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  1. Hi folks, After 13 years on SSRIs and SNRIs I stopped taking them due to parkinsonism, and it turned out that they were causing the rapid cycling up and down high to low mood swings in my bipolar disorder as well as the ramp up into mania. I didn't taper off as I read that it only affects the short term withdrawal syndrome and not the long term, plus as soon as I dropped the dose I went into the full rage and needed to get it over and done with as soon as possible (2 weeks of the bad bit). I experienced a number of symptoms including The Rage, Tardive Akithisia, Depression, Anxiety, Suicidal Impulses, Intrusive thoughts, Dissociation, Depersonalisation and a wrecked concentration span. I have started a website to collect some writings of people's experiences in long term SSRI and SNRI withdrawal, or of the rage in the short term syndrome. They would be a blog post of the whole experience rather than journal entries, maybe following up later with another post. I have started the site and put my experience on it (which needs rewriting) and was hoping to seek writings from folks on this site, if that's ok to ask folks to contribute? Support for my broken brain would also be nice. At one point I actually thought I was in hell. This is my site https://ssriwithdrawal.wixsite.com/discontinuation and I would love to hear your thoughts on the site, my writing and any ideas you might have. My email address is on the site, I hope this forum doesn't block my link, I would request that admin let it through as I am not a spammer, just a broken person trying to find meaning in other people's experiences. If the link is blocked you can email me at ssriwithdrawal *at* mail *dot* com (please let this though). For me this is my proactive way of holding it together, please help!
  2. Hello, I’m new here and am excited I found this forum. I was prescribed Celexa when I was 24 years old (16 years ago) and living by myself for the first time in my life and had my first, real boyfriend. I was out of college and scared. My boyfriend had an alcohol and drug problem but my body was too sensitive to get addicted to either. Eventually, being in love and in a chaotic environment reaked havoc on my mind and body and I developed severe anxiety and insomnia. My doctor prescribed me Celexa and it helped me sleep immediately. This was the beginning of a never ending love/hate relationship with Celexa. It has held a power over me for years, particularly with respect to sleep. Various doctors have been prescribing me this drug for the last16 years. I have tried getting off at least 4 times and the longest I have lasted is 9 months, only to start over again like an addict getting her fix. Overall Celexa shuts off my emotions and contributes to my overall sluggishness but it allows me to sleep well. I don’t like being on it but am afraid to get off at the same time. I’m currently trying once again to taper. My husband has a similar struggle with Cymbalta. Both of us are new parents to an 11 month old girl and we’d like to once and for all be off these medications but we want to do it right. If it takes me a year to taper, so be it. Before i was 24, I never had anxiety issues and I often feel that my issue was circumstantial at that age and I didn’t have the right support system to talk to me about antidepressants (and perhaps the negative research about it wasn’t out there yet). My gynecologist was the one that initially prescribed me! And because I was young and of no real opinion on things, I chose to keep taking something because i was scared that I would go back to a terrible place of those few months before it was originally prescribed to me. i now know that my central nervous system is out of wack because of this. I found this website randomly and I’m hoping it will help guide me through this process of getting off this drug once and for all. happy to have found this forum!
  3. I started ADs in 2000 at the age of 25 following a difficult period where I had lost a lot of money while working as a fund manager in the US. I lost my job and faced some possible legal ramifications which never eventuated. Anxiety and general panicky feelings led me to see a shrink who put me on a low dose of what is known mostly as Paxil (Aropax here in Aus where I now live) and said I would "feel better" soon. I stayed on Paxil for about a year but I never felt better, it increased my anxiety and made me very uptight and even caused me to be violent and aggressive at times which is very unlike me (I remember at least one episode of full on road rage). I decided to get off the drug after 1 year CT and suffered horrible withdrawals. After a week I went back to the shrink and said I've never felt like this in my entire life, I feel like a complete basket case. I asked him if it could be withdrawals like a heroin addict who stops taking heroin, and he said there is no evidence of withdrawal symptoms with ADs (imagine, this is in 2001 in a Western country, one week after stopping the med cold turkey and he told me it must be me and my anxiety returning!) So he switched me to Zoloft. Within 24 hours I felt like my body was trying to come out of my skin, it was the worst thing I had ever experienced. So I stopped it immediately and then he suggested I try Citalopram (Cipramil /Celexa). This drug had an instant calming affect, I still remember 3 days later walking around all smiles and totally relaxed. Within a few weeks I was back to myself completely - if not better than I ever was, since I always had a bit of social anxiety such as when engaging in public speaking (which I hid well) and this drug had totally eradicated that nervous feeling. I almost felt like I was a little high (like a mellow high) but still energetic and upbeat and able to function well. I gained a lot of weight but didn't care, and I definitely had a lowered sex drive, but it didn't seem to bother me then. I was in a total bubble. My GP told me that if you find something that works well for you you should stay on it long term. So I did. In fact I never saw the shrink again. I got my scripts from my GP and he never suggested I go off. Nor did I want or feel the need to. Once in a while I would ask him if its dangerous to be on this stuff long term and he would joke and say half his patients are on the stuff and there is no evidence that long term use is dangerous. People had been on it for years longer than I had and they were fine. So I was on Citalopram from 2001 until 2008. During that period I functioned well. Too well. I took on a new job in Australia where I thrived in an executive position, worked hard, made lots of money, bought an expensive house and had 2 kids (I guess my libido was low but not that low). By nature I am very driven and hard working, but I think the drug enhanced my stamina. (In hindsight I realise I was quite emotionally blunted during that period. I also have no doubt that he drug was probably the reason why I was able to take on so much work and work long hours without getting burned out. It did not make me manic but gave me a lot of confidence and stamina.) Then in 2008 I started to read about the dangers of long term use of SSRIs. How people were struggling to get off them. How they can lead to depression and possible brain damage. I got scared. So I decided to go off them. Life was good (perhaps too good) and I had no reason I needed to be on them anymore. The original anxiety of loosing money that led me to the drug years ago was long gone and totally irrelevant. By now I had known enough about these drugs that WDs were real and that I would need to taper off them. So I cut my dose (20mg) in half and took 10mg for 2 weeks. During that time I felt fine. I also began to feel more emotion and libido was stronger. Otherwise, not much difference. Then, two weeks later, I stopped taking the drug completely. The withdrawals were horrible. After a few weeks the brain zaps stopped but I still felt out of sorts. I felt very fatigued and out of it. But I was still able to function at work. I stayed in this mode for about 3 months, functioning, but still out of sorts. But I felt I was slowly getting back to myself. I was much better by the end of 3 months. You'd think this would be the end of my little story. But sadly, it is not. About 4 months after going off the drug I was standing in my office casually talking to some clients and suddenly I became overwhelmed by a surge of racing thoughts. They filled me with panic and anxiety to the extent I had never felt before. I went home that night and couldn't sleep. Everything was fine in my life but suddenly I felt like I had been hit by a train! The thoughts were ruminations and feelings of extreme guilt, about random things. They became obsessive and gave me the darkest, most anxious feelings I have ever had. Far worse that even the anxiety that I felt in 2000. Worse even than I felt when I was withdrawing. I couldn't function. I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. My entire being was exhausted from fighting these horrid feelings. I never had such a level of extreme anxiety, guilt, obsessive thinking and deep inner turmoil. It was like a door had opened in my brain that had been closed my whole life and had suddenly flooded my brain and I had no way of closing the door or making it stop. A few days in and things were getting worse. I went to a very highly regarded Psychiatrist, who was able to see me immediately. He said I had relapsed and would need to go back on the drug. How could this be a relapse? I never suffered from pure obsessional thoughts before! Terrifying panic and horrid overwhelming feelings of guilt and obsessional thinking. But I didn't care. I wanted it to end. I went back on the drug, but it didn't help. In fact, it made me feel worse. At once stage I felt like I wanted to admit myself into a hospital because I felt so unspeakably horrid. But I never did, and instead saw my new Psychiatrist who was very good. He introduced me to a drug called Solian, an Atypical anti psychotic which works to increase dopamine at low doses. It has no anti psychotic benefit at a low dose but an anti anxiety / anti depressive affect. This was helpful. A few weeks after starting this drug (in combination with my original dose of Ciprimil/ Celexa) I turned the corner. I slowly began to get better. I weaned off the anti psychotic pretty early on, but stayed on the AD. I was still working throughout most of this "relapse" and after about 18 months the obsessive thoughts had stopped completely. my Psychiatrists was of the opinion that I should stay on the drug, and I was totally for that, as the thought of what happened the last time I tried to stop was so terrifying, I couldn't even fathom returning to such a state. So I stayed on the Citalopram and life went on. However in 2015 things got worse again. I stated to feel depressed. Some days were better and some were worse. I never suffered from depression before. The mornings were bad. I was becoming more and more blunted, apathetic and depressed. It was a dysphoric but also agitated depression. I felt very drained and lethargic, like I had no motivation or drive anymore. I felt like my adrenal glands had been removed or that the motivational part of my brain had been cut out or switched off. I started getting more moody and irritable than I have ever been. Everyone was noticing it and it just got worse and worse over the following 18 months. As I write this I am still suffering, and it is getting worse. I am still functioning at work but I can spend a lot of time distracted and not working efficiently. I have zero anxiety or feelings at all, for that matter. Just a heavy depression. But I fear I may not be able to function at work much longer, the way I feel. Some mornings I cannot get out of bed and show up at work only in the afternoon, (but stay late). I now own my own business and I don't book appointments or schedule meetings until later in the day unless I really have no choice. Some days I don't show up at all. I do still have windows of high functioning, but they come and go. But this has gone to far, its affecting my life and work to the point that I am getting really desperate. A few weeks ago I did some online research about depression caused by long term use of SSRIs. The term is Tardive Dysphoria. I know that's what I'm suffering from. It is such an unnatural feeling and so all consuming and disabling. The suggested remedy, assuming the damage isn't permanent, is to get off SSRI's. My Shrinkrecently added a new drug called Valdoxan. It worked well for about a month and then pooped out. Now he wants to change my med to Brintillex, a new type of SSRI. He swears I will feel better on it. He's a good at what he does and he's probably right. But then what? I'm 42 years old. It will work for a while, possibly even for a sustained period. It might even get me to 50. But then what? I actually asked him that. He said we'll worry about it then. I think my preference is to get off all meds. But I'm too terrified to try. What happened last time I tried was just too terrible. Its been 9 more years of Cipramil use since, so it will definitely be even worse now. However I need to get out of this dysphoric state and I don't want to start any new drugs which will just make it harder to get off in the future. Any advice would be much appreciated.
  4. I was on a daily 40 mg dose of citalopram for like 15 years. Last spring I started tapering it off by 5 mg/month. The very last dose was two weeks ago. During the past months I can’t say I had any noted sympotoms. But after the last dose I started having less sleeping hours while I used to sleep too much in the past years. In the past couple of nights it’s complete insomnia in addtion to digestive distubances, nausea and chills in my body. Insomnia is the worst for me. Will these last, improve or worsen? Shall I go back to a low dose, a single dose Prozac.. Is there something that can make me sleep? It is strange, I feel tired but not sleepy! I would have stayed on Citalopram for ever, but on different occasions the drug prevented me from taking other medications that with aging become very much needed like NSAIDs because of drug interactions. I have not been particularly active but today I started fast walking for 30 minutes. Can this be the answer for what I have or is it just a helping factor?
  5. SkwinkyDink


    Has anyone had ear fullness,tinnitus/derealization?
  6. Moderator note: Link to PInballWizard's benzo thread I have been on Celexa 20 mg/day for ten years. I have hone cold turkey several times with disastrous results. I have also been on Lamotrigine 100 mg/2x daily for three years and 100 mg/day for three years before that. I take Valium as needed and have decided to stop taking it since I haven't taken it in several weeks. I have decided to stop taking these drugs. I am working with my psychiatrist and want other people's experiences with withdrawals. I know it will take time, and I am not in a hurry. Thank you in advance.
  7. Hi everyone, I've been taking Citalopram for anxiety and depression for a few weeks. My therapist diagnosed me with GAD. It has worked well in regards to my mood and my heart palpitations/panic attacks from my anxiety but I'm unable to fall asleep at night without taking Lorazepam. I've read that Citalopram can give some people hypomania which I'm experiencing. It's manageable during the day but it's making it impossible for me to sleep at night without Lorazepam which I know shouldn't be used long term. I would like to transition to Mirtazapine at night to replace the Lorazepam (I take my Citalopram in the morning). I may have to wean off the Citalopram too because I'm not sure if my doctor will approve me taking both Cit and Mirt. My question is how do you cut such a small pill into tenths so I can wean off using this 10% method? Or does this only apply to liquid forms of the meds? Sorry if this is a dumb question but I'm pretty new to all this. Thanks.
  8. Hello, I'm new here. Here is my history: C/T citalopram November of 2015 and put on Paraxotine. Soon after started to experience Akathisia. Started tapering the Paraxotine and started to feel better by 6 months with no more akathisia. I was down to 15mg when I got a blood infection in November 2016. I had a bad reaction to Cipro antibiotic where I experienced confusion. I went to the hospital where they diagnosed me with anxiety but found out later it was the Cipro. They c/t my Paraxotine and put me back on Citalopram. I was in a confused state so wasn't really able to make a rational decision, I just listened to the doctors. A month later, I started experiencing severe Akathisia. I've been tapering the Citalopram since January 2017 and only have a crumb left. My akathisia has improved in the last couple weeks in that I don't really have the urge to pace anymore. I still experience debilitating anxiety and depression though, electricity running through my body, mental akathisia, adrenalin surges. I only sleep 2-4 hours a night. I don't windows because my anxiety is so bad. The only time I really had windows was when I was up for 48 hours straight.
  9. Hi SA, Good to be here. I've been reading some of the stories on here with interest. Kinda makes my problems seem pretty small in comparison to others! I'm more and more horrified by what I'm discovering about discontinuation syndrome. As a postgraduate scientist, I've read a few of the papers associated with SSRI withdrawal and I can't believe how little real information is out there for patients and doctors. I think I've been depressed since I was a teenager, but I was essentially snubbed by psychiatrists at the time (apparently, cutting yourself counts as ‘teenage angst’ in the UK) and didn't get into the mental healthcare system until I was around 25 when I started having really severe panic attacks and anxiety. I'd taken a minor in psychology as an undergrad and, armed with quite a lot of information, was determined not to use drugs unless I felt I really needed to. The anxiety ebbed and flowed, but I generally did OK. After moving to the US for grad school (and embarking on a very long distance relationship), I had a nervous breakdown due to burn out and relationship anxiety at the end of 2013. I moved back home and spiraled further, and eventually my friend took me to the doctor and I decided to try medication, with a lot of skepticism. I tried propranolol (a beta blocker) for about a month or so, which just made me feel ill and didn't really help as a chronic medication. Then I I tried Mirtazipine, which left me with a completely blunted affect, incapable of feeling anything at all and making me too tired to function anyway. I quickly got off that and went on Citalopram, which I tapered up on, through some really horrible side effects (talk about red flags!). I remember the first day when the Citalopram really kicked in because I was hypomanic for about a week. It was like being on MDMA, a drug I had used heavily for about 8 years before. I also lost my sex drive entirely, got restless leg syndrome and started putting on weight. I went back to grad school in 2015 and after an initial period of motivation, and a short period of hypomania (2ish months), I gradually ended up back in a pit of despair and anxiety. I managed to stave off doctors’ attempts to put up my dosage and remained on 20mg until May last year (2016) when I decided to try and taper off as I didn’t feel like the medication was really helping with my symptoms and I’ve been sick of the sexual side effects since I started. I managed to get from 20mg down to 10mg before the withdrawal symptoms got too bad. I now realise that I tapered too rapidly . Either way, I stayed on 10mg deciding grad school wasn’t the time or place to be tapering. Just after that, I decided to Master out of my PhD program and enjoyed a 3-4 month period of hypomania where I felt completely amazing, extremely creative, was eating books and information and felt on top of the world…I even saw a slight return of my sex drive. This came crashing down again in October following another really sudden bout of relationship anxiety. Now I’m done with university, and have been unemployed for a bit, I wanted to get off the meds ASAP so that I could get on with my life. Rookie error! I tapered from 10mg to 5mg in about a month around the end of February with no real issue, but now I’m a complete mess again. I’ve struggled to get beyond 5mg, with bouts of extreme depression, mood swings and suicidal ideation. I’m currently taking 5mg/2.5mg every other day but I’m right on the verge of going back to 5mg for a second time because I’m suffering bad. I’ve been sick as a dog for 2 weeks, I think I do have genuine sinusitis and a terrible head cold, but perhaps the symptoms have been amplified due to the medication? Hard to say really. This past week I’ve had terrible depression, suicidal thoughts, crying spells and violent mood swings. I really feel like everything is crushingly pointless, that I am worthless and hopeless. I feel like my life is falling apart and that I’m going to destroy the remaining good parts because I can’t be around people most of the time, including my long-suffering partner. I feel like a complete burden on everyone. Apologies for the pity party, but this is where I am right now. I hope that this post might help someone else coming off this medication. I’m really stunned at how difficult it has been to get off it and do wonder a lot whether my continuing problems have been due to the medication rather than a continuing mental health problems.
  10. I've been on Celexa for 16 years, and have spent the last two years tapering off. I'm trying to go really slow and managed to get down to 20 mgs without withdrawals. When I went down to 15 mgs, the trouble started: vertigo, anxiety, irritability, depression, sleep disturbances. I'm taking natural supplements to help with the withdrawals (theanine and SamE), and they help a little. But I'm stuck at 15 and afraid to go down any further. I wish I could find a psychiatrist who specializes in getting patients off SSRI's. Mine doesn't seem to have a clue. I've been following the protocol in the book "The Antidepressant Solution." I'm getting scared I'll never get off this stuff.
  11. Hi. First of all, god bless you for this forum. I've been reading stuff on it for almost 2 months now and getting a lot of strength from it. English is not my mother tong, so please bare with me and my typos, thanks I'm a 43 year old woman, single, unemployed for a year. I've been loosing my job as a freelance a year ago, i had here and there a few projects but nothing too long. A few months ago, I stopped taking celexa completely, after, i thought, having tapered gradually. Oh boy how wrong i was. 'Gradually' for me meant taking the drug alternatively (1 day with, 2-3 days without) for almost a year and maybe more, I can't even remember when was the time i took it every day. I think I took the celexa for almost 12 years, before that i had 2 years approximately on prozac and one year on paxil. so more or less 15 years with drugs. All this time I got them from a GP and not a psychiatrist. I might have saw a psychiatrist once for this matter, but it's been a long time. And now, it's been almost 3 months since my last celexa. When I tappered "my way", i wasn't even aware of the consequences, i wish i've read this forum then. I really thought it was slow enough. but then I started to take one celexa a week and then started to feel bad, headaches, pins and needles etc. and went urgently to a psychiatrist that told me that if i made the decision to stop, and now i'm only taking half a celexa twice a week, so i might as well stop completely as it doesn't help anymore. Her words. Basically she said that the problem was that i wasn't completely 100% with my decision to stop. So she said to throw them away once and for all. At that time it made a lot of sense, I thought i've found a great psychiatrist. And now, 3 months after the last one, only now i realize that the "tapper" was way too fast and that it's almost CT, as I did stop brutally after reducing the dose. Now i feel SO bad, i thought the 1st month was hell, and that it will improve with time, but now it's been 3 months and i feel exhausted, i have extremely dry eyes, joints pain, headaches (a bit), bad hair loss. I feel like a sad zombie in another world. And i'm so afraid that the way i stopped may have compromised my healing. I have obsessive thoughts all day long about why did i stop, why now, and why this way and what the heck was i thinking to not be aware of the consequences? I'm starting therapy this week, i was on therapy for years and years before, and now i feel like it's time for support. I'm also taking care of myself with better eating, acupuncture and want to start exercising. But i'm afraid, i'm so afraid that this mess i'm in will go on and on, i don't know how long it will take and i need to work but it's very very difficult for me now. I'm thinking about reinstating (but isn't it too late now?) or going on very low dose of prozac to taper again very slowly, I don't know anymore. I'm just so afraid and confused. If i reinstate celexa, at what dose should i do it? 5 mg? Im gonna see a psychiatrist soon, another one, not the one i've seen before and that told me to just throw the drugs in the basket. I'm taking omega 3 and started with mag citrate yesterday. Thanks for reading, thanks for being here.
  12. Hi All. I am a 58 year old woman who has been taking celexa for 21 years. How do I slow taper or where can I find the info. I feel that I may be Tardive Dysphoric and am afraid that it is irreversible. Do you think I should try to taper off or just keep taking it not caring whether I live or die. I am more depressed now than when I started taking it. So depressed. Also what can I expect while tapering? God help me and bless you all. Thank you.
  13. Good afternoon, It is my first post here. I am 55 yrs old, and was taking Citalopram for 5 yrs or so. I cut the dosages in half weekly, from 20 - 0. When I hit 5 mg, I started taking 100mg of 5 HTP which I have also been cutting in half. In one month, I am now down to 0 Citalopram and 25 mg of 5 HTP in the morning and 50 mg at night, with Melatonin. I have forced myself to go to the gym up to 5 times a week, and do HIIT. Some days I had absolutely no energy, and just recently I have been able to do a strength class and a cardio class on the same day. I eat a very well balanced diet, do my meal prepping and do not eat junk food. I drink between 48 - 60 oz of water a day as seltzer. I am still feeling the hideous brain zaps. The only good thing about this is that I get so annoyed and angry that I successfully talked off a stubborn telemarketer the other night. Best insults of my life. I feel the zaps, the tiredness, the insomnia and even heartburn. It has been a month since I stopped altogether. Can anyone please tell me if these will go away for good, or is it really like I read sometimes that it could take years before these symptoms go away? Thank you so much for your advise!
  14. I have taken this medication citalopram for over 7 years. It was prescribed for what now seems fairly minor anxiety. But as time went by and lifes challenges came about I soon found myself not able to cope without it. Thats a very simple summary. About 4 years ago I began getting pretty unwell- brain fog, severe fatigue, reoccurring flu like illness, bone pain, sweats, tummy problems, weak legs. The worse aspect has been reoccurring visceral depressions, just awful moods and a sensation of real nastiness. Unable to put that into words, really. Also an aversion to light, and daytime generally. Been unable to function normally for 3yrs, after being a professional social worker for many years. Seen many medics on my path. Recent diagnosis of M.E/CFS. Not convinced. Came across Monica Cassini about a year ago, her work now makes sense to me, I highly recommend it. Its written through with such compassion. So, thanks to info from Monica, plus watching these forums a while, im now undertaking a tapering. 30mg dose reduced by 10% using a pipette. This is day 4. My head feels like the frontal lobe has lead in it, ive had some odd dreams, my mood is low, but im ok.
  15. Hello everyone so I am new here but was referred here by paxilprogress. My celexa timeline is: Started Celexa 20mg February 2008 for anxiety Started one month taper in August 2012 Reinstated Celexa 10mg on November 2012 January 2013 5 mg every day for two weeks 5mg every other day for two weeks 5mg every 3 days for one month 5mg every 4 days every 2 months 5mg every 5 days for one month 5 mg every 4 days for one month 2.5mg every 3 days for one month 2.5mg every 2 days for one month 2.5 mg for every to days and a half for one month Celexa free since 12/2013 Last year and this year has been the hardest for me mentally. I have been suffering from extreme debilitating brain fog, head pressure, strange irrational thoughts, I have lost all my social skills, forgetful on finding the right word when conversations, insomnia, withdrawal crippiling anxiety and loud thoughts when falling asleep. I have tried reinstating for 5 days this month but then quit bc it was not recommended after so long being off of it. I work a couple days a week at a store and it is hard for me bc of all the symptoms that I have. I don't know what to do if I just should wait it out or maybe reinstate at 2.5mg then stabilize at 5 or 10 then taper by the 10% methods. Someone please help....
  16. Hello, I'm writing to introduce myself as I'm new to the forum...actually all forums as I've never joined one before today. I searched on Google and found this forum as I believe I'm experiencing withdrawal symptoms from Citalopram and feel quite isolated in what I'm going through. I was taking 20mg of Citalopram for 7 years, but took the decision in April this year to come off the drug as I'd been experiencing episodes of fatigue which at the time I had recently found out was a side effect of the drug. I've outlined my history in my signature as even though it's been 3 months since I completely stopped citalopram (i was tapering down 6 weeks previous to this) I'm still experiencing withdrawal symptoms. This week I've had to take time off work as I've had fatigue similar to when I was on the drug accompanied by insomnia, dry mouth, muscle aches, loss of appetite and stomach cramps. I joined today for support to maybe find out I'm not alone in experiencing withdrawal for this long period (my GP originally said withdrawal should only last 2 weeks) and to know roughly how long this could last. Thank you in advance.
  17. Hi everyone, I have been on Citalopram for 9 years. I haven't needed it for a good 4 so decided to see my GP who advised alternating 20mg and 10mg every other day. Multiple GP's have totally underestimated withdrawal challenges. I started alternating the week before last and felt ok, probably over confidently, i decided to drop to 10mg every day 5 days ago. I have flu like symptoms, spaced out and headaches and insomnia. I'm now not sure what to do? Should i keep going as i have got this far or will ot get worse so should i take a 20mg and how often etc? I'm getting on a flight today and need to feel in control of my symptoms a bit more. Any advice would be deeply appreciated, please.
  18. kmm0806

    kmm0806: Hello...

    ...my first visit and post here. I've been Citalopram free for four weeks now. I'd taken 40mg daily since January 2004 I reduced my dose, advised by gp, by 10mg weekly until stopped (4weeks) Slowly starting to see clearly again. One of the toughest things I've ever done! K
  19. I started taking Citalopram 20mg when I was 19 for 12 months. I stopped 12 months later. I feel that when I was on it it intensified my extroverted nature and made me more funny and creative. I went off them suddenly and had bad brain zaps. But they have stopped. I am 21 now and feel like a shell of a person. I feel no emotion about anything and feel numb about past events (even traumatic ones) and apathy towards my future. I miss having the energy or drive to be creative and funny and caring about my life. Sometimes I even have trouble feeling love for my family, friends and boyfriend. How can I find meaning again? Please help me.
  20. Hi everyone I have been taking citalopram for 7 years. I tried to come off 3 years ago but had a relapse of symptoms of depression and anxiety. My husband wants me to come off citalopram so we can try for a baby. Coming off is non-negotiable. I currently take 40mg. I very scared about trying to come off as it was so horrific last time, but I need to make coming off work this time. Any advice will be gratefully received.
  21. Hi everybody! I'm Finnish, so please excuse my english, I'm very used to reading it, but not necessary writing myself. I try to keep my story short, but in a nutshell I was put on Sepram 20mg (Citalopram?, which later was changed to Escitalopram 15mg) and Olanzapin 5mg because of my depression and ocd. Now, I have to say that I really did not feel that depressed to begin with and in hindsight, I was really doing well (especially compared to now) without any meds whatsoever. Anyway, I took them for roughly 2 and a half to 3 weeks and then stopped, foolishly I might add, them both pretty much cold turkey before starting my ECT therapy. I should have discussed about it with someone, but the ECT therapy got started so suddenly and I did not really have an opportunity to talk about my concerns with anyone. I just felt uncomfortable having that many external things affecting my brain at the same time, so I figured I better get of the meds for my own peace of mind. It really didn't even occur to me, that getting off these meds could have any negative effects, cold turkey or otherwise. So I stopped taking them and about the halfway in my ect therapy, I started having increased anxiety and panic attacks. I also got one of those "brain zaps", that really scared me and started one pretty rough anxiety attack. Without knowing any better, I blamed the ect therapy for messing up my brain, but now later came to realize that I was, and still am, suffering from ssri and antipsychotic withdrawal symptoms. I feel restless, anxious, nauseous and have trouble sleeping. I have lost my appetite and really only want to lay down in quiet most of my time. I'm scared easily and for the first week since the symptoms appeared I was having constant panic attacks. I was certain that I was going to die and with the lousy feeling I'm having, still get these feelings, just not so overwhelmingly. Sometimes I'm feeling really cold, other times like I'm having a fever. I feel sluggish, constantly kinda "out of it" and have these internal tremors/shakes. My palms are sweaty most of the time and I'm having trouble to concentrate or doing pretty much anything. It's been two weeks since the symptoms started and I've really had enough of them. I took multivitamins from the start, but just started taking extra magnesium and fish oil, hoping to relieve my symptoms. Now, I was only taking the drugs for a short while and with pretty low doses, but still. I feel pretty horrible 24/7 and hope there's light at the end of the tunnel. Oh yeah, just to add: I took Escitalopram for maybe four days before quitting, Sepram for the couple of weeks before that. I just hope I get through this and did not cause any long lasting damage to myself with this. Thanks for letting me went out a bit!
  22. Hi All This site has been a great source of help to me over the last few weeks of withdrawal, so thank you. I have given up drink after a long battle during which I became co addicted to codeine and valium on and off. I have been clean and sober for 2 years. In 1997 I was first prescribed Seroxat. I then switched to Citalopram (Celexa). A total of 17 years on SSRi's. I have tried to stop the AD many times but have always gone back on them. The original diagnosis was anxiety and depression. Linked no doubt to my alcohol abuse from early teens to my mid 50's. I am male aged 56. I tried stop AD many times but always went back on them. I tried to taper in early march this year and started again. Finally after a fast taper 3 weeks from 10mg to 0. I got liquid citalopram and reduced by 10% per day!. Yes far too fast. I did have withdrawals from 2.5mg. Dizzy Nauseous Flu like sysmptoms extreme fatigue moved head and eyes would follow later waves of depression Tinnitus. These symptoms started to ease after 10 days. Except Tinnitus and fuzzy head. I was then hit with Insommnia at Day 10 I have had a couple of good nights sleep. However last night as an example; Fell asleep within seconds whilst reading. About an hour later I get a surge of adrenalin (cortisol) and I am awake. Dozed til 4am, then further surges of adrenalin every few minute for 2 hours. Further dozing til 9am. I then get up more tired than when I went to bed. I have tried all suggestions on this site to no avail. I even do a complete full body relaxation and mediatation on headphones. I have this back ground tension that stops me sleeping. I recognise it as withdrawal. I do abdominal breathing and try and rest. Get up walk around if needed. I have a sleep pedometer and it recorded me awakening 26 times last night!!! I had cancer and chemo last year and I worry all this stress cortisol is not doing me any good Hay ho day at a time this too shall pass. I am day 18 with no AD after 17 years use, so cannot expect miracles. Good luck to you all.
  23. I have gone nuts on this drug. I went to the hospital twice thinking i was going crazy. My doc kept trying to throw more meds at me. Cymbalta and effexor which i didnt take.i havent been able to eat and have lost 21 lbs in 3 weeks. I gag all day. Im now depressed and having thoughts that I'm psycho. I only took .5mg the last 2 days. I have no energy cant sleep, dont want to do anything but lay in bed and obsess over what I'm feeling. Can i just STOP the meds??
  24. Hey everyone, So I have been doing a lot of internet searches since I ended my last dosage of Cit. The success stories on this site were awesome and help me at night when my insomnia is taking over. I never actually joined a forum, always just read so this is kind of a big step for me. Anxious just typing this. Anywho, I am 27 now but went on 40 mg of CIT when I was younger, I think like 19, after I got engaged and had a panic attack. I had no idea what one even was so of course I freaked out and thought I was going crazy. So my mom took me to the doctor and I was put on CIT. I was on it for I think 2 years maybe.. Then I stopped taking it. And I really don't even remember how I did it back then. But I remember it was because I was feeling better I am almost certain I tapered off with my Dr. So then like 4 years passed, and I had a relapse, after my second child was born. So I already knew Cit worked so I went back on it for about another year. Then off of it again. But relapsed during the withdrawal and have been on it since. So I have been on it like 2 years maybe but this time only 20 mg and I actually tapered down to 10 mg for over 6 months. I felt fine so I decided to try again. But this time its a completely different story. The first time I have no idea how I did it, and the second time I never remember the symptoms being this bad, I just remember I got really bad insomnia again and I was sick of it so I went back on, sure enough 2 weeks later I felt fine again and was taking CIT. But now, the first 3 weeks were actually pretty good. I knew kind of what to expect with the slower moving, and just kind of feeling slow has all its been never had brain zaps or anything. Then weeks 4,5 and 6 I actually felt great, I was telling my family and friends, I have it under control and hopefully I am done. Then week 7 rolled around and one night I had intrusive thoughts laying in bed and I ended up with insomnia and my anxiety spiked, it is causing me to be tired every day and really anxious during the day. But now I am starting week 8 and it seems like the anxiety is getting worse almost depressing, especially throughout the day and I feel like I am ready to throw in the towel and get back on CIT . I felt pretty good when I was on them, I just thought I felt good enough to stop taking them and hate the fact I have to take a pill every day. I spend sooo much time reading success stories, I feel like I have read them all, but still have the urge to keep reading. It is starting to effect some things, but nothing too crazy. So yeah, basically going on week 8 and feeling terrible. I started lifting weights 3 times a week about 5 weeks ago. And I thought that was they key to me feeling better early on. But the more I am reading about this withdrawal, the more I see thats how it goes. You kind of get slammed further on. I told my wife this morning I am giving it 4 more weeks and if its not better I am going back on. But if it feels like today, its going to be hard to not go back on them earlier... I am hoping by sticking to one forum like this I won't be just researching so many things about it. Any help would be great! Thanks!
  25. Name: Kevin Age: 24 Sex: Male Height: 5'10" Weight: 163 lbs Race: Caucasian I understand that the following is a large wall of text, but I beg of anyone with experience or expertise to please read my case. For about four years I was on 20 mg/day Citalopram for mild social anxiety/mild depression. Around September/October of last year I felt that I was ready to slowly taper off of my medication (in retrospect I now know I should have done this under consultation with a physician and wish that I had done so). I decreased my dose slowly over the course of a few months, taking my last 1/8th of a dose in late/mid February. I didn't have anything that I would have identified as immediate withdrawal symptoms, though my wife does think that I became increasingly anxious as I tapered off. My primary reasons for coming off of the medication were that I disliked the side effect making it difficult to climax, I felt emotionally flat, and did not want to remain dependent on a medication forever. About 3 weeks later while at work, I suffered what I would most closely describe as a spontaneous panic attack with seemingly no mental provocation, feeling a flush of heat in my core, extremely rapid heart rate and extreme anxiety. A couple of times during that day I had a sensory disturbance consisting of eye floaters (raining downward through my field of vision briefly) and a very short period of ear ringing. I was essentially unable to sleep for that night and my heart rate remained very high for me (>100-110, previous to this my resting heart rate was around 60-70). The next morning I went to my university health center and I was prescribed Clonazepam to manage my panic/heart rate/etc. My Citalopram was reinstated at 10 mg and we have slowly increased it to 30 mg since then and they want me to go up to 40 next week. I took 0.5 mg of clonazepam three times per day for four days and then tapered my dose down to zero, having been on the clonazepam for a total of three weeks. As soon as I came off of the clonazepam I began to have strong ringing of the ears, extreme insomnia, anxiety, heart palpitations and occasionally high blood pressure. I went to the ER for having a racing heart, palpitations, and burning/tingling sensations of the skin. They performed an EKG which was normal. They performed a head CT scan which was normal. Complete blood count, liver enzyme tests, and thyroid level tests returned normal. After four days of what seemed like literally no sleep, my university health center put me back on the clonazepam and I'm currently taking 0.75 mg per day to manage my symptoms until we reach what they are calling a "therapeutic dose" of the citalopram. My physician consulted with two staff psychiatrists on my case, one who recommended remaining on the clonazepam until that "therapeutic" point is reached and one who recommended putting me on risperidol. I should clarify that I am a doctoral student in molecular biology (done with classes, but doing biomedical research at this point), but that my time as a student has been fairly easy-going and nothing much changed that I can tell in terms of my mental state to provoke these issues. While I was on/tapering off of the clonazepam I was unable to concentrate enough to work, and I'm on leave from work for now. I do currently have more-or-less constant minor ear ringing at the moment but the benzo seems to be keeping most of my symptoms at bay for the moment. I do have difficulty concentrating. I am afraid of remaining on benzodiazepines long term as I'm aware of their long term effects. I've read case reports in the literature of delayed onset symptoms often being permament; I'm terrified that I won't get better and I'd really appreciate any additional opinions anyone in this community could offer my case and whether the course of action my physician has decided on makes sense or any sort of referral for communication with someone who has expertise treating these issues. I have a strong conviction that something physical is going on in my brain as a result of the SSRI discontinuation that is distinct from the typical constellation of SSRI withdrawal symptoms, and I continue to worry whether I'm on the correct course of treatment. It has been exactly 1 month since the issues I've described began. Thank you for your time.
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