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Rose9975

Rose9975: Irish person wishing to taper off 20mg Lexapro

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Rose9975

Hi All,

What an informative site. Well done all involved. Currently I'm on 20mg Lexapro & wish to reduce it down to 15mg over the next three months. I find my concentration poor so I would I would be very grateful if you could give me information in simple terms even bullet points. I've been on Lexapro 11 years.This is my goal for 2016.

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KarenB

Hello Rose and welcome to s/a,

 

What a great goal to have set yourself - and so nicely timed for the beginning of the new year. 

 

*  We recommend reducing by no more than 10% of your current dose each 4-6 weeks, in order to reduce w/d symptoms. 

 

*  Read Tips for Tapering Lexapro.  Lexapro is a very potent SSRI, so if your first 10% cut gives you too much trouble you can reduce by smaller cuts.  Getting off safely is key, rather than quickly (though we all feel rather desperate to be rid of these drugs).

 

*  Some questions:  Had you already started tapering or is 20mg the dose you've been on?   Are you or have you been on other antidepressants?  

 

If you go slowly and gently you will be okay.  Have a read of those links and then come back to this thread to ask any further questions.

 

Wishing you well,

KarenB 

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bubble

Hello Rose and welcome from me too.

 

You are in a great position to start your journey to a drug free life by informing yourself beforehand. Take as much time as you need to familiarise with the good practices. It's more than half of the success. 

 

I understand about poor concentration but try nevertheless. It will mean you will maybe need more time but it will be a very well invested time to go through the link Karen provided for you. 

 

The first step will be familiarising with how to make a liquid suspension if you can't get hold of liquid Lexapro.

 

You will make a first cut from 20 to 18 mg and wait for 4 weeks carefully observing how it makes you feel. There will probably be some symptoms but they will settle down through holding. Tapering allows our brain to regrow itself after in your case 11 years it physically got changed in the presence of the drug.

 

It would be useful to have your drug history in your signature like the rest of us: Withdrawal History in Signature OR Complete your Signature from Phone or Tablet

 

Ask questions until you feel comfortable about how to manage this process. 

 

Planning is everything. I know this is lots of information but take your time.

 

Bubble

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ChessieCat

Hi Rose,

 

Yes, you have found a great site with lots of information and supportive members.  Welcome!!!

 

Just wanted to chime in with the couple of things which I found helpful to understanding what has happened to our brains.  Patience is very much needed when all you want to do is get down or off the drug/s.  Video:  Healing from Antidepressants:  Patterns of Recovery & Brain Remodelling

 

When you realise how the brain has been affected (I nearly typed infected :o which it sometimes feels like it has been) and what it needs to do to change back it helps you to be more patient and to remind yourself you are healing.

 

You can use this topic to ask questions as Bubble said, and also as a journal of your progress.

 

Wishing you well, CC

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Rose9975

I'm finding this site hard to navigate.... O.K. plan is to buy a pill crusher and a measurement sirenge and I'm going to start Taper at 19mg for 4 weeks. I haven't started yet still on 20mg Lexapro.I'm going to take it slow & responsible.I feel grateful to have come across this site.I feel not alone.Thank you for your responses & compassion it means a lot to me.

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Rose9975

I'm finding this site hard to navigate.... O.K. plan is to buy a pill crusher and a measurement sirenge and I'm going to start Taper at 19mg for 4 weeks. I haven't started yet still on 20mg Lexapro.I'm going to take it slow & responsible.I feel grateful to have come across this site.I feel not alone.Thank you for your responses & compassion it means a lot to me.

Edited by Karma
Added member name to intro title

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Karma

Hi Rose,

 

Welcome to our community.  I'm glad you found us before you started your taper.

 

Here is our discussion on tapering off of Lexapro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/This thread discusses how you can make your own liquid for more manageable decreases.  We recommend that you reduce by no more than 10% of your previous dose with each reduction; however, since Lexapro is quite strong, you may find you need to make smaller reductions.  Starting at 1 mg is a good start.

 

I also like to recommend that people starting a taper off of drugs start a journal and rate symptoms daily to get an idea of how your system responds to the reductions.  Here is a thread that discusses logging and rating symptoms: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1779-rate-symptoms-daily-to-catch-withdrawal-early/

 

It would be great if you would put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature. Doing this helps people understand your context, it appears below each of your posts. Here are instructions for how to do it:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

Please feel free to write whenever you want, you will find a lot of friendly help and support here.

 

Karma

Edited by bubble
merged thread with the original one

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bubble

I have merged a new thread you started with your original one. I also found it hard to understand how to navigate through the site in the beginning. But we all get there eventually :)

 

Each of us has only one introductory thread. That way makes it easier to keep progress and know what is happening. 

 

What you write sounds like a very good plan. Some people need time to get used to the liquid so once you get the 'equipment' and start making your own suspension you might want  to stay on 20 mg for a week to see how that goes before starting to decrease. I don't use a pill crusher with my Lexapro. I just put the pill in the water, leave it for a few minutes and stir well.

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Rose9975

Thanks Bubble.I will need to buy a suringe only.Thanks a good idea to try the 20mg in liquid first.

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Rose9975

O.k bought 2 syringe's today 10ml, 1.0ml & 5ml.

 

QUESTION: How much liquid do I use to dissolve 20mg Lexapro?? ????

 

I've decided to make my own liquid solution.' Keep it simple' as my new mantra grows.Thank you ????????

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bubble

I go with 20 ml water. That way you get 1:1 ratio. I just put the pill in the water and wait for a few minutes stirring it occasionally. Then you will just put the contents of two 10 ml syringes into your mouth for the first week to see how that goes.

 

Some people complain of the taste. It's bitter but I don't mind it.

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Rose9975

Thank you so so much.Why are yee so helpful to a stranger? I am very grateful.Hopefully in time I will be in a position to give back to yee.Is there a way to donate money or anything for the upkeep of the website?

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bubble

No problem Rose :)

 

I was helped in the same way when I came here and I still rely on the support on my journey off the drug. I'm also on Lexapro. The site is run by volunteers, people like you and me. Any donations are very helpful. There must be some information on how to do it around...

 

Wishing you the best of luck.

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Rose9975

O.k. have found tiny ml measuring containers in press see more accurate then syringe strangely enough.I'm eager to start bring it on 20mg soaking overnight plan etracting 1ml to the a.m & throwing back the rest. Have my Sad lamp on now as I start my new 2016 diary my sister gave me ☺.

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bubble

Just to check: you will take 19 ml and throw away 1 ml?

 

It seems you gave up on the period adjusting to the liquid first?

 

Patience is key in this process. We all want to come off but have to curb those impulses and let tapering fade into the background of our life to allow brain to remodel after years on the drug.

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Rose9975

Thanks Bubble.Please challenge me. Do you think my body would react different to the suspenion/mixture 20mg? Why?

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bubble

It's just that I've been following what happens to people in withdrawal for over 2 years now. Occasionally we see people having a reaction when transitioning to liquid because it seems the drug is absorbed faster that way.

 

Most people don't have a reaction including me. I was just playing it extra safe :)

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Rose9975

Thanks for the advice Bubble but I have no alternative liquid version not available in Ireland.

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Rose9975

I'll see how I go maybe I could drink 10ml a.m. & 10ml in the p.m if I notice any change

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Rose9975

DAY 1: 19ml Lexapro

Feeling: Proud of myself & grateful of the support I'm receiving on this website.In my times of strength may I be of support to others ❤????❤????

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Rose9975

Reflection: Some White powder sticks to stirring stick and syringe I held like a drug addict licking equipment & wrincing Syringe making sure I left no white trace left. ????????????.....Did the tablet dissolve fully over the night Bubble?

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Rose9975

Hi,

 

I have been taking Lexapro for 11/12 years now 20mg. One of the main side effects for me being on it is tiredness.Is it the Lexapro or is it one of the symptoms of depression. I'm in my late 30s & would like to start a family but feeling continuously tired / zapped deters me.To come to think of it anger & irritability are also part of the package. I clock up on average 9 hours sleep nightly.How could I cope with waking with a child in the middle of the night? My boyfriend has MS (on no medication) who experiences tiredness also.I live in rainy Ireland & feel less energetic in the winter.

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bubble

You are finding your way around the site very well. One other thing we have here is that each member has one thread in the Introductions sections. Having more would quickly create chaos and it's a lot easier to have all of our history in one place. That's why I merged the new thread you started with your original one.

 

Congratulations on making your first suspension! We call it a suspension because the drug doesn't actually dissolve in water but rather suspends into particles. Big pharma let us with no other way to gradually reduce the drug. As imperfect a sit may seem it works. 

 

I personally find it enough to leave my Lexapro pill in water for 5 to 10 minutes and then I stir it as well as I can and shake the bottle before drawing with the syringe. I take only 4.6 ml from a 10 ml mixture so I keep the other half in the fridge for the next day. I think you are doing fine.

 

Regarding your second post, what a coincidence: I'm also in my late 30s (38 and 8 months to be more precise) and anyone who has visited my thread will probably remember my moaning for trying to have the child (for which I have to be drug free). This 'ambition' is leading me to try and cut corners with my taper which lead to a major destabilisation at the moment (so I'm just thinking how to survive...) 

 

It seems to me that one of the most pronounced symptom of long term use of ADs is fatigue. And taking 20 mg Lexapro is quite a big dose (given that Lexapro is more potent than other ADs and that the average dose is 10 mg). I'm sorry for this bad news. But as we slowly decrease the dose, the side effects start decreasing as well. It is important to bear in mind (what many people just can't seem to understand) that healing that is reversing changes that the drugs cause din our brain start as we are slowly removing the drug. We don't have to be drug free to start healing. On the contrary, forcefully removing the drug injures the brain and traumatises it even more and actually delays healing. 

 

Winter is a very difficult period for me too. I always say that a certain amount of lethargy is natural as the whole nature slows down. But what happens to me is painful. It's like a become a different person compared to who I am in spring/winter. Many people use light therapy boxes. I bought a light bulb for this winter but we had an impossibly sunny November so I really didn't need one. I also started taking vitamin D and it seems that my energy levels have improved but the overal mood is still the same and something that I have to learn to live with.

 

I hope I didn't give you too many bad news....

 

Just a little remainder about filling in the signature. In that way you will be able to keep record of your decreases (and everybody will be able to see where you stand every time you post).

 

I just remembered: I've read a book by Maeve Binchy. I discovered her recently as light and feel good reading. Something that definitely eases up my winter :)

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Rose9975

Hi Bubble,

 

I look forward to receiving mail.Thank you xx. I'mean 36 years of age & will be 37 years in April. I would like to start a family but a few things make it not possible 1) I'm on medication 2) I'm not in a permanent post.3) I question my ability to parent with severe fatigue during the winter etc.What country do you live in? I live in Ireland & I'm awaiting confirmation of start date in a new 12 month post.

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bubble

My brain is such a mush... so can I ask: what mail? sorry :)

 

(I will be 39 in April :)I fully understand you about the obstacles. But as my years went by I realised the only real obstacle was actually drugs :( If your fatigue is severe only in winter than it is obviously seasonal... Have you thought of supplementing with vitamin D. As I said, light boxes help many people... 

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Rose9975

Mail = message = reply = inbox message in a Gmail account ????

 

I bought a great large SAD lamp on Amazon I find it does helps a lot. I got my Vitamin D level checked before & I was fine.

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Rose9975

Why am I disallowed to reply to other individuals journal entries?

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Rose9975

Strange I'm allowed to now!!!

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Rose9975

Found drug history signature it's located differently on IPhone apologies

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Fresh

Hi Rose , welcome from me too.

 

If you're not signed in , you can't post. Now that you're following this topic , you'll receive

an email each time someone posts. You can follow as many topic as you like by clicking FOLLOW.

 

The reason Bubble recommended staying on 20mg of liquid for a week is because some people get

bad symptoms transferring to liquid. Even the same dose , same drug.

 

Good to have you on board , Fresh

 

;)

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Rose9975

DAY 3: 19mg Lexapro????????

 

Feel tinkling in the left side of my brain. Any suggestions on any multivitamins that may help? When will my body register the reduction?

 

Another Issue:

The need to look at use of food especially sugar to manage emotions. I've put on weight & it at times fuels the self-loathing ????????????.

 

I plan to give up alcohol to support my tapering process.I started an unhealthy habit of having a glass a wine after work/out for lunch whatever the excuse.

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bubble

It is inevitable that reductions will cause some symptoms. A part of tapering is learning to ride these symptoms out without reacting to them by changing the dose of drug. We are going so slow with long holds to keep these whithdrawal symptoms minimal and stay in control. In other words, every reduction is rocking the boat but keeping it slow we are preventing the boat to get overturned and even rocking too uncomfortably. Minor disturbances are to be expected and they settle down after a while as the brain adjusts.

 

And now is see that Fresh posted the links I wanted to add ;) Magnesium and fish oil highly recommended.

 

Once you get in the rhythm of withdrawing and get to know your brain better and learn how it reacts to cuts , you will feel more confident and less fearful of the process.  

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Rose9975

Thanks guys ????❤????????????

 

ALCOHOL????:I haven't drunk since Saturday night. I'm waiting to get a start date for a new job so my stress level is remarkably reduced.I have worked as a Social Worker for the last 10 years.I'm thinking of changing career.I'm unsure how good the job is for me. I've got stiches in my knee fell on a rock so am unable to exercise at the moment.The stitches will be taken out next week and hopefully I'll be back in action.

 

Wish I could read the information on this site my mind gets tired, hard to concentrate, hard to remember, maybe I'm just thick......my brain becomes easily frazzled

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Rose9975

????10p.m: slight pain left hemisphere of brain.It's bearable but just want to keep track of symptoms.I don't suffer or experience head pain normally???????? .

 

I have too much time on my hands being out of work & unable to exercise.???? ..

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