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MWGer: Off 2 weeks


MWGer

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I am a 34 year old man. I've been on anti-depressants since I was about 15. I am diagnosed with Depression/OCD. However, I believe my ailments have completely been the result of anxiety, hence my OCD. I was first prescribed Prozac but then settled on Paxil. About 9 or so years ago my GP switched me over to Zoloft. The transition was rather easy. But my anxiety spiked immensely. During the switch I was also changing my worldviews which led to an increase in anxiety. I would spend hours in the morning laying in complete dread about existence. So I prescribed Clonazepam. This helped greatly. My Doctor continued to pair Zoloft and Clonazepam together for about 5 years. In 2014 I decided to go very healthy and turned Vegan. I was still on my meds and losing weight, I felt great. I then decided to go a step further in my health and stop taking my meds. I did this cold turkey. This was one of the stupidest decisions of my life. One I still regret to this day. Old fears swept in. I was not prepared for withdrawal; it took a good 5 months to recover. I was put back on Zoloft and Clonazapam. My diet fell to the wayside and in time my weight came back.

 

About a year or so ago I moved to another part of the city and changed my GP. He does not like long term use of Clonazepam and he quickly took me off of it. I felt ok, but Zoloft by itself was just not working for me even at 200 mg. My OCD triggered again in 2015 Zoloft has been a dud to get me out of it. So about a month ago I decided I wanted off of Zoloft because I had been reading some interesting things about Welbutrin. I learned from last time that cold turkey is not the way to go. So, I got on a tapering program from my Doctor. In retrospect the three week plan to come off was not enough time for adjustment, but, alas it is done with. During the last week of tapering I was put on half a tablet of Welbutrin. Withdrawal did not come full swing into effect until Zoloft had completely worked its way out of my body. It was hell. Utter hell. Anyone who has gone through this knows what that is like. Up and down, up and down. Intense emotion. I work with kids and I had the fortune of being an adult who could work through these emotions, even though it felt like I was going nuts. Is it any wonder that kids who get these high emotions and have no idea what is going on, go nuts and loose their ****?

 

So things began to stabilize a little bit. I am eating healthy and exercising. I've lost 20 lbs. But not a vegan. However anger began to become my dominate emotion. Not just your everyday anger, but full on rage. I've never experienced emotion like this. It's just utterly smacked me upside the head. I've read that Welbutrin can cause irritability and anger, my GP also told me this AFTER I had gone back with these symptoms. I've also come off sugar, so I am sure that with another withdrawal my body is going what?! I decided to go off Welbutrin after being on it for about 4 weeks. I figured that was a short enough time to not worry about too much dependence. I know that it does not target Serotonin.

 

I just don't know what is going on here. I am so freaking angry at ANYTHING. Honestly anything that is out of place is causing me some level of angst/rage. I am still trying to deal with this current OCD theme. My partner is taking the biggest brunt of this. His simple presence can spike my anger like nothing. Same with my cats. I utterly want to strangle them and yell at them all the time. Especially when they meow. I tell you that meow just heightens everything. That's not me. I am an animal lover. But everything has been turned on its head. I really don't feel like the same person anymore. I know people change and all that but this? Was my antidepressant use covering all of this? And if it was, then why the hell was I put on them in the first place? What problems have they solved?  I  want to know what is happening to my brain.

 

I know most of this is just anxiety. My doctor has given me very small perscriptions of Ativan and Clonazapam, to get through it...and when I take them as needed my mental state calms down completely even though I become very lethargic. I don't know folks; I just don't know. I'm tired of living like this. I don't want to go back on those damn meds. After going through that kind of WD I want to stay completely away. I've seen the devil and his name is antidepressant.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
removed obscenity

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to MWGer: Off 2 weeks
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi mwger and welcome to SA,

 

9 hours ago, MWGer said:

I was not prepared for withdrawal; it took a good 5 months to recover. I was put back on Zoloft and Clonazapam.

 

I doubt very much that you recovered from the withdrawal in 5 months.  The fact that you ended up on other drugs would indicate that you started experiencing delayed withdrawal.  A similar thing happened to me when I cold turkeyed Citalopram and felt great for a few months but then ended up on Pristiq.

 

10 hours ago, MWGer said:

Same with my cats. I utterly want to strangle them and yell at them all the time. Especially when they meow. I tell you that meow just heightens everything. That's not me. I am an animal lover.

 

I can understand this.  I have a 19 year old cat, who I love dearly, who misses the dog who died early last year and since then walks around the house meowing and jumping up on things and knocking things off.  Some days it drives me up the wall.

 

What a lot of people don't realise is that psychiatric drugs change the brain.  It is a physiological dependence, not a physical dependence like caffeine or tobacco.

 

Before we can make any suggestions please complete your drug history so we can see it at a glance.  Please remember to update it whenever you make a change so it remains current.  Thank you.  Below is the recommended format to use:

 

 A request: Would you summarize your history in a signature - ALL drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly?

  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses.
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • Any drugs prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
  • Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
  • Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016.
  • Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

I will give you some links to check out:

 

What is Withdrawal Syndrome?

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Dr Joseph Glenmullen's WD Symptoms Checklist

 

Brain Remodelling


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

Once we have the information about dates and doses we will be better able to offer suggestions based on your individual situation.  We may suggest reinstatement of one of the drugs.  I suggest that you wait for the mods to assess your history after which we may suggest a very small dose of a drug to reinstate.  Please read Post #1 of this topic About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms.

 

This is your own Introduction topic where you can ask questions and journal your progress.

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

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Thanks 4 the reply!

 

No, I did not fully recover in 5 months (2013). I only "recovered" because I was put back on the pills I had stopped taking. I am just using that 5 month period as a generalization. I shall be more clear in my new footer.

 

Thank you for the feedback. I appreciate the link to the video. It helped explain a little about the peaks and valleys. Or windows and storms.

 

Today was awful. Sleep has been so weird. I can actually find myself dreaming into sleep. Its just a bizarre feeling. The majority of my dreams usually come right before its time to get up for the morning. Now that I have been off these meds. I'm dreaming right from the get go.

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You're welcome.

 

Here's another link you might find helpful.  Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

Link to comment

Thanks again. I put my AD history and WD in the About Me tab of my profile. I am not sure how to get that information to be my footer.

 

 Ah look at that. All I had to do was read a little extra. Got the footer up. Ty! Hope its clear. Ask any questions at all.

Edited by MWGer
New info

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you for doing your signature.   It's very clearly laid out, however it would be more helpful if you could change the Late July with a date and also change the 1st week etc with dates if possible please.  Thank you.

 

From what you have listed it would appear that you are experiencing Zoloft withdrawal.  Unfortunately your doctor's taper was extremely fast, especially considering the high dosage of 200mg.

 

Q:  Have you read the reinstatement topic?

 

Q:  How do you feel about reinstating?

 

Q:  How long exactly have you been off Zoloft?     It's important for us to know this so that we can suggest a reinstatement dosage.

 

Q:  Are you totally off Wellbutrin now?

 

Thank you for your patience.  As you probably understand we need as much information as possible so we can make suggestions.

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

Link to comment
10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

Thank you for doing your signature.   It's very clearly laid out, however it would be more helpful if you could change the Late July with a date and also change the 1st week etc with dates if possible please.  Thank you.

 

From what you have listed it would appear that you are experiencing Zoloft withdrawal.  Unfortunately your doctor's taper was extremely fast, especially considering the high dosage of 200mg.

 

It was extremely to fast. Going from 150mg of the Zoloft to 100mg. I had to go back and say listen buddy. This anxiety is immobilizing me. So he wrote me a prescription for 10 Days of 1 mg of Clonazapam for the AM & PM. And 1 mg of Ativan when needed. This was about July 26 of this year. 2 weeks into his tapering process.

 

10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

Q:  Have you read the reinstatement topic?

 

Not yet. I am so not feeling reinstatement. Simply reading those words last night -REINSTATEMENT- I started to tear up.

 

10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

Q:  How do you feel about reinstating?

 

I'm feeling a visceral NO. I feel although this is hard right now, I am over the first few hills of WD. Will there be many more to come. Yes. But I feel like I am educating myself now. I still have about 4 of the 1mg Clonazapam, and 5 of the .5 mg Ativan. I have been using those sparingly and only in extreme need. If I have to I will go back to the Doctor and ask for the same low dosages. I have also been referred to a Psychiatrist. I am waiting for a phone call from their office for an appointment. I also just learned about medical cannabis oils - Not the THC component of the plant, but the other calming part. I work with a teacher who has high anxiety and tried the oil out this summer, she is swearing by it.  I also live in Canada so its legal. I am waiting to call to book an appointment after this long weekend. It will be covered by my insurance.

 

10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

Q:  How long exactly have you been off Zoloft?     It's important for us to know this so that we can suggest a reinstatement dosage.

 

My last dosage of Zoloft was August 8th 2017. So that is about 3.5 weeks of being off.

 

10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

Q:  Are you totally off Wellbutrin now?

 

I have been completely off Wellbutrin for 8 days. I came off of it because it was making me sweat like a pig. I love what it did to my metabolism and focus, but boy the sweat and irritability.

 

10 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

Thank you for your patience.  As you probably understand we need as much information as possible so we can make suggestions.

 

No worries. I just am relieved to have found a site like this. Truly. I thank you for putting in the time to share your knowledge and wisdom with me so that I do not have to suffer alone. MY partner sorta understands what is going on, but not fundamentally. Its been comforting to read some of the other posts and go ,"Ok, I may feel like I am losing my mind, but this all seems a little more normal, thinking about this process of WD."

 

When you say that the brain is being physiologically and not physically affected by the loss of the AD chemicals. I don't think I understand. Is it that something like caffeine which is not produced in the body, is a craving addiction, while...how do i put this...so the AD take over for the brain in the chemical production of serotonin, and when that chemical creating pill is taken away, the brain has to realize it needs to start making its own serotonin again?

 

Throughout this entire process I have also completely changed my diet and exercise habits. I have completely cut out processed and refined sugars from my diet. I will eat something in a can or yogurt if it has a reasonable amount of sugar. So there is another withdrawal my body is going through. I have lost about 20lbs in these last 4 weeks. I have also dropped coffee. Although I have found a really nice substitute called Dandy Blend. Its made from Dandelions and holy is it great. Anything that I feel has been stimulating to my adrenals I have dropped. I have been eating a lot of protein and fat. And a heck of a lot of greens. So nutritionally I can't complain. I always feel satiated and my energy levels are stable. But that doesn't mean WD doesn't kick me in exhausted box...like yesterday.

 

For supplements. ( I have been on this regimen for 3 weeks.)

- 5-400mg of Lion's Mane

- 2-500mg of Krill Oil

- 4-1000 UI of D3

- 1-400 mg of Magnesium (Highly absorb able)

 

I also think WD is causing chest pains from time to time. As soon as I start excercising the chest pains are gone and I feel great. But during the down times chest pains can come and go. I personally think that is all in my head.

 

 

 

 

 

 

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus
3 hours ago, MWGer said:

When you say that the brain is being physiologically and not physically affected by the loss of the AD chemicals. I don't think I understand. Is it that something like caffeine which is not produced in the body, is a craving addiction, while...how do i put this...so the AD take over for the brain in the chemical production of serotonin, and when that chemical creating pill is taken away, the brain has to realize it needs to start making its own serotonin again?

 

3 hours ago, MWGer said:

Throughout this entire process I have also completely changed my diet and exercise habits. I have completely cut out processed and refined sugars from my diet. I will eat something in a can or yogurt if it has a reasonable amount of sugar. So there is another withdrawal my body is going through. I have lost about 20lbs in these last 4 weeks. I have also dropped coffee. Although I have found a really nice substitute called Dandy Blend. Its made from Dandelions and holy is it great. Anything that I feel has been stimulating to my adrenals I have dropped. I have been eating a lot of protein and fat. And a heck of a lot of greens. So nutritionally I can't complain. I always feel satiated and my energy levels are stable. But that doesn't mean WD doesn't kick me in exhausted box...like yesterday.

 

Hi MWGer, I thought the links below might help give you a better idea of what is happening in the central nervous system when an anti-depressant is removed suddenly.  

 

One Theory of Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome

How Psychiatric Drugs Remodel Your Brain aka Brain Remodelling

Why Taper Paper Demonstrates Importance of Gradual Change in Plasma Concentration

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?


While all of the steps you are taking regarding diet and exercise are admirable and will certainly help, after a 20 year history with anti-depressants, it is my belief that long-term use of anti-depressants predisposes us to withdrawal syndrome and would recommend that you familiarize yourself with the reinstatement process should your symptoms ramp up.  At least that way if things do start getting difficult, you can avoid becoming panicked knowing that you have options available to you.  Am hoping that you won't have to reinstate, but I have found that the more information I have available to me, the better, that way I can make an informed decision concerning my health.  My intention is not to alarm you, or to suggest that this is what is going to happen absolutely, but just to provide as much information in case you need it.

 

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms

What to Expect in Reinstatement (James Heaney article)

Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Wishing you all the best and hope you have an uneventful experience becoming anti-depressant free.

 

Best,

BaroqueP

 

Current Prescription Drugs for Hypothyroidism:  Synthroid 100mcg / Cytomel 5mcg (15 years Pristiq/Effexor)

Tapering Schedule
September 15, 2016 - switched from Pristiq 50mg to Effexor XR 75mg; November 10, 2016 - reduced to 67.5 Effexor XR
December 9, 2016 - reduced 60.75
January 5, 2017 - reduced 54.67
January 30, 2017 - reduced to 49.0
February 20, 2017 - reduced to 44.0 
May 20, 2017 - reduced to 40.25 (holding for additional month due to late onset of withdrawal symptoms after this taper)
July 17, 2017 - reduced to 38.24
August 15, 2017 - reduced to 37.5 (50% of my original dose)

October 15, 2017 - reduced to 35.6

November 12, 2017 - reduced to 33.8
December 15, 2017 - up-dose to 35.6
December 28, 2017 - up-dose to 37.5

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3 hours ago, baroquep said:


While all of the steps you are taking regarding diet and exercise are admirable and will certainly help, after a 20 year history with anti-depressants, it is my belief that long-term use of anti-depressants predisposes us to withdrawal syndrome and would recommend that you familiarize yourself with the reinstatement process should your symptoms ramp up.  At least that way if things do start getting difficult, you can avoid becoming panicked knowing that you have options available to you.  Am hoping that you won't have to reinstate, but I have found that the more information I have available to me, the better, that way I can make an informed decision concerning my health.  My intention is not to alarm you, or to suggest that this is what is going to happen absolutely, but just to provide as much information in case you need it.

 

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms

What to Expect in Reinstatement (James Heaney article)

Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Wishing you all the best and hope you have an uneventful experience becoming anti-depressant free.

 

Best,

BaroqueP

 

 

I understand. And, I will look into this as a road worth taking if things hit the fan. I do appreciate this. At this moment that is the last thing I want to think about, but I know that if I want to be successful I will need to keep this as a back up plan. Should I need to go back on, I would only want to go back on the lowest dosage, which might be 50 mg for Zoloft. I'm not sure. Is that an accurate assessment on my part?

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

it would be recommended to start at a much smaller dose, in the area of between 2 - 5 mg.  50mg would be far too high and likely to make things a lot worse.  Reinstating means adding the smallest amount possible to reduce withdrawal symptoms.  

Current Prescription Drugs for Hypothyroidism:  Synthroid 100mcg / Cytomel 5mcg (15 years Pristiq/Effexor)

Tapering Schedule
September 15, 2016 - switched from Pristiq 50mg to Effexor XR 75mg; November 10, 2016 - reduced to 67.5 Effexor XR
December 9, 2016 - reduced 60.75
January 5, 2017 - reduced 54.67
January 30, 2017 - reduced to 49.0
February 20, 2017 - reduced to 44.0 
May 20, 2017 - reduced to 40.25 (holding for additional month due to late onset of withdrawal symptoms after this taper)
July 17, 2017 - reduced to 38.24
August 15, 2017 - reduced to 37.5 (50% of my original dose)

October 15, 2017 - reduced to 35.6

November 12, 2017 - reduced to 33.8
December 15, 2017 - up-dose to 35.6
December 28, 2017 - up-dose to 37.5

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So I read the link about how our ADs remodel the brain; I must admit it makes sense. This isn't going to be like taking an aspirin or to stop drinking coffee. My whole brain structure is altering and that is going to take some time.

 

I feel broken here, honestly...I feel like i am hooked up to the devil himself and the only way to survive is to get more of him....**** i feel like shouting.

 

They don't tell you any of this...none of it. They don't because they don't know...and if they don't know why are they prescribing this garbage to people?

 

Oh your anxious? Sad? Here is a pill to help you. No its not going to fix you. No its not going to get rid of your anxiety. Its not even going to change the way you fundamentally think. No, I'm not going to tell you that it is just going to mask your issue. It will be like its not there; deeply buried. And if you get more anxious...well we'll just up the dosage. Oh, and I am especially not going to tell you that if should ever decide to come off of these pills...well, there is a reason man invented hell, because you are going to go through it...but I'm not going to tell you that. What is wrong with our medical system!? These people are supposed to be the ones that guard our health? And this is what we are ending up with? I get it. I get that information evolves and new and better ways of treatment are constantly becoming available. 20 years. 20 years and i am back at square 1. Its funny...truly. Through out all that time, the best times I felt good are the times I've decided that I've needed to get healthy, or change the way I think. I am the one who pursued CBT. Mindfulness. Meditation. I'm the one who initiated it all. All the while this little pill devil has been inside me growing; altering my brain structure. Its humbling. That's all I got left. Its humbling.

 

Ok. Reinstating at that low dosage is making sense...and then tapering from that starting point...that' making me feel a little better. I am still going to wait until I get into see the psychiatrist. I am done with this current Doctor. Hopefully I don't get too many waves until then.

 

I am sorry for the language...but I need to let it out. You guys get it. Thank you so much for this website. Oh my god thank you so much for this. You guys.

Edited by ChessieCat
removed obscenities

20 year AD history.

(1997 - Prozac) (1997 - Switched to Paxil)

(2008-09 Switched to pairing of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2013-July- Cold-turkey stop of Zoloft and Clonazapam.) (2013-Few months? later- put back on exact dosage of Zoloft and Clonazapam.)

(2016-New Doctor stops prescribing long term Clonazapam use. Increases Zoloft to 100 mg.)

(2017-Early Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 150 mg.)(2017-Early Mid Year-Zoloft dosage increased to 200 mg.)

(2017-Late July started tapering process with Doctor support.

          1st week Zoloft 150 mg  2nd week Zoloft 100 mg  3rd week Zoloft 50 mg. Welbutrin 75 mg

          4th week. Welbutrin 75 mg (WD begins to manifest: wild emotional spikes.) 5th week Welbutrin 150 mg

          6th week Welbutrin 150 mg (Anger. Irritability continue to grow) 7th week Welbutrin 75 (I decided enough of AD.)       

          8th week-Now NO AD - WD mostly Anger/rage at any trigger. Brain zaps mostly starting at night. Weird process of getting to bed.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi mwger,

 

I'm glad that you now understand how the drug has changed your brain.  However, the sooner you reinstate the more likely it is to work.  I suggest you read the links below about talking with the medical profession before you see yours.

 

I will tell you my own experience.  I am a professional typist of 40+ years, with high speed and accuracy.  Just before finding SA I decided to reduce my Pristiq from 100mg to 50mg.  Over the next 3 weeks I was suffering very bad brain fog.  At the end of the 3 weeks I could not type.  Thanks to the information I received here I updosed and after about 4 hours the brain fog was clearing and I was able to type again.  There was no way that this could have been placebo.  I have since been tapering successfully and am currently taking 20mg.

 

I would like to point out that people can get addicted to benzos in a little as 2 weeks.  It is my personal opinion that because you are experiencing withdrawal from the Zoloft, instead of taking drugs to try and alleviate the WD it would be better to take the drug (Zoloft) which your brain is crying out for, instead of taking the others.  Also, adding cannabis-marijuana-thc-or-cbd into the mix is going to muddy the waters.  A few members here have had bad experiences using this and have had difficulty stabilising even several weeks after trying it.  People who are experiencing withdrawal have a sensitised central nervous system.

 

How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?


What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

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12 hours ago, MWGer said:

I also just learned about medical cannabis oils - Not the THC component of the plant, but the other calming part. I work with a teacher who has high anxiety and tried the oil out this summer, she is swearing by it.

 

Thanks for mentioning this.  A relative told me about CBD oil.  I have considered trying it, but am afraid of a bad interaction with current meds.  If you try it, please post your results.  

 

Edited by baroquep
merge of two reports done incorrectly and delete Terry's thread from the original report

2007 - 2008          Paxil and Klonopin

2008 - 2012           Mirtazapine following abrupt withdrawal from Klonopin/Paxil.  

2012                       Unsuccessful taper of mirtazapine; reinstated.     

7/2013 - 1/2014   Successfully tapered from 7.5 mg

 

SERTRALINE TAPER Aug 4, 2017 - July 18, 2021 - 0.00

ALPRAZOLAM  7/19/17 0.25 mg. Nov 16, 2021 - 0.241 mg; Nov 25 - 0.232mg; Dec 4 - 0.225; Dec 14 - 0.218 mg; Dec 23 - .211;  Jan 1, 2022 - .2025;

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  • Moderator Emeritus
3 hours ago, MWGer said:

I am still going to wait until I get into see the psychiatrist. I am done with this current Doctor. Hopefully I don't get too many waves until then.

 

I'm glad that you've had a chance to look at the link, and happy that you understand how very real the likelihood of withdrawal syndrome affecting you down the road.  ChessieCat is correct in telling you that the sooner you reinstate, the better but I don't want to put any pressure on you or push you to make a decision you aren't comfortable with making yet.  

What I do want you to be aware of though is that a psychiatrist is likely to recommend a much higher starting dose; insist it is a return of your original condition; suggest you switch to another antidepressant; and/or recommend benzodiazepines or any other combination of drugs and want you to be prepared for this very real concern.  It happens all the time and I'd like to save you the nightmare of becoming dependant on yet another drug(s).

 

No one wants to go back on these drugs but sometimes is it the lesser evil and at a small dose, you can get off safely within a reasonable amount of time without compromising your central nervous system or adding additional drugs ... the sooner these doctors/psychiatrists figure this out the better it will be for everyone.

Edited by baroquep

Current Prescription Drugs for Hypothyroidism:  Synthroid 100mcg / Cytomel 5mcg (15 years Pristiq/Effexor)

Tapering Schedule
September 15, 2016 - switched from Pristiq 50mg to Effexor XR 75mg; November 10, 2016 - reduced to 67.5 Effexor XR
December 9, 2016 - reduced 60.75
January 5, 2017 - reduced 54.67
January 30, 2017 - reduced to 49.0
February 20, 2017 - reduced to 44.0 
May 20, 2017 - reduced to 40.25 (holding for additional month due to late onset of withdrawal symptoms after this taper)
July 17, 2017 - reduced to 38.24
August 15, 2017 - reduced to 37.5 (50% of my original dose)

October 15, 2017 - reduced to 35.6

November 12, 2017 - reduced to 33.8
December 15, 2017 - up-dose to 35.6
December 28, 2017 - up-dose to 37.5

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