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artstychic: Prozac to Zoloft to Lexapro, now what?


artstychic

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Hello all,

 

I'm new here, and wondering if anyone could provide insight or an opinion. Woud appreciate some of your knowledge.

 

Here it goes: Last year, Jan 2014, I had a bad tmj disorder flare up. Vertigo and all. It caused me horrid anxiety and panic attacks. I couldn't sleep because I kept jolting up when my body started resting. It was awful. The doc prescribed Lexapro, 10mg and Xanax .5mg as needed. I used the Xanax to sleep for about 3weeks, then weaned off when the Lexapro kicked in. After a few weeks, I felt better. A couple of months later, I felt great despite the tmj symptoms. I weaned off over a course of 4 months - June through Oct 2014. I weaned off longer than I was on it. Shortly after, my untreated tmj symptoms got worse, inc horrible vertigo. I started the right treatment, but slumped into a dark depression. Assuming that Lexapro had an easier taper, I asked my doc to prescribe it. I started with 10mg. Three weeks in, I developed tachycardia (only when I'm asleep).This was the beginning of things getting crazy. My doc (Naturopath) wanted to support my wean by having me take seratoflo and dopaflo (they have 5htp in it). I was told to take two sprays as I taper from Prozac. I read incorrectly, and did two sprays twice that day - the first day. Well, I developed serotonin syndrome symptoms. I freaked out, and my anxiety went through the roof. Ended up in ER. I requested to see a Pscyh (I've never met with one). The Psych told me to get off Prozac and prescribed 12.5mg of Zoloft and Zyprexa, which was a huge concern for me as I am not bipolar. He described it as a mood stabilizer. I took it a few times, but was too afraid to continue. The 12.5 Zoloft did nothing except make me jittery. The tachy just became a constant at suring sleep as well. I was on it for 10 days, and wasn't sure if I should go up or go a different path. I read that Zoloft was just as activating as Prozac, which I just don't do well with. I found a new Pscyh (a more thorough one) who suggested I just go back to Lexapro since it worked before, and stay on it while I see a therapist to talk about my stress issues (it's why I got tmj disorder). I am on day 5. The first two days I started with 2.5. I'm now on .5mg - for 7 days. I'm supposed to go up to 10mg afterwards. I was also given Ativan 5mg to take as needed.

 

Now ... I still have tachy. It comes on in my sleep every hour or two. Last night, I had to take Ativan because I desperately need sleep, but I'm so worried about benzos. My anxiety yesterday was through the roof. The anxiety seems to happen only when I'm at rest. When I'm trying to relax and watch TV, my body is in full terror. It's horrible. It's awful. I've also been feeling a few brain zaps? (Could it be the Prozac?)

 

Anyway guys, wondering if guys could shed some light on my current path. I guess I destabilzed? I just want this horrid anxiety to chill out. The doc thinks the tachy will go away, but that it was due to the Prozac.

 

 

 

 

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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Welcome to the site. Before we can give you any specific advice could you clarify your drug history a bit more? You start off talking about lexapro then jump to prozac in the next sentence. They are 2 very different drugs. Could it be that you started on lex and asked to be switched to prozac? And 'tachy' means tachycardia? How fast is your pulse when you take it? Were you given any heart medication in the ER? Again, I wonder if what you are calling 'tachy' might be heart 'palpitations' which very often occur as a result of the autonomic nervous system destabilization that happens when various psych drugs are started and stopped, added and taken away in a futile attempt to treat something (In this case TMJ disorder?) If I follow your story correctly, you have been on a whole lot of different drugs in the short space of a year.

 

You are going to be all right eventually but it will take some stability in medication dosages first and then waiting for your system to calm down.

 

Can you clarify a bit what I asked about above?

What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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Hi!

 

The post won't let me edit. It should read:

 

 

Assuming that PROZAC had an easier taper, I asked my doc to prescribe it. I started with 10mg. Three weeks in, I developed tachycardia (only when I'm asleep).This was the beginning of things getting crazy. My doc (Naturopath) wanted to support my wean by having me take seratoflo and dopaflo (they have 5htp in it). I was told to take two sprays as I taper from Prozac. I read incorrectly, and did two sprays twice that day - the first day.

 

I meant to say Prozac, not lexapro.

 

Regarding the tachycardia, I am being woken up by it, and it goes over 120. But it quickly goes away when I wake up. The doc says it's from Prozac and it will subside. She feels its my nervous system firing off the wrong message.

 

And yes, I in a matter of a year, I was Lexapro, weaned off. Got on Prozac for 3 weeks. Developed tahcycardia. Got off of that. Got on Zoloft for 10 days. Then was put back on Lexapro. Fortunately, these were all low doses. The plan is to stick with Lexapro for about 9 months to a year while I continue the TMJ treatments and go to therapy. I gues I'm nervous, I messed uo my nervous system or something. I feel so out of it.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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You can edit posts up to an hour after posting them, for future reference.

 

What were the 'symptoms' of serotonin toxicity? The serato flo does indeed contain 5htp and tryprophan at 8 mg each in each spray so you had 16 mg of each that day, a very low dose. The dopa flo contains only B vitamin (a small amt of B6) but an amount of phenylalanine, phenylethlyamine and l-tyrosine. Did you get a high fever? It was more likely your symptoms were due to nervous system upset rather than true serotonin toxicity.

 

It looks as if these types of drugs do not agree with you in any way at all, your tachycardia is maybe evidence of that. So do you think you will stabilize on the lexapro? Does it seem like your system can tolerate it in the amt you are being prescribed, it's 5 mg (not .5 mg, right?) you are taking?

 

How are you feeling at the moment?

What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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I stupidly took it two sprays of each, twice. So 4 sprays of each in one day.

 

Shortly after the 2nd set of sprays, my stomach felt like it was going to explode. Sure enough it did (tmi). I started getting super jittery. That night, I started jolting in my sleep. I spent the next day completely panicked, and crying uncontrollably. That night, I tried Xanax to sleep and it didn't work. I was wired and could not stop crying. No fever. Just a lot of muscle twitching and restless leg. I do believe I panicked myself as well by googling it, and seeing that it was life threatening. So I went to ER.

 

As far as Lexapro goes, I did have a good experience with it last year. I weaned off because I was feelng good, and felt strong enough to wean off. That's why I took my time with the taper. I don't know if I will stabilize now. I was hoping someone here could tell me the chances of that!

 

I am currently on 5mg of Lexapro for 7 days. Then I am supposed to go up to 10mg. That was the dose I was on last year.

 

How I am feeling - Today is a bit better than yesterday. I took my first 5mg two days ago, so I guess it hit me yesterday. My anxiety was awful. I was restless and hyper, and felt a weird drealization feeling. The anxiety hits the most when I am trying to rest or if I'm just sitting. It was so bad last night, I took an ativan. I was barely able to sit and wach TV because my chest felt like I had a mouse in a wheel just going and going combined with impending doom. I had four random crying spells.

 

I am still out of it, but I managed to go for a walk, and I actaully smiled and laughed a little. I wasn't even able to do that yesterday. But still lethargic, and utterly exhausted.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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How did you happen to think you were getting serotonin toxicity? (that you googled and scared yourself with?) You weren't getting a high enough dose of 5htp OR tryptophan to cause that, is what I am trying to point out. My guess is that you were suffering from either a reaction to the meds or nervous system instability from all the rapid changes. Here is our topic on withdrawal syndrome (which happens also with rapid med changes):

 

What is withdrawal syndrome?

 

I am not quite sure what we can help you with except provide you with information that could help you understand what might have happened to you but nothing that can fix what has happened. You are committed to staying on the lexapro then? We cannot predict whether or not you will stabilize. Lexapro is a very strong drug. You might want to stay on the lowest dose possible and wean off very very slowly. These drugs are often prescribed at too high a dose for everyone.

 

You might want to consider a healthy balanced diet, room darkening shades at night to promote sleep, a little gentle exercise every day and some fish oil and magnesium supplements (I suggest you leave the serato flo and dopa flo alone for now, you could have reacted to an undisclosed ingredient in them).

 

King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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Hi!

 

Thanks so much! It's comforting to know that I did not get toxicity. I guess I just wanted to know there was support out there. I do have great ppl around me, but I'm the only on an SSRI.

 

I never took the sprays again after that day.

 

If I start to feel better with 5mg Lexapro, I would love to just stay on this dose. It took me four months to taper from 10mg. It's very potent, that I know. Can Lexapro be therapeutic at 5mg?

 

Thanks for links and suggestions. Healthier eating, exercise, etc are all on the to do list for this year.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus
If I start to feel better with 5mg Lexapro, I would love to just stay on this dose. It took me four months to taper from 10mg. It's very potent, that I know. Can Lexapro be therapeutic at 5mg?

 

When I was on Lexapro, I found 10mg to be too much, even though that was what was prescribed.  I cut down to 5mg and stayed on that.  When you ask if 5mg is therapeutic, it depends what you mean by therapeutic really.  These drugs don't actually cure anything, they change the way the brain works by causing an imbalance in brain chemistry, some people find these effects are helpful.  5mg can certainly be enough to cause effects, if you are happy with the way you feel on 5mg, then its much better to stay on 5mg rather than increase because an increase in dose will also increase any bad effects (side effects), toxicity and long term harm the longer you stay on them.

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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  • Administrator

Welcome, artsy. Or is it artsty?

 

....

Here it goes: Last year, Jan 2014, I had a bad tmj disorder flare up. Vertigo and all. It caused me horrid anxiety and panic attacks. I couldn't sleep because I kept jolting up when my body started resting. ...

 

When this happened, were you taking any drugs?

 

It sounds to me like you have an adverse reaction -- tachycardia -- to SSRIs. I don't know why your doctors keep on putting you on them.

 

It also sounds like the addition of the 5-HTP was too stimulating for you. This is another indication that you are a person who is very sensitive to serotonergics.

 

Yes, if I were you, I would not increase beyond 5mg Lexapro and push my luck with the tachycardia. I would also stop going to psychiatrists to deal with TMJ.

 

Do you use a night guard? If the TMJ is due to stress, it sounds to me like you need stress reduction training.

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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Last year? No. That'w why they put me on Lexapro at that time. And I actually did feel better. I felt so good, I decided to taper off. Not a good idea. I wasn't ready yet.

 

For TMJ, I see a NM dentist (I have a 24/7 orthotic), PT and chiro. The psych was after because the symptoms became unbearable.

 

The tachycardia came on when I tried Prozac in Dec. I figured the taper would be easier than Lexapro (did a slow taper and still got those annoying brain zaps) so I was put on that. But it was too activating. Feeling a bit calmer with Lexapro, but dealing with side effects.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • 1 month later...

Hi!

 

Im starting to freak out over here. Im on 10mg of lexapro and am experiencing irregular heartbeats. It happens right when I'm lying down at night to go to sleep. Tonight i had some chest pain along with it. My doctor said it's an unfortunate side effect of the drug. But im reading that it can cause strokes. Extremely worried now.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I moved the above post from the symptoms section to your introduction thread here because it was related to your own situation specifically. Please add information and updates about your changing circumstances, and ask questions here.

 

Please read through your thread, you are probably on a too high dose as has already been suggested.  When did you increase from 5mg to 10mg?

 

Please would you put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature. Putting a short version of your drug and tapering history in your signature helps people understand your context, it appears below each of your posts. Here are instructions for how to do it:

 

http://survivinganti...your-signature/

 

Petunia.

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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Hello all!

 

I was on generic Lexapro last year (a co. called Teva), and I had really good results with it. So much so, I weaned off.

 

Welp, I didn't deal with why I got on them to begin with so I am back on. But this time it feels different. I feel SOOO disconnected. Apathy. Just out of it. I still get tinges of anxiety and I can get irritable and upset pretty quickly. I had none of these issues that last year.

 

The pharmacist said that different manufactureres may feel different for people. The co. I had been using this time around is Aurobindo. She switched me back to Teva. Anyway, does anyone here have experience with this? Would love to know. I see my doc this week, and wonder if she will up my dose or move to the real Lexapro.

 

I took the Teva version last night. Not sure if or when I will see a difference.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

We can't really give you advice on different forms of Lexapro to take, or what meds to take, or what to do about side effects from the drugs you are taking; that's not really what we do here, we're more about helping people who want to get off meds and can't, or who are suffering protracted withdrawal damage and need support.

 

I would however highly recommend the book Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker, at this point in your journey.

 

Good luck to you!

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

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

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

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  • Administrator

Hi!

 

Im starting to freak out over here. Im on 10mg of lexapro and am experiencing irregular heartbeats. It happens right when I'm lying down at night to go to sleep. Tonight i had some chest pain along with it. My doctor said it's an unfortunate side effect of the drug. But im reading that it can cause strokes. Extremely worried now.

 

An unfortunate side effect? If your doctor is not concerned about arrhythmia from Lexapro, you need a new doctor.

 

You may notice on Feb 17 I suggested a much lower dosage.

 

Please read Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

This is a site for going off drugs. If you believe you require an antidepressant, we can't recommend what to take.

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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  • 1 year later...

Hi everyone!

 

I started a micro-taper two days ago - 10mg lexapro. I was doing fine until I removed gluten from my diet a month ago. Gluten was causing malabsorption, which, from what I just experienced, includes medicine! When my inflammation went down, I got the full 10mg drastically. Who knows what I was really absorbing before. Anyway, in the last 3 weeks I've had horrid anxiety and Hypnic jerks, which cause even more anxiety.

 

I decided to taper down. I'm doing 1mg at a time. I will wait a week and go down again. But what do you recommend I do in the meantime with this debilitating anxiety? I have Ativan, but afraid to add another medicine to the mix.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hey Artshychic,

 

Good call on reducing your dose to account for the extra hit you were getting.  Sounds like things have gotten a little nasty which the increased symptoms.  We have a good thread with many ideas for managing anxiety:  Non-Drug Techniques for Cope with Emotional Symptoms.

 

Also wanted to mention that reducing by 1mg per week is a fast taper.  That's 10% a week, where we usually recommend 10% a month.  A more experienced mod may know about finding a balance between getting down quickly, and ensuring you don't get further destabilised.  

 

I will probably move these posts to your own thread, since it's specifically about your own situation - that way we can keep track of your stuff better. 

 

Welcome to s/a,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Administrator

Hi, artsty. Removing gluten also removes carbs from your diet, which affects your blood sugar.

 

You may be experiencing a drop in blood sugar. If I were you, I might add a bit of gluten back. Your system noticed the carb drop, perhaps this is another situation that requires a gradual change?

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

Hello artstychic,

 

How are things today? 

 

After checking with some of the other mods, we feel it could be best to hold your dose where it is while you try Alto's idea above, as changing dose can cause even more instability.  Slow and steady with all changes is best. 

 

What are your thoughts on that? 

 

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi!

 

I can't go back to gluten. It was causing a lot of inflammation and malabsorption of nutrients, which raised my cholesterol. It was also contributing to my joint issues. Trust me, I wish I could chomp on a giant piece of bread right now.

 

Karen, yesterday the anxiety came in waves as opposed to the 5 hour afternoon marathons I'd been getting all month. Last night I slept through the night just fine. Today the waves were very mild. I was able to nap. I still got those annoying Hypnic jerks, but I wasn't panicked when it happened. But I'm so out of it. I feel like zombie. Straight up apathy and brain fog.

 

I'm going to stay at the 9mg for the month. Hoping I can stabilize and feel a bit more normal.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I can see why you're reluctant to return to gluten.  The only other thought I had was to increase your blood-sugars without getting gluten, by eating more potatoes or kumara (sweet potato), or even sourdough bread which some people with gluten issues can tolerate. Pancakes made with buckwheat flour?  You probably know a lot about the options, anyway.  

 

It sounds like you are getting some gradual improvement in symptoms, which indicates that holding for a month is a good plan. 

 

If you aren't already taking Fish oil and Magnesium you might like to look into those as many find them useful in w/d. 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I also thought I'd better mention that reducing by 1mg per month will soon take you over the 10% guideline.  Much better from this point onward to work out % amounts when you reduce, in order to avoid further destabilisation. 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi Karen,

 

I'm not sure i know what you mean. I was using the method my naturopath suggested the last time I did this, which was very difficult, for this time around because the 10mg was so strong in my system after my absorption got better.

 

Instead of going to 8mg next month, I'm thinking I would do less. I still have to read through the threads but I saw the micro tapering posts, and plan to do something like that. Is that what you mean?

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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Guys, I'm seriously ready to add gluten back in. This is torture. Once I wean I can do the gluten removal then. I'm shaking, jittery. Nightmare.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Sorry to have written unclearly in my post above Artsychic.  Can I blame w/d brain?  I firstly thought you were going to reduce by 1mg per week, but now I see you are planning to hold at 9mg for a month - which is a much better idea. 

 

What I was trying to say is that going down by 1mg per month will soon become too much.  Going from 10mg to 9mg was a 10% cut, which is fine.  But to stick to a monthly 10% rate the next cut will be from 9mg to 8.1mg.  Each cut will be smaller, to help you avoid worsening symptoms.  I just didn't want you to slip over the 10% guide and end up feeling worse - which sometimes happens when people go down in mgs rather than by percentage amounts.   

 

Of course, making smaller cuts might also be the way you want to go.  I'm glad you've been checking out the micro-tapering threads, as they might suit you well. 

 

Just one more thing:  Is it gluten or carbs your body is missing?  It's possible to get carbs without gluten, if that option appeals to you. 

 

We'll get there Artsty - one day at a time.

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator

Hey Artsy - 

 

My endocrinologist just took me off all grain and starch.  That is a Pain in the Patooti!

 

I've been wheat free for awhile, and gluten free is the easiest way to go wheat free, but he says still not good enough to address the cholesterol, fatty liver, etc.  

 

BUT I AM NOT ON ANY PSYCH DRUGS, and have worked very hard to do practices (yoga, tai chi, walking, coloring, social contacts, volunteering, etc.) to maintain my emotional status.

 

Your signature says you are still at 10 mg.  Are you at 9 mg now?  What have you decided about gluten?

 

Earlier you asked if changing brands can make a difference.  We cannot recommend drugs or brands or anything, but I can tell you that a lot of people have had reaction changing from brand to generic, or generic to generic, or tablet to liquid, because of change in absorption.

 

Anyhow, after a long discussion with my endocrinologist, he said that the first step was not to remove the grain, so much as to add protein and essential fatty acids.  Like fish and fish oil, coconut oil.  He said that as I feel better, I can taper off the grains (even the ones that don't upset me, like rice and oats).  

 

Anyhow, that's mostly my story - but I thought you might like his idea about ADDING something (proteins and fats) before you take away something (carbs and gluten).

 

How are you feeling after a few days?  What is your current protocol?

 

Have you considered:  Non Drug Techniques for Coping with Emotional Symptoms - there is a wealth of information in there, and they often help with physical symptoms, too.

 

I remember in the 80's and 90's, TMJ was a thing that they had all of these extreme surgical interventions for it, like breaking jaws and massive orthodontic adjustments.  Now they just give out SSRI's and try to teach us not to care.  Oh, and dental splints.

 

I hope you get to feeling better soon!  Please, respect these drugs.  If you look around the site, it is full of people who tapered too fast, and are suffering.  Since you are already struggling, and have had scary symptoms like the tachycardia, it is vital that you treat these drugs with respect.  Even the tiniest adjustment can have a large effect - more so as you get down further in dose.

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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  • 1 month later...

Hi guys, 

 

I'm down to 7mg of the lexapro. 

 

Not sure if it's the TMJ, but I've had a horrible headache since Saturday. Could that be from the taper?

 

I'm also feeling hot and sweaty, itchy and really irritable. 

 

Any suggestions?

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

Link to comment

Hey Artsy - 

 

My endocrinologist just took me off all grain and starch.  That is a Pain in the Patooti!

 

I've been wheat free for awhile, and gluten free is the easiest way to go wheat free, but he says still not good enough to address the cholesterol, fatty liver, etc.  

 

BUT I AM NOT ON ANY PSYCH DRUGS, and have worked very hard to do practices (yoga, tai chi, walking, coloring, social contacts, volunteering, etc.) to maintain my emotional status.

 

Your signature says you are still at 10 mg.  Are you at 9 mg now?  What have you decided about gluten?

 

Earlier you asked if changing brands can make a difference.  We cannot recommend drugs or brands or anything, but I can tell you that a lot of people have had reaction changing from brand to generic, or generic to generic, or tablet to liquid, because of change in absorption.

 

Anyhow, after a long discussion with my endocrinologist, he said that the first step was not to remove the grain, so much as to add protein and essential fatty acids.  Like fish and fish oil, coconut oil.  He said that as I feel better, I can taper off the grains (even the ones that don't upset me, like rice and oats).  

 

Anyhow, that's mostly my story - but I thought you might like his idea about ADDING something (proteins and fats) before you take away something (carbs and gluten).

 

How are you feeling after a few days?  What is your current protocol?

 

Have you considered:  Non Drug Techniques for Coping with Emotional Symptoms - there is a wealth of information in there, and they often help with physical symptoms, too.

 

I remember in the 80's and 90's, TMJ was a thing that they had all of these extreme surgical interventions for it, like breaking jaws and massive orthodontic adjustments.  Now they just give out SSRI's and try to teach us not to care.  Oh, and dental splints.

 

I hope you get to feeling better soon!  Please, respect these drugs.  If you look around the site, it is full of people who tapered too fast, and are suffering.  Since you are already struggling, and have had scary symptoms like the tachycardia, it is vital that you treat these drugs with respect.  Even the tiniest adjustment can have a large effect - more so as you get down further in dose.

 

Hi. 

 

Sorry for the delay.

 

It's been quite a ride. 

 

I actually can't digest gluten. When I eat something with gluten, my stomach gets huge. I'm down to 7mg. Still gluten-free. I've been working with a nutritionist to help me through all this. 

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Nice to hear how you're doing Artstychic,

 

Those symptoms will all be w/d, including the headache which can be caused by TMJ, which is caused by w/d.  When did you drop to 7mg, and was it a 10% drop?  (Could you update your signature?  Ta). 

 

If it was a fast reduction you could up-dose if you aren't coping.  Otherwise it will be a case of riding it out, and finding some soothing non-drug solutions

 

What do you think?

 

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi Karen,

 

The headache was tmj. I got my orthotic fixed and it went away.

 

I'm down to 6mg.

 

I've been going slower than 10% at a time.

 

Right now I have nausea all the time and irritable

:(

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone!

 

I finally made it down to 5mg of  Lexapro. I micro-tapered from 10mg. But now I have a 5mg pill, instead of the liquid I was making. I plan of staying on it for a few months. I'm worried I will respond differently to the pill. I know everyone is different, but any have any experience similar to this? I would love to know if you 

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

How's it been on the pill instead of the liquid?  You are right that it can cause a bit of a wobble for some people while they adjust.  Just don't make any other changes until it settles down again.  Sorry this answer is a bit late...

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's been about 3 weeks that I'm on the 5mg pill. The last few days I've felt horrible.

 

- moody

- apathetic

-chills

-over all lethargic and feeling unwell

-sleepy

-depressed

-anxious

 

 

Is this all w/d? I hope it levels out. I plan to stay at 5 for a bit.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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  • Moderator Emeritus

artsty: Your symptoms are most likely withdrawal symptoms. Your taper was probably a bit fast for your CNS (central nervous system).

 

From reading your posts, here's what I could find about your dose reductions:

 

April 23: cut from 10 mg to 9 mg

Jun 8: 7 mg

July 4: 6 mg

Aug 16: 5 mg

 

Staying at 5 mg for several months is an excellent plan. That time will allow your CNS to make adjustments catching up to your current dose. 

 

Between 5 mg and 0 mg, many people report the worst symptoms response to dose cuts of their taper.  While you're holding at 5 mg, you might consider how you will make small dose reductions, 10% or less. Will you

  • go back to making a liquid or
  • use a digital scale?

For your reference, here are the amounts of the next 3 dose cuts of 10%:

4.5 mg = 5 mg - 0.5 mg

4.1 mg = 4.5 mg - 0.4 mg

3.7 mg = 4.1 mg - 0.4 mg

 

You may find you need to cut less than 10%. Here are the first 3 dose cuts at 5%:

4.75 mg = 5 mg - 0.25 mg

4.52 mg = 4.75 mg - 0.23 mg

4.30 mg = 4.52 mg - 0.22 mg

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here


scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you Scallywag.

 

I haven't been feeling well. I feel like depression is surfacing. Sad, irritable and I want to cry a lot. I hope I can stabilize on the 5mg, and that it doesn't get worse.

Lexapro 10mg March 2014 - June 2014

Tapered from June 2014 - October 2014

 

Prozac 10mg January 2015 - February 2015 (gave me tachycardia)

Zoloft 12.5mg (felt too jittery)

Back on Lexapro 10mg - early February 2015 - today

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to artstychic: Prozac to Zoloft to Lexapro, now what?

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