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  1. Hello to all. I cannot write much or often due to tardive dyskinesia (or dystonia?) of my right eye, arm, neck, tongue and face. Reading, writing and using my phone, tablet and desktop exacerbate this condition. However, I would like to add my voice here and say two things that I feel are important: 1. You will in all likelihood get better - much better, and 2. If a moderator suggests that you reinstate, please read the horror stories of those of us who did not have that chance before you decide that you "do not want to go "backwards."" I believe I developed serious side effects in 2005 or 2006 including dyskinesia, but I did not know that the drugs could cause that. Before that, I developed anxiety in 2002 or earlier which I did not have to any appreciable degree before taking Celexa. I sit here now in disbelief that I suffered from increasing anxiety for 9 years on Celexa (and 5 years on Zoloft), and the doctors simply raised the dose, not by a little, but by 50 percent each time for Celexa. I also realize now that I developed dystonia in my feet and toes and my chest and neck, but I had no idea what it was, and doctors' appointments resulted in no doctor suggesting the medication could be the culprit. I didn't even know the terms dyskinesia or dystonia. No one mentioned them either. In 2011 I gave birth to a girl. That very night, the OB at the hospital switched me from Celexa 150 mg to Zoloft 10 mg with no cross taper, no advice and no warning of the Hell I was about to endure. After many nights with no sleep due to this switch I finally started to sleep again. Then, over the next 6 years the doctors kept raising the dose by large amounts despite increasing anxiety and what I now know to be akathesia, dyskinesia, and various other side effects including cognitive decline, increasing OCD, and inability to see reality. I threw more and more amazing parties, and I became a hoarder. Buying things on eBay became my job it seemed. I became obsessed with organizing my home, but it was impossible without a professional to help, and I could not see that. Until my child was about 4 I was functioning, but I thought I was a bad organizer, a bad mother, and a terrible wife. After having had horrendously stressful jobs that I managed pretty well, I could not understand why I was so bad at being a wife and mother with a much less stressful job. Eventually, I showed some signs of serotonin syndrome and mania, but I was probably spellbound by the medication (as Breggin suggests can occur.) I believed I was normal, right about everything, etc., and my husband could not convince me otherwise. I enjoyed all the energy I had and could not understand why almost everything I tried to do did not work. All my projects caused a lot of anxiety for me and my husband, it was nearly impossible to complete any of them, and I would often start a new one whilst struggling to complete a previous project. I could not believe what my husband was saying -- that a professional carpenter, bricklayer, party planner, etcetera would be needed. I began to cut corners or abandon plans in order to complete a project or be ready for a party. I had a great deal of trouble leaving the house by 2015. I could not be prepared for all of the possible disasters while I was out. I had to cancel or be late to many activities. I couldn't keep the house, cook or do laundry or organize clothing, toys, kitchen supplies, etc. I count NOT THINK straight at all. I became unable to socialize well by mid 2015. I stopped working in early 2016. I was not willing to cut corners for work so I stopped altogether intending to start again very soon. I could never do that. I continued to develop dystonia of my foot and toes and my neck and chest on my right side and slightly of my left toes, but, again, I didn't know these terms, I never connected this to Zoloft or Celexa, and I thought I was just not stretching or exercising enough. In late 2016 I decided to stop taking Zoloft. Using Xanax had worked for a few hours for anxiety, but I knew it was addictive. So, I used it only once every 3 days until I realized that after it wore off I became very angry. My child was 5, and I could not bear it if I yelled at her. I decided that discontinuing Zoloft was my only hope. If I micromanaged my child and taught her to feel anxiety over every mistake, I would not be able to live with that. I knew which behaviors were harmful to her even though my personality was utterly changed since I began medication. I could not, however, see how harmful my behavior was to my husband. He had begged me to stop with the projects and the hoarding, but I could not, and I could not see how it harmed him. I did recognize that I was not perceiving reality, and that I needed Xanax to get through all activities that were ordinary or not. I marveled at how other mothers with 2 or 3 children managed so much better than I did, and it worried me that I could not work. Something was very, very wrong and it was very likely to be the Zoloft. I looked up how to stop Zoloft on webmd or maybe a different site, and I checked many others to verify the information on other "reputable sites." All I found were instructions that parroted the quick taper that the pharm cies and doctors knew. I never saw anything about this site or Breggin or any other doctor who was aware of tardive withdrawal, PAWS, etc with regard to SSRIs. So, I made the worst mistake of my life - I "tapered" 150 mg in about 6-8 weeks. I found SA after it was too late to reinstate. I am a person who doesn't trust the pharm cies. I don't feel comfortable with the high number of vaccines for babies and young children. I'm suspicious of the flu vaccine, statins, and, of course, benzos. I try to eat organic food and even if I don't I make sure my child has organic eggs and milk. Despite that predisposed mistrust of pharmacology, I never thought to question a quick taper of Zoloft because I believed it was not "addictive!" I had a honeymoon period for about 5-6 months until August or Sept 2017. I am now medication free for 10 months. It has been HELL a hundred times over. I am still experiencing waves. It's been a few weeks, 2 or 3, since I wanted to die, and all my symptoms are less intense and less frequent except right side bruxism and dyskinesia/dystonia of my face, neck, jaw, chest and eye plus numbness on my right side in my arm, hand, face, nose, eye, jaw, hip, leg, foot and toes. I am no longer living in terror and fear and wishing an accident would take me from this world. I still have cortisol mornings in a wave, and I need to keep my mind occupied at all times, but I am not exhausted and weak all the time. The insomnia I had in Sept and October is gone seemingly for good. There are many other mental and physical symptoms that are gone or are less intense. Thank you for reading and I look forward to meeting each of you. I hope you all recover quickly and take some solace in seeing the progress I have made. Peace, Rosetta
  2. Hey! So I’m about 2 years off of effexor on a fast taper (I was on max dose, went down to 0 in 4 weeks by advisement of my psychiatrist). 3 months after I suddenly had horrible debilitating symptoms, attempted to reinstate 3 times, and the 3rd time it spiraled my nervous system into the scariest most challenging physical symptoms I’ve ever had. After a few months I stabilized and was able to adjust my life as continue working without much issue, as long as I stuck to my routine. About a month ago I, without warning, had a severe and sudden downturn. My symptoms are now worse and more debilitating than when I first had the worst of it 2 years ago, and I now can’t stomach food without adrenaline spikes, blips in vision, migraines, and sudden tingling/burning/numbness of my left side. Of course I need to eat, but I’m wondering if anyone else has gone through this and has a way to get through not eating without getting into serious medical danger. My doctors don’t understand very well what to do. My nervous system is more sensitive than ever, and even the slightest mistake causes intense emotional and physical pain. I was on effexor for about a year before stopping, and I’m currently 26.
  3. Hello, my name is Ben from Germany, I am 26 years old. I stopped taking Fluoxetin 20mg After 4 weeks because of the immens problems with the medicine. I had stomache, brain and health problems, lost Libido and nearly no erection and lost feelings in my genitals. Now after 5 months off I still have so many Problems. I feel sick, have Brain/ thinking Problems and I am Always tired and have no power at all. I dont want to do anything... sad :( and I dont have any erection... its like if he‘s dead. So now I am wondering what could/ should I do? My girlfriend is really nice but I think she needs sex :( and I cant. Was the Cold turkey a bad decision? What would u recommend to me? Thanks for your answers, Ben (26)
  4. Hey everyone, this is my story. About 13 or so years ago when I was 13-14 (I'm now 27) I had my very first panic attack which terrified me so bad that literally the next day I was at the doctors begging for meds, I did this because I didn't know any better and I wanted the anxiety GONE... I had health anxiety and every little pain, ache, sensation or feeling whatever it was, had me convinced I had a terminal illness and that I was dying which lead me to the panic attack after weeks of worrying about it, I should also mention I'm not sure where the worry came from because prior to that I was fine.. So I started on 50mg of Pristiq and back then I thought it would work like a benzo and relieve symptoms straight away but honestly it made my anxiety worse, I felt weird on it, for some reason death was on my mind more than ever like I would be down about the thought of me dying one day, my family dying,all these weird thoughts that I never had before and not what a typical13 -14 year old would have.. I stayed on it and for about 2 weeks I was absolutely bed ridden with intense anxiety, I could barely leave my room to pee, finally the tablet kicked in because I woke up 1 day nearly a few weeks in and my anxiety was almost completely gone, not to mention I felt a lot happier than before to, my life was back on track and I even got myself a part time job for after school at a fast food place, life was pretty great I mean I did notice I felt like I was in a dream kind of world but I didn't look to much into it, the anxiety was still there but not as intense, I found myself always getting reassurance which kind of worked but at the time I didn't realise that's such a bad thing to do and makes it worse, fast forward a few years later I was still on Pristiq 50mg, working and attending school, life felt like it use to, as I got older a pattern developed, out of know where an intrusive thought would come in my head which by the way happened a lot but normally I could disregard, however every so often the thought would be to complex and it would consume me, literally to the point where I would be bed ridden exactly like I was when it first started, this led to me having a dosage increased to 100 mg and being introduced to Zyprexa to help manage anxiety and sleep, at first I only stayed on the Zyprexa a couple weeks and never had it again as it made me to drowsy, fast forward to recently where I stopped Pristiq 100mg cold turkey purely because I couldn't afford it one week and my attitude was "I feel normal anyways I'm cured from anxiety" that lasted 6months lol, I should mention that withdrawal for the first few days was hard but I got through it but keep in mind, I was regularly attending the gym so that helped a lot and back then I never knew about withdrawal symptoms I thought it was like a week and then it's out your system, and honestly for a while in that 6 month period I actually did feel better off them because I appreciated life a lot more as I didn't feel as emotionally numb, a nice sunny day made me feel joy like never before it was so alien how magnified my feelings became, anyways after 6 months of course the health anxiety was back as well as weird physical symptoms I never had before, tingling and tightness in my head like a rubber band being squeezed, bowel and tummy issues, intense intrusive thoughts ect... Anyways I ended up back on pristiq but it wasn't like being on them before it felt different, I hated it and got hit with intense suicidal thoughts which lead me back on Zyprexa as well as pristiq, that lasted about a year until I cold turkeyed both the Zyprexa was first to go which was so hard to do omg man 😕 a few months later I cold turkeyed pristiq, if anyone out there is considering for the love of god don't cold turkey!!!! it's been a year to this day since I had a pristiq and a few months longer since Zyprexa, in the last year I've felt: depersonalisation/derealisation, intense head pressures and pains, vision problems, bowel problems to the point I had a colonoscopy to make sure I didn't have bowel cancer, I had a CTscan on my head to make sure it's not a tumour putting me through this hell, extreme anger and depression, extreme sleep problems, sex drives gone downhill a bit, I'm paranoid like it honestly feels like I'm in fight or flight 24/7.. The worse anxiety I've ever felt, the hardest symptoms I've had to deal with and this is what has lead me to join this group, I don't know if I'm hallucinating, but it feels like I can see my own thoughts in my head clearer than the real world in front of me.. I know it sounds strange, I feel trapped in my own mind I can easily ruminate over my intrusive thoughts and visualise them more than I can pay attention to the real world and I hate it will this nightmare ever end?Have I done PERMANENT damage? Sometimes the head pain hurts a lot I feel like I'm seconds from dying from the pain, like it's getting worse I constantly ask myself if I should go back on the meds and taper off but it's been so long plus I hate the meds I want nothing to do with them, any advice would be great I'm sorry for the novel
  5. 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.
  6. Hi all, I've lurked in the forum for a little while now but thought I'd finally introduce myself to give my bit to the community and hopefully track my progress too. I took citalopram 20mg for 6 months in the first half of 2018 to try to help with symptoms of generalised anxiety. I tapered (in what I now know to be a rather quick fashion) over about 10 weeks and hence have been antidepressant-free since August 2018, one year ago. Luckily, I never really suffered with many of the physical side-effects that many describe here, whilst on the drugs, tapering, and off the drugs. But the biggest thing for me by far has been the sense of blunted emotions, anhedonia and sexual dysfunction that has arisen. I noticed these increase gradually while I was on the meds, and then increase dramatically after coming off. Whilst on the meds and even tapering, my overall experience was mixed - whilst the dulled emotions and sex drive bothered me, my anxiety was definitely reduced and I did have more of a sense of resilience to difficulties. The problems really started once off the meds. I assumed that these side effects would go away once I was off, but they actually got significantly worse. Combined, they have really led to a real sense of having lost who I was. The loss of libido has been particularly upsetting, having had quite a high sex drive previously and sex having played an important part in my life. Almost as bad is the loss of enjoyment in music, which I simply don't experience in quite the same way any more. A phrase that resonated with me a little was that of listening to an orchestra, but with the strings and percussion missing. You hear the music, but it just doesn't quite seem full or right. Emotionally I feel less empathy and love which impacted my relationship. The anxiety has still been numbed, the one small positive. But everything is numb. With regards to my sex drive, it's not at 0%, and I do have windows where things seem better, but they feel so fleeting and hard to grasp onto. And often the more I chase these feelings (via porn, say) the further away they seem. Progress seems so painfully slow and there are definitely low periods where I feel like it's never going to recover. But there are times when I can be aroused somewhat by porn/sex and a few magical times where it seemed like everything was back to normal. Recreational drugs sometimes helped me feel something too, though clearly aren't any sort of long term solution. I have found forums like this a mixed blessing. There is an awful lot of negativity around, from people sadly in a very bad place, who have been suffering for 3/5/7/10 years etc who are convinced that this is permanent, they'll never recover, life isn't worth living etc. In my bad times it can be very easy to follow this line of thinking, look at the timescales involved and fall into despair. Nevertheless the forums have been an invaluable source of information and sometimes inspiration - I tend to try to focus on the success stories and positives rather than wallowing in the tough bits. I can completely understand why most people wouldn't want to hang around here when they feel as if they've recovered - they move on with their lives - and I'm convinced that there is a lot of unreported recovery. People don't stay in the hospital when they are better, as the saying goes. Also however painful and slow, it would just seem very surprising to me if anything like this was really permanent. Brains just don't work like that and they are capable of remarkable healing, given enough time. I've recently been in quite a bad wave, brought on to a large extent by difficulties in a relationship which has now sadly ended in quite a difficult and messy way. Though I feel numbed, the end of the relationship has clearly impacted me and in a sense I guess is manifesting itself in this complete anhedonia (rather than high anxiety, which it might have done pre-meds.) Though I feel horrifically numb and flat at the moment, it's all still a bit recent and I know that I need to give myself some time and a chance to heal from the break-up. Anyway - I'll try to pop back here to post any updates I have or answer any questions from fellow forum members. Variance
  7. Hi, my name is phill, I really need help and im really desperate because I do not know what to do, so I took sertraline for 2 years about 1 year and a half ago symptoms of insomnia started happening and I would wake up while sleeping, after 1 year and half on sertraline my doc prescribed risperidone for the insomnia took it for 6 months with sertraline after 2 years on sertraline and 6 months on risperidone and my insomnia was really bothering me a lot and doctor didnt help I decided to cold turkey stop both at the same time and I remember the first 2 weeks went so well I slept so great but after these 2 weeks symptoms of insomnia started I would only get 2-4 hour of sleep every 2 days and after stopping cold turkey after 6 months I remember that I would sleep almost everyday for about 5 hours, I would still get some days I wouldnt sleep but now its been 14 months and I get maximum 5 hours of sleep and now for some reason things seems to be worse I stay awake for couple days without sleep and some days in a row I get sleep(5hours ) some dont, today was going to be my third day awake but I managed to get (broken) sleep for about 3-4 hours after 9 am and im only 20 I do not know if it could be fatal familial insomnia or im still actually experiencing withdraws from this sickening drug, please anyone offer me some advice or opnions about these symptoms I been having, I been feelling tired the entire day and completely exhhausted not working nothing, so its been 14 months, abt 2-5 months ago I started feeling weird heart palpitations, now im feeling like I will have a heart attack during some episodes of anxiety and this is just all so crazy I have no idea if this has happened to somebody else too please help me
  8. Hello, I am 41 years old. In 2011 I got Cymbalta because of a severe depressive episode. I started weaning in 2013 in a four weeks rhythm. I always reduced between 5 and 10% of the last dose. The last steps were a lot smaller. One bead every four weeks. (120mg to zero 2013 - 2018) Because of the slow weaning I was able to get my life well regulated. Sometimes there were bad withdrawal symptoms and sometimes a little less, there were windows and waves. I've been at zero for 16 months now.The first year after zero was mixed with windows and waves, but now I have only one wave to the next wave since eight month after zero. Nausea, Back pain, anxiety, itching, muscle pain, dizziness and many other things. I always read the story from Pug here. It is my anchor in this difficult time.
  9. This painful journey started when i was 21 years old... I was addicted to Cannabis, had a difficult adolescence and all i needed was help to stop using drugs, my hormones checked, and therapy. I know that now. After a bad break up due to my addiction and mental health i was put on Citalopram. I was still smoking Cannabis chronically every day, and as i was showing little improvement they increased my dosage to 40mg after nearly 2 years on them. It made me manic, indifferent, and dangerously wreckless. I crashed my car at 100 mph having woken up late for work far too many times due to how drowsy i always was on the meds, and i was driving as if i was possessed. I survived an operation to fix a bleed on my brain. However in hospital they stopped the Citalopram dead. They never even mentioned it, and i couldnt remember and it obviously wasn't of a concern at all to them. 6 months after i went back to the doctors with a feeling of something missing from myself. I'd gone back to Cannabis after my accident for the same reason, something was missing and i felt so weird like everything i used to enjoy just meant nothing to me. Like id lost my soul, and i needed to feel happier. Not the long term answer. So they put me on Duloextine (cymbalta). Never discussed the side effects, withdrawl, possible permanent damage, effectiveness of these drugs ever, it wasnt once mentioned. Just that they woulld make me feel better, I had a chemical imbalance that needed to be fixed. So they parked me on them for 8 years ignoring all my worries over things i was experiencing whilst on the medication. Every concern was met with them upping my dosage. It didnt stop me smoking Cannabis infact it only compounded my addiciton, as the meds gave me what i now know as Akathesia and the only thing that helped was smoking Cannabis. The only time i was anywhere close to being content whilst on the medication was when i smoked. I finally decided i didn't want to be on the medication anymore, i went to the doctor and said that i wanted to see how id feel without them, and my GP said to simply reduce the tablets over 2 weeks. I was on 90mg of Duloxetine (cymbalta) at the time. I never realised the seriousness of not properly tapering, and being told to do so over such a short period of time was clearly detimental. Especially after 10 years of medication. It's been 3 years since my last dose. I don't speak to my friends, all desire has gone. My anxiety is through the roof, i'm never calm. I have no real life. I'm even finding work near impossible. The cannabis turned on me as well when i stopped talking the Duloxetine (cymbalta) , the withdrawl i think has been a big reason for that, but i decided to try and stop smoking. Never made me feel like that before i was put on antidepressants but it was making me worse at the time. I am now left pathogically anxious alot of the time, like i said no desire to do anything, all my loves, my hopes, my dreams have died. I was never this bad before i started taking meds. I don't know who i am without them but i dont want to be on medication, certainly cant accept being on them for life to regain some normality. I've been praying that time would heal me but it appears it has done nothing to help. My question to the community I've been struggling with whether to go back on them at a low dose. But i'm scared, and i didn't want them in the first place, i've gone 3 years, but it's not been a happy time. I dont want to have to go through any elevated Akathesia again, or be left with more permanent side effects by going back on them at all. My family and girlfriend don't want me to take them again. I'm being pulled every which way. But i can't stay this way I've waited over 18 months so far for therapy with a Neuro Phyiatrist and the NHS still havent approved it. I don't know if it will even help... - Should i talk to my doctor about going on a very low dose of my previous meds? Or has it been too long now? - Should i entertain taking these sketchy things ever again? I would really appreciate the communties advice. The only other thing i have left to try is looking down the route of thinking my testosterone has always been an issue. But most doctors in the UK dont subscribe to it but i haven't totally given up on the thought of trialling TRT to see if it makes a differnence. I've had a blood test my serum levels are considered normal however guidleines are vitally flawed, and i have had no idea what they were before i started taking Anti-Depressants) but i have high SHBG which means my free testosterone is very low. But doctors won't offer any diagnosis or solution to that issue. Has anyone had any experience or success with this? Many Thanks ❤️
  10. Hi, I was on Effexor for 2.5 years (the last year only on 37.5 mg ) and also combined with Wellbutrin 150mg. I went off both in February 2019 with no taper because I was unaware at all that we could just not stop. There its been been a year of worsening conditions then the ones I even wanted to get off the medication for. I took some Effexor and Wellb a few times during the year, but usually just for a day or two (which I also know now is bad). I really don’t want to go back on meds, but I have sever dry eye, very lethargic, and worst of all a very flat and sad melancholy baseline. For those who were not aware of tapering and have been withdrawing for almost a year, does anyone have recommendations? I have already been eating pretty clean, exercise, and supplement with D, Mag, and Omega, but I basically feel awful every day. Anyone been thru this as well?
  11. I don't know......I am practice posting. At present I am about 5 days off Adderal, 2.5 mg. It feels alot like when I finally came off Lexapro......I was down to 3 mg. and they took me off of it completely in October while I was in the hospital........meanwhile started up on the Adderal and still am on Trileptal 150mg. x2/day. Anyway mostly upper back achiness now.......total demotivation as anything is stressful and am just working for staying calm, fluids, eating, sleep. A conversation by phone once in awhile. Pay the bills. Accept help when I can. So maybe I am somewhat on topic. Not sure I could list all the meds. that I have withdrawn from yet........someday soon. I just wanted to be around people that get it..........and find the hope and strength again. You know.......I believe in God(although a God that accepts my anger sometimes), but even more so in a universal strength to be found in others. Anyway.......thankful for my journey in a way.......especially in those windows I get of clarity and calm.
  12. I am french. My english is not fluent. 9 months ago, i quit ad and bzd In 1 monte and a half. I was having those médecine since 20 years because of panic attac. I felt very good. So i quited.Big mistake. I took it all again: ecsitalopram 10mg+ tranxene 10mg. Then, started maniac crises. So my psychiatre told me to stop ecsitalopram. What i did in 1 month. 5 months later i am still suffering ouf brain zap, panics attacs etc... i went to see a new doctor Who wants to give me another ad to stop my suffering. To stand my state, since 2 week, I murs take 30mg tranxene by day ! But, I am anxious about having maniac attac again if a take an ad again ! I am not maniac, juste suffering of panic Attac, do you have any advice that could help me ? Thanks so much
  13. Hi, my signature basically says it all. I got into psychiatry over 2 years ago and got on seroquel and Mirtazapine for my depression & sleep problems. The opposite happened. I stopped sleeping & had severe adverse reactions. I could not stop sleeping & started to have akathisia & dyskinesia from the first tablet I took but continued to take it as I thought it was my depression getting worse or I thought I got food poisoning or something. Anyway... stopped CT both drugs at psychiatry after finding this site due to severe adverse reaction. No sleep for 1 month straight. Very acute symptoms for 3-4 months (about 20-30) What is left now is that I feel my brain is permanently on. I never get tired, have naps or sleep. Like the brain has no off switch. It's like A rubber band has been streched for over 2 years and two months but it didn't get back into it's position but stretches itself... Instead of going back into it's original form. Like You wake up and stretch it... you go to sleep and wake up and it is back into it's original form. This is my only symptom basically... I've read a few similar stories of people having similar experiences but it seems they are rather rare, maybe due to the fact that I C/Ted an antipsychotic? Or is it possible to have cortisol/adrenaline spikes for 2 years and 2 months off? (I feel like I have way more energy but in a toxic kind of way)
  14. It started in December 2018. On 17th of December I took my first (and only pill) of lexapro 10 mg. I have never taken drugs (not even alcohol). I desperetely took an AD because I was depressed and suffered from extreme anxiety attacks, due to malnutrion, being out of work and the loss of what I felt was the love of my life. I wanted talk therapy but the waiting list was so long and I got desperate. 1 pill made me suffer terrible insomnia and crazy mania. I was so afraid because I couldn't feel any emotions and I started sweating like crazy. My doctor ignored my, and after a few days without sleep I ended up in the hospital where they drugged me with Olanzapine for my anxiety. I wook up feeling even more terrible. This time I had vision problems, metallic taste in my mouth, angry violent impulses rushing in combination with being like a zombie. I was numb in the left side of my body, had poor co-ordination and couldn't move the fingers in my left hand. I told doctors this, but they didn't listen. "You really need your meds" was the answer.After 4 days on olanzapine I quit CT. During this period my health anxiety and mania around it skyrocketed. I ordered a lot of supplements to heal my brain, went to the ER asking to get my brain was damaged from the stroke. The reason I believed it was a stroke was that when I googled my symptoms "intense headache like you never experienced before" , "numbness on one side of the body", so I thought my brain One of the supplements I ordered was Mucuna Pruriens, an indian medicine with L-dopa. And with the effects of the other drugs still in my system I reacted really badly. I got this extreme euphoria from nowhere and then I totally crashed. I ended up in hospital, after trying LLLT-therapy. No doctors believed my theory that the drugs had done this, and that I got an dopamine-overdose, and now a broken reward system. At first I at least had some energy in January. But after the hospital, where they gave me a cicordinol injection along with benzos, I completely disconnected from my self. There is no now anymore, and the damage/experience is so much worse than it was when it started with Lexapro (which was an enough traumatic experience). No one has listened and only now do my family believe me, when they got to witness live how i developed tardive dyskenisia from the injection at the hospital. My lean and healthy--looking face and body, is now pluffy/swollen. I have gained weight despite excellent dietary habits. I have never before been able to gain weight, no matter what I eat. My hospital stay was in February-April. The injection was against my will, my family and doctors aswell. The doctor said I'm not psychotic. The doctors on the otherhand gave me "delusional disorder" and other labels for simply criticizing modern medicine and how telling them how sick I became because of the drugs. One of the sleeping meds made me totally loose my vision and I got muscle spasm, but the nurse's didn't bother. After the injection my neck starting twitching and I couldn't hold it straight. I could not talk. I was drooling and couldn't open my jaw. I stood drooling in front of the whole medical staff team, and they ignored me and told me to go back to my room. The doctor didn't give me any meds after that, stating, "Well you are obviously sensitive to drugs". Well, that should have been plain, given the reason I was there in the first place. During this time I also suggested to be treated with Zoloft. I think it was for 2-3 weeks, can't really remember anything from this time really. Only didn't to escape more antipsychotic poisoning and because I felt my life was already over anyways. Been free of medicines since April. 1 pill Escitalopram (10mg) December. 4 pills olanzapine (10mg) December. Sleeping meds: imovane (december-march/april). Benzos: Mitrazepan 1-2 times. Theralen, 2 times. (Really damaged me) Cicodirnol injection (don't now the dose, but low dose). Reasoning for it was that I stopped showering at the hospital. Why? Well it was traumatic to see yourself naked and in front of a mirror, and not being able to feel the water on your body... I live at home. With wellfare (thanks Sweden, but your healthcare is like the medieval ages). Every day I'm slowly loosing touch with reality.I have friends and family. A yoga teacher supporting me to go to an Indian Ayruvedic hospital in June. But my health is detoriating. I can barely move my neck (that problem I didn't have before when the worst of the injection was behind me). I have no feelings whatsoever. Anhedonia. Nothing gives me pleasure. I am against porn, but tried it to see if I react, I did react at the hospital (not a normal reaction, but something happened), no nothing. Porn was an easy test due to dopamine and how powerful it is on our brains. But nothing happens. I have no higher concioussness. No feeling of the now or my-self. This was severely damaged by the drugs in the first place, but it is just getting worse. When it all started I had racing thoughts, flashbacks, anxiety etc. And even hope when I started to improve after quitting Olanzapine. But the Mucuna Pruriens sent me back to something that is not worthy a life at all. So body has shut down. Memory. IQ. Everything declining. I have a hard time writing and coordinating everything I do. I don't know if this post belongs here, but I most say it does. Everything started with Lexapro. Got worse with Olanzapine. And finally ended me with the dopamine overload and later on injection. My background: 26 year old from Sweden. Musician, graphic designer, have master's degree in Media Production, worked as a teacher, have been a top-performer but also really anxious and low sense of self, I have not valued my self at all despite everything external going great for me. Loving, caring and really emotional. Now I'm flat and liveless. My face has changed. Eyes are dead.No curiosity for life. Deaf in one ear after the meds. I can't read or listen to music, or watch films. That was possible in the beginning before my self medication. It feels lonely. Lonely to have had such a strong reaction, not being taken seriously which made the situation much worse than it should have been. I know some of you have been on theese drugs for years, I have not, but the damage has been imense. What has happened? Can this be turned around? I am lonely in this? I just want my life back. So I wanted to share this. I should have done that in December. Maybe then I could have been warned, tapering, avoiding interactions etc. Need your support. Hope everything makes sense. I can't remember what I have written and have no energy to proof-read. / Albin
  15. Hello SA, As you can see from my signature, I have a long history of starting, stopping, and switching numerous drugs. Largely due to SA, over the past month or so I have truly awoken to the dangers of these drugs, and I am devastated over what I now know they have done to my brain and body for the last nearly 18 years. However, I do have faith that I will heal. At age 17 I unwittingly walked right into Big Pharma’s lair and became ensnared when a psychiatrist prescribed me Effexor for OCD (which apparently should not even be a first-line treatment for OCD). When I tried to fill it at a new pharmacy in my new state as a college freshman about 1.5 years later, I was told that my insurance would not fill the prescription because the dosage was too high (I don’t remember what it was). Frustrated, I decided to just stop taking it since it wasn’t helping me. I didn’t know any better. When withdrawal hit me, I contributed my symptoms to the cold turkey but didn’t fully understand I was experiencing withdrawal. Over the next 15 years I went on and off multiple drugs to try to manage my OCD and accompanying depression, not fully realizing that my unsuccessful attempts to stop the drugs were due to tapering too quickly and subsequent withdrawal as opposed to relapse. In October of 2018 I was on 10 mg of Prozac and had been holding there for about a year while seeing a psychiatric nurse practitioner. I was struggling at that dose, most likely due to delayed withdrawal from a too fast taper from 60 mg. Due to my struggles, I decided to attend an outpatient OCD program where I foolishly allowed the attending psychiatrists to take me off the Prozac and put me on a cocktail of Abilify, Anafranil, and Luvox. I did not notice any improvement with the cocktail over the 10mg of Prozac. Once I discharged from the program three months later, I returned to seeing the psychiatric nurse practitioner. He instructed me to cold turkey the Luvox (I had been taking 25 mg for 2.5 weeks). I hesitated at the cold turkey approach but thought, "I've only been taking it 2.5 weeks." He continued me at 5mg of Abilify and increased me from 75mg to 100mg of Anafranil. At my next visit one month later, I said I would like to discontinue the Abilify and Anafranil as they were not helpful. His instructions were to cut the 5mg Abilify pills in half for 6 days and stop. This seemed too fast to me, but he told me that anti-psychotics do not need to be tapered as slowly as anti-depressants. Regarding the Anafranil, I was to take 50 mg for one week, 25 mg for one week, then stop. This seemed too fast to me as well, but I told myself that it was still a taper and not a true cold turkey. I couldn’t have been more wrong. I am here now because I have found myself in “one of the worst places to be during withdrawal”, according to @brassmonkey in his Reinstatement post. I am seriously considering reinstatement after 8 months off of all drugs because I am completely non-functional, and my symptoms have only gotten worse during this time period. What concerns me perhaps the most is that I have not experienced any windows since my last dose. I want to believe that I am healing, but it feels I've only deteriorated over the last 8 months. From what I’ve read here on SA, I understand that reinstatement may or may not work and may even cause an adverse reaction since I’ve been drug-free for so long. Even so, I would sincerely appreciate any advice on reinstatement (for or against) in regards to my particular situation. Also, if I were to reinstate, which drug should I reinstate? I was on Luvox for 2.5 weeks and both Abilify and Anafranil for approximately 4 months. Before that, I was on Prozac (on and off at various times) for 13+ years. So although Abilify and Anafranil were my most recent drugs, perhaps it is Prozac that my brain and body are most used to? I am grateful for any advice, suggestions, and encouragement. Peace, Love, and Faith, HopeforHealing
  16. I'm willing to travel for this one (hopefully within Washington state)....Can anyone recommend someone that can serve as an alternative to psychiatrists and mainstream doctors for help with withdrawal from an SSNRI? I've become frustrated with these people. They do not listen, assume what I am experiencing is simply the return of depression, and offer only to throw more dangerous meds my way. I need someone that has extensive knowledge of this subject along with compassion for the individuals afflicted.
  17. hi,all been on &off antidepressants for 20 yrs but never felt this crummy.since stopping Paroxetine have had flu-like symptoms ,then fatigue loss of appetite,taste changes,eye problems(excessive blinking actually started while on it,that's why I quit).depression,anxiety,just miserable,wondering if I should reinstate or just try & hang in there.I was on it about 6 mos.stopped May 4 after about 7 wk taper.thanks for any suggestions
  18. My brain going into dream condition but not into sleep condition every night or day when ever I attempt to sleep I have believed the information about remote neural monitoring in all over internet and browsed internet 2 years heavily which resulted heavy thought process ,doubts and suspicion over near and dear. So I went to a psychiatrist and requested to bring me out of heavy thoughts.He made me use lorazepam for 10 days ,risperidone and trihexyphenidyl combination drug for 30 days.After 30 days my thoughts reduced so I did not go to doctor again.What a mistake ,I was ignorant of how psychiatry medicines work and slow tapering nor my doctor warned me while prescribing an anti psychotic.It is happened in july 2016. From then my brain going into dreams when ever I attempt to sleep.In october 2016 again I went to the same doctor and reported about the condition I am in.He prescribed olanzapine silently.I started using olanzapine ignorantly and innocently.When i was experiencing stomach upset that is when I researched in the internet about risperidone and olanzapine. Now this is june 2017 I have tapered risperidone and olanzapine safely and became drug free safely.But the thing is my brain still into dream condition and not allowing me to sleep when ever i attempt.My querry is what risperidone and trihexyphenidyl and lorazapam [10 days]did to my brain?what chemicals they blocked.Now stopping them cold turkey did what on my brain?what chemical i should take to get my sleep pattern back.?If I wait patiently with time will the brain correct its condition naturally?Any brain researcher please help.
  19. Hi I am new to this forum and this is my first post . I am currently on 30mg mirtazapine and 200mg of pregablin , I have been on these mess for about 3 to 4 months . I have just cut my mirtazapine from 30mg to 15mg and in the space of 4 days I have have horrible side effects , anxiety through the roof , shaking , lack of appetite poor sleep crying spells and the general feeling of feeling crap . The reason I have started to withdraw from the mirtazapine is that after 3 months I feel no benefit only get awfull side effects . No help with my anxiety and depression if anything it's made me more depressed . I have gone through withdrawing from Effexor and that was really tough , however just the drop for a few days of the mirtazapine has left me crushed , my doctor told me that mirtazapine was a easy drug to withdraw from , but after 4 days it has left me house bound . Has anyone got any idea on how I get through this or any experience in mirtazapine withdrawals
  20. 9 months ago today I took my last Prozac and I am still dealing with withdrawal. I took 15 mg of Fluoxetine for 12 years from PAR pharmaceuticals. In July 2015 the fluoxetine I received from the pharmacy was from TEVA pharmaceuticals, apparently PAR pharmaceuticals discontinued the tablets I was taking. Well, my body did not react well to the TEVA brand. I started having nausea and tremors. After a couple of days on the TEVA brand I switched to the MYLAN brand but nothing changed. Realizing my body was not going to handle the change I decided to taper but it seemed pointless because my body was in withdrawal from the PAR pharmaceutical fluoxetine my body was use to taking. On August 27th 2015 I took my last pill. From July to November I dealt with nausea and tremors and then all hell broke loose. On top of the nausea and tremors I developed a bad smell in my nose that only I can smell, internal shaking that is constant, the nausea got much worse, I started having hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia and chills. I also have cried almost every day since November. In December I had a gastric emptying study done due to the nausea and lack of appetite. I discovered I now have delayed gastric emptying. To date I have lost 44 pounds from the nausea and not being able to eat. I have also had a CT scan and an MRI for the tremors and internal shaking. Those results were normal. I have seen an ENT for the bad smell in my nose, but they can find nothing wrong. I have noticed that I am feeling a tiny and I stress tiny bit better but I still have the internal shaking, nausea, bad smell in my nose and crying. I have read about internal shaking in withdrawal but how long does it go on. I was put on Prozac for panic attacks and the constant internal shaking is making me feel panicky and anxious. Does anything help with it? Has anyone else experienced a bad smell in their nose or heard of anyone having a bad smell in their nose during withdrawal? Thank you for any advice or help anyone can offer me.
  21. has anyone experienced protracted for more then 5 years? I'm on my 7th, has anyone gotten severe acne from this? im afraid it will never end, but I've heard a few stories like mine, and also have seen even 10 years....please if anyone can respond just let me know if this will end
  22. Hello all, I was first prescribed 25mg of zoloft late November of 2015 after a few days in the psych ward. Afterward when I found a psychiatrist, he raised my zoloft to 100 mg and then a month or two later he added topamax 25mg and Latuda (can't remember the dosage) into the mix. Shortly after I started to get brain zaps even when I was taking the medications on time and foolishly I decided to just stop taking them all together around March or April of 2016. I never returned to that psychiatrist or any psychiatrist for that matter. Now almost four years since taking them I am still plagued with brain zaps. They are not always present but appear every few months for a few days and then vanish into the wind. It went on that until about Feb of 2018 when I started experiencing numbness in my legs. I thought it was a stroke or blood clot so I went to the ER. After I got a MRI of my brain and an xray of my spine, the doctors told me that the findings did not explain my brain zaps or numbness in my legs and sent me home with an article from PsychologyToday that I had already read a million times detailing SSRI withdrawal syndrome. I felt defeated and never thought to contact a neurologist. Since then my symptoms got progressively worse. Every few months there would be relapses and a new symptom would appear; lhermitte sign, paresthesia, tingling, itchiness, fatigue, and pain behind eyes. I started to document my symptoms April of this year after another relapse. I had another relapse September/October. Today I am in the throes of another relapse. This time somewhat longer than normal. I decided once and for all to find out if what I am experiencing is just the repercussions of not tapering off some medication almost four years ago while being a stupid college kid or if what I have is something more serious since SSRI withdrawal seems to mimic quite a few other neurological diseases. Tomorrow I go in to see if I can get a referral to a neurologist. Wish me luck.
  23. I was put on 2.5mg of Olanzapine for racing thoughts/anxiety and as a sleep-aid. I was mostly taking 1.25mg though. I wish I had done the research before taking it!! I would have never taken it if I had known it would be like this, and cause such changes to the brain. So, I've decided to just stop taking it cold turkey, as I figure that having only been on 1.25mg - 2.5mg for most of the 3 weeks, and... (5.0 for 2 days near the end) it for 3 weeks total, it's best to just stop without adding length to the drug being in my system. The dose I've been taking is small also, however, I am very medicine sensitive. I'm so worried about side-effects from withdrawing... I was using the phone and laptop last night until 3am to distract me until I felt relaxed enough to try and get some sleep, which I eventually did at about 3.30am. I was researching all about Olanzapine withdrawals and looking at many videos people posted on YouTube regarding this. It was slightly comforting. I had very vivid dreams, as I have been having on the Olanzapine, only they somehow felt even MORE vivid. I can still remember the dreams easily enough if I try and this makes me feel anxious as I experience derealization/depersonalization every day I feel. I woke up a few times this morning. First at about 6am. Felt like absolute crap. Depression, comparable to the “come down” after a high from ecstasy etc. Managed to sleep again, even with an anxiety-induced racing heart, falling into that vivid dream-filled, seemingly shallow sleep. Woke again before my wife got up at 8am, but once again, managed to fall asleep before she left the house. It’s 12.15pm now, and I feel very depressed. I feel no joy and I have anxiety that is bubbling behind this cloud of depression. Obsessive, intrusive thoughts are frequent, and I don’t want to do anything at all today. I feel so very low. I find it extremely difficult to even write this, but I’m trying as I know it is something positive, to be keeping track of my progress. I really hope I feel better soon. I’m very nervous about what to expect. I feel like it can’t get worse than this, as I feel absolutely hopeless, with no happy feelings…I’m just so depressed. I’ve been thinking about trying Effexor XR, as I’m experiencing this crippling feeling of depression, and I’ve been feeling about the same way for the past 3 days, give or take. I actually started feeling this low after I re-commenced on Olanzapine 2.5mg after a 2 day trial of withdrawing from it after I took one 5mg tablet. I started feeling this low after taking that last 2.5mg tablet. Well, that’s all I have to write for now. I feel so low… (My question to people who have successfully stopped Olanzapine) - Will I ever feel ok again? Will I find the old me..? Is 3 weeks and the dose I've been on not small..? I was taking it for 3 weeks, and mostly (for about 75% of those 3 weeks) 1.25mg (splitting 2.5mg in half) along with taking 0.625mg (splitting the 2.5mg in half) as I’m very med sensitive and nervous in general about medication. UPDATE on DAY 2 of Olanzapine WIthdrawal It is now 5.10pm in the afternoon. I am still feeling depressed and have racing thoughts which are causing me anxiety on a high level. I feel like I have lost myself, and I'm afraid that I won't be happy again. This depression is so bad that I managed to talk to a psychiatrist in the day hospital and she prescribed Mirtazapine 7.5mg (taking half of 15mg). I really hope this will help me through this, as I am feeling rather hopeless and lost... Has anyone used antidepressants to ease coming off of Olanzapine? Thanks. UPDATE on DAY 3 I slept from some time after 1.30am while listening to a YouTube video. My sleep felt very shallow with vivid dreams, which I can't recall clearly now, but I don't think they were particularly good dreams. Woke up at 6am. Immediate panic. Still empty, no, worse... no feelings at all, just fear/panic. Perhaps this is due to my receptors being messed around with from the 3 weeks on Olanzapine? Is 3 weeks enough time to do irreversible, permanent damage to the brain? I wish I had some answer... I used my phone to watch videos of people's journey of withdrawing. I couldn't seem to find enough. I continued to watch videos until about 9.30am when I got out of bed with my wife. It is 10.20am now. I'm trying to remain active, even though doing things is just so difficult! I washed the dishes. I managed to eat a banana. My wife made me a cup of hot milk. Thinking about eating food makes me feel quite nauseated. I have zero appetite. My thoughts don't seem to stop. I wonder about the point of existence. Humans as creatures - what, really, is the point? I have depersonalization and derealization for at least 4 months now, and I think about every little thing I do or see... I'm just so tired and stressed! I'll continue to update. Thank you everyone, and I hope to hear some friendly people! Shane.
  24. Hi, I'm new here I'm a 32-year-old woman from Denmark. I found you because I want to safely taper off of my low-dose Amitriptyline 10 mg. But as I read about withdrawal, I came across "post-acute withdrawal syndrome" or "protracted withdrawal" and I got chills because suddenly what has been happening since 2017 made sense! Long story short(er), I was on Venlafaxine/Effexor for 8 years because of generalized anxiety and body pains. In 2017 I tapered off from 2 capsules/150 mg, reducing with 1/4 pill every 2 weeks, so I was off them after a little under 4 months. (I didn't know about safely tapering off, only now have I come across your guide :)). By going off so "slowly" - well, compared to my doctor who told me I could do it cold turkey(!) - I didn't get the extreme side effects i would normally get when I would go up or down in dose. I felt the same when I stopped my dose and for the next 2 months, I was completely fine. But 2 months after I had taken my last dose, I started getting pain in my body, and after 2 more months, at the end of January 2018, from one day to the next I started having an extreme inner shaking/hightened fight-flight-response. It was like I had gotten a shock and I just stayed in that state every second of every day. Never being able to rest was so bad that I wanted to kill myself. It's so difficult to explain the sensation to anyone, so I usually use sleep deprivation as a related example: Sleep deprivation should be the worst form of torture and I get it now - stressing your body every second of every day is completely unbearable and you just want to die. I did sleep, though, but only 4-5 hours every night and I was never tired. My cortisol levels were high so I was checked for Cushing's (cortisol producing tumor) which meant I couldn't take any medicine to help me for 7 months because I needed accurate cortisol results (I didn't have any tumor, though). And also, nothing helped me, not benzodiazepines, sleeping pills, CBD oil or high doses of beta-blockers. After 7 months, my friend who had experienced the same "shaking" after a whiplash and after only a week had wanted to jump out the window from her apartment on the 3rd floor, recommended a low dose of Amitriptyline and that reduced the shaking by 30 % and after a month by 50 % (I only took 5 mg to begin with, though, and it worked after just a few hours, very weird). My symptoms then started to become predominantly psychological instead, like I would cry all the time. It opened up a deep developmental trauma wound that I started therapy for in December 2018. After that and body therapy like The Rosen Method, my symptoms are gradually decreasing. (I also have like 20 other symptoms, like body pain, fatigue etc.). Now, almost 2 years after I came off venlafaxin, I'm 50 % better than I was in December 2018, but my sympathetic nervous system is still firing too much. I thought that being on antidepressants for so many years, from I was 22 until I was 30 had made me so numb that I couldn't process all the stuff I had been through earlier in my life - and I still think that's partly the case - but now I see that there's an entire half of the picture I didn't know about!! That this must have been post-acute withdrawal syndrome!! So not only did I have all the past trauma that came up now that I didn't have something to artificially shut it down, at the same time my brain was also struggling with getting chemically back in balance! Woooow... #MindBlown! I don't even know what I feel... I feel so angry and want to sue someone, but that's not really possible I guess. I have missed work for almost 2 years, I'm only now starting a 10-hour internship. I can't believe you can go from feeling fine to 4 months AFTER you stopped the medicine get these extreme reactions. Has anyone else experienced something like that? And I still want to come off of the Amitriptyline, but slowly. It's only 10 mg, and this week I'm taking 9 mg. After I've done this for 2 days, I do feel some side effects like a bit of insomnia and hightened fight-flight, but it's minor. And might be because I made an oral solution from my tablets and now I read you should try to stay on your dose for 4 days before you reduce it. I did calculations based on the advice of the 10 % reductions of the new dose every month, and if I jump off at 0,1 mg, it will take me 43 months. It seems like a long time, but I would rather do this safely this time! Wow, I'm still in shock that it was protracted withdrawal symptoms that almost had me commit suicide, because no doctor could tell me what I was experiencing. I'm so glad I found you! And I also want to ask you if anyone has ever gotten completely over this syndrome, can your brain adjust completely? TIA
  25. I had been taking Celexa for depression for 20 years. I tried to quit taking it 2 times before. I am on my 3rd try. After talking to doctors I tapered for 6 weeks from 20 then 10 milligrams and then stopped. Last time I tried I tapered for 6 months. Thought I would try shorter time this time. I know now from joining this group that was a mistake. Boy do I know it. Uhh...I have been off for 3 months. Symptoms are anxious, feeling dread, nervous, hard to fall asleep, foggy brain , feel flat. I am functional in my job but I feel like an actress. Get teary eyed easily. Anyway. The posting in this group have helped me so much. I have not told too many people in my life because it is hard for them to understand. I have had my husband read a few postings so he can see what I am going through. I have been asked over the years by doctors how I feel taking Celexa and I said goodsoooo never thought of stopping for a long time. Did not know the drugs were not made to take your whole life. I am pushing myself to eat cleaner, not drinking alcohol right now and walking and riding my bike for exercise. I have to believe I will feel better but I question daily if I really will. Thanks to all who share their journey.
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