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  1. It’s my first time posting so hello to everyone . I’m so glad I stumbled on this site I’ve been so scared not knowing what was going on with me . ill try and make this as short as I can . In August of 2018 I hit what I believe to be called poop out (reaching tolerance) from taking seroxat for 15 years straight . Anxiety started to creep into my days even though I was on 20mg and hadn’t had problems only minor in the past . A visit to the dr led to him increasing my dosage to 30mg. I didn’t feel happy about this and decreased back down within 3 weeks. I knew for me the answer was to taper off. In November 2018 i went to see a psychiatrist for advice on tapering as my dr hadn’t got a clue (too long to go into) . She said to drop 5mg see how I went for 4 weeks before dropping again . This seemed to go ok . In December 2018 she said to drop another 5mg again I felt ok. Don’t get my wrong I had lots of weird symptoms with some depression and anxiety but didn’t feel too bad I put this down to the 50mg of pregabalin she said I should take three times daily (prescribed in November ) . I take twice daily on the advice of my dr. In January she said to decrease by 2.5 mg which I have done. I am now taking 7.5mg daily . From reading things on this site I now know I am tapering tooooooo quickly and my body is now telling me this too as my symptoms are more pronounced and the depression is really setting in. I don’t know what to do for the best and was hoping for some advice here. Do I stay put and wait to get stable though I have read somewhere on this site that it can take up to 18 months to start to stabilise after poop out. Or do I increase tiny amounts until I feel able to cope better with the symptoms? I am still working every day . my thoughts before finding this site were that I needed to get off seroxat because it had started to make me feel so much worse and that by keep taking it I’m poisoning my body and it will never head towards homeostasis while I’m still taking it no matter what dose. I would be so grateful for any advice .
  2. 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
  3. Hello Surviving Antidepressants team, I am so glad and grateful you exist. One of the most challenging things about withdrawing from antidepressants is the feeling of loneliness. Although I'm new to the site today, I used Paxil Progress in 2013 and have often browsed SA since. I cannot overstate how comforting it is to know I am not alone and to see people with such kindness and wisdom. Here is my introduction. I'm sorry if it's long, rambling or all over the place. It's kindof cathartic putting this down, even if it does stir some uncomfortable feelings and memories. I have wanted to stop taking Seroxat since 2006, when I was 26 years old. I believe like most psychiatric drugs it blunts all emotions, and has turned me into a zombie that craves carbs and sleep, making me fat and unhealthy. It's also killed my libido for many years. Then in 2010, aged 30, I met my partner and knowing he was the one, I have since wanted even more desperately to stop Seroxat as we'd like to have children. I'm 39 now, and fear time is running out, but would never want to get pregnant and force this drug on a developing baby. I hope I have correctly set up my new account today and am right in doing this introduction. As per my history below, I have been tapering using the 10% method since the middle of last February. I am using liquid Seroxat, which here in the UK is formulated so that 10ml = 20mg. This means practically that I consider my doses in millilitres. I use a two different types of oral syringes – the larger has 10ml total capacity broken into 1ml / 0.2ml increments, and the smaller syringe has 1ml capacity broken into 0.1ml / 0.02ml increments. My latest programme of tapering has been very comfortable and I have very little to report. I suspect I have had occasional symptoms but I have been very careful not to catastrophise or ruminate, having learned that from my previous taper and various psychological therapies (e.g. CBT) in the past. I also believe that some health complaints are part and parcel of human life, whether antidepressants or involved or not. However, I am introducing myself here as I have had an unexpected crisis in the past two weeks. Possibly because it's been a busy Christmas and I was not paying much attention, but for my latest reduction of 22 December, I took 2.92ml instead of the 2.98ml I was meant to take every day. I did not realise this until five days later, on 27 December, when my other half happened to notice I'd written 'take 2.98ml daily' on the bottle box but saw me measuring out 2.92ml. This means for five days I had made a something more like a 11.2% drop than the 9.9% drop that was planned. As it happens, on Christmas day, I felt very poorly with massive anxiety and chest tightness, repeating again on 26 December. By 27 December – the day I realised I had been taking too little Seroxat – I was having horrible digestive issues with lots of heartburn, despite avoiding all the usual food causes of this and eating very conservatively for the festive period. On 27 December and every day since, I have taken the amount I was meant to take for this cycle – 2.98ml, or 5.96mg. But this is where the real difficulties have emerged. My sleep has become very broken, and I am waking every couple of hours in a state of awful panic, with a feeling of inner trembling and bizarre, disturbing memories, phrases and thoughts – thoughts that are feel like they're written in bright neon light and someone is turning them on and off randomly with no logic and no intention by me. Physically, my breathing is shallow, despite consciously trying to practise deep breathing, and my digestive system feels like it is burning. This feeling is continuing into the day and although I'm trying to 'change the channel' and do something else, it's distinctly there in the background. As the panic awakenings seem so reminiscent of my 2013 taper, I quickly realised what was happening, even if on this occasion it has felt milder. I consider that period of my life extremely traumatic, and so it's not something that I like to revisit in my mind. And this in turn fuels the panic – I'm praying that history is not repeating itself – I find that prospect terrifying. My GP is useless and point blank refuses to acknowledge withdrawal exists, and has a 'told you so, you should stay in it for life' attitude if I ever get into discussion with her about my difficulties in coming off Seroxat. Fortunately, I can request the repeat prescription for liquid Seroxat online, so I don't have to have any interaction with her. In fact, I'd rather not have any interaction with medical professionals on this subject. In my own experience since I moved to a new area in 2013, I've only encountered hostility and cynicism. I've already decided in my mind to remain on 2.98ml (5.96mg) and not drop again for a few months (my plan would ordinarily be to drop to 2.7ml / 5.4mg from 19 January and continue onwards). My questions are related to this episode, but also more general questions that have weighed on my mind for ages: 1. Do you think my excess drop could have had an effect on me? Even if, in my case, it was a tiny difference? 2. Do you think I've technically updosed, considering I noticed my mistake after just five days? 3. Is this tiny excess drop plus subsequent updose a possible cause for my pronounced symptoms? Can such tiny variations really have such a strong effect? 4. Does stabilising really happen? Could my plan to remain on 2.98ml for a while now offer stabilisation? 5. My sleep pattern for the past week has been extremely disrupted. Is broken sleep better than no sleep? Should I give in to the urge to nap in the day because at the moment some sleep is good, and if my body is craving it, should I listen to it? (I'm self-employed and work from home so this is possible for me). 6. Do medical professionals resist recognising the problem of antidepressant withdrawal – especially now in the face of such strong evidence – because they'd effectively be admitting they got it wrong, and fear it will open the floodgates for legal action? (I get very angry about this). 7. My partner and I plan to move house in 2019 and get married soon after. Should I put further tapering on hold until after these stressful events? (I hate having to put my health plans on hold like this, but I'm also a realist who doesn't want a repeat of my 2013 trauma). If so, considering I'm now on 5.96mg, would getting to a round figure – e.g. 5mg – be sensible, since I could ask for 10mg tablets and simply cut them in half? Getting from 20mg to 5mg and being stable would still be a positive achievement! I appreciate that some of my questions are really more for me to find the ultimate answer, but I'm still very grateful for people's thoughts and experiences. Many, many thanks. This website and Paxil Progress back in 2013 is a genuine life saver. ______________ MY HISTORY______________ 2002 to 2007 22 to 27 years old - First prescribed Seroxat 20mg daily and taken properly, fully compliant. Do not have records, but attempted to stop by alternating doses around 2006, age 26. Was awful with terrible brain zaps and vomiting. Reinstated by psychiatrist, and pushed up to 40mg by early 2007, age 27. 2013 failed Seroxat taper 33 years old - January to October 2013: 40mg to 0mg Seroxat, by dropping 2mg every fortnight. Did not know of the 10% method. Terrible reaction soon after hitting zero. - November to mid-December 2013: took various drugs prescribed by doctors who would not recognise withdrawal, including diazepam, quetiapine, zopliclone. I did not continue with any of these drugs after mid-December 2013. - January 2014 was back fully on Seroxat, and worked quickly back up to 20mg from mid-December 2013. Latest, 2018 taper, following 10% method, starting with 20mg Seroxat 38 years old - Saturday, 17 February 2018 – 9 ml / 18 mg - Saturday, 17 March 2018 – 8.1 ml / 16.2 mg - Saturday, 14 April 2018 – 7.3 ml / 14.6 mg - Saturday, 12 May 2018 – 6.58 ml / 13.16 mg - Saturday, 9 June 2018 - 5.92 ml / 11.84 mg - Saturday, 7 July 2018 - 5.34 ml / 10.68 mg - Saturday, 4 August 2018 – 5 ml / 10 mg - Saturday, 1 September 2018 - 4.5 ml / 9 mg - Saturday, 29 September 2018 - 4.06 ml / 8.12 mg - Saturday, 27 October 2018 - 3.66 ml / 7.32 mg - Saturday, 24 November 2018 - 3.3 ml / 6.6 mg - Saturday, 22 December 2018 – Meant to be 2.98 ml, but between 22 and 27 December, believe I took 2.92ml by mistake / Meant to be 5.96 mg but by mistake, probably took 5.84mg daily between 22 and 27 December During this latest taper: - No other pharmaceutical drugs. - Rarely drink alcohol. - Drink between 1 and 3 cups of (black) tea or coffee a day. - Take vitamin D supplement as was found to be deficient in it in spring 2018 (my guess is due to not liking/eating oily fish, not being a fan of sunshine and being overweight – I'm about 18 stone, or 252lbs). - Also take a general multivitamin/mineral approximately every other day. - I use an e-cigarette lots. I gave up smoking in 2015 after a chest infection and so vaping is my nicotine source.
  4. I was put on 20mg of Seroxat in May 1996 (directly after two weeks of Valium). I was 19 years old. Prescription was for Panic Disorder, GAD and Mild Depression (although I had never felt depressed and explained that many times over the years to my doctor(s)). As were many, I was told I had a chemical balance which, just like a diabetic needs insulin, I needed seroxat. Since then, I have tried approximately 5 times to come off the medication (with taper of sorts - usually 10mg for a few weeks and then to zero). Each time, the anxiety came back, always with new symptoms (extreme nausea, vertigo, increased anxiety, obsessive dark thoughts). I also developed irrational fears (fear of driving on highways and over bridges, fear of ski lifts, fear of heights, fear of flying, fear of business meetings. In fact, pretty much fear of everything.). Each time I visited a doctor, I was told the same thing: you have a chemical imbalance and need to go back on Seroxat. Sure enough, a single tablet would have me feeling back to “normal” within a matter of hours. I used to joke about it with doctors “wow, what a placebo effect. This should take weeks to work?”. Now I realise I was (probably) in withdrawal. Two years ago, after being in a protracted depression for the best part of 10 years (something I hadn’t realised as it had become my baseline state), I had got myself down to approximately 7mg a day. The reason I was trying to come off was two fold: firstly, my wife and I wanted to start a family and I was concerned about both my fertility and damage to any baby I conceive. Secondly, I had made a huge effort to get fit, was running 40km a week and had dropped from 92kg to 78kg-I’m 178cm. This gave me the confidence that I was in the best physical place to achieve it. Soon after, I suffered what I considered to be a mental breakdown. I was ready to leave my loving wife and had developed a clinical apathy to everything. I became petrified I would commit suicide (I never felt this was realistic but the thought of it gave me panic attacks). Furthermore, I started wondering such thoughts as “will I jump off the balcony whilst sleep walking”. I had been seeing a psychologist for some time but talking about things seemed to make the situation worse. I also started seeing a CBT therapist. I would feel better during a session but on leaving, my mood would severely crash, like nothing I had ever experienced in my life. I knew I was in a bad place. The psychologist recommended me to a psychiatrist who was the most uncaring person I have ever met. How she medically practices, I have no idea. She wasn’t interested in my drug history, offered me barely five minutes of her time, and prescribed 50mg Trittico to be taken before bed. I took it for a few nights but decided that it was not right for me. She then offered me several other kinds of SSRIs. I declined them all and went back to 20mg of Seroxat. However, this time felt different. I was sure that seroxat was nothing more than the placebo (how could you explain the fact I got better after taking a single favor each time I had a “relapse”. As suspected, i had lost belief in the drug, and it did not bring the immediate relief like it had every time previously. I was petrified. To me, this confirmed my worse fears. It had been a placebo all this time, and now, because I was sure it wasn’t going to work, it didn’t. I was a lost case. This created severe anxiety and panic. All I could think was that I had been on a placebo for 20 + years and now I had uncovered this fact, ADs would never work for me again. I was destined to suffer dibilitating anxiety and depression for the rest of my life. Things improved slightly after being back on 20mg for a few weeks. But I was still anxious and depressed, and the mood swings were unbareable. During this time, i had had a medical for my work which showed I had very high cholesterol (7.99 in European measures) and the doctor put me on Crestor. At the time, the cardiologist told me “this is not the first time I have seen somebody at the surgery who has unusually high cholesterol following a long period of exposure to SSRIs”. This was the first time I considered what the meds had been doing to me over the years. My dark moods seemed to get worse during this period of being on Crestor. My cholesterol dropped by 50% in this time, but I could now barely function. I did some research into the link between statins and depression and decided to quit the Crestor cold turkey. My moods improved somewhat (at least I could hold a conversation now). I had also started to suffer from eczema on my arms, forehead and legs (first time in my life). Furthermore, I suffered from a bout of Diverticulitis (the doctor told me the main risk factor was constipaiton) and also blood in the urine (which after every test, scan, x-ray known to man, a cause could not be found). Further research made me realise that not only could all of these problems be linked to seroxat, so could my unexplained depression and mood swings. I made the decision to come off seroxat for good. That was in October of last year. I found a new psychiatrist who was supportive of my decision and recognized the importance of taper. However, he didn’t believe that my problems could be caused by seroxat, and thought taper over a month was perfectly acceptable. By this time, I had been on seroxat 22 years. I decided to taper for longer. I immediately dropped to 10mg per day as this is something that I had down many times throughout the years without too many problems. I would get the usual brain zaps but nothing I couldn’t handle. As I started to reduce mg by mg (1mg per week) using liquid, I could actually feel my constant depressive mood lifting somewhat (perhaps only by 10%, but there was something ). This encouraged me to go on. I sped up towards the end to 1mg per week as I just wanted to be off it. I took my last dose in the second week of January. Since then, I have been going through withdrawal. The first couple of weeks were ok (brain zaps I have suffered since 1996 so they don’t scare me). My general depressive level definitely improved. The hardest part for me was (and still is) the rapid onset of change in mood. One minute I am fine, the next my mood crashes. During every crash, I immediately think “the only reason I feel better is the placebo effect. The depression and anxiety is going to come back and get me”. CBT has helped with this catestrophic thinking and the moods seem to only last for a few hours (rather than days or weeks as previously). Every week, as a whole, I am seeing huge improvements. I have cried a lot (and it feels great). I am starting to look forward to things again. The apathy has lifted by 75%. I had a few days of panic and GAD earlier on that would seem to come out of nowhere. I would just wake up and feel down and have fear. I also started to wake during the night in a panic. But I stayed with it. A few weeks ago, I started waking more often during the night. 3 or 4 times. That developed into full blown insomnia for a few days. Last night, I slept without waking once for the first time in a month. The anxiety is now 75% better. Two days ago, I feel I had my best day for years and years. I am generally excited but scared. Since January, I have dropped from 86kg to 78kg. My skin condition has totally cleared up. What if me feeling better is a coincidence? Or the placebo effect? I have read that it can feel you are through the withdrawal, only for it to come back even harder in the future. How will I cope with that!? Now that I’ve felt well, I don’t want to go back where I was. I currently live in Zurich, Switzerland. I can find almost no support here. No doctor, psychologists, psychiatrist or therapist seems to have any idea about withdrawal. They are all desperate to tell me I have relapsed. I so truly want to believe they are wrong, that this whole thing is a drug induced nightmare, and that I will continue to get better. However, the devil on my shoulder is still there. During any period of weakness, he reminds me that the recovery is all in my head and it’s only a matter of time before I relapse. And so here I am. Hoping to be part of a support group that can help me with my withdrawal and keep me believeing. Even more importantly, I want to help others.
  5. Hi, I just wanted to share my experience of this drug and what I am going through. I was put on seroxat at 18 due to messing with recreational drugs. I was fine on 20mg for the next 17 years living life to the max!!! However, due to the birth of my son i wanted to be drug free, and had not had any symptoms for 12 years! I went to the doctor and she said to come off it over a few weeks and I'd be fine. This was not the case, after 7 weeks post taper and about 3 weeks off totally I had a total nervous breakdown. Dr put me back on 20mg, this was 4 months ago. Since then my nervous system is in complete meltdown, im suffering RLS, hand tremmors, depression, anxiety. The Doc suggests trying higher dose of Paroxetine and / or Mirtazipine. Has anyone experienced this, what did you do? Word of advice do your own research and read Shipko, and Healys work on SSRI discontnuation syndrome before you decide to come off it, especially if you have been on it for many years! Don't make my mistake and just trust your Dr!
  6. 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
  7. Hello everyone, first of all, I wanna thank everyone in this forum for giving me hope and for making me feel less alone. After being AD free for exactly 3 weeks today, I decided to create my own profile so I could tell my story and update you on my journey towards recovery. Let's start with the basics: female, mid-twenties, working and studying at the same time. I've suffered from anxiety and panic issues my whole life, so I guess it wasn't a surprise when I finally developed OCD when I was a teenager (health related obsessions are my the most persisting obsessions, so I guess you could say I suffer from hypochondria as well). Specialists have 'officially' diagnosed me with OCD, anxiety disorder (not specified which one apart from OCD) and, as of late, depression (but we'll get to that in a minute). July 2015 I was prescribed Seroxat 20 mg (Paxil) because I was severely impaired due to my anxiety disorder and OCD. It seemed to work like magic! Life was so much better for a year or so: my obsessions returned to being just thoughts that I could easily ignore, I hung out with friends and family a lot more, I could get outside of my house without feeling panicky, my work life was SO much better, I didn't feel as anxious... I didn't suffer from any major side effects, apart from weight gain. My psychiatrist never warned me that coming off the meds would be so hard. He never mentioned withdrawal, or discontinuation syndrome. I expressed him my concerns about being on the drug for a long time (my common sense told me you aren't supposed to be on this medication for a long period of time). He asked me if I was having any major side effects from taking it, I said no, he said: "then why the hurry? you will be able to come off of it once you're feeling better." *sigh* So I took it for 3 years... I went to him one other time to tell him that, whenever I missed my dose for one day, I'd get really weird head sensations that I'd never experienced before (now I know it's the famous BRAIN ZAPS!), alongside nausea. He said that this was a normal thing that happens when you stop taking the medication, but he said I was probably very sensitive to Seroxat and that's why it happened after only one day of not taking it. Since my symptoms went away once I took my normal dose again, I never thought much of it. So, fast forward to February 2018: I was sick and tired of taking meds. Yes, I wasn't feeling especially bad while being on them, but I just had the feeling that I'd been taking them for long enough and I genuinely thought it wouldn't make a difference on my mental health to stop taking them, since I felt stable (albeit a bit anxious, that's why i thought meds weren't doing anything anymore). I wasn't living in the same country anymore, so seeing my psychiatrist wasn't possible. Now, this is the part where I understand I messed up: I started tapering, but I did it as I pleased, basically. I know now that this was EXTREMELY irresponsible. I wish I had informed myself better, and I also wish my doctor hadn't given me the impression that SSRI's are not difficult to get off. I didn't follow a schedule, I just tried listening to my body: I went from taking 20mg each day, to taking 20 mg one day, 10 mg the next, then 20 mg. the next (I don't know if I'm explaining myself: for example; Monday 20 mg, Tuesday 10 mg, Wed. 20 mg, Thursday, 10 mg... and so on). Once I was done doing it (I did indeed feel a bit more anxious and suffered from brain zaps and nausea for a while, but it went away), I reduced the meds again and took 20 mg. every other day. I followed this last routine for at least 3/4 months and, even though I felt worse, it was still manageable. I suffered from nausea, derealization and brain zaps for a while, but they eventually went away. July 2018 (5/6 months after 'tapering') I decided to take it to the next level: I'd take 10 mg. every day. After 2 weeks of following that routine, I took 10 mg. every other day. Now, that was the point when withdrawal showed its ugly head: derealization, panic attacks, anxiety for no reason, obsessions, brain zaps, nausea and nightmares begun. This was end july-beginning of august. I went back on them (10 mg. a day), and symptoms definitely alleviated. A month later, I tried again - I tried stopping taking them completely at a point in my life where I had a lot of changes coming up (moving countries, change in job, last year of uni, quitting birth control meds...), and that's when hell broke loose. I now feel so bad about it, I wish I had made things differently I don't understand how I could act so irresponsibly. What happened was, I suffered a major OCD relapse, anxiety was present 24/7. I tried going on Seroxat again, 20 mg. for a month, following my psychiatrists orders (I was back in my country, so I contacted him immediately). It didn't seem to work (although my nightmares stopped). This relapse was so bad I started suffering from really bad depression. My psychiatrist told me to be patient. He said Seroxat would start working at some point. After a month of taking Seroxat and seeing no improvement, my new therapist suggested I started treatment with this other psychiatrist. I was so desperate, I went to see him. After hearing my whole story, this new psych. told me that Seroxat wasn't working for me anymore. He prescribed Sertraline/Zoloft (100 mg.). I followed his instructions, and so I went from 20 mg. of Seroxat daily, to 10 mg. daily for a week, then stopping it completely the next. I started Zoloft 50 mg. while tapering off Seroxat. After one week, I went from 50 mg. Zoloft to 100. IT WAS HELL: agitation, panic attacks (yes, even more panic attacks!), vivid dreams (I had never experienced something like that before, EVER), suicidal ideation (sorry)... those were the most prominent symptoms. I waited a month to see if it improved: it never did, even though I tried everything - changing the time I took the meds, taking a lower dose (all of this by doctor's orders). He finally told me that Zoloft wasn't working for me either, and told me to taper off of it (quickly...). He then said to wait for a week without any meds to see how I was feeling. After I week I'd start taking Fluvoxamine / Luvox (yet another med!). This was 4 weeks ago. 3 weeks ago I completely went off the meds, as instructed, and never dared to try fluvoxamine. I've already gone through enough. I feel so upset because no doctor actually thinks this is real. Yes, he told me AD discontinuation happens, and yes, he said Paxil is one of the harder drugs to quit, but he said the discontinuation syndrome would only last for 3 or 4 days! How delusional can they be? I told my doctor about this, expressed him my concerns about still being in withdrawal and he said that I should try going back to Seroxat, 5 mg. I still haven't followed his advice. What do you think I should do? I'm already 3 weeks in recovery from AD... So, how do I feel now? Here's a list of my main symptoms: When I stopped taking Seroxat and I begun taking Sertraline, daily vivid dreams started. My doctor thought it was a side effect of taking Zoloft, but I believe it's a side effect from Seroxat withdrawal, since I already had a taste of them when I tried tapering off of Seroxat a few months prior to this. Also, I did cross taper, so I started taking Sertraline when I was weaning myself off Seroxat. I still suffer from them almost every day. I wake up with an emotional hungover that lasts for hours. I sometimes hear loud sounds that aren't really there while drifting off to sleep or when I wake up. Sounds like bangs, alarm clocks... Doctor says it's stress, I say it's withdrawal. Nocturnal panic attacks / panic in dreams: I wake up with my heart racing and a feeling of impending doom (I take a small dose of a benzodiazepine most nights to help me sleep at least a little. I know it's not the best thing to do, but I had no other choice, believe me.) This had never happened to me before all of this withdrawal process. Fewer hours of sleep. It's not drastic, but I do sleep fewer hours. 6 hours a day more or less. Brain zaps. These were most intense during the first week and a half of quitting Sertraline. I still have them, but they aren't as intense and the frequency has also decreased A LOT (like 70%). Feeling dizzy. This symptom is the one that bothers me the least. It happens rarely and the intensity is low. It started happening to me on week 2. Hyperarousal. This, alongside vivid dreaming, is the worst symptom for me. This manifests itself in the form of agitation, suddenly feeling panicky, feeling the adrenaline inside my body all of a sudden. Increased obsessions. This is basically my OCD coming back, full force. Irritability. I become aggresive for absolutely NO reason! I don't act on those feelings, of course, but I sometimes scream at people or give them a bad attitude because of stupid reasons. I immediately apologize like a minute later, because I know I overreacted. Mood swings - including crying spells, intense feelings of depression and hopelessness. I am experiencing windows and waves at this point, to be honest. I didn't think it was really a thing until I started experiencing it for myself. This gives me hope... What am I doing to help myself? I'm starting meditation. I'm also starting EFT tapping. I'm trying to slowly eat healthier. I'm moving my body for at least 45 min. a day (gentle exercising, such as swimming slowly or walking). I've tried acupuncture... I'm unsure of its efficacy. Thank you so much for reading my story. I'm so grateful for this site. If you have any questions, I'm here for you
  8. I have been on Paxil for 20 years. I was originally put on it for reactive depression from getting fibromyalgia . I don't need it now. I am not depressed anymore. My problem is that there is no liquid Seroxat /Paxil available here. I first tried bridging to Prozac. I found that moving from Seroxat to Prozac was too hard. I then tried dissolving it in water but my Seroxat tablets do not suspend or dissolve in water. They sink to the bottom of the glass. Does anyone know a reputable online pharmacy that sells liquid paxil and ships to Israel? There was a suggestion of using "Ora Plus" suspension liquid on this forum to dissolve insoluble tablets. I can easily buy Ora Plus from ebay with international shipping. What puts me off is that all the reviews of that on Amazon involve people using it to suspend tablets they give to their dogs and cats! It also contains some nasty sounding chemicals. The shipping cost is crazy too. But that doesn't worry me as much as the other two reasons. I take the gsk - glaxo smith kline version of Seroxat. I take 3/4 of a tablet - 15mg. It's the same tablet distributed to the whole of the European Union. Has anyone here successfully tapered off that without the liquid Seroxat? If so how did you do it? Anyone know an online pharmacy that sells liquid Paxil that ships to Israel?
  9. I have just joined this site from Paxil Progress. I have been withdrawing from 12 years of Seroxat for over a year now. This last few weeks have been a real struggle. I thought that things were improving but the last 2 or 3 weeks have been awful. I haven't slept properly for ages and it feels like WD again. My body pulsates and irritates me. I keep arguing with my partner. Life has no pleasure any more. In the past I tried HTP, acupuncture. I just have camomile tea now, which doesn't seem to help, and Valerian for sleep which doesn't seem to have kicked in yet. Tried some CBT therapy over the phone but without success. I never thought coming off these things would be as bad as this. I went into it with my eyes shut.
  10. After experiencing blood sugar problems that are obviously linked to the Seroxat, I have been tapering my original 20 mg´s dose to 10 mg´s and have been on 10 mg´s for 60 days, Now I have tapered to 10 mg´s every other day and I feel worse on the days when I take the dose. I have been benzo-free for 7 years now, after taking 3 mg´s of Lexotan for 17 years. Tapered it gradually for 6 months (from March 2011 - September 2011) and felt prolonged withdrawal symptoms for up to 3 years after that - off and on. Last Wednesday I started getting severe dizzy spells if I turn my head, bend etc. and now I have to be extra careful about my posture. I am toying with the idea of dissolving the doze and would like to know if some of you have experience of dissolving Seroxat in water. I am fairly optimistic as I know from experience that drug withdrawal can be survived ⏳ WIth regards, Lexotania P.S. I decided to stick to my old nick from Benzobuddies.org as it sounds better than Seroxatia
  11. Hi. I Hope someone can help. I have been on 15mg Mirtazapine for 8 months, I started it the end of of September 2017. Stupidly, I went cold turkey for 4 days, didnt like withdrawals (lack of sleep, aches and pains) etc, so I reinstated back to full-dose . After nine days back on 15mg I still had not stabilised. I was improving, but getting dizzy spells, some anger and anxiety. So I reduced my dose to 7.5mg and have been on this dosage for the passed 6 weeks and have been through hellish withdrawals. At present I sleep about 4 or 5 hours and wake with akathisia (anxiety) everyday. This lasts till about 12 midday and then turns to deep depression with some suicidal ideation and general low mood till about 7pm when I start to feel normal again. I did not have this morning anxiety, low mood previous to the drop-in dosage, indeed I have never suffered from anxiety. IS IT TO LATE TO REINSTATE BACK TO 15mg ? as I really can't handle this morning anxiety any more. In summery : 15mg Mirtazapine for 8 months cold turkey 4 days reinstatement 15 mg for 9 days reduced dosage 7.5mg for passed 6 weeks. I must also add that prior to being put on Mirtazapine I was on seroxat (Paxil) for 14 years. It pooped out. My gp cross tapered me from one to the other over 4 weeks. So virtually a cold turkey off the seroxat. After six weeks off the Seroxat I crashed so tried to reinstate that but only lasted 10 days my body just couldn't take it. Whilst the last eight months haven't been great on just 15mg of Mirtazapine due to sensitised CNS from seroxat withdrawal, they were a dam site better than the last 6 weeks. In retrospect I think I should have persevered with the original updosage back to 15mg of Mirt for longer than nine days but I panicked as I thought after only 4 days off I should have stabilised after 2 or 3 In short, after 6 weeks on 7.5mg is it to late to reinstate back to 15mg of Mirt and if I do, how long would it take to stabilise ?. Or should I not rock the boat any further and just stay on 7.5 and hope for things to improve, but symptoms are pretty much unbearable at the moment, I am a complete mess . Please help. Any advice would be much appreciated.
  12. Hello Everyone, This is for Fresh, who has coerced me in to finally starting my own forum thread which I will add to over time. Please pull up a chair, sit down and may be get a hot drink and let me begin. History In a galaxy.. far far away.... oh no that's not it. Ah this is it....... I was holidaying in Italy and got a bit too much sun one day, which meant that I got a pretty servere case of heat / sun stroke. I was unable to sleep for days on end as the slightest noise would jar me awake. I was also unable to eat properly at this time and had a bad stomach, which I believe was all brought on by the sun episode. I remember having a feeling that there was a black cloud above my right eye all of the time. I started to get depressed and felt myself getting lower and lower. Until one morning a few days after the incident, I had an ice cold shower. This bought on my first ever panic attack. I first had a feeling of buzzing in my head and then my muscles in my legs and hands started to contract. I now know this is caused by hyperventilation. An ambulance was called and I was taken to the ER in an Italian hospital where I was given Valium to calm me down. When I came round the black cloud had disappeared. (never to return.... well at least thus far). I was sent home and told to take liquid Valium twice a day for 3 further days. My holiday was coming to an end and this would see me through until I was on the flight home. I slept like a baby and felt wonderful when awake. I thought the whole episode was over, but little did I know that the big change in my life was just starting. I came home and was fine for 24 hours. I went to the cinema to watch the movie "Twister" and it was whilst the film was at one of it's high tension moments that I experienced my second panic attack, it was nowhere near as bad as my first but it affected me for the next couple of days as once again I lost my appetite. I started a new job and this put me in to another tailspin, and it seemed as though panic and anxiety ruled my life for the next 8 months or so. I was put on a short course of betablockers, but they didn't do anything. I can't remember the name of that particular medicine. I finally saw a GP and was diagnosed with Anxiety and Depression, I can honestly say that other than the depressive episode whilst on holiday I have never felt depressed in my life. Yes I have had blue days but never what I now think as depression. I was prescribed Seroxat 10mg once a day. Which I started to take in the morning. Early issues involved initial panic attack when first staring the meds and then suicidal ideation which I had never experienced before. I was concerned and spoke to a GP who then prescribed Diazepan to help me "get on to the drug", a strange phrase and if I'd realised at that time what these things were doing then I would have stopped taking them. It took approximately 2 - 4 weeks for me to start to feel relief and during this time I felt the meds entering every organ in my body or at least that's what I swear I felt. I even got in to a stage where I felt myself rocking back and forth but this only lasted a day or so. Anyway after 4 weeks I was better and over the course of a few months I started to feel "normal" (whatever that may be). I stayed on the meds for a few years before attempting to wean / taper myself off, but this was very shortlived as the symptoms soon appeared. Of course the GP said.... "that the original condition was coming back" and "you need to go back on the meds". So like a good patient always does, they follow the doctors orders, because after all, they know what is right for you, right? So I think I was on Seroxat for approximately 4 years and then started to experience what I now know as "poop-out", where the meds stopped working. So my GP moved me over to Escitalopram as it was a "easier" medication to contend with and would stop me feeling the SI's. Yes this was one of the side effects once the Seroxat had stopped working. To be continued..... Namaste. DC.
  13. Hello! Seeking advice and support having discovered how dependent I am after over 20 yrs of taking paroxetine. Withdrawal symptoms of extreme sustained insomnia, excessive sweating and intense anxiety are making life unbearable and I am horrified at how ignorant I have been about my meds. I now realise GP probably made things worse by suggesting a change to mirtazapine before returning to paroxetine. GP suggested back to 20mg but I couldn't bare the thought of possibly having to repeat the withdrawal so decided on ½ dose (10mg). Not sure if I've done the right thing as still have severe symptoms after 7 days. I now realise all these changes were far too fast but do I hang on to this dose to see if I stabilise and how long do I give it?? I'm just beginning to realise that this is likely to be life changing....not what I'd planned at 58....as may well loose my job and it's a huge strain on family and friends. It's confusing and frightening. See gp on Thurs and feel it would be good to have an idea of what I should be aiming for re medication. He gave me propranolol (a beta blocker) for the anxiety but I've since discovered it could be contributing to the insomnia. Has anyone got any experience of that? With thanks and hoping to be able to share experiences!
  14. I started taking Paroxetine 20mg in 2012. Prescribed by my GP for what was then mild anxiety and low mood. I decided to come off of the paroxetine in Januay 2016. Had enough of being an asexual zombie. The drugs did little for me anyways. Started a slow taper and got down to 10mg once weekly by September 2017. If I didn't dose for longer than a week I would get agitated and angry. 10mg was enough to make me calm for a week or so.... On 24th September 2017 I decided complete withdrawal would be impossible and that maybe I would be better off going back on the paroxetine full-time. I started taking 10mg daily without a doctor's supervision. Five days later I became suicidal for the first time in my life...bearing in mind before this I had always been pretty much emotionally stable. I went to A & E suffering severe agitation/depersonalisation and several other worrying symptoms such as intrusive thoughts about attacking loved ones (something which I would never do or ever think about before). I was given diazepam to get me through the next few days. I vowed never to touch SSRIs again. I have not taken any paroxetine since the crisis on 29th September. The last 2 weeks have been the worst 2 weeks of my life. I went to see a psychiatrist privately - he diagnosed me with bi-polar and prescribed me Seroquel (quetiapine). I am NOT bi-polar, my brain has been destroyed by paroxetine. My daily symptoms are: psychomotor agitation, intrusive thoughts about violence, feeling empty, no emotion at all, electric shock sensations all through my body, panic, crying etc I know the sensible thing would probably be to go on prozac for a while, but after almost throwing myself in front of a bus after just a few days on paroxetine, to me, it's not worth the risk. I just want to ride this out and hopefully get better. I want to be in control of my thoughts and emotions again. At the moment my thoughts and emotions are controlling me. This is not a problem I had before paroxetine. I'm just worried that I'll remain this nervous wreck forever. Can anyone relate to this? Especially the intrusive thoughts, which is what worries me most. Does it get better? Regards, Clearmind
  15. bagzi

    bagzi: my intro

    Hello, My name is Igor, 39 yo, living in Serbia. I first started taking ADs in 2014 after period of exhaustion in my life, and parallel conversion to Christianity. I had a GF in that period who was an alcoholic and bulimic, which i did not know at first.. In my inability to handle the situation, i started to sink deeper and deeper into myself, and i started to turn to God for solution of my problems. Due to all the exhaustion, in dec 2014 i had my firste panic attack, which i first thought was a hearth attack. I did all the checks and i was generally ok. A friend of mine figured out what could be the problem, so he took me to a psychiatrist, which prescribed me with 20mg Seroxat and im not sure what amount of Rivotril. I refused to take any of the drugs for some 5 months, but situation got worse. I was absent from work all this time, and finally i think in May i started taking Seroxat. Did not take Rivotril due to a warning from my friend that it can create an addiction. In period of 5 months before taking drugs i was in pretty bad shape, got down some 10kg in weight, which was not that bad actually, but i had severe nervousness, anger issues, tremor of the left side of the body and difficulty to sleep. Also, very vivid dreams, like visions, where it seemed like i really participate in these awkward situations. I agreed to start the drugs partly because family was scared the hell out of what is going on with me, but partly i was exhausted from the new situation that i found myself in. So, i took the drugs for precisely a year, because doc said it is some usual period. After 8-9 months i got it down to 10mg, and i took that for some 2 months, and then i got maybe a month 5mg and after that i got off. I managed to function in society for some 2 months after i got completely off, but then i just had no energy to continue. But, i decided that im gona fight as long as i can. So, i quit my job, and went into solitude in my app. living alone. It was a very rough period, but then again i had so much revelation about life in that app that in a way i am greatfull for it. I was there so noone can look at me, i was looking pretty bad again. Went out only briefly and to the store once in a few days. But again, in Oct last year (2015) i reached the point that i just could not go on like that anymore. So i got back on meds, i figured Seroxat was working so i got back on that same drug. Again, i was taking 20mg for some 7 months, than reduced to 10mg twhich i took for 4 months, and recently in Sept i reduced to 5mg which is the dose i take now for some 2 months. Its not easy with this small dose, but i notice its getting better. It was a bit rough when i cut it down, but now i figure its ok. I dont have a plan how long i am going to take this dose, but my final goal is to get off completely. Not sure when or how. I got a job now again, and its a bit easier than in previous job. I feel really good that i had the strength to do this job switch. I feel like i have done something for myself, and although im not off the drugs completely i feel i am making a progress. Bad thing about these drugs is that they numb you, you dont get to feel your emotions. They kinda disconnect you from yourself. That is mostly why i want to get off them eventually. It is not like for example a drug you take for the hearth issue, or something in that nature, like blood pressure. You feel they are affecting your thinking, feelings and behavior. On the other hand, when i look at period before i had this first attack, that was also not life. It was mostly mechanical life where i did not question if i like to do something or not, what do i really want to do and what not. This experience was actually something like eye opening, where you realize what life actually is, where you stand right now and where you would like to go, and how much effort it would take to get there, A lot of information all of a sudden, lot of unknown and lot of unanswered question. So, i guess no wonder panic starts to overflow you. I can honestly say, that toughest period that i had these past few years was the most productive period in my life. Although i spent it mostly alone in a room meditating. So anyway, that is my short (or not so short) story. I am happy i found this place and hope to learn from all of you. Igor
  16. 40jack

    40jack: Hello

    Hi I'm new to this site. I joined basically because I want to get off my seroxat so I came here for some support. I've been on seroxat since 1994 and although I have been off meds in the past this last stint which is seven years is proving the most difficult to date.
  17. I'm new here, never written a post before although I often refer to various websites for assistance, SA looks like a great resource centre. I had a breakdown 2 years ago which caused a number of issues, from Sleep apnea (I'm not obese), bad joint pains, even more panic attacks. I can only handle 6 hours work a day, from working round the clock for many years. Started tapering in March as fed up with foggy brain and having to take 2 hour naps to escape my mind swirling out of control. Estimated plan is 20 months to taper off completely. I have spreadsheets with dates and i am using a daily journal to track my feelings rated 5 - 0 (5 being off the chart and 0 being ok'ish and thinking clearly) Motivation to get up and go for a walk is a big deal, but slowly making progress. I know the benefits but easier said than done. I learned 2 years ago to walk away when stress became too high, at which point I sleep. My wife and family are very supportive and understand the pressure I'm under trying to run a business. I hope this is the correct forum to introduce myself, and look forward to any advise / feedback.
  18. Forgive the strange title: I believe those words relate to an ancient Zen story. Anyway: a little about me....I have been on Seroxat (Paxil) for close to 20 years, have tried 2 or 3 times before to quit it, I am over 6 weeks into my latest attempt, and it ain't easy just now. I have done a gradual tapering; I used to just about (but not really) get by on 20mg....Ended up during that time living and working in another country ? , finally burnt out over there and admitted defeat. Came back to the UK. On the advice of family, went up to 30mg (not for the first time). The recent tapering has involved: back to 20mg for at least 6 months; then down to 10mg for over 6 months....Down to nothing for the last 6 weeks. (With hindsight, and reading a couple of other posts on here, etc, I realise this was probably too quick). I would say all withdrawal symptoms are mental rather than physical; although I know these two aspects are intimately linked and interacting, I've done it slowly enough to avoid any of the classic "shock" sensations associated with Paxil - or what one might call "Seroxat Flu".... Also, my sleeping patterns don't appear to be too much disturbed. Not too long after I returned from another country my father died. I am 42 years old and lost my mother to cancer at the age of 13, so am effectively now a middle-aged orphan. Have one sibling, a sister, who also has mental health problems, but there is much bitterness and anger between us (even though we do deep down love each other). We haven't spoken for about 6 months. She accuses me of only ever contacting her when I have a problem or am down, so I'm fairly stuffed down that avenue at the moment ? I have never had a proper romantic relationship...Almost hardly ever had sex - and usually not got much "out of it" due to the SSRIs and probably some emotional problems too. I was diagnosed with Body Dysmorphic Disorder in 2000....I am just about managing to hold that at bay at present, but depression and some catastrophic thinking patterns are vying for space in my mind.....I am trying to stay in the moment as much as possible, trying to meditate....Some sporadic success here does alleviate some of the emotional pain occasionally. I try to treat myself to certain material things, or life events, every so often, and that helps also. When my dad died, I inherited more money than I have had in my life; but it is relatively little considering the cost of living in the UK these days. I have already squandered a small fraction of that money on one occasion on a girl - an example of lust over love, my own vulnerability and loneliness and naevity - but I have mentally put that behind me. I tentatively manage to hold down full-time work; how well I am actually functioning at work depends on each individual perspective of my various coworkers - as strange and obtuse as that sounds. I suppose I am trying to say that I gel well, in terms of compatibility and likeability, with certain coworkers far more than others. Anyway. I have written far more than most people would easily be able to digest in one sitting.....If you got this far then thank you so much ?
  19. Hello Everybody! In December 2010 (I just turned 21) I started taking Paxil because I was having severe anxiety (Agoraphobia / Emetophobia). After intensive therapy I made a good recovery which allowed me to pick up daily life (the Anxiety is never completely gone, but it no longer has a big impact on my life). I tried to stop twice and twice this failed extremely hard. By then me and my psych/GP thought it was easy and with todays knowledge I can say that the failures were probably due to way to fast withdrawal schedules (first time I halved to 10mg and stopped the week after.. second time I reduced by 2mg each week). Early summer 2016 I was feeling better than ever on every aspect of my life, but in the second half of the summer suddenly I started feeling worse. Fatigued, unmotivated, tingling sensations and a somewhat drugged/absent feeling. Even though I did feel familiar (to Paxil symptoms, which I had a lot the first ~2-3 months when starting Paxil each time) I did not immediately link it to my medication due to no increase in anxiety. However after a thorough checkup (both physically and mentally) without any other possible finding the only remaining hypothesis was the sudden change in how my body responded to the medication. I decided to start tapering of paxil, but this time I would be prepared: I found out about the 5-10% in 3-6 weeks schedules and found a psychiatrist to help me with my tapering. I also switched to liquid Seroxat to make tapering easier. My plan was to start with tapering 10% each 4 weeks and only reduce dosage once I felt mainly stable/good during the last week. The first taper step went good with only minor/innocent side effect. The second step already became a bit heavier especially with the addition of headaches and eye floaters both of which reduced my daily productivity/concentration. However after 5 weeks I felt stable/better and decided to taper again. The first week on my new dosage (14.4mg) went surprisingly well. But after that suddenly everything changed: The anxiety came back in full force. In addition I felt hunted/restless, nauseous, vague/absent (like I'm a spectator in my own life), still had headaches, almost no energy, heart palpitations and sometimes hyperventilating. We are now three months further and I slowly/steadily start feeling better each week but still feel far from stable (more like a house without foundation which could collapse any moment). Besides all I remain positive and hope to feel better in a couple of weeks, but I am uncertain of what to do next: - I could continue tapering Paxil as if nothing happened, but given the insane symptoms I just recovered from I might consider a smaller step of 5%. - An alternative could be, due to the heavy symptoms in a this early stage of tapering to switch to an AD which is famous for being still-horrible-but-slightly-less-horrible-than-parox with regards to tapering and withdrawal symptoms. I found this topic on this site which states this and that Prozac is often used for this. I can not decide what to do.. hopefully this and other topics on this site will help me make this decision..
  20. I have been on Seroxat for about 10 years and each time my depression gets worse the dose is increased. It was actually suggested by a psychiatrist that I should take 100mg, although I refused. Since last year I have gradually reduced from 70mg to 50mg. The trouble is I have terrible withdrawal symptoms even if I reduce by a tiny amount. I get really bad physical symptoms, but also get incredibly irritable and angry. My GP is not very supportive about reducing.
  21. If you or a loved one gave birth to a child with a heart defect after taking Paxil (paroxetine, Seroxat) while pregnant, email me and we''ll talk. I am a free-lance writer specializing in medical harm. My email address is patrickhahn (at) hotmail.com.
  22. hi, i have a problem that i need help with but first let me tell you about my general situation. 9 years ago I had panic attacks and hypochondria. Doctor put me on seroxat 20 mg daily and I kept taking it for 8 years. on jun 2015 I was feeling very good and worry free so I decided to taper the medicine till I fully stop it. I tapered it for about 6 months and on January 2016 I stopped it completely. First 4 months from January to April I felt nothing much .. Only the brain zaps for few days and then it was gone and I thought that I was successful in coming off the med. By end of April beginning of May started to develop little anxiety again and had a mild panic attack and then things started to develop gradually. I think that I got every withdrawal symptom the medicine can cause. Headaches, hot flashes, cold flashes, burning skin, itching, memory and concentration issues, insomnia and vivid dreams plus of course panic attacks and health anxiety to the roof. At this point I went to see my doctor and told her about this. She wasn't convinced its withdrawal but it is my anxiety came back after stopping the medicine so she prescribed it again for me and said it is ok to take medicine for life as long as they're making us feel good. I bought the seroxat but I didn't use it. After the meeting with doctor and getting assurance that its all anxiety and not something else, I was relaxed for few days and many symptoms were gone. only some memory-concentration problems and troubled sleeping or insomnia are still there. 10 days ago I developed a new symptom which is scaring me a lot and my anxiety went again to the roof. I developed a weird sour/acid taste in my mouth/the tip of my tongue for no reason. Some times it turns to salty or even spicy, sometimes it become less and less and sometime its increased. I am scared, I have an appointment with the doctor after 4 days but currently my anxiety is to the max. did any one had this??
  23. Hi everyone, I won't go into a long boring history, just the basics. I went on Seroxat (paxil/paroxetine) for stress, anxiety back in 2007 i think. After a couple of years of feeling better i started to taper slowly but hit an unexpected crash at about 15, massive panic. I reinstated at 20mg and remember crying as the numbing of emotions began again. But at least I could function again. I started a long, slow withdrawal. Tapering the dose down by just a couple of mg each year by taking half a tablet every 2 weeks, then every week, then every other day etc. Forward to 2014 and I have a baby son and a new job. I started the year at about 13mg (taking 10mg, 10mg, 20mg consecutive days). I began to feel the stress and confused brain which i felt was caused by the changes in dose each day. After moving to 10mg, 10mg, 10mg, 20mg ( averaged around 12.5mg i think) i took the plunge and dropped to a straight 10mg. I had only done tiny drops before and for some reason I felt brave enough to try something bold. (Idiot) 6 weeks ago i started taking 10mg exclusively. I immediately felt better. No horrible dread feelings, paranoia or confusion. Then, a week later, followed (yeah you guessed it) the withdrawal symptoms. I had all the physical stuff, flu in the limbs but a strangely clear head. Headaches. So hot and sweaty. Confusion. Nausea and lack of appetite. This lasted about 2 weeks overall, and wasn't nice, however i actually felt better mentally so i toughed it out. Now i feel physically fine apart from being a bit hot and the odd headaches. Oh and my appetite has gone, but i put on weight years ago so I'm not concerned by that! The last 2 weeks have seen a return of my old friend anxiety. Horrible anxiety which comes in waves through the day and doesn't seem to have a pattern. I have started to try Mindfulness meditation, take exercise and 'get on with life' anyway. A bit of depression has also crept in, which is the icing on the cake. A doc gave me propanalol for the anxiety, which doesn't really work but it could be because i'm only taking it 'as needed' and only half doses. I felt better after a counsellor told me that the hardest part is done and that 10mg is just a therapeutic dose. She also said i could try to switch to Prozac. The better feeling didn't last too long though, and the anxiety is making it really hard in my new, horrible job. At the moment I don't know what to do. Sometimes i feel like upping my dose a bit to see if i will feel better, and sometimes i feel ok and think 'i'll tough it out and i will feel better'. Do you think the anxiety is the remaining symptoms of wd and i will adjust? Or is this just 'a funny dose' and i will feel better when i eventually drop a tiny bit lower?(I have heard a lot of people struggle around this level) Is this life below 10mg? Or is this just my anxiety coming through? All opinions welcome, but please keep it positive and sensitive please, i am incredibly fragile right now! And thanks for letting me join. Matty
  24. Hello everyone. I found this site a few months ago but only now do I feel I have the mental strength to write anything remotely coherent. I am in no way recovered but I hope my story offers some encouragement to those in acute withdrawal particularly those who cold turkey. As a teenager I suffered anorexia, I was hospitalised several times and things got pretty serious. This was back in the 90s and there was not the specialised care available that there is today. The professionals tried there best but did not know really what to do with me. This went on for years I would put weight on to loose it again, my poor parents suffered terribly. Eventually some bright spark suggested a antidepressant, I was 5 stone and eating nothing and I believe I did not metabolise the drug properly. I became a zombie which frustrated me more as I could not exercise. Roll on 2 years and at 18 I started to improve I gained some weight went back to college but I could fine no happiness in life, I felt flat, empty with little enthusiasm and basically wanted to sleep constantly. Looking back I did not feel depressed I could still work and function I just felt flat and lonely. Anyway on my Drs advise I began seroxat I think it was 20mg but not sure. I took this for 4 years, I have to say it did help I became less withdrawn and got more joy from life, but I had regular periods of unexplained illness, I would became almost chronically fatigued for days on end unable to do anything but sleep. I'm trying to cut this shorter so I will summarise. Seroxat was hell to come off, I tried several times and ended up doing a cold turkey which was rough very rough ( although my standards on rough have recently widened ) It took but 6 weeks to get any improvement but even then I cried constantly and My Dr put me on prozac and lorazepam for the sleeplessness. A week later and I mean a week I had gone from crying all day everyday unable to do much at all to, up at 7am In the gym then off to work, the change was unbelievable and my Dr was slapping his self on the back and I was beside myself with happiness. Roll on 5 years.. I'm still doing great Iv cut down to a prozac every other day and changed lorazepam to diazepam but I only take very small amounts of this maybe 5mg a week. Roll on another 3 years I'm in prozac 20mg every 3 days and same amount of diazepam. I'm ok but get more anxious and worried about stuff but I'm working and functioning ok. 2014 I decided the prozac is done I'm happy I'm working I have 2 kids I don't need 7ish mg of prozac. My Dr says just stop your virtually off it anyway worse you will get if flu like symptoms. So I do. I remember a few days after stopping feeling fantastic so relaxed happy and full of joy. Roll on 2 months and I start to get very stressed with the kids I tenner throwing a plate at the wall and just standing there and crying. I felt angry all the time and I'm the most placid person in the world. Roll on another 2 months and things start to get serious I can't sleep I toss and turn all night, I'm stressed and angry 24-7. 6 month after stopping prozac the sh@t really hits the fan. My whole world turns. I won't go into all the symptoms as from reading on the site I know you have felt them. These are the top 5 though # fear ( I will not use anxiety as it does not convey the true horror of this feeling. A word has yet to be invented to describe it) # severe agitation ( maybe akathesia ) # severe insomnia nights on end without sleep and massive muscle jerks # severe depression and it brought it's friends DP DR and SI # severe neck pain, ear pressure, jaw pain To basically stop you all dropping off I got no breaks for 5 months. I narrowly avoided involuntary hospital admission. I also had a massive reaction to another AD I think it was cirtralopram. After 7months after acute and nearly a year after CT, Im starting to see some improvement and you cannot wipe the smile of my face when i do. It does not last long, the max I have had is 5 days and I still have very poor sleep but I genuinely thought I was the one that would never get a window. There is hope all you have to do is wait.
  25. Hi everyone, my name's Clare and I'm a 35 year old female with a longstanding dependency on Paroxetine (Seroxat here in the UK). I take 20mg daily, having first been prescribed it in January 1997 as a 17 year old girl. I was prescribed it for depression with anxiety, after having what I would now describe as a breakdown of sorts. I was bullied quite severely between the ages of 12 and 14, which led to what would probably now be diagnosed as PTSD. I spent a lot of time feeling ridiculously socially anxious, which made forming and maintaining friendships very difficult. I still experience problems in this area now. Things weren't great at home, either. My parents (now long since divorced) had a volatile relationship and my dad had a drink problem. I didn't talk to anyone about how I felt (I tried to pretend it wasn't happening to me and instead reinvented myself as a bit of a "too cool for school" grunge chick). Inwardly, I was crumbling, though, and I ended up being referred to CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) when I was 16 for individual psychotherapy and family therapy. Unfortunately, the therapy wasn't of much help to me at the time because I wasn't emotionally mature or open enough to engage with it and it was too short lived. Fast forward a year and I had my "breakdown". In subsequent years, I've described what happened to a CPN (Community Psychiatric Nurse) and he thinks I may have had a hypomanic episode, followed by a depressive episode, brought on by stress. I was studying for 3 A' Levels and hoping to go to university, but I suddenly changed my mind about one of the subjects (History) halfway through the course, dropped it to pick up a Law A' Level instead, withdrew my UCAS application and fell madly and obsessively in love with one of my teachers - a married man 25 years' my senior. Sadly, he eventually reciprocated (after initially rejecting my advances) and the whole situation - without going into too many details - became incredibly messy, emotionally destructive, etc, etc. After 8 months of being on Paroxetine (September 1997), I decided to stop taking it, so I sought guidance from my GP (now retired), who told me it was fine to stop taking it abruptly (Patient Information Leaflets at the time claimed it was "non addictive"). I experienced 4 weeks of moderate 'flu-like symptoms (aching limbs, nausea, dizziness, brain zaps), followed by a return of my original symptoms of depression. Both my GP and I assumed it was because I wasn't ready to stop taking it yet and he suggested I try again in a few months. Lots of things happened in 1998 (both my grandmothers died, my parents split up, my dad started drinking again, I left one job and started another and my 17 year old sister and I ended up at threat of being made homeless), so it wasn't a good time to try to stop my medication again. The following June, however, my sister and I starting buying a house together (a small, cheap 2 bed terrace) and I felt a lot more positive about doing it. Cue another attempt at CTing the meds! Again, I lasted about 4 weeks, but this time the depression and anxiety were so much more intense! I couldn't stop crying, I lost my appetite, had thoughts of suicide, etc, etc. Kudos to my GP for failing to advise me to taper slowly (even the patient info leaflets advised a gradual reduction by mid '99!) At some point later on that year, I tried to taper again by splitting my pills into halves and quarters (with a butter knife of all things!) and spreading my doses out. A friend of mine advised this method as she'd managed to withdraw that way. Again, it didn't work. Just over 2 years later, in early 2002, I tried to do it again using this method. I was in my first year of university at the time, working part time, and I considered myself to be happy and settled. Bizarrely, I was using this method for some months before it all started to go wrong for me. I'm not sure what happened, but I suddenly found myself crying on the Head of the School of English (I studied English Literature at university) because I hadn't done any of my work for semester 2 and I needed to defer my studies. He was amazingly helpful, very sympathetic and sorted it all out for me. After that, I decided I didn't want to withdraw from my meds until I'd finished university, so I duly spent the next 3 years engrossed in studying, working part time and - I'm ashamed to say - smoking cannabis on a regular basis. It wasn't until 2007 that I again decided to withdraw, but this time I took the sensible option, spoke to more than 1 GP, conducted some internet based research, and obtained Seroxat liquid (and used a very sharp knife this time for accurately dividing pills across the score line!). I devised a tapering regime, which went 20-19-18-17-16-15-14-13-12-11-10.5-10. Beyond that, I played it by ear. The reduction from 20mg to 10mg took about 4 and a half months and wasn't too much of a challenge. I had some withdrawal effects, but fortunately no head zaps whatsoever and only occasional dizziness and feeling unsteady on my feet. Tiredness, aching, irritability, an occasional headache, hot and cold flushes and nausea were the main symptoms I noticed. After that was a bit more of a challenge (more on that later) The main reason I've decided to withdraw at this point in my life is future motherhood. My partner (Mike) and I would like to start a family and I've decided that I'm not prepared to put my unborn child at an increased risk of congenital heart defects, lung problems or neonatal serotonin syndrome. Realistically, with a gradual taper, holistic measures and a support network in place, I know I can reduce my dose to below 10mg before we even start trying. Ideally, I would like to taper off over a long period (years potentially), but I'm realistic about my chances and both my partner and I have done a cost-benefit analysis (severe depression and anxiety in pregnancy is probably more harmful than a low dose of an antidepressant). The plan is to get a GP appointment and commence withdrawal at the beginning of September (I'm going to a festival during the last weekend in August, so then's not a good time) - all being well. I'm sorry for going on for so long (thanks to anyone who's managed to get this far - lol), but I thought it'd be good to put everything into context before I start my withdrawal log. I'll add my email signature as soon as I begin my withdrawal. Thanks for reading Clare.x
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