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  1. Hi Everyone, A year ago I never thought I would be writing this, but I am here to tell you that HEALING IS POSSIBLE! Here is my story; I hope it helps... Like many of you on here, I was prescribed an antidepressant (the SSRI Paxil) after going through a period of prolonged stress that left me anxious and depressed (though, ironically, nothing even close to how depressed and anxious I was AFTER coming off the Paxil and going into a prolonged withdrawal). I was extremely hesitant to go on anything that would, “mess around with my brain chemistry” because I use my brain a lot in my work as a...wait for it...school psychologist! Yes, even with my deep knowledge of mental health, I still got sucked into the medication trap! I just wanted the pain to go away and, while I knew therapy was an option, I irrationally thought that my thoughts were “normal” and couldn’t be changed...who knows, maybe, as Victor Frankl once alluded, my ‘neuroses’ were a normal reaction to an abnormal world...but that’s another story and I know you guys want to get to the good part about recovery. Anyway, thankfully, I was only put on a very small dose (10mg) of Paxil and I was able to feel the benefits quickly. Because it worked, I decided to just keep taking it...and no doctor who refilled my prescription during the 10 YEARS+ that I was on it EVER suggested that I quit...they just kept writing the script; indeed, some even asked me if I wasn’t ready for a higher dose (thank God I didn’t go that route). Fast forward to winter of 2017 and I began thinking it was time to go off the Paxil for a variety of reasons including the fact that I was getting some weird side effects. My doctor at the time (just a regular GP, not a psychiatrist as here in Canada any MD can prescribe antidepressants) suggested that I take 5mg for 2 weeks then quit. I knew better than to do that, so I came up with a tapering schedule (something I cobbled together myself from a bunch of research online....but unfortunately not Surviving Antidepressants as I didn’t know of the site yet). Doctor thought I was being ridiculous to want to slow taper, but nevertheless prescribed a liquid suspension and I began dropping 1mg per week. All was OK until I got to below 5mg (half my dose)...that's when the more intense physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms appeared (head zaps, weepy, low mood, etc.)...so I decided to slow down and drop dosage every 2 weeks by 0.5mg instead. It was still hard though and the brain zaps continued, but my mood seemed OK-ish, but not really 'normal' for me. At that time, I went to see a naturopath who put me on a mood boosting supplement that has some GABA and 5-HTP and L-theanine. She also gave me St.Johns Wort to take 400mg 3x per day (total of 1200mg a day). I don’t think either of these really worked during that time and I eventually tapered off them. Anyway, I completed my taper by mid June 2018. In July 2018 I went on a 3 week trip to Morocco. I was relatively fine in July though I slept VERY poorly on the trip and overall the trip was very exhausting and it was very hot! When I got back I went into a total spiral; I could not handle even the slightest amount of mental stress or my body would have a near panic attack. It was as if my body was sort of out of control/ possesed. I won’t get into a huge story detailing the timeline and exact symptoms I had because this is not a novel, but I will say that within a matter of a couple of months I was a total mess, much like many of you. My sleep was f*#$ed, I rapidly lost my appetite and lost weight (OK, I'll admit, that was a bit of a silver lining for me...haha), and anxiety and eventually a deep depression were daily guest. I read and researched a lot to try to figure out what was going on! And that’s how I found Surviving Antidepressants and read other people’s stories and realised what was happening to me. When I spoke to my doctor about it, she dismissed the notion of protracted withdrawal, saying instead that I was just ‘relapsing’ (yeah...right...only feeling 1000% worse than I ever had BEFORE the Paxil) and offering me a different SSRI to which I said no, of course. I have to say, that while in the depths of my withdrawal and what I can only describe as a living nightmare that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy (I know you guys can totally relate) I never thought I would get better. One of the worst parts was not knowing IF and WHEN I would recover. Honestly, one of the things that kept me from going back on the meds was my fear of ending up on a psych-med merry-go-round that might leave me debilitated and steal even more years of healthy, vibrant living from me. All I could do was go one day at a time, with the knowledge that some days would be better and some worse than others. I tried to keep close to people as social connections always helped. I binge watched Netflix like it was going out of style (normally I don’t watch any TV as I have lots of interests and hobbies). I also got out in nature as much as possible since I have always found that healing. Going to the gym fell off the radar as did a lot of 'self-care' stuff that I had been so good and diligent at doing BPW (before Paxil withdrawal), but I tried to accept that and forgave myself for not having the strength to keep it all up. I tried to eat (when I had an appetite) as healthy as possible; did a lot of take-out, but luckily there are healthy options available now and I would also eat whatever others were willing to feed me! Anyway, slowly slowly, things began to improve...but I am not going to lie and say that it was fast (I wish I COULD say that because lord knows, it was what I wanted desperately to hear while I was suffering through this)...It took me about a full year off the very last micro-dose to feel about 70% 'myself'. Now, 19 months off, I feel 90 to 95% 'myself' and much much stronger; somehow I even survived the death of my beloved dog 3 months ago without meds (I grieved hard and it hasn't been easy, but I accept this as part of life now). If I were to plot my 'healing' over time I think the graph would resemble the stock market graphs, with daily and weekly fluctuations, but with the overall trajectory being 'up'. I want to let you guys know you are HEROES and SO BRAVE for taking on this journey. While this process is so incredibly hard, there IS hope and recovery WILL come...our brains are ‘plastic’ and I truly liken this process as a sort of 'brain injury' that needed time to heal. Please stay strong. One day, looking at it all from the other side of this nightmare, you will be glad you made it through and are med free. Much love and strength to all.
  2. Hi all, this is my first post on this forum I am confused and am looking for some advice regarding possibly tapering off of St. John's Wort. I was put on SJW by a naturopath back in June (2018) to help ease the withdrawal symptoms of tapering off of Paxil (10mg) which I had been on for 10 years. I basically began tapering off of Paxil starting in Feb 2018 and I believe I went a bit too fast; I definitely started to feel all of the typical WD symptoms once I got down past half of my original dose and by June (at the end) I was feeling pretty crappy. I went to see my naturopath who put me on a supplement to support mood (Thorne product "Mood Plus") which contains 100 mg of 5-HTP and 100 mg of GABA, 400 mg of L-Tyrosene, 100 mg of Rhodiola, and 100 mg of ginseng among other, more minor vitamins (including b12). She also gave me St. Johns Wort and told me to take one 400 mg capsule 3 times per day (total of 1200 mg) . I can't really say that I felt a huge difference in my mood after starting these supplements (nor that I do now), but I think there was some 'lift' to my spirits, bearing in mind that other factors that boosted my mood may have been the fact that it was summer, the sun was shining, and I was going on a big adventure in July (trip to Morocco). The one thing I have noticed since June / July is that I have had a lot of trouble with sleep. It is hard to really tell if it is the SJW though because there have been some good nights of sleep...and there are so many factors that influence mood and sleep. Generally speaking, my 'withdrawal symptoms' tend to be more on the anxiety and agitation end of the spectrum as opposed to depression... recently, I have begun to wonder about the SJW and if that wasn't causing or at least exacerbating my symptoms. I spoke with my naturopath just the other day and she said that this should't be the case and I should keep taking it (it has been basically 5 months now). She said that SJW is calming and most people really derive a soothing effect from it. But, after having read things on this site re how the sensitized nervous system can have different reactions to things versus the 'typically functioning' nervous system, I still have my doubts. I am also more than a bit peeved to read that SJW can cause withdrawal symptoms if it is stopped too abruptly. Given the hell the past few months have been after coming off the Paxil, I am not keen to go through another 'withdrawal saga'... I don't know what to do...should I keep taking the SJW? If not, how would it be best to taper, given that it has been 5 months on it? Right now I have decided to only take 2 capsules (so 800 mg) per day and only up to 1 pm...maybe that's too much of a drop, but I don't know how else to do it since the capsules cannot be cut. I figure I can do this for a few weeks then go down to 1 capsule..? Again, I am not sure it IS the SJW that is causing me symptoms, but I feel like I need to minimize what I have in my body at this point so that it can regulate / heal itself. Any advice / thoughts would be much appreciated. Oh, and BTW, when I asked the naturopath about tapering off of SJW she said she had never heard of people having adverse reactions to quitting SJW cold turkey...sheesh! Thanks!
  3. Hello everyone! I'm a 20 year old woman and I took Paroxetine (40 MG) for five months. I tapered very quickly due to my lack of knowledge at the time. I stopped completely on January 1st 2020. It's now been four weeks since complete cessation of it. Three days ago I started experiencing a lack of joy, happiness, love, or feeling of attraction to anyone/sex. This caused me to have a mental breakdown which unfortunately may have made things worse as now I feel nothing at all. I also have not eaten due to feeling nauseated by the idea of food and the lack of pleasure associated with eating it. I'm not looking for negativity here. I am not interested in hearing I will be this way forever. I've already been told this and I will not accept it, so please do not try. Has anyone else gone through this? Is this common? What's the normal timeline? When can I start to expect seeing improvements? Is there a secret treatment for Anhedonia that I'm unaware of? Google says that there's no treatment except the exact poison I got off of. Thank you so much for your time and I hope to hear from you soon!
  4. I stopped using Paxil someone abruptly back in March. By April I began to suffer from discontinuation symptoms however not one doctor told me to start taking Paxil again. At one point I even asked if my symptoms could be from the fact that I stopped taking axle and I was told no. There was a lot of ignorance on my part for thinking that the quick taper I did would be enough however it's how I stop years ago and how they had me stop my son years ago . I have not taken Paxil for months and have developed a sensitivity to all medications. Things I took in the past with no problem now have a terrible effect on me. Less than a month ago I tried taking 30 mg of Cymbalta which caused in credible stomach pain brains apps and severe pain and pressure in my right eye. I only took 30 mg for two days and had this reaction. About 2 1/2 yrs ago I was taking 120mg a day. At this point I am trying to get the liquid paxil approved by my insurance company, but to be honest I am not sure if it will help or hinder or help me. Not to mention I'm not particularly thrilled about putting that poison back in my body. I was wondering if anyone else could advise me One what would be the best thing for me to do at this point. I cannot even find a Doctor Who will admit my symptoms are from discontinuation syndrome O and try and help me be able to function again like a normal person. If anyone has been in a similar situation or know of others who have and could advise me it would be so greatly appreciated. Thank you, Antionette
  5. I'm another refugee from PP....I was so shocked when I logged in and found it gone! Very upsetting. I found a few people whose names I recognized from PP so that was nice. I'm currently in month 14 of my cold turkey WD.....I was too far out when I found out I should have tapered....PP was a wealth of information and support for me and reading the uplifting posts that "This too shall pass" was so encouraging in the thick of things. I am here if anyone needs an ear, wants to ask what my experience has been like, etc. My name is Gina and I am from Canada
  6. Hello Everyone. You might remember me from Paxil Progress as the person who started the post regarding Paxil and Garcina Cambogia and the cold turkey I went through when I stopped the GC while still trying to come off paxil. I was down to about smidge of paxil. Probably around 2 mg. While going through the "horrible" withdrawals of the GC, I went back to 10mg of Paxil and since then(October) I've made it through the rain and since then I have been steady up until the last couple of weeks. I had a small brain zap and on a Friday night on the right side of my head while out to dinner about three weeks ago. I then had a small panic attack on the drive home. Over the next couple of weeks, i have just felt out of it. I am not motivated, I feel spacy, just lost in my own mind, and still have some pain on the right side of my head. Then, last week I got my prescription refilled on the paxill 10mg (generic brand) and since then I have really been feeling like I am in a wihdrawal pattern even though I havent changed anything. I have always taken the generic brand of paxil. In addition, I have noticed that I am not sleeping through the nights and I have been having some night sweats. Does anyone think that I may have received a bad batch of the generic brand Paxil????? Does this sound like another withdrawal or a crash??? I had been doing so well since I made it through the GC withdrawals, but lately I have been depressed and feeling like total crap and just dont know why. Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Stay strong everyone. We will beat this!!!! Matthew914 -
  7. Hello Surviving Antidepressants team, I am so glad and grateful you exist. One of the most challenging things about withdrawing from antidepressants is the feeling of loneliness. Although I'm new to the site today, I used Paxil Progress in 2013 and have often browsed SA since. I cannot overstate how comforting it is to know I am not alone and to see people with such kindness and wisdom. Here is my introduction. I'm sorry if it's long, rambling or all over the place. It's kindof cathartic putting this down, even if it does stir some uncomfortable feelings and memories. I have wanted to stop taking Seroxat since 2006, when I was 26 years old. I believe like most psychiatric drugs it blunts all emotions, and has turned me into a zombie that craves carbs and sleep, making me fat and unhealthy. It's also killed my libido for many years. Then in 2010, aged 30, I met my partner and knowing he was the one, I have since wanted even more desperately to stop Seroxat as we'd like to have children. I'm 39 now, and fear time is running out, but would never want to get pregnant and force this drug on a developing baby. I hope I have correctly set up my new account today and am right in doing this introduction. As per my history below, I have been tapering using the 10% method since the middle of last February. I am using liquid Seroxat, which here in the UK is formulated so that 10ml = 20mg. This means practically that I consider my doses in millilitres. I use a two different types of oral syringes – the larger has 10ml total capacity broken into 1ml / 0.2ml increments, and the smaller syringe has 1ml capacity broken into 0.1ml / 0.02ml increments. My latest programme of tapering has been very comfortable and I have very little to report. I suspect I have had occasional symptoms but I have been very careful not to catastrophise or ruminate, having learned that from my previous taper and various psychological therapies (e.g. CBT) in the past. I also believe that some health complaints are part and parcel of human life, whether antidepressants or involved or not. However, I am introducing myself here as I have had an unexpected crisis in the past two weeks. Possibly because it's been a busy Christmas and I was not paying much attention, but for my latest reduction of 22 December, I took 2.92ml instead of the 2.98ml I was meant to take every day. I did not realise this until five days later, on 27 December, when my other half happened to notice I'd written 'take 2.98ml daily' on the bottle box but saw me measuring out 2.92ml. This means for five days I had made a something more like a 11.2% drop than the 9.9% drop that was planned. As it happens, on Christmas day, I felt very poorly with massive anxiety and chest tightness, repeating again on 26 December. By 27 December – the day I realised I had been taking too little Seroxat – I was having horrible digestive issues with lots of heartburn, despite avoiding all the usual food causes of this and eating very conservatively for the festive period. On 27 December and every day since, I have taken the amount I was meant to take for this cycle – 2.98ml, or 5.96mg. But this is where the real difficulties have emerged. My sleep has become very broken, and I am waking every couple of hours in a state of awful panic, with a feeling of inner trembling and bizarre, disturbing memories, phrases and thoughts – thoughts that are feel like they're written in bright neon light and someone is turning them on and off randomly with no logic and no intention by me. Physically, my breathing is shallow, despite consciously trying to practise deep breathing, and my digestive system feels like it is burning. This feeling is continuing into the day and although I'm trying to 'change the channel' and do something else, it's distinctly there in the background. As the panic awakenings seem so reminiscent of my 2013 taper, I quickly realised what was happening, even if on this occasion it has felt milder. I consider that period of my life extremely traumatic, and so it's not something that I like to revisit in my mind. And this in turn fuels the panic – I'm praying that history is not repeating itself – I find that prospect terrifying. My GP is useless and point blank refuses to acknowledge withdrawal exists, and has a 'told you so, you should stay in it for life' attitude if I ever get into discussion with her about my difficulties in coming off Seroxat. Fortunately, I can request the repeat prescription for liquid Seroxat online, so I don't have to have any interaction with her. In fact, I'd rather not have any interaction with medical professionals on this subject. In my own experience since I moved to a new area in 2013, I've only encountered hostility and cynicism. I've already decided in my mind to remain on 2.98ml (5.96mg) and not drop again for a few months (my plan would ordinarily be to drop to 2.7ml / 5.4mg from 19 January and continue onwards). My questions are related to this episode, but also more general questions that have weighed on my mind for ages: 1. Do you think my excess drop could have had an effect on me? Even if, in my case, it was a tiny difference? 2. Do you think I've technically updosed, considering I noticed my mistake after just five days? 3. Is this tiny excess drop plus subsequent updose a possible cause for my pronounced symptoms? Can such tiny variations really have such a strong effect? 4. Does stabilising really happen? Could my plan to remain on 2.98ml for a while now offer stabilisation? 5. My sleep pattern for the past week has been extremely disrupted. Is broken sleep better than no sleep? Should I give in to the urge to nap in the day because at the moment some sleep is good, and if my body is craving it, should I listen to it? (I'm self-employed and work from home so this is possible for me). 6. Do medical professionals resist recognising the problem of antidepressant withdrawal – especially now in the face of such strong evidence – because they'd effectively be admitting they got it wrong, and fear it will open the floodgates for legal action? (I get very angry about this). 7. My partner and I plan to move house in 2019 and get married soon after. Should I put further tapering on hold until after these stressful events? (I hate having to put my health plans on hold like this, but I'm also a realist who doesn't want a repeat of my 2013 trauma). If so, considering I'm now on 5.96mg, would getting to a round figure – e.g. 5mg – be sensible, since I could ask for 10mg tablets and simply cut them in half? Getting from 20mg to 5mg and being stable would still be a positive achievement! I appreciate that some of my questions are really more for me to find the ultimate answer, but I'm still very grateful for people's thoughts and experiences. Many, many thanks. This website and Paxil Progress back in 2013 is a genuine life saver. ______________ MY HISTORY______________ 2002 to 2007 22 to 27 years old - First prescribed Seroxat 20mg daily and taken properly, fully compliant. Do not have records, but attempted to stop by alternating doses around 2006, age 26. Was awful with terrible brain zaps and vomiting. Reinstated by psychiatrist, and pushed up to 40mg by early 2007, age 27. 2013 failed Seroxat taper 33 years old - January to October 2013: 40mg to 0mg Seroxat, by dropping 2mg every fortnight. Did not know of the 10% method. Terrible reaction soon after hitting zero. - November to mid-December 2013: took various drugs prescribed by doctors who would not recognise withdrawal, including diazepam, quetiapine, zopliclone. I did not continue with any of these drugs after mid-December 2013. - January 2014 was back fully on Seroxat, and worked quickly back up to 20mg from mid-December 2013. Latest, 2018 taper, following 10% method, starting with 20mg Seroxat 38 years old - Saturday, 17 February 2018 – 9 ml / 18 mg - Saturday, 17 March 2018 – 8.1 ml / 16.2 mg - Saturday, 14 April 2018 – 7.3 ml / 14.6 mg - Saturday, 12 May 2018 – 6.58 ml / 13.16 mg - Saturday, 9 June 2018 - 5.92 ml / 11.84 mg - Saturday, 7 July 2018 - 5.34 ml / 10.68 mg - Saturday, 4 August 2018 – 5 ml / 10 mg - Saturday, 1 September 2018 - 4.5 ml / 9 mg - Saturday, 29 September 2018 - 4.06 ml / 8.12 mg - Saturday, 27 October 2018 - 3.66 ml / 7.32 mg - Saturday, 24 November 2018 - 3.3 ml / 6.6 mg - Saturday, 22 December 2018 – Meant to be 2.98 ml, but between 22 and 27 December, believe I took 2.92ml by mistake / Meant to be 5.96 mg but by mistake, probably took 5.84mg daily between 22 and 27 December During this latest taper: - No other pharmaceutical drugs. - Rarely drink alcohol. - Drink between 1 and 3 cups of (black) tea or coffee a day. - Take vitamin D supplement as was found to be deficient in it in spring 2018 (my guess is due to not liking/eating oily fish, not being a fan of sunshine and being overweight – I'm about 18 stone, or 252lbs). - Also take a general multivitamin/mineral approximately every other day. - I use an e-cigarette lots. I gave up smoking in 2015 after a chest infection and so vaping is my nicotine source.
  8. Hi, I just wanted to share my experience of this drug and what I am going through. I was put on seroxat at 18 due to messing with recreational drugs. I was fine on 20mg for the next 17 years living life to the max!!! However, due to the birth of my son i wanted to be drug free, and had not had any symptoms for 12 years! I went to the doctor and she said to come off it over a few weeks and I'd be fine. This was not the case, after 7 weeks post taper and about 3 weeks off totally I had a total nervous breakdown. Dr put me back on 20mg, this was 4 months ago. Since then my nervous system is in complete meltdown, im suffering RLS, hand tremmors, depression, anxiety. The Doc suggests trying higher dose of Paroxetine and / or Mirtazipine. Has anyone experienced this, what did you do? Word of advice do your own research and read Shipko, and Healys work on SSRI discontnuation syndrome before you decide to come off it, especially if you have been on it for many years! Don't make my mistake and just trust your Dr!
  9. Amanda167

    Amanda167

    Hi. I've been on Paxil for 22 years with a few unsuccessful WDs in the past. I finally learnt that I was going way to fast so began during the 10% method from 15mg, everything was going well until I got to 7mg. I noticed that my last few prescriptions, I was constantly given a different generic and im sure my severe reaction was not only WD, but from being given yet another generic that I'd never has in the past ( paroxetine made by Milamed) as it coincides with the start of my severe WDs that started at the beginning of Feb 2019, I tried desperately to ride the storm but it got so severe with an endless list of symptoms that left me bedridden and had to give up work. 3 months of insomnia, anxiety, intrusive thoughts, panic, severe chest discomfort, etc left me wanting to end my life and I was taken to ER 3 times, they wanted to admit me to the psyche ward and I refused so each time, I went back home. From the 14th of May, 3 new meds were added.... Zoplicone.. to which I was grateful because i hadnt slept in months so have been taking half 375mg since. Quietiapine 25mg... to which I took for 5 days, then got scared and started tapering down and now on 8mg. Valium... I've been taking anything from 0.50mg daily to 4mg daily to try and take off the edge but obviously hasn't done much as mainly only taken 1 to 2mg on average for the past 4 weeks and now trying to taper that as to scared to just stop. On 1.3mg and trying not to keep switching doses. The only reason I kept switching as I never intended them to be permanent so wasn't paying much attention. As you can probably guess, I'm extremely cautious and trying so desperately not to rely on other meds and have a strong hate to big pharma. To add more confusion to what was once only 10 to 15mg of Paxil daily, I now have 3 other meds in the mix. And now it gets complicated... After hitting severe WD on the generic paroxetine from the 8th of Feb 2019, I updosed as follows... 29th April 19.... updosed to 8.5mg 07th May 19.... updosed to 9.5mg 14th May 19.... updosed to 10.4mg 29th May 19.... switched from generic brand to GSK Seroxat Paxil and stayed at 10.4mg and holding. The reason for my switch was because I had to decide on one brand and stick to it after finding out that generics can vary and I was so mad that my pharmacist kept giving me different generics. I strongly believe that the last one was bad and aided massively to my severe WD. Well, since switching to the GSK Seroxat Paxil, a new kind of hell broke lose, it felt so much stronger my head felt it was going to explode. It has been absolutely horrendous and I'm struggling to hold on and to make things more complicated, I don't know if the added meds are making things even worse. I'm so desperate to reach some stability and now know that messing with the other doses have probably not helped at all but was so desperate not to rely on other poisons. I don't know what to do to make things better, it's been a month since updosing but only 2 weeks on the GSK paxil and it's not working. Please can someone advise me??? Help me??? I feel like I've had an adverse reaction and being given more meds on a sensitized nervous system only complicated matters further... so desperate to know a way out. I would of given up if I didn't have an amazing 14 year old Son. I'm so sorry for the complication of my story and would truly appreciate if someone can offer some advise. I so wish I'd just held but I was so so desperate. Thank you so much for reading, I appreciate that others are going through hell too and it's such a lonely frustrating painful journey x
  10. Hi! I'm so glad to be here😊 I've been reading a lot of valuable info here and look forward to your insight and help! I'm a 30yo female, Med history as described in signature. Progressively more symptoms as I taper, mainly panic attacks and anxiety attacks that I haven't had in years, GI problems and heat / stagnant air / high humidity severe intolerance, morning cortisol spikes mild insomnia, more painful pms and BIG sensitivity to any stressor. Most of it wasn't even present when I was on 8.1mg ... For that reason I thought it would be good to hold for a while starting from 29/09/19 and so I did. So far cortisol morning spike is what has almost resolved. Others have improved. Still, about very other day I'll have a few hours of great discomfort from GI mainly I have a severe issue accompanied with panic attacks. It immediately triggers intense nausea for me that if not immediately taken care of progresses to vomiting. This unfortunately happens for any big stressor or even excitement now. This is the only lingering problem from my CT attempt in 2013 which I never had before that! To my unfortunate luck, I've had to deal recently with a big stressor, mimicking just the same environment and symptoms of the CT attempt and back then the solution I chose was to leave the situation and return home which gave me comfort. I could easily stabilize and continue with my taper if this stressor wasn't present, but I'm afraid I can't deal with both, aggravating each other and I'm so afraid itll become an uncontrollable spiral. So at this point I would like to ask for the best solution to an immediate relief. Yes, in the best scenario it would be just to leave the house that's causing the stress, but moving away will trigger panic attacks until I settle down and I'm so dreadful of that. Funny that this time it's the opposite solution for the CT attempt I had. Leaving instead of returning to my house. My options: Right now I can control the nausea with phenergan 12.5mg but the agony in waiting for it to work (1-2 hours) is big. I'll need this for perhaps a couple of months until things will settle down in my current house situation together with my stress sensivity. Powerful drug so not a very nice solution IMO. Other option I'm thinking about is to updose by 2.5%, just to make me less sensitive to stress I guess? I saw that this is what @Altostrata has suggested 2 days ago to my friend @embd with the option to divide the dose due to fast metabolism in the lower doses. So how do I go about that divide? I just dont know what my best shot is here so i would appreciate a moderator's advice. I have some interesting general questions prepared from a while before the stressor even begun, I'll save those for later as they're not urgent. Thanks For reading thus far 😚. Looking forward for your replies.
  11. Hi Everyone - I was put on Paxil 16 years ago, when I was 19, for generalized anxiety. I tried to get off it once, when they tapered me off 20 mg over two weeks after I had been taking the drug for a year. This was, clearly, a disaster, and I never tried again. Now I am deeply, deeply regretting not starting the taper earlier. I had NO idea how long it would take. I was thinking *maybe* a year. It seems like this will not be the case for me. I started at 15 mg in February 2018, and I'm now down to 8.8 mg, or rather 4.4 mL, as I've switched to liquid. I started by tapering 1 mg a month, which went fine for the first month. However, the next month I started experiencing panic attacks - even though I had never experienced a panic attack before. So I did some research and switched to tapering at 0.5 mg every two weeks. Once I went to liquid, because of the measuring syringe I had, I switched to tapering 0.2 mL (0.4 mg equivalent) every two weeks. This went fine until I got to 4.2 mL. I was rendered non-functional - so dizzy, couldn't remember ANYTHING for more than a few seconds, forgetting words, etc. It was horrible, and I couldn't do my job. So I went back up to 4.4 mL, where I have been for the past two weeks. I need to figure out what to do next. On a side note, but a super important one, I'm freaking out about how long this is going to take because I was thinking maybe I wanted kids, and I can't have kids on Paxil. I'm not sure what to do about that. I'm 35, and I don't have five years to try to get off Paxil and then have children. Maybe I can cross taper to Zoloft? I have no idea. So I'm lost. And looking for support. Already super excited about the information I've found here. My psychiatrist is not super helpful, and I've developed the schedule myself. She originally suggested a much faster one. Sigh. Thanks for reading!
  12. (mod note)link to teePeer1's benzo forum thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/19092-how-to-taper-the-used-as-needed-benzo-or-sparing-benzo-use/ Dear all, I gradually tapered to 10 mg of paxil from 40 and also tapered off benzo (3mg to 0) both slowly over a period of months. Long story short, I thought I was near the fonish line. However, when I taperedd to 10 mg from 15 mg paxil and stopped a doze of less than .25 benzos things got rough after two weeks. My issues are mostly related to night:severe anxiety, hyper alertness, pounding heart. It was so bad a couple of nights that I resorted to taking a small dose of lexatonil. Now I am afraid of what strategy to follow next. My experience with psychiatrists have been pretty bad during my taper and I am afraid if I go back they will put me on more meds. Should I go back to 15 mg paxil from 10 and is it safe to use half a tablet of benzo at night to brave through the night? (Though i am afraid of benzo withdrawals too) I would appreciate any suggestions on how to stabilize my situation at this stage and dosage?
  13. Gidday everyone. I am an ex-Paxilprogresser and when it closed I was very sick of the long horrible process, so I didn't join everyone here back then, but I finally paddled over to the U.S. from Australia. I have to keep reminding myself that the turtle got onto the ark by just keeping going, one step at a time! I started to have some decent days because I found a herbal remedy that has brought my headaches and migraines from 20 a month to 2 over a 12 month period. This means I can actually DO SOMETHING and is a wonderful relief. On those good head days, I always wonder how my old friends are going, so I intend to look you all up! I have decided to put up my history, a bit at a time, or it would be too laborious to read, so that's where I will start.
  14. Hi everyone, So glad to have found this forum in my journey weaning off Paxil. Because of severe withdrawal symptoms during my doctor's recommended tapering schedule, I'm weaning off Paxil painstakingly slowly (liquid prescription, with a syringe). I have a question about tapering at smaller doses. I accidentally missed a dose (just 1.2 mg.) on January 17. Anyone who has taken Paxil knows that you do. not. skip. a dose. I don't know how it happened, but I forgot to take it one night (for the first time in about ten years). For the next TWO WEEKS, I was nauseous, had trouble eating, had mood swings, and worst of all, had some very scary depersonalization (feeling like I was in a dream or on LSD). Very scary. So, this can really happen from just missing a tiny 1.2 mg. dose? I called my doctor and they said this "isn't because of Paxil." Lol. Thanks so much! (This is why I'm so grateful for this forum--people actually dealing with the reality of tapering off these medicines.) Wouldn't tapering get easier as I get down to lower doses? ? What am I going to do at lower doses? The 10% method sounds good in theory, but yikes -- it will take forever just to get off 1.2 mg. My eventual goal is to get off Paxil and Zoloft, but my primary goal is to stay alive. I appreciate your thoughts and opinions! Thanks! I ran out of room in my signature for my quite-lengthy history, so I am expanding it here since this is my intro post: On Paxil since 1996--anxiety and depression. It worked for a while, but had to keep increasing it. 20 mg --> 40 mg --> 60 mg. For years I've wanted to get off it -- it wasn't working anymore, but very difficult to come off. Early 2013--Getting treated for sleep apnea (with CPAP) eliminated about 75% of my anxiety. Who knew?!?!? How long had I had sleep apnea, but treated anxiety with meds? March 2013: Feeling so good with CPAP treatment that I started weaning off Paxil about 10 mg/month: 60mg to 50 mg to 40 mg (NO negative effects whatsoever--if anything, I just felt better and better.) July 2013-- went from 40 mg to 30 mg. Some dizziness; nothing major. Starting a new job; paused taper. June 2014, began Paxil taper again, going from 30 to 20 in one week. (I can't believe that a medical professional actually advised me to do this.) This was very, very bad (dizziness and suicidality--the first time in my life--very scary), so went back to 25mg. Stayed at 25 mg. for another year. Not looking forward to going back down and continuing taper! In June 2015 started a cross-taper while adding Zoloft--went from 25 mg. Paxil to 20, to 10, to [this was the most difficult one] 5.) The cut from 10 to 5 mg gave me akathisia; nausea; suicidal thoughts; rage; and severe anxiety. Most of my time was consumed in dealing with Paxil tapering effects. August 2015 -- obtained a prescription for liquid Paxil. September: 4 mg Paxil October 2015: Suicidality -- doctor advised me to go up on Zoloft; I did so to save my life. Now at 100 mg Zoloft. (But it's not working -- my exercise, eating, meditation, acupuncture, and supplements are.) October to December 2015: 4 mg Paxil --> 3 mg --> 2 mg --> 1.6 mg. Symptoms are tolerable at this rate; the worst is a feeling of being intoxicated for several hours a day. But going this slow makes me feel like it will take forever to get off! ! ! Currently: 1.2 mg Paxil. Also: Vitamin D; Vitamin B complex; magnesium; plenty of protein; exercise; acupuncture; meditation/mindfulness; working with a naturopathic doctor.
  15. I have been on Paxil for 20 years. I was originally put on it for reactive depression from getting fibromyalgia . I don't need it now. I am not depressed anymore. My problem is that there is no liquid Seroxat /Paxil available here. I first tried bridging to Prozac. I found that moving from Seroxat to Prozac was too hard. I then tried dissolving it in water but my Seroxat tablets do not suspend or dissolve in water. They sink to the bottom of the glass. Does anyone know a reputable online pharmacy that sells liquid paxil and ships to Israel? There was a suggestion of using "Ora Plus" suspension liquid on this forum to dissolve insoluble tablets. I can easily buy Ora Plus from ebay with international shipping. What puts me off is that all the reviews of that on Amazon involve people using it to suspend tablets they give to their dogs and cats! It also contains some nasty sounding chemicals. The shipping cost is crazy too. But that doesn't worry me as much as the other two reasons. I take the gsk - glaxo smith kline version of Seroxat. I take 3/4 of a tablet - 15mg. It's the same tablet distributed to the whole of the European Union. Has anyone here successfully tapered off that without the liquid Seroxat? If so how did you do it? Anyone know an online pharmacy that sells liquid Paxil that ships to Israel?
  16. Well I have always had some sort of anxiety my whole life. Of course, nowhere NEAR as bad as the anxiety WD has caused me. I missed school a ton growing up cause it just made me anxious to be around a lot of people and I was very shy. Just the thought of having to go to school gave me a nervous stomachache. This led to me actually dropping out for a while in high school. Thankfully I was able to enroll in an alternative high school with very small classes where we could go at our own pace and make our own hours. I was able to graduate and get my diploma in under 2 years. I've also had OCD for as long as I can remember. I was tormented by my intrusive thoughts and thought there was something very wrong with me or I was possessed. When I was around 11 or 12 I was looking in a psychology book for some answers and when I read the description for OCD I had a Eureka moment. "That's me!" I was so happy I started crying. So I guess I diagnosed myself but it was later confirmed by a child psychologist. Around 1998 (when I was 18 years old) is when I started seeing commercials on TV for Paxil. Again, when I heard the description I thought it sounded a lot like me. I had just been broken up with by a guy for being "too shy". I was hating how reserved I was and my "social anxiety." It had been getting even worse as now I was getting very nervous and racing heart when in restaurants or standing in line at the store. So I went to a psychiatrist and told him I wanted this drug, Paxil. After a LONG questionnaire and hearing my symptoms he agreed it might help me. I asked him if I could stop taking it any time I wanted and he said "Yes." LIE. That was the day I made the worst decision of my life and I will always regret taking that first pill. So I started the Paxil at 20mg and had no start up effects that I can remember. A few months later I took a trip by myself on a bus half way across the country. So I gues the Paxil was "working." I also missed a couple of doses and that is when I found out about the horrible WD. Zaps, crazy sensitivity to noises, nausea, etc. It scared the crap out of me. Felt like I was stuck on this poison. The years start to pass and I begin to become numb to everything. I gain 30 pounds, which doesn't sound like much but on someone 5'2" with a small frame it definitely shows. Although I was in a relationship I became more and more disinterested in sex. My favorite hobby was sleeping. I had zero ambition and zero motivation. In 2002, my BF at the time finally convinced me to try to get off this drug. I started taking 2.5mg drops every month or so from 30-40mg (cant remember exactly). As I got lower my interest in sex returned and I felt good. I decided to go on birth control. Two weeks after starting it I crashed completely. I was at about 10mg of Paxil at that time. One morning I woke up to nausea, some vomiting, a horrible burning sensation everywhere in my body, horrible anxiety, and the dreaded akathisia which was by far the worse symptom. I became suicidal and made an emergency appt. with a psychiatrist (not the one who initially prescribed it) who talked to me for 15 minutes and said this was proof I needed to be on the drug for the rest of my life. She proceeded to up my dose back to 30mg. I slowly started to feel better and the experience was enough to scare me away from attempting to taper off for several years. In Dec. 2006 after I get out of that relationship I feel something needs to change in my life. I was very unhappy with who I was. So I once again start to taper from 37.5mg. In 2008 I make it 20mg and decide to take a break. I go out with friends, I drink ALOT. Sleeping, smoking pot, eating, and drinking alcohol are my favorite activities. The break lasts for a whole year. In 2009 I commence my taper, but I notice it's getting a lot harder, which would make sense since besides the crash in 2002 I have never been on a dose lower than 20mg. I have to reduce my drops to less than 5%. At around 15mg in Aug. 2009 I get a part time job I love but I'm so scared of having WD at work that I take even smaller drops. In a year at that job I drop about 3mg. In 2010 I start to have stomach problems and anxiety increases. I have to stop eating red meat completely as I notice it makes my stomach problems worse. I carry a bottle of Pepto Bismol in my purse with me everywhere I go. Stomach problems give me anxiety and vice versa so it's a vicious cycle. Finally in Aug. 2010 I'm spending most of my time at my job in the bathroom so I decide to quit the best job I ever had. Probably just as well as about a month later is when the crap really hits the fan. In late September I take a 4% drop from 11.8 to 11.4. I get a little depression after about a week. Two weeks after that I try to eat a bit of red meat and visit the website of someone I used to know and it makes me very anxious. Several hours later I begin to feel very nauseous and anxious. I finally make myself throw up and feel a little better. I sleep a lot the next two days. The day after that however I stop sleeping completely. My anxiety goes into overdrive. I have no appetite and can't eat. I feel shaky, and depressed. My brain has forgotten how to sleep all of a sudden although I have never had insomnia in my entire life previous to this. If I do pass out it is for less than a hour. For 9 days I sleep one hour every 3 days. I see weird cartoony things when I close my eyes. I hear things that I know are not there. Once I had an awful bloody image flash into my mind out of nowhere when trying to fall asleep that "woke me up" with a gasp. I try everything over the counter: Benadryl, herbal sleep pills, melatonin, valerian. Nothing works. Finally someone gives me some Xanax and Trazadone. I take .50mg of Xanax and 25mg of Trazadone. Instead of sleeping one hour I sleep two. The next day I am more groggy than the night before and I am FINALLY able to sleep 5-6 very broken hours. I also updose to 12mg. I start to feel a little better but this doesn't last long. Three weeks later my stomach starts acting up again and I am unable to sleep. Not only am I unable to sleep but now every time I am about to fall asleep my body violently jerks awake. It is torture. I decide to start dropping again. I find I feel a little better after a drop but it doesn't last long. I start to drop every 3 weeks. The depression is still so bad cause I don't know what's wrong with me and my body keeps jerking awake, usually all night. I become suicidal and try to suffocate myself one night. Then I realize, I DON'T want to die. I just don't want to keep living like this. By the grace of God I make it through. I lose about 15 pounds in 4 weeks. I guess this brings us up to present, fifteen months after that "rough patch" or "mini crash". I still have no idea what caused it. The jerks are still here and still drive me insane but thankfully they have weakened and are not as relentless (usually) as they used to be. My sleep has never been the same since. I take magnesium and melatonin every night to sleep. If I get even slightly stimulated good or bad I am unable to sleep. Even going out with friends stimulates me too much and I am unable to sleep. I can't exercise for even 10 minutes cause it makes my jerks worse. I am still not working. I have found it has gotten even harder under 10mg. I have gone from tapering every 3 weeks to every six weeks. From 4% drops to not even being able to do 2.5% drops. I taper .1mg every 6 weeks. At this rate it will take me 6+ years to get to off if I can at all. I read on the other forum about someone who was going as slow as me and she STILL crashed at 6mg. I'm very hopeless. I am so freaking sensitive to drops and can't imagine how I will ever get off this poison. It has been three years since I started tapering from 20mg and I'm not even close to being off. I'm too scared to switch to Prozac because of all the horror stories I've heard and the fact that it is notoriously activating. If I try to hold on a dose longer than 7 weeks I feel very bad. I feel like I'm damned if I do and damned if I don't. Really don't know how to proceed and if I will ever get my life back. I am 31 now and would very much be able to have kids someday. I'm single and have been for a long time cause I can't even go out anymore and meet people. When I do go out, I don't sleep like I said. So that's it. Thanks if you took the time to read this LONG, LONG introduction. I pray for all you guys and I hope you will pray for me too. XX
  17. Hello fellow AD wayfarers, I've been following this site for several weeks and am amazed at what we humans can endure. I do believe that in the process of withdrawing from these drugs, many of us have been to h###. I think we're a select group, and unless you've been there, you wouldn't understand. I feel for everyone here who is going through this dark night! 26 years on paroxetine 20 mg, and I've just finished transitioning to fluoxetine with the goal of totally transitioning off all ADs next year. I began Paxil in 1993 due to a history of depression and anxiety. It worked like a charm, and I was thrilled. After 2 years, I tapered down to 0 mg over just 3 weeks because my husband and I were ready to get pregnant. All was well at first but withdrawal kicked in about a month later. I white-knuckled my way through it and experienced two miscarriages during that time. I reinstated the Paxil the next spring, I think, and subsequently had 2 beautiful daughters. 🙂 Fast forward to 2009. I was feeling good and eating well and was ready to experience life again without ADs. My emotions were well-controlled but flat-lined, and I had put on 30 lbs. I enlisted a chiropractor and an acupuncturist to assist me with treatments over my 4 month taper. Not knowing any better, I tapered by cutting out the paroxetine one day the first week, two days the second week, and so on. Not sure how it took almost 4 months but that's what I remember doing. I started having withdrawal symptoms before the end of the process. The symptoms became intolerable. I remember spending a lot of time in bed with severe depersonalization (which I learned about here- I was so happy to find a name for it! Thought I was losing my mind!), not sleeping or eating for days due to severe anxiety and nausea, and very jittery with weak and trembling muscles. It was absolutely terrifying. Add to this the guilt of not being a great mother to my two girls at this time. Thank God for wonderful husbands. I reinstated the paroxetine after a couple of months and the symptoms abated. It never seemed to work as well, though. Fast forward again to this summer. Working with my psychiatric nurse, I spent 3 weeks going from 20 mg paroxetine to 20 mg fluoxetine. I know transitioning off fluoxetine is a much gentler process. Although I'd love to get off ADs sooner rather than later, I'm planning on holding here until spring of next year when I'll begin the process of tapering. I teach middle school and trying to do this during the school year would probably be a disaster. I was REALLY nervous about the switch but it's gone way better than I imagined! I've been on straight fluoxetine now for 2 weeks. My symptoms include persistent headaches, stiff and jerky neck muscles, blurry vision, trouble falling asleep, and minor anxiety upon waking. Nothing major at this point. I'm hoping and praying it doesn't get worse and that it improves before school starts. Most any physical activity is hard right now. I'm putting my intro out there now wondering if anyone has experience doing the same thing. I'm curious how long these symptoms will continue. The headaches are really annoying. Ibuprofen helps to a certain extent, but there's always some discomfort. I'm so grateful for all who work this site and contribute with their stories. Withdrawal involves such feelings of loneliness. This site is much needed! Thank you! xoxo
  18. Hi everybody, My name is Grégory, I'm french, 35 years old. Here's my story : I started Paxil (paroxetine in France) in 2002 because of anxiety, 40 mg for 5 years, and then 20 mg for 5 another years. In 2012 I tried a withdrawal in 1 month, and I started to suffer from pain and burning sensations in my legs, and depression. One month later I reinstated Paxil 20 mg, and after some weeks, I felt better. I stayed 2 years like this. In november 2013 I retried a withdrawal, 20 mg a day, 10 mg the next day, 20 mg again the next day etc during 3 months -> then 10 mg for 3 other months -> then 10 mg/5 mg/10 mg for 3 months -> then 5 mg for 3 months -> then 5 mg/2,5 mg/5 mg for 3 months -> then 2,5 mg for 3 months. During this withdrawal (a year and a half) I had some back pain, I thought it was my discopathy that got worse, and when I was in 2,5mg for 4 months, the pain in my legs suddenly reappeared strongly, and the depression. I tried to reinstate 5 mg for a week, but a morning I had been wake by a short ring in my ears. I made an anxiety attack and I felt so bad that my family send me to a psychiatrist that sent me to a psychiatric hospital. They gave to me a lot of medication, they stopped paxil and gave to me chlomipramine, abilify, tranxene and a sleeping drug (I forgot the name) I was like a zombie. So I decided to leave one week later. I suffered from akathisia, and a lot of side effects. It was really horrible. So I stopped all the drugs and I decided to go back to paxil, 20 mg because I thought it was the best for me. Of course it was a big, big mistake. I didn't made the connection with the short ring in my ears 3 weeks ago. 1 hours after taking the only pill, a constant tinnitus appeared in my ears... So I decided immediately to stop everything, and day after day the tinnitus decreased. 3 weeks later it was completely gone, it lasted one week. After that it reappeared slowly, it was 3 months ago. Since that the tinnitus increase slowly, sometimes I can't sleep. Because of that I have a nervous breakdown. The pain in my back and my legs are a little less intense but I have no windows since I stopped Paxil. I read a lot of information about antidepressant withdrawal, a lot of testimony, in particular in your forum, the tinnitus topic, the 'reinstating and stabilizing' topic, etc..... Now please could you give me your advice ? Because I think that the pains are withdrawal symptoms and the tinnitus an adverse reaction, isn't it ? But isn't it strange that an adverse reaction goes away after a moment, then reappears and increases ? It's more like a withdrawal symptom ! I'm really lost. Thanks for your help !
  19. I have just written this same post here. I then read that new users should post here. Feel free to delete one or other of these duplicate posts. My wife is packing her bags and leaving me as I am writing this, and I am convinced that it's her SSRIs that are to blame. We've been together six years, married for three. She started taking SSRIs a year ago as she was suffering from anxiety attacks when leaving the house causing her diarrhoea. (I'm still not convinced that it was anxiety causing diarrhoea, and not the other way round. She had been suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome – but that's another story). The doctor prescribed her an SSRI which she has taken since. I wasn't happy that she was prescribed them as I was vaguely aware that they could be dangerous and addictive. However, she seemed happy that she could could leave the house confidently and continue her life as before. I'm not sure exactly what she's taking but I know it is a low dosage. She took a “normal” dose at the beginning but became a zombie, and could barely get out of bed. The doctor lowered her dosage. However during this year, first her libido decreased to the extent that we have not had sex for a few months. Then last month she told me that she's not in love with me and is not sure if she ever has been. I don't believe this because of how happy we have been together, how often she said she loved me, saying that she couldn't live without me, planning on buying a house together, having children, etc. I have tried to explain that maybe the SSRIs were affecting how she feels, showing her the thousands of studies, articles, forums with descriptions of “emotional blunting”, but she replied that she knows her own feelings. Despite this, she still seems positive towards other aspects of her life such as her work. (Some reports describe SSRI users as not caring about anything). She wants to try to cut down and quit the SSRIs anyway, but she doesn't believe that they are the cause of not loving me any more. In the meantime, she's decided to leave and live with a friend. I tried to convince her that it would be better to stay living together, quit the SSRIs and then see how she feels, but she doesn't agree. Can low dosage SSRIs affect just her “emotional pairing” and not other parts of her life (e.g. work)? If she does quit the SSRIs, how long will it be before her “true” feelings return to her? (Admittedly, it might not be the SSRIs and it might be that she really has fallen out of love with me). She also suggested that we stay in contact with each other and plan to see each other to see how we feel about our relationship. Should I agree to do this? Or should I give her space and wait and see how she feels after a time apart (e.g. a month)? Thanks for any help and advice offered.
  20. I joined this site a couple of weeks ago. After finding that paxilprogress was no more. I was devastated. That site may have truly saved my life in some of my darkest moments. What is one to do? When essentially you've self-destructed in front of everyone you love; because of a nasty little "non-habit-forming" pill that's been shoved down your throat for decades. So here I am. Time (weeks really) has eluded me. I meant to reach out sooner. I'm just hoping I'm not reaching out too late. I feel like such a horrible failure. I know better than that at some level, know that maybe I failed but that I just have to pick up the broken pieces and keep moving forward. But I'm so I'll. I'm so weak. I'm so alone. And I feel so helpless. My life may not have been a picnic before the introduction of SSRIs. But this is one situation in which the grass was truly greener on the side of which I was already standing. Before popping that first "innocent" little pink pill, prescribed by a doctor who had seen me only once and only spent 10 minutes "getting to know me". I couldn't tell you who that doctor was, I never saw him again. Nevertheless he was the first in probably nearly a hundred who have insisted upon continuing the saga. And what better did I know? I was unhappy before the meds. I was often unstable on them. And I was clueless as to why I was saying and doing psychotic things (that I often didn't remember, or just have "snippets" of memory after the fact) and so violently ill when I decided I simply no longer wanted to take the pills. Or was even 12 hours late on a dose. (More about that and my travels down genetic testing road and CYP450 mutations later.) All that being said; Hello to all in these forums. I'm the antisocial one. The antisocial one that sometimes doesn't know when it's appropriate to shut up. Or how to appropriately ask for help. But if you've been through it (psych med-wise), I probably have too. And vice versa.
  21. Hello all, I was prescribed 40 mgs of paroxetine in 1997 for depression. It worked fine for six months, I was then advised by my doctor to come off it and I tapered as per instructions (reducing by 5 mgs a week) and I was fine until I was off the drug completely for six weeks, then I crashed. I felt so bad I went back on. The next time I came off I tapered more slowly, but with the same result, so I went back on again. Fast forward to Christmas 2017 when, stupidly, I reduced from 40 mgs to 20 mgs in one go and went through terrible withdrawal symptoms, but was able to go to work even though I was obviously ill. After reading the advice on this site I up-dosed slightly to 22.5 mgs using a pill crusher, and after a couple of months the withdrawal symptoms remitted. I stayed on the 22.5 mgs for 6 weeks and then reduced by 1mg, I waited 6 more weeks before reducing again by 1 mg. I continued with this schedule until I got to 18 mgs, then everything went haywire with the very worst withdrawal symptoms I have ever experienced. I immediately up-dosed to 20 mgs, hoping this would give me some relief. After 6 weeks I was getting continually worse with increasingly suicidal/self-harming impulses. In desperation I went up to 25 mgs for two weeks and then up to 30 mgs which I have now been on for seven weeks. I've currently been off work sick for nearly three months and I can only describe my symptoms as horrific, as well as ever changing, the worst being extreme agitation and twitching of the body, along with depression, and hyper-sensitivity to any noise, as well as fear of the future. Recently the Royal College of Psychiatrists in Britain has acknowledged SSRI withdrawal as a serious problem and I am contemplating asking for a referral to see a psychiatrist in order to at least to get my experience validated as none of my regular doctors seem to believe that what I am going through is protracted withdrawal. I would be interested to know if anyone has any advice as to what I should do?
  22. Hi you all! I am Athena. So my tough journey begins in 2001, when I am diagnosed with depression. I am then prescribed Effexor, which instantly gives me huge side effects: vomiting, tremors, sweats... But I am a tough warrior and I put up with them, for a year and a half. In 2005, depression comes back, and here starts the trial-and-error of many, many AD's: Celexa, Zoloft, Effexor, desipramin, Wellbutrin, mirtazepin, Lamictal, Remeron, Abilify, nortriptylin, Cipralex, Cymbalta, and others I don't remember. They all give me side effects that are almost as bad as the disease in itself. When I would try to stop them, I would have really bad symptoms of depression, so I began to believe that that was going to be my life, which is quite depressing in itself! Last summer (2012), while being on Cymbalta, I developped really bad sleeping problems: I would sleep maximum 3 hours per night, and only with a med called Imovane. So I started to be addicted to that in order to sleep. But I was so tired that I decided to stop the Cymbalta, so my doctor prescribed me Paxil. I was already on Wellbutrin as well. Paxil made me SO sleepy, that I tried to quit in Sept. 2012, first from 20mg to 10mg, which went well, and then 2 weeks later from 10mg to 0. Outch. That's when I found out about withdrawal symptoms, which I had never heard of before for AD's. It was awful, but it might have been my revelation, because they were really PHYSICAL symptoms. I started to read a lot about the subject on the internet. I have learned a lot, and I have started to think that the depression symptoms I have been having when I tried many times to stop my meds were maybe in fact WITHDRAWAL symptoms. My doctor didn't think so. Even so, I started to taper slowly from Paxil and to take good care of myself in other natural ways. So here I am now, on 7mg Paxil, 100mg Wellbutrin and 2.5mg Imovane. My doctor keeps telling me to try and taper Paxil faster than I am now... so he can be able to prescribe me something else... a MAOI (?).I am not really interested in trying a 20th (?) medication. All of the previous ones have given me really bad side effects that have put my life on hold for 10 years... Why would this one be different? He claims that I am going to have a depression relapse if I don't take any medication... So here is my first question: do you guys think what I have experienced as "depression relapse" when I was trying to stop the AD's many times in the last 10 years, might have been in fact withdrawal symptoms? And that if I taper them a lot more gradually, I might not have those "depression symptoms" forever? And therefore, I wouldn't have to take the so-called MAOI? My second question is: which one do you think I should taper first? Paxil or Wellbutrin? I wanted to get off Paxil as fast as possible because it was making me so sleepy, but right now, it seems like the side effects from Wellbutrin are more disturbing. It has always affected my breathing, like I have to make an effort to breath completely, and it has given me some joint pain. But right now these seem to be worse, breathing is more difficult and it makes the breathing muscles become too contracted and sore. Plus I know that breathing right is important during recovery... Also, the problem with Wellbutrin is that you're not supposed to cut the pill, since the covering is doing the "slow-release" job... Well this was my story! I know it's a looong and boring story but it's mine... If anyone would have any input or advice on one or both of my questions, I would be SO grateful!! Also, please forgive my English mistakes, it is not my mother tongue. I really wish a full physical and mental health to everyone here, and I am looking forward to know and discuss with you all!! All the best. -Athena
  23. Prestorb

    ☼ Prestorb

    Hello, I am encouraged to find this site as I feel like I am on an island alone in this effort to withdraw from SSRIs. I'm sure my husband is sympathetic, but he doesn't understand and he is probably just really tired of dealing with it. So I basically don't talk to anyone other than my therapist about it. It sucks, and yet I know the SSRIs need to go. I asked for a change in SSRI about six weeks ago, so my Pdoc recommended I taper off the 40 mg of Paxil at 10 mg per week, while starting Zoloft at 25 mg per then up to 50 mg. So now I am off the Paxil (generic) and only on the Zoloft at 25 mg - I didn't tolerate it well at all. I know I am having a lot of WD symptoms, and I am just trying to manage them as best I can, which is okay some days and not good other days. I also have an 11 year old son, although I am not working outside the home right now - which I often feel is part of the problem. But I am afraid to commit to anything until my emotions stabilize. I start crying for no reason and can't stop. Sorry to ramble, I'm not sure what else to write, just hoping to find support here. Thank you.
  24. Frankgrimes

    Frankgrimes: Paxil withdrawal and reinstatment

    For the past 16 years, I had been on a super random combination - 10mg lexapro and 150 Wellbutrin xl in the morning, 2.5 paxil and 25 Zoloft at night. For OCD and depression. I started getting breakthrough depression and my Dr. thought the Paxil was doing more harm than good and we should get me off that and increase the Zoloft. So we did - from 2.5 paxil to 1.25 and 25 zoloft to 50 zoloft. That night I had the most intense sex and it was unreal. Like I had never felt before. Then I fell asleep and woke up early and with energy. My pupils were huge though - I was high and I felt sexually like a 16 year old. I told my doc and a day or two later we dropped the Zoloft down to 37.5. What a productive week of work and gym and dating. The next week I couldn’t tolerate the increased Zoloft so we went down to 25 zoloft and he said sure go off the Paxil. So I went from 2.5 paxil to 1.25 to 0 in 2 weeks. And 25 to 50 to 37.5 to 25 zoloft in 2 weeks. This all happened between February 18 and March 4. On I believe Wednesday the 6th I called the dr. crying and he said to take 1.25 paxil cuz I was in withdrawal. Eventually I went back to 2.5 but the hell was done. I didn’t sleep. I would wake up screaming. I paced for hours straight. Advil PM every night. I went to a urologist and he gave me Levaquin and naproxen and said I had a prostate infection. I didn’t eat the next 10 days. I started having pains. My left left foot went numb. I had pins and needles. My left hand was numb. Pushups hurt my left elbow. Could the Levaquin have caused my pains? Was it the withdrawal? I don’t know. I think it was the withdrawal because now it comes and goes. I had electric shocks. Acupuncture was brutal - so much electricity. Paxil withdrawal - I need hope!! During this, one time after sex i felt an electric volt up and down my entire left side - the worst pain I have ever felt. My left hand was numb. My left foot was numb (my left leg still hurts). I thought I was floxed from the Levaquin. It’s still possible - everything hurt - joints, trigger points. But can be from the withdrawal. At one point my new doc tried to add deplin. It got me high. And then deplin with 12.5 zoloft. 5 days later horrible crying and pain on my left side and withdrawals. I had the chills again. Like the flu. That went away when I restarted the Zoloft. Now 3 months later - I am feeling withdrawal again (or startup effects). I have switched brands of generics thinking maybe that was the issue that caused the depression and I switched from generic lexapro to brand name. Since then I’ve been sweating profusely - first night i was waking up with the sweats. Now I’ll just start sweating like crazy anywhere. I don’t sleep and I can’t sit still. I have a new doc who wants me to take l-methylfolate and lamictal. He wants me off the SSRIs. ’m scared. I can’t take this much more. My doc said I’ll get better. He said I’m not on what I should be on based on my genetics. But I feel it’s too late to change now that I went through and felt withdrawal. Surprisingly I feel pretty good every day from 6 pm - 10 pm. But then sleep happens. Whenever I think about the stress and permanent damage my leg hurts. Please give me hope!!
  25. Washy

    Washy: Big mess

    Hello. Brief history, 20 years of paxil/seroxat use, 16 months ago i decided with my doctor i wanted to reduce and stop this medication. With his direction of reduction i went down from 30mg to 10mg in 5 months. Brief headaches was experienced during going down. Decided to hold at month 5 as some anxiety issues started. I was advised by my doctor to give my body a rest and hold on a therapeutic dose of 10mg for some time. Really symptoms held for a further 4 months, and was adout to start to reduce further when different symptoms appeared. Since then to today i've been in a slow spiral of worsening symptoms. Since due to research i know he took me off too fast and I'm now suffering for that. I've lost my job as my condition is deteriorating slowly. My doctor advised me to go back on my full dose about 3 months ago, i had my apprehension about his method as he led me to this condition in the first place. So i remained as i am. Maybe now i wish i had listen to him as i am in a pretty rough state. . Do i list my symptoms? I now do not know where to turn or what to do. Loosing hope personally. If anyone here can give me some advise please.
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