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Annie3: chemical sensitivities


Annie3

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Autonomic dumping is a sudden wave of a bunch of autonomic symptoms all at once. For example, for a long time I had frequent palpitations, feeling hot, dizziness, and belching, all together.

 

The combination of benzo withdrawal syndrome with antidepressant withdrawal syndrome is a more complicated beast than either one by itself, and may not respond to lamotrigine, since lamotrigine has an indirect effect on the benzo system (increases GABA).

 

Sorry to open this thread up again, but I was wondering if the lamictal helped with anxiety. I stopped my use of AD after 12 years use last August. Two years prior I had developed sensitivities to everything from chemicals to coffee, alcohol, MSG ect. After I stopped the AD these improved greatly, but all of a sudden I stopped sleeping and the anxiety was surreal with adrenaline surges in the morning and feeling a bit better by night. It got so bad in January I was put back on zoloft and the sensitivities are back and are extreme. I only take 25 mg and it is not helping the sleep or anxiety. I am trying to taper right now and it is soo hard even at removing 1/10. I truly feel damaged, the anxiety and insomnia feel chemical or something is wrong with my brain and the sensitivities are so strong I can't stand next to someone who has used fabric softener on their clothes. So what I was wondering is how much the lamictal helped with the anxiety and or how soon it started to work, as my pdoc was going to prescribe it for me a ways back. Unfortunately I am tapering a benzo now too since iI started using it last fall when I tapered the AD and ended with extreme anxiety and insomnia, but at this point I feel my problems are more from the years on ADs.

 

I am also wondering if my sensitivities sound like autonomic dysfunction? I can't take many other meds without my head feeling swollen and stoned, same as the coffee, alcohol, and chemicals. We're you like this? I am worried that the lamictal will do this to me. Interestingly enough benzos are the only drug or chemical that don't give me the head pressure sensitivity symptoms. Sorry for so many questions I feel so lost and hopeless. Annie

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • Administrator

Hi, Annie, Thanks for posting. I moved your first post here because it introduces your situation and asks some complicated questions particular to your medications.

 

Chemical sensitivities are autonomic dysregulation by definition.

 

Have you seen any change in your chemical sensitivities since you're been tapering the benzo?

 

Your sensitivities sound like hypersensitivity initially caused by overstimulation from an antidepressant, then later exacerbated by withdrawal syndrome (sleeplessness being a hallmark of iatrogenic nervous system dysregulation).

 

Re-introduction of an antidepressant does not always resolve withdrawal symptoms, and can make the hypersensitivity worse.

 

Why did you decide to taper the benzo? How long have you been doing it? What's been your taper method?

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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Hi, thank you for replying.

 

It is a long story. I tapered Celexa summer of 2010 and developed depression and adrenaline rushes, my doctors didn't know what I meant by adrenaline rushes. they were there when I woke up in the morning and at night when I would just be drifting to go off to sleep I would starle and sometimes have a panic attack, this would happen several times until I passed out from exaustion. I then had to restart on escitalopram which when it kicked in put me back to normalcy, but I noticed the sensitivities more. I could no longer tolerate alcohol, coffee, and smells bothered. My head would feel like it was full of cotton or going to explode which would cause more anxiety so I would pop an Ativan, not realizing Ativan was dangerous. The sensitivities got so bad that the smell of newspaper ink would cause a flare and had to keep the recycle box in the garage. Since it started, I never even thought of the antidepressants, I researched multiple chemical sensitivities constantly. I decided to taper the escitalopram last summer as I felt I no longer needed it. I had no anxiety and no depression. When I finally finished my taper in August 2011 I felt good except for the adrenaline rushes, anxiety, and starling when I would fall asleep came back. It all felt so unnatural and the only way I knew to control it was to take Ativan so that's where my journey with Ativan started to spiral out of control. The good news is that my sensitivities almost went away. I could drink coffee and chemicals didn't bother me. Alcohol was still out of the question though.

 

In October the anxiety and irritability was too much I tried to restart celexa and after a week all the fuzzy head and sensitivities came back so I quit taking it . Mid November my doctor thought Zoloft might be different so I tried that and after 5 days I dropped into a deep depression and even worse anxiety. I went back to my doctor and she switched me to the snri effexor. All this time I was still taking Ativan but my tolerance was growing. After three weeks on the Effexor my sensitivities made me feel like I was going to die so I quit cold turkey. I know bad idea I fell into a HELL. a week later I was given a single dose of Prozac to help the withdrawal and it did calm me down a bit. I was taking 2-4 mg aof Ativan a day with it barely helping. I was also given zyprexa for sleep. I tried it twice and had parodoxal reactions both times with severe anxiety. I told my doctor how I was not sleeping and the Ativan wasn't working, so she gave me zoplicone.....just as bad as Ativan....my anxiety was even worse 4 hours after each time I took it. Unfortunately I ended up pregnant even though my husband and I had decided to quit trying, but it was too late. I was dying of anxiety and depression, no sleep, and exaustion. After talking to my doctor I thought I would have to tolerate the zoloft until after the pregnancy as this was the safest ssri and I was not coping. I ended up miscarrying and ended up in the hospital for a week hoping for some help as I knew I couldn't tolerate the ssri and the Ativan was going parodoxal on me. I was tried on trazodone for sleep...only worked for a few hours and my head felt like it was going to explode. I was switched to clonazepam with a taper schedule, but I am doing it slower at about 10% every week or two. I was also put on remeron 7.5 to sleep that no longer works buti am too scared to taper. I want off the Zoloft so bad so I decided to open my 25 mg capsule and I took one tenth away....wow am I ever sensitive. Extreme anger and anxiety that was 2 weeks ago, but I do not want to go back up on the dose. So I stopped tapering both the benzo and the Zoloft for now.

 

I have been so desperate for relief I have tried taurine, niacin, other vitamins, vistaril, and they all flare my symptoms. I am so scared that I cannot cope. I cannot live on the AD and I cannot live without. Scared to taper further because of how bad it is right now. I cannot concentrate, have a hard time looking after my children and have no enjoyment in life. I fall asleep okay, but I awaken at 3:30 every morning and then the adrenaline surges start. Oddly I feel quite a bit better at night.

 

I know my brain has been through quite a rough ride, but I feel like I have damaged it and will never heal. I cannot believe this is happening to me. The reason I was asking about the low dose of lamictal is because of course I am desperate and think I could only tolerate low doses of anything at this point. I have also been looking up lyrica lately too. I don't understand how many things make me feel hypersensitive, but the benzo does not. I need hope right now on strategies that can help me cope and heal. Thank you so much for your time. Sorry for the long post. Annie

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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Sorry, I never answered all your questions. I never noticed a difference in my sensitivities since tapering the benzos. I decided to taper because the Ativan was not working and I did not want to increase it. I was switched to clonazepam in late February starting on 1 mg and I am now down to .375 mg a day. I am. Ow thinking tat most of my problems are from the 12 years on antidepressants. :(.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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Others will chime in who know more than I do.

 

When I was working off an AD I had the adrenaline surges at 3:30 in the morning, the inability to sleep, the anxiety, etc. :(

 

Not sleeping and then knowing the next night you won't sleep builds on itself. And I too felt better late in the day only to cycle through it again the next day.

 

These are all classic signs and it is not you, it is the drugs. When my case was finally diagnosed as estrogen imbalance causing me to go hyperthyroid, I found such relief in, profound and incredible, knowing there was in fact a physical reason for my symptoms, that is was not it my head.

 

Hope that knowing this will be helpful to you too.

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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  • Administrator

the adrenaline rushes, anxiety, and starling when I would fall asleep

These are withdrawal symptoms.

 

Annie, my guess is -- and I am not a doctor -- that you are suffering from prolonged antidepressant withdrawal syndrome. Your chemical sensitivities are part of the autonomic dysfunction from withdrawal. Withdrawal from clonazepam further destabilized your autonomic nervous system, causing the chemical sensitivities to ramp up.

 

For some people who are sensitive, introduction of any antidepressant or many other psychiatric drugs makes withdrawal symptoms worse.

 

The good news is, over time your nervous system repairs itself. This can take quite a while, though.

 

It makes sense that benzos helped because benzos turn down the reactions. Unfortunately, their benefits wear off and they can go paradoxical. Then you have the problem of physical dependency and withdrawal.

 

What has your benzo taper schedule been? You might be able to reduce symptoms by backing up a bit in dosage.

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 all your reply's. Altostrata, my taper schedule has been complicated by taking .25 mg clonazepam in the am, and .125 mg in the evening. Every 4 days I take a crushed 1/8 of a .25 mg pill and remove 1/4 of that. Sorry if that's confusing my brain isn't clear right now. I had to go back up to the 25 mg of the Zoloft last night due to extreme withdrawals just from removing 1/10 of the capsule everyday for the last week and a half. I also thought that it was a very inaccurate way to taper. This has to be the hardest taper. How do you taper off 25 mg Zoloft when it it the smallest capsule? Does anyone recommend switching to prozac to taper?. I am so sensitive to withdrawal right now.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • Administrator

I believe you are tapering too fast on both the Zoloft and benzo.

 

You should not try to taper both at the same time, this makes withdrawal from both worse.

 

We recommend tapering the Zoloft first, with a 10% reduction per month.

 

I suggest you stop all your tapering and hold for several weeks, see if you feel better.

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, do you think switching to Prozac or liquid Prozac because of the longer half life might be helpful as I tried a 10% reduction 2 weeks ago with zoloft and it was too much and I am thinking the dumping of the capsule and eyeballing the cuts is too in exact . I don't understand why I am so sensitive this time, when I tapered the lexapro last fall I had barely any problems, mind you I was not having depression and anxiety before I started. Thanks again Annie

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • Administrator

I can't tell you if switching to Prozac will work for you, Annie. You will have to decide about that, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1463-the-prozac-switch-or-bridging-with-prozac

 

If your doctor doesn't know what he's doing with this, you'll have to figure it out for yourself. A couple of our members, Shanti and lundeliz, figured out how to do a switch (lundeliz switched to Celexa).

 

You have sensitized your nervous system by too-fast tapering of a benzo and Zoloft. You need to calm it down. In my opinion, adding drugs at this time is not a good idea. Don't try to take a short cut.

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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I can't tell you if switching to Prozac will work for you, Annie. You will have to decide about that, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1463-the-prozac-switch-or-bridging-with-prozac

 

If your doctor doesn't know what he's doing with this, you'll have to figure it out for yourself. A couple of our members, Shanti and lundeliz, figured out how to do a switch (lundeliz switched to Celexa).

 

You have sensitized your nervous system by too-fast tapering of a benzo and Zoloft. You need to calm it down. In my opinion, adding drugs at this time is not a good idea. Don't try to take a short cut.

 

Agreed.

 

When we're suffering we want to do something, ANYthing, to try to fix it. Benzo withdrawal seems to actually make that worse, some kind of restlessness combined with cognitive changes that makes it really hard to just do nothing and wait. Also makes it hard to think well about what's best for us.

 

But usually when one has been tapering too fast and too much, and changing meds around, just waiting and not changing anything for a while, as long as it takes, is what's needed, to allow the nervous system to settle down and restabilize.

 

I understand the frustration about chemical sensitivities, as I have them too. It's quite exciting to hear that yours went away when you went off the AD. Hopefully that will happen for you again. Meanwhile though I would find ways to cope with the MCS (avoidance when possible; I find a mask helps when I can't avoid; I use an Austin Air Healthmate Plus in my home)--and allow time for your CNS to settle down and heal a bit before continuing to taper.

 

Once things settle down you will find it much easier to think things through. (At least that's how it works for me.)

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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Hi Annie. I just read your story and wanted to welcome you. I really feel for you, reading your story is just so familiar. I didn't have such chemical sensitivities, but like many of us here, I know how horrible the hell of depression and anxiety is, and how we go on a downward spiral with multiple meds trying to fix the problem. It's more than a person should have to go through! I think for me the thing I needed most was to know there is hope, and that this is temporary and life will get back to normal. It just takes some time. I haven't had such horrible experience for several months now. But I was there. It will get better.

Taper from Cymbalta, Paxil, Prozac & Antipsychotics finished June 2012.

Xanax 5% Taper - (8/12 - .5 mg) - (9/12 - .45) - (10/12 - .43) - (11/12 - .41) - (12/12 - .38)

My Paxil Website

My Intro

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Thanks everyone, I am very grateful for this site. I have thought the last little while that my problems were the benzo, but I am realizing that it is more the AD since I have been on it for 12 years. Yes the chemical sensitivities went away went I finished tapering the lexapro. But are back since I restarted Zoloft. The weird thing is that's hike I was on the lexapro the escalated over time and I feel it is happening again. I think that's why I am wanting off so bad The sensitivities are at the most unbearable.. I guess I have been freaking out to realizing that my brain has been on them for so long and evidence saying that it can cause changes in the brain. I am scared that I will never heal and never be able to adapt being off them. Is it really possible? My days consist of depression, severe anxiety and sometimes suicidal thoughts since the thought of feeling this way for years to come is so hard. My anxiety feels very fake I am not suicidal just had thoughts, but it scares me. If I stop the benzo taper and just wait how will I know that I have stabilized and can start tapering the AD. I have felt this way since November last year. I feel like it is poisoning my system :( I am also scared of staying on the benzo longer because of tolerance withdrawal, which I already had on the Ativan around January. I really appreciate all your support.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • Administrator

....After I stopped the AD these improved greatly, but all of a sudden I stopped sleeping and the anxiety was surreal with adrenaline surges in the morning and feeling a bit better by night.

Was this the Lexapro? It sounds like withdrawal symptoms from that.

 

It got so bad in January I was put back on zoloft and the sensitivities are back and are extreme.

That's because you are hypersensitive to SSRIs. Some people should not take them. The Zoloft triggered your autonomic reaction again.

 

I only take 25 mg and it is not helping the sleep or anxiety. I am trying to taper right now and it is soo hard even at removing 1/10.

That is because you are changing your benzo dosage AT THE SAME TIME. This exacerbates the autonomic instability.

 

Unfortunately I am tapering a benzo now too since iI started using it last fall when I tapered the AD and ended with extreme anxiety and insomnia, but at this point I feel my problems are more from the years on ADs.

That isn't necessarily true, but you've rocked the boat with too much withdrawal at once.

 

I am also wondering if my sensitivities sound like autonomic dysfunction? I can't take many other meds without my head feeling swollen and stoned, same as the coffee, alcohol, and chemicals.

Like many people, withdrawal from Lexapro, then benzos and Zoloft, has made you hypersensitive to anything that affects the nervous system.

 

My suggestion is: Stop putting stress on your nervous system. You don't have 3 autonomic conditions, chemical sensitivity, benzo withdrawal, and Zoloft withdrawal, you have one condition: Drug-induced autonomic dysregulation.

 

Stay at one level in your benzo dosage and see if your symptoms lessen. You may need to increase your benzo dosage to compensate for BENZO withdrawal syndrome. We don't handle BENZO withdrawal on this site. You might visit benzobuddies.org to discuss adjusting your benzo dosage.

 

I agree the Zoloft is a real problem, but I can't recommend continuing to lower your Zoloft dosage while your benzo dosage is unstable. I don't believe that will reduce your symptoms.

 

Read this Tips for tapering off Zoloft (sertraline) Zoloft comes in a liquid. This makes tapering by tiny amounts easier and more precise. We advise tapering by 10% per MONTH or slower if you need to. Your Zoloft taper has been much faster.

 

I'm sorry you are suffering and this is complicated, confusing, and doctors don't know anything about it. We all have to deal with making these difficult decisions on our own.

Edited by Altostrata
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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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I guess I have been freaking out to realizing that my brain has been on them for so long and evidence saying that it can cause changes in the brain. I am scared that I will never heal and never be able to adapt being off them. Is it really possible?

 

Absolutely, the brain is remarkable at healing itself.

Taper from Cymbalta, Paxil, Prozac & Antipsychotics finished June 2012.

Xanax 5% Taper - (8/12 - .5 mg) - (9/12 - .45) - (10/12 - .43) - (11/12 - .41) - (12/12 - .38)

My Paxil Website

My Intro

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Thanks everyone, I am very grateful for this site. I have thought the last little while that my problems were the benzo, but I am realizing that it is more the AD since I have been on it for 12 years. Yes the chemical sensitivities went away went I finished tapering the lexapro. But are back since I restarted Zoloft. The weird thing is that's hike I was on the lexapro the escalated over time and I feel it is happening again. I think that's why I am wanting off so bad The sensitivities are at the most unbearable.. I guess I have been freaking out to realizing that my brain has been on them for so long and evidence saying that it can cause changes in the brain. I am scared that I will never heal and never be able to adapt being off them. Is it really possible? My days consist of depression, severe anxiety and sometimes suicidal thoughts since the thought of feeling this way for years to come is so hard. My anxiety feels very fake I am not suicidal just had thoughts, but it scares me. If I stop the benzo taper and just wait how will I know that I have stabilized and can start tapering the AD. I have felt this way since November last year. I feel like it is poisoning my system :( I am also scared of staying on the benzo longer because of tolerance withdrawal, which I already had on the Ativan around January. I really appreciate all your support.

 

The anxiety and the conflicted and panicky thoughts you are having sound exactly like benzo withdrawal to me.

 

One of the most unfortunate effects of withdrawal is that it disrupts our ability to think well about what's happening to us, and it also seems to disrupt our ability to SEE that we're not thinking well. I have experienced this myself and I have seen it time and time again in trying to help people withdrawing from benzos.

 

The combination of anxiety and restlessness and screwed-up thinking and not being able to make good decisions seems to often cause people to push their tapers faster and harder when what they really need is to slow down.

 

The hardest part is that when I'm like that, I can't tell that I'm like that. It took me over a year of tapering and observations of other people to figure it out. Now when I get that feeling of "I want to cut MORE FASTER" I automatically note if I have made recent cuts, and if so I consider it another withdrawal symptom and try very hard to resist the urge.

 

You might find it beneficial to take a break from tapering and focus on ways to make adaptations to the MCS, and ways to make your life more comfortable and easier while you go through this extended healing process.

 

I know you're concerned about the MCS getting worse, because the natural course of the condition is to expand and become more sensitive to more new things. I understand the thought process there. It's just that you're stuck between a rock and a hard place; continuing on the course you're on is going to really screw you up, and there's no guarantee it won't make the MCS worse. There are ways to cope with MCS. It's easier to cope with than out-of-control withdrawal (which can take years to recover from). I speak from experience.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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Annie, some people have a long battle with this, but a lot of people are recovered within a year. Not everyone takes years to recover, so don't worry. I'm doing fine after I switched Paxil to Prozac in December. I just joined Benzo Buddies as I'm going to start tapering the Xanax. I can't post yet on your intro, but if you are still having nausea and can't tolerate any medicine for it, I recommend taking Ipecacuanha 30C Homeopathy. I take that and Ginger for nausea, and the Ipacac works even better than the Ginger. I've had chronic nausea for a couple years, and now I realize that it's likely from the antidepressants. The Ipacac is easy to take, just let the little sugar pills dissolve under your tongue. They are as gentle as teething tables that we give to babies.

 

If you want to try the Ipecacuanha, be sure to get it at the health store and be sure it is HOMEOPATHY.

Taper from Cymbalta, Paxil, Prozac & Antipsychotics finished June 2012.

Xanax 5% Taper - (8/12 - .5 mg) - (9/12 - .45) - (10/12 - .43) - (11/12 - .41) - (12/12 - .38)

My Paxil Website

My Intro

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  • 3 months later...
  • Administrator

Annie, please check in. How are you doing?

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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  • 3 weeks later...

At the moment I am doing better than I have in a year, but it has only been a week. Prior to that it was the same adrenaline surges and severe head pressure. I have been holding at .25 Clonazepam for about 2 months now. I finally got into see the psychiatrist that I was on a wait list for six months to see and she is quite a help. The last one told me it was all in my head. I know this new psychiatrist probably doesn't know much about antidepressant withdrawal, but she does seem to know about benzo withdrawal. She believes in doing every test possible before prescribing meds. She tested everything on me and they all came out normal, except for my iron was low so I am being treated for that. She agreed that I need to get off the antidepressants and wanted to wean me slowly. The only thing I didn't like was she wanted to start me on Lamictal or Topamax and I told her my goal is to be off all meds. I went home and looked up natural anticonvulsant (since Lamictal and Topamax are anticonvulsants) The web came up with the Ketogenic diet. I decided to try it and cut out all sugar and all carbs and added healthy fats such as lots of coconut oil, nuts, and more eggs. Within a few days I felt better than I have in soooo long. I have energy, I am sleeping great, barely any anxiety when I wake, my mind feels clear and the head pressure is so minimal. I have not idea if this is because of cutting out sugar and carbs and upping my fat intake, but I am sticking with it for now. I feel to good to chance going back to sugar and bread and other starches. I was eating healthy prior, but I would still eats some carbs.

 

So the psychiatrist decided we would wean the 7.5 mg of Remeron first. I was scared but decided to anyways. I forgot to ask her how slow she planned on going and when I got my rx compounded she had dropped it to 5 mg. That was a week ago and I feel no withdrawal at all. I had a mild weird headache for two days, but so far so good. I see her again on October 1st and we will talk about dropping the Remeron again. I am not sure if she wants to drop to 2.5 mg as that is a 50% drop, but if I have not problems until then I might try it. After the Remeron we are going to work on the Zoloft and I will make sure we go slower. For some reason Remeron doesn't seem to give the same withdrawal symptoms as ssri's. There are no zaps, nausea, or sweating. She also wanted to up the Clonazepam to .5mg as she thought this drop in Remeron would interrupt my sleep, but that has not been the case so I am staying at .25 as long as I can. I have had a few mornings where I wake up and am ready to start cleaning and organizing my, which has not been the case in so long. It feels good.

 

I am going to continue on the Ketogenic diet for now and will introduce some good carbs back in when I am ready.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • Administrator

The web came up with the Ketogenic diet. I decided to try it and cut out all sugar and all carbs and added healthy fats such as lots of coconut oil, nuts, and more eggs. Within a few days I felt better than I have in soooo long. I have energy, I am sleeping great, barely any anxiety when I wake, my mind feels clear and the head pressure is so minimal. I have not idea if this is because of cutting out sugar and carbs and upping my fat intake, but I am sticking with it for now. I feel to good to chance going back to sugar and bread and other starches. I was eating healthy prior, but I would still eat some carbs.

That is an amazing story. Thanks for the information, Annie.

 

It's good to hear you're doing better and you have a handle on your tapering.

 

If you feel your doctor is going too fast with the tapering, ask her to slow down. You need to go at a rate you with which you feel comfortable.

 

Once you get to know this doctor, if you feel you can recommend her, please let us know! We'll add her to our list here http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/988-recommended-doctors-therapists-or-clinics/

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 Altostrata,

 

I will definitely keep you updated. So far so good. I have had a real short fuse today..... not sure if it is withdrawal, but it was not my normal self:(. On the other hand the anxiety has continued to be very, very minimal. My 3 year old daughter practically has to drag me out of bed when she wakes at 8, but once I am up I am ready to tackle the day. Not 100% but I will take it. Have you heard of anyone doing the Ketogenic diet? Some of the things I read said that it could possibly help with anxiety. Here is some links:

 

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolutionary-psychiatry/201104/your-brain-ketones

 

http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.ca/2010/08/ketogenic-diets-and-bipolar-disorder-2.html

 

I do take this with a grain of salt, but it is an interesting read.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment
  • Administrator

If you have the time, it would be great if you started a topic in the Symptoms forum about the ketogenic diet. There are a lot of people interested in the GAPS/Paleo diets, too.

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.

Link to comment

Okay thanks I will read up on that area Gaps/Paleo and start something on ketogenic. Just curious if anyone else has done this one.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment
  • 2 years later...

Its been a longgg time. Just checking in. :) Still on this Merry go round.   I have been busy tapering my meds and have not frequented the boards in a long while.  However, I have been reading for the last few months and only now have the mental capacity to actually type. I updated my signature and will update more later when I have time. :)  Annie  

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment

I am stuck on .5 mg Clonazepam, which currently makes me feel poorly after I take and and poorly if I don't take it.  Good news is that my chemical sensitivites  and head pressure induced by chemicals and foods have gone way down again since finishing my taper off the SSRI's again like last time, however the chemical sensitivies are still there to some small degree.  I wonder why having the SSRI in my body does this?  At the moment I have become more sensitive than ever to supplements and other medications.  Around November last year after a week long bout of bedridden nausea, I took 1/4 of a childrens Gravol which seemed to help so I took a bit more, and then a bit more a few hours later.  The next day I had electrical currents that felt like icy-cold patches  placed all over my spine and a sensation of weakness and almost like blood pressure drops.  Since this happened the next day after taking the Gravol I didn't put two and two together until December when the nausea came back and I tried 1/4 of childrens Gravol and the sensation came back instantly. Strangely in July/August of 2014 after I had weaned off the Zoloft and Remeron and was on a taper of the Clonazepam I was no longer sensitive to many things, ( I just don't get it) I was able to drink the full dose of Magnesium Citrate and it was doing wonders for me, I was eating fine, sleeping better, feeling about 70% better.  Then I started crashing bit by bit in mid October updosing my Clonazepam in January and now the Clonazepam is not friendly with me. :( (I should have frequented these boards while I tapered to remind myself to go slower on the Clonazepam) Thats  in the past now and I am trying to look forward.  

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment

I also want to update so I can keep track of how I have been feeling so I can look back and see progress.  :) Trying to be positive.  The reason I ended up updosing the first week of January was because I was continually getting worse.  Severe nausea, 40 lb weight loss, wobbly legs due to flexing my feet upwards unknowingly causing huge knots in my calves, clenching my teeth causing ringing in the left ear and of course increasing mental symptoms, everything was sending my stomach in a surge of butterflies,,everything.  My Pdoc whom has well intentions told me that anxiety disorder can kindle and get worse which sent my fogged out brain into panic and I took her pleading for me to updose. Realizing I tapered ridiculously fast again!! :wacko: I knew it was a risk and I took it.  Three days after going from .25 mg once a day to .25 mg twice a day I started having symptoms of burning skin, and my stomach felt like it was in an elevator dropping floors, severe depression, fatigue, worse hyperalerting.  Things have calmed down a bit now.  The nausea is completely gone, ringing in the ear is gone and clenching is way less, flexing my feet have calmed considerably and I am not wobbly or unsteady anymore, mental symptoms have dropped a bit, but still there.  Alot of fear, anxiety, and the butterflies in my stomach all day drive me insane.  So anyhoo after I take started taking my .25 mg C morning dose I still feel more sedated than it ever used to make me feel, I still get the ucomfortable stomach drop sensations and feel more depressed with some back crawlies. Its really hard to describe, but it definitely does not feel how it used to help me.  Oh and now since updosing when I get bad anxiety I start twitching, head twitches and leg twitches.  What is that??  On a positive now, I had a somewhat window from Friday around 4 pm until Saturday the same time.  It was like a switch when the window closes, I am sitting there fine and then out of no where the surges and butterflies start up and I know playtime is over.  That Friday night I relaxed with my 5 year old and took it all in, because for that short time I felt like I was out of the inside of my head and I could truly enjoy her and that particular moment.   I knew the window would close.  I hope that window was a good sign, because the days leading up to it I would have what I call micro windows last maybe 20 minutes.  It has been a long time since I had a window and I pray for more to come.  

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment

Today was a rough one.  However, I slept well.  Funny how my last window was the day I only had two hours sleep, but when I sleep longer the days seem to be rougher.  I used a sleep app that tracks your sleep cycle, (not sure how believable it is) and it said my sleep was 97% efficiant. It did feel that way until I woke at 6:30 from my husbands alarm and instantly the surges, rapid hear and burning skin all over my body started.  I HATE these mornings! The rest of the morning was shaky but I managed to pull myself together and get to my daughters Kindergarten class to read to them.  Body anxiety all morning until I took my .25 mg Clonazepam at noon and then the depression and agitation started.  Alot of crying and feeling hopeless knowing that I still need to taper the .5 mg Clonazepam and have no idea how that is going to happen.  I tried meditating 5 mins. I felt relaxed laid down and of course as per usual after I drift off I awaken immediately with surges and burning skin sensations and then feel crappier the rest of the day.  Why is that I can fall asleep at night (even without the Clonazepam) no problem, but when it comes to napping my body goes into panic mode.  Oh how I miss a nice afternoon nap laying in the sun.  As with last night the agitation and irritability is so bad its all I can do to hurry up dinner and go to the bedroom to escape any stimulation including the happy chirping of my daughter.  That kills me. Luckily my husband has been taking over from there.

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Annie,

If you start a topic here:

 

Members-only benzo forum

 

You will get some help from members with more benzo tapering experience.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

Link to comment

Thanks Petunia,  I posted a topic there.  :)

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment

Looking to talk to someone. :(  Feeling sad and exhausted.  I have been trying to avoid stress, but it keeps finding me and setting me back.  I need to learn to take things with a grain of salt and understand that death is inevitable eventually.  ( I have health anxiety)  I fear cancer and have since I was about 10 when a family friend died at the age of 15.  14 years ago watched my grandmother suffer and eventually pass.  Then my aunt battle breast cancer and is thankfully still alive.  The last five years I lost my other grandmother to kidney cancer, my uncle to liver cancer and 2 years ago my mother to gastric and breast cancer. ( Still grieving) Since my mom passed I have this fear of going through what I witnessed her go through and having my children see this.  Last year my aunt (her other sister) was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and it is not looking good. As well as her brother whom is battling lung cancer.

 

My aunties who are battling breast and ovarian cancer went in for the BRACA test and both came positive for the gene.  My mother probably would have been positive too as she had breast cancer as well.  With my family history this leaves me wondering what's in store for me.

 

Two weeks ago my other uncle on my dads side was diagnosed with colon cancer. This set me off in a bad way.  Just heard now that my husbands grandma has possible colon cancer.  Why is it every where around me?  I need a hug.  :(  I am constantly thinking its around the corner for me, which is not helpful at all. The visions of my mothers passing keeps coming into play.  I need to learn to accept this part of life and what comes comes.  

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Annie,

I can understand why you would be concerned about cancer with so much of it in your life, and having health anxiety too would make it even worse.  Here is that hug you asked for.

 

((((( :))))))

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

Link to comment

Thank you guys,  I was in a bad wave getting ready to drive 10 hours with my 5year old daughter and needed to get those things off my chest.  Valentines Day will be 2 years since my mom's passing so its a hard time of year and I needed to vent. It is helping to know of theothers going through this (sad to see) but helpful knowing that I am not alone. 

 

I drive this 10 hours every month and a half to two months and I am always stressed leading up to it and after my nervous system goes wild. I arrived at my destination on the 1st of Feb. I had 3 hours sleep that night, zero the night after, 2 hours the night before and last night it started to calm down.  Needless to say the last few days have been excruciatingly rough, with burning skin, rapid heart rate, crying, hopelessness, migraines, and mega fear/guilt.  I started the Mag oil again in little bits yesterday and I seemed to pull out a little last night and slept 6 hours last night.  I had no burning skin, rapid heart and way less surges this morning.  

 

Tuesday I went to an hour and a half of Touch for Healing and it was bliss. I was actually calm with no burning, surges or rapid heart rate......until about 1/2 hour after she was done. Worth the $75 for the hour and a half of peace. I really hope the burning skin and rapid heart stays away as this was never a symptom of mine in the past.  

 

Praying that this mild window stays for awhile.  When I say mild I still have symptoms just not severe. Annie 

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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Sitting in a 50 % window.  Sometimes I think massage or the Touch for Healing can calm my system enough to produce a window a day or two later.  Sadly I know this window will probably close.  The burning sensations are gone, yesterday the only thing bothering me was mild surges and shortness of breath, only one episode of my fast heart rate.  Last night I slept 6 hours which is huge for me.  I also felt like the window was closing last night ( the butterflies started, but I chugged a bunch of water and it seemed to help.  I do know that if I eat MSG,   a huge amount of sugar or get too stressed it seems to shut the window fast. So we will see how long this lasts with being careful not to trigger anything.  This is no where near 100%, but I feel a bit more hopeful and motivated. 

1998-2013 Various antidepressants switches and CTs.

Benzo addiction unknowingly trying to cover withdrawals in 2011

January 2012,, 25 mg Zoloft , March 2012, Remeron 7.5 to sleep and 1 mg Clonazepam.

Tapered Clonazepam from April to June 2012 from 1 mg to .25 mg (stuck)

September to October 2012 tapered Remeron 7.5 mg to 5 mg. December upped to .75 mg Clonazepam due to mothers passing of cancer.

February 2013 to December 2013 tapered off 25 mg Zoloft

January 2014 to March 2014 tapered off 5 mg Remeron Doing not to bad, not perfect but okay. Here is where I screw up May 2014 to October 2014 tapered Clonazepam from .75 mg to .25 mg. Rapidly worsening every week. January 2015 updosed Clonazepam to .5 mg. Big Mistake - Holding

Currently .25 mg  Clonazepam 11 pm at night (give or take an hour)  and .25 mg 9 am in the morning (give or take an hour)

Hope this isn't to confusing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

 

 

Chemical sensitivities are autonomic dysregulation by definition. Have you seen any change in your chemical sensitivities since you're been tapering the benzo? Your sensitivities sound like hypersensitivity initially caused by overstimulation from an antidepressant, then later exacerbated by withdrawal syndrome (sleeplessness being a hallmark of iatrogenic nervous system dysregulation). Re-introduction of an antidepressant does not always resolve withdrawal symptoms, and can make the hypersensitivity worse. 

I am glad to read this!  This describes perfectly my symptoms.  Thank you, Altostrata, for posting this.

Annie, I am so sorry you are having to go through this but I am glad you wrote about it.  I have been struggling for months and months with this hypersensitivity, and doctors and my therapist all look at me like I'm just totally neurotic.  They seem to have never heard of this.  While I am not hypersensitive (that I know of) to fragrance, I react very strongly to spices (cinnamon, ginger, clove, cumin, pepper, etc) and caffeine (including chocolate).  They rev me up, bring insomnia and agitation, make me shiver like crazy, make me itch.  I will say that like you, it was much, much worse when I was on Lexapro, then Zoloft, then back to Lexapro.

 

I am trying to stabilize on 6.75 mg mirtazapine, that demon drug, after trying to taper too quickly.  Have not taken a benzo on a daily basis since 2005, but will admit to taking the occasional .5 mg clonazepam quite often in the past month just trying to sleep.  I have not had one in a week now, though.

 

What do you find that sugar does to your symptoms?  Oddly, I notice that for me it has a slightly sedating effect, which is probably why I eat too much of it.

 

Hope you are making it okay today.

1986-2005:  Limbitrol (15 Librium/ 50 Elavil combo) 1986-2005, 2005-successfully tapered Librium

January of 2009-2011:  Mirtazapine 30 mg; Cymbalta 60 mg; tapered cymbalta fall/winter of 2011/12

March 2012-March 2014:  Mirtazapine, and various trials of Celexa, Zoloft, Wellbutrin and Lexapro; began Lexapro taper

9/18/14-Lexapro .7 mg; Mirtazapine 30 mg; 9/29/14 ditched Lexapro; added 25 mg Nortryptyline began mirtazapine taper

11/4/14:  Mirtazapine 15 mg; Nortryptyline about 12.5 mg; 1/17/15:  Mirtazapine 7.5 mg; Nortryptyline 2.5 mg, then jumped nortryptyline.

2/10:  Mirtazapine 1.875, 2/11:  Re-established at 6.75, 3/19-6.0 mg, 4/9-5.8, 4/17-6.3; 4/21 tried to re-establish at 7.5

4/23/15-Back to 5.8; 5/5-5.1mg; 5/16-4.6 mg; 5/24-4.2 mg; 6/2-3.9 mg; 6/9-3.6 mg; 6/16-3.3 mg; 6/23-3 mg

6/28-2.8 mg; 7/2-2.5 mg; 7/4-Jumped, due to increased misery from the drug itself.

In a spell of panic due to agitation and insomnia, went through a few days each of 10, then 5 mg amitryptyline and 5 mg librium. Did not work out well. Horrible insomnia now.

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Hi Annie, I'm glad you are feeling a bit better, and hope it lasts.

 

2009: Cancer hospital said I had adjustment disorder because I thought they were doing it wrong. Their headshrinker prescribed Effexor, and my life set on a new course. I didn't know what was ahead, like a passenger on Disneyland's Matterhorn, smiling and waving as it climbs...clink, clink, clink.

2010: Post surgical accidental Effexor discontinuation by nurses, masked by intravenous Dilaudid. (The car is balanced at the top of the track.) I get home, pop a Vicodin, and ...

Whooosh...down, down, down, down, down...goes the trajectory of my life, up goes my mood and tendency to think everything is a good idea.
2012: After the bipolar jig was up, now a walking bag of unrelated symptoms, I went crazy on Daytrana (the Ritalin skin patch by Noven), because ADHD was a perfect fit for a bag of unrelated symptoms. I was prescribed Effexor for the nervousness of it, and things got neurological. An EEG showed enough activity to warrant an epilepsy diagnosis rather than non-epileptic ("psychogenic") seizures.

:o 2013-2014: Quit everything and got worse. I probably went through DAWS: dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome. I drank to not feel, but I felt a lot: dread, fear, regret, grief: an utter sense of total loss of everything worth breathing about, for almost two years.

I was not suicidal but I wanted to be dead, at least dead to the experience of my own brain and body.

2015: I  began to recover after adding virgin coconut oil and organic grass-fed fed butter to a cup of instant coffee in the morning.

I did it hoping for mental acuity and better memory. After ten days of that, I was much better, mood-wise. Approximately neutral.

And, I experienced drowsiness. I could sleep. Not exactly happy, I did 30 days on Wellbutrin, because it had done me no harm in the past. 

I don't have the DAWS mood or state of mind. It never feel like doing anything if it means standing up.

In fact, I don't especially like moving. I'm a brain with a beanbag body.   :unsure:

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