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Greggie

Greggie: I'm in the midst of ... setback? WD? Who knows?

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Greggie

I found this site after I had been off of Escitalopram (Lexapro) for a couple of weeks. I thought I had tapered it properly, but after visiting this site, seems I have come off too fast. 

 

I'm a couple of days out from my 7 week mark which is great for me, but the process hasn't been fun... not that I was expecting it to be. 

 

I'm definitely over the acute phase of WD. My zaps weren't too bad and only lasted about a week or so. I felt completely over the first phase by about week 3. I've been logging all of my progress as I have been going which helps quite a bit, especially when I'm having a bad day. I can look back at my journals and see that they aren't all bad days, even though when I get a bunch of bad days in a row it feels like I've never felt good in my entire life, nor will I ever feel good again. I know it's not true, but that's where my mind goes when I start to get caught up in these waves of anxiety.

 

My current symptoms are weird burning mouth symptoms, and feel like my blood is hot running though my veins. I have a general uncomfortable feeling, and I know my breath smells bad... I can sense it. Does anyone else get this weird mouth feeling when anxious? Like you're dehydrated? You tongue feels weird and gross, and gets this awful white coating on it? Maybe I am dehydrated. 

 

I also react terribly to fasting these days. I used to be able to fast no problem, but now fasting makes my anxiety worse. I feel like my blood sugar is all over the place.

 

I'm angry, so angry, road rage... ear phone rage (when you're wearing headphones and they get caught on stuff and pull your head) I got a parking ticket  yesterday, I was so mad I tried to rip it up... you can't rip up tickets anymore, they're made of some kind of super paper or something.  Point is, I'm angry a lot... which I think then feeds my anxiety. 

 

So ya, Protracted Withdrawal? Or return of my anxiety? Funny thing is, before SSRIs all I had was a panic disorder... I don't mean to minimize the seriousness of panic, but I didn't have anxiety until after I tried to quit SSRIs the first time. So what's going on? My brain is still adjusting? I guess 7 weeks is still pretty early in the grand scheme of things, just sucks. I wish I had known... oh wait, here comes another headache... I wish I had known that panic disorder will go away without drugs if you just face them in the correct way. Seems going the drug route just gave me a more complex problem that I now have to navigate. 

 

Ugh, anyway. Hi everyone. I've been sideling for a while now. Thought I would finally introduce myself.

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Gridley

Hello, Gregge, and welcome to SA.  I'm glad your withdrawal is going as well as could be expected.

 

Here are a couple of links on what they call Burning Mouth Syndrome.  The second link isn't from SA but does make the connection between the syndrome and antidepressant usage.

Burning Mouth Syndrome - Surviving Antidepressants

Antidepressant-induced Burning Mouth Syndrome - Journal

Regarding fasting, it's probably not a good idea while you're in withdrawal.  Fasting stresses your system (as does detoxing) and more stress on the system is the last thing you need.  There are going to be lots of things you can't do right now that you could before, like possibly strenuous exercise and taking lots of supplements.  The central nervous system in withdrawal is very fragile, and it's important to accommodate yourself to that.

 

Rage and anger are typical withdrawal symptoms.

 

 
 
When we take medications, the CNS (central nervous system) responds by making changes over the months and years we take the drug(s). When the medication is discontinued, the CNS has to undo all the changes it made. Rebuilding the neurotransmitter production and reactivating the receptor and transporter cells takes time -- during that rebuilding process symptoms occur.  
 
These explain it really well:

 

 

   On 8/30/2011 at 2:28 PM,  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.

 

Your question about whether your symptoms are withdrawal or return of an underlying condition is a natural one.  Here are two links that deal with that.  Basically, if what you're experiencing now is different from what you experienced before starting the drug, the answer is withdrawal. 

 

Is it withdrawal or relapse?  Or something else?

 

We don't recommend a lot of supplements on SA, as many members report being sensitive to them due to our over-reactive nervous systems, but two supplements that we do recommend are magnesium and omega 3 (fish oil). Many people find these to be calming to the nervous system. 

 

 

 

Please research all supplements first and only add in one at a time and at a low dose in case you do experience problems.
 
Please continue to use this thread to document your taper and to ask questions. 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Greggie

Thanks for all the info, Gridley. 

 

Not feeling too bad this morning, not great, but not terrible. I have been taking CBD oil daily for the past little while, but I'm not sure it has been doing anything. Today I'm not going to take it and see if I feel any differently. 

 

I also can't sleep (at night) without the help of melatonin 6mg and CBD/THC oil. However, when I do deep breathing exercises I can get myself into such a relaxed state that I end up drifting off. I think I could likely do this at bedtime, but I always end up waking up and not being able to fall back asleep again. Insomnia, yet another fun WD symptom. I have zopiclone, that I don't ever take, and lorazipam (Ativan), that I'm too terrified to take, but I'm taking melatonin, which my doctor actually advises against. He would prefer I take zopiclone or Ativan instead... which seems backwards to me. He's got no problem prescribing me as much Ativan as I want. 

 

So intense workouts are out? I'm super active and tend to do at least 2 or 3 intense workouts a week... could that be adding to my anxiety? I was also trying the whole IF (intermittent fasting) thing for a few weeks... but I think you're right, it's not a great idea right now. Just want to get rid of the extra 20lbs I gained from these darn pills.

 

Stupid question... how long until I can return to regular pre-SSRI activities?  I'm guessing I just need to listen to my body to figure it all out, but I'm just courious to see if there may be a ball park. I read somewhere that most people tend to feel considerably better by about 3 months... not sure if that's true or not, but I'm keeping fingers toes and eyes crossed, that it is.

 

Has anyone discovered that their anxiety is triggered by gluten intolerance?

 

Also, I've been tested and apparently have low testosterone, wondering if that could be a culprit... funny thing about anxiety, it's easier to want it to be from something else than to just accept it. But I just want to be sure.

 

 

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laydefish

Welcome!

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Altostrata

Welcome, Greggie.

 

Since you had clear signs of withdrawal syndrome, such as brain zaps, it's safe to assume you are still having post-acute withdrawal symptoms.

 

A lot of people find fish oil and magnesium supplements helpful, see
https://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/
https://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/15483-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/

 

Try a little bit of one at a time to see how it affects you.

 

Often, a very low reinstatement, such as 1mg, is enough to relieve these symptoms. Rather than escilatopram, you may wish to take its gentler sibling, citalopram. Both come in a liquid for titration, or you can make your own. See Tips for tapering off Celexa (citalopram)

 

You'd stabilize on this low dose for a while, then taper off later, maybe in a few months.

 

Withdrawal syndrome can make your nervous system hypersensitive to drugs, supplements, and other stimuli, which is why you've observed this:

 

On 6/12/2019 at 2:58 PM, Greggie said:

I also react terribly to fasting these days. I used to be able to fast no problem, but now fasting makes my anxiety worse. I feel like my blood sugar is all over the place.

 

Low blood sugar elevates adrenaline, which fuels anxiety in a sensitized nervous system. You'll want to keep your blood sugar steady for the foreseeable future -- eating regularly.

 

Please let us know how you're doing.

 

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Greggie

Thanks Altostrata, 

 

I am currently taking between 200-600mg of Magnesium Glycinate twice a day, with two caps of fish oils twice a day and just added Ashwagandha x2 a day. 

 

Here are my logs from yesterday:

7:37am - Anxiety was really low, almost non-existant

9:00am - Bran cereal with nuts and honey

9:30am - meditation was great, but tongue started to act up (BMS?) 

12pm - feeling a little on edge

2:45pm - feeling anxious and panicky, not overwhelmingly so. When I stop to think about it, it's really there, when I'm busy, however, it doesn't really bother me so much. "It's less of a feeling and more of an essence,"

6:45pm - Heading home from work, feel like my body is in ketosis. Got a little panicky about it, but panic didn't break through.

7:00pm - Ate food, felt 100x better. Anxiety back down to almost nothing.

8:00pm - Wife watched Dumbo, I ended up crying like three times during the film... def more sensitive than normal, I mean, come on, it's Dumbo!

11:07pm - Watching NBA playoffs game 6 feeling okay, but like my body is heading back into ketosis.

12:00am - Raptors win NBA championships. I cried, again... tears of joy? again, very emotional.

12:00-2:00am - had a really hard time sleeping, but likely from being all keyed up from watching the game.

2am - 9am - weird dreams. I'm pretty sure I was dreaming about anxiety and being anxious. Felt weird when I got up this morning (Hadn't eaten since about 8pm, almost 11 hours)

 

So I'm seeing a pattern here, and that is that eating food seems to help a lot. And not eating often enough (or the right things) makes my anxiety much worse. I'm crazy emotional right now. Sometimes it's crying spells, sometimes it's anger. Yesterday was a crying day, I guess. I think that has WD written all over it.

 

Today I'm attempting to eat at least every two hours. Trying to stay away from refined sugars/simple carbs. I'm feeling okay I guess, but it's too early to tell if it's working. (snacking on whole fruits, hard boiled eggs, mixed unsalted nuts) 

 

I'm also listening to "The D.A.R.E. Response" for the 100th time, when I'm done it I'll move on to my next go to books, anything by Dr.Claire Weekes.

 

I'm wondering if I'm getting waves and windows in the same day? Like I have waves in the middle of the day and windows in the morning and evening... isn't too soon to already be having windows? 

 

I was also reading up on tardive akathisia, which freaks me right out. Do a lot of people who quit SSRIs experience this? I know they say that it's rare for Lexapro to cause this, but I'm not sure I believe that every doctor reports it when they do see it. Should I be worried about it?

 

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Greggie
Posted (edited)

Okay, so it’s been an interesting couple of days. Here’s what’s up.

 

two days ago I tried micro dosing a certain plant based medicine (I have heard it can help with WD, and I am speaking with a therapist who specializes in this kind of stuff) but I’m not sure how I feel about it... I decided to give it a try. I may or may not have felt the effects. I’m not sure. I think maybe I did? Anyway here’s my log of that day...

———-

9:30 - wow, day 50. I’m happy that I’ve made it this far and hopeful that I can keep going. Def having waves and windows as per the SA site. But luckily my windows are longer than my waves, but my waves suck. 

 

Feeling fine this morning Anx:0

 

Had anxious dreams last night, but only took CBD/THC, (.35mL) no melatonin. So I’ll likely keep that up. The THC def works for sleep. 

 

11:05 - took 100mg for micro dose. Feeling a little on edge, but okay.

 

11:41 - body feeling a little tingly. Micro vibrations. I feel something... but nothing major. Excited?

 

12:39 - feeling good. Anx 0. Nothing major to report on the mushroom front. Getting ready to leave for my dads.

 

4:05 - at my dads. Feeling pretty good still. Nothing major to report. ANX: 1, TONG: 3

 

5:43 - still feeling okay. Better than yesterday. Anx 0 

 

8:19 - not feeling great. Feeling a little weird. I have something in my throat. I can also feel a weird micro vibration deep in my body. I’m not sure if I have too much anxiety tho. If I had to rate it... it would still only come in at around a 2/10 at the moment. I had some sugary treats tho, and those tend to not do nice things inside my body. Before the chocolate eggs I had I was feeling fine. Hmmm, maybe dairy products are my downfall. Oh man, I love sweets so much. But I may have to give them and milk up. 

 

I actually almost freaked myself out thinking I was going into anaphylactic shock with my throat closing up. But it wouldn’t happen so slowly. I have lots of phlegm tho. It’s uncomfortable 

 

10:30 - I’m not overly anxious, but I’m having some feels. My heart feels like it’s beating hard. My body is buzzing big time. I don’t hate it. But I can see how these feelings could lead to a panic attack. But I’m not overly worried about it. I wonder if this body buzz is from the CBD oil I took about and hour or so ago. Probably. I wonder if I’m feeling it more than usual because of the micro dose. I can feel my teeth too. Could it be I’m still feeling them? It was so long ago I took them. Weird. Anyway, anxiety is low. 1/10. I feel weird, but maybe weird is okay

 

11:27 - body still buzzing pretty hard. Feels interesting. Kinda weird. Like a deep vibration in my body. But I’m not freaking out about it. Again, maybe it feels good. Different isn’t bad. Enjoy it. or at least trying to. ANX 1/10

 

Average anxiety for today <1

 

——-

then this morning things got a bit interesting. I organized a bit of a party for Father’s Day and a couple birthdays. Nothing big, but big considering my circumstances (WD) - I’m trying to live life and not let WD stop me from doing things.

 

 

8:57 - feeling weird this morning. Ears are ringing (tenitus) since yesterday and feeling a bit shaky. I woke up and looked at My wife as she got out of bed and saw red sparkles in her hair... hallucinations?! They didn’t last long, but kinda surprised me a bit. Now I’m feeling shaky and panicky, but I’m trying to allow the sensations to come and enjoy the journey. My belly has butterflies. As I wrote this I’m feeling like I’m on the verge of panic. Let’s see how this goes. Heart is starting to beat faster, but it’s okay, shaking, but it’s okay, getting slight chills... but it’s okay. It can’t kill me, I won’t go crazy, I’m going to be okay. 

 

9:39 - weird body buzz seems to have calmed down. I laid down for an hour and think It make have reduced. 

 

11:45 - not feeling bad, anx: 0, but fear of panic is up there, 5/10 highest it’s been in a while, but it’s okay, because I need this in order to heal. Come on panic! Give me something to feel! I’m ready to let you come and be with me. I want you here, I like you. You’re my friend. 

 

3:16pm - feeling okay. I feel like I’m still nervous about panic but for the most part I’m good. 3/10 panic nerves. As far as anxiety 1/10 still low. More nervous about having sensations that actually feeling them. I feel like I’m still a little shaken up from my hallucinations earlier this morning. But I’ll get over it.

 

6:13 - feeling okay, had a short nap when I got home and was feeling nice and relaxed. I did a lot of researching today regarding MDing and body buzzing. Shouldn’t have done it. What I read was body buzzing (internal vibrations) can be from Parkinson’s or MS, yikes. I think, considering I got the feeling after CBD oil it could have been from that. (But looking back at earlier entries shows I was feeling it before CBD)...  It’s the feeling you get before you start shaking during a panic attack. It’s mostly gone now as far as I can tell. I feel like I handled it well. I didn’t freak out, I kind of just let it come and go. But I can’t say it didn’t bother me. I was constantly checking in with my body to see if it was still there. It caused me some stress but I continued with the party and made it from begging to end with no panic and little anxiety. Anx 1, worry about panic: 1

 

TLDR; I had anxiety over possible mild hallucinations I had this morning, and am feeling a weird vibration deep in my torso. Kinda freaking me out, but I’m try to not add panic to fear. Anyone else have experiences like these?

 

Edited by ChessieCat
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Greggie
Posted (edited)

I’m having a major anxiety setback today. Nothing in general bothers me, (as in there is no extra stressors or things to make me upset) but my brain is convinced something terrible is about to happen and is giving me all the somatic symptoms to boot...

 

-Nervous stomach 

-white tongue

-bad taste in mouth

-anxiety 7/10

 

its really starting to get me down, I just want to feel ... nothing, I want to feel nothing. I feel like this will never end, I’ll never be someone who gets to experience the joys in life without this dark could of anxiety looming over my head. I feel hopeless. It’s almost two months since my last 2.5mg dose. 

 

I just feel so hopeless

 

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
removed obscenity

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ChessieCat
Posted (edited)
58 minutes ago, Greggie said:

It’s almost two months since my last 2.5mg dose

 

Even though it feels like it's been a long time because you are feeling awful, 2 months is not that long, especially after all the changes you have made in the last 18 months and jumping off Lexapro from 2.5mg.

 

It's going to take time and be very frustrating and require lots of patience and non drug coping techniques.

 

Have you considered Alto (this site's founder) suggestion:

 

On 6/14/2019 at 12:37 PM, Altostrata said:

Often, a very low reinstatement, such as 1mg, is enough to relieve these symptoms. Rather than escilatopram, you may wish to take its gentler sibling, citalopram. Both come in a liquid for titration, or you can make your own. See Tips for tapering off Celexa (citalopram)

 

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat

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Greggie

I agree with you (non drug techniques) seems like everywhere I turn someone has got the magic pill for the cure... and I’m starting to see all of these things as the same as SSRIs... CBD, MDing, THC, Supps, etc, when the magic bullet really just seems to be time. Why is it so hard to trust our bodies to do what’s right? 

 

I wrote a song once that went “the only way to paradise is on a boat called misery...” at the time it was just a fun metaphor for something, but now I’m starting to see the wisdom in that.

 

I have given it some thought (reinstatement) but I also feel like the SSRIs are what has stopped me from truly healing from my trauma. Problem is, they made me feel a lot worse while on them, so I worry that reinstatement will make me feel worse than I do already, and then I lose my almost two months of being drug free. If that makes sense. I think my biggest mistake was after my traumatic event I didn’t just allow myself to heal naturally and instead went onto SSRIs, now I feel like I just need to try to allow myself to heal, as painful as it is,  versus going back to the thing that potentially is the reason I haven’t healed in the first place. Ugh, it so difficult to make these decisions... 

 

i really do appreciate the support. Thanks for taking the time to comment. 

 

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ChessieCat

I can understand your reluctance and reasoning, and I am not trying to sway your decision either way.  However, it may be that your brain needs a tiny amount of the drug and it might take the edge off your withdrawal symptoms.  Please read / re-read Post #1 of the reinstatement topic.

 

On 10/9/2012 at 10:17 AM, Altostrata said:

 

If you had adverse reactions while you were taking the drug, a low dose may not trigger the adverse reactions but still reduce withdrawal symptoms. Adverse reactions tend to be dosage-related: The higher the dose, the worse the reaction.

 

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Greggie

How long do you think I can wait before reinstatement? I think I want to ride this out for another few days to see if I can get through without chemical help. But I want to make sure I’m not too far gone to try it if I need to. 

 

Ive dug up some old citalopram tabs, but they are 10mg and tiny. I have a jewelry scale, but seems like it can’t figure out proper weights. A 10mg tab weighs in at 7mg and if I break it into a quarter tab the scale can’t tell anything is even on there. 

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Greggie

Nevermind, i found the answer while digging around in the site. 

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RichT
4 hours ago, Greggie said:

How long do you think I can wait before reinstatement? I think I want to ride this out for another few days to see if I can get through without chemical help. But I want to make sure I’m not too far gone to try it if I need to. 

 

Ive dug up some old citalopram tabs, but they are 10mg and tiny. I have a jewelry scale, but seems like it can’t figure out proper weights. A 10mg tab weighs in at 7mg and if I break it into a quarter tab the scale can’t tell anything is even on there. 

 

‘Hi Greggie,

 

if you do decide to use those old tablets somehow, remember to check the expiry date on the packet first!

 

Rich

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Greggie

Thanks for the advice, Rich 

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Altostrata

You can make a liquid from the tablets

 

Quote

Both come in a liquid for titration, or you can make your own. See Tips for tapering off Celexa (citalopram)

 

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Greggie

Okay, update for today.

 

Almost like clockwork from 8am - 2pm I'm feeling fine, then from around 3pm - 6pm I'm a wreck (tongue symptoms, feeling like I'm in ketosis, anxiety, etc), then from 6pm - bedtime I'm good again. Yesterday was the same, but the worst it's been in a long long time. Today I'm keeping the feels at bay by snacking little bits all day long... sipping done broth seemed to work well.

 

I'm still feeling some anxiety right now, mostly in my lower belly, or second brain, if you will. I started probiotics today to hopefully help my gut out. My anxiety isn't quite as bad as it was yesterday. Oh no! I just realized I accidentally didn't eat my lunch because I was snacking all day. I'll see how I feel after I eat dinner in the next half hour or so. I also took a few walks today and went to the gym this morning for some weight lifting. Maybe that helped spend some of my nervous energy.

 

Deep thoughts for today... I'm not 100% convinced I'm in withdrawal any more considering the low doses of everything I was on. All the docs told me my doses weren't high enough to do anything, anyway, and always suggested much higher doses,  however,  anything in the "therapeutic range" gave me terribly adverse effects, which is also the reason I kept switching and finally jumped off after almost two weeks at 2.5mg Es. Only, jumping off at 2.5mg Es is like 5mg anything else, and I would have never dreamed of jumping off at 5mg Paxil or Celexa. So ya, jumped from way too high for sure.  Anyway, what I'm trying to say, is at a certain point my anxiety IS going to return, and I'll have to face it and use my CBT and mindfulness to address that, but if I'm going through WD and using mindfulness and CBT to deal with anxiety, from said WD, does that count toward healing my original problem? Or is it a kind of "deal with WD first" kind of thing, then, when WD is over my anxiety returns for me to face? Like I know I need to heal from the trauma I have been running from (using SSRIs to numb)... is it safe to say that healing from WD is also the process of healing my anxiety? Let me put it this way.... I came off SSRIs to face my demons, but I'm not sure what demon I'm facing? Is it like a two headed dragon I'm fighting here... (WD and trauma) and when I kill it, both will be conquered? Or is the trauma dragon hiding behind the WD dragon? And I'll have to kill the WD dragon first before then have to fight the trauma dragon? (Trauma meaning my sensitized nerves)

 

Does this make sense? 

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RichT

Yes, and I don't know the answer. But the coping techniques you're applying for WD will help in any event.

 

R

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Greggie

So many ups and downs, I have no idea if I'm coming or going half of the time. 

 

I had a crying spell last night talking/thinking about how much I love my elderly parents, which is probably the universe letting me know that I'm still in WD. It would seem that I'm still very sensitive.

 

I've been a little on edge for most of the day today, but for the most part my anxiety has been pretty calm. Friday will be 2 months since my last 2.5mg dose of Escitalopram. I'm happy to have made it this far.

 

I have decided to go back to CBT for a little bit to get me through this challenging time. Last time I saw my therapist, I was on 5mg of Escitalopram and was pretty stable, I was discharged because I was doing so well, but I think it had more to do with the drugs in my system than my ability to use CBT. I'm excited to explore CBT while actually needing it (having somatic anxiety). I keep reading about how the relapse rate for SSRIs is really high, and that for CBT it is much lower. I'll let you know how that goes. 

 

I have noticed I'm hypersensitive to being dehydrated. If I don't drink enough water my body gets really upset. Especially my tongue, it turns white and starts burning. 

 

I'm down to 3mg of Melatonin for sleep, which is half the dosage I have been taking. Also, I have been avoiding the use of THC and CBD oil for the past week. I'll likely try CBD again next week to see if my weekly anxiety average is any lower, but I have noticed that the THC oil may have been keeping my body in a sensitized state, so I have nixed it from my nightly routine.

 

I have been journaling about my anxiety multiple times a day. For example, at 9am, 11am, 1pm etc. At each time I attach a number to my anxiety on a scale from 1 - 10 (10 being the worst it could be). Then at the end of the day I average out the number and record it on a chart. It's a great tool. I find that even though I may have an 8/10 hour of anxiety, my daily average can be much lower. It gets me out of the mindset that everything is bad all the time. It really helps.

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RichT

Your journaling sounds like a great idea! 

 

Rich

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Greggie

Hi guys, 

 

having a rough time the past couple of days. As usual, at around 3pm until 6:30pm or so I’m having terrible bouts of something, I’m not sure if it’s anxiety or what. My tongue starts turning white and starts feeling very uncomfortable, then I start getting short tempered possibly due to constant discomfort. I can’t tolerate crowds or any stressors, I can only go out in public for shopping or walking etc for maybe an hour before I start to get super overwhelmed and need to get home and hide... It’s really getting me down. What’s causing all this tongue business?! It’s really getting to me. I can’t seem to keep it from Turing white and burning. Brutal. How could WD be causing such symptoms? Is it a gut thing? My physical symptoms are the only things causing me worry at this point. Can anxiety be only physical? 

 

Im trying to be strong here, but it’s hard. 

 

I just passed 8 weeks. Today for like a split second I was hit with a depressive state due to my physical feelings and it really scared me, but after a nap and a bit of a cry I feel like I levelled out. I’m not a depressed person, I also don’t cry... I wasn’t taking the drugs for depression. I was taking them for panic attacks (not even anxiety)... can WD cause this other stuff? It worries me, because of all the stuff I’ve read here I’m terrified that it’ll make me suicidal, I’m not, like not at all, but it’s one of my biggest fears. Is that a normal response to anxiety do you think? 

 

what a sucky deal this is.  *Insert lots of swear words here*

 

Ive got a baby on the way and want to be in my best mental health when she arrives, but man, I’m struggling at the moment. 

 

I don't want to reinstate, my pills were expired anyway. Just looking for some reassurance 

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Greggie

I found this article on WD possibly lasting 4 months, interesting. It's not about anxiety, but I'll take it. Looks like it's implying WD may possibly peak at around 10 weeks or so, then slowly taper off. 

 

I also found this site talking about how to taper ADs (it's from CAMH, the authority on mental health here in Toronto) where they also advocate the 10% taper. 

 

So I guess this just means that taking a year to taper and feeling okay throughout is better than jumping off to quick, then feeling terrible for a year before feeling better. If I could go back I would def do the slow taper... but again, the Lexapro made me feel awful, it NEVER helped, so it seemed stupid to stay on it for any extended period. 

 

I feel like garbage today, worst day since I stopped. Sleep quality is beginning to deteriorate.  Dreams when I am sleeping are anxiety dreams. I wake up depressed, and fearing the worst. 

 

Starting CBT again with a therapist tonight. 

 

On a positive note, my tongue feels better, turns out I'm a heavy mouth breather when I'm anxious causing lots of tongue issues, not to mention other terrible oral issues (bad breath, hoarse voice, bleeding gums, etc). I've been I'm attempting to break that habit by nose breathing, and haven't had white tongue for the past two days.

 

 

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Greggie

Accidentally took melatonin with 5htp two nights ago for sleep. Usually I just take melatonin. Yesterday my stomach was in serious knots all day. 

 

Was only 30mg of 5htp. 

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RichT
On 6/24/2019 at 9:07 PM, Greggie said:

I found this article on WD possibly lasting 4 months, interesting. It's not about anxiety, but I'll take it. Looks like it's implying WD may possibly peak at around 10 weeks or so, then slowly taper off. 

 

I also found this site talking about how to taper ADs (it's from CAMH, the authority on mental health here in Toronto) where they also advocate the 10% taper. 

 

So I guess this just means that taking a year to taper and feeling okay throughout is better than jumping off to quick, then feeling terrible for a year before feeling better. If I could go back I would def do the slow taper... but again, the Lexapro made me feel awful, it NEVER helped, so it seemed stupid to stay on it for any extended period. 

 

I feel like garbage today, worst day since I stopped. Sleep quality is beginning to deteriorate.  Dreams when I am sleeping are anxiety dreams. I wake up depressed, and fearing the worst. 

 

Starting CBT again with a therapist tonight. 

 

On a positive note, my tongue feels better, turns out I'm a heavy mouth breather when I'm anxious causing lots of tongue issues, not to mention other terrible oral issues (bad breath, hoarse voice, bleeding gums, etc). I've been I'm attempting to break that habit by nose breathing, and haven't had white tongue for the past two days.

 

 

 

‘I am a mouth breather too - I found that a saline nasal spray helped clear my nasal passages.

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Greggie

I ended up taking 2x 1.5,g melatonin supp that had 15mg of 5htp in each tablet. I slept fine that night, but woke up extremely agitated  and it got worse and worse as the day progressed. It was a horrid day yesterday because of it.

Today things have calmed down a touch, but still not feeling great. I'm amazed that such a low dose could have such a terribly adverse effect.  

 

Did I just re-sensitize my CNS?  Do you think it could have triggered mild serotonin syndrome? Or does it take a few days for the serotonin to reduce? The day I took it I was having such a great window too... I feel like such a dummy. 

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Greggie

Having super weird dreams lately. They make me feel weird when I wake up.

 

Still need 6mg of melatonin to sleep.

 

Yesterday wasn't too bad. Anxiety was pretty low. Looks like the reaction to 5htp has calmed down considerably. 

 

I am coming around to accepting that I’m in WD. I have a check up today to once and for all rule out anything medical. Mostly I just want to know if I am developing Hypoglycemia.  

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Greggie
21 hours ago, RichT said:

 

‘I am a mouth breather too - I found that a saline nasal spray helped clear my nasal passages.

Thanks for the suggestion RichT, I may give this a try for when I go to bed. I get really clogged up at night for some reason.

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ChessieCat

From Melatonin

 

On 4/7/2011 at 11:26 AM, Altostrata said:

 

Large doses of melatonin do NOT aid sleep -- they might cause your oversensitive brain to wake up, instead. I found when I took more than 2mg of melatonin, I was weepy in the morning. If you get this or a paradoxical reaction (waking) or are dopey in the morning, it's a sign you're taking too much.

 

 

It's also better to not to take any supplements which contain a combination of things.  If something causes an issue you won't know which one.  Also if you change the dose you are increasing/decreasing the dose of all the ingredients.

 

Keep it Simple, Slow and Stable

 

 

 

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ChessieCat
Posted (edited)

Also Gridley recently wrote this to another member:

 

20 hours ago, Gridley said:

 

3mg is high for those of us in WD.  We recommend starting out with around 0.25mg or 0.5 mg.  3mg can have a paradoxical (stimulating effect).  Something I've been doing that is helping a bit with sleep is taking my .5mg melatonin when I go to bed, and then taking 100mg magnesium glycinate when I wake up (usually around 3am) and then another 100mg magnesium around dawn.  We're all different, but it does help a bit, and sometimes "a bit" means a lot.

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat

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Greggie

Thanks for passing this along. 

 

If I try to use only 1mg tonight after using 6mg nightly for the past few months, do you think it will cause any adverse effects? 

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Greggie

I had no idea. 

https://www.healthline.com/health/melatonin-overdose#recommended-doses

Quote

Symptoms of melatonin overdose

Too much melatonin can have the opposite effect of its intended purpose.

It can make it harder to sleep because your normal circadian rhythms will be disrupted. An overdose can leave you feeling groggy and sleepy during the day and give you nightmares or extremely vivid dreams at night. You may also experience:

  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • headaches
  • irritability or anxiety
  • diarrhea
  • joint pain

For some people, too much melatonin can affect their blood pressure. Blood pressure-lowering medications, such as calcium channel blockers and beta-blockers, may reduce your body’s natural production of melatonin.

However, taking a supplement to make up for lower production may not always be advisable. Be sure to talk with your doctor about melatonin and any other supplements you take if you’ve been prescribed medications to help control your blood pressure.

 

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Greggie

I'm going to attempt to quit this site CT now. Being on this site has made me obsess over my anxiety, question everything I am doing and made me feel much much worse. At one point I was freaking out over the possibility that I have akathisia, then that WD was going to last 7 years, then that I am still going to experience the worst withdrawal yet, then that WD was going to... well, you get the idea. I was at work today and spent almost all of my time here freaking out about how my life has been ruined by SSRIs, instead of working.

 

I felt so bad physically... and wanted relief so bad. I was desperate to interact with someone, I just wanted someone to tell me things would be okay... but it never happened.  The more I dug, the worse the outcome seemed.

 

For me, visiting this site was a kin keeping benzos in my pocket (just in case) but never using them. It's a safety behaviour... and I need to get rid of my safety behaviours if I am ever to overcome my anxiety, be it withdrawal anxiety, or relapse anxiety.  

 

It seems that there have been folks who were helped greatly by this site, and I'm happy for you, honestly, but for me, it's another stressor I can't handle at this time.

 

Will I make it to the other side of WD? Who knows... not you, not this site. Nobody. Time will tell, and only time will tell. 

 

Maybe I'll reinstate, maybe I wont. Maybe I'll fail, or maybe I'll be okay. Like I said, time will tell.

 

I wish you all the very best on your journey. I hope we all survive antidepressants in the end.

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Greggie

I didn’t last very long trying to quit the board... maybe it’s because I’m weak. I feel like I’m really alone in this thing, and kind of feel less alone when I’m here... and I guess as long as I don’t venture deep into the scariest threads I’ll be okay using it as my journal.

 

fact is, this is scary stuff.

 

I went to the grocery store yesterday and today and felt so overwhelmed I’m almost started crying both times. I’m a man in my 40s who rarely cries. I’m so frigging emotional these days. But mostly only the crying type.

 

My sleep is pretty good, I’m taking .75mg melatonin now. I use a sleep mask which I think is really helping. I’m also using white noise, but I think it may be giving me really vivid dreams.

 

my nervous stomach is in full effect. I log my anxiety daily. which most of the times is my nervous stomach and bouts of depression. I’ve never had depression before, it’s terrible. My nervous stomach isn’t linked to anything external. It’s maddening. For the past week my waves and windows have been one day on one day off. I get a whole day of mostly a window followed by a whole day of mostly wave. I’m exhausted. Each wave gets me more and more down. 

 

this week coming up will be 10 weeks off. I wish it was easier. It’s easy to get discouraged.... I am discouraged, but I’m doing my best to help myself thru this. 

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ChessieCat
On 6/14/2019 at 12:37 PM, Altostrata said:

Often, a very low reinstatement, such as 1mg, is enough to relieve these symptoms. Rather than escilatopram, you may wish to take its gentler sibling, citalopram. Both come in a liquid for titration, or you can make your own. See Tips for tapering off Celexa (citalopram)

 

You'd stabilize on this low dose for a while, then taper off later, maybe in a few months.

 

Alto's suggestion was 2 weeks ago.  You could try 0.5mg escitalopram or 1mg of citalopram.

 

Please read Post #1 of this topic About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal

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

 

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

 

Withdrawal Normal Description


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

 

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

 

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

 

These explain it really well:

 

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

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

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

 

AND

 

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

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

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

 

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Greggie

SSRI discontinuation effects on cataplexy

 

if im not seeing an improvement in another 6 weeks I’ll consider reinstating and slowly tapering from there. But if it took narcolepsy patients ~4 months to reach baseline in cataplexy events after discontinuation, then in theory it could take that long to reach baseline once SSRIs are discontinued for some of us anxiety sufferers too. To get this far and not press through to the 4 month mark just feels like giving up. 

 

im hyper sensitive to EVERY THING at the moment. I cry too often, my anxiety bothers me more, noises bother my ears more, my nerves are sensitive to touch... etc. I’m in a highly sensitized state at the moment. I feel too much. Much more than when I was taking the drugs and also much more than before I ever took them. My spectrum of feelings is much much broader than it should be. I imagine that SSRIs are like an elastic band, before we take them we feel from -100 to 100, then we start popping the pills. Now our spectrum of feeling is like -20 to 20. Then we stop... suddenly (with a fast taper) feelings go off the charts. For argument sake, let’s say 40x what they should be. So -4000 to 4000 feels. You’re crying, you feel your anxiety is heightened, you get mad super easily, you’re way over stimulated, moody, everything is too loud, too bright... Then it snaps back, things feel more normal, and expands, things get more intense, and back, more normal, and expands, more intense, and back... (waves and windows) until we are once again at -100 to 100, or maybe a little more considering the band has been stretched. Because of this, a slow taper is very wise. 100% if I ever end up back on this stuff I’ll do it... no argument. It makes sense. But let’s say, like the narcolepsy patients, the expansion takes 10 weeks before the first snap back, then wouldn’t it be wiser to wait a few weeks to see than to start taking the drugs right now to numb the misery? I mean, ya, it sucks that I didn’t find the site sooner and follow the 10% taper, but wouldn’t I be doing myself a disservice to not climb over the 10 week snap to see what’s on the other side? 

 

This is of course nothing more than a non scientific theory based on almost nothing, but it makes sense to me. 

 

Today was a good day. Anxiety is there but low. I hung out with my dad, went to a bbq with my brother and his gf and then came home to snuggle the cat. I feel okay, not great, but okay. 60% of my old self. I’m enjoying it as much as I can knowing that a wave is somewhere building momentum getting ready to crash on me... but I’m cherishing this moment, the window is open, the sun is shining in. I currently get a window every other day as it would seem, my week has felt a lot like a rubber band expanding and contracting. 

 

I came off the drugs due to thoughts of death, extreme agitation, punching in my sleep (punching my pregnant wife) screaming in my sleep, sweating profusely, butterflies in my stomach 24/7. I was on the brink of hospitalization before coming off. Now, sure I feel like crap, but nothing compared to being on the pills. Part of me wishes I tapered slowly, the other part isn’t sure I would have made it. 

 

Keep your fingers crossed that I can make it without reinstatement. 

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