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Is it really "all or nothing" medication-wise?


areyouthere

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I was stable for 7-8 years on:

 

10 mg. Lexapro

 

150 mg Wellbutrin XL

 

4mg. xanax

 

then Nov. 2010 I was concerned about the price of Lexapro and went to doc to talk about the generic. It wasn't due out until April 2012.

 

During this appt. ( my husband attended) I pointed out that I was lethargic and wondered if perhaps I should start to decrease the xanax. Anyway... somehow I left with a bump up in wellbutrin so then for a year:

 

10 lex (non- generic/ name brand same as for all other years)

300 wellbutrin XL ( in two 150 mg tabs. taken in am )

4mg xanax

 

Fall 2011 I increased my dose of lex on my own ( I had been cutting 20 mg tablets in 1/2 for all of those years) to 20mg. so for nearly a year:

 

20 mg lex

 

300 mg wellbutrin xl

 

4mg xanax

 

This last set of drugs has left me lethargic on weekends. It does help me get through my stressful job. I will maintain this dosage this year.

 

My question/ thoughts.

 

Since I was stable on

10 mg. Lexapro

 

150 mg Wellbutrin XL

 

4mg. xanax

 

for so long.... I am wondering if, once I retire and am ready to taper if a reasonable goal/ expectation/plan would be to taper back to it & maintain there for awhile and then taper the xanax with my final goal to maintain on:

 

10mg. Lex

150 mg Wellbutrin XL

 

and the least amount of xanax possible..... and then if I am feeling great ( and I know that is a big if) maintain for a long time. I do not have a problem with being on meds. I just want to be happy while at the same time healing my brain.

 

Self help such as, meditation, message, regular exercise, are all in the plan. Currently regular massage is in my "life's schedule" along with the meds and of course, my job. Which I will quit...cold turkey... this coming year.

 

Thoughts?

 

I DO have a supportive Doc. who is helpful. I have a psychologist I can see. I see neither on a regular basis but have found that as I get older I rely on them a bit more. My husband is supportive although , depending on how I respond to tapering, really is clueless as to the possible side effects. My daughter is a NP. I have two sisters with drug "abuse" problems of their own. One catatonic / shut in....the other a recovering alcoholic who just came of of tramadol in a rehab center after trying on her own. I talk to neither. I literally am focused solely on employment, making it to a retirement date that will result in a pension amt. that will be sufficient ( barely).

 

Again.... Thoughts on the taper PLaN I laid out above.....

 

 

 

I guess mostly my question has to do with "rebound" "protracted withdrawal" or whatever those things are that might sabotage an admittedly " uneducated plan " . Will it work? Could it work? 50:50 % chance? Or "NOPE" or "well give it a try".... anything????

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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It's definitely not "all or nothing."

 

For support in your decisions about appropriate medication usage, I highly recommend the Harm Reduction Guide by Will Hall. You should be able to find the PDF if you Google it.

 

Many of us have found that these medications still have a strong effect even at very small doses, much smaller than the usual prescribed doses and usually smaller than the "minimum" doses. Especially as we age, it may be appropriate to consider reducing to the smallest effective dose, even if that requires getting pediatric formulations.

 

People who get in trouble with tapers (like protracted symptoms) almost always did CT's or too-rapid tapers. If you take it very slowly and conservatively your chances of success are excellent.

 

Allow me to add that 4 mg of Xanax is a high dose. Generally 1 mg of Xanax is considered equivalent in strength to 20 mg of Valium. Xanax is extremely potent and most often is prescribed in fractions of a milligram. Not all physicians seem to be aware of this potency issue.

 

Wellbutrin and Effexor are both notoriously stimulating, and you're not on small doses of those either (although nothing so extreme as the Xanax).

 

So you may be doing a bit of the "uppers and downers" combination thing, where you're taking one drug to counteract the effects of another drug. Since they all have side effects and they don't really balance each other in their chemical effects, you may actually be functioning less well than you realize and feeling less well than you should. (Check out Peter Breggin's work on "intoxication anosognosia" aka "medication spellbinding.")

 

That being the case, I suspect you'll find with a very slow and conservative multi-year taper that you'll feel better on lower doses. I'd recommend reducing one of your ADs first to, say, half the current dose; then VERY slowly tapering that pile of Xanax down to 2 mg or so (I'd take at least a year to do that, probably more); then reducing the other AD; then reducing the Xanax down to 1 mg or less.

 

Just my thoughts. It's good that you're starting by thinking it through and getting a realistic sense of what to expect, rather than just impulsively cutting doses.

 

--Rhiannon

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 

 

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

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Barbarannamated

Areyouthere,

 

Excellent question and I am in complete agreement with Rhi. My current belief is that it's dangerous to think in extremes, as you seem to be alluding to. I was polydrugged for over 15 continuous years. Tapered Pristiq and could manage that while being on a benzo and dopaminergic, but I was forced to CT the latter b/c I fired my pdoc and cant find another who will prescribe it. Alot of other medical issues..

 

Thank you for opening this topic. It needs to be discussed. I think it's a natural reaction to want to get off everything when we realize the ruse of psychiatry, but that's not always realistic, IMO.

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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Great question.

 

We have a link to the Harm Reduction Guide here http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/207-icarus-project-harm-reduction-guide/

 

Neurologically, you can't step in the same river twice. Your nervous system has accommodated to your present drug burden and when you change it, your nervous system will be different yet again. So you can't go back to that ideal state 10 years ago.

 

If you're lethargic from the drugs, you definitely are taking too much of something and maybe everything. As you get older, your body becomes less and less able to metabolize these drugs efficiently. Also, you may need other medications to treat real medical conditions, and unnecessary psychiatric drugs may conflict with those medications and endanger your health.

 

Therefore, it behooves you to look after yourself and minimize your drug burden. That goes for every type of drug, but particularly those you don't need medically and are causing adverse effects.

 

"Harm reduction" means choosing the path of least harm. It's up to you to decide what you want to take according to which drugs you believe are enhancing your health and quality of life.

 

Unfortunately, doctors, indoctrinated to throw prescriptions at everything that moves, are no longer taking on the responsibility of minimizing their patients' drug burden and many are complete dunces even when it comes to drug-drug interactions.

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

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Thank you so much. I have a LOT of work to do. I mean in terms of making a plan. Especially resonating:

 

1) Aging may change the reaction to these drugs. I've suspected this myself.

 

2) I am pretty certain that I am NOT functioning at a level at my job that I could be although I may never know and I am ok with that. I am CERTAIN that I am not who I could be as a person right now. I mean. I can't even stand myself!!!!!

 

3) I have had mixed reactions to the dosage of xanax. My psychologist & GP think 4 mg is ridiculously high. Psychiatrist...not. Three against four now. I'll save the benzo for last. I have been successful decreasing to 3 mg. over a 2.5 month period on several occasions. My daughter has told me that a taper to half the dosage of xanax for most people goes ok if done slow enough . And that the hardest is reducing below half the original dosage. I would be happy with a successful taper to 2 mg. Some day.

 

4) I recognized the upper downer thing as suspect but until now have not ever questioned it. No one has given me reason to.

 

hmmmmmmmm thinking thinking.... Oh. BTW. I take 2 mg. of xanax in the morning and 2 mg. at night. Any immediate thoughts on approaching the taper for this schedule?

 

One more thing.... the pharmacy switched me to the generic lexapro when it came out. I thought nothing of it. Until my drive home suddenly felt like it was 2000 miles away. Switched back to brand and am fine.

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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What is Wellbutrin supposed to be doing for you?

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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The SSRI or that class of drugs ( realize now that of which I speak I really know very little..thus..the intrigue with this site...I NEED to understand) helps with my depressed moods but causes sexual disfunction...for me I can't reach an orgasm. The drugs I have been on that I am lead to believe are in this class are zoloft and lexapro. When I was on zoloft I was so darn relieved to not be depressed that I ( and my husband) just dealt with it. Then, my GP , after I complained about it prescribed this great "new" antidepressant called serzone that did not have sexual side effects .

 

He was right. It did not have sexual side effects. But there were rumblings that it caused liver damage and might be taken off the market. I thought... maybe I don't need this crap anyway and if all of it goes through the liver.....

 

so I tapered off the serzone and some of the xanax over a 2.5 month period & felt good. Cripe.... that's how I want to feel again!!! Anyway...

 

After a particularly stressful assignment at work ( and after Serzone was no longer available) I needed help. The help included being put on Lexapro (10 mg) ... I reinstated ( I leaned a new word in the last two days...re in state.d ) xanax back to 4 mg , starting a regular exercise regiment, made appts. strategically timed so that until the meds kicked in I would have support and stepping stones to get stable. I got stable. But lexapro is in the same class as zoloft... sexual side effects. 150 mg of Wellbutrin xl was added and it took care of the sexual side effects.

SHORT ANSWER.... to counteract anorgasmia...........

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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ALL of the antidepressants, SSRIs and SNRIs, cause sexual dysfunction -- except for Wellbutrin.

 

There's no reason to add Wellbutrin to an antidepressant to counteract this very nasty adverse effect. Wellbutrin has antidepressant properties of its own.

 

In my opinion, what doctors should do is discontinue the drug causing adverse effects, not add on layers and layers of other drugs.

 

Yes, you should gradually go off Lexapro first.

 

Is the benzo for sleep problems from the antidepressants?

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

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There's no reason to add Wellbutrin to an antidepressant to counteract this very nasty adverse effect.

well adding it worked for me!!!!

 

In my opinion, what doctors should do is discontinue the drug causing adverse effects, not add on layers and layers of other drugs.

IOW taken me off the lexapro and kept me on Wellbutrin? Maybe. I never thought of that. At the time I was pretty confused about being ok off the serzone, then nearly " losing it" , had ...oh wait. He DID suggest / gave me the option of trying lexapro or wellbutrin. My sister had a very bad reaction to wellbutrin. I think what I did was hesitate for a day or two of going back on any antidepressant ( I had the xanax to curb the anxiety... but I knew at the time it's addictive consequences) so I called and said give me the Lexapro. This was 2002 or 2003. That's when I started 10 mg Lex. and the sexual side effects etc.

 

Typing this all out is helping me put a timeframe to this.

 

As for the xanax... I remember that deal now too. See Serzone INCREASES the effect of xanax ie.. when I was put on Serzone the dose of xanax increased its sedating effect. So when I tapered off of Serzone I was also tapering the xanax. When I had my "episode" I chose the lex. and needed a corresponding increase in xanax. Does that make sense? Then the sexual side effects.... then the wellbutrin. I was messing with a lot of different meds/ interactions/ emotions/ stress at the same time & I think it was just easier for him to convince me at the time to go that route. I wasn't about to let go of the lexapro. That was it.

 

 

Is the benzo for sleep problems from the antidepressants?

 

No. It was originally given to me in an ER ( 6 tablets) after a panic attack in 1996. It was like a miracle drug at the time. It really did save my job at THAT time. Now I think it is actually interfering with my performance....but I am hooked. I take the 2 mg. at night for sleep, yes. I'm not sure that he prescribed it to be used that way...no he didn;t..it just says 4 Xs a day. But that is how I use it.

 

Wellllllllll I gues the LONG TERM memory is somewhat in tact huh?!!

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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I didn't mean to say your sexual side effects should not have been addressed, what I meant to say is there's no reason to take 2 drugs when one will do. But there was quite the fad for a while for adding Wellbutrin to an antidepressant for this reason.

 

Well, it looks you got into a pickle with psychiatric drugs, side effects, attempts by your doctor to counter the side effects, and years on unnecessary drugs -- a very classic patient experience.

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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Yeah. No s@it. I look forward to the slooooooooow taper and getting at least the best part of my life back! Thanks! I'll lurk and likely pipe up in a few months... it off to work I go ho ho!!

:)

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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I was given Wellbutrin to help with the anorgasmia caused by Zoloft as well. And it did help quite a bit. Every time I tried that combo I was good for about a year and a half... For some people these drugs cause bad reactions right away. For others, like me, it is the sneaky long-term effects that get you. And it's easy to delude yourself about how much they are helping you or not and what harm they can be doing. In the end I think you end up staying on them because your brain has reset to "normal" while on them... except you find out that normal is something that's hurting you, and that if you stop taking them you are in trouble. But if you keep taking them, you just get worse. I really wish I had known how dangerous these drugs can be. I was so psyched to find something that helped my depression that I was completely blinded to the negative effects. 16 years later, I'm paying the price is a major way.

'94-'08 On/off ADs. Mostly Zoloft & Wellbutrin, but also Prozac, Celexa, Effexor, etc.
6/08 quit Z & W after tapering, awful anxiety 3 mos. later, reinstated.
11/10 CTed. Severe anxiety 3 mos. later & @ 8 mos. much worse (set off by metronidazole). Anxiety, depression, anhedonia, DP, DR, dizziness, severe insomnia, high serum AM cortisol, flu-like feelings, muscle discomfort.
9/11-9/12 Waves and windows of recovery.
10/12 Awful relapse, DP/DR. Hydrocortisone?
11/12 Improved fairly quickly even though relapse was one of worst waves ever.

1/13 Best I've ever felt.

3/13 A bit of a relapse... then faster and shorter waves and windows.

4/14 Have to watch out for triggers, but feel completely normal about 80% of the time.

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Is there ever the possibility of the CNS to become DEsensitized after a short CT.

 

I CTd in Sept. '11 for a two week period and sensitized myself to tapers. I'm not AS sensitive as many on here but leaving off half a Xanax one day can cause the cortisol awakening. I just am wondering if I've sensitized my system permanently, or, is it possible that it may be less sensitive at some point.

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I've gotten less sensitive, but I'm still pretty darn hypersensitive!

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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Tezza, xanax is a very short-acting drug, and the effects or the interdose withdrawal from it are usually felt very quickly, especially when one has been taking it regularly after a month or two.

 

If you're talking about dropping half of a one mg. tablet (dropping 0.5 mg.), that's actually not only a 50% drop but quite a bit, since xanax is very potent and for most people 0.5 mg. is considered a full dose, even though many people take higher doses. (I was on a considerably higher dose long ago.)

 

Different people have different "lag times" in feeling the effects of drops or missed doses, but it's not surprising given the nature of xanax that you'd feel the effects pretty quickly.

 

And of course, cold-turkeying meds (and going on and off them, switches, etc.) do sensitize people's nervous systems over time.

 

So it could be any or a combination of things.

I was "TryingToGetWell" (aka TTGW) on paxilprogress. I also was one of the original members here on Surviving Antidepressants

 

I had horrific and protracted withdrawal from paxil, but now am back to enjoying life with enthusiasm to the max, some residual physical symptoms continued but largely improve. The horror, severe derealization, anhedonia, akathisia, and so much more, are long over.

 

My signature is a temporary scribble from year 2013. I'll rewrite it when I can.

 

If you want to read it, click on http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/209-brandy-anyone/?p=110343

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I really wish I had known how dangerous these drugs can be. I was so psyched to find something that helped my depression that I was completely blinded to the negative effects. 16 years later, I'm paying the price is a major way.

 

Right on....

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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I was so psyched to find something that helped my depression that I was completely blinded to the negative effects. 16 years later, I'm paying the price is a major way.

 

me too!!!!

you have to pay the piper one day - at least i am paying him now and not when the price is even higher

Started in 2000 - On 150mg most of the time, (but up to 225mg at highest dose for 6 months in the beginning)
Reduced off easily first time - but got depressed (not too much anxiety) 6 months later
Back on effexor for another 9 months.
Reduced off again with no immediate w/d - suddenly got depressed and anxious ++ again 3 or 4 months later.
Back on effexor - this time for 3 years
Reduced off over a month - 6 weeks later terrible anxiety - back on.
Rinse and repeat 4 more times - each time the period before the anxiety comes back got shorter and shorter
Jan - July 2012 75mg down to 37.5mg;, 8/3/12 - 35mg. 8/25/12 - 32mg. 9/11- 28mg, 10/2 - 25mg, 10/29 - 22mg, 11/19 - 19.8mg; 12/11 - 17m,
1/1- 15.5mg; 1/22 -14mg, 2/7 14.9mg, 2/18 - 17.8mg - crashed big time: back to 75mg where i sat for 2 years....

4th  March 2015 - 67.5mg;   31st March - 60mg;  24th April - 53mg; 13th May - 48mg; 26th May - 45mg;  9th June - 41mg; 1 July- 37.5mg; 20 July - 34mg; 11 August - 31mg; 1st Sept - 28mg;  1st Dec - 25.8mg;  28th Dec - 23.2mg; 23rd Jan-21.9mg; Feb 7th- 21mg; March 1st - 20.1mg, March 30th - 18mg

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Tezza, xanax is a very short-acting drug, and the effects or the interdose withdrawal from it are usually felt very quickly, especially when one has been taking it regularly after a month or two.

 

If you're talking about dropping half of a one mg. tablet (dropping 0.5 mg.), that's actually not only a 50% drop but quite a bit, since xanax is very potent and for most people 0.5 mg. is considered a full dose, even though many people take higher doses. (I was on a considerably higher dose long ago.)

 

Different people have different "lag times" in feeling the effects of drops or missed doses, but it's not surprising given the nature of xanax that you'd feel the effects pretty quickly.

 

And of course, cold-turkeying meds (and going on and off them, switches, etc.) do sensitize people's nervous systems over time.

 

So it could be any or a combination of things.

 

Brandy,

 

Thank you for this explanation. I was prescribed Xanax on as needed basis. I've always used it at bedtime for sleep but only used in daytime as needed. Only when I'm experiencing shakiness or bad anxiety, did I use during the day. Before I sensitized myself, it was never a problem to use for a few days and then not use.

 

Recently, when I was really shaky, I used a half during the day. Then, when I didn't use during the day was when I noticed, it now gives me some waking but only for the first couple of nights.

 

I was wondering if I'd ever be able to use as needed again or if I should just avoid it altogether until I can taper the one at bedtime. Thanks so much for your reply. :)

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