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Rebecca: Hi, 6 weeks off Celexa


rebecca

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Hi Im Rebecca....been on celexa for 12 years .....spent over 2 years decreasing dosage from 40mg down to 0.  The physical withdrawal was uncomfortable but managable but this emotional stuff is at times unbearable.  The feeling of being so apart from the world...disconnected to my dearest friends and family is the worst.  The crying jags are getting to be really embarrassing also.  I am hoping this wont last for months...as I have read on line....I really would like to stay off these things for good.  By grateful for any feedback.  Thank you.

Edited by Petu
Added member name to title

prescribed celexa 2001 after 6 weeks 40 mg was determined to be the correct dosage

2010 lowered dosage to 30 mg - without any issues

2011 considered tapering off - 20mg daily -  again no issues

2012 took 20 mg every other day for at least a year...did notice lower mood

July 2013 tried 10 mg every other day...had to go back up to 20 mg 

September 2013 started taking 20mg every 2 days for 2 weeks, then 20 mg every 3 days for 2 weeks

continued extending  the days between  20mg  dose...by mid October I had gone 5 days between tablets without too much trouble

Discontinued taking celexa October 18 2013

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Rebecca,

Welcome to SA and thank you for posting an introduction.

 

I'm sorry you are still having withdrawal symptoms after tapering for 2 years, unfortunately, even a long, slow taper is no guarantee of someone having no problems when it comes to these drugs.

 

If you could be more specific about your taper, that would be helpful.  Did you make small, regular cuts over the 2 years, or a few large reductions?  What was the last dose you were on before you discontinued completely 6 weeks ago?

 

Are you or were you on any other medications?

 

By putting your medication history and withdrawal in your signature, that makes it easy for members to see your situation and offer suggestions, instructions for doing that are here:

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

What symptoms are you having now?  Over the 6 weeks you have been medication free, would you say your symptoms have improved, stayed about the same, or got worse?

 

Once we have a clearer picture of your situation, we will be able to offer some suggestions.

 

You will find a lot of friendly help and support here.

 

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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Hi Rebecca....welcome

 

I just got off Celexa, so you are not alone.  I am not med free I have been weaning onto Nefazadone.

 

The crying jags are big.  It's amazing that we can (and I did with Lexparo) take 2 years to taper and have WD symptoms.

 

Are you having other issues from the taper?

 

Being disconnected is a part of it too.  That will end.  When feeling so lousy from tapering we sometimes need to just take care of ourselves and lack the motivation to socialize.  That happened to me with Lexapro taper.  Not with Celexa.  Right now if it any consolation I want to come home and just relax.  Not deal with anything, and especially not talk on the phone.

 

Alot of others will be along for you to talk to.  Read thru the site and you will see you are not alone, in the right place and it is a safe place to share.  I just experienced a personal crisis and they people here saved my butt by being here for me.

 

Hugs

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

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Rebecca, welcome to SA! I'm sorry you're having problems after a long taper. Please do provide more info on how you tapered as Petu suggested.

 

If I were you, I'd try 2mg of Celexa and see how it feels. It takes four days for the drug to reach a steady level in the bloodstream.

In the US, Celexa is available as a liquid but you can make your own liquid. It's easier to measure more accurately in liquid form and also makes it easier to decrease by tiny amounts.

 

If you can stabilize on a small amount then you can taper off that more slowly, later on. I will provide a link to help in a moment.

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  • Moderator Emeritus
Thank you for posting your drug history in your signature.  The method you used of making big cuts in dosage and then taking the drug every other day or every few days is a bad idea as it jolts the brain and central nervous system repeatedly. Stopping Celexa at 20 mg. is equivalent to cold turkey, not tapering, and it is also one of the worst things you could have done to yourself.  Please review the method we recommend:
 
 
Many of our members have found that 5%-7% reductions with a hold of a month or more in between is more comfortable than 10%.  The 10% is a maximum.
 
There's no guarantee this will work, but if I were you I'd go back on a reduced dose of Celexa, say 5 mg., stablize for several months, and then do a slow taper from there. Generally there's a window of about a month when a person can safely reinstate their antidepressant, so six weeks is a bit risky but probably your best bet. Here's another topic to review that may be helpful:
 
 
The problems you described are antidepressant withdrawal symptoms.  How I wish you had contacted us for advice before starting your own program to quit.
 

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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Thank you for all the responses and links ...I have read more on this site on Celexa withdrawal....wish I knew about this before I came off my meds.  I am going to ride it out and try more exercise and this is the big thing for me...be a bit easier on myself. I use a natural "herb" for insomnia which works very well.  I am reluctant to go back on Celexa.  Again thanks for all your replies, I don't feel so alone anymore.

prescribed celexa 2001 after 6 weeks 40 mg was determined to be the correct dosage

2010 lowered dosage to 30 mg - without any issues

2011 considered tapering off - 20mg daily -  again no issues

2012 took 20 mg every other day for at least a year...did notice lower mood

July 2013 tried 10 mg every other day...had to go back up to 20 mg 

September 2013 started taking 20mg every 2 days for 2 weeks, then 20 mg every 3 days for 2 weeks

continued extending  the days between  20mg  dose...by mid October I had gone 5 days between tablets without too much trouble

Discontinued taking celexa October 18 2013

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Please consider reinstatement.  I'm afraid your withdrawal symptoms may get a lot worse and the longer you wait, the less likely it is that reinstatement will work.

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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  • Administrator

Welcome, rebecca.

 

The way you came off Celexa -- skipping doses, going up and down -- may have sensitized your nervous system. This can lead to withdrawal syndrome over many months or years. No blame -- you did the best you could.

 

The nervous system craves stability. Reinstating a small amount, 2mg-5mg, for example, might relieve withdrawal symptoms. You can then stabilize on that low dose over some months, giving your nervous system a chance to settle and re-adjust.

 

Then, if I were you, I'd very systematically lower the dosage to taper off. The link tezza posted for you explains this.

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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Rebecca,

I'm so sorry you're going through all this!  I'm new here, but two years seems insanely long for a taper!  I'm trying to come off another AD, and already mad at myself for not succeeding in two weeks.  Strangely enough, Celexa was giving me seratoninsyndrome, so I had to come off it abruptly, and suffered no withdrawal effects.  Go figure.  Our bodies are all made so differently.  Do you think there's any possibility your body may still need the medicine, and that's whay you're getting these symptoms, or are these symptoms new for you?  I'd be frustrated if someone asked me that question, because the withdrawal symptoms are things that I had never felt in my life before the withdrawal.  I'm not trying to be unsympathetic, just concerned.  On the other hand, might you be open to trying another medicine to ease the withdrawal symptoms?  My doctor recommended Benadryl to ease my AD withdrawal symptoms, and it does help somewhat.  Let us know how it goes, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Ellen

___________________________________________________

insomnia, anxiety, depression- since childhood

lyme disease, dysautonomia, chiari malformation- dx 4/1997

 

nortriptyline- 75mg since childhood

clonazepam- 3mg since 4/1997

trazodone-100mg since 4/2013, now tapering

 

rotating antibiotics and antimalarials for lyme disease

midodrine- 10mg for dysautonomia

repeated skull surgeries for chiari malformation

 

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Hi ....well I took your advice and have taken 5mg Celexa daily for 3 days now...bit of a headache the first day...but otherwise no physical discomfort.  On the emotional side....HUGE  difference....feel like another person...stopped crying, stopped wanting to kill myself, out of bed and doing stuff....even happy!  So thank you for your concern and support and excellent advise.  I am going to taper as suggested very slowly and incrementally over months.  I can't thank you enough for the support!

 

Rebecca

prescribed celexa 2001 after 6 weeks 40 mg was determined to be the correct dosage

2010 lowered dosage to 30 mg - without any issues

2011 considered tapering off - 20mg daily -  again no issues

2012 took 20 mg every other day for at least a year...did notice lower mood

July 2013 tried 10 mg every other day...had to go back up to 20 mg 

September 2013 started taking 20mg every 2 days for 2 weeks, then 20 mg every 3 days for 2 weeks

continued extending  the days between  20mg  dose...by mid October I had gone 5 days between tablets without too much trouble

Discontinued taking celexa October 18 2013

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  • Administrator

Please give your nervous system the chance to stabilize on 5mg for at least a month before considering tapering.

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

Hi Rebecca, I'm glad you are feeling much better and hope it continues for you. 

I would like to echo Alto and advise holding at 5mg to stabilise before starting to taper again.

 

Really pleased to hear that you are able to get up and get on with things  :)

**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

I'm relieved to see that you listened to reason. No one knows for sure, but I expected that you'd be really miserable in a few weeks if you didn't reinstate.  Please take it slow and easy from here on out.

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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So far so  good.....I will stick with this 5mg dosage for at least a couple of months before I start tapering again. Then I will decrease the dosage gradually from there.  I can't believe how different I feel in just a few days back on Celexa.  Thanks for the good advice everybody!

 

Rebecca

prescribed celexa 2001 after 6 weeks 40 mg was determined to be the correct dosage

2010 lowered dosage to 30 mg - without any issues

2011 considered tapering off - 20mg daily -  again no issues

2012 took 20 mg every other day for at least a year...did notice lower mood

July 2013 tried 10 mg every other day...had to go back up to 20 mg 

September 2013 started taking 20mg every 2 days for 2 weeks, then 20 mg every 3 days for 2 weeks

continued extending  the days between  20mg  dose...by mid October I had gone 5 days between tablets without too much trouble

Discontinued taking celexa October 18 2013

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  • Administrator

Please let us know how you're doing!

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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Hi...things are still going well....going to continue on 5mg of Celexa for a few months before tapering again.  Feel so much better...thank you for the support...a good weekend to everybody!

prescribed celexa 2001 after 6 weeks 40 mg was determined to be the correct dosage

2010 lowered dosage to 30 mg - without any issues

2011 considered tapering off - 20mg daily -  again no issues

2012 took 20 mg every other day for at least a year...did notice lower mood

July 2013 tried 10 mg every other day...had to go back up to 20 mg 

September 2013 started taking 20mg every 2 days for 2 weeks, then 20 mg every 3 days for 2 weeks

continued extending  the days between  20mg  dose...by mid October I had gone 5 days between tablets without too much trouble

Discontinued taking celexa October 18 2013

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Good for you Rebecca;you are doing great.

Don't rush it and you will be fine and Celexa free!

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

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

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

3 years and 4 months off.

waves and windows.Very much recovered.

November 2015,health issue.Setback.
 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Rebecca, I am so glad you are feeling better and that reinstating worked for you. :)

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

 

 

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

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

2002  effexor. 

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

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

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

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

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

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

 

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

 

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

 

 

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