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  1. Hey guys, I'm just going to create a topic about myself, my current situation and my experience with antidepressants/benzos as well as ask for some advice for what to do next. This is going to be a full picture. Lorazepam = Ativan Sertraline = Zoloft I'm a 22 year old. Starting the 19th November - I caught respiratory infection due to being extremely stressed and highly anxious (never before seen in my life, literally pulling my hair out from irrational worries) Starting the 26th November - I started to get headaches and nausea, most likely due to this stress. On the 1st December - stress ended, but the nausea and loss of appetite with the headaches persisted. 20th December - I started to take a beta blocker for stress due to paranoia about the headaches (thinking it could be a tumour due to the continued headaches with loss of appetite) 23rd December - I was prescribed Sertraline to help with the stress and freaking out about the headaches and health issues. I took one pill, where I noticed my pupils went completely dilated for the next week. I didn't continue the drug after that one pill as it gave me insomnia. It may be worth considering serotonin syndrome? Around the 23rd December - I started to get a numbness squeezing/bandlike pain in my foot that climbed all the way up to the top of my leg over the next few days, my current hypothesis that this was either, stress, the beta blocker, or starting the sertraline that caused this. 25/26/27 December - I went to Accident and Emergency, where the Doctors thought I could have MS and didn't consider ask about current drugs. This sent me into a big spiral as I worried a lot about this. Around this time my headaches, nausea and loss of appetite stopped. 27th December - I started Lorazepam (2mg) 31st December - Started up Sertraline 50mg at the advice of the doctors to help with my stress. My head MRI came back fine, all normal (So not MS). 5th January - Muscle cramps, and widespread pain with bandlike sensations in legs and arms. 14th January - 3mg Lorazepam with and increase to 100mg advised by my doctor. 19th January - Tapered off lorazepam and started to notice stiffness in back, legs and wrists. 26th January - completed off lorazepam. 1st February - Reduction of symptoms around this time, except obvious lorazepam withdrawal of shaking and sweating. The only other symptom that persisted was very tight calves. 2nd February - Reduced to 50mg of Sertraline. 6th February - Started to get a whole host of symptoms -Burning Legs and lower spine, muscle spasms, vibrating left eye, nausea, diarrhoea, dark stools, less appetite, insomnia, numbness/tightness in limbs, vertigo, enhanced smell - (I could smell empty wine glass from the other side of the room, slight instability. 10th February - Reduction to 25mg Sertraline. 14th February - Saw a neurologist who told me the sertraline had nothing to do with this since I was on such a low dose, but also said everything seemed fine from an neurological assessment (I could walk fine, I could feel everything he done). Thus, he told me to stop taking the Sertraline completely. ( I now see this as a big mistake.) Present day (3rd March) - Many of those symptoms have gone, although currently persisting: Much rarer burning (less than before), muscle spasms (less than before), slight instability, nausea, tight bandlike sensations in legs and arms, hyper sensitivity to cold (causes pain if something too cold touches me, almost like my nerves are hyper sensitive to everything. I did start to have really bad physical ticks for a week after stopping the sertraline completely, but they seem to have stopped completely now. I also got brain zaps, but that seems to be very rare now. I was thinking about going back on the Sertraline to help with the burning sensations and muscle pains (and other symptoms.) It's interesting to note that these were also the same symptoms I had first coming on/ upping my sertraline dose. Does anyone have any advice whether it would be best to: A.) Wait out the withdrawal, and if so, how long until I'm back to normal again? Will these symptoms eventually go? The muscle tight band pain is definitely the worst effect I have. B.) Reinstate at a low dose. If so, how low a dose should I reinstate back at? How long should I stay on that dose for before dropping the dose? How much should I drop the dose? I also wonder if some of these effects could be lorazepam protracted withdrawal coinciding with the sertraline side effects/withdrawal. It seems the lorazepam could have been masking some of the side effects I may have had from the sertraline. Thank you for reading, any advice would be much appreciated. I'll be sure to return the favour once I'm well and help others suffering from withdrawal and antidepressant mis-advice from doctors.
  2. I have been on lexapro for a short time of 1 month taking 5mg. Over the past few days maybe 5 days I have reduced this to 2.5 mg. I’d like to know if I’m tapering correctly for this short time period and if not how should I approach doing so? I’m also taking 1mg of lorazepam for sleep for the past 1 month which I’d eventually like to taper. thanks
  3. Hi. Im early 50s female. I started fluoxe 20mg back in 2010 for PMDD. My symptoms back then were rage during Pmt. It worked wonders. I was also diagnosed with Rheumatoid disease the same year. Fast foward to 2020 and officially in menopause so figured I didn't need the fluox anymore. I tapered slowly over 2021 without discussing it with a dr. I got to taking 20mg once a week for a month or so then stopped. I felt good. I didn't need an afternoon nap anymore. That was September 2021. Beginning of 2022 brought multiple significant life stressors. I started having intense palpitations, nausea anxiety sweating. Couple hospital visits, heart ok. Deemed menopause so started tibolone HRT, symptoms went away. A month later symptoms creeping back to changed HRT to eostrgen patch and progesterone tablet. Again symptoms improved then regressed. Uped eostrgen patch and told to restart 20mg fluox as this was thought to be helping my menopause symptoms. Im now 3 weeks since reinstating and no change. I wake with intense nausea palpitations and anxiety every morning. Im basically bed bound by anxiety until mid afternoon after I've had some lorazepam (various doses, sometimes .25, sometimes. 5 or more). Anxiety was never something I had experienced before, this is completely new and terrifying. So I've been in a holding pattern waiting for the fluox to kick in and now I've discovered its maybe not my menopause but protracted withdrawal and that restarting the fluox 6 months after stopping might not even help? My husband cant handle me be "sick all the time" and is not at all empathetic. Hes basically disgusted in my lack of "resilience ". Ive told him today that it could be this protracted withdrawal and he just wants to know how long its going take. I know now that I completely stuffed up coming off the fluox Where do I go from here. My life is on hold, I'm unable to look after my grandchild which negatively impacts my daughters work. I dont want to keep taking lorazepam because then I'll have problems getting of that but I cannot cope with this anxiety. Help please. Do I stay on the fluox or come off? Is there dr in South Australia who can help or an interstate dr via telehealth
  4. Please someone direct me toward where I saw a list of doctors throughout the nation who will taper AD’s. I was on here looking through it and hit the wrong button and now I can’t find it. Thank you.
  5. Admin note: link to benzo forum thread - StuckOnMeds: Reinstatement of Clonazapam Fair warning: my journey revolves around PMDD (my menstruation cycle). If this is not your cup of tea, turn back now. Hi! I'm so happy to be here! Here's the short version of my story... I was misdiagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder when in fact I had PMDD. At first, the symptoms were bearable, but after my last child, everything changed. Suddenly, I was not able to make myself or my children food, not showering, not able to pick my kids up from school. Not only that but my self-esteem was shot and anxiety soaring, and I had about one week a month where I could gather myself back up and try to heal before everything started all over again. This went on for over three years. I was completely broken. During all of this, my Psych started throwing meds at me to see what would stick. Unfortunately, nothing would work, and I ended up on 6 meds for depression and anxiety. Finally, I had had enough and approached my Psych and my Gyn about a full hysterectomy and BSO (ovary removal) to stop the fluctuation in my hormones. By this time I had tried all methods of care ranging from DBT to exercise, birth control to relaxation techniques, and so much more. Anyway, I had the surgery, and I felt (and feel) amazing. Like I had been missing out on living. Unfortunately, I was still stuck on all six meds. And so began the titration. I began titrating risperidone at the beginning of 2015. It is important to me to get off this med because I believe it to be the most dangerous. I started at 1 mg, and currently, I am at 0.18 mg. I am taking a break on my titration but intend to jump after my summer vacation and be done with this demon of a drug once and for all. Here is a list of my other meds: Morning: Zoloft 200 mg Wellbutrin XL 300 mg Lorazepam 0.5 mg and 0.375 mg ( also take around 3 pm) Night: Clonazepam 1 mg Trazadone 50 mg Risperidone 0.18 mg (liquid) StuckOnMeds
  6. Hi I took last dose of seroquel on 12/31/19 and now have insomnia. I've titrated down from 20 mg to 5mg of Trintellix and 15 mg to 5mg of lorazepam. That's the last of the drugs. I have residual tinnitus from going off Effexor too fast 20 years ago. Now I have 4-alarm ringing in left ear from Lamotrigine withdrawal. I know there's no cure for the tinnitus - so am going to ENT specialist next week for hearing tests and to look into use of new hearing aid to mask noise. I had cut the 5mg lorazepam in half - but was only getting about 2-3 hours of sleep, so I'm back up to the 5mg. I'm 72 and have been on various cocktails of drugs for over 30 years. Original diagnosis was depression then bi-polar and now the current psychiatrist says I'm not bi-polar but have ADHD. He has no knowledge of tapering. I really need suggestions on next steps. I want off these drugs. Thanks,
  7. Hello. I have been a prescribed patient on Lorazepam, Wellbutrin & Cymbalta for the better part of 20 years. Lorazepam 4 mg Wellbutrin 150 mg XL Cymbalta 60 mg I was diagnosed in 1996 with depression and generalized anxiety. I believe graduating from college and all the stressors of new jobs etc. caused a situational anxiety for me. Early morning wakenings, dread, muscle tightness in chest, etc. I have only experienced withdrawal, or interdose withdrawal when accidentally running out of mail orderpharmacy scrips. Akathasia, denationalization tremors, and on. In approximately 2015 I had started to increase my evening dose by 2 or 3 pills for a couple of months, thinking it would help me sleep better, as getting to sleep is EXTREMELY difficult for me. It has led to nighttime eating and probably 30-40 pounds. After downdosing back to my regular amount I began to feel parasthesia and burning and tingling in my right ear which has been pretty much daily but intermittent and differing in how strong. My Dr. says it is an affect of the screwing around with doses and may last for a long time (which it has already). That, and I am probably at tolerance as well. Add in some severe hypochondria as well, but this may be an effect of hitting a milestone age, and losing some firneds and my father, although Ive heard hypochondria is a symptom of the med and withdrawal obviously. After discussing tapering with my Dr. off of the benzo, she seems to think that since I am functioning at a high level at work and with family, that maybe I should continue on them and taper at a time in my life where raising a family and holding down my job aren't my daily functions, like later when the kids are grown (I have a teenager and soon to be teen) and a wife. Besides my parashtesia, I am wondering what next steps I should take.
  8. Wow! First of all I would like to say how relieved I was to have found this forum. For the years I've been struggling with this I have gotten so tired of other people (including doctors and therapists!) telling me that what I've experienced isn't possible and that I'm either making it all up or still sick. Everything started in my junior year of college. I had struggled with varying levels of depression and anxiety for most of my life, even resorting to SI when I was younger, but had finally hit a point where I thought that I needed some professional help. Looking back, I'm sure that the sudden drop was situational as much as anything. Most of my friends had moved away or graduated, my family was going through some money trouble, and I was working more hours to be able to be more self-sufficient. I started to become more withdrawn and my academics started to drop. I was an A and B student so this was very stressful to me. Thinking I was being proactive and doing the right thing, I went to my school's counseling center who then referred me to the campus clinic. The psychiatric nurse practitioner prescribed Prozac (20mg). About two weeks later I was hit with the worse anxiety I had ever had. I barely left my house unless I had to for class or work, would start shaking at random times, and had near constant chest pain. I tried to wait it out but eventually gave up and went back. She switched me to lexapro(20mg). This seemed to do the trick so I stayed on it though the end of the semester and over the summer. Unfortunately, when I started back up at school I started to struggle again. I'd tried to make positive changes in my life: made some new friends, got in contact with old ones, and started trying to date. Then, as it happens all too often in college, the guy I was seeing got me drunk and took advantage. This led to me having a bit of a breakdown and my friends urged me to go to the hospital. While there they switched me to zoloft(50mg), remeron(15mg), and lorazapam(2mg as needed). This is where things start to get really wonky. At first I thought it was helping but about a month after I got out of the hospital I started having these intense intrusive self-harm thoughts. Violent and strong enough to scare me. I had a medication review and those three were dropped and I was put on WellbutrinXL(150mg). Again things were better for a little while but about a month later started to go south. The intrusive thoughts were back and I had started to feel very unlike myself. Impulsive and disconnected. I later learned that this was probably a kind of dissociation. One night all of the stress and darkness got to me and I impulsively decided to chase the rest of my pills with half a bottle of vodka. It was strange because I wasn't trying to kill myself, the mindset was more: "I wonder what this will do. It can't be worse that what I'm already feeling." It didn't feel real, like it was happening to someone else. That put me back in the hospital where I then dropped out of college and moved back in with my parents. I had to be on a wait list but eventually I started seeing a new psychiatrist who decided to diagnose me with Bipolar based on the impulsiveness and out of character behavior I had while taking Wellbutrin. She called it agitated depression or mixed mania. At the time I believed her. I was scared, desperate, and seriously doubting my sanity, and I felt like I couldn't trust myself. She started out by prescribing me Abilify(15mg) and Effexor (75mg). This was my second nightmare. A few days later I started having akathisia and had similar feelings of impulsiveness and feeling out of control. When I told my doctor she urged me to wait it out which led to me relapsing into SI for the first time in over 6 years to cope. That combination was obviously stopped and I had the most physical withdrawal symptoms that I had so far. I couldn't leave my bed for two days I was so nauseous and dizzy. I feel like I should point out at this point that I was on most of these medications for max of a few months and didn't taper at all. Cold turkey then right on to another. Next on the list was Latuda(40mg - 60mg). My insurance ended up not really covering that one so what I ended up on as my final medication was Lithium. This was a blessing in a way because it didn't really do anything, which turns out, is what I needed. At one point I was up to 1600mg a day to control my "symptoms" which I'm now convinced was almost entirely side effects mixed with withdrawal. That dose completely destroyed my short term memory. After finally stabilizing, I had gone back to school and this was making classwork almost impossible, so after much debating the dosage was stepped down to 800mg. Finally, in the summer of 2017, I took a summer job working at a research station in the forest. After a lot of solo time hiking in nature I had an epiphany. This was the best I had felt in years and that all of my serious problems started after I sought "help." When I got back to see my doctor I told her my plan to stop taking medication. She was extremely judgemental and basically told me I'd be back when I had a relapse and just told me to tapper off with the what I had left (about a weeks worth). I'm very happy to say that she was wrong. All I've done since then is get better. I still struggle with some depression and anxiety but if that is the trade off I will gladly live with that. After a year and a half of being free of psychiatric drugs I'm surprised at the difference. On medication I was dissociating, having panic attacks, paranoia, and suicidal ideation. I felt like a complete basket case. It's terrifying to me how easy it is to get stuck in a downward spiral like that. Not ONE of the doctors or therapists that I'd seen even considered that the medication could be what was causing me to get worse and worse. They just saw worsening "symptoms" that they had to "get ahead of" and I believed it too. Now, even that the worst is over, the experience still haunts me. I feel so guilty about the way that I behaved and I have no idea how much was my fault versus the medication. I know that it was a factor but I remember making the decisions to hurt myself and destroy my life and I'm not really sure how to live with that. I have nightmares where I'm back in the worst of it feeling like I'm slowly losing my mind and I have permanent scars from the SI. I saw a new primary care doctor recently and the first thing she tried to do was get me back on mood stabilizers after seeing "bipolar" on my chart. I don't know how to get that removed or if I even can. The only people who believe me are my friends and family who saw me go from a somewhat stressed young adult to nonfunctional almost overnight. I know that this hasn't ruined my life... but it certainly feels like it sometimes. I'm sorry that anyone else had to go through this hell but I'm so, so glad that I'm not alone in this. Even now I'm not sure that I'm completely recovered. I guess time will tell.
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