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☼ Adrian65: mirtazapine - wave at 10 months


Adrian65

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After a period of ill health which resulted in developing chronic insomnia I was prescribed first 20 mg Citalopram to which I reacted very badly and then a week later 15mg  Mirtazapine. The Mirtazapine helped with my sleep for a number of months but then started to be less effective. I reduced the dosage to 7.5 mg with just 1 week of discomfort and sleep improved again. For personal reasons I then tried to quit from 7.5 mg which was a mistake and after 2 weeks reinstated at 7.5 mg. 

 

At this point I found SA and then did a much slower taper reducing the 7.5 mg down to zero over 8 months. Jumped off at 1 mg which may have been a bit high.  Some discomfort and sleep issues but the taper and post 0 mg period was manageable. Typically 1-2 bad nights of sleep a week but otherwise 6 ish hours of sleep on the other nights. So not perfect but survivable. 

 

Its now coming up to 10 months off Mirtazapine and been hit by a very uncomfortable period. Started with several days of body aches and headaches and now 3 consecutive nights of very little sleep (under 3 hours a night). Experiencing uncomfortable itching on the arms and periods of hot and cold whilst trying to sleep. 

 

Found SA incredibly helpful in my tapering and understanding what was going on to my mind and body. I am hoping this setback is the 10 month wave but any info on this would be much appreciated. 

 

Take one 100 mg of magnesium per night and a probiotic in the morning. I have 3 monthly B12 injections for pernicious anemia.  No other supplements taken. 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
added space

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Adrian65: mirtazapine - wave at 10 months
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Adrian and welcome to SA,

 

I'm really pleased that you found SA when you did and were able to taper slowly.  Thank you for creating your drug signature.  Could you please add in the dose and date when you jumped to 0 so that we can easily see that you CTed the drug.  Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 

Magnesium works better if taken throughout the day.  The other supplement SA recommends is Omega-3 Fish Oil    Try a small amount to see how it affects you.

 

 

This is your own introductions topic where your can ask questions about your own situation and journal your progress.

 

 

I will give you some information which you may not have already seen.  Please check out the Are We There Yet? topic.

 

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.  

 

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You might also find some of this helpful too:

 

We strongly encourage members to learn and use non drug coping techniques to help get through discomfort and 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.

 

 

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Many thanks CC

 

i have updated my signature to reflect when I jumped off. I tapered down to 1 mg by May 2018 and dropped to zero beginning of June 2018.

 

Over the past 18 months I have been through a lot of the articles listed, but it is useful to revisit. Good to be reminded about the importance of acceptance, something I have to work on. Just before Christmas was diagnosed with low B12 which needed rectifying with a number of loading injections and probably lifelong supplementation. Keep coming back to the thought that undiagnosed B12 deficiency was probably underlying a number of health issues that ultimately led to anxiety/insomnia and some pretty low times. Nothing I can do about it now and need to come to an acceptance that it happened and move on. 

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
7 hours ago, Adrian65 said:

Keep coming back to the thought that undiagnosed B12 deficiency was probably underlying a number of health issues that ultimately led to anxiety/insomnia and some pretty low times.

 

You wouldn't be the only one who misdiagnosed.  Vitamin D is another one that can cause mood issues if it is too low.

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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  • 4 months later...

So it’s been a good few months. General improvement with fewer nights of poor sleep and very occasional use of sleeping pills. Seem to be able to go 7-10 days with decent natural sleep and then get a period of 2-3 days of disruption. 

 

I have tried supplementing D3 at 25ug but it was too energising and with more time spent in the sun decided to drop it. Have some 10ug in store to potentially try once the days get shorter and we head into winter. 

 

After a a good spell I’m now suffering a period of disrupted sleep and rising anxiety. Had a 14 hour flight (east to west) across 7 time zones which has totally blown my sleep schedule. Trying to stay awake until bed time but keep falling asleep at 8/9.00 pm and then getting enough sleep to mess up normal sleep. Ah well.....

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
25 minutes ago, Adrian65 said:

I have tried supplementing D3 at 25ug but it was too energising and with more time spent in the sun decided to drop it. Have some 10ug in store to potentially try once the days get shorter and we head into winter.

 

Vitamin D should be taken in the morning.

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Thanks CC

 

took the vitamin D in the morning but seemed to still impact my sleep. Didn’t cause any anxiety, just lay there fully aware of what was going on. At the time we were heading into summer decided to stop the vit D but will try again with a lower dose in autumn\winter. 

 

Now just got to get through the jet lag. Worst I’ve ever had it

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • 2 years later...

I haven’t been on SA for quite some time. Life is generally good, occasionally I experience 1 or 2 nights of difficulty sleeping but it resolves itself. I have just had a tough night and ended back on SA and was surprised to see my last posts were about the impact of vitamin D on my sleep. I had completely forgotten about this and hrestarted taking vitamin D this week. I think I’ll quit the vit D and see you all in 3 years when I forget and start taking it again. 

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello and thank you for coming back to update us.

 

Do you have other symptoms?  How bad are they?  What symptoms have resolved?

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Hi CC

 

no remaining symptoms. The one thing that remains is that despite my sleep being ok to good, I have never got back to a relaxed relationship with sleep. Each night I got to bed with that small doubt that I may have difficulty sleeping that night. 
 

I went on Mirtazapine to try and break a cycle of insomnia causing anxiety causing insomnia causing anxiety etc. My nervous system was just not functioning  well and spiralling down. I also needed to gain weight after losing a lot of weight due to a bad case of acid reflux on the throat which impacted my appetite and one of the side affects of M is to increase appetite. I’m not sure what first caused the insomnia, my suspicion was an undiagnosed acute lack of vitamin B12 which is now dealt with by injections every 2-3 months. 
 

I will always be grateful to SA for providing me with the tools to safely taper off Mirtazapine. I had tried to come off 7.5 mg to zero in one go and that was unsuccessful and emotionally tough. Subsequently I tapered down over about 8 months and although at times the small reductions were frustrating (there are those days where you just want to be off the drug) it was the right way to do it and it worked for me. I had disrupted sleep for some time after that but the trend was towards improvement, although never linear. 

2017 Citalopram 20 mg 1week

2017 Mirtazapine 15 mg for 10 months

2017/8 Mirtazapine 7.5 mg to 1 mg over 8 months to end May 2018

2018/9 June 2018 jumped off from 1 mg to 0 mg. Been at 0 mg since June 2018

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Because you're feeling better, I added our cheerful "here comes the sun" symbol to the title of your Intro topic, to show you're recovering.

 

Please continue to let us know how you're doing. I hope you will add your story to our Recovery Success Stories eventually!

 

Please see this topic:  How to write your success story

 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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