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  1. readyfortheworld

    Introduction from Texas

    Hello everyone, I’m a 25 year old male from Texas. My journey started January 2016, when I experienced a panic attack (that appeared to come out of the blue) on my way to visit my sister while I was riding a bus. I felt like I couldn’t breathe and I felt like I was about to pass out. From that day on, I started to have panic attacks that would last all day for several days. I wasn’t sure what was going on so I asked my mom to take me to the doctor. The doctor said I was having panic attacks and also anxiety. He prescribed me a Mexican medication named Adepsique (I live in a border town and decided to go there since health care is way cheaper there than in the US). I took that medication for around 6 months and started to have suicidal ideation and just felt in a low mood most of the time. I attributed those symptoms to the medication and “tapered” off it fairly quick. Once I was fully off it, I started to have unbearable insomnia/anxiety and wasn’t able to sleep for about two days. I felt like I was going crazy so I asked my mom if she could take me to an actual psychiatrist and she obliged. The psychiatrist prescribed me 10 mg of escitalopram and 2.5 mg of olanzapine. I don’t really feel like it helped that much but I felt better on it. I decided I didn’t want to be on medication for the rest of my life so I decided to start tapering it off. I might’ve tapered too quickly off it but I was just anxious to get off those medications. I don’t really remember how long the taper lasted but I was off both medications by the last week of April 2018. I dealt with several withdrawal symptoms such as suicidal thoughts, anxiety, mild motion sickness, insomnia, irritably, aggression and intrusive thoughts. That lasted most of 2018. Around October of that year, I started dealing with IBS-like symptoms such as stomach pain, frequent gas, constant bowel movements and urgent bowel movements. Most of my other withdrawal symptoms have been reduced but I’m still stuck with the IBS issues to this day. Although I’ve been suffering for these last couple of years, I’ve felt like I’ve grown a lot as a person. I have changed my diet to a whole-foods plant based diet, I exercise daily, and do things I wouldn’t have thought I would do when I was younger. Sorry if this post is too long.
  2. Hi everyone, I am new here and I would greatly appreciate your help! I am sorry for my long story (with possible errors) but I just can't find anyone who can answer my questions and I desperately seek recognition and advice. If you do not want to read this long story please scroll to my questions and fears? I'm Renske, 46 years old, and I'm from the Netherlands. I have been taking 20 mg of Seroxat aka Paxil for a very long time (since I was 19) because I was diagnosed with a compulsive disorder. Seroxat worked very well for me for a long time. Mainly because I gradually gained weight (more than 25 kilos), and kept gaining (with no obvious reason, such as eating a lot or something like that) and everything was checked; bloodwork, thyroid etc , I decided a few years ago to try to phase out Seroxat. Because I already knew how difficult that would be, I did it VERY slowly, with a suspension. I was busy with this for a year. Throughout the year I was particularly affected by huge irritations and hostility. It seemed as if I had absolutely no patience and I was constantly angry. I have been very sad about this, because I was particularly unkind and impatient towards my children (8 and 11). Not physically thank God, but extreme irritation and impatience is of course also very bad. This made me feel very guilty. The phasing out eventually failed, the moment I took almost nothing anymore, because I became extremely anxious and because the obsessive thoughts came back. Because I didn't have a back-up plan, after all the effort 😞 I quickly rebuilt to the full dose. It didn't work properly anymore; so i went up to 30 mg. Still didn't work properly. What I found remarkable, though, was that the aggressive / irritated feelings greatly decreased. In consultation with a psychologist and psychiatrist I recently decided to switch to Lexapro (escitapram) although I realize that it is a matter of trying, because many SSRIs work the same (with the risk that it would not work properly again) and that they often have the same side effects (weight gain). I noticed that I had developed some sort of aversion to Seroxat, because it is apparently the most difficult drug to phase out and because it is the biggest culprit among the SSRis when it comes to weight gain. The current situation: week 1: Seroxat (paxil) I went from 30 mg to 20 mg, week 2; 20 mg of Seroxat, week 3; 10 mg Seroxat and 5 mg Escitalopram (lexapro), week 4; stop Seroxat and 10 mg escitalopram. Afterwards; continue with 10 mg escitalopram. I understand that 10 mg of Lexapro (escitalopram) is approximately equal to 20 mg of Seroxat. I am now at the beginning of week 5. During these past weeks I have had the so-called and famous brain zapps, and huge sweat attacks. But the worst thing is that I am AGAIN so terribly irritated and hostile. I recognize this as a withdrawal from Seroxat, I am almost certain that this is not a side effect of building the escitalopram. Ironically, I don't have a lot of trouble with my compulsion, but all the more with my very short temper. Discussed it with the psychiatrist; she indicates that if this is a withdrawal phenomenon, it should be over in a few weeks, according to the pharmacist who makes the product. Of course I said that that is the biggest bullsh*t and that there are so many people who suffer from these symptoms for a longer period of time. She didn't really have an answer for that. She indicated that maybe it was my personality that came back. But that is nonsense; I was always gentle and kind to others. this is also not ordinary irritation due to stress or something, but it really seems like something physical that really engulfs me, just like that She suggested perhaps adding some Seroxat again? The reason why I do not believe in this is because in the past I have phased out the Seroxat very slowly and then I also had such symptoms. Why would that be different now? My questions and fears: Does anyone recognize the symptoms of irritation, impatience and hostility of phasing out the Seroxat / Paxil? How long can this take? Was this passing on? Is there anyone with whom this went away as a new drug started to work properly? I am afraid that this withdrawal phenomenon will continue to exist for a long time due to the withdrawal of Seroxat, while the Lexapro may work, can this coexist? Or is that far-fetched? I know that all anti-depressants must be phased out gradually. Would it make sense to take a little more Seroxat next to the Lexapro, so that I would phase out slower, despite using Lexapro at the same time (within safe margins of course)because the (very) slow reduction has not diminished the feelings of irritation in the past, and I am now inclined to finally stop completely with Seroxat and switch completely to Lexapro. I would be so grateful if I get some responses from people who recognize things. Again, sorry for my long story. Thanks so much in advance. Renske
  3. Hi, I wrote a big introduction, maybe that’s why I did not get many responses. I’ll try again. I’m Renske (46) from the Netherlands. I suffer from ocd. therefore i can hardly do without medication. Currently I’m switching from Seroxat to Lexapro. Seroxat didn’t work properly any more en in gained an enormous amount of weight. I tried tapering off Seroxat before, very slowly. It took me a year and I experienced I became very irritable and angry during the entire time. It failed, Now i’m trying again: this time i’m crosstapering to Lexapro. I’m experiencing the same withdrawal symptoms: I’m very irritable, angry and impatient. This troubles me a lot, especially because I hurt my children with my behavior. I take lorazepam daily, just to try to be Less aggressive. I’m afraid this won’t pass. Had anyone had the same experience? And did this pass? I’m worried. Thanks in advance.
  4. Hi all, I joined this site several weeks back, tried to create a forum but my internet went out while I was doing so, I don't think it went through, so if this is a repost or posted in the wrong area, I'm sorry. Anyway, long story short, I'm female and close to turning twenty two, I originally started sertraline around 15-16 years old for anxiety, (generalized, panic attacks, and social) and depression. I started at a lower dose but after several years made my way up to 200mg, stayed on it for another several years, and at the age of 21 finally managed to come off them completely after many attempts that failed due to withdrawal. Fast forward to the end/beginning of this year after being off them for around eight months, my suicidal ideation got severe again, and fearing the worst, I jump shipped and started sertraline again because I was afraid of what I may do. After about 2 months on them again at 50mg, I tapered off over about a week and a half because they were giving me brain zaps, reduced sexual function, brain fog, etc, and I realized why I quit in the first place. Now I'm here two months later wondering if I've ruined myself for doing so. I've had a lot of emotional blunting and anhedonia, but the thing that I do not understand is that I am quick to irritability and anger, but nothing else. I can get sad at times, I have cried a few times which I couldn't manage on the short time I went back on the pills, but I used to have full on meltdowns, which I know isn't ideal, but at least it was something. I am an emotional person, and living in this fog and anhedonia is very concerning to me. I had issues with it before on the pills and even the short time off, but not to this extent. I've been trying to be positive, but I'm about two months in and I'm just tired of living through this window, if that makes sense. It's frustrating because sometimes I can feel this literal switch in my body, that is so close to clicking everything back together, but it doesn't. Other times I don't feel a switch at all. I've had more depersonalization episodes which I haven't had before. I always had a bit of dissociation, but the episodes have definitely been worse. I guess I just don't understand why after years of high dosages, constantly going on and off, I could quit fine and return to normal functioning within two months, where as now after a smaller dosage and shorter period, I'm doing way worse two months in now. Sorry if this is too detailed, but I want to be as clear as possible for any other women going through the same thing and to document my personal experience. I also am able to orgasm, but not the way I used to be able to. The short time on the pills I had near 0 interest and orgasm was hard, so while it is good I can do this again, it isn't the same rush as before, and it isn't nearly as pleasurable due to genital numbness. That has gotten better somewhat, I am able to tell if I am touching myself down there and feel the temperature of things, but the pleasure that was there before and the warm feeling is still not back. A little over a month off, I had a couple random times I became wet down there, and would feel more of a throbbing feeling I had before the pills, to elaborate on that I guess aside from the obvious sensation, it was a desire of, holy ****, I need it now! I don't have that anymore, yet again. With enough concentration and thinking about sex enough, I can get somewhat of a desire, but not much. I thought I was getting better a month ago due to the random lubrication and able to feel temperatures again, along with maybe 10-15% of original feeling coming back, but the past month nothing else has changed, and I haven't randomly gotten wet down there or had much of a throbbing sensation since two or three episodes. I guess my question is, what is your experience with withdrawals from anti-depressants? For those of you who have recovered, did it come back at once, or was it a more gradual thing? From my brief time on this site it seems most swing back and forth like a pendulum, getting better than not, then eventually after weeks or months of going back and forth one stone is then officially planted, only to have to fight the next ten ahead, whether it be the fight with emotions or sexual dysfunction. While I certainly would love to hear from everyone, as I have scrolled through many forums on this site, if there are any females my age, I would love to hear your responses in particular just to know there are others like me going through the same thing, and it would help me understand maybe more of what to look for in terms of recovery, though I acknowledge everyone isn't the same. It's just very disheartening being this young and having to worry about this. It sucks, but I have read many success stories and I am trying to stay positive, especially since I have had some recovery, even if it is marginal.
  5. Hello, My name is Cathy and I live in Minnesota. I have a long history of depression, numerous meds, ECT, a study for VNS, a study for genotypes, etc. Typically I would get into more detail but it hurts too much to type. I started Nardil about 7-8 weeks ago and was on a steady 60 mg. dose for at least five weeks. Early on I started developing "carpal tunnel" type symptoms. I had done a short MAO trial in the late 80s and remembered when I was on one, I had almost had carpal tunnel surgery. I went off the MAO for other reasons and the symptoms all went away, prior to surgery fortunately. I later learned that Nardil depletes B6. When my symptoms started this time, I began adding in B6. I was not sleeping well, often up til 4 or 5 am unless I took Trazadone, in which case I would sleep until 4 or 5 pm. About two weeks ago, I started getting more fidgety, restless legs, etc (the insomnia was different from what I typically have--if I can't sleep it is usually because my brain will not shut off. This insomnia was as if my body did not want to go to sleep--tossing, turning, etc. My back and neck started becoming tighter too--I am a typical type A, first born, Taurus, former lawyer--so they are usually tight to begin with. This was worse. With insomnia, restlessness, etc. I stayed up and did a lot of housework, cleaning the basement, cleaning the garage, etc. Somewhere along the way, my shoulders, neck, arms, and hands developed excruciating pain. The hands were typical neuropathy symptoms. I could not drive or type. I used heat, ice, lots of Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Tylenol, and even some old celebrex. I did gentle stretches. I had chiropractic. Nothing helped. I went to urgent care and was given muscle relaxers (one that was safe with an MAO) and a referral to physical therapy. Those did not help either. All in all, I think the symptoms were due to pyridoxine depletion (my nerves were probably more prone to damage--recovered alcoholic who had footdrop--although the college incident makes me wonder if I am just low on B6 to start with), a lack of sleep (thus no healing), and the added movements and tension. I am still experiencing the neck and hand pain. It is a little better now, thus the typing. However, in the last few days, it has been to the point where I can't even move my fingers. I am now going off Nardil. I feel more depressed, angry, irritated, jumpy, fidgety, extremely restless, tired but not sleepy, and in general, bad all over. I am not sure when the use symptoms overlap with the withdrawal symptoms. Typically I do not have much for withdrawal symptoms, but this sucks. I did read the advice--keep it simple and stable and taper slowly. Right now I am about one step away from checking in to the hospital--but it is the weekend and the holiday on Monday. Plus once I get there, I will have wished I stayed home. Just looking for support and understanding. My fiancee (provided our relationship makes it thru this) does not really get depression or meds. He tries, but his understanding of it is limited. Thank you, Cathy
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