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  1. Original topic title: I survived Generalized anxiety disorder to a very intense degree as well as Major depressive disorder in a very short amount of time, I basically dropped Pregabalin, and clonazepam Now I only have to drop Pristiq( please help me Hey How is this community? I was researching and I found you all. I hope you all are well and doing great. I suffered from Anxiety since I was around 18 years and it would come and go in waves. I never really resorted to Psychotropic drugs. Most of the time my anxiety would spotaneously resolve. I would always stay very active with exercise and swimming and sports. I always had great family and friend support and my disorder never got out of hand. I had bouts of recreational drug use and abuse during my college years but never was an addict( I used MDMA and cocaine). However even with my anxiety disorder I never took this SSRI/SNRI garbage and I suffered from anxiety for 13 years. Essentially it is Garbage. It might help to a degree with anxiety or depression. But I see the damage it does to the beautiful human body. My anxiety got out of control starting last year and it kept getting more intense. I never dealt with anxiety at this level. It was something surreal. I was just suprised. I always had anxiety. But this was something out of this world. The anxiety kept getting more intense, the spiraling thoughts, then the anxiety took over my body, mind and soul. I was rendered incapacitated. I started to develop depression and also suicidal thoughts. I never dealt with something of this magnitude. It was truly out of this world. I had to take some time from work. I developed a plan to recover. I read self help books. I had family support. I started to exercise intensively and I got on Psychotropic drugs. This took place this year the worst of it from february 2022 to May 2022. I am essentially recovered now August 2022. Lyrica, Clonazepam and Pristiq. My dosage of Lyrica was 400 mg a day at one point. Eventually I developed a tolerance to the Lyrica and dropped it ; I tapered it and I got off it without a problem. I also had this weird intuition in my gut. Its very unusual. Its something related to God or a higher power for certain( I am a Christian). Something just told me to drop the Lyrica and I tapered it over a week or two and got off without an issue. I also have a strong brain body connection. I have dealt with anxiety. I also do not always view my anxiety as a bad thing. Even though its force is overwhelming at times I learned to rest in it and accept it and allow the energy to pass. Anxiety is a form of energy. Thanks to God, a higher power or whatever miracle. I survived GAD and Major depressive disorder very rapidly this year probably over 2-3 months. It was very intense but I survived. I now continue to experience anxiety but instead of intense fear, its just amplified energy. My panic attacks dissapeared. I had panic attacks, phobias, and agoraphobia I Survived. Anyways now I just have one beast to conquer. I put my faith in this community to help. I know I can survive this too. This a mere part of the process. I have not been on the SNRI for a long time. I wish I never started. Since February to now August I gained roughly 20 pounds So I only have been on pristiq for 6 months . I went from a nice basically good looking 30 year old male who was 6'2 very fit and 215 pounds to a 30 year old male who now has 235-240 pounds. This was all due to the pristiq and lyrica and I am happy I dropped Lyrica. On saturday 8.6.2022 I dropped my Pristiq from 100 mg to 75 mg. So far the withdrawal has not been too intense. I only have been on Pristiq for 6 months. I kind of want to do a faster taper. Any advice? I have confidence in God, myself, my body, my mind that I will drop this ****. I want to do it safely but if possible a bit quickier. The intuition in my body or some kind of force told me start this now. Now is the time. Now you will get off this crap. I think my Body can do this. I know I can. I am staying positive. The power within. All of us have it. I know some of your journeys have been long. So has mine with anxiety, it has been 13 years of dealing with it. I mostly stuck to exercise and supplements and family and friend support to deal with it and always was successful. This year I started to take this Pristiq crap and maybe it helped maybe it didn't. I think time did. According to most research Depressive episodes and anxiety episode last a year and dissolve naturally. I am standing now at Pristiq 75 mg. I am on clonazepam .25 mg plan on dropping it over the next 2 weeks. Basically have no benzo withdrawal or any issues with that and a high level of discipline and know I will drop it. What is the best and safest way to taper Pristiq 75 mg? with the least amount of damage done? I dropped to this dose on Saturday from 100 mg. Basically I am taking one 25 mg extended release tablet and one 50 mg extended release tablet. I have been on Pristiq only 6 months. It was a terrible choice. I will never go on any SSRI or SNRI after this. I also do not like the feeling I lived till 30 years old something without pills( supplements okay) but its just crap. They also lie. Pristiq is addictive. They made the chemical like that on purpose. The side effects are horrendous and I am having a doubt in my mind if it truly helps anxiety. It just numbs you out. Maybe helpful to a degree but its just B/S.
  2. Pens


    i’ve been on antidepressants for approximately 10 years doctor put me on different kinds. Just want to be off of them. Recently I was put on mirtazapine to help get off of Pristiq and now I am experiencing with drawl symptoms from tapering down on the mirtazapine. I am withdrawing from mirtazapine at present I would like to be part of a support group to help me get through And to learn if there’s anything I can change i.e. diet to help lessen the symptoms of withdrawal.
  3. 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
  4. April 2013 I was originally put on Fluoxetine for social anxiety, at 17 years old, 10mg raising up to 40mg daily. For the first 6 weeks I lay on the sofa feeling worse than ever. It gradually started to have some effect. . Stayed on till May 2014, when I decided to come off. It did lift my mood slightly, but didn't help with anxiety. It was making me lethargic and I wanted to get my energy back. I reduced by half then half again, then stopped. . A few weeks later, after a couple of "big nights out" I woke up with intense mood swings, derealisation, anxiety and light headedness/vertigo. I started to get brain zaps, a sense of impending doom. Doctor put me back on meds - Sertraline, 50mg up to 100mg after a few weeks, then 150mg a few months later. This made me feel a bit better, but coincided with a period of heavy drinking. Late 2015, started to feel unwell again, went to Psychiatrist and was put on 200mg Sertraline, 15mg mirtazapine, 50mg quetiapine. This helped me to feel good, if a little detached and spaced out. Early 2016 I decided I was feeling so good I could stop taking everything. I took no advice, and tapered off extremely quickly. I got very intense withdrawal symptoms - brain zaps, derealisation, impending doom, very intense anxiety, labile mood. I ended up going back on Sertraline but it didn't alleviate the symptoms so I tapered off more slowly, and was off by May 2016. By September 2016 I wasn't coping, and my doctor put me back on Sertraline, which didn't work, so I changed to 45mg Mirtazapine, then added 50mg Quetiapine for sleep.. Life was "bearable" but it didn't make me feel as good as the first time on meds, and certainly didn't feel well or healthy. I was drinking heavily throughout this period. 2017 - stopped drinking Jan - September - this removed my crutch for socialising, so I became isolated and depressed. The meds weren't helping but I was afraid of the withdrawal symptoms. August 2017 I tried TMS, which i don't think really made any difference. I started University October 2017 which made me extremely anxious, and I found it hard to attend seminars and lectures. Around Christmas 2017 my gut problems began, and i have been diagnosed with IBS. 2018, still drinking too much, I started exercising more and managed to get through the first year of Uni. January 2019, I had to defer Uni due to anxiety. Mirtazapine was causing weight gain and I didn't think it was helping, and i believed there must be the "right drug" for me. The psychiatrist advised cross taper from Mirtazapine to Venlafaxine - 150mg raising up to 225mg. I had a bit more energy on this. During 2019 I was drinking heavily again. March 2020 I was returning to Uni and decided to try a strict weight loss diet. I had an intense dream one night which meant I woke up feeling tearful and extremely emotional. Looking for causes, I stopped my diet and returned to normal eating, but the emotional intensity carried on . I took some 5HTP without effect, so went to Psychiatrist. Venlafaxine was increased to 300mg. This is when the akathisia started. My emotions were blunted, and terrible insomnia. My IBS continued to get worse and worse. (nausea, constipation, cramps) I had intense periods of suicidal thoughts, noise sensitivity and brain zaps, (linked - noise led to brain zap and jump, and a peak of anxiety), headaches. I couldn’t concentrate or remember things. I couldn't continue with University and had to defer again. Quetiapine was increased to 125mg to address the akathisia, and Zopiclone for occasional use to help sleep. Several weeks later, no change, so I was cross tapered quickly from Venlafaxine to Vortioxetine 10mg rising to 20mg. This had no positive impact. By early August 2020 i was put back on Mirtazapine 45mg and still on Quetiapine and occasional Zopiclone. This seemed to make me worse, so I wanted to come off everything. I started to taper off Quetiapine quickly, and it seemed to make no difference. I stopped the Zopiclone and went down to 30mg Mirtazapine. I also consulted a private psychiatrist for a second opinion at this time and he put me on Pregabalin for the anxiety, quickly put up to 600mg daily, which he assured me I could stop easily and immediately once my withdrawal symptoms were better. Early September to end of December 2020 I tapered off Mirtazapine and felt awful every time I went down, but i was desperate to get off it. I am now only on Pregab 250mg daily. Current symptoms - insomnia, akathisia, anhedonia, suicidal thoughts, intense feeling of impending doom, general anxiety, digestive problems, brain zaps, noise sensitivity, poor memory, lack of concentration, derealisation. How am I now - most days bad, some tortuously awful, very few are somewhat bearable. Anhedonia and derealisation are constant.
  5. It’s my first time posting so hello to everyone . I’m so glad I stumbled on this site I’ve been so scared not knowing what was going on with me . ill try and make this as short as I can . In August of 2018 I hit what I believe to be called poop out (reaching tolerance) from taking seroxat for 15 years straight . Anxiety started to creep into my days even though I was on 20mg and hadn’t had problems only minor in the past . A visit to the dr led to him increasing my dosage to 30mg. I didn’t feel happy about this and decreased back down within 3 weeks. I knew for me the answer was to taper off. In November 2018 i went to see a psychiatrist for advice on tapering as my dr hadn’t got a clue (too long to go into) . She said to drop 5mg see how I went for 4 weeks before dropping again . This seemed to go ok . In December 2018 she said to drop another 5mg again I felt ok. Don’t get my wrong I had lots of weird symptoms with some depression and anxiety but didn’t feel too bad I put this down to the 50mg of pregabalin she said I should take three times daily (prescribed in November ) . I take twice daily on the advice of my dr. In January she said to decrease by 2.5 mg which I have done. I am now taking 7.5mg daily . From reading things on this site I now know I am tapering tooooooo quickly and my body is now telling me this too as my symptoms are more pronounced and the depression is really setting in. I don’t know what to do for the best and was hoping for some advice here. Do I stay put and wait to get stable though I have read somewhere on this site that it can take up to 18 months to start to stabilise after poop out. Or do I increase tiny amounts until I feel able to cope better with the symptoms? I am still working every day . my thoughts before finding this site were that I needed to get off seroxat because it had started to make me feel so much worse and that by keep taking it I’m poisoning my body and it will never head towards homeostasis while I’m still taking it no matter what dose. I would be so grateful for any advice .
  6. Hi.. My story is, “briefly“, that I have within the past 3 years, been on... so. Much. Crap. And I am currently in withdrawal torture from hell and have been for years now. In the beginning of 2019, I had a very bad stress / anxiety reaction, and I was quickly put on medication. Benzodiazepines for two months along with starting Zoloft. Quit Benzos cold turkey (doctor’s orders) and then Zoloft was upped to 125 mg (in hindsight I am pretty sure it was because I reacted strongly to Benzo quitting). I felt completely horrible on Zoloft and tapered off over the course of 2.5 months (doctor’s orders). Then I was in complete hell and couldn’t sleep so after being “clean” for one month, I was put on 7.5 mg. Mirtazapine. I could FINALLY sleep and it did seem to help my anxiety a bit? I still had a lot of strange horrendous symptoms though but I don’t know if that was from Mirtazapine or SSRI withdrawal ...? Can a dosis of 7.5 mg. Mirtazapine cancel out severe SSRI withdrawal? Anyway - So in 2020 I was on Mirtazapine up and down weekly between 7.5 and smaller doses (doctor said I could just adjust from day to day). I ended up just completely wrecked and just lied in bed in a haze.. so they took me off Mirtazapine and started me on 60 mg. Duloxetine plus Promethazine for sleep. Total haze still, awful.. So off it again after 7 months - tapered from 60 mg. Duloxetine to 0 over 4 weeks. Then felt .... HORRIBLE (!!!) and started self medicating with Benzodiazepines while I waited for withdrawal to end for two months- until my doctor found out and said stop that. Then I was put on Pregabalin and Escitalopram 10 mg. from March 2021 until I wanted to quit (because I was a complete foggy hazy wreck on that as well). Stopped Pregabalin in May and Escitalopram in July (tapered from 10 mg. to 0 over 4 weeks). In September I tried to take a tiny dose of Escitalopram to ease the horrendous withdrawal symptoms .. but that didn’t work and I felt worse. So I just thought I’d push through this indescribable nightmare... in December however I took 1/2 pill of Benzodiazepine twice because it was so unbearable. So.. now it is 9 months since I stopped Escitalopram (/6 months since I tried a small dose for a week) and 4 months since Benzodiazepines.. I can’t describe how much of a hell it has been AND STILL IS 😔 I have constantly tried to tell myself that it WILL and MUST get better soon. And while some symptoms have gotten better, I have almost no life by now. I hardly see anyone because I just can’t due to symptoms, I hardly exercise or leave my apartment. Some days, like today, it is almost constant torture. A week ago I tried Melatonin (4.5 mg. over two days) and then I’ve tried some Valerian root pills.. somehow it’s gotten worse now. So.......... bottom line: I’m thinking about starting Mirtazapine just to ease the withdrawal symptoms and to make sure I sleep better. Right now no matter how much I sleep, I am never rested and feel like I haven’t slept for days everyday. But I am BEYOND scared that it will make everything worse, and then I have yet another drug to get free from. So yeah.. does anyone know if Mirtazapine can help SSRI withdrawal symptoms? I honestly don’t know what to do. Thanks and sorry about the long message. I feel pretty desperate. 😔 Best Louise
  7. Hello, My English is not that good but I will try my best. I’ve been taking Escitalopram for over a month now after a very hard benzo and Pregabalin withdrawal. It seems like now my anxiety is getting better and I no longer have derealization. My doctor put me on 10mg and after 3 weeks he upped to 20mg. The first symptoms when I started Escitalopram (nausea and increased anxiety) eventually subsided. The only thing that I still experience is little depression, very low energy and sleepiness. I don’t know if this will subside too because I’m 23 years old and currently studying in Russia. I really miss my energy and motivation. Thank you very much for any information. I am very happy with this website.
  8. Inability to walk properly 5 months ago I stopped Lexapro and started feeling weakness over the body. Specially in my legs. I used to be a very active young person. Now I can walk just to the bathroom and back due to muscle weakness and pain. I have checked with different doctors already and they say that everything looks normal in MRIs and Electromyography. Can this be SSRI related? I also survived benzo and Pregabalin withdrawal 3 years ago. I’m pretty depressed and suicidal right now due to this problem. If anyone knows something, it would be great. Thank you.
  9. Hey Warriors! I’m approaching 3 months tapering off Pregabalin, reducing 1-2mg/day using water titration. Today marks -80mg, or 520mg down from 600mg/day. And the day I found this forum. Feeling constant sadness most days, with some energy and a few happy moments here and there. Sleep has been erratic, it affects me badly to be so tired all the time. I’ve got appointments next week: - Julia Ross Nutritional Consultant for Amino acid therapy - New GP To get referral to Psychiatrist Three other meds to come off after this. The order I’m hoping to follow is: 1. Pregabalin 2. Lamotrigine 3. Fluoxetine 4. Moclobemide I’d love to be blessed with a quick and easy tapering journey but I know it’s not always possible. But I’ll do my best to have the best possible outcome. Thank you for sharing in the good and the challenging times xxx
  10. My name is Liza and I’m from Canada. I am here because the Lyrica support group I am part of is shutting down. I was put on Lyrica last March 2021 for burning in my legs, but was started at 150mg and increased to 375mg in less than a month. The side effects included severely burning legs, insomnia, and anxiety. A month after I started taking it, I realize it was causing these problems and not some unknown disease. I began tapering and taped too fast to start. the withdrawal caused burning legs, severe insomnia, urinary urgency, anxiety, angry, depression. In early November 2021, I was started to Seroquel to help with the insomnia, but it’s caused me to hyperventilate and then on Dec 28th, i was diagnosed with a DVT - Blood clot. i am off the seroquel, but am holding the Lyrica at 85mg because the recovery from the blood clot has been pretty awful. Since the clot, my anxiety has been quite severe and I feel like something terrible is going to happen, especially when o get a new pain. And FYI I have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.
  11. Hi everyone and thanks for accepting me. I'm humbled by what I have read here. Today I took what I hope is my last 200mg of pregabalin (I've been on 200mg twice daily for a year) and tonight I start my first reduction- 175mg. My psychiatrist has said it is better to reduce both doses at the same time so I'll be on 175mg twice daily, for the next couple of months. I am frightened. I've been stable on this for months now and been able to pick up parts of my life that lay in ruins, I thought, but were just dormant. I love to travel by train to visit my daughters and go to new places. I started Park Run and joined a running club. Before this there was a 2 year blur of burnout, break down, addiction to and withdrawal from sleeping tablets and tranquilizers. I'm frightened I might return to that time. But I know there are problems with taking pregabalin long term and I already struggle with some of the memory problems so...here goes. I hope to be able to record here what happens on this journey, good or bad. Who knows where this train will take me?
  12. I do understand that there is some valuable info and help here,I do but atm I’m so disoriented that I can’t find any help. I’m also very very emotionally sensitive and I know nobody means to be offensive but I take it so wrong and then I’m that much deeper in that black hole. I don’t mean at all to leave permanently but I tried to drop on my dosage 2 wks ago and the pain is so horrific that I couldn’t do it,so I was on 50’mg 2xday of Preg then I tried to stop to 25mg 3xday but couldn’t do it and even tho I’m taking 25mg 4xday I’m now on top of the pain and waiting to stabilize in now in withdrawal like symptoms stil from trying to drop and that dreaded death warmed over feeling is back. So I’m just gona sit and stabilize then drop one of my dosage. I wished I knew what vitamins or natural supplements I could use with the meds I’m on but I get so confused when I try to find sumin to help with the nerve pain that I just give up,especially early on in my dosage drop. But anyways I’m sure Iv talked your ear off. I so appreciate your care and concern I truelly do. Thank you so much for your kind words. Gabanoids
  13. Six years ago I was desperate to find relief from the debilitating pain I was experiencing from having had shingles-Postherpetic neuralgia. Even though I had worked in healthcare for 25 years I was very naive when it came to taking meds. I was a hospital social worker. My desperation and naïveté resulted in my ending up on Lyrica. The side effects have been many with the worst for me being tremendous weight gain.
  14. Hello to you all, I came over from the Survivors group on FB. I was on Pregabalin for about 16 years, the side effects from it worsened after being on it less that one year but I thought at the time it was just my conditions, each year I became sicker and food intolerances became part if my norm, so many other things were going on and over the years I had been extremely ill to the pint when I thought was on my way out. It was pretty scary. I found Amy's group on FB and learned so much about why I was so ill, reading other people's experiences similar to mine. I then took things into my own hands and cut my dose in half, nit a good idea because for about 4 or 5 months I was in total agony but I was determined to put up with it to get this stuff put if my system, after that time I then reduced by 100mgs every two months, but my food intolerances we still getting worse. In fact for the last 3 months on it I could nit eat without being very ill and so when I got to my last 100, after 3 months I stopped it there. Withdrawal is not pleasant but irs worth it to feel the way I am now. There were a lot of serious side effects but too much to go into here. Now most of the side effects have gone and I can eat food quite happily without thinking how sick I might be. I am so much better from discontinuing with Pregabalin and will never take that or it's substitutes again. My body is thanking me for taking note of good advice. I am so much happier without it. I am living again.
  15. Hi, I will try to keep it brief, but I am in desperate need of advice. I am a 34YO Male, my 1st bout of anxiety happened 10 years ago when I experienced a very stressful time in my life. I had my 1st child, started MBA school, and opened my own business all within a 3 month span. Had a panic attack one night, and what followed was a year of high general anxiety, with some intrusive OCDish thoughts sprinkled in. After a year I decided I would give meds a try. Tried Buspar...did nothing except make me dizzy. Tried Zoloft, and this was the magic bullet for me. Felt my anxiety lesson (after a brief increase) after about 3-4 weeks and after a few months I was back to myself. During this time I would have blips (one to two week periods when my anxiety would resurface, usually requiring a dose tweak and then would go back to normal. These would usually happen when I was eating bad, not exercising ect). At the start of my Zoloft experience I at one point got up to 150mgs, but in the last 4-5 years was on the minimum dose of 50mgs after I got generally healthier and added a multivitamin and fish oil supplement. Because of these blips, and the fact I was afraid to go back to the year of anxiety, I stayed on the Zoloft probably longer than I should have. It was 8 years later (October 2016) when I finally said, "heck I don't need these anymore". My prescription ran out and I just decided not to refill it. I went through most of the withdrawl symptoms, some brain-zaps, lots of light-headedness and dizziness, ect. That went away after about 3 weeks and for 3 months I felt great, totally off meds and totally back to normal. At the end of January this year, I started to have another "blip." I wasn't eating healthy and not exercising as much and decided I would be "proactive" and resume the Zoloft at my previous dose of 50mgs to nip it in the bud. This sent my anxiety through the roof but thought my body would adjust so I continued taking them. I was so scared of the increased anxiety though I didn't give it a fair shot and kept increasing and decreasing the dosage from 25 to 50mgs every week or so. Finally got into a p-doc and he gave me Lexapro, 5mgs for the 1st week and 10mgs after that...long story short, it did the same thing as the Zoloft and wasn't much better after 7 weeks. At this point I figured, "wow I wasn't this bad before, I will just go off of these!" Well unfortunately my month of no meds did not return me to my January self, in fact it was probably worse than on the meds! So then the doctor gave me pregabalin, which helped a little, but is crazy expensive and not covered by insurance. So on June 1st I started Paxil, 10 mgs for the 1st week and 20mgs after that, hoping the pregabalin can help me to get on them. I really want to be off meds, but don't think I am mentally able to at this point. It seems quitting the Zoloft cold turkey, then reinstating, I am much more sensitive to these drugs, does that make any sense? So I am hopeful I can eventually give a med (Paxil) enough time that my body will desensitize to it, and I can be on it for a bit to get stable again, then get off. Anybody experienced anything like this? Will my body desensitize? I am so desperate to feel normal again, I am a father of 3 (10YO Boy, 7YO Boy, 3YO Girl), a husband to an amazing wife, and they need their Dad and Husband back! What should I do? Give Paxil the time to desensitize, then get off after a few months? Is the fish-oil supplement that I still take that helped me reduce my dose of Zoloft causing me to be more sensitive? Quit everything and see what happens? Thanks in advance for reading my story and giving any advice or encouragement.
  16. Current drugs: - 2012-present citalopram, currently steady at 25mg - 2020 lyrica: max 4mg/day. started tapering after 2 weeks and having worse withdrawal than from 225mg This case history must be very unusal given the low dose and short time. Has anyone heard of a similar case? Also unusual is the bad method I'm stuck with to calculate doses. Recent start and tapering of lyrica ----------------------------------- I started a microdose of lyrica January 1 2020, thinking I could test side effects and stop if they were bad. Worked up to a maximum of about 4mg/day. After 2 weeks I decided it wasn't for mej. Reduced to 70% of max dose and held 4 days but got serious withdrawal symptoms. I thought an increase might help so went up to 80% of my maximum for 2 days, symptoms got MUCH worse, then down to 75% (1 day) and 65%. I thought lyrica and citalopram might be interacting and that tapering citalopram might be easier, so I tried 20% less (25->20mg) one day. I got the worst anxiety of my life and haven't changed it again. Following that I stayed on 65% of my lyrica dose for 2 weeks while I stabilised. Now on day 5 down from 65% to 60% which has not been bad. So, tapering slowly seems best. BUT I cannot measure doses accurately because I'm dividing powder with a knife on a plate (see below). Would switch to liquid but I can only guess how much I'm taking in a day. I'd be grateful for any advice on what I should do! Or information about similar low-dose, short-term cases, or how to handle inaccurate doses. I've been advised by some to go cold turkey given the small dose and short time, and that might have been ok when I started tapering after 2 weeks, but now I've been on it 6 weeks total. I could just about handle the initial 30% drop from my maximum dose but I could not handle what happened when I raised it 10%, then lowered it again. Maybe my case will be useful to someone. If nothing else it shows you can get hooked on a very small dose. The rest of this post goes into background a little and a lot of detail about what I'm doing now, so may be of less general interest. Prior drug history ------------------ - before 2010: prozac then paroxetine then seroquel. never any real trouble getting off them. Just some anxiety/irritability. - 2012 lyrica (only) for 11 days max 225mg/day then tapered off over 5 days with bad withdrawal symptoms for about a week - 2012 mirtazapine for a couple of months, after the lyrica - 2012-present citalopram, starting near the end of the mirtazapine Why is withdrawal worse in 2020 than on a much bigger dose in 2012? ------------------------------------------------------------------- It's hard to compare the two but the current withdrawal seemed considerably worse even before I raised the dose again and made it much worse. Some ideas I had: - I'm also on citalopram now. - Use or withdrawal from lyrica in 2012 primed/changed something. - I got lucky when i went off quickly in 2012, just in time (tapering after 11 days of using it) and just fast enough (5 tapered doses) to escape worse withdrawal. - The down/up dose in first week or withdrawal made it much worse. Also changing citalopram dose for 1 day seemed clearly VERY bad. Switching to liquid ------------------- Day 1 of last taper (65->60%) was partly with liquid I got from a compounding pharmacy. I replaced about 23% of the powder with liquid. Symptoms from underdosing have been bad but less bad than raising the dose, so I aimed low, and took what should have been roughly 45% less liquid than needed (using my rough estimate at equivalance - see dosing method below for details). It was much too strong. I got more sedated than I've ever been on lyrica, lots of muscle twitches, then somewhat agitated when it wore off. I switched back to all-powder doses, and decreased the evening dose by 1/3 to compensate for the morning overdose, and from the next day remained 5% of max dose lower. This has gone surprisingly well despite the updose then decrease. I'm tempted to stay on the powder, but I can't divide into smaller amounts than 1/256 of a capsule with any accuracy at all. That means as I decrease the dose, the reduction step size will get bigger. The most recent step down (65->60%) was about 7.5% of my current dose, but that will become 15% of current dose given a few more steps etc. Also, if a shirtsleeve brushes my reference doses away I'm sunk - I'll have little idea how much to take. But if I switch to liquid, I have to guess how much to take, and try to correct for symptoms, and gradually replace powder with liquid. After the first drop in dose (100% to 70%) it seemed to take a few days for the withdrawal to really get going. If that's still true, adjusting the liquid dose up and down could easily get out of hand and be less gentle than the later, and proportionally bigger, powder decreases. So neither option is good. Powder dosing method (details) ------------------------------ The method I use to dose is awful: I divide capsule's powder into two piles of 1/2, then divide each pile agqin and again. Currently I take 1/64 + 1/128th of a capsule every morning and again at night. This has limited accuracy of course, but it gets worse; there is residue left on the plate after the division. The amount of residue has changed over time since I switched from a big knife to a razor blade, and I haven't been consistent about how much residue I leave. At one point I thought measurements would be more consistent if I kept "reference" piles of each key size: 1/32, 1/64 and 1/128. But I realise now the references are not accurate, and I'm basically eyeballing the new piles now to match the reference ones. To estimate how much my 1/128 actually is, I started a new pill, and divided it with as little residue as possible (using a razor blade, which doesn't leave much at allif you're careful). To my amazement I seem to have left about 50% of the pill as residue. Separately I began sweeping residue from another pill into a pile, which I estimated was about 30% of the pill. Another idea would be to weigh my 1/64th, but I suspect it's too little to measure accurately with any scale I can get my hands on. Potency of my powder -------------------- To make matters even worse, the capsules I'm using expired 4.5 years ago. From a short look on the net and talking with a pharmacist this might not be big deal. But also the powder sits on a plate being slowly divided for up to 2 weeks before I take it, so it may degrade somewhat.
  17. First, excuse me for my English, I speak just French. I’m new on this group and would share my story. My story with shrink medications: It’s the most important rules, the golden rules if you want quit all this crap with minimal damage: stay on the original molecule and taper SLOWLY. I’m destroyed now because I have follow my Dr in this process: 1. Ten years on Tramadol and two years on Klonopin due to neurologic pain after a failed surgery. 2. Almost CT withdrawal of the two molecules , at this time I don’t know a clue about Ashton Manual and withdrawal, I trust my doc 3. Results: depression, anxiety, seizures, ...DR ad Olanzapine and Cymbalta (first time in my life that I take antipsychotic and AD) 4. Results: suicidal ideation, I inform my doc, he up the dosage of the AD! 5. Result: Suicide attempt two weeks later, cardiac and respiratory arrest , 2 weeks in intensive care at hospital 6. They give me Effexor, Pregabalin high dose (Lyrica ), Fentanyl, massive dose of benzos 7.Result: serotoninergic symptômes, they stop CT the fentanyl and Tramadol but ad Trazodone and sleeping pills 8. Results: psychosis, seizures, panic attacks, bowel obstruction and direct to ER! 9.Result: they cut CT the Effexor, Pregabalin, Trazodone and start with anSSRI (fluvoxamine), sleeping pills, Propranolol for tremors and heart rate, and start to cut the benzos but at a rythm of 25% each week. 10. Result: panic attacks, sweating, tremors, insomnia, suicidal tough, akhitisia, enable to eat (lost 30kg in 6 months), depersonalization, weak as hell! 11. Result: 10 weeks in detox clinic...they continue to cut the benzos but 50% each week!!! I talk with the Addicto in charge about Ashton and Breggin, about FB group... Never hearing this!!! 12. Result: back to home with SSRI but nothing else, BUT PAWS off hell: insomnia, dizziness, POTS, PSSD, PTSD, DEPRESSION, CNS AND GI SYSTEM DESTROYED, Anhedonia,SEIZURES, PANIC ATTACKS, ... 13. Result: my Dr stop the SSRI CT and reinstate pregabalin and another SSRI. 14.Result: more anxiety and insomnia. Dr CT the pregabalin: hell 15.Result, I change of Dr and search for a treatment with plant medicine Iboga, change my diet due to benzos belly and all damages due to AD and tapering the SSRI. 16. Go in a clinic for treatment with plant medicine Iboga / Ibogaine. Overnight no more PAWS, insomnia, pain, anxiety, ... was a life saver! Iboga reset all neurotransmitters, like if I was a baby born. 17. Return to home with no PAWS, no medication , but weak, tired and depression (My mistake is that I tapering to fast the Last SSRI, at this time I just want do die but my instinct say to me to microdosing with plant medecine Iboga or psilocybin...but was to down to follow my instinct) 18. Back to the shrink who give me SSRI ( insomnia, anxiety returns, give me Mirtazapine, but adverse effects, ad pregabalin and CT after 3 months, back on benzos too and ad Quétiapine into the cocktail...) I have two lovely kids and a wonderful wife, but I have lost everything: my job, my health, my family... because I’m just able too stay on the couch with horrible symptoms, kindling effect, and pain all day long, sometimes I can eat but the GI system is so painful and destroyed that I can’t assimile nutrients correctly. When I can sleep 2-3 hours it’s a very good night for me, but usually with a lot of nightmares and sweating... Today I have received by mail the decision of health services of my country: I’m considered as 100% invalid. IN CONCLUSION: FOR THE PEOPLE WHO WANT STOP SHRINK DRUGS: 1. SLOW TAPERING DON’T GO CT 2. STAY ONLY ON YOUR ORIGINAL MOLECULE 3. DON’T STOP MULTIPLE MOLECULE IN SAME TIME 4. DON’T FOLLOW IN ANY CASE THE DR ADVISE ABOUT TAPERING OR DIAGNOSIS DURING WITHDRAWAL 5.DON’T AD NEW DRUGS IN THE COURSE, NEVER! ONLY TIME, HEALTHY DIET, EXERCISE, SOME VITAMINS ARE THE KEY 6.GO **** YOURSELF ALL BIG PHARMA AND DOCTORS WHO WORK FOR THIS. MY SON, MY DAUGHTERS AND MY WIFE HAVE NOW A VEGETABLE IN PLACE OF A FATHER. THANK YOU VERY MUCH MOTHER****ERS! HOPE THERE IS A DIVINE JUSTICE AFTER... Good luck for everyone 🤞🤞🤞hope you will be better than me. ❤️❤️❤️
  18. Can someone help me to withdrawal Trazodone and Fluoxetine? I’m also in protracted Benzo WD. (22 months off after 4.5 yeras on Lorazepam). I’ve also been 5 months withdrawing pregabaline (225 mg) since march to august, and I have also been able to reduce Trazodone from 50 mg to 22.5 in 5 months (extremely difficult) . I’m also taking 1 capsule (20 mg) fluoxetine every 10 days because I can’t afford WD symptoms. I need a proper plan. Even if it’s 1 or 2 years. I’m exhausted and suffering. I find it hard even to write. I feel I can’t do this anymore. My sleep is fractured and poor (no REM sleep). I can’t even calculate dosages or plan tapering methods. At this stage I’m too sensitive to any cut. Many thanks in advance.
  19. Hey guys, I found this forum a while ago and it got me interested. I am a 24 year old male from the Netherlands who has been suffering from depression and anxiety since 2014. I have had many bouts of depression and/or anxiety and they're still there. Since late 2016 I have tried a number of different medications. After started tapering down my escitalopram in the summer of 2019. I tapered from 10mg to 7,5mg (stayed on that dose for like a month), then tapered to 5mg (stayed on that dose for about a month again), then tapered to 2,5mg (stayed on that dose for a month again) and then quit. I quit my Wellbutrin 150mg XR at the same time. After I went from 2,5mg to 0mg in early August 2019 I had some very severe withdrawal symptoms. I had never experienced something like that, even though I quit other drugs before (Wellbutrin and dexamphetamine). My (early) withdrawal looked something like this: I had very severe anxiety for about 2 weeks after quitting, also had weird nightmarish dreams, felt dizzy at times and had a weird sensation when turning my head (a sort of vertigo/dizziness). After 2 weeks the more ''physical'' symptoms (the vertigo/dizziness) was mostly gone. I didn't feel as on edge anymore and had a sense of stabilization. However, from that point in time up until now I have been quite anxious on a daily basis and also depressed. The anxiety I have experienced for over a year is a strange kind of anxiety. I was anxious before starting escitalopram, hence is why I started it in the first place. However, the anxiety I experience now feels quite different. It's like a continuous stream of light panic attacks. Like the feeling you get when someone scares you (like the feeling you get when you drop a glass). Also my thinking is very negative and I feel like I will never get out of this place. Over the past year I have tried to reinstate escitalopram twice and have also tried to reinstate Wellbutrin 3 or 4 times. I am currently on Wellbutrin and have been for 9 days. I also take pregabaline 75mg twice daily. The positive thing is that I haven't quit Wellbutrin yet this time and probably won't. I plan on trying it for at least a few months to see if my mood improves. I have been on twice before. The first time I was on it for a month, the second time I was on it for 2-3 months. The second time I was also on escitalopram. In hindsight I was actually quite stable back then, but my emotions felt dulled at times. I decided to quit both medications at the same time. As said before, I had been tapering off the escitalopram from 10mg to 2,5mg. The Wellbutrin I didn't taper, because it's not really possible in my country. We don't have to 50mg - 100mg IR dosing, just the 150mg XR dosing. In hindsight I think I shouldn't have quit both medications at the same time, but I thought it was safe as I couldn't really taper them any lower. Anyways, Wellbutrin lifts my mood and gets rid of my depression almost completely. I have fair hope that a reduction in my depression will also reduce my anxiety, but I am not sure. I have been reading about prolonged SSRI withdrawal on this website, and about the waves and windows pattern. I do recognize some of the things that are often said on this forum, but I have 0 physical symptoms. Physically I am completely healthy. It's all in my head. I do feel however that the anxiety I have now been experiencing for over a year might be because of prolonged SSRI withdrawal. I am not sure however. I have always been anxious. At the moment my depression and anxiety are so debilitating that my life is not really worth living. However, I hope that the Wellbutrin will make a change. That is my story. Thanks for reading. PS. this is an overview of my medication history: November 2016 - February 2017: methylphenidate 2x10mg daily February 2017 - September 2018: dexamphetamine 2x7,5mg daily October 2018 - November 2018: Wellbutrin 150mg xr daily + quetiapine occasionally for sleep December 2018 - August 2019: escitalopram 10mg daily (5mg daily for the first months) May 2019 - August 2019: Wellbutrin 150mg xr daily September/October 2019: dexamphetamine occasionally November 2019 - December 2019: tried to reinstate with escitalopram, didn't work January 2020: tried to reinstate with Wellbutrin, didn't work March 2020: tried to reinstate with sertraline, didn't work. Late March/Early April 2020: September 2020: escitalopram 10mg/15mg July 2020: Vyvanse 30mg daily for a week, then quit August 2020: methylphenidate 10mg occasionally October 2020: Wellbutrin 150mg xr + pregabaline 2x75mg daily
  20. Hello everyone, At age 4 I developed PANDAS (unknown at the time). It was characterised by extreme OCD and comorbid Tourette Syndrome and ADHD. In my teens I was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome. At age 7 I recieved my diagnoses. At age 8 I was medicated with Paxil. My OCD improved dramatically. I was switched to Zoloft because of anti-cholinergic side-effects experienced with Paxil. I was maintained at 150 mg of Zoloft for several years. I developed worsening akathisia and emotional numbing. At age 15 I developed severe apathy in the absensce of depression. With the help of my mother over the next 3 years I titrated to 2/3 of a 25 mg pill. I could feel the difference between 12.5 and roughly 16 mg of sertraline, and I could not go lower than 16 mg without side-effects. Due to my lower dosage, some emotional range was restored and I fell in love and started what would become a 3-year long-term relationship. At some point I figured I could do without sertraline. I stopped it and did not notice much. Eventually a creeping relapse overtook me with intense obsessive thinking. I started back up on fluoxetine. It caused bruxism and akathisia. I switched to sertraline after realizing this. It caused me to become hugely dysphoric (with superimposed hypomanic features). I got into a fight and broke several bones in my face. I was sent to a psychiatric ward. I found a study that found that fluoxetine caused an increase in diazepam concentrations by as much as 50%. I decided that I was probably undergoing acute benzodiazepine withdrawal, so I requested to be switched to Luvox, which also vastly increases diazepam concentrations. I have a long history with benzodiazepines which I will not expand upon here, except to say that my GP, who is handling my medication, is always pushing me to go faster on my taper. I got him to approve an Ashton schedule, although I think I would do better if he gave some leeway to hold at a dosage for a while so I can adjust. I stabilized within a few days of the change, and my akathisia was relieved (or masked by diazepam?). I left the ward at 100 mg of Luvox. To achieve further reduction in my OCD, Luvox was titrated up to 300 mg by my GP. This again caused emotional numbing and akathisia. I reduced my dose to 200 mg. I sat at this dose for a while, but by accident, or fate, I started missing a few doses here and there. This triggered intense emotion reactions. Life had me hooked. I had an emotional reaction to a song, and I have told myself that I am never going back into no-where land. I am going to decrease my Luvox to 100 mg, as 200 mg leaves me wishy-washy about wanting to taper. I will request my diazepam be increased to 25 mg and hold for 1 month, and then recommence taper. I have taken an SSRI for the vast majority of my life, and I have a question: Here is what I believe to be one of the enigma's of SSRIs. I know that it is true for myself. I hope to see if it is true of others. At the dose of an SSRI required to stave off withdrawal, the desire to get off of the SSRI diminishes. This can shave years of "living" off of your life. On the other hand, if you CT or cut too low too fast, the withdrawal will force you to reinstate. I have also struggled with intense DP/DR at times. It was at its height when it was 24/7 and I felt like "I", (insert my real name, let's pretend Jay) had died. That was the most excruciating time of my entire life, save brief periods of bash-your-head-in-the-wall akathisia after being given an antipsychotic at a psychiatric ward. Thank you so much to anyone who made it to the end of this post, it means a lot, Peace. EDIT: Also, sometimes when experiencing distress I wonder if it is the SSRI or the benzo, withdrawal from either of these, or just normal.
  21. Hi everyone, I wish i could say i am here to share a story of inspiration but my story is not such. I was prescribed zoloft at the age of 17 and went off back in November at the age of 39 after a very gradual 40+ week taper. At first i felt ok. The initial symptoms of withdrawal were mild, perhaps due to the fact that i was tapering down at only 5mg every two weeks. In January of this year (about 10 weeks after my last dosage) i began to experience quite severe anxiety. It was all day and persistent. After 4 weeks i returned to my GP and he suggested i go back on a low dose of zoloft until my CBT sessions began. He prescribed 50mg of Zoloft (1/3 of my regular dosage for 20+years) and to my shock after three days i went into an almost catatonic state of complete and utter panic attacks. I was immobilized by panic. My doctor told me to stop immediately and also prescribed Klonopin to help with the immediate anxiety. After i was stabilized he prescribed a low dose of Citalopram and the same thing happened after a few days. More Klonopin and no SSRI's. I weened very quickly off the benzo and was then walloped with the most severe insomnia of my life. After 4 days without any sleep the doctor (now a psychiatrist i was seeing) said to continue the benzo and added Lyrica (pregabilin) to help ween off the benzo while thwarting the insomnia. After three hellish months i was finally off the benzo and am currently now weaning off the lyrica. Every step of the way has been hell for me. I'm inside of an existence that has become a rollercoaster of anxiety, depression, fear and nausea, intermingled with short periods of normalcy. All along i thought that this experience was the benzos and lyrica and reemergence of old symptoms but only recently stumbled upon info about protracted withdrawal from ssris--which amazingly is completely off of the radar of the medical profession, as i'm sure most of you know. I'm currently living in a state of hyper vigilance as i never know when in the day i'll suddenly be walloped with severe anxiety and i always feel apprehensive at bedtime hoping i'll sleep ok. The worst part of this whole situation is that i don't know with any certainty that this current state i'm in will ever end. There have been many many days over the last 7 months where i have thought about death as the only relief from this predicament. I'm very lucky to have an amazingly loving and supportive wife who continues to hold me up and a couple of close friends who know what i'm going through. This keeps me going--barely. I struggle with feelings of deep resentment toward the medical and pharmaceutical fields for leading me to this place that i'm in. I wouldn't wish this hell on my worst enemy. I'm glad i found this site. I'm here to find some hope. I'm here to hopefully find stories from others who are in a similar predicament who have found recovery. I need to recover because this is no way to live. I do not want more meds (and doubt i can take them anyway at this point) Thanks for the opportunity to share my story.
  22. Please i kindly ask you to advice. After caesarian delivery I got Lyrica 100mg for pain. I was on it 1,5 year. Now I wanted to withdraw and all hell broke loose. I have obsessive thoughts about harming myself and others (never were there before), intrusive thoughs of someone running with the knife, thoughts /urges to kill myself or other, hallucinations when I Close my eyes in the bad about bad things (yesterday I had in my dream a cancer) already for two months, and my doctor thinks this is Depression and wants to up Lyrica and give some antidepresant to it. I do not know what to do. I do not want medicaments, but I am afraid I might lose my mind and really hurt someone. What is this for a medication? How can this do to me? I was always normal. I have Little chicldren, I am single mom. I want only to die. Please tell me what to do, or I will go crazy. The best possibility would be only to die. How can I come from this away? I am afraid my brain is totally destroyed.
  23. Hi all, I would like to come off of all the drugs I am on. I have an appointment with a Psychiatrist in November as I have asked for a re-assement (to consider a diagnosis of CPTSD rather than Borderline Personality Disorder) and I plan to begin my taper once under their supervision. I have been on Citalopram (now 40 mgs) for approx. 18 years. I was put on Quetiapine (now 200 mgs) approximately 5 years ago when I experienced a total breakdown after the birth of a baby. At the time I suffered from extreme insomnia (zero sleep for 5 nights), which led to relentless anxiety (non stop panic) and eventual psychosis. The Quetiapine wasn't relieving all my symptoms. I ended up admitted to hospital where I was put on Pregabalin (now 300 mgs). I would like to know the best way to approach this. I'd like to go to the Psychiatrist with a plan to propose. My GP wanted me to drop 25 mgs each med each week and I'm guessing that's too much at once?
  24. Hi im wanting to ask for advice on tapering off pregabalin.Ive been on 300mg x3daily for about 7months now for anxiety,fibromyalgia and chronic pain .I wanted to reduce back to 300mg x2 daily with a view to gradually reducing down over period of time.The gp said to take 3one day thn 2 the following over 5days thn down to 2x300mg daily.However on first day of 2x300mg I started getting awful fluttering and palpitations as well as migraine,twitching hand ,leg and facial muscles and increased pain.I want to reduce back to 2x300 but safely with no or at least less of these scary palpitations.How can I do this,over what period of time and how would I work out the dosages.I appreciate any help ands advice on this.thankyou
  25. Mccauley


    I've been reading a lot in here. My issue may not be one for this forum. I have questions about withdrawing from lyrica. I had been prescribed lyrica 50 mgs twice daily and Wellbutrin 300. I had been taking both of the lyrica in the morning with the Wellbutrin and a claretin d. With this concoction I was able to get up and function most days. Somehow, the doctors office turned in my script for 150 of lyrica twice a day instead of 50. I was then taking 300 in the morning along with the others. I had a mail order supply of three months. I honestly thought I was loosing my mind. My poor memory went non existent. I had conversations I couldn't remember among other things like car accidents, weight gain and just horrible feelings. On advice from another forum I asked the doctor for 50 mg tablets trying to get back to the dosage that worked for me. He suggested to take 200 mgs a day for a month, then 100. This is causing me so much pain and depression and fatigue. I had some questions for anyone who may have any insight or advice. In 2014 I had a bad withdrawal from cymbalta and this situation is just making me crazy. If there is somewhere else I should go please let me know. Thank you.
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