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Is There Ever a Good Time to Taper?


Nikki

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I had posted this on my own thread. I don't really think there is an optimum time to taper or drop a dose. Unless you are clairvoyant. ;)

 

I was sharing that I did make my second drop, and lo and behold my elderly Mother began another Drama episode. This is her personality. Been like this forever... It lasted 4 days.

 

Unfortunately this brings up many childhood issues, and the end result is that I feel unmanageable. The manageability for myself is anger, guilt, sadness and alot of crying.

 

Eventually it passes until the next time. The guilt for being angry is a killer for me. I don't yell at her. I try to remain calm, but it does come across.

 

During tapers/drops in dose life crops up with unexpected bills, dentists, appliances needing replacement, work worries, etc. You know what I mean. These things during a taper tap into the Neuro-emotion stuff :huh: which stinks.

 

We never know what life is going to bring, which is why I really don't think there really is an ideal time to taper. Stuff happens.

 

I did ask this question on my thread: Am I the only person on this site who has family of origin drama or bad memories???????

 

Barb, Areyouthere had me laughing out loud with their responses. Maybe this is where the anxiety all began. You know, the scene of the crime ;)

 

Woke up yesterday and today unwell. Will most likely go back up in dose to get a hold on myself.

 

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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Can relate to the question about is there a good time to taper, I'm always looking for the optimum time to reduce and so does my husband because we don't want emotionals kicking in when we've got other things going on in life like say money issues, but ultimately there isn't always a good time because like you say, you can choose the optimum day and then, ta dah!! **** happens a few days later!!

I am thinking about my next reduction right now, and the last one has been a bit rough, the first really rough one I've had the whole time I've been tapering, and now, today, my husband has got a suspected deep vein thrombosis out of the blue and has a scan tomorrow. That's life.

 

I love your "family of origin ishoos". I think we all kind of have these. I daren't talk about my family on t'internet though! I know my anxieties originate from childhood/school experiences.

*** Please note this is not medical advice,discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner***





http://prozacwithdrawal.blogspot.com/
Original drug was sertraline/Zoloft, switched to Prozac in 2007.
Tapering from 5mls liquid prozac since Feb 2008, got down to 0.85ml 23/09/2012, reinstated back to 1ml(4mg) 07/11/2012, didn't appear to work, upped to 1.05ml 17/11/2012, back down to 1ml 12/12/2012 didn't work, up to 1.30ml 16/3/2013 didn't work, bumped up to 2ml (8mg) 4/4/2013 didn't work, in July 2013 I reinstated Sertraline (Zoloft) 50mg, feeling better now. 

A few months down the line I switched to 5ml liquid Prozac and tapered down to a compromise dose of 3ml liquid Prozac and have stayed there ever since, no withdrawals and no emotional blunting/loss of libido.

 

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i also wonder if maybe when we haven't tapered, issues pop up and we don't notice them because we are 'stable' It's sort of like waiting for the right time to have a baby. If you try and have everything 'just right' you may never get there. We are human and our issues make up the fabric of our life.

 

For me, I am trying to identify triggers and notice my unhelpful responses, because it is actually usually my responses that are damaging rather than the actual event.

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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Strawberry why was the last drop the toughest? What dose are you at and did the bad spell pass? Sorry about your husband. Good news is you caught it and it can be treated...

 

Peggy...yep we all have triggers, and I am better now at catching my response. Some of these triggers go very deep and very far back.

 

Thank goodness we have all been better parents to our children. We took what we learned and made a decision not to do whatever is was to our kids.

 

The post about Neuro-emotions is so true during a taper. I think we all try to pick the 'ideal' time to taper, but it never seems to arrive.

 

When I was tapering Lexapro I went from October thru January holding at 15mgs. for the Holidays. Some other stuff cropped up. Boy, I was so glad I stayed put for that season :D

 

Holidays are a good time to HOLD or STAY PUT.

 

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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My taper has been plain sailing all the way, withdrawals fairly transient. This time, for some reason I can't seem to shift the early morning anxiety, it does go through the morning thank goodness, maybe it is just how I am and nothing to do with withdrawal. I also went through 2/3 weeks of mild depression, that has gone, but I just felt waves of sadness, I think that bit was withdrawal.

*** Please note this is not medical advice,discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner***





http://prozacwithdrawal.blogspot.com/
Original drug was sertraline/Zoloft, switched to Prozac in 2007.
Tapering from 5mls liquid prozac since Feb 2008, got down to 0.85ml 23/09/2012, reinstated back to 1ml(4mg) 07/11/2012, didn't appear to work, upped to 1.05ml 17/11/2012, back down to 1ml 12/12/2012 didn't work, up to 1.30ml 16/3/2013 didn't work, bumped up to 2ml (8mg) 4/4/2013 didn't work, in July 2013 I reinstated Sertraline (Zoloft) 50mg, feeling better now. 

A few months down the line I switched to 5ml liquid Prozac and tapered down to a compromise dose of 3ml liquid Prozac and have stayed there ever since, no withdrawals and no emotional blunting/loss of libido.

 

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In my opinion there is never a good time to taper, sadly. Unless your taper is a breezy one, at some point no matter when you start you will probably feel like you picked the absolute worst time to taper.

 

A complicating factor, in my case, was i did not realize all the ways the antidepressants were affecting me until I was off of them. This is something that is discussed often and in retrospect really influenced my decision making.

 

In the end, unless there is a legitimate reason to postpone, I think the best time to start a taper is as soon as you can.

 

I think we all, people, tend to get caught up in "I'll do _blank_ in the future when..." type of thinking too often. Stressors will always be present. And that's another advantage of tapering generally. As stressors affect us, we can slow down or pause the taper.

"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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There's never an ideal time to taper, but if you do it slowly and systematically, you can always hold if life gets choppy.

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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A complicating factor, in my case, was i did not realize all the ways the antidepressants were affecting me until I was off of them. This is something that is discussed often and in retrospect really influenced my decision making.

 

This comes up a lot. I've seen it a lot with benzos in particular. People taking large doses of benzos have a hard time thinking clearly and absorbing information and that really affects how they approach their taper. It's quite frustrating.

 

This may not be what you meant, above, but it's an issue that comes up for me a lot--how the drugs and even the withdrawal symptoms affect a person's ability to think clearly, make good judgments, and taper wisely.

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 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                   1

 

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

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There's never an ideal time to taper, but if you do it slowly and systematically, you can always hold if life gets choppy.

 

Yeppers. That's sure been the key for me.

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 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                   1

 

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

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  • 3 weeks later...

I've noticed that it's possible to stay at a certain dosage for too long, too. I've had a couple times where I wanted to stay at a dose. I didn't feel overt symptoms, but I felt "fragile" as if some tipping point would be triggered if I did another taper. This was at the 2 month point of a dose. After feeling like that for a while, I decided to go ahead and taper, fearing that I was reaching a point of inertia. The next taper went fairly smoothly, and the fragile feeling started to dissipate. It's a delicate balance between tapering too fast and tapering too slow, I think. Once we start going down in dose, it becomes very hard to tell the difference between withdrawal symptoms and drug related symptoms.

Paxil/Paroxetine/Seroxat

2000 - 2011: 40mg/day

June, 2011: 30mg/day

July, 2011: 25mg/day

August, 2011: 20mg/day

September, 2011: 15mg/day

October, 2011: 10mg/day

November, 2011: 0mg/day

January, 2012: (crash), 10mg/day

April 24, 2012: 9mg/day

June 11, 2012: 8.1mg/day

July 26, 2012: 7.5mg/day

September 24, 2012: 6.8mg/day

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npanth I never thought about staying at a dose for too long. Probably because I am always in such a hurry, so I never did. Except once I stayed at 15mgs. Lexapro for a few months to get thru the Holidays at that time.

 

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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Share on other sites
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I'm the opposite Nikki, I've held a dose for months LOL I think partly because I've been stung so many times before I've gone to the opposite extreme now, and also I have a husband whose been through all of it with me and holds me back, sometimes we argue about it because I want to make the next cut and he wants me to hold a bit longer.

*** Please note this is not medical advice,discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner***





http://prozacwithdrawal.blogspot.com/
Original drug was sertraline/Zoloft, switched to Prozac in 2007.
Tapering from 5mls liquid prozac since Feb 2008, got down to 0.85ml 23/09/2012, reinstated back to 1ml(4mg) 07/11/2012, didn't appear to work, upped to 1.05ml 17/11/2012, back down to 1ml 12/12/2012 didn't work, up to 1.30ml 16/3/2013 didn't work, bumped up to 2ml (8mg) 4/4/2013 didn't work, in July 2013 I reinstated Sertraline (Zoloft) 50mg, feeling better now. 

A few months down the line I switched to 5ml liquid Prozac and tapered down to a compromise dose of 3ml liquid Prozac and have stayed there ever since, no withdrawals and no emotional blunting/loss of libido.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

"In my opinion there is never a good time to taper." That, in a nutshell sums up why I stayed on so long. That is why the accidental w/d I experienced due to generic switch (see my intro. story)was an involuntary, but necessary reminder of how at the mercy of this drug I was.Now I am committed to getting off it.Otherwise, I might have stayed with the status quo forever. The involuntary nature of that w/d due to the generic switch highlights how hard it it to make the voluntary decision to taper (finding a good time to do it). Knowing how excruciating the w/d is--especially when done too fast, it was always at the back of my mind that something could happen (like a natural disaster, or they stop making the drug) that would make me unable to obtain the drug and force sudden w/d. It reminds me of when I worked at a methadone clinic and I met heroin addicts who were only able to detox when they were in jail. I want to take more control of my life than that.

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There's never a great time to taper but some times are better than others. I once dropped my dose when I had PMS really bad. This coincided with a full moon and increased work stress. This was not the best week of my life! So I have learnt to go gentle with myself and time my drops a bit better.

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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Dalsaan, I agree. There may not be a fantastic time to taper, but there are certainly bad times. I picked a predictably bad time... Oh well.

B

2005 St John's Wort / 2006-2012 Lexapro 20mg, 2 failed attempts to stop, tapered over 4.5 months in early 2012

January 2013 started Sertraline, over time worked up to 100mg

July 2014 Sertraline dropped from 100mg to 75mg, held for six months, slower tapering until 2019 22 Dec 3.2mg

2020 Sertraline 19 Jan 3.1mg, 26 Jan 3.0mg; 1 Mar 2.9, 7 Mar 2.8, May (some drops here) 24 May 2.5, May 29 2.4, June 21 2.3, June 28 2.2mg,  July 4 2.1mg, July 24 (or maybe a bit before) 2mg, early Nov switched to home made suspension; 29 Nov 1.8mg; approx 25 Dec 1.6mg)

2021 Some time in about Jan/Feb realised my dosing was off and as probably on more like 1.8mg and possible mixing error in making suspension; doses after 10 Feb accurate; 10 Feb 1.6mg; 7 Mar 1.4

 

My thread here at SA: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1775-bubbles/page/17/

CurrentSertraline: 7 Mar 1.4mg / Armour Thyroid / endless allergy meds, erg

 

 

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