Jump to content

nautical: Tapering off Sertraline 50mg


nautical

Recommended Posts

Hi all!

I was put on 50mg of Sertraline in April 2019. In hindsight it was situational stress: the loss of two family members the year before and having to deal with the bureaucracy by myself while doing a full-time PhD abroad at the same time. I am not sure whether the sertraline ever had any effect apart from giving me very lucid terror-filled dreams and restless leg syndrome. Apart from the dreams and the restless leg syndrome I feel much better now - but not because of the medication - just because my circumstance has improved and I found a healthy way to cope with the stress. I am so glad I decided to thoroughly search the clinical databases PubMed and Embase for current peer-reviewed and published studies to make up my own mind before approaching my GP to taper off. The evidence I found there is so much more in line with what is suggested here in this forum compared to what is recommended by GPs! As expected, when I approached my GP they just suggested to cut the tablet in half and then alternate days - based on no evidence at all, showing no understanding whatsoever for doing it more slowly and controlled. I since bought a pill grinder, empty capsules, and a good scale and have started tapering very slowly. I am looking forward to my journey with all of you. I attach a picture of my progress so far.

 

Picture 1.png

Supplements: pregnacare before-conception, fish oil, probiotics, vitex agnus castus, chelated magnesium, vitamin D
Since mid-April 2019: 50mg sertraline

27 Nov 2020: started tapering using grinder method

27 Nov: 47mg sertraline, -5% of previous dose every 5 days.

27 Jan 2021: 29.9mg sertraline, now -5% of previous dose every 1/2 month.

Link to comment
  • manymoretodays changed the title to nautical: Tapering off Sertraline 50mg
  • Administrator

Hi, Nautical.

 

Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants. 

 

It sounds like you're already doing research, but just to make sure you have the basics, here is some information on withdrawal to get you started: 

 

Tips for tapering off sertraline (Zoloft)

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

How psychiatric drugs remodel your brain

 

Healing from antidepressants. Patterns of recovery video (4 minutes)

 

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

On 12/23/2020 at 10:50 AM, nautical said:

Apart from the dreams and the restless leg syndrome I feel much better now - but not because of the medication - just because my circumstance has improved and I found a healthy way to cope with the stress.

 

I'm glad you're finding healthier ways of coping. Here is some information on restless leg and dreams:

 

Non-drug treatments for restless legs

 

Lucid / vivid dreaming

 

What is the sleep cycle?

 

If you're experiencing nightmares, these tips may help with your overall sleep:

 

Tips to help sleep: so many of us have that awful withdrawal insomnia

 

We don't recommend a lot of supplements, as many members report their nervous systems are simply too fragile to handle them. However, magnesium and fish oil tend to be calming to the nervous system and many people report they do help. Please only add in one supplement at a time and at a small dose. For more, please see:

 

 King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

Please add a signature.  Include drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements in the last 12-24 months. Also include supplements. This will help us give you the most accurate advice we can. 

  • Any drugs and supplements prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years. 
  • Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago) 
  • Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016. 
  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses. 
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • This is a direct link to your signature:  Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

Please continue to use this thread to document your taper and to ask questions. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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.

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

I know a tablet is made up of filler and active ingredient. After a couple of months of grinding and weighing the antidepressants and reducing my dose by 30%, I am wondering how other forum members deal with the risk of having just filler or just active ingredient in your measured powder? Do people just grind one tablet at a time and then stir or shake the powder so the filler / active ingredient is randomly distributed? Are there better ways to ensure a proportional amount of filler vs ingredient in the powder that is ultimately used? This obviously becomes more relevant as smaller and smaller doses are taken. Any tips are greatly appreciated!

Supplements: pregnacare before-conception, fish oil, probiotics, vitex agnus castus, chelated magnesium, vitamin D
Since mid-April 2019: 50mg sertraline

27 Nov 2020: started tapering using grinder method

27 Nov: 47mg sertraline, -5% of previous dose every 5 days.

27 Jan 2021: 29.9mg sertraline, now -5% of previous dose every 1/2 month.

Link to comment
  • Administrator
55 minutes ago, nautical said:

Are there better ways to ensure a proportional amount of filler vs ingredient in the powder that is ultimately used?

 

Frogie posted about using a pill crusher in her post here:

 

Using a digital scale - Frogie's post about a pill crusher

 

 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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.

 

Link to comment

Thank you Shep. I am already using a pill crusher and the powder is very fine. But I guess I am worried that perhaps the different parts of the powder (filler vs active ingredient) are not well mixed, leading me to fill up my gel capsule with just filler rather than equal proportion of filler vs active ingredient. I will post that question in the thread you suggested! :)

Supplements: pregnacare before-conception, fish oil, probiotics, vitex agnus castus, chelated magnesium, vitamin D
Since mid-April 2019: 50mg sertraline

27 Nov 2020: started tapering using grinder method

27 Nov: 47mg sertraline, -5% of previous dose every 5 days.

27 Jan 2021: 29.9mg sertraline, now -5% of previous dose every 1/2 month.

Link to comment
  • Moderator

Hi nautical-- I posted this on another thread but think I should post it here also. Have a look at this thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/22065-myths-about-your-drugs/?tab=comments#comment-463989

 

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

Link to comment
  • 3 weeks later...

Hello All!

 

I have had pretty severe restless legs two nights ago - about as intense as when I started on sertraline. Yesterday night it was fine, but I am a bit scared it will come back because restless leg nights are sleepless and I am in the final month of submitting my PhD and cant loose a productive day! I never had restless legs before I started on sertraline and it was worst when I just started on it, so I am 99% certain its related to sertraline. I have been tapering at a pretty steady pace since 2 months: I am down 40% from 50mg active ingredient to 29.9mg (see shaded green area in attached chart). I was wondering whether something like this is a sign I should go slower or whether this is to be expected and nothing to worry about? So far I haven't had any other withdrawal symptoms.

 

Thanks so much for all your help,

nautical

Screenshot 2021-01-27 at 17.14.02.pdf

Supplements: pregnacare before-conception, fish oil, probiotics, vitex agnus castus, chelated magnesium, vitamin D
Since mid-April 2019: 50mg sertraline

27 Nov 2020: started tapering using grinder method

27 Nov: 47mg sertraline, -5% of previous dose every 5 days.

27 Jan 2021: 29.9mg sertraline, now -5% of previous dose every 1/2 month.

Link to comment
  • Administrator
18 hours ago, nautical said:

I have been tapering at a pretty steady pace since 2 months: I am down 40% from 50mg active ingredient to 29.9mg (see shaded green area in attached chart). I was wondering whether something like this is a sign I should go slower or whether this is to be expected and nothing to worry about?

 

Nautical, this is WAY too fast. Please see the links in the first post I made in your thread. We recommend going no faster than 10% a month based on the previous month's dose (not the original dose). 

 

You may want to updose to where you were a couple of weeks ago and see if you feel better. 

 

Let us know how you feel. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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.

 

Link to comment

Thank you Shep, I take your advice. I somehow thought no side effects meant that I could go by 5% every week (upon reflection I am a bit embarrased because I did read and understood what it says in the links. I just didn't think the inconvenient waiting bit applies to my life... 🤦‍♀️). I will now slow down and go by 5% every half month (which I hope is equivalent in terms of safety to 10% every month)?

Supplements: pregnacare before-conception, fish oil, probiotics, vitex agnus castus, chelated magnesium, vitamin D
Since mid-April 2019: 50mg sertraline

27 Nov 2020: started tapering using grinder method

27 Nov: 47mg sertraline, -5% of previous dose every 5 days.

27 Jan 2021: 29.9mg sertraline, now -5% of previous dose every 1/2 month.

Link to comment
  • Administrator
16 hours ago, nautical said:

I will now slow down and go by 5% every half month (which I hope is equivalent in terms of safety to 10% every month)?

 

This sounds like a good plan. You may want to go with the Brassmonkey Slide, which involves smaller, weekly reductions (but still no more than 10% a month). 

 

 

The Brassmonkey Slide Method of Micro-tapering

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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.

 

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use Privacy Policy