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Rosa

Rosa: Insomnia relief during the weaning process

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Rosa

This is my first post and I am so glad to be among you. Your stories are so close to mine that it feels like we are good friends already. I totally did not know about the 10% weaning schedule, and neither did the psychiatrist that I was working with.  Two months was the longest I have taken to wean which is probably why I was never successful. I have a new psychiatrist that I will meet the beginning of March and I want to start the 10% program at that time to wean off of Zoloft. Though I am a researcher about problems that I have, for some reason I missed the info that has been out for years about these drugs with new issues popping up all the time. No one in my behavior health clinic seems aware of it either. I am about to cause a stir!

 

In the past when trying to wean off of celexa or Lexapro my first real problem was insomnia. Exhaustion and stress start to build quickly and then comes everything else. My psychiatrist recommended melatonin to use when I can't sleep even on a SSRI. (which is not regularly) It works really well and I would like to continue using it as I wean, but I have reservations because I have heard some vague criticisms of it. My doc likes it (tho this does not give me much confidence) and it works great now. No idea how it will work as I wean.

 

Any information on melatonin or other sleeping meds or techniques that you can share with me? I do not want to just go into a new set of problems with another drug - but sleep is essential.

 

Medication History:

2007 to 2010 20 mg of celexa, Tried to wean off about 4 times during that time.

2010 tried Wellbutrin which did not work, back to celexa.

2010 to 2013 On lexapro but it had the same side effects that I had with celexa. Tried Wellbutrin again and mirtazapine, Back to Lexapro

2014 mostly on Lexapro

Sept of 2015 stopped Lexapro and started Zoloft 50 mg - now have been on it for 6 months

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Sarabera

Hi Rosa, welcome to Surviving Antidepressants. I've been on this stupid drug for 34 years, and learned more about it in the last year than in all the rest combined!. Including how difficult it is to get off it. My biggest issue for a long time has been insomnia. Melatonin seems to have a weird paradoxical effect on me (ZERO sleep the first night, then good sleep 2-4th nights, then back to regular crap sleep). I'm fairly suspicious of it. My only advice at this point is to take the smallest possible dose that is effective. Have you tried using tart cherry juice (Montmorency cherry)?--it is a very low dose, natural source of melatonin.

 

I haven't started tapering yet (winter has been a mess sleep-wise), but I think we will both be successful with a slow, accurate taper. There is a ton of information here if you look around.

 

If I may ask--what is the main reason you are on (or were originally on) Celexa and Lexapro--depression? Is that still an issue?

Sarah

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SkyBlue

This is my first post and I am so glad to be among you. Your stories are so close to mine that it feels like we are good friends already. I totally did not know about the 10% weaning schedule, and neither did the psychiatrist that I was working with.  

 

Any information on melatonin or other sleeping meds or techniques that you can share with me? I do not want to just go into a new set of problems with another drug - but sleep is essential.

 

 

Dear Rosa,

Welcome to SA. I feel the same -- that so many of our stories are similar and it is like we are good friends already!

I also hadn't heard about 10%….

 

About sleeping: Here are some ideas. 

 

- magnesium can be very calming and is necessary for many of our body's processes

- looking at what's called "sleep hygiene" -- the behaviors around getting into bed and falling asleep. Try having no "screen" time (TV, computer, phone) an hour before bed, doing another, more restful activity, instead -- reading, listening to music, deep breathing, some stretching, etc.

- of course, being careful about caffeine

- same/similar sleep time each night

- blocking out light sources in the bedroom (I even put black electrical tape over this tiny flashing light on my computer)

 :)

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Fresh

Hi Rosa ,  welcome to the site.

There are many threads in the Symptoms and Self Care section that may help.

Click on the following links to go to discussions:

 

Sleep problems - that awful withdrawal insomnia

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

 

Tips to help sleep -- so many of us have withdrawal insomnia

 

Mindfulness During Withdrawl

 

 

 

Best wishes ,  Fresh

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Altostrata

Welcome, Rosa.
 
The reason we advocate a 10% reduction method is to minimize withdrawal symptoms, including insomnia, which is very, very common. If you are getting insomnia, you are probably tapering too fast. Slower tapering with smaller reductions will reduce this reaction.
 
Please see Why taper by 10% of my dosage?
 
Why taper? Paper demonstrates importance of gradual change in plasma concentration
 
I have been using melatonin for years, I do not believe it carries significant risks. Use the minimum dosage effective for you. See Melatonin for sleep

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Ali

Hi Rosa

 

Welcome to the site. I am fairly new, but there is a wealth of info, as you can see.

 

I just wanted to add, I don't know if it's the first time you are seeing the psychiatrist. Either way, I really hope they are supportive. If so, they'll be in a teeny weeny minority. Therefore, I would be prepared for them to tell you how much you need the antidepressants and that you have a life long illness that needs treatment etc etc etc. Just my experience of psychiatrists. Be firm and have your answers ready if you really want to come off, I would say.

 

Ali

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Rosa

Hi Rosa, welcome to Surviving Antidepressants. I've been on this stupid drug for 34 years, and learned more about it in the last year than in all the rest combined!. Including how difficult it is to get off it. My biggest issue for a long time has been insomnia. Melatonin seems to have a weird paradoxical effect on me (ZERO sleep the first night, then good sleep 2-4th nights, then back to regular crap sleep). I'm fairly suspicious of it. My only advice at this point is to take the smallest possible dose that is effective. Have you tried using tart cherry juice (Montmorency cherry)?--it is a very low dose, natural source of melatonin.

 

I haven't started tapering yet (winter has been a mess sleep-wise), but I think we will both be successful with a slow, accurate taper. There is a ton of information here if you look around.

 

If I may ask--what is the main reason you are on (or were originally on) Celexa and Lexapro--depression? Is that still an issue?

Sarah

Sarabera, Thanks for the welcome and I have found a lot of information on this site already. Will definitely keep looking.  The reason I was put on the AD was that I was going through 4 major stressors in my life at once. I couldn't sleep. I couldn't eat and lost 15# (down to 115#s), I had multiple psychosomatic symptoms that made everything worse. I was a mess and I had a lot of people counting on me at work and I didn't have time to be sick. I was very resistant to starting an AD and saw multiple docs and had multiple tests - all normal. Since I had to function, I tried prozac, but was worse and had suicidal thoughts. Then I tried celexa - within 3 weeks I started feeling human again. I was willing to live with the sexual side effects and the scary dreams, to sleep and eat again.  Now I am fine when I am on celexa, lexapro or zoloft - except for those same side effects. But the stories of what they are doing to my brain have made me realize that I need to get off.

 

I have not tried the cherry juice, but I will put that on my list of ideas. Does it work for you? When I told my doc that Melatonin 1mg didn't work for me, he said that the effective dose of Melatonin is 3-10 mg. I tried 3 mg and it has worked very well. But, I do not need it every day at this point.  

Yes, we are both to begin this journey - we can help each other and it will be successful!!!!

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Rosa

Hi Rosa

 

Welcome to the site. I am fairly new, but there is a wealth of info, as you can see.

 

I just wanted to add, I don't know if it's the first time you are seeing the psychiatrist. Either way, I really hope they are supportive. If so, they'll be in a teeny weeny minority. Therefore, I would be prepared for them to tell you how much you need the antidepressants and that you have a life long illness that needs treatment etc etc etc. Just my experience of psychiatrists. Be firm and have your answers ready if you really want to come off, I would say.

 

Ali

Hi Ali, Glad you found the site too. I saw a psychiatrist for over a year and the goal was for him to help me wean or to find a med with fewer side effects. I found him to be very nonchalant - willing to try things, but certainly never took the interest to study the long term effects and give me information. He gave me the impression that this could be a lifelong issue and that the AD could be taken forever, but also said that they prevented dementia in some studies. I belong to an HMO which believes in the patient participating in my own healthcare. My old doc has left the practice and I have no idea what his replacement is like. However, at least now I have a plan to give him and I understand what I am dealing with.  

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Rosa

Welcome, Rosa.

 

The reason we advocate a 10% reduction method is to minimize withdrawal symptoms, including insomnia, which is very, very common. If you are getting insomnia, you are probably tapering too fast. Slower tapering with smaller reductions will reduce this reaction.

 

Please see Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Why taper? Paper demonstrates importance of gradual change in plasma concentration

 

I have been using melatonin for years, I do not believe it carries significant risks. Use the minimum dosage effective for you. See Melatonin for sleep

Altostrata, Thanks for there sites, I will check them out. I have not started my taper and insomnia is not a serious problem right now. But I know what is coming as I start my taper and I want to be ready. Glad to hear of your positive experience with Melatonin. 

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Rosa

 

This is my first post and I am so glad to be among you. Your stories are so close to mine that it feels like we are good friends already. I totally did not know about the 10% weaning schedule, and neither did the psychiatrist that I was working with.  

 

Any information on melatonin or other sleeping meds or techniques that you can share with me? I do not want to just go into a new set of problems with another drug - but sleep is essential.

 

 

Dear Rosa,

Welcome to SA. I feel the same -- that so many of our stories are similar and it is like we are good friends already!

I also hadn't heard about 10%….

 

About sleeping: Here are some ideas. 

 

- magnesium can be very calming and is necessary for many of our body's processes

- looking at what's called "sleep hygiene" -- the behaviors around getting into bed and falling asleep. Try having no "screen" time (TV, computer, phone) an hour before bed, doing another, more restful activity, instead -- reading, listening to music, deep breathing, some stretching, etc.

- of course, being careful about caffeine

- same/similar sleep time each night

- blocking out light sources in the bedroom (I even put black electrical tape over this tiny flashing light on my computer)

  :)

 

Skyblue, These are good ideas. Magnesium gives me diarrhea - but wish I could take it. I might try again. I do stay away from caffeine. I think you could be right about the screen time - I should try that for sure. Rosa

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Petunia
 Magnesium gives me diarrhea - but wish I could take it. I might try again.

 

What kind are you using? Magnesium Citrate is well absorbed and Magnesium Glycinate is even better. Have a look through the topic for more detail:   Magnesium, Nature's Calcium Channel Blocker

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SkyBlue

Hi Rosa, 

 

The screen time thing is good, but can be hard to implement. :) 

 

Also, that can be a sign of having too much magnesium. Maybe you could try taking a smaller amount and see where your tolerance is?

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Rosa

I am a fairly new member - and have been so grateful for this website and all I learned from you as I try again to taper my SSRI after many failures. I am in the first month of the 10%/mo plan that I learned here. It has made me anxious and my body is already coming up with distressing symptoms. 

 

My research to solve this problem brought me to another site as well, and I want to share it with you because it appears to be excellent. It is called the Anxiety Centre (anxietycentre.com).  This site gives information about the physiology involved in anxiety - how it is affecting the body and why it affects it that way,  And then it gives you the tools to control it. Knowledge is golden!! Their team is made up of people who have recovered from anxiety disorders - all the counselors, the owners, everyone, have a total understanding of what we are going through. Many times I thought they had read my mind, my experiences were so in tune with what was being said. 

 

As a retired nurse, I knew much of this information, but I had never put it together like this. From my perspective this is accurate, professional, realistic, compassionate, hopeful but honest about what you have to do to make it work. They make it clear that the process is not easy or fast, but it is so great to have a comprehensive plan - and I recommend it. I am already using their techniques and although I have much to learn and practice, I can see that it is making a difference.

 

You can go to the site and read quite a bit of good info for free but being a member for a minimal fee gives you get so much more. 

 

I know it won't be right for everyone, but I hope someone finds it helpful. The idea that we are struggling along on our own with almost no solid assistance from the medical & psychiatric communities is beyond appalling. In fact some are complicit in that they are burying the facts about antidepressants and not giving us valuable information that we need so desperately. I am trying to make some noise in my health care system. I will see how far it goes.  

 

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nz11

Wow so glad you found sa.

Thanks for adding your voice to the forum and i can see you are in a position of influence and that is great.

Yep you are right there is a whole heap of help here.

Sounds like you got the taper plan sorted. With symptoms this early on you could always go to 5%. Dont forget the % of previous dose bit.

Remember your cns is the final judge on the matter.

 

I think those anxiety info is very helpful for wdl.

I believe that ssri/snri withdrawal is not anxiety but some other animal ...unfortunately we non medical people who have no jargon or extensive understanding of the appropriate vocab to describe wdl we are simply left with incorrect terms to use ...i mean thats all we have.

However doctors seem to be completely void of any appropriate vocab either...from 6 or 7 doctors ive never heard the word akathisia, iatrogenic injury protracted ssri wdl or pssd.

Perhaps wdl is at the extreme end of the continuum for an impaired cns either way yeah that stuff/survival tools can be useful for us as well.

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Petunia

I used to visit that site often, then I joined and became a paid member. It was before I learned that I was in withdrawal, I was trying to manage my symptoms with the various techniques and methods, which are very good for psychologically based anxiety, but didn't help me much. Thankfully, I eventually found the withdrawal forums and learned that my symptoms were an imbalance caused by drugs and needed time in order to heal.

 

But CBT and mindfulness are a big help when dealing with the secondary anxiety which can accompany withdrawal anxiety.

 

Its been a while since I visited, but I think the site is mainly a platform to promote their own anxiety counselors, I never had a personal coaching session.

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Rosa

I came to Surviving Antidepressants in February of 2016 after multiple unsuccessful tries to taper from SSRIs. At 70 years of age, I did not want to spend the rest of my life with the side effects of those drugs. With your help, I started on a slow methodical taper of 10% per month, finished my taper in November of 2016 and have been off the SSRI since then which is 9 months. 

 

This site gave me the knowledge I needed to taper very slowly and the support of others going through something close to my issues. It was interesting that I did ok using the very slow taper but once I was off and had a stressful event, I found that I could not cope and many of the same post taper symptoms came back. During the taper I hooked up with a great counselor who continued to work with me once I was done by training me in cognitive behavior therapy and meditation as well as giving me lots of TLC and support. I worked my way through lots of issues that the drugs had covered up but did not fix. It has been difficult and I still have the occasional back slide. But I have made great progress and I do feel successful.

 

I had no help from the psychiatrists or my family physician who didn't understand what was happening or know what to do.  I have done the above survey and I am hopeful that the truth about these drugs and the knowledge on how best to use them and get off of them will become mainstream. I am grateful for the help of the people at this site. You made my success possible.

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gigi63

Congratulations Rosa.  Beautiful!

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Madeleine

Wonderful to hear from you about your successful withdrawal Rosa! Thank you so much for coming here and sharing with us.

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Gridley

Very encouraging.  Thanks for sharing, Rosa.

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Rosa

Hi estherfranco4, I sure wish I had the answers you are seeking. I studied anxiety on a web site called AnxietyCentre.com (out of Canada) which is rich in the physiology of the brain as well as coping measures. It was really valuable to me, but didn't address SSRIs but in a scanty way. I got that on this site and many other resources.

 

I wish I had better news to share, but after 18 months of working to get off Sertraline, I had a reoccurrence of  my worst anxiety symptom which is the inability to sleep. The problem had been building over 6 months but finally came to a point that I had to do something so I went back on a lower dose of sertraline. My course had been unstable  - with symptoms of depression and anxiety intermixed with doing exceedingly well but the sleep problem tipped me over the edge. At this point, I feel that for me the problem is me and not the SSRI. It does give me side effects that I wish I didn't have but I have to decide what symptoms I can live with. I am feeling better now and I will need to decide where I go from here. If I decide to taper again, at least I know the formula to use. 

 

We are all working with emotions and reactions we don't understand which makes it so hard to fix.  One thing I know is that each of us has a different journey but that we are stronger when we share with others who can understand our plight. A good friend told me once - be patient - it will take time. I tell myself that a lot. I hope you have a strong support system because that really helps too. Take care, my friend. 

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estherfranco4

i wish i had something to say.i am speechless.

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Terry
On 8/20/2017 at 5:12 PM, Rosa said:

At 70 years of age, I did not want to spend the rest of my life with the side effects of those drugs. With your help, I started on a slow methodical taper of 10% per month, finished my taper in November of 2016 and have been off the SSRI since then which is 9 months. 

Were you on 50mg sertraline when you started your taper?  I am tapering 25mg sertraline and calculate it would take me over a year to wean off.  How were you able to do a 10% taper in less than a year?  

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Gridley

estherfranco4,

 

SurvivingAntidepressants has lot of information about withdrawing from SSRI's that can help you.  Do not despair.  

 

So the moderators can have information about you in order to answer your questions and support you, please post an Introduction about yourself in Introductions and Updates.  Here's how:

 

 

Then please do a Signature about your drug history. Your signature will appear at the bottom of each of your posts.  This helps moderators understand your situation.

 

Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 

 •    Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses.
 •    A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
 •    Any drugs prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
 •    Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
 •    Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016.

     

 I am again linking a couple of topics so that you have a better understanding of what is recommended here and the steps that you can take to minimize your withdrawal.  

 

What is Withdrawal Syndrome?

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 
  •  

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Gridley

estherfranco4,

 

I have moved your first post to SA's Introductions and Updates forum.  This is where you can can post any question you have as well as how you're doing.  

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Rosa
6 hours ago, Terry said:

Were you on 50mg sertraline when you started your taper?  I am tapering 25mg sertraline and calculate it would take me over a year to wean off.  How were you able to do a 10% taper in less than a year?  

 

I started at 50 mg but tapered 10% of that 50 mg each month rather than cutting it 10% of the most recent dose. So 5 mg a month for 9 months. I did really well with the taper - much better than I had ever done before. Impossible to know how I would have done if I had gone even slower but since I did well off and on for the following 11 months - I still feel my taper was good. 

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Rosa
6 hours ago, Terry said:

Were you on 50mg sertraline when you started your taper?  I am tapering 25mg sertraline and calculate it would take me over a year to wean off.  How were you able to do a 10% taper in less than a year?  

 

7 hours ago, estherfranco4 said:

i wish i had something to say.i am speechless.

Well, if you do think of a question for me or wish to follow up, please feel free to do so. But be sure to get support from this site. These people really can care and can help. 

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Rosa
1 hour ago, FSL said:

Although you see on this site people being legit heroes, enduring horrendous WD symptoms for months and even years, I came to the conclusion that living with a low dose of SSRI and have mild side effects is better than living the hell we have to go through to claim to be off drugs.

 

32 minutes ago, Rosa said:

 

Well, if you do think of a question for me or wish to follow up, please feel free to do so. But be sure to get support from this site. These people really can care and can help. 

 

32 minutes ago, Rosa said:

 

Well, if you do think of a question for me or wish to follow up, please feel free to do so. But be sure to get support from this site. These people really can care and can help. 

And there is no right or wrong here - we are all doing the best we can with this problem. 

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Terry
3 hours ago, Rosa said:

I started at 50 mg but tapered 10% of that 50 mg each month rather than cutting it 10% of the most recent dose. So 5 mg a month for 9 months. I did really well with the taper - much better than I h'm doad ever done before. Impossible to know how I would have done if I had gone even slower but since I did well off and on for the following 11 months - I still feel my taper was good. 

Thank you so much for your answer.  I was also on 50 mg to start with, but because I felt so bad decided to cut it in half to 25mg after less than 3 weeks.  Now I'm tapering more slowly, down to 15.5mg  after about 9 weeks, and feeling quite good.  

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Altostrata

Rosa, sleeplessness might have a lot to do with your emotions.

 

As we get older, our production of sleep hormone may diminish. It may be time to try melatonin at night and our other sleep hygiene recommendations, such as darkening the bedroom and getting a little sun during the day to set your pineal gland for the daily sleep cycle.

 

Important topics about symptoms, including sleep problems

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estherfranco4
On 10/27/2017 at 2:35 AM, Rosa said:

 

Well, if you do think of a question for me or wish to follow up, please feel free to do so. But be sure to get support from this site. These people really can care and can help. 

my agony -question is when these withdrawal symptoms will go away...if they do ?? this is another question..do they always go away.

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estherfranco4
On 10/26/2017 at 6:10 PM, Rosa said:

Hi estherfranco4, I sure wish I had the answers you are seeking. I studied anxiety on a web site called AnxietyCentre.com (out of Canada) which is rich in the physiology of the brain as well as coping measures. It was really valuable to me, but didn't address SSRIs but in a scanty way. I got that on this site and many other resources.

 

I wish I had better news to share, but after 18 months of working to get off Sertraline, I had a reoccurrence of  my worst anxiety symptom which is the inability to sleep. The problem had been building over 6 months but finally came to a point that I had to do something so I went back on a lower dose of sertraline. My course had been unstable  - with symptoms of depression and anxiety intermixed with doing exceedingly well but the sleep problem tipped me over the edge. At this point, I feel that for me the problem is me and not the SSRI. It does give me side effects that I wish I didn't have but I have to decide what symptoms I can live with. I am feeling better now and I will need to decide where I go from here. If I decide to taper again, at least I know the formula to use. 

 

We are all working with emotions and reactions we don't understand which makes it so hard to fix.  One thing I know is that each of us has a different journey but that we are stronger when we share with others who can understand our plight. A good friend told me once - be patient - it will take time. I tell myself that a lot. I hope you have a strong support system because that really helps too. Take care, my friend. 

thank very much dear Rosa, yes it is not easy to say how each one will react and how long the healing process will take. is it months ,years ,or never ?? i joint this forum because it is impossible to find help in greece....i am afraid that there are no people aware ,or doctors,of withdrawal syndromes ...i found out because i was suffering and i was searching for answers every where possible ..civilized answers are far away from the country i live ,unfortunately. 

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Rosa

estherfranco4, my heart goes out to you. It is a very difficult process and the fact is that most of us going through it have found  that our doctors do not understand any of this. I did find a great counselor who helped a lot. There is research going on about it - which is so needed - but that will be a while. 

 

I hope you found your first post on the Introductions and Updates forum on this web site. That is the area where you can ask questions and get a lot of support. There is also educational  information to read on this site. If you could fill us in on your symptoms, possibly we could give you hints on what has worked for us. Also it would be helpful to know how long you have been off of the med and how long you took to wean off. So many things come into play.

 

It is so good that you are reaching out. 

 

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estherfranco4
3 hours ago, Rosa said:

estherfranco4, my heart goes out to you. It is a very difficult process and the fact is that most of us going through it have found  that our doctors do not understand any of this. I did find a great counselor who helped a lot. There is research going on about it - which is so needed - but that will be a while. 

 

I hope you found your first post on the Introductions and Updates forum on this web site. That is the area where you can ask questions and get a lot of support. There is also educational  information to read on this site. If you could fill us in on your symptoms, possibly we could give you hints on what has worked for us. Also it would be helpful to know how long you have been off of the med and how long you took to wean off. So many things come into play.

 

It is so good that you are reaching out. 

 

Rosa thank you for been so compassionate,i wish i could get some help.i will give to the group an idea of my story with antidepressants.

back in 1994-5 while in new york for a visit, i started taking paxil the smallest dose 5 or 10mg , i do not remember.it was like paradise the first few months or a year,, i can not remember.

later on, things were not well , the dose was increased slowly and gradually. the doctors back in greece  changed the paxil to various other meds, zoloft cymbalta prozac and i do not remember how many others as well. also pills for insomnia.

from 1995 to february 2017 i was on medication.the last one was prozac.i decided that i should stop and the doctor gradually reduced the dose .

the reason i decided to stop is because not only they were not helping me but the opposite.i became a different person physically and psychologically .through the years i put 30 kilos which is 60 pounds..all my life the quantities of food i was eating were very small i was 5.8 tall with 128 pounds. from very thin i became very fat.a weak person unable to deal with anything isolated defeated thinking of suicide until today.i do not live i just survive.its very tiring.

the symptoms i have today after stopping prozac are , panic attacks-- as the nourologist i see describes them-- 6 in the morning they wake me up , with a horrible feeling of nausea, with a knot of salaive in my throught.i need to breath quickly and deeply to loosen somehow the suffering lasts a few hours.i am thinking over and over again things that make me very unhappy...etc etc etc.

it would be easier for me  to send any help suggestions in my email address .

thank you for your help

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Rosa
On ‎10‎/‎27‎/‎2017 at 3:06 PM, Altostrata said:

Rosa, sleeplessness might have a lot to do with your emotions.

 

As we get older, our production of sleep hormone may diminish. It may be time to try melatonin at night and our other sleep hygiene recommendations, such as darkening the bedroom and getting a little sun during the day to set your pineal gland for the daily sleep cycle.

 

Important topics about symptoms, including sleep problems

 

Thank you for your response. I have tried Melatonin in the past with good luck, but during this period nothing was working but Ambien and I didn't want to be on that. Now that I am back on Sertraline, I rarely need a sleeper but Melatonin works when I do need one. I have learned a lot about the tricks of getting a good nights sleep and believe in them so I agree with your points about a dark room plus getting sun when you can, and exercise, and regular bed times, etc. And I totally agree that sleeplessness has a lot to do with my emotions. 

I am working on it! Thanks for you help.

Rosa

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rosa
On ‎10‎/‎29‎/‎2017 at 2:41 AM, estherfranco4 said:

Rosa thank you for been so compassionate,i wish i could get some help.i will give to the group an idea of my story with antidepressants.

back in 1994-5 while in new york for a visit, i started taking paxil the smallest dose 5 or 10mg , i do not remember.it was like paradise the first few months or a year,, i can not remember.

later on, things were not well , the dose was increased slowly and gradually. the doctors back in greece  changed the paxil to various other meds, zoloft cymbalta prozac and i do not remember how many others as well. also pills for insomnia.

from 1995 to february 2017 i was on medication.the last one was prozac.i decided that i should stop and the doctor gradually reduced the dose .

the reason i decided to stop is because not only they were not helping me but the opposite.i became a different person physically and psychologically .through the years i put 30 kilos which is 60 pounds..all my life the quantities of food i was eating were very small i was 5.8 tall with 128 pounds. from very thin i became very fat.a weak person unable to deal with anything isolated defeated thinking of suicide until today.i do not live i just survive.its very tiring.

the symptoms i have today after stopping prozac are , panic attacks-- as the nourologist i see describes them-- 6 in the morning they wake me up , with a horrible feeling of nausea, with a knot of salaive in my throught.i need to breath quickly and deeply to loosen somehow the suffering lasts a few hours.i am thinking over and over again things that make me very unhappy...etc etc etc.

it would be easier for me  to send any help suggestions in my email address .

thank you for your help

 

estherfranco4,

You have given us good information on your med history but I fear that your posts are coming only to me and not to the group as a whole since other people are no longer responding. I do not navigate the web site well or I would know how to fix it, but I don't. There are many moderators on this team with a lot more experience with this issue than me and I hope your information reaches them. I know how much you want answers, I feel the same way. But the reality is that all we can do is learn as much as possible and try to work our way through the symptoms with hints and help from those who understand and have gone through it. That is why it is important for you to read the resources on the Forum, and the stories of those who have been here and learned what the pitfalls are. 

 

From my research on this site and in other places I can tell you what I have found. Don't taper over 10% a month - it can even take years. So if your doc did what mine always did - 2 months - that was not enough. Sometimes you need to go back on the med to relieve symptoms and then taper more slowly. You can make your pills into a liquid or get a liquid from the pharmacy and then use a syringe to dole out the dose. Instructions on how to do this is on this website.

 

When you first wake up, the cortisol in your body is at its peak, and that can make it the highest stress time of the day. Cortisol is the hormone that gives you a stress response. I have had the same issue of early morning rumination and body tension. It helps to get out of bed and do something. It's hard to do, but it helps. Walking with friends early in the day helps me too. Being with people I enjoy always helps. You are feeling isolated, and I have felt that too which is why I force myself to seek people who make me feel good. If you really have a knot of saliva in your throat - you may need more liquids to thin it down. If it is actually anxiety (from increased cortisol) which feels like a lump in your throat (I have had that ) then the deep breathing, getting busy, etc., would help more. Maybe get up and have some chamomile tea?? 

 

There is at least one antidepressant that does make you gain weight - there may be more.  Certainly some people eat when they are stressed - and we are all stressed on and off the meds! 

 

Hope always gives me good days - and I get hope when something good happens or I am proud of myself for something. So I strive to find those things that will do that for me. 

Of course, as I said before, I went back on my med because I was having trouble so I cannot claim to have the answers. But I feel better since I went back on my med, with a lower dose, and I'm going to take it as it comes. One step at a time. 

 

Hope this helps some. I feel it is inadequate, but it's the best I can do at this point. Sending you good thoughts, Rosa

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Altostrata

Everyone can see estherfranco's post. estherfranco, if you post in your own Introductions topic, you're more likely to get answers to your questions.

 

Thank you, Rosa, that's good advice to estherfranco.

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