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  1. Hello to all of you First of all I want to thank all of you for the information posted on this page. I am a guy living in Copenhagen, and I'm currently taking clomipramine. In a couple of months I will turn 30, and by that time I will have spend the last 12,5 years of my life on antidepressants. I am diagnosed with OCD, which most of all manifests in GAD like symptoms today. The first 10 years I was on 20 mg of citalopram, and it was only increased a couple of times during this period. Last year I was seeing a psychiatrist, and we tested a lot of different medicine (paroxetine, pregabalin, mirtzapine, sertraline, escitalopram), but none of it helped with my symptoms. I wanted to try clomipramine as a last resort, which my doctor prescribed me. It felt good for a couple of weeks as all the other drugs have, but I simply can't stand the feeling of being doped any more. I feel like I have to get back to me in some way, but talking about me is also kind of crazy after being on antidepressants for 12,5 years. I was taking 25 mg of clomipramine which I cut in half about a month ago. It's been kind of a tough month. The anxiety and anger overtakes me, and today I have made a water solution and taken 20 mg instead of 12,5 mg. Hope the symptoms will improve! I do have some worries now. The whole water solution makes me really nervous. Like do I get enough, will the solution get stronger as I get near the bottom of the glas etc. Like doing the whole water solution is agony, when you suffer severe anxiety. Do you guys have some calming words or any suggestions to combating the anxiety? I have made my mind up about wanting to stop the medicin, and I'm planing to do the 10% method etc. That make me drug free in 2020 or something, but just decreasing the drug slowly will be a reward in it self. I'm so tired of feeling numb, apathy and not being able to love like I once did! Greetings Henrik
  2. Hi everyone! I was prescribed Abilify for severe depression and anxiety and I have been able to slowly taper off thanks to miracle product called cysteine, highly recommend it. When I crossed 15mg of Abilify, instead of constipation I got diarrhea. Now, when I was on 9-8mg, even my genital numbness receded a little. However now, when I lowered the dose to 7.5mg, my genital numbness is even worse, I got constipation again as well as water retention. What might be going on?
  3. Hey Guys, Name's Kittie. Go by SailorMew on here. I'm 22. Diagnosed with BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder) and PTSD. Have some anxiety thrown in there as well but not enough for a full GAD diagnosis, but rather as more of a symptom of the other two diagnoses. I've been in and out of therapy since I was in 3rd grade, and on and off meds since I was 14. Finally found a mix that helped. Got put on Seroquel and Lamictal in April of 2016. As well as .25 of Xanax as needed for panic attacks. My ending doses before I started to taper were Lamictal 100mg 2x day morning and night Seroquel 100 1x day night Xanax .25 as needed I've been doing better. Hit a plateau. Found a new therapist to start Rapid Resolution Therapy with, high hopes for this one. Going to get my trauma figured out. The other day (2/22/2017) I actually missed my whole nighttime dose of medication because I fell asleep on the couch and then woke up and went directly to bed. The next morning I woke up at 7 am, which is unusual for me, fresh, energized and in a great mood. I've missed my meds before but I haven't felt that great in a while. I took my normal 100mg Lamictal that morning. Felt a little woozy but felt fine after taking the Lamictal. Had a great day. Forgot I could feel so much. Decided that my progress has plateaued with the meds and maybe its time to get off of them now, and learn to continue progress without meds, at least this one for now. I was initially put on it for sleep, in any case, and at such a low dosage it's mostly considered an antihistamine more than an antipsychotic. Although what I experienced that day could be considered maybe a hypomanic state, but since I'm not bipolar I don't have much worry over this. Personally, I just attribute it to the lack of zombie-inducing Seroquel in my system. (they say it's completely out within 48 hours, since I only take it every 24 hours and had missed a dose, it was already out IMO). Last night (2/23/2017) I decided to start my taper since I had already missed a dose. (good idea? bad? I don't know) I took 100 Lamictal as per usual. and 90mg of Seroquel. I used 1 50mg tablet and another 50mg tablet that I cut up to into quarters and only took 3 of 4 quarters. right before I took it I still felt kinda wired. once it set in sleep was normal. This morning (2/24/2017) I had the day off, so I slept in. woke up groggy, feeling kinda useless. definitely feeling the Seroquel back in my system. This sucks, I think to myself. Oh well. I read something that just the day before I would have gotten really emotional and inspired over, whereas today I was more like, hm, yeah, that's nice *apathy* towards. As the day goes on it starts wearing off a little more and I feel more lively. I take a nap around 6 pm and I wake up feeling a little more like the day before. Maybe I slept off the rest of it. Tonight I will take the same amount (90mg) before bed. Going to let this dose stabilize and then drop to 80mg. Just sharing my experience. Tips, tricks, and advice on tapering Seroquel welcome. Anyone on the same combination of meds and/or with the same disorders, your input is especially valuable! PS. I know it's ill advised to make decisions about your medication, while not on said mediation. I've taken that into account, considered it thoroughly withdrawal and side effects included, and I've consulted my close ones and gained support with this decision. I am currently trying to get in contact with my Psych, their office is hard to get a hold of (*cough* the secretary sucks *cough*) Generally though, she is more than supportive of whatever I choose to do with my medications. This is because I've been in the psych circuit for a long time, correctly self-diagnosed where professionals were constantly misdiagnosing me (as bipolar, ADHD, and a plethora of other things) (diagnosis confirmed while in DBT treatment), and because I've done my own extensive research on what works and doesn't work for my particular disorders. (Mostly everything I read points to Seroquel and Lamictal being the only effective meds. DBT is still the best therapy modality for it, in combination with trauma-focused approaches. I've found this to be true through personal experience) But I digress. Thanks!
  4. Hello, My name is Dennis and I have been on Ssri antidepressants for ten years. I am 24 years old and I have Autism along with depression and anxiety. Just last week, my doctor put me on Welbutrin XL 150mg and had me take 50mg of Zoloft, my normal dosage being 100mg. She wants me to stay on that for two weeks, then go off, as she said that Welbutrin will help. I have gone through ssri withdrawals before, and I always got the usual brain zaps, increased anxiety and depression, and more agitation. I feel that two weeks is not enough to completely taper off an ssri, so that is why I am here. I will post my day by day progress on here. Any advice would help. Thank you, Dennis
  5. Hi Everyone! I´m new to the site. There is so much good information here. I´m so glad I was referred to it. I have a question about tapering. I´m taking 100 mg of Thorazine and 75mg of zoloft. A couple of months ago I got down to just taking 75mg of thorazine and had sucessfully tapered off the zoloft. After a month of just taking the thorazine I became depressed. It seems that I can´t take either one without the other. If I take the thorazine alone I get depressed. If I take the zoloft alone I can become manic. Can I just taper them both at the same time? Thanks in advance
  6. Hi all, to start I would like to say I wish I'd found this website 8 months ago. But if wishes were horses, beggars would ride. Just a disclaimer here, I'm a writer, so this is going to be detailed.... I started taking Escitalopram after I was diagnosed with Post Natal Depression in April 2013 (At that point I had a 21 month old and a 3 month old), I had just hit the crazy 3 month post partum hormone phase, my hair had started falling out the week before and the hormones, lack of sleep and a pigheaded obsession with just taking on too much while having two small children just got to me. When the Dr and the mental health nurses suggested that I go on Escitalopram, I investigated the possible side effects from the medication, asked how long people usually take them for, but I didn't ask about the withdrawals.... After 9 months on them, I decided that I was probably in a better place with the kids and the pressure, I'd been back at work for 2 months, I'd had one appointment with a psych and missed a second one, I foolishly thought that I would be fine. The mental health service wouldn't take me back to give me advice about cessation, so I called and asked to speak to the mental health doc in the Post natal ward at the hospital who told me that I could just go off them cold turkey. Yep, thanks for that, Lady! I stopped about a week before Christmas and went back on them about 6 weeks later - I had been driving to work and found myself thinking about suicide, not planning, just thinking and that is a huge warning sign for me, so back on the tablets I popped. This year I decided that everything was a bit more stable, the kids were 3 and 4, and I thought that I might be in a position to start coming off the tablets. My doctor advised that I should be able to come off them, but only went as far as giving me a prescription for the suspension. He offered to do a mental health plan assessment and get me some free appointments with a psychologist, again, something I should have considered, but I went into this with a pretty cavalier attitude. I then discovered that I couldn't get the suspension, I tried a couple of pharmacies, but was told that it had been discontinued (although it is still on the PBS in Aus). I think my first dose reduction was to 5mg (much too large as I know now, but looking at the charts, it seems as though a difference in the larger doses is not as critical). After a couple of months, I made a suspension using tablets and water (I am a scientist by training, I convinced myself that I knew what I was doing), I think my dosage drops went to 3mg, then maybe 2, I'm not entirely sure as I didn't document it (naughty me). Over those few months, I didn't have too many issues, I noticed a few times that I was a bit anxious in the mornings, but I could always talk myself out of it, I might have had a few melancholy days, but all manageable. There were also a couple of positives, like the return of my libido, that was certainly a bonus. In October I finally found a compounding pharmacy who made me the suspension and I started on 1.25mg/day. October/November were crazy busy, so I just maintained that dose until the markings on my syringe started fading. I think I missed a couple of doses, but I reckon my last one was about the 19th or 20th of December. On Xmas eve I came down with a cold, so I spent Xmas day feeling pretty seedy, only had one glass of sparkling. On the 26th and 27th hubby and I were finishing the construction of a cubby house for the kids in about 35degree temperatures, which wasn't pleasant. In hindsight, I think I knew I was on edge, I needed to take a break, but I really just wanted to get the damn thing finished, despite the heat. On the evening of the 27th I had a panic attack, as is my usual reaction, I then had the stress runs, then total freak out. I made a Dr appt for myself and my daughter (who I caught the cold from) the next morning as by then I had lost my voice. Then the next morning I had a text saying the Dr was not coming in and I should reschedule, when I got that message I broke down again. I managed to see a GP who told me that it probably was withdrawals and I should wait two weeks to see how it went. I was too frantic to wait and when I popped the antibiotic for my cold, I also popped a full 10mg Escitalopram. In the cold light of the next morning, probably with the clarity of relieved withdrawals, I decided that I should stick it out and not keep taking it. Yep, super foolish, I know that now. Over the next couple of days I had a thumping headache (fortunately only for one day), anxiety, gastro upsets, dizziness, nausea, decreased appetite, lethargy, pretty sure I had heart palpitations, and no real drive to do anything (at least it was the Christmas break and hubby was home with me and the kids). I prescribed myself a lot of time on the couch and spent a lot of money on Romance novels in the kindle app. Oh and on Friday morning, I remembered that I noticed a pink spot in a stretch mark on my breast about a month ago and convinced myself that I was dying of breast cancer, because anxiety. I managed to convince myself to go out on New Years Eve and we spent the night at a friends beach house, with the kids, I had a single glass of sparkling (forgetting that I don't drink it because it gives me horrible gas tummy aches, fortunately I know how to relieve that) and a single bottle of cider. I forgot about antibiotic interactions and wound up with a terrific hangover, wise move Kat, wise move. After a healing dose of bacon, eggs, toast and fruit, I felt much better, but still didn't trust myself to do that so poor hubby, who was still recovering from an 11pm Jagerbomb, still had to drive the 1.5hrs home. I was feeling okay, but fragile; a little shaky and my heart still felt like it was racing. Monday morning I was anxious, I spent the morning on the couch with aforementioned romance novels, a nap and a trip out for a late lunch for a friend's birthday. After lunch, which I forced myself to eat half of and normally I gorge, we took the kids to a beautiful park with lake and streams that you can walk in. While out I felt okay, but fragile and a little shaky. When we got home, I still felt shaky and collapsed on the couch. Dinner for all was toast. I played a couple of games on the Wii and felt much perkier, almost happy as the kids were going to bed. When Tuesday morning rolled around, I was home alone with the kids (3 and 5). I was anxious when we woke up, but managed to feed us, shower (with company), brush all of our hair and get out for a walk before lunch. After lunch I felt pretty good again, but had an appointment with my regular GP, who I planned to talk to about whether I was having withdrawals or becoming symptomatic. He told me that I wouldn't still be having withdrawals and I should just go straight back on the medication. I filled in a K10 and he organised for me to have 6 appointments with a psych covered by medicare. He also told me that the spot on my breast is nothing to worry about. When I told him that I wasn't going to go back on the escitalopram he said he wanted to see me in two weeks. Despite his assertions that it couldn't be withdrawals, I couldn't quite believe it; anxiety wasn't the reason that I went on the medication initially, nothing else could explain the nausea or the dizziness, or my racing heart (I was feeling that my heart was racing, which you expect with anxiety, but I wasn't even anxious when the heart was pounding). Wednesday morning again started with anxiety, and was now saddled with a 4 and 5 year old as it was the little ones birthday . I had decided that I wanted to take the kids to the zoo. Unfortunately, I couldn't get organised until about 10, so we didn't get there until about 11, when it was already about 30degrees in the shade, not pleasant. We got home at about 3 and I was shattered; exhausted and anxious. I tried to have a nap on the couch, but the kids were too excited about the new slip n slide to let me rest long, although I did manage to get them to clean their room before letting them play. I was then short tempered and snappy while I tried to get the wretched thing working. After dinner, I went to bed pretty tired, but mostly happy. I had also realised the theme in how my days had been running and did a little positive thought work before bed. Thursday I woke up feeling fairly good. I managed to get to the gym for a Les Mills Body Balance class with my favourite instructor, I was still a little wired after the class, but by the afternoon I was feeling quite happy, I managed to get through the rest of the day, pulled down the Christmas tree and tidied the house a bit and did nothing out of laziness rather than inability. Even hubby said I seemed better. Of course, that didn't stay the way today. I forgot to do my positive thinking exercises last night, and I realised that in the night. I'm not sure if I was going to rebound a bit today anyway, if it was because I didn't do the exercises or if it was because I woke up in the night and remembered that I hadn't thought about not being anxious and worried that I would then become anxious. Aren't our brains amazing things? Today was hard. Its been stinking hot here, I've been stuck in the house with the kids all day. I started out anxious and had loads of jobs to do to prep for the birthday party on Sunday (which is shared with two other kids and not at our house, thankfully). I didn't manage to get out to do the job I had to do, but at least I did get the computer prep. I was almost in tears when I was on the phone to DH (twice). My brain was playing the anxiety game, worried about dying, worrying about depression, worried that I'll get to fifty and not have beaten the depression and lose the battle with it anyway. Then I thought that maybe I do just need to be on it, life with two young kids is hard (esp as miss 4 is going through a phase of just completely ignoring any direction or requests), I was good yesterday and I'm bad again today. I spent some quality time on the couch with the latest romance novel. I managed today, the tv was on all day, we were inside (not completely my fault), I still managed to feed everyone (although it was four snack packets of chips for afternoon tea between the three of us), I pushed myself to vacuum the rest of the chips off the couch. I had a cry when DH got home. Now I feel good. After reading some more information on the page, I have realised that my final taper was probably inadequate. I have been trawling the internet all week for information on tapering and withdrawals and had convinced myself this morning that the 1.25mg dose probably wasn't even a therapeutic level. Thanks to the article linked on the tapering page I now know that this isn't the case, even though they only look as citalopram in that article, I think there is some data to extrapolate for escitalopram. I'm now at the point of deciding whether to just ride it out (as much as you can ride out a hurricane that just keeps blowing back to shore), or to go back on to my lowest dose. At this stage, I've decided to wait until Sunday, then go back to 1.25mg if I feel I need it. I'm back at work next week, which has both positive and negative impacts. At least at work I will have something to keep me busy and distracted, but business won't actually ramp up properly until the week after, so it won't be too stressful, plus the kids will be at childcare so they will be adequately stimulated as well. But for now, to bed, some positive thinking and hopefully a good nights sleep! Even though I know people might not actually make it this far in the post (it is very long) I have found the process of writing it very soothing and I have seen how far I have come in the last few days. I have felt relaxed and happy, but now I am getting wired again, so off to bed I go!
  7. Hi Guys, I posted this in the media section but realized it needs to go in this section. We are seeing some major changes here in the UK, at the moment we are on the cusp of fighting for a national helpline for Tapering etc, this petition is about putting the onus on the pharma companies to provide information for Tapering etc, please sign its by my friend and someone who has been affected by ADS, https://www.change.org/p/secretary-of-state-for-health-jeremy-hunt-make-pharmaceutical-firms-help-users-who-want-to-stop-taking-anxiety-depression-drugs?recruiter=58757463&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=share_facebook_responsive&utm_term=mob-xs-comment_share-no_msg thanks Guys!
  8. Hi, I'm glad to be here, I have been here before, had to do withdrawal way too many times before. I could really use your encouragement and support, I feel so alone, not too many people understand this nightmare. I'm now tapering Abilify, I was on 5mg now Im on 2mg, for almost one year now. Im also on 50mg Amitriptyline and 20 mg buspar. I went on these meds because of a con man pharmacist, that told me I could take high doses of progesterone to help ease withdrawal from a muscle relaxer I was tapering off of. My story is long and complicated, in a nutshell, progesterone in high doses can act as a benzo, with my 20 year history with benzos, that wasn't good. I was on 800mg of progesterone cream. Then I was cold turkeyed off of it,estrogen and the muscle relaxer (zanaflex). I was a complete mess!!! I wound up in the hospital, where they put me on amytriptaline, then later the buspar and abilify. Anyway, Im now tapering the abilify, I feel very anxious,nauseous, morning adrenaline surge and depressed, its horrible! I may have tapered too fast. I have read your posts on tapering to go at a rate of 10% per month. I know all to well about this, with my benzo history and all. I cut the 5mg pill, in half, and was at 2 1/2mg for a couple of months, now Im down to 2mg, been here for about 15 days. Its weird, I had a couple of good windows while on the 2 1/2mg dose, but it was up and down though. Now at this 2mg dose, I'm REALLY struggling. What do you think??? Any advice would be welcome. I know cutting is not the best way to do this. I now have a gemini scale, and plan on taking it down much slower. I would titrate with water, but I don't think abilify is water soluble. I sleep really good, the amytriptaline help with that. I will eventually taper that and the buspar. I don't think buspar has done much for me. Thanks for reading, look forward to hearing from you.
  9. So my psychiatrist has finally allowed me to start tapering off of my remeron that I've been on for 1yr and 4months. She proposed a 2month plan regarding taking half my 30mg dose for a month, then cutting that down to 7.25mg for 2-4 or so, then stopping completely. I feel like that's too fast. Also, I have a pill splitter, but it is cheap and wouldn't get the job done if I would do the 10% reduction method. I could take half of the 15mg tablet and add that onto my other 15mg tablet for 22.25mg to start off with instead. I dunno. I don't want this to take forever, and I really have no idea how to get an exact reduction rate of 10% with this pill splitter I have. I'll be withdrawing soon. Any advice?
  10. Hi all, I had a case of severe depression several years ago, but fortunately I was able to beat and I have been healthy ever since. I never went an any antidepressants. I have been fine ever since. However the other week on Jan 4th I had a life event (death in the family) that hit me very hard. After a few days I decided St Johns Wort might be a good solution to prevent the return of a depressive episode. To head it off at the pass so to speak. Stop it before it starts. I realize now this was a big mistake. I was going through a natural grieving period and my symptoms were not depression at all. I started taking St Johns Wort on Jan 9th. Hypericum extract (40-73mg), equivalent to 300g st johns wart according to the bottle. 3 times a day as per the instructions. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. I started using a SAD lamp at the same time. I was starting to feel better and thought I would just keep it up through the winter, and then tapering if off into spring and come off it completely. I had no side effects of any kind. However on Jan 20, 12 days after starting I went to a party and drank heavily. Beer and red wine, and also many foods that are not supposed to be eaten on St Johns. I hardly ever drink normally as well. The next day on Jan 21 I felt fine in the morning, (surprisingly no hangover). But after taking my morning pill I started to feel anxiety which I normally never do. After my second pill at lunch I had a panic attack. I normally never have anxiety issues. I skipped the pill that evening thinking I ought to stop. After researching SJW (like I should have done before starting!!) I really want to get off this, and realize I need to taper. On Jan 22 I kept my dose reduced to 2 pills a day but spread out. I took a half in the morning, then a half a couple hours later then one quarter each 2 hours after that. Totaling 2 in the day. I felt fine that afternoon. Myself again. Every dose I take hits very fast, even dilating my pupils. I can feel myself getting a little high even. It seems to be affecting my serotonin levels very directly now. It wasn't like that taking the pills prior to the party. Its Jan 23. In the morning I had anxiety again, not as bad as the panic attack but still extremely uncomfortable. I took a quarter pill at 8 am, another one at 10am and I didnt start to feel normal again until 30 minutes after that. My plan is to stick to 2 pills a day with a quarter pill every 2 hours. Questions: How slowly do I need to taper this? I have found answers in this forum for people who have been on it for a long time. I've only started 2 weeks ago today. If I taper off 10% a month that seems really slow. Would 2 pills a day for a few days, then 1.5 a day for a few days and so on be slow enough? It seems to be worst in the morning, perhaps due to not taking anything overnight - should I be spreading my dose over the night as well? My impatience got me into this mess so I don't want to make the same mistake getting off it again. But I cant help but be concerned that that longer I stay on it the more my brain will become used to it, just making things worse.
  11. Hi everyone, TLDR: 1. Is 10mg of fluoxetine a day a reasonable starting dose for someone who's been trying unsuccessfully to taper at 40mg per week? 2. Could the days of missing doses been causing my nervous system harm, considering fluoxetine's half life i.e. is skipping days feasible with fluoxetine tapering? Edit: My longest steady dose (over the 3 years) of fluoxetine was 20mg per day but I am not sure, my memory is hazy. The long story: I've been on fluoxetine for about 3 years. Over the last 10 months, I've had a very disrupted dosing of fluoxetine. My best period was last December when I was happy on 40mg of fluoxetine weekly but my doctor told me to stop suddenly, which I did. Early this year I was back on fluoxetine and taking it for the most part daily. However, I craved the happy balance I had taking it weekly as I had minimal side effects (mostly sleeping too much) but I was able to practise my CBT effectively for my OCD. Sadly, since May I've had a few bad attempts at reducing my dose and this was all before I learned about tapering properly. I had just thought tapering made sense so I tried it my own way but I was not prepared for the horrible withdrawal symptoms I've had recently. Last month I was on as little as 40mg every two weeks but I think I've been feeling the aftermath of that recently. I updosed (again before learning about this site and tapering properly) and I went on daily fluoxetine at 20mg for a couple of weeks. The last month I was on 40mg each week and I found symptoms were bad around day 5/6. So, having found this website, I want to taper properly. Each time I had a withdrawal symptom I always ran back to fluoxetine like a good little addict and up-dosed like an ignorant buffoon. In any case, I am ready for the 10% taper and have invested in a Gemini 20. I will dry cut for the first few months. I am just deciding what my current/starting dose should be because I've made such a mess of things over the last few months and with fluoxetine's long half life, it is hard to know where I am. My proposition is: Starting today, taking 10mg per day (I got tablets from the pharmacy as opposed to pills so I can divide them easily). I'm sorry for my messy post but my record keeping has been regular but erratic this year so I am piecing bits together to get a picture of what the hell I've been doing with this powerful drug. Thank you all for this place. I've read so much the last week and it is nice to know people are going through what I am and are doing so well.
  12. My doctor reviewed some bloodwork with me in November; it shows that I am in big danger of metabolic syndrome. Fasting glucose 107, A1C 7.5, cholesterol up 40 pts (20 of them the 'good' cholesterol), fat around the middle, 31 BMI. So I want off the Abilify. I planned to talk to my psychiatrist about it at my January appt, but he cancelled. My next appointment is in March and I really don't want to wait that long. I want off. I am curious about tapering this with the long half-life. Can I consider eliminating one dose per week? Or should I stick with the 10% per day? Also, I have been rapidly tapered off a bunch of AD in the past with no problems. Is it likely that since I haven't had a problem in the past that it will still be easy to get off my current meds? Also, I am wondering if Abilify is still available as a liquid. Anyone know? Thanks!
  13. FatherOfLewis

    SSRI Bridging Possible?

    If different SSRIs work on different receptors, can bridging your taper of one SSRI with a different SSRI allow you to float above the WD phase of the 1st SSRI, then have a lesser WD from the 2nd (since you weren't on it as long)? It seems like the longer you're on an AD, the longer/harder the WD. If so, then for example, if I spent 9 years on Lexapro, couldn't I switch to Zoloft for like 2 years (assuming the WD from Lexapro will last about that long), then taper the Zoloft, expecting that WD from Zoloft won't be as bad, since I was only on it 2 years and it may have masked the WD from Lexapro? Or is this just a pipe dream, and I'll still have to go through WD from the two combined (11 years total in this example)?
  14. Butler Hospital, in association with Brown University in Providence, RI are doing research on a 20 week taper comparing two different taper methods. Is this unusual? Considering the paucity of information from pharma and/or scientific research on tapering I was astonished to see this being done. I've put in a call. The research head is on vacation for week, so I'll need to wait to hear back. I probably won't be eligible as my anxiety is PTSD based, not PD, SAD or GAD! TAPS Tapering Anxiety Pharmacotherapy Support Study TOPS Tapering OCD Pharmacotherapy Support Study
  15. Ok so I've been on Mirtazapine for almost two months. I had some side effects the first week but then it was fine. The past 3 weeks however I have been having a huge host of side effects, some of which are debilitating like really bad vertigo, extreme disorientation, derealization, depersonalization, short term memory loss and completely blanking out for periods of time (I only know this because I'll look at the time and continue doing something then all of a sudden I'll get this weird feeling like I just awoke from a sleepless dream. I'll look at the time and like an hour or so will have passed) and diminished sense of time (i.e minutes feels like hours or hours only feels like a few minutes. Today 10 hours passed by in the blink of the eye and I can barely remember the day). Some days are better than others but some are really bad. I've missed two weeks of work (I've tried going back multiple times but couldn't get through even 10 minutes. Movement and bright lights makes the vertigo worse) The worst of it has been the past 5 days non-stop. I've been to the ER three times and to the doctors (including a second doctor) and they all chalk it up to 'panic attacks' or simply say "I don't know" yet not one of them has recommended stopping Mirtazapine... (Scratching my head at this) I literally feel like I'm stoned out of my mind. The only other time I have felt even remotely like this was when I tried a pot brownie (bad idea). My vision had diminished severely and I feel like I have nerve damage. I have almost no sense of taste or touch. Pain tolerance is way higher. But they refuse to believe it's not mental so I've decided I have to come off Mirtazapine as I don't know what else could be causing this. So I've read all of the guides and I'm sorry... it's probably my decreased mental states (I'm having serious trouble retaining information) but I'm totally confused as to how to do it. I'm on 15mg quick dissolve tabs. Thanks.
  16. Hello - I just joined this site as I need help for my mother. She is 69 years old and starting having some fairly acute bouts of depression after she retired. She had been taking a sleeping pill (I don't know the name) since the mid 80's and decided she wanted to stop taking them around age 66. She stopped cold turkey. I think this is when the depressive symptoms began (as a result of withdrawls) for which she started seeing a psychologist and psychiatrist. After trial and error...lots of error...she has now been on Cymbalta (1 daily - 60mgs), Olylanzabine (zyprexa - 1 at bed - 5mgs) and Trazadone (100mgs at bed) for over a year now. It seems as though they are all interacting poorly and creating even more problems. She can barely function. Its as if her brain doesn't remember how to even process a thought properly. After doing my own research and getting my father on board, I'd like to get her off of as much of the medicine as possible and see if we can get her "well" without the meds. We are starting with the Zyprexa. After reading and learning about the horrific side effects of this drug, many of which she is experiencing, we have decided to taper her from this pill first. My father called her primary care physician and he said to half the Zyprexa for a month and we will continue lowering the dosage from there. She is not psychotic or bipolar, so I'm unclear as to why this was prescribed to her in the first place. After a week, she said she is already experiencing withdrawl symptoms. However, I'm not sure if she is experiencing them because it was suggested to her that she could possibly have withdrawls, or if she actually is having withdrawls. I should mention, she is of the old school thinking that if a doctor prescribes you medication, you take it because it will make you feel better. So, we have caught her taking multiple Trazadone at night because she thinks they help her sleep - the more the better, right? She is afraid she won't be able to function without taking all of these meds that are making her worse than she ever was before. I think after showing her what I have learned, she is ready to start the detoxing process. My mother has always been a happy, healthy, outgoing person until this prescription pill nightmare began. Any input, direction or help would be so helpful. Thank you, Briana
  17. I started taking Cipralex 20mg last summer when my depression anxiety and OCD got so bad I was having crying bouts,and suicidal ideation multiple times a day. I felt unable to leave an emotionally abusive relationship and knew I HAD to do something. After ten years free from all psych meds, including several very functional happy and productive ones, convincing me once and for all I AM CAPABLE of happiness, without drugs. I was loathe to be on meds again but desperation found me in the doctors office once again. The medication did limit the crying, and I was able to leave that relationship but I find myself still anxious and sad most of the time, I have also thrown myself right back into another negative relationship, so what's the point of being on meds? I need to be practising my CBT and making bet ter choices in my life not drugging myself. They mess with my libido and god only knows what else. I'm done with this rubbish,. I want to be free.
  18. 2 AM here and for me to risk losing another sleeping night, it says of how much dire my life has become. My real name is Vitor, 23 Y/O, Male and middle-class Brazilian. Ever since the age of 17 I've been suffering from undying stress due to a troublesome relationship, ever since I've contemplated the voyage of the magical healing that psychiatric meds would proportionate, people say with age comes regret for what should have been, mine has arrived with no preemptive sign. Since 2013 I've started my first psychiatric treatment, 10mg of Escitalopram (Exodus, a medication that - so far - is only available national-wide), my mood went from downhill to upwards jolly, my med also diagnosed what could have been ADHD and suggested me to start a parallel treatment with Ritalin LA 20mg (which later was increased to 30mg and much later reduced to 10mg). Past almost a year into the beginning of the treatment, and my doctor saw no use for me to carry on with SSRIs, instructing then to stop aburptly, so far I've exited the road symptomless, or with ones that I couldn't notice at such time, since my troublesome affective relationship went from bad to worst every single day. 2014's dawn and i've lost touch with my girlfriend, the shock basically made me rush into my old med once again, had a terrible reaction that - if not by my current state - would have been the worst time of my life. The experience already made me wary of the dangers underlying such meds. Worst would come when my Health Insurance retracted my membership, on the basis that my monthly automatic payments were not being made due to an error, with no prior warning from any part. Universal Healthcare here is a mess, and when trying to make an appointment, on 2014, I'm still yet to hear any previews from any part. I was basically lost at that point. Forced into Cold Turkey from both meds, which would have been bad, have I not associated with the recent loss of my girlfriend. I can't remember that much about the symptoms. 2015 I've found another psychiatrist who basically reinstated me into both meds, but things started to spiral down from here, on July I've lost my job and had to head out to my parents, with the second "withdrawal" I started to be wary of the first underlying condition: Brain Fogs. I've basically grown and lived in my own imagination, for the first time in my life, trying to visualize thoughts was an out of reach task, something I did naturally taken away from me. I basically gave up on writing and drawing for some time. And after it, symptom after symptom came after me, the bad sinus, the erratic emotional swings, hyperarousal, hyperthermia, akethesia. All except for the Brain Zaps. The constance of intake and withdrawals basically spinned my head, and I can't say whether or not I'm into a dead end. I tried reintroducing Escitalopram probably 2 more times (both 7,5 mg), but the sleepiness was so crippling that I've basically gave up trying. 2016 and here I am, symptoms I've never had any notice until now, my mind totally blank, impossible to sleep with the burning skin and lightheadedness. I don't feel fatigue that much, but I'm panicking almost all of the time. Coming here was a struggle, admiting that I'm sick was a blow to my morale and self-steem, and trying to tell yourself you're fine is the worst. My ability to feel joy have been dulled, but I think I'm slowly turning back to enjoy games, the hardest blow is the brain fog and cognitive impairment, not being able to contextualize and love being imaginative. I've read so many terrifying stories, but at the same time, I think embracing the first community that would accept my phase is absolutely necessary. My family is clueless of my symptoms, so were and are most of my friends, which I've lost so many. I'll definitely miss my 20's, if I ever remember them. Sorry for such sloppy and grieving carthasis, and thank you to anyone who took your time reading.
  19. Hi! I'm excited to find this community! I am female, 51 years old and have been on 10 mg of Lexapro for a year and a half. I went through an emotional/stressful divorce and hesitantly went on the drug with the idea I would quit as soon as I could. I am now 17 pounds heavier which is a bummer for any woman, but especially for me as I am in the wellness industry and it is beginning to affect my work and professional image. My tummy is huge --a common issue with Lexapro evidently. YUck... I have toyed with tapering but evidently in too large of increments and always feel the resulting physical instability and emotional fragility. It has felt like this drug owns me and I’m sick of that feeling. I am a single mother of 3 kids so my stress level is and has been very high for the last several years. My doctor has me on Bio-identical hormones for menopause symptoms and that seems to be very helpful. I sleep great...but wake up groggy and rely on caffeine in the morning and afternoon to get me through the day. I'm really irritable... I exercise almost daily and that helps I’m sure. In response to my concern regarding weight gain, my doctor prescribed me Pristiq. She is suggesting I switch over...which I'm contemplating...although my real desire is to be med free, if this is an option for me. Sometimes I feel that my stress is high, and I need a little "help" to cope with it all..If that's the case I think I'd rather be on something that doesn't have the same weight gain issues as Lexapro (ie Pristiq). I'm open and interested in supplements to help support my system... I self-prescribed 200 mg of SAM-e/day and that seems to help overall, although now I see that taking it along with my Lexapro may not be a good idea. I so very much want to be off Lexapro and will take my time to do so. I am excited to have this community to support me...I have no one else! Thanks in advance for welcoming me. C. Ellen 2013--present 10 mg/day Lexapro currently 200 mg/ day SAM-e
  20. Hello everyone! I am glad to join a forum where we can share our very unique experiences with tapering off. I have been tapering off escitalopram for only 6 days now and I could feel a considerable change in my mood from day 2. I went from 10 mg of escitalopram per day, to a 10-7.5-10 dosage recommended by my psychiatrist and I have been feeling very irritable. Specially at night. I was wondering if someone has experienced w/d symptoms this early. My fiancé is a physician (ophthalmologist) and insists it's too early for me to feel a change (still, he supports and comforts me). But I am very sensitive to any substance. I just want some empathy and any advice on how to cope. I feel like I'm not myself and I wonder if this (easily upset, slightly anxious and anti social) is how I am going to feel for the next 8 months (which is how long my tapering off will take). I am trying to practice modern dance at least twice a week to boost my serotonin levels naturally and it feels good up to now. But every night I am this cranky b****! Has anyone felt the same? Before you suggest slower tapering, take into account that Escitalopram is not sold in liquid form or in lower dosages than 10mg in Mexico. All the best.
  21. I’ve tried writing this introduction more than once and I have to say that it’s kind of difficult to summarize almost twenty years of wrestling with these dang meds. Around 1995, my second marriage was falling apart. I hated myself and I was falling apart. The marriage counselor my (ex-)wife and I were seeing recommended a doc who could prescribe something for me. In tears, I practically begged that doctor to give me antidepressants. To his credit, he was reluctant but he did end up giving me handfuls of free samples of a relatively young drug called Paxil. At that time, I had never had a panic attack. When I began taking Paxil, and it gave me panic attacks as my system got used to it, I was told that it cannot give you panic attacks. It was only after I began taking Paxil that I actually made a serious suicide attempt and ended up hospitalized. When one of my doctors tried to help my taper off Paxil by halving my dose, I reported symptoms of withdrawal. My doctor told that was impossible: that these meds do not give you withdrawal symptoms, and that any symptoms I was having must be the underlying pathology reasserting itself. I then spent years in the care of a doctor who seemed to have never met a med he didn’t like. When I complained of Paxil’s sexual side effects, he put me on Wellbutrin. He started stacking the meds on me. I was getting tremors in my hands from the Wellbutrin, so he put me on Neurontin (Gabapentin). Never able to get free of sexual side effects, I tried a bunch of different meds. Effexor. Buspar (which had me screaming at the top of my lungs). Etc. But I always returned to the welcoming arms of Paxil. Things started to turn around for me when I started researching medications for myself. After spending some time on Serzone (Nefazodone), I saw online that some countries had banned that med due to concerns over liver toxicity, so I asked to be taken off it. Doing more research exposed me to the fact that many folks were experiencing the side effects and withdrawal symptoms I had been reporting to my own doctors for years. And gradually, the doctors started to admit to the existence of “discontinuation syndrome” which seemed to be particularly bad for those taking my main medication – Paxil. I started to trust my own observations more. I started keeping a daily log of how each dose of each medication affected me over time. This log has been a tremendously helpful tool for me. My doctor at the time felt that such detailed record-keeping was pathological. Luckily, after almost two decades medicated, I found a doctor who was willing to listen to me. She put me on Lexapro in another attempt to get free of sexual side effects. She was willing to listen to me when I told her how sensitive I seemed to be to these meds, and how halving my dosage yielded catastrophic results. I told her of my plan to do a very gradual taper; much more gradual than she thought necessary. She was willing to go along with it as long as I reported in regularly. So, in October of 2013 I began my most gradual taper ever. And on 05/28/14 I became med-free. We’ll see how it goes. My wife and I just celebrated thirteen years of being happily married, so I'm very lucky to have her as my support network. She's seen me at my best and she's seen me at my worst. I'm mainly here at Surviving Antidepressants to learn more about these meds and to have experienced, knowledgeable, and impartial folks who can help me evaluate whether what I'm going through is withdrawal or the depression/anxiety that has plagued me in the past.
  22. Hello, I'm currently coming off Risperdal and I'm wondering how I might feel and act once I'm off the drug compared to how I am now. If you have been on Risperdal and are now off it, what is different? How do you act and feel different off the drug? I would especially like to hear from people who have tapered off Risperdal safely. I'm still on Risperdal, but I imagine when I'm off it I will have more affect. I don't really know what else. Thanks!
  23. OK so I need some input on tapering off from 20mgs of Lexapro. I asked my doctor for the liquid version so it would be easier to measure the mg's but she told me there is not a liquid. There is though! So that made me mad. So I decided I'm going to have to break each tablet and weigh it to be accurate. Then my doctor told me to reduce the mgs by quarters. I feel like that is too big of a taper so instead I'm going to do it by mg every week or 2 weeks. I am on ~18mg now. Has anyone tapered off Lexapro before? How did you do it? Did you have awful withdrawl symptoms? I want this process to be as painless as possible. I feel like I can deal with the mental symptoms better than the physical (nausea, vomiting, etc.) Also, my last q-- is one is more likely to experience the worst withdrawl symptoms during a certain mg decrease? Please help I can't take this anxiety and fear of getting ill any more. I'm going to turn into a hermit if things don't get better.
  24. I was dependent on Topimirate (Topamax) for over 4 years, and wish Id found these sights before I started. Had I known it'd be so horrible Id have stayed away. 4 or so years ago I checked myself in the hospital determined to stop binging, purging and starving. It had been on and on since I was 13 (was 27 at the that time). A psychiatrist prescribed Topamax upon my leaving the hospital, stating I had bipolar and body dysmorphia. At first, I was petrified of not having my eating disorder as a crutch. The first few weeks I muscled through, and kept myself as distracted as possible when I found myself worrying. I dug deep into my emotions in a journal as a healthy purge. And suddenly, I didn't care, I stopped thinking about food, and just enjoyed it. I simply just stopped. I stopped binging. I stopped worrying myself into a purge. I stopped obsessing about my intake, or ruminating over weight or image. I no longer sat in front of the mirror picking my face for hours. I was normal, worrying only a bit, and then letting it pass. So at 200 mg for over 4 years, I was okay, for better or for worse. Some side effects were annoying, like thinning hair and memory issues- but they were tolerable to self destruction. Then I saw a new psychiatrist in November 2014, who said I should have never ever been put on Topamax bc I had history of an eating disorder. She gave me 150 mg, and sent me away to see her in a month. Then my insurance changed again, and I couldn't make it into the appointment bc it wasn't covered. So I tapered myself after several months on 150. About one month into my taper at 150, I began to think something was really wrong. I was still working, but my mood and mental status began to change, and physical symptoms presented themselves. Mentally, I became paranoid, somnolent, agitated easily, felt faint and alternated between exhaustion and insomnia. I had eye pain and grittiness , blurred vision and halos, headaches daily (understandable as topamax treats migraines), jaw pain, back pain high and low, arms tingling and joint pain. And around May 2015, I was showering and noticed larger amounts of hair coming out into my hands and clogging the drain. And when I looked in the mirror to put up my hair, I saw several places where I could see my scalp CLEARLY. It wasn't the simple thinning topamax caused for the 4 years, it was clumps. My eyes hurt more, and i used artificial tears about 5-6 times a day. My eyebrows and eyelashes began falling out, and pubic hair They simply weren't staying in the follicles, if I touched them with any force, they fell out. For instance when I tried to use eyeliner, they'd attach to the pencil and just sit on my cheeks, dead. It wasn't the simple thinning topamax caused for the 4 years, it was clumps. I thought I needed to go off, but at this point saw my health was deteriorating with each taper (I took myself down to 125 in June). I thought I needed support physically because something was seriously WRONG. But I could NOT find a doctor who would help me through it. Most just wanted to prescribe more psychiatric medication instead. I surmised it was all from withdrawal, as symptoms were not an issue UNTIL I decreased my dose after 4 years. However, no doctor would admit to Topamax being the issue, or assist in my body withdrawing and getting me off it with physical support. I went to three different psychiatrists, 4 holistic or integrative doctors, a rheumatologist, 4 different internists, 2 obgyns, 4 eye doctors, 2 endocrinologists. Ive spent my entire past half year going to doctors and feeling suicidal. Each wanted to put me on another brain med. I found a psychiatrist with experience in treating with Topamax, and she helped me to decrease off 125mg that I'd been on two months. I tapered from 125 to nothing over two weeks. And Ive gotten worse. Now Im having stomach issues and sebbhorheic dermatosis, and have not had my cycle since June. It is not alopecia aereata, I have been to several dermatologists. I have now been off since September, and am so desperate, I am about to go back on it. My hair got worse, my mood got worse ( I can barely do anything, think about anything else, and feel overwhelmed by life). I know this isn't me. Something is wrong and I need guidance. Does anyone experience using topamax? My most recent doctor (integrative medical doctor) is a specialist in those who have found no answers and been to every doctor you could think. He said I have autoimmunity, and inflammation. I was told me I should not have gone off the medication without some sort of medical support, and told me to go back on topamax, or take lamictal for help. It seems a bit like a hair of the dog kind of treatment, but Im at the point where I can't fight this anymore. What do you all think? PLEASE HELP.
  25. Hi, guys, I'm LeAnn. After 15 years on Citalopram for depression and sort of PTSD, I decided I should go of it in August of last year. I tapered off under my doctor's care and after about 8 weeks, I was completely done. I had the nausea, dizziness, tiredness, anger, laughter, CRYINGCRYINGCRYING. Still crying...not as bad, but because David Bowie died. I did lose a bit of weight, too, so that's a good thing. The thing that brought me here was my search to see if there is a connection between going off an antidepressant and heightened senses. I'm noticing cigarette smoking more, and it's irritating my sinuses. Maybe it's the new neighbors in the next-door apartment, or my withdrawing, but I had to buy an air purifier recently and have it going 24/7 to get the smell out of our living room, even with the windows closed. Anyway, there you go.
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