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Zyprexa19

Zyprexa19: starting olanzapine / Zyprexa taper

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Zyprexa19

Hi,

 

ive been on Zyprexa 5 mg since November 27 2018 for a very stressful period in my life when I was suffering from high anxiety that caused chronic insomnia and some suicidal ideation 

 

i was on it for roughly 3 weeks

 

after going through a difficult cross-country move, I managed to get myself off the drug, cutting from 5 to 2.5 to 0 within 2 weeks.

 

from December 27th through January 4th of this year, I was drug free, feeling and sleeping great.

 

then I got hit with another wave of external

stress regarding a job opportunity in California (where I had just moved from)

 

after 3 days of insomnia, my shrink advised me to go back on the drug. Dumb mistake.

 

ive been on the drug since January 7th

and have probably developed a physical dependence by now 

 

i want off this damn thing and I want my life back. 10 weeks shouldn’t make withdrawal has horrifying as I’ve seen it be for some people here

 

Im mainly concerned with the insomnia. I have read threads where some people claimed success using gabbapentin and benzos to get through the sleeplessness, though I would probably just opt for the former.

 

if anybody can share Zyprexa discontinuation success stories, please share.

 

hoping to start cutting my dose this week.

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ChessieCat

Hi Z19, and welcome to SA,

 

Unfortunately, after anything over about 1 month on a drug, the brain has most probably fully adapted to getting the drug.  Because of the short period of time you have been on Zyprexa, you may be able to taper faster than SA's recmmended 10% of the current dose followed by a hold of about 4 weeks which allows the brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

I suggest you also read this topic:  Before you begin tapering what you need to know

 

Getting off a psychiatric drug has nothing to do with how strong / determined / disciplined we are as a person.  It has to do with the brain adapting to not getting as much of the drug.  We can only go as quickly as our brain lets us if we are to get off the drug with minimal discomfort.  It is important to listen to your body and your symptoms and to hold for longer and/or reduce less if symptoms become more than minimal.  Withdrawal symptoms mean that your brain is trying to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  Dr Joseph Glenmullen's Withdrawal Symptoms

 

The only supplements which SA recommends are Magnesium and Omega-3 Fish Oil .  Try a small amount one at a time to see how you react.  Only make one change at a time.  Keep it Simple, Slow and Stable   We also suggest that you keep daily symptom notes on paper for a few days after making a change.

 

It is better to reduce the drug you are taking at the rate your brain allows you to, than to introduce other substances.  Taking other drugs/supplements will muddy the water and if issues arise you will not know what is causing the problems.  And you will likely need to taper the other substance and it could end up taking more time to be drug free than if you had carefully tapered the current drug.

 

Please note that many members find that the lower there dose gets the slower they need to go, reducing less and/or holding longer.

 

Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves


When to end the taper and jump to zero?

 

Tips for tapering off olanzapine (Zyprexa)

 

 

Please create your drug signature using the following format.   Keep it simple.  NO diagnoses or symptoms please - thank you.

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I will give you more information in the next couple of posts.  This is your own introductions topic where your can ask questions about your own situation and journal your progress.

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ChessieCat

Here's some additional information which might help you to understand what is happening:

 

Recovery isn't linear it happens in a Windows and Waves Pattern

 

Withdrawal Normal Description


When we take a psychiatric drug, we are adding chemical/s to the brain.  The brain then has to change to adapt to getting the chemical/s.  It might have to change something to do with A and then once that change has been made it affects B so another change has to be made and so on down the line.  It is a chain reaction, a domino effect.

 

The same thing happens when we take the drug away.  That's why it's possible to experience such a vast array of withdrawal symptoms, and they can change, and be of different intensity.

 

are-we-there-yet-how-long-is-withdrawal-going-to-take

 

These explain it really well:

 

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

On 8/31/2011 at 5:28 AM, Rhiannon said:

When we stop taking the drug, we have a brain that has designed itself so that it works in the presence of the drug; now it can't work properly without the drug because it's designed itself so that the drug is part of its chemistry and structure. It's like a plant that has grown on a trellis; you can't just yank out the trellis and expect the plant to be okay. When the drug is removed, the remodeling process has to take place in reverse. SO--it's not a matter of just getting the drug out of your system and moving on. If it were that simple, none of us would be here. It's a matter of, as I describe it, having to grow a new brain. I believe this growing-a-new-brain happens throughout the taper process if the taper is slow enough. (If it's too fast, then there's not a lot of time for actually rebalancing things, and basically the brain is just pedaling fast trying to keep us alive.) It also continues to happen, probably for longer than the symptoms actually last, throughout the time of recovery after we are completely off the drug, which is why recovery takes so long.

 

AND

 

On 12/4/2015 at 2:41 AM, apace41 said:

Basically- you have a building where the MAJOR steel structures are trying to be rebuilt at different times - ALL while people are coming and going in the building and attempting to work.

It would be like if the World Trade Center Towers hadn't completely fallen - but had crumbled inside in different places.. Imagine if you were trying to rebuild the tower - WHILE people were coming and going and trying to work in the building!  You'd have to set up a temporary elevator - but when you needed to fix part of that area, you'd have to tear down that elevator and set up a temporary elevator somewhere else. And so on. You'd have to build, work around, then tear down, then build again, then work around, then build... ALL while people are coming and going, ALL while the furniture is being replaced, ALL while the walls are getting repainted... ALL while life is going on INSIDE the building. No doubt it would be chaotic. That is EXACTLY what is happening with windows and waves.  The windows are where the body has "got it right" for a day or so - but then the building shifts and the brain works on something else - and it's chaos again while another temporary pathway is set up to reroute function until repairs are made.  

 

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ChessieCat

During any taper, there will be times of discomfort.  We strongly encourage members to learn and use non drug coping techniques to help get through tough times.

 

Understanding what is happening helps us to not get caught up with the second fear, or fear of the fear.  This happens when we experience sensations in our body and because we don't understand them we are scared of them and then start to panic.

 

This document has a diagram of the body explaining what happens in the body when we become anxious:

 

https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/docs/AnxietySelfHelp.pdf

 

 

Audio FEMALE VOICE:  First Aid for Panic (4 minutes)

 

Audio MALE VOICE:  First Aid for Panic (4 minutes)

 

Non-drug techniques to cope

 

dealing-with-emotional-spirals

 

Dr Claire Weekes suffered from anxiety and learned and taught ways of coping.  There are videos available on YouTube.

 

Claire Weekes' Method of Recovering from a Sensitized Nervous System

 

Audio:  How to Recover from Anxiety - Dr Claire Weekes

 

 
Resources:  Centre for Clinical Interventions (PDF modules that you can work through, eg:  Depression, Distress Intolerance, Health Anxiety, Low Self-Esteem, Panic Attacks, Perfectionism, Procrastination, Social Anxiety, Worrying)
 
On 4/28/2017 at 4:03 AM, brassmonkey said:

 

AAF: Acknowledge, Accept, Float.  It's what you have to do when nothing else works, and can be a very powerful tool in coping with anxiety.  The neuroemotional anxiety many of us feel during WD is directly caused by the drugs and their chemical reactions in the brain.  Making it so there is nothing we can do about them.  They won't respond to other drugs, relaxation techniques and the like.  They do, however, react very well to being ignored.  That's the concept behind AAF.  Acknowledge, get to know the feeling involved, explore them.  Accept, These feelings are a part of you and they aren't going anywhere fast. Float, let the feeling float off as you get on with your life as best as you can.  It's a well documented fact that the more you feed in to anxiety the worse it gets.  What starts as generalized neuroemotinal anxiety can be easily blown into a full fledged panic attack just by thinking about it.

 

I often liken it to an unwanted house guest.  At first you talk to them, have conversations, communicate with them.  After a while you figure out that they aren't leaving and there is nothing you can do to get rid of them.  So you go on about your day, working around them until they get bored and leave.

 

It can take some practice, but AAF really does work.  I hope you give it a try.

 

 

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Zyprexa19

Thank you

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WiggleIt

Hi @Zyprexa19,

I just wanted to welcome you to the site.  I hope we can be a support system for you.

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Zyprexa19

So I have been consulting the holistic psychiatrist (Dr. Alice Lee), who has been referenced a couple of times on this website.

 

She says that if you taper correctly, can you escape the dreaded insomnia that frequently accompanies Zyprexa withdrawal.

 

I want to believe her, but the Internet is flooded with stories about people who have been hit by sleeplessness even after jumping off from as small a dose as 0.6 mg.

 

I'm hoping to start cutting my dose tomorrow.

 

But looking forward, if I get by insomnia once I am off this thing, I think my backup plan is going to consist of cannabis and gabapentin. 

 

Also, the primary success stories I have seen posted on here are Andy's and Kirby's. Seeing as I have only been on the drug for about 2.5 months, I'm really hoping I have a far easier time getting back to normal than Andy did. Anyways, LMK if anybody has any thoughts on this.

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powerback

Hi zprexa19 .when you say cannabis ,do you mean medicinal with the THC[pyhco active part of the plant] removed from it .in my opinion you need to be very careful.I'm researching CBD oil myself for nervous system disfunction .

Anything that messes around with your system needs careful consideration and start very low doses and build up if you choose this direction .

SA of course doesn't recommend cannabis . 

From reading your into it seems your very sensitive to stress ,this will need careful consideration so as not to need the drug in  the future

.you will need to learn how to slow down in all aspects of your life to prevent relapses [how do we slow down in this world I hear you say].don't push yourself to a  dangerous point ,get good at reading your body

,I'm not sure of your age but use this wake up call to get ahead of the curve because stress is the biggest epidemic in the western world .research stress management like your life depends on it and youl do yourself a huge favour and advantage . 

A couple of months after ide a breakdown in work due to withdrawl and other factors my DR tried to give me Zyprexa ,I was a mess in front of him and refused the drug.

Take care. 

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Zyprexa19

Thc.

 

i was previously a habitual user.

 

i just don’t know how I will be able to deal with prolonged insomnia

 

not sleeping is hell.

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eymen23
1 hour ago, Zyprexa19 said:

i just don’t know how I will be able to deal with prolonged insomnia

 

not sleeping is hell.

 

Hi Zyprexa19,

 

I’m sorry you have found yourself in the same situation as many of us here. Reading through your posts, I can sense you are feeling very apprehensive about the tapering process and concerned regarding how withdrawal will affect you. 

 

This is natural, and I felt very similar when I first started tapering Escitalopram. Looking on the positive side, you have found this site at the perfect time, which strongly encourages slow and careful tapering based on symptoms and non drug coping techniques.  

 

Insomnia and sleeplessness can be very unpleasant and when severe enough, it has the ability to be debilitating. However, unless I have misunderstood, you are not experiencing any insomnia at present? If so, that’s a good sign of stability, given you did previously experience some after the quick taper in December. 

 

In regards to Dr Alice Lee’s comments about escaping the insomnia, I would say this is somewhat fair, given the information and experiences documented on this site, but not totally accurate. During any taper, it would be sensible to assume there will be times of discomfort. However, by going with the slow and careful approach encouraged here, you should be able to minimise the risk of severe or intolerable symptoms and keep life much more pleasant than those who fast taper or cold turkey. 

 

Although we often warn members of what might be ahead and provide a realistic prognosis, please try to see this as informative, rather than fear inducing. Knowing what can and is likely to happen, massively helps in managing expectations  for the tapering process and has allowed many here to navigate the harder days in their taper. Once you understand that withdrawal symptoms from a slow taper tend to come in waves and are not permanent, they can be a lot easier to accept and work around. 

 

In regards to the horror stories on the internet, please try to remember that your story will always be different to somebody else’s story. Firstly, only those who are the most affected will tend to post their experiences online, meaning there are often many more ‘worst case scenarios’ available to read about. Secondly, being optimistic and assuming we will successfully taper, goes a long way in boosting resilience and ensuring that it does indeed happen.

 

Please keep us updated and I wish you all the best with your taper. 

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Zyprexa19

Hi,

 

im starting my 5 mg zyprexa taper this

wknd.

 

going down in increments of .2 mg until I hit 4 mg. Then talking to my pdoc again on March 8.

 

ive only been taking this crap since late November so I’ve been told it’s ok if I taper faster than SAD’s standard 10 percent/4-week hold.

 

Assuming constancy in my dose reduction I should be at zero by early May.

 

my pdoc says that with the right supplements/taper regimen I can largely avoid zyprexa cessation insomnia.

 

guess we will find out. But finally moving in the right direction 

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Altostrata

Please put your updates in this topic.

 

14 minutes ago, Zyprexa19 said:

ive only been taking this crap since late November so I’ve been told it’s ok if I taper faster than SAD’s standard 10 percent/4-week hold.

 

Anyone who's taken a drug for more than a month is at risk for withdrawal syndrome. Did someone here tell you it's okay to taper faster?

 

Going on and off psychiatric drugs can make your nervous system more sensitive to changes in dosage. If I were you, I'd be cautious.

 

On 2/20/2019 at 11:09 AM, Zyprexa19 said:

So I have been consulting the holistic psychiatrist (Dr. Alice Lee), who has been referenced a couple of times on this website.

 

She says that if you taper correctly, can you escape the dreaded insomnia that frequently accompanies Zyprexa withdrawal.

 

I want to believe her, but the Internet is flooded with stories about people who have been hit by sleeplessness even after jumping off from as small a dose as 0.6 mg.

 

I'm hoping to start cutting my dose tomorrow.

 

But looking forward, if I get by insomnia once I am off this thing, I think my backup plan is going to consist of cannabis and gabapentin. 

 

Also, the primary success stories I have seen posted on here are Andy's and Kirby's. Seeing as I have only been on the drug for about 2.5 months, I'm really hoping I have a far easier time getting back to normal than Andy did. Anyways, LMK if anybody has any thoughts on this.

 

The reason we advise people to taper at 10% per month is to avoid withdrawal symptoms such as insomnia. So that part of what Dr. Lee told you is correct, gradual tapering reduces the risk of withdrawal symptoms.

 

Reductions of 0.2mg from 5mg Zyprexa fall well within the 10% guideline, but if you make 3 reductions of 0.2mg in a month, you may be going too fast. It can take weeks before you start having withdrawal symptoms from the first reduction, and then you're feeling even more pain from the others.

 

We don't know of any supplements that will enable you to taper faster. We don't recommend Dr. Lee because her practice is based on this.

 

FYI, the reason this site exists is because people cannot get good tapering advice from their doctors. If there was a supplement regimen that made going off drugs easier, we'd be recommending it to everyone.

 

In our experience, gabapentin or cannabis do not reliably reduce withdrawal symptoms. Your plan is very risky.

 

To help us out, follow these instructions Please put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature

 

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Zyprexa19

At the 10 percent per month rate, I will be tapering this drug for over a year.

 

thats insane

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Altostrata

You'll find it even more insane if you get withdrawal symptoms and go on a drug merry-go-round for years.

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Zyprexa19

I just don’t understand how the same rules apply to short-term and long-term users

 

i would think short-term users should able to discontinue more easily 

 

if it ends up being a drug merry go round, i will just peace out. That’s no way to live.

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powerback

Oh Zyprexa as much as I agree and sympathise with your fears ,you will be able to do the taper you will find strength you never knew existed .

 

.I understand a year seems long but   take it from me doing it this way is best ,take the chance at a  quicker taper  at your peril .

You already have a sensitive nervous system ,all a quicker taper does is destabilise it further .

Trust me dig deep and learn everything you can .

 

I totally empathise with your fears but ignore those that have walked before you at your peril as said already .

 

Of course we aren't Drs but you know what this site is ,its full of drug cases ,no better information you will find in my opinion if you exhaust its resources . 

Total respect on your journey .

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Altostrata

Yes, it's very unfair that people get dependent on these drugs and can't get help from their doctors. Very sorry you have not been exempted from this.

 

Better be cautious than sorry.

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Zyprexa19

Hi,

 

i read peter breggin’s 10 percent method here.

 

download848.mediafire.com/xc0ar44wz4eg/q9v2n9jxopu8x25/2000_breggin_your_drug_may_be_your_problem.pdf

 

he says discontinuation in 10 steps at a rate of 10 percent each (from the original dose)

 

he says these step reductions can vary from days, weeks to months

 

he generally recommends 10 percent reductions every 7-10 days.

 

So it seems that his views are being misrepresented in SAD’s 10 percent tapering section? Breggin seems to think the average person is ok cutting doses 4 times faster than this website.

 

or is Zyprexa an outlier?

 

can somebody please clarify.

 

 

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Carmie

Hi Zyprexa, 

 

I wanted to welcome you to SA too. Tapering by 10% every couple of weeks is way too quick. Even if you don’t feel so bad after two weeks, tapering too soon can catch up with you later on. The brain needs more time to stabilise after every drop. I remember not holding long enough in the past, when I knew nothing about tapering, and I would go into waves for months after that. It took me ages to stabilise. 

 

Best to go slow and steady. I can only do 4% to 5% a month now myself. Take care💚

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Zyprexa19

Ok, anyway Breggin says that this method is suitable for people who have been on medication for less than a year*

 

so that has to be taken into account.

 

dropping from 5 ml to 4.8 ml tonight.

 

wish me luck 

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ChessieCat

When it comes to tapering "rules" they are only guidelines.  A general rule that will suit most people.  There are some who can go faster, and some that need to go slower.  However the difficulty is there is no way to know which group you are in.

 

Saying "but this person said this because of this" is not going to make any difference.  It's your brain and how quickly it can adapt to the changes which will dictate the speed that you can reduce.  You will need to listen to you body and what level of symptoms you get.  If you start getting withdrawal symptoms that are more than mild discomfort, then it means you are going too quickly and will need to reduce less and/or hold for longer.

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Zyprexa19

Well started my first cut at .2 mg. Dropped to 4.8.

 

didnt sleep quite as good, but I probably experienced less discomfort than I would have with a full 10 percent cut

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eymen23

Hi Zyprexa19,

 

Thanks to the 4% cut, you will hopefully find the withdrawal symptoms are tolerable. Please note that given the drug half life (mean of 30 hours), it will likely be a week or so before you notice the full impact of this change, as you reach a new steady state of the drug. 

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Carmie

Hi zyprexa, 

 

How are you gong since your last drop?💚

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Zyprexa19

hi,

 

i accidentally messed up the dosage on the 2nd night of my taper

 

so I had to reinstate/stabilize at 5

 

starting taper again tonight

 

good news is I am stable at 5 mg and didn’t drop far enough to shock my cns

 

so ridiculous that my primary pdoc was like go ahead and drop to 2.5 lol

 

honestly if this process becomes too insufferable, I’m just going to get some fentanyl on the dark web.

 

this whole situation is bullsh*t and I blame the world 

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ChessieCat
12 minutes ago, Zyprexa19 said:

if this process becomes too insufferable, I’m just going to get some fentanyl

 

 

On 6/16/2011 at 4:45 AM, Altostrata said:

 

We do not advocate experimenting with hallucinogenics, psychedelic mushrooms, herbs, adaptogenics, or any gray-market drug. You never know exactly what you're getting and results are unpredictable even in people whose nervous systems have not been compromised by adverse drug reactions.

 

If your nervous system has been sensitized by adverse effects from psychiatric drugs (or street drugs) or withdrawal, , you could make yourself a lot worse by experimenting with hallucinogenics, etc., and the only remedy is to cope with your symptoms until they go away. We don't have any magic potions for you.

 

Try such substances at your own risk.

 

 

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Altostrata

Really not a good idea. You're going to have to adult yourself in this process.

 

Good to hear you're doing okay on 5mg again. If I were you, I'd let my nervous system settle for some weeks before another reduction.

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Zyprexa19

Alostrata, wait a couple of weeks after iVe been fine on 5 for the last 4 days??

 

im only cutting 4 percent.

 

my adverse reaction on the night I messed up my dosage probably had more to do with my anxiety about the dosage as opposed to the .2 or .3 mg differential 

 

I respect your advice. It’s just depressing as hell.

 

 

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ChessieCat
1 hour ago, Altostrata said:

If I were you, I'd let my nervous system settle for some weeks before another reduction.

 

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Altostrata
35 minutes ago, Zyprexa19 said:

my adverse reaction on the night I messed up my dosage probably had more to do with my anxiety about the dosage as opposed to the .2 or .3 mg differential 

 

How did you mess up and what was your adverse reaction?

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Zyprexa19

There was spillage (I have a compounded solution) and it was difficult to make up the difference 

 

 i probably took a little less than 4.8 ml

 

my mind couldn’t be at ease because my dose that night was inexact. I obsessed over it 

 

I barely slept, if I slept at all

 

my shrink said to wait a little while before I cut again so maybe you have a point 

 

 

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Zyprexa19

So now after a week of restabilizing at 5 mg, I feel like my body has built up a tolerance to this dose. E.g. I’m sleeping significantly less than I was pre-taper

 

how am I supposed to cut successfully when I’m already feeling discomfort?  

 

What do i do?

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ChessieCat
On 2/17/2019 at 10:27 AM, ChessieCat said:

Please create your drug signature using the following format.   Keep it simple.  NO diagnoses or symptoms please - thank you.

  • details for last 2 years - dates, ALL drugs, doses
  • summary for older than 2 years - just years and drug/s

Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 

As previously requested, please create your drug signature.  This will allow us to see your drug history at a glance.  Thank you.

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