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InChristAlone

InChristAlone

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InChristAlone

I was in Lexapro 10 and 20mg (mostly 10) for 15 years. I was put on it when I was 19 after going through a breakup with my high school girlfriend. Also

 

, I have dealt with minor anxiety issues most of my life and have a family history of anxiety and depression.

 

Everything was going ok until I herniated a disc in Jan 2018. What felt like a nervous breakdown ensued. My GP stopped Lexapro cold turkey and started me on Luvox and this made things worse. I cold turkey quit everything for a couple months and things continued to get worse. My GP then put me on Effexor 150mg and Klonopin 1mg twice daily.

 

Things improved for a while. After 6 months, I decided to taper Klonopin because I had found this site and benzobuddies. I am down to 0.25 mg of Klonopin daily and still on Effexor.

 

I am living a life of waves and windows now. I am a middle school teacher and coach. Thankfully, God has strengthened me enough to continue to work through this WD process.

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Gridley
Posted (edited)

Welcome to SA, InChristAlone.  I'm glad you found your way here.  

 

To start, please add a signature.  Include drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements in the last 12-24 months. Also include supplements. Please include the date you started the Klonopin taper and the rate at which you tapered.  Also, please include whether the Effexor is XR or regular release.This will help us give you the most accurate advice we can. 

  • Any drugs and supplements prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years. 
  • Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses. 
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • This is a direct link to your signature:  Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

Based on what you've written, it sounds as though you've tapered the Klonopin a good deal faster than what we suggest.  We recommend tapering by no more than 10% of current dose every four weeks.

 

 

We also generally recommend tapering the more activating drug first, while leaving the more sedating drug in place to act as a buffer.  Activating drugs are most antidepressants.  Benzos are sedating drugs.
 
 
You've made a number of drugs changes over the past seven months, including your current Klonopin taper.  The waves and windows symptoms you describe are very likely withdrawal symptoms.
 
 
 

 

What is your daily symptom pattern now? Do you feel better or worse in the hours after you take Klonopin? The Effexor?  We need a daily symptom pattern for three days.   Please post your symptoms, when you take your drugs, and their dosages. Use a simple list format with time of day on the left and notation (symptom, drug and dosage) on the right.  This is your Introduction topic and is the place to post this symptom pattern list.   This is an example:

 

6 a.m. Woke with anxiety
8 a.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
10 a.m. Stomach is upset
10:30 a.m. Ate breakfast
11:35 a.m. Got a headache, lasted one hour
12:35 p.m. Ate lunch
4 p.m. Feel a bit better
5 p.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
6 p.m. Ate dinner
9:20 p.m. Headache
10:00 p.m. Took 50mg Seroquel
10:20 p.m. Feeling dizzy
10:30 p.m. Fell asleep
2:30 a.m. Woke, took 3mg Ambien (NOT "took 1/2 tablet Ambien")
2:45 a.m. Fell asleep
4:30 a.m. Woke but got back to sleep


Once you're completed your drug signature and your symptom pattern, we'll be in a better position to help you.

 

 
 
 
Edited by Gridley

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InChristAlone

Thank you Girdley. I’ll make sure to get that filled out. Is it possible my initial symptoms were due to Lexapro “poopout?” Just curious. I definitely tapered Klonopin at too fast a rate. Struggling after last cut. Plus, it’s very difficult to cut pills into equal sized 1/8ths. I made that cut last Sunday and this week has been my toughest in a while, probably since initial breakdown started. Thanks again! 

 


8 a.m. Woke up feeling anxious Took 150mg Effexor XR and 1/8th mg of Klonopin
8:30 a.m. Ate breakfast with coffee felt a little anxious and vision is strange.
10:00 a.m headache lasted a couple hours. Vision still weird.. 
12:00p.m. Ate lunch. Slightly anxious. Vision is still weird. 
5:30 p.m. Ate dinner Felt a little anxious and depressed. Vision still weird. 
8:30 p.m. took 1/8th mg of Klonopin
10:00 p.m. Feel best I’ve felt all day. Vision is closer to normal. Anxiety mostly gone. 
10:20 p.m. Feeling dizzy
11:00p.m. Fell asleep

9:00 a.m Woke up. Slept through most of the night. Woke up occasionally, but fell back to sleep fine. 

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ChessieCat

Hi ICA and welcome from me too,

 

7 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

Everything was going ok until I herniated a disc in Jan 2018.

 

2 minutes ago, InChristAlone said:

Is it possible my initial symptoms were due to Lexapro “poopout?”

 

Q: Were you on any drugs (eg pain killers, antibiotics) for the herniated disc?

 

If yes, please add that information (drug name if possible please) to the drug signature.

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InChristAlone

Ok. I added it to my signature. Thanks!

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ChessieCat
50 minutes ago, ChessieCat said:

Q: Were you on any drugs (eg pain killers, antibiotics) for the herniated disc?

 

January 2018 Predisone 10mg (2-weeks), Baclofen 20mg (3 times a day as needed for 1-month) , and Tramadol-Acetaminophen 37.5-325mg (3 times as needed a day for one month.) 

 

 

Q:  Are you still taking Buspirone?  I have included it as being current in the drug interaction.

 

 

It may have been drug interaction from Drug Interactions Checker :

 

Interactions between your drugs

Major

busPIRone traMADol

Applies to: buspirone, tramadol

Using narcotic pain or cough medications together with other medications that also cause central nervous system depression can lead to serious side effects including respiratory distress, coma, and even death. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may be able to prescribe alternatives that do not interact, or you may need a dose adjustment or more frequent monitoring to safely use both medications. Do not drink alcohol or self-medicate with these medications without your doctor's approval, and do not exceed the doses or frequency and duration of use prescribed by your doctor. Also, you should avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how these medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

 

Major

baclofen traMADol

Applies to: baclofen, tramadol

Using narcotic pain or cough medications together with other medications that also cause central nervous system depression can lead to serious side effects including respiratory distress, coma, and even death. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may be able to prescribe alternatives that do not interact, or you may need a dose adjustment or more frequent monitoring to safely use both medications. Do not drink alcohol or self-medicate with these medications without your doctor's approval, and do not exceed the doses or frequency and duration of use prescribed by your doctor. Also, you should avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how these medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

 

Major

busPIRone escitalopram

Applies to: buspirone, Lexapro (escitalopram)

Using busPIRone together with escitalopram can increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called the serotonin syndrome, which may include symptoms such as confusion, hallucination, seizure, extreme changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, fever, excessive sweating, shivering or shaking, blurred vision, muscle spasm or stiffness, tremor, incoordination, stomach cramp, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Severe cases may result in coma and even death. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience these symptoms while taking the medications. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatment for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

 

Major

traMADol escitalopram

Applies to: tramadol, Lexapro (escitalopram)

Using escitalopram together with traMADol can increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called the serotonin syndrome, which may include symptoms such as confusion, hallucination, seizure, extreme changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, fever, excessive sweating, shivering or shaking, blurred vision, muscle spasm or stiffness, tremor, incoordination, stomach cramp, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Severe cases may result in coma and even death. You should contact your doctor immediately if you experience these symptoms during treatment. In addition, combining these medications can increase the risk of an irregular heart rhythm that may be serious and potentially life-threatening, although it is a relatively rare side effect. You may be more susceptible if you have a heart condition called congenital long QT syndrome, other cardiac diseases, conduction abnormalities, or electrolyte disturbances (for example, magnesium or potassium loss due to severe or prolonged diarrhea or vomiting). Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatment for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. You should seek immediate medical attention if you develop sudden dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting, shortness of breath, or heart palpitations during treatment with these medications, whether together or alone. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

 

Moderate

busPIRone baclofen

Applies to: buspirone, baclofen

Using busPIRone together with baclofen may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

 

Moderate

baclofen escitalopram

Applies to: baclofen, Lexapro (escitalopram)

Using baclofen together with escitalopram may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Moderate

busPIRone food

Applies to: buspirone

You should avoid the use of alcohol while being treated with busPIRone. Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of busPIRone such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. Patients receiving busPIRone should preferably avoid the consumption of large amounts of grapefruits and grapefruit juice. If this is not possible, the busPIRone dose should be taken at least 2 hours before or 8 hours after grapefruit or grapefruit juice. Large amounts of grapefruit and grapefruit juice may cause increased levels of busPIRone in your body. This can lead to increased adverse effects such as drowsiness. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

 

Moderate

baclofen food

Applies to: baclofen

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of baclofen such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with baclofen. Do not use more than the recommended dose of baclofen, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or

 

 

Moderate

traMADol food

Applies to: tramadol

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of traMADol such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with traMADol. Do not use more than the recommended dose of traMADol, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

 

Moderate

escitalopram food

Applies to: Lexapro (escitalopram)

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of escitalopram such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with escitalopram. Do not use more than the recommended dose of escitalopram, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

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InChristAlone

Sorry, I only took the buspirone for 6 months. I updated my signature again. 🤦‍♂️

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InChristAlone

Also, do you see a benefit of me stabilizing at .25mg Klonopin daily and then tapering Effexor? 

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Gridley
1 hour ago, InChristAlone said:

Also, do you see a benefit of me stabilizing at .25mg Klonopin daily and then tapering Effexor? 

 

Yes, there is much to be said for that approach.  As stated in the link I provided earlier, the benzo would act as a buffer while you taper the Effexor.

 

Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

For now, though, it is important that you stabilize on the Klonopin.  In general terms we like to have members hold for three to six months to stabilize; in some cases it can take quite a bit longer.  It can be a long frustrating time, but stability does eventually come.  Stability as we define it doesn't mean an absence of symptoms but rather a steady state of feeling bad without major changes in either direction.

 

Once you have stabilized, then you can begin a slow taper of the Effexor.  But let's stabilize first.  When the time comes we can give you specific instructions on tapering the Effexor.

 
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.  Magnesium glycinate is a good form of magnesium.

 

 

 

Please research all supplements first and only add in one at a time and at a low dose in case you do experience problems.
 

 

 

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InChristAlone

A few years ago I started to feel like my memory was declining quite a bit and noticed a lot of fatigue. I got to where I drink about 3-4 cups of coffee a day. Then, with my herniated disc I feel like I had a mental breakdown. The , I had several panic attacks over a couple of months. After that, I started having what seems like waves and windows and for the past year and a half I usually fell pretty decent by bedtime and always feel rough in the morning. Does this sound like withdrawal issues? During most of this time my GP was trying to get me a medication that would get me feeling better. I have still been drinking my coffee. It seems to help with depression during waves. 🤷‍♂️

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InChristAlone

I hope I didn’t miss this in a forum, but is quiting coffee recommended? It seems to help my depression during waves, but I don’t really know if it helps or hurts. 

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ChessieCat

There are many existing topics on SA.  You can either use the site search function or use google and add survivingantidepressants.org to the search term.

 

caffeine-in-coffee-or-tea-tolerance-issues

 

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InChristAlone
On 6/30/2019 at 12:26 PM, Gridley said:

Once you have stabilized, then you can begin a slow taper of the Effexor.  But let's stabilize first.  When the time comes we can give you specific instructions on tapering the Effexor.

 

I have only been down to .25 mg of Klonopin daily for about a week, and I am starting to feel a little better, but I was definitely hit hard at first. Should I consider going back up to my last dose .375 mg daily? 

 

Also, does my history seem to indicate I am dealing with withdrawal?

 

thanks for any advice,

 

ICA

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Gridley
26 minutes ago, InChristAlone said:

Should I consider going back up to my last dose .375 mg daily? 

 

Also, does my history seem to indicate I am dealing with withdrawal?

 

 

Since you're starting to feel better, rather than make another change I'd suggest you stay at .25mg and stabilize there.

 

The Lexapro CT and the rapid Klonopin taper would indicate you're dealing with withdrawal.

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InChristAlone

Thanks Girdley! 

 

I know Im asking a lot of questions, but I’m trying to make informed decisions, and I just don’t trust any doctors in my area. I want info from those who’ve been through this.

 

When is a good time to taper Nexium? Should I wait to stabilize or start ASAP. 

 

Thanks again for any info,

 

ICA

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Gridley
Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

When is a good time to taper Nexium? Should I wait to stabilize or start ASAP. 

 

Since Nexium can exacerbate WD symptoms, I think you could taper ASAP.  Read Alto's suggestions about how to taper Nexium in these links.

Tips for tapering off stomach acid blockers or PPIs (esomeprazole ...

That acid reflux pill may be causing your health problems - Symptoms ...

 

Edited by ChessieCat
resized and unbolded font

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InChristAlone

Since I started Klonopin last August I would like to quit it as soon as I can within reason. I would rather get off the benzo and then worry about Effexor. Ive been holding at .25 mg per day of Klonopin since June 29th. I’m doing pretty decent. I feel crappy at times during everyday, but nothing too major (depression, anxiety, vision issues.) When should I cut Klonopin again or make the jump?

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Gridley
Posted (edited)

@InChristAlone

 

Hello, InChristAlone,

 

It's your decision, but in general we recommend tapering activating (stimulating) drugs, such as SSRI's and SNRI's (Effexor) first, leaving the the sedating drugs, such as benzos, for later to act as a buffer against the antidepressant withdrawal.


Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

Regarding tapering the Klonopin, we recommend tapering by no more than 10% of your current dose every four weeks.  Your signature says you started your taper of 2mg Klonopin around three months ago and you are now at .25mg.  That's a very fast taper and far more than we recommend.  If you do decide to taper the Klonopin, I would wait at least three months and probably longer to let your system catch up to the fast taper before you begin.  I know you are anxious to be off the Klonopin, but going too fast can be very destabilizing to the system and can cause significant withdrawal symptoms.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

We cannot predict the jumping-off point,; it's highly individual. To be safe, many people stop when the dosage is so low that they cannot divide the drug any further.  Klonopin is a very strong benzo and where you are at 0.25 is too high.   It is best to taper as low as possible before jumping, If at all possible 0.1mg or smaller. Some have suggested 0.05 as a good end-of-taper benzo dose, although some people may go even lower.
 

 
 
Edited by Gridley

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InChristAlone
59 minutes ago, Gridley said:

@InChristAlone

 

Hello, InChristAlone,

 

It's your decision, but in general we recommend tapering activating (stimulating) drugs, such as SSRI's and SNRI's (Effexor) first, leaving the the sedating drugs, such as benzos, for later to act as a buffer against the antidepressant withdrawal.


Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

Regarding tapering the Klonopin, we recommend tapering by no more than 10% of your current dose every four weeks.  Your signature says you started your taper of 2mg Klonopin around three months ago and you are now at .25mg.  That's a very fast taper and far more than we recommend.  If you do decide to taper the Klonopin, I would wait at least three months and probably longer to let your system catch up to the fast taper before you begin.  I know you are anxious to be off the Klonopin, but going too fast can be very destabilizing to the system and can cause significant withdrawal symptoms.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

We cannot predict the jumping-off point,; it's highly individual. To be safe, many people stop when the dosage is so low that they cannot divide the drug any further.  Klonopin is a very strong benzo and where you are at 0.25 is too high.   It is best to taper as low as possible before jumping, If at all possible 0.1mg or smaller. Some have suggested 0.05 as a good end-of-taper benzo dose, although some people may go even lower.
 

 
 

Do you think if I give myself more time to stabilize that’s i will see improvements in the way i feel, especially considering I tapered so fast?

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Gridley
3 minutes ago, InChristAlone said:

Do you think if I give myself more time to stabilize that’s i will see improvements in the way i feel, especially considering I tapered so fast?

 

As you stabilize, you should see some improvements in the way you feel.  As I said, it will take some time as your system has a good bit of catching up to do.  By contrast, tapering more at this point will be further destabilizing and likely to make you feel worse.  

 

What was the rate you tapered the Klonopin?

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InChristAlone

Well, I started tapering Klonopin around the middle of April this year. My dr. suggested I taper it by a .5 mg a week and be done in a month, so that’s how I started. As of June 29th I had tapered 1.75 mg over 14 months. I guess that’s about a rate of .5 mg per month. I guess I was tapering somewhere between 25-30% about every 2-3 weeks until June 29th.

 

Also, I’m not sure I have completely recovered from CT quitting Lexapro in April 2018.  What do you think? 

 

 

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Shep

InChristAlone, it may help if you could post another few days of a drug and symptoms journal. You did one when you first joined the site a few weeks ago here in this post

 

We really need to see how you're feeling before and after you take your evening Klonopin. If it's helping you ease into sleep, you may want to stay on it. If you're getting sleepy and can sleep without it, you may want to come off it first. But I would be hesitant to advise doing that without knowing how it's effecting you. 

 

Gridley is giving you great advice about coming off the AD first. Please note the concept of "brakes and accelerators" in the thread Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?:

 

On 5/4/2012 at 2:34 PM, Altostrata said:

Antidepressants and ADHD drugs (most are amphetamine analogs) tend to be activating drugs, causing jitteriness, anxiety, or sleeplessness.

 

Benzodiazepines, the "Z" drugs for sleep, anticonvulsants (such as lamotrigine), Lyrica, gabapentin (Neurontin), and antipsychotics tend to be regulating or sedating drugs, causing drowsiness, sluggishness, or dopiness.

 

The two types of drugs can be thought of as "accelerators" and "brakes."

 

Many people have a sedating drug -- a brake -- added to an activating drug -- an accelerator -- to treat drug-induced anxiety or sleep problems.

 

In those cases, unless you are having clear adverse reactions from a particular drug, taper the antidepressant or stimulant first. Otherwise, you will experience activation from the other drug as you decrease the "brake."

 

Insomnia is a key symptom with benzo withdrawal, so removing your ability to sleep, especially while you're still on an activating antidepressant, could cause you to become non-functional. You need to sleep in order to teach and to coach. 

 

On 6/29/2019 at 4:31 PM, InChristAlone said:

After 6 months, I decided to taper Klonopin because I had found this site and benzobuddies. I am down to 0.25 mg of Klonopin daily and still on Effexor.

 

I get a strong vibe that the reason you are wanting to come off the benzo first is two-fold: (1) you're afraid of developing a deeper dependency and (2) you've gotten advice from Benzo Buddies. 

 

Please note that benzo dependency is created within the first 2 - 4 weeks you are on the drug, so you're likely already dependent.  Benzo Buddies is a support forum (not a research forum) and it's dedicated solely to benzos, so they don't have a lot of information on dealing with polypharmacy. And polypharmacy is a completely different animal, so to speak, than a benzo-only situation.  Benzo Buddies prioritizes coming off the benzo and many of their members are using "helper drugs" (anything from antidepressants to antipsychotics) to get off their benzo. We don't recommend that here on Surviving Antidepressants (SA). SA deals with polypharmacy in a harm-reduction manner. 

 

Benzo Buddies relies heavily on the Ashton Manual as a guide to coming off benzos, and although we owe Dr. Ashton a great deal for her work, her benzo withdrawal clinic was in the 80s prior to the invention of the SSRI and other newer antidepressants, which are far more potent than the older antidepressants. So her work is problematic within the context of today's polypharmacy. Please see:

 

Ashton and beyond in benzo tapering

 

Benzo Buddies can be a great place for social support, but please be cautious with their tapering advice. 

 

For the next few days, please post another 2 or 3 days of your drug and symptoms journal (like you did here in this post). 

  • Include any supplements
  • Include when you drink coffee (at some point, you may wish to slowly taper down or off if it affects sleep)
  • Include when you have meals and snacks
  • Include the number of hours you sleep each night

 

Also, did you decide to taper off the Nexium? You mentioned it at the beginning of the month, so please let us know how you're doing with that. 

 

 

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InChristAlone

Yesterday:

 

7:15 a.m. (Slept 8 hours.) Woke up feeling anxious Took 150mg Effexor XR and 1/8th mg of Klonopin and 20mg Nexium .

7:30 Ate breakfast. Drank 1.5 cups of black coffee.  Took 1.25 ml of ionic magnesium supplement. 

9:20 a.m.Went to dentist. Felt decent. Vision is weird. 
11:00 a.m. Ate lunch. Drink 1.5 cups of black coffee. Felt decent. Vision still weird. Skin is a little sweaty and clammy. 
12:00 p.m. Took sun to a jump park with wife. Loud music made me nervous. Had feelings of wishing life was over, but I did my best to ignore. 
5:30 p.m. Ate dinner Felt a little anxious and depressed. Vision still weird. 
6:15 p.m. Mowed for an hour or so. Still felt down. Drink 1.5 cups of black coffee. 

8:30 p.m. Took 1/8th mg of Klonopin. 
11:00p.m. Feel best I’ve felt all day. Vision is closer to normal. Anxiety mostly gone. 
12:30 p.m. Went to bed. 

 

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InChristAlone
6 hours ago, Shep said:

 

Also, did you decide to taper off the Nexium?

 

I am at 20 mg of Nexium now. Heartburn has not been bad. Still holding since I’ve been on it for so long. 

 

Also, insomnia has not been a symptom for me. I’ve been fortunate in that area.

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Altostrata

Hello, why are you taking Effexor, Klonopin, and Nexium together in the morning?

 

Please put ALL your drugs in the Drug Interactions Checker https://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.php
and copy and paste the results or a link to them in this topic.

 

Please take Klonopin at the same times each day, with doses 12 hours apart. Variations in dosing schedule of an hour or two can affect your symptom pattern.

 

As Gridley said, usually we get people stabilized on Klonopin and then taper the antidepressant. What is your intention regarding Effexor? Withdrawal from your drug cold turkeys is probably the reason you were feeling poorly in August 2018.

 

Caffeine may contribute to nervousness and gut upset. Prior to Nexium, when did you get heartburn?

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InChristAlone
Posted (edited)

I have heartburn issues my whole life because of esophagus birth defect. Had surgery in 98 which fixed a lot of my problems. I was pretty much told Id be on a PPI the rest of my life. I quit sodas a few years ago and now it seems I can control those issues with diet. 

 

My whole problem started in January of 2018 when I herniated a disc in my back and started having anxiety and panic attacks. At that point I’d been on Lexapro for around 17 years. I had been put on it for minor anxiety and OCD type issues back then. Things went kind of crazy when I after back injury. Swapping SSRIs and eventually ending with Klonopin and Effexor. 

 

Normally, I take the Klonopin right around every 12 hours. Summer is a little harder, being a teacher, I’m off and don’t have a good schedule. Sometimes I sleep in more and stay up later. 

 

My longterm goal is to be med free. I think they are a huge part of my problem. 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
removed quote, reduced font

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InChristAlone
1 hour ago, Altostrata said:

Hello, why are you taking Effexor, Klonopin, and Nexium together in the morning?

I used to always take Lexapro and Nexium in morning before problems started and Klonopin is every 12 hours, so I didn’t see a way around taking them all at once. Plus, Nexium and Effexor are extended release, so I figured it did t make much a difference. 

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Shep
On 6/29/2019 at 11:42 PM, InChristAlone said:

8 a.m. Woke up feeling anxious Took 150mg Effexor XR and 1/8th mg of Klonopin
8:30 a.m. Ate breakfast with coffee felt a little anxious and vision is strange.
10:00 a.m headache lasted a couple hours. Vision still weird.. 
12:00p.m. Ate lunch. Slightly anxious. Vision is still weird. 
5:30 p.m. Ate dinner Felt a little anxious and depressed. Vision still weird. 
8:30 p.m. took 1/8th mg of Klonopin
10:00 p.m. Feel best I’ve felt all day. Vision is closer to normal. Anxiety mostly gone. 
10:20 p.m. Feeling dizzy
11:00p.m. Fell asleep

9:00 a.m Woke up. Slept through most of the night. Woke up occasionally, but fell back to sleep fine. 

 

Thanks for doing the drug and symptoms journal, InChrist.

 

When did the vision symptoms start? Did they start when you went on Klonopin last August? 

 

Do you have "weird" vision prior to taking the Effexor and Klonopin in the morning or does it start after?

 

Are you able to gage your symptoms by the drug? In other words, do you feel that the Klonopin is more connected to your vision issues and the dizziness or the Effexor? It may be hard to tell, especially  since you started both of these drugs at the same time last August, but if you have a gut reaction, please let us know. 

 

19 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

Also, insomnia has not been a symptom for me. I’ve been fortunate in that area.

 

I'm very glad to read this. 

 

Please keep doing your drug and symptoms journal. I'm not online on weekends, but would like to touch base with you on Monday before you make any changes. Your drug and symptoms journal may be enough at that point for us to go through it and set up a safe game plan for coming off your drug cocktail. I'd also like Alto's opinion of which drug to come off first, as her knowledge of antidepressants is much more than mine (I mainly work in the benzo area). 

 

19 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

I am at 20 mg of Nexium now. Heartburn has not been bad. Still holding since I’ve been on it for so long. 

 

Holding the Nexium is wise. Perhaps hold it steady until we set up a game plan for your other drugs, since it's best to only change one drug at a time.

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InChristAlone

7-25

 

9:30 Woke up (slept 9 hours). Took 150mg Effexor XR and 1/8th mg of Klonopin and 20mg Nexium . 

9:45 Ate breakfast. Drank 1.5 cups of black coffee.  Took 1.25 ml of ionic magnesium supplement.  Vision is weird. 

10:30-12:00 Went to pool with wife and son. Felt a little depressed. Vision is weird. 
12:30 p.m. Ate lunch. Drink 1.5 cups of black coffee. Felt decent. Vision still weird. Skin is a little sweaty and clammy. 
8:00 p.m. Ate dinner Felt a little anxious and depressed. Vision still weird. 

8:30 p.m. Took 1/8th mg of Klonopin. 
9:30 p.m. Felt pretty good anxiety and depression wise.  
12:30 p.m. Went to bed. 

 

*It seems like I feel tired most of day. My memory and mental focus does not seem well much of day (been this way for a while.) 

* Not as patient with son and wife as I’d like to be. Irritable for no reason. 

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InChristAlone
16 hours ago, Shep said:

Are you able to gage your symptoms by the drug? In other words, do you feel that the Klonopin is more connected to your vision issues and the dizziness or the Effexor? It may be hard to tell, especially  since you started both of these drugs at the same time last August, but if you have a gut reaction, please let us know. 

 

I suspect that Klonopin is my vision issue. My depth perception was off when I started it. I actually hit two cars parking and I’ve never had issues driving. I figure it is the benzo since I never had that problem with Lexapro, but I know Effexor is different. It seems like an issue caused by a benzo. 

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Shep
On 7/26/2019 at 11:31 PM, InChristAlone said:

 

I suspect that Klonopin is my vision issue. My depth perception was off when I started it. I actually hit two cars parking and I’ve never had issues driving. I figure it is the benzo since I never had that problem with Lexapro, but I know Effexor is different. It seems like an issue caused by a benzo. 

 

I'm suspecting the benzo, too InChrist.

 

You may want to come off your morning Klonopin dose first. The only issue would be if you're a fast metabolizer, you may have some issues with interdose withdrawal. 

 

Please post your thoughts and I'll report your thread to get Alto's input, as well. 

 

 

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InChristAlone
48 minutes ago, Shep said:

You may want to come off your morning Klonopin dose first. The only issue would be if you're a fast metabolizer, you may have some issues with interdose withdrawal.

I would be pretty nervous to go more than 12 hours without taking a dose Klonopin. 

 

I am not sure if my vision is better before if after a dose of a Klonopin either. Sometimes I don’t feel their is any rhyme or reason to what’s going on with me. 

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Shep
8 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

I would be pretty nervous to go more than 12 hours without taking a dose Klonopin. 

 

 

Another option would be to taper both the evening and the morning doses at the same time (though no more than 10% per month, calculated on the previous dose). 

 

Are you feeling nervous about just going 12 hours without taking Klonopin or are you feeling nervous about removing this drug and having to function without a benzo? 

 

The reason I'm asking is because we generally recommend coming off the benzo last. So you may want to hold the benzo and once you've stabilized enough and feel ready, reduce the antidepressant.

 

As you posted, it is hard to tell what is coming from what at this point.

 

Please post your thoughts.

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InChristAlone
3 hours ago, Shep said:

Are you feeling nervous about just going 12 hours without taking Klonopin or are you feeling nervous about removing this drug and having to function without a benzo? 

I have only been on a benzo for the past year. I am ready to have it out of my system, and start to move on. I wish a doctor had never suggested I take it. 

 

I think I would like to come if Klonopin first and then taper Effexor when Ive been off Klonopin long enough to begin the taper. 

 

I CT’d Lexapro and fast tapered Klonopin to this point. I just don’t know what my game plan should be at this point. How long do I hold and so on? 

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InChristAlone

It also seems like I’m quite irritable and distracted most of the time. Is that pretty normal where I’m at in this process? 

 

Im sure this is normal, but I question whether I’m dealing with withdrawal or not. That alone is exhausting. 

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Shep
17 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

It also seems like I’m quite irritable and distracted most of the time. Is that pretty normal where I’m at in this process? 

 

Im sure this is normal, but I question whether I’m dealing with withdrawal or not. That alone is exhausting. 

 

Yes, this is very normal during withdrawal and very common. It sounds like you're dealing with neuro-emotions. 

 

Neuro-emotions

 

From the website Toxic Antidepressants:

 

Toxic Antidepressants - Neuro-Emotions

 

From James Heaney's (npath) blog:

 

Dealing with anger during SSRI withdrawal

 

22 hours ago, InChristAlone said:

I think I would like to come if Klonopin first and then taper Effexor when Ive been off Klonopin long enough to begin the taper. 

 

I CT’d Lexapro and fast tapered Klonopin to this point. I just don’t know what my game plan should be at this point. How long do I hold and so on? 

 

Your symptoms are teachers. Let your teachers guide you. You're a teacher yourself, so you understand how important it is for the student to pay close attention to what is being taught. 

 

Your "teacher symptoms" such as sleep, appetite, motivation, level of anxiety and irratilbity, ability to do function throughout the day, etc. will help guide you. 

 

This is a great post by another moderator, Brassmonkey, with what he calls "Withdrawal Normal":

 

WDNormal

 

Do you feel you're in a place of Withdrawal Normal? If so, you may want to try a very slight 3 or 5% reduction from the benzo just to gage where you are. I know you're in a hurry to get off, but let's place functionality as a priority, not speed. 

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