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Lovejoy444 AD-free after 25 years nearly continual use... Oy!


Lovejoy444

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So...  Hi all...  Where to start?!

 

I guess first, I'd just like to say I'm glad I found this web site.  You guys are all so supportive and fantastic.  Although I know it on an intellectual level, it's always nice to have confirmation that I'm not totally gone in the head!

 

For years, I was under the misapprehension that antidepressants were supposed to make me happier, so I changed meds and went on higher and higher doses in pursuit of that elusive happiness (fully enabled by doctors who probably didn't know much more than I did about the meds).  I've never had much emotional resilience, even as a child and teen, before ADs screwed with my brain.  In 2002(ish) I found out my birth mother (I was adopted as an infant) had paranoid schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and lived in institutions or group homes for most of her adult life.  So, yeah... yay for good genes, right?

 

Below is a slightly longer/more explanatory version of my AD history than is found in my signature.  I don't remember all the dates and dosages at this point, but you'll get the general idea.

 

I was prescribed my first AD somewhere between 1990-1992.  I just felt like I wasn't as happy a person as I "should" be, and was "down in the dumps" more than my friends were.  I was in my early 20s.  Wellbutrin was prescribed by a doc who didn't seem to wholeheartedly "believe in" depression.  He also said it would help me quit smoking.  (It didn't.)  No improvement after about 6 months.  I don't recall tapering, but don't recall any WD either.  Disenchanted, so no subsequent ADs for a few years.  Boy, don't I wish I'd just stopped there and lived with my disenchantment!

1996(ish) -- Tried Zoloft.  No improvement after about 6 months. As with Wellbutrin, I don't remember tapering, but don't remember any WD either\1997/98(ish) -- Started Effexor.  Started low (37.5mg?), and progressively moved higher since little or no improvement in symptoms.  Topped out at the max of 150mg and stayed there for many, many years.  This would prove to be the most effective AD I was on.  Since it's an SNRI, I rather thought that my original issue might have been a norepinephrine problem.  I don't know if that's relevant information for me today or not....

 

2004 -- I had to quit Effexor cold turkey because I'd gotten divorced, lost my husband's health insurance (was a stay-at-home mom), my Rx ran out, and I had no money to visit doc for a new Rx.  Wow, those 3 months after quitting were the WORST of my life.  (I eventually contacted the drug company and confirmed for them that I was low-income so they could start sending me meds!)

 

2010 or 2011, I decided that I still wasn't "happy" enough and asked for a med switch.  Started on Celexa (Citalopram).  Stayed on it for a few years (mostly because I didn't feel like switching again), but it really didn't do much.  I didn't shoot anybody, but I wasn't happy either.

 

October 2014, went back to Zoloft on advice of a new doc who said it could work this time.  In addition to being ineffective (still!), it also made me queasy and light-headed.  Yuck.

September 2015 -- Completely fed up with unhappiness (compounded by several negative life events and severe cash flow problems) and the uselessness of Zoloft.  I decided I would switch back to Effexor since my mood was always best on that one, but I never got there... Instead, I looked into AD alternatives like meditation, supplements, support groups.  Decided I'd wean myself off ADs using my final refill of Zoloft (not knowing about the 10% tapering "rule" at that point).  I figured if I was gonna feel like crap anyway, I'd at least stop paying extra for it every month.

 

September/October 2015 -- used my last 3 weeks' worth of Zoloft pills to wean off it.  No idea what dosage the pills were, but... for one week I took 2/3 of a pill.  The next week(ish), I took a 1/2 pill.  The following week(ish) I took 1/3 pill.  The final week(ish) I took 1/4 of a pill.  After a few days Rx-free... BANG! Withdrawal symptoms from hell. (Although I didn't know it was withdrawal at the time.  I thought it was just regular f***ed up me coming back.)  Mood swings, crying, LOW LOW LOW frustration tolerance, sporadic severe irritability, anxiety, light-headedness, queasiness, headache, and the attention span of a gnat. 

 

I have since discovered that if I'm not being emotionally challenged in any way, I'm pretty stable -- not happy, but at least on an even keel.  But as soon as something goes wrong (e.g. a bill coing due that I can't afford to pay, attitude from one of my teenage daughters, my dogs barking for 10 minutes straight because a neighbor walked by outside, even stubbing my toe), my temper flares like David Banner becoming the Hulk, and/or I just start bawling.  Just that one stubbed toe or spilled cup of coffee (decaf!) that I can't handle sends me into a sh*tty mood for HOURS.  So... aside from occasional light-headedness and nausea, if I could live in a vacuum, I'd probably be fine.... 

 

Anyway, after my final dose of Zoloft, I began taking a few supplements (Yes, I now know I shouldn't have started a bunch at the same time, but at least none of them are conglomerations of a bunch of things all in one pill!).  Omega 3, magnesium citrate, chromium GTF, multivitamin, calcium w/ vitamin D3, SAM-e (which I subsequently stopped taking).  I also started meditating, which I really think I like, especially using mindfulness to help shut down my racing brain as I try to fall asleep at night. 

 

[At the request of one of the moderators, what follows is a reposting of part of a post I made in a different forum here...]

 

beginning of repost [[[...Anyone have thoughts on the book The Chemistry of Joy?  If there's a thread on this already, just point me in the right direction.  I like some of what it has to say, but it doesn't really address AD withdrawal symptoms or chronic depression brought on by long-term AD  .use, so I'm not really sure how valid it is for someone like me whose brain is already screwed up from decades of AD use. 

 

I've also started meditating in an effort to calm my brain down.  I think I might like it.  =)  I have read in many places that meditation can actually rewire your brain to behave more healthfully.

 

I guess no matter what I try though (or consider trying), I always come back to the same conundrum....  My brain isn't normal anymore.  So... meditation has been shown to have xyz beneficial effects on a normal brain... what about an AD-abused brain?  And certain supplements have been shown to have xyz beneficial effects on a normal brain... what about an AD-abused brain?  Is any of the advice and treatment ever going to be valid or viable for my altered brain?

 

You can quit smoking, but your lungs are still black.  You can quit drinking, but your liver's still shot.  You can quit drugs/antidepressants, but your brain's still messed up.  Does the brain recover?  Should I consider going back on a low dose of Effexor (the most effective AD I was on over the years) just to help balance my moods, keep me on an even keel?  (Or should it be Zoloft, since that was the one I was on most recently, even though it didn't do me any good?)  ADs never made me a happier person per se, but they kept me from overreacting to everything in my life and wanting to choke everyone who annoyed me!  For a LOT of years, I was on the max dose of 150 mg of Effexor.  Might I benefit from a very small dose (37.5 mg or something like that)? 

 

I have NEVER had a doctor (for mental OR physical health) that I had 100% faith in, and I just don't have the money to go chasing the really highly respected mental health folks out there, whom I might actually HAVE a little faith in.  I've always felt I had to do my own research, then take it to the doctor with me, since they are rarely up to date on the latest brain science, even the mental health providers.

 

This turned into much more of a self-pitying rant than I had intended.  If anyone can tease out the things I need answers to in all the angsty prose, I'd appreciate feedback.  =)  I hope some of it made sense.  I know we're all in the same boat -- or at least on the same river -- but I still feel bad for vomitting all that on everyone's backseat.  (Sorry for the mixed metaphor.  LOL)]]] end of repost

 

Aaaaannnnd... my brain's just full now.  I'll wrap up this lengthy introduction.  If any of you have managed to remain awake for the whole show, I welcome any insight, inspiration, or even commisseration.  Be well all!

 

=)

Laurie

Edited by scallywag
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Welcome, Lovejoy.

 

Do you still have these symptoms?

Mood swings, crying, LOW LOW LOW frustration tolerance, sporadic severe irritability, anxiety, light-headedness, queasiness, headache, and the attention span of a gnat. 

 

 

As you came off Zoloft fairly quickly, you may wish to reinstate a small amount, such as 10mg, to reduce withdrawal symptoms. After stabilizing for some months, you might taper off by very small amounts.

 

See What is withdrawal syndrome?
 
About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms
 
The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Tips for tapering off Zoloft (sertraline)

 

Very good to hear you're doing so well with meditation -- that's a very important life skill.

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

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Hi Altostrata, and thanks for the welcome.  (I love your avatar... do you know what sort of feline that is, by chance?) 

 

Yes, I still have all the symptoms you highlighted.  Today has been a good day because I've had none of the challenges I mentioned.  For instance, the dogs started barking crazily at... who knows what... a squirrel doing sit-ups 6 blocks over, or something equally invisible to the rest of us.  I felt the rage begin to kick in, but got the dogs under control fairly quickly, so it subsided.  I've pretty much been in my home all day, either at the computer or reading, except to get my kids from school; my problematic daughter has been in a good mood; haven't stubbed any toes; and the only mail I got today was a nice note from the Red Cross telling me where they'd sent my recently donated blood -- no bills.  LOL

 

The light-headedness and queasiness are pretty much ever-present; it's just the severity that waxes and wanes.  I haven't noticed what the pattern is for that yet.  The less active I am, the less I experience the light-headedness/queasiness, but they're still there.

 

I checked out the Windows and Waves forum yesterday, and I really couldn't figure out what anyone was talking about....  I couldn't locate what I guess would be the initial post that actually explained Windows and Waves.  I really have never been able to navigate forums of any kind.  They confuse me.  LOL

 

After reading one of your other posts somewhere (as well as reading about it in other sources) I added the magnesium citrate a few days ago.  I actually think that started to help almost immediately.  I take 200mg in the morning, 200mg in the afternoon, and 100mg before bed.

 

I called the pharmacy and found out that I was on 100mg/day of Sertraline (Zoloft).  Do you think going back on only 10mg/day would help with the withdrawal, or should it be a wee bit higher?

 

=)

Laurie

 

 

 

 

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This is a wild Pallas cat, from Asia.

 

25mg Zoloft might be okay.

 

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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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  • 2 weeks later...
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Hey Lovejoy - even though you tapered too fast and are still having symptoms, it sounds like you are doing really well, overall.

 

I agree with Alto about the tiny 10 mg to start.  When reinstating, start small, give it a week to work.  It may be enough to give you remission of symptoms.  If 10 mg works, why use more?  If 10 mg doesn't work, after a week, add a little more, maybe up to 15 mg.  Gradually, carefully work your way up until you find the dose that relieves your symptoms.  Reinstatement allows you to control your symptoms so that you can be in charge of the process.  These drugs are powerful, much more powerful than the doctors are led to believe.  There are people here on crumbs, that have symptoms from cutting their crumbs in half.

 

I, too, am an adoptee.  My BEST FRIEND was a doctor, and as she was learning about the DSM, she said to me, "I think you are Bipolar 2."  I resisted for years, thinking, "No, I'm just a wild-and-crazy gal."  THEN, I met my birth family.  They are not as extreme as yours, but there was enough weirdness in the family that I accepted the label, and "meds for life."

 

Samples of family weirdness:  my birthmother wrote love letters from an "anonymous person" to someone who'd moved away from her, until he wanted to meet "this person," and she abandoned her family - 3 kids - to move cross country to become his unpaid live-in maid and nanny (He already had a wife.).  She kept this role for 20 years, wanting to be near him.  My birthsister rescued her from the streets, when she became a toothless bag lady.  I met him (the lover).  He was a con man.  Her brothers (my birth-uncles) were in the air force, her sister (my birth-aunt) in the navy.  One of the brothers used to fly over his mother's house and drop the laundry from the plane, so Mom (my birth-grandmother*) could wash it for him.  It was said of him that "nobody really knew him."  He was a chameleon.  The other brother kept a wife & family in the USA and another wife & family in South America (bigamy, never caught, but eventually the wives knew).  The sister was so OCD about building her dream home that she wrapped her soul into every nail and fixture until it was "ship-shape." (a la ex-Navy!)

 

MY brothers (I was in the middle of the sibs, the one who "got away"): one lives inside the PC, a Master Gamer, coming out only when he can take his PC to a LAN party.  The other, a brilliant and talented artist, sits in his blog pond spouting anger, completely isolated from everyone except his blog pond and his cats (and his poor wife is more isolated than included).  

 

My birth grandmother*, was an overprotective mess because when she was at puberty, she found her menopausal mother's (graphic) suicide.  She was then convinced that when she hit menopause, she would go insane as well.  UNLIKE YOUR FAMILY, none of these people were diagnosed.

 

On the one hand, when I met these people, I realized "I'm never alone in the world," - all of my interests in science fiction, gaming, fantasy, magick, spiritual thinking, I connected to all of them in this regard.  All of my "wild-and-crazy" behaviours now made sense when taken in this genetic backdrop.  I was thrilled to be connected to a well-researched lineage going all the way back to AD 1000.  This gave me a depth and meaning that I could never have achieved with my REAL (adopted) family.  Additionally, the families were well-matched - my adopted grandfather was an engineer, my adopted grandmother a church organist and the "piano teacher" for her small town.  My birth grandfather and grandmother were engineers and she was an accomplished pianist.  Some amazing connections.  (both of my older brothers have the same age and given name)

 

However, looking at all of the bizarre eccentricities, it was so easy to accept - oh.  Nature, not nurture.  I would challenge you to look at the information you got about your birthmom - were the "madnesses" really madnesses?  Or just easy labels for a traumatized woman?  How much was she medicated? (I think you are younger than me, only tricyclics were available when my birthmom was "depressed," and even then - it was because her youngest son had drowned in the river).  Problems of living are too often shoved into diagnostic labels.

 

(an example of this:  my adopted paternal grandfather was a "drunk," exhibiting all of the "alcoholic symptoms" that we would now medicate.  But now, we would call it "PTSD" because he was gassed in WW1, and drinking was the only way to take away the pain in the 30's)

 

Nature vs. Nurture: As I have gone back and re-examined my "label" of "bipolar," I look at the family who raised me, too.  My Mom has some sort of buried trauma, tragedy, self-esteem neurosis that she was happy to hammer into me (and because of my genetics, I rebelled whole-heartedly, as it felt "wrong").  She was never diagnosed.  I had a classic 50's style distant father, who was formidable when he was there.  No alcohol, but lots of undercurrents.  No actual abuse, but lots of manipulation, nagging, lots of learned behaviours which did not serve me well in my adult life.  Nature vs. Nurture?  Yeah.  Both.  I was lucky to have the genes I had - creativity, imagination, love of books and music (both families) - and lucky to have the upbringing I had:  education, social mores, opportunities I would never have had in the birthfamily.  My younger sister - who is now an amazing woman in her own right, used to fantasize about finding me, because she imagined that I was in a safe home, with food, shelter, and education.  And she was right.  I am the only birth sibling to have completed university.

 

The prices?  Well, the creative genes have their downside, dark side, philosophical side, and the oppressive "social training" (think fundamentalist religion) and "mother's voice" took their toll on me.  But I'm just people.  I'm not a diagnosis.

 

I was adopted at nine months.  BUT - they lied.  They lied to birthmom, telling her I went straight to adopted home, and they lied to Real Mom, telling her I was not available - for NINE MONTHS they made her wait while they did some cosmetic surgery to remove a port wine stain - and I had 9 months to NOT BOND to that Mother person.  A critical time.  And I have no idea what it has done to me.  THAT may be the worst part of "nurture."  And harder because it's invisible - I cannot access those memories to work with them.  

 

I thought I would tell you some stories to see how that compares /contrasts to you.  Like people in withdrawal, only adoptees know how adoptees feel.  

 

And one last thought:  take your calcium separately from your magnesium.  I don't know why vitamin companies bundle those together - they chew each other up.  Keep them at least 2 hours apart.

 

Welcome to SA!

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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Hi Lovejoy ,   how has the past week been for you?

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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Hi guys!  Thanks for checking up on me and for sharing your story (JanCarol).

 

So... I went back on sertraline (Zoloft) three or four days ago to get rid of the withdrawal symptoms.  Doc wrote the prescription for 25mg, so I just took it as soon as I got home.  I was REALLY starting to fall apart and don't think I could have handled taking a smaller dose and [potentially] living in hell for a week to see if it was enough.  Given the alternative, I'm totally okay with taking longer to taper due to going back on a higher dose.  If I was ever in any doubt that what I was experiencing was withdrawal, those feelings were put to rest!  I took the first dose around 9 pm, and the next morning I was symptom-free. Thank god I found this web site/forum.  =)

 

Now I'm just dealing with regular depression/blahness, which frankly, is a wonderful feeling.  Never thought I'd say THAT.  LOL 

 

JanCarol, your family history is very colorful.  =)  My Aunt Linda (birthmom's sister) said doing drugs in her late teens/early 20s changed my b-mom's personality drastically.  I don't remember which drugs it was offhand.  This would've been the early '70s, so all kinds of good stuff was floating around then.  Even after she wasn't doing drugs anymore, she was never the same.  She died in 2012, and I didn't have much time to get to know her.  My b-father was an alcoholic and died from cirrhosis of the liver 10 - 15 years ago.  I never got to meet him. 

 

My adoptive family was fantastic.  I couldn't have asked for better parents.  They were supportive, with no agendas beyond loving me to adulthood and beyond.  In my case, any mental illness was almost certainly nature-derived rather than nurture. 

 

I haven't gotten back on the supplements since I restarted the AD, but would like to in the next day or so.  I've just really been enjoying not feeling like crap 24/7.  LOL  Following are the doses/times:

 

--multivitamin

--3600mg fish oil (2 pills in a.m., 1 in p.m.)

--calcium (1200mg in a.m., 600 in p.m.)

--Vit. D3 (1600 IU in a.m., 800 IU in p.m.)

--magnesium (100mg in a.m., 100mg afternoon, 100mg p.m.)

--chromium GTF (200mcg in a.m., 200mcg p.m.)

--sea kelp (for iodine, 150mcg in a.m. -- for hypothyroidism, not depression)

 

I will try to remember JanCarol's advice to take the calcium and magnesium two hours apart!

 

So, now that I'm back on the AD and equalized, should I start taking just one of the supps at first, and slowly phase the other ones in week by week?  If so, where to start?  I'd like to hear people's opinions/advice.  And how will I know if any of them are "helping" if I'm still on the ADs?  Some of them I'd like to continue taking indefinitely, regardless of whether they help with the depression, because I know I don't eat right (the fish oil, calcium, and D3, for instance).

 

Thanks again for checking in with me! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You were on these supplements before you went off AD's?  

 

IF you were on them prior to withdrawal, you may be able to tolerate them in withdrawal.  

 

There's really no need to take Calcium and D3 in the PM, they are more "morning" meds.  D3 might actually interfere with your sleep, if taken later in the day.  

 

I've heard the same about chromium at night - but I take mine at night - thinking about moving that dose to the afternoon.

 

The only one I would ditch is the multivitamin.  If you have a reaction to something in that - it could even be the filler - you won't know which ingredient it is, and what to avoid in future.  I understand you may be depleted in B vitamins, but they are the hardest to acclimate to while in withdrawal.  Even then, I recommend trying them one at a time, starting with B3.  If you don't react to that, and it seems to help, try B6 or P5P.  Then, if that goes well, you can try the "scary one," B12 - which is depleted by these drugs, but which is the most difficult of the B's in withdrawal.

 

Also, an excellent co-factor for Magnesium, Calcium, and Vitamin D, is Vitamin K.  Some tablets come with K in it already (but again, I'm not fond of combinations).

 

You can learn more about supplements here:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/606-important-topics-about-tests-supplements-treatments-diet/ and you will notice that it's "different strokes for different folks."  Everybody is different.

 

Please put your current dose of Sertraline in a prominant place in your signature, so we can get the nitty gritty quickly!

 

It's awesome that you stabilized so quickly and easily, and surely it helps to have defined your problem (withdrawal) so clearly!  Just wait some months before you consider any tapering, to make sure all of the changes you've been through have rattled out of your system.  Delayed reaction to changes is a common feature of all of these drugs.

 

It's great to hear you are feeling better!

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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  • 1 year later...

Hi all. I have a few questions about how to accomplish tapering venlafaxine with my doctor and my pharmacy. I'm certain my doc will agree to writing the prescriptions for the funky dosages, etc. because we've discussed tapering before. I also have found a compounding pharmacy in town who can fill my funky prescriptions.

 

I'm not even sure how to phrase my questions, so I'm just gonna start typing and hope that what comes out makes sense!

 

I'll be following the geometric 10% taper rule (rather than reducing by the original 10% each new time period). As per the advice on another page here (http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/) posted by Altostrata, I should monitor myself for any withdrawal symptoms to see how I'm faring with each new taper. If I find that I'm having symptoms that don't clear within a few days, I should increase my dose by a little bit, but not back to the previous dose. I should follow that same series of steps with each new decrease.

 

I suppose I see how to phrase my question now. LOL .....How do I get my doc to prescribe multiple dosage amounts simultaneously so that I can have smaller amounts waiting in my medicine cabinet if I need to supplement a current unsatisfactory dose with just a "little bit" more for the rest of that month, but not back to the previous dose? The pharmacist told me they may need a few days to fill the funkier dosages in case they don't have what they need in stock. Therefore, it wouldn't be just a matter of calling my doc and saying "Hey there, I need you to call in a 23-day supply of 4mg pills to get me through this month. That new dose was too big of a decrease, and I'm feeling like shooting people the past two days. I really need them like YESTERDAY!" The doc might indeed call it in that very moment, but the pharmacy might not be able to fill it for three days... three days of me wanting to shoot people. (Not literally, of course, so please don't report me to the authorities!)

 

It seems to me that following those steps would require me to maintain a modest inventory of several different dosages of pills so that I can fall back to a slightly higher dose, but not as high as the previous dose, if I'm having problems. Would my doctor prescribe such things for me to keep on hand so that I can self-adjust without calling her constantly? I'm totally comfortable with self-adjusting, but I don't see a doctor just calling in like three different prescriptions so that I can keep a supply of 10mg, 5mg, and 1mg on hand, for whenever I need to adjust.

 

Any thoughts you guys have would be much appreciated. I definitely could use some advice on how to approach this with her. She's conventional but open-minded, so I hope to have her cooperation. I don't want to switch docs if I don't have to!

 

Thanks!

=)

Laurie

 

 

 

 

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Hi Laurie

 

Here are the existing SA discussions:

 

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?


How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

 

compounding-pharmacies-us-uk-and-elsewhere

 

 

To search the site I use google and type in survivingantidepressants.org + topic.

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Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm not sure what drug you are currently on.  I suggest you check out the information for the drug you want to taper because you may be able to get your required doses by making your own liquid or counting beads (it all depends on the drug you are on).

 

You can find the link for your drug on in this topic in Post #1 under the heading --------TAPERING OFF SPECIFIC PSYCHIATRIC DRUGS--------

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

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

Link to post

Thank you SO much, Chessie. I am deficient when it comes to using boards and forums--I never would've found that page you sent me to. I'm on generic venlafaxine XR capsules, and I'm off to cut one open right now to see what's inside of it! I'm almost giddy since I read the page about tapering off Effexor. Woohoo!!!!

 

You guys are fantastic for keeping this site running and for being so prompt with responses and doing so much work. Come spring, when I have some extra cash, I will definitely be donating!

 

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You're welcome.

 

When you get a chance could you please add a line at the very bottom of your signature (so we can see your current drug at a glance) which states the details of your Effexor (generic) - approximate date, the dose and any dose chances you have made since you last started on it.  Please keep it updated when you make a change so it remains up to date.  Mods and members use the drug signature to see your tapering history which saves us having to read back through your topic (and possibly missing something).

 

Here are some topics and links to resources which I think may be helpful for you:

 

non drug coping techniques.

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

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

Link to post

Thanks for the links, Chessie. I've previously read a few of them, but will certainly check out the rest. I also updated my signature... it definitely had too much ancient history and not enough pertinent current info. I did my first taper last night, as you can see by my signature. So far so good, but it's obviously early yet. Those damn beads are tricky to count! They bounce like superballs and have that weird static thing that makes them do funky tricks when trying to count them. LOL

 

Thanks so much for your help. I hope to be keeping up with things here so I can learn more from my fellow sufferers and perhaps impart a few pearls of wisdom of my own as tapering progresses.

 

=)

Laurie

 

 

 

 

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