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If I had known, I never would have started taking them! - blueheron


blueheron

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Hi all!

 

I'm a 48-year-old working mother of three who started taking Celexa and worked my way up to Lexapro over 11 years ago, when my dad died. Two years ago I lost my health insurance, and had to switch from the insanely expensive Lexapro back to Celexa. But in the past couple of years, I gained about 40 pounds because of the Celexa (and I wasn't skinny to begin with!). Also, my panic attacks -- one of the reasons I started taking medication in the first place -- were getting worse. So, with the help of my doctor and about a month of Wellbutrin, I have stopped taking the Celexa completely.

 

"Brain shocks"? Hells, yeah! Those electric zaps were awful but seem to be much better. I highly recommend the Wellbutrin route if you're getting off SSRIs....my doctor didn't tell me about it -- didn't even know about it -- I found all of this stuff out on the 'net.

 

Now I am having terrible insomnia, feelings of "What's the point?", ridiculous brain monkeys chattering away all night as I pick apart my day, myself, my life almost obsessively. Thank God I have a very understanding husband, who keeps reminding me that I am coming off medication. It doesn't feel like that's what it is, it feels REAL.

 

Does any of this sound familiar?

 

Reading some of the threads here has made me feel better. I hope I can help someone too.

 

Thanks,

Blue Heron

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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Hi all!

 

I'm a 48-year-old working mother of three who started taking Celexa and worked my way up to Lexapro over 11 years ago, when my dad died. Two years ago I lost my health insurance, and had to switch from the insanely expensive Lexapro back to Celexa. But in the past couple of years, I gained about 40 pounds because of the Celexa (and I wasn't skinny to begin with!). Also, my panic attacks -- one of the reasons I started taking medication in the first place -- were getting worse. So, with the help of my doctor and about a month of Wellbutrin, I have stopped taking the Celexa completely.

 

Now I am having terrible insomnia, feelings of "What's the point?", ridiculous brain monkeys chattering away all night as I pick apart my day, myself, my life almost obsessively. Thank God I have a very understanding husband, who keeps reminding me that I am coming off medication. It doesn't feel like that's what it is, it feels REAL.

 

Does any of this sound familiar?

 

 

 

Very familiar unfortunately...I am currently on Celexa and my anxiety is bad. I too lost my job back in 2009 was on COBRA for 18 minths @ $416/month.

 

Prior to this I was on Lexapro and went thru wd from that over the course of 2 years. I gained weight from Lexapro. One of the reasons I wanted to get off of it.

 

You are fortunate to have a husband who does remind you that you are coming off meds. You have three children and I am sure your days are full. Wanting to feel normal if not for ourselves, for out children weighs heavy on us. Again, you can rely on hubby...

 

Wellbutrin is notorious for causing insomnia. The mental chatter is an issue for anyone getting off of this stuff. I have it continuously on a full dose of Celexa.

 

I don't know how to taper Wellbutrin, but I believe there are posts here on how to do it.

Keep coming back and let us know how you are getting on. I do know that the best way to taper for the least amount of side effects is tiny cuts in dose and 4-6 weeks between drops.

Getting off of a drug does not mean we are done with it. There usually are residual effects that can go on for a period of time.

 

Best Regards

Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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Hi BlueHeron-

Clone the hubby please ;)

 

Yes to all that you describe (after a 3rd nite of fractured sleep) -

It is all very bizarre because I did not expect it - I knew of zaps but didn't get them for some reason -

 

Glad you found the group -

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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Thanks, both of you. I really appreciate the words of welcome and wisdom.

 

I am actually off all medication now, for about two weeks. But it seems like the late night monkeys and insomnia are getting WORSE! I guess it's the storm before the calm, right? *crossed fingers*

 

It is SUCH a relief to have found this forum....thank you!

 

Barbara, if I could clone him I would...then he could clean the kitchen and rub my feet at the same time!!! NOT!!! :D

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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Hi all!

 

I'm a 48-year-old working mother of three who started taking Celexa and worked my way up to Lexapro over 11 years ago, when my dad died. Two years ago I lost my health insurance, and had to switch from the insanely expensive Lexapro back to Celexa. But in the past couple of years, I gained about 40 pounds because of the Celexa (and I wasn't skinny to begin with!). Also, my panic attacks -- one of the reasons I started taking medication in the first place -- were getting worse. So, with the help of my doctor and about a month of Wellbutrin, I have stopped taking the Celexa completely.

 

"Brain shocks"? Hells, yeah! Those electric zaps were awful but seem to be much better. I highly recommend the Wellbutrin route if you're getting off SSRIs....my doctor didn't tell me about it -- didn't even know about it -- I found all of this stuff out on the 'net.

 

Now I am having terrible insomnia, feelings of "What's the point?", ridiculous brain monkeys chattering away all night as I pick apart my day, myself, my life almost obsessively. Thank God I have a very understanding husband, who keeps reminding me that I am coming off medication. It doesn't feel like that's what it is, it feels REAL.

 

Does any of this sound familiar?

 

Reading some of the threads here has made me feel better. I hope I can help someone too.

 

Thanks,

Blue Heron

 

Wellbutrin is such an activating drug, and will take time for your brain to re-adjust. You are not alone with the "Whats the point?" questions. Thank the heavens you have your family and hubbie! :)

Years:150mg Wellbutrin (to concentrate) 20-30 mg Celexa (rumination).

CT 8/2011 during a pregnancy attempt under MD orders. (Idiot!!!) Pregnancy hormones allowed it.

Felt great with 6 mg of melatonin per night to sleep plus preggo hormones-didn't last:(

Best time of my life. Botched IVF in Dec 2011.Stress.

Bone chilling exhaustion and told to go back on celexa and wellbutrin.

4/9/2012 Back on celexa wb for some relief, wb gave me heart palps so dropped and only need 6.6 mg celexa and 1/4 melatonin pill...IMPROVEMENT because my doses are much lower!

REMEMBER to get your thyroid and hormones checked/out of whack ones can appear LIKE MOOD DISORDERS!!

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  • Moderator Emeritus

What you're going through is very typical of antidepressant withdrawal, and it does get better over time. Try to be patient.

 

Here's a forum entry on sleeping problems that may be helpful:

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/555-tips-to-help-sleep-so-many-of-us-have-withdrawal-insomnia/

 

Keeping my bedroom dark and wearing a sleep mask did wonders for me. Once you can sleep, other symptoms begin to lessen.

 

Welcome aboard. This site has been a tremendous help to me and I believe you'll find the same.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, blueheron. Thanks for joining us.

 

I hope you are out of the woods as far as Celexa withdrawal is concerned. The brain zaps are a withdrawal symptom from the Celexa.

 

If the symptoms get worse, you may wish to go back on a very small amount of Celexa, 1mg-5mg, and see if that helps. If it does, you may wish to stabilize for a month or so and taper very slowly from that point using Celexa liquid.

 

Despite the assistance of the Wellbutrin, your tapering schedule may not have given your nervous system a chance to adjust to the decrease of Celexa. I certainly hope this is not so -- many people experience only a few weeks of withdrawal symptoms. But others, having tapered too quickly for their nervous systems, have problems for much longer. It may be better to cushion the adjustment with just a tiny bit of Celexa.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Thanks Alto -- I've been tapering from the Celexa for three or four months, going to a smaller and smaller dose, then a month of the Wellbutrin, with the occasional dose just to ease the brain zaps. Yes, they seem to be gone now -- grateful for small favors! And off the Wellbutrin too.

 

I forgot to mention that I also went off clonazepam last year. No side effects, I was always very careful with a low dose.

 

But now I have the fun roulette wheel of symptoms -- what will today bring? Will I be okay? Will I be "better than" okay (manic)? Migraines (which I've never had before)? Diarrhea? Panic attacks and night sweats? Would you like that with or without insomnia? Some feelings of worthlessness and self-pity thrown in? ;)

 

It's not constantly bad, but the nights when I don't sleep seem to bring a snowball effect of panic, sweats, poop, and self-defeating talk which never seems as bad by the light of day.

 

I feel like I now am not taking any medications, so it's only a matter of time until the symptoms of withdrawal stop. So glad to have found this site. Thanks to all of you! <3

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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Hi Blue Heron,

Just wanted to say hi, and welcome you. This site is wonderful for keeping perspective on symptoms and getting things to settle down. There seems to be no easy way out, but to settle in for the long haul it takes.

 

I loved your analogy of the "roulette wheel of symptoms". So true, but that made me laugh because every morning I wake up to see what is with me that day, like a spin of the wheel.

 

Anyway, welcome! Lots of great folks here!

 

R

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  • Administrator

blueheron, I just read your post about frequent trips to the bathroom at night. I'm very concerned for you. You seem to be having severe withdrawal symptoms. It appears your taper was not gradual enough for your own individual nervous system.

 

Withdrawal symptoms occur because of the absence of the drug. You are not protected from withdrawal because the drug is out of your body. That's how you get withdrawal symptoms.

 

Please consider going back on a tiny amount of Celexa. I know you don't want to do this but it's much better for you to take more time getting off the drug than suffering withdrawal symptoms for months or years.

 

Even if you go over these symptoms in a couple of months, you don't want to put your nervous system through this kind of stress for that time. It can have long-lasting consequences.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Thanks for the welcome Romido, and I read your intro. Very touching. And thanks for the poop talk.

 

Thanks for your concern, Alto. My doctor doesn't seem to think my withdrawal is very severe. I can go days without any symptoms at all, and then I have a night like last night, where everything sort of hit together. At 48, some of the night sweats, etc., may be menopause. I had a hysterectomy a few years back, kept my ovaries, but have no way of knowing whether I'm going through the change yet or not. No periods.

 

Now that I have a name for the symptoms (AWS) I feel a lot better. I'm going to give it another few days to see if knowledge will help ease the symptoms. It may. If not, I will certainly talk to my doctor about a low dose, if I need to....

 

Blue Heron

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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You have a great sense of humor and that is great. Taking a little bit of Celexa may work well for you to help alleviate WD.

 

Most of us have had to do that with our meds.

 

Insomnia is huge. A big wd symtpom and a good night's sleep means so much. I get that along with bad anxiety.

 

Hugs

Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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Hi blueheron. I recently bought a black, plain sleep mask at Bed Bath and Beyond for about $5. It is wonderful; totally blocks out light and is very lightweight so it is very comfortable. It might be worth a try.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I second the motion for sleep masks. I got mine for $3.99 at Rite Aid and it has helped immensely with insomnia along with keeping the bedroom as dark as possible. I now get eight hours or so of sleep at night and that has helped a great deal with diminishing other symptoms of AD withdrawal.

 

Just one warning: be sure to put the sleep mask on while the lights are still on so you don't get it on upside down. Ask me how I know.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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Jemima -- if you wear a sleep mask upside down, does it keep you up all night? :lol:

 

Thanks everyone. I had a nice dark room last night, wore earplugs, had a cup of Sleepytime, took some Valerian (which really smells like it should be coming UP, not going DOWN), and slept eight beeeeyotiful hours (one trip to pee, but that's normal). Symptom free last night, and that is a very good thing!

 

Bridget

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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I think Nikki's hugs helped too....

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

What happens if you wear the sleep mask inside out???

 

:D You sleep from 8AM to 10 PM. Talk about derealization...

As always, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! A proud supporter of the 10% (or slower) rule.

 

Requip - 3/16 ZERO  Total time on 25 years.

 

Lyrica: 8/15 ZERO Total time on 7 or 8 yrs.

BENZO FREE 10/13 (started tapering 7/10)  Total time on 25 years.

 

Read my intro thread here, and check the about me section.  "No matter how cynical you get, it's almost impossible to keep up." Lily Tomlin

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Jemima -- if you wear a sleep mask upside down, does it keep you up all night? :lol:

 

Well, no, but I certainly had a rude awakening the next morning with light pouring in from the bottom. Geez. :blush:

 

 

Thanks everyone. I had a nice dark room last night, wore earplugs, had a cup of Sleepytime, took some Valerian (which really smells like it should be coming UP, not going DOWN), and slept eight beeeeyotiful hours (one trip to pee, but that's normal). Symptom free last night, and that is a very good thing!

 

Bridget

 

YAY!!! :D

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

 

What happens if you wear the sleep mask inside out???

 

:D You sleep from 8AM to 10 PM. Talk about derealization...

 

LOL!!! :D

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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You are all just too funny -- what a nice bunch!

 

I no longer have the brain zaps, but I do occasionally get what I call "thrumming." It's kind of the inner shakes, like an electrical hum that I used to get (A LOT!!!), back in the day, the morning after I had had way too much to drink. I don't know how else to describe it, but I'm pretty sure it's related to the withdrawal. I sometimes wake up and it feels like the bed is vibrating. Anyone had this?

 

No, I'm not possessed. At least I don't think I am....

11 Years on Lexapro/Celexa, Tapered Using Wellbutrin, Medication-Free April 2012.

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What happens if you wear the sleep mask inside out???

 

You see inside of your brain ;)

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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:lol: Too funny for words!!!!

Effexor XL 2009-2012. CT 150mg Effexor XR  2012, Effexor XR  75mg  2012  then rapid taper to 0, Reinstated Effexor XR 13mg then updosed to 20mg, Tapered to 18mg Effexor XR 4/9/12, Off Effexor XL ?Reinstated  Effexor XL 150 mgs  August  2012, Crashed in November 2012, Prozac 40 mgs 2012 to Feb 2018, Buspar 60  mgs 2012-stopped 2015, Remeron 7.5 mgs as needed for sleep-stopped Feb 2017, Prozac 50 mgs Feb 2018 to March 2018, Lexapro 5 mgs March 18 2018 to May 17th 2018, Lexapro 2.5 mgs  May 18th to May 26th 2018, Prozac 10 mgs May 15th 2018, Prozac 5 mgs May 19th 2018 to current day May 28th 2018,  Xanax 0.25 mgs to 0.5 mgs daily for over 15 years. Increased Xanax to 1.5 mgs Sept 2012, Tapered Xanax to 0 mgs  May 2013.Reinstated Xanax Feb 2017 at 0.125 mgs as needed, Gradual increase of Xanax to 1.5 mgs daily till May 22nd 2018, Xanax 1.25 mgs daily. Holding

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

 

What happens if you wear the sleep mask inside out???

 

You see inside of your brain ;)

 

That's just TOO scary. :o

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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What happens if you wear the sleep mask inside out???

 

You see inside of your brain ;)

 

That's just TOO scary. :o

 

:lol::D

"Step inside my skull and enjoy the show..." Sheryl Crow

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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  • 2 months later...
  • Administrator

blueheron, how are you doing now?

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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