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Kittygiggles posted a topic in Introductions and updatesIntroduction Hi everyone. I have been lurking here since last year but decided to start my thread as my waves are getting more frequent. I am trying to stabilize at 20mg of generic Prozac (fluoxetine) daily, and have been taking it for 6 months. I thought stabilization was finally happening in January this year but waves are now weekly. I am here to see if anyone can shed light on why my horrible waves are more frequent now. I've read “The windows and waves pattern of recovery” (http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-recovery/). Maybe I'm missing something? I'm not feeling very bright since WD hit me! Wave and window frequency Stabilization seemed to work right away and my intense waves were about every 14 to 21 days (3 to 4 weeks). Last month and this month, waves have increased frequency to about every week and last 2 to 5 days, with a window inbetween. Currently working on a graph based on my daily notes to visualize my stabilization journey. WD waves This is how I recall them now but I will update this description when I consult my notes next during a window. A headache and dizziness accompany a vice-like tightness around my head. I then get intensely irritable, depressed, and quite sleepy. I then get akathisia, mostly in the legs. I have tried pushing through it but I find it very hard to concentrate on anything and I just can’t bring myself to talk or interact with anyone. Any conversation or touch terrifies me and I just have to dismiss myself and apologize to whoever is around me at the time and hope they don’t take my sudden departure personally. I then go to sleep. When I wake, I feel better but the wave is still there. I tend to get better over the next day or two, only for the cycle to repeat as mentioned above. Aside from sleeping the only relief I get, for but a moment, is when my rescue cat comes home and deigns to grace me with her presence on the bed next to me or in my chair. This WD has meant that I can no longer keep many commitments, I can only work on a casual basis (i.e. I put in a few hours a day in a window), and my relationships have become skeletal. My life is slowly falling apart and I am now dependent on my partner. She is understanding of my withdrawal, having been on SSRIs herself but luckily avoided a protracted WD. Sadly though, I just feel so guilty and frustrated at how I am now a slave to this window and wave cycle, and largely a useless partner. Windows (something positive) I am myself: productive, fairly positive, happy, thoughtful of others, and able to tackle my anxiety properly. I still live in fear of waves but I am learning to try not to ruminate on them. I feel a willingness to connect with people. I am starting to put too much pressure on myself to do everything during a window and that is leading to problems. To be fair to myself though, my waves are iatrogenic and I must forgive myself for feeling wretched, even during a window, because SSRI withdrawal is the worst thing I’ve ever experienced and it has ruined my life. Why are my waves more frequent? I will share some of my hypotheses below regarding why my waves are more frequent. If anyone has any thoughts please let me know, I’d love to hear them. I’ve learned so much from SA already. As mentioned in my signature I am working on compiling all the daily data I have into a graph so I can get a better picture of my stabilization journey (and what proceeded it). I don’t know when that will happen as my windows are now spent doing all the things I put off in my waves and just improving my loosening grip on the good things in life. I know though that I have to finish this data processing as soon as I can in case the waves merge into one big, long one. 1. My SSRI history during the last two years is peppered with ignorant tapering attempts, maybe it is catching up with me? 2. The optimist inside me is hoping that the frequency is increasing because it could be a pattern that occurs prior to a period of flatter frequencies (perhaps the ebbs and flows of homeostasis). I am perhaps just fantasizing but I imagine that if the frequency increases so much, like in a radio wave, the peaks and troughs (waves and windows) will be indistinguishable, which could be what homeostasis looks like. I am laughing at this hypothesis as I can see I am desperate for some good news XD 3. Maybe my reinstatement/stabilization dose was a little too low (considering I was on 40mg daily for the longest time) and I am catching up with the WD that it would have caused in recent months. If this is the case, I can’t see any benefit in updosing now anyway. Sure, it could always get worse but I think it would definitely get worse if I start guessing at an updose level. I could be wrong. 4. Some of my family wish to visit me later this month for a few days. I haven’t seen them in years. They planned it during one of my windows in December and I felt positive about it all. I also felt optimistic that given about 6 months of trying to stabilize, my waves would be a thing of the past, or a rarer occasion. I tried to get them to postpone but they can’t change their plans without losing all their money. I don’t want them to stop their holiday for me but as the reason for travelling is to see me, I have warned them that I may be in bed, only able to talk to them for a few minutes. I hope I have a window when they are here but I think I’ve had a huge amount of stress about the visit because I just don’t need the guilt I will undoubtedly feel when I am only able to see them for a few minutes. In other words, perhaps stressors and other factors in my life are making waves more frequent. My expectations for stabilization and my tapering plan I didn’t expect stabilization to take this long but after reading “After reinstating or updosing how long to stabilize” (http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4244-after-reinstating-or-updosing-how-long-to-stabilize/?hl=%2Bhow+%2Blong+%2Bstabilize) I realize it could take a long time, maybe years based on how much damage my ignorant tapering did in the past. When I stabilize (I suppose I have to believe that I will) I plan to do an SA taper, spanning years, with water titration (I have done a few trial runs of it and it’s very easy to get accurate doses this way). I have the syringes ready but it could be a long time before I get to use them! My current plan is to keep plodding along at 20mg until I can get a more stable window and wave frequency. I don’t expect my waves to disappear completely but this increase in frequency means I am questioning things and hope that someone out there may have an idea about what’s happening and what I may expect to happen for the next 6 months. Lifestyle As for my lifestyle, I am healthy, eat well, and exercise most days. I take some supplements but I don’t think they’ve made much of a difference either way. I will list them later when I can manage it but they include B12, magnesium, and fish oil. Sadly, during waves I mostly lie in bed as it provides me some relief. One of the side effects from fluoxetine is sleepiness and lethargy, which I've always had, so that contributes to me lying about a lot. It took so much out of me to write this but I am glad I did it now! Good luck to you all and I wish you the best, regardless of what stage of withdrawal and recovery you are. Kittygiggles
32 male Ok so gonna try and keep this simple but detailed if makes sense...Reinstated 6 weeks ago after nasty month long WD symptoms mainly tight chest and tremours towards the end and immediately felt good as soon as I took the drug one eve. I reinstated 5mg every other day then noticed a bad 2 days after a week which I thought was odd?? so took it every day. After 1 good week noticed a 3 bad days?? I decided to gradually increase to 10mg over space of 2 weeks as I read on here if having WD symptoms slightly increase a bit but not much but had bad insomina so went bk to 5mg! YES I KNOW BAD MOVE With in 2 days had the worst WD ever akathesia, no sleep, no eat, pure panic attacks that last 3 days! I stuck to 5mg and after 3 days felt really good again like nothing happened for 5 days till....last 4 days been having same problems but slight less akathesia but pure anxiety all day followed by panic attacks in the middle of them all with intrusive thoughts my questions- why the hell am I getting more bad days then good lately? Literally can’t function not working at the mo. Yes I know I yo-yo’ed but still I have stuck to five now for 2 weeks solid and not stable at all! judgin by my story yes I shouldn’t of gone down to 5mg maybe stayed at 8mg or something after reaching 10mg . But why am I gettin these crazy symptoms? Is my CNS sorting it self out? should I make my way slowly bk to 10mgs over the next few weeks-could run the risk of more disturbance? Or 20mg where I came from? ( currently packing for holiday freaking out how I am going to feel for week abroad in Spain but don’t want upset GF) All theories welcome 🙏 any questions please ask thanks
I believe I’m experiencing rapid cycling. Manic episodes alternated by depressive episodes. I’m thinking it is caused by the fairly high (for me) dose of Effexor. I'm on 112.5mg. One moment I will be very restless and terribly anxious and within a few hours, I am deeply depressed. (It can take longer; it can take up to a day for the depression to come back.)I’ve had an antidepressant (Paxil) induced episode 21 years ago. The psychiatrist put me on mood stabilizers, and I stayed on them for the next twenty years. I went off Lithium about a year ago, with the help of a psychiatrist and naturopath. I tried to go off Effexor, started mid 2018, but didn’t know about this group yet and I went off too fast and ended up in Psychiatry in April/May 2019. I reinstated after that, but I haven’t stabilized yet. It’s been a tough road. Now what do I do? My dose of Effexor is too high, it is maybe the cause of me going manic. But it’s not advisable to withdraw when one isn’t stable yet. I’m not sure what is best. Do I stay on my current dose or withdraw? I sure hope I won’t go into a full blown manic state! I prefer not to go back on Lithium though.
The below chart is the chart I used which was made in MS Excel until I hit a wall, and now have to stabilize. The formula is a 3% cut. I've been doing this for a year before I recently crashed. I left off at 41.36mg. I guess the question I have is if these numbers look good, and is the sheet done correctly? https://www.dropbox.com/s/gyctpdz6md5kln9/Image1.jpg