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  1. My story appears to be similar to many folks here on this forum. Reading all of these accounts has helped me accept my symptoms as a result of Zoloft, which has at least given me some piece of mind. Before I explain my timeline and struggle with getting off Zoloft, I want to bring to the forum’s attention something my psychiatrist informed me of which I have found no evidence of elsewhere. Hopefully someone can verify this. My psychiatrist explained the following: The FDA allows for a 30% upward or downward margin of error on Zoloft pills. He explained that a 50mg Sertraline (Zoloft) may have up to 65mg or as low as 38.5mg. Another example, a 25mg Sertraline may have have as much as 32.5mg and as low as 17.5mg. Can anyone validate this? If this is true, it is unimaginable. My story: I started 50mg of Zoloft in 2012 for general anxiety, social stress and general dissatisfaction. My psychiatrist at the time said “It was about as harmful as taking an aspirin.” In 2013 we increased my dose to 75mg. My psychiatrist retired in 2015 and I continued at 75mg through my general doctor’s refills. In 2018, I felt I was in a good place and tried to go cold turkey. After a couple of weeks of torture, I returned to 75mg. After learning that I should taper, and also feeling I was in a good place, I decided to reduce my dose to 50mg in July of 2019. Two weeks of intense symptoms ensued but by the end of the second week things became more manageable. I wanted to reduce the symptoms and requested (it took some convincing of my new psychiatrist) a liquid form of Sertraline in August. I reduced to 45mg but felt like I was not getting a consistent dose (sticking to the glass) and it was difficult to swallow even when mixed with water. My psychiatrist recommended that I switch to a 25mg pill + a half and a quarter of another 25mg pill bringing me to 42.5mg in September. I stayed at 42.5mg for September and October and was distracted by a series of sinus infections (antibiotics and 2 rounds of prednisone). Thinking I was ill from the infections, I did not realize most of my symptoms were Zoloft related. All of my symptoms were rationalized but my general doctors. Dizziness, light headed, extreme head pressure, headaches, persistent neck pain, fogginess, loss of appetite, ear pops and pings, jittery, imbalance, loss of equilibrium, flu-like symptoms and tingles in hands...doctors all rationalized them as symptoms of sinus/ear infection and the steroids. This went on for almost 2 months, while somehow I was still functioning. Until I called my psychiatrist last week and he informed me that it might be because we switched to a smaller pill which may have 30% less than is listed on the bottle. He prescribed the 50mg for me and within 2 days I felt somewhat improved, but noticed some brain zaps and the continuation of symptoms. My psychiatrist said that 50mg may not be enough to counteract a withdrawal and that we may need to go up to 75mg to stabilize. This past Sunday (10/27) I upped my dosage to 75mg. I am feeling some improvement, but still not feeling right: light headed, light sensitivity, headaches, fogginess, inconsistent appetite, ear pops and pings, jittery, imbalance and tingles in hands... So I am back where I started, 75mg, and hopefully stabilizing soon. Lots of information here from fellow “survivors” but I am scared. Shouldn’t I feel totally better? Could a couple months of enduring withdrawal make stabilizing more difficult? And most importantly, is the 30% margin of error that my psychiatrist shared with me true?? If so, we need to change that! Thank you for your time.
  2. Cloudskishawna

    Cloudskishawna: 5 weeks on Remeron / mirtazapine

    Something weird happened last night I think it was maybe 3 in the morning wasn't able to sleep but I know why that happened I had drunk some caffeine maybe around 1 pm big mistake So I go use the restroom going back to bed and then on my way my nose just starts leaking blood scary but I didn't panic or nothing just got some tissues but I have been having this heartburn issue now it's irritating me is there anything I can take to help that out.so since I wasn't able to sleep i just go to the store and get some more yogi bedtime tea which has been helping me tremendously once i got back it was 4 am so I just made some tea got in bed maybe around 5 and now woken up at 11 AM so Yeah no more caffeine for me
  3. I have successfully stopped using SSRI's (Celexa 40mg daily) and Benzo's (Xanax/Klonopin 3-4mg daily) for three years now after using them for 16 years. I tapered down from the Benzo’s first over a period of four months and then tapered down from the SSRI’s over the next four months. Of the nine subsequent withdrawal symptoms, I experienced since stopping both medications, three years later I am down to three symptoms that are lingering. Specifically: Sleep problems (waking up every 1-2 hours – inconsistent patterns) Elevated blood pressure (high-norm 140’s over 80’s) Ringing in the ears My PCP recommended I see a neurologist and he advised that the lingering symptoms are a result of the damage caused by the SSRI's and in time they will go away. Does anyone know when these lingering symptoms will leave and is there any recommended treatment I can utilize until they are gone? Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
  4. Topic title: Lingering Symptoms I have successfully stopped using SSRI's (Celexa 40mg daily) and Benzo's (Xanax/Klonopin 3-4mg daily) for three years now after using them for 16 years. Of the nine withdrawal symptoms I experienced, I am down to three symptoms that are lingering. Specifically, terrible sleep problems, elevated blood pressure and ringing in the ears. My PCP recommended I see a neurologist and he advised that the lingering symptoms are a result of the damage caused by the SSRI's and in time they will go away. Does anyone know when these lingering symptoms will leave and is there any recommended treatment I can utilize until they are gone? Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
  5. Hi,thank you for adding me to the group.I have been off and on Paxil for over three years.Recently it pooped out on me and withdrew from 30mg to 0 in the space of 4 months.I have been off Paxil for 25 days.Looking back I probably should have taken more time to withdraw.I took longer then my Doctor recommended,which was weeks,and took 4 months to do it.My main symptom is an overwhelming exhaustion that doesn't seem to go away along with muscle aches,a sore neck and jaw.Does anyone else feel like going back to bed right after waking up?
  6. Hi everyone! Did anyone use this type of medications that works oppositely to SSRI? This is SSRE - serotonin reuptake enhancer, prescribed for depression and anxiety, invented in 1960s in France. It is used in Europe and in Asia mainly. Any experiences? Thank you
  7. I am using Paxil for 19 years now and decided together with my doctor to bring the dose down and eventually stop altogether. Everything is stable in my life, and the summer is coming in Alaska. I went from 60mg to 40mg in a few months, but I experience flu like symptoms now. After looking on the web I found this site with success stories about slowly tapering. I am going up to 50mg now and as soon as I am stable will start tapering.
  8. I have two experiences of taking and stopping antidepressants. The first time was in 2003. I was in graduate school, we had just moved into a new house that needed lots of work, we had a 3 year old, and my best friend was given 5 months to a year to live. It was a horrible time in my life. I knew that I had to get through this time without completely shutting down. I went to my doctor and told her I needed anything that would help. She set me up for counseling twice a week and a prescription for Prozac 10 mg, increasing to 20 mg. The Prozac was a miracle for me. I took it for 1 year and had little issues. I did have some strange side effects like greater risk taking (spontaneously bought a new car without consulting my spouse). The car was the biggest thing. I had sexual side effects that are considered normal. When the worst of it was over I knew I didn't need it anymore. I told my MD and we made a tapering plan that I followed. There were some possible issues that I realize, looking back. More intense feelings of anger, disappointment, and sadness. But it was mixed with a difficult time in life so I couldn't really see the possible symptoms. Fast forward 15 years. I hit another part of my life that I felt I could benefit from an antianxiety or antidepressant. After being married for 19 years and having three kids my wife was diagnosed with bipolar disorder II. She had been treated for depression for several years but the meds and antidepressants never seemed to be a good fit. So my life was consistently up and down for years. At this time though, I was experience some early menopause symptoms (perimenopause) and my own emotions were on a roller coaster. Being our family's stability anchor I knew that I needed help to get through this. I found myself yelling at my kids for very small issues then apologizing over and over. That was not typically me. Since I had a good experience with Prozac I talked to my MD about it. She agreed but prescribed me Celexa (citalopram) 10 mg with increasing to 20 mg over time. At first she told me to take it prior to my cycle 5 days before, but my cycles became so irregular that was not possible. I ended up taking it daily for 5 years. Then I did something really stupid. I was not taking it regularly (on 3 days off 4) over and over due to a very hectic travel schedule for work. After one of my week long work trips in Nov 2017 I discovered that I had not taken it in 10+ days and I decided that I didn't need it anymore....so I stopped, cold turkey. For about 4 weeks I was fine...then on a long flight home from another trip, I broke down. I started crying about all the issues in my life, my kids life, life in general. I am mostly a positive and strong person but I could only see the futility in things. The cycle of climbing a hill only for gravity to pull us down. The pointlessness of all our real efforts. I came home feeling dead inside. I was an emotional zombie. After a couple of days I decided to lay this all out to my wife. She was surprised but decided that I was exhausted emotionally and physically and needed a rest. She took over most of the responsibilities with the house and kids that I had. She let me rest. But rest did not make it better. She checks in often and ask me how my day was going, my text answers are something like, dead inside, vacant, empty, I miss myself, I feel nothing, I have no desire to do anything, I don't care about anything, etc.Outwardly though, I am tense, easily angered, overwhelmed, discontent, agitated, nervous, and obsessive about stupid stuff, etc. I have never suffered from depression and my life was better than it has ever been, but it often seemed like depression. That's when I started looking for answers. That's when I found SA. Everything started making sense. The pains I have, the insomnia, the depression, all of it. It's been 3 1/2 months and I don't think that taking them again and tapering down is going to be a better option for me. I've been going through the HELL OF IT and I don't want to do it again for any reason. I have to get through this. I have to get better. I have not gone back to my doctor to tell her this story. I don't know what it would matter but to prove how stupid I was. Afterall, she DID tell me that I would need to taper and I didn't. I justified it thinking inconsistency WAS tapering...it is NOT. Now what? Everyday I feel miserable. Every.day. But it's inconsistent. Sometimes it lifts for a while and doesn't come back as severe. I call that progress. I'm hanging on to that. I regret not tapering but I'm in too deep at this point and I will suffer it out as long as I am able. Having a BP wife has helped because REALLY understands. Thanks for the read. I'm so glad I found this community. I'm in here somewhere trapped in the neurochemical eclipse and you probably are too. Stay strong.
  9. Hello All, I'm new here and am looking for some help. I've suffered from major depressive disorder my entirelife. My depression is a fairly constant part of my life with brief windows of freedom from it. 2 years ago I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder also, and at that time decided to try medication. I've tried multiple antidepressants and NONE OF THEM HAVE HELPED. I don't remember the first few I tried, but I tried paxil for a month, gave me my first panic attacks ever, then I switched to zoloft, which made me so tired I couldn't function, and then I came to effexor. I was on Effexor for 6 months, but all it did was numb my anxiety, and did nothing for my depression. So, I've been off effexor for a month now. I didn't tapper off too well. Was on a 70mg dose(I'm very sensitive to medication that was a very high dose for me) and in the span of two weeks kept cut down the dose/stopped. I couldn't take it though, the drug made me so sick everyday for 6 months, it was horrible. Now my depression is in full swing and I don't care about anything. I'm a full time grad student in a studio art program and since getting off effexor I can't make anything, I'm too depressed, I don't want to do anything and have been isolating in my room, sleeping up to 15 hours a day, just excessive depression symptoms. I'm afraid to go to a therapist/psych because all they ever want to do is give me meds and they don't work for me! Not a single one has helped. Has anyone else experienced that? No med working? and could anyone give me advice about stopping antidepressants and depression symptoms? It's been about a month so idk if I should introduce a little bit of effexor back in or not? I tried to do 15mg a while ago and it made me sick and very sleepy like when i was taking my full 70mg. Should I just ride out this depression and hope for the best? I hate antidepressants, they really have been a horrible part of my life. Any info/help greatly appreciated here. xo, vi
  10. Hi, I'm a 27 years old male, I started taking antidepressants on my own without doctor consultation about 3 and half years ago due to some emotional trauma. First I took Paxil 20mg for 2 and half years then I decided I don't need it anymore so I stopped taking it abruptly and I had very nasty withdrawal symptoms which I didn't have before taking the medication like severe depression and hopelessness, anxiety and suicidal thoughts but no physical symptoms though, so I returned to the medication for a month then switched to Prozac 20mg (cold turkey) for six months to ease the withdrawal symptoms. I then started tapering down Prozac over another 6 months by skipping doses since 20mg i.e. taking a pill every other day for a month then every 2 days for a month and so on till I stopped it completely about 2 and half months ago. I was doing fine during the tapering period and the 2 and half months after I stopped completely, then 2 days ago when I started having a depression episode and feelings of hopelessness like the ones I had when I tried to quit Paxil, however not as severe but still very bad, and again no physical symptoms just the depression and hopelessness feeling which I didn't have before taking the medicine in the first place. are these withdrawal symptoms or new illness since they appeared 2 and half months after stopping, also how long are they going to last? I have been doing a lot of internet research lately and I see some say that the symptoms last for 3 weeks and others say that they last for months or even years and may not completely disappear... so I don't really know what to expect...
  11. I have been thinking how to utilise a "flashback protocol" to the"wd" protocol...Flashbacks usually pull people into re-traumatising themselves...this is a natural response, but the way out is to GET OUT of flashback...I am including this below: Flashback protocol* This protocol can be used to help halt traumatic flashbacks (WD symptoms) and ground you in the present by reconciling experiencing self with observing self. With practice, this may help to reduce the occurrence of further flashbacks. “Right now I am feeling _____________________________________________________ (name the current emotion, for example ‘fear’) and I am sensing in my body ________________________________________________ (describe, in detail, the current bodily sensation) Because I am remembering _________________________________________________ (name the trauma, no details) and, at the same time, I am looking around where I am now in ______________________ (say the year) here ____________________________________________________________________ (name the place where you are right now) and I can see _____________________________________________________________ (describe some things that you can see right now) and so I know _____________________________________________________________ (name the trauma again) is not happening now/anymore I often panic when I get some symptoms that I remember from my past; so reminding myself that this is not happening now is really essential. Also, instead of getting overwhelmed with WD, this protocol my help in getting OUT of it...at least not so severe? I HOPE... more about flashbacks- they remind me so much WD symptoms Coping with flashbacks What is a flashback? A flashback is a dissociated memory that returns to consciousness. It might be a smell, a taste, a sound, an image, an emotion, or a combination of these things. It might last a moment or linger on for weeks. Flashbacks can be described in many different ways. Some people describe flashbacks as being like nightmares that happen to you while you are awake, remembering memories, or re-experiencing the assault. Sometimes people describe smelling alcohol or perfume when there is no one present, hearing a word over and over again in their heads, feeling panic or dread for no logical reason, or seeing pictures, like snapshots or a movie in their head. Whatever term you use to describe them, they are usually very frightening experiences. This information is for people who are experiencing flashbacks, so that they might use the information to help understand and hopefully reduce/control flashbacks. Experiencing flashbacks does not mean that you are losing your mind. It means that you are at a point in your life where you are able to deal with things that perhaps you couldn’t cope with earlier. Flashbacks tend to lose their intensity once you have assembled the fragments into a coherent memory, talked about it, cried about it, and absorbed the memory into your life. The flashbacks you are experiencing are only memories. They cannot hurt you and you are not being re-abused. You may feel powerless because you cannot control when these memories are going to emerge. But you do have control over how you feel afterwards. You may experience a wide range of emotions. Acknowledge them and allow yourself to feel them (even though this may seem painful). Take some time to recover from flashbacks and look after yourself. By looking after yourself you are acknowledging that you are a good person worthy of nice things. Whatever you choose to do, take some time out for yourself. Strategies for dealing with flashbacks • Try to relax. Although this is difficult, trying to relax reduces the stress that accompanies the flashback and usually means the flashback will pass more quickly • Concentrate on breathing deeply and slowly. Sometimes when people are stressed they forget to breathe, and they freeze up. When this happens it is easier for the flashback to take hold of you. Focusing on breathing helps to free you from ‘freezing up’ and also provides a distraction from the flashback. • Remind yourself that the abuse is not happening now. You are remembering the abuse, and that can be painful, but it is still memory and not occurring right now. • Find a safe place. This may be somewhere in your house, school, work, garden etc. Try to concentrate on breathing slowly and deeply while you are getting there. • Seek out a support person, someone you feel safe with • Imagine a safe place. This can be anywhere or anything that helps you feel safe. You could use a photograph, draw or write it down before a flashback occurs, so that you can have it ready and refer to it. • Remember positive encouragements from your support people. Imagine the person is there with you, encouraging you. Think of what they would say to you to help you feel stronger. • Touch or hold something to ground you in the present moment, instead of feeling pulled into the past where the abuse occurred. This could be a table, a chair or a pillow etc. • Hold onto a soft toy or an object that helps you feel safe/comforted • Use the flashback protocol. With practice this may help to reduce further flashbacks. • You might find it useful to talk to other people you trust about it. This could be talking to a close friend, your counsellor, or even writing about it. This helps to acknowledge that although you suffered alone when you were abused, you don’t need to be on your own when you are healing from it.
  12. I've been tapering off of Lamictal for about 5 months now, and won't be done until September 22nd. I'm tapering 25 mg every 2 weeks. I've experienced some withdrawal symptoms with other meds, Effexor being the worst, but coming off of Lamictal is one of the worst things that I've ever experienced. I've put in the time and effort to have bettered myself in order to be stable enough to get off of these medications, but the mental and emotional symptoms are intense. The endless physical side effects just make the emotional parts worse. I have a good support system, but I'm finding myself still wanting to talk to others who have experienced similar situations. I put together a list today of my withdrawal symptoms currently. I'm basically housebound right now, and it is beyond hard. My Current Withdrawal Symptoms: Physical Withdrawal Symptoms 1. Nausea/Vomiting 2. Diarrhea/Constipation 3. Migraines 4. Vision Changes 5. Body Pain/Foot Pain/Muscle Pain/Neck and Shoulder Pain/Stiffness 6. Tooth Pain 7. Bone Pain/Joint Pain/Cracking/Rubbing 8. Gagging/Vomiting from smells, tastes, textures, etc. 9. Easily out of breath/hard to breathe/chest pain 10. Overall weak/low endurance 11. Cold Sweats/Hot Sweats/Hot Flashes/Temperature regulation problems 12. Crawling in my skin/body is uncomfortable 13. Cold symptoms – runny/stuffy nose, sore throat 14. Extreme Fatigue 15. Off-balance/fall/run into things/hurt self often/dizzy 16. Malaise 17. Restless limbs/body 18. Metallic taste in mouth 19. “Brain Zaps” 20. Chest pain/tightness 21. Sensitive skin/Bruise and Bleed easily 22. Sporadic Appetite Emotional/Mental Withdrawal Symptoms 1. Anxiety 2. Unease/Nervous/Paranoid 3. Moody 4. Irritable 5. Anger 6. Rage 7. Depression 8. Crying 9. Emotional Lability 10. Jittery 11. Memory Loss 12. Concentration Issues/Can’t think straight or function 13. Confused/Disoriented 14. Easily scared/gasp from fear 15. Strange/vivid/intense dreams/nightmares Has anybody experienced anything similar to these symptoms?
  13. Ok so I have no idea how to start this and I'm sure I will forget some things. So here goes... I'm a 20 year old female and when I was 12 I was put on Zoloft for situational depression. I was on it for a total of 8 years and over that period of time I had my medication increased a couple times so I was at 100mg. Then in November (I think) 2016 I decided to get off of it. I weaned myself off over the period of about 3 or 4 weeks. (I think, I don't remember because I thought it would be of little importance). I was doing fine but noticed some anxiety but still felt 100% normal. Then around February 25th 2017 I noticed an increase in anxiety and spoke with my doctor who thought getting back on Zoloft would be the right choice. So I started back on at 25mg. I had severe side effects that I had never experienced before on Zoloft. Depersonalization, nausea, fatigue, random pain, the list goes on. But I tried to stick it out for around 4 days before I realized I couldn't take it anymore, so I stopped taking the medication thinking things would settle down again. Boy was I wrong.. I had so many symptoms such as: Nausea Light headed Palpatations Head ache Head pressure on right side of head (debilitating) Neck pain Back pain Chest pain Leg pain tendons feel like they're popping Teeth clenching jaw pain tmj Irrational thought Depersonalization Derealization Lump in throat Difficulty swallowing Clogged ears (so awful) ringing in ears (sounds like frequencies) Irritability Tearfulness Shaking Panic attacks Weight loss and as of two days ago everytime I try to fall asleep and about to drift off I get this weird sensation in my chest/head but it's not a palpatation, it's almost like a falling or tugging sensation. It's kept me up all hours of the night And The list goes on... ive been to the ER 3 times now thinking I was dying So I went to my doctor and he told me it was all anxiety but I knew that couldn't be it so I tried to diagnose myself but I've had all bloodwork done, an MRI, an echocardiogram, and everything was normal. I just can't believe this is anxiety. So I found this website and everything makes sense. I tried to tell my doctor that it could be Zoloft withdrawals but he said that no withdrawals only last a couple weeks and wouldn't listen to me and made me feel crazy. I've lost 40lbs in 3 months because of feeling so awful. I missed school, I cry everyday, no one listens to me anymore, I just can't live another day like this. So my question is, how long will this last? If I started a different medication like lexapro would it help? Or am I too late? I need help and need answers before I actually do go crazy. Please help.
  14. ShakeyJerr

    Evening relief window

    I've mentioned this in my own thread, and seen other people mention it too - so I thought I would start an official topic so we can share information and ideas. Most every evening I get an nearly complete relief of symptoms around 7-ish (with exceptions on extremely stressful and/or physically active days, and excluding the first couple of weeks of my withdrawal) The relief window takes me through to bed time and lasts until I wake up with high anxiety anywhere between 2am and 4am . I used to call it "my false friend" because it was a tease of how life could be after withdrawal, but then it would leave again. Now I look forward to it and protect/cherish it. Anybody else experiencing this? What are your evenings like just before it comes? What are you doing? Do you have a routine? A typical timeline for me is: 2am to 4am - Wake up with high anxiety. Go to bathroom. Try to go back to bed. Toss and turn. Pray. 5am - Get out of bed. Feed cat. Drink adrenal cocktail. Maybe have a decaf black tea or chamomile tea. Pace. Pray. Take 100mg of Mag-Glycinate. 6am - Panic Attack! 6am (work days) - Take blood pressure med, shower, and leave for work. 6am (non-work days) - Lay down, panic, get up, pace, pray. 6:30am - Eat a little something. Daytime - Various levels of anxiety. Drink (either in water or decaf black tea) 100mg of theanine twice during the day. 11-ish: Take a walk. 4:30pm (work days) - Get home. Still have anxiety. Interact with daughter. Prepare kitchen for dinner. 6-ish - Wife joins us. We make dinner. 6:30 - Eat dinner. Clean up. 7ish - Go upstairs to read. Anxiety begins to subside. Might doze a little or just zone out. Pray with wife. Chat a bit. 10-ish - Go to sleep. Fall asleep rather quickly. Anybody see anything in my routine that is promoting the evening relief window? Or something in there that is keeping me from getting it earlier in the day. Or something that I can do to get it to kick in earlier? What is your routine like if you are also getting the evening relief window? Comparing notes might help. SJ
  15. Hello Everybody! In December 2010 (I just turned 21) I started taking Paxil because I was having severe anxiety (Agoraphobia / Emetophobia). After intensive therapy I made a good recovery which allowed me to pick up daily life (the Anxiety is never completely gone, but it no longer has a big impact on my life). I tried to stop twice and twice this failed extremely hard. By then me and my psych/GP thought it was easy and with todays knowledge I can say that the failures were probably due to way to fast withdrawal schedules (first time I halved to 10mg and stopped the week after.. second time I reduced by 2mg each week). Early summer 2016 I was feeling better than ever on every aspect of my life, but in the second half of the summer suddenly I started feeling worse. Fatigued, unmotivated, tingling sensations and a somewhat drugged/absent feeling. Even though I did feel familiar (to Paxil symptoms, which I had a lot the first ~2-3 months when starting Paxil each time) I did not immediately link it to my medication due to no increase in anxiety. However after a thorough checkup (both physically and mentally) without any other possible finding the only remaining hypothesis was the sudden change in how my body responded to the medication. I decided to start tapering of paxil, but this time I would be prepared: I found out about the 5-10% in 3-6 weeks schedules and found a psychiatrist to help me with my tapering. I also switched to liquid Seroxat to make tapering easier. My plan was to start with tapering 10% each 4 weeks and only reduce dosage once I felt mainly stable/good during the last week. The first taper step went good with only minor/innocent side effect. The second step already became a bit heavier especially with the addition of headaches and eye floaters both of which reduced my daily productivity/concentration. However after 5 weeks I felt stable/better and decided to taper again. The first week on my new dosage (14.4mg) went surprisingly well. But after that suddenly everything changed: The anxiety came back in full force. In addition I felt hunted/restless, nauseous, vague/absent (like I'm a spectator in my own life), still had headaches, almost no energy, heart palpitations and sometimes hyperventilating. We are now three months further and I slowly/steadily start feeling better each week but still feel far from stable (more like a house without foundation which could collapse any moment). Besides all I remain positive and hope to feel better in a couple of weeks, but I am uncertain of what to do next: - I could continue tapering Paxil as if nothing happened, but given the insane symptoms I just recovered from I might consider a smaller step of 5%. - An alternative could be, due to the heavy symptoms in a this early stage of tapering to switch to an AD which is famous for being still-horrible-but-slightly-less-horrible-than-parox with regards to tapering and withdrawal symptoms. I found this topic on this site which states this and that Prozac is often used for this. I can not decide what to do.. hopefully this and other topics on this site will help me make this decision..
  16. Hi, I think lately I've been under covert medication. Anybody recognizes these symptoms with any antidepressant or antipsychotic? Thank you in advance. -Extreme photophobia (light hurts even at night with street lights or car lights) -Excess of fat in your stools (daily) (soft, greasy and pale yellow stools) -Urgency to urinate constantly -Lack of concentration -Feeling cold all the time but sometimes you feel heat intolerant (even when you are in direct sunlight you feel almost hypothermia) -Acathisia or restless sensation all the time -Racing thoughts all the time -Extreme Insomnia -Unability to achieve a lasting erection and difficult to achieve orgasms -Darkening and thickening of your hair, not only body hair but face and head (you have brown hair and the suddenly you have black thick and damaged-like hair) -You feel you cannot learn easily and you have a really hard time memorizing things you could easily do -You keep sweating and sweating but at the same time you have dry skin and sometimes lack of sweating in your face (cold, clammy skin) -You leave a weird odor in your clothes, always, even if you bathe yourself well -Dry mouth and bad breath even if you wash your teeth -ANNOYING muscle tightness (it feels like you just cannot relax your muscles and all the time you feel like if they are pulling) -Feeling like walking as a drunk or you feel you don't have stability as you walk -Lack of judgment, (getting very emotional out of nothing or not really seeing the whole picture of situations) -You feel like you are more complaisant that normal (agreeing things you normally don't and feeling like you worry about what others can say about you when you normally don't) -Abnormal euphoria just because everything -Mood changes (from euphoria and being very emotional to rage and depression) -Losing sensation of your body (you touch yourself but it feels like you don't feel anything) -Pallor -Abnormal healing of wounds (I could have a cut but the wound won't heal as fast as before, it would just take weeks to properly close) -Wanting to talk and verbalize everything nonstop -Constant gum bleeding (very sensitive just by brushing teeth) -Strange change in food's taste -Fatigue alterning with periods of extreme energy and I-can-do-it-all periods -Feeling like you were running and agitated most of the time -You cannot stop moving your feet -Weight gain -Dilated pupils -Dry lips -Numbed tongue -Difficulty in speaking (like you don't know the words to describe something totally easy and normal, stuttering) -Dilated arm veins -Ear buzzing -Increased sensitivity to normal noises -Difficulty to do maths -Eye bags and looking ill in general. -Feeling suicidal -Looking yellow sometimes -Having foam in your urine sometimes. -Zero sexual arousal (it is like you do not feel aroused or have erections as you normally do) In general, feeling like you are totally drugged, in a dream, or as I have read, like if you were on cocaine. I would thank if someone would recognize these symptoms and tell with what kind of medication did you feel them as I suspect I have been under covert medication because I refused at first to take those things. It is a long story but I have been medicated wrongly because I have a tumor that causes me weird things and they thought I was depressed just because at first they didn't find anything. Furthermore, a lot of physicians just simply didn't know or explain weird symptoms like extreme photophobia. I swear I had to wear sunglasses even at night because that symptom was unbearable, it literally caused me pain in the day or even when I looked at the floor, strangely that was when I had dilated pupils, really big pupils. I don't do drugs and this happened overnight. The most weird thing is the photophobia, dilated pupils and muscular tightness for me, I was checked neurologically and everything was fine, no head tumors, no eye damage, anything at all. I suspect this covert medication because stubborn psychiatrists wanted to put me on medications and I refused completely because I knew something physical was wrong instead of just a "mental illness", whatever that means. Most of these symptoms suddenly started to dissapear a year and a half ago, gradually, and then I got like a withdrawal syndrome feeling suicidal, like I couldn't go out of bed, suddenly that euphoria went off and nothing would satisfy me at all, it is like a flat emotional response, but then you get depressed and angry, nausea, sweaty.. a total mess. Now, after all that last stir, the last months I have been feeling more like myself and all those symptoms dissapearing but I want to know because all of this seems so suspicious to me. Now, my original physical condition it is not treated so you cannot blame the getting better to a treatment to the physical ailment. Another thing I would want to ask is that if a withdrawal syndrome can last up to many years after you have taken the medications, because I stopped taking those things by myself from one day to another without gradually diminish them and I was wondering if that withdrawal could have lasted by six years (which I don't think so), so my family would have decided to go on covert medication by psychiatrist orders or something or is just something else that I have in my body. I really feel like crap and as if my brain was shook and then you come back to normal life after (and that is something that tumor doesn't do and do not behaves like that).
  17. Please help, 2 weeks ago I was prescribed 50mg sertraline for intrusive thoughts, but was not depressed. I took my first one and about 6 hours later I had a very bad reaction I had a fever my blood pressure was high, I had diarrhea and my mind was cray I knew instantly that I had poisoned myself, it wasn't until a week later I read up on serotonin syndrome and realized I experienced all the side effects and still suffer some of them to this day, here are my symptoms I have and have got worse short term Memory loss, agitation, irritability, muscle twitching, shivering, restlessness, sweating(up my neck and scalp mostly), hallucinations derealization/depersonalization, feel disoriented at times, muscle spasms which are painful at times, tingling/prickling sensations in my hands feet chest arms and legs, pressure at the back of my head. I don't get it I was a happy outgoing person until the doctor insisted the tablet would take away intrusive thoughts, not only do I still get them but get even worse! hallucinations! I don't want this Have I got the effects from serotonin syndrome or is this permanent nerve and brain damage? please help I am quite worried and no one wants to listen to me
  18. Hi, I am curious as to what symptoms other people have in withdrawal as well as during reinstatement of medication. There are lists of symptoms all over this website and all over the internet, but I would love more detail from you personally. How long do their last for you? Have you found anything that helps? Also are you in withdrawal or reinstatement? For me, right now, I feel burning hot and I'm sweating. No fever. This comes on suddenly, even if I am in a cool place. It can last 5 minutes or 5 hours. I keep ice packs in the freezer that I put on the back of my neck until it calms down. The other current symptom I have is what I call internal tremors, or internal shakes, and muscle twitching. I had them all day yesterday, as well as some during the night. Usually I have more during the night than during the day, but this time it was the opposite. I find that if I don't sit still I'm not as aware of them, so I try to move around the house. I do a little laundry, fold clothing, that sort of thing. At night I get out of bed and take a lukewarm bath and most recently I'm trying the bath with Epsom salts. I have tried exercise but that brings on the above sweats along with headaches. I have these symptoms both in withdrawal and now during reinstatement. I am 15 days into reinstatement. Hoping for stabilization soon. I am really interested what other people have to say. Thank you. RS
  19. What a great forum! So glad it and you all are here. About 2 months ago I tapered down on Celexa from 10mg a day to 5mg. Symptoms were standard..nausea, some fatigue, anxiety,etc. but bearable. I also stopped Wellbutrin XL 150mg. Seemed fine. The past two weeks, however, have been just plain gross. I am still on 5mg of celexa, but I am feeling out of it, dizzy, restless, insomnia. I just have never heard of withdrawal symptoms being so delayed. Any ideas or comments are appreciated.
  20. Hello people, Not sure it this is the correct forum to post this, but I want to encourage everyone who read this post to report their symptoms and their experience with a specific drug in this website http://www.askapatient.com/ . The reason for this is that "askapatient" is a widely used website by people who is considering taking prescription drugs to know the experience of others, and if many of us report our bad experiences with them in such a website, they will at least be informed about the possible dangers of the drugs. So the main idea of this post is to help others get to know the risks that doctors don't tell them. Feel free to post your review and help others to make an informed decision about their usage of a drug.
  21. I've been on Lexapro for about 5yrs now. I started at a 10mg does, but eventually moved to 20mg about 4yrs ago and have been there ever since. I tried to cut it off and just quit 2yrs ago, but was overwhelmed by the dizzy spells, mood swings, and fatigue. So I went back to my normal dose after about two weeks. Overall, I just don't like how the drug makes me feel. I feel numb to the world, I don't "feel" anything when I am on it. Obviously there was a time in my life where that was better than the alternative, otherwise I would've never started; but I am hoping that I am past that now and would like to move on. I am still taking Wellbutrin 150mg right now as I know that cutting both at the same time would be a "really" bad idea. Unfortunately, I do not have any medical providers that I feel really understand what I am going through at all. My psychiatrist was just there to fill scripts and didn't talk to me about any of the problems that I was having emotionally, just physiologically. My psychologist at the time (and subsequent providers) really just feel like a waste of time. I never felt better talking to any of these people, and they never really seemed to understand me or my problems. My general practitioner is someone that does not believe in anti depressants so never wanted to have anything to do with "that" part of my life. He let the other people deal with that. Basically I find myself in a horrible situation where I don't have any sort of trusted medical provider in my life, so I'm trying to do this by myself, suck it up, and get it done and over with. I have been off of my 20mg dose for about two weeks now. The first week was full of the typical dizzy spells and lethargy, but week two is incredibly more intense than I remember and I have found some new symptoms as well. In addition to those first symptoms which have intensified, I also find myself in a very unstable mood scenario. I snap at things with my kids or with my wife that I would normally not snap at, I find myself VERY easily agitated, and I have myself in a couple of completely uncontrollable situations where my body just went to sleep. I was sitting there, I felt it happening, and there was nothing I could do about it. Lastly, I have started having these feelings in my head that almost feel like a spark is happening between one side of my brain and the other...or like my brain is "flinching". It is a very hard things to describe. I can hear it happening as well...it is like someone is brushing a cloth over my brain and I can hear that quick rubbing noise. All of these symptoms are so much worse than last time I tried this, which helps me remember why I went back on. I try to explain these things to my wife, but she doesn't understand it. If I wasn't me, I wouldn't understand it either. Most of the posts I have seen on here advise against what I am trying to do to get off of this drug (and I completely understand why). But is there anyone that has ever done this successfully? If so, how, and how long did it take for these symptoms to start lessening? Thank you very much to anyone that answers and takes the time to read this.
  22. I am currently withdrawing from Paxil. Did a too fast taper, crashed bad, and have reinstated. I seem to be somewhat (compared to being out of my mind) stabilized after 3 months of reinstatement. However, my daily routine aside from poor sleep quality, is that I feel very anxious with panic barely under control from about 5:00 AM until noon'ish. The rest of the day I am functional and actually have periods where I feel almost normal. Does anybody experiencing Paxil (or any SSRI) withdrawal have this symptom pattern? Before using Paxil I never had any of these symptoms. I took it for mild seasonal depression annually for 4 months. Each year it was harder and harder to get off. I should have paid closer attention.
  23. hey everyone. so i'm in need of help. lets start from January 2014. I started Prozac 20 mg. I stayed on this until the end of June 2014, taking 1 a day. Then i switched to Celexa 20 mg once a day. I've been taking this and still am on this dosage. As you can see I've been on an antidepressant for 9 months straight with no breaks. With Celexa I've been having weird drug interactions. If I take benadryl I start feeling tingly and feel like I'm on fire. So i stopped taking benadryl. I"m also prescribed adderall 10 mg as needed. If i take adderall I start feeling like im on fire as well. So i stopped taking adderall. Then a couple days ago i went to walmart and bought some whey protein pre-workout mix because i'm trying to lose the weight celexa has inevitably put on. I drank the preworkout shake for the first time... and I started feeling like i was on fire... like i couldn't breath. It seems like everything triggers an interaction. I want to GET OFF antidepressants. I missed a dose of celexa and the next morning i woke up at 6 a.m. with tingling and weird temperature highs and lows, cold sweats and I was in so much physical pain that i was in tears, my head was killing me and i didnt feel normal. I felt zoned out, felt like i had the flu and felt scarily lethargic. The tingling and temperature highs and lows also existed. My eyes would dilate when i would get hot for some reason and then the feeling would go away... then come back. i went to the doctor because i just felt so out of place. i ended up taking my celexa and still felt sick and weary. my blood pressure was fine. my temp was normal. but i was so hot i went to take a bath and the coldest water felt warm to me... scary. and so the doctor said that i needed to wean off the celexa. he said to just stop taking it because i'd only been on it for 3 months. but keep in mind i was on prozac then switched to celexa. a total of 9 months of ssri use. i asked him what if i started withdrawing to which he replied to taper off the celexa. he wants me to cut my dosage in half today. i'm so tired of the side effects of celexa but the withdrawal is real. its making me allergic to everything! and i never knew how hard it would be to get off of until i experienced such terrible withdrawals. any comments or advice would be appreciated greatly. thank you for reading.
  24. Hey guys, Just wondering how normal it is to have 1 or more symptoms progressively get worse and worse as time goes on... It seems the further i am away from my last dose (20 months) the more severe some of my symptoms get. The biggest thing for me is some of the sexual symptoms, the emotional anesthesia, the cognitive problems, and the visual symptoms. They all seem to be increasing, becoming more severe, as time goes on. Now this doesn't necessarily mean that these symptoms dont fluctuate at all for me... Think of it this way, the "typical" progression of withdrawal is something along the lines of "2 steps forward, 1 step back", except in a more complicated and unpredictable manner. Now, for me its more like "2 steps back, 1 step forward". Or at least it feels that way. When i came off zoloft (too quickly might i add), the initial withdrawal consisted of the usual stuff, brain zaps, stress, abdominal pain, tension, fatigue, headaches, etc... After that phase which lasted about 2-3 weeks, i basically never fully returned to normal and then i just slowly spiraled down hill. Yes i've had tiny "windows" or i'd prefer calling them "glimmers of hope" where 1 symptom or more would 'seem' better for a while, or i'd have those relaxing evenings where i can at least somewhat enjoy whatever i'm doing, but the general trend of my symptoms have been negative progression, its like i'm going in the wrong direction. Especially in the past 6 months. (new symptoms appearing, worsening, etc). I understand in withdrawal things get better, worse, etc its all over the place! but for me, its way more on the 'worse' side than the 'better' side. I dont think i've had any considerable improvements so far, like i dont think i've ever felt this bad so far and i rarely find anything gets better. Genital numbness and low libido (two symptoms i never had initially) are starting to really settle in and its really scaring me. I guess the main question is, despite this worsening these past 6-12 months, can/will the PSSD, emotional anesthesia, agitation/stress, etc get better? These are the issues i'm mainly worried about.
  25. I have been on 20mg prozac for 12 years. I want to have a baby and get off of this. I changed to 10mg March 29. Then on May 1 I moved to 10mg every other day. I have had diarehea, headaches, difficulties sleeping and mood swings. Last week I was so angry. This week I am starting to feel a little paranoid--that others hate me and I feel lonely. Do I need to get back on this stuff? I dont want to. I cannot tell if this is because I am "coming back to normal" or if I really need the Prozac? If this passes I will be okay. Right now I just feel awful.
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