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I was put on 20mg of Seroxat in May 1996 (directly after two weeks of Valium). I was 19 years old. Prescription was for Panic Disorder, GAD and Mild Depression (although I had never felt depressed and explained that many times over the years to my doctor(s)). As were many, I was told I had a chemical balance which, just like a diabetic needs insulin, I needed seroxat. Since then, I have tried approximately 5 times to come off the medication (with taper of sorts - usually 10mg for a few weeks and then to zero). Each time, the anxiety came back, always with new symptoms (extreme nausea, vertigo, increased anxiety, obsessive dark thoughts). I also developed irrational fears (fear of driving on highways and over bridges, fear of ski lifts, fear of heights, fear of flying, fear of business meetings. In fact, pretty much fear of everything.). Each time I visited a doctor, I was told the same thing: you have a chemical imbalance and need to go back on Seroxat. Sure enough, a single tablet would have me feeling back to “normal” within a matter of hours. I used to joke about it with doctors “wow, what a placebo effect. This should take weeks to work?”. Now I realise I was (probably) in withdrawal. Two years ago, after being in a protracted depression for the best part of 10 years (something I hadn’t  realised as it had become my baseline state), I had got myself down to approximately 7mg a day. The reason I was trying to come off was two fold: firstly, my wife and I wanted to start a family and I was concerned about both my fertility and damage to any baby I conceive. Secondly, I had made a huge effort to get fit, was running 40km a week and had dropped from 92kg to 78kg-I’m 178cm. This gave me the confidence that I was in the best physical place to achieve it.

Soon after, I suffered what I considered to be a mental breakdown.

 

I was ready to leave my loving wife and had developed a clinical apathy to everything. I became petrified I would commit suicide (I never felt this was realistic but the thought of it gave me panic attacks). Furthermore, I started wondering such thoughts as “will I jump off the balcony whilst sleep walking”. I had been seeing a psychologist for some time but talking about things seemed to make the situation worse. I also started seeing a CBT therapist. I would feel better during a session but on leaving, my mood would severely crash, like nothing I had ever experienced in my life. I knew I was in a bad place. 

 

The psychologist recommended me to a psychiatrist who was the most uncaring person I have ever met. How she medically practices, I have no idea. She wasn’t interested in my drug history, offered me barely five minutes of her time, and prescribed 50mg Trittico to be taken before bed. I took it for a few nights but decided that it was not right for me. She then offered me several other kinds of SSRIs. I declined them all and went back to 20mg of Seroxat. However, this time felt different. I was sure that seroxat was nothing more than the placebo (how could you explain the fact I got better after taking a single favor each time I had a “relapse”. As suspected, i had lost belief in the drug, and it did not bring the immediate relief like it had every time previously. I was petrified. To me, this confirmed my worse fears. It had been a placebo all this time, and now, because I was sure it wasn’t going to work, it didn’t. I was a lost case. This created severe anxiety and panic. All I could think was that I had been on a placebo for 20 + years and now I had uncovered this fact, ADs would never work for me again. I was destined to suffer dibilitating anxiety and depression for the rest of my life. Things improved slightly after being back on 20mg for a few weeks. But I was still anxious and depressed, and the mood swings were unbareable. 

 

During this time, i had had a medical for my work which showed I had very high cholesterol (7.99 in European measures) and the doctor put me on Crestor. At the time, the cardiologist told me “this is not the first time I have seen somebody at the surgery who has unusually high cholesterol following a long period of exposure to SSRIs”. This was the first time I considered what the meds had been doing to me over the years. My dark moods seemed to get worse during this period of being on Crestor. My cholesterol dropped by 50% in this time, but I could now barely function. I did some research into the link between statins and depression and decided to quit the Crestor cold turkey. My moods improved somewhat (at least I could hold a conversation now). I had also started to suffer from eczema on my arms, forehead and legs (first time in my life). Furthermore, I suffered from a bout of Diverticulitis (the doctor told me the main risk factor was constipaiton) and also blood in the urine (which after every test, scan, x-ray known to man, a cause could not be found). 

 

Further research made me realise that not only could all of these problems be linked to seroxat, so could my unexplained depression and mood swings. I made the decision to come off seroxat for good. That was in October  of last year. I found a new psychiatrist who was supportive of my decision and recognized the importance of taper. However, he didn’t believe that my problems could be caused by seroxat, and thought taper over a month was perfectly acceptable. By this time, I had been on seroxat 22 years.

 

I decided to taper for longer. I immediately dropped to 10mg per day as this is something that I had down many times throughout the years without too many problems. I would get the usual brain zaps but nothing I couldn’t handle. As I started to reduce mg by mg (1mg per week) using liquid, I could actually feel my constant depressive mood lifting somewhat (perhaps only by 10%, but there was something ). This encouraged me to go on. I sped up towards the end to 1mg per week as I just wanted to be off it. I took my last dose in the second week of January. 

 

Since then, I have been going through withdrawal. The first couple of weeks were ok (brain zaps I have suffered since 1996 so they don’t scare me). My general depressive level definitely improved. The hardest part for me was (and still is) the rapid onset of change in mood. One minute I am fine, the next my mood crashes. During every crash, I immediately think “the only reason I feel better is the placebo effect. The depression and anxiety is going to come back and get me”. CBT has helped with this catestrophic thinking and the moods seem to only last for a few hours (rather than days or weeks as previously). Every week, as a whole, I am seeing huge improvements. I have cried a lot (and it feels great). I am starting to look forward to things again. The apathy has lifted by 75%. I had a few days of panic and GAD earlier on that would seem to come out of nowhere. I would just wake up and feel down and have fear. I also started to wake during the night in a panic. But I stayed with it. A few weeks ago, I started waking more often during the night. 3 or 4 times. That developed into full blown insomnia for a few days. Last night, I slept without waking once for the first time in a month. The anxiety is now 75% better. Two days ago, I feel I had my best day for years and years. I am generally excited but scared. Since January, I have dropped from 86kg to 78kg. My skin condition has totally cleared up. 

 

What if me feeling better is a coincidence? Or the placebo effect?

 

I have read that it can feel you are through the withdrawal, only for it to come back even harder in the future. How will I cope with that!? Now that I’ve felt well, I don’t want to go back where I was.

 

I currently live in Zurich, Switzerland. I can find almost no support here. No doctor, psychologists, psychiatrist or therapist seems to have any idea about withdrawal. They are all desperate to tell me I have relapsed. I so truly want to believe they are wrong, that this whole thing is a drug induced nightmare, and that I will continue to get better. However, the devil on my shoulder is still there. During any period of weakness, he reminds me that the recovery is all in my head and it’s only a matter of time before I relapse.

 

And so here I am. Hoping to be part of a support group that can help me with my withdrawal and keep me believeing. Even more importantly, I want to help others. 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
Incorrect medication/cc reduced font, added spacing

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Robko: my story - 23 years on Seroxat / Paxil / paroxetine
  • Moderator Emeritus

Dear Robko,

Welcome to SA!  We are glad you found us, but of course wish you weren't going through all of this.

Thank you for the excellent medication history you provided us.  I hope it won't be too much if I ask you to give us one more piece of writing about your medication history.  Here on SA, it's helpful for us to have a complete history, like the one you just wrote, and a concise list of just the medications and dates and dosages.  After you've been on this site for a while and posted on your own intro topic a few times, your first post with your detailed backstory will get pushed back by pages and pages, so the signature helps people see your concise story so they can respond.  This way, we have a long reference and a quick reference when everybody chats with you.

Here's where to go on SA to add a concise medication signature:

a.) Look at the top right of the page where your name appears
b.) Click on your name and you'll see a pull-down menu appear
c.) Under that menu, click on Account Settings    
d.) You'll get taken to a new page.  Look at the left side of that page
e.) Click on Signature
f.) In the box that pops up, fill out a short list of your medication history, including med names, dates, and dosages. (For example, you can just write Sertraline 60 mgs from July 2016 to Sept 2018.)  
g.) Click Save and then you can go back to the rest of the site and keep chatting!

It's good that you found a doctor who supported your taper and unsurprising that the doc wanted you to go fast.  You were smart to realize on your own that you should go more slowly; I'm impressed by your self-awareness.  Small pockets of the medical community are finally realizing that slow tapers are a harm-reduction method, but the knowledge is still not widespread in the medical community.  If you'd like, I can link you to some recent articles about doctors who are finally taking cues from sites such as SA in order to inform their medical practice to support patients in doing slower tapers.  (I won't bog you down with these links if you don't want them, though!  There's already plenty going on in WD, so I don't want to make you feel like you have homework.)  As far as all the physical side effects you had on psych meds, you're lucky that at least one doctor recognized that it could be the pills doing it to you.  Those side effects do get better, as you've already seen your own body improving,

If I'm understanding your info correctly, you are having WD right now and you are afraid that you might get hit even harder with a stronger, delayed WD in the future, is that right?  Part of WD is certainly fear, and it could be WD itself that's making you worry about getting even worse WD later, even though there is no evidence that it will happen to you.  Right now, it sounds like you are having windows (bright spots) in your WD process, so focusing on those windows is going to be the best tool to help move your healing forward.  During the moments when the worry/fear hits you that maybe it's just a coincidence that you are feeling better, how do you handle those moments?  Do you wallow in the worry or do you find ways to distract yourself?  

Distraction, which sounds like a very basic tool, is actually an incredibly useful part of coping with WD.  Distraction means allowing yourself to get occupied by something that's just flat-out entertaining and not too intellectually demanding.  For some people, that means doing some kind of manual craft, for others it's gardening, and for others it's laying down and watching TV.  ANY tool you have at your disposal is fair game to keep your mind distracted from the little bugger on your shoulder until he fades away completely.  You can get a coloring book if you want to, just do anything to keep yourself preoccupied until the little devil shuts up.

WD tends to go in windows and waves, with the overall pattern being forward momentum.  It sounds like you are already aware of this "up and down" (windows and waves) pattern, but it may help for you to read a little more about it and know you aren't alone and that people do improve from this:
 


The very last link I'd like to give you is to the SUCCESS STORIES (hooray!) here on SA.  Instead of looking ahead to worse WD that may not even happen to you, look ahead to healing.  I'd recommend printing out your favorite recovery stories, highlighting the best parts, and keeping them handy for when you're in a wave and need a boost.  It's easier to grab a piece of paper at our bedside than to log on sometimes:

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/forum/28-success-stories-recovery-from-withdrawal/

Okay, I've blabbed a lot, so I'll let you catch up on this and reply to us with any more questions or comments that you have!

 

 

**I'm not a doctor and don't give medical advice, merely personal experience
***Off all meds since Nov. 2014. Mentally & emotionally recovered; physically not
-Dual cold turkeys off TCA & Ativan in Oct 2014. Prescribed from 2011-2014

-All meds were Rxed off-label for an autoimmune illness.  It was a MISDIAGNOSIS, but I did not find out until AFTER meds caused damage.  All med tapers/cold turkeys directed by doctors 

-Nortriptyline May 2012 - Dec 2013. Cold turkey off nortrip & cold switched to desipramine

-Desipramine Jan 2014 - Oct. 29, 2014 (rapid taper/cold turkey)

-Lorazepam 1 mg per night during 2011
-Lorazepam 1 mg per month in 2012 (or less)

-Lorazepam on & off, Dec 2013 through Aug 2014. Didn't exceed 3x a week

-Lorazepam again in Oct. 2014 to help get off of desipramine. Last dose lzpam was 1 mg, Nov. 2, 2014. Immediate paradoxical reactions to benzos after stopping TCAs 

-First muscle/dystonia side effects started on nortriptyline, but docs too stupid to figure it out. On desipramine, muscle tremors & rigidity worsened

-Two weeks after I got off all meds, I developed full-blown TD.  Tardive dystonia, dyskinesia, myoclonic jerks ALL over body, ribcage wiggles, facial tics, twitching tongue & fingers, tremors/twitches of arms, legs, cognitive impairment, throat muscles semi-paralyzed & unable to swallow solid food, brain zaps, ears ring, dizzy, everything looks too far away, insomnia, numbness & electric shocks everywhere when I try to fall asleep, jerk awake from sleep with big, gasping breaths, wake with terrors & tremors, severely depressed.  NO HISTORY OF DEPRESSION, EVER. Meds CREATED it.

-Month 7: hair falling out; no vision improvement; still tardive dystonia; facial & tongue tics returned
-Month 8: back to acute, incl. Grand Mal seizure-like episodes. New mental torment, PGAD, worse insomnia
-Month 9: tardive dystonia worse, dyskinesia returned. Unable to breathe well due to dystonia in stomach, chest, throat
-Month 13: Back to acute, brain zaps back, developed eczema & stomach problems. Left leg no longer works right due to dystonia, meaning both legs now damaged
-4 years off: Huge improvements, incl. improved dystonia

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Hi Wiggleit,

 

Thanks so much for your welcome and kind words. I will certainly try to put something together with regards to a more comprehensive medication history. The only problem is, for many years I self medicated and often dropped from 20mg to 10mg during times I started to feel better. This was usually done without the help of a doctor (I was living in places where there was zero medical support) so I really have no idea how often, or for how long, I changed my dose. I can only remember three times where I thought I had "relapsed" and so I can be sure during those periods I had come off Paroxetine (2000, 2006, 2009). I remember as the symptoms were so horrific, I thought I was dying. (2000 was characterized by extreme nausea and panic; 2006 by extreme dizziness and panic; 2009 by nausea, dizziness, panic and irrational fears). Unfortunately, and to my great dismay, I have no record of how long I tapered for (I suspect it was quick), and how long the periods were between taking my last dose and "relapsing".

My biggest fear is as follows: In the past, when I decided to stop taking the meds, I had 100% confidence in them that if I relapsed, I could immediately start taking them again and feel better. This was of great comfort. Now I know that is not the case. It is terrifying. It is like somebody has removed my one last remaining safety blanket.

 

My wife and I have started to do a "forensic analysis" of where we were living, where I was working etc to try and calculate my dosage history. For sure I will not be able to say whether I was on 10mg or 20mg. However, I may be able to calculate the periods when I was actually off the medication. Will try and post later this week. I have managed to get a copy of my original UK medical records. They are hand written and very difficult to read. However, I can make out the following:

 

26/09/1997 - Long chat - found out that he XXXXXXXXXX panic attacks very easily. Nausea. Feeling hot. Feeling lump in the throat. Agreed to try diazepam 2mg 3xday for one week and review

03/07/1997 - A lot better. Diazepam 2mg twice day. Symptoms almost gone.

04/07/1997 (This was from a community psychiatric nurse addressed to my family doctor) - "history seems to suggest a long standing anxiety related hypochondriasis. Focussing on vague or in some cases, quite normal somatoform features. Have explained principles of anxiety management, coping techniques and their application (literature given). Appears to be already a little reliant on diazepam. Says he realises this is a problem and will start to reduce does himself. As you mentioned, it may be worthwhile to try some form of anti-depressant with anxiolytic properties (I believe you mentioned Seroxat, dose usually 20mg daily). If in  a few weeks there is minimal response, it way be worthwhile considering a Tricyclic such as Dothiepin 75mg."

09/07/1997 Anxiety-panic + mild depression. Had counselling. Agrees to go on Seroxat 20mg

22/07/1997 - On Seroxat 20mg daily. Feeling better.

15/06/1998 - On Seroxat 20mg daily. Feeling much better. Wants to know whether he can come off it. Advised to choose the time. If he is not stressed out.  

13/08/1999 - Feeling a bit low again. Stressful time. Bereavement in the family. Split up from girlfriend. Off Seroxat 1 year. Suggest he go on holiday

25/01/2000 - Feeling low. Feeling nauseous. Agrees to take medication Seroxat 20 mg daily

31/12/01 - Off to Cyprus new job on 03.01.2002. Came in for a chat. Off Seroxat from 02/12. If any recurrence, see doctor in Cyprus. Avoid St. Johns Wort.

 

I am now devastated to find out that I was off the tablets for a period of 17 months between August 1998 and January 2000. I remember how bad that time was in January 2000. I am barely 4  months in this time. What have I got to come?! Im trying to stay positive but this has been a kick to the stomach.

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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Dear All

 

I have been totally paroxetine free for four months. The first couple of weeks brought the usual withdrawal symptoms (vivid dreams, brain zaps etc). I then went through a period of extreme mood swings. Originally, I was put on the medication for anxiety (some 23 years ago!). I do have the odd day now where the anxiety returns and I think I am in relapse - but it seems to disappear as quickly as it comes. I have had some "perfect days" during the recovery but now I seem to be getting worse again. Which leads me to my question: For the past two weeks, the quality of my sleep has dramatically reduced. I seem to be waking several times in the night and, when its time to get up, I am physically not capable. I also suffer from intermittent brain fog during the day. I do not think its a coincidence that the fatigue and general feeling of malaise has coincided with the poor sleep. I really don't want to take medication for sleep, and I have tried all kinds of techniques (lighting and temperature control, no watching tv or computer screen use, light exercise, eating earlier, yoga and medication) but nothing is helping. Every morning the same. Does anybody have any other suggestions to help me get a decent nights kip?

 

Thanks!

 

Robko

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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DeterminedAnna

Hello Robko,

 

I have read your intro thread fully and identify SO MUCH with what you are describing. Your 'I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT' and 'what's the point'  and 'nocturnal panic attacks' comments in your signature are exactly like my symptoms and feelings.

 

I know you are in Switzerland with little help, but I wanted to say you are not alone. You really are in good company here.

 

Also, some non-drug sleeping tips I have learned throughout my Seroxat withdrawal:

 

- No caffeine after midday. Better still, no caffeine at all.

- Chamomile tea. Chamomile oil. Lavender oil.

- Limit fluid intake as the day goes on. Don't go to bed with a full bladder.

- Eat something small with protein right before bed. I have a handful of nuts.

- Complete blackout eye mask.


Not functioning myself too well today. But I hope this helps.

5% reduction every four weeks of liquid Seroxat (paroxetine) back to start of latest taper from 6 June 2020

  • 24 Oct 20: 6.04mg per day, as 5.32mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening 
  • 26 Sept 20: 6.36mg per day, as 5.64mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening
  • 29 Aug 20: 6.68mg per day, as 5.96mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening
  • 1 Aug 20: 7mg  per day, as 6.28mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening (bereavement, didn't reduce)
  • 4 Jul 20: 7mg per day, as 6.28mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening
  • 6 Jun 20: 7.36mg per day, as 6.64mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening
  • As well as the above, I take the these supplements every day.

 

Previously

From 12 May 19 to 5 Jun 20 inclusive: 7.72mg per day, as 7mg lunchtime; 0.72mg evening. Split my doses in May 2019 as I suspect half-life is more of a factor at lower doses. Further history here.

 

 

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FleeingFluoxetine

There’s an app called Calm which has people reading short stories designed to help you sleep. I’ve been listening to the one read by Matthew McConeahay (sp?) and it knocks me out every night. I still don’t know how it ends. :)

As of May 28th, 2020:

15 mg liquid Prozac

12.5 mg Imovane

50 mg Seroquel

20 mg Propranolol 3x a day

0.5 mg Clonazepam 3x a day

Supplements including Omega 3 fish oil, vitamin B complexes, magnesium, vitamins A, C, and E

 

 

 

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MikeysMum

Hi Robko. I just wanted to say hi too. I've recently come off Paroxeteine after 25 years. Although I tapered (with no knowledge of correct tapering) I really rushed the last bit because I felt great with no WD symptoms until a few days after I stopped completely. The last 4 months have been hell but I am having days of near normality where I feel like my old self. I've discovered through lots of reading on this site that fear of the fear and fear of anxiety and fear of becoming more unwell have added much to my distress. Ive never experienced fear and anxiety like what has occurred in WD. The physical symptoms have been debilitating but easy compared to the other stuff. I'm telling you this bc I want to share what has helped. I don't know how to copy and past yet but if you look at my intro page I received some great advice from the mods. When I'm in that horrible dark place and/or not sleeping I am able to try and be objective and tell myself 'this feels real and is real for now but it's only WD. These symptoms mean my body is healing and I know it can and will heal'. I am aware that I will most likely crash again ( and again). But that's okay bc I know I've got some good strategies now to deal with it. Keeping a diary of symptoms and good/bad days has really helped because I have proof of the good days. Acceptance of the symptoms (not fighting) has also helped. In the beginning after a good day I would try and rush back into life and do everything I used to do. Big mistake for me. I need to go gently. Gentle exercise etc. Anyway I didn't want to make my reply about me but I've found so much useful advice in this forum and wanted to try and share that. I've found acupuncture and cranial osteopathy to have been really helpful too but unfortunately all this costs money and it really is such an individual thing. Insight Timer app is free and has lots of sleep/meditation audios which I've also found great. Tara Brach has lots of free meditations and great talks on her site as well. Anyway I just wanted to touch base as I've been off that dreaded drug for 4 months too after a very long time of being on it. Take care.

1990 -2015 Paxil 20 mg

2015-2017 November 40mg Paxil

Nov 2017 Started tapering by 20 mg each week

Rushed final tapering October 2018- 30th Dec 2018went from 15 mg to 10 mg to zero

February 12th 2019 re instated 20 mg on dr advice once only (collapsed,)

April 13th and 14th re-instated 5mg then stopped due to illness

Early march 2019 Started iron tabs every second day ((equivalent you elemental iron 65.7mg)

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laydefish

Hi Robko! I just wanted to say welcome!  Everyday will get better for you, it will take time but as you heal you learn what does & doesn't "aggravate "your WD Symptoms and you'll be able to control them a little better day by day.  Keep holding on & remember you're strong!

2 years Drug History Prior to Tapering:

Between 2011 & 2018 I had approximately 58 dose changes between the 4 main medications I took as well as 14 new medications add & taken away.

Prozac (Fluoxetine):(Aug 2016-Dec 2016: 60MG),(June 2017-Nov 2017: 60MG),(Dec 2017: 80MG),(June 2017-Sept 2 2018: 60MG),(Sept 3 2018-Sept 5 2018: 40MG),(Sept 6 2018-Sept 8 2018: 20MG),(Sept 9 2018: 0MG).

Cymbalta:(Jan 2017-May 2017: 60MG).

Cyclobenzaprine: (Aug 2016: 30MG,(Feb 2017: 30MG).

Diazepam (Valium):(Aug 2016-Sept 15 2016: 30MG),(Sept 16 2016-Oct 2017: 15MG),(Nov 2017-Aug 19 2018: 6MG),(Aug 20 2018: 0MG).

Gabapentin:(Aug 2016-Aug 3 2018: 2400MG),(Aug 4 2018-March 26 2019: 2000MG),(March 27 2019-March 30 2019: 1600MG),(May 1 2019: 2000MG)

Hydrocodone:(Aug 2016-Oct 2016: 10-325/4daily),(Nov 2016-Feb 2017: 10-325/3daily),(March 2017-April 2017: 5-325/4daily),(May 2017-April 2018: 10-325/3daily),(June 2018-Aug 25 2018: 10-325/5daily),(Aug 26 2018-Sept 2 2018: 4.5daily),(Sept 3 2018-Sept 10 2018: 10-325/4daily),(Sept 11 2018-Sept 18 2018: 10-325/3daily),(Sept 19 2018-May 1 2019: 10-325/3.5 daily).

Oxycodone: May 2018: 10-325MG/4daily). 

Please see my Intro for full drug history.

         **Forgive Yourself For Not Knowing What You Didn't Know Before You Knew It!  -Maya Angelou/

Link to post
15 hours ago, DeterminedAnna said:

Hello Robko,

 

I have read your intro thread fully and identify SO MUCH with what you are describing. Your 'I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT' and 'what's the point'  and 'nocturnal panic attacks' comments in your signature are exactly like my symptoms and feelings.

 

I know you are in Switzerland with little help, but I wanted to say you are not alone. You really are in good company here.

 

Also, some non-drug sleeping tips I have learned throughout my Seroxat withdrawal:

 

- No caffeine after midday. Better still, no caffeine at all.

- Chamomile tea. Chamomile oil. Lavender oil.

- Limit fluid intake as the day goes on. Don't go to bed with a full bladder.

- Eat something small with protein right before bed. I have a handful of nuts.

- Complete blackout eye mask.


Not functioning myself too well today. But I hope this helps.

 

Hi DA,

 

thanks so much for taking the time to write. Its horrible to think so many of us are in this situation (but perversely, quite comforting also). I've been trying chamomile and Lavender for a while but hasn't helped. I also sleep with a blackout mask. I will try to eat some nuts before bed and see how that helps. Funnily enough, even though I woke on 4 occasions last night, when I did sleep, it seemed to be a very deep sleep and I woke up actually feeling a little refreshed. Its amazing the difference it makes to the day. My doctor has given me a prescription of melatonin so I may try that (although I am reluctant to put anything else in my body!).

 

Hope you are feeling better today

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
12 hours ago, FleeingFluoxetine said:

There’s an app called Calm which has people reading short stories designed to help you sleep. I’ve been listening to the one read by Matthew McConeahay (sp?) and it knocks me out every night. I still don’t know how it ends. :)

Thanks FF, I have been using it for a few months. Alan Sklar is my favourite narrator! :) 

 

It was working really well until the past few weeks. Actually, I dont find falling asleep too difficult. Its the constant waking though the night and the feeling that I haven't been asleep that is the killer.

 

Ps I know the Matthew Mcconaughey (sp?) one you refer to. Its ace :)

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
4 hours ago, MikeysMum said:

Hi Robko. I just wanted to say hi too. I've recently come off Paroxeteine after 25 years. Although I tapered (with no knowledge of correct tapering) I really rushed the last bit because I felt great with no WD symptoms until a few days after I stopped completely. The last 4 months have been hell but I am having days of near normality where I feel like my old self. I've discovered through lots of reading on this site that fear of the fear and fear of anxiety and fear of becoming more unwell have added much to my distress. Ive never experienced fear and anxiety like what has occurred in WD. The physical symptoms have been debilitating but easy compared to the other stuff. I'm telling you this bc I want to share what has helped. I don't know how to copy and past yet but if you look at my intro page I received some great advice from the mods. When I'm in that horrible dark place and/or not sleeping I am able to try and be objective and tell myself 'this feels real and is real for now but it's only WD. These symptoms mean my body is healing and I know it can and will heal'. I am aware that I will most likely crash again ( and again). But that's okay bc I know I've got some good strategies now to deal with it. Keeping a diary of symptoms and good/bad days has really helped because I have proof of the good days. Acceptance of the symptoms (not fighting) has also helped. In the beginning after a good day I would try and rush back into life and do everything I used to do. Big mistake for me. I need to go gently. Gentle exercise etc. Anyway I didn't want to make my reply about me but I've found so much useful advice in this forum and wanted to try and share that. I've found acupuncture and cranial osteopathy to have been really helpful too but unfortunately all this costs money and it really is such an individual thing. Insight Timer app is free and has lots of sleep/meditation audios which I've also found great. Tara Brach has lots of free meditations and great talks on her site as well. Anyway I just wanted to touch base as I've been off that dreaded drug for 4 months too after a very long time of being on it. Take care.

 

Hi MM, thanks for writing! Wow, you've been on this poison even longer than me and we are both off it for four months. You are absolutely right about the fear making it worse. I think that's where CBT can help. Although its hard to tell the difference what is real fear and what is "chemically induced" fear. I had a strange experience last night. During one of my waking periods, I realised that I had zero anxiety in my body (actually, I have felt like this the past few days). My mind started telling me that this is one of the "waves", and no doubt, the anxiety will come on doubly strong in a future wave. usually this thought would have been enough to send me into a panic. but it didn't. There was zero reaction. Its almost like I was "missing" the anxiety. Very strange sensation!

 

The other thing to say is whilst I think this website is fantastic, it could become very easy to obsess over it and start to spend all day and every day on it. I don't think this is particularly healthy (at least not for me). I'm the kind of person who will read everybody symptoms and start developing them myself!

 

Thanks for the advice re alternative treatments and apps/websites. I will take a look!

 

Wish you a great day. Lets do this!

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
2 hours ago, laydefish said:

Hi Robko! I just wanted to say welcome!  Everyday will get better for you, it will take time but as you heal you learn what does & doesn't "aggravate "your WD Symptoms and you'll be able to control them a little better day by day.  Keep holding on & remember you're strong!

Thanks laydefish. Appreciate the words of support and comfort!

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post

Hi All, has a terrible couple of days. Just feel like I need sleep, but body doesn’t feel capable. I’m exhausted, weak and Shaky. Does anybody find that the waves and windows can literally change by the hour several times a day?

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
  • Moderator
3 minutes ago, Robko said:

 Does anybody find that the waves and windows can literally change by the hour several times a day?

 

Yes, quite often I have ups and downs, mini-waves and windows, throughout the day.

Gridley Introduction

 

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

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

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

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, soon reinstated.  CT 2000. RI 1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept. 2016  0.625mg X 3

Nov.27, 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover + change to one 18.75mg dose, w/1 month hold.

Feb. 9, 2021, begin 10% every 4 weeks taper.  Current dose as of Feb. 23: 16.0mgai.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 16mgai (0.44mgpw).  Aug 2016, discovered SA, holding at 16mg.  Taper is 78% complete.  

  

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


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

Link to post

Thanks Gridley. I have just been out for dinner with friends (not drinking) and I could barely sit there- felt absolutely awful., fatigued and a head full of cotton wool (with brain zaps and twitches). They wanted to go on somewhere and I decided to bail and come back to the hotel. Within 20 minutes of being back to my room, all the pain and exhaustion seemed to lift in a matter of minutes. So strange.

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
  • Moderator
59 minutes ago, Robko said:

Within 20 minutes of being back to my room, all the pain and exhaustion seemed to lift in a matter of minutes. So strange.

 

This sounds very similar to my experience.  With me, it's connected with stress and agoraphobia and how one feeds into the other.  Going down into our little sleepy village over a very bumpy dirt road and dealing with (for someone not in WD) minor errands sends my anxiety levels up.  Once I get back home, after a few minutes I calm down.  I try to balance the benefits of getting out in the world at least a little with the stress of what happens when I do get out there. I've always had social anxiety and have tended to be a homebody, and it WD has increased those tendencies.  I don't blame or castigate myself, just try to cooperate with who I am and what I'm going through while trying to participate at least a little in life.

Gridley Introduction

 

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

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

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

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, soon reinstated.  CT 2000. RI 1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept. 2016  0.625mg X 3

Nov.27, 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover + change to one 18.75mg dose, w/1 month hold.

Feb. 9, 2021, begin 10% every 4 weeks taper.  Current dose as of Feb. 23: 16.0mgai.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 16mgai (0.44mgpw).  Aug 2016, discovered SA, holding at 16mg.  Taper is 78% complete.  

  

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


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

Link to post
FleeingFluoxetine

My waves and windows are getting better, but they can change within a day for sure. I've had whole days where I feel completely awful, but then around 8 pm I suddenly feel like my old self and nothing ever went wrong. Then I wake up again in misery.

 

But hey, at least my elbows aren't sweating as much now!

As of May 28th, 2020:

15 mg liquid Prozac

12.5 mg Imovane

50 mg Seroquel

20 mg Propranolol 3x a day

0.5 mg Clonazepam 3x a day

Supplements including Omega 3 fish oil, vitamin B complexes, magnesium, vitamins A, C, and E

 

 

 

Link to post
  • Mentor
23 hours ago, Robko said:

Hi All, has a terrible couple of days. Just feel like I need sleep, but body doesn’t feel capable. I’m exhausted, weak and Shaky. Does anybody find that the waves and windows can literally change by the hour several times a day?

 

‘Sorry to hear that.

 

yes, I find symptoms can come and go really quickly.

 = medication taken now

 

2007 quetiapine to March 2019 200mg

2019 quetiapine March to present 225mg 

2007 citalopram to present 40mg 
2018 March Abilify 5mg  
2019 Abilify February rapid taper over 3 weeks from 5mg to off

2019 March Clonazepam as required, taken very occasionally, then taken 0.5mg for 2 days 28th and 29th March, now phased out

2019 1st April reinstated Abilify 0.5mg / day 

2018 to present Liquid B12 2g twice daily (diagnosed B12 deficiency) 
 

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I find it incredible that only now after four months of being off Seroxat/Paxil, the brain zaps have hit (and hit hard!). Last night I finally got some sleep but I had intense dreams and actually had the brain zaps whilst asleep (they woke me up). I am also now having them today at work - and they are much worse even under the slightest hint of stress. At the same time, I am starting to twitch a lot (my eyes and forehead keep jumping upwards in time, sometimes in time with the zaps, other times independent of the zaps). What the hell has this drug done to my brain!! I actually don't find it too uncomfortable. In many ways, I feel comforted that this is the process of my brain repairing itself.

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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On 5/12/2019 at 2:36 AM, Gridley said:

 

This sounds very similar to my experience.  With me, it's connected with stress and agoraphobia and how one feeds into the other.  Going down into our little sleepy village over a very bumpy dirt road and dealing with (for someone not in WD) minor errands sends my anxiety levels up.  Once I get back home, after a few minutes I calm down.  I try to balance the benefits of getting out in the world at least a little with the stress of what happens when I do get out there. I've always had social anxiety and have tended to be a homebody, and it WD has increased those tendencies.  I don't blame or castigate myself, just try to cooperate with who I am and what I'm going through while trying to participate at least a little in life.

Hi Gridley, thanks for writing. The only thing with me is that I didn't feel the little bit "anxious" whilst out. no nervous tension, no increased heart rate etc etc. Its a weird one. All we can do it keep going! I wish you the best

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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On 5/12/2019 at 4:22 AM, FleeingFluoxetine said:

My waves and windows are getting better, but they can change within a day for sure. I've had whole days where I feel completely awful, but then around 8 pm I suddenly feel like my old self and nothing ever went wrong. Then I wake up again in misery.

 

But hey, at least my elbows aren't sweating as much now!

Do I still have sweaty elbows to come???!!!! :)))

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

Link to post
15 hours ago, RichT said:

 

‘Sorry to hear that.

 

yes, I find symptoms can come and go really quickly.

Thanks RichT

June 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam three times daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 (for one week) - 2mg Diazapam twice daily For panic and GAD

July 1997 to Aug 1998 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD

Jan 2000 to Dec 2001 - Seroxat 20mg daily For panic and GAD I reinstated as I was suffering from extreme nausea and dry heaves plus social anxiety. I was housebound.

Jan 2002 to Dec 2004 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 10mg and 20mg daily (no records exist) For panic and GAD I do not remember why I reinstated but probably would have been anxiety symptoms.

Jan 2006 to May 2006 - 80 mg Propranolol daily For panic and GAD/high blood pressure

Feb 2006 to Mar 2007 - Prozac 20mg daily For GAD Although I do not remember, my medical notes state that I had anxiety and was feeling low.

Mar 2007 to Sep 2008 - Seroxat 20 mg daily For GAD I remember that I was suffering again with GAD and panic. Was finding it difficult to keep my job. Thinking back, I can remember periods of apathy. (prior to going back on the medication). I was also suffering from vertigo, constant nausea and nocturnal panic attacks/gasping for air and jumping up whilst falling asleep.

Sep 2010 to Nov 2018 - Intermittent use of Seroxat with doses between 8mg and 20mg daily (no firm records exist) For GAD Whilst on medicationIn 2017 (Jan), first symptoms of depression appear. Mood quickly falls with extremely dark thoughts. I HAVE NEVER FELT ANYTHING LIKE IT. Thoughts of death and suicide. Severe mood crashes. Total apathy - I found pleasure from absolutely nothing (this is what scared me the most).

Nov 2018 to Jan 2019 - Seroxat Tapering down to zero (one mg per week/two weeks depending on reaction). Surprisingly comfortable withdrawal. Initial brain zaps. Even during tapering, base line mood was lifting. After 6 weeks, started to suffer anxiety in clear wave patterns (usually in the morning). On a couple of occasions, I had severe anxiety all day (with no panic attacks) which made functioning very difficult. Huge mood swings. One minute I was fine, the next my whole world had fallen apart (I'm talking in a matter of seconds). These mood swings have stopped. Baseline mood level is higher. Still get waves of sadness, dark thoughts and anxiety but the windows of feeling well seem to be getting longer. After 3 months, insomnia became a problem (for a period of about a week) and this also caused me great anxiety. I have NEVER suffered from poor sleep before. My sleeping is now slightly better but still nowhere near the level that I am used to. I still struggle with motivation, and at times feel extreme apathy ("whats the point" kind of attitude). I find it very difficult to get out of bed in the morning and my work is suffering from lack of motivation.

 

 

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