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☼ MissMellie 13 Months into Lexapro Withdrawal


MissMellie

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Hi Everyone, I just wanted to share my story of Lexapro withdrawal and let you know where Im at with my journey.

 

I was put on Lexapro in 2006 for "Generalised Anxiety Disorder" after the birth of my first child. I wont go into too much detail, however I believe now looking back, that I was wrongly diagnosed.

 

I started off on 10mg and slowly got up to 20 mg and continued on that for approx 3-4 years, I tried to come off several times but the overbearing dizziness and increased anxiety got me every time and I re started the drug. I then decided to lower my dose going down to 10mg and then 5mg and then simply stoppped ( I had no idea about withdrawal or tapering) and then several weeks after stopping had my very first panic attack. I felt crazy and I wasn't sure what was happening to me and why. I returned to my dr and was given .5mg of Xananx for my now diagnosed "panic disorder" and put back onto my lexapro of 20mg.

 

My doctor told me I would be on them for the rest of my life. To say the least I was devastated. I found that re-instating for me, increased my symptoms threefold. I had panic attacks that seemed to last for hours, incredible anxiety, depression (for the first time in my life), tremors, I literally felt like I was going mad. I quit my job and I thought I was going to land in a mental institution.

 

However I kept on with the tablets. I stopped the X after a couple of weeks as it made me feel like a zombie and I would lose my bowels for no reason (It was horrible). I continued on with the lexapro, my Dr had me convinced, it was me. I thought that if I kept going I would feel better and my symptoms would ease as my body adjusted to the medication.

 

Unfortunately this as not the case and things did not improve, in fact I developed more anxiety, depression and my mind would not shut up, it was constantly talking and I would repeat words in my head like OCD over and over again and I didn't know why.

 

I thought to myself that I had to get off this medication. I had never felt like this before and I had never suffered such symptopms in my life. So I decided to taper, I tapered way too fast, as I just wanted my mind to stop talking and for the panic attacks and depression to stop. I cut down from 20 mg to one evey second day for 2 weeks and then would go down to 15mg and so on until I reached zero. Then my hell began...

 

I have had so many symptoms that I now wonder how I every got to where I am now. I had the brain zaps, sever diziness,heart palpitations numbness in my face, vomitting, diarrohea, hot flushes, dry mouth, crazy mood swings, constant mind chattering (where I couldnt concentrate) - OCD like repeating of words, anxiety, depression, electric zaps in my knees, crying spells, adrenalin rushes, nausea,insomnia, breahtlessness, no appetite, bad dreams, fuzzy head, cravings (unsure of what), aggression and irritation, numbness in hands,depersonalization, tingly arms - burning sensations, confusion, obsessive/intrusive thoughts and images, suicidal ideation, hypersensitivity and more.

 

With withdrawal I have found that with a lot of the symptoms they were constant for a long time and then would come and go. I found that early on, I would have mini mood tornados I would call them. I would feel happy, sad, angry etc all with half an hour. Then I would have days of quilt, sadness, happiness, anger - as if my moods were re-establishing themselves one by one. Then certain phases would last longer eg the anxiety at first was relentless and then I would get weeks of it and then days.

 

The same with the depression, I felt so empty, hopeless and dead inside for months - I remember saying to my husband at one point. I could die right now and not care. That went from months, to weeks and now days. The same with the relentless mind chatter, I could not sit and talk to a friend because my mind would not shut up. I could not concentrate. I had months of this, then weeks and now days. And this has happened for the entire withdrawal process - not sure if others can relate to this process.

 

I personally found that from the first day I quit lexapro up until month 9 were the worst months of my withdrawal. At month 4 I started to get horrible images in my head and at month 8 I started get intrusive thoughts - these are still with me today, but they are not as constant as they have been. Not alot of people talk about this part of withdrawal, but I have heard of a lot people that also get this. For example I would look at a knife and automatically see images of my wrists being cut - never before have I ever thought of this (until withdrawal) and I have several others - the thoughts and images have been the scariest part of my withdrawal, but Im learning to let the come and go.

 

At month 9 I felt like I was going backwards. I thought I was losing the plot and for sure had some other type of mental illness, bi-polar - ocd - perhaps I was a crazy person but never realized. Withdrawal makes you think about everything - your childhood, your parents, situations in your life, what type of a person you are and what you could and should have done. Anyways, alot of my symptoms got really bad at month 9 and during the midst of such episodes you don't see reason and you truly believe you are getting worse rather than better.

 

However that really bad wave passed and the windows have become better. I remember crying all the time, it was getting ridiculous and I didn't know what I was crying. Now at month 13 I don't have those days of tears, I have maybe a day a month where i cry (usually around my menstrual cycle) and I get moments in days where I get teary. A big improvement.

 

At month 9 I also started to get muscle twitches and spasms really bad, my memory became strange and I had troubles with getting out the right words when I wanted to say something, I also found that one of my legs had some weakness - all of these things freaked me out and I thought that I was getting MS or parkinsons. I read further into withdrawal stories and found that this was quite common to happen.

 

Now at month 13 I still get these symptoms but they only last for days at a time, rather than weeks. So all in all, since month 9 it has been onwards and upwards, I have been more confident and much more happy within myself. I am doing things I love again and a lot my passion in my life has come back.

 

I am not healed and I know I still have a long way to go, but I do see that I am making progress even if its incremental. Last week I had a really bad wave but it lasted for only days, rather than weeks or months. To date I can say my biggest improvement has been my anxiety and depression - it has really lifted which makes dealing with the other symptoms much more manageable. I will keep you updated on further progress.

Edited by Altostrata
added paragraph breaks

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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Thank you for sharing. I took Lexapro then switched to imipramine. I remember how scary those intrusive thoughts were. I had them from bad anxiety before meds. which led me to take meds.

 

It is so refreshing to hear that there is healing and feeling better. You are a very strong person to have gone thru this.

 

Thank you again

Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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  • Administrator

Welcome, MissMellie.

 

I moved your first topic to the Introductions section. Yes, you have classic prolonged withdrawal syndrome. Congratulations on having made so much progress on your own -- you are a very strong person!

 

I welcome your experience and voice to our community. You will be a huge help to others struggling on the same road.

 

In the not-too-distant future, when you look back on this, I have no doubt yours will truly be a success story.

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

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Yes thank you for sharing that, it's been a nightmare hasn't it? you sound like an amazingly strong and together person, and I'm sure you'll carry on going from strength to strength.

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





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

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

 

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Thank you so much everyone, for your words of support and encouragement ( I hope that one day I will be a mental ninja!! lol). Finding this forum has helped me greatly and hearing everyone's input is so helpful. I am hoping that within the next 12 months I will improve more.

Altostrata can anyone explain why the thoughts and images are happening and if you know of others that have had a similar experience during withdrawal? They just pop into my head and I don't understand where they manifest from?? When they happen I try to ignore them and focus on the fact that I don't normally think like this and blame it on withdrawal. I also try to imagine nicer things like hugging my daughter - she has been a huge inspiration through my withdrawal.

Thankyou again everyone for your kind words - they mean alot!!

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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  • Administrator

Those strange thoughts happen to us all. See the Symptoms and Self-care forum for many discussions!

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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  • 2 weeks later...

I am crying my eyeballs out right now after reading MissMellie's story. OMGosh it was like I am was reading my OWN story. I was put on these horrible drugs in 1995 after I had real bad postpartum depression. I have been on some kind or another for 17 years. I weaned off Effexor last fall and I thought I was doing great until March 22, 2013 when I had the worst 24 hour panic attack of my life. I think I have had all the same symptoms that MissMellie has been having since then. I let my doc talk me into going back on them and have been on Prozac for 2.5 weeks now because I thought it was ALL JUST ME. Until today finding this site and reading others stories I now know it has been these meds still messing me up after being off of them for 6 months. I am scared to death to go thru this for maybe another year. MissMellie must be superwoman to have gone thru this for 13 long months and still having symptoms. God Bless you woman for being so strong! Are there any natural supplements we can take to help us through the long road?

Sept-1990 started my first AD Zoloft never got higher dose than 50mg

Dec-1990 Quit Zoloft  =Nov-1995 Back on Zoloft for Post-partum depression/anxiety

early-1998 Quit Prozac to get pregnant   =Feb-1999 Back on Prozac 20mg

10-1999 Prozac 30mg  =12-1999 Prozac 20mg

7-2001 switch to Wellbutrin SR 100mg

8-2001 increase Wellbutrin SR 150mg

10-2001 adding back Prozac 20mg

5-2003 tapered off Prozac  =7-2003 back on Prozac 20mg

8-2003 Add in Imipramine 25mg then to 50mg    (given Xanax for bad panic episodes

9-2003 Imipramine 75 mg then to 100mg

1-2004 switch to Lexapro 10mg

8-2004 Lexapro 20mg, Imipramine 75mg

4-2006 Adding Wellbutrin 150mg then to 200mg

7-2006 switch Lexapro to Celexa

12-2007Celexa 40mg Wellbutirin 150mg

9-2009 switch back to Lexapro 20mg, WellbutrinXL 150mg

2-2010 stop Lexapro start Celexa 40mg

11-2010 switch Celexa to Cymbalta 60mg

3-2011 Cymbalta 60mg switch to Effexor 37.5 to 75mg

10-2012 thru 12-2012 taper Effexor 75mg to 37.5 and off.

5-2013 start generic Prozac 10mg to 20mg, Trazadone 25mg  BEGIN THE TAPER(6-2013 Prozac 20mg to 10mg, Trazadone 25mg. 7-2013 liquid Prozac 7mg, Trazadone 25mg 8-2013 liquid Prozac 8mg, Trazadone 25mg9-2013 liquid Prozac 5mg, Trazadone 25mg10-31-2013 liquid Prozac 3.25mg, Trazadone 25mg=11-11-2013 liquid Prozac 3.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-4-2013 liquid Prozac 2.8mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-13-2013 liquid Prozac 2.5mg, Trazadone 25mg=1-5-2014 liquid Prozac 2.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=(CURRENT/06-01-2014 LAST dose liquid Prozac, Trazadone 25mg)((Aug. 13, 2014 reinstate .20mg of liquid Prozac for crippling anxiety, dread (still on same Trazadone...)supplements are probiotic, Vit. D3 and Fish Oil daily)Aug 19th reinstate 6.25mg Zoloft, Sept. 4th 25mg Zoloft.CURRENT(50mg Zoloft, 25mg Trazadone)

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Im so glad that my story has helped you somewhat Fitby50. I am glad that there is someone else out there like me who has gone through similar circumstances. It has been a really hard long road and since writing my first post I am going through yet another horrible wave. But I have to keep going, I simply can't risk going onto another ssri and feeling the way I did after I reinstated. The 24 hour panic attack, I can totally relate to, it has to be the most horrifying feeling in the world. I actually remember sitting myself on the shower floor and switching the water to cold, hoping that the feeling of ice cold water pouring over me would take my attention off that horrible feeling.

All I can say is, stay strong and think of all the positives - easier said than done I know. But my family has been my driving strength, especially my daughter ( I think I've become the best actress in the world, as I will not show her what this is doing to me - she is only 6). The other thing I try to do is, see this as a challenge, one hell of a challenge and I just pray that one day I will be myself again.

As for supplements some people say not to use anything, I think Ive tried everything under the sun and personally I simply stick to a good multi vitamin, fish oil (good quality brand with high epa and dha) and a pro-biotic as many say that serotonin is actually produced in the gut not the brain.

If I can help you in anyway or offer any advice please don't hesitate to msg me :) Take Care!!

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Fitby.

 

How are you doing on Prozac? How much are you taking?

 

We have suggestions for supplements and other gentle support methods in our Symptoms and Self-care forum http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/forum/8-symptoms-and-self-care/

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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Thanks Alto! I started on 10mg for 4 days, then I went up to 20mg that I have been taking for about 10 days. Today I took it back down to 10mg, plan to do this for a couple weeks and try to go down to 5mg, butthe tablets may be hard to break down, they are scored for 10mg. I have checked out some of the sections on withdrawl. I am curious if anyone has tried the supplements on the "theroadback.org" website. I think they have good info., but I am hesitant to try the supplements. I was having bad side effects back on the Prozac, but for the past 3-4 days I have been feeling pretty good, not much anxiety. I know I want to stay off these poison drugs, but I am scared to death of the withdrawl lasting for months or years. Not sure I am that strong.

Sept-1990 started my first AD Zoloft never got higher dose than 50mg

Dec-1990 Quit Zoloft  =Nov-1995 Back on Zoloft for Post-partum depression/anxiety

early-1998 Quit Prozac to get pregnant   =Feb-1999 Back on Prozac 20mg

10-1999 Prozac 30mg  =12-1999 Prozac 20mg

7-2001 switch to Wellbutrin SR 100mg

8-2001 increase Wellbutrin SR 150mg

10-2001 adding back Prozac 20mg

5-2003 tapered off Prozac  =7-2003 back on Prozac 20mg

8-2003 Add in Imipramine 25mg then to 50mg    (given Xanax for bad panic episodes

9-2003 Imipramine 75 mg then to 100mg

1-2004 switch to Lexapro 10mg

8-2004 Lexapro 20mg, Imipramine 75mg

4-2006 Adding Wellbutrin 150mg then to 200mg

7-2006 switch Lexapro to Celexa

12-2007Celexa 40mg Wellbutirin 150mg

9-2009 switch back to Lexapro 20mg, WellbutrinXL 150mg

2-2010 stop Lexapro start Celexa 40mg

11-2010 switch Celexa to Cymbalta 60mg

3-2011 Cymbalta 60mg switch to Effexor 37.5 to 75mg

10-2012 thru 12-2012 taper Effexor 75mg to 37.5 and off.

5-2013 start generic Prozac 10mg to 20mg, Trazadone 25mg  BEGIN THE TAPER(6-2013 Prozac 20mg to 10mg, Trazadone 25mg. 7-2013 liquid Prozac 7mg, Trazadone 25mg 8-2013 liquid Prozac 8mg, Trazadone 25mg9-2013 liquid Prozac 5mg, Trazadone 25mg10-31-2013 liquid Prozac 3.25mg, Trazadone 25mg=11-11-2013 liquid Prozac 3.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-4-2013 liquid Prozac 2.8mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-13-2013 liquid Prozac 2.5mg, Trazadone 25mg=1-5-2014 liquid Prozac 2.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=(CURRENT/06-01-2014 LAST dose liquid Prozac, Trazadone 25mg)((Aug. 13, 2014 reinstate .20mg of liquid Prozac for crippling anxiety, dread (still on same Trazadone...)supplements are probiotic, Vit. D3 and Fish Oil daily)Aug 19th reinstate 6.25mg Zoloft, Sept. 4th 25mg Zoloft.CURRENT(50mg Zoloft, 25mg Trazadone)

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Im so glad that my story has helped you somewhat Fitby50. I am glad that there is someone else out there like me who has gone through similar circumstances. It has been a really hard long road and since writing my first post I am going through yet another horrible wave. But I have to keep going, I simply can't risk going onto another ssri and feeling the way I did after I reinstated. The 24 hour panic attack, I can totally relate to, it has to be the most horrifying feeling in the world. I actually remember sitting myself on the shower floor and switching the water to cold, hoping that the feeling of ice cold water pouring over me would take my attention off that horrible feeling.

All I can say is, stay strong and think of all the positives - easier said than done I know. But my family has been my driving strength, especially my daughter ( I think I've become the best actress in the world, as I will not show her what this is doing to me - she is only 6). The other thing I try to do is, see this as a challenge, one hell of a challenge and I just pray that one day I will be myself again.

As for supplements some people say not to use anything, I think Ive tried everything under the sun and personally I simply stick to a good multi vitamin, fish oil (good quality brand with high epa and dha) and a pro-biotic as many say that serotonin is actually produced in the gut not the brain.

If I can help you in anyway or offer any advice please don't hesitate to msg me :) Take Care!!

 

Thanks MissMellie. I feel bad you are still having bad waves after all this time. I can relate to the shower thing, I remember taking a hot long one and crying my eyes out the whole time. I have 2 teenage boys and I have been able to talk to my oldest who is 17, and he seems to understand what is going on. It helps to be able to have support from him and my husband and to be open and honest with them. I want to go back to my doc at the next checkup and tell her I am weaning back off and its the SSRI discontinuation syndrome causing these symptoms and its not me and I can't be on this poison the rest of my life.
Sept-1990 started my first AD Zoloft never got higher dose than 50mg

Dec-1990 Quit Zoloft  =Nov-1995 Back on Zoloft for Post-partum depression/anxiety

early-1998 Quit Prozac to get pregnant   =Feb-1999 Back on Prozac 20mg

10-1999 Prozac 30mg  =12-1999 Prozac 20mg

7-2001 switch to Wellbutrin SR 100mg

8-2001 increase Wellbutrin SR 150mg

10-2001 adding back Prozac 20mg

5-2003 tapered off Prozac  =7-2003 back on Prozac 20mg

8-2003 Add in Imipramine 25mg then to 50mg    (given Xanax for bad panic episodes

9-2003 Imipramine 75 mg then to 100mg

1-2004 switch to Lexapro 10mg

8-2004 Lexapro 20mg, Imipramine 75mg

4-2006 Adding Wellbutrin 150mg then to 200mg

7-2006 switch Lexapro to Celexa

12-2007Celexa 40mg Wellbutirin 150mg

9-2009 switch back to Lexapro 20mg, WellbutrinXL 150mg

2-2010 stop Lexapro start Celexa 40mg

11-2010 switch Celexa to Cymbalta 60mg

3-2011 Cymbalta 60mg switch to Effexor 37.5 to 75mg

10-2012 thru 12-2012 taper Effexor 75mg to 37.5 and off.

5-2013 start generic Prozac 10mg to 20mg, Trazadone 25mg  BEGIN THE TAPER(6-2013 Prozac 20mg to 10mg, Trazadone 25mg. 7-2013 liquid Prozac 7mg, Trazadone 25mg 8-2013 liquid Prozac 8mg, Trazadone 25mg9-2013 liquid Prozac 5mg, Trazadone 25mg10-31-2013 liquid Prozac 3.25mg, Trazadone 25mg=11-11-2013 liquid Prozac 3.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-4-2013 liquid Prozac 2.8mg, Trazadone 25mg=12-13-2013 liquid Prozac 2.5mg, Trazadone 25mg=1-5-2014 liquid Prozac 2.0mg, Trazadone 25mg=(CURRENT/06-01-2014 LAST dose liquid Prozac, Trazadone 25mg)((Aug. 13, 2014 reinstate .20mg of liquid Prozac for crippling anxiety, dread (still on same Trazadone...)supplements are probiotic, Vit. D3 and Fish Oil daily)Aug 19th reinstate 6.25mg Zoloft, Sept. 4th 25mg Zoloft.CURRENT(50mg Zoloft, 25mg Trazadone)

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Alto! I started on 10mg for 4 days, then I went up to 20mg that I have been taking for about 10 days. Today I took it back down to 10mg, plan to do this for a couple weeks and try to go down to 5mg, butthe tablets may be hard to break down, they are scored for 10mg. I have checked out some of the sections on withdrawl. I am curious if anyone has tried the supplements on the "theroadback.org" website. I think they have good info., but I am hesitant to try the supplements. I was having bad side effects back on the Prozac, but for the past 3-4 days I have been feeling pretty good, not much anxiety. I know I want to stay off these poison drugs, but I am scared to death of the withdrawl lasting for months or years. Not sure I am that strong.

 

Please don't "taper" off Prozac that fast. It's asking for nasty withdrawal symptoms and a long recovery time. Here is our topic on the subject:

 

Tips for Tapering Prozac

 

And another one about making pills into liquids:

 

How To Make A Liquid From Tablets Or Capsules

 

When you have a chance, please give us a post about yourself in the Introductions and Updates Discussion. And please put your drug history in the "About Me" section of your profile so that it shows up in all of your posts.

 

As for the supplements recommended by The Road Back, I'd avoid them. Most supplements don't do a thing for withdrawal and some of them are over-stimulating and harmful. A high quality fish oil and magnesium are the only supplements that seem to help nearly everyone. There are topics about both of these in the "Symptoms and self-care" section of this forum, and you can get both at reasonable prices either locally or online.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Miss Mellie,

Found your story, as I'm thinking about getting off of Lexapro, and was looking to see what other people have experienced.  Ugh, you story makes me so mad at these pill pushing ignorant doctors!  How are you doing now?

2005-2008: Effexor; 1/2008 Tapered 3 months, then quit. 7/2008-2009 Reinstated Effexor (crying spells at start of new job.)
2009-3/2013: Switched to Pristiq 50 mg then 100 mg
3/2013: Switched to Lexapro 10mg. Cut down to 5 mg. CT for 2 weeks then reinstated for 6 weeks
8/2013-8/2014: Tapering Lexapro (Lots of withdrawal symptoms)
11/2014 -8/2015: Developed severe insomnia and uncontrollable daily crying spells
12/2014-6/2015: Tried Ambien, Klonopin,Ativan, Lunesta, Sonata, Trazadone, Seroquel, Rameron, Gabapentin - Developed Anxiety disorder, PTSD, and Psychogenic Myoclonus
7/2015-1/2016: Reinstated Lexapro 2 mg (mild improvement, but crying spells still present)

1/2016-5/2017: Lexapro 5 mg ( helped a lot, but poor stress tolerance & depressive episodes)

5/20/2017 - Raised dose to Lexapro 10 mg due to lingering depression(Total of 2 failed tapers & severe PAWS)

9/11/2018 - Present: Still on 10 mg Lexapro and mostly recovered.(Extremely sensitive to stress which triggers Myoclonus.)

10/7/2022 - 20 mg Lexapro (brand only) Plus occasional Klonopin for anxiety and Ambien for insomnia.

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  • 4 weeks later...

MissMellie,

Thanks for your incredible story. I was searching the web for Lexapro withdrawal problems and came across it and signed up so I could post.

I have been taking Lexapro for (I think) 7-8 years. It originally did what it was supposed to do by taking the edge off of my problems with my marriage, kids, work and the world in general. Now I am older and figure I can't keep taking this forever, (mid 50's, male). I take too many other pills because while I was taking it I developed type 2 diabetes, which I am not blaming on the Lexapro, (or maybe I should).

 

Anyway, I figured it is time to face the world realistically and deal with it. I started by reducing my dose by half for 2 weeks and then again for a week and then every other day. I figured that was a good method of weaning myself off. Well the last few days I started to see, that the while Lexapro kind of smoothed the edges on a lot of issues, I was now seeing things a bit clearer. I got a few of the brain zaps but knew what they were from the few times over the years when I forgot to take it.

Now I am into the second week and the "zaps" are incredible. I am not sure I should be walking or driving sometimes but if I keep my head straight, it is better. I hope I do not have to experience what you have been through. I am not sure how one can function as a productive person in this world and go through all that for months.

 

My initial search on the web was to find out how long this lasts. It started as annoying and is now aggravating and getting to the point of making me angry. I am sorry that you went through months of issues and that of course, is not promising to me. But I will not go back on Lexapro unless it is absolutely necessary. This is a very nasty drug to quit!

 

J

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miss mellie, how long did you take to taper the lexapro overall?

 

I'm trying to taper Lexapro now using the liquid, and it's just so hard. 

 

It's interesting to read about all your symptoms, I realized that I experienced a lot of them, and didn't even know they were symptoms. Like adrenaline rushes...I get those.

 

What is depersonalization? A lot of people mention that, but what does it feel like exactly?

 

Also, the morbid thoughts.  Yes, I've had them. I thought they were just part of depression.  But now I'm thinking that they're part of withdrawal!  I started having them when I didn't even know that I was going through withdrawal, because I was taking a drug, that I didn't know affected the brain! (Reglan)  

And then again, when I went off of Effexor, after a 2 month taper, the morbid thoughts came back.  I thought they were part of my depression.  Wow, I wish I took better notes back then.

 

The words repeating in my head, that has been happening to me lately as well, like a song that gets stuck in your head...huh...I never considered that might be a withdrawal symptoms as well. 

2005-2008: Effexor; 1/2008 Tapered 3 months, then quit. 7/2008-2009 Reinstated Effexor (crying spells at start of new job.)
2009-3/2013: Switched to Pristiq 50 mg then 100 mg
3/2013: Switched to Lexapro 10mg. Cut down to 5 mg. CT for 2 weeks then reinstated for 6 weeks
8/2013-8/2014: Tapering Lexapro (Lots of withdrawal symptoms)
11/2014 -8/2015: Developed severe insomnia and uncontrollable daily crying spells
12/2014-6/2015: Tried Ambien, Klonopin,Ativan, Lunesta, Sonata, Trazadone, Seroquel, Rameron, Gabapentin - Developed Anxiety disorder, PTSD, and Psychogenic Myoclonus
7/2015-1/2016: Reinstated Lexapro 2 mg (mild improvement, but crying spells still present)

1/2016-5/2017: Lexapro 5 mg ( helped a lot, but poor stress tolerance & depressive episodes)

5/20/2017 - Raised dose to Lexapro 10 mg due to lingering depression(Total of 2 failed tapers & severe PAWS)

9/11/2018 - Present: Still on 10 mg Lexapro and mostly recovered.(Extremely sensitive to stress which triggers Myoclonus.)

10/7/2022 - 20 mg Lexapro (brand only) Plus occasional Klonopin for anxiety and Ambien for insomnia.

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  • 1 month later...

Miss mellie,

 

Can you please post on your progress. I was on citalopram for 6 months and the dr cut my dose in half. Within 2 days I crashed hard and was crying, etc. I reinstated the med and I never had any relief from all the side effects. I had lots of suicidal thoughts which I have Never had before, amongst increased anxiety, crying spells, etc. my meds took a full 6 months before I started to feel any relief. I was started on this medicine after my dr stopped me from the med buspar after 9 days cold turkey after lots of side effects. After I stopped buspar I crashed hard and my drs were convinced it was me. I originally started the meds for a rapid heart beat due to lots of stress I was u dee for a few months. Long story short, I am 4 months into my withdrawal and still having lots of the exact symptoms you have described. Please update on your status. Your story gives me hope. Thanks!

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Dandy. Please start an Intro topic for yourself, also.

 

MissMelly might respond to a personal message, she hasn't visited this topic in a long while.

 

We'd like to hear how she's doing, too.

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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  • Administrator

Click on the envelope icon at the top right of every page. It leads to the personal messaging system.

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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  • 4 months later...

Hello everyone, Im terribly sorry I haven't replied to your messages but for some reason I haven't recieved any of them? For those of you wondering I am still haning in there. In April it will be my 2 year anniversary from being med free. It has been an extremely difficult journey for me and I can literally say that I have been to hell and back. I felt as if things had improved at month 13 but it was good wave and since I have had alot of bad waves and then alot of good and even very good days and weeks.

 

On a positive note, for me alot of the psychological issues eased up significantly after the 18month mark. I literally only have days here and there where I have psychological symptoms. They are so improved, they are now just bad memories. At times I still get scared as I hope never ever to go back to that dark place. I also had a lot of symptoms pop up since month 13, which I find amazing.

 

These days I am stuck with more physical symptoms such as left sided weakness (weakness in my arm and leg), numbness and tingling in my left shoulder blade, I get shivers all over my body (my head, legs, arms),muscle tightness - especially in my calves - it feels like I have a tight band around my calves and eye floaters. I easily get pins and needles and at times I feel very weak and get inner trembling. I have had an MRI to rule out brain tumors and MS - they have come back negative. So I have to believe that this is STILL withdrawal.

I have many good days now and have a very supportive family. But I get days where I get scared and my anxiety about my health soars. I think because I have been suffering for such a long time, I worry that there is something else wrong with me. I try and think of how far I have come and how much of my psychological symptoms have lessened, but I still get scared because I simply want this all to end once and for all. I have become hypersensitive to everything from vitamins to antibiotics. So I have to be careful of what I take as I get some pretty severe reactions - they basically bring on withdrawal ten fold.

 

For those of you that wanted to know about my withdrawal, I dropped 5 mg every 2 weeks from 20mg of lexapro - it was severe and I defintely would not recommend it but my reaction to lexapro reinstatement was also extremely severe, so I had to simply quit.

 

All in all, I can say I have hugely improved from this time last year and I hope to post again next year this time to say the same thing.

 

I would love to hear if anyone else is having these physical symptoms?

 

Take care xxx

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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sorry you didn't receive the posts.  Thank you for coming back to let us know the good news.  I did a taper from Lexapro and it took me two years to get off of it.  I tried the reinstatement like you and it didn't work.  Meds have a mind of their own.

 

Wishing you all the best.

Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Miss Mellie, thank you for dropping in to update your thread.

It is always good to see that someone is improving, it gives everyone else hope. 

I'm so pleased for you and hope the last of your symptoms are over soon.  :)

**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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello MM,

 

I've also read your thread and it's really inspiring to see how much you have achieved left to your own resources. I believe you will continue to feel better.

 

Just wanted to add for the sake of those who might be reading your thread that one of the reasons reinstating might not have worked in your case was that after being on a much lower dose you went back to the full dose. You brain had probably already made some adjustments to the lowered dose and found a much higher dose too activating. That's why Alto usually advise a smaller increase...

 

all the best,

 

bubble

Current: 9/2022 Xanax 0.08, Lexapro 2

2020 Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

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Thankyou everyone for your replies and all of your support. Yes Bubble I totally agree, I think it was total overkill re-introducing the Lexapro at such a high dosage, combined with a new script for xanax it was a disaster waiting to happening. I am just so glad that I made it through without being put into some mental home. I will keep you updated with future progress.

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you so much for updating us. Your story gives a new hope to so many of us still struggling...

 

best,

 

bubble

Current: 9/2022 Xanax 0.08, Lexapro 2

2020 Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

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  • 1 year later...

Hi Miss Millie,

 

How are you doing since your last update?

I found lots my symptoms in common thanks to lexapro! I am one of those hit badly by lexapro dose increase and am still suffering daily with all types of symptoms, with the pain ( needling, deep bone), numbness, tightness all over my head, face, neck, shoulde and upper body. Have the physical symptoms disappeared for you?

 

Hope to hear more great news from you!

Lex

Drug free Sep. 23 2017

2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.

2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg

2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain

2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain;

2013 Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg by July. first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain

2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg,

2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on

2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.

2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR

2016 Feb., started dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday 2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg

2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, 2/13--0.13mg, 2/20--0.06mg, 3/18--0.13mg, 6/1--0.12mg, 7/6--0.1mg, 7/14--0.08mg, 8/17--0.04mg, 8/20--0.03mg, 8/28--0.02mg, 9/6--0.0205mg, 9/8--0.02mg, 9/17--0.015mg, 9/20--0.01mg, 9/21--0.0048mg, 9/22--0.0001mg,

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  • 3 months later...

Hi Everyone, I just wanted to share my story of Lexapro withdrawal and let you know where Im at with my journey. I was put on Lexapro in 2006 for "Generalised Anxiety Disorder" after the birth of my first child. I wont go into too much detail, however I believe now looking back, that I was wrongly diagnosed. I started off on 10mg and slowly got up to 20 mg and continued on that for approx 3-4 years, I tried to come off several times but the overbearing dizziness and increased anxiety got me every time and I re started the drug. I then decided to lower my dose going down to 10mg and then 5mg and then simply stoppped ( I had no idea about withdrawal or tapering) and then several weeks after stopping had my very first panic attack. I felt crazy and I wasn't sure what was happening to me and why. I returned to my dr and was given .5mg of Xananx for my now diagnosed "panic disorder" and put back onto my lexapro of 20mg. My doctor told me I would be on them for the rest of my life. To say the least I was devastated. I found that re-instating for me, increased my symptoms threefold. I had panic attacks that seemed to last for hours, incredible anxiety, depression (for the first time in my life), tremors, I literally felt like I was going mad. I quit my job and I thought I was going to land in a mental institution. However I kept on with the tablets. I stopped the X after a couple of weeks as it made me feel like a zombie and I would lose my bowels for no reason (It was horrible). I continued on with the lexapro, my Dr had me convinced, it was me. I thought that if I kept going I would feel better and my symptoms would ease as my body adjusted to the medication. Unfortunately this as not the case and things did not improve, in fact I developed more anxiety, depression and my mind would not shut up, it was constantly talking and I would repeat words in my head like OCD over and over again and I didn't know why. I thought to myself that I had to get off this medication. I had never felt like this before and I had never suffered such symptopms in my life. So I decided to taper, I tapered way too fast, as I just wanted my mind to stop talking and for the panic attacks and depression to stop. I cut down from 20 mg to one evey second day for 2 weeks and then would go down to 15mg and so on until I reached zero. Then my hell began... I have had so many symptoms that I now wonder how I every got to where I am now. I had the brain zaps, sever diziness,heart palpitations numbness in my face, vomitting, diarrohea, hot flushes, dry mouth, crazy mood swings, constant mind chattering (where I couldnt concentrate) - OCD like repeating of words, anxiety, depression, electric zaps in my knees, crying spells, adrenalin rushes, nausea,insomnia, breahtlessness, no appetite, bad dreams, fuzzy head, cravings (unsure of what), aggression and irritation, numbness in hands,depersonalization, tingly arms - burning sensations, confusion, obsessive/intrusive thoughts and images, suicidal ideation, hypersensitivity and more. With withdrawal I have found that with a lot of the symptoms they were constant for a long time and then would come and go. I found that early on, I would have mini mood tornados I would call them. I would feel happy, sad, angry etc all with half an hour. Then I would have days of quilt, sadness, happiness, anger - as if my moods were re-establishing themselves one by one. Then certain phases would last longer eg the anxiety at first was relentless and then I would get weeks of it and then days. The same with the depression, I felt so empty, hopeless and dead inside for months - I remember saying to my husband at one point. I could die right now and not care. That went from months, to weeks and now days. The same with the relentless mind chatter, I could not sit and talk to a friend because my mind would not shut up. I could not concentrate. I had months of this, then weeks and now days. And this has happened for the entire withdrawal process - not sure if others can relate to this process. I personally found that from the first day I quit lexapro up until month 9 were the worst months of my withdrawal. At month 4 I started to get horrible images in my head and at month 8 I started get intrusive thoughts - these are still with me today, but they are not as constant as they have been. Not alot of people talk about this part of withdrawal, but I have heard of a lot people that also get this. For example I would look at a knife and automatically see images of my wrists being cut - never before have I ever thought of this (until withdrawal) and I have several others - the thoughts and images have been the scariest part of my withdrawal, but Im learning to let the come and go. At month 9 I felt like I was going backwards. I thought I was losing the plot and for sure had some other type of mental illness, bi-polar - ocd - perhaps I was a crazy person but never realized. Withdrawal makes you think about everything - your childhood, your parents, situations in your life, what type of a person you are and what you could and should have done. Anyways, alot of my symptoms got really bad at month 9 and during the midst of such episodes you don't see reason and you truly believe you are getting worse rather than better. However that really bad wave passed and the windows have become better. I remember crying all the time, it was getting ridiculous and I didn't know what I was crying. Now at month 13 I don't have those days of tears, I have maybe a day a month where i cry (usually around my menstrual cycle) and I get moments in days where I get teary. A big improvement. At month 9 I also started to get muscle twitches and spasms really bad, my memory became strange and I had troubles with getting out the right words when I wanted to say something, I also found that one of my legs had some weakness - all of these things freaked me out and I thought that I was getting MS or parkinsons. I read further into withdrawal stories and found that this was quite common to happen. Now at month 13 I still get these symptoms but they only last for days at a time, rather than weeks. So all in all, since month 9 it has been onwards and upwards, I have been more confident and much more happy within myself. I am doing things I love again and a lot my passion in my life has come back. I am not healed and I know I still have a long way to go, but I do see that I am making progress even if its incremental. Last week I had a really bad wave but it lasted for only days, rather than weeks or months. To date I can say my biggest improvement has been my anxiety and depression - it has really lifted which makes dealing with the other symptoms much more manageable. I will keep you updated on further progress.

I am SO GLAD that I found this post!! Seriously! I feel like you have just described me to a "T"! I have been Lexapro free for 14 weeks now and although I do notice big differences, I am also noticing the "wave" that everyone talks about. It sucks. At one point I feel almos tnormal with a touch of anxiety and then the next day BAM! I am hit with obsessive-intrusive thoughts and crying jags. I am happy to read that it does get better. I really feel that we all need to read the good side of things as well as bad. I am hoping that when I start CBT, things will get even better. I actually have a very large understanding of what is happening, but when youre in the 'moment', its hard to remember that it isn't you but the W/D. Its also scary how quickly our bodies can adapt to a 'good day'. For example, I had a good day yesterday and my mind was instantly all "Oh im getting better and this is great and its amazing" and then the next day to having obsessive-intrusive thoughts, it almost kind of kicks you in the gut. It's like, amazing and your body thinks its ok now and then bam you get hit with a bad day and you feel like youre back at square one. But I will say that I am having more and more moments of clarity and good moments than bad now. Its just hard not to get sucked in to the bad days 'oh woe is me' feelings. It truly is a struggle.

1-2013- Quit 15 mg Lexapro cold turkey

5-2013- went back on to Lexapro 20 mg; found out through this forum that I was just feeling protracted w/d symptoms- kicking myself for not sticking it out

10-2013- started my taper to 18 mg

2-2014- tapered down to 15 mg

6-2014- tapered down to 12.5 mg

4-2015- still at 12.5 mg; noticing anxiety more- hanging around until I feel ok to go down to 10mg

6-2015- 5 mg

7-2015- 2 mg

8/2015- OFF     UPDATE: Dec 16th- Off 18 weeks today! Still having some issues but better!

 

 

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Thank you so much everyone, for your words of support and encouragement ( I hope that one day I will be a mental ninja!! lol). Finding this forum has helped me greatly and hearing everyone's input is so helpful. I am hoping that within the next 12 months I will improve more. Altostrata can anyone explain why the thoughts and images are happening and if you know of others that have had a similar experience during withdrawal? They just pop into my head and I don't understand where they manifest from?? When they happen I try to ignore them and focus on the fact that I don't normally think like this and blame it on withdrawal. I also try to imagine nicer things like hugging my daughter - she has been a huge inspiration through my withdrawal. Thankyou again everyone for your kind words - they mean alot!!

MissMellie- as far as the images go, that is all from the W/D and lexapro. I had post partum really bad after my daughter and suffered from my first obsessive intrusive thought ever. It scared me so bad that i burst into hysterics and that was it. But now I know that it is just OCD, and the fact that we get so upset about it means it will NEVER happen. We will NEVER act upon it. I still have to hide the knives in my kitchen. Sometimes I just walk by them and stick my tongueo ut at them. Its scary, but JUST A THOUGHT. I have found an amazing book that has helped me tremendously in this. It is called "The Imp of The Mind" by Lee Baer, Ph.D. It really is a great book and seriously made me feel better. I went through and high-lighted different things and continue to go back to it.

1-2013- Quit 15 mg Lexapro cold turkey

5-2013- went back on to Lexapro 20 mg; found out through this forum that I was just feeling protracted w/d symptoms- kicking myself for not sticking it out

10-2013- started my taper to 18 mg

2-2014- tapered down to 15 mg

6-2014- tapered down to 12.5 mg

4-2015- still at 12.5 mg; noticing anxiety more- hanging around until I feel ok to go down to 10mg

6-2015- 5 mg

7-2015- 2 mg

8/2015- OFF     UPDATE: Dec 16th- Off 18 weeks today! Still having some issues but better!

 

 

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  • Administrator

Hi, Treehugger. I hope MissMellie comes back and tells us how she's doing. In the meantime, please start an Intro topic for yourself so we can get to know you.

 

MissMellie's is a classic story of antidepressant use and withdrawal.

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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  • 3 months later...

Hi Guys... just posted this in updates. My recovery story!

 

Its been a long time since I posted on this forum, however I am due to celebrate my 4 year anniversary from Lexapro withdrawal and I thought I should give you all an update on my recovery.

I haven't been active on the forum for some time as I needed to distance myself. I felt that everytime I read about other people's symptoms/stories although helpful at the time, it also triggered a lot of fear...fear of the unknown and fear of what would happen to me if I got more symptoms, or if my symptoms did not disappear. In saying that I also gained a lot of hope from other people' stories and I even re-read certain ones over and over in the hope that I too would make a full recovery.

 

Well ladies and gents, I can happily say that I too have made a full recovery after a "severe" withdrawal from the poison Lexapro. It did take a long time, however my recovery did happen. It was slow and gradual and did occur in waves as everyone knows. I personally felt my big turning point was around the 2 year mark, with big improvements happening after that time. I do also want to point out that some symptoms I had weren't actual symptoms of Lexapro withdrawal  - well they may have been somewhat a part, but not wholly Lexapro. I think this is important to know as when your in the depth of withdrawal you tend to blame everything on your withdrawal (well I at least did). A good example of this was the pins and needles I experienced in my left shoulder blade. I found out this was actually from muscle tension, which was exacerbated by my job. I had a couple of sessions of dry needling as well as some magnesium oil and it was gone.

 

So do I still get anxiety? Yes of course I do..I'm human and as a human I feel emotions, one of them being anxiety. Is it as bad as what it was on Lexapro - definitely not, 100% not. My anxiety at first while on Lexapro completely diminished to a point where I did not care about anything (very sad I know). However this changed and turned into severe anxiety, with OCD type repetitive thoughts which I have never experienced in my life up until Lexapro.

 

As for my symptoms now, I have none, none that are worth while mentioning....do I have crappy days where I don't feel 100%...sure. Everybody does! But I have I got rid of the horrible thoughts, the tingling, the zaps, the weakness, the heart palpitations, the nausea, the bad dreams, feelings of aggression, suicidal thoughts, memory loss, depersonalisation and the many more I have listed in my diary. I still have triggers...that make me remember the hell I went through and I think it will still stay with me for a long time, however life is good now, actually life is awesome!! I have a wonderful family, a great job and best of all I am completely med free!! Living life and trying to be as healthy as I can be.

 

So for all of you out there, who are wondering 'will I recover?'. Yes you will!!! Your recovery is imminent. Take all the good days and enjoy them. When the bad ones come along, focus on the good days you have had and how many more are coming your way. Withdrawal really made me appreciate feeling good - I think that's something we all take for granted. I would also like to mention that I found the book "Recovery & Renewal" by Bayilssa Frederick amazing and it was my bible for many days/nights when I felt like giving up. That alongside this forum of course.

 

I wish you all the best on your journey and your road to recovery x

2006 - 2011 20mg Lexapro ( Diagnosed with Generalised Anxiety Disorder/Postnatal depression after childbirth. Symptoms only emerged after having Implanon hormonal implant put in).

2011 - CT off Lexapro (Did not know about withdrawal and developed crippling anxiety/panic attacks plus a host of other symptoms)

Oct 2011 - March 2012 - Diagnosed with panic disorder and was reinstated back onto 20mg Lexapro and .5mg Xanax. Took Xanax several times over a 2 week period and stopped.

Feb 2012 - April 2012 - Weekly drops of Lexapro and CT.

Protacted Withdrawal ever since. 0-18 months "severe" psychological hell. Currently at 26months and have left sided paresthesia. Numbness/tightness/burning left side of face. Pins and needles left shoulder blade. Hot patches/electric zaps on lower legs, Eye twitch. Nerve pain in back and crawling feeling on left forearm.

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just one word from me 'inspirational'

 

thank you

 

DC.

1997 - 2001 Seroxat 10mg

2001 - 2013 Escitalopram 10mg

Gradual taper from 10mg to 5mg over 2.5 years (between 2011 - 2013)

Last taper from 5mg to 0 under advice from doctor done in 1 month (too damn fast!) - included missing out days.

Have been drug free since Oct 2013.  - Yep 5 years drugs free

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Just read your story and very inspired by it!!. Woke up early in fear about still having so many symptoms but like you years ago it has gotten better .Still  feels like a long way to go and I am really looking forward to the turning point! Yours was at 2 yrs you said and im almost at 19months so Hopefully its close for me!! Thanks again and so happy you have made it through !! All the best 

 

Mort

Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th . PPI Dexlant  30 mg taper has begun. Cutting 20% currently.  using zantac as needed.  Benzo is currently 0.10mg 

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Mellie! So glad to hear you're doing well. I can't believe it's been a year since we mailed. I tried to reach out over the summer but the messenger system had you marked as blocked so I dont think it went through.

I'm nearing 2 yrs at the end of May. I'm much better than a year ago but dysfunction still exists. Unlike what you experienced, my worst sumptoms are physical.

 

Do you feel you still made progress after reaching the 2 yr mark?

 

Keep enjoying that good health! You deserve it.

9/2006 Began Lexapro

1/2014 Began taper from 15mg 

Cut dose by 2.5 mg every two weeks or until stabilized 

5/25/2014 Last dose 

 

Experienced: Anxiety/depression, intrusive thoughts, dizziness, de-personalization, mood swings, stomach pains, nausea, headaches, gastro upset, anger, many spells of brain fog, chills, water retention, hypoglycemia, heart palpitations, weight gain, light headedness, muscle constriction - jaw, chest, neck, cortisol surges waking me several times at night with heart racing, blurry eyesight / visual snow, neuropathic pain, burning/numbness in hands and feet, muscle twitching, light sensitivity, sinuses, temperature disregulation, ear zaps, FEAR, hopelessness, doom and gloom, muscle spasms and tension across whole body, low energy, apathy, depression, constant post nasal drip, ear pain, jaw pain and cracking, tooth pain, burning/tingling/numbing, right rib cage pain FOREVER, lymph congestion, hypersensitivity to many foods and many supplements, bladder/ urination issues, creaky bones, sallow, yellow skin on hands/feet, emotional dysregulation, back pain, vivid dreams, mucus, peeling lips.

 

What's left: Low energy some days, muscle pain, hormone imbalance, GI stuff here and there, eye floaters, peeling, red lips.

 

 

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Thanks so very much for the very needed inspiration!

Congratulations for the incredible achievement Mellie! You made it and set a great example for all of us especially in the typical lexapro hell!

 

I am soooooo happy for you to get your life back!

 

How bad was your back pain during the WD? Is it now completely recovered?

 

Sending hugs to you...

Lex

Drug free Sep. 23 2017

2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.

2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg

2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain

2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain;

2013 Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg by July. first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain

2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg,

2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on

2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.

2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR

2016 Feb., started dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday 2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg

2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, 2/13--0.13mg, 2/20--0.06mg, 3/18--0.13mg, 6/1--0.12mg, 7/6--0.1mg, 7/14--0.08mg, 8/17--0.04mg, 8/20--0.03mg, 8/28--0.02mg, 9/6--0.0205mg, 9/8--0.02mg, 9/17--0.015mg, 9/20--0.01mg, 9/21--0.0048mg, 9/22--0.0001mg,

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Thank you for the update!

It is always lovely to read of such improvement and recovery!

October 2011 - Given sertraline 50mg for dizziness. 

Not informed that this was an antidepressant. Stopped after 2-3 weeks as it was not helping with dizzy spells.

 

March 2012 - Given escitalopram 10mg 

October 2012 - Became aware of what I had been prescribed. Started slow taper.

April 2015 - Last dose escitalopram 0.19ml liquid.

 

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  • Administrator

Very happy to hear from you, MissMellie. I added our cheerful "here comes the sun" symbol



to the title of your Intro topic, to show you're doing better.

Thank you for letting us know how you're doing. I hope you will add your story to our Recovery Success Stories forum!

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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