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Nolabud1: Tapering off low dose of Lexapro


Nolabud1

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Does anybody have experience with tapering off 5 mg of Lexapro?    I have been on for 8 weeks and wish to come off.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment

Good Afternoon,

 

I just read some informative and helpful posts you wrote about this subject.  I wondered if I could pick your brain, as I feel you have a handle on this. My profile is quite simple.  45 year old male.  Had a vertigo episode 7 months ago.  Went to every specialist under the sun (vestibular specialist, Neurologist, had full blood work, EEG, CTA's of brain and neck, MRI of brain, sinus scan, etc), and nothing out of the ordinary was discovered. 

 

Since that vertigo episode, I have had this "spaced out" "disequilibrium" feeling in my head that I cannot seem to shake.  The symptoms of occasional headaches, light headedness, and dizziness (not spinning like vertigo) have not gone away.  My neurologist suggested I try Lexapro for a few months, to see if these symptoms could be anxiety related.  I am very sensitive to all medications, which I knew going in. 

 

My neuro originally prescribed 10 mg Lexapro with an increase to 20 mg.  After consulting with some professionals in this area, I started out at 5 mg for 2 weeks. (20 mg pill split twice).  I was on 5 mg for 2 weeks and although there were slight side effects, I tried upping to 10 mg.  After 3 straight days of excruciating headaches, I went back down to 5 mg.  In the 8 weeks I was on 5 mg, I felt OK ,but I gained 15 pounds (no lie) as I was either hungry all the time, or tired and drowsy all the time.  The odd feeling in my head was still there but dulled by my cravings to eat and constantly feeling like I needed a nap. 

 

Last week, I decided to taper off the 5mg dosage.  I weigh the broken tablets to get exactly 2.5 mg on a pill scale each morning.  I realize the weight of the pill is actually 25 MG but the dosage is 20 MG.  Last night I was working on my laptop while reclining, and I got so dizzy, I thought I was going to either throw up or pass out.  I stood up, walked it off, and my head settled down. 

 

It seems for a week I have felt woozy and off balance much more.  My food cravings have diminished and I am not as groggy as I was when on 5 mg.  So many professionals state 5 mg is such a low dosage I shouldn't have to taper, but with as sensitive I have always been to meds, I knew I needed to at least try 2.5 mg.  In your experience, how long should I stay on 2.5 mg of Lexapro, considering I have only been on the SSRI for 9 weeks total, and the 2.5 tapering for 8 days.  Your advice is greatly appreciate. 

Thank you.  Mark

Edited by Altostrata
added screen name to title, paragraph breaks

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Altostrata changed the title to Nolabud1 Tapering off Low Dose of Lexapro
  • Administrator

Welcome, Nolabud.

 

When you had the original vertigo episode, were you taking any drugs at all, such as an antibiotic?

 

You got withdrawal symptoms from decreasing from 5mg Lexapro to 2.5mg. This is not unusual, Lexapro is several times stronger than other SSRIs and you're sensitive to drugs.

 

How have your symptoms changed since you reduced to 2.5mg? Have they gotten better, worse, or the same?

 

Please read

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

 

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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Thanks for responding. When I had vertigo 7 months ago I wasn’t on anything. This is the first script I’ve had other than antibiotics and such, but wasnt on anything at the time. It may have been alcohol induced as I was on a cruise ship and drank foolishly for 3 straight days. Not proud of that at all. I haven’t had a drink since.

As to the tapering, when I first went from 5mf to 2.5 mg a week ago, the first few days were fine, just minor stuff. Now I’ve been on 2.5 for 8 days and it seems the light dizziness and dull headache are constant. Should I stay on 2.5 for another week?

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment

A reminder I’ve only been on Lex for 8 weeks total.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • ChessieCat changed the title to Nolabud1: Tapering off low dose of Lexapro
  • Administrator

Yes, the bender might have done it.

 

Don't reduce the Lexapro. It's up to you to decide: Do you want to make a slight updose, say, to 2.75 mg or do you want to wait it out and see if symptoms decrease over the next week?

 

If they do not decrease, I would updose to 2.75mg to start. The link I gave you explains how to make a liquid to take a small amount, or you can ask your doctor to prescribe the liquid.

 

I would take 2.5mg in tablet form and then add 0.25mg in liquid form to begin with.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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So if I choose to updose to 2.75 mg, is that the weight on the scale or should the weight be 3.00?? Thanks for your advice. I’m going to go with 2.5 mg for one more week to see if these symptoms subside. Is it common for the withdrawal symptoms (dizziness) to last 2 full weeks when tapering?  Let me know and thanks again.

Mark

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment

I also find it’s hard to watch tv with action shows on when I feel this dizziness. Is that common? Just curious. Thanks 

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment

Good Afternoon,

 

I am on day 9 of 2.5 mg of Lexapro, tapering from previous 8 weeks of 5 mg.  If I choose to stay on the 2.5 mg for the next couple of weeks, should I start to see a reduction in the consistent diziness I'm feeling as my brain gets accustomed to the reduction in dosage?  I notice it alot when watching TV and working on my computer.  Please let me know and thanks.

 

Mark

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator

Hello, Nolabud1 and welcome from to SA from me too.

 

To give members the best information, we ask them to summarize their medication history in a signature -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly.
  • 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. 
  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses. 
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

It is impossible to know how soon your brain will get accustomed to the new dosage.  The symptoms are the result of tapering too fast, 50% instead of the recommended 10%.  Your brain is going to need time to adjust to the reduced dosage.

 

How are your symptoms?   If you're not having any improvement, what do you think about updosing to 2.75 as Alto suggested?

 

In any case, I would do no further reductions until you have stabilized.  This could take several months.  You will have to be patient.  The professionals are wrong when they say no taper is needed at a low dose such as 5mg.   It is exactly the opposite: the lower the dose, the slower you should go.  This is especially so when you are sensitive to medications, and even more especially so when the drug in question is Lexapro, which is much stronger than other antidepressants.

 

You will heal, but you must give it time and go slowly.

 

 

 

 

 

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

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When you say “signature” are you talking about this:

 

Mark

Lexapro

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

 

Is this how I should respond to questions?

 

Since I’ve been on a tapered dosage for 9 days, I’m going to continue for another week to see if I stabilize. If not, I’ll readdress.

 

Thanks,

Mark

 

Edited by ChessieCat
Removed surname

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator

Yes, this is the place for you to respond to questions and make updates.  This is your introduction topic - the place for you to share your progress and connect with other members of the SA community.

 

Here is the link to create a signature.  It will appear with each of your posts.  Please do not include your real name.  Is the information in your previous post complete?  Is the 5mg Lexapro you started in December the only psychiatric drug you've been on?   If there are others, please include along with dates and dosages.  If that's the only one, click on the link below and enter the information in your previous post.  Here is the link:

 

Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

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  • Moderator Emeritus
55 minutes ago, Nolabud1 said:

Mark

Lexapro

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

 

It would be better to include your member name so:

 

Nolabud1 / Mark

 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

Thank you.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator

That's great, Nolabud1.  Thanks.  Please keep us updated on how you're doing.

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

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lexapro

5 mg for 7 weeks

tapering at 3mg for 10 days 

Have withdrawal side effects when I sit and watch TV or Work on computer. When I am active I don’t notice as much. Dizziness mostly at night while watching TV or reading. How long should I stay at 3 mg before attempting to taper further?

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Administrator

Hi, Nolabud. It sounds like you are light-sensitive. See

 

Light-sensitive? Try blocking out blue light

 

Computer Program Adjusts Blue Light to Time of Day

 

Avoid bright lights for a while everywhere, if necessary, wear dark glasses inside and outside.

 

After an updose, you'd let your nervous system settle down for some months.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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So I upped my Lex dosage from 3 mg to 4mg due to withdrawal side effects. I was on 5 mg Lex for 7 weeks. Tapered to 3, which was too drastic. At 4 mg, I don’t have the brain zaps but I have light headedness whenever I turn my head. This is the same symptom I had prior to meds. This is quite frustrating. Something is effecting my equilibrium and balance in my head.  It’s either the Lexapro or something vestibular is going on. It’s been 7.5 months. Need advice.  Thanks.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • 3 weeks later...
  • Administrator

How are you doing now, Nolabud?

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

Link to comment

I’m actually doing better. 3mg of Lex a day.  It’s not much but I’m taking the tapering slowly. I try to get out and walk, golf, drive, and work as much as possible. Seeing a balance specialist in 2 weeks. My symptoms seem less severe. PPPD seems to be what I have. It’ll take time to recover. Thanks for asking.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
7 minutes ago, Nolabud1 said:

I’m actually doing better.

 

That's good to hear.

 

Please update your signature whenever you make a change.  Thank you.  Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 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
  • 2 weeks later...

I was on 3mg Lexapro (tapering from 5mg) for a month and have started to reduce to 2.5 mg. This is pill form and I weigh 2.5 mg daily on a scale. On for a few days now and experiencing some dizziness and irritability. This is different than when I went from 5mg to 4mg. I understand liquid form is best when tapering but can I get the same consistency with cut pill dosages? Thank you.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
On 15/02/2018 at 5:47 AM, Nolabud1 said:

Thanks for responding. When I had vertigo 7 months ago I wasn’t on anything. This is the first script I’ve had other than antibiotics and such, but wasnt on anything at the time. It may have been alcohol induced as I was on a cruise ship and drank foolishly for 3 straight days. Not proud of that at all. I haven’t had a drink since.

As to the tapering, when I first went from 5mf to 2.5 mg a week ago, the first few days were fine, just minor stuff. Now I’ve been on 2.5 for 8 days and it seems the light dizziness and dull headache are constant. Should I stay on 2.5 for another week?

I have had three major episodes of vertigo. All led me to the doctors surgery for extensive test. On two occasions I almost passed out with the intense dizziness and nausea. All test came back normal. I now believe alcohol was the contributing factor. Heavy drinking resulting in dehydration. There are articles that talk about the connection between vertigo and alcohol consumption. Obviously not all vertigo is caused by alcohol but in my case it was. 

 

Why the doctor put you on on lexapro I do not know 😢

 

December 2007 30mg Lexapro and a benzodiazepine December 2008 25mg, December 2009 20mg, December 2010 15mg Lexapro, December 2011 10mg Lexapro. Long hold as I felt happy with the dose and saw no need at the time to reduce further. September 2015 dropped to 5mg. Terrible anxiety started two months later. June 2016 dropped to 3mg and terrible obsessive thoughts and anxiety so ten days later I reinstated back to 5mg. October 2016 dropped to 4mg. April 2017 dropped to 3mg. September 2017 dropped to 2mg. Terrible obsessive thoughts. Anxiety through the roof. OCD.  September 2018 quit cold turkey 2mg Lexapro. March 2019 feeling better than I have in years. 
Jan 2021 Anxiety returns after a twelve month period of incredible personal stress. 
Dec 2021 Reinstated antidepressants after 12 months of debilitating anxiety and panic attacks. 50mg zoloft. No side effects, unlike starting lexapro 14 yrs ago

Jan 2022. Stable. Like a weight has been lifted. 

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Hello Nolabud,

I am just popping by to say hello and offer support. Hope you are feeling well today.

: )

-D

2001- Klonopin 0.125 mg.  2011- increase to 1 mg.  2018- increase to 1.5 mg

2010- Trials of SSRI's, several.

2011- Saphris 5 mg. CT. 6/2017- retry Saphris 5 mg sublingual, begin taper August 2020 10% taper with scale, and final taper liquid sublingual, August 2019- taper complete!

2011- Geodon 20 mg. Begin taper Sept 2019. 10% liquid taper. 2020: December-5 mg. 2021: Jan-4.5mg. (held Feb.for vacation). March-4mg. Apr-3.6mg. May-3.2mg. June-2.8mg. (Held July for vacation). Aug-2.4mg. Sept.- 2.2mg. Oct. 2mg

2011- Gabapentin 300 mg to present- 2020.

2014- Vyvanse 20 mg, 2020- Vyvanse 5 mg.

2016- Lithium 300 mg, June 2016 - FT.

2017- Cogentin 0.5 mg. June-August 2019- off Cogentin.

Omeprazole 20 mg and holding, Omega 3's/fish oil, Magnesium

Omeprazole 20 mg and holding, Omega 3's/fish oil, Magnesium

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Altostrata- I have tapered from 5mg to 4mg to 3.5mg to 3.0 mg to 2.5 mg now (for 10 days). I was doing fine until a couple days ago when I started getting a crushing headache accompanied by dizziness (not spinning, just wobbly). I’m determined to beat this, but I wanted to ask if it’s common for headaches to appear a few days after tapering to a lower dosage, even at these low levels? Thanks

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Withdrawal symptoms can appear at any time after a dose drop, usually from a few days to a few weeks later.   As you haven't been on it very long, your system may be able to recover more quickly than those who have been on for many years.  However, it is best to wait until stable (symptoms settle down) before making further dose reductions.

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

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Should I stay at 2.5 mg for a month before going to 2.0 mg?

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

Link to comment
  • Moderator

It is at the low levels that you should taper more slowly, either cutting less(less than 10% per month) or holding longer (meaning longer than a month).  You should hold for at least a month.  10% of 2.5mg would mean your next dose would be 2.25mg, not 2.5.  Don't rush it at the end.

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

Link to comment

Ok, but this is where I have an issue. I’ve been on this drug for 14 weeks. Never going over 5 mg, even though my Dr, wanted me at 20 mg. Thank God I didn’t do that. Even at this low dose for this limited amount of time, I have felt very tired, hungry, and slightly dizzy when I stand for awhile. It’s to the point where I’m not sure if it’s the medication tapering or my original ailments. I won’t know for sure until I’m off Lexapro. I realize tapering must be slow, but I also want off. I tapered too quickly initially and paid the price. At 10% tapering, it will take a year to go from 2.5 to zero. How can that be? I’ve only been on the low dose for a little over 3 months total?

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

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  • Moderator

You can become physiologically dependent on antidepressants within one month of taking them.  You have been on them for three months.  It is not uncommon for the tapering period to far exceed the amount of time you were on the drug.

 

I know you want off and it's hard to wrap your mind around the length of time it takes to do it safely.  You've already had to updose once and that lengthened your taper time and likely worsened your withdrawal symptoms.   It is much better to do it very slowly, especially at these lower doses, than to have to updose, wait to stabilize (which is not always guaranteed), then taper again.  

 

The tiredness and dizziness are typical WD symptoms.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
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Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

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Hi Nolabud1, i just want to come in to tell you even though u at low dose and short of times. You need to slowly taper off to let your brain have a time to readjusted to the low doses. The lowers doses the withdrawals will be more and harder. You will better after 2 months coming off medicine but the following waves is more extremed u even wont know what the next new withdrawal visit you. Better been prepared yourself and read more others stories here to gain your knowledged. Take the supplement to help your nervous system is omega fish oil and magnesium citrate.For your information i also took lexapro 5mg over 8 months and off the medicine for over 6 months still suffering withdrawals. Hope you will recovery more faster after your taper program because individual recovery is different. Take care.

Mid December 16 lorezapam 1mg and lexapro 5mg

Early April17 updosed lorezapam 2mg, mid Apr17 taper 1.5mg, mid May17-1.25mg, early Jun17- 1mg, mid Jun17-0.75mg, mid July17-0.5mg, End July 17 reduce from 0.4mg, 0.3mg,0.2mg until 0.1mg.lorezapam free on 9 August 2017.

Early Mar17 updosed to Lexapro 10mg , end Mar17 reduced 7.5mg, mid May17 reduced 0.5mg, End Aug17 reduced 2.5mg, early Sep17 -1.5mg, Mid Sept-1mg, End Sept - 0.5mg .lexapro free on 26 September 2017

 

Supplement- omega fish oil and magnesium citrate only.

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To all who have responded to my posts, I thank you kindly. I looked at my script bottle this morning and realized I have been on citalopram this entire time (14 weeks) not Lexapro. I am trying to taper off this drug slowly but still have withdrawal symptoms, even going from 3.0 mg to 2.5 mg. Does the discovery of the correct medication I am on change any of the comments you have posted? Thanks again for your help.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

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  • Moderator

No change in advice, Nolabud.  Both are SSRI's.  Citalopram (Celexa) was the predecessor to Lexapro.  When the patent ran out, they made it stronger and voila we had Lexapro.  

 

If you are having withdrawal symptoms it's because you are tapering too fast.  Going from 3.0 to 2.5 is more than 10%.  10% would've been 2.7.  It doesn't seem like much but, as I've said, when you get down to these low numbers, it makes a difference.  These drugs are powerful.

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg 

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Jan. 11, 2022: 5.4mg 

Taper is 71% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg and holding.  

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


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

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I have tapered from 3.0 mg to 2.5 mg of Citalopram for 2 weeks now. The first few days I didn’t have any withdrawal symptoms. The last week I have. My purpose is to get off the drug. I don’t have anxiety or depression. My neurologist prescribed this for a prolonged equilibrium issue I was having in my head. As soon as I started on 5 mg of Citalopram I had side effects but those went away in a couple weeks. Through a ton of research and talking to people on this drug, I realized I should have never gone on it. After 2 months of 5 mg I started to taper. Now I am at 2.5 mg, which I know sounds extremely low but I assure you I have the headaches, brain fog, etc. associated with withdrawal. I actually can’t tell if it’s my previous ailment or the Celexa causing these symptoms, that’s why I’m tapering off Celexa. In addition, this medication makes me extremely fatigued and hungry. I wasn’t like this prior to the drug. I need off it.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

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  • Moderator Emeritus

 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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  • 2 weeks later...

It seems the experts on this site are correct. Tapering to 2.5 mg from 3.0 mg of Celexa was too drastic. On 4/2 I increased up to 2.7 mg and it seems to have lessened withdrawal. Amazing how this drug effects me. I’ll stay on 2.7 mg for a couple more weeks then reduce to 2.4 mg. The main reason I went on this medication 4 months ago had nothing to do with anxiety or depression. I was having and still have equilibrium issues. They’ve lessened though and that’s good. Thanks to those who responded over the last couple of months. Most physicians don’t believe in 2.5 mg of Celexa as theropudic, but I’m trying to taper off. It seems headaches are common and fatigue. Will have to fight through and keep on schedule.

Nolabud1 - Mark

45 yr old male

Citalopram

Start date: December 20, 2017     5 mg

Taper date: February 6, 2018.      2.5 mg

Back up to 3 mg 2/16

Tapered to 2.5 mg 3/18/2018

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