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Petunia

Hi Alex,

I only just saw your post too. What symptoms have come back? Did you try the St Johns Wort?

I had a bad reaction to it, so wouldn't advise trying it.


I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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Petunia

Hey Alex,

I'm wondering how you are, you haven't posted in a while. Did you ever try the St. Johns Wort?


I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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alex

Hello, I am Alex and I haven`t been here for a while.Next month it's going to be 4 years off.

I wish I had better news but I'm afraid not.

Lately, I've been having horrific powerful waves, with off the charts anxiety, depression, feeling of doom, insomnia, high cortisol nights..the whole combo...

I don`t know if the thing that is triggering this awful setback is a new part time job that I just got.

I feel that I am between a rock and a hard place here, because I need the money, but the stress trigers the wave...

On the other hand I've had clear windows up to 10-11 days in wich I thought I was out of the woods...and then, bam!!

I would really appreciate some encouraging words especially from those long termers out there.

Thank you.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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cymbaltawithdrawal5600

Alex, you know there is only 1 intro topic to a member, yours is here:

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/3298-%E2%98%BC-alex-withdrawal-or-relapse/

 

A mod (hopefully ) will move this post there for you. I will make a comment then. Glad to see you, sorry things not going so well.


What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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alex

I am sorry. I forgot.It is just that I am in such a bad shape right now.

Please I need some feedback...


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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daveycrocket

Hey Alex. Although somewhat new to withdrawal, I totally relate to what you're going through: I was fine for a few days last week, and now totally a mess again. It's exhausting. I try to tell myself "this is just withdrawal" but the lows become scary low and it's just mentally exhausting to be feeling like such garbage for hours and days on end. My only advice would be to try and reflect on what you're experiencing, journal your thoughts, and recognize that "this too shall pass." Try to objectively few your symptoms. Focus on calming activities. Hope this helps.


Currently: 4G of Fish Oil (4 Capsules) w/ Vitamin E; Sam-E @ 400MG

 

May 1, 2016: CT from .5MG of Risperdal & 1MG of Clonapin 

Feb 1, 2016: CT from 75MG of Nardil (MAOI) - used for anxiety/panic/depression for 2+ years.

 

Prior to 2014: Tried several meds with varying success and generally for less than a year: Lexapro (some success, stopped working); Effexor (worked for a bit); Paxil (worked but lost my sex drive); Zoloft (again, sexual side effects); Cymbalta (didn't do much)

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SquirrellyGirl

Hi Alex, 

 

I have  merged your new intro with your old one so your history stays together.  You can bookmark your Intro so you can find it.  And of course be sure you've clicked "Follow this topic" so you get notifications when people respond.

 

I'm sorry that you are in another wave, brought on by stress, no doubt.  Have you tried mindfulness?  Focus on your breathing, the sensation of the breath moving in and out, the rise and fall of the belly, sensation of air leaving your nostrils...And if your mind wanders to thoughts, don't judge yourself, just notice that your mind wandered and then bring it back to the breath.  Five minutes a couple of times a day could really help you out.  I find the mantra "peacefully accept things as they are" very calming.

 

Just to get a current review, how long has it been since you came off the Xanax and quetiapine?

 

Yes, a new job=stress.  And you've had windows, so we know this will pass.  I think your primary objective for now should be finding ways of coping with the stress.   Are you troubled or worried about performance?  

 

I have a tendency to latch on to the last thing that I learned and thought was fabulous, and so the most recent thing was this youtube video that CW5600 shared, about Dan Harris and his journey to finding mindfulness.  He is a journalist who was on a major network news program here in the states, and he was basically burning the candle at both ends without self awareness, and ended up having a panic attack in front of millions of viewers.  You might give this a watch:  https://www.youtube.com/embed/Dt5Qv9tUObI.  It's a very entertaining presentation - he is very engaging.

 

I think the closer we can get to letting stress float on by, the better we will be able to avoid or delay waves, just a theory on my part.

 

Wishing you peace :-)

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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alex

Thank you Squirrel.

I just can`t believe I am almost back to square one after all these years.Where did all the healing go?

This is awful.I am sorry.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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SquirrellyGirl

You aren't back to square one, Alex - the healing that your system has accomplished is still there, it's just that there was more to be done.  Remember this video?  Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

I love his post about the what is happening in the brain.  Though it is about benzo withdrawal, the concept is the same for ADs, and you were on Zanax so perhaps recovering from that is still in the mix: What is happening in your brain?

 

Particularly:

 

The process to reverse this takes a while.  GABA receptors have to UPregulate and effectively "reopen" or "grow back".  Glutamate receptors must DOWNregulate, or effectively "turn off" or "prune back".  And IN this mix, all the smaller monoamines (neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine) must somehow find a way to synthesize in the mix.  Through weeks and months the body is rebuildling millions of neurons, and changing pathways, rebuilding GABA, downregulating Glutamate, rebuilding serotonin, rebuilding dopamine, rebuilding norepinephrine.  And ALL the enzymes and hormones that need to be made are attempting to be made while this is going on.  Basically- you have a building where the MAJOR streel structures are [...] to be rebuilt at different times - ALL while people are coming and going in the building and attempting to work.

It would be like if the World Trade Center Towers hadn't completely fallen - but had crumbled inside in different places.. Imagine if you were [...] to rebuild the tower - WHILE people were coming and going and [...] to work in the building!  You'd have to set up a temporary elevator - but when you needed to fix part of that area, you'd have to tear down that elevator and set up a temporary elevator somewhere else. And so on. You'd have to build, work around, then tear down, then build again, then work around, then build... ALL while people are coming and going, ALL while the furniture is being replaced, ALL while the walls are getting repainted... ALL while [...] is going on INSIDE the building. No doubt it would be chaotic. That is EXACTLY what is happening with windows and waves.  The windows are where the body has "got it right" for a day or so - but then the building shifts and the brain works on something else - and it's chaos again while another temporary pathway is set up to reroute function until repairs are made. 

 

Read the whole post because she goes over what regions of the brain lead to what.  I find this a very soothing post, and even though this is happening so many years out, it is a sign that the nervous system is still fragile, and the stress of a new job triggered it to realize that it still has some recovery to do.  

 

Hugs!!!!!

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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alex

Thanks a lot for taking your time to post me.

Yes, this is a very complex, painful process.

In my case, I was on hefty dose of one of the most toxic AD: Effexor.

But as I told you, I have seen a lot of overall improvement, but this powerful waves are hard to bare.

Thank you again for this post, it gives me hope to keep going.

 

Hugs to you dear Squirrel


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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cymbaltawithdrawal5600

Please bear with me on this, it took a bit of time to get it formatted correctly and I am only taking the time for you because you are one of the oldtimers and have always been really sweet to me.

 

Here is how long it should have taken you to taper off effexor at the rate we suggest:

 

Current dose 'x' mg =150 mg

I desire to taper down to 0.1 mg

Using a taper rate of 10' % of previous dose

I define my intervals (I) between drops as every 4 weeks

No. of  Intervals needed for tapering = 71

Then you will need to taper for  284 Weeks  = 5.5 Calendar years = 65.5 Calendar months  71 Intervals (weeks, rounded up)

1,988  Days 

 

This is from a spreadsheet worked up by Nz11

 

Here's what you actually did (as near as I can figure out):

 

Date started tapering  4/26/2012    
Date drug free  7/26/2012    
Start dose    150.00    
Jump off dose  1.00    
Define your intervals between drops  1.00     weeks
                
Your avg taper speed was  34.13%     OPD
34.1%        drops  every     1.00     weeks
OPD  (Of Previous Dose).                

You tapered for        13     Weeks.    
    =    0.3    Calendar years    
    =    3.0        Calendar months    
 91     Days    13.00     Intervals   (weeks) 

 

It may not be super accurate, I did not have your actual drop off dose and you can't put a ZERO amount into a formula. You clobbered your body with a drop like that off that drug.

 

You (and most everyone else) incorrectly assume that once you are so many years out away from the drugs and you have had periods of feeling recovered, that you are home free and won't feel wd syndrome symptoms ever again. (At 4 years you would be a year and a half away from ending your taper, you'd still be on the drug if you had known what to do.)

 

I say, not so. You are still healing and you mentioned stress: yep, that will do it. You have to learn how to manage stress and take care of yourself. There is not much we here can do for you except to ask: are you still eating a balanced diet? Getting daily exercise outdoors in the sun? Taking your magnesium and omega 3? Drinking plenty of liquids? Getting enough sleep?

 

When the symptoms flare up for any reason you have to go back to basics. All these things will be important for the rest of your life. 4 years is just the beginning of healing.... but it's a solid start.

 

What can we do for you? Want a squishy humid sweaty hug from south FL? You got it! I'll even throw in a sisterly smooch!


What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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SquirrellyGirl

Hugs back to you, Sweetie!  Remember, it's a wave, not permanent. Tough to still have them this far out, but another bout of healing :-)

 

Have a nice weekend and treat yourself with kindness :-)

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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ang

Hi Alex, so sorry to hear you are suffering.     Effexor was my demon,  150 I think?    

 

 3 years now off that devil called Effexor.    I didnt make it in one shot off the effexor,  did a horrific dive, and ended up on a cocktail,  18 months off that cocktail  now.

 

I know, how horrific it is when I feel terrible, feels like every day of my whole life has been total hell,                      but it hasnt,  just feels like that in a wave, your sounds real bad.      You said you had a bad wave before, and recovered failrly fast,  I hope you can also recover from this one fairly quickly. 

 

Hang in there     hugs         Thankyou for the chart Cymabltawithdrawal, that is helping me immensely, when I view how I should have tapered, like that.


1992 Dothiepin 375mg 8 weeks, exhaustion/depression.  Serotonin syndrome, oh yes!  seizures . Fell pregnant, 3rd baby, Nitrous Oxide, 3 weeks mental hospital pp psychosis. zoloft tegretol.

Feb 1996 ct tegretol, tapered Zoloft 8 weeks. as (unexpectedly)  pregnant. Steven died after 3 days.(Zolft HLHS baby).  98 had run in with Paxil, 2 tablets, 3 weeks taper, survived.
2005..menopause? exhausted again. Zyprexa, mad in three days, fallout....  Seroquel, Effexor, tegretol,   and 8 years of self destruction. Failed taper.
Damn 1/4 valium... nuts again! .fallout, zoloft 100mg  seroquol 400mg mirtazapine 45 mg  tegretol 400mg.  Mid 14 3 month taper. Nov 14 CRASH.
Mid 15 ....   75mg  seroquel,  3 x 1800mg SJW  2 week window end of December followed by 6 week wave
5/2 68mg seroquel, 2.5 x 1800mg SJW::::20/2 61mg seroquel, 2.5 x  SJW::: 26/2 54mg seroquel, 2 x SJW::::21/3 43mg seroquel, 1 x 2700SJW :::: 23/4 36mg seroquel 1 x 1800 SJW
15/5 33mg seroquel, 1 x SJW::::   28/5 30mg seroquel, 1 x SJW::::;  18/6 25mg seroquel 1/2 SJW::::, 11/7 21mg seroquel 1/2 SJW::, 26/7 18mg seroquel 1/2 SJW:::, 9/8 12mg seroquel :::, 16/8 6mg seroquel ;;;;, 12/9 0 jump.

23/9  3mg.....,  27/9 0mg.  Reinstated, 6mg, then 12mg.............  LIGHTBULB MOMENT,  I have  MTHFR 2x mutations.  CFS and issues with MOULD in my home. So I left home, and working 150km away during week, loving it.

Oh was hard, panic attacks first week, gone now, along with the mould issues.

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alex

Thank you so much for taking your time to post me.

It really gives me a boost to kep going

I am in a clear window again.

The most persisting symptom is broken sleep.My REM sleep is severely damaged.I manage to sleep in patches through the night though.It is incredible how mind and body adapt to this awful situation.

I am in the roller coaster.Last month I had 19 good or very good days, and 12 bad or very bad days.

I am doing much better with the new job stress.I can feel my brain and body struggling to find balance.I know it will some day.

 

Thank you again.

 

Hugs,A.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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SquirrellyGirl

Hey, that's pretty good - more good than bad days!  :-)

 

I am so glad to hear that you are dealing with the job stress, amazing, really, given how you were feeling just last week or so!

 

So many people have the sleep issue, and what I have gleaned from the ones who are doing well is that they just try to not get anxious about not being able to sleep, first of all, and that they accept rest as good enough.  What I mean by that is that they will lay quietly, maybe meditate, and just let their body rest, even if not sleeping.  

 

When I have had wakefulness, I have used Emotional Freedom Techniques (tapping) with the set-up phrase "Even though I can't sleep, I deeply and completely love and accept myself."  I used to have to tap a few rounds before falling back asleep.  Now, if I find myself awake, I just say the set-up phrase in my mind without actually going to the trouble of tapping, and I fall back asleep!  I guess that is re-wiring for you!  That repetition is so important, as that is what rewires the brain.

 

I think you're just going to keep getting better, Alex - good to track your window and wave days if it helps you see that the waves never last and you are getting more good than bad!

 

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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alex

After a 10 day window of good or very good days, I'm back into a hellish wave of horrible anxiety, despair and fear...

I am going through a well established pattern now: 10-11 days ok, and 10-11 days miserable.

I can barely write due to awful anxiety.How much more of this torment?


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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alex

It is awsome the extreme swings of mood that I'm getting:from being almost normal,happy, able to interact with people in parties, etc, to become an emotional disabled wreck....holly cow!!


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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alex

The most brutal wave since March 2015

Survival mode.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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SquirrellyGirl

I'm so sorry, Alex - ride the wave!  It may be that with this one things will heal for good.  You can do this!

 

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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mammaP

Hi Alex, I'm sorry to see that you are in another wave. Hang in there Alex this one will pass just like all the others did. You have started a new job and that must be stressful! Sending Mamma hugs to Costa Rica, I hope this one passes very soon for you.


**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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alex

Thank you so much my dear friends.

Today I'm doing better.

Hoping for the window to open again.

 

From "the steaming jungles of Central America...." (some US president said that) big hugs to you too.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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Petunia

I'm sorry a nasty wave has brought you back to the site Alex, but its good to hear from you, I often wonder how you're doing. Congrats on the new job, I'm sure your symptoms will settle down again as you become more relaxed at work.

 

Sending hugs your way from Australia, I hope this wave passes quickly, it sounds like you have some good recovery happening there.


I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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alex

At 4 years out I'm struggling with the most powerful wave.

Out of the charts anxiety,crushing depression, insomnia,night cortisol....and a new symptom: dispnea (breathlessness)

I am isolated,disabled,lonely,can`t work, can`t eat, can`t sleep, I am a living dead.

Trying to find meaning not to end this **** once and for all.

I am sorry.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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gn11

Alex...I just read your post ...sorry about your suffering. Just to let you know that someone is hearing you.


2006-2007 Lexapro (not sure of dose) in 2006

2007 Stopped abruptly. Developed serious wd symptom.Went back after two weeks and  tapered successfully over 3 months

November 2013  started 10 mg of Celexa for hormonal symptoms

early 2014 cutdown Celexa to 5 mg.Attempted to get off it November 2014 and had a difficult time. Went back to 5 mg and stayed until about a month ago. Had eye surgery for glaucoma (left eye-mini-shunt implant)

March-April 2016 developed multiple problems: ringing of ears, ear infections, multiple allergies. Tested negative to allergies  

Anxiety increased  every time I used  an OTC or had stress.April-May Cortisol spike problems increased.

June 9 Found this website while doing research on cortisone and celexa.

Went back between 5 and 10 mg a couple of times. Currently trying to stabilize at 7.5.   and  taking  a leave from work and comeback part-time.

Started taking liquid Celexa 6/15/2016 at 3.75 ml

Other meds: Dorzalamide/timolol for glaucoma twice a day andLatanoprost in the evening.

Vitamin D 2000 mg;vitamin C 500 mg; Lysine 1000 mg 2 x a day. Acupuncture twice a week; meditation; relaxing music daily. 150 mg of Magnesium as of 6/15.

 

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SquirrellyGirl

Alex, please hang on and let this wave roll by.  We are all rooting for you!  It will subside, so redouble your efforts to care for yourself to get through this wave and not let the secondary fear build. Try to take three deep meditative breaths.  I'm taking three deep breaths right now in honor of you :-)  Imagine holding yourself as a child, comforting him to get through feeling bad.  I find such imagery helpful.  You've gotten through these in the past and you can get through this one too, I know you can!

 

 

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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alex

I am hanging on.

Thank you dear friends.


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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alex

Hello.

Does anybody knows how Squirrel is doing??


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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alex

At four years off, this is my situation: I am in the roller-coaster of hell.Half the month ok or better, and the other half deep in the most miserable condition.

Symptoms during the windows, are much better, in fact, there are days when my life is almost normal.But, the waves are NOT getting any lighter or better.

As a matter of fact, I have been having such powerful waves lately almost as bad or worse than the begining.

My symptoms are almost all emotional: awful anxiety, so bad, that I have to lock myself in my bedroom and scream like mad...depression, very severe depression,

obsession with death, absolutely suicidal,crushing tiredness, and terrible broken sleep. I haven't sleep more than one hour straight in more than 4 years!!

My sexual life is destroyed due to premature ejaculation.

All of this has created a big trauma, and even when they tell me that We heal from this nightmare, my BIG question is: how much longer??

Am I too old to heal?? is Effexor a different kind of drug that makes more harm than the regular SSRIS?

As you can see, I am very very scared and tired from all this...and don't want to die , but I don't want to live like this...


4 years aprox. on 150mgs.Effexor for situational major depression.No AD before.
Tapered 150-0mgs in 3 months.

Tapered Quetiapine,Xanax in the last 18 months.NO med of any kind anymore.
First 3 months off acute w/d
Protracted w/d ever since.
Symptoms:Anxiety,anhedonia,insomnia,tinnitus,PSSD

04/13/2014 Awful Relapse.Recovered fairly fast.

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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JanCarol

Hey Alex, I'm sorry this has been extended pain for you.

 

I don't have time to go back over your whole history.

 

I hear you, when you say you are suffering.  You are not alone.

 

There are others who have suffered too, and got better.  

 

Please, look at what you can do, and go to these places.  My husband, after his stroke, now likes to watch game shows - he enjoys trying to guess the puzzles, and the happy feelings when someone wins.  Some people are finding amazing inner resources chasing Pokemon GO.  Some of us can exercise, some of us cannot, or it is limited.  Find what you can do - and do that.  It seems like forest bathing is an excellent healer for you.

 

I'm not with you, but you are not alone.  I encourage you to look at some success stories:

http://http://igotbetter.org/videos

http://igotbetter.org/stories

 

and

 

http://cepuk.org/recovery-stories/

 

and here, on SA:

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/3523-success-recovery-from-protracted-zoloft-withdrawal-and-pssd

 

It can get better, it does take time.  If it is taking too much time - then perhaps there is something in your own situation, views, activities, that is making things harder for you.

 

Look to the things which make things easier.  You have windows, for up to 2 weeks, this is an awesome sign.  I hope you see the forest - and the trees - today.


"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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SquirrellyGirl

Hello Alex, just checking in on you.  Are you still able to work?  I know awhile back you got a new job and it triggered a wave.  I was just thinking about you, so how are you doing?  

 

SG


Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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Altostrata

Very happy to see a new Success Story from alex! 

 

In accord with our custom, I'm locking this topic, as alex's story continues in alex Turning the corner at 4 and a half years


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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