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CrazyMama: Paxil


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I have been on paxil 20mg for 5 months after severe ppd. I cut my dose to 15mg for almost a week thinking I would be ok. I wasn't. I had to reinstate my full dose of 20mg. Has anyone had to do this? Did you original dose work anymore?

Edited by scallywag
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  • Moderator Emeritus

CrazyMama -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)


I've moved your post to the Introductions Forum. We ask that people post their updates and questions in an introduction topic (one topic per person)  so that all the information is in one place. When you have questions, we'll provide you with links to relevant topics.

I hope you'll find the information in the SA forums helpful for your situation. I'm sorry that you are in the position that you need the information, but am glad that you found us.

A request: Would you summarize your history in a signature -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-18 months particularly? Any drugs prior to that can just be listed with start and stop years. Please put your withdrawal history in signature

It sounds as if you experienced withdrawal symptoms. This topic provides more information.
What is withdrawal syndrome

That dosage cut from 20 mg to 15 mg - 25% - was a big one. People generally don't realize that you can't just stop these drugs as you can with many others. Many doctors are unaware of tapering methods that minimize both difficult symptoms and protracted withdrawal syndrome. We suggest that people start with a 10% cut to see how their CNS (central nervous system) reacts to the change.
Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

Paxil is a nasty little monster of a drug. Here's more information about it:
Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

I would suggest that you stay at the 20 mg dose for 4-6 weeks so that your brain and the rest of the CNS can recover from that harsh drop. While you're getting steady, read up on what's involved in decreasing dose, tapering techniques and take some time to consider out how you're going to get the tapered doses. 

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here

scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

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Crazymama welcome to sa

Did you take any drugs prior to paxil.

As SW says  it would be great if you could do a drug sig.


So glad you found sa


Thought for the day: Lets stand up, and let’s speak out , together. G Olsen

We have until the 14th. Feb 2018. 

URGENT REQUEST Please consider submitting  for the petition on Prescribed Drug Dependence and Withdrawal currently awaiting its third consideration at the Scottish Parliament. You don't even have to be from Scotland. By clicking on the link below you can read some of the previous submissions but be warned many of them are quite harrowing.


Please tell them about your problems taking and withdrawing from antidepressants and/or benzos.

Send by email to petitions@parliament.scot and quote PE01651 in the subject heading. Keep to a maximum of 3 sides of A4 and you can't name for legal reasons any doctor you have consulted. Tell them if you wish to remain anonymous. We need the numbers to help convince the committee members we are not isolated cases. You have until mid February. Thank you

Recovering paxil addict

None of the published articles shed light on what ssri's ... actually do or what their hazards might be. Healy 2013. 

This is so true, with anything you get on these drugs, dependance, tapering, withdrawal symptoms, side effects, just silent. And if there is something mentioned then their is a serious disconnect between what is said and reality! 

  "Every time I read of a multi-person shooting, I always presume that person had just started a SSRI or had just stopped."  Dr Mosher. Me too! 

Over two decades later, the number of antidepressant prescriptions a year is slightly more than the number of people in the Western world. Most (nine out of 10) prescriptions are for patients who faced difficulties on stopping, equating to about a tenth of the population. These patients are often advised to continue treatment because their difficulties indicate they need ongoing treatment, just as a person with diabetes needs insulin. Healy 2015

I believe the ssri era will soon stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine. Healy 2015

Let people help people ... in a natural, kind, non-addictive (and non-big pharma) way. J Broadley 2017



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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi CrazyMama,


Welcome from me too.  You've definitely come to the right place.  Lots of information and support here.


What withdrawal symptoms did you have when you dropped your dose to 15 mg?  How long is it since you updosed to 20 mg.  It takes 4 days for the drug to get to a steady state in the blood and about another 7 days before the brain fully registers the dose so you may be feeling a reduction in the severity of the symptoms within the first day or so but it may take a while before you are, hopefully, feeling improvement.  It's a good idea to keep daily notes of your symptoms on paper.  What improves, what worsens, if any, and what stays the same.


These helped me to understand SA's tapering of 10% or less of the previous dose with a holding period to allow the brain to adapt to getting less of the drug.  They have also helped me to remain patient and not try and get off too quickly.


Brain Remodelling (Rhi's Description of Brain Healing)

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery


As Scallywag said, this is your Intro/Update topic where you can ask questions.  You can also journal your progress here.  Please also remember to update your signature whenever you make a change so it remains current and can be seen at a glance.  Thank you.


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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