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  1. I would like to say hello and thank this website for giving me hope. I have spent the last few days reading a lot of the posts and have found them to be full of information and great advice. The success stories are wonderful to read. I have never been in a medical situation like this and I was feeling lost and alone until I found Surviving Antidepressants. I was put on Zoloft (50 mg then upped to 100mg) in February 2016 due to depression over a long-term illness that at that time was still un-diagnosed. I got a diagnosis for my illness in April of 2016. I was hospitalized for that illness both in April and March and it was eventually brought under control. Once I got home from the hospital (both times) I was very weak and I had very confused thinking. I had multiple at-home treatments and medications to keep track of. Somewhere in there I messed up my Zoloft and either went cold turkey or was only taking it intermittently, but did not realize it at the time. Starting in May and ramping up in June I had all sorts of symptoms, which nobody in the medical field could figure out, including me. I was put on Gabapentin (600mg then upped to 900mg) to help with the symptoms. My symptoms included headaches, nausea, feeling hot and sweating but having a low body temperature, as well as the feeling of internal tremors in arms and legs, and actual external tremors. I also had jerky arm movements. I had what I call “vertigo light”, the whole room didn’t spin, just the floor moved when I tried to walk; I felt like I was drunk. I had brain zaps, motion sickness, insomnia, dizziness, nausea, and pressure in the ears like when flying on a plane. My memory was also bad. After endless nights of searching the Internet with my symptoms I realized I had withdrawal. Counting the actual amount of pills in the bottle and looking at the day it was prescribed confirmed that I had not been taking my medication. Once I realized what was going on I contacted my psychiatrist and I went back on at 50mg, which was twelve days ago. A dosage that high might be a mistake after reading about “reinstating” here on this sight, I don’t know yet. Since reinstating the brain zaps and vertigo have disappeared, and the other symptoms have gone down in intensity, however I am getting them more frequently. I’m now getting them every day, for at least a few hours and sometimes all day. Before going back on Zoloft they were really brutal but only for a few hours at a time, none of this all day stuff. Klonopin seems to help however my psychiatrist has suggested that I use it sparingly, he said that the Gabapentin should be helping with the symptoms. By the way, I feel I have an excellent psychiatrist. He did warn me when he put me on Zoloft not to go off of it without talking to him first and that there was tapering involved. He also responds to my frequent and desperate e-mails on a timely basis. I do recognize though that I need to be proactive when it comes to my health. This is my first time with a drug in the SSRI class. At this moment my goal is to stabilize. Eventually I would like to get off, but right now I just want the physical symptoms to go away. By the way, the depression, which was acute in February, seems to have disappeared, both while on and off the Zoloft. I am open to opinions, questions, and suggestions. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
  2. Hello guys I'm new here and my English language is a bit bad but i will try my best to explain pls stay tuned 🥺 ..... I was suffering from anxiety which is kinda severe at first only social anxiety and moderate depression it all started when i was around 13 years old i just couldn't take any bad word or anything i may see it bad or not appropriate to say so if i here bad word or someone makes jokes about me or anything like that i enter a severe depression/anxiety state for 3 days and then it resolve . I return normal after 3 days and ....i cand handle being with ppl i get anxious and shy and get low confidence and like so .... ..... HOW IT ALL STARTED! ..... when i entered 24 i tried to cure myself so i went to a therapist then i was put on multiple drugs changing for 1 year with no significant effect on my overall health until the day i tried ecitalopram i really felt great everything was ok and i gained my life back and more i was so happy and enjoying but after 6 months i quited cold turkey and...... HELL OPENED THE DOORS!. Panic attack and anxiety and severe depression like hell i couldn't handle this until i contacted my physician and returned to another med (zoloft) i was kinda better but not good no panic attacks then after 3 months on it i tried to get off of it so i took 25 mg down from 50 mg for 1 week and then i dropped it i suffered withdrawal at first and then after a few weeks i was good and getting better my motivation returned and i was like a day good and a day not really but getting slightly better day after day but i suffered fear from dark with low confidence but i was feeling better .. THEN.... i married my girl and after a while i was hard with her like focusing on the minor things so i decided i need to return to my medication to help me with this thing but then everything was bad i was so depressed and so anxious for 2 months with returning to ecitalopram then i moved to prozac and i was a little better with it but still not feeling good so i decided again to quite so i dii like zoloft 1 week 20 mg down from 40 mg and then dropped it . WHAT'S ABOUT NOW. at first i was good first weeks then i entered in severe depression anxiety state then it got lifted a lil bit my anxiety is better then when returned to ecitalopram or prozac but i feel low self-esteem and excessive thinking and and i think I'm recovering but Very slowly like I'm feeling like the old me when i was so anxious when i hear anything about me and i feel like I'm having weak personality but zero motivation and sometimes i feel so sad not like when i dropped my zoloft after few weeks my motivation returned no its different 😧! SO GUYYS WHAT SHOULD I DO?!. sometimes i think about returning to the meds and sometimes I'm afraid of going back to my old self when i was triggered by anything into depression anxiety cycle I'm really confused and i don't know what to do? 5 months without the meds !
  3. Hi All I found this website 2 years ago and it has been of tremendous help. Here is my story. Until age 24 (12 years ago) i have had a perfect metal and phisical health, always a very happy and joyful person. I moved due to work out of my country, destination far north scandinavia. Two year after, winter is terrible, absolutely no sunlights for long month and polar nights. This time it takes a mental toll and i get depressed for first time in my life. I get cipralex from the doctors and 1 month after i am back to work. This is the beginning of everything. I am able to function well, however zero emotions of any type. I function but i am not myself anymore within 2 months. I am alive but not living, even if from outside everything seems normal. After 1 year i started on suggestion of the doctor to taper. Obvioulsy too fast. Within 6 months hell breaks loose. Everything started with much dizzyness, headeche, pains and with few days i was not able to function. I avoid to tell much details but you know, hell on earth. Going insane and losing the mind. No words can describes how bad it was. Moved back to my parents. The doctor put me back on 10 mg because he said i am still depressed. Within few weeks i am ok and back to work. However a suspect come in my mind. The symptoms i got this time were extremely different from the depression i previously got. Life goes on, and during next 8 years i tried other 2 times to quit with the same devastating results (usually at the beginning is fine, but symptoms kick in after 5-6 months). Doctors keep saying i am depressed and have to stay on drugs. When i try to raise the issue if it can be the drug every doctor tell me: no way, it s you that are depressed, symptoms dont kick in that far out after you have quit. Destiny wants that 2 years ago i met a girl who shares her story of antidepressant and withdrawn symptoms. SUDDENLY I CONNECT ALL THE DOTS. Everything fall in place and makes sense. I was always right since the beginning, it was the drugs, and the incompetence of doctors has kept me 10 years under these drugs. I am speechless of the total ignorance of the doctors , even psychiatrics on this topic. I start researching and thanks God i find this webside, where i can recognize everything you describe. Specially the waves and windows patterns, the symptoms, etc.. I started using your method. In 2 years i am down from 10 mg to 2 mg at the moment. Many ups and downs, many waves and windows. Sequences of weeks and months of zero symtoms and almost great mental health alternated with period of 5-10 days of dizzyness, headaches and pains that happens out of the blue, and out in the blue they desappear, however still tolerable and that allows a normal life. Now that i am down to 1-2 mg per day i see waves are coming more often than before, and i see these last steps are more challenging than it s been until now. My question for you people is: I use liquid drops of 1 mg , where 1 mg is the minimum amount. How do i go from 2 mg to 1.80 mg? Since i can divide only for 1 mg , in order to taper now i started to do like this per week: 6 days 2 mg and 1 day 1 mg, and so on, after a month i do 5 days 2 mg and 2 days 1 mg. However i started to get more frequent and longer waves recently and i am wondering if it is because of this method. Do you have any advice on how to taper smaller dosage? Thanks very much for this website and all your efforts.
  4. I feel low & numb & anxious & stuck in my own head & struggling with intrusive sucidal thoughts. I first started panic attacks through a couple hangovers didn't no much about them which they were scary, went to doctors to ask advice straight away given citalopram told to take once a day did so for a few weeks till I realised I didn't want to be on these and they were antidepressants, then the trouble started panic attacks everyday so went back to doc & given sertaline tried for less than a week and symptoms was to bad stopped then went back to doc & given citalopram liquid tried for couple weeks had like a high effect which wasn't good & finally given mirtazapine was on it for over a month with really bad lows and symptoms at first then started to ease but I still didn't want to be on a mind altering drugs! So I got told to just stop. Now from July 10th 2018 that's when all the issues have started been a rocky road ups & downs but I'm sat here thinking what's the next steps as I feel low and numb and sucidal thoughts all the time shall I go back to the drugs or ??? Struggling with no sleep Sucidal thoughts Anxiousness Low mood Snappyniess No interests in life
  5. Elisabeth1

    Any help from psychologist?

    Hi there, Does anybody get help from a psychiatrist to get through a wave? And if so (or not) what kind of support is helpful for you? I find myself looking for help but PAWS is (still) unknown in The Netherlands. I am not even sure what to ask for but some moral support would be so welcome! Any suggestions??
  6. Hi Im new here, I took Wellbutrin for 6 months and I have severe symptoms that got worse over time which can't be explained by any doctor. Extreme fatigue, high bp, extreme dizziness and a feeling of being drunk, muscle twitches, nervousness, anxiety, insomnia, appetite loss, derealization and more. Got to the ER twice, did all the bloodwork, got checked by internists, did an EEG and even a MRT. They said I have GAD and its kinda true?but only since like 3-4 months around that time when I stopped. I took 300 then 150 (which didn't affect me that bad) for a couple of weeks and then went to zero. I told my psychiatrist and he said it isn't possible cause none of his patients in 20 years had wd cause if Wellbutrin for that long. Its been 15 weeks and Im anxious about taking it again cause here in austria we don't have the SR or IR versions - just the 150 and 300 XL (!). So I cant take like 75mg and try if it works .. either 150mg or none .. cause as far as I know you shouldn't cut the extended release tablets ... I really need advice ...
  7. I was put on risperidone 3,0.5mg in the morning and 2mg at bedtime for 3 months, but not only that i was misdiagnosed and its been 4 months off it now and I also cant feel anything, happiness, sadness, creativity, joy, zest for life is gone. my scense of wonder is gone and I have alot of cognitive problums now to like not being able to think right, im slow. I used to love music but now it dosent stimulate me. i cant feel ciggeretts or injoy video games like I used to. im loseing all my friends because there like WTF man and im only 24. I doubt an antidepressant is going to do anything. I was on Celexa but stopped it after 3 weeks because what im feeling is from risperidone not depression. now I also have an inability to communicate, I dream EVERY NIGHT. I cant stay focused anymore I used to build projects from wood but nope, cant do that anymore ither. I used to laugh love injoy parties some of my friends even said i was the life of the party. well, not anymore thats for sure. I dont evin remember what I did a half hour ago. this drug ruined my life so far: my birthday, christmas, family events. my family is wondering what the hell happend to me. I NEED TO RECOVER. ive been chemically lobotomized. at least I can still type to find support on the internet. if i knew they were antipsychotics i would of never takein them. the doc never explained anything to me!, the only things I do feel really is worried i wont come out of this, and being hungry, all i think about now is why did i take these meds and will i ever recover. someone please respond with something positive did anyone recover from this and how long did it take. I ended up in the psyc ward because I smoked weed that was soaked in bleach and I tripped out. never knew the weed was tampered with at the time and then I was misdiagnosed with psycosis. I dont think the bleach weed did any real damage because when I woke up in the hospital I was ok but I was givein risperidone and sent home I should of never took the risperidone. but I did for three months, anyway. long story short I need support in knowing if ill get my emotions and personality back.
  8. Hello I am 24y old male. Around july 2019 my medication was switched from valdoxan (agomelatine) wich I used for 4 years without any problems to some SSRI medication and some antipsych. - meds. I cant remember the name of my medication since it was switched numerous times cause I instantly felt that it affected my sexual drive. The condition gradually got worse with symptoms like: total death of sexual drive, erectile dysfunction, absent feeling of sensation in orgasms. I finally stopped taking any meds cold turkey around this july 2020 with my last medication being sertraline accord 50mg if I remember correctly, so I was on the SSRI -meds about a year. Now 5 months later after quitting the meds my symptoms are still as bad with a new symptom of having numb feelings: I dont feel sadness nor hapiness and its hard for me to feel interested romantically. I learned about PSSD several months ago but found this forum about a week ago. One post really shocked me here. In the post user wrote something like this: "there are over 4000 users in this forum yet only 40 success stories". This really made me sad and desperate, even suicidal. Is the situation really this hopeless? I'm really running out hope right now, and would like to hear your stories and some encourageing news and studies. I can also provide exact medical history next time I have an appointment.
  9. Dear All I have been taking Duloxetine 60 mg and Rivotril (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg for almost 2 years and I would like to taper them off for the sake of my children. I need your help and advise please on the best plans and strategies regards ectactos
  10. Hey there. My name is kyle. I live in a small town in canada, I've been on 2 types of antidepressants. First was called pristiq (weined off no issues). I am currently taking paxil 30mg. I've been on this for 4 years now and I'm really beginning to hate the side effects. - I have constant sweaty feet ( drives me crazy, especially in the winter when they sweat and my feet get frozen so fast) - if i don't get up and get moving doing something in the morning i get super tired it turns into a brainfog type headache and feel depressed. The brainfog and depression in this state remind me of the feeling of paxil withdrawal that I experienced a couple years ago. -hard time getting off, it's not impossible but takes alot of concentration. -weight gain ( I'm not terribly overweight about 20 pounds I'd say) - I feel as though they are causing me more depression than they're worth Been doing some research on CBD oil and am hoping that one day when I'm off antidepressants I can transition to CBD oil. It sounds promising anyways ( I know I cant start the oil until I'm completely off the antidepressants) Brief background At the age of 7 or so I had another kid from school (a Male "freind" ) sexual molest me. I never said anything and I grew up from there thinking alot of horrible things. It turned into self hate and horrible thoughts. Fast forward to 17 years old and I had my first small panic attacks after smoking weed. Then when I was 18/19 more followed after smoking weed. I quit the weed but the panic stayed. Went on pristiq and it helped was on it 2 years and but eventually was slowly getting the anxiety back.. weined off the pristiq and broke up with a long time gf moved away started a new job (bad idea) had a severe panic attack at new job, immediately quit moved back to home town got back with ex girlfriend. Wasnt working and slid into a serious depression followed by a panic attack that lasted 2 weeks, day in day out until I finally gave up and went to the doctor. Was put on paxil. Took 3 months to get back feeling well enough again to work again (hardly left the house. Scared the hell out of me) Have been on paxil now 4 years. Broke up with the long time gf about 1.5 years ago now. Bought a house and am working with my family's company for 4 years now. About 2 years back I tried to wein off the paxil. The doctor told me to go down to the 20mg for a month then the 10mg after that.... well that lasted about 3 days. 3 days of taking the 20mg and I felt like absolute hell (severe depression crazy brainfog, couldn't do anything but sit around) it scared me. Its somewhat scared me now to think about trying to come off them again but I honestly believe my quality of life will improve now. (I hope anyways) There's more to my story. This is a brief overview of where I am at this time. Feel free to ask questions. I am an open book. My concern is to feel better ! If you have similar storeys/experience like mine please comment!! Thanks for reading!!!
  11. Hi all!iam new to this site also new on antipsycotics. i believe you do great work about helping people from what i saw until now and i would like to say my problem to see if someone has experienced it and how can i possible deal with it.ok lets start recently my mother had an appoinment with her psyc doctor about me to talk about some issues.the days before that i did a minimun dose of MDMA .when i was on the docs office i started feeling fear and i said to him everything about what drugs i tried in the past.i was unable to conCetrate or talk normally i was feeling intense fear and panic for something bad will happen.the doctor said that iam on a psycosis episode and he told my mother that he needs to hospitalize me and to investigate what is happening to me.he prescribed me zyprexa about 10mg a day and after 3 days i went in to start the "therapy".the 1st days was ok the doctors was asking me things (for only 15-20 min a day) and i was really thinking that is a way to do good to myself cause i didnt knew. now the bad part begins. in day 10-12 on zyprexa i noticed changes in my breast start to grow but i didnt gave so much weight cause i was eating like a beast.then i started feeling like i could not have sex at all.i said these things to doctors and they were like "oh you might have that but they will go away".then i asked to stop the "therapy" but the doctor said he can not let me go out cause he thought i have an episode or something.my mother agreed and they kept me 5 more days in against my will.i refused to take anymore the zyprexa pill so they convinced me to take invega instead for 3 days.i took it cause i was something weird was goin on inside my head and i was convinced i need the pill cause iam mentally ill.anyway from that day i knew that keeping me in against my will and giving meds is illegal and the only thing i want was to go out and stop the pills(extremely difficult).at least i did it i went out of there but on the 17 day with a lot of pressure SO it might be a short time(21 days zyprexa and invega)taking that pills but i noticed these symptoms and i want your help (ITS BEEN A MONTH IAM OUT OF THESE DRUGS )BUT STILL HAVE THOSE SYMPTOMS my breast grew (not noticable from others but i believe that is the start of man boob thing) i have no libido lack of motivation lack of concentration anhedonia muscle stiffness some tremors on muscle still anhedonia depression more than ever feeling like a zombie lying in a bed all day suicidal thinking i want you to focus on the breast enlargement (man boob thing) and and the sexual dusfuntion am i have to be like this forever?anyone had gone through it ? also i have to say that i did hormonal test and my prolactin levels was back to normal and the testosterone levels was good too but my breast is still bigger and my libido and my sex drive is still messed up. i now that is not a serious thing to talk about but i need help and iam despaired i dont know what to do my parents and doctors dont believe me about all these things. also dont forget to say iam a mucisian iam playing drums and have a lot of interest on sports like skate and football.its like i lost my skills my interest i cant listen to music like i did and i cerntailny believe my legs are damaged due to the movement disorders now iam stucked in home crying and do nothing only searcing for other cases like me to reliefe the pain HELP I THINK MY LIFE SCREWED FOR EVER NOT LOVE MY SELFE ANYMORE ETC AND ALL THAT FOR 20 DAYS thank you for listening me
  12. W0rstcasescenari0

    Worstcasescenario

    So Im 40 years old and wither or not anyone believes me I know its responsible for ruining my life. I was on effexor for about a year when I was 24 I was an at home wife/mother of 3 , I had never been in trouble before and worked in the computer field when I wasnt at home with my sons. At 25 I was using drugs, Gambling, Left my husband and family and by 30 I was in prison. The things I did, unrepairable, so out of character. I knew it was the effexor, I told anyone who would listen. Up until now I would look every couple of years to see if anyone else had similar experiences, I would come up empty handed. I hate that so many other people have been negatively affected by this drug but now I dont feel so alone.
  13. Hi Everyone: Here is my background. Diagnosed with GAD and depression while in the service in 2005. Tried Paxil for a while and it really helped. I didn’t like the side effects (anorgasmia) so I tapered off. 2017 rolls around and I fathered my first child. Baby was born prematurely so we had a 3 month NICU stay. Decided the stress and anxiety warranted a trip to the doctor. Started me on Bupropion and Xanax .5mg (7/2017). Was on the Bupropion briefly. It gave me brain fog and poor executive function. Maybe took it 2 weeks. Next appointment was 10/2017. Dr. started me on Mirtazapine 30mg and kept the Xanax as needed. Stayed on it until 1/2018. It definitely helped with sleep but I just felt weird. TON of weight gain. I remembered Paxil really helped me years before and asked for it. Went straight to 20mg (2/2018-3/2018) . That was short lived as it gave me intense heart palpitations and shortness of breath. Went back to Mirtazapine 7.5mg from 2/2018. Did a fast, uneducated taper and stopped on 4/12/18. I googled my side effects from withdrawal: anxiety, paranoia, itchy skin, no appetite, heavy chest, insomnia, lots of racing thoughts and rumination. Sure enough, a fast taper will do these things. I thought with such a small dose, surely, I could taper pretty quickly. Yes ,7.5 is small but it still warrants a long time of tapering. So now as much as I don’t want to do it, reinstatement may be the key. Eventual goal is 0 mg. I am just a high-strung worrier. I’d rather be that than a high-strung worrier dealing with worse anxiety and worse depression because of pills. Exercise has really helped me in the past, I just couldn’t do it with the kid at home but things are fine w the kid so that will be intregal. I’m still mulling over but think reinstating at 7.5 or 3.25 may be good. Stay on it for a while and follow the 10% rule. Maybe 10% and stay there for 2 or 3 months. I have Xanax and Dr will prescribe Ativan but I haven’t taken any benzos since 4/12/18 and hope to avoid them as they are addictive and not very helpful except for sleep. I tried propranolol for a few days but felt heavy in the chest, hard to breathe. I've been caffeine free for 2 months and alcohol free for 8 months today. Anyway, I really appreciate this website and the information. The stories of people who’ve gone through this and have made it really give me hope.
  14. emergingfromhell

    emergingfromhell: Tips

    Hi. I'm HOPEFULLY coming out of what could be called a 7 month mental breakdown induced by antidepressant roulette ....I've read so many of your stories over the last few months (which have been the worst) and they have helped me...so I feel like I should share my experience in case anything in it can help someone else. First is a short version of what happened to me. Below that is a list of specific things that helped me. And below that, I've shared a longer version in case you'd like more details. I'm truly in awe of how behind psychiatry is. No one should have to suffer like this. WHAT HAPPENED TO ME - I was on Wellbutrin and Prozac for a few years - couldn't quite get the balance right (turns out SR and XL were getting messed up so that didn't help). I was always a little too anxious or a little too depressed. It wasn't bad, but could have been better so I thought I'd try something new. First, I got off Wellbutrin CT. Prozac alone was hell - probably bc of Wellbutrin withdrawal. Then I cross tapered Prozac with Pristiq. Pristiq worked for a month then stopped- I was in hell again - probably delayed Prozac withdrawal. Then I added Ability to the Pristiq - horrible side effects. Then I stopped those CT and I took Viibryd. Pristiq/ Ability withdrawal + Viibryd side effects, and after all I'd already been through, worse than hell. I took Klonopin and 10mg Prozac to wean off of that. I started to feel slightly human again. I got back on Wellbutrin and Prozac and felt more human. Then had to wean off the Klonopin - worse than what's worse than hell. Now I'm just on the Wellbutrin and Prozac like I was originally and I finally feel like a person again. What a nightmare - 5 withdrawals in 7 months. Anyway...I've learned some things.... THINGS I'VE LEARNED - Medicine tips: 1. Try to stay consistent with a pharmacy/manufacturer if you're taking generic bc that can make you respond differently to the medicine (I think that was a problem with my wellbutrin originally - also XL is smoother than SR and it's important to stay consistent with that as well) 2. Adding Prozac while weaning off an anti-d can really help with withdrawal 3. Wellbutrin can increase the concentration of Prozac in the body if taken together which is important to know when tweaking the dosage 4. Don't CT anything even if you're on something else or getting on something else. 5. Changing is a REAL b**** so only do it if you have to. 6. If you have to take a benzo to help with withdrawal, don't take it everyday or for too long bc you'll have another withdrawal and nothing to help with that one. Anxiety: 1. When panicking, holding ice, getting in a really hot bath, running or doing push ups can be good bc your heart is racing due to a threat it doesn't understand...when you give it a real reason to race and then take it away...your heart feels the threat is removed and will slow down a bit. Plus your mind will focus on that pain instead of on the more painful racing negative thoughts. In some messed up way, it's like a less harmful version of cutting. 2. Lavender oil is very calming, and smell is the only sense with a direct pathway to the amygdala which is the part of your brain associated with mood and emotions. Smells that remind you of happy times work as well. 3. Warm baths helped me more than anything. Increasing body temperature can help regulate mood. Sometimes, putting cold water on for a little helps as well bc that can help circulation and increase oxygen. Switching back and forth can help with the chills/hot flashes that come with withdrawal. 4. After bath, I put towel down on floor and did some stretches to open chest and hips bc that's where we carry a lot of grief. I recommend making it part of a morning routine. 5. Writing affirmations on paper with a pencil or pen can be therapeutic. Find words that resonate with you - simple sentences. It sounds silly, but it actually helped. 6. If people are pissing you off, but you know you shouldn't be confrontational in this state, write them letters that you don't send. 7. Fresh air really helps, even if you just open a window. 8. The mornings are the worst bc of Cortisol. 9. Google Alternate Nostril Breathing and do that for longer than feels comfortable. Also, when taking deep breaths, the exhale should be longer than the inhale and is more important, but if you do it for a really long time, make them equal so you don't get light-headed. 10. There's a good mediation app called "Insight Timer" and another called "Calm". 11. I read a book called "Love Warrior" that was a good distraction and very relatable. If you have stress relating to a toxic relationship, "Women Who Love Too Much" is also a great book. 12. Binge on a Netflix series to distract your mind. The Moth app is good for that also if watching is too hard. 13. Hugging or cuddling releases oxytocin and can really calm stress. Massages obviously help a ton as well. 14. Imagine a happy place in detail - the smells, sounds, textures etc...for a proper amount of time. Get lost there. 15. Talk to yourself and tell yourself the things you wish someone would say to you to calm you down. You'll feel crazy at first, but it helps. 16. People who've had easy experiences don't write on message boards, but there are plenty. So don't get discouraged only reading horror stories on here. They're the worst cases. 17. Focus on today. Making big changes to address the underlying issues that caused the original anxiety and depression are things to consider once you're stable. And whatever in your life is getting messed up bc of the state you're in, focus on fixing those later when you're better as well. Be honest with work, family, friends etc and hope for compassion. In the meantime, think of the next right thing to do and the next breath. One thing at a time, one moment at a time. Everything else will be much less daunting and easier to fix when your biochemistry isn't going haywire...so cut yourself some slack. Nausea: 1. Pepto can help. 2. Chocolate Boost Plus is good for when you're too nauseous to eat but need to keep weight up. Banana and peanut butter smoothies with chocolate protein powder helped me. Whole foods has a bunch of shots, smoothies etc if you can't make them. 3. Pedialite can help with dehydration. 4. Three fingers from your wrist is the pressure point for nausea. 5. Ginger helps more than you'd think. Ginger candies to suck on are good. Despite what people say, I found Ginger Ale made me more nauseous. Loved Ones: 1. It's helpful if other people can make many of the daily small decisions for you bc thinking at all can be really overwhelming. 2. Complicated conversations about politics, business etc should happen in another room. It's important to focus on simple and positive things to help your brain heal 2. Google SSRI withdrawal symptoms and show them to your loved ones so they know what to expect and so they know your behavior is the result of a chemical clusterfuck and is not reflective of a new or old you. 3. Explain to loved ones that if you sense their anxiety about your anxiety or their fear or impatience, you will feel it magnified and it will slow your recovery massively. You need to be around supportive people who will tell you you're going to be ok and keep you calm. That's crucial. From Me to You: This is only temporary. You will get through this and be yourself again, no matter how impossible that seems while you're in it. I know my story isn't very encouraging, but I really believed the new me was going to have to live like that forever, and I really didn't think I'd survive if that was the case. But I did survive and I'm here now - feeling like the old me with a new appreciation for everything, and the hope that what I went through will somehow help someone else. Here's the more detailed version if you think it might provide some useful information - about what NOT to do For a few years, I was on 300 wellbutrin and 40 prozac... I couldn't quite get the balance right for anxiety/depression, and I thought maybe being on just one drug would be a better idea. My doctor suggested I CT the wellbutrin and up my prozac from 40 to 60. I stayed on just Prozac for the month but crashed - fatigue, anxiety, depression - and A LOT of it. I still don't know if that was wellbutrin withdrawal but, in hindsight, I suspect it may have been. I went to a new doctor who suggested I try Pristiq bc my mom does well on Effexor (strong proof that members of the same family tend to do well on the same drugs) and it was the improved version. Also bc I had done well on Cymbalta years earlier, except for the intense fatigue, she thought another SNRI might be good for me. I weaned off Prozac in a couple of weeks while taking the Pristiq. It worked really well for about a month on it's own and then I crashed again - fatigue, anxiety, depression - and A LOT of it. Again, in hindsight, I wonder if the prozac had a delayed withdrawal bc that can happen even though doctors don't acknowledge it much. I raised the Pristiq by 25 for a couple weeks and it didn't help. Studies have shown that increased levels of Pristiq doesn't increase efficacy of the drug...it's just more to get off of later. So I went back down to 50 and my doctor then added 5mg of Ability. I had awful side effects - restlessness, jumping out of my skin, major depersonalization, etc. She suggested Rexulti which has less side effects but isn't covered by insurance and would have been 1k a month so I tried Geodon instead for three days - same class of med, same problems. So I gave up on Pristiq. Stopped CT and started 10mg of Viibryd. That's when things started to get really really bad. I basically compounded Pristiq withdrawal with Viibryd side effects. I eased up over a month to 40mg - the therapeutic dose. I woke up in a panic attack every morning, I couldn't function at all, I could barely talk or eat. I felt terrified and almost catatonic. I took 20mg at 11am and 20mg at 3/4pm, and you have to take it with food which is hell when you're that nauseous. It got a little better after 5/6 pm everyday which was strange. It also got a little better at 40mg in that my good windows would last a little longer but my bad ones were still awful and still lasted for the majority of my day. I added Valium in the morning but didn't want to get addicted so I'd go three days or so then experience increased depression when I stopped. My doctor kept telling me to be patient, that things would turn around, but after two months of feeling like I was dying everyday, unable to function and having suicidal thoughts, I lost any bit of patience I had left. He had also told me that he thought a lot of this was psychological not chemical and that I should spend more time talking to my therapist. Anyone who has been through awful side effects and/or awful withdrawal very much knows the difference between issues that can be resolved by a therapist and issues that need a good psychiatrist. The only thing I needed to talk to a therapist about at the time was the physical pain I was in due to the medicine. I saw another doctor who told me to wean off the Viibryd - that I should be feeling better by that point. I honestly thought I wouldn't make it through another withdrawal period, but the Viibryd was so bad for me that the withdrawal was actually less miserable than the side effects had been. She also told me to take Klonopin .5mg in the morning and at night. My anxiety was way worse in the morning so I took it then, but fortunately, didn't get addicted to the full 1mg a day bc I didn't take it at night. She also added Prozac - 10 up to 20 while I weaned down on Viibryd. After being off of the Viibryd for a little over a week, I needed to figure out what anti-depressant was next. I honestly felt too scared to try anything else so I added 300xl of Wellbutrin to the 20 Prozac - a little less than I was on originally - before I started all the changes. Still not finished - then I had to withdraw from the .5 Klonopin I'd been taking for a month. I cut in half for a week then half of that for 3 days. I suffered terribly that whole time and then for a few days after my last dose. I am writing you from the other side. So...I basically went through all of the hell to circle back to where I started, and I definitely didn't have it in me to get off altogether bc I know adjusting to life without meds after 16 years on them is going to be a bigger task than I have the energy for right now...but I did learn some things....
  15. I have been on Effexor 150mg for about 3years now. I stopped cold turkey 3 days ago , ( yes i know it’s not right to do ) so being i’m on my 3rd day will they get better, worse or remain the same?
  16. I'm holding at .25 mg of clonazepam twice a day. Since September 2017 have been slowly tapering down from .5mg , 3 times a day from Aug 2017. The madness started when I tried to taper off 1 mg of xanax 3 times a day in May 2017 . I could not taper off xanax , even with a trial of ativan or valium both intolerable. 2 mg dose of valium caused uncontrollable shaking of body and stuttering when speaking . Ended up in Aug 2017 , in hospital , pulled off xanax, thrown on mirtazepiene , gabapentin and clonazepam . Have slowly tapered off the gabapentin and mirtazepiene, one at a time . I need help in lowering my dose of clonazepam , because have been holding for 30 days + due to on and off internal vibrations , and the start of warming spine with tingling , assorted chills on and off, etc . My fear is the next taper will bring constant burning of spine , as had with xanax , and worse the reinstatement of gabapentin. Gabapentin did stop burning spine but with depression, blurred vision, weight gain and acne like eruptions on face and neck , as well as other side effects , etc. I need help on my next drop . Do I just stay where I am at and hope the internal vibrations, tingling , and warming spine at some point stop ? I'm very strong and determined to be free of this drug but do not know how to endure burning nerve pain from withdrawal . I have tried topical magnesium oil , oral melatonin for sleep , Ubiquinal , etc to no avail. Ubiquinal at low dose reved me up , just to stimulating . Who knows if placebo effect , but tart cherry juice , twice a day allows for some sleep. I find my body during tapering, less is more and fear supplements cause more harm due to a very sensitive nervous system. I do take vitamin b with c and vitamin d . I follow a low cholesterol diet , no alcohol or caffeine . My DR. does not believe in protracted withdrawal or that my symptoms stem from benzos . A neurologist disagrees as thankfully no neurological damage just neurological symptoms every time a cut in dose is made . Does any one have any insight to ease my suffering ?
  17. I went about it all the wrong way. September 2017 I went Cold Turkey from 20mg of Citalopram. Used it for 18 months or so. I stayed off hoping this would eventually get better. They never did. The first two weeks were the worst. Loss sense of reality, no emotions, flu syndrome basically all the side effects under the sun. 90 days I’m I reinstated. 5mg on day and was fine. Then 5mg the next week and was fine again. Then, 10mg the next day and got SS and hyperactivity. .5 Klonopin has helped with the on going dizziness and sucidal thoughts. Anyone out there with success stories from cold Turkey and unable to reinstate? Even a time frame. Waves of symptoms come and go. Everyday is different. I hope to hear back from anyone who cares With hope, Trevor
  18. Hi all danish members Im writing the rest of the topic in danish, because i need somebody nearby to help me. Situationen er som følger: Jeg bor på et bosted hvor jeg nok skal bo et eller flere år endnu da jeg venter på en bolig. Jeg har været tvunget til at tage medicin det sidste 1 og et halvt år, eller bliver jeg smidt ud. Jeg er ved at være rigtig dårlig af det. Jeg leder efter en læge i nærheden (bor i Roskilde) der kan hjælpe mig med at trappe ud, enten nu eller når jeg flytter væk herfra. Mine recovery chancer bliver mindre og mindre og dermed også muligheden for at flytte væk herfra.enhver anden form for hjælp bliver modtaget med kyshånd. Knus Sara
  19. Hi everyone, I'm new here. Im 19, hoping to one day become a doctor, but right now that seems impossible. I have always been very bad with medicine, i forget to take them, or i just don't care enough to take them. In my junior year of high-school 2015, I had a suicide attempt which put me 2 weeks in the hospital and on prozac, I don't remember the dose. I stopped taking it cold turkey after one week it made me feel fake happy, I felt like I was faking everything. Then I finally got myself a good psychologist, and a " meh" psychiatrist which led me down a road of several antidepressants, , most of the time I just took the medicine for 2 days to a week, and then stopped cold turkey. I would fake symptoms and tell my psychiatrist I was doing fine on them when in reality I was not taking any of them. I did his with Cymbalta, Effexor, and Douloxetine, I think thats what its called. Then I was put on pristiq, again, it made me fake happy, so I stopped after a month, I never had bad side effects from quitting, just starting them was what made me have all sorts of shaking and vomiting etc. This summer, I had another breakdown, turns out I have OCD, well i was put on Paxil, surprisingly I had no side effects coming into it. It was great I was feeling better. I took it for a week and a half or maybe 2 and then i started forgetting to take it. After a week or so of not taking it I started to feel aroused all the time. like the slightest touch or sexual thing would make me want to "have some fun" with myself. It was weird. I felt very odd about it because for like the past month I had been anything but sexual, I was actually very afraid of sex. and the medication had made me numb down there. Then i started getting tingles in my lady parts, they felt inside me, and I was also peeing a lot which made the tingles kinda hurt. So I took a UTI test..... I have a UTI.... but I would get weird throbbing and tingling inside me as well, and in my lower back and in my anus, it was very odd. I searched up what it could be and PGAD came up, I read all the suicide stories and people that had it for years with no relief I was so worried I would soon start having uncontrollable orgasms. I began to check and hyperfocus on my lady parts. I started taking Paxil again, 4 days later it was gone but I was left so worried it would come back, i became hyper aware of my lady bits. for 3 days I was okay.... then i started feeling aroused, I was scared, i didn't know whether it was PGAD or me being me. I cant orgasm at all. then some tingling by my clitoris after I peed sometimes. sometimes its slight twinges inside me, or feeling "stimulated" when i cross my legs even loud noises make me twinge down there....Its not as bad as when I was "withdrawing" but still Im so scared it will come back one day. Anyway . Im stuck. Do I get off the meds? what if the PGAD comes back? I really don't know what to do. Im starting university again in a week and Im so scared.
  20. Hello everybody, First of all, sorry for my poor English. I'll try to write short but correct sentences, so you can understand my case. I'm 21 years old and currently I'm studying Medicine. In 2013 I started psychological treatment for social anxiety (only psychotherapy, without medication). I'm positive that this helped me a lot, but the psychologist thought that I wasn't improving fast enough, so he prescribed me Escitalopram 5 mg/day. I didn't notice any improvement or adverse effect while taking this drug. The summer of 2014, before I started College, was the worst phase of my life. I didn't want to get out of my bedroom, and I only wanted to die. That fall, I visited a psychiatrist for the first time, and he prescribed me Desvenlafaxine 100 mg a day. This drug completely killed my mind. I felt numb, dizzy, emotionally flattened, I had severe memory problems... When the College semester ended (I failed 3 subjects), I withdraw the drug with the help of the psychiatrist. Several months later, I felt better, but I had the feeling that the drug had left some type of "residual damage" in me...I wasn't the same person than I was one year ago, and the memory problems were there. I committed the great mistake of asking another psychiatrist for advice: I wanted to know if the Desvenlafaxine was the culprit of the symptoms I was suffering. The new psychiatrist told me that I was suffering from anxiety and obsessive-like behavior, so he gave me Duloxetine (60 mg/day during the first 3 months, 30 mg/day later) & Alprazolam (0.125 mg. 3 times a day during the 3 first months, once a day later). This time, I got better results than the year before. I felt better, I even obtained A+ in two subjects. When the summer came, I decided to withdraw the drug with the help of my doctor. I suffered a considerable withdrawal syndrome (dizziness,photophobia,tinnitus,swinging mood...It was horrible!). When the College course started, I felt really anxious, I could barely study, so I started taking the Duloxetine & Alprazolam again. However, this time the medication didn't helped anything. I felt worse everyday, so I decided to leave the College for a while and search a good psychotherapist. I found one who is helping me a lot, she encouraged me to withdraw these horrible drugs, so I'm "clean" since December, 2016. I'm going to summarize my drug history and the withdrawal symptoms I'm having: Medication history · March 2014-October 2014: Escitalopram 5 mg/day. · October 2014-July 2015: Desvenlafaxine 100mg/day. · October 2015-July 2016: Duloxetine (Cymbalta) 30 mg/day & Alprazolam (0.125 mg/day). · October 2016-November 2016: Duloxetine (Cymbalta) 30 mg/day & Alprazolam (0.125 mg/day). · 2 and a half months "clean" (since the end of November until today) My withdrawal symptoms · I don't feel anything, I don't enjoy anything in life, my mood is completely flat. I don't enjoy things that I used to enjoy, I have to think "hey, you used to enjoy doing this, so you should be having a good time", but I don't have the "natural" and "automatic" feeling of enjoy. · My memory is not sharp anymore, I have problems remembering what I've done yesterday or some days ago, I have to do great efforts in order to remember things. · I feel mentally slow, I have enormous concentration problems, I feel absolutely useless. That's the summary of my situation. I can't talk about it with anybody (my fathers don't understand what's happening, my girlfriend and friends don't notice any problem and my psychotherapist, although she think I was medicated without reasons and she thinks the two psychiatrists committed malpractice, says that these drugs don't cause any permanent damage and that I mustn't get obsessed with all these symptoms. So, my last hope is this community, while I expect to find people with knowledge of the topic. Is this "damage" permanent? Will I recover my old self? I'm terrified just now, and the idea of not being myself anymore is scaring me a lot...I don't want to live like this, and if this situation don't revert, I'll have to take radical measures. Thank you very much for your time, I hope you can help me with your experiences and knowledge. Best wishes, dav267
  21. 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.
  22. On the 18th December, 2016, I took my last Lexapro and within days, I started feeling excessively tired and in January I got very sick with infections and have been really low. A week ago my Lyrica was reduced from 200mg to 100mg due to weight gain. My head is all over the shop at present, OMG.. so low. Having death visions of like me [details removed by moderator] How the hell do I get out of this?? Want to give it a go without the Lexapro (SSRI's) as I have been on them 10 years on and off for GAD and hear very bad reports about Lyrica for weight gain and brain fog...
  23. Surely medications can work very well for the right people...but for anyone considering anti-depressants, I will be sure to give persistent words of caution. I was always a very passionate person. A lover of the arts and emotions. I was also always very anxious. Towards the end of my senior year of high school (2012), I decided that my anxiety was hindering my academic abilities more than it needed to. My mom, a nurse anesthetist, was very skeptical of medications (anti depressants, in particular). In hindsight, I wish I was able to share in her skepticism. Ultimately, the doctors put me on Sertrailne, or Zoloft. I began the med around May 2012, gradually working my way up from about 25 mg. At the end of the summer, I believe I was on about 100 mg (this is for sure the highest dose that I've ever been on). It was a rainy afternoon in August 2012 at my grandparents cabin that I noticed was feeling very off. I didn't think much of it, but little did know, this was likely the beginnings of my brain accepting the med. Then college came, and the side effects worsened. I guess my anxiety was gone, but at what cost?. I was feeling emotionally numb and depersonalized. Eventually, I opened up to my parents about how I had been feeling (over the phone, because I was away at college). They figured that I had been taking the med for a short enough period of time that I could quickly wean off of it with minimal side effects. But this made me feel significantly worse. My first experience with withdrawal led me to believe that I was better off on the med. Long story short, my parents encouraged me to come home once my first semester of college was done and register for some classes at a community college so I could live at home with them. So, I went about two more years on the med before I decided I had enough. I wanted out. I did not want to be under the control of some pill, especially if it was going to make me feel the way that it did. I felt sort of like a zombie or robot. It was very hard to enjoy the simple things in life. I was having sexual problems, and I had a very annoying appetite (I always wanted to eat, despite not being truly hungry). In all of this, the real me was still inside, and it knew it didn't like the I was feeling. So in October 2015, under the instruction of a doctor, I began weaning off. The weaning off process left me feeling very similar to how I felt while of the med. The last time I took the med was in early-mid January 2016. Since then, I've gradually felt some pretty horrifying side effects. In a nutshell, what I felt while on the med seemed to be amplified. I had a hard time enjoying all of the things that I once did. But it hasn't all been bad, as I have had some glorious days that left me feeling like my old self. I could sit down and watch a movie just like I used to. Colors seemed brighter and music sounded better. But this is only some of the time. Starting last Tuesday, I truly felt like my old self. This led me to believe that the withdrawal side effects had finished, but then today, they gradually reintroduced themselves. I began feeling subtly nauseous and irritable. So in a desperate attempt for support, I searched the web for help groups. No matter how much or how hard you try to explain your situation to someone, they won't really understand unless they've experienced something similar. I just want someone to tell me that things will get better. The last week now seems like a cruel joke, because I truly thought that the withdrawal was over. Any words of encouragement would be very much appreciated. Thank you.
  24. This is a small part of my "withdrawal journal" from day 4 to day 40. I have been on Effexor for 8-10 years (I can't remember if I was 16 or 18 when I started, very well could have been younger). I was diagnosed with an Anxiety disorter and also major Depression. My doctor never once told me about what might happen if I ever wanted to quit taking Effexor. I always had some side effects from this med and eventually it got to the point where I wanted to switch. My Dr decided to just put me on another med, no tapering, just stop cold turkey and begin taking something new. It goes without saying that within a week I was back on Effexor because I believed the new med wasn't right for me because the side effects were horrible. There was no discussion on how it might just be the withdrawal from the Effexor not the side effects of the new pills.That was after one year of taking them. I tried to explain the brain zaps and she wasn't quite sure what I meant. This should have been a warning to me but growing up you are told that doctors are here to help that they know best so I questioned it no further. Several years in and a couple of dosage changes and failed attempts at trying other meds and I am struck with severe depression, not just my normal depression but something all together new. I wanted to be done with life. The thoughts terrified me and I knew something was incredibly wrong. I again saw my doctor, she decided that it may be the adderall I'm also prescribed so she takes me off of that cold turkey and puts me on a sedative along with the effexor. Again I am having horrible reactions so I am swithed between meds several more times. On Effexor off effexor, dosage changes of effexor etc. I also started seeing a therapist and can no longer work because of all the side effects/withdrawal symptoms. I am off from work for 4 months before the stress of med changes and dealing with Metlife force me to just give up, accept a higher dosage of Effexor, and return to work. I returned to work feeling slightly better but still knowing something was wrong inside me. The increased dosage causes me to have night terrors nightly which lead to waking up in a cold sweat crying. I deal with this for months and try to talk to my dr about it but at this point I have just given up. I stop going to therapy because I can't afford it and deep down I know the problem isn't a talking issue its a chemical one. For about a month I start having night sweats to the point where I severely dehydrate myself and am only getting about 3-5 hours of sleep a day because of the night terrors. I call off of work and wait to see my doctor. I tell them what is going on and their solution was to switch my meds yet again. The plan to make the switch is to one day on effexor one day off then one day on and two days off before starting the new meds. At this point I am on 150mg. The first day off within hours of missing my dose I start to get the zaps. Another couple of hours I start shaking and sweating. That night I decide that I will no longer be taking Effexor or any other medications that are supposed to "help" me. I quit cold turkey... that was 4 days ago. I feel as though I can't put into words the hell the last 4 days have been but I will try. I sleep about 1-2 hours a day but wake up drenched in sweat crying every 30 minutes, I shake compulsively mist of the time. I try to eat but for the most part it just makes me want to throw up. I find myself rocking back and forth constantly because it somehow helps. I cry for no reason from complete lack of any emotional control. Standing and moving make me motion sick as does watching tv so being awake 22-23 hours a day leaves me with nothing mush to do but cry out of helplessness. I can't smoke because it increases the zaps as does caffeine so there are also those withdrawals too. I have been drink about 8 16oz bottles of water a day just to keep hydrated from the cold sweats I have. I have been taking vitamins to try to combat some of the effects but they only sometimes seem to take the edge off. I have been retaining so much water that my joints throb. As I type this I'm shaking so bad that the backspace button is used more than the other keys.I have a fan on because I'm sweating but I'm covered in goosebumps. Several times in these few days I have been brought to my knees just praying for a moment of peace. I know this is a very long post and few will take the time to read it but in my eyes as long as I can keep one person from having to go through this it is all worth it. I know many people will scold me for not tapering but I just want it out, I want to be rid of this poison. I'm not saying there aren't some people who need it but if a doctor even brings up Effexor PLEASE just do what I didn't and research it, see what you will have to go through while on it and when you are well enough to be off of it. When you see dozens of articles saying it is worse than kicking hard drugs you need to question if it is worth it. I am now on day 40 and I feel as though I am going crazy. I tried to go back to work around week 3 of been off the drug but could only make it a week. I was still getting the shakes, brain zaps, nausea, crying spells, fits of pure rage, trouble speaking, couldn't process what someone was saying to me, ect. I still am going through many of these withdrawals. My doctor told me I should be "over" the withdrawal by now. I put that in parenthesis because it makes me very upset that doctor acts as though you go off of it and bam after 4 weeks you're fine. I have no idea if I'm still going through withdrawal and my brain acclimating back to it's normal state.... or the more scary thought is, that maybe this is just the normal me and I really do need to be on these pills. Please I need help.
  25. My husband was advised by his pdoc to discontinue Effexor XR at 37.5 mg approx 9 days ago. He is having severe side effects from this that don't seem to be letting up. My question is would it be advised at this point for him to start taking some amount of Effexor again?
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