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☼ Toulouse: my Paxil withdrawal journey


Toulouse

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MOD NOTE : Toulouse's Success Story is here

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Hello everyone, I am a first time poster, long time Paxil user.   I have been on Paxil for about 12 years or so, prescribed by my doctor to combat anxiety.  My anxiety was never severe, I just fell down the slippery slope of Paxil use after what should have just been a bump in the emotional road for me.  Long story short, I've decided to taper off of the Paxil 20mg (down from 40mg a couple years prior). 

 

This year my doc advised me to cut from 20mg to 10mg. (I know now, way too much and too fast).  I had brain zaps, irritablilty, and vivid dreams (which I actually don't mind since they are usually pleasant) and some dizziness.  After a few weeks I was feeling OK enough to go from 10mg to 5mg. I was good for about 3 weeks.  But the next two weeks I suffered from severe anxiety - unlike any kind of despairing feeling I've ever had in my life! I suddenly became an emotional wreck and was just at wits end.  So I went from 5mg Paxil back up to 10mg.  A week or so later - hives.

 

Hives, - small ones, on my neck or forearms. They'd go away after a couple hours so I didn't put too much worry into it.  Then a week after these small hive appearances, I had a really bad outbreak of hives on my legs, which I thought was just a heat rash. I didn't take an anti-histamine, I hate the way they make me feel.  Big mistake. I ended up waking up at 4 in the morning, itching terribly all over my body.  I was searching for Benadryl downstairs when my wife found me - at which point I was getting dizzy and nauseous. I was going into anaphylactic shock.  My wife and I both thought I was dying, my children sobbing as they waited by the front door for the ambulance to arrive. 

 

I've never had allergies really.  I am allergic to cats, it turns out, but I've had my cat for 3 years (a Persian which I found to not feel allergic reactions to in the past- and who has since been living with my brother till this all gets ironed out).

 

So this anaphylaxis was not something I was prepared for.  An amulance ride later, they told me I had some kind of allergic reaction.

 

A few weeks later, after seeing an allergist, he suspected my bizarre reaction to be caused by a medicine (not a food or other allergen).  I only take Paxil, and Propecia. (which I've stopped last week to try to rule that out as a cause of the hives).  I still get small areas of redness on my skin, primarily when I wake up in the AM.  And for now I'm on antihistimines, which I dislike greatly.

 

I am wondering if the traumatic, despair-like anxiety feelings I suffered, and then yo-yo-ing back to a higher dosage of Paxil did a number on my body and made me overly sensitive to histamines, or my cat.  Since my allergist suspected Paxil as a possible cause of the hives/anaphylaxis, I have since tapered back down to 5mg, and three days ago down to 2.5mg.  I suspect its not the actual Paxil causing the hives, but the withdrawal itself, the toll it takes on my body and mind. 

Just hoping putting my story out there, if anyone can relate to such a physical reaction like what I experienced, and if they too, think it is related to the Paxil withdrawl.

 

Thanks for reading.

Cheers

Edited by Erell
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Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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So, here's what I think happened.  I think my body was just really messed up after coming down from the Paxil.  Whatever was going on, created a sudden allergic reaction, but I didn't know what.  Unti

  • Administrator

Welcome, Toulouse.
 
Yes, we find people develop odd sensitivities with withdrawal symptoms.
 
Your changing your Paxil dosage too fast destabilized your autonomic nervous system. What time of day do you take Paxil? What time of day do you get the rash? Do you get the rash in the same area each time?
 
How do you feel on 2.5mg Paxil?
 
See

What is withdrawal syndrome?
 
Why taper by 10% of my dosage?
 
Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

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 Toulouse,

I moved your introductory post from the symptoms section to a Journal thread of its own. This way more people will notice it, and you can maintain your own journal. Please use this thread to track progress, write about symptoms, ask questions and communicate with the community, add to it whenever you want.

 

I'm sorry to hear about what you have been through, hives seem to be a common withdrawal symptom,  I'm glad you are feeling a little better now, we have a topic about it, please would you add your experience to the discussion, here is the link:

 

Skin issues: hives, acne, dryness etc.

 

As you suggested in your post, the hives are likely to be caused by withdrawal, particularly the rate at which you are tapering. You have been tapering too fast. We suggest reducing by no more than 10% of the current dose every 4 weeks, this reduces the risk of withdrawal symptoms arising. Please read through this which will explain why:

  

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Here is our Paxil tapering topic:

 

Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

 

Antidepressants, including Paxil have an antihistamine effect, so perhaps during the time you were taking a high dose of Paxil, you were being protected from developing an allergic reaction to your cat, I'm not sure. Antihistamines are not recommended while tapering or recovering from withdrawal, they act on the same receptors as antidepressants, please see this topic for more information about this:

 

Antihistamines - Surviving Antidepressants

 

I'm glad you found us, you will find a lot of friendly help and support here.

 

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

 

 

 

Link to post

Welcome Toulouse,

I moved your introductory post from the symptoms section to a Journal thread of its own. This way more people will notice it, and you can maintain your own journal. Please use this thread to track progress, write about symptoms, ask questions and communicate with the community, add to it whenever you want.

 

I'm sorry to hear about what you have been through, hives seem to be a common withdrawal symptom,  I'm glad you are feeling a little better now, we have a topic about it, please would you add your experience to the discussion, here is the link:

 

Skin issues: hives, acne, dryness etc.

 

As you suggested in your post, the hives are likely to be caused by withdrawal, particularly the rate at which you are tapering. You have been tapering too fast. We suggest reducing by no more than 10% of the current dose every 4 weeks, this reduces the risk of withdrawal symptoms arising. Please read through this which will explain why:

  

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Here is our Paxil tapering topic:

 

Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

 

Antidepressants, including Paxil have an antihistamine effect, so perhaps during the time you were taking a high dose of Paxil, you were being protected from developing an allergic reaction to your cat, I'm not sure. Antihistamines are not recommended while tapering or recovering from withdrawal, they act on the same receptors as antidepressants, please see this topic for more information about this:

 

Antihistamines - Surviving Antidepressants

 

I'm glad you found us, you will find a lot of friendly help and support here.

 

Petunia.

Petunia - thank you so much for your informative reply and for moving my post to a more visible location. My allergist and internal medicine doctor have me on zyrtec and zantac once in the am and once in the evening. I found that I am not feeling well, especially after my pm dosage, so I stopped that a couple days ago. Right now, I will only take a Claritin if I see hives wanting to come on.  I think I'm sort of stuck in between both of these drugs, the antihistimines and the paxil.  I'm hoping to take less and less antihistimines as my symptoms seem to have improved from where I was a month ago - though still not 100% hive free every day. Hopefully I can continue my wean, which is now 2.5 mg.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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Welcome, Toulouse.

 

Yes, we find people develop odd sensitivities with withdrawal symptoms.

 

Your changing your Paxil dosage too fast destabilized your autonomic nervous system. What time of day do you take Paxil? What time of day do you get the rash? Do you get the rash in the same area each time?

 

How do you feel on 2.5mg Paxil?

 

See

 

What is withdrawal syndrome?

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

Thank you for responding Altostrata.  I have always taken the Paxil in the AM.  The hives started sporadically, and not very bothersome for about a week. Then one evening, around 10pm - that's when I noticed my upper legs covered in hives -- then several hours later the anaphylaxis as the hives grew much worse (by 4 am).  

 

I went back down to 5mg after seeing the allergist about 3 weeks ago. Then last week went down to 2.5. (going on day 5 now).  Felt the typical withdrawal symptoms (light headed, easily irritated, and some brain zaps though not much).  Today, however, I feel great compartively speaking. I will stay on the 2.5 for about 3-4 weeks and see about cutting down again.  I can get the liquid form of Paxil. But my insurance won't cover it for some reason. I think the 200.00 or so it will cost will be money well spent if I need to trim down to 2.mg and then down to 0mg.  I will read more on his site about how I should taper at this point. I'm already here at 2.5 and handling it OK so far. So will reassess things after a few weeks at this dosage. 

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

Sounds good. You might want to hold at 2.5mg even longer, to allow your nervous system to settle down.

 

Please keep notes on paper about your daily symptom pattern. This will come in handy.

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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Just an update.  I've been on 2.5mg of Paxil (from 5mg the month before)  for about a week and feeling 95% normal again. My journey has brought me from  January-February this year at 20mg Paxil to 10 in March, to 5 in June, and now to 2.5.

 

I had a physical today and discussed with my dr the possibility that my hives outbreak (and the anaphylaxis episode that started it), were the results of my yo-yo-ing between 10 then 5 then 10mgs of Paxil. (and after other info derived from my Allergist as well). I explained to him what I was experiencing with the wd symptoms and he was very keen to understand more, and found my information useful, for him to have more knowledge of paxil wd symptoms. 

 

We both agree it's time for me to come off the paxil entirely. His thoughts are that even though I will likely have some more wd symptoms, that I just take the 2.5 for a few more days then just stop.  His thoughts are that the dosage are so small, and seeing how I've rebounded (generally), in my weening process, that the 2.5 to 0 should be very doable for me. I may try this and if I feel anything other than I've already felt, I can go back to 2.5 and start to taper that.

The hives have gone, though I do get blotchy skin every day, but it goes away without the help of antihistimines after a short while. A sign my body is getting back to normal. I will be seeing my Allergist tomorrow as get his opinion on that, and how my recovery is going.

 

I will update here for those interested. I'll be happy to share more of my experiences too.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

Even at 2..5mg, Paxil can be very difficult to go off. Please consider a more gradual taper.

 

Please read the links we gave you.

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.

Link to post

Even at 2..5mg, Paxil can be very difficult to go off. Please consider a more gradual taper.

 

Please read the links we gave you.

Thank you Altostrata. I will heed your advice, as well as others on this board. I will try to purchase the liquid form of Paxil and go more slowly.  At 2.5, a week in, I'm not 95% as I thought I was a few days ago.  Closer to 75%. A few minor brain zaps and vivid dreams still. Plus I'm dealing with sporadic insomnia now. I'm happy to say though, that I'm not as irritable, or for the length of time I was in previous tapers.  Still a short fuse, but definitley controllable.  

 

My body is still getting the occasional hive, or red blotch (particularly in the morning but go away usually without meds).   I think the paxil withdrawal really put my body into a shock and thus these sudden allergic sensitivities.  I have not gotten much member feedback here, perhaps because my initial post wast too lengthy, or wasn't in the Introduction section right off, where it should have been. Maybe I should shorten my story to see if others relate to what I've gone through these last months. I'd love to hear what others have done to combat their allergic sensitives / reactions.   I'm considering researching some supplements to take to help my immune system, but am at the beginning of that quest now.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

It is possible severe withdrawal syndrome made your entire system temporarily more sensitive.

 

Visit other peoples' Intro topics, get to know them, and they will visit yours.

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.

Link to post
  • 2 weeks later...

Just an update, I've purchased liquid paxil but am afraid to use it. For the past 4 days I've been shaving my 2.5mg down to somewhere around 1.50 for the time being. I am still getting rashes and hives pretty much daily, though they are mild generally. I'm taking Claritin primarily. My mood was in the dumps for a couple days but last two days I seem more ok.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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Another update. I'm still cutting up my pills instead of trying the liquid.  Mainly because I am reacting pretty good to the way I've been doing it. I am cutting my pill to be what I think is less than half of what it was at 2.5mg. So I think I'm around  somewhere shy of 1mg or so (maybe .50-75?) . It's not very exact, and I'm eyeballing it.  But I am not having the usual zaps or irritable nature at this point, so I'll keep at it. Today I think I took a little less than yesterday.  I will keep at this and see how it goes.  This morning I had some mild heart palpitations but took half a xanax to calm it down and I'm fine now.  Not too worried about that.  Also noticing my hives / rash have really diminished since last Sunday, they day after I started another drop. Defnitely belive the hives/rash is a direct result of the drug somehow. If no one finds this info helpful, it's okay. I can refer back to my old posts as this serves as a good journal for me as I go through this.  I HOPE to be off of Paxil completely by next week.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

Experience tells us to be much more careful going off Paxil. I certainly hope this works for you.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • 2 weeks later...

*topic moved from symptoms forum

 

I'm 10 days off of Paxil, after a six month taper from 20mg.  I think I'm doing OK enough. No side effects to make me consider going back on at least.

Today I woke up with back pain - i felt like maybe I just slept wrong.  Then later it was sort of in my chest, on the left side, upper rib cage. It sort of fluctuates how I'm seated, if I'm hunched over a desk, it's my back that aches. If I take a deep breath, I feel it in the front.  It sort of feels like I've been punched in the ribs.

 

I had a physical a few weeks ago, and all looked good. Chest X-ray and electrocardiogram (sp?) both normal.

 

Could this be related to w/d?

 

thanks in advance. (I tried doing a search here first,  but it was fruitless)

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Chest pain related to anxiety and flu-like aches and pains are common withdrawal symptoms, see: Dr. Joseph Glenmullen's withdrawal symptom checklist ...

 

Also see this topic:  Tension and pain in muscles and joints - Symptoms and self ...

 

Personally, I've had all kinds of strange pain occur randomly in various places since being in withdrawal. Usually it will last a few hours to a few days and then go away.

 

If something lasts longer than a few days, feels serious and/or is getting worse, its best to have it checked out by a doctor.

 

The search function on this site doesn't work very well.  The best way to search this site for specific information  is to use Google. Type in survivingantidepressants.org then the symptom or information you wish to search for.

 

If after searching, you can't find what you're looking for, please start a new topic.

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

 

 

 

Link to post

Thank you, Petunia. I'll read these links

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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Just an update after 15 days 0mg Paxil.  It seems the worst of the w/d symptoms were during my drops from 20-10 and then 10-5 mgs.  Though the first several days I have had a few dizziness episodes, one day particularly bad (day 4 or 5 I believe).  My head was spinning at one point when I woke up in the middle of the night. The next day, gladly, was much improved and the dizziness has so far stayed away.  I've been getting numbness/tingling in either hand during sleep, depending on how I'm laying against it.  This has subsided for a few days, then started up again last couple days.  My main concern was anger, and losing control of it. I had a few rough days there, but I think I'm slowly improving on that aspect.

 

(edit): two nights ago I had what I believe are my first ever halucinations. At night, waking up for no reason, just stirring in my sleep. Saw something strange, in the shapes in the darkness of my room.  I knew they weren't real.  They passed after the initial shock of seeing what I thought I was seeing.  (scary stuff). The next day I had some anger issues in the AM.  Since then I have settled down so hoping that stays away.

 

I'm also slowly starting to regain some proper emotions. Able to balance my emotions, not get riled up too easily. Able to chuckle and give and receive a bit of humor.

My hives, well for most of the last month or so, have really diminished more into reddish blotches on my chest. (which looks like an anxiety rash). I haven't had full blown hives in a while, and when I did, they were treatable with the antihistimine cocktail. ( i stay away from benadryl and stick to zyrtec with zantac and an occasional claritin if I'm getting itchy).  Which is still most days. But it SEEMS to be calming down somewhat. It could be that I'm eating low-histimine diet, as it seems so many things trigger the allergic response (going outside after grass is fresh cut, certain foods,)  cut caffeine and alchohol all togehter (yay, the only good to come out of this ordeal IMO).  It could also be calming down after all the paxil up and down mgs.  It could be just running its course.  It's STILL here, just not to the degree, and I'm not so anxious, worrying about them any more.  I really hope my itchy chest and arms continue to improve to where I eventually don't need any meds. 

 

My joints have felt a bit sore on occassion this past several days.  Like i've just played in a football game and waking up the next morning to the aches. Except I've done nothing but my ordinary house and work activity.   My throat also has felt a little dry the last few days. Not too much, but I know it's there. 

 

I had a little anxiety this afternoon during lunch (with family members in a restaurant).  I was fine for a while, then later started to get a little anxious, like i wanted to get out of there. Felt a little chlosterphobic and just wanted to not be there.  But I told myself it was the anxiety, and that it will pass.  Eventually it started to lift and the rest of the afternoon was pretty fine and I was able to not think of my w/d or symptoms for most of the day.  I'm getting a tiny bit of headache pain right now, but not enough to warrant a tylenol, so I will deal with it naturally and start getting ready for bed. 

 

That's about the skinny of it, being 2 weeks off the poison pills.  I hope I continue to stabilize and not relapse, as I read so often here.  I really hope that I can return to normal feelings again and can normal physical functiong too. 

Thanks for reading. 
 

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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Good to hear. 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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Thanks. Last couple of days, no anger at all. I read some people here and they are having such a tough go of wd.  Even though I'm not 100% by any means, I think I'm doing pretty good considering.   I've gotten off of Paxil several years ago. (and did it fairly cold turkey - a very fast taper - maybe a week) And I was OK after just a few days. The only reason I stupidly got back on was because of my palpitating heart. And also the instense anger I was having - (I did not realize the anger was a wd effect. I thought I NEEDED the Paxil to control my anger).  SMH.   I know now, it will pass, and I have to be extremely cautious about trying to keep myself from getting or being around stressful situations.

 

On that note, I am looking for a good therapist now, to help me deal with anxiety naturally in the future.   I am definitely looking for regular sessions to help me cope with whatever comes my way. I'll keep updating as the days/weeks go by.   

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ok, so just updating for the record. I'm on my 5th week off Paxil.  Mentally, I am OK (so-so).  I wouldn't say I'm depressed, but I'm not happy either.  I'd call it 'glum.' Which might be normal considering I have several symptoms that are all likely from WD.  My anger/irritibility has improved to controllable levels. Not hot-headed.  Not feeling entirely clear headed lately.

Physical symptoms:  tingling hands and feet when I sleep. Aches on my back, elbows and feet, (like i've been standing all day).  Urticaria still sporadic, but frequent. Mainly flushing on my chest area, neck too. Occasionaly hives. Either on shoulders, or legs, which itch.  I seem to be sensitive to certain foods, gluten, spices, or high histamine foods.  My skin is very sensitive.  I get pressure urticaria. (the lines from my sheets make deep impressions on my forearms, chest and face, that last a couple hours after rising - the luckily don't itch.  Also wherever i wear something tight - like a watch band, waist and socks areas. Globus (feeling like something in throat).  My ears itch like crazy. (the inner ear). This has been ongoing, and probably started way back when I first tapered - I just didn't think it was related to wd but I do now.

 

No drugs. Only antihistimines if I feel the rashes/hives warrant them.  (zyrtec/zantac cocktail or claritan. Benadryl makes me feel like utter garbage for 24 hours so that's only in an emergency).  Right now doing a low histamine / gluten free diet to the best of my knowledge, which seems to help somewhat.  Hoping one day to go back to normal.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Just another update. 2months+ being completely off of Paxil.  I'm at about 75- 80% feeling better mentally.  Feeling more alert, especially in the AM, whereas before it would take me an hour to get out of bed. I reported feelig 'globus' like something stuck in my throat last month or two. Thankfully that seemed to go away a few weeks ago. I'm still getting hives, mainly red spots here or there. Sometimes they itch, like on my legs. Other times, they're visible on my arm, or shoulder, but don't bother me too much. Though upon spotting hives, I will take an antihistamine out of fear of inviting another dangerous reaction like in my first post. I saw a new allergist a couple weeks ago. She of course, doesn't know anything about SSRI WD. But as a chronic hives sufferer hereself, recommended me with supplements and diet instead of recommending more pills (which she did say I should still take if I need to).  So I'm taking Quercitin, Vitamin D (she found out I was deficient) and a probiotic for my gut. Also recommended a low histamine diet. So at least she's not just pushing bendadryls, etc. and shrugging her shoulders like my other allergist.

My other issue is I'm still having joint pain. Mainly in my lower back, and my knees. If I sitt too long, getting up I feel like a 90 year old man (I'm 45). My feet ache too, if standing without shoes for too long, or when I wake up, the balls of my feet (heels) have a dull throb.

The numbness in my fingers/hands I was reporting prior has not gone away, but it is much better overall. I feel like it's 80% gone.

Hoping these issues resolve soon.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • 3 months later...

I hope others can chime in as this is very worrying to me.  I've been free from Paxil for almost 6 months after a half year taper from 20mg.  I went through many of the typical WD symptoms and in the last two months have seemed to be getting much better.  But in the last month I started getting recurring insomnia. No big deal, I have good nights and bad.

 

But the last few days I suddenly have developed little muscle tremors in both my forearms. In my right hand palm too.  It has kept me awake two nights in a row as that's when I notice it most, when i'm lying down. Last night I got zero sleep and the tremors seemed to get worse and also on other muscles, like my calve and thighs, and a little on my torso. 

 

I've read that muscle tremors / spasms can be a WD symptom. But has anyone here experienced this too? Of course I'm having anxiety about it which is probably making everything worse (thinking it's something far more sinister).

 

A couple things to note, I've been taking supplements this past month on the advice of an integrative doctor I started seeing who said I was low on D and B Folic Acid so I've been taking those and Omega 3s as well.  The last two days I stopped taking all the supplements thinking maybe one of them is causing this. (but it seems to have gotten worse as of last night).

 

I also took half a xanax the night before last when I first noticed this, hoping it would calm me down so I can sleep (it did). I don't know if that made things worse. ( i only will pop a half of a xanax in rare instances - though last night I toughed it out without it).

 

Any info or experiences will help  me a great deal as I wait till tomorrow to call my doctor and see what he says.

 

Thanks so much

 

Toulouse

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

These are common withdrawal symptoms and usually go away in time, have a look in these topics to read about the experiences of others with these symptoms:

 

tremors, shaking, body vibration - Surviving Antidepressants

Tension, pain, twitches, spasms in muscles and joints ...

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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Thank you Petunia.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Vitamin B is a known trouble maker for those in w/d.  You might like to reinstate the other supplements and see how it goes, without the Vit.B. 

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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Vitamin B is a known trouble maker for those in w/d.  You might like to reinstate the other supplements and see how it goes, without the Vit.B. 

I contacted the holistic DR who put me on the supplements and though he doubted any of the ones he had me on is causing this, he told me to halt all of the supplements and take a Magnesium supplement. (then if it goes away to reinstate one by one)   Yesterday, I did still take my Vitamin D (3000mg) and the Methylfolate (for the B9 deficiency) but didn't take Omega 3 (1500mg)  as I've suspected before that it has given me insomnia.  NOTE - the two days this started happening I ceased the supplements on my own.  Part of me thought maybe my ceasing the supplements suddenly is what caused /contributed to the twitching so yesterday I popped the D and Methylfolate.  Yesterday the spasms / twitches did improve greatly. Not sure if its anything I did or just time helped it.  So far today I have taken nothing at all. I am unsure as the twitching has improved / cleared up, if I should do what I did yesterday (just exlude the Omega 3) and continue with the magnesium.  Sorry if i'm being confusing.

I told my primary doctor about these twitches and he wants me to come in. I'm not sure he will be of any use. I'm sure I contacted him because I was in panic mode.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

Toulouse, I moved your post here to update your Intro topic.

 

Many people do better with fish oil and magnesium supplements, see
http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/
http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1300-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/
 

These can help muscle tension and sleep, too.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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Toulouse, I moved your post here to update your Intro topic.

 

Many people do better with fish oil and magnesium supplements, see

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1300-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/

 

These can help muscle tension and sleep, too.

Thank you Alto.  My chronic hives went away after getting on a gluten free diet. I just started taking supplements. (and also just started getting the weird muscle twitching). Magnesium seemed to have helped it go away yesterday. I will take more magnesium today, along with Vitamin D and see if this effect keeps improving.

Thanks for everything you do for this community too, Alto. You really are a true hero for your hard work.

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Twitching is a very normal w/d thing. 

 

I take fish oil in the morning so it doesn't affect my sleep, and magnesium in the evening so it helps me sleep.   

 

You are wise to make changes one by one to work out what's causing what.  Just keep good notes on paper about what you are taking, and what effects you are noticing. 

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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Twitching is a very normal w/d thing. 

 

I take fish oil in the morning so it doesn't affect my sleep, and magnesium in the evening so it helps me sleep.   

 

You are wise to make changes one by one to work out what's causing what.  Just keep good notes on paper about what you are taking, and what effects you are noticing. 

Thank you.  It's just weird that 5-6 months out from being off of Paxil that these brand new symptoms show up. I didn't get insomnia till a month ago or so and then the muscle twitching just started a few days ago.  Makes me wonder what else is around the corner, but I'm going to try to remain positive. 

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

That's a great attitude Toulouse, you are drug free and recovering every day. The way I look at it is that symptoms are just signs that my body is healing back to its natural state :)

 

Its hard for me to remember exactly, but my twitchy/tremors stage started quite a while after I became drug free, I actually found it a bit fascinating and a nice distraction from the horrible anxiety and fear type symptoms, I knew they were common. Actually I did some research about trauma release methods and learned that these kinds of body sensations can be a way the body releases stored trauma energy from the past, so that's what I imagined was happening.

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

 

 

 

Link to post

That's a great attitude Toulouse, you are drug free and recovering every day. The way I look at it is that symptoms are just signs that my body is healing back to its natural state :)

 

Its hard for me to remember exactly, but my twitchy/tremors stage started quite a while after I became drug free, I actually found it a bit fascinating and a nice distraction from the horrible anxiety and fear type symptoms, I knew they were common. Actually I did some research about trauma release methods and learned that these kinds of body sensations can be a way the body releases stored trauma energy from the past, so that's what I imagined was happening.

Petunia, thanks for the reassurance. The muscle twitching / tremors really have me scared. They seem to target my right hand, forearm and bicep, and sometimes my left forearm as well as my legs, back and other random places.  But it's mostly bothersome in my right hand/arm.  I took some Magnesium today to see if it helps any.  Do you remember how long this went on for you?  It keeps me awake and I'm at the point where I'll reach for a xanax soon if I don't get relief. ( i was tempted last night but held on until the movements quelled).

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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Hi Toulouse , it's actually not unusual at all to get new symptoms this far out , so don't

feel worried about that.

Magnesium or epsom salts in a bath or foot bath may help too.

 

When it's bad , remind yourself that that each time it comes , it does settle eventually.

Try not to allow your mind to focus on it - when you notice it , consciously replace the thoughts

with something else , i.e. cognitive behavioral therapy.

 

Best wishes , Fresh

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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 Do you remember how long this went on for you? 

 

 

My memory of symptoms isn't very good, but I do remember most of my twitching/tremors were in my legs and usually at night. The first time I got them, it lasted about 2 - 4 weeks and the way I handled them was I would lay down and let them do what they wanted. I was thinking of them as a kind of trauma release therapy and would encourage them to tremor more.... as much as possible and for as long as possible. I was imagining that it was releasing some kind of negative energy which had become trapped. Then when the movement stopped, I would feel more relaxed.

 

They came back, maybe about 8 months later, not so bad and only for a few days.

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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How are you doing now, Toulouse? Any improvement?

Current: 2019: 0.04 mg Paxil!! This is real. Soon, after taking Paxil my entire adult life, I will be free.

Long story short: After 18 years on Paxil, "tapered" almost completely off over a month, at doctor's advice in July 2015.

Self-care includes magnesium, reasonable exercise, mindfulness, this forum and nutrition/eating enough food.

Also on 100 mg Zoloft unfortunately!! (which I now will have the knowledge to taper properly)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Longer version: On Paxil since 1996--anxiety & depression caused by (undiagnosed) under-eating / eating disorder.

Doctor kept increasing dose, up to 60 mg; it never really helped but said it really was the best "med" for me.

Rapid doctor-led "taper" July 2015, down to 5 mg, with Zoloft as a "cross-taper" = Essentially a cold turkey. 

Severe withdrawal but didn't know it; believed it was my "underlying condition," and kept tapering, 5mg to 4 to 3  to 2 to 1.  

Feb 2016: Found SA! As of June 2016, tapering from 1mg at rate of 5-10% per month, Brassmonkey Slide! 

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How are you doing now, Toulouse? Any improvement?

I am doing a little bit better overall.  My chronic hives are gone.(though i've been maintaining a gluten free diet).  I will stay on this diet indefinitely. My muscle twitches /tremors have diminished mostly but are somewhat still present, it's definitely improved.  I've been taking magnesium every night, and either that has helped, or it is coincidence.

My joint pain has diminished greatly over the last few months. Though still stiff sometimes, not as bad.  My insomnia, which surfaced badly a couple months ago has also improved and i'm able to sleep at night (knock on wood).   So, small, incremental improvements I would say.  Thank you for asking - hug -

Been on Paxil 14 years. 40mg for the bulk of those.

20mg in 2014

10mg March of 2015 - then tapered to 5mg

Then to 2.5 to 1.5 - to 1mg, from Mar-August.

As of August 23 2015, I am flying without a net.  Paxil free!

WD symptoms since tapering mid- 2015:

Short temper, hostile. Brain zaps. Bruxism. Wild vivid dreams  Hives Food intolerance Lump in throat, . Joint pain. Knees, elbows.  Pain in feet. Numbness in hands. Shaking, like I'm cold. Trembling. Tremors, muscle twitches all over. Facial tics. Eye, lips. Head.  Floaters in my eyes. Severe Insomnia (between months 4-5)  then returned from March-October 2016. I'm sleeping better now. Dreams have returned to normal (month 7) High levels of anxiety when around large crowds or in large rooms. Intestinal spasms, heartburn.  Dizzy spells.  Panic/Anxiety Attacks suddenly developed months 8 out.  4 years out, 98% feeling back to normal.  (October 9 2019)

 

 

 

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