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Stabilizing - what does that mean?

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ikam

Bump.  Stability.  

 

My big lesson for today is that a hold is harder work than a taper.

 

We get impatient and want to take it down and down, or a pdoc pressures us into discontinuing since we're not at "therapeutic levels" anyway.

 

But to hold.  And hold.  And hold.  and wait until you're not suffering before you do a cut - and plan that cut weeks in advance.  And talk it over here, in SA, and with your support team if you have it.  If you hear enough people say, "I think you're doing really well," then a plan your next taper. 

 

Most of you are young, a year or two added to your taper is nothing - especially since you start to feel immeasurably better once you get down to 50% of "therapeutic dose."  Your head starts to clear, you start to take interest in things, you may care more about people, or even feel creative again.  And that's the payoff for the head zaps, blinding flashes, gut trouble, sinus difficulty, restlessness - that you had to go through to get there.

 

Holding is the key, for me.  It makes me feel like I am in control of the process.  If my life is disrupted, then it's time to hold.  If I'm having health issues or symptoms, then it's time to hold.  Holds are my friend, and I can feel the healing taking place during them.

 

But there is a possibility of permanent damage.  And maybe holding forever just increases the side effects you are suffering.  It's really difficult, in withdrawal, to separate drug side effects from w/d.  In that case, trying a taper is probably warranted, if the hold doesn't seem to be improving things.  You can always reinstate if it goes amiss.  And by tapers and reinstate, I'm talking the smallest possible amount.  5% maybe.  What I think of as a "test taper" to see if it's okay.

I agree, it is difficult to separate drug side effects from WD. Moreover, I am finding it difficult to separate this from my personality traits...as far as I remember I always suffered...Also, it is difficult to judge when there are ongoing life related problems...

I have been oversensitive all my life...

The only new symptom for me at present is paresthesia...


- 30 September 2020- reduced doxepin to 125mg

- May 2020, omeprazole 40mg switched to esomeprazole 20mg

- 2012 re-started Doxepin 75mg, evening. Increased to 150mg

- 2012, Atenolol 25mg, twice a day

- 2016, Low dose of HRT in evening, Sandrena and Utrogestan 

- Long terms of Nasal spray Otrivine

- 2012, PPI Omeprazole 40mg-evening

24.10.2014- Started ESCITALOPRAM-first 5mg and then 10mg; due to the adverse symptoms reduced on 5.01.2015- Escitalopram- 2.5mg 22.07.2016- re-started reduction by 1% at a time. Completed tappering on  19.03.2020 😇

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Narcissus

Thank you for the wise words, JanCarol, and for bumping a helpful thread.

 

After two years now of staying at  75 mgs of Effexor I feel like I'm finally approaching true stability, and boy it feels good.  This leads me to believe that I was experiencing mostly withdrawal symptoms and not side effects from the Effexor.  This makes sense, as I never really experienced any serious difficulties until I tried to come off of the Effexor.  I'm not discounting that withdrawal can change the way we react to the drug, or saying that we don't we have to look for adverse reactions to it.  But in my case, and I'm sure in many of your cases, the profound stress of trying to kick the drug too quickly seems to be the culprit for most if not all of my withdrawal symptoms.  

 

I hope people can give themselves enough time to heal before tapering.  You may get that panicked feeling that you need to get the drug out of your system, but this feeling can be very misleading I think.  It makes it seem like the nature of the problem is the presence of the drug in the body, when I think it's really our body's dependence on the drug, and when we've built this dependence up for a long period of time it needs to be gradually reversed.  

 

Sending love and patience everyone's way.


3 Years 150 mgs Effexor

2 month taper down to zero

3 terrible weeks at zero

Back up to 75 mgs

2 months at 75

6 or so months back to regular dose of 150 - was able to restabilize fine.

3 month taper back to zero

1 HORRENDOUS week at zero

2 days back up to 37.5

3 days back up to 75

One week at 150 - unable to stabilize.

Back down to 75 mgs

At 75 mgs (half original dose) and suffering withdrawal symptoms since October 2012.

 

"It is a radical cure for all pessimism to become ill, to remain ill for a good while, and then grow well for a still longer period." - Nietzsche

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ikam

How to judge if I am stable or not?

Depressed, low mood is something normal for me...

Wanting to die, suicidal, it is normal for me...

Lonely, it is normal...

Oversensitive, especially to noises, it is normal...

Fight, flight, it is normal...

Pains, aches, diarrhea, seems also normal...

 

Paresthesia is gone...


- 30 September 2020- reduced doxepin to 125mg

- May 2020, omeprazole 40mg switched to esomeprazole 20mg

- 2012 re-started Doxepin 75mg, evening. Increased to 150mg

- 2012, Atenolol 25mg, twice a day

- 2016, Low dose of HRT in evening, Sandrena and Utrogestan 

- Long terms of Nasal spray Otrivine

- 2012, PPI Omeprazole 40mg-evening

24.10.2014- Started ESCITALOPRAM-first 5mg and then 10mg; due to the adverse symptoms reduced on 5.01.2015- Escitalopram- 2.5mg 22.07.2016- re-started reduction by 1% at a time. Completed tappering on  19.03.2020 😇

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Rhiannon

 

 

I hope people can give themselves enough time to heal before tapering.  You may get that panicked feeling that you need to get the drug out of your system, but this feeling can be very misleading I think.  It makes it seem like the nature of the problem is the presence of the drug in the body, when I think it's really our body's dependence on the drug, and when we've built this dependence up for a long period of time it needs to be gradually reversed.  

 

Sending love and patience everyone's way.

 

Yep, that's the conclusion I've had to come to, after seeing so many peoples' journeys over the years. I mean yes, there are definitely people having bad reactions to the meds, but I actually think that's probably only about a third of the people who think they are having bad reactions to the meds, and most of the time they're having compounded withdrawal due to not allowing their brains time to achieve homeostasis.

 

Holds really are just as important as reductions. 

 

There's a discussion of this in the Slowness of Slow Tapers thread. I won't attempt to reiterate it here but there's some good stuff there, some links to a couple of good articles, if anyone would like more insight into why we need to give our brains lots and lots and lots of time to balance and heal, as part of the "getting off drugs" process.

 

And remember my "trellis" analogy: Our brains on these drugs are like plants trained on a trellis. The trellis is the chemistry induced by the drug. The plant is the brain. If you want the plant to regain its natural shape and health, you need to remove the trellis, but if you yank that trellis out too fast, the yanking is going to cause a lot of damage, because the plant has integrated the trellis into its shape and structure. 

 

We see a lot of people here in the aftermath of having torn the trellis away too fast, or suffering from pulling it out chunk by chunk faster than the plant can reshape itself and grow its own support, so it is struggling and collapsing.

 

You need to remove the drug a wee bit at a time and then allow the brain to heal, then remove a bit more and allow more healing, etc.


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

 

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

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Rhiannon

How to judge if I am stable or not?

Depressed, low mood is something normal for me...

Wanting to die, suicidal, it is normal for me...

Lonely, it is normal...

Oversensitive, especially to noises, it is normal...

Fight, flight, it is normal...

Pains, aches, diarrhea, seems also normal...

 

Paresthesia is gone...

 

Given your history as you describe in your sig line, I am not surprised that this is your normal. 

 

Normal and stable are not the same thing. It can be normal to be stable, but it can also be normal to be very sick and messed up. For many, many years when I was changing meds, always cutting back on my doses or skipping doses because I hated the side effects, I was suicidal, miserable, dysfunctional. I was also pretty miserable even when I was taking the drugs as prescribed, because that's what happens to a lot of people on these drugs. The long term outcomes are not good.

 

So during that time, feeling sick and miserable, craving death, and not being able to work or function was normal for me. But I was not stable.

 

All the symptoms you describe above are typical for withdrawal, and from your sig line it sounds like you've been making some aggressive cuts, so I'm not surprised to hear it. I'm sorry for your suffering.

 

It's a tricky thing, to balance between the bad effects of tapering too fast, and the bad effects of the drugs themselves. There's no easy answer. Overall, I would say, people get the best results by erring on the side of going a bit too slow, mostly because we all have such a strong urge to go too fast.


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

 

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

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ikam

 

How to judge if I am stable or not?

Depressed, low mood is something normal for me...

Wanting to die, suicidal, it is normal for me...

Lonely, it is normal...

Oversensitive, especially to noises, it is normal...

Fight, flight, it is normal...

Pains, aches, diarrhea, seems also normal...

Paresthesia is gone...

 

 

Given your history as you describe in your sig line, I am not surprised that this is your normal. 

 

Normal and stable are not the same thing. It can be normal to be stable, but it can also be normal to be very sick and messed up. For many, many years when I was changing meds, always cutting back on my doses or skipping doses because I hated the side effects, I was suicidal, miserable, dysfunctional. I was also pretty miserable even when I was taking the drugs as prescribed, because that's what happens to a lot of people on these drugs. The long term outcomes are not good.

 

So during that time, feeling sick and miserable, craving death, and not being able to work or function was normal for me. But I was not stable.

 

All the symptoms you describe above are typical for withdrawal, and from your sig line it sounds like you've been making some aggressive cuts, so I'm not surprised to hear it. I'm sorry for your suffering.

 

It's a tricky thing, to balance between the bad effects of tapering too fast, and the bad effects of the drugs themselves. There's no easy answer. Overall, I would say, people get the best results by erring on the side of going a bit too slow, mostly because we all have such a strong urge to go too fast.

Yes, I thought about my time-line with regards to meds and that I must have been in some withdrawal before, but that time nobody spoke about withdrawals...

 

Yes, I have a strong urge to go faster, but also listen to wise suggestions...

I want to feel stable, whatever it means for me...

 

Many symptoms I had before being put on meds. I started feelind depressed, suicidal when I was around 14 years old...

What I presented with were mostly symptoms of complex trauma...that time I started drinking alcohol...

No wonder, that I dont know what stable means...


- 30 September 2020- reduced doxepin to 125mg

- May 2020, omeprazole 40mg switched to esomeprazole 20mg

- 2012 re-started Doxepin 75mg, evening. Increased to 150mg

- 2012, Atenolol 25mg, twice a day

- 2016, Low dose of HRT in evening, Sandrena and Utrogestan 

- Long terms of Nasal spray Otrivine

- 2012, PPI Omeprazole 40mg-evening

24.10.2014- Started ESCITALOPRAM-first 5mg and then 10mg; due to the adverse symptoms reduced on 5.01.2015- Escitalopram- 2.5mg 22.07.2016- re-started reduction by 1% at a time. Completed tappering on  19.03.2020 😇

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RubyTuesday

for me, stabilizing means that regardless of how rotten i may feel, I am still able to sustain my daily survival activities as well as my daily regimen of spiritual exercises (exercise, meditations, meetings, etc.). If I can not sustain my daily activities at all for more than 2 to 3 days, then the reduction is too severe and it would be good to reinstate to the former dose or at least halfway back up.

 

I like the analogy of a broken or sprained limb. If I can move it around at all, it may hurt, but that's good, but I should go slow and not try to go out and run a marathon. on the other hand, it moving it doubles me up in spasms, I should probably leave it in the cast for awhile longer. 

 

tapering off of psych meds is the most excruciatingly difficult thing I have ever done, and that's saying a lot in my case. PATIENCE IS ESSENTIAL.

Ruby


2002: "Situational depression" 2002-2010:Prozac.Birth Control.2011 Short trials: Paxil, Celexa, Lexipro, Wellbutrin, Xanax, Ativan- Gee, Doc never mentioned protracted AD wd syndrome. Imagine that. 2011-2015. Lamictal. Seroquel. Remiron. 2012: "Complex post traumatic stress disorder." Fast taper of Remiron jumped off June 2013. Slow tapers ever since of Seroquel & Lamictal.  crippling muscle spasms. crying fits. panic attacks. akathisia. nerve twitches. the jitters. the heebie jeebies. de-personal/realization. numbness. tingling. fatigue. lethargy. nightmares.insomnia. weird images. eye pain.vertigo. dizziness. brain zaps. and on and on and on. withdrawal? side effects? which drug? impossible to know. Stopped Seroquel October 2015.  Stopped Lamictal  March 2016. Had more severe muscle/joint spasms that paralyzed me for 3 days at a time, last episode was March 2017.Going back to work as of February 2018 after 14 years off full-time work due to the crippling effects of psych meds. Check out Robert Whittaker "Anatomy of an Epidemic" for  his breakdown of the rates of mental disability  since the introduction of Prozac into the human population. Best solutions for me: Social support via AA meetings. Acupuncture. Meditation. Dance. Nature. Yoga. Social support online with psych med survivor community. Nutrition. Exercise. More outdoor time. Go sit in the sunshine for 5 minutes. Touch a tree. Breathe deeply.

 

 

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Songbird

For me it usually takes four to six weeks, but occasionally it may take longer, sometimes months.  Since my last failed taper attempt, I am very careful to listen to my body and do not cut until I feel really stable, even if it takes many months.


2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 July 2.9mg

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Jonesy3

Hello! Quick question. I just started my first taper (did 10% cut from current dose). I know to hold for at least a month, but I wondered how long (an average, obviously) do the taper symptoms tend to last after each cut? I'm only experiencing very mild symptoms, mostly fatigue, but wanted some feedback! Thanks!


*2000: Started Paxil CR 20 mcg at age 13

*Fall 2009: Came off Paxil CR 20 mcg cold-turkey

*Summer 2012: Reinstated Paxil CR 20 mcg

*April 2015: Started taper from 20mcg

*August 2015: Currently on 16mcg

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mammaP

Hi Jonesy, everyone is different so there is no right answer. I always say to wait till symptoms have subsided then wait 2 or 3 weeks more before another cut, however long it takes.  They shouldn't last long if they are mild, maybe  a week or so, but if they persist then it may be best to think about smaller cuts which can be more often so the time it takes to taper is much the same but less jarring for the nervous system.  If I could go back I would have done a micro taper of effexor, but then again  if I could go back I wouldn't touch the poisonous drugs in the first place!  


**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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Jlynn

When I was tapering and my brain was keeping up it was 4-7 days. Unfortunately I made to many big cuts to fast ( before I found this site!) on my doctors advice and when I got to half my dose it caught up with me and I got more symptoms than I can even remember. I reinstated back to 20 mg Paroxitine and after 20 days I am just starting to have windows. I will be way more conservative and cautious when I taper again.


40 years old and have been on 20 mg of Paxil for the last 19 years. Multiple unsuccessful attempts to quit over the years.01/2015 Was tapering using liquid Paxil. MD has prescribed 1 ml = 2mg taper every two weeks or once withdrawal symptoms at that dose subside. Reduced from 20 to 10 mg using this method and at 10 mg severe withdrawal set in. 1.5 months of pure hell. Found SA, learned what was happening, and reinstated to 20 mg. After a month of severe symptoms recovered with the reinstatement. Fish oil - Multi Vitamin - Pro-biotic, amino-acid/B Vitamin supplement every day. Magnesium as needed.08/09/15 - 18 mg - 09/08/15 - 16.4 mg - 10/10/15 - 15 mg - 01/02/16 - 13.6 mg 02/15/16 - 12.0 mg - Bad symptom flare up 40 days into drop - Dizziness, panic/anxiety, overheating (esp at night), low appetite, headache, insomnia with bizarre dreams, internal shaking. 04/16/16 - 11mg - 7/17/16 - 10 mg holding.....

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brassmonkey

Hi Jonesy-- welcome to the group.  Like mommaP said "no two tapers are alike" so it is very hard to give exact numbers.  One thing I can say is that this is a time intensive process and trying to make it go faster causes a lot of people a lot of grief.  The recommended waiting period is usually 4 weeks between drops, this is a starting point and a reference only, and is frequently a little too fast for most people.  The problem is you won't know until it all catches up with you and you start having big problems.  I have been doing a steady taper at 10% every 6 weeks for the past three and a half years (I started at 40mg of paxil and am currently at 1.8mg.)  All in all it has been pretty smooth, but the timing of the symptoms is always unpredictable, as well as what symptoms they are.  I have been doing a modified drop I call "The Brassmonkey Slide Method"  where I drop 2.5% a week for four weeks and then hold an additional two weeks.  I came up with this to minimize the symptoms.  They hit a little less hard because of the smaller drops and seem to stabilize during the fourth or fifth week.  Others who have tried this method have reported similar results, but again YMMV.

 

Mild symptoms are a good sign, so you're off to a good start.  There are several dosage ranges between 20 and 0 that tend to give people more trouble than other ranges, so don't expect it to be this mild all the way down (I sure hope it will be though).  The trick is not to panic when you hit a rough spot, given a little time it will resolve itself, and sometimes you just have to push through.  It is also a good thing that you have only taken one medication.  The people who have been polydrugged always have a much rougher time of it.  Please, please, please don't be tempted to switch drugs or add drugs it will just cause you trouble down the road.

 

Hope that gives you a little clarity.


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Jonesy3

Thank you so much brassmonkey! Is your way of tapering similar to a microtapering schedule? Also, do you use the liquid paxil, and if so, do you multidose? I switched from the timed release paxil to the liquid, which is not timed release, so I'm scared not to dose it twice a day.

 

So far, my only stmptoms have been fatigue, but I also have low thyroid, so it's hard to say what is what!

 

I am in NO rush to get off. I would rather experience as few of symptoms as possible and go slowly!

 

Thank you for your feedback!


*2000: Started Paxil CR 20 mcg at age 13

*Fall 2009: Came off Paxil CR 20 mcg cold-turkey

*Summer 2012: Reinstated Paxil CR 20 mcg

*April 2015: Started taper from 20mcg

*August 2015: Currently on 16mcg

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brassmonkey

Hi Jonesy-- It is similar to a microtaper but a little more aggressive in that I take bigger cuts and then hold.  The microtaper takes several tiny cuts and then holds.  I have been cutting up 40mg tablets the whole time and weighting them on a milligram scale gets a little tedious at times but its been working so far.  I do one dose in the morning.  I used time release for a while a long time ago but don't remember any big difference when I switched back and fourth.  I have heard people say that they have had trouble switching from the tablets to liquid, but it usually cleared up in a few weeks.  I don't see any problem with dosing twice a day.  Personally I don't think it is necessary unless the symptoms flair up, and it makes it much easier to miss a dose, which will cause some trouble too.  One big thing to learn is not to be afraid of the symptoms.  Yes they are uncomfortable at best and yes they are a big pain in the ***, but they are not going to harm you.  Being afraid of them adds what we call "secondary fear" which can intensify things off the chart.  While your symptoms are mild is a good time to start practicing AAF, Acknowledge, Accept, Float.  Acknowledge that the symptom is there and it's real, explore the symptom and get familiar with it.  Accept that it is happening and that there isn't anything you can do about it.  Let the symptom Float away as you go on about your life.  It is a lot like having an unwanted house guest.  Attitude is one of the biggest keys to getting through this, and I can tell that yours is pretty good already.


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Altostrata

merged similar topics


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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sky68

Stabilizing usually took me 7 to 10 days average. Whereas in the beginning of tapering, I didn't notice any WD at all.

But even after feeling stabilize I waited for a few weeks more before tapering the next step.

Guess it's different for all of us.


Diagnosis: GAD (2008), clinical depression (2012), again clinical depression (2016) and ptsd (2016)

History of: paroxetine, lexapro, sertraline, bupropion, zyprexa, seroquel, nortrilen, oxazepam, lorazepam, diazepam, nortriptyline.

 

Successfully came off nortriptyline after a full year of tapering from 100 mg. Quit in May 2015.

February 2016 started mirtazapine, followed by levothyroxine in April 2016 (diagnosis hypothyroidism)

 

Current meds/supplements: mirtazapine 15 mg, levothyroxine 50 µg, diazepam 1mg (tapering off) and melatonin 5 mg.

 

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blackrabbit

Hi Jonesy-- It is similar to a microtaper but a little more aggressive in that I take bigger cuts and then hold.  The microtaper takes several tiny cuts and then holds.  I have been cutting up 40mg tablets the whole time and weighting them on a milligram scale gets a little tedious at times but its been working so far.  I do one dose in the morning.  I used time release for a while a long time ago but don't remember any big difference when I switched back and fourth.  I have heard people say that they have had trouble switching from the tablets to liquid, but it usually cleared up in a few weeks. 

Hey there, I know it's a few months after you posted this but I am searching for help and have a question about this. What did you mean when you said people have had trouble switching from the tablets to the liquid? I ask because I am currently taking 10mg tablet and 3ml aka 3mg of the liquid (to equal 13mg--I only have 10mg and 5mg tablets and breaking them up and weighing them has become too much of a pain). Do you mean that the mixture of the liquid and tablet is harmful? 


Current meds: Escitalopram

Was put on 20mg Lexapro for 4 years; was at 18mg for ~1 week.

4/19/15: 15mg; WD symptoms include: loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea and indigestion after eating, diarrhea, and anxiety. Most of these happen at night.

6/5/15: 13mg; WD symptoms include: tiredness/lightheadedness, indigestion, numbness (emotionally)

7/6/15: 11mg --> 7/10/14: 11.7mg (wanted to taper by 10%)

8/10/15: 10mg; WD symptoms include: anxiety, nausea, GI upset, headaches

9/1/15: bumped back to 10.5mg (back to tapering by 10%); 10/5/15: back to 10mg

11/8: down to 9mg: feeling depressed so far ---> 11/16: bumped back to 10mg :(

1/23: back to 9mg; headaches, "motion sickness" feeling, anxiety

3/24: 8.5mg; 5/24: 8mg; nausea and dizziness bumped back to 8.5mg 3/26 :(

 

blog: https://offwithyourmeds.wordpress.com

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brassmonkey

Hi Blackrabbit-- no, mixing the tablets and liquid is not harmful.  In the past I have know a number of people who have tried to switch from the tablets to the liquid exclusively  and have had a bad reaction to the liquid.  Their bodies seemed to handle the two differently and the liquid seemed to throw them into hardcore WD.  For some it settled out after a few weeks, but for others, they had to switch back to the  tablets to restabalize.  They then continued their tapers using just the tablets and weighting out the doses with scales.  If you are having no adverse effects, then I wouldn't worry about mixing them

 

Hope your taper is going well.


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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blackrabbit

Hi Blackrabbit-- no, mixing the tablets and liquid is not harmful.  In the past I have know a number of people who have tried to switch from the tablets to the liquid exclusively  and have had a bad reaction to the liquid.  Their bodies seemed to handle the two differently and the liquid seemed to throw them into hardcore WD.  For some it settled out after a few weeks, but for others, they had to switch back to the  tablets to restabalize.  They then continued their tapers using just the tablets and weighting out the doses with scales.  If you are having no adverse effects, then I wouldn't worry about mixing them

 

Hope your taper is going well.

Thanks for the response. Just wasnt sure if it was going to take my body a few days to react to the mixing or not. This whole process has made me pay extra attention to everything my body does (idk if it's a good thing or a bad thing). I think about every possibility that could happen during this whole tapering process and stuff. 


Current meds: Escitalopram

Was put on 20mg Lexapro for 4 years; was at 18mg for ~1 week.

4/19/15: 15mg; WD symptoms include: loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea and indigestion after eating, diarrhea, and anxiety. Most of these happen at night.

6/5/15: 13mg; WD symptoms include: tiredness/lightheadedness, indigestion, numbness (emotionally)

7/6/15: 11mg --> 7/10/14: 11.7mg (wanted to taper by 10%)

8/10/15: 10mg; WD symptoms include: anxiety, nausea, GI upset, headaches

9/1/15: bumped back to 10.5mg (back to tapering by 10%); 10/5/15: back to 10mg

11/8: down to 9mg: feeling depressed so far ---> 11/16: bumped back to 10mg :(

1/23: back to 9mg; headaches, "motion sickness" feeling, anxiety

3/24: 8.5mg; 5/24: 8mg; nausea and dizziness bumped back to 8.5mg 3/26 :(

 

blog: https://offwithyourmeds.wordpress.com

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eiledon20

When is the time you know you need to taper your antidepressant rather than updose?

 

What is "stable" like?

How can I be my old self wheN the small dose benzo is making you tired and heavy specially in the mornings? I believe they also make you unmotivated.

 

What i know is i can now enjoy music at night but not loud. I guess our nervous system is a wreck.


Partner suddenly died 2014. Severe depression AGAIN (had previous episode 10 years ago). I was given escitalopram but could not bear the side effects, so i ask for an ECT (not sure if this helped). During the treatment and my hospital stay I was given Depakote mood stabilizer.  PDOC says I need to take it for two years. After 4-5 months I have a hard time with the Depakote. Hard to get up in the morning. Depression again or Depakote effects? So stopped Depakote (did not know about tapering then)

 

Januray 21, 2015. Severe depression again, started Pristiq 50mg and clonazepam 0.5 mg nightly. Had confusion, suicidal thoughts, thoughts about death, and find it hard to understand the TV, much more type in a computer.

 

Had adverse reaction to most antidepressants: muscle pain/spasms, irritablity, restlessness. Also Tried Prozac, Zoloft, Escitalopram years ago.

Started to taper pristiq and clonazepam after four months:

5th month:

2 weeks - 3/4 tablet PRISTIQ   (deducting the clonazepam also, so hard to cut)

2 weeks - 1/2 tablet PRISTIQ   (crumbs of clonazepam nightly)

2 weeks - 1/8 or less (hard to cut really) (zero clonazepam)

Then jump off pristiq.

I just wonder why I was cured during the 10 year period (2004-2014) I have no depression symptoms and no meds either. Pdoc said I might be biploar 2 but it is a "grey" area. Aren't bipolars supposed to be on maintenance meds?! Damn this diagnosis. I am tapering Pristiq either way.

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Petunia

This topic may answer your question about stabilization:

 

What does stabilizing mean? - Surviving Antidepressants

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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eiledon20

petunia, thanks


Partner suddenly died 2014. Severe depression AGAIN (had previous episode 10 years ago). I was given escitalopram but could not bear the side effects, so i ask for an ECT (not sure if this helped). During the treatment and my hospital stay I was given Depakote mood stabilizer.  PDOC says I need to take it for two years. After 4-5 months I have a hard time with the Depakote. Hard to get up in the morning. Depression again or Depakote effects? So stopped Depakote (did not know about tapering then)

 

Januray 21, 2015. Severe depression again, started Pristiq 50mg and clonazepam 0.5 mg nightly. Had confusion, suicidal thoughts, thoughts about death, and find it hard to understand the TV, much more type in a computer.

 

Had adverse reaction to most antidepressants: muscle pain/spasms, irritablity, restlessness. Also Tried Prozac, Zoloft, Escitalopram years ago.

Started to taper pristiq and clonazepam after four months:

5th month:

2 weeks - 3/4 tablet PRISTIQ   (deducting the clonazepam also, so hard to cut)

2 weeks - 1/2 tablet PRISTIQ   (crumbs of clonazepam nightly)

2 weeks - 1/8 or less (hard to cut really) (zero clonazepam)

Then jump off pristiq.

I just wonder why I was cured during the 10 year period (2004-2014) I have no depression symptoms and no meds either. Pdoc said I might be biploar 2 but it is a "grey" area. Aren't bipolars supposed to be on maintenance meds?! Damn this diagnosis. I am tapering Pristiq either way.

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eiledon20

Is five months enough to say that it is better to taper a drug than suffer the ill side effects it has on you? Been suffering for so long, i dont want anymore of this.

 

Is there really a treatment resistant depression or are they mostly chemically sensitive bodies unable to tolerate the side effects.

 

:( i am determined to get off.....


Partner suddenly died 2014. Severe depression AGAIN (had previous episode 10 years ago). I was given escitalopram but could not bear the side effects, so i ask for an ECT (not sure if this helped). During the treatment and my hospital stay I was given Depakote mood stabilizer.  PDOC says I need to take it for two years. After 4-5 months I have a hard time with the Depakote. Hard to get up in the morning. Depression again or Depakote effects? So stopped Depakote (did not know about tapering then)

 

Januray 21, 2015. Severe depression again, started Pristiq 50mg and clonazepam 0.5 mg nightly. Had confusion, suicidal thoughts, thoughts about death, and find it hard to understand the TV, much more type in a computer.

 

Had adverse reaction to most antidepressants: muscle pain/spasms, irritablity, restlessness. Also Tried Prozac, Zoloft, Escitalopram years ago.

Started to taper pristiq and clonazepam after four months:

5th month:

2 weeks - 3/4 tablet PRISTIQ   (deducting the clonazepam also, so hard to cut)

2 weeks - 1/2 tablet PRISTIQ   (crumbs of clonazepam nightly)

2 weeks - 1/8 or less (hard to cut really) (zero clonazepam)

Then jump off pristiq.

I just wonder why I was cured during the 10 year period (2004-2014) I have no depression symptoms and no meds either. Pdoc said I might be biploar 2 but it is a "grey" area. Aren't bipolars supposed to be on maintenance meds?! Damn this diagnosis. I am tapering Pristiq either way.

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dreamspirit

It's been 12 weeks since I reinstated after I crashed.. I do feel better than what I did in withdrawl.. I do have days where I get andrenaline surges, headaches and stomach problems but not everyday.

When I have done my tapering I never get withdrawls right away it's always takes months for me to feel them and crash so I feel that once I reinstate that it will take me months to feel almost 100% better.


 

Been on Paxil since 96”-97”, 40mg tried 3 times to get off and didn’t work, started a very slow taper Jan 2016, have only dropped down by 3 mg.. on 37mg currently.. have very delayed withdrawals. Last drop was in July 2017.. still have waves and windows. 

 

Magnesium 200mg, foilc acid 1 mg, vitamin d3 5000iu, Blood pressure meds-Verapamil & Irbesartan... Smoke cbd flower once in awhile. 

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JanCarol
 

How to judge if I am stable or not?
Depressed, low mood is something normal for me...
Wanting to die, suicidal, it is normal for me...
Lonely, it is normal...
Oversensitive, especially to noises, it is normal...
Fight, flight, it is normal...
Pains, aches, diarrhea, seems also normal...

Paresthesia is gone...

 

I find that people around me can help, too. 

 

Most of my close friends and loved ones know I am going through that, and I give them permission to chide me, "My aren't you a grumpy bum today?"  (irritable), or "I've missed you so much - it's great to see the real you again."  or "Yes, you're irritable, but you are also engaged with your life."

 

Feedback can let you know how you are going, when you can't quite get a clear perspective on yourself.  

 

As many of us here experience, sometimes it feels like the long, slow, crawl doesn't get any better - but the thing is, even though it seems slow, often others can see what we look like, better than we can.  But this is trusted others.  Sometimes it may be a therapist, doctor or counselor, but I always add "diagnostic goggles" to the things they say.  My friends, my family, know that I'm "eccentric" and "weird," and "goofy," but when I'm struggling - they can clearly point out things like:  "you have been sleeping better," or "you haven't had as much IBS these past 2 weeks." and "thank you for not biting my head off today!"  (I get that one from hubby sometimes!)

 

 

Is five months enough to say that it is better to taper a drug than suffer the ill side effects it has on you? Been suffering for so long, i dont want anymore of this.

Is there really a treatment resistant depression or are they mostly chemically sensitive bodies unable to tolerate the side effects.

:( i am determined to get off.....

 

"Treatment resistant depression" is, in my opinion, drug induced.  If you had never been put on the drugs, you would never have become "treatment resistant."  Treatment resistant depression hardly existed before the drugs.  Certainly, there was a small statistical part of the population who were always "melancholic," (the old word for depression) and could not be helped by anything other than rest, or abuse of their substance-of-choice (insert: alcohol, opium, absinthe, etc. here - some would call that, "self medicating.")

 

Your determination to get off is good.  This is what will hold you through the holds.  But if you plow on through the tapers without resting on the holds, it will become more an more difficult until it is tenable.  You need to listen to yourself, your body, your emotions, and make sure you are stable before you take another taper.

 

I refer you here to Rhiannon's excellent:  Rhis's Start Small Listen to Body Taper Plan


"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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starcontrol2

I don't know either what stabilizing would mean in my case.

I have symptoms that never end but sometimes get better and I have symptoms that get replaced by other symptoms.

I am surviving, I am not living.

My drug history may not be as long or as complicated as some but suffering is just as real.

My personal opinion is that in my case I won't fully heal until I fully get off.

Yes, i drag my butt to work, usually by 11 and I can't really do any work, i leave by 4. I feel any slight pressure at work and I will be gone and I can't get another job now.

Lexapro messed up my vision or I should say visual processing I can't live half drunk all the time. I had to abandon team sports, sleeping is a major issue.

I look at my daughter and it is just a child I don't feel it is my child, this is heart wrenching and heart breaking.

I force to exercise daily with sleepless zombie delirium i am in. I drive because i have to but i feel driving drunk all the time.

I get glimpses, i do!!! I know deep down somewhere is me!!!

I refuse to live with this "stability".

I feel like a Roman Empire in 5th century and the only reason barbarians haven't overrun me is because beyond the few soldiers on the border that still echo the previous might, I have no legions i only play barbarians zoloft and lexapro against each other.

I need my own legions, I cannot rely on barbarian stability


10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg

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Calmer

I think it takes between 2 to 3 weeks usually to stabilise, provided the cut was small, i.e. a 5% cut every 2 weeks is better than 10% every 4 weeks.  I'm confused, you say you never really stabilise but feel better with each drop - how long do you wait before the next cut?

 

 


  • Finally finished tapering from Mirtazapine (Remeron) 22.1.2017

September 2014 started 15 mg Mirtazapine.  Started a slow taper, (5% every 2 weeks) in October 2015

P.doc advised to stay on Mirtazapine for at least 6 months preferably a year.

April 2014 suffered chronic insomnia which lead to anxiety and then depression.

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Fresh

Hi Calmer , I'm not sure that sunflower will respond - she hasn't been on the site since March last

year.

 

When I was tapering much too fast in 2013 , I felt better within days after each cut.

This was not to be confused with stability - I became a little euphoric , my thinking was clearer , the

colours were brighter , increased energy , that sort of thing. I subjectively felt better for a short time , and never allowed myself to stabilize before cutting again , and getting the same rush of symptoms.

 

Really dumb thing to do cause it all caught up and I crashed badly. I wonder if that's what sunshine was meaning?

Please could you start an introduction thread for yourself when you're ready.

 

Good to have you on board , Fresh

 

.


1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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starcontrol2

I have a question:

 

So, I was never really able to stabilize. Sometimes I feel way worse, sometimes I feel a little better but there is a "stable" pattern when I feel about 3/10.

I would guess, this is my "level" until brain re-calibrates.

Since my original med was Lexapro and Zoloft just doesn't seem to relieve withdrawal I feel continuing to taper is the only way to go.

Opinions?


10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg

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brassmonkey

Several people have asked me privately if I have noticed and patterns in the timing of symptoms over the course of my taper.  I thought it would be good to share the answer on this thread. Bear in mind that I have been doing the Brassmonkey Slide Method my entire taper until I reached about 2.5mg.  At which point it became physically impossible to weigh the doses and I'm too stuck in my ways to switch to liquid.  I started my taper four and a half years ago at 40mg of paxil.  I have done a cumulative 10% every 6 weeks by dropping 2.5% a week for four weeks and then holding an additional 2 weeks.

 

For the majority of my taper symptoms would hit me on day three after the first cut.  These would generally clear back to WDnormal by the end of day six. The second and third cut would be pretty much the same.  The fourth cut frequently was different with the symptoms hitting again about the third but sometimes the second day but not clearing back to WDnormal until around the tenth thru sixteenth day.

 

Things were pretty miserable the entire time I was going from 40mg down to 25mg.  But I could feel a bit of stabilization by the end of each six week period.  My brain also had a lot of sorting out to do as I had been in severe poopout for well over a year before I started to taper and I had also just almost CTed a very heavy alcohol habit at the same time.  By the time I got to 25mg I was starting to notice a general improvement in the symptoms and was having fifteen minute windows about once a month.  I can still remember the first one because I didn't realize that it had happened until  a few hours later with an aha moment of "hey, I had a window this afternoon, this is really going to work."

 

When I got to the 5mg range things seemed to be hitting sooner, frequently on the second day and some times on the first. But they would clear be the sixth.  All this time the baseling or WDnormal was raising as things improved in general.

 

Because of the limitations of the scales when I reached about 2.5mgai (active ingredient) I switched from tapering 10%ai to tapering 1mgpw (pill weight). This put me in the 8-10% range per drop.  I also increased the speed to every four weeks, with longer holds when it felt like I should.

 

With the new schedule the pattern changed a bit.  The first few drops tended to have symptoms start up around day three, peak on days four or five then taper down over the next week and be cleared by the end of the four week period.  After passing 1.5mgai things changed again to nothing until day four or five and then hitting fairly hard for a day or two, subsiding and holding fairly steady for a week or so and then fading off to WDnormal.  There were two instances where I held an extra week because things hadn't settled out.  My impression has been that WDnormal has raised with each drop since 1.5mgai.

 

 

Currently I am getting hit for a few hours on the morning of the third and fourth days and then drag on for about a week before clearing to WDnormal.

 

It's been a very long drawn out experience, and still has some time to go before I can finally jump off.  Although it hasn't been a pleasant experience the symptoms have been manageable to the point I have maintained a full time job, traveled, and indulged my hobbies.


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Rhiannon

I think you need to create a line dance called the Brassmonkey Slide. And make a video for us. So we can all do it.


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

 

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

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brassmonkey

It's just a jump to the left..

Then a step to the right....


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Altostrata

starcontrol, the answer to that question depends so much on your particular history of switching, your Intro topic is the proper place for it.


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

merged similar topics


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

Slightly better is going in the right direction.


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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kesh

I've seen a few people post on this issue when new to tapering protocols and trying to figure out how to get well. I thought it might be a good idea to make a thread.

 

Many of us coming here have been bounced around by different doses and medications, and don't know what a stabilising dose might be. Are we in withdrawal or are we feeling symptoms induced by a dose increase or new drug? Will a hold at where we are actually give us any stability? Maybe on joining this forum we have been on the same dose for a while and feel no stability.

 

Myself, I have akathisia, in windows and waves. I don't know of anyone that stabilizes on akathisia, that is they hold their dose and see it stop or lessen significantly.

 

Healing to all.


Current daily meds. Citalopram 2.5mg morning. Diazapam 1.5mg evening, Propanalol 40mg split 4x10mg throughout day.

 

Recent meds. Fluoxetine 20mg began 24th Nov 2017, CT on 4th December on medical advice due to bad Akathisia. Citalopram 10mg began on 13th Dec 2017, tapered to 2.5mg by 20th Dec 2017 on medical advice. Diazapam 2mg began on 6th Dec 2017 cut to 1.5 mg on 26th Dec. Propanalol 40mg began on 13th Dec. Zopiclone 3.75 mg began 13th December, used maybe 5 times then quit.

 

Previous history. Tricyclics, Fluoxetine or Citalopram for periods of 6mo to 2yrs over last 25 years. Probably 5 yrs in total. No significant ill effects.

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