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  1. Hello everybody. I was on lexapro 20mg for 20 months due to a high stress situation. after months of therapy for stress management I decided to come off lexapro as I felt I had dealt with the issues. Both my therapist and doctor came up with a 6 week taper method . I am now 6 1/2 months off and I am suffering dearly with severe anxiety , fear , depression , and a very odd depersonalized state , plus other symptoms. I know now I tapered way too fast and I am very much past the window for reinstatement. I've had to quit work and can barely function at all. I have noticed that everyday seems like it's getting worse. I used to get windows that were half of a day long , but those have stopped two weeks ago. I'm looking for hope and encouragement as I have a little girl who needs her daddy to be alive. I fear that I'm going to die or become severely disabled for EVER. I'm trying to accept that this will take a very long time to heal from , but I am very very scared that I'll never be the same. I don't take any other drugs , but I do use an ecig with only 1 mg of nicotine. which is about 5% of a regular cigarette. Is it normal to get worse after 6 months off ? Will it get even more worse later ? Does it reach a peak and then get better ? I am very grateful for this site. I only wish I found it before I chose to come off.
  2. Hello all- i just want to introduce myself to the group. I have been a long time reader and follower. I just decided to create account. I will be totally honest.\ Back in 2014 Started using steroids to enhance my body building. I never used before but all my coworkers used them and so i started a 8 week cycle. After stopping them and going through the whole post cycle therapy, i started to experience what i did not know at the time was anxiety attacks for no apparent reason. Please note i never had panic or anxiety attacks before. On July 4, 2014 i experienced a full panic attack while sitting down watching TV. This panic attack felt like i was going to die! I was short of breath, sweating, dizzy, like i was about to faint. Right after that attack i was not the same. I felt the after effects. i was scared to have another one, i had brain fog, anxiety, Depersonalization, suicidal thought which scared me to my wits. I became depressed because i didn't know what was wrong with me. I stayed that way for two days, until i went to urgent care. I was given a injection and calmed down for the rest of the day. I was sent home with xanax, and instructions to see a Psychiatrist. Once i seen the doctor she diagnosed me with GAD. Wrote me prescription for Escitalopram 10mg, and xanax 0.25mg as needed. I started taking the Escitalopram 10 mg at night and immediately couldn't sleep, had racing thoughts, and was more anxious. Next day she instructed me to take it in the morning. That seem to do work better than taking it at night. Eventually my symptoms were gone except that i was tired alot and my libido was down. She prescribed me Bupropion SR 150 which i made me feel like my mind was going 100 mph. I stopped Bupropion SR 150 and she switched me to Bupropion Xl 150 and then 300 mg which combated the tiredness. At this dose of Bupropion XL i had motivation, my libidio returned, and my energy level improved. Fast forward to last year November 2016 when i decided i want to give it a shot and taper off lexapro first. With my doctor agreeing with me, i started to cut the 10 mg pill into 4 pieces. I weaned myself down to the point that i couldn't cut the 5mg pills to get a accurate dose. That's when i researched on SAD on how turn Escitalopram into a liquid form. See my signature for my tapering doses. Recently my employer started restructuring the company, Unsure of my future i started interviewing and testing for other potential employers. During the interviews i was so nervous i took 0.25mg xanax to calm me down. This was last month in August 2017. My latest taper was on August 14, 2017 i was at 0.7mg and reduced to 0.6mg/1.2ml - 2:1 ratio of Escitalopram. During on of the testing for this new job i was on the verge of having a panic attack. Not sure why since i was not nervous nor worried about the testing portion. I had no choice but to push through since we could not leave the room at all! I managed to finish the test but i was not feeling to good, so i took 0.25mg of Xanax which helped. After the testing episode i have been noticing that when i go into a important meeting i start to panic. i get dizzy, sweaty, and anxious. I feel like i want to run out of there. It got to the point that before one certain interview with a potential employer i have taken 0.125mg of xanax to get through it. And after all that i actually go the job! I decided to return to my latest dose i felt i was stable at which was 0.7mg/1.4ml of Escitalopram in liquid form. I increased my dose on September 10, 2017 I was hoping this will help. I was ok for 3 days until i had to make more liquid Escitalopram with distilled water. I bought some 10ml bottles so just in case i have to travel i have a small enough jar or vial to carry around. So after this mixture the new ratio will be 1:1. I crushed two 5mg pill of Escitalopram and added 10ml of distilled water. After a couple of hours i took my dose at 0.7ml = 0.7 mg 1:1 ratio. I am not sure what happened but maybe the powder that sits at bottom didn't have enough space to properly mix with the water, because right after i took this dose i was on the verge of having a panic attack and i haven't been the same since. I had to do breathing techniques. That worked for like 15 minutes but i was very irritated, i couldn't stay still, i had racing thoughts coming into my head, heart was pounding, i felt dizzy. I had to take 0.25mg to calm down to be able to sleep. i woke up around 1100pm the same night and felt anxious and i took a extra 0.125 mg of xanax again to fall asleep. I had to call in sick to a golf tournament with my new boss, and some clients. Now ever since then i have been on edge, i feel ok one moment and the next, i am anxious, i get racing thoughts, my left eye is twitching a lot. i worry that i won't be able to perform at my new job which is very demanding. Yesterday i did my original mixture of Escitalopram 2:1 ration in a slightly larger jar and i took my dose at 1.4ml/0.7mg of Escitalopram and bupropion xl 300 mg. I did not have the same episode i did the previous night. I this point i don't know what to do. Should i stay at my current dose and try to stabilize, lower my dose, ??? your help and input is much appreciated. Thanks
  3. Hi all. I've been on antidepressants for most of my life. I'm in my mid forties and was first prescribed ADs at age 16 for depression and anxiety. My drug history is tough to remember. During my teens and 20s, I was prescribed Pamelor, Prozac, Zoloft, Effexor, Effexor combined with Depakote, Cymbalta, Prozac again in combination with Lithium, Lamictal until I got the rash, a brief trial of Neurontin in combination with another SSRI. I'm sure I've forgotten some. Some of those worked for a bit but nothing worked for long. Then in my late twenties I was prescribed MAOIs, first Parnate, then Marplan, which seemed to work but I had to take Dexedrine with it because it lowered my blood pressure so much I was passing out. After about 4 or 5 years I was not functioning well again, and was tapered off the Marplan and Dexedrine, which was one of the worst experiences of my life. Now I know it was done way too quickly and I was in severe withdrawal from both meds for about a month. I went back on Effexor XR, at 450 mg and stayed on that dose for over 10 years. The first 5 of those years were probably the most functional years of my life, and then things started to slowly creep back toward noticeable depression and anxiety, and increasingly worse socialphobia. My psychiatrist first tried adding a small dose of Ritalin in attempt to help the Effexor work better, but that didn't seem to make any effect at all, good or bad. Then she added a low dose of Abilify, and I stayed on that for about a year without any major benefits or side effects. I think I just got so used to feeling bad that I just didn't bother to change anything for a while, and hid from life rather than dealing with it. And I was afraid of going through another major med change, so i just kept hiding. About 8 months ago, a number of life changes led me to living in a new place and being out of a job (by choice, initially). I got stuck in a rut, stayed hidden at home most of the time and kept putting off looking for work, which I had initially planned to do early this spring. I was feeling worse and worse, and realized that I was putting up with a lot of negative side effects of the high-dose Effexor without any real gain, so my psychiatrist agreed it was time to try something new. I first tapered off the Abilify in March of this year, and I'm not sure I noticed any withdrawal at the time, because I was feeling pretty depressed to begin with. The only noticeable issue was some GI disturbance and sleep problems. Then in April I began to taper off the Effexor, and now i realize it all happened way too quickly. I went from 450 mg to 300 for about 1 week, then to 150 for another week, then to 75 for another week or 10 days. Throughout all those weeks, I had all the discontinuation symptoms, but I was prepared for them and was able to manage. I wasn't working and was able to just stay home and suffer through it. When I stepped down to 37.5, I had a what I think was a serotonin syndrome effect. One day while I was out walking I suddenly lost all my energy, my body felt like lead and my heart started to pound and my entire body was dripping with sweat. The entire episode lasted only about 15 minutes, but it was pretty terrifying. My doctor then suggested a minor reinstatement, and then a continued taper once I felt a little better. It took me about 3 or 4 more weeks to get off the last 37.5 mg. So by the beginning of June, I was off all Effexor, and had started taking Lexapro, first at 5mg for about a week, then up to 10 mg, which is what I'm taking currently. During most of May and June, aside from the physical withdrawal effects,which were really uncomfortable, I felt better in terms of mood. I did have mood swings, and periods of almost manic feelings, but these weren't too bad. Then for the past month or so, the depression and negativity and anxiety have been getting steadily worse. I've felt suicidal a lot, but it's more an ideation thing, I don't believe I will ever be able to actually kill myself for a lot of reasons. But I really believe I've mostly given up on life. I've been in therapy most of my life as well, but I'm starting to realize that aside from taking pills and complaining about how bad I feel, I've never done any real work to get better. I'm wondering if all the meds have made me worse, and after doing a lot of research and browsing around this forum, I feel like it might be time to stop the meds all together and actually make an active effort to learn some new ways to live. I saw my psychiatrist yesterday and explained how I've been feeling, including my thoughts about tapering off all meds. She was somewhat open to the idea, but didn't actually encourage it. Somehow during our meeting, I agreed to raise the dose of Lexapro to 15 mg rather than try to taper it. And now I'm wondering why I did that. I think in part because I didn't feel strong enough to challenge my doctor. But I woke up this morning and took the regular dose of 10 mg, and am not sure where to go from here. I apologize for the lengthy post, but this has been such a long journey. I'm hoping to hear some thoughts from others about what my next best step might be.
  4. Junglechicken

    Hi, I joined this forum today and wanted to introduce myself. All it took was a family trauma to set off my depression/anxiety (my father's inability to stop spending money he didn't have, led to no money and my having to pay for my parents housing etc.,). I have suffered from underlying depression and anxiety for many years but managed to keep a lid on it by exercising and I guess being younger and able to forget the darker stuff by clubbing and going out. Then 6 years ago hubby and I moved to Canada from the UK and I dive-bombed into hell. Daily panic attacks at home and work, I was bullied at numerous work places as well as dealing with the work pressure, feeling of isolation and no support network. Then in June I lost my job and have been more or less house bound with the exception of having to go out to do chores. Went to my doctor who prescribed Cipralex (Feb 2014) - I was on it for 18 months in total and came off it mid-September 2015 after a 3 month taper at 5mg. This happened after I had got a job at a large company (Nov 2013), and I had to take 3.5 months medical leave. Upon my return to work, I was met with resentment and disdain by my colleagues who saw it that I was just looking to get "free vacation" time. This made my life even more hellish - my Manager had wanted to get rid of me upon my return but couldn't by law. I lost my job about a year after returning to work due to redundancy. Since then I have experienced extreme fatigue (had to stop marathon training), intense muscle and joint soreness, weird dreams, tinnitus, headaches, sinusitis, pressure changes in my ears and ear pain, sub-clinical migraines, crying spells, GI issues, heightened anxiety and depression. Despite these things, doctors never seem to find anything actually wrong with me. I honestly feel as though I am in hell - I feel as though someone has taken a photocopy of me and the photocopy is a completely different person (withdrawal). The weekdays are a drag, and I dread them as my hubby is at work. I fear the worst will happen while he is away. I am a total basket case and freak out very easily if there is a withdrawal symptom I don't recognise. If I can survive this, I can survive anything.
  5. Hi, First time here. I will try to make this a short story. I don't know what or how much to share. Desperate for your thoughts and guidance. I have been on a multitude of antidepressants for 20 plus years, having tried unsuccessfully to stop but each time returned to the same or yet another RX. Diagnosed M.Depressive Disorder/Anxiety/A.D.H.D. For years I got my prescriptions from my Internist, who originally prescribed me anti-depressants. It took over a year for her to convince me to do so, then I held onto them for dear life. (I was about a year-and-half-sober (alcohol) and didn't want to rely on any more artificial substances but eventually succumbed. Sometimes, I was on a combination of drugs. Fast Forward. At Dr.'s request, went to psychiatrist. She didn't immediately try to put me on yet another pill, which was refreshing. First did thyroid T3? Then I tried Lamictal and had a horribly adverse reaction as I was titrating up on this medication. I am not a violent person and guns scare me, but I thought about getting one. I also had depersonalization? So very scary. This and a subsequent adverse reaction to an antibiotic (3 days in the E.R. thousands of dollars of tests--I believe it was neurotoxicity--made me want to eliminate all medications. After over a year of slowly reducing medications, I was off Escitalopram 20mgs and had reduced Adderall XR from 25mg to 10mg, however, the anxiety was so great and I just didn't fully understand the Adderall withdrawal process. (I hadn't found your site yet) I went back on Escitalopram 5mg. This began in mid-February. Again, I tried to eliminate both meds. In June, I crossed over from Adderall XR 5mg to Immediate Release and was on liquid Escitalopram 3.75mgs when, I started having horrible nightmares/P.T.S.D. It was unbearable. At Psychiatrist request, went back on Adderall XR mg and eventually to Escitalopram 5mg. She also prescribed Minipress (off-label) for nightmares. 4 days of this was hideous. Horrible anxiety. Discontinued and was given Wellbutrin XR 150mg. I believe this was to help with the side-effects of going back up on the Escitalopram which now seemed to produce horrible anxiety. I'm not sure if this was due to the liquid form and/or possible because I changed forms of Adderall and didn't stabilize before reducing the Escitalopram. Four days of Wellbutrin was shear hell. I have been plagued with suicidal thoughts before but while on Wellbutrin, the overwhelming nature of these thoughts was terrifying. Wellbutrin was eliminated and I was next prescribed Hydroxyline 25mg up to 8 times a day to reduce the overwhelming anxiety. This was about a month ago. There are overwhelming events in my life. True. But I don't know if the Hydroxyline is contributing to these. I have been suicidal and my anxiety is exponential (numbness in my body, chest pounding, blood-pressure up, virtually paralyzed) Today in desperation, I again went to see the psychiatrist. She has given me Gababentin. I just took 100mg tablet and am terrified. I cannot explain how much it feels as though I have failed. As a person in recovery, I tried to stop drinking multiple times without success. Each time feeling worse about myself when I drank again. After almost, almost eliminating RX's I am now supposed to take Escitalopram 10mg (which I have done for approximately 7 days..I had been on 7.5mg) Adderall XR 5mg has been consistent about a month and a half. And I have just put another pill in my mouth to alleviate the heightened anxiety. After reading some of the things about Gababentin on your site, I don't know what to do. I realize my system is totally confused and that you cannot tell me what to do, but I feel like a science experiment. I was told that some people have to be on medications their whole lives but I don't want to be one of them. I have been on anti-depressants for over half of mine and I didn't fully realize the price that I have paid. I started Lexapro when it first came out and then went to the generic form. My brain was once my thing but I have felt stupid for years. My brain just wouldn't work. I could not find the right word, my short term memory seemed non-existent and I have felt like a zombie. Again, please forgive the length of this post. I just feel so very alone.
  6. I am new here as you can see. I need help!! I'm hoping someone can help me get off 10 mg Lexapro. Every time I try to drop to even 9mg, I end up sick to my stomach. I go back up to 10mg and am still sick to my stomach. I have no other symptoms. In my profile is all my information, I don't know how to get it to the bottom of this page. I'm not very good on the computer. Sorry
  7. Gridley

    In 1986 I was prescribed a tricyclic antidepressant, 75 mg Imipramine PM, to slow bowel function and to relieve pain resulting from ulcerative colitis. I was also put on 1 mg Lorazepam. In 1991 I went CT off both the Imipramine and the Lorazepam, resulting in a terrible colitis flare-up. After a few months I reinstated with success. However, these medications, and everything else I did for the colitis ceased work about three years ago, and in January, 2015, I underwent surgery to remove my colon and replace with an internal J-pouch, which cured the colitis. But that left me with the 30-year-long Imipramine situation. In January, 2016, I began tapering the Imipramine 10% every three weeks, which went fine until I got down to 19 mg, then 12 mg, at which point I began experiencing severe anxiety as well as dizziness. Realizing I had tapered too quickly, I updosed to 25 mg a month ago but have not as yet stabilised at this dose, as I am still experiencing considerable anxiety as well as insomnia. Until September 23, my tapers were approximate percentages as I hadn't yet bought a scale. I use the supplements Theanine and Nature's Balance Happy Camper to help with the anxiety, along with magnesium glycinate. It's only been a month, but I'm a little worried that I am never going to stabilise at 25 mg. In 2004, due to depression, I was put on a succession of SSRIs, in addition to the Imipramine, including Zoloft, Prozac and Effexor. Lexapro 20 mg seemed to finally work and I remain on it at this time. In 2011 I was prescribed 1 mg Lorazepam for insomnia, now 1.5 mg.
  8. Hi Everyone, So where to start? Guess this forces another time to think back when a fatal turn of my life started. Unlike most of us here, I started the 2 week sample supply of Lexapro pill in 2009 for a severe headache based on recommendation of a friend who has been taking SSRI for years. So I didn't go through any information of side effect or how to take the drugs etc., information you would otherwise get from a pharmacist or dedication insert. Somehow it stopped my headache 2 weeks on 10 mg of lex. I don't remember why I restarted it after the initial doses, but do know it’s not for another headache. It was something only now I can relate that it must be withdrawal of that 2 weeks sample. Anyway, I started feeling anxious and other flu-like symptoms (which I mistakenly thought I do have anxiety) so I have been on and off lex on a dose 1/4--1/3 of the 10 mg pill over 3 yrs. period (so been withdrawal numerous times unconsciously). I was ok then except for some pins/needling sensation on head, neck and back in morning which is tolerable. When the generic Lex was first available in the market mid-2012, insurance switched me to it without my awareness. After half year of the switch (increased from 2.5mg to 10mg in fighting with the side effects), pin and needling getting less to none while jaw pain progresses to a level of daily bothersome. The thought of withdrawal was triggered by the worsening of the jaw pain. I prepared the WD fully (as I thought) by lots of online research and used the program from Point of Return taking their supplement pre, during, post WD along with lower than suggested reduction rate (5%) tapering down from 10mg-5mg quickly and then 5mg-2.5mg (liquid) in 2 months when hell started with the most weird and severe jaw and head pain which took me to the first ever panic attack (Aug.2013), plus constent knifing on my head. I backed up to 2.5-3.0mg since then in fearing of the recurrence of the severe WD. Ever since then, I never had one day or minute free of this pain, along with hot flush companied by occasional anxiety and depression.. I switched back to name brand Nov. 2013 (also liquid) after learning from others that the generic can cause severe jaw pain (it is recognized by many generic takers that the two works differently and the generic is bad or worse). It seems the pain is lessoned after 4 month switch just a tiny bit in severity not even the frequency while stabilizing for the change has been the battle of my everyday life. It’s so crazy how much one drop more or less can do to my poor mind and I have to say I gave up hope to understand weather it’s too much or too less of the med is causing which/what symptoms. Everytime I change (ip or down) just a few drops of the liquid lex, I got handful of strange and new symptoms and lately I have been thinking of suicide, the only way to stop it all. I dont know if when others talking about suicidal thoughts, is it somethign poped up out of blue or more like the terrible feeling/suffering put you into such thought? Putting all the sorrow and agony aside, While in constant search for understanding of the situation for a strategy, from what I learned from publications (one of those linked below) and fellow victims (with same severe WD after many years), I have been asking myself this big question: will it be better off just staying with the med than continuing tapering (which could post greater danger and suffering for long time)? http://www.madinamer...n-acknowledged/ I understand this means giving up the hope for freedom and live with poor quality life. But this is what I have been struggling lately everyday and really appreciate your thoughts. Hope we all have a good day for the good Friday and getting better.
  9. Cipramillion: Cipralex

    Hi all! Been hanging around and read up on some of the great posts on this forum over the last week. Impressive work! My english is not that good, so pls bear with me. Here is a summary of my medical background/history. My problems startet after an acute reaction to a vaccine i took 3 months ago. A few weeks later i also found out that i had an Epstein Barr infection, most likely during the same period that i took the vaccine. My symptoms after taking the vaccine were severe with extreme depression, anxiety, fatigue, insomnia and generally feeling very ill. My doc think i might have developed chronic fatigue syndrom/ME as a result of the vaccine/infection, but at this point nothing is certain. I have no previous history of psychiatric problems or other somatic illness. I lived a happy life with my family and enjoyed my work fully at 100%. Now i cant work at all, and the situation is tough with two small kids to look after. As a result of my symptoms, which didnt seem to stabilize after 2 months, i aggreed starting treatment with Cipralex (Lexapro/escitalopram) 5mg. My doc told me to increase the dose to 10mg after 3 days, which i did not do. I noticed just after the first couple of days that i was sensitive to the medication and had lots of side effects (headache, feeling dizzy, mild depersonalization etc). Then tried to stabilize at 5mg for 3 weeks. Felt a bit better the second week, more energy and better mood, but still the side effects were bothersome. I changed to the original brand after using the generic for the first week. It helped a bit on the side effects. Also got parasthesia, a burning sensation in the body and face. Feeling very warm and uncomfortable. Sporadic panic anxiety. So after 3 weeks i decided to reduce the dose to 2.5 mg after discussing this with my doc. I told him to prescribe the liquid version (Lundbeck), which only comes in 20mg/1Ml in Europe, but still makes it more accurate for 2.5 mg. Im not sure how to use this at lower doses. He was a bit puzzled about my sensitivity to the medication. Probably need to take a CYP test to see if im a poor metabolizer. I`ve noticed that im very sensitive in general after i got sick. Cant drink anything with caffeine now. Sugar is also no good. Before i used to drink a lot of coffee. Now i cant take a sip without getting restless and almost dizzy from it. Anyway. After the dose reduction i startet to feel a lot of naseau and dizziness, and after 2 days i woke up in the middle of the night with fast heartbeat and lots of anxiety. My first thought was that this probably was withdrawal from the dose reduction, which surprised me after just taking 5 mg over 3 weeks. I felt better over the next few days, but still got lots of headaches, dizziness and not feeling very well. Depressive thoughts and feelings of hopelessness. This was also something i did experience before i took the medication, but somehow it feels a bit different now. Before i would be having crying spells regularily, not happening much now. Feels like everything is more locked up inside. I think the medication does some job at keeping my emotional reaction at bay here.I`ve also been sleeping better after starting taking the medication. Before i barely slept for 2-3 hours pr night. I still wake up a lot, also have very vivid dreams. Im able to fall asleep again after i wake up, which was more difficult before. Im not sure what to do next. I dont think my reactions to Cipralex is good for me, and i really want to stop, but im also very scared of withdrawal symptoms. Feel a bit trapped here. Should i increase the dose just a bit (3,5mg) to help with the withdrawal? Or should i just wait and see if i stabilize before eventually taper down more slowly?
  10. Hi All, Yet another member of the OMG SSRI's I thought they were supposed to help me - club. My story. My mother is a schizophrenic - maybe related, maybe not, not sure. In my early 20's I struggled with fairly deep depression with anxiety - no specific reason or cause - again, I think it MIGHT have been inherited something from my mother. Got through that after a few years with help of good diet, reading a lot of self-help books, and finally travel. Had a fantastic childhood, always on the go. Deep interest in technology and IT. Moved from Australia to UK to travel and see world. Met loveliest lady in Victoria in 3 months! Instantly knew we were right. Happy. Never really was a "depressive" personality, fairly introverted and normally interested in lots of things. had some mood dips, took St Johns Wort occassionally - not sure if it did much, but low moods NEVER last long for me. I'd always bounce back. But nothing major. Anyway - flashforward to about 2008. In a job in IT. Had an extremely stressful situation build and build - sought help internally in the company - wasn't really helped much. Finally my wife got me to goto her regular GP doc. She signed me off for 1 month of work, gave me some of tranquilizer which I didn't like at all, and 10mg of Lexapro. She said I might feel MORE anxious starting Lexapro - I was a bit sceptical... but went along with it. Work situation was sorted out, went back to work. Was ok. Wasn't nearly as interested though, felt less "sharp" and less switched on. Thought it was that I was just over the job. After approx 18 months (I really didn't take notice of a lot of the dates back then) I thought right lets stop the tablets. Took 5mg for 2 weeks and stopped. Started getting the brain zaps - they weren't THAT bad, thougth they were weird and interesting more than anything else. What got me was the intense muscle aches and crippling depression and extreme confusion and brain fog. After a few days of suffering with this and being very irritable, my wife said "For god sake, take your med!!" So I swallowed that 10mg tablet and a few hours later, started to feel more human again. Thats when I was like omg I'm stuck on these things. Went to see the doc who put me on them, and she completely dismissed me saying they're not addictive. I didn't see her again, got repeats from other doctors who seemed to understand the situation a bit better. I went on my merry way thinking, I'll deal with coming off them another time - later when things are better. Fast forward a few more years, in 2 newer jobs - again, struggling mentally to learn new things and retain things, and "care" about the job. Started to get dizzy spells - 5-10 seconds, tingling in feet, and growing apathy, slowly losing more and more interest in hobbies and interests, really having to push myself. Felt like I was in a rut... just felt "off", not myself, and constantly like I'm about to come down with the flu or something. Was it my teeth? Something wasn't right. Just notched it up to being in a rut, and "getting older"... not sure why I thought that, but thats how I rationalized it. I started getting SORT of brain zaps, even though I was taking my meds daily. I was doing half of a 20mg tablet for years to save costs (the 20mg cost same as 10mg here in AUS). Eventually something clicked in my brain that I wasn't feeling right, starting googling my symptoms and eventually found people on SSRI's having similar - came to various sites like survivingantidepressants and paxilprogress etc etc etc, and there were literally 10,000's of people in the same boat. Finally an answer! I still couldn't quite work out exactly what was going on with me though. As I felt bad on 10mg, the thought of DROPPING in dose scared me - and I did something very very silly (in hindsight).... and took myself upto 20mg!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I know, I know. I started to feel better, but my brain was still "drugged", but I was feeling as if my brain was getting oxygen. I stayed there for about 2-3 weeks, and went down to 15mg - getting quite strong waves of anxiety, but it was still better than the "nothing" I'd been feeling... also got a little "high" with a fair bit of energy - and "windows" of very clear thinking... they didn't last very long though. My aim was to "kick-start my brain" and get back to 10mg to then start tapering properly. I jumped to 20mg in around sept or oct 2014, then 3 weeks later to 15mg. when I got back to 10mg I started getting waves of muscle aches (to me that is the WORST withdrawal symptom - I literally cannot stand that feeling of deep pain in my body - same when I get the flu too). Was taking some codeine and ibuprofen to take edge off, as well as a mouthful of Omega 3, Magnesium, NAC, and Choline supplements - as well as a multivitamin. Overall, I didn't feel TOO bad, some dizziness, whooshy feelings, lightheaded, some concentration issues etc, but nothing I couldn't push through. But I was having some waves of being interested again - which I loved... although I could STILL "feel" the Lexpro suppressing my emotions and perception ability, like things don't really penetrate, like you have cotton wool around you. Anyway - I felt "stable" on 10mg again... and dropped to 7.5mg.... I was at that for about 4 weeks. I was hoping to feel stable on it, but the muscle aches kept coming and going, seeming to get a bit worse with each wave, then I started to get waves of depression along with it, each "wave" seemed to be worse than the last. After 4 weeks I thought I would be over the worst of it, and I als thought I'd be stable for Xmas time with the family. WRONG! I got good news about a new job - and was able to quit current job quickly - and spend 2 weeks at home. Great. wrong. Crashed BIG TIME, on couch - could barely move, felt incredibly depressed, felt like lead in my arms and legs, and couldn't get off couch. ARGH - not now!!! went back to 10mg tablet - started to feel a bit of relief.. but it now seems after 1 week of being on 10mg that the symptoms are getting to me aghain - slowly building muscle aches and depression... So the reason I'm here - I can't seem to get to a stable dose again... so do I need to go UP to 15mg to get "stable" and taper slowly from there? I'm really confused as to what I need to do now. I've got a bottle of liquid Lexapro, although it is 10mg /1ml which is very potent. I've got an oral syringe to help measure out the doses. But I really don't know what I should do now. Any advice??
  11. Hello. I am twenty years old and had been on antidepressants since I was ten. From then on through my teenage years, all I knew was I needed to take my medicine . Once I was diagnosed with high-functioning autism, my pediatrician referred me to a neurologist. The neurologist then put me on respiradone and strattera. I don't remember if I had any behavior problems or not, but my neurologist told me I would have to be on medicine for the rest of my life. I stayed on those two meds until I got into high school. My first two years of high school, I couldn't stop crying. I cried day and night. My neurologist put me on celexa. When that didn't work, my neurologist told me he could no longer help me and referred me to a psychiatrist. I saw the new psychiatrist my junior year of high school who told me I had depression and anxiety that needed to be treated. I was taken off respiradone and strattera and put on pristiq and adderall. When pristiq wouldn't work, I was switched back to celexa. So it went on, switching back and forth between antidepressants. There were so many different ones I can't remember many of them. Every time I asked my psychiatrist if the next time it would work, he assured me it would. There was no chance to talk when I saw my psychiatrist. It would result in a new prescription every time. During my senior year, I helplessly slept through every class, sometimes falling out on the floor asleep. I had a good school counselor who allowed me to pass because she knew it was the medicine and I got plenty of sleep. I also cried uncontrollably almost every day in front of everyone and it was very humiliating as I would stir up a lot of attention. My senior pictures of me showed a person with a puffed up and swollen face. I was switched to lexapro again and stayed on it my whole first year of college. Then the crying returned. During my second year, I was switched to Abilify for depression. I still trusted my psychiatrist as he again promised me it would work. Out of all my experiences with antidepressants, there is nothing that could ever have compared to this. As soon as I took the first dose of Abilify, my brain signaled to me something was very, very wrong. I began receiving no sleep. My psychiatrist put me on trazadone for that, but when I took it, my body fell completely limp, my heartbeat slowed down to almost nothing, and I went numb while my body shut itself down. I stopped it after two nights. Meanwhile, with abilify, I began spending all my time obsessing over things I would normally never touch. I believed I was an alien hybrid sent from outer space to save the planet. I also believed the human race are all aliens in disguise. Then I started going mad. I didn't want to be a human anymore. I wanted to be a supernatural creature with otherworldly capabilities. This was all extremely terrifying to me, but I couldn't stop myself. I lost my common sense as I believed these nonsensical theories. My mind was overpowering me with racing thoughts such as these listed. I couldn't think clearly. I was almost always in a state of rage. Reasoning had left me. For reasons I do not remember, I stopped Abilify by myself cold turkey. My psychiatrist had told me before that I never needed to worry about tapering because the antidepressants I took were all in the same family. He never mentioned stopping completely. Withdrawal symptoms didn't show up until a week later. My psychiatrist told me they would last 15 days. They were relatively minor, and I didn't worry much about them. However, nothing could have ever prepared me for the horror I underwent next. Every horror I could have never imagined bestowed me over the course of a month. I received no sleep. I was very lucky if I got one hour. The nights soon got from bad to worse. I developed REM sleep disorder. I was unable to tell the difference between being awake and asleep. As my mind was drifting, I jumped up in the air, screamed, swung at the air, and thrashed violently all over. In addition, my head would suddenly snap up and I would shout melancholy indistinguishable language and suck in sharp breaths. I was aware of everything, but I had no control over it, and it was very disturbing to me. Then came the uncontrollable muscle movements. My lips drew up on the sides, my mouth gaped open, my lips puckered and pouted, my teeth bared, my tongue stuck out, my neck extended, my eyes bulged, my eyebrows rose and lowered, my hands flapped, my arms swung, my knees jerked, my head jerked side to side, and my fingers extended. Shouts, grunts, moans, and gasps escaped my mouth. Several weeks went by as more horrendous symptoms appeared. Every day I was a zombie. I could only do basic human activities. I had no awareness of the passage of time. At night while drifting off, a dark shadowy presence swept over me. I was aware of where I was in real time while drifting, but I sensed a sudden danger. I jumped up alert every time. I heard a voice I believed to be God's telling me why I was like this and what I needed to do. It spoke to me relentlessly for days. When this occurred, an otherworldly and overwhelming sense of peace filled my every being. But it was always soon replaced by a terror so surreal I could not function. During this time, I could "see" my brain and I believed I was in control of what I allowed to be let in. After four days of this, I ordered the voice to "Get out!" It did and did not come back. Right after this, a veil suddenly covered my mind and I was disengaged from reality. I had no sense of where I was and I had no connection with my parents. I was always mad, crying most of the time, and my head was always jerking. I saw my psychiatrist for the last time two months ago. The doctor who had been nice to me all this time suddenly turned mean. He told me he refused to see me unless I got on medicine. By this time, I had found this site and many other websites about withdrawal. I knew I wanted to try living a better life and I was not backing down. I never took the newly prescribed anti psychotic he prescribed me. A week later, my parents, exasperated with how I was doing and on their last straw, called my psychiatrist. My dad told the psychiatrist I had read on the internet how long the withdrawal really is and the doctor spoke with me on the phone. My psychiatrist told me that the withdrawal symptoms I was describing were "all in my head" because the medicine would already be out of my system now six weeks later. He told me I needed to get on medicine right now because "I needed help". He told me my quality of life was not as good without the medicine. I was in another rage episode by this time, and unlike me, I confronted him. I said "Well why are a lot of these the same symptoms I experienced during the so-called withdrawal time?" He said he didn't know and preceded to ask me was I on drugs. I was in disbelief that anyone would ask such a thing. I have not spoken to that psychiatrist since. I am dealing currently with a lot of physical and mental symptoms but none I would describe as severe as that horrible nightmare of a month. (That month just happened to be timed perfectly with my Christmas break.) My mouth, head, and fingers jerk, but never as exaggerated as they were the first month. I dealt with extremely numb fingers, feet, and ankles up until two weeks ago. My ankles at times felt like they were hanging by a single nail. My feet, bluish-green, were so numb and swollen I had no feeling and shooting pains shot up my legs. I was extremely dizzy for so long. My gp told me I have low blood pressure. I started having panic attacks. Anxiety crept over me for no apparent reason. I cried a lot. I felt hopeless. I am dealing with apathy, anhedonia, akathisia, and cognitive problems. My memory has not been well during this whole time. I am not aware; I'm just wherever I am. I have lost perception of sight, hearing, and touch. I do things I'm supposed to do because I know that's what I've always done. I cannot connect feelings to memories; I have to rely on pictures and journals from over the years. I had to look back in my journal to refresh my memory of this whole experience which I happened to write down. I have been disconnected with myself...it was worse in the beginning. I would look at pictures of myself and couldn't connect that it was me. The whole first month of withdrawal my face was so puffed up I thought my skin would fall off. Sometimes things look bigger or smaller than they appear. My thinking ability is limited. I went to my gp again three weeks ago and I was low on vitamin D. I am currently on iron medicine, vitamin d supplements, allergy medicine, and multivitamins. Although the numbness has gone away, I am extremely faint and have weak tremors every day. At night I'm miserably exhausted. My heart is always beating fast and hard. I get chills and my body tenses up. I'm not sure if I should be concerned about any of this. I cold-turkeyed Abilify four months ago. I have managed to keep my grades up in college since then and so far have maintained a perfect attendance. Some days are harder than others, but I try to count my blessings as I've heard stories far worse than my own. I am only beginning to understand what I am dealing with. The last thing I would want is to ever take another antidepressant and hinder this process. I feel like I have a real sense of myself now and I feel more in control. I have no idea how long this will last or if it will ever go away but I try to maintain a positive attitude about it as things slowly get better. I have faced the fact that I can't change my past but I can certainly shape my future. I apologize for the long story. It is difficult to get my thoughts together.
  12. Hi, I am new to this side, but unfortunately not new to antidepressants. In 2010 I managed to tapper Effexor, which took me more than two years. I made a terrible mistake and around 2 months ago I have started taking escitalopram. I was fulled by a psychiatrist that this is a safest antidepressant, which does not cause any side effects. I have also been on low dose of Doxepin at night to prevent migraines (this has been for over 2 years, but never caused any major problems...) I started on 5mg of escitalopram and I was ok on this, my anxiety stopped, I slept better, etc. Two weeks ago I increased to 10mg and this is when symptoms started. Firstly it was a weird sensation, each morning I was getting "pins and needles" in my arms, this was going away after getting up. Then I started sleeping badly...I wanted to cut back to 5mg, but a psychiatric said that it was only temporary, so I have stay on 10mg. In the meantime, I had a migraine and took my usual triptan; I almost got serotonin syndrom (at least I think)...This was the time I started to read about escitalopram and discovered horror stories... I want to stop this drug! I wonder if I have taken it for so short I could go with a faster than 10% tapper? Can I cut to 5mg straight away? Thank you Ikam
  13. hello guys, that's my story (coming from Italy, sorry for bad English): I was suggested in October 2014 to take Risperdal 1mg/day for my social anxiety and paranoia...took it for 23 days from November, that day I suddenly felt a great fear of death and a 'strange void' in my head. From that moment (23 November 2014) to present day I have had no emotions, I have lost all my interests, my mind is empty now (very slow thinking), I speak few times only to answer a question, I have no energy or motivation so I'm lying down on my bed all the day. Before taking Risperdal I had some issues with social anxiety and paranoia, but I loved going to gym, walking, thinking freely, reading and gaming. Now I don't have any desire, I also experience discomfort when eating or taking a shower. I read many posts about this like-being dead existence after taking risperdal. Please help, also jim24 your story is similar to mine, please update me on your situation...I will do the same.
  14. Hi all . I was on SSRI for 9 years (mostly lexapro) with some small breaks in between. I withdrew fully (don't believe I did it slowly) in July and now 3 months later I am experiencing intense symptoms that became disabling at times . I was initially prescribed lexapro in college for panic attacks and general anxiety . Physical symptoms compared to emotional were not bad for me at all . Now 3 months later my fatigue intensified. I am constantly exhausted no matter how much I sleep . I feel detached and disconnected. I am also indifferent and not emotional (example I don't want to be intimate) the most annoying thing is dizziness and the feeling of disbalance I wonder if it will ever go away . At times I wonder if I should go back on drugs but in all honestly they didn't really help me I just get like a zombie. If anyone can share their experience coming off lexapro, similar symptoms and if gets better . Thank you so much <3
  15. I was on 10 mg ciprelax for 6 years. I tapered off for 6 weeks and finally stopped. All was well for about 3 weeks then all hell broke loose. Night sweats, loss of appetite, restlessness, suicidal thoughts. I have had non stop burning, prickly pins and needles tingling in my head, hands, and feet for 3 months now. Went and got all checked out and everything came back normal. Found this web site and showed it to my Dr. He believes this is what I am going through. I have tried everything from fish oil, magnesium, to CBD oils. I even tried going back on a low dose to no avail. I need to know this will end some day. My relationship with my wife and friends are getting bad as I just can not do much. Please share your get well stories as I really need to know I will one day get better.
  16. hi all, I am not sure how much info you want or need, but the short version is: i have been on lexapro for 13yrs. I believe it was prescribed for me just a few weeks after it became available. I had been on the highest dose of celexa before this. my dose was quickly raised from 20mgs to 30mgs to 40 mgs, where it stayed for many years. My insurance balked at the 40mg dose, saying that over 30mgs was not shown to have any additional effect so about 2 yrs ago, my dose was reduced to 30mgs. I don't even know how many times I have tried to go off this drug. I do not believe it is helping me at all. It seems all I have is the side effecs but no benefit whatsoever. I have had several severe depressions in the past couple of years. I am now commited to getting off this stuff for good. For a lot of reasons that I'm too tired to go into now. I am down to taking about 1/8 of a 20mg tablet every couple of days, or whenever the insomnia and/or feelings of rage get to be too much. I am very lucky, this time I have NOT had any of the brain zaps, nor that feeling of losing my balance, etc. Primarily I am dealing with severe insomnia that may or may not be from going off the lexapro- see, I lost my 17 yr old cat on Nov 29th and I have not been able to sleep much at all since. I think it's a really weird grief reaction, but I don't know, maybe it's partly withdrawal too....? the rages are totally out of character for me. Part of me thinks they are due to extreme fatigue but even when I am not feeling too terribly tired, I will have these "episode" of just terrible anger out of nowhere. it scares me. I think of doing awful terrible things, violent things. I screamed at my doctor's nurse. for no reason, really, I just felt out of control and that she was not hearing me about how bad things are. anyway, I did not know a place like this existed, I've been on forums for ppl with mental illness before and they all get totally freaked out when you talk about going off your meds. I hope I can find some support and help for this and mostly I hope to be able to be OFF of this drug for good! thanks for listening to my long rambling post, off to look around the forum
  17. Hi everyone. I am new here, and I am so thankful for this forum. I was wondering if anyone could give me any advice or input into what I am going through with Prozac withdrawal right now. Any input would be greatly appreciated! Here is my history with meds: I am a 29 year old female (well, 30 this month). At age 20, in college, I took 5 mg of Lexapro for a year (prescribed 10 mg, but I am very sensitive to meds, so I broke it in half). I weaned off of it very slowly. I took 2.5 mg for several weeks when weaning off, then half of that for a couple weeks, until I was done. Withdrawal for me was miserable, but thankfully the worst of it only lasted for maybe a week or so (it basically made me psychotically enraged at everyone until I was totally off of it). Once I was off of it, I lost weight quickly, I was sleeping better at night, and my only remaining symptom that lasted about 2 years was just this random facial twitching. Then around age 26, I started experiencing horrible panic attacks several nights a week that left me paralyzed in fear and unable to sleep. The panic was situational—I was faced with making some major life decisions, and I felt really stuck, and very alone and depressed and scared of making the wrong decision. I finally decided to try an AD again to see if it would help me to get over my panic attacks, sleep, and move forward. I tried a low dose of Lexapro again; for a few weeks, it worked well and I slept well, then all of a sudden I began having an adverse reaction—the most horrible anxiety and insomnia you could imagine. It was a living hell. I got off of it quickly and switched to brand-name Prozac 10mg. It worked great! I was sleeping well at night, my panic attacks completely stopped, and I took some huge steps forward. I took it for maybe 9 months or so and weaned off of it very easily. A couple years later, after some stressful life events, I felt I should go back on the Prozac for a period of time since it had helped calm me so much in the past, enough to make some changes and move forward. I felt it was harmless since I had no problems on it before and it was very easy to get off of. This was at the end of May of last year (May 2016). Since I have been so sensitive to meds in the past and could do well on a low dose, I started by breaking the Prozac capsule in half and dissolving it in juice and drinking half for 5mg (I used to do this the first time I took it when I felt I didn’t always quite need the full 10 mg, and it worked very well). Part of me was concerned that I may have an adverse reaction (I can’t remember why I was afraid of this, since I had done well on it before) so I thought it was good to begin with 5 mg for a few days/weeks and see how I did. I began experiencing terrible, terrible anxiety in my stomach, as if my stomach was constantly doing somersaults that never stopped. It was also the beginning of horrible, horrible, nightly insomnia. I figured this was just a normal start-up effect, and that it would soon stop once the Prozac built up enough in my system. 8 weeks later, the anxiety and insomnia were as horrible as ever, so I quit the med. I was literally on it for no longer than about 8 weeks. So I was done with it by the end of July of last year. I have been off of it for about 6 or 7 months now, but the anxiety and insomnia are still as horrible as ever. They never resolved, and I don’t understand why. They did not begin until I began the medicine. It is like my body has been tricked into thinking it is still on the Prozac. I also wonder if those symptoms would have gone away had I built up to a high enough dose of the Prozac (I know 20 mg is the lowest therapeutic dose, and I was only taking 5mg). Do you think my anxiety and insomnia will ever be resolved without meds? Could going back on Prozac, only a higher dose, help me? Why would I have done so well on Prozac years ago, only to do horribly on it this time? And . . . why would I still be having symptoms after being off of it for 7 months, especially when I was only on 5mg for 8 weeks? I am really not sure what to do. Does anyone have any advice? Thanks for any input. I am really at a loss.
  18. I asked for and started taking 10 mg Lexapro for social anxiety mid 2015. I don't think it's making much difference so decided to get off it. I thought it would take a few weeks on half dosage but this site has corrected that impression. i particularly like the parabolic graphs that show the need to take extra care at very low dosages.
  19. Hello Friends. I'm a 36 year old male with a 15 year old psych meds addiction. My story started after I survived a terrible car crash, and then suffered from panic attacks shortly after. My GP at the time prescribed me Aropax. I took this for close to a year if I remember correctly and then decided to quit. Her advice was to just "stop taking them". I can still clearly remember the horrible dizziness and the debilitating brain zaps! I went back onto them, but never felt that same level of 'normal'. Then I tried Cipramil. Didn't really make a difference. Then I went onto Effexor and this worked great for a while. The very short Half-Life was a problem for me and made it impossible to come off. I went onto Prozac and managed to taper off it. Things went well for some time, until some bumps in the road and a new job brought my anxiety back to life! So onto Escitalopram I went. I've been on it ever since. I tried to get off my pills about 2 years ago, but rather than using the methods described here, I simply alternated dosages, which ended up not working very well. I also didn't pay much attention to my diet and drank alcohol frequently. Since then my life has changed dramatically. I live a rather comfortable life with very little stress and I have a great support system. I have decided to give it another shot. Rather than being a slave to the medication for the rest of my life, I have now made some dietary changes and cut out alcohol completely. I've started with my first round of 10% reductions, and hopefully this is the start of a new life for me.
  20. I don't know......I am practice posting. At present I am about 5 days off Adderal, 2.5 mg. It feels alot like when I finally came off Lexapro......I was down to 3 mg. and they took me off of it completely in October while I was in the hospital........meanwhile started up on the Adderal and still am on Trileptal 150mg. x2/day. Anyway mostly upper back achiness now.......total demotivation as anything is stressful and am just working for staying calm, fluids, eating, sleep. A conversation by phone once in awhile. Pay the bills. Accept help when I can. So maybe I am somewhat on topic. Not sure I could list all the meds. that I have withdrawn from yet........someday soon. I just wanted to be around people that get it..........and find the hope and strength again. You know.......I believe in God(although a God that accepts my anger sometimes), but even more so in a universal strength to be found in others. Anyway.......thankful for my journey in a way.......especially in those windows I get of clarity and calm.
  21. Hi! English is not my native language and I apologise in advance. Started cipralex 20mg in 2013 and i ended the treatment in february 2017 total of 4 years. I did a quick taper of 2 weeks. Immediate symptoms: Brain zapps/body zapps, crippling anxiety and depression, could not leave bed literally for 2 weeks. For me the biggest problem were the brain zapps/body zapps wich are still ongoing. The zapps lasted every single second for 7 weeks (with an exception will explain later in post) it never stoped it kept me up at night and when I fell asleep these zapps would wake me up. I was sure my life was over as it did not seem to stop and if it would have lasted longer I would most likely have ended it. I am sure allot of you here can rellate to this. For the first time in my life I had become suicidal. So what temporarily cured it? Running did, within 10-15 seconds of starting to run they went away. And immediately came back a few seconds after I stoped running. So I was running twice a day morning and evening and rest of the day i was walking, all day long i stayed mobile it was the only way I could get some sort of relief from these horrendous zapps. So my advice for anyone who might experiencing this for temporal relief is to get your pulse and heartrate up and really get going. As I said wile I was running it cured the zapps 100%. For referance I am a long time runner for many years running 80km/50miles a week +. And as fast as these zapps came it suddenly stoped being constant and I got a few an hour, then less and less. They are still here gets worse at evening and less at middle of the day. Lack of sleep,anxiety and being in a depressed mood triggers it. Also if I keep focusing on these symptoms they get worse. By staying active and distracting myself and training for around 2 hours a day keeps these zapps at a minimal. But they come and go and are really unpredictable. Its been 6 month and my brain still does not feel right, in all honesty I feel like I might have gotten some sort of brain damage,at times I can literally feel pain inside my head a wery uncomfortable feeling. Like the brain is waking up after many years of being in a sleep and is struggling to keep up. But I try not to think of that and try to make my life as best as possible living in the moment keep training and hoping all these strange head sensations will go away some day. My doctor and my psychologist have never had any of their patient complain about these symptoms. My psychiatrist whos been in the business for 30 years has never had a single patient mention this to him and he had only heard about these so called brain zapps. And basicly every health proffesionall I have seen about this say the same thing, that it is some sort of stress response and it will pass soon..... Lets hope for the best.
  22. Hey there, So it's taken me awhile to work up the courage to share my story. My journey with SSRI's began when I was 9 years old. In hindsight, I think it was a combination of being on a string of antibiotics (with everything we know about the gut/mind connection now) and living in a hugely dysfunctional family (i'm an empath/highly sensitive and tend to feel the emotions of others) that started my "depressive" symptoms. I also had a depressed mother (since giving birth to me) and she too was on Prozac so it only made sense to put me on it as well I guess? the medicating of young children never ceases to amaze me. I developed no appetite, because Prozac is way stimulating to a 9 year old brain and then they started saying I was anorexic. I was hospitalized and medicated some more, but did everything the doctors said so that I could get out and go back to the dysfunction of my family life. Around age 10 I started to wean myself off of the Prozac. I did this without my mom's knowledge and started hiding the pills in my mouth. I knew at that age that the drug did not make my body feel good. Yet I believed this crazy idea that my brain was broken and I was weird. Fast forward through my parent's divorce at age 11, me starting to experiment with drugs and alcohol at age 14…i was still a good kid, didn't get into trouble made good grades, but never felt normal in terms of my emotions. I moved away at 18 to a different city for college and was going through a stressful transition. I got back on an ssri at the age of 18 (zoloft 50mg) and remained on it for approximately 6 years at that dose. in graduate school i switched to prozac 20 mg and stayed on that for 5 more years, then switched to prozac 40 mg. I got pregnant at age 28 and reduced my dose to 20 mg during pregnancy. I really wanted to breastfeed and slowly tapered off by a few weeks postpartum. obviously going through ssri withdrawals during the postpartum period I ended up starting lexapro 10 mg and have been on it for the past 3 years. in 2013 I had what I consider to be a spiritual awakening (based on a decade long yoga practice and practicing other forms of spiritual healing methods) and realized that the drugs actually made me feel anxious and not inside my body. i was also turned onto the renegade psychiatrist books (such as Peter Breggin) and my eyes were opened completely to the dangers of ssri. I should add that I have been working in the mental health field for about 10 years now. so the plot thickens. at one point I worked briefly for an inpatient psychiatry facility that tested new psychotropic drugs coming to market, so I have seen first hand how the drug companies "do" research. In september 2013, I began a 10% taper of the 10mg of lexapro. my goal was initially to do 10% a month but there were some reductions that I stayed at a dose for longer…now in september of 2014 I am at 2.5mg. I have noticed predictable mood symptoms each time I reduce the dose. first a bit of hypomania (nothing that gets me in trouble), then a few weeks of heightened anxiety, then a leveling out where I feel much better and actually feel at home in my body and way less anxiety. my most recent reduction to 2.5 brought 2 weeks of super intense muscle pain in my neck and shoulders. i'm a pretty active person and to have that amount of pain felt a bit debilitating. I began supplementing with SAM-E, did a lot of acupuncture and am feeling a lot less pain this week. have had more anxiety than in previous reductions, but i also had to go a little more than 10% (closer to 12) due to it getting really challenging to slice the 5mg tab. I am going to check into making my own oral solution…have a prescription for the liquid lexapro, but it is close to $200 and I'm still trying to figure out if it is gluten free. does anyone know? THANK YOU all for reading this and supporting me. it means the world to finally tell my story. most of my friends and family have no idea I've been on antidepressants for 15+ years, that I was medicated as a child, or that I'm currently withdrawing, so it feels like such a relief to just get it out there. and to know that y'all understand. this withdrawal process is one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life. It has been like peeling back layers of myself, my humanity, my personality and not knowing exactly what is me, what is the drug withdrawal, and what is normal. but all in all I feel so much better, so much more alive, and more engaged with life. it's just been rocky getting there.
  23. I'm new here. I have been on various SSRIs for 22 years and depressed since I was at least age 12. I went off the latest SSRI, generic Lexapro, because I have gained 30+ pounds over the last few years, needed at least 12 hours per day of sleep and still wasn't happy. I am on the max of Bruproprion. It doesn't seem to have any unwanted side effects. It is supposed to be at least weight neutral when taken without other drugs. The physical withdrawal effects are brain zaps, ringing in the ears, dizziness and nausea. These aren't 24/7 and they may be subsiding. Hard to say. I tapered from 10mg of Lex to 5mg to 5 every other day. I did this starting beginning mid-June. My struggle is that I fear my depression is returning. I feel like I will never be OK. I also don't want to become anti-psych med or anti doctor but I wonder if I wasted years of my life on meds that never worked or if this is the way it will always be.
  24. Can any one please help me! I have been on Lexapro for 1.5years 10mg since i switched from Zoloft 100mg. It was working good for my anxiety and running thoughts, only little trouble with hard to get to sleep at night. However, after tress of my work, i feel little worrying feeling and doctor straight away put me on 20mg of Lexapro. I felt heart palpitation when wake up and didn't care of it, and my heart started to beating faster and faster during the 7 weeks, went to 125 bpm for whole day! That was worse than my original Anxiety symptoms! Also i experienced some bowel movement, no appetite but with happy feelings sometimes. I don't even know what happened to me! I after couple research on the web I noticed it is quite simular to Serotonin Syndrome, but i don't know I am right or not, anyone can tell me? Then i went to see doctor, he wants me to reduce dosage to 10mg, right after 2 days, that feeling was awful! Now it has been 2.5 month after i dropped back to 10mg, for the first month i went back to 10mg, the racing heart was slowly calms down to 68bpm but still feel very strange and anxiety. The second month palpitation feeling was totally gone but still have anxiety feeling and stomach starts to feeling nausia, full and indigestive that makes me more anxious I was worrying my stomach too much now. I went to see doctor, he gave me a medicine call Nexium, I only took for one day and felt extremely nausea and vomitted once then I stopped taking that. I am still not well now and do anyone think i am still suffering from a kind of withdrawal syndrome? I am so worrying and don't know if the symptom will still exists or I should keep waiting till its getting stabilized? I contacted my doctor again he said he might give me some add on medicines, but I don't really want to take additional medicine to cause new symptoms. I have lost my job and I really want this feeling go away soon...
  25. 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.
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