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Preacherswife: Coming off the lexapro and scared


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Hello! My name’s Christine and I have been on and off lexapro for years. I have recently have started really looking at the things my family is around Such as food, cleaning products, mold, atmosphere etc… and yesterday, through a friend, realized that I have been dealing with SEVERE side effects for at least a year of lexapro. 
 I eat a gluten free diet and mostly sugar free. I have had increased anxiety, disturbed sleep, aches, brain fog, trouble being motivated, numbed state of mind, and now a sore in my nose that refuses to heal. My husband has been telling me for years to come off but I have been dependent on the meds. Both of my parents have anxiety/depression problems and are heavily medicated. 
i was first placed on meds due to situational depression while I was in a bad relationship. I came off cold turkey after getting married to said bad relationship. Got a divorce and remarried. Developed anxiety issues in the new marriage and was placed back on meds. I came off cold turkey when I found out I was pregnant. After having the baby, I had SEVERE PPD and PPA. I was once again medicated and the dose was increased after I didn’t improve. I have been scared to even think of coming off the meds until now. And yes, I’m a Preacher’s wife and a Preacher’s daughter. My faith helps, but it is not a take it all away, at least IMO.  I’ve made up my mind I’m going to come off but I want to do it safely. I’ve ordered the book YOUR DRUG MAY BE YOUR PROBLEM to read as I go through this. Any input would be greatly appreciated. 

May 2010 - February 2012 Lexapro 10 mg quit cold turkey 

February 2015 - August 2016 10 mg quit cold turkey after finding out I was pregnant 

April 2017 - May 2017 10 mg for severe PPD and PPA 

May 2017 - now 20 mg upped dosage after still having issues 

Zyrtec 10 mg

prenatal probiotic

COQ10 100 mg

Vit D3 50 mcg

biotin 5000 mcg

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  • getofflex changed the title to Preacherswife: Coming off the lexapro and scared
  • Moderator

Hello, and welcome to SA.  We are a peer owned and run forum of people who have been or are getting off of psychiatric drugs.  It's great that you have found us before you started your taper.  Many people come in here after tapering too fast, and have significant withdrawal issues.  


It sounds as though you are having adverse effects from the Lexapro from being on too high of a dose.  Lexapro is one of the more powerful SSRI drugs, and 20 mg is a hefty dose.  I believe you will feel better as you reduce, but it is essential not to taper too fast.  You will see why.  


Thank you for providing your drug signature.  


Here is some information about how these drugs actually work.  This shows how important it will be to do a very slow, careful taper.  


How Psychiatric Drugs Remodel Your Brain



Tapering is best done extremely slowly, and we generally taper by 10% of the current dose no more than once every 4 weeks, so that the taper becomes exponentially smaller.


 Why Taper by 10% of my Dosage  


Tips for Tapering Lexapro


So for your first taper, you would reduce your dose from 20 mg to 18 mg.  The link above will explain how to do this.  Stay at this dosage for 4 - 6 weeks.  Take the precise same amount at the same time each day. Listen to your body, and don't reduce your dose again until you feel stable. 


Also, as we are recovering, we suggest keeping things slow, simple, and stable. This is extremely important. 


Keep it Simple, Slow, and Stable



Hopefully you won't have any symptoms, but if you do, here are some techniques to cope with them: 


Non Drug Ways to Cope with Withdrawal Symptoms



We don't suggest many supplements, but 2 that many of us find helpful are magnesium and omega-3 fish oil. Here are the links for info about those. It is suggested to add one at a time, and start with a low dose to see how it affects you. 



Omega 3 Fish Oil


Feel free to ask any questions, and have a look around the site.  There is lots of very good information here.  Good luck, and keep us posted! 

Please do not private message me or tag me.


***Please note this is not medical advice.  Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a doctor who understands psych meds and how to withdraw from them, if you can find one.


Lexapro   Started Apr 15 2010 - 10 mg;  started taper August 2017, recent taper info: Apr 2 '20  0.18 mg; Jul 16  0.17 mg, Aug 23  0.16 mg, Oct 7  0.15 mg, Nov 8 - 0.14, Jan 16 '21 - 0.13, Feb 7 - 0.12, Feb 22 - 0.11, Mar 26 - 0.10, May 21 - 0.09, June 15 - 0.08 Aug 16 - 0.07, Oct 6 - 0.06, Nov 21 0.05, Dec. 17 0.04, Jan 14 '22 0.03, Feb 19 0.02, Apr 18 0.01, May 15 0.005,  Jul 8, 0.00.  Psych Drug Free as of July 8, 2022!!  Woohoo!!!

other meds: Levothyroxine 75 mg

magnesium in small amounts at 4 AM, 3 PM, before bed

suppl AM: fish oil, flax oil, vit C, vit E, multivitamin, zinc

suppl 8 PM: magnesium 350 mg, Estroven, melatonin 2 mg


Paxil 2002 - 2010, switched to Lexapro 2010 

Trazodone 50 mg. 2002 - 2019, fast tapered in 2019 

Xanax 0.5 mg as needed 2002 - 2019, up to 3x weekly 

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