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Cloud23: Lexapro 9 years

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cloud23

Hi All!

 

Sorry for long post, but I just wanted to share my whole story.

I've been following this site since my last taper.. but was hoping I would never need to post here for advice.. but here I am...

 

I started Lexapro around 2009 due to depression that was caused by external factors. I was having family issues and struggling in college.

I started drinking a lot and smoking cigarettes... that's when I thought something might be wrong with me so after talking to some friends, they recommended I go to a doctor.

Well, I ended up at the university's psychiatrists office a left with a prescription of Lexapro. Not sure when I ended up on 20mg but I'm sure I started out with 10mg at 1st.

 

I stayed on the Lexapro even though I still had major depressive episodes in college. I thought I needed the Lex because of the depression, but I later (recently) learned my depression got worse because of the Lexapro.

I drank alcohol and smoked weed and cigarettes while on Lexapro. It wasn't until years later that I realized that drinking alcohol caused issues with the Lexapro which made me more depressed.

My psychiatrist never warned me about drinking on it.. even though I told him that I did drink on it... However, he was very against weed...

 

I think the only reason I graduated college with an engineering degree is because of weed. It helped me get through all of the hard times and kept my mind at bay.

 

Fast forward... I finally decided to get off the Lexapro right after college.

2013- 1st taper 20mg to 10mg in 2weeks
----------(Got brian zaps. Dr said to stay on Lex)

This was a bad idea because I was still drinking. I got a DUI because I tried to speed home late at night because I knew I had to take the Lexapro early in the morning or else I would have a bad hangover.

Decided to go back to full dosage so I could handle the DUI situation...

 

 

The next time I tried to taper, I was doing great in life. Still smoking weed but I cut down alcohol drastically. 

2015- 2nd taper 20mg to 15mg to 10mg by 1month on each dose

----------(Got chest pains, Dr said to live with chest pains forever or continue Lexapro)

I got scared so I decided to stay on Lexapro... The second reason was because I just broke up with my girlfriend and I was about to start traveling for work... I needed to be functional for work travel. 

This is where my Dr said I had a General Anxiety Disorder and should stay on the Lexapro my whole life.... yea I didn't believe that but I felt hopeless at the time.

 

 

2017/2018- 3rd taper 20mg to 15mg to 10mg by 3months on each dose

----------(Thought I had a seizure, GP Drs said it was not one but probably low blood sugar or pressure. Psychiatrist said to stay on 20mg Lexapro "just to be safe" and focus on quitting smoking 1st)

This was the best taper I was doing. However, ever since one night I got dizzy, slowly fell to the floor and my whole body shivered. I got up, used the bathroom (#2), had a panic attack, and then I felt fine afterward so I went to bed.

That had me scared. My GP said it was not a seizure since I got up right away. I'm sure it was from smoking to fast and dehydration most likely.  I told my psychiatrist and he said to focus on quitting cigs 1st. And that I should stay on Lexapro 20mg for life.

This horrible psychiatrist prescribed me benzos to help quit smoking cigs (yea replace 1 drug for another horrible one). I quit drinking alcohol as well.

 

 

2018- New psychiatrist. 20mg to 15mg (3weeks) to 10mg(2.5weeks) to 7.5mg(2weeks) to 5mg(2weeks) to 2.5mg(weeks).. now at 0mg since July 27th 2018

----------(Fast taper due to side effects on full dose or else I would have tapered extremely slower.. starting smoking cigs again to help get through the withdrawals.. now regretting that decision)

So I finally quit smoking cigs after 10years. I was smoke-free for two months! Then it all went downhill from there...

I started to experience side effects from the Lexapro. Horrible insomnia, night sweats, dry mouth, sensitivity to light and sound... I knew this was not from quitting cigs because I was done with the withdrawals from them.

I didn't sleep for almost a week. No natural supplements helped... I panicked. I emailed my psychiatrist and told him what was going on. He said...." THERE ARE NO SIDE EFFECTS FROM THIS MEDS AND IT'S JUST MY ANXIETY"...

That's when I knew I had to switch psychiatrist. It took me a while to book an appointment because most were a month waiting list... I panicked more.

I started to smoke cigs again to help me finally come off the meds... I didn't know what else to do...

 

Finally found a new psychiatrist and we made a taper plan. We made a taper plan for 3months. 20-15-10-5-0mg.. Well we did the 3month plan but with different dosages. 

(I didn't tell him I started it for depression but I was on it for anxiety disorder. I also said I was on it for 7years and not almost 9years. To be honest, I was scared he wouldn't help me if I told him exactly why)...

I had to take 1 Trazodone one night to finally sleep after a week of no sleep. I used that to restore my sleep schedule. I do not take Trazadone.

 

I had withdrawals/side effects all the way from 20mg to 0mg.

Most common symptoms were insomnia and anxiety.

Here is a list of other symptoms:   Fatigue, dizziness, nausea, muscle twitches, itching, dry eyes (went to an ophthalmologist twice for this one), depression, dry mouth, chest pains, dry itchy throat, mucus in chest and throat.

 

I have been off it for a 5 week now.

Now I have constant anxiety.. it is very hard to focus at work without taking a smoke break every hour.

I am worried that I smoke way too many cigs now. about 15 a day... I cannot help it at all due to fatigue, stress, and the constant anxiety. 

I really want to stop smoking cigs but right now is just impossible to cut down and even stop... 

I tried vaping but the JUUL makes my eyes hurt and the regular vapes just don't do anything. My parents suggested I stick with regular cigarettes bc my body is used to that...

I applied for Medical Marijuana. I received my card about a week ago. Have been using high CBD low THC for a week now but doesn't seem to help much.

I am going to continue trying medical CBD to see if that helps after some time. I have 5htp but I am scared to try it.

I will be seeing a Chinese Herbal doctor/ acupuncturist tomorrow to see if that help.

I take GNC multivitamins and fish oil as I have heard that helps with withdrawals. 

I use high CBD-low THC tincture morning and night. Also, smoke high CBD weed to help with sleep. 

I feel better at night and I can go to bed now using weed and Bramhi (ayurvedic medicine) with milk.

 

I am hopeless as I don't know what to do...

Should I try to reinstate on a lower dosage?

Should I go on another AD and try to stabilize on that and work on quitting smoking cigs again?

 

 

Any advice and or suggestions, please?

 

 

Thank you,

-Cloud23

 

 

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SkyBlue
19 hours ago, cloud23 said:

later (recently) learned my depression got worse because of the Lexapro.

 

Hello Cloud and welcome to SA. I'm glad you found us.

 

Yes, unfortunately psych drugs can actually worsen the symptoms we were seeking relief from. It also sounds like you're definitely in withdrawal from the very rapid taper this summer (and have likely been sensitized by previous rapid tapers). The good news is, it is possible to heal from this whole ordeal and even to gain more stability in the short term.

 

It is highly unfortunate that your doctor said your two choices were to "live with chest pains forever" or stay on Lexapro for life. Then you were prescribed benzos to stop smoking. You've been through a lot and it sounds like you're now really listening to your inner wisdom. 

 

Thank you for providing a detailed but succinct drug signature. Yours is a model signature that is really helpful without giving too much information and it's really well-organized. We appreciate it!

 

A few things stand out to me: 

 

***I'm wondering about all the supplements. Many people find that in withdrawal they are very sensitive to supplements. We've seen CBD be very activating. Have you experienced this at all? 

***Acupuncture: make sure your practitioner gives you a "calming" treatment, not a "detox" one. Make sure he/she knows that you're extremely sensitive right now. Along with ^ caution about supplements, please be equally as careful with Chinese herbs. (I'm speaking from experience -- I took a lot of supplements in acute withdrawal

** Yes, stopping smoking is good (and you will get there), but addressing the WD symptoms is just as if not more important

 

19 hours ago, cloud23 said:

Should I try to reinstate on a lower dosage?

Should I go on another AD and try to stabilize on that and work on quitting smoking cigs again?

 

 

We don't recommend ADs here -- the one exception would be the Prozac bridge for tapering (info on this site, but I'm not familiar with it).

 

Reinstatement of a very small dose is definitely an option. Here is some information (please read the first post by Alto especially) -- https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/

 

 

Let us now what you think about the reinstatement info.

Again, welcome.

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cloud23

SkyBlue,

 

Thank you for your reply. 
It helps to talk with others going through this and it's comforting that I am not alone. 
 

1 hour ago, SkyBlue said:

***I'm wondering about all the supplements. Many people find that in withdrawal they are very sensitive to supplements. We've seen CBD be very activating. Have you experienced this at all? 

 

 

 

Hmm, that's interesting. I have noticed some medical marijuana does increase my anxiety, so I stop whichever strains that cause issues.

I have not experienced anything from CBD. So far that seems to help. I'll keep an eye on it though. 

My hopes were to replace my ADs with Medical Marijuana and CBD...

 

1 hour ago, SkyBlue said:

***Acupuncture: make sure your practitioner gives you a "calming" treatment, not a "detox" one. Make sure he/she knows that you're extremely sensitive right now. Along with ^ caution about supplements, please be equally as careful with Chinese herbs. (I'm speaking from experience -- I took a lot of supplements in acute withdrawal

1

Yes I have read on a thread here about "detox" from acupuncturists. The 1st time I went, I did discuss with him about it. I will mention it again. He had me do a "detox" smoothie everyday to help and I have been doing that. It's a smoothie of carrots, onion, apple, oranges, and ginger. I don't think this smoothie blend would be bad since it's just fruits and veggies. I'll see what he suggests today.

 

As for supplements:
I didn't want to modify my diet too drastically, but here is what ended up happening.

I have been taking the GNC MegaMen Vitamins for a while now (3yrs). I started it when I started working out again, along with Whey Protein.

However, when I started withdrawal and tapering...
I did start eating fruits and veggies a lot more. I cut out fast food and processed foods almost to none/rarely. This was due to reading that proper diet helps the healing process. 

I started Omaga-3 fish oil because I hear that helps with withdrawals.

The insomnia was really bad at 1st so I was desperate for relief because it was hard to focus at work.. This is how I ended up with the list below.

For nights, I switch off from Bramhi, melatonin , or Valerian root.

Not all at once obviously, but I switch whenever it seems like one stops working as well.

Most nights I take warm milk and 1-2 teaspoons of honey. Along with a couple hits of medical marijuana.

(I should probably add the supplements to my signature)

 

I plan to slowly wean myself off of some of the supplements. Just not sure when or which ones to start with.

I'm thinking of discontinuing Omega-3 fish oil or the sleep supplements slowly. But I'm not sure yet...

The only problem I have with the supplements is that I cannot tell which ones are helping, hurting, or not doing anything.

Like I do get waves and windows.. So it's hard to tell. 

 

As for reinstatement, I'll look again at the link you provided.

For now, I want to stay away from any ADs... I know I mentioned that in my intro post but it was just my anxiety and worries kicking in...

 

 

 

Thanks again!

-Cloud23

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cloud23

Hey Friends,

 

Thought Id ask a few questions regarding my current issues I'm having.

 

1. So my acupuncturist seems very nice and I've done 3 sessions with him so far. But today he perscribed me some Chinese Herbas and I'm scared to take them.. I don't want to take the risk.. one of the ingredients is "Pinellas Tuber". Google says it's banned in US because it has some chemical that can cause dangerous side effects. Other sites says it helps with anxiety, insomnia and depression.. so the information is conflicting.

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1093/pinellia-ternata

I'm leaning towards not taking it. He provided it in pill form with 7 other herbs. He said take 5pills after a meal twice a day. Which seems like A LOT to me..

 

2. I keep having rapid heart beats all of a sudden. It's super scary.. it comes randomly. After I eat or after a small walk.. Im assuming its withdrawals but it scares me. Any Advice?..

 

3. Any advice on the smoking cigarettes thing. I want to try "Vice Breaker" pills.

https://www.amazon.com/Vice-Breaker-Nicorette-NicoDerm-Lozenges-100/dp/B00GMMTXC6

Or Lobeila pills but I don't want to be taking more supplements bc I already have been trying quite a few. It's hard to tell which are helping and which are not. I think ill try electronic cigs again tomorrow but they don't help like they used to. Plus Im more sensitive to the JUUL during withdrawals (they seem to make my eyes hurt after a few hits, I can't tell if they are just too strong or if it's because of the "Nic Salts" they use in them). Either way cutting down on cigarettes is okay when I have less withdrawals symptoms. But hard when my anxiety and stress is high.. any advice from smokers or ex-smokers on here?

 

 

Thank you,

Cloud23

 

 

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brassmonkey

When the known side effects of Pinellas Tuber are heart attack and stoke it's an indication that the use of this supplement is not worth the possible benefits.  Add in the fact that it is an abortive and can be passed to children through mothers milk and the case against it gets even stronger.  One big reason it's banned in the united states is that it contains one of the key ingredients for making crystal meth.  I would caution people to stay far away from this supplement.

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cloud23

Brassmonkey,

 

Thanks. Yea I'm definitely not taking the Chinese Herbs. It just seems too risky. Being desperate for relief is how I kind of ended up on ADs that I ignored the dangers. 

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cloud23

Update October 11:

 

To anyone reading, I thought I'd give an update to where I am at.

2.5 months off a fast taper.. Doing okay but still recovering slowly..

 

Symptoms and concerns:

  • Fear, depression, anxiety, and many many stressors in life at the moment which is causing delay in recovery.
  • Rapid Heart Beat, Chest Palpitations, tingling in face and fingers, chest pains.. my parents think this is mostly due to coming off the meds and the many stressors in my life.... (Mostly work stress because my department might move over seas, my co-work I have a project is un-understanding and unreasonable even after i told him what I am going through..even though his wife went through withdrawals after coming off effexor.., and I don't have a clean record so finding another job would be difficult. Plus this is my dream job and it pays really well)

 

Doctors and concerns:

  • I'm scared to go back to my original GP with any issues because all they will say is " take antidepressants for life because of serotonin deficiency like diabetics and insulin"... which I defiantly do not believe.
     
  • I have a medical marijuana card but not sure if I trust the clinic here anymore..
    • I had an appointment yesterday and tried to tell them every time I tried take their CBD, I get more intense heart palpitations. I tried to explain that I think the reason for that is because my body is confused right now and instead of the CBD helping, it is causing my withdrawals to intensify. The marijuana consultant said weed isn't harmful and to just do breathing exercise when I get heart palpitations. I understood her statement, but my gut feeling (as well as reading other's experiences on SA) is that this is not the case for me. Something is off and I am not reacting to the CBD as a normal person would. I am scared to keep taking it bc I don't want it to halt or slow down my recovery... This is very saddening for me because weed has saved my life the past 10 years . Only now am i getting adverse reactions from it. So medical marijuana is a no go for now..
    • I had an EKG bc of the heart palplitations done at the same clinic in September. Doc said I was normal just some early repolarization. I told her and ask about the Lexapro. 1- she criticized my psychiatrists for doing a rapid taper. 2- she didn't believe i was in withdrawal and said it was my underlining anxiety coming back. Told me to go back to 2.5mg till I got my medical card.. BTW I never had a serious anxiety issue till I started  Lexapro to be honest. My only 2 panic attacks in my life were after I started Lexapro.
       
  • I stopped going to my acupuncturist. I might go again, but not sure...
    • He criticized me when I refused to take his Chinese herbs. I would have tried them but one of the ingredients is banned in the US for causing heart attacks and strokes. I told him about that and he said I shouldn't believe what I read on the internet. I read the article on webmd.. He said I have an anxiety disorder and that my only options are his meds or psy meds and acupuncture... once again, I had normal anxiety before I started Lexapro.
       
  • I saw a Nathropath/ Nutritionist/ Traditional Chinese Medicine
    • She thinks the issue is with my gut. I do believe that because I believe in the gut-brain health are inter-twined. She had me do a microbiom test (poop test). I am waiting on the results.
    • I am very cautions of what she will suggest..
    • I am going to tell her that my body is very sensitive to taking anything right now.. hope she understand.

My next game-plan/ final thoughts:

  • My parents want me to stop going to soo many doctors because they aren't helping at all. Mostly just trying to prescribe more pills and aren't listening to me. They refuse to believe I am in withdrawal..
  • I am scared to reinstate a low dose of any antidepressants because how my body is reacting to anything I try... especially medical marijuana. So reinstatement isn't on my radar. 
  • I am still struggling with quitting cigarettes. I need to focus on cutting down though, but anyone who has smoked before know how hard it is, let alone quitting during withdrawals.. my parents recommend not to stopping completely right now because I have already changed to many thing that is effecting my body drastically (I'm off Lex, I changed my diet from poor to veggies/homecooked meals/and fruits, supplement trials for any relief)
  • I will continue with 30min exercise 5x week. Good diet. Sleep, when i can get it. I use healing affirmations along with meditation music at night for subconscious mind recovery. 
  • Focus on Laws of attractions to help recover (the negative thoughts and fears are making it hard at the moment).
  • Most importantly! I need to stop going online to review my symptoms and others stories. I think this is causing me to have fears from it..
  • Stop trying supplements and just focus on with melatonin, fish oil, and magnesium. 

 

If any one have suggestions or advice, please let me know.

I think I am going to focus on meditation, prayers, and mindfulness in the mean time instead of constantly reading stuff online. I'll check my messages next two days but besides that, I'll try to check at a much later time. I'll see how that goes though..

I live near Chicago, IL, USA. If you have any suggestions on a doctor(s) that understand withdrawals and actually listen, please refer them to me.

 

Thanks you,

Cloud

 

 

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Altostrata

cloud23, I see you are asking questions on Ather's thread. Let's address them here.

 

On 9/12/2018 at 6:14 PM, cloud23 said:

I keep having rapid heart beats all of a sudden. It's super scary.. it comes randomly. After I eat or after a small walk.. Im assuming its withdrawals but it scares me. Any Advice?

 

You have post-acute withdrawal syndrome. You have had a rough withdrawal from Lexapro several times. When people go on and off psychiatric drugs, their nervous systems become sensitized to drugs and sometimes supplements and foods.

 

Those palpitations are because of this sensitization. How is your sleep?

 

As we mentioned earlier, reinstatement of a very small dose, such as 1mg Lexapro, can reduce the withdrawal symptoms. Celexa is Lexapro's gentler chemical sibling, if you fear Lexapro. Either comes in a liquid form by prescription so you can take 1mg with an oral syringe.

 

That acupuncturist is the wrong acupuncturist for you.

 

We don't help people quit smoking here, but that would be a good idea for you. (One of my friends used herbal cigarettes to cut down, it satisfied her habit of smoking.)

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cloud23

Alto,

 

10 minutes ago, Altostrata said:

Those palpitations are because of this sensitization. How is your sleep?

 

As we mentioned earlier, reinstatement of a very small dose, such as 1mg Lexapro, can reduce the withdrawal symptoms. Celexa is Lexapro's gentler chemical sibling, if you fear Lexapro. Either comes in a liquid form by prescription so you can take 1mg with an oral syringe.

 

Thank you for the reply.

 

My sleep has improved. I get about 5hrs a night. I do wake up occasionally in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. And was up with morning anxiety, which calms down after eating something light and drinking water.

 

As for reinstatement, I'll try to find a doctor to see if I can get a perscription of the oral Lexapro. I'm just nervous they'll ask too many questions and try to get me on something else.. I do have some 5mg pills leftover.

 

Does withdrawal affect blood pressure?

I checked my mine yesterday and it seemed a little on the higher than what I expected. Still okay but not what I was hoping for. The average was 125/85.

 

I will look into quitting smoking again or at least cutting down with herbal cigarettes. I'm just nervous if that would effect the withdrawals?

Since my body has through a lot of many changes lately.

 

Thanks you,

Cloud

 

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Altostrata

Yes, withdrawal can affect blood pressure.

 

Have you ever had therapy for the anxiety? You might look into Cognitive Behavior Therapy. It sounds like you are an anxious smoker. It also sounds like you have a bit of health anxiety, see

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms 

 

Health anxiety, hypochondria, and obsession with symptoms

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cloud23

@altostrata

 

Yes I have done CBT with a therapist before. I stopped going because of the price and the therapist said "anxiety drugs are 1 of many ways to cope with anxiety".. I wasn't fond of that comment. I tried another therapist but he didn't understand what Brain Zaps were and about withdrawals much. So I stopped that after the 1st session.

 

I will read up on the links you provided.

As for reinstatement, I will read up that link again.

 

Since I have been off the Lexapro for 2.5months now, I want to try to see if I can go on without reinstatement. I stopped taking fish oil two days ago and seeing if that helps lower the palpitations. So far it has a little.

 

Thanks again,

Cloud

 

 

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cloud23

No brain zaps really. They went away after 2nd week. I maybe get 1 once a week or two.

 

All of my phsyical symptoms have gone expect for chest pain and the paplitations. Occasional numbness in face and fingers.

 

I was about to try magnesium but my mom suggested I stop trying so supplements and just let my body naturally heal. I do still have a bottle of the 100mg magnesium citrate capsules.. 

Edited by cloud23
update physical symptoms

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Altostrata

You still get brain zaps? Since the end of July? How much fish oil do you take?

 

Please read the magnesium topic , you'd probably find taking it to be helpful for anxiety and relaxation. 

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cloud23
3 minutes ago, Altostrata said:

You still get brain zaps? Since the end of July? How much fish oil do you take?

 

 I don't get brain zaps as intense as I did the 1st week or two after going to 0mg. I get a very very small tingle rarely now, it's probably not brain zaps then, since it's nothing like when I dropped to 0mg. It could be just the weather changing. I was taking 500mg fish oil in the morning daily. Just stopped that 2days ago.

 

 

 

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WantoffVen

I'd like to reply to Cloud how I quit smoking after 45 years. What I did was get the vaping cigarettes with 12 mg. nicotine but I still smoked 4 cigarettes a day. I decreased the cigarettes and within about 3 months I was able to give up the cigarettes altogether and then slowly tapered (lol we love that word) the amount of nicotine in the vaping cigarettes. I took 14 months to go off the nicotine altogether but it was soooooooooooooooo easy compared to cold turkey. I think what helped the most was not giving up the cigarettes entirely when starting the vaping. Just wanted to suggest this to you. If admins don't want this post please cancel it.

 

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cloud23

I stopped taking it because I was curious if it was the reason my chest pain and palpitations increased. I did some research and found that for some individuals, fish oil can cause palpitations. It feels like my palpitations have decreased past few days. I will see how it goes for rest of the week. 

I never felt much of a difference when taking the fish oil or not. I didn't want to take too much as I wasn't sure how my body would react to it.. 

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Altostrata

You might want to leave off the fish oil for a bit and see what happens.

 

This could be important to find the cause of your palpitations: Please keep daily notes on paper about your symptoms, when you take your drugs, and their dosages. Use a simple list format with time of day on the left and notation (symptom, drug and dosage) on the right.

 

Also see our topics in the Symptoms forum about taurine.

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cloud23

Update  February 5, 2019:

 

Sorry I haven't been on here in a while.

Also, sorry for the very long post. A lot has happened but I'll try to focus on the main things.

However, I thought I'd give an update:

 

Naturopathic Dr I mentioned in October 11th 2018 update. This happened in October:

  • I got my microbiome (stool test) results back. I feel like the Dr tried to take advantage of my anxiety and fears into buying her product. She said I was missing "95% of my good bacteria", which to me sounds ridiculous because I feel like I would be dead if I was missing that much. She also said I had candida. But looking at the results myself, nothing seemed that bad. It seems I am missing some good bacteria which I can replenish with probiotics and healthy diet. The Candida seemed very low on the chart.
  • Here is where things went wrong with that appointment and why I became very skeptical:
    • She took my appointment 45 mins late (I guess it can happen).. but during the appointment she did not listen to any of my worries and concerns on what ALL she wanted me to take.
    • Here is what she wanted me to take DAILY, which I thought was extremely excessive:  6 Pills of Probiotics, 2 Pills of Prebiotics, 2 Pill of Grapefruit Seed Extract, 1 of Uvi Ursa, 24 tiny tiny pills of Emperors Tea (Traditional Chinese Medicine)
      • Sorry I think that's a lot of pills to take daily. Worst was I had to buy it from her and the bill for the supplements was $300! 
    • I had more questions and I was the last patient of the day. However, she gave me a list of what I needed to take and when. A quick diet plan. And then she left very quickly and rudely out the office. She left me with her assistance and almost $500 bill if I bought her $300 worth of supplements. I didn't buy her pills. 
  • Another not so well Dr experience this was. In the end I felt like I was being taken advantage of due to anxiety and almost scammed. Now I am not too sure if that's true or not but taking the list of pills I mentioned above daily just seemed way to excessive. 

After that experience I avoided doctors for a bit. Things were slowly improving as I started to sleep more. Some symptoms came and went.

I had weird chest pain and muscle numbness but that went away after a few weeks.

Work was still stressful but during the Christmas, things were slow for me which helped. Except the last day before I took vacation, I had a lot of responsibilities dropped on me for when I returned. 

 

India Trip In January:
 

I told my family in India what was going on with me and they advised I come to India since I haven't in 10 years. They said they would help me out find some good doctors and fix things.

I have lack of support from parents and my brother at home recently. I live alone and support myself. My friends are limited after I quit drinking. So I decided to take the offer from family in India and travel there for vacation.

I had high hopes for my 3 week trip in India but it didn't go completely planned as expected. Here is what happened and all of the Dr visits:

  • 1st week I got sick bad with fever and coughing. I think it was from the very poor air quality and pollution in the city my family lives.
    • Went to their family Dr and this was another bad experience.
      • I specifically said I cannot take antibiotics unless it was absolutely needed, we he prescribed me them anyways.
      • Dr did not listen to my about my withdrawals and criticized me when I tried to explain why I didn't want to take antibiotics.
  • I ended up taking the antibiotics but I think I defiantly took a step back in recovery. I told my family and everyone I didn't want to take the antibiotics but eventually I got convinced that I should.. especially since I was in a dirty, polluted environment.
    • My anxiety and insomnia definitely came back strong.
  • I went to many other doctors while in India because family there recommended it and it's really cheap compared to US:
    • Went to another regular family Dr about my anxiety, insomnia, and excessive acne. He tried to prescribe me AntiDEPRESSANTS again.. and antibiotics for the acne. I said NOPE. 
    • I went to an Ayuvedic Dr and he said I should keep taking AntiDEPRESSANTS life long due to the "Chemical Imbalance".. I said NOPE to him as well. I didn't believe what he said.
    • I went to a homeopathic Dr and they seemed to understanding. I tried their meds (which were not your typical pill form, they were liquid sprinkled onto tiny sugar balls). Either way, after trying it for two days, I knew they were not right for me.
  • I eventually did end up going to the hospital for tests because a cousin worked there. I had some blood tests done, one urine and stool test done. Almost all came back good.
    • The blood test didn't check as much as the tests I get done in US, unfortunately. 
    • One of the blood test said I was borderline for low thyroid. Dr said get another test done in 3 months. And some of my other numbers were on the lower end but still all good. 
    • I got an EKG and chest xray done and they were all good as well. 
    • The urine and stool tests were all good as well. They didn't say anything about the candida that the Naturopath Dr said in US.
    • So this hospital visit wasn't that bad of an experience. At least I got things tested. Also, got proper meds for my cough and fever.
  • One good experience was that I met a religious man while in India. Not your average person and I don't know how to describe him. 
    • He looked at me, felt the pulse on my wrist and he was able to tell a lot about me that most doctors couldn't. 
    • I did some religious prayers with him and he offered me advice on diet. He said just focus on eating right.

Overall, my experience in India was not what I hoped. But at least I got to see old family members and get away from home stress and drama (sort of). 

 


Where am I at now:

  • I'm back into the US.
    • Working again. It's been very stressful which is not helping my recovery. I can't switch jobs because I live alone and it took years for me to work my way up here. As well as find this good of a job.
    • My parents are trying to be supportive but still don't listen to my advice and concerns. My brother is older and doesn't offer any help and makes life for my parents and me more difficult. 
    • Limited friends for any support. But at least I can find someone to talk to once in a while, which is good.
  • I haven't smoked a cigarette in 60 days. YAY! (I do crave them a lot thought due to work and home stressors). I went cold turkey with it since that's the only way I know how to quit.
  • Still focused on healthy eating when I can. 
  • Supplements:
    • Only Probiotics and melatonin right now.
    • I stopped taking the GNC Mega Men vitamins because I was scared it had way too many vitamins over daily value %s. My blood tests showed my B12 was way over. 
      • It also had Talc. I'm not sure that's good anymore after hearing about Johnson and Johnson issue with Talc and baby powder a month or two ago. 
    • I plan to look into Fish Oil and Magnesium again but I will slowly try to implement that back into my diet. 
  • Symptoms:
    • Occasional Chest pain/ pressure. I never was able to find out what is causing it. It's not fish oil or cigarettes. My heart checked out fine in all tests. 
    • Anxiety and worries for minor things. 
    • Sleep is improving.
    • Real bad acne breakouts. I also started getting many tiny black dots on my body that started recently, kind of like moles. I went to a dermatologist and he said there was nothing wrong. 
    • Digestive issues. Gas and bloating. 
    • Brain fog occasionally.
    • Fatigue. 
    • Depression and crying.
  • I need to get back to my rhythm of going to the gym but its been super cold that it takes me a while to force myself out of bed. 

    • Also, I can't seem to workout like I used to when I was feeling normal. Not sure why, it's been like this after I complete came off Lexapro. My heart races hard and I get tired easily.

    • I'm still getting 30 mins walking in daily, some moderate stretching, and light weight lifting. 

  • Lost my meditation habit. I need to focus on getting back on track with that as well. 

  • I am healing. Which is good. But the process has been slow due to life circumstances. But trying my best when I can.

 

Thank you anyone that reads it. Once again sorry for the long message. I've just been trying to focus on life and healing.

I just wanted to share my experiences just in case if it helps anyone in the future.

 

Thank you and God Bless,

Cloud 

 

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Ather

If I was there I would have hugged you like I hug my son and would have told you that there is nothing wrong with you, you are 100% fine,  you just need to take thing easy :)

 

Going through your post I noticed a very well focused and detailed write, I hope you are this focused most of the time, if so then please know that you have no depression.

 

You went to India, went to all kinds of doctors but not a senior psychiatrist, why ? They meet many cases like us and the well-experienced ones send us home without any meds ! sometimes there words of advise are enough for us.

 

You have quit Cigarettes, Thank you very much, Now this is some achievement, this is where the brain's healing start :)

 

Stay busy with your work and let stress stay down, under your feet, don't let it come up.

 

Now you know that all your tests, x-rays, ECGs are fine, know that your heart is fine, whenever you feel the chest pain again just let it go, let it go, don't worry about it, and it will go !

 

Your's

Ather

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ather

I forgot to add:

Two things that got me out of my 23 years of Antidepressants (and also my Depression) were:

1. I quit smoking.

2. I started large doses of Vitamin D (after I found out I had very low levels of it in my blood test)

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cloud23
On 2/6/2019 at 12:43 PM, Ather said:

If I was there I would have hugged you like I hug my son and would have told you that there is nothing wrong with you, you are 100% fine,  you just need to take thing easy :)

 

Going through your post I noticed a very well focused and detailed write, I hope you are this focused most of the time, if so then please know that you have no depression.

 

You went to India, went to all kinds of doctors but not a senior psychiatrist, why ? They meet many cases like us and the well-experienced ones send us home without any meds ! sometimes there words of advise are enough for us.

 

You have quit Cigarettes, Thank you very much, Now this is some achievement, this is where the brain's healing start :)

 

Stay busy with your work and let stress stay down, under your feet, don't let it come up.

 

Now you know that all your tests, x-rays, ECGs are fine, know that your heart is fine, whenever you feel the chest pain again just let it go, let it go, don't worry about it, and it will go !

 

Your's

Ather

 

 

Ather,

 

Thank you for the kind words.

 

I went cold turkey stopping the cigarettes because that's the only way I know how to stop them.

 

In India, I refused to go to a psychiatrist because the last thing I wanted was doctors to tell me is to go back on antidepressants. I had 3 suggest that to me.

All of my tests came out fine so that does help me feel better. But there are two things I mentioned that I am not sure about.. A Naturopath Dr said I have Candida and wanted me to buy her $300 worth of supplements. Another doctor said my thyroid was borderline and wanted me to get re-tested in 3 months. I am sick and tired of going to doctors but part of me says I need to find a legit one to help me though all of this. 

 

I still need to work out the stress situation. Its just hard when I live alone and don't have much support from family and friends.

I do need to get back to prayer and meditation as I have not been able to do that recently due to the anxiety in the morning.

 

Anyways thank you for reading. We'll chat soon.

 

Thank you,

Cloud

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Ather
14 hours ago, cloud23 said:

 

 

Ather,

 

Thank you for the kind words.

 

I went cold turkey stopping the cigarettes because that's the only way I know how to stop them.

 

In India, I refused to go to a psychiatrist because the last thing I wanted was doctors to tell me is to go back on antidepressants. I had 3 suggest that to me.

All of my tests came out fine so that does help me feel better. But there are two things I mentioned that I am not sure about.. A Naturopath Dr said I have Candida and wanted me to buy her $300 worth of supplements. Another doctor said my thyroid was borderline and wanted me to get re-tested in 3 months. I am sick and tired of going to doctors but part of me says I need to find a legit one to help me though all of this. 

 

I still need to work out the stress situation. Its just hard when I live alone and don't have much support from family and friends.

I do need to get back to prayer and meditation as I have not been able to do that recently due to the anxiety in the morning.

 

Anyways thank you for reading. We'll chat soon.

 

Thank you,

Cloud

 

Cloud my Brother you did good by going back to your home country, change is very good, it distracts you.

 

Cigarettes are gone and they are history now, very good !

 

Skip the candida doctor.

 

Keep thyroids in check, specially post quit smoking, you should, but not to too much worry about, because you are in the range.

 

You earlier said you had your parents with you, are they with you or are they back in India ?

 

Yes, keep in touch with our Creator, cry while talking to Him, stay Thankful, think of those who are below us, the ones who sleep empty-stomach, the ones who have lost a limb, the ones who cannot see or hear, the ones who have terminal illness and you will find yourself very much thankful, being rebellious will only create negative energies, so stay away from the devil's work.

 

Please stay in touch,

Your's

Ather  

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