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Did I go wrong with my nailfile? Shaving or filing a tablet


areyouthere

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ADMIN NOTE Filing or shaving a tablet to taper is not as exact or consistent as the recommended methods of using a liquid to taper, or shaving or dry-cutting a tablet and using-a-digital-scale-to-measure-doses

 

But if your drug is an extended-release tablet and you cannot get a prescription liquid or immediate-release tablet to make a homemade liquid, or you cannot get a jeweler's scale to weigh your dose, filing or shaving a tablet with a razor blade (single sided) or knife may be your last resort for gradual tapering.

 

Be very careful in estimating the amount you file or shave off a tablet. You might take a little off one side of a tablet for the first reduction step, then a little off 3 sides of a tablet, then 4 sides. Then you can start on the corners, working your way around the tablet over more reduction cycles.

 

We advise waiting a month between reductions to let your nervous system accommodate to the change. Do not taper if you already have withdrawal symptoms, further reductions will make them worse. Hold on your dosage until withdrawal symptoms go away, or reverse the last reduction and let your nervous system settle down before making a smaller reduction. You may find it easier to micro-taper by very tiny amounts. Do not rush, a taper takes as long as it takes.

 

Whatever process you use, it's a good idea to keep notes on paper. You'd be surprised how hard these things are to remember.

 


 

 

OK. So I used a nail file ( the orange side... you know more rough) and struck 30 tablets 20 times each and started taking them the day before yesterday. Today I have a headache but that's not unusual, but I am also feeling a little jittery.. like my little finger on my left hand twitches once in awhile and my eyelid did a few earlier in the day.

 

It definitely feels as if something is different. What should I do? Keep going? To see if it IS the taper? I am under a bit more stress because of work but my gut is telling me this is the taper. Go back to the full 20 mg.? And wait until I can get a more controlled taper ?

 

Cripe. Don't we all feel it won't happen to us?

 

Edited by ChessieCat
Added admin note

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 really think you need to be systematic with your taper - i think you need to know (at least around about) how much you are taking and take the same amount daily for 3 -4 weeks before you taper again

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks for responding Alex.

 

By "strike" I mean I held each 20 mg. tablet between my thumb and index finger with my left hand and using a finger nail file held in my right hand , rubbed (filed) off ( or "on the the Pill" however you look at it) the pill 1,2,3,4 etc. 20 times.

 

Thereby reducing the dosage. The powdered Lex. just fell to the table as I filed. No CLUE by how much I actually reduced. I have to get a digital scale to figure it out at least by weight.

 

It's not been a great day.

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

I really think you need to be systematic with your taper - i think you need to know (at least around about) how much you are taking and take the same amount daily for 3 -4 weeks before you taper again

 

I agree. Do you think I should continue to take the rest of the filed tablets ( they are decreased by a close amt.) or should I just go back on the full dose ( 20 mg.) since it has just been three days and before I try it again, use a more precise technique?

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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So you shaved 20 strokes off each of the pills? From here I don't know how much a stroke takes with it. Would you say your pills are 5% smaller, 10%, 25%?

 

If I were going to use this method, I would probably not reduce so many pills at once.

"Well my ship's been split to splinters and it's sinking fast
I'm drowning in the poison, got no future, got no past
But my heart is not weary, it's light and it's free
I've got nothing but affection for all those who sailed with me.

Everybody's moving, if they ain't already there
Everybody's got to move somewhere
Stick with me baby, stick with me anyhow
Things should start to get interesting right about now."

- Zimmerman

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Am I correct that you just shaved the lexapro, and prepared a 20-day supply?

 

I've heard of people using nail files, but there are certainly more precise methods. Forgive me if you've discussed this in other threads, but are you able to get the lex in liquid form? That would be the best way to measure very small drops precisely.

 

Like Alex, I wondered what approximate percentage of the pill was shaved off when you filed it. Remember too that if it's a round pill, each successive filing you do on a pill will shave off slightly more than the previous ones. Try holding a shaved pill next to a whole (unshaved) pill and try to estimate what percentage has been removed from the shaved pill. Bear in mind the shape of the pill.

 

If it looks like about 10% has been shaved off, you might need to taper with a smaller cut in dose. Some people need to drop by 5% and occasionally some people find they need to do just 2.5%. Best to start small and see over time how your body responds.

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Yeah. I totally F'ed this up. Thanks for the advice and sticking with me. I have enough (whole 20mg) pills... 60 to be exact.

So let's say that I knew exactly how much I tapered.... and it was 10%. And on the third day I had some twitching, & distorted vision ( the symptoms I experienced today.... they've gotten better toward this evening) ... What would you advise? 1) Keep going at 10% and see what happens? OR 2) immediately reduce the taper tomorrow to 5 % ? OR 3) go back on the whole dose , wait to stabelize & then go ahead and try 5 %?

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Also.... up until a year ago or so I was taking 10 mg. Lex. I would cut the 20 mg. tabs. in half with a knife resulting in unequal pieces. It never , ever bothered me. I did that for 8 years. Then I had some extra, bug-time stress and like a dumb ass upped my own dose. Yeah. I'm late to the party.

 

If someone has a logical explanation for why unequal amts. before ( blood serum levels) never bothered me why unequal amts. now ( crude nail file method) WOULD I'd like to hear it.

 

Here's the thing.... Pretty quick here I will get super busy. Crazy busy. Busy enough that slight symptoms ( less than what I had today) will likely not even be noticed by me. That would be a bonus IMO for starting a taper rather than thinking what my body is doing 24/7. I really would like to get a head start on tapering from 20 to 10.... but slowly.

 

BUT I don't want to totally mess this up. I'm just beginning to understand the damage I've done and the power of these drugs.

 

Yes, I can get a prescription for the liquid. I may be able to get it over the phone but if not I'll have to wait until my next appt. in Nov.

 

Signed,

 

Clueless

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

it seems that maybe your nervous system is a bit more sensitive second time around - that is often the way, the more you play around, the more sensitive your brain becomes - that is why consistency is important.

I would consistently take the last dose you were last stable on for 4 weeks and then decrease 10% from there for another 4 weeks, rinse and repeat. You will probably need to get a scale to do this accurately - or go over to liquid. You are lucky your dose comes in liquid.

Don't beat yourself up for being clueless - you are a long way ahead of many people just by finding this site - just make a commitment to doing it the right way from this point on.

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

it seems that maybe your nervous system is a bit more sensitive second time around - that is often the way, the more you play around, the more sensitive your brain becomes - that is why consistency is important.

I would consistently take the last dose you were last stable on for 4 weeks and then decrease 10% from there for another 4 weeks, rinse and repeat. You will probably need to get a scale to do this accurately - or go over to liquid. You are lucky your dose comes in liquid.

Don't beat yourself up for being clueless - you are a long way ahead of many people just by finding this site - just make a commitment to doing it the right way from this point on.

 

 

Ok Peggy. Thank you so much for this reply. It's like pieces falling just right into this puzzle. This is exactly what I will do. I'm going to go back to the 20 mg. tomorrow. Chill out. Think this through and do what I was originally intending to do.... make a freaking PLAN. Wow. What a learning curve this is and again, I can't thank you enough. My anxiety level just dropped to near zero.

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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  • Administrator

I have no idea how much 20 strokes of a nailfile on a Lexapro tablet would take off.

 

Usually people who are using the filing method add only one swipe at a time.

 

I strongly recommend a more systematic way to taper, either via a liquid or the digital scale.

 

Go back to 20mg and figure out what you want to do. You might save the tablets you filed for use in the future, if you should get a digital scale.

 

If you can't afford to put these tablets aside, you could ask a patient pharmacist to weigh a few whole 20mg tablets for you to see what the average weight is per milligram. Then weigh all of your filed ones, divide the total by average weight per milligram, you'll find out how many milligrams (approximately) you have in all. You might use these tablets for a DIY solution.

 

See Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

You may note that in none of our tips for tapering topics do we recommend filing a tablet! It's very imprecise.

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

 

I'm going to let this topic stand in Tapering, retitled, as a topic about the nailfile method.

 

Greeeeeeeeat!!! Glad I could help out with the " proper way to improperly do multiple things at once" :P

 

Oh well. I AM getting good advice and if this will in any way help others... well maybe what goes around comes around? Fingers and toes crossed. :)

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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Lexapro comes in a liquid, it doesn't need to be compounded. Please read the Tips topic.

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'm using a nail file in my Xanax taper, but I wouldn't recommend it unless you plan on going extremely slow and have a small dose to start with. My Xanax is only .5 mg, and it's too hard to measure even with my jeweler scale. I am in no hurry and I want this as painless as possible. So I take two swipes off 10 pills. Then after I take those, I take 4 swipes off 10 pills, etc. However, Benzo w/d reaction seems to peak sooner than antidepressants, so 10 days is fine to me. If I were doing this with antidepressants, I'd give it at last 3 weeks between reduction. I also agree that it's probably not a good idea to shave 20 pills at once, just in case you need to updose to correct a bad withdrawal reaction. With Benzos, they are less forgiving as a reupdose doesn't always fix the reaction, and that is why I'm going so very slow by using the file.

Taper from Cymbalta, Paxil, Prozac & Antipsychotics finished June 2012.

Xanax 5% Taper - (8/12 - .5 mg) - (9/12 - .45) - (10/12 - .43) - (11/12 - .41) - (12/12 - .38)

My Paxil Website

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  • Altostrata changed the title to Did I go wrong with my nailfile? Shaving or filing a tablet
  • 3 weeks later...

I know people on here are saying the nail file method is imprecise, but what if it is just to shave off .1 or .2 mg of a pill thats split in half when the doses arent even. For instance, my paroxetine 10 mg tablets are scored, and when cut in half, the halves are usually off by .2 or .3. I've decided to find a number i can make all of these halves by striking the pill just a handful of times to make them perfectly even every time using my scale. Does this sound ok?

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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tagging @Altostrata to check out my post above. I know this is a super old thread, though.

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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ChessieCat

The issue with doing it with a nail file is that some of the tablet powder will be left in the nail file.  It would probably be better to use a single edged razor blade to try to cut the tablet more evenly and then chip off a bit more with the blade if needed. 

 

Here's an example of the type I mean

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ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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Altostrata

Using common sense, I'd say any method that depends on eyeballing the result is going to be somewhat imprecise. You'll have to decide if the margin of error is tolerable 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

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@ChessieCat interesting. Couldn’t I just wash off the file after using it though? Razor could work though. 
 

@Altostrata if I’m weighing the pill after every few strikes, how is that eyeballing it? Especially since I’m only really trying to take off .3 or .2 mg. 

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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ChessieCat
11 minutes ago, Adili13 said:

Couldn’t I just wash off the file after using it though?

 

If you are always going to use the same nail file (a metal one would be best) then you wouldn't need to wash it.

 

If you are trying to weigh out half of a tablet and keep the rest for another half then by using a nail file you are going to "lose" some of the tablet.

 

14 minutes ago, Adili13 said:

if I’m weighing the pill after every few strikes, how is that eyeballing it? Especially since I’m only really trying to take off .3 or .2 mg. 

 

Yes, you are doing it to reduce the amount and then weighing it.  That is not eyeballing it.  It's the left over part of the tablet which will end up being less than half so you would need to add more to it to get the dose you need.

 

Suggestion:  you could try doing it with a nail file and then weighing the dose for a while and see how you feel.

NEW!!!              INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder               NEW!!! 

 

ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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@ChessieCat ok, I don’t think i explained myself clearly, my apologies. I want to get to take 15 mg of paroxetine and the pills only come in 10 mg scored tablets. After using a pill splitter and weighing the two sides to come up with 15 mg, I’ve found the variation between sides can be up to .5 mg, but is more commonly about .2 or .3 every time. To get a more perfect split after using the pill splitter, I simply was shaving off a bit of the halved pills and weighing them to get equal halves. 

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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ChessieCat

Well then using a razor blade will be more accurate and you won't lose tablet powder in the file.

NEW!!!              INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder               NEW!!! 

 

ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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ChessieCat

You could try using the razor blade to cut the tablet instead of the pill cutter.  The blade of a pile cutter may not cut as cleanly as a razor blade.

NEW!!!              INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder               NEW!!! 

 

ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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ChessieCat

The other option is to crush the pill and weigh the powder and take a 10mg whole tablet and 5mg powdered tablet.

NEW!!!              INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder               NEW!!! 

 

ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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Ahhhh, now that’s an idea! 
 

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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I think that’s smart, I’ll go for that probably 

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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Altostrata
21 hours ago, Adili13 said:

@ChessieCat ok, I don’t think i explained myself clearly, my apologies. I want to get to take 15 mg of paroxetine and the pills only come in 10 mg scored tablets. After using a pill splitter and weighing the two sides to come up with 15 mg, I’ve found the variation between sides can be up to .5 mg, but is more commonly about .2 or .3 every time. To get a more perfect split after using the pill splitter, I simply was shaving off a bit of the halved pills and weighing them to get equal halves. 

 

This could work, but as ChessieCat pointed out, you'd be wasting the smaller half-tablet, unless you saved it for further titration, which means you'd inevitably be weighing tablet fragments if you want a more precise dosing method.

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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@Altostrata So, I knew this would be a problem, and to avoid it, I weighed 20 pills and found the lowest weight of any of them. I decided I’d just weigh all my pills to this weight so I’m always just shaving the larger half to the desired weight. It’ll be about a 3 percent cut when the time comes, but it seems easier than trying to make it perfectly 15 every time. 

2008: start Lexapro 10 mg which is quickly upped to 20 mg. 2008:2013 try at least four individual times to get off Lexapro, never get lower than 5mg, settle at 15 mg. 2015: again, attempt to get off Lexapro and get to 5 mg. After 6 months, feel i'm stabilizing but go back on a higher dose because of one stressful event. 2016: go to 20 mg from 15 mg due to work stresses, hit severe tolerance for the first time and become very suicidal. 2016-2017: try viibryd and cymbata in an attempt to feel better. Also add Lamictal 150 at some point. 2017: eventually land on paxil 37.5 and Lamictal 150. January 2018: cut paxil to 25. April-July 2018: reduce Lamictal in 50 mg increments till im off August. 2018: reduce paxil to 20 mg. december 2018: dropped Paxil to 18 mg, SEVERE CRASH. March updosed to 20 mg April 11: dropped to 19.4 mg due to akathsia (still experiencing akathsia symptoms from updose) April 20: 19 mg Paxil May 4: 18.7 Paxil July 5: 18.2 July 12: 17.8 Aug 19: 17.5 Aug 26: 17.3 Oct 20: 17.1 Nov 3: 16.9, 8/17/20: 16.6 after nine month hold, 8/24/20: 16.4, 8/31/20:16.2, 9/14/2020: 16.0, 9/21/20: 15.8, 9/28/20: 15.6, 10/19/20:15.4, 10/26/20: 15.2, 11/2/20: 15.1, 11/7/20: 14.8 

 

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ChessieCat
16 minutes ago, Adili13 said:

I weighed 20 pills and found the lowest weight of any of them.

 

This topic discusses more fully how to get more accurate doses:

 

using-a-digital-scale-to-measure-doses

 

NEW!!!              INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder               NEW!!! 

 

ADs:  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 Oct 2015  Current from 14 Nov 2020:  Pristiq 0.50 mg

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

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

REMINDER TO SELF:  I don't need the drug now, but my still brain does.

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