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whatshappening: Did I reinstate too late?

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bijay

@whatshappening  I am so sorry you are suffering through this insomnia. I agree with @getofflex that acceptance is important - it will help take the pressure off and reduce your anxiety over insomnia, which just feeds it more.   From my own experience I think the anxiety over sleep can become more of a factor than the WD itself - maybe that’s why the updosing has not worked for you. 
 

Besides doing good sleep hygiene, consistent bed and wake times, etc. try putting the clock/phone away so you can’t see it and become anxious over the hours you have slept or not slept.  

 
You may also try getting out of bed and doing something boring.  Low-key tv or music, reading (even the phone book), or whatever helps you to calmly distract your mind.  It didn’t always work for me but it was a lot better than lying in bed becoming more and more despondent, and sometimes I would nod off despite myself. 
 

Sending good thoughts your way.


Started .25 mg. clonazapam Oct. 2016

Started 10 mg. Celexa Dec. 2016

Started 10 mg. amitriptyline January 2017

Also took 60 mg. Dexilant Oct. 2016 through April 2017, successfully weaned off

Quit Celexa successfully cold turkey Oct. 2017

Fast wean of amitriptyline Dec. 2017

Had major WD symptoms and reinstated at 10 mg. Jan. 2018

Slow amitryptyline wean started Mar. 2019, reduced from 10 mg. to 4.1 mg. currently

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Artistic1

@whatshappening I sympathize with your sleep issues. I've been through this same scenario of reaching a state where you're afraid to go to bed or go to sleep. That, of course, creates more problems! I tried melatonin (never worked), different doses of magnesium, (worked sometimes), sleep tapes (worked sometimes), sleep books (informative, but not helpful), sleep therapy (waste of money), and on and on....but nothing helped consistently. Knowing that thinking and worrying about sleep was counterproductive, I decided to try to stop thinking about my poor sleep, and most especially, what might be causing it. That will drive you crazy. I can see in your post that you're trying to figure out if it's your updose, your low dose, if this will ever change, etc. etc.

 

I told myself, I have poor sleep, plain and simple. So what can I do to just DEAL with it rather than FIX it? I changed my thinking to aim for resting rather than sleeping. If I couldn't get the best sleep, I could at least get the best REST possible. That took a lot of pressure off. Resting I could do! It allowed me to do deep breathing, or listen to relaxing tapes, or do progressive muscle relaxation imagery in bed without worrying if it was going to put me to sleep. If I did drifted off and woke up and couldn't go back to sleep, I just started again with the same things....focusing on relaxing rather than sleeping.

 

At the same time, I had to deal with feeling tired the next day, because I wasn't sleeping well. So I switched my focus on my daytime activities, too. Instead of fretting about how tired I was, my philosophy was: "First, do what is necessary. Then do what is possible. Soon, you can do the impossible." I cut myself some slack about how crappy my sleep was the night before and how I was dragging during the day. I did what I could, and I also made sure to do a 15 minute quiet meditation during the day, just to get my brain and body used to being still.

 

 All this really took the pressure off, and I am now actually sleeping much better! It took quite a while, and my sleep isn't perfect, but it's much, much better. I'm happy with being able to get into bed and not working myself up about whether or not I will sleep, because I know that all I have to do is rest. My brain is now in the habit of focusing on plain relaxation, and as a result, the sleep just seems to take care of itself.

 

Hope this is helpful.


Celexa - 20 mg May 2015 - March 2016 (Felt quite good)..... Celexa taper from May 2016 - Nov 2016.....Depression and Anxiety returned June 2017

July, 2017: Zoloft = 25 mg;  Aug. 2017 = 37.5 mg; Nov. 2017 = 50 mg thru Jan. 23, 2018.

Jan. 2018 - May 6, 2019 = taper Zoloft from 50 mg to 12.5 mg.  Aug. 11, 2019 - felt so bad that I reinstated at 25mg. Hold at this dose until Feb. 3, 2020

Feb. 4, 2020 = reduce dose to 21.875 mg. Hold for 10 weeks. April 14, 2020 = 18.75 mg. Hold for 10 weeks.  

June10, 2020 - start cycle of 2 weeks to taper slowly from old dose to new dose, then hold at new dose for 6-7 weeks. June 23 = 16.666 mg.

August 26 = 14.75 mg

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whatshappening
28 minutes ago, Artistic1 said:

@whatshappening I sympathize with your sleep issues. I've been through this same scenario of reaching a state where you're afraid to go to bed or go to sleep. That, of course, creates more problems! I tried melatonin (never worked), different doses of magnesium, (worked sometimes), sleep tapes (worked sometimes), sleep books (informative, but not helpful), sleep therapy (waste of money), and on and on....but nothing helped consistently. Knowing that thinking and worrying about sleep was counterproductive, I decided to try to stop thinking about my poor sleep, and most especially, what might be causing it. That will drive you crazy. I can see in your post that you're trying to figure out if it's your updose, your low dose, if this will ever change, etc. etc.

 

I told myself, I have poor sleep, plain and simple. So what can I do to just DEAL with it rather than FIX it? I changed my thinking to aim for resting rather than sleeping. If I couldn't get the best sleep, I could at least get the best REST possible. That took a lot of pressure off. Resting I could do! It allowed me to do deep breathing, or listen to relaxing tapes, or do progressive muscle relaxation imagery in bed without worrying if it was going to put me to sleep. If I did drifted off and woke up and couldn't go back to sleep, I just started again with the same things....focusing on relaxing rather than sleeping.

 

At the same time, I had to deal with feeling tired the next day, because I wasn't sleeping well. So I switched my focus on my daytime activities, too. Instead of fretting about how tired I was, my philosophy was: "First, do what is necessary. Then do what is possible. Soon, you can do the impossible." I cut myself some slack about how crappy my sleep was the night before and how I was dragging during the day. I did what I could, and I also made sure to do a 15 minute quiet meditation during the day, just to get my brain and body used to being still.

 

 All this really took the pressure off, and I am now actually sleeping much better! It took quite a while, and my sleep isn't perfect, but it's much, much better. I'm happy with being able to get into bed and not working myself up about whether or not I will sleep, because I know that all I have to do is rest. My brain is now in the habit of focusing on plain relaxation, and as a result, the sleep just seems to take care of itself.

 

Hope this is helpful.

 

Hi Artistic,

 

I want to thank you for all your comforting advice. I totally understand what you are saying and 100% agree. I've told myself the same things lately regarding focusing on REST instead and definitely ACCEPTANCE of my current situation. I get hopeful with these new mantras and psych myself out with them throughout the day. I do meditate and exercise (whatever energy permits) and do my best to stay productive during the day. Then the dreaded and tiring night time regime sets arrives and it takes the fun out of my new outlook. I'm getting irritated with things that help one night that don't help another night - especially being the sleep meditation, music and hypnosis that I plug into when I just want to lay still. I also have the added pressures of trying to get my body stabilized so that I can attend to some responsibilities towards the end of this month. So i guess you can say it's a race to get better by a certain date. But now 4 weeks in I can see that I may be stuck with this new sleep pattern for a while and life must go on right? I like what you said about "First, do what is necessary. Then do what is possible. Soon, you can do the impossible.". That's definitely something I will include in my daily mantra.

 

I want to stay the course of a direct taper especially when I have those nights where I get a couple hours of sleep. But not sure at this point if it'll get only harder when finally tapering down again or if I should just cut my loses and cross taper to a medication that will be kinder to my body to get off. 

 

May I ask what part of the tapering journey are you on yourself? Did your sleep issues begin at a lower dose of your taper or are you now completely off medication?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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whatshappening
1 hour ago, bijay said:

@whatshappening  I am so sorry you are suffering through this insomnia. I agree with @getofflex that acceptance is important - it will help take the pressure off and reduce your anxiety over insomnia, which just feeds it more.   From my own experience I think the anxiety over sleep can become more of a factor than the WD itself - maybe that’s why the updosing has not worked for you. 
 

Besides doing good sleep hygiene, consistent bed and wake times, etc. try putting the clock/phone away so you can’t see it and become anxious over the hours you have slept or not slept.  

 
You may also try getting out of bed and doing something boring.  Low-key tv or music, reading (even the phone book), or whatever helps you to calmly distract your mind.  It didn’t always work for me but it was a lot better than lying in bed becoming more and more despondent, and sometimes I would nod off despite myself. 
 

Sending good thoughts your way.

 

Hi Bijay,

Thank you for responding and for your advice. I agree with what you are saying about the anxiety over sleep becoming more of a factor rather than the WD its self. I think I'm getting scared that this experience is becoming all to familiar to what I faced in 2016 when trying to initially taper off and then getting hit with chronic insomnia at the very same dose of 3mg. I swear I didn't sleep for weeks and the doc tried so many different medications until landing on Klonopin first then later Rameron. 

 

As I've mentioned to @Artistic1, I told myself to focus on REST instead and definitely ACCEPTANCE of my current situation. I get hopeful with these new mantras and psych myself out with them throughout the day. I do meditate and exercise (whatever energy permits) and do my best to stay productive during the day. Then the dreaded and tiring night time regime arrives and it takes the fun out of my new outlook. As sleepy as I make myself I get jolted up a few minutes later. I play some meditation tracks or sleepy hynosis from my phone to just lay still (sometimes works to drift off and other times not) if that doesn't help I get out of bed to do something else which then I tend to go on this SA site to look for answers and comfort when I do get really restless. I know that's probably not productive. I typically don't stay on the computer long before turning it off and trying to go back lay down and close my eyes.

 

It's just been a circus of pre-night time regimens (a glass of wine earlier, nighty tea, lavender oil, melatonin etc) and then anywhere during the middle of the night hours of 12am- 6am sleep (meditation, getting up, laying back down etc.)


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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bijay

@whatshappening  I was just looking at your signature - congrats on your perseverance,  you really have come so far on your taper.  It does look as though the last few times you’ve been going down more quickly, and the last drop from 3.5 to 3.0 mg was larger than the previous ones. Could this have been too much too fast?  If so, staying at your current updose will help, but may take some time.


Started .25 mg. clonazapam Oct. 2016

Started 10 mg. Celexa Dec. 2016

Started 10 mg. amitriptyline January 2017

Also took 60 mg. Dexilant Oct. 2016 through April 2017, successfully weaned off

Quit Celexa successfully cold turkey Oct. 2017

Fast wean of amitriptyline Dec. 2017

Had major WD symptoms and reinstated at 10 mg. Jan. 2018

Slow amitryptyline wean started Mar. 2019, reduced from 10 mg. to 4.1 mg. currently

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Artistic1

@whatshappening Hi again. You had this question for me: 

May I ask what part of the tapering journey are you on yourself? Did your sleep issues begin at a lower dose of your taper or are you now completely off medication?

 

I had sleep issues starting in 2015 when Generalized Anxiety Disorder hit me out of the blue. This was aggravated in 2017 when I went on Zoloft, which totally ruined my sleep. In 2018-2019, I did a taper down from 25 mg that was inconsistent and unsuccessful, and at 12.5 mg, I had to go back up to 25 mg. During that time, sleep was hit and miss, but generally bad.

 

When I started my current taper in January, 2020, I had some terrible nights. Mostly, I think it was me psyching myself out over whether I was doing the right thing. Once I committed to getting off the drugs, and doing it correctly, I felt more in control. The thought that helped the most: I figured if I was going to be miserable without good sleep, I'd rather be that way OFF of drugs rather than on them. I used to sleep well before Zoloft and GAD, so I knew it was in me to get back to that place. I just have to ride it out to the end. The success stories on this group helped so much.

 

I am now down to 13.15 mg Zoloft from a basic starting point of 25 mg. Took me 10 months to get there. But I now know that the med was affecting my sleep since I'm doing so much better as I get lower. Just a combination of that and the practices I mentioned before. Also, I had a GREAT CBT therapist who made a huge difference for me. We didn't do any sleep therapy, but everything else I learned from her had a domino effect.

 

Good luck to you. I know you will get where you want to be. Just one step at a time. First, do what is possible......!!


Celexa - 20 mg May 2015 - March 2016 (Felt quite good)..... Celexa taper from May 2016 - Nov 2016.....Depression and Anxiety returned June 2017

July, 2017: Zoloft = 25 mg;  Aug. 2017 = 37.5 mg; Nov. 2017 = 50 mg thru Jan. 23, 2018.

Jan. 2018 - May 6, 2019 = taper Zoloft from 50 mg to 12.5 mg.  Aug. 11, 2019 - felt so bad that I reinstated at 25mg. Hold at this dose until Feb. 3, 2020

Feb. 4, 2020 = reduce dose to 21.875 mg. Hold for 10 weeks. April 14, 2020 = 18.75 mg. Hold for 10 weeks.  

June10, 2020 - start cycle of 2 weeks to taper slowly from old dose to new dose, then hold at new dose for 6-7 weeks. June 23 = 16.666 mg.

August 26 = 14.75 mg

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whatshappening
2 hours ago, bijay said:

@whatshappening  I was just looking at your signature - congrats on your perseverance,  you really have come so far on your taper.  It does look as though the last few times you’ve been going down more quickly, and the last drop from 3.5 to 3.0 mg was larger than the previous ones. Could this have been too much too fast?  If so, staying at your current updose will help, but may take some time.

Hi Bijay, thank you for recognizing my efforts. I guess that’s why I’m so hard on myself feeling like all this way and now this??? 

I would agree with you about possibly go down a little quicker at the tail end. I just couldn’t see how 1 measly bead (that’s the dose difference) could make much impact. Plus it’s not possible at this low dose to even drop 10% of current dose as the individual bead weight is much greater. 

 

I got some maybe 2 hours of sleep (light) last night but it was separated by a good 3.5 hours Of being awake in between with a series of getting up, laying down, rolling over, meditating, going on the computer, laying down, going to the bathroom...lol.

 

ughh...I now struggle with a decision on whether I’d be better off crossing over to Prozac as that might be a likely option to getting off effexor. 


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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bijay

@whatshappening  We are always toughest on ourselves, much tougher than we would be with anyone else.  But you have come a very long way and need to give yourself a lot of credit for that.  

 

I can understand what you say about a single pellet.  I look at the extra tidbit of powder I shave off these tablets and can’t believe my body can tell the difference.  
 

I’m sure you have probably read the information on SA about making a liquid for easier dose reductions, although you would probably need to dose twice a day if you are switching from a time released version.  Maybe you can get some first hand experience from others here to see if that works better than the crossover to Prozac.  


Started .25 mg. clonazapam Oct. 2016

Started 10 mg. Celexa Dec. 2016

Started 10 mg. amitriptyline January 2017

Also took 60 mg. Dexilant Oct. 2016 through April 2017, successfully weaned off

Quit Celexa successfully cold turkey Oct. 2017

Fast wean of amitriptyline Dec. 2017

Had major WD symptoms and reinstated at 10 mg. Jan. 2018

Slow amitryptyline wean started Mar. 2019, reduced from 10 mg. to 4.1 mg. currently

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Artistic1

@whatshappening Hello again. I just read through more of your thread, and I see a BIG focus on the number of hours you're sleeping or not sleeping. My recommendation is to forget about keeping track of the number of  the hours of sleep you're getting. It's actually not helpful.  I used to do that, too. Every morning, I wrote down how many hours I got so I could see if something I had done the day before or taken the night before was a solution. All it did was make things worse because I was focused on a negative behavior and a negative outcome.  

 

Then I found this out that sleep research indicates two things:

1.we usually get more sleep than we think we do.

2. we generally don't need as much sleep as we think.

 

Note the word "THINK" in those statements, because that's a big part of the problem.


1. We can't possibly know the exact amount of sleep we're getting because unless you're watching a clock and falling asleep at the same time (which is impossible), you can only estimate that. Chances are, what you THINK is inaccurate. Also, sometimes we are in a light sleep phase, but when you wake from it, you THINK you were awake the whole time, but it's not true. It was sleep, but just not deep restful sleep. 

2. We THINK we need 8 hours because that has always been the "recommended" amount, but that's not true for everyone.The fact is, some people do perfectly fine on anywhere from 4 - 8 hours of sleep. 

 

When I learned these two things, I used them to change my behavior and my thinking.

1. I quit tracking the amount of sleep I was getting because I realized I couldn't really measure it accurately, and it was one more negative thing I was focusing on.

2. I threw out the 8 hour sleep recommendation. Maybe I was one of those people who did just fine on less than that, and that has turned out to be true. After all, the number of hours mattered less than how I was actually functioning during the day. Of course, I could tell if I hadn't had a good night's sleep because I'd be dragging along. But then I employed the "do what's necessary...possible....impossible" philosophy, and with practice, my day became less stressful. 

 

In the early practice of this, I set different goals. There were nights when I estimated I THINK I only got 2-3 hours of sleep. But if that happened, I changed my thinking and said, "Hey, I THINK I got 2-3 hours last night, but it could have been more. I don't know. At least it wasn't zero! I'll just work with that today...do what's necessary....possible....impossible." What else was I going to do? This was at least better than counting hours and worrying over them and creating more insomnia.

 

Well....sorry for the long post, but maybe this will help.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Celexa - 20 mg May 2015 - March 2016 (Felt quite good)..... Celexa taper from May 2016 - Nov 2016.....Depression and Anxiety returned June 2017

July, 2017: Zoloft = 25 mg;  Aug. 2017 = 37.5 mg; Nov. 2017 = 50 mg thru Jan. 23, 2018.

Jan. 2018 - May 6, 2019 = taper Zoloft from 50 mg to 12.5 mg.  Aug. 11, 2019 - felt so bad that I reinstated at 25mg. Hold at this dose until Feb. 3, 2020

Feb. 4, 2020 = reduce dose to 21.875 mg. Hold for 10 weeks. April 14, 2020 = 18.75 mg. Hold for 10 weeks.  

June10, 2020 - start cycle of 2 weeks to taper slowly from old dose to new dose, then hold at new dose for 6-7 weeks. June 23 = 16.666 mg.

August 26 = 14.75 mg

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Onmyway

@whatshappening

I noticed in one of your previous posts that you are drinking alcohol. Lots of people here have discovered that it can really exacerbate withdrawal and set people back. Alcohol also interferes with sleep in a serious way and while you may not have thought it impacted you before, in this sensitized state it can have profound effects. 

 

I'd consider cutting it.

 

I personally would not make more changes like bridges as it can confuse things - it's hard to know what the equivalent dose of SSRI is in another medicine. You could try it but I've learned that keeping things stable is good in WD. 

 

I still have sleeping issues, they get worse in waves and when things are not going well in my life but the initial insomnia right after cutting improved significantly over a few months for me. 

 

Not sleeping one night actually doesn't bother me much as I've done that regularly in school. Also deprivation can actually increase mood paradoxically.


Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg ,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months (don't remember dates), trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up), occasionally did this in difficult times 

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax/day, then 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week, April  14 , 2019 - citalopram 1.8 mg (liquid), May 8, 2019 - citalopram 1.6 mg (liquid),  July 27, 2019 - citalopram 1.5 mg (liquid),  August 15, 2019 - citalopram 1.35 (liquid)

 

 supplements:  melatonin 1 mg  

 

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whatshappening
1 hour ago, Artistic1 said:

@whatshappening Hello again. I just read through more of your thread, and I see a BIG focus on the number of hours you're sleeping or not sleeping. My recommendation is to forget about keeping track of the number of  the hours of sleep you're getting. It's actually not helpful.  I used to do that, too. Every morning, I wrote down how many hours I got so I could see if something I had done the day before or taken the night before was a solution. All it did was make things worse because I was focused on a negative behavior and a negative outcome.  

 

Then I found this out that sleep research indicates two things:

1.we usually get more sleep than we think we do.

2. we generally don't need as much sleep as we think.

 

Note the word "THINK" in those statements, because that's a big part of the problem.


1. We can't possibly know the exact amount of sleep we're getting because unless you're watching a clock and falling asleep at the same time (which is impossible), you can only estimate that. Chances are, what you THINK is inaccurate. Also, sometimes we are in a light sleep phase, but when you wake from it, you THINK you were awake the whole time, but it's not true. It was sleep, but just not deep restful sleep. 

2. We THINK we need 8 hours because that has always been the "recommended" amount, but that's not true for everyone.The fact is, some people do perfectly fine on anywhere from 4 - 8 hours of sleep. 

 

When I learned these two things, I used them to change my behavior and my thinking.

1. I quit tracking the amount of sleep I was getting because I realized I couldn't really measure it accurately, and it was one more negative thing I was focusing on.

2. I threw out the 8 hour sleep recommendation. Maybe I was one of those people who did just fine on less than that, and that has turned out to be true. After all, the number of hours mattered less than how I was actually functioning during the day. Of course, I could tell if I hadn't had a good night's sleep because I'd be dragging along. But then I employed the "do what's necessary...possible....impossible" philosophy, and with practice, my day became less stressful. 

 

In the early practice of this, I set different goals. There were nights when I estimated I THINK I only got 2-3 hours of sleep. But if that happened, I changed my thinking and said, "Hey, I THINK I got 2-3 hours last night, but it could have been more. I don't know. At least it wasn't zero! I'll just work with that today...do what's necessary....possible....impossible." What else was I going to do? This was at least better than counting hours and worrying over them and creating more insomnia.

 

Well....sorry for the long post, but maybe this will help.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi Artistic1,

 

I will throw the sleep tracker away...lol. It actually is my symptom tracker though and I use it correlate against my tapering cuts and to see which symptoms got better. But yes I should maybe not putting so much emphasis on what happens on one day versus the next day otherwise it just turns it into one big messy sea of red ink. I need to change my behavior and thought processes to make this work and I like your approach and seems to be one that I can definitely implement. 

 

My doctor wants me to stay the course in my tapering without crossing over to another medication. However just mentioned Doxepin for sleep so that I can continue to taper effexor. He said it doesn't bind to the receptors as much as effexor does or even mirtazapine. I'd need to find out more about that.


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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whatshappening
1 hour ago, Onmyway said:

@whatshappening

I noticed in one of your previous posts that you are drinking alcohol. Lots of people here have discovered that it can really exacerbate withdrawal and set people back. Alcohol also interferes with sleep in a serious way and while you may not have thought it impacted you before, in this sensitized state it can have profound effects. 

 

I'd consider cutting it.

 

I personally would not make more changes like bridges as it can confuse things - it's hard to know what the equivalent dose of SSRI is in another medicine. You could try it but I've learned that keeping things stable is good in WD. 

 

I still have sleeping issues, they get worse in waves and when things are not going well in my life but the initial insomnia right after cutting improved significantly over a few months for me. 

 

Not sleeping one night actually doesn't bother me much as I've done that regularly in school. Also deprivation can actually increase mood paradoxically.

NOOO not the wine...lol. It's my one thing that helps me to forget about this whole cracker mess for just a while. How about 1/2 glass ????


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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Onmyway
On 10/23/2020 at 2:40 PM, whatshappening said:

NOOO not the wine...lol. It's my one thing that helps me to forget about this whole cracker mess for just a while. How about 1/2 glass ????

It's obviously up to you what you do, I had a reaction to fresh squeezed orange juice which ferments so had a tiny amount of alcohol but I drank a liter of it which would have been equivalent to about half to a glass of wine. This would cause drunken feeling, balance issues, dizziness.

 

Giving it up may improve your sleep, you could try for a week or two.

 

 

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
removed name

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg ,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months (don't remember dates), trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up), occasionally did this in difficult times 

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax/day, then 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week, April  14 , 2019 - citalopram 1.8 mg (liquid), May 8, 2019 - citalopram 1.6 mg (liquid),  July 27, 2019 - citalopram 1.5 mg (liquid),  August 15, 2019 - citalopram 1.35 (liquid)

 

 supplements:  melatonin 1 mg  

 

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whatshappening

Hey guys thoughts please:

 

since I’ve hit a wall in my tapering which has led to unmanageable withdrawal symptoms particularly with sleep my options I’m thinking are:

 

- take an additional med to help with occasional sleep while I continue to taper off effexor.

- don’t take additional med, wait to stabilize and then start a cross over to prozac

- don’t wait to stabilize and Just start cross over to Prozac. 

 

although my best ideal choice is to do the direct taper as I have been I don’t want to prolong any unnecessary misery should any of the above options be a better route.


Effexor XR 37.5mg (1st time 2003-2004 / 2nd time 2007-2008 / 3rd time 2010-current) Attempted to get off again in July of 2015 and did a year long taper only to reinstate by June 2016 due to failed taper. By July 2017 started to give this another try.

 

7.01.17 - 37.5mg fast forward to 3.25.18 - 26 mg  / 4.27.18 - 23.4 mg  / 5.20.18 - 21 mg  / 6.24.18 - 18.9 mg / 9.7.18 - 17 mg  / 10.13.18 - 15 mg / 11.10.18 - 13.5 mg 12.24.18 - 12 mg / 2.10.19 - 11 mg  / 3.6.19 - Updose to 13 mg and was better only for a month so decided to continue with tapering process. / 5.18.19 - 12 mg / 6.12.19 - 11 mg  / 7.7.19 - 11 mg  / 8.22.19 - 10 mg  / 10.4.19 - 9 mg   / 11.29.19 - 8.5mg / 12.16.19 - 8 mg / 1.24.20 - 7.5mg / 3.15.20 - 6.5mg / 3.29.20 - 6 mgs / 5.9.20  - 5.5 mgs / 5.23.20 - 5 mgs / 6.29.20 - 4.5 mgs / 7.10.20 - 4.25mgs / 7.24.20 - 4 mgs / 8.18.20 - 3.75mg / 9.1.20 - 3.5 mgs / 9.29.20 - 3 mgs but Horrendous side effects suddenly appear preventing further tapering.

 

10.9.20 - Updose to 3.5mg / 10.18.20 - Updose to 4.5mg

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bijay

@whatshappening  I have no personal experience with drug crossover, but I would not consider crossing over to Prozac until you feel stabilized at your current updose of Effexor.  
 

Recently you have also been going as little as two weeks between tapers, and the last taper was larger than previous ones.  Being more conservative as you go forward may be more important than anything else you do.


Started .25 mg. clonazapam Oct. 2016

Started 10 mg. Celexa Dec. 2016

Started 10 mg. amitriptyline January 2017

Also took 60 mg. Dexilant Oct. 2016 through April 2017, successfully weaned off

Quit Celexa successfully cold turkey Oct. 2017

Fast wean of amitriptyline Dec. 2017

Had major WD symptoms and reinstated at 10 mg. Jan. 2018

Slow amitryptyline wean started Mar. 2019, reduced from 10 mg. to 4.1 mg. currently

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