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DaveB: trying to stop a roller coaster year


DaveB

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Hi, I will try to keep it brief, but I am in desperate need of advice. I am a 34YO Male, my 1st bout of anxiety happened 10 years ago when I experienced a very stressful time in my life. I had my 1st child, started MBA school, and opened my own business all within a 3 month span. Had a panic attack one night, and what followed was a year of high general anxiety, with some intrusive OCDish thoughts sprinkled in.

 

After a year I decided I would give meds a try. Tried Buspar...did nothing except make me dizzy. Tried Zoloft, and this was the magic bullet for me. Felt my anxiety lesson (after a brief increase) after about 3-4 weeks and after a few months I was back to myself.

 

During this time I would have blips (one to two week periods when my anxiety would resurface, usually requiring a dose tweak and then would go back to normal. These would usually happen when I was eating bad, not exercising ect). At the start of my Zoloft experience I at one point got up to 150mgs, but in the last 4-5 years was on the minimum dose of 50mgs after I got generally healthier and added a multivitamin and fish oil supplement.  

 

Because of these blips, and the fact I was afraid to go back to the year of anxiety, I stayed on the Zoloft probably longer than I should have. It was 8 years later (October 2016) when I finally said, "heck I don't need these anymore". My prescription ran out and I just decided not to refill it. I went through most of the withdrawl symptoms, some brain-zaps, lots of light-headedness and dizziness, ect. That went away after about 3 weeks and for 3 months I felt great, totally off meds and totally back to normal.

 

At the end of January this year, I started to have another "blip." I wasn't eating healthy and not exercising as much and decided I would be "proactive" and resume the Zoloft at my previous dose of 50mgs to nip it in the bud. This sent my anxiety through the roof but thought my body would adjust so I continued taking them. I was so scared of the increased anxiety though I didn't give it a fair shot and kept increasing and decreasing the dosage from 25 to 50mgs every week or so.

 

Finally got into a p-doc and he gave me Lexapro, 5mgs for the 1st week and 10mgs after that...long story short, it did the same thing as the Zoloft and wasn't much better after 7 weeks. 

 

At this point I figured, "wow I wasn't this bad before, I will just go off of these!" Well unfortunately my month of no meds did not return me to my January self, in fact it was probably worse than on the meds! So then the doctor gave me pregabalin, which helped a little, but is crazy expensive and not covered by insurance.

 

So on June 1st I started Paxil, 10 mgs for the 1st week and 20mgs after that, hoping the pregabalin can help me to get on them. I really want to be off meds, but don't think I am mentally able to at this point. It seems quitting the Zoloft cold turkey, then reinstating, I am much more sensitive to these drugs, does that make any sense? So I am hopeful I can eventually give a med (Paxil) enough time that my body will desensitize to it, and I can be on it for a bit to get stable again, then get off.

 

Anybody experienced anything like this? Will my body desensitize? I am so desperate to feel normal again, I am a father of 3 (10YO Boy, 7YO Boy, 3YO Girl), a husband to an amazing wife, and they need their Dad and Husband back! What should I do? Give Paxil the time to desensitize, then get off after a few months? Is the fish-oil supplement that I still take that helped me reduce my dose of Zoloft causing me to be more sensitive? Quit everything and see what happens?

 

Thanks in advance for reading my story and giving any advice or encouragement. 

Edited by DaveB
added white space

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Utah49er: need advice
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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Utah - Welcome to SA,

 

3 hours ago, Utah49er said:

It seems quitting the Zoloft cold turkey, then reinstating, I am much more sensitive to these drugs, does that make any sense?

 

Makes perfect sense.  With each change you've made (up or down in dose, off or on another drug), your Central Nervous System has become one step further destabilised. 

 

The first step is to get stabilised (which will probably take at least two or three months).  I would suggest giving yourself a good chance of stabilising at 10mg, if you have not yet gone up to 20mg Paxil.  This is because during your month of no drugs, you will have partially adjusted to lower doses. 

 

While you are waiting to stabilise, you can set things up to ease the upcoming taper.  This includes things like cleaning up your diet, starting Fish oil and Magnesium, and bringing into your life some self-care techniques.

 

Please put your withdrawal history in your signature – all drugs/dates/dosages etc. so we can see your situation easily whenever you post, and help you more accurately.  Thanks.  When did you start pregabalin? 

 

The second step is to try a 10% (or less) reduction.  We recommend a gentle taper, reducing by no more than 10% of your current dose each month.  This allows your brain time to adjust as you go, and lessens any withdrawal.  

 

The troublesome thing with SSRIs is that you can't just flush their effects out of your system.  They change the way your brain works, and that takes much longer to heal.  Suddenly stopping the drug puts your brain and Central Nervous System into shock.  It's like yanking a trellis out of a garden instead of gently untangling the plants and slowly removing the wood – it’s too much trauma for the plants/your brain.  (For the source of that simile, plus further discussion, see http://survivinganti...el-your-brain/)

 

Have a read of those and then you can come back to this thread to discuss things further.  This can be your journal to record your tapering and healing progress, and to ask questions. With time and good care, you will be able to one day be off this drug. 

 

Melt into your own life

Welcome to SA,

Karen

Edited by KarenB

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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Hi Utah -

 

Your story really resonated with me. Like you, I had situation-induced anxiety (and depression in my case) and ended up on the medical merry-go-round (which is not so merry!). I am also a husband and a father, and know full well how going through recovery can affect one's family. Our boats are similar.

 

As you will learn here, the dosage changes, cold turkeys, fast tapers, and so on - along with the medications themselves - will cause your neurotransmitters to fluctuate, your synapses to down-regulate, and your central nervous system to go into shock.

 

But the good news is that with time and proper diet, you will heal!

 

A couple of notes of caution:

 

1) Avoid "magic bullet" thinking. While certain lifestyle changes and supplements will help, there is no "cure." Break the "cure" thinking - that's what got all of us into this mess. Think in terms of  "aids."

 

2) Introduce one supplement at a time, at a very low dose. Give it a week to see how you react. Do not abandon the supplement in a day or two just because you are feeling bad - but do abandon it if you get a sudden adverse reaction, either physically or mentally. After you give it a week, you can slowly start increasing the dose over the course of several weeks. Once you feel good about that supplement, move on to the next.

 

3) Generally speaking, the most successful supplements seem to be magnesium and fish oil. There are threads dedicated to them here where you can get specific advice.

 

4) Practice mindful breathing. Use it whenever you feel anxiety coming on. The goal is to breath deeply through your mouth into your belly, and then exhale completely through your nose. Slow and steady pace - no gasping in or rushing the air out.

 

And most importantly of all - know that the people here are loving and helpful. Never hesitate to post on your thread or reach out. Share your emotions, ask for advice, look for comfort. That's what SA is here for!

 

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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13 hours ago, KarenB said:

Makes perfect sense.  With each change you've made (up or down in dose, off or on another drug), your Central Nervous System has become one step further destabilised. 

 

The first step is to get stabilised (which will probably take at least two or three months).  I would suggest giving yourself a good chance of stabilising at 10mg, if you have not yet gone up to 20mg Paxil.  This is because during your month of no drugs, you will have partially adjusted to lower doses. 

 So I should continue to take my current meds for 2-3 months to stabilize? No upping or lowering doses? I am currently taking 2g of Omega 3 fish oil (EPA - 690mgs, DHA - 250mgs) as well as Magnesium Citrate of 250mgs, a multivitamin and a probiotic. 

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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Also, I meant to add I have been taking Omega 3s since August of 2012 and they were a big reason why I was able to reduce my dose of Zoloft from 150mgs to 50mgs. I was then on 50mgs pretty much solidly for 4 years, until quitting entirely in October. I had just always been told 50mgs was the "lowest dose" of Zoloft, so I just (stupidly) simply quit taking it. Was fine for three months after some initial withdrawal symptoms, anxiety started to creep back in at the end of January. So I tried to reinstate Zoloft at 50mgs to be "proactive" and I have been riding this anxiety whirlwind ever since. After reading info on this site, I have seen I have pretty much done the wrong thing at every turn, including switching meds when after a month trial they "aren't working." So I am now here looking for advice on what to do now going forward so I don't continue to make the wrong choices and can stabilize myself to get back to some kind of normalcy for my wife and kids. 

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Yes, keeping doses the same is what helps your brain and CNS to settle down.  When changes are made, your brain has to respond each time by trying to adjust to the new levels.  Eventually it gets very stressed by the constant adaptions. 

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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38 minutes ago, KarenB said:

Yes, keeping doses the same is what helps your brain and CNS to settle down.  When changes are made, your brain has to respond each time by trying to adjust to the new levels.  Eventually it gets very stressed by the constant adaptions. 

 

Is this common when stopping an SSRI and then restarting a few months later? I really didn't feel THAT bad, just had some anxiety coming back in January after being off Zoloft since October. Thought I was being "proactive." Doctor was surprised I was having such a bad "start-up" anxiety after being off of them only a few months. So by staying at my current dose of Paxil and Pregabalin I will be giving my brain and CNS the time it needs to calm down and heal? I am really just experiencing anxiety (but it is really bad), not really and depression. I am quite shaky all the time in my hands too, probably due to the anxiety.

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Anxiety is one of the most commonly felt withdrawal symptoms.  Reinstatement was absolutely the right idea, though we would have suggested reinstating at a lower dose, as your brain would have partially adapted to having less of the drug.  It is probable that the 20mg was too high. 

 

I'll check with the other mods about what they think about staying at that dose, or dropping back to the 10mg more quickly, since you've only been at 20mg for 10 days now. 

 

 

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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Is it bad that I am on a different med than I was for 8 years? I mean, I am essentially "re-instating" a drug I never have taken, or can the SSRIs be pretty much interchangeable? Obviously looking back I should have reinstated on Zoloft at a much lower dose than the 50mgs I had previously taken, and then gone from there, but I guess I am in a different situation now, and just have to know how to move forward to make sure I quit making mistakes and let my brain stabilize.  

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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For what it is worth, today has been a better day, so maybe my brain is starting to adapt to the 20mgs of Paxil? Maybe it is just a "window" and I will have a huge "wave" swallow me up again? I do feel like I may be seeing a light at the end of this long, terrible, 5 months long tunnel...I just hope it isn't a train coming at me!

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post

Anyone with advice on my best plan moving forward? Am I "reinstating" if I am not on the same drug I was? Is it "withdrawal" if I didn't feel THIS bad until trying to reinstate my Zoloft? Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated, it has been a long 5 months of trying to figure out what the heck happened to me.

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post

Feeling kind of alone, no one with any answers to my questions? I was pretty excited when I found this site as I feel that reinstating at my original dose of Zoloft and overloading my CNS is exactly what has happened to me. I have never seen that explanation anywhere else, and my doctor was just baffled I would have an adverse reaction to Zoloft after only being off it for 4 months. I just want to make sure the course of action I am currently on is a good one, I have suffered a lot (seemingly maybe needlessly) the last 5 months by doing everything wrong according to the people on this site. I don't want to make anymore mistakes, but it doesn't look like anyone here has many answers for me.  

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post
Iatrogenesis

When I tried reinstating Zoloft after a month-long withdrawal that severely messed me up for several months, I started feeling so bad, I took 12 pills of Hydroxyzine and it wasn't even completely a suicide attempt, I just felt atrocious. Apparently you need to reinstate really slowly to prevent that from happening, it did go away for me in the end, but I felt like I did something to my liver with the hydroxyzine for some time. Other than that I've no idea about sensitizing your brain by quitting cold turkey, I've quit drugs cold turkey twice, they were APs, but actually there was no way to function without them after doing that, and the only thing that stopped the hellish withdrawal state was reinstating them. Then again, my brain must be very different than yours. I've also by the way read about people just getting a psychotic state from taking SSRIs in the first place and murdering their children, so I wouldn't be surprised if the anxiety was simply something that the SSRI just naturally did at that particular time.

1 year risperidone, 1 year olanzapine (10 mg). attempted first withdrawal cold turkey, failed. 2 more years olanzapine, switched to abilify which was very disruptive so attempted quitting cold turkey, failed. then 4 years amisulpride at 150 mg and about 3 zoloft at 150 mg. attempted withdrawal from both in 3 weeks, failed. reinstated zoloft and bridged to olanzapine (10 mg), successfully withdrew it over 10 months. tried withdrawing zoloft over 12 months, failed. bridged to prozac, at 40 mg,  now at 12 mg.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I guess it's not 'technically' reinstating to the exact same drug, but you are reinstating SSRIs in general - the same class of drug, working in the same manner. 

 

Sorry you've been feeling alone - we're all volunteers, and lately with the switch over to the new software we're a bit stretched as we get used to all the changes. 

 

The best thing you can do now is to hold for a few months while your Central Nervous System restabilises.  Holding can be hard, as it feels like you're doing nothing, but actually you're doing the best thing you can. 

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.

Link to post
6 hours ago, KarenB said:

I guess it's not 'technically' reinstating to the exact same drug, but you are reinstating SSRIs in general - the same class of drug, working in the same manner. 

 

Sorry you've been feeling alone - we're all volunteers, and lately with the switch over to the new software we're a bit stretched as we get used to all the changes. 

 

The best thing you can do now is to hold for a few months while your Central Nervous System restabilises.  Holding can be hard, as it feels like you're doing nothing, but actually you're doing the best thing you can. 

 

Ok, thank you, you have been very helpful. Sorry I didn't mean to sound like a whiner, I just was hoping there would be more people on this site weighing in. It is really hard to just hold, when you already feel so terrible, but it is good to know that by holding my CNS should stabilize and I can start feeling better. Any other tips to get through this? Anyone else going through something similar?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post

Also, is it normal that I didn't get my intense withdrawal symptoms (intense anxiety, internal shakiness, waking early unable to go back to sleep) until I attempted to reinstate Zoloft in January? This made my anxiety crazy, and the med changes, and going on and off, have just exacerbated it. 

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

It does happen that sometimes people don't get 'hit' with w/d symptoms until a few months off their drug.  In your case, perhaps you were managing to hold steady, but then the sudden re-introduction of zoloft sent your brain spinning.  The straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak. 

 

I imagine there are many people here going through a similar thing, though with varying details.  Have a look in the Intro forum for people with 40 or less posts to find others who are new here and who are probably also trying to stabilise.  Reading the success stories can also be helpful. 

.

Looking at acceptance, non-drug techniques and keep-it-simple-keep-it-slow-keep-it-stable are the best focus during a hold.

 

I think I've seen you posting on other people's threads; keep doing that as connections with others will help lots.  You aren't alone Utah.

 

Karen

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.

Link to post

Did the other mods agree my best course of action is staying at the 20MG until I stabilize?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post

Hey Utah,

I'm not a mod but I wanted to offer some encouragement as I see similarities in our paths. I'm also a husband and dad of young kids that's trying to get his old self back.

 

I took 10 mg Paxil for 12 years and last Feb tapered to 0.0 by April, essentially a cold turkey. 7 weeks later, my anxiety and intrusive thoughts became so bad, I attempted to reinstate the full 10 mg. I took one dose and had a severe reaction where I felt like I was going to jump out of my skin. It was as if my body was completely rejecting the very drug I took for so long. The next few months my GP had me go on a merry-go-round of Lexapro and Zoloft. Ultimately, I stayed on Lexapro and stabilized on 20 mg over the course of 7 weeks. That's when I started researching the treasure trove of info on this site. I've been tapering the Lex since Dec and currently have my dose down to 11 mg. 

 

I know it's tough right now, but I can vouch for stabilizing and then tapering when ready. Im not saying I'm 100%, in fact I'm far from it. But I'm so much better than I was last summer and that's proof to me that my brain and body are healing.

 

When I get symptoms, the most perplexing and frustrating thing for me is trying to decipher whether they are due to residual Paxil withdraw, side effects of Lex, or symptoms of tapering Lex. I know there's at least a portion of all 3 going on, and it'd be great to know so I could know the perfect taper schedule, but I've come to grips with the fact that there's nothing perfect in this process. I also try to remind myself that it doesn't matter the exact cause, the symptoms are my body's way of readjusting itself from a drugged state to a less-drugged state, and one day it'll be a NON-drugged state.

 

Hope this helps in some way. Hang in there and feel free to ask any questions you have. 

2004 - March 2016 (12 years): Paxil 10 mg (2-month taper led to crash in May)

June 2016 (4 weeks): Lexapro 10 mg (cold swap to Zoloft)

July 2016 (3.5 weeks): Zoloft 50 mg (quit c/t and led to crash in late August)

late August - mid October 2016 (6 weeks): Lexapro 10 mg

10/13/2016 - 11/30/2017: Lexapro 20 mg (7 weeks)

Begin taper of Lexapro 12/1/2016:

2016: 12/1 - 18mg, 12/6 - 17mg, 12/22 - 14.5mg

2017: 2/12 - 13mg, 3/2 - 12.6 mg, 3/9 - 12.2mg, 3/14 - 11.8 mg, 3/23 - 11.4mg, 4/27 - 10mg, updose 5/18 - 11mg, 6/27 - 10.5mg, 7/23 - 10mg, 9/7 - 9mg, updose 9/15 - 10mg, 12/17 - 9.5 mg, 12/20 - 9.3mg

2018: 1/18 - 9 mg, 2/8 - 8.8mg, 2/15 - 8.5mg, 2/22 - 8.3mg, 3/1 - 8.1mg, updose 3/7 - 8.3mg, 4/5 - 7.9mg, 5/6 - 7.5mg, 6/2 - 7.1mg, 6/29 - 6.8mg, 7/29 - 6.4mg, 8/22 - 6.1mg, 9/15 - 5.8mg, 10/11 - 5.5mg, 11/9 - 5.2mg, 12/3 - 5mg

2019: 2/1 - Generic swap = bad reaction, 2/4 - back to previous generic, updose 2/20 - 5.2mg, 3/2 - 10mg, 3/6 - 6mg, 3/30 - updose 7mg, currently holding at 7mg

Link to post

Finn, thank you for your reply! When you stabilized at 20mgs in November did you feel close to back to your normal self? Do you need to be pretty close to 100% before you begin to taper again? Did you have early morning wakings feeling like you adrenaline and cortisol were out of control?

 

Right now I am waking early (anywhere from 5:30 - 6:00AM, it was much earlier on the Zoloft and Lexapro before pregabalin) with high anxiety, this will last until about 11-12. Then I kind of go in waves of anxiety and feeling ok until about 6PM. After this time I am much better, though certainly I wouldn't say feel normal or back to myself. So evenings are much better, but still not close to 100%. Is this a weird pattern? Does anyone else have something like this?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post

Also Finn, what caused you to get off the Paxil? Were you just wanting to be med free? Did it quit on you?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post
16 hours ago, Finn25 said:

Hope this helps in some way. Hang in there and feel free to ask any questions you have. 

 

Sorry, never quoted you so you probably would never get a notification of my questions...thanks in advance!

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post
On 6/20/2017 at 5:19 PM, KarenB said:

I'll check with the other mods about what they think about staying at that dose, or dropping back to the 10mg more quickly, since you've only been at 20mg for 10 days now. 

 

Did other mods agree it would be best to stay at 20mgs? What about Pregabalin, am I able to decrease that as it would probably be easier than the SSRI? Thanks for all your help!

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm currently checking in with the other mods about all that. 

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.

Link to post

Sorry for the delayed response. Busy day today.

 

 

13 hours ago, Utah49er said:

When you stabilized at 20mgs in November did you feel close to back to your normal self? Do you need to be pretty close to 100% before you begin to taper again?  

 

 

No I wasn't and looking back I probably should have stayed at 20 mg for longer than the 7 weeks. But I was having what I believed were side effects of being on such a high dose of Lex, mainly fairly regular migraines, so I felt like I needed to start the taper sooner. I suppose the headaches could have been just another WD symptom, but I haven't had one fortunately since I got below around 15 mg.

 

Unfortunately, there's no set formula to determine when you're ready to taper I don't believe, but I'd say wait until you've had a about a week or so straight of feeling closer to normal. And that may take a while to feel that way, but you'll be so thankful you did later.  

 

13 hours ago, Utah49er said:

Did you have early morning wakings feeling like you adrenaline and cortisol were out of control?

 

Yes, and that's really the big sign to me that my CNS was stabilizing was when I started being able to sleep to my alarm. From April until August, I'd wake regularly between 4:00 and 5:30.  Then I started having stretches were my sleep improved. Now, I only occasionally have trouble sleeping.  I get waves of symptoms around once or twice a month where I have trouble sleeping for a day or two, but that's it these days.  In reading other people's intros, panicky high-cortisol mornings waking people up is a quintessential WD symptom, so you have lots of company with that. I think it's a sign of a CNS that's been put into a mode of chaos but works itself out with time. Hopefully others will chime in, but the timing of your anxiety sounds very normal. 

 

For me, everything is worse in the morning, not just the anxiety. I usually have a spike in all symptoms like brainfog and just feeling out-of-it from the time I wake up until around noon, when I get some improvement after I eat lunch. Then by 8 pm or so, I feel pretty close to normal. It's whether or not I'm in a wave or window determines the degree of relief I get, and how soon I get it. In April, I had some windows where I felt pretty good almost immediately after waking.  Lately, the morning dread has been pretty tough, but I can see it getting better. I assume it's all cortisol related, based on what I've read here. 

 

13 hours ago, Utah49er said:

Also Finn, what caused you to get off the Paxil? Were you just wanting to be med free? Did it quit on you?

I wanted to be med free, but I obviously underestimated the impact it had on me. I still have the same goal now, just with a much more educated and planned approach.  Looking back, I realize now that the drug did stop "working" a long time ago.  I just kept convincing myself that I needed something to help me, even if it was just a low dose AD. 

 

 

 

2004 - March 2016 (12 years): Paxil 10 mg (2-month taper led to crash in May)

June 2016 (4 weeks): Lexapro 10 mg (cold swap to Zoloft)

July 2016 (3.5 weeks): Zoloft 50 mg (quit c/t and led to crash in late August)

late August - mid October 2016 (6 weeks): Lexapro 10 mg

10/13/2016 - 11/30/2017: Lexapro 20 mg (7 weeks)

Begin taper of Lexapro 12/1/2016:

2016: 12/1 - 18mg, 12/6 - 17mg, 12/22 - 14.5mg

2017: 2/12 - 13mg, 3/2 - 12.6 mg, 3/9 - 12.2mg, 3/14 - 11.8 mg, 3/23 - 11.4mg, 4/27 - 10mg, updose 5/18 - 11mg, 6/27 - 10.5mg, 7/23 - 10mg, 9/7 - 9mg, updose 9/15 - 10mg, 12/17 - 9.5 mg, 12/20 - 9.3mg

2018: 1/18 - 9 mg, 2/8 - 8.8mg, 2/15 - 8.5mg, 2/22 - 8.3mg, 3/1 - 8.1mg, updose 3/7 - 8.3mg, 4/5 - 7.9mg, 5/6 - 7.5mg, 6/2 - 7.1mg, 6/29 - 6.8mg, 7/29 - 6.4mg, 8/22 - 6.1mg, 9/15 - 5.8mg, 10/11 - 5.5mg, 11/9 - 5.2mg, 12/3 - 5mg

2019: 2/1 - Generic swap = bad reaction, 2/4 - back to previous generic, updose 2/20 - 5.2mg, 3/2 - 10mg, 3/6 - 6mg, 3/30 - updose 7mg, currently holding at 7mg

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Utah.

 

The following will be helpful in giving opinion on your situation:

 

Keep notes on paper about your drug dosages and daily symptom pattern

 

A symptom pattern that occurs regularly over several days could mean the symptoms are from withdrawal, other adverse effects of drugs, or something else you do on a daily schedule.

 

In the course of discussion in your Introductions forum topic, you may be asked to keep notes on paper of your daily symptom pattern, including when you take your drugs, their dosages, and any symptoms.

 

What we need to see for every individual day over several days is:

- Time and dosage for drugs taken in morning
- Time and description of any symptoms in the morning
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in afternoon
- Time and description of any symptoms in the afternoon
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in evening
- Time and description of any symptoms in the evening
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in middle of the night
- Time and description of any symptoms in the middle of the night (such as waking)
 
And so forth. A diary, in chronological order, such as:
 
6 a.m. Woke and vomited
8 a.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
10 a.m. Had diarrhea
10:30 a.m. Ate breakfast
11:35 a.m. Got a headache, lasted one hour
12:35 p.m. Ate lunch
4 p.m. Stomachache
5 p.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
6 p.m. Ate dinner
9:20 p.m. Headache
10:00 p.m. Took 50mg Seroquel
10:20 p.m. Headache got worse
10:30 p.m. Fell asleep
2:30 a.m. Woke, took 3mg Ambien (NOT "took 1/2 tablet Ambien")
2:45 a.m. Fell asleep
4:30 a.m. Woke with headache

 

An appointments diary is perfect for this and can be bought at stationary stores. 

Thay have a page for each day with times for appointments which can be filled in with doses, symptoms etc as shown by Alto.

I'm typing from my phone now so can't see how long you have been taking 20 mg Paxil. It might be too much especially in the beginning but the brain adjusts quickly and bouncing around with different doses really traumatises it.

 

Also you reported that you were feeling a bit better some time ago. These might all be indications to stick with the dose but we'll be able to give a more educated guess once we get the information I described.

Current: Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

This post explained so many things to me, neurology behind psychotropic drugs in simple terms and how ANTIdepressants are nothing like ANTIbiotics and it's criminal psychiatrists are treating them just like that.

 

It explains delayed withdrawal onset that happened to you and why you got so bad once the drug was re introduced. It's basically that the whole brain structure was resisting the impact and didn't collapse immediately (just like the Twins :(

 

It also explains how our brain is repairing itself. Once you understand that what you should and shouldn't do becomes very logical.

 

 

Current: Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus
On 2017-06-21 at 8:02 PM, Utah49er said:

Feeling kind of alone, no one with any answers to my questions?

 

Utah49er -- I'm sorry you're feeling alone.  Sometimes when a question is about a complicated situation it requires research and often discussion amongst moderators.  Your question falls into that category.  Because the moderators are volunteers and  many of us are dealing with symptoms of withdrawal ourselves, not to mention families, work, etc., it can take some time to sort out answers to these questions.

 

Bubble asked for notes about your symptoms.  Have you started a daily log?

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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11 hours ago, Finn25 said:

 

 

Yes, and that's really the big sign to me that my CNS was stabilizing was when I started being able to sleep to my alarm. From April until August, I'd wake regularly between 4:00 and 5:30.  Then I started having stretches were my sleep improved. Now, I only occasionally have trouble sleeping.  I get waves of symptoms around once or twice a month where I have trouble sleeping for a day or two, but that's it these days.  In reading other people's intros, panicky high-cortisol mornings waking people up is a quintessential WD symptom, so you have lots of company with that. I think it's a sign of a CNS that's been put into a mode of chaos but works itself out with time. Hopefully others will chime in, but the timing of your anxiety sounds very normal.  

 

Really interesting how our stories seem to correlate. The early morning waking has been weird for me, as sleep has never been an issue for me. Good to know I am not the only one and it is fairly common. You said it took you a while to stabalize, is there a certain point where you would give up and try something else if you were me, or just no matter what soldier on at the same dose of the same drug until stabilized?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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1 hour ago, scallywag said:

 

Bubble asked for notes about your symptoms.  Have you started a daily log?

I am working on it, though my symptoms are pretty much just anxiety symptoms. Sweating, anxious restless feeling, shaking hands, sometimes I feel burning skin or like my eyes are burning. They kind of come in waves throughout the day, strongest in the morning, weakest at night, though I can still have some pretty strong waves at night from time to time. I have heard a lot about "windows and waves" however I have heard this usually referred to in terms of days, weeks, or months. I get them in hours and minutes...is that normal? Is it bad?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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7 hours ago, bubble said:

 

It explains delayed withdrawal onset that happened to you and why you got so bad once the drug was re introduced. It's basically that the whole brain structure was resisting the impact and didn't collapse immediately (just like the Twins :(

 

 

 

Thank you for this. I have read the thread on reinstating by Altostrata and notice he talks a lot about reinstatement "failing," and how you are more likely to fail reinstatement if you had been off for a long time. My question would be, how/when will I know if my reinstatement "failed?" Will I simply never stabilize? If so, then what? Sorry for all the questions, and thank you to everyone who has respond to me. Overall I feel I am doing better than I was a week ago, though I have a LONG way to go to feel normal. However, I am only two weeks on 20mgs of Paxil in my attempt to stabalize, so any progress is good, right?

2008 - October 28th, 2016: Zoloft 50 - 150 mgs, settled on 50mgs from 2011 - 2016.
January 23rd - March 1st 2017: Zoloft 50mgs, direct switch to Lexapro.
March 1st - May 1st 2017: Lexapro 10 mgs, down to 5mgs for a week, then off.
June 1st - July 31st 2017: Paxil 20mgs, Lyrica 600mgs
August 1st - September 30th 2017: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
October 1st  - November 12th 2017: Paxil 60mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs
November 12th, 2017 - September 4th 2018: Paxil 40mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs 

September 4th - September 27th: Paxil 30mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

September 28th - November 7th: Paxil 20mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs (Also Testosterone Therapy started in June 2018 and ended in November 2018)

November 7th 2018 - February 22nd 2019: Paxil 10mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs

February 22nd 2019 - April 17th: Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin 1mgs

April 17th - Now: Zoloft 25mgs, Zyprexa 2.5mgs, Klonopin .5mgs

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  • Moderator Emeritus

When I was stabilising after reinstatement that's exactly how it worked: I would get initially very brief moments when my symptoms would abate. Those brief periods of relief told me I was on the right track.

 

Gradually those brief periods got bigger and bigger and after some 4 months I noticed a marked difference and a much improved functioning.

 

So in response to the question to Finn, it's a very bumpy and long road. It can really take months but every day is getting better and better. At this point there are no magic bullets so keeping things steady is your best bet.

Current: Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

From everything you describe it seems the reinstatement is working for you.

 

Did you get a chance to read the link on brain remodelling? It really explained things for me and helped me made sense of everything I was going through at the time and before.

Current: Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

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Hi Utah, I answered your reply to my piece a few days ago. But I feel that us communicating would be a good thing as we have striking similarities (our age, im 36, and our home life; I am a father to a 13 month old baby boy). I won't pour my story out here, you can see it on my introduction, but i think I can offer you my experiences with reinstatement. Basically, I only settled on 20mg (my original dose) a couple of months ago. The previous couple of months I had reduced from 20mg to 15mg and had started to get very paranoid. But did feel more serenity, and these horrible thoughts and a general feeling of hopelessness were much reduced. I decided I couldn't handle this paranoia and relatively quickly updosed to 20mg again. The paranoia basically disappeared overnight, but this horrible feeling of being totally F*cked, brain fog, no motivation returned. I also had terrible nerve pain in my hands, and a slightly irratic hb. However, these physical symptoms have basically gone now. So, I am wondering if this is a paradoxical reaction to updosing the Seroxat. My plan is, and i really think, this stuff is basically poisoning now and I have to get off it. But the initial rapid taper has really messed me up massively. Then even the relatively small taper 20-15 over 12 weeks) was too much for me to handle. However, like other people have said the general trend is improvement. Most of the physical things (like morning anxiety etc) have completely gone, my sleep is pretty much back to normal and the stress reactions have greatly improved  ( i once, a few months ago, got that angry with a shop assistant I started shaking for about an hour!). Its the cognitive side of things that are the real bain now. So you should hold on confident that these things will get better. Although I am scared to death I'll never be the fun loving, gregarious, adventure junkie that i was a year ago. 

Intro - 

  • On Paroxetine (Paxil / Seroxat) 20mg since 1999 (age 18). Tapered off over 8 weeks on Dr's advice 2016 - Crashed massively (acute withdrawal) September '16 and reinstated on doc's advice. Found this site and started getting real answers! Currently doing a very slow withdrawal. 

 

Taper progress - 

  • September '16 - 40mg / December'16 - 30mg / Feb '17 - 20 mg / March '17 - 18mg / April '17 - 15mg - became paranoid / May '17-  upped dose to 20mg (kindled - developed chemical sensitivities and neuropathy in legs). 2 month hold. July '17 - 19.5mg / Aug'17 - 18.5mgSept '17 - 17.5mg / October '17 - 17mg / Nov '17 - 16mg / Dec '17 - 15.5mg / Jan '18 - hold / Feb '18 - 14.5mg / April '18 - 13mg / June '18 - 11.5mg / Aug '18 - 10mg (half way hold of approx 2 months) / Nov '18 - 9mg / Dec '18 - 8mg. (tapering too fast, having anxiety / paranoia, so having a 6 week extra hold) / April 19 - still holding at approx 7.5mg

 

Points of interest - 

  • Average seroxat 20mg pill weights 0.355g 
  • Using AWS Gemini 20 scales (seem reasonable for about £20)
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On 6/24/2017 at 11:35 AM, Utah49er said:

Finn, thank you for your reply! When you stabilized at 20mgs in November did you feel close to back to your normal self? Do you need to be pretty close to 100% before you begin to taper again? Did you have early morning wakings feeling like you adrenaline and cortisol were out of control?

 

Right now I am waking early (anywhere from 5:30 - 6:00AM, it was much earlier on the Zoloft and Lexapro before pregabalin) with high anxiety, this will last until about 11-12. Then I kind of go in waves of anxiety and feeling ok until about 6PM. After this time I am much better, though certainly I wouldn't say feel normal or back to myself. So evenings are much better, but still not close to 100%. Is this a weird pattern? Does anyone else have something like this?

 

the pattern you describe, of difficult mornings and evenings being better, is VERY common in WD

 

the waking up to a cortisol spike is also very common

 

magnesium can sometimes help with this, and soaking in epsom salts can also help.

 

 

  • pysch med history: 1974 @ age 18 to Oct 2017 (approx 43 yrs total)
  •  Drug list: stelazine, haldol, elavil, lithium, zoloft, celexa, lexapro(doses as high as 40mgs), klonopin, ambien, seroquel(high doses), depakote, zyprexa, lamictal- plus brief trials of dozens of other psych meds over the years
  • started lexapro 2002, dose varied from 20mgs to 40mgs. I tried to get off it several times. WD symptoms were mistaken for "relapse". 
  •  2013 too fast taper down to 5mg but WD forced me back to 20mgs
  •  June of 2105, tapered again too rapidly to 2.5mgs by Dec 2015. Found SA, held at 2.5 mgs til May 2016 when I foolishly "jumped off". Crashed in Sept, reinstated at 0.3mgs in Oct. 2106
  • Tapered off to zero by  Oct. 2017 Doing very well
  • Nov. 2018 feel 95% healed, current age 63 
  • Jan. 2020 feel 100% healed, peaceful and content 
  • Aug 2021, loving life ❤️ 
 
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4 hours ago, Utah49er said:

 

Really interesting - 

 

I saw this on Pregablin the other day. I'm not sure if its helpful, but it's interesting - 

 

Intro - 

  • On Paroxetine (Paxil / Seroxat) 20mg since 1999 (age 18). Tapered off over 8 weeks on Dr's advice 2016 - Crashed massively (acute withdrawal) September '16 and reinstated on doc's advice. Found this site and started getting real answers! Currently doing a very slow withdrawal. 

 

Taper progress - 

  • September '16 - 40mg / December'16 - 30mg / Feb '17 - 20 mg / March '17 - 18mg / April '17 - 15mg - became paranoid / May '17-  upped dose to 20mg (kindled - developed chemical sensitivities and neuropathy in legs). 2 month hold. July '17 - 19.5mg / Aug'17 - 18.5mgSept '17 - 17.5mg / October '17 - 17mg / Nov '17 - 16mg / Dec '17 - 15.5mg / Jan '18 - hold / Feb '18 - 14.5mg / April '18 - 13mg / June '18 - 11.5mg / Aug '18 - 10mg (half way hold of approx 2 months) / Nov '18 - 9mg / Dec '18 - 8mg. (tapering too fast, having anxiety / paranoia, so having a 6 week extra hold) / April 19 - still holding at approx 7.5mg

 

Points of interest - 

  • Average seroxat 20mg pill weights 0.355g 
  • Using AWS Gemini 20 scales (seem reasonable for about £20)
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  • ChessieCat changed the title to DaveB: trying to stop a roller coaster year
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