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  1. I am 40, male. I’ve never had chronic anxiety before.. just the typical anxiousness before a large work presentation, that’s it. October, 2021, I got heart palpitations after 2nd Pfizer/COVID vaccine. Then developed chronic anxiety and have had a couple of panic attacks (again: all of this is new to me) I was put on Citalopram for 3 months and it worked! I felt great (normal.) after reading horror stories of long-term use, I tapered off of it. After 4 weeks off, anxiety came back and I don’t know what to do! I stopped coffee. I exercise daily, eat healthy, do breathing exercises, pray, take natural vitamins, read books on overcoming anxiety, have a therapist, but none of it is working. I feel like I have no choice but to get back on SSRIs. I don’t have a social phobia or trigger. I am just constantly anxious all day, get heart racing, palpitations, and sometimes feel like I’m losing control. If I shouldn’t take SSRIs then what can I do?!? I don’t want long-term medicine but what choice do I have? (I feel like I did before I ever took citalopram so I can’t blame this feeling on the drug)
  2. I have successfully stopped using SSRI's (Celexa 40mg daily) and Benzo's (Xanax/Klonopin 3-4mg daily) for three years now after using them for 16 years. I tapered down from the Benzo’s first over a period of four months and then tapered down from the SSRI’s over the next four months. Of the nine subsequent withdrawal symptoms, I experienced since stopping both medications, three years later I am down to three symptoms that are lingering. Specifically: Sleep problems (waking up every 1-2 hours – inconsistent patterns) Elevated blood pressure (high-norm 140’s over 80’s) Ringing in the ears My PCP recommended I see a neurologist and he advised that the lingering symptoms are a result of the damage caused by the SSRI's and in time they will go away. Does anyone know when these lingering symptoms will leave and is there any recommended treatment I can utilize until they are gone? Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
  3. I had postpartum depression 30 years ago. I experienced full recovery after 6 months without any meds. I do, however, think this experience left me with a fear of it ever coming back, i.e. fear of panic and anxiety. About 10 years ago, I had some anxiety (which I now think was partially hormone related) but anyway, Doc put me on Citalopram, 10 mg/ I took it for a year with success, then up to 20mg for 6 years. It worked as I didn't have any panic attacks or severe anxiety during that time. Then it stopped working 3 years ago and I had horrible symptoms. My anxiety was out of control. I felt like I had the flu for months and terrible GI problems. Went to docs to check for other problems and she went back to the anxiety dx. She upped my dose to 40 mg. Again, it worked OK, the worst of the anxiety was gone. Then BOOM. In March 2016 I went into my worst panic ever. I lost myself and became a bag of nerves who couldn't function.I was so bad, and I got mad and blamed the pills for doing a 180 on me I just stopped taking the meds as soon as I ran out). Cold turkey. Bad decision. I simply spiraled into hell. Symptoms I never had before came to try to kill me. Depersonalization, internal shakes, brain zaps, flu like symptoms, no energy, night sweats, weight loss, burning body, anxiety like never before, etc. I tried to explain it to my husband, and they only thing I could tell him was that i felt like I was poisoned. Long story but from here to there I have lost myself completely. . After a few months of this, I went back to my doc and she said my withdraw symptoms should be gone and I'm just back to being anxious. (Like never before mind you) She put me on Prozac and I had a horrible reaction. Almost suicidal. Not on anything now and feeling like I'll never be well. I'm in hell. My physical and mental symptoms are sometimes, too often, unbearable. I am a happily married 58 year old with awesome kids and a life I love....or would love if I was capable of coping. These horrible symptoms have taken all of my joy away. I have so much to live for and get well for, but i can't find the way out. My future is promising, but looks like just more torture from where I'm standing. It seems quitting cold turkey screwed me up pretty bad. Wish I never would have taken these drugs. I never, ever felt this bad in my life. About to give up. So, here I am. I am afraid of reintroducing drugs for fear of them making me worse. I've tried lots of minerals, vitamins, yoga, hypnosis, accupunture, meditation, prayer, healthy eating, exercising, mindfulness, reading, and more. But, while some have kept me from going over the edge, there has been no real relief. Today I resorting to taking a Xanax to make it through an event I had to attend, Sorry for the rant, I would so appreciate any advice or suggestions. Bless you all
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