Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'citalopram'.



More search options

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


Forums

  • Support
    • Read This First
    • Introductions and updates
    • Tapering
    • Symptoms and self-care
    • Finding meaning
    • Relationships and social life
  • Members only
  • Current events
    • Success stories: Recovery from withdrawal
    • Events, controversies, actions
    • In the media
    • From journals and scientific sources

Find results in...

Find results that contain...


Date Created

  • Start

    End


Last Updated

  • Start

    End


Filter by number of...

Found 206 results

  1. Hi to everybody, I just signed up to the forum to contribute and to get support for my issues. The "Intro" part: I always considered myself a very "stable" person, psychological issues were for others, not for me. I have seen quite some people in my environment struggle with that (siblings, colleagues), I tried to be understanding and helpful - but I never thought that something similar could affect me. That changed when I voluntarily changed my job last year, from an employee working more than a decade for a big company to a self employed consultant. Unluckily I did not have the time to take a break in between my jobs, so I left my old office and started the training and preparations for the new job right away. Everything went well for the first couple of months but it was extremely stressful. My sleep quality degraded more and more, I was unable to relax and by end of October 2018 I had the first breakdown in my life. I could not stop ruminating, endless negative thoughts, no sleep, no future ... I started taking St. John's Wort and it became somewhat better within 2-3 weeks. But then I experienced a panic attack, likely caused by the AD. So I reduced the medication within 2 weeks and stopped taking anything. All in all I was on the med/herb extract for maybe 7 weeks including the fast taper. I felt really OK afterwards, but for maybe 2 weeks only ... then the combination of bad sleep (early morning awakening) and low mood became worse and worse again. The mornings were unbearable ... in the evenings I sometimes felt 100% normal. So beginning of this year I made an appointment with my GP and was put on mirtazapine (30 mg/d) for sleep and citalopram (10 mg/d, later increased to 20 mg/d) to treat the depression + one shot of a neuroleptic substance for instant relief. I improved a bit, but the symptoms never disappeared. I managed to work a bit and keep my business alive, but not enough to really get the business going. And after some weeks I panicked again. That seems to be a pattern for me: After two/three weeks with a (new) AD, something strange happens ... the web search led to the term "acivation syndrome" and I kept taking the meds. Since February this year I am visiting a therapist for talk therapy which helps quite of lot. We went through some issues during my childhood and I was diagnosed as a "hypersensitive person" (HSP). At first I was a bit reluctant to accept that, but it explains a lot of behaviors and issues I had in the past. As HSPs may also be more sensitive to drugs (I can kill nearly every pain with 100 mg of Ibuprofene ...) and the side effects of the ADs were really bothersome I reduced them by half and continued to reduce them stepwise ever since. In comparison to the recommendations here in the forum rather fast, far beyond the 10% / month ... I was not yet aware of how slow some people have to taper. So finally my question: How do you distinguish between AD side effects / WD symptoms and recurrence of the depression? My last reduction step of mirtazapine (5mg -> 3.75 mg/d) was 16 days ago and the morning lows are pretty bad right now. Sleep is OK, but I am also very tired throughout the day, not much energy to do anything. The citalopram I currently keep at 5mg/d. In the past as soon as I got better I did the next step to reduce the side effects of the ADs ... probably way too fast. On the other hand I only took them for a couple of months. Now my plan is to stabilize on the current dosage but when my mood is low I really have a hard time to resist the urge to change my meds (up or down) ... just want to try out something to make it better instead of just waiting .... Any ideas are highly appreciated ... thanks!
  2. Hi, First of all I'd like to thank everyone connected with this site, I'm learning so much about the best methods of reducing Citalopram and am grateful for those of you who set this up, maintain it and contribute! A heartfelt Thank You. I don't have any where near as horrific a story as many here and I hope no one minds me dropping by; I'm looking for advice on my next steps. I was prescribed Citalopram 20mg after a couple of months off work with 'anxiety (NOS)'; basically I couldn't get off the sofa without feeling I was going to faint. I think I react by Freezing in the Fight/Flight/Freeze response. After a couple of years I talked to my Dr about coming off and, as with many of you, was advised wrongly to drop by half for a few weeks then stop totally. All was tolerable for a couple of months (nasty symptoms but tolerable) until the crushing fatigue hit and I thought perhaps I wasn't ready to come off Citalopram as the fatigue was my main reason for starting on the drug in the first place. I wasn't just tired, it felt as though my soul was tired. So I went back on the drug in Sept 2016 and eventually steadied at 20mg. Last year I wanted to reduce the dose to see if I could cope without....still naive about how this should really be done....and dropped to 15mg then 10mg after a while. I had a few withdrawal symptoms but they were manageable. Had a great autumn and winter so thought I could drop again. Last month I reduced the dose to ~7.5mg (cutting a 10mg pill into quarters so can't be precise). This is where I found you all, I wanted some reassurance that I was doing this the right way, hahahahha, I now see it isn't. So, I've decided to dissolve my 10mg tablet in water and pipette out the desired amount, reducing by 10% after a period of stability. I've ordered the pipettes and a beaker so should be in a position to start this soon. However.....in the meantime, my withdrawal symptoms are getting stronger at times, it's erratic and difficult to find any pattern. My question is, would you recommend I go back to 10mg, stabilize then taper by 10% or should I sit this out until I settle then commence the 10% routine? It's important to me that I remain in work, so far so good and I really don't want to experience that fatigue again. My symptoms are fuggy brain, irritability, lack of concentration, socially withdrawn, tingling in my fingers and left side of my face/neck, tiredness, twitching and the feeling of ants marching over my skin, the ants are wearing boots! Many thanks for reading. Mamgu
  3. Hi, I found this website from someone's post who seemed to be going through the same as what I am. Sorry if this is long but I'm not sure which info is necessary! I was taking Citolapram for alittle over 2 years, mostly 20mg but I upped to 30mg near the end. I weened off them within a week but after almost a month I went back of them (20mg). I only stayed on them for a week and then came off them cold turkey. About 7 or more weeks since, I randomly woke up one day with PGAD. It's a horrible, progressive, non-curable disorder that makes your genitals feel constantly aroused, sometimes stabbing, burning, feeling the need to pee, zap feelings and a lot of throbbing. I've had this for a month now and feels worse these past 2 days (coincidentally I was pescribed Amitriptyline 10mg but after 2 days of taking them I decided I don't want to go back to ADs - apparently PGAD is mostly caused by withdrawing from ADs) I've had so many breakdowns because of this and there is no way I can live with it, especially because it can cause spontaneous orgasms and a lot of pain which I haven't got yet. I'm so scared and my doctors have no idea about the disorder and just try to convince me it's in my head which despite my obvious symptoms and causes I'm hoping it is. My history of OCD could explain it too. Before taking ADs I had a fear of farting in public which as stupid as it sounds, kept me house-bound for years. It went away after I took ADs and started college. Then a year later I had a bad sickness bug which led me to a fear of throwing up, with that I felt sick literally every single day and not always just mildly. I had tests but nothing explained it. Then I started hearing alot about PGAD just before mine started, once mine started my sickness has completely gone (so all this time it must have been in my head which is crazy because I almost threw up it was so bad). And now I'm getting all these symptoms of PGAD constantly. But I'm still not convinced it's all in my head because it is a fact that withdrawing from ADs too fast can cause it, plus I think I have some damage in my pelvice since I went on an exercise bike during my 2nd withdrawals. This gave me what I thought was piles in my perineum which went away after a week and then came back with my PGAD. I have a huge skin tag in my perineum which fills and becomes solid if I'm too active and I start getting a pain around it (in my legs/butt cheeks). I'm thinking I've damaged my pelvic floor and that these things could be connected? Although the PGAD didn't start straight away? I'm sorry this was so long but I am so so terrified of having this disorder, it is honestly such a horrible, embarrassing, painful and hopeless thing to live with and has always been my biggest fear since I learnt about it. I have so many things that could have caused it which makes me think that maybe it isn't just in my head. It's driving me crazy and if anyone has any hope or experience like this I would really love to hear from you. Sorry again for the long post.
  4. "I've come to the unfortunate conclusion that I am in a state a protracted SSRI withdrawal. One of Alto's articles describes me perfectly in terms of a completely dysfunctional nervous system and paradoxical responses to most meds and even some supplements. The exaggerated alerting only allows me to sleep 3-4 hrs a night and my startle reflex is out of control (a bird chirping will send shivers down my spine). The most terrifying and unnerving symptom to me is derealization. It's as if I am in a dream 24/7. It breaks my heart not being able to truly connect with my wife, kids, family, and friends. The derealization has created a secondary self-sustaining anxiety/panic loop which compounds my other withdrawal symptoms. I feel trapped because no medicine seems to help (except for benzos which scare me) and I literally feel like I am dead waiting this out in hopes that I heal. " quoted from another member I could ever be a mother ( since there is no long term evidence on risk to unborn child). This seems laughable now. I live in complete dissociation and I'm unable to function. My depression is so bad I have hardly been able to leave my bed (psychomotor retardation). One psychiatrist said it was a relapse. But it is a different kind of despair.my nerves grated on - and a feeling that I cannot even describe. I only once tried to come off my meds, 2 years ago, my high-functioning partner said I should do without them. I couldn't function and felt constant emotional pain/sadness so went back on. I know it is hard to exctricate what is withdrawal and what is not. I went on them, off the back of mirtazipine and a depressive relapse ( from a traumtic indcident). I was still getting depressed on citalopram. This feels like a very different type of feeling. I feel pretty frightened that there is so little evidence about their long-term use. I have come off ssri's 3 times-- once at 17, once at 22 ( after 3 years) and do not remember symptoms like these. I feel, at 34, if I don't get off them now I never will but how long will this hell go on for? It's such a trap. It makes me think of the documentary of the same name, "The Trap" by Adam Curtis. He talks about antidepressants in it. Different family members of different generations have always been sceptical of the medical profession and especially drugs/pharmaceuticals. I think they had wisely, seen drugs introduced and then eventually recalled from the market and the medical professions role in this. I feel like I willingly went along with being a 20th century guinea pig. It always plagued the back of my mind that the drugs had been on the market for so little time, no-one really knew the long-term implications/behaviours of the drugs. We have no controls, I will never know what I would have been like living through my mid twenties to mid thirties without these drugs. I don't know if this nervous breakdown is due to the "truth" of my emotions repressed under the drugs or if this is withdrawal. It's scary to know that it may become protracted. I can't live like this- it's hell. I can't read up enough on pharmapsychology because I am so dissociated. I have been told that ssri's don't involve structural changes but like Joanna Moncrieff states, "we just don't know". Any help/ideas/comments??????????
  5. Hello everyone, I am another who was previously at another forum which has closed down. I'm very grateful that there is another good AD forum as I really don't want to be doing this alone. I already know a lot of other members here. My history in summary: 2001 Had a baby, a few days later got hit with severe anxiety and insomnia, diagnosed with post partum distress, anxiety, and hyperventilation syndrome. A psychiatrist prescribed Aropax (paroxetine), Mellaril (thioridazine - an anti-psychotic used as an anxiolytic at lower doses to cover the SSRI start-up) and zopiclone for sleep short-term. Stayed on Aropax for about six months then tapered off over a couple of months, with just a few mild withdrawal symptoms. 2003 Had second baby, repeat of above process but with Cipramil(citalopram) and midazolam for sleep. 2004 Had just got off citalopram when a very stressful situation occurred at my workplace (company was bought by two other companies and split, our part then integrated with one of the two buying companies). Spent a huge amount of energy and effort job-hunting and not coping well with the situation. Eight months of unrelenting stress later had a breakdown, similar symptoms to before, decided to go back on Aropax since it had worked well before (stupid, stupid). 2005-2006 Work situation still stressful, kept trying to taper dose down but couldn't cope below 10mg. 2007 Crashed at around 5mg, straight back to 20mg. A few months later searched the internet and found information about slow tapering. Began a slow taper which went well initially. 2008 Crashed around April after dropping from 5mg to 4.5mg. Went straight back to 5mg which didn't help. Went through a couple of months of pure hell (stupidly did not updose). Couldn't sleep, eat or keep still. Off-the-scale akathisia, didn't sleep for a whole week, couldn't keep anything down, spent my days and nights pacing around until my feet hurt and I couldn't even wear shoes. Began relaxation exercises which calmed things down enough to struggle through for a while but unable to work to support my family. Lots of pressure to get back to work. Updosed back to 10mg in June and 20mg in July. GP prescribed zopiclone for sleep, then psychiatrist prescribed Seroquel to switch over to from the zopiclone. Nasty drug, gave me big muscle twitches in my legs. Restabilised by October, tapered off Seroquel fairly quickly. Began tapering paroxetine again in December. 2009-2014 Tapered at a glacial pace, some years hardly dropped at all due to instability for months. Eventually was doing only 0.1mg drops and for a while 0.05mg drops which sound so tiny as to be ridiculous but I felt every drop. Was afraid of crashing again at 4.5mg but got through it and am now down to 3.45mg. Last drop was 0.15mg instead of 0.1mg as drops seem to be getting a little easier recently. Still very afraid of crashing. In 2011 decided I had to get out of my stressful job/career, felt like I would never get off meds as long as I stayed. The lower my dose got the more toxic the environment felt. I think the meds had helped me stay in the job by numbing me out somewhat. April 2011 was offered and took paid redundancy, 2012 back to uni to retrain as teacher, 2013-2014 unsuccessful job hunting, bits and pieces of part-time work, feeling mostly happy apart from worry about lack of income. No regrets about tossing old career in spite of not really having a new one. All in all, far too many years of having these meds in my life, rather over the whole thing by now. If you actually read all of this, you deserve a chocolate fish.
  6. Mole25

    Mole25

    Hi All, I am new here and have been reading your experiences with the tapering of Celexa/Citralopram. I seem to be in a bad phase again at 1,5mg. Six hours of neck pain with muscular spasms. One of you guys wrote you took Epilim - or has anybody a tip on supplements which make you calmer and reduce neuro/muscular spasms. Its driving me nuts. All the best Mole
  7. Hello all. I have been following on this forum for the last couple of months on and off. I have been on Citalopram for nearly 11 years. I am 25 years old now. Quick history. Always been a bit anxious. Even as a kid. Had severe migraines from age 4 till 10 , then they stopped TOLD i had ADD. Put on ritalin at 7 years old for 2 weeks. ZOMBIE! taken off Ritalin. Love life and family and friends. Quite an emotional, caring individual. FAST FORWARD....Aged 14 felt overly guilty and anxious over child hood life event. Went to doc, said i might have OCD. Put me on 60mg Citalopram. Didn't notice any difference in anything being on med. Aged 19 went cold turkey cause of OCD symptoms tried to change to another drug Mirtazapine. ANXIETY 10/10 and Panic attacks. Then back on to 60 MG after a few days after symptoms of withdrawal began. Stabilized i think within a few weeks bit still felt crap for a good while. Not 100% for next few years but ok. Can feel drug messing with me. Making me anxious for no reason. Have to keep active and busy and I'm ok. Slowly over 2 years went from 60mg to 45 mg . All good. Decide due to weird randomized anxiety, lack of tears etc that i want to come off these drugs, and i know i can. Anyway i then go from 45mg to 40mg and severe withdrawal within a week. Dropped from 50mg to 45mg within 5 weeks. Insanely nasty neuro-emotional symptoms. Only symptoms are ever really Anxiety and Panic.. Chuck in a bit of hopelessness and some depression on the side.. . . . Tend to feel better by evening almost normal .. just a bit dazed and confused. Anyway i waited it out thinking it will go. Got some nice long windows of a week or more feeling almost good way clearer than I've felt in years, more alive, more real. Things feel better! things are more beautiful. Music sounds better. Everything is more beautiful But then BOOOOOMMMM!!! Anxiety back with a vengeance. Thought i noticed waves getting shorter and windows a bit longer but not significant enough to tell, and then after 10-11 weeks after my symptoms first appeared i updosed cause i needed a break. Updose felt WEIRD.. Within 4 hours of the extra 5mg i felt hazy, cloudy and drowsy.. Had insomnia that first night , still anxious but not as intense. Next couple days slightly better - Mild, consistent anxiety but not too bad. Manage to sleep well now.. Thought i had restabilized. Day 5 after updosing felt 95% back to normal. BUT last 3 days have been crap. Anxiety back. One week after updosing. Not AS INTENSE, hasn't got that razor sharp edge to it that it had before, but uncomfortable none the less. My question to anyone out there with this kind of experience is ... Would this anxiety be caused by the withdrawal still, or the updosing of the tablets? As I've read that increasing SSRI dose can cause anxiety for the first few weeks.. And can it take a while to re-stabilize after updosing?? considering i tried to tough out the withdrawal for nearly 3 months... One more thing. No overly negative stories please. I believe and i know that i can heal from this. Kindest regards and thankyou for your responses Nick
  8. One year ago I completed what I now know to have been a too rapid taper off Citalopram, going from 20mg on 2nd Jan 2018 to 0.1mg on 23rd April 2018 by successively halving the doses. A year on and my condition has been steadily deteriorating. I’ve read about the Windows and Waves pattern of stabilization, but over the last year I seem to have been caught in an ever deepening wave with little to no relief. I’d been taking 20mg of Escitalopram for major depression since 2003. In 2014 my doctor changed my prescription to 20mg Citalopram as a result of an NHS cost cutting measure that required patients on Escitalopram (which, at the time, was still under patent) to be swapped to Citalopram. I found the Citalopram caused significantly more side effects than the Escitalopram and then, in November 2017, I went into tachyphylaxis and started suffering discontinuation symptoms. My doctor changed my prescription to 30mg Mirtazapine and a short course of 3.75mg Zopiclone since I was barely sleeping. I was told to go from taking the full dose of Citalopram to nothing for two days and then start the full dose of Mirtazapine. I couldn’t stand the Zopiclone: it heavily sedated me and the effect lasted through most of the next day. Going cold turkey with the Citalopram, even if only for two days, magnified the discontinuation symptoms so I went back to my previous 20mg dose: when I told my doctor about this her response was simply: “How do you expect me to help you if you won’t co-operate with me?” So I did, and the result was terrible. I stopped the Citalopram, waited two days and then, over the next four days, managed to take four doses of Mirtazapine. Each successive dose made the electric shocks / brain zaps I was experiencing as a result of the Citalopram discontinuation worse, and the more active I was the more intense they became. After the fourth dose they were happening multiple times a second and there was no way to get any relief. This was accompanied by what I can only describe as a murderous rage, totally at odds with my normal self: I don’t know how I managed to contain it, but I was able to hold it down long enough to call my brother for help. He told me afterwards that he was deeply shocked by the state I was in when he arrived, and he was on the verge of calling an ambulance to get me into hospital. I eventually managed to calm down enough that he thought it safe to leave me overnight. The following day I saw my doctor again. When I told her what had happened and described the rage I’d been feeling her response, in the most patronising and contemptuous voice imaginable, was “Well, we’ll just have to give you something to calm you down then, won’t we”. I told her that I wasn’t willing to take any more drugs and that I wanted to come off the Citalopram. This wasn’t remotely well received, but I was eventually given a prescription for liquid Citalopram with the comment it would let me take as long as I wanted to come off it. It was also made very clear that this was the limit of the help I was going to get. The liquid Citalopram had a life of four months once opened so I had a limited time to complete the taper. Back in 2001, at the suggestion of a doctor at my local hospital, I’d come off Paroxetine by successively halving the dose over a period of about two months. This had been unpleasant but had worked. I decided to taper off in the same way and get the dose as low as possible before stopping. The actual taper wasn’t too bad: each successive decrease would leave me with the usual electric shock symptoms, digestive problems and headaches, but these generally didn’t last more than a week or so. I was typically reducing the dose every other week as a result, apart from one bad spell at around 0.5mg where the symptoms went on for about a fortnight. After I stopped completely everything initially seemed fine. Then I started to notice I was having strange dizzy spells: no vertigo, I was just oddly off-balance. This got progressively worse. I used to ride a motorbike a lot, but the dizziness compromised my abilities so seriously I had to give it up. It also made driving a car any distance very unpleasant. In early August 2018 I experienced my first wave: all the symptoms I’d associated with the discontinuation returned and I also started to feel permanently cold. August was a very warm month, but I remember one day when the temperature was 86 Fahrenheit and I was so cold I had goosebumps and couldn’t stop shivering. September saw me waking up the moment it started to get light with terrible feelings of panic. By late November I was virtually housebound; the dizziness was so bad that I couldn’t walk without a stick to help me keep my balance. It was around this time that I found this site and started to understand exactly what was happening. I tried the two suggestions of magnesium and fish oil to no discernable effect, but blacking out my bedroom window and taking vitamin C helped reduce the early morning anxiety. In January 2019 there was a brief respite where the dizziness lessened to the point that I could walk without a stick, and that particular aspect seems to have held. But in February everything took a severe downward turn. The headaches reached a level where I couldn’t bear any light or sound and were very migraine-like, often concentrated behind one eye. The morning anxiety became more intense. I couldn’t concentrate on anything and became unable to work - a real problem since I’m a self-employed software developer. Then my emotions went haywire: I’d have bouts of completely irrational grief where I’d cry for hours. I’d become seriously angry for no reason and blindly latch on to something - anything - no matter how minor - as the cause and act in a terrible way towards anyone I associated with the problem. And I started to get very tired very easily: even a short walk would leave me incrediby tired for days afterwards. Two months later and this just hasn’t let up. I have virtually no support and am really not sure what to do. Other than the brief period in January where the dizziness lessened, I seem to be stuck in an ever deepening wave with the symptoms continually getting worse. Is this likely so far out from a too quick taper? I absolutely don’t want to go back to my wretched doctor - or any other doctor - because I’m now deeply afraid of any form of psychiatric medication, but I’m starting to feel like I can’t cope any more and have no other option.
  9. Hi all, I've been struggling for 2 months now, completely unable to function and go to work. I had been on citalopram 20 mg for 6 months when I did a 'taper: over the course of about a month which started with skipping some days and then alternating 10 mg with 20 mg days for some of it, going back to just 10 mg for a bit. I had my last pill 12th April and the brain zaps stopped about 3 weeks after that. This coincided with a nasty virus I had, so not sure what symptoms are from what, it's a very blurry period. Now I know that this wasn't the right way to taper but it's too late. I still am extremely fatigued and it took me a while to think that might be due to the WD. I had started thinking that I have developed CFS/ME from the stress. I have started monitoring my HR with a Fitbit and it goes up to 120 if I speak to people or get up or walk. This makes me feel quite unwell so I feel bedridden currently. I find it hard to differentiate between physical and mental symptoms and my health anxiety and insomnia are through the roof. Sound familiar to anyone? I feel so alone. My doctor prescribed 20 mg citalopram again to me and I have taken 10 mg for two days now (this seems stupid, but I don't know how to break the pills into smaller doses...) Any tips for what to do, e.g. a better way to reinstate in this situation? I feel like I'll never be able to go back to work again. Thanks for reading and big hugs! (I don't take any other drugs) ETA: my experience on the drug was extremely positive the first time around, I only stopped because I thought I didn't need it anymore and I was too lazy to get a new prescription....
  10. Hi. Hoping for some advice. Unfortunately I didn't do my research properly before trying to taper off and discontinue citalopram. See signature. I managed to completely cut the citalopram out at the beginning of April this year and ploughed on through the horrible withdrawal, mostly emotional with mood swings. Mood gradually worsened and at the end of May had a massive crash - couldn't stop crying, the world seemed to be a different place, it looked different, and I could no longer function. Terrified the next morning I took a 10 mg pill of citalopram I had left over from last time. Saw the doctor the following Monday who encouraged me to continue with them. By Friday 7 June, my anxiety levels were that high with constant whooshes of panic that I went back to the doctor. He wanted to up the dose to 40mg but I said I was afraid this would lead to more anxiety. Agreed to up to 20 mg and he prescribed a weeks course of 2mg diazepam to help alleviate the panic. Diazepam helps but the underlying anxiety doesn't seem to be settling. Took the 20mg of citalopram this morning, have hardly been able to function all day. I'm at a loss at what to do. Should I stick at it and hope the citalopram will kick in again? Do I reduce right back down to say 5mg? Do I stop completely and ask for another medication to help stabilise me? I suspect nobody knows the answer. Feeling extremely restless when the diazepam wears off - I can't go on like this 😞
  11. Hello everyone, I took my first anti-depressant at 21. I am now 43. In the years in between, I have had multiple psychiatric admissions, taken many many different medications, some at high doses, some inappropriate for my diagnosis, and for long periods of time, and had 8 sessions of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). I am posting here now because I believe I may be experiencing a withdrawal/discontinuation syndrome. My life has been razed to the ground and I am reaching out, to foster hope, make connection, and see if I can educate and empower myself and find guidance and support to get into healing and recovery. My difficulties began 9 years ago. The only drug I was taking at the time was Citalopram, and I was reducing it. The first thing I noticed was increased sensitivity to sound (e.g. hearing the radiators throughout the house I was staying in). I was working as a counsellor at the time, and I began to have feelings of falling through my chair when working with clients, a sensation of falling downwards and backwards suddenly. I then started to feel strange in the car, as if something toxic was coming through the ventilation system, leading me to feel a bit like I wasn't fully there; slightly afraid I would pass out (I never have) or "disappear". I would pinch my cheeks to try and "come back". I couldn't understand it. For 18 months, I followed the initial thinking from my GP, that I had labyrinthitis, and had various auditory system tests. This revealed nothing. I then went to the London Balance and Hearing Centre and had a thorough check there. They found nothing wrong and said that 40 % of people presenting there they referred on to psychiatry. By this stage, I had stopped driving, stopped working, had considerable difficulties walking - I walked using 2 sticks, and continued to have extreme sensitivity to sound (found the sound of the dishwasher on the floor below almost unbearable). The psychiatrist diagnosed "total serotonin depletion of the vestibular nucleus" with utter conviction (no sample/scan of anything has ever been taken by a psychiatrist in 22 years of treatment), and admitted me urgently to hospital. I was not depressed at the time. I was bombarded with medications. 3 weeks later, I went into depression, but the somatic symptoms I had been admitted for continued. More and more medications were administered. Eventually, I discharged myself and went to another psychiatric hospital. They were shocked at the levels of medication I was on (this was 2013) and proceeded to reduce and change the drugs. I left this hospital in 2014 but my somatic symptoms persisted (difficulty walking, unable to tolerate the sound of the fridges in the supermarket, clinging on to the shelves, tremors in my legs, unable to stand in line....). By this time, I had a diagnosis of Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD) - which I identify with to this day. This was September 2015. Because, despite high levels of medication, the symptoms were still present and limiting my functionality (e.g. unable to tolerate short attending a short evening course on social media at my gardening group: I couldn’t cope with looking at the screen, sitting on a chair without sides, or the sounds – and had to leave), I decided to change tack and try a different approach. That was when I sought out a trauma therapist and a more holistic path. At this time I was on Quetiapine (250mg at night, 50mg breakfast and 50mg lunchtime), 3g L-Tryptophan, 15mg Diazepam, 60mg Citalopram. Over the course of 3 years, I brought myself down off the meds in a very measured way, one at a time, titrating at what I thought was a slow pace. I managed to come off the Quetiapine, L-Tryptophan and Diazepam. I continued to experience severe somatic symptoms but could walk about a little, go into a bookshop briefly - not able to work or go out for a meal, or the cinema or anything like that. When I began reducing the Citalopram, my symptoms became seriously bad. They emerged approx. 2 – 3 months after reductions e.g. 60 > 50 > 40 beginning May 2017, resulted in severe, disabling symptoms by August: severe tremors, terrifying hyperarousal, unable to tolerate sounds at all, using alcohol when necessary literally to be able to tolerate them or walk when necessary. I made another reduction 40 > 35 > 30 > 25 > 20 from December to April 2018, at which point I became housebound and called the paramedics as I was experiencing states of terror, feeling as if I was about to die, unable to regulate my nervous system at all. I now know, how terribly and tragically misguided my reduction pacing was. I wish I could turn the clocks back. But I can't. Hence my presence here, and prayers that there is still hope that I might recover my health. The emergency services suggested I increase the Citalopram back up to 30mg, which I did - and then up to 35mg, 3 weeks later. By this stage, I was housebound, having violent seizure patterning (not seizures - I never lose consciousness), unable to tolerate the sound of using a telephone, unable to stand to wash up or make food. My therapist began visiting me in my home. At the time, she and I had been understanding what was happening as partly being a releasing of the trapped energy of the trauma of the ECT which I had when I was 29. Indeed, the seizure patterning/muscle spasms look very like this. And my therapist described what she believed was going on in Somatic Experiencing language of "overcoupling": effects of psychological trauma/stress from earlier life + ECT shock trauma + long term use of meds.....all contributing to a dysregulated nervous system. I still believe this to be the case. However, very sadly, my therapist reached the point where she felt unable to continue to support me and pointed me back towards psychiatry. This was utterly devastating to me. I had derived considerable strength and hope from believing I understood what was happening in my body, that I had agency over its process, and was resourced and motivated by this. Being advised that all that was left was to go back to psychiatry, felt like the final straw. I went into severe, suicidal depression. Since then, I have seen several more psychiatrists, 2 neurologists, one neuropsychiatrist. None of them acknowledge that there is any possibility that psychiatric medications are implicated in my somatic symptoms. They put them under "medically unexplained" or "functional neurological disorder". I had 5 weeks in another psychiatric hospital in December 2018 which was largely pointless as I could not bring myself to take further medications, except for the introduction of one, Pregabalin, but at a low dose (because I was looking ahead to having to withdraw off this too eventually, and cautious accordingly.) I am now staying with my parents, in Luxembourg because I am unable to manage on my own in my own home without carers. I am at the lowest point of my life. The depression is severe but largely "reactive", ie an understandable response to losing my world - my work, my community, my functionality and all that that now deprives me of. I am just surviving at the moment. I hope I can find a way ahead. I am new to this website. I wonder how I might best use it to seek support and guidance? I will list the medications I am currently taking: Citalopram 40mg Pregabalin 50mg @ 09.00, 25 mg @ 13.00, 25mg @ 22.00 Diazepam 2mg @ 09.00, 25mg @ 13.00, 25mg @ 19.00, 25 mg @ 22.00 Zopiclone 3.75mg: began tapering under advice of GP 10 days ago, reducing by 1/4 = cutting the pill in half and half again and taking 3/4. He suggested I taper by 1/4 every 2-3 weeks. I feel trapped in a Catch22: I am unable to function in the world as I am. My symptoms are prohibitive of most activities and restrict where I can be, even within my parents' home, as my sensitivity to sound is so great and I am unable to be standing for very long due to the tremors. I am due to see the GP again tomorrow to ask his advice. I do not have a psychiatrist here. I am not keen to see yet another psychiatrist unless this person understands the fight/flight/freeze response, believes in withdrawal syndromes and tapering. My despair lies in the fact that I am sadly not in a position to be tapering really until I have adequate functionality restored. But I don't know how to restore that, how to address the tremoring and sensitivity to sound. The advice I have had from psychiatrists is to increase the dose of Pregabalin to quell the tremors. I am currently on a sub-therapeutic dose. I am reluctant to do this as this will be yet another drug to come off (which holds risks of seizures through withdrawal). Does anybody here have anything they could suggest to help? I am only just beginning to try to understand what the effects might be, on my nervous system, of extensive use of the drugs I have been on in the past, and am currently on. In particular, Quetiapine (I was on 800mg in 2005 and reduced over a couple of years - I never had any psychosis; and again 2013 - 2016 at 300mg), Diazepam (30mg in 2013, now 8mg) and Citalopram (60 for many years, now 40mg). I don't know if everything my body is manifesting is an expression of a depletion of receptors throughout my body? I am doing an online course on the nervous system and understand the intricacy of it, and how every cell in our bodies is affected by nervous system dysregulation. What is the next step? How do I address the somatic symptoms, in particular sensitivity to sound and to gravity: my sympathetic nervous system is "turned up way too high" in response to my standing up = tremors How/where can I find a clinician to guide me? I am due to see a Functional Medicine practitioner next Thursday with a view to try trying to do something myself to help heal my system. Any thoughts on this? I am also acutely aware that my life situation is such that I feel insecure and at sea. So, I need to find a way to create a secure base for myself, professionals I trust, decide which country to live in to do this (I will probably be unable to live alone until/unless I can heal this)..... I understand now that my nervous system is picking up cues about safety all the time. And if my life situation is unstable, it will keep going into fight/flight/freeze in reaction to that too. So, I need to also do some internal work on finding safety in the midst of uncertainty. This is so challenging. I feel very grateful to have this space in which to share and hopefully help each other. Thank you.
  12. After successfully being on 20mg citaloprom having become depressed after the sudden death of my mother for about 8 years it pooped out sending me into dizziness,panic attacks etc for a couple of weeks then I felt fine. That was about 2 years ago. Three months later developed rash on face and diarrhoea, sleep disturbances, cramps and bruising on arms. Put on different drugs by gp none of which got rid of these symptoms then gp decided it was probably anxiety so prescribed ssri's again. Each one he tried me on I had dreadful reactions to. Sent to a psychiatrist who prescribed cipralex in drop form to build up slowly and then my hell for the past two and a half years started. From the onset of taking the drug increasing by one drop every third day I would have 24 hour panic/anxiety no appetite nausea fatigue. This went on for about three months and then what I now know as a window appeared for about a week only to plunge straight down again. That is how my life has been until last summer my gp told me I needed to see a psychologist as still suffering badly. Rang my psychiatrist to ask him and he said he felt my problems were not in the head but probably systemic so to see an endocrinologist. After various tests for adrenal thyroid etc he said all fine but felt steroid inhaler I had been on for about 4 years could be causing problems. Looked up side effects of inhaler and yes skin rash anxiety etc all matched. September last year came off the rash, cramps etc all disappeared and even put on a few of the 10 pounds weight I had lost since this started. Felt fine for a couple of weeks then crash back into another wave and that is how it has been ever since with severe waves of anxiety, loss of appetite, nausea, extreme fatigue. Then paid privately to see a gp in the hope he would help. His decision was the cipralex was aggravating me and to stop the eight drops a day immediately. I dropped a drop every two days and felt brilliant for five weeks apart from the brain zaps, nightmares,insomnia, dizziness then back came the raging anxiety, extreme fatigue, panic, nausea, loss of appetite. I have given in this morning and taken two drops of cipralex I don't know if I have done a stupid thing or not, whether it is too little or I should have just suffered for longer. Since this first started I seem incapable of taking any drugs or antibiotics without severe reaction Can anyone help?
  13. Hi all Last June I stopped 20mg of Citalopram that I had been taking on and off for 8 years. My doctor advised me to taper over 2 weeks! Months 0-3 were bad but not too bad. 3-6 were bad, some very severe waves and really bad OCD, which Ive never normally had. 7-9 waves started decreasing. 9-11 windows have been more clearer but still getting bad waves My windows seem to be getting progressively better. I keep thinking I'm back to my normal self and then get hit with a wave and come back feeling more normal. Recently Ive been getting more intrusive thoughts. My nervous system and physical symptoms seem to have got worse recently. I had some MSG on friday which messed me up. Im still getting physical sweats now. This wave has been the most severe Ive had for a long time. Has anyone noticed their nervous system get worse? Thanks
  14. Hello. Here's my story: I have general anxiety disorder (GAD--self diagnosed), though I may also be bi-polar. I had a tough time in my teen years--panic attacks, confusion, fear of people, etc., never happy. My father was an alcoholic; my youngest brother died of alcoholism a year ago. I've had my own battles with alcohol, too, but I never became the two six-packs, plus a bottle of whiskey that my father consumed every day. I quit drinking four years ago. For the past year and a half I have used medical cannabis (in a legal state with a doc's evaluation), which helps with anxiety and worry, and is the best sleep aid I know. In my late thirties (I'm now 57) I started taking Prozac--in 1997 (I think)--using a bottle I got from a friend (his mother had a scrip but she didn't take it). I liked it. It took a lot of my anxiety away, and I ceased having panic attacks. I only had a month's supply so I went to my doc, talked to him about my use and he was happy to write a scrip for me--20 mg. of Paxil (my insurance did not cover Prozac). He said to me then that anti-depressants/SSRI's are to sad/anxious people what insulin is to diabetics. I know now that that line came straight from a drug rep's play book. I know now that it was wrong and, at least from the drug company's perspective, a lie. Paxil agreed with me and I continued taking it daily (20 mg.) until about two years ago. I had tried to quit it several times over the years--both cold turkey and by tapering—mostly because I had gained up to thirty pounds on it and could not, no matter how hard I tried, lose that weight (I have been a frequent aerobic exerciser since long before I started Paxil—I continue to exercise, but not as much as before). Trying to stop Paxil altogether was hell. While doing so I felt a profound depression; I cried a lot, spent time in bed during the day on weekends, was twitchy, anxious, fearful, panicky—just not myself; I even began thinking vague thoughts about suicide. I had never felt these symptoms to such an extreme before beginning anti-depressants. Long ago, before beginning Paxil, I had been sad/depressed, I'd had panic attacks and problems with social anxiety, etc., but none of these symptoms were as debilitating as what I was feeling off Paxil. Shortly after getting down to about 10 mg. of Paxil (I had been using an emory board to taper down--for about six months) I couldn't stand it any more and spoke to my psych doc. She put me on Wellbutrin (which made me too hyper, despite taking it in the morning) along with Prozac (which gave me akathisia [pacing constantly]). I gave up both after about a month or so and went on Celexa, which my wife and daughter had been on successfully. I've been taking 20 mg. of Celexa for the last two and half years. About six months ago (or so--could be less) I started to taper off Celexa, this time using sandpaper. I'd read a book called Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker and it scared me into trying to quit again. About a month and half ago I jumped from about 13 to 14 milligrams of sandpapered Celexa to ten by simply breaking the Celexa tab in half. It was easier than using the sandpaper, etc. I'd been feeling a bit odd before then, though nothing too bad, but then I began feeling the old, horrible symptoms mentioned above. They weren't that intense, really, but I'd been worrying a lot about my son going back to college (smart kid, good school, but he has emotional issues—I'm afraid of him failing), and anticipating my return to work—my job is beyond stressful (I'm a teacher). These and other stressorrs convinced me that I needed to be back on the medication. So, as of last Monday, a week ago, I've been taking my full dose again of Celexa, 20 mg., and I have felt better the last few days. BUT today I've felt horrible--two or three panic attacks, crying, a "buzzing" anxiety, a hollow feeling in my gut. I feel worse today on 20 mg of Celexa than I felt a week ago on 10 mg. of Celexa. I've imagined that I somehow forgot to fill my pill pack with Celexa for Sunday morning (today), but I don't think that was the case. Just an hour ago I took an additional ten mg of Celexa (my wife encouraged me) to get me back up to a therapeutic dose. But it scares me what I've been feeling today. As far as I know I should be feeling my old self, the self I've known for years on Paxil/Celexa. I'm scared that my long-term use of SSRI's have damaged my brain to the point that I can't return to even the me on an SSRI, much less the me pre-SSRI. I hope that this forum can help. I know that many of you are struggling with these issues, too, and I emphathise and wish you well. Perhaps I can help, too. Thank you for reading this. I hope I've been clear; if you have any questions or suggestions, please post.
  15. I'm coming up on my 5th month of being off of Citalopram for 6 years. I recently came upon this forum and I'm just bewildered at the information I've found that was never told to me by my doctor. She made this WD sound like it was a 30 day thing no problem. No lingering effects or anything. I have alot of resentment towards her right now! It would have been nice to have the accurate tapering information 4 months ago. Unfortunately, I'm not in that boat. In my current situation, what can I expect going forward at the 5 month mark. This has been extremely rough on my family. I have 3 kids and a wonderful wife, who all have been blind sided by what I have turned into. They are my livelihood and my inspiration to be the father and husband I am capable of being. I'm just struggling, I still have different symptoms everyday (irritability, heart palpitations, dizziness, muscle tension, neck and back pain, foot numbness, panic attacks, high anxiety, headaches, tinnitus). I am doing the best i can but feel bad for my wife. This was my problem and should never have unknowingly effected her like this. Will these symptoms ease over time? I'm searching for someone who has had a similar experience than I and can give me some insight.
  16. Moderator note: link to Waterfall's members-only benzo thread - Waterfall: What dose to try now: Taking Clonazepam on AD withdrawal Wow. I feel nervous. Like I've just stepped out onto a big stage. With big lights. And the crowd beyond the edge, of the lights, of the stage, is all fuzzy and indistinct, sitting out there in the dark. Is this microphone on? I chose Waterfall for my name, because it's one of those things that can be seen from so many different perspectives. A waterfall can be seen as a wonderful thing of beauty. It can also be seen as destructive, a changing force. It can be a small trickle. I can also be a torrent. They can bring life sustaining water, or they can bring a flood. Some of the greatest waterfalls are considered some of natures greatest wonders. But close up they can also be noisy and wet. It's all in how you look at it. And which waterfall you meet. Anyway. Me. Who am I? Well. A waterfall. Pretty in my own way. And also messy. Changed by the floods and droughts of life. I'm also philosophical, apparently. And I talk a lot. Especially when I am nervous. I've struggled with anxiety since I was 5, or so I'm told. It's been there as long as I can remember. The details blur over the years, but I think the first time I also struggled with depression, that I'm aware of, was in my teens. I've always struggled. Always wondered why I felt so broken compared to everyone else. And why everything seemed extra hard for me. I was first prescribed Wellbutrin as a teen. I no longer remember what I told that doctor. Whether it was more about anxiety. Or depression. But I didn't take it. I was next prescribed Prozac when I was pregnant with my first child, at 21. I didn't take it then either. I first actually took something when I was in my twenties, I took Wellbutrin for 6-9 months. I no longer remember exactly. But other than feeling euphoric about doing something, when I first started it, I never noticed any other change. And since I wasn't supposed to take it and be pregnant, I quit, cold turkey, to become pregnant with my second child in 2010. I have always thought that I felt no symptoms after stopping. None. But now I wonder. I started a downturn in my health mid-pregnancy, beginning a sudden flare up of something akin to eczema or atopic dermatitis, in response to a cream that I had previously never reacted to. In the following months, I reacted to just about everything. Ever soap or cream or perfume I touched. I continued to struggle with general feelings of ill health, for the next several years, until I was pregnant with my 4th in 2014. The whole pregnancy was really tough. I had been pregnant three times before, but this... this time was complete misery. I told myself to survive until the baby was born. And he was. And I crashed. Hard. Really hard. I panicked. And couldn't sleep. And couldn't stay calm. And I was weak. And shaky. And so after a bit of trial and error, they put me on Clonazapam and Citalopram near the end of the year. I used the Clonazapam for a few weeks while they slowly upped the Citalopram to 40 mg. And there I stayed. It was still a struggle for quite some time, but I slowly improved. In 2016, I moved. Spring 2017, I felt like I was slipping again. Slowly feeling worse and worse, and afraid, because I was already on drugs, what would I do if I crashed now? So I went to see a different doctor. She started me on Gaba. And a few other supplements to help with sleep and general health. And then, oh, clever me, I stopped citalopram. In June. Cold turkey. Stupid. I know. I don't know anymore what I was thinking. I only remember that I thought it was a really good idea at the time. And it wasn't a planned thing. I'd missed renewing my prescription, so I hadn't taken it for about a week, so I consulted with this new doctor, and asked her if it made sense to just keep not taking it. She agreed. Gave me a prescription anyway, in case I needed some again, or if I couldn't handle it. I never took any. After that I had a decent summer. I thought all was well. I still struggled, but considering that I can't remember not struggling. Ever. I thought on the whole I was doing pretty good. Kept busy, for me anyway. I've never been able to be as busy as most people seem to be. But we went to the beach a few times. Visits to the splash pad. Some quiet days at home. Somewhere in there the new doctor started me on something called MoodRx that apparently has St. John's Wort in it. Apparently couldn't start that until I had been long enough off of the citalopram. Spent the end of the summer getting lots of veggies and berries into the freezer. Started to get a bit stressed about a visit from the in-laws. Turned my house upside-down in anticipation of their visit. And they came. And all was going well. I felt on top of the world. And then. And then I crashed. Hard. Again. Sept 18. I was spending the day with the kids and my in-laws. First I felt a bit off. But I soldiered on. I panicked in the grocery store. Felt super nauseated. But I calmed down again. Struggled off and on throughout the day until school pick-up for the kids off the bus. Then I lost it. Panicked. And couldn't calm down. Felt absolutely horrible. And I've been struggling hard ever since. Sometimes I think I'm starting to feel better. Other times I think I feel worse than ever. When it first happened, I went to the doctor a lot. We stopped the St. John's Wort stuff. Still not sure if I was having a bad reaction to it, or not. I also stopped, over time, taking everything else. At this point, the only thing I'm taking is 0.25mg of citalopram each morning, just to help me to survive. And I'm starting to try to take some vitamins and minerals again, in the hopes that it will help with some of the symptoms. At this point what makes the most sense to me, particularly in light of what I have read on this site, is that I'm suffering from withdrawal from the citalopram that I stopped back in June. And possibly made worse by a reaction to the St. John's Wort. But I really don't know what' going on. I'm scared. And I just wish I knew what was going on, and what the right thing to do was. One of the biggest things I struggle with is the fear and panic. My biggest trigger is health and physical symptoms. If I had read this site first, maybe I'd have done things differently. I like to think I would have. I also periodically have crying binges, where I just can't seem to help crying, and crying, and crying. And I'm not one who normally cries a lot. But once I've cried for a while, it seems to pass again. I've had some of the darkest, most depressed thoughts. About everything being hopeless. And pointless. Sometimes I just get irritable. One of the other major symptoms is a chest pain I have. They've already listened to my heart. Checked my blood pressure. I've had a general blood work-up twice in the last year. Once this past spring, and once last fall. Nothing came up. My iron isn't low. My blood sugar level is fine. My heart enzymes are good. But my chest hurts. This last week, my heart has started a sort of swoony/weird/almost like a flutter but not really kinda feeling. And this morning I woke up with pain in my back and neck and arm and chest. The worst I've had yet. I could barely get up this morning and I almost couldn't turn my neck. Sometimes when I did, it felt like someone was stabbing in my ear, or in my throat or chest bone. I also struggle with lot of numbness and tingling in my hands and feet. And sometimes my muscles all hurt. And sometimes my joints hurt. And I feel weak. And sometimes shaky. And did I mention panicky? And emotional? Sometimes my vision seems a little funny. Or my hearing. But it comes and then goes quickly. And is gone again. I've developed a cough, and I'm scared because I had bronchitis and strep throat 2 or 3 times last year. And that was still on the meds. And how could I forget the heart pounding? Oh, I have lots of heart pounding. Sometimes I do things, and nothing happens. But so often when I stand up. Or go up the stairs. Or wake up in the morning. Or lie down at night, my heart pounds. And pounds. I don'y know what's causing what. I just want to feel better. I've seen several different doctors. I've also seen a couple different therapists. Mostly they say there is nothing at all wrong with me, except in my head. One told me maybe it was lyme disease. Or maybe not. My main doctor wants me back on more drugs. The second lady I saw recently also wanteed me back on citalopram. I tried. I can't. If I take it. Even one 10mg pill, no matter what time of day, I wake up the following morning, early, panicking, and burning/tingling from head to toe. So my main doctor wants me to try another antidepressant. I don't want more drugs, but I'm not sure I can do without them. I just don't know what to do. Today was one of the roughest days yet. I'm in pain, and I'm panicky, and depressed and it all feels so hopeless. Since 2014, when I saw someone who gave me, for the first time, a diagnosis, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and prescription, after which I improved, my husband now believes that's the answer. My brain is broken, and I need drugs. Don't I see it? That's the only answer. So he's always pushing me to take more drugs. Take more of the clonazapam. Go back on citalopram. Get a new prescription. Just take something already! But I don't want to. Most days i can make it through with only the one Clonzapam. And that's it. But I am having a tough time. I've tried different diet options. I've tired a few different supplements. I just don't know what else to do. I don't know who's ideology to follow. So like I said. Right now, I'm taking 0.25mg Clonazapam every morning. Just to survive the day. And I don't eat dairy, or use any perfume, in order to keep the reactions in my skin to a minimum. I'm trying to take a multivitamin , plus vitamin D, a vitamin B complex, and a multi mineral. I'm most afraid of this chest/neck/back/arm pain right now. I could really use some encouragement and some help deciding which course of action to take. I've done some reading on here already and found some helpful stuff. I'm just wondering what people might have to say that's specific to my case. Feel free to point out specific threads on here that people have already written that may be helpful. And in advance, thank you. Whatever you have to offer, thank you. It's been really tough, and I can use every little bit of help I can get. And to all of you who have struggled and are struggling, I wish you all the best. I wish you health and strength. Some of you are amazing, what you've been through, or are going through, and still making it through the day, I applaud you. Some of the stuff you've dealt with sounds so much worse than what I'm dealing with. I only wish I could be half as tough as some of you are. Keep on keeping on.
  17. Hi, I do appreciate this supportive website. My story: I had been on Celexa for anxiety for at least 10 years at doses of between 10 and 20 mg. At 15 to 20 mg at times it really seemed to help the anxiety and lift my mood. Last Dec. I went on Zoloft because the anxiety seemed to be breaking through with the Celexa. (However, I now wonder if lowering the dose on my own was actually giving me symptoms of anxiety). I went one month on 25mg Zoloft, then 50mg Zoloft for 3 months. It never seemed to really help with anxiety or low mood, and also gave me GI upset with diarrhea. I decided to stop on my own, tapering over 6 weeks. While tapering and since stopping I have been taking Fish oil and probiotic, hoping both of those supplements would help with anxiety/depression. During the taper and since stopping, I have been having additional GI problems, plus very bad histamine intolerance. Foods that I had not problem eating while on SSRI, now give me headache, dizziness (to the point where I haven't driven on the freeway for 3 months!), fatigue, and flu-like symptoms. By the way, I would occasionally have these symptoms when lowering the Celexa dose, but then it would go away soon, so I attributed it to anxiety. So weird and awful. I've done lots of reading and discovered that in some people this can happen after SSRI discontinuation. One theory is that the SSRI has acted as an anti-histamine therefore the cells in the GI tract don't need to make the DAO enzyme that breaks down histamine. So when going off the SSRI, there is nothing to break down the histamine. I am currently on a low histamine diet. Trying Quercetin and Vit. C to help with the high histamine. The glutamine/aloe vera supplement made me feel extremely fatigued so had to stop. It's been 2 months since stopping Zoloft. Of course I'm praying my body will return to normal sometime soon, and fearful this may last a long time. My primary care doctor said the body doesn't even start to feel normal until 3 months post-stopping. I would appreciate any input from folks who have had similar issues, and would love to hear some positive stories of healing from this. Needless to say, will never take SSRI again! Thank you
  18. Hello, everyone, and thank you for being here. Here's my story: In July 2017 I started a severe bout of anxiety, mostly health-related, that I never entirely got over, although I'm not having daily panic attacks anymore. I worked on it with talk therapy, which I continue, but in January 2018, I decided I needed pharmaceutical help and saw a psychiatrist who prescribed 10 mg of Celexa daily as well as Ativan as needed. Something similar had happened to me 20 years before, so I knew to be cautious about how much Ativan I took. The Celexa did help take the edge off my anxiety but the sexual side effects depressed me. In November 2018, having made some progress in therapy, I decided they were unacceptable and decreased the dose to 5 mg. I didn't consult the psychiatrist but I figured that since Celexa wasn't addictive like Ativan, it wouldn't matter. (Haha.) Actually I didn't feel any withdrawal effects until March 2019, which puzzles me. I started having ferocious headaches and intense neck and jaw tension, along with little painful "sparks" in my eyes every once in a while. I have never been a headachey person and I'd never felt anything like this before. They feel like electric knives going into my scalp. I thought it was just tension (my daughter had been in an auto accident and I was taking care of her while she recovered from injuries) but in early April 2019 I called the psychiatrist and told him about the headaches. He said the headaches were "likely" from the Celexa and since I was on "a baby dose" at that point I should stop taking them. It's been a month and I still have the headaches, neck and jaw tension, eye pain. Not every day but most days. At this point the psychiatrist says just don't worry about the headaches, they're not important or major. But they feel major to me! Sometimes I take ibuprofen and that helps. But I resist taking it. I've had up to 5 days without headaches and then when they come back I'm heartbroken and scared. But I'm grateful to have learned here on this site that SSRI withdrawal isn't always a straight line. Can anyone reassure me further, especially about the weird timeline of the headaches? Why did they start three months after I decreased the Celexa dose? And why do they continue a month after I stopped entirely? Has someone had a similar experience, similar symptoms with Celexa? I know several things in my story go against the good advice on this site. But I do not want to go back to taking Celexa, even a small dose. I vowed to myself I would never take a ssri again unless I was prepared to take it for the rest of my life. Thanks for listening.
  19. Moderator note - link to benzo thread - Flowers: Xanax - spacing of doses Hi Everyone! it's been great to find this site and know their are others in the same boat as me. I am British but live in Spain but it looks like a lot of you are from USA. Well, regardless of our geography the drugs and effects are still the same I guess. My story goes like this........ I have been on antidepressants since my thirties and nothing ever seems to trigger off the depression. I am however quite an anxious, nervy person! The last 15 years I have taken Citalopram after my Dr told me I would probably need it for the rest of my life. All was fine - Citalopram helped me immensely initially and has kept me on an even keel since. I think it just made me feel normal - no highs or lows. Then in March this year I got a severe allergy to pollen that gave me sinusitis and an asthma flare up. My Dr gave me some antibiotics and oral steroids to help. I had a very bad reaction to the meds and ended up with increased anxiety, shaking etc. He suggested that I might like to increase the Citalopram from 30mgs to 40mgs. All was well until early September when I started to get extreme nightmares and heart palpitations. The nightmares were so bad I was screaming out loud. My mood was good but I was very tired. So the Dr suggested that either 40mgs was too high or the drug wasn't agreeing with me at all. His advice was to try to reduce or come off the drugs so he could see if I was OK without them or he would need to give me something else. He also advised taking 20mg for 4 weeks then 10mg for 4 weeks etc until I was off them. So, I started end of September and reduced to 20mgs straight away for 4 weeks. I didn't feel that bad over those weeks just maybe a little extra anxiety that could be managed. The trouble started when I went down to 10mgs just over 4 weeks ago. I got all the withdrawal symptoms full on. This wasn't helped by getting a lung infection which set off asthma again. I was getting even more anxious not being able to breath and was given antibiotics again and a nebulizer. Both meds can effect anxiety and I think they did because I ended up really ill. One of the worst withdrawal symptoms was not being able to control my legs and the weakness in them. I collapsed and ended up in the Emergencies with my Blood Pressure 207/117.They eventually stabilised me and sent me home where I am now watching my BP at home. The depression has set in and I can barely get out of bed each day and can't stop crying. I have seen a different Dr. who has given me Lexatin to take 3mg up to 3 times a day to ease the anxiety. I have only taken one today and it has calmed me down, but am conscious of the dependency issues. He has also suggested increasing the dose of Citalopram back up to 30mgs. I think the first Dr maybe have recommended a far too quick withdrawal for me as I haven't been able to cope with the severe effects. I am going to increase to 20mgs to see what happens but I am so scared of what is going to happen. I can't even contemplate coming off these drugs now. I just want to get back to normal and live again. When will I get any benefit from the increase and should I go on up to 30mgs? Any help or advice anyone can give would be so welcome - you all seem to have a wealth of experience out there.
  20. Hey! I was 15 when I was put on Sepram (citalopram) due to depression (what I had that time was an eating disorder and guess I was depressed because of that) Anywho I ate Sepram until I was 24 on various dosages from 10-40mgs. I remember that often times when I was a teenager I'd just crash and get depression from nothing (now I realize that it was because I sometimes forgot to take my meds). I was 22 when I first unsuccesfully quit medication since I was feeling really well. I was going to university in a new town back then. Had a lot of new things going on. Well I survived for three months and then I crashed and burned. I had terrible anxiety and insommia and was tired as hell. I didn't know I was in withdrawal. I had quit my medication from 20mgs to 0 in two months as my pdoc had instructed (waaay too fast, now I know that, and it was really stupid to quit them in a period where a lot of changes happened in my life). I came back home to my parents as I was unable to function. I went to see my psychiatrist and got back on meds. I wonder why she didn't say to me that I was withdrawing and I really really must take things easy, she propably didn't know about SSRI withdrawal. I was in overdrive, I thought I had gone insane, it didn't occur to me that maybe the medication is doing all of this, it was like I had completely forgotten how my mind usually works. I got myself a job cause I thought that I must do something and not just be. I went to work after 4 months of doing nothing but pilates and qi qong and eating avocados. Everything was relatively fine though I had pretty bad anxiety and some racing thoughts and insomnia and my stress tolerance was bad. At some point I got tired and a bit depressed again and pdoc upped my dosage to 40mg. I got in to college again. I began to taper my meds again in a six month period (again way too fast). I was feeling quite low all the time, I had no motivation and everything felt futile and my condidence fell. I was a bit angry for no reason. My studies didn't go as fast I would have liked cause I was bit lethargic. I somehow managed with my low moods and anxiety. By summer 2015 I was energetic and I could FEEL. I hadn't really felt anything but anxiety and depression for years. I was interested with being around my friends. I was working fulltime and doing university exams at the same time. I was genuinenly interested in different things and life in general. I bicycled 20kms everyday and was riding almost everyday. I felt that I was ME after so many years of feeling weird. I had had social anxiety on and off during my medication, and I have gotten stressed easily. Then in the middle of the Summer 2015 i began to go on overdrive. I was hostile towards my parents. I had a met guy I got a crush on and I was mean to him and I wasnt myself. I was erratic but also very stressed and worried about everything. But I was so full of energy that I was unable to listen to me and my body. I had bad insomnia but I could go on and on without sleep. By the end of summer my new fling ended. I couldn't deal with it like normal people do as I was deep in withdrawing. My sense of security vanished. I tried to continue my studies. I couldn't sleep, I couldn't eat and my body couldn't hold liquid anymore. I was aggressive all the time. As studying proved to be impossible because I was unable to concentrate i tried just working. In October 2015 I started getting paranoid, I had intrusive and obsessive thoughts, I began to hate myself and felt that I'm no good and I don't deserve to live, I didn't sleep at all. I had stopped exercising in September 2015 cause I simply just couldn't do it any longer. My mother tried to get me to stretch my body and do a little pilates but I couldn't do it because I was so tense all the time. My muscles were sore and I was hurting all the time, I saw nothing but black and grey. I saw my psychiatrist few times and explained my symptoms to her but couldn't get any help except Xanax which I ate like candy. I deteriorated more and more as my insomnia grew worse. I was agitated and restless all the time, barely could walk and shivered like a leaf. My parents had no idea what to do with me. Thank god I had come back home to them when I started going nuts. I had arrythmias but I was so messed up that it didn't occur to me to go see a doctor. I had suicidal thoughts all the time. My mother couldn't leave from my side for a second. In January 2016 I could feel something zap in my brain, all of my emotions vanished. In the end my insomnia and mental state went so bad that I tried to kill myself. I was admitted to hospital and stayed there for a couple of days, somehow went back to work for a few days (I had tried to kill myself, who would go to work after that? ME). In march 2016 I tried to kill myself again with 3,8grams of propranolol. My life was hanging by a thread as my heat rate dropped too low. Again to hospital where I was put on Lyrica, Suprium, Tenox, Sepram again and Abilify. I was in the hospital for a month and when I got out I quit all medication. Now I live in a nursing home. They want me to do a bit of work and I have done some stable job few times a week. I get scared and stressed out easily. I have crying spells and sometimes I have dyskinesia and stiff neck and I find it hard to speak. Sometimes I vomit and have diarrhea and I'm fatigued. I have almost constant vertigo and inner emotional turmoil. I tried to eat different vitamins but my body couldn't handle them. Now I eat D vitamin and that is something my body can tolerate. when I exercise I begin to feel really weird and I bloat. I have had brain MRI, everything is fine. My bloodwork is fine. I have always been in good condition and exercised a lot but now I have zero muscle and it feels like my body can't build any muscle. I rarely see any dreams and if I do they are usually nightmares. I feel that my brain isn't working properly. I get this huge pressure in my head when i'm in a situation where I'd usually feel strong emotions but no emotional reaction comes out of me. I can't tolerate too much noise and some days I get irritated very very easily. Sometimes I sweat profusely and my sweat smells really bad. My sexuality is gone and I have no need to see my friends. Sometimes after exercising I get this window of wanting to see my friends and hug my parents and be close to them. I really don't like to be around people because they remind me of what i used to be. I was a talented rider, well I still am but it doesn't feel the same because now I get easily scared as I am riding. I feel very traumatized by all of this. My body triggers from almost nothing. I shiver and shake several times a day. I feel that I'm very very vulnerable and can collapse in any minute if i get too stressed. Sometimes I get an urge to kill someone. When I pet my dog I feel like killing her though I know I love her. I have suicidal thoughts, especially around people. I often want to (self harm - graphic language removed jch). I would really like to go to live at our summer cottage with my parents and just heal and hope some day I'll recover. What is the most devastating thing to me is that I have lost my creativity and I have lost myself, the spark inside of me, the thing that made me me. I have no goals left anymore except to stay alive. I know I have been stupid quitting my medication without tapering long enough and I have been stupid to strain my body as I have clearly been sick beyond measure but still tried to pull through and do my responsibilities. But I do feel that I have been ruined by psychiatry since I was put on meds at such a young age. Me and my parents were told that these meds are safe and won't do any harm and that it's safe to eat them indefinitely. I trusted what the doctor said. It never occurred to me that maybe my anxiety was the product of the meds. I had zero anxiety as a teenager but steadily during my adult years my anxiety has increased. I am very very thankful that I have parents who are willing to take care of me as long as it is needed. They hate to see me suffering, this is very hard on them. And it is very hard for me that they have to go through this with me. I really really hope that maybe after two or three years my body is healed and I can tolerate normal life again.
  21. Hi Have just joined and looking for practical advice on supporting myself as have started a gradual reduction of citalopram today. I've been on it for 12 months having been fortunate to never have had mental illness before. Any practical advice much appreciated. Thank you
  22. Hey everyone! Just wanted to introduce myself and let you all in on my journey and discontinuation of antidepressants. I am 28 years old and just ended an 11 year relationship with AD's. There was so much shame I felt being on these drugs. I felt like I was this great person because of the pills I was taking and nothing more. I wouldn't dare tell a soul I was taking antidepressants for fear that they would then see the pill and not me. Make sense? I said goodbye to Sertraline in November 2017. After completing yoga teacher training and having this new perspective of myself and my life, I started to actually feel the chemicals that weren't meant to be in my body. I had tried tapering off of Sertraline 3 times prior to the last over the past few years. The previous tries I would make it about a month or two before surrendering back to the pills to make myself feel better if I started feeling sad or uneasy. This time was different. VERY different. This time I started with intense research. I wanted to discontinue the dosage but this time was for real; I would do my homework and get off of these things once and for all. And what I found first broke my heart, made me angry and then gave me hope. The anger is still present when I try to find a reason 'why' people are enslaved to these prescription drugs. The research I found led me to this site, and I continue to research the effects and harms that these medications actually do to people, unbeknownst to them. The cause of our sadness is residual, stagnant energy trapped in our bodies from a traumatic event or life experience that changed our perspective of what is. When we take these medications, we are never actually dealing with the source of our problems, rather than masking it over with a clouded perception of reality. I used to love my prescriptions. Even after I would attempt to quit, that love would return after I felt 'better' taking them again. I was prescribed my first antidepressant when I was 16. I was missing a lot of school because I slept in too late. I just loved my sleep. Eventually, I was sent to the PCP to see what could be done about this sleeping problem.. Well, her answer was Citalopram (Celexa). This was the beginning of a battle I never wanted to be involved with but here I am. And P.S. the sleeping issue was not resolved in any way thereafter. To keep it short, I will just give you a brief history of how my dance with prescription drugs evolved after that: 2006 Celexa (Citalopram) 40 mg & Adderall XR 75 mg (a lot of the times more because I was heavily addicted) 2007 Citalopram & Ritalin (don't remember mg) .. soon after Vyvanse (don't remember mg) and finally to Amphetamine Salts due to unpleasant side effects from the Ritalin & Vyvanse.. ** indicates time period where Amphetamine Salts were prescribed 2008 ** Citalopram 40 mg-> Effexor XR 75 mg after a psychiatric evaluation (which I now understand was due to the medications and the effect they had on me mentally ... psh) 2009** Effexor XR 75 mg - Paxil (Paroxetine) 30 mg due to the INSANELY high cost of Effexor without insurance I was forced to wean myself off and switch 2010** Paxil 30 mg-> Sertraline 50 mg due to weight gain and lethargy 2011-2013 Sertraline 50 mg -> Wellbutrin (Bupropion Hcl) 75 mg due to sexual side effects and wanting to feel alive again 2013-2017 Wellbutrin 75 mg -> Back to Zoloft (Sertraline) 75 mg because the anxious side effects of the Wellbutrin made me uneasy and Sertraline seemed to be the only AD that had the least side effects at the time 2017 Sertraline 75 mg -> slow taper to 50 MG for two weeks -> halving the dosage & following this pattern until there was nothing -> 5 HTP 50 mg & 1200 mg Fish Oil NOW = 1200 mg Fish Oil and becoming accustomed to an Ayurvedic diet along with daily yoga practice**** this is HUGE and one of the main reasons I have remained clean from AD's Now, almost two months clean from prescription drugs I can say that there is still lots of work to be done. When you go through your teenage years and early twenties on AD's, you need to relearn how to interact and react as there is no longer that pill keeping you numb. Everything becomes real and raw. There are still days that I have my emotions consume my entire being in a negative way and I am still working on this. I WILL NOT GIVE UP. As of right now, it seems as though I am taking off from where I left off at 16 years old. This means emotionally and re actively along with maturity and sexuality. As many of you can relate, I could go on with this topic and how it has effected my entire life for ever and ever. There will be more posts that follow in regards to these drugs and how we can help each other become clean and free once again as we were made to be. Love and blessings to you all <3 we CAN do this..we are all in this together! LB Anti-depressants controlling tools of your system Making life more tolerable, making life more tolerable. The Unthinking Majority - Serj Tankian
  23. I just want to say its reassuring to read that i'm not the only one who is finding long term withdrawal difficult. I've been off citalopram for 7 months and everyone keeps saying the drug is out of my system and its just my issues that i'm experiencing. I feel like i've tried everything but it doesn't seem to ease. Meditation has helped keep me calm but its the confusion and unconnected feeling all the time that pisses me off Just like everyone who posts on this site i'm hoping it doesn't last much longer
  24. Hi everyone, I'm wanting advice on how to taper if my withdrawal symptoms are delayed - ie they occur several months after the taper is completely finished. If I have no symptoms during taper, should I proceed to the 'Fast Taper' guidelines (4 weeks x2, then 3weeks x2, then 2 weeks x2, then weekly until done)? In the past I have thought I was relapsing, and resumed the medication. Now I understand it was probably WD from too fast a taper (4 months). Any thoughts? Tikki Tikki
  25. was prescribed citalopram and lorazapam after a nervous breakdown last july from watching my father pass from aspiration pneumonia caused by advanced dementia. i needed something. i've been off the lorazapam for probably 4 months. i tried to go from 20 mg of the citalopram to 10 to 0 in a couple weeks. was not good. so i went from 10 to 5 to 2.5 over the course of 4 months and then something less than 2.5 if i got dizzy. i haven't had any at all for 5 weeks now. glad i found this place. oh man the crying out of nowhere, the anxiety this morning, almost had a panic attack. my withdrawal is no where near as bad as some of the folks here i'm reading about, but the neuro emotions i'm reading about and the windows and waves really hit home. sometimes i can feel really good and want to cry from some perceived lack in my life at the same time. mostly i feel good now, but when it comes, like others have said, i feel like its always been awful and always will be. i have to stop attaching words to the feeling because i'll find some pitiful story to tell myself because its like something is pulling me to feel sorry for myself. i asked my psychiatrist about brain changes from the citalopram and he said it would happen. he also said untreated anxiety and depression will also cause negative brain changes over time. so, what to do. i've also been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder level 1 in probably 2016. yeah, had no idea i didn't recognize facial expressions very well. i'm really bad at it. anyway it comes with a good bit of anxiety. so i do suspension training 6 days a week to help me get rid of anxiety, and i also need adrenalin to really be happy. i'm at my best when i'm involved with whitewater paddleboarding or onewheeling on a regular basis - something exciting and a bit dangerous. i also ferment pickles, red cabbage kraut and kimchi for my gut health. i'm really fighting to keep my brain health and hoping that one day things get back to normal. in the meantime thank you all. its great reading about everybody here and i'm really thankful to find this place and realize i'm not alone in these withdrawals.
×
×
  • Create New...