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TiredDad: Helping my three girls


TiredDad

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Hi all, I have a wife tapering from Prozac, a 15yo daughter tapering from Lexapro, and a 12yo daughter tapering from Prozac. I'm exhausted.
 
WIFE
In 1999 she became very depressed shortly after we were married. After months of heartache, she was prescribed Prozac in 2000, which pulled her up from the abyss. (In hindsight, her depression was probably from the birth control pills messing with her hormones, which she began taking shortly before we were married.) She has been on Prozac most of the past 17 years, with a short stint on Zoloft. She has tried stopping cold turkey a couple times, with obvious results leading her to believe she was broken and needed the medicine. She has never been truly "happy" while on Prozac, and would describe most of her life as being under a cloud, varying in shades from light gray to black.
 
In Fall of 2016, after seeing her daughters on antidepressants with no positive results, she did some research and found Mad in America. Disgusted, she did a 1-month "taper" and felt the jarring consequences a few weeks later. Brain fog, zero motivation, headaches, stiff muscles, Low cognitive function, crying fits, etc. She quickly jumped back to 10mg Prozac, which helped reduce symptoms.
 
In Feb 2017, she began multivitamins, NeuroBalance (5htp and L-tyrosene) and L-Methionine upon the suggestion of a naturopathic Physician's Assistant. We're still not sure whether or not these things are helping or hindering, but she is doing OK right now.
 
By March of 2017, she had finally stabilized on 5mg Prozac. 
 
April 2017, she reduced to 4.5mg Prozac and has felt no negative symptoms for two months. I believe her nervous system was not harmed enough to become too sensitized, so I hope she does well as she tapers VERY slowly.
 
15-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER
This story is much sadder. She was prescribed Zoloft for anxiety in 7th grade (3 years ago). Over the years, and despite dosage increases, we never saw any reduction in anxiety symptoms, ever. We only saw the anxiety get worse.
 
Eventually by spring of 2016, on 150mg Zoloft, the anxiety was so bad, we could barely get her to school more than two days in a row, she could not socialize with friends, go to church with the family, etc. She was a non-functioning, anxious mess. This spurred my wife to do some research, and in October of 2016, they both "tapered" off of their medications over one month. Yes, basically Cold Turkey. 
 
My daughter's symptoms were far worse than my wife's. Brain zaps, fevers, panic attacks, uncontrollable sobbing, severe agitation, brain fog, sinus infection, tinnitus, fatigue, the list goes on.
 
At this point I was still in the Trust-Your-Doctor camp. So I convinced my wife we should get her back on AD's. The Pediatrician suggested Lexapro, and we complied. (My wife would have fought against this decision, except she was in the middle of her own withdrawal symptoms.)
 
In Feb 2017 we found a naturopathic clinic that had helped many people taper from antidepressants. It appears their main method is to build up 5htp and L-Methionine before beginning a 3-4 month taper. While this method may work for many, it doesn't appear to be helping my daughter. And based on my research on this site, it may be causing even more anxiety and agitation.
 
By April 11, we had tapered down to 15mg Lexapro, where she is holding.
 
June 15, We are trying to simplify her regimen, based on the 3 KIS. She was on Fish oil, Magnesium, Vitamin D, a multivitamin, NeuroBalance (5htp), L-methionine, and Lexapro. We stopped the multivitamin and Vitamin D, and we are now trying to figure out how to taper off of the Neurobalance (5htp) and L-methionine. Once her regimen is just Fish Oil, Magnesium and Lexapro, we will reinstate the slow taper.
 
Any suggestions on tapering the 5htp and the l-methionine? From my research, l-methionine may not be as "strong" as SAM-e, so it may not need as slow of a taper. Thoughts?
 
Every day is a struggle for her. She has no control over anxious thoughts which lead to debilitating anxiety. She also has a constant stuffy/runny nose, which I read can be a symptom. Before all of this, she was a talented, beautiful, athletic, artistic, kind, fun, social person. Now she can barely function on a day-to-day basis. It wrenches my soul to know that we parents played a role in harming her, even with the best intentions. 
 
12-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER
She was prescribed Prozac for anxiety in Kindergarten (6+ years ago). Yes, this fact will trigger rant-mode in many of you, which is very understandable. But please know that we are still heartbroken over our mistakes, our misguided efforts to help our children, and our trust in a healthcare system that has harmed our family in ways that may be irreparable. And another thing, my wife was severely depressed years ago, and the antidepressants were a life-saving miracle for her. So when we saw our daughters struggling with things that ostensibly came from their mother's genes, the decision to prescribe antidepressants came even easier.
 
Like our older daughter, we never saw much benefit from the Prozac with the younger, but we trusted the system and kept her on it. By 2011, she was struggling in school, so she was prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD. It helped a little. (I am currently on ADHD medication, which made that decision easier as well. I will not taper from my ADHD meds until my family reaches a point of relative stability. We just can't handle any more upheavals right now.)
 
Last year, she developed Trichotillomania, or hair-pulling. While we have suspected it came from the prozac and adhd meds in some way, we have recently made headway in this area. We have found a Naturopathic Doctor who is very thorough and careful, as opposed to all of the other doctors we have met with who already knew the answers and would not listen to anything different. This doctor did a bunch of blood tests and found she was severely low on iron and vitamin D. I guess both of these, especially iron, can affect dopamine levels, which are directly tied to Trichotillomania and ADHD symptoms. Currently, after 6 weeks on iron and Vitamin D, her hair-pulling is occurring less, as well as other symptoms that we assumed were tied to withdrawal symptoms.
 
Anyway, we began lowering her Prozac in January 2017. Because of issues we believe to be associated with low iron and vitamin D, it has been difficult to know which symptoms have been from tapering. 
 
Feb 9, we stopped her Vyvanse for ADHD. She was always on a low dose, and did not take it on weekends and during the summer, so we hoped cold turkey would be OK.
 
June 15, she is currently doing OK on 10mg Prozac. Once her iron and Vitamin D are raised to a healthy level in a few months, we will reinstate a slow taper.
 
CONCLUSION
I have left out a lot, and maybe missed some key points, but at least I have a general history down. We have made a few mistakes since trying to taper last Fall, and may still be making mistakes. This forum has been very helpful and educational. When we begin tapering again, it will be extremely slowly. I welcome any suggestions, especially regarding my older daughter, who is hurting the most.

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to TiredDad: Helping my three girls
  • Administrator

Welcome, TiredDad.

 

Very sad to see your family all struggling with possible misprescription. Your care for them is heartening.

 

About Wife:

 

1 hour ago, TiredDad said:

In Feb 2017, she began multivitamins, NeuroBalance (5htp and L-tyrosene) and L-Methionine upon the suggestion of a naturopathic Physician's Assistant. We're still not sure whether or not these things are helping or hindering, but she is doing OK right now.
 
By March of 2017, she had finally stabilized on 5mg Prozac. 
 
April 2017, she reduced to 4.5mg Prozac and has felt no negative symptoms for two months. I believe her nervous system was not harmed enough to become too sensitized, so I hope she does well as she tapers VERY slowly.

 

What kind of multivitamins is your wife taking? What times of day does she take each of her supplements and drugs?

 

Is she taking any other drugs?

 

Please see Tips for tapering off Prozac (fluoxetine)

 

About 15-year-old daughter:

 

1 hour ago, TiredDad said:

By April 11, we had tapered down to 15mg Lexapro, where she is holding.
 
June 15, We are trying to simplify her regimen, based on the 3 KIS. She was on Fish oil, Magnesium, Vitamin D, a multivitamin, NeuroBalance (5htp), L-methionine, and Lexapro. We stopped the multivitamin and Vitamin D, and we are now trying to figure out how to taper off of the Neurobalance (5htp) and L-methionine. Once her regimen is just Fish Oil, Magnesium and Lexapro, we will reinstate the slow taper.
 
Any suggestions on tapering the 5htp and the l-methionine? From my research, l-methionine may not be as "strong" as SAM-e, so it may not need as slow of a taper. Thoughts?

 

Thank you for reading 3KIS!

 

It's important to track symptom patterns for each of your family members. What time of day does your daughter take Lexapro and the other items? Does she have any symptoms after that? Please ask each to keep daily notes on paper about symptoms, when they take their drugs and supplements, and dosages.

 

This helps to see if any are causing adverse effects. A symptom, such as a surge of anxiety, that occurs every day about the same time is probably related to something else, such as taking a pill, that's on a schedule.

 

What forms do the NeuroBalance (5htp) and L-methionine come in? If they're capsules containing powder, you can pour a little powder out to take a reduced dosage. I would figure on going off one at a time, giving a month of reduction for each.

 

Eventually, you're probably going to have to measure amounts, consider using a digital scale http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1596-using-a-digital-scale-to-measure-doses/

 

About your 12-year-old:

 

1 hour ago, TiredDad said:

Feb 9, we stopped her Vyvanse for ADHD. She was always on a low dose, and did not take it on weekends and during the summer, so we hoped cold turkey would be OK.
 
June 15, she is currently doing OK on 10mg Prozac. Once her iron and Vitamin D are raised to a healthy level in a few months, we will reinstate a slow taper.

 

What are her symptoms of low iron and vitamin D?

 

Did she have any symptoms from stopping Vyvanse? Has her hair-pulling stopped?

 

I think your plan is sound, wait a bit before tackling the Prozac.

 

 

It's really too bad, adolescents and pubescents go through many different kinds of changes in personality and temperament, and these are so often misdiagnosed as needing psychiatric drugs. I sense your whole family is traumatized by this brush with psychopharmacy. You might all take a meditation class together, practicing it will bring you all closer and might be comforting -- it's a healthy way to deal with anxiety.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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DearTiredDad:

You deserve a special Father's Day Award this year for all that you have gone through! No wonder you are tired.  Your wife is lucky she has you (just as I am with my husband who has stood by me during my issues with depression and withdrawing from medication.)  You are a special breed.  :) 

With regards to your 15-year old.    Two thoughts came to mind:  Firstly: it would be good if she could develop some cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques, i.e. how to stop negative and  anxious thoughts.  No doubt the anti-depressant quick taper and then starting the lexapro has destabilized her central nervous system so that is contributing to the anxiety. But, knowing some non-drupe techniques (like CBT and meditation as Alto suggested above) could help her get through this until her brain stabilizes and settles down.  

Secondly: People of her age really need to feel loved by their parents, and it sounds like you are supportive, which is good. Anything that you can do to reassure her that she is loved, that things will work out okay in the end, that you are there for her, that she will get better and that things will be fine will go far in helping her recover from this. 

200 Zoloft; 10 mg Zyprexa; 4 mg valium as of May 2021;  Valium taper: July 16: 3.5 valium; July 30: 3 mg (paused valium taper)
Zyprexa: July 26: 8.75 mg

-------
Dec 1, 2016. 10 mg zyprexa for 1.5 month. Started taper mid-Jan. 2017. Cut 1.25 mg every 2 weeks; smaller cuts 2.5 mg down. Stopped at .6 mg. May 7, 2017: zyprexa free. 
Zoloft: Dec1, 2016, 200 mg. Started taper: Jun12, 2017: 197.5 mg; Jun19,:195 mg; July 2:185mg; July 9,:180 mg; July16,: 175; July 23: 170; July 30: 165; Aug6: 160; Aug13: 155; Aug. 20: 150; Aug.27: 146 mg; Sept3: 145 mg; Sept10:143 mg; Sept17:140 mg....Nov5: 122 mg...Dec3:112.5 mg; Jan14, 2018: 95 mg...Jan28: 90 mg; Feb21:80 mg; Mar11: 75 mg; May2:70 mg; May15: 68 mg; May28: 65 mg; Jun9: 62 mg;Jun25: 60 mg:July22: 55 mg; Aug25: 45 mg. Aug28: 50 mg...Oct 28: 38 mg; Dec.4: 30 mg; Jan8,2019: 25mg; Feb6: 23.5 mg; Apr1:17.5mg; May1:1 mg; May 5: 18;  May 18:15mg; June 16:12.5mg; Sept 10:11 mg; Sept.16:10 mg; Oct. 1: 9mg; Nov. 27: 8mg; Dec.5: 7mg; Jan.1,2020, 6 mg; Feb1: 5 mg; May 1: 2.5 mg; Jn 1: 2 mg; Jy 1: 1.5 mg

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  • Administrator

Good suggestions, Madeleine.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi TiredDad,

I agree with the others, you definitely deserve an award. I'm so sorry for what has happened to your family, please don't blame yourself. We all do the best we can with what we know. When we know better, we do better, which is what you are doing now. I'm glad you found this site.

 

I wanted to share something which happened to me, because its similar to what your 12 year old experienced. Stimulant medications caused me to have dermatillomania (skin picking) which is similar to what your daughter has developed. Mine started when I was put on a stimulant weight loss drug. The picking continued for the whole time I was taking that drug. When I stopped taking the drug, the compulsive picking slowed considerably, but was still there a little bit. I was also taking lexapro at the time. I came off lexapro too fast and was experiencing withdrawal symptoms, then I was diagnosed with ADHD and started stimulant medication for that. Dermatillomania returned worse than ever and remained for about 18 months even after I stopped taking the stimulant medications. It subsided slowly and is now gone completely.

 

I just wanted to make you aware that these kinds of compulsive behaviors can be caused by amphetamine type drugs in some people and that the symptoms don't always stop right away after ceasing the drug, it may take some time.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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Thanks Altostrata, Madeleine, and Petunia for your encouraging words. 

 

What multivitamins is your wife taking?

Wife takes a multivitamin from a local naturopathic clinic, they label it Alpine Custom Complete. Full dose is 2 pills, 3 times per day, but she usually only takes 4 of the 6. I can get the full ingredients if you'd like. 

 

What times of day does she take each of her supplements and drugs?

~9AM:

- 4.5mg Prozac

- 2 Neurobalance (full ingredients listed below)

- 1 L-Methionine (500mg)

- 2 Alpine Custom Complete multi.

- 5000 iu Vitamin D

- 1400 mg fish oil

- 200mg magnesium amino acid chelate

- 800mg Wild Green Oat Extract (Dopa-Mind™) (supposedly to help with brain fog, may stop soon, not sure if/how it's helping.)

~5PM

- 2 Neurobalance

- 1 L-Methionine

- 2 Alpine Custom Complete multi.

 

Is she taking any other drugs?

Not at the moment.

 

Wife is actually doing relatively well. Most days she's actually better than before we began this process; I don't think she's been injured like my 15yo has. She just met with a new Naturopathic Doctor (who we like much better than the one who recommended the NeuroBalance and L-Methionine). This Dr. strongly agrees that any AD tapering should be very slow, and helped a friend of ours through a multi-year taper off of benzos. We're still unsure how much this Dr. truly understands withdrawal syndrome, so we're taking things slow with him. He wants her to do a gut-reset diet because of bloating and possible infection, which will involve some new supplements, and said her hormones are all messed up (horrible hysterectomy, ovary removal, endometriosis removal a couple years ago) and wants her on hormone therapy. Yes, wife is a carnival of issues. :)

 

 

15-year-old Daughter:

 

What time of day does your daughter take Lexapro and the other items?

Same time as wife, usually.

 

Does she have any symptoms after that?

This is an interesting question. I'm seeing a possible flaw in my observations over the past few months. I haven't really looked for immediate or same-day symptoms. My mindset has always been to wait a few days and see if there are any subtle changes. This could be big. The funny thing is, I've read so many stories on here, and members talking about same-day reactions to starting or stopping supplements, but I never really applied it to my own daughter's experience. As I type this I am seeing multiple recent events that could actually be tied to same-day supplement changes and not just environmental factors or just "rough days." I will talk to her about at least texting me if she notices a surge in anxiety or other changes that occur. (I don't think she has the capacity to do the pencil/paper thing, and a text will give us a timestamp.)

 

What forms do the NeuroBalance (5htp) and L-methionine come in?

Both come in capsules/powder, so we'll look into liquid titration, if that's the term. Already own a digital scale. :)

 

NeuroBalance ingredients:

- 100mg Vitamin C

- 20mg B-3 (Niacinamide

- 20mg B-6 (Pyridoxine HCI and Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate)

- 25mcg B-12 (Methylcobalimin)

- 1g L-Tyrosene

- 100mg 5-HTP

- 50mg Taurine

- 50mg Rhodiola

 

It would be good if she could develop some cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques:

She has actually been seeing a therapist who she likes, weekly. (We went through a few therapists. It's amazing how there's such a broad the spectrum of competency in therapists.) This one has been amazing at helping her with validation, mindfulness, controlling anxious thoughts, dealing with stressful situations, facts vs. perception. While these techniques can be hard for an injured, highly anxious nervous system to grasp and use, they should be very helpful for the rest of her life.

 

12-year-old Daughter:

 

What are her symptoms of low iron and vitamin D?

Low cognition, ADHD symptoms, RLS symptoms, low energy, agitation/impatience, loss of coordination, pale features. She's doing much better on an aggressive iron/D regimen, all of these symptoms seem to be improving. RLS symptoms, which were very bad and scary, are totally gone. Hair-pulling has reduced by 75% by my estimation. Plus she tells me she can often stop the urge when it comes, which was impossible before.


Did she have any symptoms from stopping Vyvanse? Has her hair-pulling stopped?

This was tough to see, because we had also lowered her prozac by 25% not long before. Between that, going off Vyvanse, and apparent low iron/D, she was a horrible mess for a while. I'm not sure what symptoms came from stopping Vyvanse, though I strongly believe the hair-pulling can be at least partly attributed to starting her on vyvanse, as Petunia mentioned. We had read similar stories and had suspicions. 

 

Right now, 12yo is doing well. It helps that school is out. Homework and school attendance were a nightmare for her this year. Dr. did some food sensitivity blood work because of her drastically low iron/D (everyone has low iron/D, but hers were dangerously low,) which showed inflammation from all of the regular food she eats, which is an indicator of malabsorption issues, possibly leaky gut, or something I guess. So now we're waiting for results from a Celiac test. Fingers crossed it's not that.

 

So many words. Feeling like a novelist. :)

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • Administrator

Where a person has some kind of digestive upset, a non-irritating diet, starting with an elimination diet, can be helpful. Chicken and rice are staples.

 

Digestive problems: Nausea, Diarrhea, Bloating, GERD

 

I hope your naturopath is sensible about diets, there are some wacky recommendations out there. We do not recommend any kind of purging or liver cleansing as they stress the body and nervous system and are of dubious value. Paleo isn't for everybody, the absence of complex carbs can lead to low blood sugar, which triggers adrenaline and anxiety.

 

Antidepressants and amphetamine analogs such as Vyvanse can cause anxiety and self-injury behaviors such as hair-pulling -- and even worse -- particularly in adolescents.

 

I am concerned about the NeuroBalance. Most supplements of this type, claiming to "balance" neurotransmitters or some such, are wastes of money.

 

- 100mg Vitamin C <-- very low dose, harmless

- 20mg B-3 (Niacinamide <-- very low dose, harmless

- 20mg B-6 (Pyridoxine HCI and Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate) <-- large dose, can cause anxiety

- 25mcg B-12 (Methylcobalimin) <-- very low dose, harmless

- 1g L-Tyrosene <-- large dose, can cause anxiety

- 100mg 5-HTP <-- may add to stimulation fron SSRI, contraindicated. Also requires tapering.

- 50mg Taurine <-- can be stimulating for some people

- 50mg Rhodiola <-- can be stimulating for some people

 

In general, the B vitamins (B-3, B-6, B-12, etc.) can cause anxiety. There are many people here who are so sensitive, they cannot take any B vitamins at all, even the trivial amounts in multivitamins.

 

I'd watch out for the L-Methionine, too. Some people find it overstimulating. Same with vitamin D (should be taken as D3).

 

You'll need to isolate the effects of each supplement, change one at a time. One way to find out if a particular supplement is causing a problem is to take it at a different time than the other supplements, then record reactions, if any, most of which will happen fairly quickly.

 

If any of your females are experiencing anxiety shortly after taking NeuroBalance, I would gradually discontinue it.

 

Magnesium and fish oil tend to be calming and help the nervous system to settle down. See

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

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

The dosage of both, taken in divided doses throughout the day, is higher than your wife is taking. Your daughters may benefit from taking these two supplements, too. Magnesium is especially good for restless legs.

 

 

 

 

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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The Naturopath seems reasonable so far, no drastic cleanses or anything. Plus we're taking his suggestions at our own pace. If we're not comfortable with things, we let him know.

 

I, too, am very concerned about the NeuroBalance. A thought: I have a bottle of Natrol® 100mg 5-HTP time-release tablet, with a small tiny amount of calcium. Since the 5-HTP is the only thing that requires tapering, could I safely switch straight over from the NeuroBalance to the single 5-HTP tablet? Then many of the possible stimulating agents are removed from the regimen, and we can more easily focus on tapering the 5-HTP? Also how slow should the 5-HTP taper be? No need to taper the L-Methionine?

 

15yo daughter also takes magnesium and fish oil like her mom. 12yo is stubborn about the fish oil, but takes it occasionally.

 

Thanks so much for the advice and support!

 

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Fish oil in a capsule is much easier to take.  TiredDad - you are doing great, my hat's off to you caring for your girls like this. 

 

5-htp For your information, but I shall let Alto or another mod answer your specific questions. 

 

For yourself, a quality vitamin C might help with fatigue.  I started one a year ago, and it helped noticeably.  Buffered varieties are gentler on the stomach.   

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

About trichotillomania -- if you're interested in more information and specific support for that, the TLC Foundation for Body-Focused Repetitive Disorders (BFRD) may be a helpful resource.  The foundation was started by a woman who engaged in "trich/TTM" for years and has since expanded to include other BFRD.

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 post

ufff..poor you! My mum was busy sort of 24/7 with me when WD kicked in and thar was exhausting for her! These 3 ladies are lucky to have you! you are so well informed, that is amazing! As for the "mistakes" you talked about: your daughters are young and even if they are going through a very hard time right now, they have plenty plenty plenty of time left in their life for being WD and meds- free!!!! And your wife is doing pretty well you said, that's great! you'll all get through this and now you know what to expect of these drugs and never walk the same path again. 

wishing your family all the best! 

 

2005-2006: Cipralex 5 mg

2009-2010: Cipralex 5 mg

2012-2015: Cipralex 5mg, 10mg 

tapered 10mg-7.5mg-5mg-2,5-0 (I always waited for a few weeks on the current dosage until I felt stable. Steps were too big I realized too late)

Completely drug free since August 2015

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Lots of respect to you TiredDad. What's more valuable in life than seeing a smile on your daughter's face?

 

You seem to be well-informed about drugs and the harmful effects they might have. I don't have much to add to that. Others who know much more about it have already replied.

 

I do have have some experience with anxiety though. Just like drugs can have contra-productive effects, our minds can also be set against ourselves, producing fearful thoughts at any time. It is possible to reclaim your life back from a broken mind. But, just like with the drugs, it all starts with the awareness that a mind producing such thoughts is not for you, but against you.

 

In short these things are helpful when dealing with anxiety:

  - cognitive therapy (revealing trauma,     wrong structural thought patterns,...)

  - love, friendship (there's another world outside of thought)

  - dailty self therapy. Get aware it's your own thoughts producing your pain.

 

This was not an easy road for me. You could probably help your girls by delving a bit into it yourself. Do you know Guy Finley? You could perhaps watch a couple of his vids on YT.

 

Took my first SSRI sipralexa/lexapro/escitalopram in 2007 for depression. In 2010 the doctor switched me to paroxetine/seroxat/paxil for anxiety.

My paroxetine story from then on:

 

2010-15 from 10mg up to 20mg

jan 2016 30mg

may 2016 0mg cold turkey (don't!)

dec 2016 symptoms: anxiety, tremor (could barely stand)

jan 2017 reinstated at 7.5mg to taper in steps of 10%

...

Dose changes from may 2017 to now: 

5.0/4.7/4.4/4.0/3.7/3.5/3.3/3.1mg

Link to post

Thank you KarenB, Scallywag, Pepita, and miT for the encouraging words and advice!

 

On 6/17/2017 at 0:13 PM, Altostrata said:

 

- 100mg Vitamin C <-- very low dose, harmless

- 20mg B-3 (Niacinamide <-- very low dose, harmless

- 20mg B-6 (Pyridoxine HCI and Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate) <-- large dose, can cause anxiety

- 25mcg B-12 (Methylcobalimin) <-- very low dose, harmless

- 1g L-Tyrosene <-- large dose, can cause anxiety

- 100mg 5-HTP <-- may add to stimulation fron SSRI, contraindicated. Also requires tapering.

- 50mg Taurine <-- can be stimulating for some people

- 50mg Rhodiola <-- can be stimulating for some people

 

 

 

For Altostrata I guess:

 

Any recommendation on how slowly we should taper 5-HTP?

 

All of the other ingredients can be stopped cold turkey, right?

 

Our old Naturopath said L-methionine should be taken with 5-HTP, I don't recall the reasoning. So if it doesn't require tapering, are we safe to just stop the L-meth while tapering the 5-HTP?

 

Another thought: One of the withdrawal effects that has lingered with older daughter has been a chronic stuffy/sneezy/runny nose, especially in the mornings. I've read on this site and others about withdrawals messing with histamines, lymph nodes, etc. Any suggestions on safely helping reduce her nasal symptoms? 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

Link to post

TiredDad -

 

Your story broke my heart and lifted my spirits. It is so sad to see the medical community once again leading people - especially young people - down the drug path. They are so under-informed and too beholden to the drug industry. But your love and concern and bravery in the face of all of this is inspiring!

 

The admins here will give you great advice on the tapering and supplement issues. I am just chiming in with love and prayers!

 

SJ

 

Main thread: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/14472-shakeyjerr-say-hello/

History: Prozac & Lithium from 1999 to 2003. Ended up back on after 4 months because taking a beta-blocker caused immediate depression (just 2 doses - turned out I didn't even need it; I had no other withdrawal symptoms - I might have ended up med and withdrawal-free otherwise :(). - Switched to Effexor (75mg 3/day) and Seroquel (50mg 3/day) in 2010. - Did a self-taper during 2016. - Developed Discontinuation Syndrome 02/17.

Supplements: Magnesium-Glycinate 400mg split into 4 100mg doses throughout the day. Vitamin C 500mg - once per day. Fish Oil 1360 mg (950 mg Active Omega-3) - twice per day.

I'm not a doctor. I use the internet, experience, and trial & error. Seek medical advice if necessary.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

This is just a gut-feel guess about tapering the NeuroBalance product -- I wouldn't attempt more than a 25% reduction to start. You may wish to be more conservative and try 10%.  Stay at that dose for a week and monitory symptoms. If it's not too much work to decrease the L-methionine at the same rate as the other supplement do that.

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 post

DrugfreeProf, thanks for the empathy and good advice about naturopath path. :)

 

ShakeyJerr, thanks for the supportive reply.

 

scallywag, we have begun on a 25% reduction on the 5-HTP, but won't taper the L-methionine until later. I'll update on how it's going.

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • 3 months later...

Quick update:

 

WIFE

Wife continues to taper her liquid Prozac by one "notch" in her syringe every 4-6 weeks. Withdrawal symptoms seem to be mild: fatigue (she's always had it), impatience (or is that just parenthood?), tight neck & headache.

 

16-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER

Tapering Lexapro. ~.75mg every 4-6 weeks. Doing as well as we could hope. We have not seen any more bad symptoms besides constant stuffy nose. Her anxiety is always high.

 

She has shown great strides, but still struggles daily. It seems removing fortified foods and all supplements besides Fish Oil and Magnesium has helped. She has lowered her 5-htp by 25% but held there. Still takes L-Methionine. We considered tapering off both of those, but have delayed since she's doing OK while tapering LexaPro. 

 

SUCCESS STORY: She went on her first date with a boy to her school's Homecoming Dance. While it brought up extra anxiety for 1.5 weeks, she pushed through and had a wonderful time. She even said her date seemed to have more anxiety than she did. So while she struggles a lot, she can still find plenty of joy in life. She has not missed one day of school yet this first month.

 

We have seen amazing results from working with a therapist. She shows signs of "re-wiring" of her brain, where she sometimes catches Automatic Negative Thought on her own, and is more mindful of how her anxious brain affects her.

 

12-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER

Her taper from Prozac seems to be going well. Going down ~1mg every 3-4 weeks since summer.

 

Her Trichotillomania (hair pulling) is about 5% of what it was last school season. Her beautiful golden hair is growing back; she is only a couple months away from not needing her mother's brilliant, strategic ponytail/braid solutions. Stress triggers the desire to pull, and restarting school has been slightly problematic but under control.

 

She's in a crazy growth spurt right now, and has become a bottomless pit for food. We hope it's a positive thing, as she has never eaten much and has always been underweight. We also fear some type of nutritional absorption issue. Also, she had her first menstrual cycle in august, which lasted over 1 week. Then she seemed to have another one only 2 weeks later! I don't know if any of this is related to her medication, but thought I should mention it. 

 

Our biggest concern for her now is her ADHD/cognition/memory. It seems to be worsening. She is worse at math, writing, problem solving, follow-through than when she was in 3rd grade. We know she KNOWS the answer, but her brain just won't organize itself enough to even write it down. My evenings are spent sitting next to her as the "focus factor" to keep her on homework tasks. Then even when she gets her homework finished, she never turns it in. 

 

SUCCESS STORY: While she struggles with anxiety and horrid ADHD symptoms, we approached the school year more prepared than last year. She has a kind school counselor with an open door policy for her, and we have spoken with nearly every one of her teachers in person regarding her struggles. Most are super supportive and helpful. For the first time EVER (7 years), she will walk into school on her own. She still has the same anxiety, or even more, so approaching school with clear communication and proper structure has made the difference.

 

She is beginning to see the same therapist as her older sister.

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Update:

 

WIFE

She seems to be having a hard time since the latest taper. More depressed. She calls it "flatline." She sleeps for 2-3 hours after sending the kids to school, and rests again in the afternoon. No mental energy either. We're holding longer until the next taper. I'm researching nutrition depletion due to prozac to see what she could be missing. I found the forum thread on Co-enzyme Q10, and will have her try it for a couple weeks. She doesn't react to B vitamins like the older daughter, so we'll also try higher doses of those, one at a time, in addition to, or in place of, her multivitamin.

 

16-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER

Tapering her Lexapro seems to be going well. The trouble we're having seems to be nutritional. She generally avoids fortified foods. Two weeks ago during vacation, it was difficult to avoid fortified breads, but she did OK, anxiety was manageable. Then she had a small capful of 5-Hour Energy, literally a few drops. Anxiety built up over the next few days to the unbearable point that she missed a lot of school and could barely function. It's been 11 days and she is still suffering though improving slowly. This disaster has re-emphasized the importance of watchful nutrition for her, and us. I know 5-hour energy is some harsh stuff, with a ton of B vitamins and activating amino acids, but I still let my guard down for a small capful of it. LESSON LEARNED. 

 

12-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER

She is doing really well, considering. Her taper is more aggressive than her sister and mom, and she doesn't show any problem with it. Her Trichotillomania is still far better. On "bad" days she says she'll pull 10-20 hairs, and that's usually during Math class or doing homework at home. Some days she won't even pull. 

 

Last week we met with a Functional Neurologist to help with her concentration, memory recall, and overall cognitive impairment (She is worse at math than she was three years ago.) His tests showed an underdeveloped parietal lobe, and gave us some fun, goofy physical exercises to help stimulate it. This guy was 110% confident this would help her. He also claimed he could fix every ailment known to humanity, which was a red flag for me. But we had heard good things about him from families we trust. So I remain hopeful-yet-skeptical.

 

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

Link to post

Hi TiredDad, thanks so much for posting this update for us - I'm sure there are plenty of us who wonder how you are all coming along. 

 

So many positives in your update, esp around Miss 16's taper as well as Miss 12. Let's hope the Func.Neurologist is as effective as he is self-assured! 

 

You didn't mention yourself, how are you going?  xxxmollyn

 

 

Drug history

  • 20mg paxil in 2001 - 4 months use  
  • 20mg paxil in 2003 - 2 months use 
  • 20mg paxil in 2008 - 8 years continuous

Withdrawal history:

  • March 2014 - disastrous alternate day taper
  • Jan 2015 - 15mg to 10mg. Disaster
  • Sept 2015 -  10mg to 5mg. Disaster. Reinstated to 6mg. Relief
  • Oct 2015 - started slow 10% taper 
  • Oct 2016 - at 4mg- stop taking paxil (not recommended)

 

I'm not a medical professional. Seek advice from a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

Link to post

Thanks Molly for the positivity, and for asking about me.

 

I'm doing OK, though strung out and stretched thin. But I still have it easy compared to what my girls are going through; at least I have the physical/mental/emotional capacity to continue supporting and helping them while stretched thin. It's difficult to accept how life has ground to a halt for our family, but I'm seeing glimmers of hope for a healthy, happy life somewhere in the future.

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

Link to post
2 hours ago, TiredDad said:

It's difficult to accept how life has ground to a halt for our family, but I'm seeing glimmers of hope for a healthy, happy life somewhere in the future.

 

 

Oh isn't that the truth!! Learning to accept how it looks now and how and what we'll achieve - good grief that takes quite some doing!! Letting go of how it's supposed to look if you are 

'me' or 'my wife' or 'our family' - wow - quite a bit of grief attached to the loss of the dreams of all that.. I could go on and on lol but it's your thread :D Thanks for leading me to reflect on that TiredDad.

 

 

 

Drug history

  • 20mg paxil in 2001 - 4 months use  
  • 20mg paxil in 2003 - 2 months use 
  • 20mg paxil in 2008 - 8 years continuous

Withdrawal history:

  • March 2014 - disastrous alternate day taper
  • Jan 2015 - 15mg to 10mg. Disaster
  • Sept 2015 -  10mg to 5mg. Disaster. Reinstated to 6mg. Relief
  • Oct 2015 - started slow 10% taper 
  • Oct 2016 - at 4mg- stop taking paxil (not recommended)

 

I'm not a medical professional. Seek advice from a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

Link to post
  • 6 months later...

Hi everyone, this post is about my 16yo daughter who is doing the worst.

 

We have tapered slowly from 20mg over the past year to 10mg Lexapro 8 weeks ago, holding there. Over the past 4 months she has seen a very rapid increase in Anxiety, OCD, and full-on Tourette Syndrome. She is now home-schooling half of her classes, no longer socializes with friends, spends most of the day in our bedroom, and even sleeps in our bedroom. She reacts intensely to any negative action from us, (even a raised eyebrow mid-conversation that could hint at disagreement or disappointment.)

 

This has rocked us hard. I'm not sure how much longer we can survive this rapid decline.

 

QUESTION 1:

My question—besides WTF?—is could these be symptoms of withdrawal syndrome despite our slow taper? I have a suspicion that since we've seen hints of OCD before we began tapering, so how do we know if symptoms are from withdrawal syndrome or already exist? She NEVER had tics or Tourette's before tapering.

 

QUESTION 2:

We don't have a doctor we really trust well. So I'd like to be armed with some documentation specific to Lexapro side effects AND Lexapro withdrawal symptoms. Can someone point me in the right direction? 

 

QUESTON 3:

Her therapist, who has been very supportive of our concerns about medication, has referred us to Tourette Specialists. But deep down I feel like it's a symptom, not a cause. Is it possible the tourette symptoms have arisen because this whole time our daughter has been suffering from OCD more than Anxiety, and the wrong kind of therapy has exacerbated her condition?

 

 

 

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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I’m also very sensitive to looks, grins, etc.. Withdrawal adds to the hypersensitivity.

OCD also gets worse in withdrawal. It’s like these neuro-emotions suck out the bad thoughts. In a window you finally get some relief.

I personally have muscle spasms and tics from these drugs. I guess they might be misinterpreted as tourette. Never even crossed my mind, it’s just withdrawal.

 

 

Took my first SSRI sipralexa/lexapro/escitalopram in 2007 for depression. In 2010 the doctor switched me to paroxetine/seroxat/paxil for anxiety.

My paroxetine story from then on:

 

2010-15 from 10mg up to 20mg

jan 2016 30mg

may 2016 0mg cold turkey (don't!)

dec 2016 symptoms: anxiety, tremor (could barely stand)

jan 2017 reinstated at 7.5mg to taper in steps of 10%

...

Dose changes from may 2017 to now: 

5.0/4.7/4.4/4.0/3.7/3.5/3.3/3.1mg

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  • Administrator
Altostrata

I have never heard of Tourette's emerging as a withdrawal symptom, can you tell us more about how your daughter manifests it?

 

Puberty is such a difficult time.....

 

Probably good to hold on tapering for a while. Is she taking magnesium and fish oil?

 

Many people do better with fish oil and magnesium supplements, see
http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/15483-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/

 

A lot of people find them helpful. Could be good for your entire family. Try a little bit of one at a time to see what the effect might be.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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She takes magnesium and Fish Oil daily, and nothing else besides 10mg Lexapro.

 

She ended a 5-week regimen of A-drenal supplement 2 weeks ago to relieve her fatigue, and it worked really well in bringing her back to functional energy. I suspect it could have added to some anxiety, based on some of the ingredients, but this downturn had begun long before we started her on that. And things have continued to worsen since ending the supplement.

 

I will call them "tics" instead of "Tourette Syndrome," since she hasn't been diagnosed. I think it's good to know you've never of it as a withdrawal symptom. Maybe that can help us with diagnoses moving forward. As I said previously, I suspect a misdiagnosis of OCD, which can sometimes have symptomatic similarities with Tourette Syndrome. 

 

The tics always manifest themselves when she is under duress, which is anytime she is not distracting herself with episodes of The Office. They are uncontrollable in that she can't keep them in while under stress while in a safe environment at home. She can mostly control them when she's at school or in public, but it's exhausting. They include: F-word, flipping "the bird," saying things like "i'm going to die," neck shrugs, grabbing things, like the arm of someone near her, repeating noises and words. 

 

 

 

 

 

DAUGHTER 1 (16 years): 2014: Prescribed Zoloft for anxiety. --- 2016 Mar: Increased to 150mg Zoloft. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" to zero. --- 2016 Nov: Started 20mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Jan-Apr: Tapered to 15mg Lexapro. --- 2017 Feb: Began NeuroBalance (5-htp) and L-Methionine (trying to taper them now). --- 2017 Sep: 12mg Lexapro. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Lexapro ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 10mg.

 

DAUGHTER 2 (13 years): ~2010: Prescribed Prozac for anxiety in KINDERGARTEN. (I know, don't get me started). --- ~2012: Prescribed Vyvanse for ADHD symptoms, relatively low dose during school season. --- 2017 Jan: Lowered from 20mg to 15mg Prozac. --- 2017 Feb: Stopped Vyvanse CT. --- 2017 Mar: Dropped to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 May: New Dr. found low iron & vitamin D. Supplementing. --- 2017 Sep: 6mg Prozac. 

CURRENTLY (MAY 2018): Tapering Prozac ~10%/4-6 weeks. Holding at 1.5mg.

 

WIFE: 2000: Diagnosed w/Depression, Prescribed Prozac. (hindsight, most-likely hormone issues) ... Tried CT a few times. --- 2016 Oct: 1-month "taper" from 40mg Prozac to zero. Brain fog, headaches, etc. --- 2016 Nov: Back to 10mg Prozac. --- 2017 Jan: CT Prozac again. --- 2017 Feb: Back to 5mg Prozac. Stabilized after a few weeks. Began NeuroBalance and L-Methionine. --- 2017 Apr: 4.5mg Prozac. --- 2017 Sep: 4mg. 

CURRENTLY (OCT 2017): Tapering Prozac 1 syringe "notch"/4-6 weeks. Currently ~2.5mg.

 

ME: This is exhausting on all levels.

 

 

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  • Administrator
Altostrata

Does she know why she does this? Can you ask her what she's feeling when she behaves this way? It doesn't sound like Tourette's.

 

Is she having waves of bad feelings? Surges of anxiety? Electrical sensations?

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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