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  1. Hello, I’m new and needing assistance. I was on paxil for many years and tapered slowly. I was unable to stay off the meds. I was put on paxil, then 20 mg cymbalta, then 12.5 mg sertraline. All had to be stopped due to side effects. I stopped taking sertraline after a fast taper in April or May this year. It seems like I had every withdrawal symptom listed. August was awful. I had major anxiety, panic attacks, blood pressure spikes and insomnia. I feel unstable. I am having trouble doing things like going to the store due to anxiety. My doctor has prescribed me liquid sertraline and I took 1mg today. It triggered tachycardia. I just don’t know what to do.
  2. Gem

    ☼ Gem

    Hey everybody. I have been off Seroxat for 5 years, 9 months. I was initially put on a tranquilliser and Prozac for mild-moderate depression and mild situational anxiety. This was later changed to Seroxat. I was on antidepressants for 8.5 years. I have been through a protracted withdrawal and my remaining symptoms include: Insomnia (improved) Weird leg sensations (much improved) Feeling down (improved) Intrusive thoughts and memories, OCD- like symptoms (much improved) Ability to deal with stressful/upsetting situations compromised (improved) Heightened emotional sensitivity (much improved) Mild tightness in top of head (occasional) I have phases/ windows where I feel like myself and am symptom-free and when I feel better than I did prior to taking antidepressants. It is miraculous that I have healed this much, as my brain and body were in a bad, bad state in earlier withdrawal. I have experienced a big improvement in my creativity; this really means a lot to me. (It was badly affected by withdrawal). I also have found that I am not so overwhelmed by lots of information/stimuli. My sense of humour and ability to laugh is drastically better.
  3. Hello. Getting started here with an intro as I prepare to start to taper from paroxetine after far too many years stuck on it. Grateful for this site / forum and write this in solidarity with everyone who's been on / going through this kind of journey. 1996/7 first tried fluoxetine and citalopram for depression/anxiety in my teens but stopped very quickly. I don't recall exactly why, though I know one of them gave me a skin rash and I don't think I stayed on either for long enough to notice any benefits. 1999 finally went on paroxetine, I think 20mg at first. Going on was awful (many physical effects such as upset stomach and pretty much everything listed on the leaflet at the time - which I had deliberately not read but ended up reading while bed-ridden) but felt I had no better options at the time, and there's no denying that it helped reduce my anxiety and allowed me to progress with my life. Having said that, I was never keen to stay on and the side effects sucked (skin itching, sexual dysfunction, crazy nightmares, chest pain) but my early withdrawal attempts all crashed and burned. Longest taper over 5 months back in 2005 was scariest experience of my life once I got really low and went from a tiny amount of powder to nothing for 3 days. I had intense crying spells, light/shade effects, dizziness, brain zaps, trouble even speaking, tiredness, stomach upsets, high anxiety and anhedonia. Reinstated after reading a Paxil Progress thread and realising I could end up with protracted withdrawal syndrome otherwise. Had to get on with my life and pretty much resigned to being stuck on it forever. As a 'compromise', have tried to keep the dose as low as possible. For about a year I got by on 5mg every other day, but this was not good: felt like I was barely saving off withdrawal syndrome and my old anxiety returned. Managed on 5mg daily for another few years till the same thing happened. Been on 10mg /day since 2013 but since 2018 I've been noticing numerous signs that I'm now becoming tolerant to this dose: experiencing diminished 'benefit', but more side effects (including new ones such as tinnitus and insane night sweats), plus WD effects starting if I'm ever more than about 8 hours late. Staying on 10mg doesn't seem like a sustainable solution as the tolerance will just get worse over time, so the options seem to be two extremes: stay on this treadmill of ever-increasing doses or try and taper off. Both are terrifying but I know it has to be the latter. If I don't try now while I'm still relatively young and healthy, I'll just be storing up problems for later in life when I'll be less able to cope: the idea of being old and frail, on a max dose that's worn off is just unthinkable. My GP is ok with me tapering now: has said to take as-needs valium (Diazepam) during slow taper but am scared of adding a benzodiazepine to the mix, especially after hearing some of the Mad in America podcasts from World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day. Also very scared that normal life will become impossible so stalling at this point and just reading as much as possible in the hope of preparing myself for success this time, even if it takes years.
  4. Moderator note: link to benzo forum thread - Miko789: Xanax withdrawal/tapering Hi, I'm new to the forum, I have some questions I want to ask. My doctor prescribed effexor for depression, in 2009. Now I'm free of symptoms and I managed to come off with withdrawal symptoms though. That's with the antidepressant. Now I'm on Risperdal consta from November 2013 and seroxat 10mg. My doctor prescribed with risperdal consta 3,3mg/day long acting injection every two weeks. From February 2015 he lowered the dosage to 25mg/every 2 weeks equals 1,66mg/day. I tried to lower the seroxat 10mg but after 40-45h I have withdrawal symptoms vertigo, dizziness. Is it possible to cut down seroxat? How about the Risperdal consta (long acting injection). Has anyone tapered off completely without withdrawals? I read about the 10% harm reduction procedure to taper off and I'm going to tell my doctor and follow. thanks in advance
  5. I need some help and information about the tapering schedule as I am from India and pursuing Mba, I tried as many psychiatrist and doctors but nobody could help me to taper and the withdrawal symptoms are horrendous, I can't even stand when tapering even smaller amounts.I am taking 25 mg of paroxetine and 0.25 mg of clonazepam since three years for severe depression and anxiety, I am just too sleepy all the day almost lack motivation to do daily tasks ,these drugs make you stable but have number of side effects getting tired researching daily about tapering and the stories are horrifying, I want to become whole and free from these poisoning drugs 😢 I think there is a lack of knowledge regarding tapering procedure among doctors in India. I found this site and maybe it will answer some questions of mine. Guys please help me tapering these drugs efficiently so that no withdrawal symptoms will bother me.I am taking two psychiatric drugs 25 mg paroxetine and 0.25 mg clonazepam since three years. Please help me.
  6. First off, I am so incredibly thankful for this forum. I would of never ever got off this medication if I had not found this forum. A big thank you to Alto and all the mods that work hard to help everyone. A big thank you to everyone I talked to daily on here as well Here is my intro thread ☼-cocopuffz17-paroxetine-free-but-not-trouble-free When I came to this forum I had no idea what was going on with me after coming off 11 years of paroxetine use @ 20mg. I was told by my psychiatrist that this drug isn't known to cause this, I know that's not true after going through the hell of AW/PAW. My body was being ravaged by chronic fatigue, autoimmune conditions and a plethora of AW (acute withdrawal) and PAWS(post acute withdrawal) symptoms. I was terrified and did not think I could get through it at the time. But I constantly read stories of success and knew that it was possible and my mindset slowly shifted. I knew that whatever this would throw at me I would be able to take it after making that decision in my mind. Here is some back story of my battle against depression/anxiety and the war I went to with getting off this medication. In high school I struggled immensely with anxiety. I would have panic attacks almost everyday and missed a lot of school because of it. Shortly after graduating I was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder/depression and told I had a chemical imbalance from a psychiatrist that I was seeing and would need an antidepressant (paroxetine) to fix this imbalance. I trusted the psychiatrist as this is what they are educated to do. Never once was nutrition ever mentioned, this will make sense later in my story. Things did get a bit better. I no longer had this terrible anxiety and could function better out in public. So this led me to believe the doctor was right and that I needed medication to function as I was told I had a chemical imbalance. Over time I slowly slid into a deeper depression and struggled with sleeping. I went to my family doctor and he said to just take sleeping pills. So I took sleeping pills to sleep. I now know this was insomnia caused by the medication. I continued my life and took my antidepressant for multiple more years before I had a health condition pop up. In 2011 I was diagnosed with having erythema multiforme. The E.R. doctor told me it was from an allergic reaction to penicillin. I believe it was caused from long term antidepressant use. It was the most painful thing I have ever experienced at that point in my life. I had a full body rash that was the itchiest thing you could imagine and every time the rash hit a joint I was unable to bend that joint. It was terrifying and painful as could be. It lasted around 2 weeks. Here is a reference pic before any of these health conditions. I don't remember the exact time frame on this. But it was in the 2013-2015 range. I was feeling way better and decided that I didn't need my AD anymore. So I cold turkey'd. All hell broke loose and I literally went crazy and was uncontrollable. All my anxiety symptoms came rushing back and nothing but pure rage for everything in the world. I reinstated and everything slowly returned back to medicated normal. I tried this twice with cold turkeys, I failed hard both times. The third time I spoke with my psychiatrist and he suggested doing a taper of 3 months @ 25% per month. I made it about 1 month and had to reinstate because the "original symptoms" were too strong, which I now know were withdrawals from coming off the medication. Once again this just supported the psychiatrist's theory of the chemical imbalance and I was like okay I guess I'm on this medication for life. Late 2014 to early 2015, I was having trouble swallowing food. My tonsils were so swollen. I ended up getting a tonsillectomy in 2015. Yet another random health condition that popped up out of the blue. I blame this excessive inflammation on the medication I took long term. Fast forward to late 2015.... I started losing my hair. I ended up going to a dermatologist and he diagnosed me with alopecia. This sucked. I went into a further depression. After recording this video I immediately changed my nutrition to a paleo diet. I saw regrowth on my scalp(not full growth though). The results slowed down and I stopped eating paleo and my condition got worse. I ended up losing all my hair on my scalp and was feeling the worst I had felt in my life and slid into a deeper depression. I was not feeling like my current psychiatrist was helping me. So I asked my family doc for a referral to another psychiatrist. I got an appointment a few months later. I went to it and it just so happened there was two psychiatrists in the room. At first I was like yes! Multiple opinions! I told them I was feeling suicidal and thought about it constantly. They both agreed that this was a normal feeling and everyone feels like this at times. This was the point where I realized I was not going to receive the help I needed to get through this from these doctors. It is not normal to feel like this and absolutely ridiculous that the trained professionals can say that. I now know this was caused by my antidepressant. Shortly after this all happened my alopecia was progressing. It was going from alopecia areata to alopecia universalis. I was slowly coming to terms with having no hair on my scalp and knew I could not handle losing my eyebrows and facial hair. I lost 50% of my leg and arm hair. This is the point when I looked myself in the mirror with tears rolling down my face and said I will never let myself be this depressed again in my life. I had no idea how I was going to do it at that time. But I made myself a promise and I refused to break it. I had some success with nutrition changes when I did the paleo diet a few years prior. So this is where I started reading more on nutrition. So after doing that I started reading a lot on people who had reversed autoimmune conditions and how they did it. There were two main contenders I found. A) ImmunoSuppressants B)Nutrition changes. I refused to be on another drug. I thought I needed to be on an antidepressant for life, like hell I was going on another drug for life with all the side effects associated with it. So I chose nutrition changes. In October of 2018 I started The Plant Paradox by Dr.Gundry! In 6 weeks I felt the best I had ever felt in my life. This gave me the confidence to attempt another taper. So I went back to my original psychiatrist(I was still going to him as I needed prescription refills). He suggested the 3 months at 25% per month. I agreed....I just trusted the doctor for tapering as I knew nothing about it at this time. This is where the hardest year of my life is about to begin. It took almost 5 years and a lot of pain, a lot failing and a lot of learning. But I grew my hair back after being told I would just have to learn to live with it from doctors. I thought this would be the hard part....not the case. Getting off of my antidepressant was. The first drop from 20 mg to 15 mg was not bad. A slight headache. I stayed at 15 mg for 30 days. The second drop from 15 mg to 10 mg was much harder. This is when I started reading forums and found so many struggles of what people were going through and truly how hard it is to get off of these drugs. I had fevers, cold shakes(I would have a hot bath 3-4 times a day to stay warm), headaches were picking up in intensity, fatigue was starting to happen daily and insomnia. I stayed at 10 mg for 30 days The third drop was from 10 mg to 5 mg absolutely wrecked me. I had even worse insomnia, lightning bolts in my visions, headaches got worse, I was unable to focus, fatigue was even more crushing(I was sleeping 14-16 hr days), cold shakes, tinnitus, vertigo, light sensitivity(I was wearing sunglasses at night it was that rough) and lagging vision ( I would turn my head and know my head was moved but by eyes were still seeing the image from 5 seconds before). I stayed at 5 mg for 15 days. I added another drop in here.... because I was suppose to go from 5 mg to 0 mg but I felt so awful and panicked so I went to 2.5 mg for 15 days with all the same symptoms. I know this is way too fast of a taper now. I did not know at the time as I was just following my doctors instructions. CONTINUED BELOW ↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓
  7. Hello, I have been on paroxetine for 7 years,have tried many times to go off but unsuccessfully. Finally on 7 th year i lowered my dose from 20 mg to 10 mg. After panic attacked and insomnia appeared on my trip few months later I took 20 mg while I was on a trip and lowered it again on 10 mg.Due to some medical conditions that I suspected that are cause of paroxetine,I lowered the dose to 0 in maybe two months,way too fast. I was okeish for about two months ( I had all of the symptoms of wd but I fought with it ) and I compelety crushed this February . Tinitus and never ending insomnia are the worse. I started to Google and found all the posts about some neurological damage From this drug which made my anxiety worse. Doctor gave me lorazepam to sleep. My question is ,should I go back to 10 mg and taper more slowly? Am I in a risk of neurological damage From tapering too fast ? Is this tinitus permanent? How long wd simptoms approximately last ? I see I am in risk of developing tolerance to lorazepam since I have been using it two weeks for sleep. My doctor's don't know anything since one wants to put me on mirtazapine and other on Prozac. I am so worried and feeling alone in all this.
  8. Hello, I've been very grateful for this site, comforting me in the knowledge that I'm not alone in my battle. 10% taper is working slowly but steadily, it'll be a while but I'm planning on finishing it this way. Withdrawal is not pleasant, but it doesn't suck as much as it did. Eating healthy (I got a really nice juicer) has been the biggest factor in helping manage my withdrawal symptoms, and mental wellbeing in general. Thanks for all of your stories, omnispan
  9. I'm wondering if anyone else has or had experienced worsing withdrawal symptoms when switching from Paxil CR and Liquid SOLELY to the Liquid Suspension? I have been tapering slowing Since January by the following: (1 Pill = 12.5 CR) Starting dose of 2 (12.5 CR'S) = 25 MG OF CR Jan 21st: 1 Pill + 10mg liquid (2 weeks) 2/4: 1 Pill + 9mg Lq (3 weeks) 2/25: 1 Pill + 8 mg lq (1 week) 3/4: 1 Pill + 6 mg lq (2 weeks) 3/18 1 Pill + 4 mg lq (2 weeks) 4/1 1 Pill + 3 mg lq (2 weeks) 4/14 1 Pill + 2 mg lq (2 weeks) 4/29 1Pill + 1 mg lq (16 days) 5/15 1 12.5 mg Pill ONLY (9 days) 5/24 12 mgs liquid (8 days) 6/1 11mg lq (12 days) 6/13 10 mg lq until today 7/10 I have a feeling that the liquid isnt nearly as....either effective or has as long a HALF LIFE as the company would have me believe. When I first started the taper I was taking the 1 pill and taking all the liquid at 9 pm at NIGHT. Within 16 hours of the night dose I was having bad symptoms until I took the next dose. This went on for a week. I then experimented by switching the timing of the liquid to the morning at 9 am. Withing 2 days the withdrawal syptoms had switched from the evening to the morning! What clearly was happening, was the liquid was NOT staying in my system anywhere near as long as the CR. After a week of suffering the withdrawl symptoms at the new time, my doctor suggested taking half the liquid dose every 12 hours, since it obviously had a SHORTER Half life than the CR Pill, since my syptoms corresponded to ALMOST EXACTLY 16 hours after the last Liquid dose. With 3 days of splitting the daily dose into every 12 hours the symptoms had mostly resolved. Everything was going ok (not perfect but much better than the horrible symptoms when only taking the liquid once daily) UNTIL I recently finally got below the level of the pill and am ONLY on the liquid. Since I switched to the liquid ONLY I have been taking it every 8 hours -or 3 times a day, but the worsening symptoms have returned. Not as bad as when I was only taking it every 12 hours, but worse when I still had the CR for the majority of the dose. I THINK THIS LIQUID IS CRAP. I've only dropped 2.5 mg's in almost 8 weeks and I'm having WORSE symptoms than when I was dropping a 1mg every 2 weeks no problem. (Again with the CR pill as most of my dose. ) Any ideas? I mean, the fact that I had horrible symptoms correspnding to 16 hours AFTER the liquid dose, regardless whether I was taking it at 9am or 9pm, tells me it has to have a much shorter half life than they are saying, expecially since once I started taking the liquid 5mg ever 12 hours instead of 10 all at once things cleared up within 48 hours. And now that all I have is the liquid, I'm worse even though I'm dropping at only half the speed of when I still had atleast 12.5 CR. And! I'm taking it EVERY 8 hours: 3 mg AM, 3 mg Afternoon, 4 MG Night. I notice the electrical shocks in my head close to the time I am scheduled for the next dose, as if it's only in my system about 6 hours at a time. Help![/size]
  10. MOD NOTE : Toulouse's Success Story is here ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hello everyone, I am a first time poster, long time Paxil user. I have been on Paxil for about 12 years or so, prescribed by my doctor to combat anxiety. My anxiety was never severe, I just fell down the slippery slope of Paxil use after what should have just been a bump in the emotional road for me. Long story short, I've decided to taper off of the Paxil 20mg (down from 40mg a couple years prior). This year my doc advised me to cut from 20mg to 10mg. (I know now, way too much and too fast). I had brain zaps, irritablilty, and vivid dreams (which I actually don't mind since they are usually pleasant) and some dizziness. After a few weeks I was feeling OK enough to go from 10mg to 5mg. I was good for about 3 weeks. But the next two weeks I suffered from severe anxiety - unlike any kind of despairing feeling I've ever had in my life! I suddenly became an emotional wreck and was just at wits end. So I went from 5mg Paxil back up to 10mg. A week or so later - hives. Hives, - small ones, on my neck or forearms. They'd go away after a couple hours so I didn't put too much worry into it. Then a week after these small hive appearances, I had a really bad outbreak of hives on my legs, which I thought was just a heat rash. I didn't take an anti-histamine, I hate the way they make me feel. Big mistake. I ended up waking up at 4 in the morning, itching terribly all over my body. I was searching for Benadryl downstairs when my wife found me - at which point I was getting dizzy and nauseous. I was going into anaphylactic shock. My wife and I both thought I was dying, my children sobbing as they waited by the front door for the ambulance to arrive. I've never had allergies really. I am allergic to cats, it turns out, but I've had my cat for 3 years (a Persian which I found to not feel allergic reactions to in the past- and who has since been living with my brother till this all gets ironed out). So this anaphylaxis was not something I was prepared for. An amulance ride later, they told me I had some kind of allergic reaction. A few weeks later, after seeing an allergist, he suspected my bizarre reaction to be caused by a medicine (not a food or other allergen). I only take Paxil, and Propecia. (which I've stopped last week to try to rule that out as a cause of the hives). I still get small areas of redness on my skin, primarily when I wake up in the AM. And for now I'm on antihistimines, which I dislike greatly. I am wondering if the traumatic, despair-like anxiety feelings I suffered, and then yo-yo-ing back to a higher dosage of Paxil did a number on my body and made me overly sensitive to histamines, or my cat. Since my allergist suspected Paxil as a possible cause of the hives/anaphylaxis, I have since tapered back down to 5mg, and three days ago down to 2.5mg. I suspect its not the actual Paxil causing the hives, but the withdrawal itself, the toll it takes on my body and mind. Just hoping putting my story out there, if anyone can relate to such a physical reaction like what I experienced, and if they too, think it is related to the Paxil withdrawl. Thanks for reading. Cheers
  11. Hi everyone I was on Paxil 20mg for 19 years- most of which time it worked well (except for some weight gain and bloating). While studying at grad school I started taking Adderall for four years until it developed until a problem and managed to come off it inn July 2017. Went through the PAWs from that which lasted for a long time (and is maybe still ongoing). However, since I came off the Adderall, the Paxil appeared to have stopped working (either than or the PAWs from the Adderall was overriding its effects). So 5 months ago I decided to do the Prozac bridge to see if Prozac would work for me. I did a straight switch to Prozac 20 mg without any tapering and felt some withdrawals and also felt weird most likely from starting on the Prozac as well. While taking Prozac I have been up and down, with good weeks and bad. However, in the last two weeks I have had what seem suspiciously like the 'waves' I hear about on this site. I have felt the worst I have ever felt in my life and it seems very much like SSRI withdrawal to me (I've experienced withdrawals from Paxil several times before when I either ran out or tried to quit). This time symptoms include a sense of impending doom, nausea, tinnitus, hypersensitivity to stress, depression. It seems unusual to be suddenly hit with withdrawal symptoms 5 months after giving up Paxil and while still taking Prozac right? So my question is- is this some delayed withdrawal to the Paxil I stopped taking 5 months ago or is it some adverse reaction to the Prozac (even though I have had periods of feeling fine on it). I am leaning towards to the possibility of coming off the Prozac and reinstating the Paxil. Even though I was feeling pretty depressed when I was on Paxil last I didn't feel like this now where I basically feel like I'm losing my mind. Any recommendations on what I should do?
  12. hi,all been on &off antidepressants for 20 yrs but never felt this crummy.since stopping Paroxetine have had flu-like symptoms ,then fatigue loss of appetite,taste changes,eye problems(excessive blinking actually started while on it,that's why I quit).depression,anxiety,just miserable,wondering if I should reinstate or just try & hang in there.I was on it about 6 mos.stopped May 4 after about 7 wk taper.thanks for any suggestions
  13. Hi all this is my first post. I’ve put all my medical info in my signature as requested but if I’ve missed anything please let me know. Full case history: n.b. I don’t expect anyone to feel they have to read all this, I just want to get it off my chest! I’ve had issues with depression and anxiety since childhood (no particular trauma: suspect a strong genetic component as evident in other family members too). Severe depression around 19/20 due to college stress led to me going to the doctor. Was put on 30mg citalopram which made me suicidal and gave me auditory hallucinations among other symptoms almost immediately. Doctor told me to ‘keep going’ but decided to stop - a million percent the right decision and one I wish I had made later. Was put on a low dose of paroxetine either once or twice (not sure) for short periods in my twenties after going to the doctor with anxiety/depression. No severe side effects I can remember, seemed to see a noticeable improvement, and came off drugs without issue. In my late twenties I went to the doctor again with depression and was prescribed 7.5mg paroxetine. Again no side effects and a noticeable improvement. After a few months I went back to the doctor and told her I was feeling much better and would like to come off the paroxetine. She told me this would be a mistake - that people often thought they should come off and actually got much worse when they did, so I should stay on the drugs. I accepted this, assumed that I was just one of those people who needed this medication to be ‘normal’ (I believed completely in the chemical Imbalance idea) and continued taking the medication. On a personal note this is the part of my medical history that makes me the angriest. There was a window at that time in which I was trying to do what was best for my mental health, and trusted my doctor against my own instincts. I may well have suffered adverse reactions if I had stopped taking paroxetine then, but I personally suspect strongly it would have been less severe due to the low dose, shortness of duration, and the fact I was younger. I may be wrong but I’ll never know. I stayed on paroxetine for the next ten years. Over time I felt the medication was getting less effective, and every time I went back to the doctor I was prescribed an increased dose (to be fair I’m sure at least once I requested an increased dose as I thought it was what I needed). I don’t remember the exact details but I ended up on 40mg. In the last couple of years I’ve had a very difficult time personally and it became clear the medication wasn’t helping me. I talked to the doctor In early 2020 about coming off paroxetine and trying a new medication - they advised me I would need a couple of ‘quiet’ weeks in a secure environment to do so to manage the change. When the pandemic happened and I was able to work from home full time, I felt I had the space to make the change. The doctor gave me a tapering schedule that was approximately as follows: 3 days on 30-40mg, 3 on 30, 3 on 20-30, 3 on 20, 3 on 10-20, 3 on 10 and then nothing. i had no symptoms during the tapering window and naively thought I had been lucky. I decided to hold off on taking the sertraline because I wanted to see how I managed with no drugs in my system, again I was very naive. Three days after my last pill I became profoundly unwell - suicidal, brain fog, brain zaps, diarrhoea, hypothermic temperature, severe weight loss (21 pounds total in a few weeks) I can’t even recall all the symptoms. I tried to ‘stick it out’ for a couple of weeks until a very sensible friend whose mother is a pharmacist told me I couldn’t keep going like this and my taper schedule had been much too quick, I needed to go back on a low dose. I spoke to a different doctor and agreed to go back on 10mg for a month, then 5 mg for a month then nothing. This still felt too steep so I actually added in three weeks of 5 and 0 alternating (I now realise alternating was a mistake too). My symptoms improved slowly but never disappeared and when I tried to stop completely, again severe symptoms reoccured. Went back to a 5/0 alternating dosage but remained quite ill. Spoke to yet another doctor after a couple of weeks who advised as I was now at such a low dose of paroxetine I should stop taking it completely and start taking 50mg of sertraline immediately. I was so desperate at this point that I felt if the sertraline would set me free from paroxetine I was willing to do this. The next four weeks were pure hell. I suspect because my body was dealing with withdrawal from one drug and reacting badly to another all at once (plus my contraceptive pill was changed due to stock shortages but that’s another story). My physical symptoms were bad but not as bad as before, but I was persistently suicidal. I have an amazing family who took care of me during this period. Even with their help I came close to the brink several times. I was referred to the mental health crisis team who said they would get my doctor to prescribe me mirtazapan to help manage the symptoms. They never processed this and I never followed up as I was determined not to add any more drugs to my regimen. I stayed on the sertraline because I felt I had no choice - all I could do was keep going and hope to make it to the other side. The last six weeks have been bad but I’ve seen an improvement. I have suicidal days but also good days and I am more able to manage my own healing. I am back at work after a month of leave. My physical symptoms have lessened but do re-emerge periodically. I am eating all the right foods, taking the proper supplements, exercising, meditating, journaling and doing breathing exercises. I desperately want to come off sertraline but I know I have to get myself in a stronger and more even position before I can do that. The thought that I am trapped on another drug, that coming off it will take literally years, and that I am still so unwell, is profoundly distressing. I feel this experience had almost destroyed me. Forums like this one have been my only comfort at times - seeing other people’s stories has made me feel less alone. so I’m sharing mine in case it chimes with anyone else. I don’t know exactly what I’m looking for here. I cannot taper right now even though I want to so badly I want to throw all my drugs away (obviously I won’t!!). I feel this site has given Me the information I need to tackle it when the time is right, which I am grateful for. I guess it’s just been such a personally devastating experience I wanted to share it in a place it would be understood. Basically, I’m very frightened.
  14. Hello everyone. My name is Christa. I am from the Netherlands Europe so please don't mind if my English isn't all that. For the past 25 years I was first on paroxetine and the most years on venlafaxine 150 and later 75 mg. For. Years this was fine by me. Until I started reading about tapering. A view more years went by and in the back of my mind there always was the feeling that I was done with those drugs. So finally I went to my doctor. Only to hear that my medication was to hard to stop. So some time more went by. But still I wanted to. So I went back to my doctor and I told her...... Listen. That depression for 25 years ago.... I think it's gone now don't you think so? The time I first got. The drugs was totally different from where I am today. I am in a stable situation. Steady job. Husband. Animals. No white picked fence tough. But still she told me it can't be done. Well........ I am the kind of person who does not take no for an answer. So I started counting beads. Until I was at 37.5 mg. And then there was a surprise. I got capsules from 37.5 mg and Inside each capsule there were 3 smaal tablets. So the first week I took out 1 tiny pill from my daily capsule. A small whitdrawel would come for a view days. About 3 days. So I waited until my body was used to the lower amount and as soon as I felt ready I decreased the dose again. I did this until I was at 10 somewhat mg. And there it got scary. Still from 10mg to 0 is still a 100% change. And from there the real withdrawal began. I could not do it. So I did read about the prosac bridge. Bridging the gapp between venlafaxine and no medication. Because prosaic has a long half life time it's very handy in this case. So I called my doctor again and told her I was willing to try a different kind and I wanted prosac. I never had the plan to switch to a new antidepressant but I did not tell her. For a week I took my 10mg venlafaxine and I took one tablet of 10mg of prosac. After that week I stopped the venlafaxine. For. 3 more days I took half a tablet of prosac. And then stopped completely. I can te you that's scary. I was waiting for some relaps or something bad to happen. But it didn't. Nothing. I slipped out of my antidepressants. But than....... Reality hit like a truck. All of a sudden I was back in the real world emotion came back. Crying laughing angry everything came back. So I took a view weeks of from work to adjust. People a. Careful with me now. They can't play me anymore. I am no longer the dosile Christa who was a bit weird and just happy to have work. The new Christa has her own ideas. Things she will do and things she won't. Christa is thinking again. I am strong and people notice. I am no longer ugly bettie who takes all the crappy jobs. I am building my future. It been 4 months now si ds I stopped my medication. My stomach is still upset. I am often not friendly and harsh. But people have admiration for that I am this strong. I have claimed my live and my territory and it works. It's been a hard Rollercoaster road. But it can be done and you can too Thanks
  15. Hi everyone, I'm Mark, living in Marseille, south east of France, I'm 36 yo. I began Paxil (Deroxat in France), in 1999, given for a "IBS" (irritative bowel syndrom)... 20mg a day (1999-2014). 2010-2014 were the best years of my life, friends, family, job, music, soccer, etc etc... Mid-2014 I decided by myself to reduce Paxil. So, I started to take 20mg a day, then 10mg next day, then 20, then 10 ... End 2014, jav/fev 2015, I took 10, 5, 10, 5.. then 5mg... 2 weeks after being at 5 mg / day, my life turned to hell. Many symptoms occured weeks after weeks : Nausea, dizziness, lightheadness, belly ache, loss of appetite, tinnitus, electric schocks when moving eyes... Then i thought about my paxil reduction... I re-start 10mg in 2015, then 20mg since january 2016, but my symptoms are still here... Now, I just wanna die with those awful nausea all day, dizziness etc... Sometimes I have 1, 2, 3 days where symptoms seem to reduce, then they retstart awfully... In 2015 I had all medical examination to exclude other problem : Colonoscopie, Pillcam (for small intestine), Ultrasound, 2 Belly MRI, 2 head MRI, tons of blood analysis, eyes tests, inner ears tests, etc, etc... Nothing found... I saw more than 20 doctors in 18 month (gastro, neuro, diagnosticians, ENT, opthalmo, psychiatrists...). None want to listen me, and all say that's not a problem with my paxil, because Withdrawal least no more than few weeks... I'm here, to claim for help. i really need somebody who understands me, who well knows withdrawal problems, etc... I don't understand why I don't feel better since I have re-taken 20 mg... Sorry for my bad english.
  16. I am new to this site I took Paxil for 13 years and Lamotrigine for 3 years. At 31 months out I am still having bad symptoms like tinnitus, brain fog, agoraphobia and a few others. Unfortunately I cold turkey because at the time I had no knowledge of tapering from anyone. Is this a normal pattern? Sure would like feedback. Thanks
  17. Hello, Altostrata told me to make a topic literally a minute ago, so I am opening up for help. I am going through a really rough time right now and really don't know what to do. I was prescribed Paxil CR in a rehabilitation facility at the age of 18. Previous to this I had suffered with OCD, panic attacks and depression. While in the facility people told me I seem depressed and should see a psychiatrist. I was taken to the office, and after what felt like a 10 minute consultation was given a script for Paxil CR. After being discharged from the facility I was put on 20-30mgs of generic Paxil. I stayed on that for 11 years and have recently gotten off. I did a one month taper using Prozac. I know this is a incredibly fast taper given the amount of time I was on the medication. But I really did not know any better. I have been off of it for 6 months now in total. I tried to resume Paxil recently but only for a day or two. I was hit with very bad side effects and it scares me to try again. So I am trying to fight through and hoping this gets better. I have tried to get off this drug 3 times in my past. Once at 22 where I did it cold turkey, I did not know about the withdrawal. I was hit with crying spells and depression like I had never known previous to the medication. I reinstated after a couple weeks. I then proceeded to try again at age 26 and was hit with the same symptoms, reinstated again. I am now 29 years old and fighting to stay off this drug. I have a lot of regret for having started this "medication". I can't believe it is even used in that term it feels like poison. In my time using the drug I felt emotionally numb and indifferent to all normal feelings. My childhood dog passed away at the age of 21, 3 years into my treatment with Paxil. I could not cry maybe one tear came out and I felt like I had to force that. I had a lot of anger issues. Where I felt like it was the only emotion prevalent during my time with Paxil. I have ripped doors down in my own home with my mother, punched walls etc. During my stint trying to get off Paxil at age 26 and shortly after resuming it. I was put into a psych ward, their plan of action was to drug me with a bipolar medication known as Depakote. I asked why they were forcing me to take this? The response was that every person needs to be on an anti psychotic. They also made me up my dosage of Paxil to 30mgs, at the time I was on 20mgs. I was in there for a week and was discharged Christmas eve of all times. I took my self off the Depakote immediately, I did not have any withdrawal from that. It was probably because of the short time I was on it. I am a 29 year old man who is living at home with his mother. My drive and hope for a better tomorrow is shattered. I read Dr. David Healy's website where people are not getting better after 6 years off SSRI's. My main symptoms are overwhelming depression and anxiety. I have crying spells for hours on end. During my time on Paxil I never cried like this I was a robot. I have incredible guilt wishing I never took this medication if I knew what I know now. I feel like that is preaching to the choir, I know all of you must feel the same. I have got on my hands and knees and prayed to let me go back and say no to Paxil at that initial psychiatrists meeting. I am flooded with thoughts thinking that my brain and body is permanently damaged. It has driven me to have intense suicidal thoughts. As I was 18 when initially prescribed I thought I had damaged my body's physical development. I was a late bloomer so that is a thought that I am bombarded with. One person on this site who has tried to help me and I thank him so much is Irishwill. We have messaged back and forth and he has reassured me I am OK. I still have that guilt though of wishing I never took this drug, I would do anything to change that decision. I know that cannot happen though. I am trying to stay away from horror stories, but with this condition they become prevalent. I am hoping my body can heal, but it's hard when my mind is so in the negative. I really want to say to all of you I have never met you personally, but I feel I have a bond or kinship with all of you. I am sorry any of us have to go through this. I know we all thought these drugs were meant to help us. I want to have a life, I want to smile I want to be happy. I am really scared my body and brain are beyond repair because of my 11 years on this poison. I recently saw a therapist I have known since I was probably 13. I told him all of what I am saying to you now. His response was to try another medication. He believes in the famed chemical imbalance theory. I think we all know these drugs cause that imbalance. I don't want my entire life story to be one of suffering. I want to be able to do things other people do. I don't want to ramble on here, because I can go on and on. I hope all of you find healing I really do. One thing this experience has given me is a huge amount of empathy for anyone suffering with any illness, medically induced or otherwise. I look forward to your comments. Thank you,
  18. Hello! Finding myself in a temporary reprieve from debilitating apathy, I thought I would introduce myself here as I've been lurking for a while. Like many of you, I'm currently battling a severe withdrawal reaction from paroxetine. During the fall of 2014, I decided to chart a course to discontinue medication I was on (Paxil 60-100mgs for a decade for OCD, Buprenorphine of opiate dependency and mild chronic pain). Unfortunately, as seems to be common, my psychiatrist was entirely unaware of discontinuation symptoms and had me taper from 60mg to zero in the course of a few months. Strangely, I felt zero withdrawal effects during the taper and for approx four weeks afterwards. A few days after the last dose of paxil, I took some time off from work to recover from the foreseen mild opiate withdrawal and stopped taking the buprenorphine. For two weeks I went though a normal opiate withdrawal (cold sweats, chills, aches, etc). However, a few weeks later, my entire world was turned on its head by a new set of symptoms. Severe anxiety, panic attacks, loss of balance and coordination, crying spells, suicidal ideation, debilitating muscle pain, constant overstimulation, derealization, mild paranoia, memory loss, confusion attempting the simplest of tasks, poor word recall and communication ability and a host of other cognitive problems. Along with that horror came a wonder I hadn't experienced before -- akin to being instantaneously launched out of a lobotomy and the removal of years of emotional anesthesia. Everything and everyone in my life had meaning and emotional attachment. I was able to connect with friends and loved ones (and strangers) on a level I didn't heretofore remember experiencing. Music... oh how splendid it sounded. Sunsets and walks in the woods were mesmerizing. Exercise and sex felt fantastic. Empathy and concern for the plight of others was overwhelming. A lifetime of painful memories and grief bubbled uncontrollably to the surface. Due to the timing and the lack of capable professional help, I assumed this was a severe case of post-acute withdrawal from the buprenorphine and had no basis to connect it to paxil. Months into this lovely process, I decided to restart a low dose of paxil for the hell of it. Within 36 hours, the worst of the withdrawal symptoms vanished as if by magic and I suddenly knew something was very wrong. Although the SSRI withdrawal was greatly attenuated, restarting the paxil brought a total loss of affect, inability to experience emotions, severe apathy and anhedonia. These symptoms had been experienced somewhat during the decade of treatment, but at a much less significant level. Having a short college background in neuroscience, I spent weeks reading the latest research on SSRI withdrawal (turns out there is very little) and modulation of dopamine (crap shoot) and with the help of a confused, but helpful psychiatrist, attempted to abate the new symptoms. I tried: Other SSRIs (same lobotomy effect as paxil) Serotonin modulators like Viibryd (zombie state again) SNRIs (massive anxiety, didn't help withdrawal) Wellbutrin augmentation (no change) MAOIs (didn't prevent withdrawal) Low dose antipsychotics (no change, or exacerbated withdrawal) Selective Ht2c serotonin blockers (exacerbated withdrawal) In the end, I realized that, at least for me, I was on a wild goose chase and I might as well dig in the for the long haul and re-instate paxil (without any augmentation) in order to taper slowly. I restarted at 20mg and have been tapering since the beginning of the year. I'm down to 12mg now, and find myself stuck in a partial withdrawal / mostly lobotomized state. I'm very unmotivated and can't seem to squeeze any enjoyment out of life, friends, exercise, music, hobbies, etc despite my best efforts. I've become quite anti-social, and my days have been reduced to working, sleeping, eating and laying on the couch. At the beginning, despite knowing it was a dangerous idea, I would take 3-4 day breaks just to feel human again. I considered crashing off of it again and moving to a warm foreign country to spend a year or more recovering, but unfortunately I don't have the money to not be working right now. Thankfully, even on a steadily declining dose, I have started to have these short windows of time when I seem to awaken out of the haze, and suddenly feel the sun and the breeze, with music and socializing feeling great. It'll last for a few hours before it fades back into the abyss. Exercise, when I can force myself to do it, seems to increase the frequency and duration of these. I don't have advice for anyone, other than to keep pushing through... Even when it's rough and awful. Between the stories I have read here, and knowing that the brain is capable of amazing things, I'm quite confident I will recover. It may take another year to remove this poison from my brain in a responsible and safe way, but I will be so grateful when the time comes to feel alive again. I wish everyone luck with their own journey through this torture...
  19. hello everyone, I am a former member of paxilprogress, i went by the username of no_fear if i can remember. I was on paxil for 5 years and 4 months, starting off on 20mg, but for the most part on 10mg, i tapered down to 5mg/day then 5mg/every other day, then stopped, this was back in winter 08/09. to be honest the tapering part for me wasn't too bad, the real problems started after i stopped, probably about 2 months after. i was hit with depression and anxiety, after that came the brain zaps and dizziness (i felt like i was going to fall backwards all the time) that lasted for a good 6 months. i have had bouts of insomnia and moments lying in bed feeling so low and fatigued i would of asked God to end my life right there. it took me a good 4 years after stopping to get to a place and head space to feel what i could consider normal, i have been off paxil for over 7 years now and have never looked back. i currently do have health issues which are possibly related directly or indirectly to coming off paxil, but i feel it is more to do with my clean but not very nutritious diet and not letting myself recover properly. i feel bad typing this because i can see many of you are still in withdrawal and i think this site is more to do with that, but i just wanted to share my story and let people know there is light at the end of the tunnel.
  20. I stopped taking Paxil 6 months ago. Since then, I've been unable to sleep more than about 4 hours a night. Has anyone gone through insomnia every night like this for this long? How long does the inability to get a sufficient amount of sleep last after getting off all psychiatric medications?
  21. Benzo topic: pinkfairy-in-ad-withdrawal-possibly-zopiclone-and-now-benzo Hi everybody am new around here....right here goes!i need some advice an help.am a single mum to a nine year old with no family or support.in janurary I was taken off Paxil which I was taking at 40mg...I had no clue about tapering,they took me off in 4 weeks I was on it for 3 an half years.they then gave me diazepam to stop the with drawals...so now am also in the process of weaning off this at 10% a month.have now educated myself on this one!!am in a right state an I feel like am in a deep dark hole!have got real bad depression but they can't get another AD into me,probably because my CNS is in a mess....am I too late to reinstate Paxil?or would you guys keep on going.any help would be amazing!!am really struggling xx
  22. Hello Everyone, Let me introduce myself. You can call me Sebas (38), i'm from Amsterdam. Hope my English is okay. I was diagnosed with anxiety issues around 2004 and then started using Seroxat, I believe it's called Paxil in the US. I'm aware by now of all the problems this medicine is causing. In other words, i've read a lot, and i mean A LOT about it. I can almost graduate about the subject After several attempts to stop, I found out in 2015 or 2016 about the 5-10% reduction rule. That helped me from 20 mg (10 ml) tot 12 mg (6 ml) in about 1,5 years (estimated). I'm using the fluid suspension and some squirts for accurate dosage. From 6 ml down to 5,8 took me 5 weeks to feel allright, then i stabilized for a week and went back down from 5,8 tot 5,6. All the usual withdrawal symptoms occur during tapering periods such as illness, nerve system problems, visual, fatigue, stomache cramps and also i'm countering eye circles. Since the last dosage (from 5,8 tot 5,6) i've been feeling bad for 9 weeks already. Especially my stomache and my energy. So i'm now wondering what to do, wait (and wait...), go back to 5,8, go back to 6,0 of try to switch to another AD. Cause this one is really @#$%&* mainly cause of the fast half-life period. I've read about a cross tapering method. I asked my doktor for a psychiatric consult about it. Or...could it be my body (and mind) is telling me this dose is beneath the minimum that i just need for my personal wellbeing. I'm familiair with magnesium, omega 3/fish oil and multi vitamin for support. I'm looking forward fto exchanging some knowledge. Bye Sebas
  23. Hello guys, Dave’s here, i’ll keep it short, last month, i got prescripted with depression and anxiety and were given paxil 20mg to take for 3 weeks. I feel alright until the med ran out and i suffered quite a bit. later i went to the hospital again and was prescribed with citalopram 20mg for 2 weeks. After taken Citalopram for 3 days, the side effects were horrible and i got no libido as well as couldnt get up down there whatsoever. I went cold turkey this time, and it has been 10th day that i suffered from insomnia, light headed and loss of sexual desired i am panicking, will i ever be normal again? I want to start a family and have kids, please help ... will it be permanent ?
  24. Est-ce que quelqu'un a sevré paxil svp en francais... Je suis a 30 mg et j'aimerais passer a 15mg et je me demande si les symptomes que je ressens vont partir et combien de temps? je suis a 28 mg depuis 3 semaines, léger maux coeur, tête, fatigue, estomac digestion etc... mais je peux m,endurer... Google translation: Has anyone weaned paxil please in french ... I am at 30 mg and I would like to go to 15 mg and I wonder if the symptoms that I feel will go away and for how long? I have been at 28 mg for 3 weeks, slight aches in the heart, head, fatigue, stomach digestion etc ... but I can endure ...
  25. Success story: cocopuffz-11-years-on-paroxetine-its-nothing-but-a-bad-memory-now-i-am-now-free Hello, I am new here. I really appreciate everyone posting their stories, struggles or successes. It helps me understands what I have been through WAY better. I was on paroxetine(20 mg) for 11 years for social anxiety. I was told by my psychiatrist that it would be "a vitamin I take for the rest of my life". Little did I know it would rob me off all my emotions in life. Over the last 11 years I have had a decent amount of "we dont know why this happens" health conditions. I now look back and blame alot of it on this drug. Since coming off of this drug my health conditions have improved, but some of the withdrawal symptoms kick my butt here and there. Reading the success stories, I know these will get better with time. So I am keeping my nutrition dialed in and my attitude positive. Thanks!
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