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sklaz: coming off cipralex and starting wellbutin xl


sklaz

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Hi I am new to this site, I am 36yrs married and have 4 children plus 2 stepkids who are older and no longer living with us(husband is older than I). I hope to get some support(crying as I type this).

 

About 8 years ago I started taking cipralex 10mg a day helped with my panic and depression but this year I notice my panic worse and weight gain which made me spiral down to deppression once again. Tried to up my dose over the years but did not work for me also I started to have bad reactions to alchol(do not drink much but just a social glass of wine or beer if we went out) never seemed to bother me before but felt like my face was tight and on fire plus looked like i had a sunburn. So my Dr. told me to wean of the cipralex over a month and once I was down to 5mg every 3 days to start taking wellbutrin xl 150mg a day.

 

After a couple of weeks I had bad panic attacks and dizzy spells, went back to the dr and she told me that was normal and within a week to go off of the cipralex completely and up my wellbutrin to 300mg. It has been a week and a half since I stopped the cipralex and upped my dose off wellbutrin. Needless to say I feel like I am going crazy in my head from dizzyness and panic or my heart is giving out altogether. Dr says to keep on this for ar least a month and things will get better. Really?? I don't know if I can hang in there that long..am I reacting to coming off the cipralex still or is it the wellbutrin?

 

I did quit smoking a year and a half ago that is why she put me on this new drug so Icould lose some weight, get sex life back and have the get up and go feeling to do things. Am I to go crazt in the process? I feel bad for my kids and husband, plus every other family member thinks I should just get over myself and snap out of this..am I selfish, crazy, should I stop taking wellbutrin? So confused and scared.

So sorry this is a long msg

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Hang in there sklaz, I know someone with more experience will come around soon and have more knowledge to offer you, but I DO know you aren't selfish or crazy and that you seem to be suffering withdrawal from the cipralex. Many of us have felt similar sensations and emotions to what you are describing right now. You are not alone and things will get better.

Self-tapered off Effexor after being on for 9 years around 2001

Medication-free until 2006

In 2006 went through divorce and placed on Celexa 20 mg and p.r.n. clonazepam

Stayed on 20 mg until 2011 when began cutting in half and taking 10 mg (Didn't really notice withdrawal symptoms)

Began to plan to come off in spring/summer 2012, continuing 10 mg Jan/Feb.

Tapered to 5 mg March/April (about 1 week mild withdrawal symptoms).

Tapered to sliver of tablet, estimated 2-2.5 mg in (1-2 weeks of withdrawal symptoms progressively diminishing and then stopping)

May 18, 2012: Stopped Celexa.

July 5, 2012: Reinstated Celexa at 5 mg.

July 13, 2012: Increased Celexa to 10 mg.

August 30, 2012: Increased Celexa 15 mg.

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  • Administrator

Hello, sklaz, welcome.

 

You are suffering withdrawal symptoms from Cipralex. Do you have any tablets left?

 

Can you take half of a 5mg tablet? This probably will reduce the withdrawal symptoms.

 

If you don't have any tablets, try to get a prescription for liquid Cipralex and take 2.5mg of that per day. Any doctor can prescribe it. You probably will have to take this for a month or two to stabilize.

 

If your doctor told you to take 5mg every 2 or 3 days to taper, she doesn't know anything about tapering. That is a method that tends to cause severe withdrawal symptoms.

 

She also doesn't know anything about severe antidepressant withdrawal. This is not unusual.

 

When severe antidepressant withdrawal symptoms appear, the approved procedure -- described in every package insert -- is to reinstate the medication at a low dose, stabilize, and taper more slowly.

 

Wellbutrin can exacerbate anxiety. If I were you, I'd immediately cut my dose of Wellbutrin in half for a week, then half again for a week, then off. Wellbutrin is very bad to treat withdrawal symptoms, which you'll be dealing with for a while.

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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Thank you so much I thought I was going crazy, my husband figured that since I was already off the cipralex for a week and a half that it would be out of my system and it is all in my head. I hate how people just assume we make this all up, funny thing is that it is in our heads and that is what is wrong in the first place. I felt so alone till I came on here.

 

I still have 22 pills left of the cipralex, I just took 1/2 now and I am wondering when to take the next dose and how often, plus should I taper it down to a 1/4 of a pill?

Called my Dr. and she would only make the quickest appt. near the end of July plus made a one time psychiatrist appt in August because they want to find out the effects from switching cipralex to wellbutrin. I feel like a lab rat..funny how the instructions to theses pills all say to get advise from the dr. before doing something different with the meds but when you do call the Dr.s they won't see you if you are having problems.

I know these are reactions and I'm not crazy but it is very hard and lonely. I live in a area where it can be hush hush no one wants to know your problems and everything is fine.

 

I called a therapy office nearby I hope it won't take too long to see someone.

Thank you for your help..I am so grateful.

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Oh yeah I forgot to mention the Dr. also gave me Apo-Clonazepam 0.5mg and take either 1/2 or 1 pill 2 times a day if needed..she didn't explain too much about it. I tried 1/2 a pill once because I was by my self and could calm down. It did calm me for alittle while but I hate having all these meds.

thanks for reading my posts and giving advice

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Sklaz...

 

Taking the Ciprolex will help lessen your withdrawal symptoms. You are in withdrawal due to the doctor giving you bad information.

 

From what I know Wellbutrin it can exacerbate anxiety. Can you find another doctor?

How much Wellbutrin are you on?

 

If you have 22 tablets left start updosing until you feel relief. The doctor gave you a benzo which will help ease some of the anxiety as well.

 

Post each day to let us know how you are getting on.

 

 

Celeste

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

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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  • Administrator

sklaz, you should always take antidepressants every day, preferably at the same time every day.

 

If I were you, I'd take half a tablet (2.5mg) every day for a few days and see if it helps. If it helps a little, increase to a tablet (5mg) every day.

 

Do this rather than relying upon the Apo-Clonazepam. Benzodiazepines have their own risks and can be very difficult to discontinue.

 

Get your Cipralex prescription refilled as soon as possible. You will not be quitting Cipralex within a few months. You will need to get stable on a dosage first.

 

We recommend tapering at 10% your current dosage, per month. When you are ready to taper, your first decrease will 10% whatever you're taking.

 

Liquid Cipralex is handy for gradual tapering. See Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

Your doctor knows nothing about tapering off antidepressants. If I were you, I'd go to a different doctor to discuss your medication.

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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Thank you so much for the advice I feel so much better today! I have just enough wellbutrin to taper off in two weeks and i am going to take 2.5mg of cipralex for awhile and see how that goes. I guess my goal is to come off of it completely but if it takes awile so be it, at least I won't feel crazy and suicidal anymore.

 

I don't get it we trust these dr.s with our lives, they should no more before they just slove problems with more pills. She did say the reason she was putting me on wellbutrin was to lose weight I gained quitting smoking and it would give me a boost in energy. It felt more like I was spinning out of control and I even asked her if it was withdrawl from the cipralex.

 

Thank goodness there are web sites like this one, I don't know what I would have did yesterday..I even talked to my dr. office yesterday and they didnt help me very well.

I also phoned a therapist office yesterday and left a msg so hopefully I will see someone soon. The whole reason I went on the meds was to manage my anxiety and panic...need to learn different ways of coping instead of medicating myself with those clonazepam with feel like I am high and I can't do that with kids around. Plus I don't want another pill to withdrawl from!

I can't believe the difference I feel today from yesterday..thank you so much!

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sklaz, so glad you are feeling better today. Nothing is worse than those feelings of powerless despair and fear. My main issue has always been anxiety too. I've been enjoying the videos/modules on anxiety and ways to help untwist thinking patterns at this site that I found out about from another post on here: http://llttf.com/ Registration is free. Just listening to a voice talk rationally about things is very calming for me.

Self-tapered off Effexor after being on for 9 years around 2001

Medication-free until 2006

In 2006 went through divorce and placed on Celexa 20 mg and p.r.n. clonazepam

Stayed on 20 mg until 2011 when began cutting in half and taking 10 mg (Didn't really notice withdrawal symptoms)

Began to plan to come off in spring/summer 2012, continuing 10 mg Jan/Feb.

Tapered to 5 mg March/April (about 1 week mild withdrawal symptoms).

Tapered to sliver of tablet, estimated 2-2.5 mg in (1-2 weeks of withdrawal symptoms progressively diminishing and then stopping)

May 18, 2012: Stopped Celexa.

July 5, 2012: Reinstated Celexa at 5 mg.

July 13, 2012: Increased Celexa to 10 mg.

August 30, 2012: Increased Celexa 15 mg.

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  • Administrator

need to learn different ways of coping instead of medicating myself

Excellent conclusion.

 

Thanks for the link, jfrank. We've got some other suggestions in Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

People have found these techniques really work.

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 again well I had another bad night, its like I was having adrenelin pumping through my body non stop and trying not to panic through it was exhusting. I didn't get much sleep but so far I am feeling better today. Why was I okay for a day and a half and then bang it started and I wasn't even stressed about anything at the time. I am slowly bringing my cipralex dose back and I went down to one wellbutrin, I decided today I wasn't going to take one I believe it is probalby what is enhancing whatever my body is going through.

How do I not go crazy while going through this..

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I went down to one wellbutrin, I decided today I wasn't going to take one I believe it is probalby what is enhancing whatever my body is going through.

How do I not go crazy while going through this..

 

Probably has a lot to do with what you are feeling. You decided to stop Wellbutrin cold? In a message above you mentioned going down over a short period of time as you had not been on overlong, but not an abrupt stop. Going back to the dose of Wellbutrin you are on two days ago would answer a lot of questions, and help you to feel better in the process.

 

These drugs give us alot of grief.. we don't want to give them added help! Be good to yourself and I hope you feel better soon.

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

 

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

 

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

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

 

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

 

 

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  • Administrator

Just stay calm, it's scary but you can do it, one step at a time.

 

It's a good sign that you feel better with a little Cipralex.

 

Wellbutrin may very well be exacerbating your alerting symptoms. When did you start taking it? If it's only been a few weeks, risk of withdrawal from it is low if you step down quickly.

 

Take it earlier in the day rather than later, so it's less likely to interfere with your sleep.

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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sklaz....

 

Tapering both of these drugs is something you should not be doing at this time.

You need to stabilize and relax for a good period of time before you start tapering Wellbutrin and the Lexapro.

 

That is a double whammy and not a good one.

 

Your husband said the drug is out of your system. That is not how this stuff works.

Not at all. The brain and nervous system have been affected and it takes time for them to heal and for the brain chemistry to return to a normal mode.

 

This is not like taking an antiobiotics. The people who have the best withdrawal are those who took it very slow.

 

There is something called protracted withdrawal. It is the continuation of WD symtpoms long after being off of the meds completley. This may not be your situation, but we never know if it is going to happen

 

Just want to lay out this info for you so you may have an easier time of it.

 

Hugs

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

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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  • Administrator

I've suggested sklaz come off Wellbutrin fairly quickly since she's been on it only a short time and it could be exacerbating her anxiety.

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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  • 2 months later...

Hi everyone I am back, it has been a busy summer for me and I haven't been able to get on the computer much.

I will update you to what I have been going through. I stopped taking the wellbutrin and started feeling much better, I am still on the cipralex but am down to about 2.5mg(pill form it is hard to cut exactly).

It took forever to get a drs appt but when I did see her all she said was I guess the wellbutrin didnt agree with you we should try something different. I told her no I am going to come off the cipralex first and slowly, she said that was fine but we would see what my pyscharatrist appt would say(which I didnt see her till aug.4th).

I was feeling not too bad finished july with just taking mg every other day because at the time I felt fine with that.

I then went to my appt on aug4th and she was very nice but one aptt isnt so good..it brought up a lot of issues which is fine unless you get to see someone on a regular basis, this appt was free so I think I get to see her one more time in the distint future. Her advice was to take the cipralex everyday gradually cutting it down like you guys said, but she figiured by the end of aug i would be done. Not the case, after that appt i went down to 2.5mg everyday not too many issuses at first but the last week I have been having a real hard time with my panic and anxiety. Kind of the same symptoms from the wellbutrin but not as bad. I always feel i am on the verge of an attack and cant sleep. On a good note i have started counsiling once aweek which started last week.

 

Will I ever feel normal again? How long do I stay on 2.5mg of cipralex? When I did ask my dr about the liquid form she just shook her head and said there was anything like that.

I feel worse then how I was before I went on these pills.

I think the psycharatrist(sorry about spelling) wants to put me on something else but I just want to get off these horrible pills and try to cope with out more drugs..is that possible or is my head screwed up now.

This is very frustrating since no one seems to understand around here not my drs or my husband and friends.

I am not as bad as I was taking the wellbutrin but I dont understand how I can feel great and then lousy again..sick of my own head and body

 

Sorry for the long post

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One other thing I wanted to mention was the dizziness is bad sometimes once I have a spell it takes awhile to stop. Why is this? Is it something serious?

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  • Administrator

I was feeling not too bad finished july with just taking mg every other day because at the time I felt fine with that.

sklaz, alternating doses is not a good idea. It sets you up for withdrawal symptoms.

 

The dizziness is a common withdrawal symptom.

 

How much were you taking in July when you were alternating doses?

 

Then you said you went down to 2.5mg. How much of a drop did you make?

 

I'm not sure if Cipralex liquid is available to Canadians. US citizens can buy it from Canadian pharmacies. You can make your own liquid, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tips-for-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

 

If you use a liquid, you can come off in decreases as small as .01mg.

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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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone since I was last on things have been okay..not great but ok. The answer to the last question i was on 5mg of cipralex for a month then i went down to 2.5mg. I had some withdrawl but I knew what it was so I could handle the symptoms. I have been seeing a councilor at my doctors office and it has been going really well! She has teaching me how to deal with the panic and anxiety which has helped so much.

So I was at 2.5mg for about a month and now for the past 2 weeks am taking aprx 1mg or .5mg, not too sure because it is mostly crumbles i am taking. Now that I have read further on this site I should have crush the pill and made a liquid. Just this week I am experiencing bad headaches head and ear pressure like my head is being squeezed. Plus I keep feeling like I am about to get a cold but it nver happens. Plus the adominal cramping and bloating has been really bad and I feel really hungry but when I eat I feel like I am going to be sick.

I thought at first I had or was getting the flu but now I think it must be withdrawl, since it just constantly feels like I am at the start of getting sick but never gets real bad but doesnt stop either.

I have been taking crumbles off my last pill and I only have 1/4 left of it, I am not sure if my doctor will let me get more or not since she doesnt believe I get all these symptoms from withdrawl. When I finally use up my last pill will I get worse? Or will it stay like this for awhile with symptoms I can somewhat bear?

I am going to phone on tues to see if I can get a few more pills but if I can't..what then??

Can I still make a liquid form with just a 1/4 of the pill?

Thank so much for your help.

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  • Administrator

Do you have any refills left on your prescription? You can make a liquid from a whole pill.

 

It might be better for you to accurately measure the dosages and gradually go off.

 

It sounds like maybe you've been reducing too fast.

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 don't have any more of my prescription left except a quarter of a pill, i am going to try to refill it on tuesday. How much more do you think I will need? And if I do get more pills and make my own liqiud form how much should I take? A few weeks ago once I was stable on 2.5mg(i was taking for a month) i started just taking crumbles so i am unsure of the dose.

Your are right though I think I am trying to reduse to fast, which is mostly because of my family not understanding why it takes so long. My husband just figuires i am delaying and no matter what i will have with drawl anyways. Which i try to telll him that may be true but at least the withdrawl will be bearable once im down to the littlest bit. Family friend and doctors don't seem to get it!

thanks again

sklaz

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Skiaz.

 

I think people struggle to understand withdrawal because they associate it with addiction and cravings like those associated with giving up smoking for example. They think if you have will power and keep going you will get through the withdrawals and overtime the cravings diminish

 

 

Antidepressant withdrawal is not like that. Our systems are used to having the drugs and our physiology has adjusted accordingly. When you stop taking the drugs, our system and physiology have to readjust If we reduce suddenly our too fast our system hasn't had time to adjust and therefore goes into turmoil at the withdrawal of the drug

 

Some people's systems adjust quicker than others.

 

Explaining this to loved ones might help and there are posts on here that spell this physiological stuff in more detail if you need it

 

 

Rest assured you are doing the best thing for yourself in going slow. Let your body be its own expert and listen to what it says

 

I wish you all the best

Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.

Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.

Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.

Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.

Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).

Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

 

DRUG FREE - as at 1st May 2017

 

>My intro post is here - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2250-dalsaan

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  • Administrator

sklaz, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

 

If you can get Cipralex liquid, get that.

 

If not, if I were you, I'd get 10mg tablets. That leaves you lots of room for adjusting the 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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  • Moderator Emeritus

sklaz.... maybe printing out thismight help your husband and family understand.

 

None of my business... but does your husband have to KNOW you are taking a little bit? Maybe just taking it and skipping trying to get anyone to understand would work? Everyone is different in handling such things.

 

Let us know if you can get the refill. If it were me I would push my doctor hard to get it and then let Alto know what to do next in terms of tapering off of it. SLOW seems to be the name of the game.

Fall 1995 xanax, zoloft. switched to Serzone

1996- spring 2003serzone/ xanax/ lightbox.

b]Fall 2003- Fall 2004? Lexapro 10 mg. Light box /4 mg. xanax.[/b]

2004 - Fall of 2009 10 mg Lex, 150 mg Wellbutrin XL % 4 mg xanax

November 2009- Sept. 2011 10 mg lex., 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax [/b

Sept.2012- July 2012 20 mg Lex 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax

My mantra " go slow & with the flow "

3/2/13.. Began equal dosing 5 Xs /day xanax, while simultaneously incorporating a 2.5 % drop ( from 3.5 mg/day to 3.4 mg/day)

4/6/13 dropped from 300 mg. Wellbutrin XL to 150 mg. Difficult but DONE! Down to 3.3 mg xanax/ day / 6/10/13 3 mg xanax/day; 7/15/2013 2.88mg xanax/day.

10/ 1/2013...... 2.5 mg xanax… ( switched to tablets again) WOO HOO!!!!!! Holding here… cont. with Lexapro.

1/ 2/2014.. tapered to 18mg ( by weight) of a 26 mg ( by weight) pill of 20 mg tab. lexapro. goal is 13mg (by weight OR 10 mg by ingredient content) and STOPPED. Feeling very down with unbalanced, unpredictable WD symptoms.

1/2/2014- ??? Taking a brain-healing break from tapering anything after actively tapering something for 1.5 years. So… daily doses as of 2/2/2014: 18 mg by weight Lex, 150 mg Well. XL, 2.5 mg xanax, down from 26 mg by weight Lex., 300 mg well. XL, 4 mg xanax in August, 2012. I'll take it. :) 5/8/14 started equivalent dose liquid./ tabs. 5/13/14 1.5 % cut.

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