments, then sit back and monitor how you react. A few weeks later, reassess how you're doing and consider what next.

 

I'll share my experience with a different AD. I tapered at what I thought was a slow rate, and the wheels fell off (before finding this site). I increased my dose back to the last place I felt ok. Things improved, and I stayed on that dose for 5 or 6 months. Now, following the tapering approach on this site, I've reduced what I take by ~90%.

 

Have a read of the link below to learn a little more about your AD.

 

 

I'd also have a read of this link:

Keep It Simple, Slow, and Stable

It's bedtime in my timezone, but if you ask more questions, hopefully someone else will jump in and respond.

 

Better days are ahead.

Please don't send me PMs. I am not a doctor. My comments are based on my personal experience with ADs and tapering. Consult your doctor about your own medical decisions.

Start of taper: Jan ’22 Vortioxetine 15mg, 

End year 1: 4.5mg, 

End year 2: 2.38mg, 

Year 3: 19 Jan 2.33mg, 26 Jan 2.28mg, 2 Feb 2.24mg, 8 Feb 2.19mg, 29 Feb 2.15mg, 7 Mar 2.10mg, 14 Mar 2.06mg, 21 Mar 1.99mg, 10 Apr 1.95mg, 17 Apr 1.91mg, 24 Apr 1.87mg, 1 May 1.83mg, 23 May 1.80mg, 30 May 1.76mg, 8 Jun 1.72mg, 13 Jun 1.66mg, 3 Jul 1.62mg, 10 Jul 1.58mg, 17 Jul 1.54mg

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Thank you @Emonda.

 

So the last days have been quite hard. Somehow when I wake up it is the worst, severe anxiety and feeling of doom. In the afternoon this shifts to moderate anxiety and low mood, sadness, tired and feeling alone. Then somehow yesterday evening I was totally fine (did have anxiety but Felt ok), I caught myself dancing 😄.

 

Saturday and sunday were terror all day so I guess it is a little improvement. Is it normale to shift in his much during the day and is this a good sign? 
 

cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 2013 - Jan 2023: Sertraline 50mg jan 2023 - feb 2023: Sertraline 25mg feb 2023 - mar 2023: Sertraline 12,5mg Apr 2023: Sertraline 0mg 05/23: reinstated 50 mg Sertraline  06/23: 150mg seroquel 07/23: 1200mg lithium 

08/23: 50mg clomipramine (just 2 weeks), 1mg risperidone  09/23: -

10/23:- 11/23: fluoxetine 10-20mg, lithium 800mg 12/23: fluoxetine 40mg, lithium 800mg 01/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 800mg 02/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 600-400 04/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 200-0 05/24: fluoxetine 40mg

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Hi Anyone,

 

I need Some help, because I am very down today.

 

So I jumped from 60mg to 40mg fluoxetine following my docs advice before finding SA.

 

A week ago (4 weeks after decreasing) the terror started. I had a non stop feeling of terror, tight Chest and my Heart was pounding. I somehow stayed positive and said to myself; this is just withdrawal.

 

But now a week later I feel so depressed. The anxiety decreased 70% but the depression crept up. I feel alone, I miss my family even though I dont want to be around them to much because I want to safe them from my missery. I am scared I am going insane, I am scared I am broken, I feel no joy.
 

Should I see my anxiety decreasing as a good thing or did it only get worse and dont I feel it anymore because now I am so sad.

 

Some evenings have been good. I was actually looking forward to going to work. But the second I wake up, I am overwhelmed by pure terror and my Heart is pounding.

 

Lots of love 🩷

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 2013 - Jan 2023: Sertraline 50mg jan 2023 - feb 2023: Sertraline 25mg feb 2023 - mar 2023: Sertraline 12,5mg Apr 2023: Sertraline 0mg 05/23: reinstated 50 mg Sertraline  06/23: 150mg seroquel 07/23: 1200mg lithium 

08/23: 50mg clomipramine (just 2 weeks), 1mg risperidone  09/23: -

10/23:- 11/23: fluoxetine 10-20mg, lithium 800mg 12/23: fluoxetine 40mg, lithium 800mg 01/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 800mg 02/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 600-400 04/24: fluoxetine 60mg, lithium 200-0 05/24: fluoxetine 40mg

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  • Administrator
On 6/13/2024 at 12:16 AM, Takingitslow said:

Is it normale to shift in his much during the day and is this a good sign?

 

Did you have a chance to read the link on Windows and Waves in my first post? It's worth a read....ups and downs are part of the process.

 

37 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

A week ago (4 weeks after decreasing) the terror started. I had a non stop feeling of terror, tight Chest and my Heart was pounding. I somehow stayed positive and said to myself; this is just withdrawal.

 

38 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

I feel so depressed. The anxiety decreased 70% but the depression crept up.

 

These items are on the WD symptom checklist.

 

38 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

feel alone, I miss my family even though I dont want to be around them to much because I want to safe them from my missery.

 

When I feel rotten, I try not to be alone. Company and distractions are so helpful. Perhaps being with your family might be just what you need right now.

 

39 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

I am scared I am going insane, I am scared I am broken, I feel no joy.

 

You're not going insane, and certainly not broken. Things improve with time.

 

42 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

Should I see my anxiety decreasing as a good thing

 

I'd say seeing windows and waves is a sign of recovery.

 

43 minutes ago, Takingitslow said:

Some evenings have been good. I was actually looking forward to going to work. But the second I wake up, I am overwhelmed by pure terror and my Heart is pounding.

 

I'm sure someone will chime in with the reason why, but from personal experience, I have found mornings difficult, and I feel much better in the evening.

 

Sometimes, you just need to grab onto the positives and celebrate those...and you mentioned a few above 😊

Please don't send me PMs. I am not a doctor. My comments are based on my personal experience with ADs and tapering. Consult your doctor about your own medical decisions.

Start of taper: Jan ’22 Vortioxetine 15mg, 

End year 1: 4.5mg, 

End year 2: 2.38mg, 

Year 3: 19 Jan 2.33mg, 26 Jan 2.28mg, 2 Feb 2.24mg, 8 Feb 2.19mg, 29 Feb 2.15mg, 7 Mar 2.10mg, 14 Mar 2.06mg, 21 Mar 1.99mg, 10 Apr 1.95mg, 17 Apr 1.91mg, 24 Apr 1.87mg, 1 May 1.83mg, 23 May 1.80mg, 30 May 1.76mg, 8 Jun 1.72mg, 13 Jun 1.66mg, 3 Jul 1.62mg, 10 Jul 1.58mg, 17 Jul 1.54mg

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi, @Takingitslow. Read my introduction topic. Our stories are very similar. Dose increase followed by worsening of symptoms. Because of this, doctors don't believe that medicines can harm us, they lead us into polypharmacy. Then chaos ensues. Everything you experience now is withdrawal and it will pass, even though it is terrible. I'm also stuck in the mud, but I have faith that I'll get out of this.

2010 - 2017 20mg Lexapro2017 - 2023 60mg Cymbalta, July 2023 90 mg Cymbalta

august - november 2023 - 150mg Pristiq  + 0,25 Rexulti + 0,25 xanax SOS
dezember 2023 -  january 2024 - 20mg Lexapro + 0,5 Rexulti + 0,25 xanax SOS

february 2024 - 20 mg Lexapro + 50 mg Luvox + 0,25 xanax 3 times a day

march 2024 - 600mg Lithium + 25 mg Amitriptyline  + 25mg Luvox

03/15/2024 - 600mg Lithium + 25 mg Amitriptyline + 12,5mg  Luvox

03/25/2024 - 600mg Lithium + 12,5 mg Amitriptyline + 12,5 mg Luvox 

04/03/2024600 mg Lithium + 12,5 mg amitriptyline + 0 Luvox

04/09/2024600 mg Lithium + 10 mg amitriptyline + 0 Luvox

04/12/2024Onset of withdrawal symptoms: anxiety, dread upon waking, depression, derealization, palpitation, negative thoughts, hopelessness.

06/22/2024 - 525 mg Lithium + 10 mg amitriptyline + 0 Luvox, 07/1/2024 - 450 mg Lithium + 10 mg amitriptyline + 0 Luvox, 7/7/2024 - 600 mg Lithium + 10 mg amitriptyline + 0 Luvox

 

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