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nologic1986

Hi all,

 

I recently completed a taper of Valium over the Feb - Sept 2019 time period via a daily liquid microtaper (sooo glad to be done with this!), but from my siggy, you can see I am also currently on Lexapro and Mirtazapine (both of which I have been on now for around a year). I would like to taper off of both of these (not the same time, but lexapro first, mirtazapine second) over the coming months and am just looking for more information from those who have successfully walked this path before me. If anyone is tapering a benzo, I am an open book regarding my experience and what has helped me (fish oil and kefir are the two supplements that helped me the most, by a mile). I am wondering if there is a way I can taper my antidepressants in a similar manner - very very slowly, gradually, and consistently, but also a pace that is based on symptoms / experience as opposed to a pre-set path. Thankfully, none of these are controlled substances, and I have a doctor that is very supportive of working with me, so I am all ears to this community and look forward to joining and learning in advance of my remaining tapers.

 

Thanks,

Jim


Successfully tapered off of Valium (Feb - Sept 2019 after 4 months of daily usage) using daily liquid micro taper with minimal symptoms after a failed cold turkey attempt (I took my time with the last 2mg of Valium)

 

33 years old with minimal psych med history that only began Oct 2018

Recently learned I am C677T heterozygous (MTHFR)

 

Current meds: Lexapro (5mg daily) and Mirtazapine (7.5mg daily)

Lexapro Oct 2018 - present

Mirtazapine December 2018 - present

 

Looking to start Lexapro taper late 2019 - early 2020 after giving my CNS some time to heal / stabilize

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Gridley

Welcome to SA, nologic1986.  Congratulations on completing your Valium taper!  I've got an Ativan taper coming up fairly soon as soon as I finish my Lexapro taper.

 

First off, I'd suggest you wait for a couple of months before beginning your Lexapro taper to let your system have a rest and to let everything settle.

 

I'm not aware of a thread on doing a symptom-based taper, but I will give you information on the three tapers we recommend.  They are symptom-based insofar as we recommend you hold or reduce the drop when symptoms become too much.

 

The first is the standard taper of 10% of current dose every four weeks.

 

 http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/

 

The Brassmonkey Slide is a way of making micro-taper reductions weekly, as opposed to a larger reduction once a month.  The advantage of this taper is that you don't get hit with the 10% drop all at once.  Instead, it's spread out into four 2 1/2% weekly drops, followed by a two-week hold.  I used this method to taper Lexapro from 20mg to my current 1.5mg, and it has worked well.
 
A micro-taper is the gentlest way to come off these drugs. 

 

 
The following link is specifically about tapering Lexapro.
 
 
You mentioned your signature in your post, but it didn't show up.  The signature can't be done from a phone.  Here's the link:
 
 
This is your Introduction topic, where you can ask questions and connect with other members.  We're glad you found your way here.
 
 

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Began taper using Brassmonkey slide Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Current from Oct. 21, 2020 at 0.025mg

Taper is 99.875% complete.

 

Lorazepam 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, resumed a few months later. CT 2000.  1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept, 2016 increased to 0.5 X 3 in split dose. Sept. 2019 increased to 0.625 X 3 after crossover to new brand

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 15mg.  Aug 2016, discovered SA, updosed to 25mg and holding.  Taper is 66% complete.  

  

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


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

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nologic1986
43 minutes ago, Gridley said:

Welcome to SA, nologic1986.  Congratulations on completing your Valium taper!  I've got an Ativan taper coming up fairly soon as soon as I finish my Lexapro taper.

 

First off, I'd suggest you wait for a couple of months before beginning your Lexapro taper to let your system have a rest and to let everything settle.

 

I'm not aware of a thread on doing a symptom-based taper, but I will give you information on the three tapers we recommend.  They are symptom-based insofar as we recommend you hold or reduce the drop when symptoms become too much.

 

The first is the standard taper of 10% of current dose every four weeks.

 

 http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/

 

The Brassmonkey Slide is a way of making micro-taper reductions weekly, as opposed to a larger reduction once a month.  The advantage of this taper is that you don't get hit with the 10% drop all at once.  Instead, it's spread out into four 2 1/2% weekly drops, followed by a two-week hold.  I used this method to taper Lexapro from 20mg to my current 1.5mg, and it has worked well.
 
A micro-taper is the gentlest way to come off these drugs. 

 

 
The following link is specifically about tapering Lexapro.
 
 
You mentioned your signature in your post, but it didn't show up.  The signature can't be done from a phone.  Here's the link:
 
 
This is your Introduction topic, where you can ask questions and connect with other members.  We're glad you found your way here.
 
 

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you! I will indeed look to do a micro-taper...I do have a question though..I seem to have trouble coming off of my current version (tablet form, made by Cipla) and switching over to the liquid version. For those who were sensitive to other generic substitutes, is there a recommended way to make a homemade liquid version using your tablets? I feel like this may unfortunately be the best approach for me given my sensitivity to switching to the liquid generic version. And thanks for the recommendation to hold for a few months - I think I will indeed do this and just wait until the holidays are over with before I tackle this taper.

 

Jim


Successfully tapered off of Valium (Feb - Sept 2019 after 4 months of daily usage) using daily liquid micro taper with minimal symptoms after a failed cold turkey attempt (I took my time with the last 2mg of Valium)

 

33 years old with minimal psych med history that only began Oct 2018

Recently learned I am C677T heterozygous (MTHFR)

 

Current meds: Lexapro (5mg daily) and Mirtazapine (7.5mg daily)

Lexapro Oct 2018 - present

Mirtazapine December 2018 - present

 

Looking to start Lexapro taper late 2019 - early 2020 after giving my CNS some time to heal / stabilize

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Gridley
20 hours ago, nologic1986 said:

is there a recommended way to make a homemade liquid version using your tablets?

 

How to make a liquid from tablets or capsules

 

There are also instructions in this link:

 

 

Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

When making a crossover from tablet to liquid, we recommend a gradual switch.  Even though you'll be using the same brand, the body absorbs liquid differently from tablets, thus the need to make the switch gradually.

 

3/4 tablet, 1/4 liquid for 3 to 7 days

1/2 tablet, 1/2 liquid for 3 to 7 days

1/4 tablet, 3/4 liquid for 3 to 7 days

all liquid thereafter 

 

Gridley


Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Began taper using Brassmonkey slide Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Current from Oct. 21, 2020 at 0.025mg

Taper is 99.875% complete.

 

Lorazepam 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, resumed a few months later. CT 2000.  1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept, 2016 increased to 0.5 X 3 in split dose. Sept. 2019 increased to 0.625 X 3 after crossover to new brand

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 15mg.  Aug 2016, discovered SA, updosed to 25mg and holding.  Taper is 66% complete.  

  

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


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

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Giulietta

Hello Nologic

 

Welcome to SA! They are an indispensable for navigating WD. You will find top notch advice here and friends. I am glad you have a supportive physician. That is 1/2 the battle isn't it. :)

 

Congrats on getting off the valium! I imagine you must feel great. After finishing with cymbalta (and resting my CNS for a TBD period) I can look forward to tapering clonazepam.

 

Welcome.

 


2014-present  Lamotrigine ER 600 mg (sz)

2000 - present  Clonazepam 1 mg (.25 mg am;.75 mg pm)

2000 - present  Gabapentin 1000 mg (sz)

2014-2019   Lisinopril 2.5 mg

2010-present Lorazepam/Ativan .5 mg prn only  (sz)

 

2005-2018/19   Assorted SSRIs taken intermittently, incl. dulox.

(6/2015-4/2020) Unwitting 20 mg duloxetine CT Dec 2018. Prev. CT from 20 mg  9/2018.

Suplmnts:  omega 3 fatty acid, CoQ10,  Calcium  Citrate with Vit D3/Mages.

I am not a medical professional. My comments are not medical advice.  They  are based on personal experience.

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PH1

Hi NoLogic!

Yes, you’ve come to a good place to learn how to taper off these meds.    I too am taking Lexapro and Mirtazapine.  I’ve been tapering slowly and doing pretty well.    Just take your time and monitor how you are feeling.    If you start getting symptomatic your body is telling you to slow down.   
 

You’ll get there, although it will take time.   I’m here to help!


2010:  Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg.   Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg. 

2011:    Tapered Mirtazapine: 5 month successful taper.  Then tapered Lexapro:  4 month successful taper

May 2011 to August 2017:   No medications, full recovery

September 6, 2017:  started Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg  - due to severe sudden insomnia (I believe caused by statin use)

November 16, 2017:   started Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg

January 1, 2018:  Started taper of 15 mg Mirtazapine (Remeron)  -- went too fast the first few months, now micro-tapering

June 16, 2018:  Started taper of 10 mg Escitalopram (Lexapro) --  alternating micro-tapering with Mirtazapine

On 1/1/2019:  3.00 Mirtazapine,  5.37 Escitalopram;     On 7/1/2019:  1.90 Mirtazapine,  3.96  Escitalopram;   On 1/1/2020:  1.30 Mirtazapine,  3.35 Escitalopram;  On 7/1/2020:  0.40 Mirtazapine,  3.00  Escitalopram

Current (mgai):   0.09 mg  Mirtazapine;   2.69 mg  Escitalopram

Supplements:  Fish Oil, Curcumin, bio active B vitamins, zinc, magnesium glycinate, Vitamin D, Vitamin C

 

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."  Matthew 6:34

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nologic1986
20 minutes ago, PH1 said:

Hi NoLogic!

Yes, you’ve come to a good place to learn how to taper off these meds.    I too am taking Lexapro and Mirtazapine.  I’ve been tapering slowly and doing pretty well.    Just take your time and monitor how you are feeling.    If you start getting symptomatic your body is telling you to slow down.   
 

You’ll get there, although it will take time.   I’m here to help!

Thank you! I definitely plan to go slowly - for me it’s all about maximizing quality of life and the time it takes to taper off is a distant second. Could you please tell me how you are tapering? Are you dry cutting weighing or are you doing a liquid taper?


Successfully tapered off of Valium (Feb - Sept 2019 after 4 months of daily usage) using daily liquid micro taper with minimal symptoms after a failed cold turkey attempt (I took my time with the last 2mg of Valium)

 

33 years old with minimal psych med history that only began Oct 2018

Recently learned I am C677T heterozygous (MTHFR)

 

Current meds: Lexapro (5mg daily) and Mirtazapine (7.5mg daily)

Lexapro Oct 2018 - present

Mirtazapine December 2018 - present

 

Looking to start Lexapro taper late 2019 - early 2020 after giving my CNS some time to heal / stabilize

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PH1
On 10/22/2019 at 5:59 PM, nologic1986 said:

Thank you! I definitely plan to go slowly - for me it’s all about maximizing quality of life and the time it takes to taper off is a distant second. Could you please tell me how you are tapering? Are you dry cutting weighing or are you doing a liquid taper?

I’m with you....I want to maximize my life  and minimize the suffering coming off the meds.   If that means taking a few years, so be it.    I have been dry cutting and weighing (with a .001g scale) this whole time.    The recommendation here is to taper one drug at a time, which is wise.   I have been tapering very slowly both of my meds, however.   My goal is to get off the mirtazapine first then tackle the last of the Lexapro second.   Lord willing I’ll be off mirt a year or so from now and Lexapro in 2021.


2010:  Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg.   Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg. 

2011:    Tapered Mirtazapine: 5 month successful taper.  Then tapered Lexapro:  4 month successful taper

May 2011 to August 2017:   No medications, full recovery

September 6, 2017:  started Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg  - due to severe sudden insomnia (I believe caused by statin use)

November 16, 2017:   started Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg

January 1, 2018:  Started taper of 15 mg Mirtazapine (Remeron)  -- went too fast the first few months, now micro-tapering

June 16, 2018:  Started taper of 10 mg Escitalopram (Lexapro) --  alternating micro-tapering with Mirtazapine

On 1/1/2019:  3.00 Mirtazapine,  5.37 Escitalopram;     On 7/1/2019:  1.90 Mirtazapine,  3.96  Escitalopram;   On 1/1/2020:  1.30 Mirtazapine,  3.35 Escitalopram;  On 7/1/2020:  0.40 Mirtazapine,  3.00  Escitalopram

Current (mgai):   0.09 mg  Mirtazapine;   2.69 mg  Escitalopram

Supplements:  Fish Oil, Curcumin, bio active B vitamins, zinc, magnesium glycinate, Vitamin D, Vitamin C

 

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."  Matthew 6:34

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nologic1986
11 minutes ago, PH1 said:

I’m with you....I want to maximize my life  and minimize the suffering coming off the meds.   If that means taking a few years, so be it.    I have been dry cutting and weighing (with a .001g scale) this whole time.    The recommendation here is to taper one drug at a time, which is wise.   I have been tapering very slowly both of my meds, however.   My goal is to get off the mirtazapine first then tackle the last of the Lexapro second.   Lord willing I’ll be off mirt a year or so from now and Lexapro in 2021.

 

I will be looking to do the same - dry cutting and weighing and going incredibly slow. How has your taper been so far? Love the quote in your siggy by the way - so true / wise, and the biggest obstacle about this whole taper business is worrying about what is to come....


Successfully tapered off of Valium (Feb - Sept 2019 after 4 months of daily usage) using daily liquid micro taper with minimal symptoms after a failed cold turkey attempt (I took my time with the last 2mg of Valium)

 

33 years old with minimal psych med history that only began Oct 2018

Recently learned I am C677T heterozygous (MTHFR)

 

Current meds: Lexapro (5mg daily) and Mirtazapine (7.5mg daily)

Lexapro Oct 2018 - present

Mirtazapine December 2018 - present

 

Looking to start Lexapro taper late 2019 - early 2020 after giving my CNS some time to heal / stabilize

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PH1

Overall my taper has been pretty manageable.   When I hit bigger bumps in the road it’s from tapering a bit too fast.  I then hold for a month and things settle down and I feel reasonably well, then taper again a bit more slowly.   As I’ve gotten to the lower doses I’ve had to slow down even more.  Right now I plan to drop 0.1 mg of the mirt every 30 days until I’m done.  If I get stronger symptoms I’ll slow down even more.    With the dry cutting method the smallest increment drop I can do is 0.1 mg.

 

I tend to think too much about the future so that verse has really helped remind me to take things one day at a time....but it’s still not easy to do!


2010:  Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg.   Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg. 

2011:    Tapered Mirtazapine: 5 month successful taper.  Then tapered Lexapro:  4 month successful taper

May 2011 to August 2017:   No medications, full recovery

September 6, 2017:  started Mirtazapine (Remeron) 15 mg  - due to severe sudden insomnia (I believe caused by statin use)

November 16, 2017:   started Escitalopram (Lexapro) 10 mg

January 1, 2018:  Started taper of 15 mg Mirtazapine (Remeron)  -- went too fast the first few months, now micro-tapering

June 16, 2018:  Started taper of 10 mg Escitalopram (Lexapro) --  alternating micro-tapering with Mirtazapine

On 1/1/2019:  3.00 Mirtazapine,  5.37 Escitalopram;     On 7/1/2019:  1.90 Mirtazapine,  3.96  Escitalopram;   On 1/1/2020:  1.30 Mirtazapine,  3.35 Escitalopram;  On 7/1/2020:  0.40 Mirtazapine,  3.00  Escitalopram

Current (mgai):   0.09 mg  Mirtazapine;   2.69 mg  Escitalopram

Supplements:  Fish Oil, Curcumin, bio active B vitamins, zinc, magnesium glycinate, Vitamin D, Vitamin C

 

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."  Matthew 6:34

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