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everythinglive: New here, cold turkey off lexapro


everythinglive

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everythinglive

Hi everyone.

 

Just a quick note to say this website is amazing! It's great to have such support out there.

 

Ok so I've had depression for a year now and have been on Lexapro for that amount of time.

 

I've recently decided to go cold turkey completely off it as I don't like the side effects I get from it.

 

I also don't have the patience to wean off it.

 

My questions are

 

1) Have any members gone cold turkey off lexapro, and 

 

2) After how many days did you start to feel the effects of the withdrawal?

 

Thanks very much for any replies,

 

everythinglive.

 

First Depression 2007-2009

On Lexapro during that time

 

Second depression Oct 2012 to present

10/10/2012 - started lexapro 15mg

15/06/2013 - up to 20mg - serious side effects

28/06/2013 - down to 15mg

12/09/2013 - down to 10mg

07/11/2013 - attempted lexapro CT approach

12/11/2013 - sensibly went back on lexapro to stop withdrawal symtomns before they get worse

 

Will try a tapered approach in the near future

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Everythinglive,

Welcome to our forum and thank you for posting an introduction.

 

Please don't go cold turkey off your medication, it can cause some very nasty withdrawal effects, which can sometimes last a long time.

 

How long have you been on Lexapro?

 

I was taking Lexapro for several years and tried four times to come off it by just stopping.  For me, the side effects started to kick in by about day 3, then became worse and worse and by 1 - 2 weeks I could no longer tolerate them and went back on the medication.

 

I finally managed to come off Lexapro in 2010 by tapering, but now I realized I tapered much too fast and have been in protracted withdrawal ever since.  Its too late for me to reinstate the medication and taper slower.  I tried earlier this year, but nothing works now, so I just have to wait to recover, however long it takes.

 

Here are our tips for coming off Lexapro:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tips-for-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

 

Others should be along soon with some ideas to help.

 

Petu.

 

 

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome to the group! Your signature says you stopped Lexapro 7/11/13, so that would be four months since CT, right?

 

One of your questions was, how long before WD symptoms are felt. This question would be answered differently by different people. Some people feel symptoms from a missed dose of their med, some feel symptoms in days, weeks, or even months out.

 

Have you had symptoms?

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Everythinglive, I would seriously consider reinstating and tapering slowly. I know it isn't what you want to do but many people have tried CT and ended up very ill. Petu is one of them so knows how hard it is. 

We'll be with you every step of the way with encouragement and support.  :)

 

Note for Tezza, Everythinglive is in Ireland and dates are back to front so 11/7/2013 is 11th July. And 7/11 is 7th November, so it's just a few days since stopping. It can be confusing!

**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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everythinglive

Hey all, thanks for the replies. Thanks to mammaP for clearing up the dates. Yes I agree that CT isn't the best idea but im just so sick of the meds and want to be off them asap.

 

It's day 5 now and all Ive got is a small headache and a bit of a weak feeling.

 

If the withdrawal effects do get worse I would consider going back on the meds but that thought doesn't go down well with me at the moment.

 

I will update you all on my progress here.

First Depression 2007-2009

On Lexapro during that time

 

Second depression Oct 2012 to present

10/10/2012 - started lexapro 15mg

15/06/2013 - up to 20mg - serious side effects

28/06/2013 - down to 15mg

12/09/2013 - down to 10mg

07/11/2013 - attempted lexapro CT approach

12/11/2013 - sensibly went back on lexapro to stop withdrawal symtomns before they get worse

 

Will try a tapered approach in the near future

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  • Administrator

Welcome, everythinglive.

 

Everyone who cold-turkeys follows the same thought process. You may or may not be one of the lucky ones who can go off suddenly and not suffer much in the way of withdrawal.

 

On the other hand, the longer you wait, the less likely reinstatement of the drug will resolve withdrawal symptoms. And you will be very, very miserable by that point. The prudent thing to do is to take even 5mg now and taper more gradually.

 

Please look around at the other Intro topics to find out what might happen.

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

welcome!

i can't see how much you were taking.I went from 5 mg to 2.5 mg and 2 weeks after that.i was off lexapro for 44 very painful days while my symptoms were getting scarrier and after i experienced the worst agony ever, i went back to 5 mg and still recovering slowly.

 

The first symptoms started after 3 to 4 days as irritability and extreme sensitivity to touch that would happen in the evening.gradually it progressed to awful panic attack and eXperience of derealization,like i was outside my body.

 

I guess we all thought we can beat this thing...moreover,our doctors told us it's not addictive so we can just stop taking it...

 

But it's good that you are here

 

best,

bubble

Current: 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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  • Moderator Emeritus

I hope you'll take a look at my Intro, link below. I went off 10 mg. far too fast in the fall of 2011, ending on December 14th, and I'm not altogether well to date, 23 months later.  I started getting jittery at the very end of my "taper" ( following the usual B.S. we get from doctors about cutting the dose by half every two weeks and then alternating days at 2.5 mg. and quitting), but it was manageable until about a month later when withdrawal symptoms hit with a vengeance. I was almost completely disabled from mid-January 2012 through April 2012 and had a lot of ups and downs for the rest of the year.  It was all I could do some weeks to just get groceries. I'd often go for two or three days without sleeping at all and due to high morning cortisol levels I was extremely irritable up until one or so in the afternoon, flying into rages at the slightest provocation. The side effects from Lexapro are a minor nuisance compared to withdrawal symptoms.

 

By the time I realized what was going on, it was too late to reinstate safely.  There is a window of only about a month.  I hope you'll take our word for it that reinstating even 5 mg. will help to prevent nearly all of the agony of cold turkey withdrawal.

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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everythinglive

i dont know what to do

First Depression 2007-2009

On Lexapro during that time

 

Second depression Oct 2012 to present

10/10/2012 - started lexapro 15mg

15/06/2013 - up to 20mg - serious side effects

28/06/2013 - down to 15mg

12/09/2013 - down to 10mg

07/11/2013 - attempted lexapro CT approach

12/11/2013 - sensibly went back on lexapro to stop withdrawal symtomns before they get worse

 

Will try a tapered approach in the near future

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

Reading this might help:

 

About reinstating and stabilizing

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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everythinglive

Ok so it's day 6 now and im starting to feel the effects of CT. Sore limbs, disorientation, headaches, insomnia.

 

I don't want this to continue so I've taken the sensible approach and gone back on my meds until at least christmas, then i'll try and taper off slowly.

 

Ive learnt an important lesson this last week, thanks for all your feedback.

 

I'll keep you informed of my progress.

First Depression 2007-2009

On Lexapro during that time

 

Second depression Oct 2012 to present

10/10/2012 - started lexapro 15mg

15/06/2013 - up to 20mg - serious side effects

28/06/2013 - down to 15mg

12/09/2013 - down to 10mg

07/11/2013 - attempted lexapro CT approach

12/11/2013 - sensibly went back on lexapro to stop withdrawal symtomns before they get worse

 

Will try a tapered approach in the near future

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

I am so glad you decided to reinstate, withdrawal is a horrible thing to suffer and I hope it isn't long before the symptoms are stopped. . Come back and keep us 

updated when you start your taper, we'd love to hear how you are doing.  :)

**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

 

 

Link to post
  • Moderator Emeritus

I think you've made the best choice. Please let us know how you're doing.

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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