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  1. Hi guys well I've finally become a member after visiting the forum many times in an attempt to try and build up the courage to get off Effexor once and for all. I've been on between 225mg and 75mg for the last 10 years. Originally to treat Major depression and Borderline Personality. Took 75mg through two healthy pregnancies. I've tried twice in the past to get off this drug with no success. I experience heavy sweating and derealisation as a side effect. I'm struggling to find a doctor that a) believes in venlafaxine withdrawal and knows how to combat the withdrawal symptoms The first time I came off cold turkey as instructed by my psychiatrist. This was about 5 years ago before my first pregnancy. Prior to any warning labels being on the medication which now say 'Do Not Stop Taking This Medication Abruptly'. I had really bad anxiety and panic which I had never experienced before in my life. As soon as I got back on I was back to normal. The second time I reduced my dose from 75mg to 37.5mg then to 0 over the course of about two weeks. As per instructions by my GP. As soon as I stopped I felt like I was pretty close to losing it (as in my mind). Major anxiety and panic again. Started taking Effexor again after three days. I am seeing a new doctor and she has suggested halving my dose straight away from 75mg to 37.5mg. Then after two weeks start taking half a 10mg Endep tablet before bed for three days. After three days stop the Effexor completely. She said the Endep should combat the withdrawals. Having read a lot on here about tapering I said to her that that reduction sounds way too fast and I started freaking out because I don't want to end up in that psychotic limbo like I have all the other times I've stopped. I hope this makes sense. Any advice would be very much appreciated. Thanks
  2. Here is my prescription history, or what I remember of it and where I'm at now. I don't remember most of the meds I've been put on, but I do remember being put on Paxil by my PCP when I was 19 after going through unbearable depression, or what I thought was unbearable at that time. I was not given any other recommendations, such as seeing a psychologist or LCSW. At 19 years old, I thought my Doctor knows best and I should do what my Doctor tells me. Once I met my husband about 4 years later, I decided to try something else due to a lack of libido, which I had been struggling with before my husband. My PCP prescribed me Zoloft and I had a terrible reaction to that. I was manic; crying and laughing at the same time. My emotions were in overdrive. I can't remember the two or three other scripts I tried, but they weren't good either. Finally, Lexapro worked better. Then, when money was tight I went back to my PCP to see about being put on a generic for Lexapro. There was no generic for Lexapro but she told me the generic for Celexa, Citalopram would be comparable to the Lexapro. I went on that and it worked, but I still had no libido. But, after going through so many pills and the bad episode with Zoloft, I didn't want to experiment anymore. About 5 years later, when life has been good and my husband and I are looking to have a baby, I do not want to be on meds if I get pregnant. I have been wanting to get off meds well before thinking about having a baby, but wanting a child has kicked this in gear. Other than antidepressants, I live a fairly holistic life. I avoid Tylenol, advil or any over the counter drugs. I eat mostly a plant based diet, with the occasional treat if we are somewhere that does not offer plant based choices. I have been off Citalopram for about 3 months now, but am convinced I am still going through withdrawal despite seeing my psychiatrist who has weaned me off slowly. I took even slower than the Dr advised because I was scared to go through what I went through on Zoloft. I was taking 20mg and I followed a cycle of 20/15 each day for one month, 15 for a whole month, 15/10 for one month, 10 for one month, 10/5 for another month, 5 the next month, 5/nothing for the next and eventually nothing. Throughout the weaning off, I had tingly fingers, these jolts in my head, that I later found out through research were brain zaps. Up until last week, which had been 3 months off of Citalopram, I was getting dizzy spells. When driving a few times, I had to pull over because my vision was like looking into a fun house mirror and my head would spin. I am also experiencing extreme anxiety like I have never had before in my life. I was vomiting and feeling like the world was caving in around me and having issues breathing before going to work everyday or when I had a presentation at work. I work in sales and having this debilitating anxiety is not acceptable in my line of work. I am scared I won't keep up and lose my job in the state I am right now. I needed to get back on track fast before things spun out of control. I saw my Psychiatrist on Thursday and I told him about the extensive research my husband and I have done on SSRI Discontinuation Syndrome and my Dr was quick to shut me down and tell me that wasn't it because I've been off my meds for 3 months now. My Psychiatrist gave me a prescription for 0.5 mg of Clonazepam with instructions to take ¼ to 1 tablet twice a day as needed for anxiety. I took a ¼ once each day on Thursday and Friday. I immediately stopped after that because I hated the way I felt. I felt drowsy, sleepy, lethargic and unambitious. This cannot happen with my job in sales where I have to create my own work and leads. I also had issues driving; I felt like the road was curving or weaving where it does not. Luckily, this was happening on my way home where I knew the roads so well that I was able to remember how the roads actually go. After this drive home on Friday, I knew I could not continue taking the Clonazepam. It is Sunday now and I have no idea what to do. Do I go back to the Doctor to try a different benzodiazepine or have it on hand just in case my anxiety gets bad or do I try to continue being off any meds? I really don’t want to be on anything, but I also know it has been very difficult to function and I don’t want to lose my job because I can’t function. My plan of attack for the week is to try to get through the week with no meds and try using breathing techniques, relaxation method and worry beads when I feel an anxiety attack coming on. I am going to look up meditation techniques on You Tube to see if I can find some meditations to calm my mind before bed and in the morning before work. I want to get through this without meds. I am worried the period of time I have been on meds might have done permanent damage. I have an appointment to see an integrative health specialist on Valentine's Day and I hope he has some insight and orders tests that can tell me more about what's going on in my head and with my body. As a side note - ethically, should I officially break up with my Psychiatrist if I don't want to see him anymore? Like write him a letter or tell him when I go to my follow up visit in 3 weeks?
  3. I started taking Lexapro about a year and a half ago. It helped with both depression and anxiety, but the side effects were too much to handle. I had no sex drive and this caused problems in my marriage. I was also sleepy all the time and could not stay awake for nothing. So I decided it was time to come off. Right now it seems like the worst decisions of my life. I have tried tapering very slowly, but if I do not take one pill each morning I have extremely bad consequences. I get so dizzy I can't make quick motions. I have brain shivers and brain zaps where it feels like I'm getting smacked in the face with a pan while I'm sleeping. I'm extremely agitated and feeling completely hopeless. The question is- has anyone else experienced this? It seems virtually impossible to get off of this medicine! I am considering just quitting cold turkey, besides being told not to, just to get that crap out of my system, even if I have to suffer for a few weeks. Any experiences related to this? Help! I feel so lost and alone.
  4. After two years of taking 10 mg of Ambien, 4 mg klonopin for sleep, and 40 mg. ritalin, I became addicted and ended up a zombie. I went to my doc and told her about this and she told me to go home and throw out my meds. I followed her advice and ended up not sleeping for six days. I begged her for klonopin on the 6th day for sleep and she relented. I wish she had done a taper for me, and don't know why she didn't. Feel like she was ignorant about ambien and benzo withdrawal. Not only did I not sleep for six days, but I had sucidal ideations the first two days I came off those drugs. Still don't feel right and don't know what to do. Do I go back on them and taper? It has been almost two weeks since I went cold turkey. It was hell. Still is. I take lamictal 400 mg, for depression, and saphris 10 mg for mania. I'm bipolar. I also take 100 mg topamax and want to quit that. And she just added 300 mg neurontin for sleep instead of the klonopin which makes me shuffle around and slur my speech in the morning. I've come this far cold turkey. Still experiencing withdrawal symptoms, mainly agitation and insomnia. Is it too late to taper? Or do I just continue w/ the cold turkey hell?
  5. I have recently found out that Sudafed (Psuedoephedrine) increases Norepinephrine in the brain. I looked this up because I noticed that when I take Sudafed, I become more energetic, more alert, more awake...at least for a while. The effect lasts for about 5 hours. http://www.drugbank.ca/drugs/DB00852 An alpha- and beta-adrenergic agonist that may also enhance release of norepinephrine. It has been used in the treatment of several disorders including asthma, heart failure, rhinitis, and urinary incontinence, and for its central nervous system stimulatory effects in the treatment of narcolepsy and depression. It has become less extensively used with the advent of more selective agonists. [PubChem] Perhaps for those of you, who like me, experience extreme drowsiness during withdrawal, maybe Sudafed can help? Especially when bridging with an SSRI from an SNRI like Pristiq or Effexor? I found this blog, which mentions the same Sudafed effect that I have noticed, as well as the ADD medication Straterra, have any of you tried it or a similar medication to help with drowsiness type of withdrawal? http://accidentalscientist.com/2005/08/the-sudafed-test-for-adhd.html Also: http://www.fpnotebook.com/ent/pharm/Dcngstnt.htm A phenethylamine and a diastereomer of ephedrine with sympathomimetic property. Pseudoephedrine displaces norepinephrine from storage vesicles in presynaptic neurones, thereby releasing norepinephrine into the neuronal synapses where it stimulates primarily alpha-adrenergic receptors. It also has weak direct agonist activity at alpha- and beta- adrenergic receptors. Receptor stimulation results in vasoconstriction and decreases nasal and sinus congestion.
  6. Glad to have found this forum. I found it by looking for articles on long-term symptoms of quitting Effexor. Started taking Effexor XR around 10 years ago. Only 75 mg, went to 150mg for probably a year or so, then back down to 75mg for the last several years. I found lots of research pointing to the fact that andrenergic receptors are targets of norepinephrine. These receptors are in your sweat glands (activating the micromuscles that make you sweat) and digestive tract (sphincter constriction, etc). They affect your fight or flight response. I had a lot of symptoms that didn't make sense, then I started to research long-term effects of effexor/venlaflaxine. A lot the side effects that were listed as 'rare' or 'uncommon' were appearing in my day to day life. Granted I was taking only 75mg, but over a long time. This is a NON-SCIENTIFIC observation, but I believe that I was being affected by the norepinephrine. I considered EffexorXR a wonder drug, as in the beginning I was more confident, smarter, energetic. Of course, there's tolerance... afterwards I had to keep taking it just to be normal and avoid the side effects. After my norepinephrine discovery, and observing all the rare side effects.. I decided that this was not a good drug. So I started taking my 75mg once every other day. Once I got used to that, I started stretching the next dose by 12 hour or more increments. If I couldn't handle it I'd take my pill and try to stretch it next time. The half life of venlaflaxine is under 24 hours, so 48 hours later, presumably 25% is still in your system. Once I got to the 4 day mark, I got a prescription for 37.5 mg and followed the same process. I've tried doing it by granules as others have, but this was proving to be difficult, which is why I decided to vary TIME rather than DOSE. I took my last 37.5 mg Effexor XR in mid-July of this year. A couple of weeks after, I was on fire! Waking up early without an alarm, extremely organized, productive, and everything seemed extremely positive. Two months later, it wasn't the same. Some depressive or anxious days, mostly good days though. CURRENT SITUATION I'm feeling anxious and depressed more often. Judging myself and my life, making comparisons to where I was, comparisons to other people, etc. I originally took Effexor XR because I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder--but didn't want to do expensive therapy sessions (mistake, I'll admit). Depression wasn't really there before. Now it is -- although I felt depression at times when I was on Effexor. (Withdrawal?) Symptoms: - anxiety - depression - weight loss - some fatigue - IBS (supposedly effexor is sometimes used for IBS) - less social Attempts at Solving: - 200mg L-Theanine daily - 500mg DL-Phenylaline (don't think it does anything) - 1200mg of DHA/EPA fish oil daily - exercise every other day - 2 cups kefir probiotic fermented milk - 12 strains of probiotics (this has been very good lately) - mindfulness based cognitive techniques Where do I go from here? Are these really withdrawal symptoms? I really don't want to get back on Effexor, but if it makes me happier.. I have to consider it.
  7. Hello everyone. (hmmm, seems like spell check does not work on this site) I just want to share my current experience with Risperidone withdrawal and maybe get some feedback on the situtation. Current Medications: Venlafaxine 225mg Chlorpromazine 100mg It basically all started quite a few months ago when I experienced extreme frequent urination and urge. At the time I suspected it to be an UTI and visit the doctor. No UTI was found but I was given a dose of antibiotics anyway (Cipro). Antibiotics did not work and I saw another doctor for second opinion. Still no UTI was detected but the doctor assumed it might be an undetectable infection. Another dose of antibiotics were perscriped (Norfloxacin). Still no luck. I was then given Lenditro to try and relax the bladder muscles. No change. Note: No other urinary symptoms such as burning, pain, swollen or anything of the kind is experienced. It's just the urge and frequency. An appointment with a state urologist was made but I had to wait 4 months. 4 months later the problem still persists and I'm urination between 30-50 times a day. Urologist did a catheter test and no problems were detected. I was then sent home with more Lenditro and was advised to speak to my mental doc about possible urinal side effect with the Risperidone I was taking. Pdoc suggested I taper off. At that stage I was on 1.5mg and have been taking that dose for about 2 years. Doc wanted me to drop it by 0.5mg per week which I suggested was a horrible idea. I then insisted to rather drop by 10% per week. Doc was not impressed but this is my body so I don't really care. I can't go to another doc since they are state appointed. To see the urologist again would probably be another 6-8 month wait. Note: I also experienced loss of libido, horrible weight gain (even though I was not eating more), and fatigue on Risperidone Anyway, I've taper down the Risperidone dose and I'm finally off the med. I've been off for four days now and things aren't really going to well. My symptoms are as follows: Major libido comeback. Basically my libido is totally out of whack. I'm having these major intense sexual dreams and I have this constant desire but it totally feels unnatural and quite uncomfortable. Very fatigued. I simply want to sleep most of the time. Weak body. My body just feels so weak. No energy whatsoever. I'm quite nauseas. Vertigo / Dizzy What makes matters even worse is the fact my urination has actually gotten worse after I stopped the Risperidone. From the point that I wake up, until I go sleep, I have the constant urge to urinate.
  8. I'm a 31 year old mom and wife. I'm your average "soccer mom" so to speak...except for my dark secret of medication abuse. In my 13 years of marriage, I have had 14 surgeries (all female related-ending in a hysterectomy at age 26) This created a viscous cycle of pain, surgery, recovery, massive dr bills, a dependence on pain medications, and then depression. I could go on and on about the pills I've taken, the withdrawals I've experienced, and the despair I feel that I will never get better. I am currently taking seroquel...only 25 mg at night. I've been in it since July. It was given to me to treat PTSD from all the horrific medical disasters I have had as well as some tragedies I have gone through. I would really live to not take it anymore-it makes me feel very horrible...confused, can't find my words, almost drunk like... How do I taper off such a low dose... I am on a variety of other meds (trazodone, temazepam, fioricet with codeine, propranolol) I don't want to take those either...but I want off seroquel first. Any and all opinions would be very appreciated!!! My beautiful children deserve to have their mom back and my awesome husband would've his wife to feel well again!
  9. Hi, I'm scared because I've been feeling bad ever since I got off of lexapro in December 2012. I had been taking it for 2 or 3 years. I had to stop because it was making me sleepy all the time towards the end. I tapered off, but did it over a few weeks. I started to get all kinds of symptoms-hot flashes and chills, brain wooshing, sweating, insomnia, dizziness, irritability, digestive problems. My period even stopped for three months. This went on for 5 months and then I started to feel better, but I felt drained and lacked energy. In the last few weeks, the hot flashes, sweating and insomnia are back. I wake up several times every night because I go from being too hot to too cold. I also just missed a period. Is it possible for withdrawal to come and go and disrupt so many systems? I also feel drained and can't focus very well. My doctors are confused. They said withdrawal should only last a few weeks. I hate this and I'm scared I won't ever be the same again.
  10. Hello all! I am very new to this forum. I found it while searching for help tapering and managing withdrawal symptoms. From what I have read so far, I am not alone here. I was diagnosed with Bipolar II disorder, major depression, and generalized anxiety disorder between 2006 and 2008. I used to have horrible panic attacks(that would even cause ticks), and I almost never left the house. Since then, my psychiatrist has tweaked doses of anti-depressants, mood-stabilizers, benzodiazapines, and more recently added Pregabalin to the mixture. I feel as if though I can function much better, and I have even been able to go for my AA degree. Here's my problem: I do NOT want to be on the Pregabalin. I know very little about it, and yet it has caused me serious pain and discomfort. It helps greatly with the anxiety, but my body is dependent upon it and my memory is very foggy. I feel trapped, because I just cannot come off of it alone. Stopping it completely is NOT an option. Around 48 hours after stopping, serious withdrawal kicks in--nausea, vomiting, join pain, head pain, GI problems and pain, serious fatigue, suicidal thoughts and much more. This is by far the worst sickness that I have ever been through. It feels worse than the flu. I don't know much about tapering, but I think if I want to stick with capsules, I can go down 25mg at a time with it. If that's too much, I could possibly ask for it in liquid form. I am afraid. Any encouraging words will help. The suicidal thoughts are the worst part..
  11. Abilifyneedhelp88

    Important Empowering Technique...

    Hello All, I recently was curious as to how the pharmaceutical company (Otsuka) for Abilify had any info on discontinuation studies for the drug and if they had guidelines for discontinuation. At first I got the generic answer, everybody's different, everybody reacts differently on the drug and was redirected back to my doctor who I know gets his info from the company, from his experience with patients and of course his drug rep. The person I spoke to was a Pharm D. She would only give her first name and last initial. She was hesitant to give me any further info but when I said I was an RN, she said she could give me more info than just would a patient receive. So this is where it got interesting. She said there were no specific guidelines as to discontinuation. She said results done in studies were all over the board. She gave me specifics of the double blind studies and the percentages of relapse which are very low in the discontinuation. She then asked me if I would talk to their quality control department and go on record as to what my side effects are in which she came back and said that they were not available so I could talk to her. I had an hour conversation with her regurgitating all of my side effects, how I felt about the drug and how I thought that they should have more studies about discontinuation. I told her what I was currently doing in tapering in which I feel comfortable and thought that the Doctor was giving advice that was bringing patients down too fast and possibly encouraging relapse. I told her that I would like to come off the drug faster but that in reality going slower with all things considered and prior past history was the safest way to go for me. I also told her that it is difficult to live with the SE's and because of that and wanting to get pregnant is the reason for withdrawal. I found that expressing myself to this drug company liberating because in speaking with them it sounded like many people do not call in and share with them their experiences. So please, please call your manufacturer and tell them what is going on. They may not be able to give you a clear answer but their is some hope in being able to express yourself and go on record. It may be just what you need right now. They also want to know if your SE's or withdrawal symptoms get worse, better or stay the same. It is vital to express this to the manufacturer so they can take your story into consideration when developing new drugs. It is only from the patient do they hear and those that are proactive in their suffering. And it goes a long way when the other person on the other line says they are grateful for you calling in.... Just my two cents...Heather RN
  12. Hi everyone -- I am so happy to have found this community! I had decided earlier in the week to go off my medications but thought that I could just space my doses out further & further apart.. ha. Well this afternoon my brain started zapping and I realized that I needed to do some serious research, and here I am. I started on antidepressants back in the mid 90s when I was a teenager because of severe anxiety and depression. First on Prozac for a few months, which I quit cold turkey because I was 16 and stupid, and then Paxil (40 mg) for about 4 years which I managed to ween myself off of. All I remember about the paxil is having intense brain zaps. I don't remember exactly how I managed to get off it, other than drinking lots of water. After going off the paxil I became housebound with agoraphobia. My doctor sent me free samples of Effexor XR to start taking and I recall it having an almost immidiate effect. It really did work well for a few years, but I had to keep increasing my dosage until I was taking 450mg/day. This is great if you enjoy sleeping and not having any emotions whatsoever. I began to taper down about 4 years ago, and am currently at 150mg/day. I did get to 75mg/day but tapered directly from 150mg to 75mg and ended up with severe withdrawal symptoms so I went back up to 150mg. This was in 2010. In 2011 my pharmacy switched me from the brand name Effexor XR to Nova-Valefexine, and then to Teva-Valefexie which did not work, at all. I ended up in severe withdrawal and was almost hospitalized after attempting suicide. I started back on brand name Effexor XR this past spring but have never been able to get back to where I was before. My anxiety and depression are so bad that I don't think it matters whether or not I'm on medication. I'm also taking 15mg/day of Buspar and am going to maintain that dosage while I taper off Effexor. I am under medical care, and am going to be starting with a new psychologist next Friday. I'm also going to try exercise/yoga/walking/meditation and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy instead of taking medication. The thought of getting of medication is actually raising my spirits, because I believe that a lot of my symptoms (apathy, nausea, hot flashes, headaches, vision problems) are caused from the medication. To start my taper today I took 50 pellets out of my 150mg Effexor capsule. I watched the video in which 109 pellets were taken out, but decided that I would rather so a slower taper. I will stay at this level for one full month. If my math is correct, this makes my current dosage 137.5 mg, down 13.5 mg (if each pellet = .275) I have brain fog today because I delayed my effexor by 3 hours, but hopefully after a few days of this dosage I will feel better. I will keep you informed and would appreciate any input or suggestions from the community! Thanks so much!
  13. Hello, I am new to this forum and it looks like a great resource. I have been on various antidepressants since 1991 and unfortunately never tried to stop taking the meds. I tried to withdrawal from Effexor a few years ago and i didnt consider it a serious attempt because i went back after 2 weeks. I decided to try to go off meds (Pristiq) 3 months ago and I underestimated the way i would feel. I began tapering steps. 1. 50mg/day every day-- balance affected, lightheadedness 2. 50mg/every second day --3 weeks later-- irritability, morning anxiety added 3. 50mg/every third day -- 4 weeks later -- anxiety is all day, low appetite added--lost 12 lbs over next six weeks 4. 50mg/every fourth day--3 weeks later-- same anxiety but balance and lightheadedness lessening 5. tried to go to 50mg/every 5th day --- was so irritable by the fifth day, i decided to stay at every 4th day. I'm hoping that i can continue to taper but at a slower rate and maybe the anxiety will lessen or hopefully go away. I didnt count on these symptoms when i decided to go off Pristiq. I am afraid that Pristiq covered up the anxiety i have in my brain but I didnt feel like this before i started taking these drugs a long time ago so i am hoping its just a withdrawal symptom. Not sure if taking antidepressants over many years leaves your brain unable to manufacture the chemicals i need to lessen anxiety and depression, and if so, what can be done to help my brain make these chemicals? Ron
  14. Hi All, 8 years ago my husband was transferred to England and within a year here, I was put on Citalopram for depression and anxiety. This makes a lot of sense having come from a very close knit family with quite a bit of support. I found it extremely difficult to make friends in London and stayed on the anti-depressants, changing and changing until I found one that ‘worked’ for me until I got pregnant 3 years ago. I went cold turkey from Fluoxitine at that point and the only reason I can think that I didn’t notice withdrawal symptoms was because I was pregnant and felt like hell anyway. Just before I got pregnant I was diagnosed by a doc in my home country with adrenal fatigue syndrome. Something I could hardly treat through my difficult pregnancy. My daughter was a colic and reflux baby and every day was an absolute nightmare for the first months after her birth. My family, for various reasons, could not come to help me. It’s not surprise that I was diagnosed with postnatal depression. Little did I know at the time that the PND had everything to do with very little sleep and adrenal fatigue that had worsened causing depression. I went back on anti-depression medication and went through 4 different types of drugs until Venlafaxine and Propanalol, and high dosages of it, finally made me numb and I could function if I had a list telling me what needed to be done. Up until 11 days ago, I had been trying to reduce the medication by 1 pill a couple of days a week. I went cold turkey from the AD meds by accident. I ran out of my meds and thought I’d get my prescription (repeat prescription) filled the next day. To cut a long story short, I was only able to get my prescription the following Wednesday by which time I was as sick as a dog and realised that I had been going through withdrawal. Since I wanted to wean off the drugs anyway and I’d already been through 6 days I decided not to refill my prescription. I had the typical symptoms which others who have had withdrawal from Effexors have reported. I stupidly thought that a few days without my medication (as I couldn’t get the prescription) would just leave me feeling down. I had no idea I would be so sick. My husband is NEVER off work for any reason but he had to stay home with me as I could hardly walk. I was so dizzy I was vomiting; my muscles ached; I was weak and my head felt like my brain was being shaken inside my head like an egg in a yolk. I suffered headaches, cold sweats and muscle tenseness. All I wanted to do was sleep but when I did I had horrific nightmares. I still have a bit of lingering dizziness but it is getting better every day. It took 9 days for most of the symptoms to ease. The physical symptoms I mean. I am struggling horribly with tearful episodes and lack of patience. I’m having angry outbursts that are uncharacteristic. On the meds, I was numb and couldn’t seem to feel anything, let alone anger. Off them I feel like a nervous breakdown waiting to happen BUT for the first time in 3 years I am able to feel. On the anti-depressants I felt numb, unmotivated, exhausted, my memory was shot, my quality of sleep was really low and when I did sleep I had nightmares or very busy dreams. My weight sky-rocketed and I also found that while I was mostly numb to emotions; good and bad; I was a prime candidate for anxiety attacks which I had to take propanalol (beta blockers) for. I naively thought that I’d go off the meds and would suddenly feel better. I did not realise that my adrenal glands have still not recovered and that the lingering effects of the drugs would make me feel so exhausted and lacklustre. I have since started taking adrenal fatigue supplements in the hope the hopes that they help. I guess I still have a lot of work to day in getting my health back on track. The biggest areas in which I would hope to see improvements in is my energy levels, sleep quality and memory. I’d also like to see my weight reduced. I know that I’m going to have good days and bad days and I guess that’s what I’m doing here. I’m hoping to find drug free ways to cope and lead a normal life.
  15. Hi Everyone, I'd like to share my intro and story...... I started this with SaraInCanada's thread, Let me tell you a bit about my story..... I was taking Seroquel for more than 5 years (if my memory serves me right at least it was seven 7 years). This was the last anti-psychotic that I used. I had gone through several pych meds for about 14 years of my life beginning from anti-depressants, becoming anti-psychotics, then a combination of them, then they added a few benzo's then. My problem began in 1995 during a high school "core energy" retreat that stressed me out. My problem continued until college and at work. During these 14 years I was almost the same as you..... feeling like a zombie..... being inconsistent and not having my freedom inside...... (it's screaming inside beleive me)... I had very low self esteem as i can't feel my self controlling my life up to the point where I questioned my being a human person already.... I'm almost living like a dog..... I was able to take it off with only that thing in mind...... ALL of it up to 0mg of Seroquel up to now in 2013..... I was tapering for more than 1 year.... I was already beginning to taper off when I was at work (btw i'm an engineer) and then our company shutdown and I thought this was the perfect timing to get off it..... It took me at least (or more than) a year to do this.... tapering 10% in 2 weeks time.... I was not always successful..... I had to go back from time to time to a higher doseage..... but then I would always try to get back on track after a few weeks or months... One thing that really helped me was taking a bike, jogging or walking to our church in the mornings.... i did it most of the times and I tried to keep it regular during the tapering (I still try to do it up to now.....) This was very important to me as I approached the 200mg to 150mg stretch mark..... this was the hardest part for me as this was for me was the dopamine part..... Then came the serotonin, histamine part (or whatsoever....)., This was being apparent as I was already having stomach issues.... and not only that even the muscle spasms would come...... sometimes on my calf or back of my ribs, sometimes being INSIDE my HEAD literally..... feeling my innermost brain cramping or beginning to get hard... at the same time my stomach and brain would do a contest with each other.... I would also feel very strange like an auto-immune thing or something that eats me up and can't understand the feeling.... It would come and go...... I discovered many things while tapering off (specially as I was reaching 50mg - 25mg and 12.5mg). Vitamin C would help in my panic attacks .... also in my feelings of paranoia or being suspicious. I also discovered for me that Lactobacillus casei (shirota strain) "YAKULT" was also good for me as it helped me have nice feelings of being alive (and a ticklish feeling inside). I discovered that Vitamin C and also Yakult would help me as Vitamin C is a good companion for the adrenals...... Dopamine needs to by synthesized into epinephrenine..... Vitamin C can help with this...... With the Yakult part I discoverd that probiotic strains can have a relationship with epineprenine..... I was also taking a good form of B-Complex.... A word of caution though is not to overdo the vitamins and supplements at it can hurt the stomach also if taken too much..... Also, during the withdrawal, certain high dosage of vitamins (for me some high dose B-vitamins) would actually aggravate your symptoms as it might interfere with neurotransmitter production). Care and experimentation should be taken......... Now that I've taken them off, I still continue the journey..... It's not gonna end there...... In fact..... the personality or emotional things you had "before" taking the psych meds comes back...... AND you have to deal with them...... sort of dealing with the real world...... At some point your tapering off will be useless unless you come back to society...... and try and try again because you will never get better unless you do it...... It's a continuing process that doesn't end when you take them all off.... the only difference is there's nothing like the true taste of freedom....... Regards, Goodluck my friend, SuperRyu P.S. Nutrition also plays a very important role.... I tried to stay away from sugar, soda's, softdrinks and sweet shakes with too many artificial things..... I always tried to eat the right things and had protein in my diet.
  16. SourCherry

    SourCherry: Pristiq

    I have been taking Pristiq now for over two years. I stumbled accross forums on the topic and was shocked to see side effects I was experiencing, and had not made the connection to Pristiq. I never had a weight problem before I started taking it, but I am constantly hungry! Lack of motivation, I had no clue this was associated to Pristiq!! I thought I was just changing into a hermit! It was all I could do to go to visit my sisters! I never had a problem before I started this medicine. I guess I didn't associate lack of motivation because it didn't happen right away. At first I was full of energy! Felt great! But as time went on I put on a lot of weight and had to talk myself into the simplest tasks! After a year of being on Pristiq, I was diagnosed with high blood pressure. I have read that this has happened to other Pristiq users. However, my father has high blood pressure so this may just be hereditary. I decided to taper off!! I have read the horror stories of withdrawal and it scared me. However, I want off of this medicine! So Monday I took my 50mg dose and decided to take one every third day. Today is the third day, and although I am dizzy, it isn't anything that I can't tolerate. I decided to take one if the withdrawal gets bad enough. I know that cold turkey is not recommended but I figure if it isn't keeping me from working or doing my everyday things it was ok?! I will keep you all posted about the process for me. I know everyone is different so I would never recommend this method to anyone!!!!! I was just wondering if anyone else went this route? What kind of withdrawal symptoms you had? How did you taper off? Just stories about your experiece being on Prisitiq, the side effects you had while on it, and what made you decide to quit taking it and regain your life back:)
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