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  1. Are the doctors right? Insomnia. I gave birth to my son in March 2019 and experienced terrible postpartum anxiety. My psychiatrist put me on 20mg Lexapro (escitalopram) which I commenced on the 17th June 2019. In October I saw my psychiatrist and told him I wanted to taper off Lexapro - he told me to take 15mg for one week, 10mg for one week and then 5mg for the final week (three week taper). My last pill was on the 14th November 2019 and the day after my last pill I couldn’t sleep. Ever since then I have experienced terrible insomnia. I either find it hard to fall asleep or I wake a few times per night. My psychiatrist and doctor believe that my anxiety is waking me during the night but I think the insomnia is a withdrawal symptom. What are your thoughts? And is there anything I can do to ease my insomnia? Do I need to go back on Lexapro (6 weeks without the meds) and then taper more slowly? I have had my anxiety under control but the lack of sleep is sinking me downhill again.
  2. G'day SA community My name is Anthony and I have been lurking on this site for a few weeks and thought it time that I start my contribution. And hopefully get some well needed support without being too selfish. I would firstly like to preface my intro by thanking all the members, staff, moderators and founders of this site. It is helping me get through a dark time in my life that I have never ever experienced before. And it has been and still is scary. My story is long (as is most sufferers) so I will do my utmost to be as concise yet brief as possible without losing the important information. I would also like to take the opportunity to thank Aeroman in particular as His success story is what I have needed and his time and investment in answering all the questions from the members relating to his journey has been inspiring to say the least. I won't go into the usual diatribe about how I suffered as a child in a dysfunctional home from physical, emotional and mental abuse of which was the case but my story is more about the incompetent people in white coats we see as all knowing, professional, caring and are in their chosen field because they like helping people and not the money! It all started when I was 21 years old. I had recently finished my apprenticeship with a National Manufacturer as a HVAC & R Technician (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration) and was around two years into starting my own business. Things were going very well when all of a sudden and out of nowhere my heart started racing and I was feeling faint. It was fortunate and by coincidence that I was working next door to a Medical Centre. I literally crawled into the Medical Centre and was dragged by a lovely receptionist wo a consultation room. She got me glass of water and informed a doctor. Unfortunately by the time the doctor arrived my heart had suddenly reverted back to normal and I was feeling fine. Tired but, well. He did all the usual work up of tests, including a 24hr Holter monitor to check my heart but basically put it down to either dehydration (as it was the middle of summer here in Australia) or anxiety/stress. Anyway, I was given the all clear. A couple of years later, with out any warning, the same thing happened again. And then again. and then again and again and again. There would be sporadic episodes of this that would last from anywhere from 3 minutes to as long as three hours. It would also involve many Emergency Department visits, ambulance call outs, blood tests, tests for this or that, tests for something else more visits with a GP and yet nothing could be found other than that old chestnut. ANXIETY......STRESS......DEPRESSION. Duh...of course I'm stressed out, I am as anxious as all get up because I feel like my heart is either about to stop or beat so fast its going flop out of my chest.......and nobody can find what the...is wrong with me. So fast forward a couple more years and with still no answers I decided to start seeing psychologists, Chinese medicine Practioners, hypnotists, more GP's, more Psychologists, even a Psychiatrist who suggested the bad word.....Anti Depressants.........of which I have never been one to even take a paracetamol for a headache let alone nasty stuff like that. Well, they all promised they could resolve my anxiety and stress related heart problems but none of them ever did. I was eventually convinced by a psychologist (and my wife) to try Zoloft because I was one of those people that was either born with a chemical imbalance or I acquired one due to my childhood traumas. Well lets just say that those three days were what I thought at that time to be pure hell on earth. Stopped CT and straight in the bin with the free sample. With all the money I spent over the years I could have bought my own little Island retreat somewhere in the Pacific Islands. Fast Forward a few more years and continually dealing with my heart palpitations I got married, had two daughters, multiple businesses and generally a reasonably good time even though that this heart issue was hanging over my head constantly my Quality of Life was very restricted. Fast forward a few more years and Feeling pretty bad about this and being at that age where I wanted more out of life I hunted down a new GP who was the mother of my daughters best friend at school, I had known her a few years personally and my wife thought she would be able to help with this trouble that I was enduring. Well now is where trouble really starts but I did know that till recently. Into the first consultation and boom, out comes the Mental assessment questionnaire and what do you know, I have anxiety and stress bordering on depression. WTF? Being tired of all this I caved in, desperate for my heart to be normal I took the free sample of Lexapro with my tail between my legs, went home and told my wife who was ecstatic (in her defence she only wanted the best for me and a happy life with her husband and the big house and cars and white picket fence and she believed all the doctors saying I was mental blah blah blah). Sucked back my first tablet and went back to my life. Yeah, I thought my life was coming back and that these medicines really do work, why didn't I persist last time because I don't even think about my heart anymore.......A year down the track I went back to my doctor and told her that it feels like it wasn't working like it was 6 months ago, boom, up my dosed from 10mg to 20mg. Well well well, wouldn't you know it. 11pm on a Tuesday night I woke up, my heart was going crazy, I was ill, vomiting, fainting and feeling like I was going to die. Told myself to suck it up, it was all mental, I was mental, I have something seriously mentally wrong with me, the doctors and everyone said so.........three hours later I called for an ambulance, woke up my wife and kids and told them what was happening, my kids were freaking out......The ambulance arrived and as the paramedics came into my bedroom a thud and my heart slowed down to normal, I felt okay, all the stress and anxiety and ill feeling gone just like that. A two day stay in hospital with all the usual tests again and the doctor comes to see me, "Yep, unable to find anything, must be stress or anxiety". Great I thought. So much for Lexapro, time to get off this rubbish because I don't feel anything anymore, no fun, no anger, no happiness, nada......Two weeks later I tapered as per doctors advice and against her wishes I was off the AD's for good. Three months later I was back in her office begging for some relief, I was in bad shape, out of work and my wife again seriously wanted to go back on the meds or there would be repercussions maritally speaking. This time the Doctor said I now had Major Depression Disorder, those words alone stressed me out. Anyway, time to start the heavy hitting SNRI now, I was in bad shape she said..........Well two days later I ended up having another heart episode that was the worst I had ever had, I really thought that I was going to die, I screamed at my wife to call the ambulance, my kids started crying immediately, the Ambulance sent an Urgent care Hi-Priority paramedic who was in my bedroom hooking my with ECG leads all over my body, cannulas in both arms and then said quite casually..."It okay mate, no worries, your not dying....you got SVT. Just relax and Ill fix it for you in a minute I just have to get this ECG trace to show the docs and will get it done" What? SVT? Did I eat something bad, what is SVT. Isn't it anxiety? I asked the Paramedic. 'Nah" he says. Got nothing to do with anxiety. you may have anxiety from having this but having this is definitely not from anxiety" Anyway, a few valslva manoeuvres and a couple of jokes when the transport ambo turns up later I'm feeling quite calm. Off to the hospital for further tests and the Paramedics hang around for a while and with the Doctor explain to me what SVT is. Also known as PSVT (Paroxysmal Supra Ventricular Tachycardia). 24 years of my life chasing this, never not once did any medical or other professional suggest I go see a cardiologist but they were all too willing to take my money...............For those of you who don't know what PSVT is or don't want to use google, I had AVNRT (Atrio ventricular nodal re-entrant tachycardia) type of heart arrhythmia, there are several, of which I had an additional pathway next to my AV node causing my heart electrical conduction system to short circuit causing my heart to beat at extremely high rates which was captured on the ECG at 230bpm. Diagnosis meant that it was not life threatening, just very unpredictable and uncomfortable...No Joke! After my hospital stay I was referred to a cardiologist for follow but decided I should see my GP so I can stop the Prisitq because I have found out, after 24 years, that I am not mental, or at least the reason why I am a bit skiddish is because the actual heart problem. Again, my wife and GP convince me to stay on the Pristiq to just help get over the next couple of months until I sort out this heart arrhythmia and me, after all these years being brainwashed what did I do....I agreed, good idea, just to get me over the next hurdle because now I have to go and have a heart operation I need to be in the right mindset..............how stoopid am I? I am now back at home waiting to see the specialist cardiologist and everyday my mood is getting worse and worse. I am constantly crying, panicking, thinking I am going to die and I haven't even seen the cardiologist yet. This snowballs to the point that during my Consultation with the Cardio I was in a very bad emotional state my wife had to talk for me. When the Cardiologist found out I was on Prisitq he asked me why I was on this junk, I should get off it as quickly as possible, and medications like these are only for people who are in dire need of help and in Hospital. The Heart operation, Electrophysiology Study and Cather Abalation will resolve the heart issues and I won't have to worry about heart arrhythmias ever again. I informed him that my GP told me I needed to stay on them, well after that there was some correspondence back and forth from my Cardioligist and GP about this and finally my Cardiologist gave up. Operation day arrives and I go to the hospital, supposed to be a day procedure, should be home that night.......Two procedures and two weeks later I am sent home with some complications that the Electrophysiologist had some trouble sorting out. I wouldn't want to go into detail but I was an emotional wreck, my kids were destroyed emotionally as well I am happy to delve further into the complications during and after the procedure if anyone wants to know but, .Lets just say that I had almost, almost was going to have a pacemaker installed but thankfully it was found out that I had some complications from some "Medications" Namely a SNRI Pristiq. Basically I am still not right after three months and I am diagnosed with a condition called Inappropriate sinus tachycardia that needs to be controlled with some heart medications. Hopefully this will resolve with time. Nonetheless, I was totally traumatised by that event and I am struggling with it mentally still. So out of hospital I meet with my GP as I had lots of Chest pain, and irregular heartbeats etc etc and to finally get off the Prisitq. But no. now that I am in pretty much an uncontrollable state she suggests and refers me to a Psychiatrist to re-evaluate and possibly change medications and wants me to look at going to a Mental Hospital and to help get through the next few days while I am waiting for the Psych Doc appointment that I should start on Valium and Sleeping tabs to get me through. Wait, what. Now I'm treating this med with another med. Anyway, I'm so desperate ill do whatever......... Finally see the Psych doctor and she DSM's me as Panic Disorder only, stops the Pristiq immediately, but after three days break I need to start Lexapro again at 10mgs and then three days after that start 20mgs. Oh by the way, its because you have a chemical imbalance disease in your brain, you will need these the rest of your life, its like insulin for diabetics, most people are on these now, its what you need to live and get by........................................These nasty people play on your vulnerability!. Well I stopped the pristiq on a Wednesday. Thursday morning I woke up like a new person. No Crying, energy back, no dizziness, my heart was beating regularly and slowly and I felt brilliant. I told my wife that I didn't want to go on the Lexapro again but after some heated discussion, what she and the kids had been through recently and the potential issues going forward I handed my genitals back to her to put in her purse for safe keeping..........Start sucking those poison pills down again as directed by all those who had never been on this rubbish, two more weeks in bed feeling like death warmed up, headache, nausea, sore mouth, teeth sore everything, could not talk could not eat, that's when I woke up one morning and trashed the lot of pills in the bin. That was the day I Cold Turkey again Wrong move I know but boy, was I sick. The suicide ideation, the gory vivid dreams, the grim reaper and death is all thought about for those two weeks mixed in with insomnia. Well, I haven't recovered from these two weeks of Lexapro, they have changed something in me and I didn't get the relief I got from when I stopped Pristiq. This time Lexapro, only for two weeks has done something to me and I feel these withdrawal symptoms are going to take something special from me to get through...................These drug pushers need punishment for their actions. All these years of feeling intimidated by these charlatans and all along I had an issue that should have been resolved with a day procedure. Yes it was heart surgery nonetheless but still, my family and I are in a world of hurt now that was unnecessary. Thank You for letting me to get this out, I needed it. I am struggling with the WD side effects and I am concerned for the future and pain that is coming from this but I will no longer be controlled by these poison pills..........................
  3. I was on 40 mgs Lexapro. started on 20 mgs then increased over 5 years. Have been on various antidepressants for over 20 years. Seeing a Homeopath and trialing remedies. Told by Psychiatrist reduce 20 mgs a week. Frightened by all withdrawal horror stories. Have to work to pay mortgage. Suffering from discontinuation Syndrome. -suicidal thoughts - brain fog - anxiety - panic attacks -stomach upsets - debilitating lack of concentration - constant fear of living My family are supporting me Dont want to go back on meds but scared this may continue for years. Any advice welcome.
  4. hi all my name is Miguel and i have a question about Lexapro here is the medication I took and the time lines Sertraline 50 mg on 5/10/15 and took Trazodona, 150 mg then i stopped continued on sertraline Mexazolam, 1 mg 1/12/15 on 6/6/16 I went to 100 mg Sertraline then 03-10-2016 i changed to Escitalopram, 20 mg and Xanax 0.5 and took it until i stopped on 28/5/2017 by my own bad mistake I did a super fast tampering of 20 15 10 5 0 in 1 mouth ^^ and i whent back on it on 7/08/2017 owe my one whit out saying to the doctor but i am now at 10 mg and i have an appointment whit a psychiatrist and gonna ask him to taper me off slowly But I am afraid that cuz i started whit 16 almost 17 y old that it's gone be hard or that I am hooked for life I did cold turkey and i wasn't dat bad until it all hit me at once ty for your help i will be posting regulary about my situation Love you all Miguel
  5. Moderator note - link to benzo forum thread - Frogie: W/D from Xanax am new here as you can see. I need help!! I'm hoping someone can help me get off 10 mg Lexapro. Every time I try to drop to even 9mg, I end up sick to my stomach. I go back up to 10mg and am still sick to my stomach. I have no other symptoms. In my profile is all my information, I don't know how to get it to the bottom of this page. I'm not very good on the computer. Sorry
  6. I was diagnosed with post natal depression ten years ago. The psych put me on 10mg lexapro and told me to see him again two weeks later. When I went back he asked if I felt better and I said no. He put my dose up to 15mg. Two weeks later I went back again and answered the same question with another no. He put me up to 20mg. This continued till I reached the dose of 30mg. By that stage I had learned to lie....I told him I felt much better so that he would stop increasing my dose. I later learned that the recommended dose of lexapro is 20mg. After twelve months on 30mg I cut myself down to 25mg. Basically over the following years I did the same thing until I got down to 5mg. That was two years ago. That is when my problems began. Increased anxiety and ocd. No physical symptoms thankfully. But the anxiety and ocd is awful. I have read extensively and know my symptoms are withdrawal. There are definite windows and waves. I am currently at 2mg and life is hard. I honestly can’t see how I am going to get off this drug. The withdrawal sets in about one month after a cut and honestly seems to be endless in intensity. At this stage I am in no hurry to cut any further. During a window My anxiety and ocd seems laughable and I can’t believe how silly I have been getting upset about everything. But during the waves the fear and terror is so real. It is as though my central nervous system is damaged beyond repair. I live in a constant state of hyper alert.
  7. Hi guys! Its been almost 7 months since I ct Lexapro, having only used it in 1 month om 5 mg. Its only now for the last weeks that the zaps, vertigo, flu-sympthoms and burning are starting, and becoming more severe by each day.. And I have a constant low fever since one month. (No virus.) Im burning all over my body, not sensitive to touch really.. Just feels like im on fire. And feels like breathing.. Sulfur. Not a refluxprob. (Also kinda blushing in face) All worse in my belly. Having attacks where it kinda knocks me with burning nerves all over and then goes back to constant medium-burning.. My cold sheets in bed is a blessing to naked skin! Also, notice aches and getting weaker in all my muscles.. 😕 Im so afraid! Whats going on! Have someone felt like this?
  8. Teppo125 Hi you all! This is my first post here, but I have been here and reading stuff for many months. Sorry for my poor english, but maybe you will understand. I had many adversities in 2018-2019 and I began to have panic attacks, chest pains and air hunger. I had all of these in 2012 as well, but I was checked and there was nothing wrong with me. The panic attacks and chest pains all got away in a few months. I went to the private doctor which we had because of our job. And he recommended for me to go to the psychologist. The psychologist said that he recommends me to seek psychotherapist, because of my illness. Well I didn't do anything and the panic attacks didn't go away. I had to call an ambulance two times and they took me to the ER both times because I thought I was going to die. I went to the psychologist again and I told him that I would like to get some medications started. He said that he doesn't recommend medication, because I would start to trust the medication and it could be hard to stop (Oh how right he was..). Well I didn't seek a psychotherapist, but I went to the public hospital, because I wanted the medication, because I thought it would help. I called the psychiatric nurse and after the first appointment she sent me to the doctor and mid july in 2019 I was prescribed Escitalopram (Lexapro I think in you're language) 10mg/day. First week 2,5mg. Second week 5mg. And then 10mg. After first week psychiatric nurse wanted to see me and asked how I was doing. I was doing better, but I started to have some mild suicidal thoughts. What I never had before. We didn't notice them at all. At second week the thoughts became louder. Then I lifted the dose to 10mg and after a few days it wasn't only thoughts, but also suicidal behavior. I couldn't think anything else, only that that I'm going to kill myself. I noticed that something was very very wrong. I thought that the same goes for me what my cousin did earlier in the year, because he was deeply depressed and committed suicide. I was diagnosed mild depression and I had those horrible thoughts. I called the nurse and I wanted too se her. At this point the nurse was changed to another person. The previous nurse was only temporary and the right nurse came back from vacation. She didn't know at all what had happened to me, and neither did I. I didn't know that this DRUG could cause this kind of stuff. Also I am pretty good at sleeping and with this drug I had major sleeping troubles. Then we lowered the dose to 5mg and it helped a lot. Thoughts were still there, but I continued eating them and continued my life. I played football and another sports in the summer, but the thoughts were still there all the time. After 8 weeks(I think) I recognize that when I watched a mirror, I became to hate my self. Then I decided to call the nurse and I told her that I want quit this medication, because I was not feeling good with this drug. She said that I'm now fearing the drug and she doesn't want that I quit the escitalopram. Well, after a long conversation she gave me permission to stop the drug and I could do it cold turkey, because such a low dose and I haven't ate it a long time. And you all know what happened then. But I didn't. I have never before ate any drugs. Only ibuprofen for hangovers some times. I quit the medication propably mid september and I feel pretty good. But after 1,5 - 2 weeks I was thrown behind the hell. And the hell last, it last enormously long time. After two weeks of quitting the drug my girlfriend told me to go privat psychotherapist, because I felt so awful. I though that I am insane that I have tilted some way 😃 (I can laugh sometimes now). The psychotherapist said that it is almost impossible that you are insane, because you are too old to become lunatic and it happens almost every time in 20's or earlier(I'm 30 years now). That helped a little bit. After 4 months of quitting CT, I went to psychiatric and told her what I was going throw. She said that the drug(withdrawal) couldn't be anymore the reason how I felt and prescribe me ketiapine (Qetiapin maybe in English?) for that enormous anxiety what I have. But she also said that just last year people and media are been talking about those side effects and withdrawal in Finland caused by antidepressants. I crashed. I didn't want to live anymore, because my life was awful hell. And it wasn't the withdrawal anymore. I took that ketiapin for month or two 12,5 mg or less for sleeping and anxiety and then I quit it, because I don't want eat any drugs anymore EVER. But somehow I find a group at Facebook. It was Finnish(I'm Finnish also)group about SSRI withdrawal and I noticed that maybe I'm not a lunatic. And then I found there also this site. I also went back to another psychotherapist after 5 months of cold turkey and she said that my biggest problem was the drug withdrawal. I wasn't insane because that couldn't be possible. Or it could be possible, but there should be some sings before if I was for example scitzofrenic or bibolar. I was happier than ever. I continued the therapy which is conditional behavioral psychotherapy. Now I'm almost 8 months free of the drug. I'm not fine, but I think that I survive this. This is not a success story yet, but I write that too then when I'm firmly on my feet. If anyone could help me somehow what I should do in this withdrawal please leave me a comment. Or is it only time what heels me?
  9. Admin note: link to benzo forum thread - Blondiee1915: Xanax taper. Need help Hi all . I was on SSRI for 9 years (mostly lexapro) with some small breaks in between. I withdrew fully (don't believe I did it slowly) in July and now 3 months later I am experiencing intense symptoms that became disabling at times . I was initially prescribed lexapro in college for panic attacks and general anxiety . Physical symptoms compared to emotional were not bad for me at all . Now 3 months later my fatigue intensified. I am constantly exhausted no matter how much I sleep . I feel detached and disconnected. I am also indifferent and not emotional (example I don't want to be intimate) the most annoying thing is dizziness and the feeling of disbalance I wonder if it will ever go away . At times I wonder if I should go back on drugs but in all honestly they didn't really help me I just get like a zombie. If anyone can share their experience coming off lexapro, similar symptoms and if gets better . Thank you so much ❤️
  10. Hi, I am new to this side, but unfortunately not new to antidepressants. In 2010 I managed to tapper Effexor, which took me more than two years. I made a terrible mistake and around 2 months ago I have started taking escitalopram. I was fulled by a psychiatrist that this is a safest antidepressant, which does not cause any side effects. I have also been on low dose of Doxepin at night to prevent migraines (this has been for over 2 years, but never caused any major problems...) I started on 5mg of escitalopram and I was ok on this, my anxiety stopped, I slept better, etc. Two weeks ago I increased to 10mg and this is when symptoms started. Firstly it was a weird sensation, each morning I was getting "pins and needles" in my arms, this was going away after getting up. Then I started sleeping badly...I wanted to cut back to 5mg, but a psychiatric said that it was only temporary, so I have stay on 10mg. In the meantime, I had a migraine and took my usual triptan; I almost got serotonin syndrom (at least I think)...This was the time I started to read about escitalopram and discovered horror stories... I want to stop this drug! I wonder if I have taken it for so short I could go with a faster than 10% tapper? Can I cut to 5mg straight away? Thank you Ikam
  11. Hi Guys. I have been on every SSRI over the past 2 years, apart from Paroxetine. This all started from some situational anxiety at work. Each time i took a medication i was on them for about 3 month without any benefit at all. I would loose time at work, cold turkey and return back to work. Each time i did this i was getting worse and worse. I would then return back to the doctor and ve started on something else. This has basically gone on for 2 years. All this time i have got worse. I have now come to understand withdrawal and the fact i could have well been prescribed numerous medications due to an illness been mistaken for withdrawal. 8 weeks ago after stopping my second attempt of Escitalopram for 3 months i decided to stop for good with a fast taper. I feel anxious, dizzy, fatigued, poor cognition and inability to focus. I know if i take a dose of SSRI that this will improve however i will return to the Zombie state of meds. I am finished with medication!!! On reflection my problems i encountered prior to any medication was far easier than the problems i have had the past 2 years on medications. I think i have been a victim of Psychiatry! I dont think i ever needed medication! My chemical imbalance was created by meds! If i had no knowledge of this i would be stuck in Psychiatry! I just want to know ppls experiences and can i still be in withdrawal at 8 weeks after 2 years of messing about with meds. Thanks Lee
  12. I've been meaning to introduce myself for a while now, but getting myself to sit down and actually write something has been so incredibly hard. I just can't focus. Things I want to say or share come in bits and pieces and are gone by the time I can get on this site. I'very been tapering off Lexapro since August and am down to 10 mg fromy 30. I know it's faster than suggested here, but it seems to be OK. Well, I am still alive anyway. Since I can only seem to put together short thoughts on everything and need to get them out right away, I've decided to use Twitter primarily #TweetingMyRecovery. My handle is @AbleWriterSays if anyone cares to join me or follow along.
  13. Gridley

    Gridley

    In 1986 I was prescribed a tricyclic antidepressant, 75 mg Imipramine PM, to slow bowel function and to relieve pain resulting from ulcerative colitis. I was also put on 1 mg Lorazepam. In 1991 I went CT off both the Imipramine and the Lorazepam, resulting in a terrible colitis flare-up. After a few months I reinstated with success. However, these medications, and everything else I did for the colitis ceased work about three years ago, and in January, 2015, I underwent surgery to remove my colon and replace with an internal J-pouch, which cured the colitis. But that left me with the 30-year-long Imipramine situation. In January, 2016, I began tapering the Imipramine 10% every three weeks, which went fine until I got down to 19 mg, then 12 mg, at which point I began experiencing severe anxiety as well as dizziness. Realizing I had tapered too quickly, I updosed to 25 mg a month ago but have not as yet stabilised at this dose, as I am still experiencing considerable anxiety as well as insomnia. Until September 23, my tapers were approximate percentages as I hadn't yet bought a scale. I use the supplements Theanine and Nature's Balance Happy Camper to help with the anxiety, along with magnesium glycinate. It's only been a month, but I'm a little worried that I am never going to stabilise at 25 mg. In 2004, due to depression, I was put on a succession of SSRIs, in addition to the Imipramine, including Zoloft, Prozac and Effexor. Lexapro 20 mg seemed to finally work and I remain on it at this time. In 2011 I was prescribed 1 mg Lorazepam for insomnia, now 1.5 mg.
  14. Kristine

    Kristine: not alone

    Moderator note: link to Kristine's benzo thread - Kristine: Protracted clonazepam withdrawal? Hello, I am new to this site and would firstly like to extend my gratitude to all the people who have shared their stories and support. I now know I am not alone. My story is long and complex so I will attempt to condense it. I am 43 years old and was introduced to antidepressants 10 years ago after being diagnosed with MDD, GAD and PTSD (l do not feel comfortable with labels) by my psychiatrist. During the first 8 years of treatment multiple antidepressants and other psychotropic medications were prescribed. I will fast forward to October 2015 when I attempted to end my life (I had never been suicidal prior to taking antidepressants). I had to resign from work and was hospitalised for 1 month. At the time I had been taking citalopram for a number of years and had reached the maximum dose. My intuition told me it was not helping. I wanted to stop this medication and my psychiatrist was supportive of this decision. However, it is obvious to me now that she was inexperienced and uneducated with this process. The citalopram was ceased over one week and due to severe anxiety I was commenced on seroquel and diazepam. After leaving hospital I managed to taper off the seroquel and diazepam but became increasingly unwell both mentally and physically. My psychiatrist convinced me that my mental illness had returned and I was commenced on Parnate which was increased in dose over 3 months. Instead of improving my mental and physical ailments worsened and my psychiatrist sort a second opinion. I was hospitalised again in May 2016 under the 'care' of another psychiatrist. This was the beginning of an indescribable hell where I was treated like a human lab rat. Looking back the medications he prescribed were beyond belief and I was the victim of poly pharmacy without adequte professional rational. Unfortunally, like so many others, I was vulnerable and trusted his guidance. He treated me as both an inpatient and out patient over a one year period. Over this time I was prescribed over 14 psychotropic medication some of which were abruptly ceased and crossed over with other medications. If this wasn't enough I was subjected to 15 sessions of unnessaccery ECT. Not surprisingly, I was in a zombified state, unable to function and unable to return to work. My anxiety and depression was not alleviated and I was plagued with tremors, nausea, vomiting, fatigue and migraines. By April 2017 I ceased my appointments with this psychiatrist (he had little belief in withdraw symptoms or side effects of the medication he prescribed - he resorted to blaming me) and returned to my previous psychiatrist. Over the past eight months I have the mammoth task of withdrawing from multiple medications. These include escitalopram (completed reduction), Lithium (competed reduction), clonazepam (partial reduction), bupropion (completed reduction), seroquel (completed reduction), dexamphetamine (partial reduction) and fluoxetine (no reduction). My withdrawal symptoms are horrendous and relentless. My psychiatrist has been unable to advise me along a comfortable path. She appears to be in denial and her support has mostly evaporated. I feel abandoned, alone and frightened. I was forced to seek information independently (for which I am grateful), which continues to be a hideous realisation that for years I was in a constant state of drug withdrawal, side effects and drug interaction. I also feeling very angry about my treatment. I am tapering at the 10% rate now (one medication at a time) but even though I know road ahead will be long and rocky, I feel a sense of empowerment from educating myself. What I am experiencing is common and I am finally breaking free from the clutches of psychiatry.
  15. Hi! English is not my first language so I apologize if my texts are confusing, same with my signature. I quit the last 5 mg escitalopram/cipralex 3 weeks ago. When I went down from 10 to 5 mg nothing got better so I started reading about tardive dysphoria which made me very eager to quit my medication completely. I also found out about 6 months ago that quitting 5 mg at a time is way too drastic for someone who has been using the medication for years, but I figured i'd just endure this last time. The problem is that I've now found out from reading on this site and on other places that some of the side effects might become permanent. So my question now is, should I go back up to 5-4 mg, and then slowly go down 1 mg at a time from there? Or should I just wait this out when it has already been 3 weeks. I'm willing to wait it out if it gets better. But if there are big risks about doing what i'm doing right now i'm gonna go back up if that's your advice. Ps: I do feel horrible physically and mentally and can practically not be around people, but as I said i'm willing to endure it if it gets better. I can't trust my doctors anymore, they want to make me go back up to max dosage with both voxra and cipralex + start giving me more benzo for no good reason. Which is why I'm asking here, the people here seem to have good knowledge about this. TL;DR: Go back up to 5 mg and go down 1 mg at a time or endure this and wait for it to get better?
  16. Hello everyone, I'm a 32 year old female from Germany. Over there I'm in quite the similar forum which already helps tremendously. But I finally decided to sign up here, too. For more support, more hope, more people who understand... I have been mildly depressed for some time because I couldn't handle my physical chronic illness well, anymore. I went to a good therapy. But when I experienced some anxiety issues for the first time in my life I got scared and sadly decided to try Escitalopram. While in hospital for some physical diagnostics in August 2015 I was put on 5mg up to 20mg Escitalopram without any big problems. I continued therapy for another one and a half years and actually felt great. I was one of the lucky people who didn't suffer from any side effects other than a bit of weight gain. In 2017 I went down to 10mg without any problems. Then it was finally time for hubby and me to try to conceive. But before that, the meds had to go. My psychiatrist at the time was nice but, as I know now, clueless. She recommended a quick taper, as stated in my signature and told me I could "get some brain zaps". I tapered and was off in June 2018. I know now I definitely had that honeymoon phase. I felt wonderful. Hubby and I started trying for a baby! Over the summer I had some symptoms that I recognized as withdrawal symptoms. Because now I already knew the German forum. But only on the surface. Had I dug deeper and read through some stories, I would have known that you can crash with some delay. Which is what I did. I fell on October 1 and landed on October 2 in a different, nightmarish world. Everything was so different. Everything! I was a happy woman up until those days. My symptoms at the beginning: akathisia, extreme anxiety all the time, insomnia, including two weeks of complete insomnia, extreme fatigue, muscle tension and pain, diarrhea, massive derealization, crying spells, despair, heart racing and palpitations, bladder problems, hopelessness, stomach problems and more which I might have forgotten. By then I knew there was no point in seeing a doctor. I was bedridden anyway. And I knew this was withdrawal hell. The German forum advised me to reinstate. I did, at 0.25. There was a first little window right after the first dose but overall, I was still in hell. Over time I carefully updosed to 0.35, then later to 0.5 and then, right the next day, because I was so desperate, to 0.6. That's when a different kind of hell broke loose. I felt cornered by my symptoms, I had no room anymore, I couldn't breathe. I was so agitated, my nerves tingling, vomiting, pulse up to 160. Never ever could I survive this. I even got scared I might be able to harm myself. This turned into obsessive thoughts and panic, that I might really be able to end my life, without ever really wanting it. German Forum told me to go back to 0.5 after just a couple of days. I did, but it still took time for those very drastic effects to settle... I couldn't be left alone anymore. I've been lucky to have my husband and mother, sister, friends. Someone was always there. In mid December my grandma jumped in. She lives next door but I couldn't have seen her and scared her before then because I was in such bad shape. But from then on she was happy to take care of me whenever needed. So... I've been holding the dose since the end of November and am going to continue to hold. I'm still more or less housebound. I got agoraphobic, the world seems to big for me. Just some little steps outside the door, nothing more. I'm still in a different world. I never feel save. I do sleep okayish at night but never at daytime because I jolt in terror when I try. I'm terrified by the withdrawal. I'm hopeless and anhedonic, don't have any interest and don't do much. I feel bad writing this. But... I had improvements. Like no more non stop anxiety, no akathisia, I eat, I sleep, I'm not bedridden anymore, hardly any derealization... But the thing is. I'm so terrified. Frozen in fear and feel like I can't trust those improvements. Especially because everybody says it's normal that withdrawal takes years. So why should it be different for me? Did reinstating catch me? Or is crashing hard and suffering for years inevitable for me, as it was for most of you? I don't know who I am and where I stand anymore. I can't trust my body anymore. I'm going through typical windows and waves, though somehow faster than others. I seem to improve faster but cannot trust that. And I feel ashamed whining about that because I know you all have been suffering for long and probably wish you'd feel that kind of progress. I don't even know what living and being happy is supposed to feel like anymore. Will I notice it? Will I know when it's over for me, even when I'm now frozen in fear and feel like I'm not really growing with my improvements? Withdrawal turned me into a child, which is not typically me. It's weird. I am still going through this but am already haunted by the very bad memories. Do you know this? I know lots of affirmations, I pray, I read success stories, I follow Baylissa's wise words. But still acceptance is my weak point. I can't seem to do it. Or rarely. I'm floating through all this with a feeling of nothing to hold on to, despite knowing that I have my wonderful family and friends. Like life is over... I don't ever move freely, feel relaxed. I'm so scared I won't be able to find my way back. That I will remain frozen, even after withdrawal is over. I can't really try things or look at things from normal life because it depresses and scares me so much. Desperate... TV, computer and reading are almost impossible for me. So what can I do? I come online on my mobile. What I do to help me: focus on breathing. Taking fish oil and magnesium. Gaba tea. Some game playing with grandma. Eat. Luckily I can eat everything like before. Drink enough. Pray. Have people around me. What I can't do: guided meditation, relaxing music, yoga... Stuff like that. When I try, terror jumps at me. As if there's a door open in my brain that should be closed. Taking baths is a NO. Memories of horrible waves... Will I forever see and feel withdrawal everywhere? My home doesn't feel the same anymore. All that exists is withdrawal and I'm so scared that won't ever change. Phew, that's a lot. Thanks for reading! Oh! Two more things: luckily I didn't get pregnant over summer! Just the thought of it, in this situation! And my screen name. While I feel devastatingly hopeless inside, I think almost all of us have that glimmer of hope in our hearts. That spark that makes us continue, day by day. Even if we don't realize it. I wish you healing! withhopeinmyheart
  17. Success story: karenrose-i-successfully-came-off-after-years-of-trying Hi everyone. It is great to have a forum like this. I am so grateful to find qualified help. I was given an antidepressant 13 years ago to help with a deep depression that no psychotherapy or alternative approach would help with. Paxil was a godsent at the time. However, with my first attempt to come off, I learned how destructive these drugs can be and had to go to Cymbalta, then Lexapro. I came off again, this time with aminoacids and was succesful for about 6 months. I got very depressed again and went back on Lexapro. After several traumatic events I learned that I had Hashimoto's and finally understood how to treat this. My depression abated. Over the last two years I have tapered off Lexapro - very difficult, but succesful to the point that I am now on 1mg instead of 45. I am struggling with the last mg and have horrible symptoms when I try to go off. Looking in this forum to try to find ways to taper more slowly off 1mg. Will elaborate on this later. This is my quick intro for now. Thank you so much for this life saving forum.
  18. Hi guys, I’m new but I have been reading a lot and this seems to be really good info. Especially the stuff I read from Altostrata. My story: i took escitalopram for 4.5 month, the last month being an accelerated taper bc lexapro never worked in the least for me and looking back now I believe it gave me akathisia when I increased to 20mg. Anyway, about 3 weeks after I hit 0mg, after the physical stuff subsided, I got hammered with emotional turmoil and I’m pretty sure the akathisia came back 5 fold. I couldn’t sit still, horrible anxiety followed by depressive fits that seemed to cycle and sadness/hopelessness. It almost seemed like I was bipolar and thus I ended up on lamictal a month ago. I can sit still now but Im still emotionally wrecked. Mainly I just can’t quit hyperfocusing on how bad I want to feel normal and be off this stuff. I started questioning everything and researching on my own. I now believe it was just lexapro withdrawal I was dealing with and now I’m on lamictal at 50mg. I did 25 mg for 2 weeks and have since been on 50mg for around 31 days total. What do you guys recommend for me in terms of a taper. I don’t want to compound the ssri withdrawal with another medicine. note: I also take 50mg of trazodone to sleep bc it’s been the only way I could get any sleep for this entire process. Thanks in advance, J
  19. Hi! I will keep this post pretty plain for now, as my WD symptoms (the pains, mainly) make it hard to even use a computer for long. I will also try to make a short "signature" version of my history later today. When I was signing up, I was asked to provide a history of my case. I'm gonna paste it below. So, here goes. ---------------------------------------- All of the following changes/switches were done in 1-2 weeks each (except where otherwise noted). I.e., very quickly (which is bad). - Started Amisulpride 600mg and Escitalopram 30mg in 2014 for OCD. - In 2017 Amisulpride dose became 500mg. A few months after that, I developed tardive dystonia (cervical). - In 2018 autumn switched from Amisulpride to Abilify (about 15mg), to combat the dystonia. Indeed the movements stopped, but I was very sleepy (was taking lots of baclofen too). So I moved back to Amisulpride 500mg. - In 2019 february made another attempt at switching to Abilify (22.5mg). It was successful. But since then, I gradually developed disabling joint pain. - In 2019 (around July) reduced Abilify to 15mg, and nothing much changed. - In 2019 September switched from Escitalopram to Paroxetine (40mg) to combat the joint pain. Got a slight improvement in joint pain. Since the first day of Paroxetine, I began having eye problems. - About 3-4 weeks later I reduced Paroxetine to 20mg and Abilify to 7.5mg. Nothing much changed. - About a week later, I reduced Paroxetine to 15mg and Abilify to 3.75mg. Finally the joint pain was almost gone. - Soon, the joint pain reappeared so I started taking 4x3.75mg Abilify and since then, my joint pain is quite minor. - About 3-4 weeks later I switched (Cold Turkey) back from Paroxetine to Escitalopram (7.5mg) to combat the eye problems. That did not help, and I started getting disabling muscle cramps (in quadriceps). Then I found the "paroxetine withdrawal support" FB group. - About 4 days later, I switched (Cold Turkey) back from Escitalopram to Paroxetine (15mg), because of the cramps and because of what I learned from the FB group. - That didn't reduce the cramps. So I increased Paroxetine back to 20mg, which did help somewhat. - 1-2 weeks later, we're at the present moment (24 Dec 2019). ---------------------------------------- I'll be happy to communicate with you guys in order to help one another in this journey! In Facebook I'm actually afraid to help other people, because Facebook is too addictive with the "likes" and "loves" etc. Especially for lonely people like me. I hope this forum will be different in this regard!
  20. Hi everyone! I am so happy I discovered your forum last week! I am a stay-at-home mother of three children from 5 to 10, and happily married. I have been on Escitalopram 10 mg for one year, since February 24, 2019. A doctor prescribed it to me because I had been in an acute anxiety condition for many days and it was still increasing. I was diagnosed a burn out too. It was hell for me, I wasn't able to do anything, panicking with difficult breathing. I had been doing everything for my family for 10 years, never taking a break, without fun hobby or social life: a perfect recipy for the break down that happened. Now, thanks to my psychotherapy, all the rest I took and the new way I live (I work less, I involve everyone at home and I have hobbies and friends now), I feel better. I still feel tired and in the process of totally healing from my burn out, but I am on the good way. I plan to tapper off from escitalopram because, in spite I tolerate it well, I'm beginning to have more very small involontary movements and I don't like that. Moreover, the doctor who prescribed it to me told me to take it only for a year, which I agree with. I think I will now be able to control my remaining anxiety with my psychotherapy -- if escitalopram ever helped in my healing process, which I'll never know. So I thought I could tapper off within 6 months. My pharmacist told me to do that within 1 month, but I knew better because I wanted to avoid the withdrawal horror stories I read on Internet. What a surprise when I discovered your forum telling I should go even more slower than that! I am so, so scared of the discontinuation symptoms that, believe me, I will go slow and do the -10% every month, should it take 4 years to be escitalopram free. Now my only worry is that I cannot purchase the liquid form in Canada, it is not available in my country... So I will read your advice about how I can make my own oral solution or how to make powder with my pills and prepare smaller doses myself. I should start next week and I'll let you know how it goes. Thank you for being there! Your work here is a real blessing, and I will share it with the many antidepressant-users I know.
  21. Moderator note: Link to Nikki74's benzo thread: lexapro kindling akasthesia Mirtazipine diazepam Help. i recently stopped lexapro after a short taper from ten to five mg over 9 days. i had been on 20mg since 2011 then tapered quickly in June and stopped. This was a few weeks after stopping pregabalin 150mg v abruptly. all this time I was also on 15mg Mirtazipine. my anxiety went crazy and gp told me to double Mirtazipine dose to 30. I lasted 3 weeks of hellish symptoms and was put on diazepam and Zopiclone. im now off Zopiclone which was tough. 6 weeks ago GP told me to go back to 15mg Mirtazipine and add in 10mg lexapro. This didn't help so now have stopped lexapro three days ago but took 2.5 mg last night as am feeling withdrawal. gp wants me to start tapering diazepam as I'm getting worse akasthesia when it wears off or even a paradoxical reaction to it. i have akasthesia. Insomnia. Severe anxiety. Shaking. Muscle weakness. Obsessive thoughts and suicidal ideation as cannot go on like this. The only brief ride break I get is the 15mg Mirtazipine which calms me for 2-3 hours. How can I go on? i am a single mum and have CFS already for many years. do I stay off the Lexapro now? How do I cope with withdrawals, akasthesia, and tapering diazepam?? I take 7mg a day been on it three months. i can't stop in one place and am smoking (just tobacco) every half hour. i got sober in 2013. this is hell.
  22. servadei

    ☼ Servadei

    First, I'd like to say I choose this site because people seem really nice and non-judgemental (hope I won't see 'your dose is too small, you've been on antidepressants only for a year etc.) I decided to share my story, not to ask for pity, but to maybe get better tips. So in summary: -since childhood I've always been a bit of deep thinker, though I've never had problems making friends etc. So i would say i had happy childhood, with no big traumatic events -when I was 12 my mother died (she had cancer) -at that time I was stepping into the puberty and as my dad was drinking and my brothers went to college, I was left alone and maybe with too much freedom. My mother was strict but caring and full of love so I often wonder if I would end up like this i she was still alive -I smoked weed a couple of times and drank every weekend, also took my dads normabel when he yelled at me or something -my dad is now alchol free, and he even stopped smoking, but he used to beat me...well not much but still enough to leanight me emotional scars I guess. I thought it did not bother me until recently when I talked with a psychologist ad started crying, so I guess I kept it buried? (she also told me to report him but I assure you it's not that bad, also, I really love my dad, he supports me...everyone has flaws, and it's not my dads fault he went to war and has a mild ptsd) -at that time I could not rely on my dad, my brothers were everything...till the day the train hit our car and they both ended in hospital, one of them almost died. We were never sentimental or emotional around each other (kind of a family thing) but I cried all night thinking I would loose them. I found about the accident through internet article my friend sent me, and I had to wake up my dad who was very drunk that night -so all in all I was a confused teenager but i didn't had problems until summer 2013 -I was diagnosed in Jan 2014 with phoboc-anxiety disorder and put on meds (Escitalon-escitalopram-10 mg) -Currently coming off of them and going through withdrawal (it's my 12th day without them) This is all for now. I have a lot of questions but I'll take it slow. P.S. for my fellow christians, my fate helped me a great deal (it's the reason I didn't break down), so tips and prayers are very welcomed.
  23. 10 years of antidepressants. Four months of recent hell and counting from trying to get off of them. Lets save some time and say about five months ago I decided to get off my antidepressant (escatalopram). Went from 20 mg, two weeks later 10 mg, two weeks lather 5 mg, two weeks later 0 mg then a hellish destabilization occurred. I managed about 1 month off then I decided to restart on 5 mg which I have been on for about two months until now 9/5/2016. Not doing much better from reinstating the drug but leagues better then the depths of cold turkey. Looking for advice. Should I go up a dose? I really don't want to but its starting to affect my work and I have a very promisinbg career coming up if I can keep my head on straight. If I just stay on this dose would I feel better in time? should I stick with it? And how when I know when I should reduce my dosage again? Anyway these questions i am hoping to get help with because this place is the only place where people even remotely know what they are talking about with regards to these topics.
  24. April 13- started 5mg/5ml liquid escitaloprám oxalate for 18 days, had bad side effects-constant headache, migraine, panic attacks at night(never had before), leg/body jerks at night, dizziness, sensitive to light and noise, nausea, sore throat, dry eyes, lack of appetite, higher level of anxiety than before. Dr switched me to liquid sertaline on April 30 that I was to ramp up on from 20mg/1ml up to 3ml. I decided I wanted to not be on the anti anxiety/anti depressants anymore, Dr said I should just stop cold turkey. So I only took the 20 mg/1ml. Then I called pharmacist for taper instructions. He said to do 1ml every 2 days for a week and then 1ml every 3 days. I did 0.5 ml 2nd to last time and 0.4ml the last time. I've had headaches pretty constantly for over a month now(I usually have for like 4-5 days then it goes away and then comes back), eye floaters on Thursday to now, muscle core pain (could be related to my current back and chest pain-costochondritis), occasionally leg jerks at night, some increased anxiety still. I did an eye appointment today and everything was all good. I am taking several supplements trying to also treat my costochondritis:Turmeric curcuminOmega 369 flaxseed (I'm allergic to fish)Magnesium citrateVitamin d3 1000iuHemp oil gummiesCentrum multivitaminProbioticMelatonin 5mg (started taking after I stopped taking hydroxyzine nightly)NuvaringI'm looking for relief from the headaches or how much longer they will last. So upon finding this site I'm wondering if I should reinstate on the sertaline, but I'm not sure if I just start at the 1ml or if I should go up to the 3ml where I was supposed to go up to since I didn't really taper off the escitaloprám. I'm so irritated that I ever started these. I didn't want a long term anxiety med, just something to help me get through this Pandemic and my doctor and eap counselor pushed me to do it. I do have an appt request for a new therapist since I'm out of eap counseling and hoping they can also shed some light on this.
  25. Hi Everyone I apologize for so much information at once I'm too sick to do a full brand new post so I have copied and pasted posts from support groups on facebook I was directed here too for help. I am in desperate need to know if I should reinstate any of my medications or if it is too risky. I was wondering if I should try taking the lyrica again then do a proper taper, the psychiatrist put me on for my anxiety I never had pain before I took it until he took me off it too fast I first started getting the muscles contractions and horrible muscle cramp pain and had my first uncontrollable muscle movement episode of my face after the lyrica was stopped with only a 4 day taper which I did not know was too quickly I had been on it for 5 weeks. I think the lyrica stopped so suddenly started it all but then the escitalopram and trazadone tapers and getting off them too quickly just made everything worse. I have been so desparate in my thinking to see if there is a way to reverse this what I think may be dystonia that I have been thinking should I try to go back onto the lyrica to see if this disappears and then do a really slow proper taper but then I think it is so risky what if I really mess myself up worse but living with this and with it only being so soon 4.5 months and I have so much pain already I already cannot handle it I cannot imagine handling it any worse. I'm so afraid and do not know what to do I'm afraid that this will not go away with time if it is the dystonia. What does anyone think do you think trying lyrica again would be worth the risk? it is so hard to know what to do considering I had 3 too fast drug tapers. Does anyone think this would be too risky? I'm sure I have developed dystonia more and more everyday it scares me. I can feel my waist and hips turning to the left and I have less control of my legs then normal and the feel wobbly or like spaghetti or elasticy I don't know how to describe it and my neck and head want to turn to the left I feel like a force is pushing it to the left. Also I feel the muscles in my face moving mainly wanting to pull down especially in my jaw area and my neck and face muscles get tight. I also have had 3 times where I have had uncontrollable movements of my face that lasted for hours the first one was the worst that happened right after I was stopped on the lyrica in the hospital that included my eyes, tongue protruding and mouth, pretty much my whole face and my neck and right arm twisting to the left the nurse told me it was anxiety and to calm down I did not believe her that it was anxiety I have had anxiety long enough to know it does not do that. Since then I have had 2 more episodes that involved then same area's but not my tongue. I'm very scared of my future and no doctors will say the drugs have anything to do with it. Also my hands, wrists and lower arms get stiff throughout most of the day. My muscles get unbearably painful a very very deep bone consistent aching pain. I was able to move around today more and do some things in the kitchen and I did notice the pain lessened while I was more active. This is when I really noticed though I'm definitely dealing with the twisting of my right side of my body to the left. It makes me walk around like I look intoxicated. I really respect all you peoples opinions and knowledge and have some questions to ask if you would not mind. I was wondering could it get better or go away and just be a part of withdrawals or once this happens do you have it for life? Have been off antidepressants for for 3 to 4.5 months (too fast tapers) had been on poly drugged for 1.5 years then before that on citalopram for 10 years. A huge mess I was fine for the first 10 years developed insomnia and my anti was switched to trazadone and when that did not work the poly drugging happened for 1.5 years (I was a zombie and almost entirely non function able still am but no longer a zombie but I am extremely sick now riddled with unlivable pain still suffer from insomnia and take unfortunately 7.5mg zopiclone and 1mg clonazepam a day) but these last few days my muscle pain, uncontrollable cramping, stiffness, tightness in my head, face, throat, neck, right arm/hand, shoulder and sometimes my left arm/hand and also episodes of uncontrollable muscle movements of my face is so unbearable lately I cannot handle it any longer. Today I have been at my wits end desperately not thinking I can go on any longer. I am so sick fluish this last few months also I'm getting to the point the pain in intolerable another minute it is almost 24/7 I have only had the muscle pain or tightness cramping go away for maybe a half hour a few times in the last month. It is too much. I was so sick before all this for the last 1,5 years that I am so weak I cannot this week get myself to hardly eat and bathe the pain is so intense I want to it all to end. No one can help me. I need to desperately no what to do. The pain is like you have if you get a severe cramp or charlie horse for instance this morning it has been a constant charliehorse in my lower right arm and hand, right shoulder, neck, face and head. It is so painful I only could sleep for a couple hours last night. I even took a baclofen (which I only have taken maybe 6 times in the last 3 months when I feel I can no longer take the pain another minute), 2 advils, clonazepam and all my vitamins. I just do not know how to go on any longer. I have no support group at home. My husband is my only person I have and he along with my doctor think my pain is psychosomatic. My husband cannot tolerate my complaining or crying or making any sounds of or about my pain. I don't know how to make the pain stop or live with it anymore so it is tolerable. I cannot handle the suffering anymore I literally am desperate for help so badly. Since lyrica was one of the last meds I was on that the pain started after the psychiatrist took me off with only a 4 day taper and that is when the nerve and muscle cramping, movements and severe head pain started I do not know if I should try to reinstate after being off it for 4.5 months but I think it is too risky but then again I'm desperate for this muscle pain relief i am so afraid I have the early stages of dystonia too. I have had episodes of uncontrollable muscle movements of my face, neck and right arm. I am so afraid of that. But this muscle pain is so intense it is unimaginable I really need to numb this pain somehow. The severe head pain migraine burning so painful 24/7 and the piercing tinnitus. Even the numbness, tingling burning nerve pain allover but the worst is the muscle pain it is so severe. Whenever I try to type on the computer this all makes my pain levels go up so much worse but I need the help so badly, emotional support. I am desperate I feel for my sanity and my life, I need knowledge so bad. I want to do everything right now. I want to get better if there is any chance. I need something to keep me strong to endure this it feels like I am being tortured daily and have to put up with it because no one will listen to me. I wish I would have been thinking clearly enough to search out support groups before I let him put me on these meds or atleast before they were stopped or the too quick tapers. I cannot stop thinking about wanting to turn back time. I hope my life is not ruined forever unless I can get this pain under a tolerable level and I pray to god I do not have dystonia but I fear I do from having joined a dystonia support group on here it sounds all to familiar. I do not know how I can make it through life with no support, knowing my doctor is not listening to me and my husband is not trying to help get me better just not wanting me to bother him with my pain or worries, be silent. How do I survive this? I cannot hardly look after myself being so sick, I have nowhere to go. Does anyone else that had been off antidepressants for as around long as I have 4.5 months or longer experience this muscle cramping, severe pain? Please explain where in your body and the level of pain? Also any uncontrollable muscle movements? What do you take besides magnesium for the pain? Does anyone ever recover from antidepressants withdrawals/pain after stopping them too quickly after being on antidepressants for 12 years? Brief History Born August 1, 1970. Female 48 years old. At time of illness Tracy had been a National Lifeguard Instructor Trainer and Lifesaving Society Instructor Trainer with a career as an Aquatic Supervisor at an indoor town pool for 5 years. Training and certifying Lifeguard/Swimming Instructors, supervising daily duties of lifeguards/Instructors/front deck staff as well as implementing and maintaining programming, scheduling, operational procedures and guidelines. Before that Tracy had owned and operated her own Day Spa for 10 years as well as worked in advertising. She graduated from college in 1993 in Graphic Design/Advertising Art. Tracy fell ill from insomnia in September of 2018 she had been just diagnosed with severe sleep apnea and had just started cpap therapy but found the treatment invasive and could not tolerate the cpap treatment enough to fall asleep with the cpap machine. She had been lead to believe she would die in her sleep if she did not use her cpap machine and became fearful and so persistent in always using her cpap machine while sleeping that her intolerance to the therapy resulted in severe insomnia. Citalopram 20 mg/day and 1mg Clonazepam as needed for 10 years prior to her insomnia. Clonazepam was rarely needed. Dec. 14, 2018 Citalopram 20 mg/day was changed to Trazodone 100mg/day. Clonazepam 1mg/twice a day. Mental Health declined due to sleep deprivation, becoming emotionally weak and sensitive, frequent crying, anxiety and ability to function daily declined. Was no longer able to work due to 3 months of insomnia and mental health decline after medication change. Feb. 9 -16, 2019 Psychiatric Ward Sertraline 20mg/day was tried but discontinued due to side effects. 20 mg/day Citalopram was added to the Trazodone 100mg/day. Clonazepam 1mg/ twice a day. Was very ill on the combination. After Feb. 16 – June, 2019 Citalopram 20 mg was discontinued and Trazodone 100mg was tapered and stopped. Clonazepam was tapered to .5mg then switched to Valium 10mg and tapered to 2mg, Buspirone 10mg was added then stopped. By this time insomnia had become extremely severe and ability to function daily on the most basic level was lost. Anxiety was severe and dehabilitating. June 1 - August 9, 2019 Psychiatric Ward Quetiapine 100mg/day added. Citalopram 50mg/day started then after 5 weeks discontinued due to intolerable side effects and switched to Mirtazapine 45mg/day, Fluoxetine 20mg/day, Zopiclone 7.5 mg, Clonazepam .5mg/twice a day. Discharged feeling very drugged. Was able to sleep with cpap machine 7-8 hours/night(every 24 hours) Had regained ability to keep up hygiene and function on a basic level. Mentally was very out of it. Aug. 9/2019 – Nov. 12, 2019 Due to feeling so drugged from Sept. 9/2019 Fluoxetine 20mg was tapered and stopped on Oct. 2/2019. Clonazepam was increased to 1mg/twice a day. Oct. 14 – Oct. 19/2019 felt the best that I ever had felt since falling ill in fall of 2018 but my mind and body felt very weak and fragile but then for no known reason I went past the feeling better stage and started to decline back into having a hard time functioning mentally and physically but could still do daily functioning tasks. I was able to keep good daily hygiene, cook supper, keep the dishes washed, take on a small cleaning task every day for example wash off a coffee table or do wash a load of clothes. Nov. 12/2019 – Dec. 12/2019 Hospital Was admitted at routine doctors appointment to the hospital since I had declined from starting to feel better and I continued to decline during the Quetiapine taper. Quetiapine 100mg was tapered and stopped, Zopiclone was reduced to 3.5mg/day, Clonazepam was increased to 1mg/three times a day After this I started to feel like I was improving as in not feeling so drugged and I was mentally and physically able to function better. I suggested staying on Mirtazapine 45mg for awhile to see if I would stabilize on it and be ok my doctor did not agree so the Mirtazapine 45mg was tapered to 15mg and I was started on Escitalopram 10mg. I was on this combination for the last week I was in the hospital before going into a different psychiatric ward for a second opinion on a treatment. My body felt good no body sensations or pain but a small headache and my mind felt weak but not bad cognitively, my anxiety was mid range level to high. I questioned in my mind whether I should still go to the psychiatric ward and if I could handle living this way and if I would get better but arrangements had already been made and I thought at the time maybe I could get stabilized there on the Escitalopram if it worked and have my ability to sleep maintained. On my initial appointment my husband and I had with the psychiatrist before entering he had said his goal was to get me on only the Escitalopram and hopefully if my anxiety could get reduced I may be able to sleep without and sleeping medication. Being on only one medication sounded good. Dec. 12, 2019 – Feb. 3, 2020 2nd psychiatric ward Mirtazapine was stopped, Escitalopram had just been increased to 15mg/day, Clonazepam was reduced to 1mg/twice a day. Zopiclone was increased to 7.5mg. The first week of being there I felt really good I had no body pain or sensations, my mind was clear but felt weak but I was thinking well. My anxiety was high during the day but after my evening clonazepam dose of 1mg I felt anxiety free and really good but I was getting very tired again as my sleeping had started to decline since the Mirtazapine had been stopped. Escitalopram was increased to 20mg as the next couple of weeks progressed and then I felt drugged and out of it again, not fully present and was no longer able to think as clearly my basic functioning was on the low range but I was able to keep up my daily hygiene and attend groups. Lyrica 100mg/day was started on Dec. 29 for anxiety. Clonazepam was switched afterwards to Lorazepam .5 mg twice a day then shortly after discontinued. I had not wanted to take the Lyrica because the goal had been to have me on as little medications as possible and I did not have nerve pain but the psychiatrist said it was better to be on Lyrica then Clonazepam. Feeling pressured to try it I gave in. Trazodone 100mg/day was started on Jan. 14/2010 and within the first week after that I started to experience muscle pain throughout different areas of my body and developed a constant migraine headache, sweats, chills, ear pain, nausea and constant diarrhea. I did start to sleep longer but could not fall asleep with my cpap machine anymore. Since Trazodone had not worked well for me in the past while being on it and the citalopram at the same time I was not comfortable going on it but the psychiatrist told me he would take me off it if I did not feel well on it. At this point I was not thinking clearly and wanted to not make the psychiatrist give up on trying to get me better and I felt extremely pressured to not go against his treatment plan. I told the nurses and my psychiatrist during the last 3 weeks I was there that I thought the Trazodone and Lyrica had me take a turn for the worst and that I was very sick. I was desperate for them to listen to me but they turned a blind eye and had closed ears to my complaints of suffering. 7.5mg/day Zopiclone still continued but was raised to 10mg/day the last week I was there. Lyrica 100mg/day was discontinued on Jan. 27/2020 with only a 4 day taper. My psychiatrist was not happy that I wanted to go off it because I felt it was making me feel drugged and I thought it was contributing to my body pains and migraine headache. He told me I was to be discharged within that week. He told me to take whatever he wants me to take that week without question. He at the same time as discontinuing the Lyrica took me off my propranolol 20mg, enalapril 5mg, Atorvastatin, reactine. He raised my Zopiclone to 10mg/day and put me on another medication which I cannot remember the name I was told by the nurse when I was given the first dosage that it was an older type of drug that was often given to shift workers to keep them awake during the day. I started the first dose on Jan.29/2020 but only took it the one day because that was the first day after I took it in the morning around 10am I started to experience a burning searing excruciating headache/migraine, tinnitus, hot sweats, uncontrollable muscle cramping over my entire body including my neck and face, my legs and feet went numb and my body pain was excruciating. The nausea and not being able to eat much but digestive cookies and constant diarrhea was the state I was in at the time I was discharged on Feb. 3/2020. Dec. 12, 2019 – Feb. 3, 2020 2nd psychiatric ward I was in treatment trying to get better the psychiatrist put me on all these I got very ill and he took me off the lyrica too quickly which I did not realize at the time and then discharged me sick not knowing what to do and telling my husband and I that I had to start taking my treatment into my own hands and that I had been off and on enough medications in the last 2 years that I should know how to taper and what drugs are making feel bad that he had know idea that I knew my body the best. So my doctor tried to help I was in so much pain and sick (not as much as I am in now though) here are the too fast tapers Escitalopram 20mg Started on Dec.5, 2019 Taper: Feb. 16 - 20, 2020 15mg. Feb. 21 - 26, 2020 10mg. Feb. 27 - Mar. 2, 20202 5mg. Mar. 3 Stopped 0mg. · Reply · 1d · Edited Lyrica 100mg Started on Dec. 29, 2019 100mg. Taper: Jan. 24 - Jan.27, 2020 50mg, Jan. 28, 2020 Stopped 0mg. (only 4 day taper) · Reply · 1d Trazodone 100mg Started on Jan. 14, 2020 100mg. Taper: Feb. 4 - Feb. 14, 2020 75mg. Feb. 14 - Mar. 6, 2020 50mg. (Then paused Feb.16 -Mar.3 for Escitalopram taper) Tapered again: Mar. 6 - Mar. 25, 2020 25mg. Mar. 25 to Apr.6, 2020 12.5mg. Apr. 7, 2020 Stopped 0mg. I'm currently not on another antidepressant this last treatment scared me so much I did not want to start another one. I currently am still on the zopiclone 7.5mg and clonazapam 0.5 twice daily though unfortunately and will have to at some point try to get off those.
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