Jump to content
les625

les625: Help with Trintellix ... and overall hope

Recommended Posts

les625

Hi guys, sorry this may be a long post, I think it is okay to share my story on this.

 

  I am 21 years old, a college student about to graduate, and I have been on an SSRI for about 5 years now.  I was diagnosed with ADHD and GAD when I was about 12, I have always been somewhat anxious and had issues with regulating my emotions.  In 2013 my girlfriend broke up with me and I was really sad and feeling hopeless.  After a few months of being down and also anxious, my doctor (pediatrician) decided to put me on 5mg of Lexapro.  The Lexapro seemed to help (I think?) and I recovered somewhat quickly.  Over the next few years, however, my doctor fluctuated my dosage quite a bit.  I would get anxious, he would up my dosage, and then I would become a zombie and he would lower it.  It did seem to blunt my emotions on a high dose.  Other than that it was fine.  However, the summer after my freshman college, I became extremely anxious and had an existential crisis, prompting my doctor to change me over to Zoloft and Trazodone.

 

  When starting Zoloft, I took 50mg and worked up to 100mg.  It possibly helped my anxiety but my emotions became blunted again (or maybe it was depression?).  I did not feel hopeless or sad, but I kind of lost the ability to have pleasure over simple things.  After going through a hard time on Zoloft and Trazodone feeling empty and dull, my doctor and I decided to taper off to see if that would help.  Every time I tapered, we would allow three weeks to go by to see if it helped.  I went from 100mg to 75mg to 50mg to 25mg and eventually to nothing.  Every time I lowered, I felt a little more in touch with my emotions.  With the Trazodone, I stopped cold turkey on a dose of 50mg.  When I went completely off of the Zoloft and Trazodone, I started having crying episodes, brain zaps, insomnia, anxiety, occasional anhedonia/brain fog, and severe social anxiety.  After a month or two, all of these symptoms went completely away (except sometimes the anhedonia/brain fog).  I was doing good and feeling very in touch with my emotions.

 

  After a few months off of the Zoloft though, the school year was coming back around, and the girl I had been dating for 2 years broke up with me unexpectedly.  It devastated me and left me feeling sad and hopeless.  I was crying all of the time, I was thinking about her all of the time, losing the ability to feel pleasure, and had anxiety because I still saw her every day.  This continued on through the semester and I went home for winter break feeling depressed and anxious.  I was feeling brain fog/anhedonia, and lost overall enthusiasm for life.  It got bad enough that I knew I needed help, so I started talking to a therapist (I had seen a few before this one) and it was helping.  I still was depressed, but was slowly improving.  I started taking Adderall again to study for a certification exam over the break and this helped boost my mood tremendously.  It cleared my mind, helped with the brain fog/anhedonia, and made me feel a little more peaceful inside (less racing thoughts).  My psychiatrist decided he wanted me to take Trintellix and put me on a 5mg dose.

 

  I went back to school feeling down and anhedonic again.  All the progress I made during seemed to start disappearing.  I stopped taking the Adderall, and once the Trintellix seemed to start working I started becoming extremely anxious.  I felt extreme depersonalization, started having weird sensory problems (visual snow, eye floaters, tinnitus, and my body started fluctuating between feeling tingly and numb) and was scared.  My doctor upped my dose of Trintellix to see if that would help. I ended up taking Ativan to help with the anxiety.  I was feeling less anxious but still had the sensory/depersonalization problems.  Not to mention, my emotions went away again.  The Ativan lowered my anxiety but made me feel completely dull and emotionless.  I ended up tapering off of it and feeling better after a few months, but having a lot more anxiety/sensory issues.

 

  Since this (which was earlier in the summer), I started taking Adderall because I read a lot and it seemed my problems were kind of related to Adult ADHD.  I always feel internally restless and have a hard time focusing, and taking therapeutic doses (20 mg or lower) seem to calm me down and clear my mind.  Not to mention, it helps with my emotional regulation problem.  Overall my academics and state of mind are improving.  I have lowered the Trintellix from 20mg to 10mg over two months.  I have had more sensory problems and anxiety since lowering the medicine, but it seems my emotions are slowly coming back.  Every now and then, I get a nostalgic feeling that reminds me of what life used to feel like.  It gives me hope.  But I have been so up and down for the past 5 years, I am sick of feeling so unstable.  I want to have emotions again and not deal with brain fog/anhedonia and anxiety for the rest of my life.  I didn't have the former problem until taking medicine.  I want the sensory problems to be gone.  They only started after I started taking Trintellix. 

 

I need help with tapering off I think.  Does anyone have any advice for me? I want to learn to treat my depression and anxiety in natural ways, and learn to regulate my emotions better.  I want to believe I can live without taking medicine for these issues, because they only seem to exacerbate them.  Do I have any hope of being stable again?  I always feel uneasy inside and am constantly trying to distract my mind from this.  I am sick of being anxious about these weird symptoms, everyone thinks I am crazy and writes me off.  Will slowly tapering help this?  I long for a day that I am not constantly thinking about being better, and can handle life's ups and downs.  I am not wanting to be perfect, just to be able to not always think and worry about my mental health.  I am always worrying about exercising enough, meditating enough, sleeping enough, eating well enough, and lowering stress enough.  I think my issues could be related to tons of different things, but it is so hard to tell when you are put on medicines that only seem to compound the issue.  School has been a big source of stress/anxiety and I am almost done, so I really want to take the time to improve my physical/mental/emotional/spiritual state of mind so life is not always this rocky.  

 

  Thanks for listening, sorry this was so long.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
added spacing

Share this post


Link to post
les625

Also just to clarify, I am feeling better now than I have in a while.  I am not having the worst anxiety/depression that I have had before, but it is pretty moderate.

Share this post


Link to post
Altostrata

Welcome, les.

 

How's your sleep? Do your symptoms follow any daily pattern?  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.

 

How often do you take Adderall?

Share this post


Link to post
les625

My sleep is okay. It is sometimes disturbed, especially when stressed.  Like waking up early in the morning.  The symptoms I get most right now are fluctuating periods of anxiety and then brain fog.  Also, ever since taking Trintellix I have had visual snow/eye floaters/increased tinnitus.  I also have experienced more depersonalization/derealization.  This has increased since coming off of 1mg of Ativan in July.  I have been taking Adderall daily.  I have done this before a few years ago without any issues.  The Adderall has actually helped calm my anxiety and brain fog, but I have cyclical stages of anxiety/obsessive thoughts. 

Share this post


Link to post
les625

  I am currently on 20 mg of Adderall XR and 10 mg of Trintellix.  I have been on a steady dose of both for 4 months and think I am ready to try to go down in both. Does any have any suggestions? I have no idea which to taper first.  I am so sick of the brain fog I want to taper the antidepressant first, but I am not sure what interactions may occur.  Could I get serotonin syndrome with this? I see that both inhibit CYP2D6, which increases each others' side effects and increases risk of serotonin syndrome.  I'd really appreciate some advice, because my psychiatrist doesn't know much about it, and is not much of a help at all.  I am just ready to do this the right way and feel emotions/motivation again.

Share this post


Link to post
les625

Also, tapering from Trintellix 15 to 10 mg in August really was not bad. I did not have much of an issue with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Altostrata

Hi, les. What times of day do you take your drugs, and their dosages? Are your symptoms better or worse at any times of day? When you reduced the Trintellix, which symptoms changed?

 

Please keep daily notes on paper about your symptoms, when you take your drugs, and their dosages.

Share this post


Link to post
les625

  I take my drugs and supplements in the morning. 10mg of Trintellix and 20 mg of Adderall XR.  I do not take another tablet of Adderall later in the day (I did for a while).  My symptoms are worse when I do not eat breakfast or take the medicine late (without the Adderall I have pretty severe brain fog).  Honestly brain fog is probably the worst symptom right now, along with emotional numbing/apathy.  I also experience fatigue around 2-3 PM and I feel more down around 8-9 (when I notice my Adderall wears off). 

 

  When I reduced the trintellix, I experienced some increased symptoms of anxiety/nervousness the first few days.  I also experienced IBS.  However, the emotional numbing/apathy and brain fog have lowered with each dose.  I truly do feel that the Trintellix is sedating me.  I am a neuroscience student and I can definitely tell the increased SSRI messes with my already depleted dopamine (which I think is depleted for a myriad of reasons).  

 

  Honestly the Adderall has been a game changer for me, however I would like to not be on it the rest of my life.  It gives me the motivation and mental clarity I have not felt in so long.  It does not make me super strung out or jittery.  It makes me feel more normal and motivated again.  But I think there are issues I can deal with to be able to go off of it eventually.  Do you think I could reduce Trintellix and keep Adderall the same at least for now?

Share this post


Link to post
les625

Hey guys,

  I was just wondering if any of you feel that the ADs caused your emotional numbness.  I have been on them since I was 15 (I had a breakup that left me pretty down and sad).  Ever since then, my emotions have been slowly fading away.  I feel very flat and numb.  Happiness and sadness are not ever really present in my life.  I have become less interactive with the world.  Well last year, I went on a fast taper from 50mg of Zoloft to none in three weeks.  I also stopped a 50mg dose of Trazodone CT. I definitely had rough withdrawal symptoms, but over time I started to feel emotions again. Basically, a girl I loved broke up with me after 2 years and it completely broke my heart during this time.  But I started to feel again.  My emotions were unpredictable and I did not realize withdrawal could last months, so my doctor put me on another medicine.  The feelings started to slowly fade away again...

  I have always thought that becoming older my emotions just kind of disappear.  I am 21 now.  I miss feeling things.  I feel that I have lost all empathy and passion for life.  Do you lose passion when you get older? I would like to hear from some of the older folks.  Does emotion ever come back? This is my normal and I do not like it.  I want to find a sense of identity.  Life feels pretty hollow and grey.  How long did it take you guys after coming off to get emotion again? I started taking Adderall which helped with my apathy and amotivation, but did not help with my lack of emotions.

  Do you experience emotions later in life? I miss the feelings that came from a hug, spending time with friends, family, finding meaning in my relationship with God.  All just feels bleh. I miss passion and hope, excitement and sadness.  Any type of encouragement about finding passion/emotion/purpose/identity would be nice.

 

Thank you guys for all you do

Share this post


Link to post
ChessieCat

There are many existing topics on this site.  Before creating a new topic, please use the site search or google adding survivingantidepressants.org to the search term.

 

emotional-numbness-on-and-off-drugs

 

anhedonia-apathy-demotivation-emotional-numbness

 

derealization-or-depersonalization-dr-and-dp    (continue reading more than the first few posts)

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.