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CocoaViolet: time to begin tapering off of fluoxetine after 25+ years


CocoaViolet

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Hello Courageous friends on this forum, 

 

Thank you for being here. 

 

After 25+ years on fluoxetine, I feel in the near future will be time to begin to taper off.

 

Whenever I have tapered off in the past my intense sugar cravings have ruled over me as a form of self equalizing serotonin levels. This is why I initially went on an SSRI because I was binge eating carbs and sugar in my 20s and 30s (and alcohol) and having severe mood swings/depression. Within a day of taking fluoxetine, maybe even hours afterwards I felt a sense of equilibrium finally. Tapering off of it feels precarious since I feel pretty incredibly well balanced on it...

 

I have many variables already in place to do so, a diet (no sugar, refined carbs good organic vegetarian protein balanced meals every 4 hours for blood sugar and serotonin  regulation)  a deep meditation practice, regeneration time out in Nature, CBD oil, at least 8 hours of sleep every night, and hormone balancing natural  supplements as I am menopausal, as well as other natural supplements for adrenal health etc.

 

Reading through the brassmonkey slide tapering protocols has been really inspiring. I did not know of this method. The only thing is... I really need some hand-holding on how to make a water dilution and how to do the measurements and math part....(I am a musician/artist brain and can not quite wrap my head around it...)

 

Would anyone be willing to literally walk me through a very gentle tapering template?

 

I can plug the numbers into the so helpful spreadsheets provided on this awesome site, but to dilute the capsule with water and measure with a pipette feels overwhelming, as does tapering in general....

 

Thank you all for the courageous journeys you are on and for being here in this way.

 

I hope my introduction/request for support combo is ok.

 

♥️ Cocoa Violet

 

Edited by ChessieCat
added spacing

1998 20mg fluoxetine

1999-2021 40mg fluoxetine

2018 tapered off (irregularly)  every other day or so skipped regular dose, then went cold turkey- nervous system went into PTSD mode

 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to CocoaViolet: time to begin tapering off of fluoxetine after 25+ years
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello CocoaViolet and welcome to SA,

 

Thank you for creating your drug signature.  You mention that you have tried to taper off before.  Please as the dates and doses to your drug signature.

 

If there was a reason for why you started taking a psychiatric drug it will be important for you to learn non drug coping methods to manage the original issues.  Seeing a counsellor might also be helpful.

 

SA's general tapering protocol is to reduce the current dose by no more than 10% followed by a hold of about 4 weeks to allow the brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  The BrassMonkey slide is slightly different in that you do a 2.5% (or less) reduction every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an extra 2 weeks.  So the reduction cycle is 6 weeks, not 4 and therefore takes longer.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?


Dr Joseph Glenmullen's WD Symptoms Checklist

 

Post #1 of this topic explains how to get non standard doses:

 

Tips for tapering off fluoxetine (Prozac)

 

Q:  What strength capsule are you currently taking?  If you are taking a 40mg capsule then it might be helpful if you get a smaller dose capsule and then you can take part of the dose in liquid.  You would need to get your doctor to write a prescription for the different doses.  If you could get 10mg and 20mg you could take 10 + 20 capsules and make a liquid with a 10mg capsule.

 

Please let us know if you are not able to get the smaller doses of capsules and we can explain how to make the liquid using the 40mg capsule.

 

There is a link to a printable document in Post #1 of this topic which you could give to your doctor if you think they might be hesitant about prescribing what you need to taper.

 

how-to-talk-to-a-doctor-about-tapering-and-withdrawal-what-to-expect

 

Before you begin to taper it is best to do a cross over to allow your body to adjust to receiving a different form of the drug.  It is gentler on your system.  To begin with you would stay on 40mg dose and make a liquid with a 10mg capsule and take the full 10mg in liquid with the 30mg made up of capsule.  You would do this for 1-2 weeks, noting any new symptoms that occur.  You would not make a reduction until the symptoms have subsided.

 

how-to-make-a-liquid-from-tablets-or-capsules

 

The first 10% reduction would be 40mg x 0.9 = 36mg

 

So you would dissolve a 10mg capsule in 10mL of water and take 6mL of the liquid.  This is because each 1mL of liquid will have 1mg Prozac.

 

If you preferred you could put the 10mg capsule in 20mL of water and take 12mL of the liquid, if that is easier for you to measure.  The amount you take will be double the first dilution because there is twice as much water.

 

The more water you use to make the liquid the easier it is to measure the dose, especially when you get to numbers which have 2 decimal places.

 

Please note that it is better to round up than to round down.  This way your reduction will be less than 10%.

 

I used syringes for my liquid taper; 1mL, 3mL, 5mL and 10mL.

 

Another member is using an adjustable volume pipette.

 

I hope the information I have provided helps to get you started.  If you have any questions, please ask them.  We have other members who have difficulty doing the calculations and measuring their dose, so you are not alone.

 

This is your own Introduction topic.  Each member has one (and only one) Introduction topic.  Your own Introduction topic is the best place to ask questions specific to your own situation and where you can journal your progress.  This will keep your history in one place and mean that you do not have to repeat your story.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
realised member is taking capsule not tablet

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq    Post 0 updates start here

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you.

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Thank you Dear Chessie Cat for such a generous and thorough response!

I will certainly take in all the details a little at a time and am most just taking in the amazing generosity of this sute and your input which is such a gift.

 

I will ask more and respond as I go... And yes to all you have added so far... Such rich resources.

 

Am updating my signature now.

Gratitude.

🙏🏽

1998 20mg fluoxetine

1999-2021 40mg fluoxetine

2018 tapered off (irregularly)  every other day or so skipped regular dose, then went cold turkey- nervous system went into PTSD mode

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You are very welcome.  And thank you for creating your drug signature.  Please remember to add the date and dose whenever you make a change so that it remains current.

 

One small suggestion.  At the word "During" at the start of the last line like I have below.  It will make it a bit clearer that you are still on fluoxetine.  Thank you.

 

During 2018 tapered off (irregularly)  every other day or so skipped regular dose, then went cold turkey- nervous system went into PTSD mode

 

It can be a bit overwhelming when you get a lot of information "thrown" at you.  Just go through it as you can, and you can always go back and look at it again, just in case you overlooked something.

 

And a tip.  There are many existing topics on SA.  To find them you can use the site search function or use an internet search engine and add site:survivingantidepressants.org to the search term.

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq    Post 0 updates start here

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you.

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