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Renewedmind: Cold Turkey from Zyprexa


Renewedmind

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Due to ignorance, I stopped taking zyprexa 5mg cold turkey back on Sept. 20 2016. My psychiatrist had prescribed it for me in March after being diagnosed Borderline personality disorder with bipolar traits along with anxiety and depression. It helped with a lot of my symptoms but I did not like the weight gain. When I began this medication in march, I was only 130 lbs and by september I was up to 160 pounds! 

 

So I stopped taking it.

 

I haven't had problems stopping medications in the past so I didn't see how it would be any different with this medication. Boy was I wrong!

My first withdrawal symptoms did not start until about 2-3 weeks after stopping the med. I found myself in a constant state of anxiety and panic therefore I experienced a loss of appetite. As time went on things got worst. This past week has been the worst. Cryings spells, debilitating anxiety and nausea rendering me unable to function, depersonalization, mania (once), psychosis (once), pacing back and forth, restlessness, INSOMNIA, intermittent stinging feeling all over my body, numbing of emotions. 

 

Finally I couldn't take it anymore and went in to see my doctor. She gave me zofran to help with nausea and lexapro because she thinks that I'm just depressed. I refused the lexapro. The zofran did help the three days that I took it and also Xanax .5 mg for the anxiety. Initially, I was skeptical about taking the xanax. I am aware of its addictive nature but I am a single mom and I work full time. I can not just lay around all day crippled by anxiety so I only take it if the anxiety doesn't let up. So far I only had to take it once.

 

The last 3 days have been heaven. My anxiety and nausea are gone and my other symptoms have literally disappeared. I do have INSOMNIA now and that is driving me insane! The depersonalization was pretty bad yesterday too. The one good thing out of this experience is that I have quit smoking. I have lost my desire to smoke. It is not there. It scares me because I loved smoking! I had no plans to quit. My personality has changed a bit too. I don't listen to music anymore and I don't feel as sharp mentally as before. I'm spending more time with my kids and hugging them loads more instead of being closed up in my room and sleeping my life away. I don't feel a connection to my boyfriend anymore right now and that is scaring me. I'm emotionally numb. It makes me sad.

 

What can I do to rid myself of this terrible insomnia? Please don't suggest reinstating zyprexa. That is not an option for me. I have been traumatized by that medication. I cannot even bear to look at the bottle. It is pure poison! I can't imagine EVER touching another pill or putting that poison into my body. It is pure EVIL. Those withdrawal symptoms were horrible and I don't ever want to go through that again. I feel like I have been improving each day, re-instating means I'd just have to start all over again. If I had found this site before my cold turkey I would have tapered instead but I cannot go back now. 

Edited by Shep
added tags

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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Hi, Renewedmind.

 

Welcome to SA.

 

Reinstating Zyprexa is an option, but totally up to you. I understand your reluctance. As you wrote,  "The last 3 days have been heaven," so you're already having really good windows.  

 

It really depends on how you're able to handle your symptoms while working and taking care of your family. If the insomnia gets too bad, you may wish to consider reinstating. But note that reinstatement would only be at a fraction of the dose you were previously on, due to the increasing sensitivity of the central nervous system after coming off psychiatric drugs. 

 

Just so you have the information, here are the links. 

 

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms 

 

Tips for tapering off olanzapine (Zyprexa)

 

 

I'm glad you only took Xanax once. I have been through benzo withdrawal, and it is brutal. 

 

So let's get you some information on dealing with the insomnia. From my own experience, and after reading countless other stories about people going through antipsychotic withdrawal, insomnia is a real problem. If you're able to function on little sleep until the insomnia resolves itself, you may not need to reinstate. 

 

However, if the insomnia becomes such a problem that you cannot work or take care of your family, than you may wish to consider a reinstatement. This is by far a better way to handle withdrawal than to add in another drug. From what we currently know now, adding another drug will not "fix" the problem of withdrawal from another drug.

 

You were so smart to second-guess your doctor who was trying to do just that. So good for you.  ;)

 

Here are some links to get you started on learning non-drug coping skills for insomnia. I also have a lot of problems with depersonalization, so I use mindfulness. That might be something you want to explore, as it's a great way of also handling insomnia. So one coping skill to help with two problems.  You'll find links to threads on mindfulness and other great tools here:

 

Tips to help sleep

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Guided Meditations, Calming Videos, Sleep Hypnosis

 

Many members report good results with Fish Oil and Magnesium because they calm the CNS. However, because supplements can ramp up symptoms in some people, it's best to research carefully, and then only add one supplement in at a time and at a very small dose:

 

King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

You may also want to consider a very small amount of melatonin. The key is to only use a small amount due to the heightened sensitivity of your CNS after coming off psych drugs.  Here is some information:

 

Melatonin for sleep: Many people find it helpful

 

Here is some information about what to expect during withdrawal and recovery. Although the main focus of Surviving Antidepressants is antidepressant withdrawal, antipsychotic withdrawal follows a very similar windows and waves patterns, so these links will be helpful for Zyprexa withdrawal: 

 

What is withdrawal syndrome? 
 
The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

 

I'm trying to piece together your psychiatric drug history:

 

Zyprexa 5mg  - March to September 20, 2016 - came off cold turkey

 

Zofran - took for 3 days

 

Xanax - only took it once

 

Is this correct?

 

Please fill out your signature with your drug and supplement history. 

 

Please put your withdrawal history in your signature

 

This is your thread to list your symptoms and to ask plenty of questions.

 

Again, welcome to the forum. Please let us know how you are doing. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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It might have been mentioned in some of the pages shep linked you to, but sauna has helped me a lot when I have had insomnia due to withdrawal. I've used benzodiazepines too to stimulate sleep, but my experience has been that sauna has actually been a BETTER aid than the sleeping pills. Just my two cents (tapering olanzapine too).

2015 Started on Olanzapine 10 mg, 2016:18th January Down to 7.5 mg (from 9,38 mg) 1st of June 6.75 mg (began 10% taper!) [...] 1st December 3.65 mg

 

2017: 1st Jan. ~3.3 mg, 1st Feb 2.95 mg, 22nd Feb 2.65 mg (began 3-week taper) 15th Mar 2.38 mg, 5th Apr 2.14 mg, 26th Apr 1.94 mg  17th May ~1.74 mg (began 19-day taper) 5th June ~1.56 mg 24th June 1.4 mg (began 17-day taper) 11th July 1.26 mg 30th July 1.13 mg 24th Aug 1.0 mg(!)

17th Sept 15 mg 11st Oct 13.5 mg 26th Oct 11.75 mg 18th Nov 10 mg 15th Dec 9 mg

2018: 12nd Jan. 8.1 mg 15th Feb 7.5 mg 1st Apr 6.75 mg 1st Apr 6.08 mg 1st Jun 5.48 mg 1st Jul 5 mg 15th Aug 4.6 mg 15th Sep 4.4 mg 18th Nov 4.3 mg 16th Dec 4.2 mg

2019: 16th Jan 4.1 mg 28th Feb 4.0 mg [...] (began 0.1mg per 2.5 months taper!) 1st Oct 3.7 mg 15th Dec 3.6 mg

2020: 1st Mar 3.5 mg (began 0.1mg per 3 months taper!) 1st Jul 3.35 mg (<-- trying a larger drop) 4th Sep 3.25 mg (started 0.1125mg / 2 months) 10th Dec ~3.1125 mg

2021: 1st Feb 3.0 mg 26th May 2.9 mg 1st Sep 2.8 mg

2022: 1st Mar 2.7 mg 1st Aug 2.6 mg
Other medications: Temazepam for sleep, don't want to use it (has too many side effects). Melatonin too, except that doesn't work for me with high doses of olanzapine.

Haven't used any sleeping medications for a long time. Temazepam caused withdrawal symptoms when I last tried it.

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Shep, thanks for your response and for the helpful links!

 

So far, I am able to function on such little sleep but I don't know how. For some reason I don't get tired, it's like my brain is always ON. It won't turn off. I never get sleepy, even after 8 hours of third shift work. Luckily my job is very stationary and doesn't require mental alertness. I will read as much as I can and try my best to deal with this insomnia. I'm determined to beat this. This has been the hardest thing I've ever gone through but I am a fighter!

 

It might have been mentioned in some of the pages shep linked you to, but sauna has helped me a lot when I have had insomnia due to withdrawal. I've used benzodiazepines too to stimulate sleep, but my experience has been that sauna has actually been a BETTER aid than the sleeping pills. Just my two cents (tapering olanzapine too).

 I have never heard of sauna. Can you elaborate?

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Administrator

Shep, thanks for your response and for the helpful links!

 

So far, I am able to function on such little sleep but I don't know how. For some reason I don't get tired, it's like my brain is always ON. It won't turn off. I never get sleepy, even after 8 hours of third shift work. Luckily my job is very stationary and doesn't require mental alertness. I will read as much as I can and try my best to deal with this insomnia. I'm determined to beat this. This has been the hardest thing I've ever gone through but I am a fighter!

 

 

 

You sound strong and determined, two excellent traits to guide you through this.

 

Yes, this type of psychiatric drug-induced insomnia is really unusual. Many of us are able to function on very small amounts of sleep.

 

Self care is extremely important. The links I listed in my previous post will help you get started on finding ways to cope. 

 

Please let us know how you are doing. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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After a week of full blown insomnia, my sleep is finally improving and so are my wd symptoms!

 

I became desperate after not being able to sleep and my doctor prescribed me belsomra. Luckily my magnesium arrived in the mail the very same day. I have not had to take the rx since magnesium is working so well. I am currently getting about 5 hours of sleep compared to zero a week ago so this is a victory for me.

 

Mysteriously my anxiety has disappeared and it was one of my main symptoms besides the insomnia. My apetite is still off but the nausea is gone now too.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I hope that this is your "new normal," as they say.
 
While you're feeling well, would you take a moment to create a signature with your medication and withdrawal history?

  • Please summarize your history -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-18 months particularly.
  • Include any drugs you are taking now for any reason -- prescription, over-the-counter, or street drugs.
  • Any drugs prior to 18 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
  • You don't need to include symptoms or diagnoses other than the initial condition that led to prescribing the first drug.
  • We ask for this information in your signature so that we can see it at a glance. A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs.
  • You can find instructions in this topic: Please put your withdrawal history in signature

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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Yes I will create a signature.

 

A new symptom has manifested itself over the last few days. Im finding it hard to be alone. I have been sort of running away from myself and the home that I have lived in for the last 8 years. Suddenly I hate it here and am scrambling trying to avoid being here. I have associated this terrible experience with this home and I am triggered being here. Looking at my bedroom or just being near it causes me discomfort and I cant stop crying.

 

I spent all weekend away from home and now Im here today feeling panic again? Is this depression?

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Administrator

Hi, Renewedmind.

 

Extremes states of fear are common during withdrawal. 

 

Try to do as much self soothing as possible. Some links to help:

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Neuro Emotions

 

"Change the channel" -- dealing with cognitive symptoms

 

Are there some things you could do to your home to make it less triggering? Perhaps a scented candle or cook something that has an "inviting" feel to it? 

 

If the thoughts get overwhelming, remember that it's caused by withdrawal and try the "change the channel" link for ideas on what to do to self soothe and get your mind into a better, calmer place. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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Thanks for those links, Shep! I will get busy reading over them.

 

It's been a week since my last post and it has been pretty uneventful because I have finally accepted this as my new normal. I'm not fighting against it any longer. And what a difference it has made for me mentally. Insomnia is SO much more manageable now. It's not at the forefront of my mind and I'm no longer obsessing over how many hours or days it has been since sleep. I'm not watching the clock. I no longer worry about sleeping. I sleep when I sleep.  And so far, my body sleeps when it needs to (not much LOL) but I'm certainly getting sleep here and there.

 

I feel quite blessed and looking at life from a new perspective. Withdrawal could be a lot worst from what I'm reading on these boards and my heart goes out to all of those who are suffering. But instead of focusing on the negatives, I'm rejoicing in the positives right now!

 

Although I'm not tapering, I still am learning so much information and find that I'm not alone in what I am experiencing at any given moment. It's been very helpful coming here to read others stories. I hope I get to write a success story in the not to distant future. I am hopeful.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Wow renewedmind, that is a really great post!  Thank you for sharing because it's exciting news.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  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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  • Administrator

I agree with Chessie! Beautiful post! 

 

Yes, I hope you do write a Success Story.  :)

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I feel like such a hypocrite because my last post was all so very positive, but in the last week I've hit a really bad wave and its made me less than confident. Actually it has set me back pretty bad. I'm thinking about reinstating zyprexa and I never wanted to do that. Right now, my current symptoms are extreme fear/terror, brain fog, cognitive dysfunction, loss of appetite and not sleeping again. I'm at around 60 some days post zyprexa and it seems right around my womanly cycle I get a bad wave. I simply cannot keep going on in this way. I have a very good job and kids to support. I cannot lose my job due to being non functional due to withdrawal.

 

Can someone suggest a starting dose to reinstate zyprexa if I decide to go that route????? Someone please help.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You aren't the first one who has had that happen.  Unfortunately that is the way the AD WD cookie sometimes crumbles, but don't beat yourself up about it.  It's got nothing to do with how strong you are as a person, but the fact that being on the drug changed your brain, and the brain is still crying out for the drug.

 

Post #2 has the links for reinstating and Zyprexa.

 

Because you were on 5mg, my thought would be that you could try 0.5mg or 1mg.  Please do not go back on 5mg because your brain will have already made some adaptations during the last couple of months and 5mg will be too much.  I'll ask the other mods for their thoughts on a dose which you could try.  Remember to keep notes of symptoms that improve, worsen or stay the same.  This can help us to know if reinstatement is working.  Also, it takes about 4 days for the drug to get to a steady state in the blood and a few more days for it to register in the brain.  Keep it Simple, Slow and Stable

 

This is another link which might help you to understand why you get withdrawal symptoms What is Happening in Your Brain

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  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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Thanks Chessiecat for your quick reply!

Just the thought of reinstating makes me feel so much better. I think I've taken all that I can take! My worst fear is losing my kids and my job right now, so I will put my pride aside and go back on this drug unfortunately and taper :)

 

I will wait while you ask the mods about a safe dose, although 0.5 sounds great to me. I have no idea how to get my pill cut down to that size though, even after reading the links you gave me.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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Before reinstating the zyprexa, I have been reading over the links that shep provided in post #2 to prepare me how to taper from my reinstatement but it all seems so complex and foreign. I am not understanding how to get my 5mg dosage to 0.5 or even 1 mg???? I am feeling so desperate right now and hopeless. I feel so stuck!!!!!

 

I just want sleep! I was starting to sleep better before my period and now bammmmm I'm back to square one. I am panicking. Someone please guide me how to go about this. I am clueless. 

 

Does my pdoc or GP need to write me a prescription for the 0.5 or 1 mg for me to be able to use a compound pharmacy?

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Administrator

Hi, Renewedmind.

 

Here are some methods for tapering:

 

How to cut up tablets or pills

 

How to make a liquid from tablets or capsules

 

Using a digital scale to measure doses

 

Compounding pharmacies (US, UK, and elsewhere)

 

Here is a thread with a lot of helpful links for insomnia:

 

Sleep problems - That Awful Withdrawal Insomnia

 

Once you decide on a taper method, let us know if you have any specific questions.

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi renewedmind,

 

I've had confirmation that 0.5mg or 1mg would be okay to try.  The idea of reinstating is not to get rid of withdrawal symptoms completely but to get them to a manageable level.  The lower the dose your can reinstate at the better and of course the less your will have to taper after you have stabilised.

 

Once you know that reinstatement is working I would suggest staying on that dose for at least 2-3 months before even considering commencing a taper.  This is a minimum and it may be best to hold a bit longer, but the 2-3 months is a good place to start and will help you to accept that you will need to be patient.  It is better to hold and allow your CNS to stabilise than try and taper and then have to updose.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  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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If Im not seeing any relief after 4 days on 1 mg how long should I stay at this dose before moving up? what do you suggest my next dose be?

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

From the Reinstatement topic, Post #1:

 

How long should you give reinstatement?

  • It takes at least 4 days for your body to fully register the addition of a neuroactive drug. Unless you have an immediate bad reaction, observe your symptom pattern for about a week to see if the reinstatement is helping. If you have an immediate bad reaction, reduce or stop taking the drug.
  • After reinstatement, the amount of time needed to alleviate withdrawal symptoms (stabilizing) varies according to the individual. Relief can be felt immediately, after some weeks, or after some months.
  • Once you feel withdrawal symptoms are reduced after reinstatement, give your nervous system time to stabilize before attempting dosage reduction. Think in terms of months, not days.
  • Be patient after you reinstate. Reinstatement may not immediately eliminate all withdrawal symptoms. You may still experience waves of symptoms, which usually lessen as time goes on. Do not attempt to taper again until you feel symptom-free, or at least until your withdrawal symptoms are mild and tolerable.
  • The dose needed for effective reinstatement varies according to the individual.

 

It takes about a week after reinstatement for it to register in the brain.

 

Have you noticed any change in your symptoms, any slight improvement?  It might help to Rate Symptoms Daily to Check Patterns and Progress

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  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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I took 1 mg last night and I immediately felt relief. I was able to get sleep. But I have lots of anxiety about this med being in my body which is not helping. My anxiety stems from my taper method. I used a pill cutter to cut my pill which is not really accurate. I'm afraid that since I have reinstated, I'm not going to be able to taper further because the pill is so small. I cannot cut the pill any smaller than 1 mg with my pill cutter. Its like a no win situation. I don't know what to do at this point.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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How do you feel ?  Zyprexa.- 1 mg ? Maybe, update your drug history ?  

Most probably you can possibly convert to liquid at some point.

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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I took 1 mg of zyprexa. Not Xanax. I don't trust myself doing liquid zyprexa. I don't understand how to do that.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Zyprexa isn't soluble in water, and the powder sinks to the bottom, so you need to get a compounding liquid such as Ora-Plus.

 

Two members who are tapering Zyprexa had an extensive discussion about this in the Zyprexa tips thread, starting at this post.

 

If you'd like a detailed explanation and "walk-through" around making your own liquid, just ask! I'd be happy to post detailed instructions.

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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Hi Scallywag, thanks for your reply to my post. Yes I am interested in a very detailed walk through of using oraplus as a way to taper my olanzapine. Any help is greatly appreciated. I just want to go about the best way to do this and feel good and confident about what I am doing. Just need someone's gentle guidance. 

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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I have a question about tapering if any one is willing to answer. Since I have decided to reinstate and taper slowly, does this mean that I won't go through intolerable withdrawal symptoms once I have tapered completely off of this drug??? Or will there still be windows and waves?

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

The tapering method recommended by SA is a harm reduction method.  When we take a psychiatric drug our brain changes.  When we remove the drug the brain tries to adapt to not getting the drug.  If we go off too quickly this may result in very bad withdrawal symptoms.  When doing a slow taper you may still experience withdrawal symptoms whilst tapering and once off the drug but the hope is that because you have taken the drug away from the brain more gradually and the brain has been adapting as you taper that the severity and number/variety of withdrawal symptoms will be kept to a minimum.

 

Before finding SA I had tried to drop my dose of Pristiq by 50% (100mg to 50mg) and after 3 weeks at the lower dose I couldn't type.  I am a professional typist so had a benchmark.  Within 4 hours of updosing my foggy brain was clearing and I was able to type again.  That was November last year.  After stabilising, since the beginning of this year I have been tapering slowly and am now down to 37.5mg.  During this year I have only had mild, manageable, withdrawal symptoms.  I have periods where I feel a bit of brain fog, or when I find it harder to type then normal, or when I have trouble reading or finding words I want, but these have been very minor compared to my original 50% dose reduction.

 

These helped me to understand SA's recommendations and have helped me to be patient and not try and hurry my taper:

 

Brain Remodelling


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery


What is Happening in Your Brain

 

Because the improvement in your symptoms may only be very slight it may be helpful to Rate Symptoms Daily to Check Patterns and Progress.  Doing this will allow you to look back and see smaller improvements that you may not actually realise/feel.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  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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Thanks Chessiecat, this is very helpful information. I have learned a very valuable lesson and am very humbled because of this experience. Thank you all for helping us to see the light at the end of the tunnel

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Quick question about your reinstated dose: How are you achieving a 1 mg dose now?

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

Link to comment

Quick question about your reinstated dose: How are you achieving a 1 mg dose now?

Using a pill cutter.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

So you are cutting a 2.5 mg tablet in 5 pieces and taking 2 of them?

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

Link to comment

I am dividing 5 mg tab cutting by 2. Then I half it again. So more like 1.25. I know that is not very accurate but its all that I can do at the moment unless I go back to doc and get a prescription for 2.5.

 

I would have loved to reinstated at only 0.5 just to start small, but could not cut that low. The 1.25 seems too much of a dose but that was my only option. I was desperate.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • Moderator Emeritus

The first step would be switching over to liquid while maintaining the same dose. Here's what I would do to create 4 liquid doses of 1.25 mg from a 5 mg tablet:

  1. Get/buy compounding solution, such as OraPlus.
  2. Cut a 5 mg tablet in ½ to get two (2) 2.5 mg pieces.
  3. Store one of the 2.5 mg pieces in a cool, dark cupboard.
  4. Crush the other piece and put the crushed bits in a container that
    - can hold more than 10 ml (about 2 teaspoons of liquid) and
    - has a lid so you can shake it.
  5. Measure 10 ml of compounding solution, e.g. OraPlus, and add it to the container.
  6. Shake the container.
  7. Withdraw 5 ml of solution with a syringe and take as your dose; this will contain ½ of the 2.5 mg or 1.25 mg.
  8. Refrigerate remaining solution.
  9. Take remaining solution on next day.
  10. Wash + rinse + dry container
  11. On day 3, repeat steps 4 - 8. On day 4, repeat step 9 & 10.

After you have stabilized on the liquid dose for at least 4 week, you can start to taper. The first few doses at a 10% taper rate would be 1.12, 1.01, 0.9 mg. We/I can do the arithmetic to figure out those doses when the time comes.

 

At some point you may want to request a change in your prescription to 2.5 mg tablets. That would mean that you would only need to crush not cut the tablet to yield a 2-day supply of a liquid where 5 ml = 1.25 mg.

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

Link to comment

Thank you so much Scallywag!  I feel comfortable following your directions as you have made them very easy for me. 

 

I have a quick question. I have been reading the thread that you posted a link to in your previous reply to me. In that thread they are mentioning ODT tab which is disintegrating tablet that dissolves. Should I request this tablet at 2.5 mg instead of crushing a regular tab? or does it not matter?

 

Thanks so much. You have been very helpful.

Zyprexa 5 mg for 6 months---quit cold turkey on 9/20

Zofran taken 3 times in October 2016 for nausea during severe withdrawal in order to work and function

Xanax 1 mg prn for anxiety (during severe withdrawal) & sleep, taken 3 times---stopped on 11/3/16

Supplements: Vitamin B6 and VitB12---discontinued due to seemingly increasing depersonalization

Magnesium Glycinate & Magnesium Oil---helps me to go to sleep and stay asleep

11/14/16---slept 7 hours for the first time in 5 to 6 weeks!

ON THE ROAD TO RECOVERY & HEALING---HORRIBLE WAVE AT THE MOMENT 11/18/16 to present

Reinstated 1 mg of Zyprexa on 11/29/16

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

How are things going for you, rm?

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

Link to comment
  • 2 months later...

Hi renewed mind,

I am coming off olanapine too. Crushing the tablet or using the ODT seems to both work from what I have tried. As long as you are mixing it with the ora plus because in both kinds the olanzapine will sink. ODT Tablets only come in 5mg at the lowest. I dissolve it in 4ml of water and then add 6 ml of oraplus then I mix and take out 2.9ml which is 1.45 grams of olanzapine. You could used a crushed pill in the same solution to make the oraplus go a bit further.

How are you doing at this amount? Have you stabilized? I hope you are doing ok.

Medicine History

June 2011 I was put on 10 mg Olanzapine. I stayed on that for 7 months then went down to 5 mg for 3 months and then went down to 2.5mg and slowly went down to less than .3 every few days. I have tried to come off 4 times, each time getting down to less than .3 before having to go back on at 5mg or 2.5mg. I would cut by 50% each taper. From Jan 2015 to June 2015 I reduced from about 5mg to .3 mg. This last time I went on 2.5 mg last June 2015 until July 2, 2016. July 3, 2016 I went down to 1.25mg - withdrawal hit. Up dosed to liquid 2 mg July 23, 2016.

Medicine Current

2 mg Olanzapine as of July 23, 2016

Supplements

Omega 3 1000mg, Vitamin E 400 UI, Vitamin C 1000 mg Time Released, 200 mg Magnesium Bisglycinate, Multi Probiotic, .25 mg melatonin for 3-5 days as needed

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