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Armorall

Armorall: CT from bupropion and risperidone

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Armorall

Are there responses to anything I'm asking about in the earlier post? 

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Armorall

I started posting here because I saw that others were getting confirmation of what they were thinking and advice, encouragement to keep going, that they will heal, etc etc. 

Did I do/say something wrong to not get responses? 

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Armorall

I really need the support, this is the only place that can truly speak to my experiences. 

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brassmonkey

Hi Armorall--  you're doing nothing wrong.  It just takes time for us to get back to people.  SA is staffed by a small group of volunteers who are going through many of the same things you are experiencing.  We are also spread out all over the world so the time differences can cause delays.

 

I've spent the last couple of hours looking into the herbal blend that you are questioning. Like most traditional herbal blends I would stay away from it.  This one may be milder than most because there is little evidence that several of the ingredients actually do anything.  One in fact is nothing more than a naturally occurring sugar pill. While two of them could be quite dangerous if you happen to be pregnant. One of them is contraindicated for people in ADWD as it directly affects the body in the same way.

 

I hope that helps.

 

Brassmonkey

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Armorall
Quote

One of them is contraindicated for people in ADWD as it directly affects the body in the same way.

Thanks @brassmonkey, I understand. I just had questions about if what I had seemed like regular withdrawal (night sweats), about taking a leave of absence for the sake of building neuroplasticity... other things in other posts. I felt like only the supplement part was being addressed, but I understand that people are busy and volunteers that are perhaps also going through withdrawal.

So, I have laid off the herbs for a day and I think it is helping with my sleep. The effect was having these bursts of euphoria during the day, but that energy wouldn't turn off for the night time. 

 

I put what you said in quote...so are you saying that one of the herbs listed is (contraindicated?) contradicting because it pushes their ADWD withdrawal symptoms even more? 

Would you be able to tell me which herbs are doing what, so I can discuss with acupuncturist? Particularly the herb that pushes symptoms? 

Thanks for your research, I couldn't make heads or tails of this stuff. I appreciate it greatly. 

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brassmonkey

Angelica Root is the big problem because it can directly affect serotonin levels by increasing them. Which is what SSRIs do and we are trying to get away from.  Also it affects the GABA systems which are closely related enough that people in ADWD need to pay attention to.  Because of the affects on these systems if it is taken for an extended period then it needs to be tapered just like a regular AD.  It also affects a persons hormonal systems which can have an adverse affect on ADWD symptoms.  This is why we consider it to be contraindicated for people in ADWD.

 

Rehmannia is basically nothing more that a naturally occurring sugar pill.

 

Peony is an antiinflamitory

 

Albizia is a central nervous system depressant

 

Both Angelica Root and Lovage are very harsh on the female hormonal system and are to be avoided if one is pregenant.

 

That's a condensed version of the information available on line.

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Armorall

@brassmonkey Ok thanks for all that! I have stopped taking it and my situation rapidly improved- back to being able to fall asleep AND take naps without stabs of anxiety (maybe due to the acupuncture, don't know). Just the normal waking anxiety, and it's not too bad. This was a great help. 

 

One question- if Albizia is a central nervous system depressant, wouldn't that help us? Don't we have an over sensitized nervous system, so maybe that would benefit? 

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Shep
6 hours ago, Armorall said:

One question- if Albizia is a central nervous system depressant, wouldn't that help us? Don't we have an over sensitized nervous system, so maybe that would benefit? 

 

Benzodiazepines are also central nervous system depressants and they are highly problematic during antidepressant withdrawal if used for more than emergencies. The problem with damping down the nervous system includes paradoxical and rebound symptoms. I haven't done the research that Brassmonkey kindly did, so he may be able to weigh in with more information specific to Albizia, but I'm just relaying information based on a class of drugs (benzos) that we see often on this forum that also depress the nervous system. 

 

Depending on what exactly this supplement is affecting, it may need to be tapered or risk a withdrawal syndrome of its own if the nervous system adapts to it. 

 

Also, please note there is a difference between "calming" the nervous system and "depressing" the nervous system. We recommend fish oil and magnesium because they "calm" the nervous system (although some people are sensitive even to these). We don't recommend anything to "depress" the nervous system. 

 

Your body is craving homeostasis. The best thing you can do now that you're off these drugs is simply get out of the way and let your body recover. That means not adding in a lot of supplements. Eat clean and healthy, avoid caffeine, sugar, and alcohol, and drink plenty of water. 

 

Take a daily walk in the sun if you can and try to keep stress as low as possible.

 

On 10/3/2019 at 9:22 AM, Armorall said:

I saw that Alto said that the more we can hold off stressful situations, the more that we can work on our neuroplasticity and get back to homeostatis. If that's true, would it be wise to possibly take a leave of absence from work in hope that I could have faster/more efficient healing? I don't know if I could do this, but I've been thinking about it. 

 

If you have this option, I would take a leave of absence if your symptoms are severe, as opposed to adding in supplements or any other remedy. 

 

Whether that will aid in neuroplasticity depends on if you're someone who will get bored and anxious if you're not working. Some people find that working is a great distraction, but for others who are dealing with cognitive problems and / or pain, working may not be an option. So it really depends on the severity of the symptoms and your own personality type, as well as the level of stress your job causes. 

 

If you decide to keep working, you may want to see if you can limit other obligations until you're feeling better. 

 

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Armorall

Ok thanks @Shep, I appreciate the input on that. I will have to think about the job part. On one hand, it is a good distraction, on the other, the amount of stress it causes can be much. 

I also hear you on limiting other obligations- maybe just making sure I'm functional at work is the best I can do for now. 

 I hear the keep it simple part as you are stressing now.  I did ask about niacinamide, as I saw it in a thread of discussion between Nadia and Altostrata from several years back. 

I know that as of now, SA really only recommends fish oil and magnesium. Would niacinamide be something to try as well, or did it end up not being recommended? 

Thanks for your input!

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Sassenach

Hi Amorall

 

There is a moral here.

The mods on this site are here to help members get through W/D.

That is our only objective.

We are extremely busy at present.

Whenever a member decides to try " something "  without referring to us, and this goes wrong it is a drain on our resources.

We know you want to get through as fast as possible but it eally cannot be rushed.

Glad to hear you are sleeping better.

 

Sassenach

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Shep
15 hours ago, Armorall said:

Would niacinamide be something to try as well, or did it end up not being recommended?

 

Fish oil and magnesium are the ONLY supplements we recommend. Other supplements may benefit one person but harm another person because we're all in varying degrees of nervous system dysregulation. 

 

For this reason, if you do try niacinamide, start with a very low dose to see how you react.  We also recommend this for fish oil and magnesium because how people react varies wildly even for these two supplements that we do recommend. So starting low is the best practice advice we can offer. 

 

Unfortunately, it's an "at your own risk" type of deal when it comes to supplements. 

 

Please post and let us know how you do should you try it. If your symptoms are not severe, you may want to avoid all supplements and simply let your body heal and find homeostasis without any outside interference. 

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Armorall

@SassenachMy apologies. When I went to the acupuncturist they asserted repeatedly that they had treated people with ADWD, so I trusted that they might know what they were doing. I also went in with not only hopes of the herb part being effective, but perhaps that maybe it would help the SA community if it did work. 

 
I hadn't seen anything about Chinese herbs (only ayurvedic) so I thought I would give it a try, particularly with the strong assertion that the practitioners had dealt with the likes of ADWD people before. 
 
I was wrong and I appreciate the SA guidance that came out of it. It helped me make sense of what was going on and that I should ditch the herbs.
I am sorry it was a drain, and I will stick to the SA recommended regimen. I've already ordered fish oil and vitamin E out of Shep's earlier recommendation (I realized the fish oil I had I hadn't been refrigerating, and I had been only taking 500 mg).
@ShepI will wait before trying the niacinamide after I get the fish oil settled, thanks for your guidance on that. 
Thanks for your past and future help. 

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Armorall

I read Brass Monkey's coverage of what happens (in the "how long is this going to take?") section if you CT your meds. Now I am scared. All the implications point to tapering being the faster way to recover over CTing, whereas CTing takes much, much longer in the long run. Brass Monkey is saying several years. I know people have reinforced me just staying where I am in this journey, but is there any argument for reinstatement in my case? I hear that there might be an adverse reaction, but is it worth a shot? 

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Shep
18 hours ago, Armorall said:

I read Brass Monkey's coverage of what happens (in the "how long is this going to take?") section if you CT your meds.

 

It may help to also read the section of that thread on adverse reactions: 

 

But I only took it for a Week

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Armorall

@Shep  I did read that part, thanks for the link. The problem is...what if it wasn't an adverse reaction? I had only been off the first drug for a little while...what if Bupropion wasn't causing me insomnia and it was just insomnia from withdrawal of Risperidone/Abilify? 

Should I try to reinstate Bupropion and just see if I get the insomnia back? I'm asking because if it works, according to this Brass Monkey writing on CT, I will have a much much shorter time of withdrawal than if I keep going with a CT withdrawal. 

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Armorall

 "That may sound very bleak, but it’s not going to all be pain and suffering.  These people tend to have a more liner recovery. The first several months will be acute.  Then things start to improve is a noticeable manner, with life starting to resume and get back on track.  All the members I have known have made full recoveries.  They then go on to graduate college, attend med school, and start successful careers in a variety of fields."

I guess this part would be good news, though if I fall into the "only took for a week" category. Don't know if it applies to me, though. I took for four months. I'm stumped. 

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Shep
18 hours ago, Armorall said:

The problem is...what if it wasn't an adverse reaction? I had only been off the first drug for a little while...what if Bupropion wasn't causing me insomnia and it was just insomnia from withdrawal of Risperidone/Abilify? 

Should I try to reinstate Bupropion and just see if I get the insomnia back? I'm asking because if it works, according to this Brass Monkey writing on CT, I will have a much much shorter time of withdrawal than if I keep going with a CT withdrawal. 

 

Please re-read your thread. 

 

You'll have to make the decision to reinstate or not. We can only give you the "best practice" advice once you make your decision. 

 

Are you feeling better since you stopped the Chinese herbs? 

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Armorall

My sleep is better (except I woke up with a big ol cortisol spike at 4:30am this morning...I have the blackout curtains, so not much else to do) now that I'm not on the herbs. No vibrating in bed through the night...only got the cortisol sweat with the spike in the morning. 

 I will reread, thank you @Shep

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Armorall

 Yes, I stopped getting the weird vibrating-trying-to-go to sleep that I had gotten, so now my sleep is back to "normal" (tossing turning but asleep). Also woke up to the 4:30am cortisol spike today. I have the blackout curtains so not much can be done about that I guess. I'm back on the boat of no reinstatement. Thanks Shep : ) 

 

Oh oops, I thought my earlier reply hadn't gone through. Sorry for the double response. 

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Shep

I think you're making a wise decision. You've been off everything for two months and you're seeing improvements. If things change over the next few weeks, please post and we can reassess, but as long as you're not bringing in other remedies and are doing as much self-care as possible, the improvements in sleep will likely lead to other improvements over time. 

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Armorall

Thanks Shep, I appreciate the acknowledgement. Have a great day!

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Armorall

Welp, I have a new symptom: tinnitus. Had it since Sunday. Very mild, only notice it when it's quiet and I'm about to sleep, can usually drown it out with my white noise machine anyway. Everything else is pretty much the same. I had five days in a row off for fall break and I was able to sleep a lot (with my usual toss n' turn type sleep). Even if I got up from an anxiety pang, I could still resume sleep and drag it out until noon-ish or even later. Last night I had a nice window from acupuncture, but then I couldn't sleep very well later (switch off). Not sure if it's because I've been sleeping so much or if my treatment was too intense. I took some magnesium this morning and had an immediate pain on the side of my head, only lasted a minute and I somehow knew it wouldn't last. I hope the new symptoms are signs of healing and not the opposite. 

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Shep

It could very well be a sign of healing, Armorall. Windows and waves are common and many of us experience increased baselines of healing after a wave. 

 

The fact that the tinnitus is mild is a great sign that your waves are not overwhelming and will hopefully usher in a better baseline going forward. 

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Armorall

Great, thanks for the acknowledgement, Shep. Have a good evening! 

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Armorall

Had crappy sleep last night, anxiety rushes from 2:30am and on. I woke and have a new symptom- muscle stiffness on my back. I ordered a bath plug so I can do the epsom salt bath in a few days. I hope I don't keep acquiring new symptoms, but only time will tell I guess. 

 

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Armorall

I am definitely getting worse. I had the worst sleep last night. I went to acupuncture and told him I wasn't sleeping well now for the past few days. He gave me a heavy sedation treatment. I kept getting the anxiety pangs through the night, just didn't feel them as deeply because of the treatment, and vibrating body and heart racing and all that. I would sleep 15 minutes out of every hour, then wake up with  pang or with getting too hot, always having to adjust because of stiff muscles. This is horrible. Do you think acupuncture has become too much for me? It's my second (and final) week of having two treatments in a week. Then we will fall back to once a week, then every other week and so forth. 

I notice that I'm becoming more sensitive to things, like I washed my hands under cold water, and it made my whole body feel cold. 

Any thoughts for reinstatement now? It's now been four straight days of crappy sleep, very much out of my pattern. 

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Shep
4 hours ago, Armorall said:

Do you think acupuncture has become too much for me? It's my second (and final) week of having two treatments in a week. Then we will fall back to once a week, then every other week and so forth. 

 

You mention this is the second week of having two treatments in a week, but were you having acupuncture before the two treatments a week? If so, can you gage anything from your acupuncture experience that might lead you to think the acupuncture could be causing problems? Some people do fine, but others report problems with acupuncture. 

 

Are there any other stressors that could be causing upticks in symptoms? 

 

This could also be a wave from the Chinese herbs. Or just a wave that happens due to coming off psych drugs. 

 

4 hours ago, Armorall said:

Any thoughts for reinstatement now? It's now been four straight days of crappy sleep, very much out of my pattern. 

 

This is a very tough call for the reasons we're discussing. 

 

Which drug were you thinking of reinstating - the antidepressant or the antipsychotic? 

Edited by Shep
fixed typo

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Armorall

When I was going to acupuncture one a week, I did have a night where I spent the night with anxiety rushes going through me as I slept. I thought then that it was the herbs and not the acupuncture, so I stopped the herbs. The other times I did fine. This week was the week where I had difficult sleep immediately following the treatments, but I also had difficult sleep on the days in between the treatments as well. 

 

I was thinking Bupropion (that's what my psychiatrist suggested as well) would be the drug to reinstate. I'm just so mad (as so many are on here) that we didn't know about tapering. When I came off it in 8/10, I felt fine. I wish I had called back the nurse to tell her I came off of it (so that maybe she would have told me to get back on for risk sake), but I already had thought she/my psych didn't understand my situation anyway, as they asserted that bupropion has no energizing properties, and I should just keep taking the melatonin with it. But now that moment is lost and my CNS is in shambles. Would I stabilize if I came back on it and then did a taper? 

When I look at the reinstatement piece on SA, it says its for people who are in such a bad way that they need to reinstate. I don't have all the symptoms that many people do, but I fear I am just getting worse.  I started out fine on 8/10, then noticed symptoms shortly before September, then got worse and had the same symptoms from mid-September on. Am I going to keep getting worse? Can it be mitigated, or is it too risky? I see some people reinstate and then that makes it worse.  

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Shep
1 hour ago, Armorall said:

When I was going to acupuncture one a week, I did have a night where I spent the night with anxiety rushes going through me as I slept. I thought then that it was the herbs and not the acupuncture, so I stopped the herbs. The other times I did fine. This week was the week where I had difficult sleep immediately following the treatments, but I also had difficult sleep on the days in between the treatments as well. 

 

Anything that causes an uptick in symptoms can create a non-linear path. So you may want to give yourself more time to stabilize from the treatments. 

 

1 hour ago, Armorall said:

Would I stabilize if I came back on it and then did a taper? 

When I look at the reinstatement piece on SA, it says its for people who are in such a bad way that they need to reinstate. I don't have all the symptoms that many people do, but I fear I am just getting worse.  I started out fine on 8/10, then noticed symptoms shortly before September, then got worse and had the same symptoms from mid-September on. Am I going to keep getting worse? Can it be mitigated, or is it too risky? I see some people reinstate and then that makes it worse.  

 

There's no guarantee. If you do reinstate, as we discussed earlier in your thread, do so at a very low dose. Since it's possible the AD caused your insomnia, if you see your sleep getting worse, you'll know to stop taking it. 

 

What dose did you come off of? Was it the 150 mg dose of bupropion that you have listed in your signature in March or did you do any kind of rapid taper by the time it was August? If 150 mg was the dose you were on when you discontinued it in August, you may want to try 5 mg and see how you do. This is only about 4% of that 150 mg dose but with the possibility of you having had an adverse reaction, I would be very hesitant to use more to start. You can always increase. 

 

Again, you may want to give it more time before reinstating. Just my opinion, but I would stop trying to fix withdrawal and simply eat healthy and clean, get gentle exercise and sunlight every day, and take time off from work and other obligations as you're able to until you feel better. It seems like the attempts to add in supplements and herbs and use acupuncture may be causing problems that can take a long time for your nervous system to sort out. 

 

Just a thought because of the risk involved in reinstating. 

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Armorall

Yes, I came off of the 150mg dose in August.  5 mg, ok, thanks for the suggestion. I know, I keep coming back to the reinstate topic every time I lose sleep. Now I have building symptoms so the idea resurfaced again, as well as some attempt to fix the past.

Thanks Shep, I appreciate your insight. When I think about the 4 days of non-sleep, I forgot that Wednesday night would have actually been a "normal" sleep, but I woke up with anxiety at 4am because I had just read the night before about Altostrata's struggle and was pretty spooked about it.  So I did that one to myself. So it was bad sleep after Tuesday acupuncture, Thursday, and Friday (also after acupuncture), so maybe the treatments are messing me up now. I have six days before the next one, so I might take that one and then stop if it seems like I get the same reaction. 

I'll just have to watch for my sleep coming back and ponder the reinstatement further. I know what you're saying about sitting back and healing, it's hard to think of doing nothing to help, especially if things take a turn for worse, but I guess that can be chalked up to waves? I've just had a relatively consistent baseline, must think on it. Have a good Saturday.

 

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Armorall

I guess I didn't read Alto's story closely enough, it is actually inspirational as she mentions that her autonomic nervous system stabilized, she can think clearly and her mood is generally calm. This is good news! 

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Armorall

Welp, I had a nice window from 1pm until bedtime where I felt totally normal yesterday. I went out with my husband to a Halloween parade and joked and laughed, it was like old times.  Then got my sleep back to my usual toss n turn, maybe even a little better than that as I slept a little more deeply through from 12am (I got in bed earlier but didn't fall asleep until then) and then an alarm for 8:30am. Today we had a social obligation in the morning, I found it slightly difficult to relate to my friends as I felt that depression/anxiety (not overpowering, but there enough) and didn't really enjoy the event.I think they are a reminder of my too recent past when I was normal and that depressed me more. I warmed up to them through the day. Took a nap around 2:30pm and woke up with anxiety 45 minutes later and tried to fight it. Came on the site to read success stories to alleviate it. From 5:30pm now in a nice window again and going to eat dinner with actual hunger. I hope I can stay in it for bed time.

 

But all in all, looking up. I guess I will cut acunpuncture from the list. Hopefully that was what was exacerbating my sleep. 

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Armorall

Edit: I don't have a window right now. Slight anxiety pang.

 

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Armorall

My sleep symptoms are definitely increasing. I sleep on my stomach (its hard for me to fall asleep on my back) and laying on my arms has begun to be too much. They got sore very quickly so I have to switch my weight constantly. Then they get tingly. Also, at some point the tinnitus was super loud in my sleep. I forced myself on my back and could sleep like that for a bit. Are these things that pass/vary from night to night? I felt that I had enough brainpower to stay asleep (my head felt sleepy) but the rest was working against that.  Is this how windows and waves works? 

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Armorall

Had "better" sleep last night. I guess it will be up and down. I stayed home from work after getting upset at more info online, so I got to sleep in and that was nice. My upper arm started to feel like there were gerbils fighting inside of it. Muscle stiffness also now a regular thing in sleep. Am I just getting worse....I realize after reading that no one does well with reinstatement after they've started CT withdrawal because their CNS is too sensitive to take anything anymore. Does that sound accurate? I mean, I swore I wouldn't go back to drugs ever, but also, I had it in the back of my head that if I couldn't bear this after a year or two, maybe I should try them again. Is it generally that people who withdraw from a CT can never go back on anything successfully? I see a lot of times that people go into severe withdrawal, then they try to get back on something to mitigate, and it only makes them worse. 

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