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TrishN. Will it get better!


TrishN

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Hi

 

I have been on 20mg of Escitalopram for many years, and just over six months ago I decided that it was time to ween myself off, which I followed to the letter. However 11 days ago it was time to stop altogether as suggested by my GP. Nothing seemed to change for the first 4 days and then it started........................................... Tired; worn-out; 'fuzzy' in the head; tummy upset; wee bit less tolerant!

 

Now I do know not expect miracles, but when can I expect to feel 'normal' again, this dizzy feeling is driving me mad.

 

TrishN

I have been on Escitalopram 20mg for more years than I care to remember and it did work, but no-one said how hard it would be to wean off it. I cut down to 10mg a day for 4 weeks and then down to 5mgs for another 4weeks. The GP then said to reduce again to one every other day for a few weeks and then just stop.....and so I did. However after about 4 or so days I started to experience some very mixed and varied side effects. Think the worst feeling is how dizzy I feel, with every movement, from the flicker of an eye movement to the strange feeling when I stand up. Then there is the constant need for the loo with stomach cramps and lastly feeling a wee bit down and out of sorts.... Bit hard to describe really. So 11 days further on and not quite sure how long this goes on. T

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Trishn

 

Welcome to the forum. You'll find us a supportive bunch.

 

It's difficult to say how long your withdrawal may take. That's a very common question

 

To provide more commentary and support it would be useful if you could fill out your signature and tell us how you

Tapered. How often did you drop a dose, how big were your drops, what was the last dose you were on before you dropped off

Did you have any withdrawal symptoms at all during your taper?

 

Here is a link on how to fill out your signature http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in

 

Dalsaan

Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.

Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.

Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.

Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.

Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).

Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

 

DRUG FREE - as at 1st May 2017

 

>My intro post is here - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2250-dalsaan

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi TrishN, welcome to SA.  You tapered 'to the letter', and stopped when the GP said it was time.

You trusted your doctor to know what was bet for you but sadly most doctors know zero about tapering

and withdrawal symptoms.  

 

The only way to stop withdrawal symptoms is to reinstate the drug.  The amount to reinstate would depend

on the dose you were on when you stopped. Usually a smaller dose will be enough to help with the symptoms 

and relief can be quite fast.  No-one ever wants to reinstate but it really can help. Once stabilised you can start

a very slow taper from the last tiny bit.  

 

Here are some topics for you to look at. http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/3079-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-stop-withdrawal-symptoms/

 

Tapering ecitalopram http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

**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

Hi Trish,

Welcome from me too.  I'm sorry to hear that you followed your GP's advice to the letter and have ended up here, sadly, this happens a lot.  Many people arrive here after following the advice of well meaning, but ill informed doctors.

 

Some people are able to stop taking antidepressants fairly fast, without any problems,  but a significant minority of people need to taper very slowly.  This often happens after long term use, these drugs make changes in our brain and nervous system over time and it requires time and careful tapering for nervous system support to allow the changes to be reversed without life disrupting symptoms.

 

I tapered too fast off Escitalopram (lexapro) in 2010, by the time I found this site and learned the truth about how to stop these drugs properly, it was too late for me to reinstate, so I'm now in protracted withdrawal.   I wish I knew then what I do now. 

 

If I were you I would read through the links MammaP posted and consider reinstating, then start a slow, safe taper.  Reinstating 2.5mg may be enough to stop your withdrawal symptoms.

 

Please stay in touch and let us know what you decide.

 

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

Your taper was quite fast, especially at the lower doses. Most doctors don't realize that it's necessary to taper more slowly at the lowest doses. Highly recommend you reinstate at a low dose (1-3 mg) and stabilize, then taper more slowly off that last bit.

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

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

 

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

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

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

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

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

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

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I really wish I had the confidence in my GP to taper me off, however as he is of the belief that I would not have any side effects it is not very encouraging.  ~They only offer tablet form the smallest dose being the 5mg, which I would have to break in half!!!!!!!!!!!!! He would probably not then taper me off accuarately.  Bit sad really that you have not trust in health service after reading other peoples difficulties too. T

I have been on Escitalopram 20mg for more years than I care to remember and it did work, but no-one said how hard it would be to wean off it. I cut down to 10mg a day for 4 weeks and then down to 5mgs for another 4weeks. The GP then said to reduce again to one every other day for a few weeks and then just stop.....and so I did. However after about 4 or so days I started to experience some very mixed and varied side effects. Think the worst feeling is how dizzy I feel, with every movement, from the flicker of an eye movement to the strange feeling when I stand up. Then there is the constant need for the loo with stomach cramps and lastly feeling a wee bit down and out of sorts.... Bit hard to describe really. So 11 days further on and not quite sure how long this goes on. T

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  • Moderator Emeritus

In the Tapering section there are instructions for making your own liquid suspension from tablets.


 


Reinstatement can be helpful, but the longer you wait the less likely it is to work. Here is some information about reinstatement to help you decide if its something you would like to try:


 


http://survivinganti...rawal-symptoms/


 


I'd highly recommend reading Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker. Psych meds can be pretty perilous and in my opinion should only be used for short times and very cautiously, if at all.


 


Other resources you may find helpful are Your Drug may be you Problem by Dr. Peter Breggin and Council for Evidence Based Psychiatry


 


Here is the link to our symptoms and self care section, you may find some useful non-drug ideas to help manage symptoms as you recover.  Especially read the topics pinned at the top.


 


Many people find  fish oil and magnesium helpful, see King of Supplements: Omega 3 Fatty Acids (Fish Oil) andMagnesium, Nature's Calcium Channel Blocker


 


Please stay in touch and let us know how you are doing.


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

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

 

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

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

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

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

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

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

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