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  1. Hi everybody I'm Soren from Denmark, 50 years old, and just started tapering 18 years of Mirtazapine-use. Earlier I have tried to withdraw from mirtazapine three times and every time by doctors instructions (50% two weeks, 50% of the remaining dose two weeks, then stop), and the last time I nearly hurt my beloved cat in rage. It was the most frightening out of control experience and periode in my life. I'm not long into my taper (down to 20 mg from 30 mg) and my taper it is going well at the moment (5% every three weeks). As almost universally experienced by other mirtazapine 'withdrawalees' I suffer day 4 or 5 after a reduction, but come day 8 and I am stabilized and on day 10 I feel a little better than before the reduction. I will write more about my experience with both citalopram, brintellix (trintellix), and mirtazapine later but for know I just want to say thank you. You see I have for over 6 months been browsing survivingantidepressants and even though I can feel the heartbroken, desperate loneliness in peoples struggles, I feel that you are a little more non-lonely when when you are visible for each other. More importantly I will no longer just be a browsing antidepressant surviver. If I (and everybody else who are anonymously browsing) continue to free ride on sites like surviving antidepressants the real magnitude of the antidepressant problem will never be known and the work you do never be recognized (enough). I have seen somewhere (maybe a YouTube video) that survivingantidepressants.org has over 14.000 members. My guess is for every site-member in the withdrawal community (on FB-groups, twitter, RxISK, innercompass etc) there are +1000 more browsing non members out there. So here you have one more grateful member so you hugely important work can become a little more visible. Soren from Denmark
  2. hello. i'm going to attempt an introduction. i reserve any possible ambition about a coherent, comprehensive history for a potential future recovery success story. i'll do what i can for now. first and foremost, THANK YOU to everyone here at SA. THANK YOU for starting this website, for contributing, for keeping it going, for sharing, for being here, for fighting the good fight. in regards to tapering safely i did not find you in time; but since i found you it has helped immeasurably. before i found SA i'd been suffering through PW and PAWS for well over 3 years with no clear understanding of what the F was happening to me. although i had a working strategy of how to approach the embodied experience i was living, it took up a lot of energy not having an official explanation. i had a kind of makeshift, workaround idea along the lines of "maybe this is latent C-PTSD that has surfaced in the wake of SSRI cessation" and "clearly my nervous system is hypersensitive and destabilized, and i am intolerant of stress, possibly also as a result of a lifetime of chronic stress and trauma", etc. somewhat luckily these working hypotheses led me to a variety of tools that were entirely applicable to dealing with withdrawal syndrome, and so, ultimately, i was practicing many of the same non-drug coping strategies that i have since seen recommended on this site. for years i was on my own and it was trial and error. the bottom line is, it has been so much better since finding SA and knowing that i'm not alone and finally figuring out, "oh, this is what's going on!" (not that one cannot have C-PTSD / chronic stress / or the like in addition to WS, but WS is certainly also its own thing in addition to whatever underlying vulnerabilities may present) anyway -- THANK YOU to everyone for everything. i am currently in my fifth year of protracted withdrawal and post-acute withdrawal syndrome following an incorrect, too-fast taper of lexapro/escitalopram that basically amounted to CT + decades' worth of going on and off dozens of different psych drugs/cocktails, incl. most recently vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine, etc. i don't have energy or access right now to write in more detail about the long and illustrious drug history and the numerous failed attempts to get out of psychiatry (it's clear to me now that i've been in protracted withdrawal with PAWS multiple times before, but at the time i didn't know what it was and when i sought help consistently received a new and more extreme diagnosis every time; it seemed, according to psychiatry, that i was getting sicker and sicker, and would get more heavily drugged each time around -- psychiatry suffers from munchhausen by proxy in its absurd closed-loop system) bottom line -- TODAY I AM DRUG-FREE. i was first committed to a psych ward as a minor (below the age of consent), that's where i was first drugged. i clearly remember being so overmedicated that my hands were shaking non-stop, i couldn't properly hold a fork to eat or a pencil/pen to write. i fainted in the shower. i knew it was the drugs, i knew they were giving me too much, i know i said as much. i have no recollection of being listened to. my first ever "psychotic episodes" also occurred during this first ever hospitalization, subsequent to which my diagnosis was augmented to include my being labeled as "psychotic". i am convinced the sensory hallucinations were caused by the drugs they were giving me. i have spent my entire adult life thus far (approx. 17 y.o. - 42 y.o.) under the influence of psychiatric drugs. WTF. although i am currently drug-free i don't consider myself out of the woods yet as i'm still very much in recovery and reeling from the extensive physiological and psychological/existential harm. i cannot even begin to really truly process that. i don't dwell on it, i try not to think about it, really, although of course the thoughts come occasionally, but for the most part i let them pass bc my thinking is currently rather unreliable and murky, colored as it is by WS (monkey mind chatter which does not allow for proper processing). maybe one day when my cognitive/emotional/spiritual/etc. capacities are healed, if it is still relevant and required, i will mourn any loss as necessary. for now i sometimes touch upon grief (primarily on behalf of our collective loss and the tragedy of psychiatric violence afflicting countless human beings and indeed our global ecosystem as a whole) but my mind is too feeble to truly grasp the staggering atrocity / swirling galaxy of bullsh*t. for the time being i'm mostly just sorta left stunned and reeling; and sometimes in a moment of clarity i feel a call to arms and long to spring into action and up onto the barricades (etc.), but i lack the abilities for any kind of follow-through, which can be distressing as i think, "i'm not doing my part to save my fellow suffererers out there!" in these moments i have to remind myself that first i have to get better, and for now i just gotta hang on to my own life raft, bc that's pretty much all i can do, and most of the time it's a tall order as is, at least for now. i have to tell myself that what i cannot currently comprehend, is not currently my job. i try to do the tasks i am able to do, that is what is for me to do here and now. for example: currently i am able to shower once a week, sometimes twice a week. i am able to do a gentle yoga session about once a week. leaving the house is very difficult, but i manage to get out about twice a week. i am able to do my own grocery shopping (usually once a week), which brings me a sense of satisfaction and purpose. i am able to cook for myself (i've been on a self-designed, tried-and-true nutritional regimen for a couple of years now, which works quite well for me); nourishing myself is a vital part of my day and one of the few ways i'm able to actively engage with life on a daily basis. there are many, many things i'm unable to do and many, many ways in which i'm functionally disabled. i don't feel like getting into that now. in this moment i'd like to focus on markers of progress. for example: here i am, writing an introduction post. i have not posted here before bc writing and verbal communication, esp. disembodied/virtual kind without being in the physical presence of the other person, is something that has been extremely difficult for me in withdrawal and continues to be very, very challenging. so this is really hard and scary right now; and at the same time it is a marker of progress that i am able to be here writing this at all, since for so long i have not been able to and now i'm giving it a try. we'll see how it goes. these days i feel like i'm in my little WS groove. doing my thing, doing the best i can. i tell myself that this too shall pass -- based on the accounts of people on this site and the many success stories, it's possible to recover and heal. i trust that this is true; which means that there's a finite number of WS days/hours/moments (that number is unknown and unknowable, i call it X). and so it follows that every single day/hour/moment of WS-related suffering is 1 down, X to go and brings me that much closer to the conclusion. this is my way of conceptualizing the unpleasantness and discomfort as healing-in-process. instead of thinking of it as "i'm still sick" (which connotates stuck-ness and static state), reminding myself "i'm continously healing" (which conveys movement and development and some notion of constructive progress). it's very, very hard. i do feel like things are getting better ... lately one of the odd things about feeling better is that the WS symptoms have decreased somewhat in intensity, and now that some of the WS symptoms are less extreme, it's as though it's less clear to me that they are indeed WS symptoms. i sometimes find myself thinking, "wait, what if this particular thing is no longer WS and now this is just 'me'?" overall i tell myself that this line of thinking is still WS, as these are "anxiety thoughts" and fear-based, and i pay them as little mind as possible. it's a strange sign of progress that as WS is gradually lessening in intensity the lines between "syndrome" and "self" seem to be blurring more and more. this is, of course, compounded by an underlying all-pervasive tension around the question, "who am i?" at this point i accept that i have no idea who i am. i don't know who i am now, i don't know who i was before, i don't know who i will be after. my sense of identity is flimsy at best, i have difficulty with any sense of continuity or understanding "me", "my life", or anything along those lines. it's okay. i'm not sure my sense of self has ever been that strong to begin with. i don't know where i'll be dumped at the end of this fun-house-mirror-lined chute of WS bizarro-world ... it's kinda funny sometimes, when i think about it. it's all so absurd. all these illusions and so many people out there running around all serious and self-important and convinced of what's "real". maybe i'll feel like that one day, who knows? ... (feel free to skip to the end of the book, eh?) anyway. i don't have much more to say for now. this is the most words i've used in any one sitting in any context possibly in years. i mostly don't like social contact due to conventions/exigencies of verbal communication (i don't mind context of shared social presence as long as there is no speaking/conversation involved) and so i spend most of my time alone. i'm actually surprised this many words have come out of me! and now i'm babbling, i've got the feeling this is all very messy. but the most important part is: ABSTRACT hello. thank you. i'm here. ain't that a trip with love, "me" 1996-2018: various polypharmacy combinations incl. SSRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzodiazepines, stimulants, etc. (approx. 30+ different drugs over the years) 2018 - inadvertently CTed lexapro/escitalopram from 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg (over the course of 6 months, and under the "supervision" of a psychiatrist whom i trusted at the time) July 2018 - 0mg lexapro/escitalopram 2017 - 2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 70mg 2020 - 2021 - tapered off of vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine from 70mg down to 0mg (gradually but unsystematically and probably too quickly) July 2021 - 0mg vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine February 2022 - 0mg - no psychopharmaceuticals - no drugs/medications of any kind supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 2mg melatonin at 9pm
  3. Hey All!! I’m so glad I found this site although it may be a little late. I fear I tapered too quickly on Brintellix and here I am experiencing withdrawal. To give you a little history, I started antidepressants in October 2016 after a very stressful job left me in a bad place. At that time, I should have listened to my husband who told me that if I quit my job, all would return to normal. Instead, I felt the only way to heal myself was to start antidepressants. I did quit my job at the same time and expected to be “healed” with my antidepressants. Unfortunately, I bounced from Lexapro to Pristiq and finally to Brintellix in November of 2015 along with Lamictal to stabilize my mood. Looking back, I’m not sure any of those drugs actually worked…I may have been going through withdrawal every time I stopped taking one. Instead of getting better with the new antidepressant I think maybe I was just getting over the withdrawal of another??? Needless to say, I very quickly got off the Lamictal in June 2016 (went from 100-50-0 in a 3 week period). I went through withdrawal from that (about 3 months before it was over completely) and started feeling more like myself. My intent was never to stay on AD forever so at the end of October, I was feeling well. I had worked through my issues with my therapist, was good at my job, and genuinely happy. However, I was still acutely aware that I still wasn’t myself. I could not feel PURE JOY. I was pretty numb. So my doc told me to taper on my Brintellix, go down to 5mg (from 10) for two weeks and then stop completely. My last day of Brintellix was November 10th. Within a week I was actually feeling more like myself than I had in years!! I was laughing with my kids and at random things on TV. I was back. About the beginning of December was when the symptoms began. I felt more FRUSTRATION than I ever had, so much madness. I felt like a toddler trying to figure out how to manage my emotions again. I worried that the depression was returning because I didn’t have my Brintellix. But it didn’t make any sense. My life had not changed. I was feeling joy—more joy than I had---but I was also experiencing these random thoughts that would not get out of my head. It felt like I had two lives going on at times. The one in my head and the one outside my head. Current Symptoms: Irrational Fears Unable to be fully present Sleep—my mind won’t STOP Erratic Menstrual Cycle that make symptoms of anxiety even worse Physical Anxiety Improvements since discontinuing: Joy Intimacy with my husband Pockets of being myself again Thank you for any advice or encouragement you have related to my symptoms. To all of you who have been doing this, you are amazing!
  4. Hello, first of all, excuse me for my English, which is not my language. I’m a 50 years old man, long term SSRI/SNRI user who is trying to survive after a lot of mistakes made with this poisons. First SSRI was prescribed me in 1998: a psychiatrist decided to solve my panic attacks, anxiety and fears to be sick with a 20 mg of paroxetine. My journey with SSRI began: I took paroxetine from 1998 to 2008; then escitalopram from 2008 to 2010; venlafaxine XR from 2011 to 2016. During this period, 3 or 4 times I attempted to stop but after six months free I reinstated the drug; my doctor said that the difficulty to stop was a problem of mine because “SSRI don’t give dependence” and anyway said “if necessary you can use it for all the life”. For sure from 2006 for me was IMPOSSIBLE to decrease paroxetine under 10 mg!!! From 2017 drugs seem not work as in the past: my doctor tries firstly with escitalopram (from december 2017 to august 2018), sertraline (from november 2018 to july 2019) and finally vortioxetine (november 2019 to february 2020). On february the 6th I took for last time vortioxetine which was giving to me just problems More than nine months have passed since then during which I experienced extremely heavy symptoms that reduced my mental energies and threw me into a profound discomfort that makes it increasingly difficult to carry out my normal activities. Some of the symptoms are those that I have already known in the past (although they present themselves in a more severe way): agitated anxiety; insomnia (I have occasionally taken xanax which fortunately I have used very rarely in these 20 years) and sudden and agitated awakenings; obsessive search for information and explanations about my malaise (via the internet). Others are new: an unbearable mood swings; a certain emotional lability (I get very easily moved and angry); physical symptoms such as fatigue with pain in particular in the legs and frequent palpitations. In the background then there are distressing thoughts for the future: evolution of my malaise (fear of irreversible damage to my nervous system induced by prolonged use of drugs). What seemed surprising was requent change in symptoms from week to week. At the end I found this site and with it a little hope: I have learned many things, even about my mistakes, and discovered that I’m not alone. Now I’m just surviving and my days are (very) often hard to pass, but there are moments (1 or 2 hours in a day) when I feel this journey through the hell is a long and necessary way to live again, to see the stars again. My long journey to healing has started, and I hope you would support me with your advice.
  5. Hey there! This is my first time posting on this platform, so I hope you'll forgive me if I'm in breach of any protocols or haven't used the space appropriately. I tried to read as much as I could before diving into this, but frankly, there's a lot of stuff to sift through, and it got overwhelming at points. So, if I've erred, please, don't hesitate to let me know so that I might make amends. Anyway! My signature pretty much says it all. I've used Venlafaxine (Effexor) to treat social anxiety disorder and chronic depression since I was about 21-years-old (I'm now 30), often bouncing between 150mg and 225mg to varying degrees of success, and with little issue save for some of the nastier side-effects. In my case, those side-effects were weight gain, loss of energy, libidinal ones, and if I miss my dose by even a few hours, the worst brain zaps imaginable. There's been very little interruption of this medication, save for one spell of going cold turkey for a few months, and a few quick run-ins with Fluoxetine (Prozac) and Escitalopram (Cipralex). Ultimately, I kept coming back to Venlafaxine because it worked better than any other medication I'd tried, and I could live with the side-effects even if I'd rather not. So from about 2017 onward until the spring of 2021, I kept on Venlafaxine at about 150mg without interruption. The side-effects really started to weight on me in the months leading up to that spring, particularly the weight gain. I figured that there had to be a better way, and I'd heard great things about Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq), so I thought I'd give that a shot. I consulted with my doctor who said that we could do this without issue, but would rather I tried Vortioxetine (Trintellix) instead because of the prohibitive cost of Desvenlafaxine. His plan was to taper off of 150mg of Venlafaxine over a month, and then immediately switch to Vortioxetine. It seemed like a good enough plan to me because, well, I didn't know any better. This, of course, was when my life got ruined, it seems almost irreversibly at times. Simply put: I did not take well to the Vortioxetine. It was an awful, awful experience. I had more panic attacks in my first two weeks on that medication than the rest of my life combined. I'd lost the capacity to think or to speak or to remember anything. I was in constant discomfort. It was like my life had been turned completely upside down. Worse still, I started to develop pure obsessive compulsive disorder, something that hadn't really been a thing for me to this point in my life. I tried and I tried to stick it out, but I had to quit after a month. I couldn't bare to live like that. And my doctor threw in the towel and told me to talk to a psychiatrist. So I did precisely that. I had to wait a month, though, at which point I was without any medication and I suffered such debilitating withdrawals that I had to go to the hospital. I didn't really know what was going on at the time and I'd never felt worse in my life. But, eventually I got through that, and I spoke with a psychiatrist at the hospital. They told me that Vortioxetine was a terrible choice on my doctor's part, and my experience was pretty much par for the course. She said it's by far the worst medication for people with anxiety or social anxiety. She also wasn't particularly fond of me tapering off of Venlafaxine for a month when I'd been using it for the better part of a decade. I started taking Desvenlafaxine on June 1, 2021, with a dosage of 50mg for two weeks, and then up to 100mg. And it didn't really do much for me, which was devastating. I'd wake up having panic attacks. I'd have regular panic attacks throughout the day. On top of it all, I'd developed tinnitus. My social anxiety was in an awful place. I tried to stick out for as long as I could before I threw in the towel on that and switched back to Venlafaxine -- the devil you know, right? The switch back to Venlafaxine offered some relief, but I didn't feel anything like I used to before this whole ordeal. I was still an anxious mess. My pure OCD compulsions remained, another devastating blow. I felt spaced out constantly. It was a better experience than I'd had on Vortioxetine or Desvenlafaxine, but hardly a good one. This would still register as the worst I'd felt from a mental health perspective at any point in my life prior to last spring, when this medication SNAFU turned my life upside down. Worse still, I couldn't really get my dosage up to a helpful level. I seemed to feel worse when I moved up to 75mg. It was like my body and my mind couldn't handle this drug that at one point was a feature of my every day life for years at a time. So, I went back to 37.5mg, feeling awful constantly. Anxious, depressed, suffering pure OCD compulsions... it felt at times like I'd lost my mind. And as it became clear that this wasn't doing much for me, I started to slowly wean myself off of Venlafaxine, one half-bead at a time. I'm now down to one bead, which is about 12mg, if I'm not mistaken. I've felt better as I've weaned down, if only slightly, which is both good and bad. I still feel awful relative to where I was before this medication ordeal started last spring. And I really do need this medication to get through day-to-day life. My situation feels hopeless. I'm watching personal and professional relationships deteriorate because I can't handle even the most rote social engagements without freaking out completely. I've contemplated taking my life on a few occasions, and came very close to doing so last November. I've spoken to a psychiatrist who wants me to try starting Sertraline, but frankly, I'm kind of terrified given my experiences the last few months. I just don't have anymore room for my life to get worse before, well... I don't even know. Any advice on what to do? I'm totally at a loss here, feeling failed by my doctors, and in a hopeless loop that leaves me feeling awful on day-to-day basis, unable to live the life I did at this time a year ago.
  6. Greetings. I have been taking Brintellix ( 10 Mg ) and Mirtazapeine ( 15Mg ) for about a year. After a slow start they started ( seeming ) to work well about 3-4 months in and the result ( after a serious episode of clinical depression / anxiety with frequent, planned suicidal ideation) was that I've been feeling clear headed, calm and able to focus on work and live a full life as a family man with a demanding career. During the depression I'd seriously considered that my career would not be possible and made plans ( when I wasn't thinking about ending my life ) to work in a less demanding occupation. So once bedded in, the medication, or possibly other factors like good diet, yoga and excercise, seems to have really helped. Overall I'd say I've been feeling less anxious than at any point in my adult life ( I'm now 50 ) and not experiencing any adverse side effects from the drugs, bar a slight reduction in my sex drive- but only slight. I sometimes also find that afetr I've taken the Mirtazapeine in the evening I can't stay up for long, for example if I've watching a movie. I have 2 concerns A ) I don't really like allopathic medications and was very resistant to taking anything. I have treated myself and my family successfully with natural medicines for my whole life, not even taking headache pills or antibiotics. This seemed like an emergency and my family were very keen for me to try prescribed medications. My feelings at the time were, well even if I live a few years less, that's probably better than suicide and the pain that would cause my family + friends. So I got on board with the 2 medications. B ) I'm concerned that at some point one or both of the drugs will " Crap Out " anyway and I'll hit a wall. I've had a lot of therapy since starting the medication and deepened my spiritual practice and feel that I've much better equipped to handle depression if it hits me again. I'm wondering if I can get some advice on which order to start tapering / withdrawing, and what I might expect from the process? I'm not taking any other medications, and I don't drink alcohol or take any recreational drugs. I'm sleeping well right now. I'm a naturally anxious / neurotic person and have lived with this all my life, so I have strategies for coping with those feelings / sensations if they creep back. After starting to experimentally taper - I tried dropping the mirtazapiene by 25% and then 50%- the anxiety has definitely ramped up in quite sudden waves and I'm sure I'm not approaching things in a sensible way- so am considering taking the dose back up to 75% of prescribed 15Mg ( so 3/4 of a 15 Mg pill ) and taking a more steady approach from advice on this website. I'm seeing that 10% taper in a month is more normal- but had tried 25% and 50% purely because I have a demanding life and making liquids etc seemed like another thing too many- but I'm seeing that it may be the only sensible way forward. Thanks in advance.
  7. Hello and nice to meet everyone. I have been reading as much as I can the past two days and feel like it is time to introduce myself. THANK YOU for everything you all have contributed, this site is a game changer. So many questions answered and a new journey begins. You can see my drug history and four month taper in my signature over the spring/summer (my psychiatrist at the time recommended two weeks, go figure). I had planned on a few crappy months going into this. Oh if I had only found this site first... Withdrawal didn’t kick in for at least two weeks, and slowly at first. I spent all of September and October dodging and weaving through good days and bad days, which I observed simply as “anxiety” (my original diagnosis) but with unusual physical symptoms. I journaled and kept calendar entries, mostly to record when I had to resort to Ativan (usually 0.5mg, occasionally 1mg). Other than for flight anxiety (two trips), I can count 17 times I took it over those two months, and only as a last resort. I had two sudden midnight “surges” (after feeling great) with shivers, out of control heart rate, even some diarrhea, which would last hours. I was convinced it was Serotonin Syndrome. The second one took me to urgent care the next morning for a heart checkup. A few days later a new psychiatrist then put me on Propranolol (beta blocker) as my primary concern was my heart. Propranolol immediately helped me observe and evaluate the “anxiety” I was experiencing which helped a lot. The new psychiatrist also had me stop 5-HTP after only a few weeks which was probably smart. I speak to him again this Friday, not sure what to share/ask given what I am learning here. I am now clear on the fact that I am riding waves of withdrawal symptoms, anxiety responds to the unusual feelings and emotions created by the withdrawal and adds its own icing to the cake, but I am focused on observing and not reacting, and doing my best to “ride it out”. The most unusual part of this “pattern” has been the timing of it all - usually kicking into high gear in the evenings after dark (earlier and earlier in my part of the world). I am nervous about traveling this weekend (short flight) but also realize I need to try and have as “normal” a life as I can stand under these conditions. My wife is awesome, understanding and super supportive. At 12 weeks in, I am not sure reinstatement is an option for me, even though I still have 5mg Trintellix in my drawer, and could try taking microdoses. Leaning toward a no, but I realize I may have run out of time to make that decision? I have read almost all the “required reading” but would still appreciate an opinion on that one. Also considering stopping my multivitamin, turmeric and mulberry leaf extract and taking only my “Super Omega-3 Plus” (Fish Oil) and picking up magnesium pills. I just started the Probiotic so I could drop it too, but not feeling like it would impact all of this either way? I am intrigued by the Reishi 415 blend to get some non-psychedelic mushroom love. Lastly my wife and I are thinking about therapeutic float tanks (she would love to do it again) and I have begun using our hot tub as part of my daily routine, along with many failed attempts at meditating. Anxiety was never something I handled well to begin with, and I realize now I must absolutely be on my game to dance this intricate dance. I will post any new thoughts, findings and curiosities on this thread as appropriate. I appreciate everyone’s support! PS- I opted to not use the appropriate abbreviations as I wanted to easily share this summary with family
  8. I have depression and anxiety. My former prescribing ARNP started me on Latuda to augment sertraline (an off-label use) but I didn’t notice any effects. We then switched 150mg sertraline to 20mg trintillex from November-December and I felt good but I had eye twitching and found out it was expensive so I decided to try an ADHD medication as recommended by my prescribing ARNP. I lowered my trintillex (I think to 10mg) and started the ADHD med but I was anxious and nauseous on it so I stopped and went back up to 20mg trintillex. A few weeks after that, I started having severe symptoms (see below). I have a feeling that increasing the trintillex caused my current symptoms but Latuda is not covered by my insurance so I want to get off it as well. I know I need to titrate slowly but I don’t know which one to start with. I was working with an ARNP and we discussed starting sertraline and then decreasing trintillex but she dropped me after I asked started asking questions about and wanting to change the tapering schedule. She discouraged me from stopping the trintillex alone and said my depression would get worse. Since January 11th, I have been experiencing debilitating anxiety, crying uncontrollably (for the first two weeks), nausea, vomiting, racing heart, heat sensitivity, insomnia, stomach pain, suicidal ideation, obsessive thoughts, memory issues, cognitive issues, itching, agitation, feeling detached, irritability, waves of panic, self doubt, and constipation. My questions are as follows: Should I start decreasing the Latuda or the trintillex first? Do you think decreasing the Latuda could help my anxiety symptoms even though it didn’t seem to have a positive affect on me when I started taking it? Would it be unsafe for me to start decreasing trintillex without adding another SSRI? Would it be safe for me to start on sertraline before dropping the trintillex? To the best of my memory: 2006-2010: sertraline 2006-2007: risperidone 2010-2016: took fluoxetine and citalopram as mono therapy 2016: trial Effexor for a few months 2016-2020: escitalopram (polyrugged with Wellbutrin) 2016-2020: Wellbutrin, months on and months off May 21-Nov 21: tapered from escitalopram to sertraline 150mg August 21: trial of lamotragine (rash) August 21: started latuda (off label) at 20mg, then up to 40mg and 60mg but back down to 40mg November 21: two week taper from sertraline to trintillex 20mg, experienced eye twitching and itchiness (5mg trintillex for 5 days, day 6 decrease sertraline to 100mg, day 10 decrease sertraline to 50mg and increase trintillex to 10mg, day 14 stop sertraline, 10 days of 15mg trintillex and then up to 20mg trintillex) December 21: quick taper down on trintillex to I think 10mg and trialed dextro-amphetamine for a week, 10-40mg, anxious and nauseous (1/2 of 40mg pill in am, then 1/2 pill am and 1/2 pill pm, then 20mg am and no pm, then 20 mg am and 1/2 pm, then maybe 20 mg am and 20 mg pm) December 21: quick taper back up to 20mg trintillex, some lip and foot twitching January 22: lorazepam for a few days January 22: clonidine .1mg-.4mg per day, currently taking .1mg am and .1mg pm January 22-March 22: ashwagonda, L-theanine, and probiotics Current medications: Latuda 40mg Trintillex 20mg Clonidine .1mg am and .1mg pm Fish oil Vitamin D Levothyroxine .112mg
  9. I've always been sad with my life since I had like 14 years old. I never found any joy in anything. So, in high school, my friends from then offered me weed and I accepted. And it was awesome. I could get high and enjoy life, at last. it was awesome. really miss that stage of my life, now that I think of it. things were good. Things changed, I went to study to another state, things didn't work out (cause I would smoke weed and party instead of studying) so I had to return to my home town. I started buying drugs from the deep web, psychedelics, and it brought me many good memories I wish I can relive some day. Anyways, a couple years worth of taking lots of drugs will do a number to you, no matter how "clean" they are and how "young" you might feel. One day, february 2018, I snapped. Man this really hurts to write. One day, I just felt sick of it all and hit several times my car door with my head, I did a number of holes in it. I realized I really did nothing to me rather than just make holes in my car, so I just drove off to the nearest bridge and told some friends and my dad through text I would jump. one of them went to pick me up and I had a long convo with my sister. I agreed on taking meds. My dad is a psychiatrist and started me with trintellix, brintellix, or Vortioxetine, first 10mg, later 15, finally 20mg. I took it for 6 months, then realized I couldn't get high off most drugs anymore. Not weed, not alcohol, not nicotine, not even a coffee. Not only that, my range of emotions became more tame, nothing as intense as it used to be. This sucks, I thought (and I still do), so I'll drop it. I tappered off 5mg each month, so it took 4 months for me to completely stop taking it. If you're read a bit of anything in this forum you'll realize the decrements are much smaller and the times between dosing less are bigger, like 6 months or so. I experienced pretty much every withdrawl symptom there is: blurry vision, INTENSE vertigo, slugishness; everytime I would turn around even just my head I would experience this very disturbing "shock" moment where I would feel like something missing off my head was taking a sense of itself missing. Very hard to describe, it was something more.... neuronal, shall we say, I think thats because the spinal chord needs serotonin for lots of things and when it suddenly stops its flow its something very ***** up for your body. Since there is no natural way that you can achieve that. Lots of things have happened in the meantime, none of them for the better. It did eventually even itself out, but then I started to become more and more erratic with my **** so i had to be put on meds again. I've left it all for 1 month now and I don't think it will ever go back to what it used to be, not even 50%. I do exercise, I eat healty, but I simply cannot feel good after going a hard workout, after a deep session of meditation, and a weed smoke break after a long day of busting my ass at the office. I can't believe I'm stuck with this ****, it's all my fault for always wanting more and more, never letting breaks between drug highs. Now I'm forever ***** and there is nothing I can do to remedy it. I haven't had sex in forever, but I fear an orgasm with someone will be capped just like every other feeling in my life.
  10. I cold turkeyed off Lexapro 10mg in august of 2020. Big mistake. After a year of taking every supplement known to man I relapsed really bad. My relapse was triggered by chronic UTIs, numerous rounds of antibiotics, and hypothyroid. I relapsed into severe depression, anxiety and insomnia. It’s been six months now and docs have tried to reinstate me four times on the ADs including the one I cold turkeyed off of. I got really sick on all of them and quit within a week. Also on lorazepam daily for severe anxiety which I still take. Finally my psych put me on trintellix and was able to eat again and felt like maybe it could work. I did four weeks on five mg and started to sink again. Doc moved me up to 10 mg two days ago and I feel the worst anxiety Ive ever had. I’m losing hope. I think im permanently damaged from quitting cold turkey. I dont think I will ever be the same again and don’t want to live this way anymore. Im now on two drugs that are both very hard to quit and feel like Ive taken 10 steps backwards. I have no interest in anything. Im not myself and haven’t been since I quit the AD. My psych doc doesn’t call me back when im having a crisis. I’ve been to the ER for severe anxiety three times. I need help real bad.
  11. Kernol's benzo topic Hi everyone, I was doing so well on my sertraline tapering over the last few years which i originally took for anxiety 10 years ago. It was only as I quit completely 6 weeks ago after doing my best to measure down from 25 mg to 12.5mg then 7.5mg - i must have gone too quickly as after 2 weeks completely off it I was hit with out of the blue anxiety attacks that seemed off the scale compared to anything I had experienced in my 10 years on it. I am now really struggling with these adrenaline rushes and so the doctor suggested that I go back onto 25mg to see if it was because I did it too fast. I have now been taking the 25mg for 1 week and the anxiety attacks are still very bad and frequent. I feel like I have been plugged into an electric socket. I am now starting to really panic about panicing and my biggest fear is - have I done the right thing going back on it like this? And if this anxiety doesn't settle in a week or so - then what? I am scared stiff after reading forums of people saying these drugs can cause permanent brain issues - what if I never get my anxiety under control again due to this drug. I am scared witless of people talking about months of hell of withdrawals. I just want to be stable like I was for the 10 years I was on it. I am just looking for help, guidance anything that will let me know if this should settle - could it be that this anxiety is the anxiety like when you start the drug originally? I really am scared - please somebody help me.
  12. Hi Everyone, Well i am 36 years old and my journey with antidepressants started at the age of 16 (in 1999) when i started having panic attacks, i had always been a sensitive person and prone to bouts of anxiety as far back as i can remember. The list of medications went from Aropax, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Fluoxetine etc etc and i had tried numerous times basically since i first got put on them at 16 to stop them, i resented the fact that the doctor was telling me i would need them probably for the rest of my life and that i had a "chemical imbalance" which was determined through an extremely flimsy set of written questions, with no science at all backing it up! But unfortunately i was young and naive and this was back when you trusted what your doctor was telling you, so i reluctantly agreed. Every time i tried to come off this medication i would fail spectacularly and end up in severe distress at which point the doctor would use this as "proof i needed medication" when actually this was a withdrawal symptom all along which unfortunately took a lot of pain and anguish and time for me to come to understand, but i am where i am. I had been on the Fluoxetine for over a decade (can't remember exactly how long) and was tapering off in 2016 (before i knew anything about tapering), anyway i reached a point after a difficult breakup where i had a complete meltdown anxiety wise to the point where it was unbearable and the doctor put me on Mirtazapine where my weight ballooned to the biggest i'd ever been and i am only 155cm tall and since being put on antidepressants have put on close to 30kg! I used to be quite fit and active until this happened. Anyway at the end of 2017 after being on 15mg of Mirtazapine for a year as well as remaining on the reinstated 20mg of Fluoxetine i began tapering the Mirtazapine because the weight gain was making me even more miserable. The taper was going quite well and i had been tapering for 18months and was down to 0.5mg! and found out my mum needed to have some pretty serious surgery and lost my job which sent me into a spiral and unfortunately because i didn't know any better at the time i reinstated the full 15mg of mirtazapine again instead of just pushing it up 1mg or something and holding for 6 weeks (which seems to be the magic number for me). Anyway, after discussing with my doctor we decided to change the 20 mg of Fluoxetine over to 20mg of Vortioxetine after i had done a DNA test which supposedly tells you which medications may work better with your genetic makeup. So now i find myself on a new drug and also still taking the 15mg of Mirtazapine. The medication change was 10 weeks ago now and 5 days after the switch i did have some vomiting, diarrhea, headache and anxiety which passed but have had a steady stream of side effects including - intermittent Anxiety (sometimes panic), mild vertigo, some headaches, nausea, teariness and feelings of DEEP sorrow, irritability, ruminating thoughts the list goes on and on really but they all seem to pass quite quickly at this stage so i am hoping to power through and hoping that these side effects won't get any worse. Once i have had a solid period of time where there are no side effects and i feel physically and mentally ready then i will attempt at weaning from the mirtazapine (I wish i could do it immediately so i could finally fit into my old clothes again but alas the evil antidepressant side effects stop this from being a reality right now). I am being careful to keep a journal of my symptoms and become more aware of what my body is telling me, as well as learning from other people's stories from this website, which are immensely helpful as well as listening to James Moore's youtube channel called "Let's talk withdrawal" which i highly recommend to everyone who needs some encouragement. So glad to have found Surviving Antidepressants and reading all your experiences, it really helps to know I am not alone through this process
  13. Hi, Came across this website trying to find others who've gone through withdrawal and experienced skin issues during the process. I took 5mg Trintellix medication for the last two years which worked wonders for me. Though, due to financial circumstances and having a shingles outbreak, I had to stop taking the medication cold turkey. My Dr. did blood work and everything came out fine. Chalked my shingles outbreak due to excessive stress. Over the last month and half that I've stopped the medication I've gone through crying spells, anxiety, insomnia/interrupted sleeping cycle, eating binge (sweets), fatigue, muscle weakness.. Right now, I'm experiencing headaches that stop and switch to IBS symptoms then switch back to headaches, some fatigue, focusing issues (eye), skin breakouts (pimples, red spots, hives) on my arms and chest. Today, a new hive or spots came out on my right oblique. I'm scared that it might shingles again or just the continuing break out due to my withdrawal. Just wanted to know how those who've had skin breakouts managed this or let it just be.
  14. ADMIN NOTE Please read this entire topic for tips about tapering vortioxetine. There are many reports on the Web about withdrawal symptoms from vortioxetine, despite their being overlooked by drug companies. Vortioxetine appears to have a withdrawal syndrome similar to almost all the antidepressants and should be tapered slowly to avoid severe or prolonged withdrawal symptoms. See Why taper by 10% of my dosage? According to https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/vortioxetine#section=Top According to https://www.drugs.com/pro/brintellix.html , Brintellix is available as 5mg 10mg 15mg 20mg film-coated tablets. It has a very long half-life, somewhere around 66 hours. There is no ingredient in or coating on the tablet to make it extended-release, that would be unnecessary. (In May 2016, Takeda changed the name of this drug from Brintellix to Trintellix in the US to avoid confusion with another drug.) More biochemical detail about vortioxetine at DrugBank. Vortioxetine is metabolized in the liver by several liver enzymes; however, enzyme cyp 2D6 is very important in its metabolization. Taking vortioxetine with other drugs that are metabolized in the liver, as many psychiatric drugs are, can lead to drug-drug interactions, particularly if the other drugs utilize cyp 2D6. From https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/vortioxetine#section=Drug-and-Medication-Information Check for drug-drug interactions. Reduce by splitting tablets Depending on your daily dosage, you may be able to taper by dry-cutting tablets. For example, if you are taking 20mg per day, you may request that your prescription be filled with a combination of 10mg and 5mg tablets with the intention of splitting one 5mg tablet into fourths (1.25mg per quarter tablet). This will enable you to reduce from 20mg to 18.75mg, 17.50mg, 16.25mg, 15mg, 13.75mg, 12.5mg, 10mg -- all reductions within the 10% guideline. (Your doctor will have to specify the reason, such as "take x mg in the a.m. and x mg in the p.m.", for most insurance to cover this type of prescription). At 10mg, you will want to get your prescription filled with two 5mg tablets. At this point, to maintain a reduction rate of 10%, you will need to either 1) use a digital scale to weight tablet fragments of 1mg active ingredient (mgai) or less; OR 2) convert one 5mg tablet into a liquid to measure with an oral syringe. (See below.) Use a digital scale to measure doses If you are very sensitive to dosage reductions, you may wish to weigh tablet fragments, see Using a digital scale to measure doses Taper with vortioxetine liquid Measuring a drug for tapering by 10% at a time is easier using a liquid formulation. Since vortioxetine is available in fairly low dosages, you can take part of your daily dosage as a 5mg, 10mg, or 15mg tablet and add the rest as a liquid until your dosage is less than 5mg, where you would take your entire dose as a liquid. Taking part as a tablet and part as a liquid makes it easier to switch from a tablet to a liquid. Vortioxetine liquid may be available by prescription in some countries (other than the U.S). Check with your pharmacist. Make your own vortioxetine liquid The active ingredient in the tablets, vortioxetine, is slightly soluble in water. This means you or a compounding pharmacy can make a liquid suspension from vortioxetine, see How to make a liquid from tablets or capsules A liquid will be a suspension, not a consistent or "homeogenous" solution. Vortioxetine is highly soluble in ethanol and a substance called DMSO, as are many psycho-neuro-active prescription medications. Ethanol is readily available in vodka. You can get oral or medical grade DMSO from many sources. If you have questions about this, feel free to post them in this topic. Have a compounding pharmacy make custom capsule dosages or a liquid or for tapering Compounding pharmacies can make capsules of the drug in any dosage or a liquid from the tablets. You will need a prescription written for the custom compound. The only drawback is this can be expensive. I have a friend on vortioxetine (Brintellix) so I was wondering, does anyone have any info on how tapering this drug might look like? Thanks in advance.
  15. Hi Guys, So here's my story. I was first depressed when I was 18 over a breakup that wasn't that long. i had always struggled with anxiety and depression and I was simply overcome with it over something as simple as a short high school relationship. Maybe it was growing up but long and short I was first prescribe Zoloft then Lexapro which made me go manic because as I found out years later I was unable to metabolize it properly. In any case, after trying different antipsychotics and other sleeping drugs, I ultimately found Trintellix , which I was first perscribed 5mg of in 2017. It's a new antidepressant. In any case, it changed my life, significantly lowered my anxiety and got me undepressed, until 2 years later when I was graduating college I was wickedly depressed again. So I upped it to the starting therapeudic dose of 10mg. After 2 more years of success i decided I was ready to get off of it, and so I tried it two weeks ago. I cut the dose from 10mg to 5mg and it was, to say the least, horrific. After a few days I felt like my head was going to pop for how bad it felt like it was being squeezed. I had massive headaches, I had sigificant mood swings and anxiety, and I was depressed again. And it was affecting my work so I decided I couldn't live like it and went back to my 10mg dose. Currently having to deal with the starting side effects all over again (constipation, loss of libido, bloating). Not sure where to really go from here. How can I know when to get off get and how to do it? Who else has been on this drug? What's next for me as I'm kinda lost now with who I am without this.
  16. Hello everyone, I don’t even know where to start. My 19 years old girlfriend was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, depression and OCD in 2015 when she was 13 years old. She was also hospitalized 3 times. We’re together for 9 months. This month, roughly month after tapering off Cipralex, my girlfriend started having, which I think are withdrawal symptoms (suicidal ideation, really bad anhedonia, drowsiness, sometimes pressure like feeling on the whole head). She told me she experienced anhedonia even in year 2018 after mental “downfall” (complete fall to the depression and suicidal black hole) after cold turkeying Zoloft and Abilify (don’t remember the dosage, haven’t taken those regularly) and feelings haven’t come back since, maybe only briefly. Before that she normally felt every emotion. She had psychiatric appointment yesterday and she’s supposed to start taking Abilify again, which I don’t know it’s a good idea with the cocktail she already have. Her psychiatrist also said, there’s possibility of her not taking these drugs the whole lifetime and also said the tapering Cipralex wasn’t that fast while simultaneously starting Brintellix (vortioxetine). I just want her to be happy and help. I don’t know how to help her with getting her feelings back and whether that’s still a WD symptom after 2018 fall. The thing she’s deeply sad about the most is the emotional numbness. She’s also experiencing loss of libido from year 2018. I have a hope she doesn’t have to take those drugs forever, but don’t know whether she should start tapering them now or not or maybe later? Is Abilify a good idea? Is emotional numbness caused by the pills or rather withdrawal? Any advice on what to do is greatly appreciated. Thank you bunch, everyone.
  17. Cigarettes at age 11. Alcohol periodically from age 13 to age 30. Valium episodically from age 18 to age 27. I have been on myriad anti-depressants since 1982 for major depression and generalized anxiety. Imipramine, desyrel, ativan. Off drugs from 1984 till 1995. Started Prozac 1995 till 2014 (did well from 1995 to 2011). Tried Wellbutrin, Cymbalta. Abilify and Trintellix from March 2014 till August 8, 2017 (depression free). Had to withdraw due to cervical dystonia and tremors which still persist. Terrible experience withdrawing from Abilify and Trintellix. Started Wellbutrin 150 mg. and Prozac 10 mg. for one week to help with withdrawal. Then increased Wellbutrin to 300 mg. and experienced ringing in ears; stopped the Wellbutrin and increased Prozac to 20 mg. (10 in A.M.; 10 in P.M.) Now on Prozac 20 mg. per day, occasional Propranolol for tremors (doesn't help). I've read that coming off Abilify can take up to 3 months or more, and it has been 2 months so far. I feel like I've spent (wasted) my entire adult life trying to feel better, first by self-medicating, then by psychiatric medicating. I'm 72 years old. I wonder if there is any hope for me.
  18. Brinhellix

    Brinhellix

    Hi, sorry for my english. I need some help n suggestion.. 5 sept 2020 feel having psychosomatic symptomp, a psychiatric suggest brintellix (vortioxetine) 10 mg 12 sept 2020, go to another psychiatric, suggest psychotheraphy, stop brintellix after 8 day (cold turkey), several week later develop unknown depression, suicidal, brain fog, etc. That psychiatric say that its not withdrawal. 13 sept-10 nov 2020, no medication 11 nov 2020, go to another psychiatric, give coctail 2x1 for 5 day: morning (fluoxetine 5mg, antacid, chlrordiazepoxid clinidium a.k.a librax, alprazolam 0.125mg, propanolol, trifluoperazine 1.25mg, trihexyphenidyl 1mg, citicholin 125mg), evening (sertraline 25mg, propanolol, alprazolam 0.25mg, chlorpomazine, trihexyphenidyl 1mg, dipenhydramine 6.25mg, diazepam 1.25mg, haloperidol 1.25mg, citicholin 125mg) 15 nov 2020 change cocktail 2x1: morning (buspirone 2.5mg, vortioxetine 5mg, citicholine 125mg), evening (librax, antacid, alprazolam 0.125mg, sertraline 12.5mg, citicholine 250mg) 21 nov 20 change cocktail 2x1: morning (vortioxetine 10mg, alprazolam 0.125mg, citicholin 125mg), evening (librax, antacid, alprazolam 0.125mg, sertraline 25mg, citicholin 125mg) 26 nov 2020 regret alternative therapy (bilateral carotid compression that induce faint n jerk several second), insomnia, frequent urination & foamy, stare blankly, more cognitive decline. Switch to vortioxetine 5mg 12 des 2020 stop all psyc medication, feel slight improvement What should i do? Reinstate something then slow tapper or just wait to healing? I feel very difficult in here to do tapper until under 1mg. Thaks
  19. Hi all, This is an amazing forum! I am so grateful for the years of knowledge accumulated here. It has given me the confidence and the reassurance that tapering is the right thing to do and that I will need all the patience I can get! My question: I am trying to slowly switch from 15mg Trintellix in pill form to a homemade liquid suspension (just in water). I am currently prescribed 10mg and 5mg pills. To be cautious, I have only dissolved 5mg in water, and I continue to consume the 10mg in pill form. I started this on Nov 22 and began to experience insomnia: difficulty falling asleep, and staying asleep. I am quite certain this has to do with my switch to liquid Brintellix, as my sleep patterns are always affected by changes in my Trintellix dose. Does anyone have any advice on whether I should continue with this tactic, or make changes to what I’m doing? Thank you.
  20. Hi, I thought I would introduce myself. Have joined this forum after experiencing horrendous withdrawals from anti-depressants. I am 34, female. Currently 3 months completely off of Prozac which I took for 6 years at the highest dose I understand is allowed to be prescribed in the UK (60mg daily). I weaned down from 60mg to 0mg over 5 months. Have had 3 months of pure hell since stopping taking Prozac completely - symptoms ranging from suicidal depression, nausea, migraines, loss of appetite, the most debilitating anxiety and panic. Weakness, crying spells, the most excruciating emotional and psychic pain that I have ever had to endure. All the symptoms I have read others have experienced except I haven't had brain zaps - not sure why. Am determined to stay off of Prozac and just go through what I need to. Very grateful to have come across this forum and hopefully to be able to share how I am getting through and to hear how others have managed and hopefully to offer support too. I am aware that there seems to be no other way that through this - keen to connect with others who are finding a way through. Very keen to connect and speak further to anyone else having to go through this. Very determined to get through although very aware it feels like you just don't know what each day will bring or when you really are finally on solid ground. Very keen to hear others experiences. I am using the idea of windows and waves to navigate through currently. Very keen to connect with others. Natalie
  21. Dennis Hi I have been taking 5mg vortioxetine for 1 month and my anxiety has under control ,should I start tapering my medication.Dr advise me to take 3-6 month.Any advice will be welcome.
  22. Hello SA, SleepyMagee here. I'm a first-time caller, long-time listener, and I've been meaning to do this for such a long time. I'm sure you all know how hard it is to get started, especially when your story is a long and painful one. But I feel like I'm ready. The following will be an account of my history with mental illness and how the medication I was prescribed made a bad situation worse. I'll try and keep it as short as possible, for all our sake. I hope updates and eventually a recovery story will follow. So here goes... In September 2009 a relationship ended. It had been on and off for most of that year, and really isn't particularly important except that precipitated my first bout of serious depression. I was 26, had very little direction in life, had been working dead-end jobs and really didn't care much. But when that relationship went south and I started to feel bad, I realised that I hadn't been particularly happy for a long time. The relationship ending was just the last straw. The suffering I felt was new and scary, but I got through it. I saw my GP and was offered antidepressants but decided against taking them. After a few months I started to feel better and exactly one year after I first noticed that something was wrong I enrolled in college and felt pretty good. School was fun and stimulating, but there was always a fear that I would fall back into the darkness, and when I had a dip in my mood about a year in, I went to my Dr and asked him to prescribe me something. Looking back I don't feel like I needed the pills. But I was really worried that the depression would get worse and it would affect my work. I really wanted to finish my studies and do well. So I ended up taking 150mg of Sertraline for six months and I have to say, it was pretty good. My mood improved after a couple of months and the side-effects were minimal. The worst issue was a terrible case of the runs which lingered for about six weeks before disappearing. I had no issues coming off the drugs and I finished college, passing with flying colours. Between 2011 and 2013 I was on and off Sertraline twice, for about six months each time, and had no real problems. Then, in early 2014, I felt my mood had started to dip a little and so I knew what I was going to do. I went back to the GP and asked for medication, but I thought I was clever. The old Sertraline had given me that pesky Diarrhoea, and I would like to avoid that if at all possible. Surely the answer was to just try a different medication? I'd be back to my old self in no time and avoid the runs as a bonus. Simple, no? No! This is the point in the story were everything starts to go wrong and it's the watershed moment. I haven't felt right since then. The Doc prescribed Fluoxetine (Prozac) 20mg and I duly took it. Within a couple of weeks I could tell that something was wrong. I started to feel very uncomfortable in my own skin- itchy, agitated, jumpy. It was very strange. I also started to have trouble sleeping. After a month or so I went back to the GP and I don't remember how the exchange went but somehow I came away with a prescription for 40mg of the drug. As time passed I felt more ill until I realised that what I was experiencing was anxiety. Eventually the anxiety progressed and turned to panic. I had my first panic attack at 3 am one night and it was caused directly and completely by the medication. I had never had any issues with anxiety before taking that drug and the only time I've had it since is when I have introduced new medication or adjusted the dose of medication I'm on. It's never been as bad as it was at that time though. At the same time I was so activated that I was getting just 2-3 hours sleep a night and working full time. I remember telling my girlfriend at the time I was too tired to go see her after work. When she got upset I agreed I would head over to her place, but when I got there she put me straight to bed. She said I looked like a corpse and her apologies were profuse! In September 2014 things had gone too far, and I was falling to pieces. I had missed so much work over the past six months that I couldn't take it anymore and quit my job. I haven't worked since. Shortly after that I was finally taken off the Fluoxetine and went straight on to Mirtazipine. You'll have to forgive my inability to remember how long I took to updose/downdose for these meds- it was a long time ago and my memory has been effected by the drugs (note: there is no recognition from the Doctors I saw that my anxiety and continued depression may have been caused by horrible crap they were giving me. I however, was starting to suspect.) Mirtazipine was prescribed because of my difficulty sleeping, and boy did it do the trick. 45 minutes to 1 hour after my dose I was nodding off. Once I fell asleep I was dead to the world for 10 hours solid. Pretty great? Eh, no. No matter how long I slept, I woke up feeling like I'd hardly slept at all. I couldn't focus, felt 'fuzzy' in my head, was always tired and was completely numb. I was basically a zombie. I had originally hoped that I would get back on the employment horse pretty quickly after my Fluoxetine experience- I was even told by the company I left to get in touch when I felt better- but I was no more functional on the Mirtazapine than I was on the Fluoxetine. I have never felt so physically exhausted in my life, and have never recovered my energy. To this day I wonder about which was worse/more damaging. I suffered more on the Fluoxetine, but on the Mirtazipine I lost any semblance of being a functional human being. Pick your poison. I suspect that a combination of the 2 drugs effects, one so quickly after the other, has done the long term damage. So I spent a year on Mirtazapine, sleepwalking through a living nightmare. I barely left the house and when I did, I was shattered for days afterward. I think it was around this time I began to insist that the pills were making me sick, and yet I was still convinced to take the maximum dose (45mg) and made to doubt my own instincts. My symptoms, I was told, were obviously depression and an adjustment in the dosage may be all that was needed to fix all my problems. I'm slightly ashamed that it took me another couple of years to admit the truth to myself. So my relationship ended, I had to move out of the home I shared with my partner and move back in with my parents at 32 years of age, and had no quality of life to speak of. But I finally got off the Mirtazapine. It was hell. My anxiety returned with a vengeance and I had the worst insomnia I've ever had. It genuinely felt like I was physically dependent on the stuff. Apologies, I can't recall how long it took and how often I dropped the dose, but I do remember that by the end I was nibbling tiny portions of a pill every few days just to get some kind of sleep. At the same time I began to take Sertraline again because my Doctor still couldn't believe that all the problems could be caused by the medication. I doubted enough myself to allow it, but part of me knew that I shouldn't be replacing the Mirtazapine. At the very least I feel like it may have ameliorated some of the symptoms of withdrawal to have something else working on my serotonin. If I had gone completely CT off the Mirtazapine I may have gone insane. Although the most pernicious symptoms passed after I ditched the Mirtazapine, I never recovered in any meaningful sense, probably because I moved on to another drug and my system never had time to recover. By this time I feel like my body was just so beaten up and my nervous system so damaged that a careful, slow taper was needed, but the fun was far from over. I made one attempt to get off medication completely in 2016, but failed, but in 2017 I managed it. It was, however, a disaster. I dropped from 150mg of sertraline to nothing in about six weeks. I was assured that this was a conservative approach to tapering. It wasn't, but I soon started to feel better. June and July of were pretty good and I started to feel like my energy was returning. I thought I was free and clear. In August I began to feel ill and depressed. By mid September, six months after my final dose of Sertraline, I was almost catatonic and competely suicidal. I lay in bed all day and formulated a very specific plan to end my life. Somehow, in late September, I made the most difficult call I've ever had to make. I called my sister and told her what was happening. She took me to the Doctor and from there I was referred to my local mental health services. Within a few days I was back on medication - Vortioxetine 5mg, then 10mg after 1 week). At this point I had the epiphany I needed to admit to myself fully that the medication had ruined my life. The standard line is that the medication will take 2-4 weeks to have an effect. Within a few days of taking the vortioxetine I felt much better. Not weeks, days. Bingo! This was NOT depression. It was withdrawal syndrome. The dose was increased to the maximum of 20mg a few weeks later and at this point I didn't fight because I was so happy that I didn't want to kill myself anymore. I have to be honest now, and it might be something that isn't heard much on these forums - the Vortioxetine was... ok. There were no new major side-effects, and it improved my mood (undoubtedly because withdrawal was terminated), but the rest of my problems sort of just hung around. I was tired all the time, my sleep was disturbed and broken, I had occasional anxiety, I felt numb, I was cognitively compromised (confusion, poor memory, poor focus) and felt generally ill and weak almost all the time. But at least I wasn't depressed. So I formulated a plan. I would take my time, stabilise, educate myself and prepare for the end goal, my final tapering and withdrawal from the medication. And this time I was determined to do it for good. SA has been invaluable for mesince then. I began to taper in June18. I went from 20mg to 10mg overnight. No problems. In September I went from 10 mg to 5mg. No problems. In January this year, I believe it was the 5th, I stopped taking the medication. No problems... for 2 months. And then withdrawal began. I am almost 7 months free of the medication now, and the short version of the story is that things are going ok. Not great, not terrible, but ok. I'm think I'm about where I expected to be. I guess I'll keep you updated if I can as my recovery progresses, but this isn't the time or place. But I will say this- the waves and windows are REAL, folks! So, thats the end of my sad (and very, very long) story. If you made it this far, thanks for reading and don't be afraid to ask me anything. Sleepy
  23. My Gemini scale arrived this week with a set of glass graduated cylinders. I've read that the transition from solid to liquid dosing can be a little hairy. Can anyone help with suggestions for making the switch? Am currently taking ~8mg, in pieces, with a glass of water. I would like to be dosing completely in liquid form by the time my dose gets down to 5 mg in a few months. Should I just start dissolving all 8mgs now, or divide the dose into liquid and solid portions. If so, is there any ratio I should be targeting? I also have 00 gelatin capsules that I can fill with solid portions to conserve the bits that disintegrate to powder if necessary.
  24. Hi, My husband takes Mirtazapine 15mg every night, along with two psychotic drugs (Trifluoperazine & Olanzapine) for his agitation/yelling and Vortioxetine 10mg (every am) and recently Prozac 20mg. His problem was insomnia but after being put on benzos & antidepressants, it became more complex - one thing leads to another, and he has very bad daytime agitation/constant yelling, memory loss, confusion, low mood, unable to function etc... He has just started Prozac 20mg two weeks ago, to aid with tapering of Mirtazepine. His doctor agreed on 50% cut but he suffers bad withdrawal after 1 week. Previously, he was able to taper off 45mg Mirt to 30mg then to 15mg without much difficulty. So now he is on 25% cut on Mirt. Q: Is this too much considering that he is on Prozac which should help with the tapering as we understand. We are really tired of this journey as his problem was simply Insomnia and it became so much worse after he is put on these potent addictive drugs and we realised that we were trapped! Would really appreciate all your kind advice. Thank you so much!
  25. After 6 weeks on Trinnelix at 10 mg the neurological type sensations have been insane. I am 3 months in dealing with this now. Worst part is I don't know if any of what I experienced was due to a bad reaction to the ssris or some underlying condition that was brewing already inside me. All I know 6 weeks in on trinnelix and I'm in a hospital with muscle enzyme breakdown called rhabdomyalysis. SSRIs can be a cause but so can some crazy neurological muscular disease among other things. I had to cave in and went on zoloft 0.5 mg to be increased to 0.25mg and clorazapam 0.5 mg last week as in my mind since all this happened I now convinced myself that I have ALS and every day has been pure hell. Dr. Google has been fun. I no longer have self control. I cried daily today was one of those days after my conversation with my GP. I still don't know what is wrong with me and if Zoloft will give me the same issues as trinnelix 6 weeks from now and if once again I'll end up with rhandomyalysis. Clorazapam stopped my body twitches, which is great but my doctor gave me no reassurance as this is also a medication given to people with neurological issues hence my earlier breakdown. I already know I don't have MS clean brain MRI and CT Scan. I'm just waiting on a cspine MRI which will happen this saturday. I'm only lucky to be getting tests at this rate due to some connections through friends and family as I could not imagine living like this for another 3 months. Next is neuro appointment and waiting on the nerve study which I'm petrified of. I had spinal surgery as a kid so who knows. My problems started while on trinnelix and then a week after stopping it cold turkey after really poor advice. I took myself to the hospital 2x last week as I had burning sensations down my arm with electrical shock feeling that was new. My blood work is now good no muscle breakdown issues. They also told me to take ativan every 4 hours which is the dumbest thing I've heard. This was the advice I received from the emergency room doctor. I went back to my family doctor and told her I need to function so she gave me clorazapam until zoloft kicks in. symptoms are gone for the most part but I question why based on what I learned about the medication. As good as I felt prior, I suddenly feel like **** again and I'm noticing little twitches. I feel like my CNS is on a spin cycle in a washing machine that I just can't get out of naturally. Sorry I don't know how to add the meds under the quote so will have to put it in this way... APRIL 25 TO JUNE 5, 2019 TRINNELIX 10 MG CLORAZAPAM 2X PER DAY 0.5 MG SINCE AUGUST 22, ZOLOFT .05 MG SINCE AUGUST 22
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