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How to self-soothe


bluebalu86
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So I wanted to share this. When Alto told me I have to learn to self-soothe, I started thinking about it and this is what I came up with.

Sometimes when we are in distress, very little things that act directly on our SENSES bring comfort, no matter how small. Influencing the body directly and not on an intellectual level is very important. 

This is what I have found that helps a little.

 

TOUCH: Clothes made from very soft fabrics. I have a "comfort" hoodie made from a very soft fabric (don't really know the name of it) and I wear it when I feel stressed. In the future will look to buy more clothes like this. Soft socks help too. 

SMELL: Any perfume or scent that you like. Just spray away. Scented candles. Also pay attention to what you use to wash your clothes, because the scent stays on your clothes all day. 

SOUND: Comforting sounds. It can be music or nature sounds. Youtube is a great place to search for things you might enjoy. I like the sound of water (rivers, beach), birds, rain and night sounds. Also native american music I find very spiritual. 

SIGHT: It could be photos, paintings, pictures, anything. I personally like very much this painter, I'm thinking of finding ways to buy his art and put it in my room: http://thomaskinkade.com/I think he painted what heaven looks like :) I'm sure you can find others you enjoy.

TASTE: I haven't yet found any particular taste that soothes me, but I'm sure some people have something - either solid or liquid, which comforts them. Right now I can think of a brand of tea with chamomile, vanilla and honey that I like. 

 

So this is just my 2 cents. I know it seems fairly stupid to even talk about these things, because sometimes the suffering is so great that nothing helps, but I have come to realize we have to keep trying to find the littlest of things that help and use them as building blocks and tools to create a soothing environment for ourselves while we heal. 

I suffer from depression, anxiety, pure-o ocd, and panic attacks since 2004. Been on multiple different psychiatric drugs since 2006. Never had a significant WD problem before, only brain zaps for a month and then I'd be fine...............Been on Cipralex (escitalopram) 15 mg and Fluanxol (flupentixol) 1 mg since Sep 2014. Stopped taking the Cipralex after a fast 20-day taper.Took the last 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 5th, 2015. Then took Seroxat (paroxetine) 10 mg for a week, and stopped it too. Severe WD started suddenly on Feb 16th. RI 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 18th, 2015. RI worked and was relatively stable for a while................April 7 - decreased Fluanxol from 1 mg to 0.5 mg and took it at this dose for a week. - BIG MISTAKE; April 13 - WD starts creeping in; April 14 - RI full dose of Fluanxol 1 mg => severe muscle twitching and jerking when trying to relax and fall asleep, overwhelming sense of doom, dread, terror, and horror, insomnia, hoping to stabilize.
Tried doing a 10% cut off Fluanxol in the end of May for a few days, but quickly updosed to full dose because the twitching returned.
Experiencing waves and windows in the following months.
Unsuccessful brief taper attempt of Fluanxol by 5% on November 1st. Symptoms hit the next day. Too scared to continue tapering, reinstate full dose.
Severe crash in November after stupidly trying a barbiturate on November 9th. Grave mistake. Sense of unshakable inescapable internal torture, like my soul is in hell being tortured, terror/horror/dread/doom (probably akathisia?) that gets especially bad when trying to relax and fall asleep, muscles twitch, jerk and move on their own, shaking, insomnia, can't eat, confusion, disorientation, brain not working normally. Never felt so bad in my entire life. Never experiment with other meds while in WD! Praying to God I stabilize and get back to my baseline.
December - things getting even worse.

January - unbearable suffering

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I don't find anything about this stupid Blue. These are all great ways to bring comfort when you most need it. I used to have a list of things like this in my journal and posted around my place. When in a bad place, it's good to remember that something has helped in the past...even if doesn't seem like it will right now.

 

I think of these things not just as ways to soothe while we heal, but as healing itself. As most of us have found, there is no single thing that works, or always works....but the 100 small things that Dalsaan talks about in my view, do work. My naturopath described it as "building a new self".

 

One of my friends told me the other day that she feels that the main reason we're here is to learn how to do self-care well...those things that start out as something to soothe, distract, or fill time can end up being the foundations of a new life..or at least, that's been the case for me.

Remeron for depression. Started at 7.5 mg. in 2005. Gradual increases over 8 years, up to 45 mg. in 2012.Began tapering in June 2013. Went from 45 to 30 mg in the first 3-4 months. Held for a couple of months.Started tapering by 3.75 mg every month or 2, with some longer holding periods. Eventually went down to 3.75 mg. about April 2014. Stopped taking Remeron August 2014. Developed issues with histamine a week after stopping--symptoms reduced through diet and a few supplements. Currently having issues with a few foods. Most of the histamine intolerance has resolved or is at least, in remission.

Current Medications:

Current Supplements: Cannabis (CBD and THC), Vitamin C, D, Quercetin, CoQ10, Tart Cherry, Probiotic, Phytoplankton oil, magnesium, Methyl B. What has helped me most: spending time in nature, qi gong, exercise, healthy diet, meditation, IV vitamins, homeopathy, massage, acupuncture, chiropractic, music, and cuddling my cats..

My introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/8459-mirtazapine-withdrawal-freespirit/#entry144282

Please note: I am not a therapist or medical practitioner. Any suggestions offered come solely from my personal experience in recovering from childhood trauma, therapy, and AD use. Please seek appropriate care for yourself.

 

“After a cruel childhood, one must reinvent oneself. Then re-imagine the world.”
Mary Oliver
 

 

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This is not to cause any offence to the gentlemen on this site and neither do I mean to suggest that the guys have any less problems in WD but I sometimes think as females we tend to put ourselves at the bottom end of the pile. As a mother I think we tend to fall right to the bottom! 

 

Some of us make the mistake of considering "self care" or "me" time as self indulgent which is totally wrong. It is the little things that can make the difference if only we can train our minds to allow that goodness or self soothing in. As said before it is so easy to get in to the negative mindset. We have to make the decision to notice the good things around us and make a mental note or even note it in a journel or diary just to prove to our doubting mind that it happened. I have been for a walk this evening after dinner. I am lucky that I live in a beautiful part of the UK surrounded by farmland and a river all in walking distance. I made a conscious decision to take note of the surroundings, the sounds and the smells. I was lucky this evening as the sun was shining despite rain all day, it was chilly but fresh and I could breath. I came across three beautiful swans and some totally crazy goats!  As I carried on walking the chill in the air for some reason bought back memories of my grandmother (no idea why) but it made me realise that there is peace and loveliness around us we just have to allow it in.

 

The senses are an amazing thing and can entice all sorts of memories, it has been said that smell in particular can remind us of things in our past. My grandmother used to wear Yardley face powder and smelling it now takes me back to when I was a little girl and I used to love sneaking in to the drawers of her dresser and playing with her make up.

 

We need to give ourselves permission to "self soothe" every day no matter how small it may be.

1995-1998 various SSRIs then withdrawal

2000 Sertraline

2003 Sertraline then changed to Prozac to attempt withdrawal.

2004 failed at withdrawal so Citalopram.

2010 attempted slow withdrawal over 12 months but failed- sever episode depression 2012

2012 3 days of Mirtazepine with bad reaction so started escitalopram 20mgs

2013 started very very slow taper with a number of slight reinstatements

Currently on between 0.5 and 1mg escitalopram drops at day.

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These are three very excellent posts, ones that everyone should read and take to heart.  One thing that we should all do every day, no matter how badly we feel, is to post in our journals one moment, one thing, one thought that took us out of ourselves just briefly and made us smile.

 

There is a large water tank that I see on my drive in to work.  The trees around it have grown up to look like a couple of large dinosaurs having a tea party with the tank as the table.  It makes me smile every time I see it.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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This is a great thread.  I am fond of the 100 little things idea and I think soothing through the senses is really important.   Soothing isn't just about confronting our thoughts and fears, it is soothing our nervous system and finding comfort and perhaps joy in small, perhaps mundane things.  I think that's what people with good mental health do, so on that basis its about developing good ways of being in the world.

 

Here are some things that I do and often need to spend more time doing:

 

Feeling the sun on my back;

cuddling my dog;

listening to songs I like;

getting massages;

laughing;

stretching;

eating nice/healthy food;

rolling on the floor with my friends baby;

looking at flowers

Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.

Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.

Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.

Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.

Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).

Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

 

DRUG FREE - as at 1st May 2017

 

>My intro post is here - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2250-dalsaan

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I also think this is a great thread, thank you for starting it bluebalu. Reading through your list of 'very little things' reminded me of how it was only little things which helped when I was going through the worst of withdrawal. Anything beyond the smallest change in sensory input was too much for my over-sensitized nervous system.

 

Some of the little things which helped me to self-soothe when I was at my worst were:

 

On a cold day, making a warm drink and feeling the warmth of the cup in my hands.

The act of making the drink became like a little ritual, I would focus on each step and it would give me a sense of control and security in my ability to do something small for myself, when everything else was frightening and feeling completely chaotic.

Perfumes and even essential oils were too overwhelming, but the subtle fragrance of strawberry tea would occasionally make me smile.

I had to be careful with the smell of hand soap, it was too much for me, would bring on waves of nausea, but hours later, getting a very subtle reminder of it, still on my hands was pleasant.

Low level, warm lighting in my room was comforting (it still is)

Putting on a pair of warm, fluffy socks and when my feet were really cold (often), warming up a heating pad for them too.

Listening to audio books or talks/lectures/ASMR spoken by people with a voice I found calming.

Holding a tissue (kleenex) in my hand

Laying with my cheek pressed against my arm.

Feeling the bed sheet between my toes

 

When I went into withdrawal, most of the things I previously found relaxing, comforting or joyful, became too stimulating and would make me feel worse. Not everyone experiences this extreme sensitivity in withdrawal, but if you do, you may have to look to the very little things at first, until you move further along in your recovery process.

 

Some of the things I had to give up due to extreme sensitivity were warm baths, walking in nature, laying in the sun, massages, music, exercising. It was actually devastating to realize that things which previously had added enjoyment and richness to my life, were now causing me pain. I could no longer handle listening to the sounds of birds or the rain, or look at trees or beautiful scenery without getting surges of adrenaline and increased shaking.  But slowly I'm being able to incorporate some of these activities back into my life in small doses.

 

from:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9940-on-not-investing-in-drama-yours-or-other-peoples/?p=182264

I have a friend in San Francisco, a psychotherapist who specializes in treating panic and anxiety. (She is a very anxious person herself.) She's been doing this for many years. I asked her the most common problem she sees. She said "some people never learned how to self-soothe."

 

If you want to live without psychiatric drugs, you need to learn to manage your symptoms with non-drug methods. This is a necessity for anyone on this site. It means managing the self-destructive patterns that led you to psychiatric care as well as withdrawal symptoms. Even people who are suffering terribly can do this, I've seen it. It doesn't mean symptoms go away. It means your attitude towards them changes, you understand your situation, you do what needs to be done to take care of yourself as best you can.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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These are great ideas, Blue. They are you taking care of yourself. Excellent!

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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I absolutely love the paintings, Blu,

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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This is a great topic. Before I came to SA I found it hard to self soothe, after all you can't think your way out of depression because it's an illness right? For years I was telling anyone with ears how ill I was and I can't pull myself out of it because it's a chemical imbalance. Actually that was probably right in a way because I was messed up by psych drugs. Then I learned about those drugs, their side effects, and withdrawal. Alto's change the channel topic really changed things for me and I learned that positive thoughts and meditating on good things really did help. Laid in bed unable to do anything I could look out of the window at the sky as long as it wasn't too bright. The clouds, the birds that flew across the window and the aeroplanes flying over. I could then imagine the passengers and wonder where they were going on holiday, which prompted memories of past holidays that made me smile. Often the negative thoughts would be there, like was there a terrorist on that plane? But I learned how to replace that those thoughts with the positive ones. My taste is elderflower juice, not too strong just enough to flavour the water. I have a soft throw that I wrap myself up in and feel how soft it is.  I also have fluffy socks like Petunia that I love, and videos of my grandchildren never fail to make me smile however bad I am feeling. 

 

The small things are the most important, and are cumulative, a few small things in a day can make a huge difference. 

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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I hope I never take for granted again when recovered just being able to sit in peace :)

 

Yes..my soft fluffy throw, love it. In a bit of a window so lots to enjoy..even the little things..freshly washed clothes, my colouring books, the fresh air on my walk by the river, lovely cup of coffee.

 

Ha! Mammap, now we are telling everyone no, no the chemical imbalance did not exist! Except now from the psych drugs..

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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I love this thread!  I found some things to do that I hadn't thot of before and a reprise for self-indulgent behavior which is always anthema to me. 

 

I love the ceiling fans in my house, just sitting and feeling the air go over me. 

 

I love my morning decaf coffee, the smell, the taste, the warm feeling of the cup. 

 

I have a stuffed bear that was given to me by my daughters when I was in the psych hospital and it is super fluffy and squishy and very comforting. 

 

My Standard Poodles are so comforting with soft curly hair and soulful eyes. 

 

I have a huge garden and even with my distorted vision, it never fails to give me pleasure---the centers of my Zinnias are especially wonderful to me--so intricately designed.  And the bumble bees on them with their yellow stripes and fuzzy bodies. 

 

Most all animals will make me smile and of course as with mamaP, videos of my grandchildren. 

 

I really enjoy British period movies/PBS series---they move slowly and deliberately and never frenetic or forced. 

 

Maybe not good for me, but I so enjoy and look forward to my 3 Hershey Kisses that I have every afternoon. 

 

And singing old hymns that remind me of where I am going...

1971-81  Valium 5mg c/t PAWS     1992- through now Zoloft 25mg    2003-05 Valium 12mg Slow Taper Off

2013 Afrin Exposure to CNS    2013 O/D Val 230mg    2013 Doxepin 50mg Clonidine 2mg Zoloft 25mg

3/15/16  Doxepin 49mg Micro Tapering  Zoloft 24.3mg Holding taper

3/15/16 Clonidine mg 0.1 1/2 -    Decreasing incrementally.  DISCONTINUED

10/9/16  Doxepin 48.9  Zoloft 24.3  Clonidine  01.10  Continuing micro taper on Doxepin.

11/16/16 Doxepin 48mg  Zoloft 24.3mg  Clonidine 1.30mg

5/4/17  Doxepin 45mg  Zoloft 24mg  Clonidine 1.20mg   Micro taper of Doxepin  , Clonidine

01/13/19  Doxepin 45mg   Zoloft 21mg   Will start Micro taper of Doxepin 2/19

12/21/21  Doxepin 20 mg ?  Reducing using water micro taper--Pulling 24ml from 75ml

12/2121   Zoloft .060 grams by weight--HOLDING (info from post added by CC: On 12/21/21 my dosage was .060grams by weight or 20mg. )

26 Apr 2022 - Zoloft at -0-

 

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Selma whats PBS? :)

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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For awhile, I was unable to use anything that was scented. Everything from shampoo to laundry soap had no smell. Essential oils and smells have always been comforting to me...but I found I was able to put a pot of water on simmer on the stove--with a couple of slices of lemon and half a cinnamon stick in it. I could get a hint of the smells, but wasn't overpowering and didn't trigger a histamine response.

 

On 1 of my worst days, I went back to bed in all my clothes, took 2 heated bags and a heating pad. The 2 cats snuggled beside me, and I let myself focus on the sounds of the rain, the softness of the kitty fur, and the warmth around me..though I was still freezing inside and felt incredibly ill. It was actually a very beautiful memory.

 

Anything warm and snuggly was often a good thing for me--cats, teddy bear, fluffy blankets and socks, warm baths, and sitting by the pellet stove.

 

I listened to a lot of meditation tapes, watched tv in bed, drank hot tea...looked out the window at the trees, sky, birds.

 

For myself, I see these things not just as ways to soothe. When done with intention and presence, it's a way to practice self-compassion, to remind myself that I'm worthy of being treated well. A way of filling a once empty bucket.

 

One more thing, that my meditation teacher recommended. Place a hand over my heart gently..as a physical reminder of sending compassion.

Remeron for depression. Started at 7.5 mg. in 2005. Gradual increases over 8 years, up to 45 mg. in 2012.Began tapering in June 2013. Went from 45 to 30 mg in the first 3-4 months. Held for a couple of months.Started tapering by 3.75 mg every month or 2, with some longer holding periods. Eventually went down to 3.75 mg. about April 2014. Stopped taking Remeron August 2014. Developed issues with histamine a week after stopping--symptoms reduced through diet and a few supplements. Currently having issues with a few foods. Most of the histamine intolerance has resolved or is at least, in remission.

Current Medications:

Current Supplements: Cannabis (CBD and THC), Vitamin C, D, Quercetin, CoQ10, Tart Cherry, Probiotic, Phytoplankton oil, magnesium, Methyl B. What has helped me most: spending time in nature, qi gong, exercise, healthy diet, meditation, IV vitamins, homeopathy, massage, acupuncture, chiropractic, music, and cuddling my cats..

My introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/8459-mirtazapine-withdrawal-freespirit/#entry144282

Please note: I am not a therapist or medical practitioner. Any suggestions offered come solely from my personal experience in recovering from childhood trauma, therapy, and AD use. Please seek appropriate care for yourself.

 

“After a cruel childhood, one must reinvent oneself. Then re-imagine the world.”
Mary Oliver
 

 

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  • 1 month later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Forum Members,

 

Some great ideas here.  And having a list is good.  When I am not coping I need to have something to check in with.

 

When I'm feeling very low, I find cuddling up with one of my teddy bears is comforting (I'm in my 50's) and my daughter in her late 20's has a white bear (with a dress on) that she does the same thing with.  I feel a (little) bit silly, but I've told myself that it's okay and if it helps, well what's the problem.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi All,

 

Decided to do a search on self soothing and found this which I thought may be helpful:

 

http://www.dbtselfhelp.com/html/self-sooth.html

 

CC

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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Drowning my face in my cat's fur and sniffing it is very soothing. For me it's like smelling a baby (well, he is one).

September 2011 - 75 mg Effexor, 15 mg Mirtazapine
September 2012 - CT. Developed PSSD (mostly erectile dysfunction and diminished enjoyment of sex).
January 2016 - Symptoms persist, no improvements. In fact, things seem worse now than they were in the first year.

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  • 3 months later...

I'm not really sure where to best share this link.

 

I am so wrapped up in self-hatred and am finding myself unable to let go of my past, especially with the waves of bad memories flooding back as constant reminders of the horrible things I've done. A friend shared this video with me about self-compassion and how to work on letting go and forgiving ourselves. I hope this video can help others who feel like they're also trapped in self-hatred and self-criticism.



 


Last taper was off of Lamictal (Lamotrigine): Started drop from 225 mg in April 2014 by going down 25 mg every 2 weeks. Then to 12.5 mg every 3 weeks. Then 10 mg every 3 weeks. Then 5 mg after 3.5 weeks. (using the chewable, dispersible pills) I had gone down to 30 mg, but was far too sick and went back up to 35. I then dropped back down to 30 mg, then 1 mg drops until 25 mg. Dropped off completely at 25 mg because the symptoms from taking the pills were becoming more unbearable than the withdrawal at times. Completely off as of 5/11/15. Update 10/28/15: Reinstated 0.0625 mg, meant to take 0.25, measured wrong. Only took 2 days.

I've gotten off of: Abilify, PRN Klonopin (0.5-1 mg) - no taper as took it infrequently, and Effexor (300 mg). Abilify and Effexor were rapid tapers around the beginning of 2014. After tapering Effexor and Abilify I tried taking Remeron and Topamax for a short time with very bad side effects. (I have taken numerous psych drugs over the years (starting in my early teens), but these were the ones I was on when getting off completely).

On 2/9/15, received a Promethazine injection for nausea, which caused pain, numbness, burning, shooting pain and was prescribed pain meds (made me sick and didn't help), 5 days of Prednisone, and some sort of anti-inflammatory. I had been doing somewhat better with Lamictal taper until this point.

Current Supplements: Omega-3 with Co Q-10: 1000 mg x 2, Vitamin C with Bioflavonoids and Rose Hips: 500 mg x 2, Multivitamin, Vitamin D, Probiotics

 

Dx: Asperger Syndrome (originally misdiagnosed Borderline Personality Disorder, ADHD), GAD, and PTSD

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Hugging the soft toy seal I have had since I was a child and my hubby. Going for walks in the beautiful UK countryside.

 

Going through a very fearful time right now, a lot to do (big stuff) and we are not registered with a doctor yet which is scary for me.

 

The worst case scenarios have been going through my head.........

 

Trying to keep myself together when in pain.

Dose History: 19 Feb 2014 - Escitalopram 10mg daily June 2015 - Started taper, 5mg every other day July 2015 - 5mg every 2 days August 2015 - 5mg every 3 days September 2015 - 5mg every 4 days Sept 14th - Completed tapering, but at 7 weeks "drug free" I suffered serious WD symptoms as a consequence of "incorrect" tapering. Nov 25 2015 - Re-instated Cipralex @ 2.5mg daily. WD symptoms faded. Held at this dose and experienced "windows and waves". 12 Oct 2017 Reduced dose to 1.25mg. 13 Mar 2018 Reduced dose to 0.625mg (approx.). 16 April 2018 0mg. Windows and waves triggered by stress (IBS/reflux, headaches, sinus issues) Aug 2019 Mirena coil fitted 6 Jan 2020 MAJOR Wave hit 19 months following last dose (protracted WD).  Symptoms listed below Mar 2020 Mirena coil removal.

Therapy: Nov 15th 2016 Re-started therapy Jan 19th 2017 Started CBT Dec 2017 Started listening to Hypnotherapy CD (self-esteem). Nov 2019 Started couples therapy.

Supplements: "Bioglan" Biotic Balance Ultimate Flora 10 billion CFU, live Bacteria, Probiotic, suitable for Vegetarians, with Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, Bifidobacterium Longum"Pukka" Vitalise a unique blend of 30 energising botanicals.

Diet: 16 April 2018 Detox cleanse / anti-candida for 90 days. Jan 2020 Started "small plate" diet (i.e child size portions).

Exercise: Stretching, Yoga, Pilates, Spinning, Elliptical/upper body workout, walking.

Medical Test Results: 4 Jan 2017 Homeopathic Treatment starts 24 Feb 2017 Started weight loss program 24 Mar 2017 Naturopathic Treatment + anti-Candida diet started due to suspected Candida Related Complex (CRC). DETOXED for 7 weeks to "re-set" gut. April 2017 "Genova Diagnostics" Comprehensive Stool Analysis NEGATIVE; Full Blood Count (Normal) / Blood Cholesterol: 5.6 (Borderline) / Blood Sugar (Normal) / 28 Jun 2017 FSH 8.2 / 14 Nov 2017 FSH 17.7 Dec 2017 Blood Cholesterol: 3.9 (Normal) / Kidney Function (Normal) / Blood Sugar (Normal). December 2017 "Genova Diagnostics" Food panel allergy (bloodwork) analysis - a few "VERY LOW/VL" allergens; Mar 2018 "Genova Diagnostics" SIBO urine analysis: High Level of Yeast/fungal markers found in small intestine but NO SIBO.  April 2018 Thyroid (Normal) / Full Blood Count (Normal) / FSH (Normal). 16 April 2018 Started anti-Candida diet - 3 month protocol.   25 March 2020 All test results "Normal". CRP" 5 mg/L (normal range to 0-5 mg/L).

Symptoms:  Flu-like symptoms, anxiety, anhedonia, sinus headaches right-side (severe), IBS issues/reflux (severe)**, tinnitus, fatigue, inner tremor, nausea, chills/hot flushes, pounding heart, muscular issues including stiff left hip flexor, intense anger, PSSD (ongoing).  **Histhamine intolerance (suspected).

Major Life Events: 

Re-located to UK from Canada: Jan 2016

My father died: 5:05pm, Monday 5 Feb 2018 Last Lexapro dose: 16 April 2018 (its now been over a year since I quit ADs)  Moved house: Friday 23rd February 2018  "Divorced" toxic Mother: Monday 26 March 2018 Starting working again: 19 November 2018  Diagnosed with: 5th August 2021 PTSD/C-PTSD Diagnosed with: March 2022 Interstitial Cystitis (IC)/Painful bladder syndrome

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Very interesting topic.  I am going to think more about how to do this.  I guess the one thing that comes to mind is that when I am stressed, in pain, feel crap, etc. I put the kettle on and make a cuppa.  I have a very beautiful old china tea-pot with pretty flowers on it and even that I enjoy!  My china cup has soft green and white roses on it which is soothing in a way!  It is a time I just 'SIT FOR A BIT". 

1995-2007      20mg Aropax/Paxil for pain.  Years of up and down doses

2008                Endep, Lexapro and then Esipram (hell!) CT (oh dear!)

2009                20mg Aropax.  Tried skipping doses for a year (more hell!)

                        2010                10mg.  10% taper.  Lasted 4 months. Crashed again

2011                5% taper. 9mg-7mg (hell got even worse!)

2012                2.5% taper.  6.6mg – 5.6mg (worser still & unbearable)

2013                5% taper.  Big mistake.  5.5mg – 4.6mg  (even worserer)

2014                2.5% taper.  4.9mg – 4.5mg;    2015 2.5% taper 4.4 - 4.0mg

2016                2.5% taper.  3.9mg  Feb 3.8   Mar 3.7  May 3.6   Jul 3.5

2017                2.5% taper.  Jan 3.4;   Mar 3.35;  Apr 3.3; Oct 3; Dec 2.9;

2018                2.5% taper. Jan 2.8; Mar 2.7; Mar: 2.75; Jun 2.7; Aug 2.6; Oct 2.5; Nov 2.4; Dec 2.3

2019                Jan 2.2; Feb 2.1;

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