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uncomfortablynumb: Withdrawal Symptoms or Anxiety/Depression


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#37 Mort81

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 01:37 AM

Hey I was just asking because most doctors dont believe any of us that WD last more than a few weeks. So I thought that if your near me you could see this Pychologist because he is very aware of all the issues we face on here and  he could provide a diagnosis for your Doctors so that everyone is on the same page and treating your symptoms as WD . if they werent in the first place . But if your getting good support and your Doc believes you than no need. Alot of people on here just want someone to believe them . I totally know what you mean about getting down about your situation . Thats totally normal!  I dont know your whole history but the Neuro anxiety and depression is caused by the WD and is usually way worse than the original condition. . I can attest that the anxiety caused by WD is 100x worse than the orginal anxiety I had, that caused me to go on antidpressants. And it comes and goes in waves but will disappear. For some people it is the main symtoms and will stay for a while than fade in time . The recovery stories on here taught me that.

 

 I used to exercise 5-7 days a week . I played hockey twice a week  and baseball in the summer so I totally can relate! and I did this right up until WD.  Being to weak or sick to exercise is an awful feeling but overtime it will fade aswell . My two worst symptoms have been stomach pain and Weakness , The weakness was so bad  I could barely walk  and that doesnt go to good with exercise.. I have always been a guy who could push through anything physically but this has required the opposite , extreme patience  which is very tough for someone like me.  Hang in there 

 

 

Mort 


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#38 Martina23

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 01:39 AM

Glimmers of hope, hmmm ..

From Friday on I felt a bit better. They fired me from the work what is really now very unfortunate. But this allowed me not to concentrate on the withdrawal. And since Friday this harm OCD went much better. There were no bad attacks anymore, I started to have feeling that my GABA starts to come online. I felt well with the people and with my children, but yesterday when I already started to notice that I feel better it went worse. I have the feeling that when I remember OCD it comes back, when I dont concentrate it diminishes considerably. But I start to think that within time I will heal. I hope so. The last three days it felt like this. And how are you?


05/2013 Lyrica 100 mg / per day for pain + PGAD resulting from caesarian delivery11/2014 started to taper: 50 mg per day/ for one week then c/tafter one month reinstated at 50 mg /per days of 10 July 2015 drug free-
symptoms OCD

#39 oskcajga

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 08:52 AM

Glimmers of hope, hmmm ..

From Friday on I felt a bit better. They fired me from the work what is really now very unfortunate. But this allowed me not to concentrate on the withdrawal. And since Friday this harm OCD went much better. There were no bad attacks anymore, I started to have feeling that my GABA starts to come online. I felt well with the people and with my children, but yesterday when I already started to notice that I feel better it went worse. I have the feeling that when I remember OCD it comes back, when I dont concentrate it diminishes considerably. But I start to think that within time I will heal. I hope so. The last three days it felt like this. And how are you?

You got fired from your job?


8 Words of Wisdom about Adverse Effects and Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Syndrome:

 

1.  Please do learn about this condition by thoroughly reading 1) Dr. Healy's website and SurvivingAntidepressants.

2.  Please read books like: 1) Anatomy of An Epidemic and 2) Mad in America.

3.  Success Stories do exist.

4.  Please be extremely cautious about reinstatements, recreational drugs, supplements.  Even low doses can complicate matters.

5.  Transfer all financial assets into your own name (hint: relationships end).  Do not spend money wastefully.  Keep your job as long as possible.

6.  Psychiatric drug "withdrawal" and adverse effects are serious neurological reactions to powerful "drugs" - do not take this condition lightly.

7.  These conditions almost never recognized by any medical doctors - hospitalization/appointments can be futile/potentially injurious.

8.  PSSD, anhedonia (no emotions), memory loss, brain zaps, etc are scary - don't worsen them by taking more drugs, supplements, and medications.

 

Stimulant free since September 20th, 2014; SSRI free since September 1st, 2013


#40 Martina23

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 09:38 AM

Yes, on Friday ...
05/2013 Lyrica 100 mg / per day for pain + PGAD resulting from caesarian delivery11/2014 started to taper: 50 mg per day/ for one week then c/tafter one month reinstated at 50 mg /per days of 10 July 2015 drug free-
symptoms OCD

#41 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 01:58 PM

Hi Mort, Thanks for getting back to me. Yeah, my doc is supportive. And he is understanding that I want to try the no-med route even though it is his job to push drugs. How is your recovery? Did you get depressed and anxious and lose interest in things during WD? How old are you? I am hoping that my age is sorta in my favour for recovery. We are both in the same boat in that WD killed our active lifestyle. I used to workout 4-5 times per wk and played tennis and basketball. My insomnia is so bad that I only am getting a couple hours sleep. Don't think it is very wise to workout without sleep. Body needs to recover. Then again I haven't tested if exercising would help sleep during WD. My body is such a wreck right now. I threw out my shoulder tossing a peanut to a squirrel. This is almost funny considering my background in fitness. How was your anxiety and depression before meds? Mine was due to stress from university. I knew I was in trouble when I lost focus and was upset for about two or three months not knowing if I could finish my last year. As for other symptoms I can't even remember if I totally lost interest in my regular activities. I may have isolated myself from friends but I could still have conversation with family and wasn't numb like I am now. Prior to meds I was a shy and slightly person but it didn't rule my life. I still hung out with friends and dated. My anxiety was bad in large groups and doing presentations. I would try to avoid both as much as possible. The anxiety and brain scramble during relapses and now withdrawal is so I don't even speak to my closest friends! Martina - sorry to hear you lost your job. I hope there is something better waiting for you. How long were you working there? It is good that you can be around friends and feel comfortable. Isolation is killing me. Just yesterday I lost a client. I don't blame them bc I have been out of commission for so long. I built up a personal training business that I had passion about. I went to university studying health sciences and was constantly learning. I put so much focus into this career and now I don't know if that passion will come back.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#42 Mort81

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 10:47 PM

Hey No prob. I am 34 . I also was a personal trainer from 19-23 so it was a long time ago but throwing a peanut to a squirrel made me laugh! not that you got hurt obviously . I went through stages of pretty bad anxiety before meds. They werent always constant. Usually something in my life triggered the episodes of Anxiety similiar to yours like school. Alot of my anxiety was just being unconfortable with where I was in life like I didnt have a career back than so I was ashamed. All of my friends were more successful and getting married early and I felt like I was a failure. SO I pressured myself way too much to get going and it caused anxiety attacks expecially in social situations. I think alot of young people get misdiagnosed  . Its not easy fitting in or trying to figure out your life when your 16-30 . This world puts unfair expectations on people . School causes tremendous amounts of anxiety and when your a young person its not easy to put it in perspective.So plenty of young people are being put on meds during school. .

 

 

 I am still in the thick of WD im probably somewhere just past the middle of recovery.  Although the people who see me everyday think I am just around the corner from being myself again. Yes I got depressed because I was so sick I couldnt work and still am not, or workout/ sports I lost lots of money as I finally had a good career . I was in the middle of buying my first condo , getting engaged and starting a family.  Plus other than a few people in my life , nobody understands . and Doctors until now turned me away and dont believe in WD. So the whole process took its toll on me. However Id say that its pretty normal to feel anxious or depressed about that. They dont realize what a battle this is. I can also say the WD anxiety is not the same as the original anxiety. It is much worse . aside from being anxous about what I cant do right now , the actualy WD induced anxiety is way worse . It hasnt been constant for me either its come in waves .Just like the fear alot of us have on here . Its not a normal fear its a neuro fear thats exaggerated by going off the meds too fast .Its not suppossed to last in the long run . I am pretty sure the being numb is the same result . I have been more on the hyper sensitive side although being so sick makes you not care about anything that was important. I wasnt watching my favorite teams play or I didnt care about any new news from friends or family because I was so sick nothing mattered. How can you care about anything when your suffering. Some people get really numb during WD and others are off the charts hyper sensitive.  These drugs cause such a variety of symptoms and nobody knows what ones you will get . Kinda like spin the wheel and see what 10-20 symptoms  you end up getting. It seems that all these symptoms fade away in time but sometimes takes a long time.

 

 

Being young and physically strong will help you in the long run.  Everybody recovers on their own pace even older people or people that have been on multiple meds for 30 yr.  I urge you to read Gia K's story. She was exposed to 40 different meds and on 6 at one time at the highest dose. If she can recover to the point she has than any of us can and will !I wish I knew when I or you would feel good again but its not like a torn muscle or broken leg. If i knew that next year at this time id be 90% myself and back training/skating and working than right now id be able to relax much more . I hope that will be the case anyway. I think that goes for everyone on here . This is such a scary experience and the number 1 fear from everyone is they are worried they will never enjoy life again Or have a life. If these drugs were properly studied and tapered than we would know what to expect . 

 

 

I think your agrophobia and avoidance of situations is completely normal right now . Your system is temporarily down so dont beat yourself up about not being able to socialize properly . Isolation is normal right now , sleep is off , work schedule is off , body is off . symptoms are high and few people understand how intense this can be. The toughest part of WD has been watching everything around me fall apart and not being able to do anything about it. I have been pretty isolated aswell. Im up typing to you now and likely wont sleep until 10am so I feel the isolation. Some nights I dont sleep at all so I take the sleep whenever I can get it. I have missed birthdays , family events, sporting events because I was too sick. Its also uncomfortable to hang out with people who dont understand your situation. My suggestion now would be do anything that makes you happy and dont do things that cause stress.  It wont always be this way socially . You actually seem like a sociable person. Anybody who is a personal trainer must be good with people . Your confidence got shot somewhere along the way and the meds briefly distracted you but ultimatly caused you way more harm than good.  The passion for life will come back . How can anybody be passionate when they have a hurricane brewing in their mind and body . If we had the ocean in Toronto id go to the beach everyday with my dog lol. Do anything thats ditracts you from your situation . Time is your best friend. 

 

Mort


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#43 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 10:06 AM


Note - topic and reply moved from symptoms section because it relates to your specific set of circumstances rather than something that relates more broadly to other members. If you are seeking advice on what to do next, your intro thread is the place to do it


Hi,

Does anyone know what can be done about insomnia? Over the last couple of weeks more nights than not, I have had pretty much zero sleep. I end up just lying with my eyes shut for hours. Frustrated. Think it is making headaches and zaps worse, along with nausea.

I take magnesium and fish oil. I cut back on coffee to 1 per day. Will be totally eliminating it now. I keep my sleep environment dark and cool and don't have electronics in them bedroom.

A couple of weeks ago I tried reinstating 37.5mg of Effexor but it just made me feel worse and I backed out after only one day. Should I have tried to stick with it? Or tried a few beads?

I really don't know what to do at this point. What can i try? Insomnia is making aa horrible situation pretty much unbearable.

I am very grateful for any help you can give. Thanks.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#44 starcontrol2

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 10:17 AM

My sleep is a little better now, although i don't feel refreshed at all and am sleepy all day, among other things.

I tried everything and anything. My routine right now:

 

passion flower 5pm and before bed.

melatonin spray 8:30pm

camomile tea around 9:30pm

epsom salt bath or just foot bath.

 

I don't know if any of the above made any difference as my sleep is still pretty bad but I remember it being just like you describe. Maybe it just improved with time? i don't know, again I am still a very sh*tty sleeper but a little better.

BTW, you do sleep some, it may be 2-3 hours but I think you do, if you have 0 sleep for a week you wouldn't be able to write your message. Don't confuse, horrible sleep or unreferenshing sleep with no sleep, I do get it about rough sleep.


10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg


#45 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 01:36 PM

Thanks. I may try the chamomile tea. The insomnia is a beast. Not sure how to tame it. I never had it before it must be from withdrawal. But it is weird that I haven't experienced this any other time I took a break from Effexor. Seriously the past few days I am have gotten zero or close to zero sleep. Feel like a zombie and just have a sickly feeling. Doc suggested trying sleep meds Imovane for a short period. I am on the fence about doing this. Ughh
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#46 andy013

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 01:40 PM

Personally I would have tried to reinstate for a longer period before giving up, unless it made me feel intolerably bad. There is no guarantee these symptoms will end any time soon.


December 2010: 10mg Citalopram

April 2011: 5mg for 2 weeks then cold turkey withdrawal - Extremely bad depression / no emotions

June 2011: Reinstated 10mg - After 3 weeks started getting impulsive suicidal thoughts

July 2011: Cold turkey - Withdrawal hell begins...


#47 dalsaan

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 02:13 PM

Sorry about the insomnia. I've been there. It's dementing. Reinstate ting has been my go to strategy when we was like that.

We usually recommend reinstating a very small dose. It may be you reinstated too much and your system reacted

I recommend you read through this thread and then come back here to post any questions you might have - http://survivinganti...rawal-symptoms/

Dalsaan
Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.
Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.
Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.
Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.
Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).
Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

>My intro post is here - http://survivinganti...ic/2250-dalsaan

#48 oskcajga

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 02:13 PM

Thanks. I may try the chamomile tea. The insomnia is a beast. Not sure how to tame it. I never had it before it must be from withdrawal. But it is weird that I haven't experienced this any other time I took a break from Effexor. Seriously the past few days I am have gotten zero or close to zero sleep. Feel like a zombie and just have a sickly feeling. Doc suggested trying sleep meds Imovane for a short period. I am on the fence about doing this. Ughh

 

If you do use sleep meds, their effects can become paradoxical if you've been affected by an SSRI.  So they may work for a little while then all of a sudden you take one and you get anxious and you cannot sleep or relax and feel even worse the next day.

 

It's a good idea to have someone around if/when you take sleep meds - some people sleep walk and hurt themselves or do unusual things when they take certain sleep meds.  Best to have someone observe you.


8 Words of Wisdom about Adverse Effects and Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Syndrome:

 

1.  Please do learn about this condition by thoroughly reading 1) Dr. Healy's website and SurvivingAntidepressants.

2.  Please read books like: 1) Anatomy of An Epidemic and 2) Mad in America.

3.  Success Stories do exist.

4.  Please be extremely cautious about reinstatements, recreational drugs, supplements.  Even low doses can complicate matters.

5.  Transfer all financial assets into your own name (hint: relationships end).  Do not spend money wastefully.  Keep your job as long as possible.

6.  Psychiatric drug "withdrawal" and adverse effects are serious neurological reactions to powerful "drugs" - do not take this condition lightly.

7.  These conditions almost never recognized by any medical doctors - hospitalization/appointments can be futile/potentially injurious.

8.  PSSD, anhedonia (no emotions), memory loss, brain zaps, etc are scary - don't worsen them by taking more drugs, supplements, and medications.

 

Stimulant free since September 20th, 2014; SSRI free since September 1st, 2013


#49 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 02:27 PM

Those two points are swaying me away from trying the sleep meds. If I tried reinstating Effexor on a smaller dose, how many beads should I try? How long should it take to feel withdrawal symptoms ease with reinstatement? At what point do you conclude reinstatement is a failure?
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#50 oskcajga

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 02:50 PM

Those two points are swaying me away from trying the sleep meds. If I tried reinstating Effexor on a smaller dose, how many beads should I try? How long should it take to feel withdrawal symptoms ease with reinstatement? At what point do you conclude reinstatement is a failure?

 

It would probably be best to buy a jewlers scale from amazon.com for $20 and not just count beads - as the beads can be very tedious to count and easy to make mistakes with.

 

For example:

 

http://www.amazon.co...s=jewlers scale


8 Words of Wisdom about Adverse Effects and Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Syndrome:

 

1.  Please do learn about this condition by thoroughly reading 1) Dr. Healy's website and SurvivingAntidepressants.

2.  Please read books like: 1) Anatomy of An Epidemic and 2) Mad in America.

3.  Success Stories do exist.

4.  Please be extremely cautious about reinstatements, recreational drugs, supplements.  Even low doses can complicate matters.

5.  Transfer all financial assets into your own name (hint: relationships end).  Do not spend money wastefully.  Keep your job as long as possible.

6.  Psychiatric drug "withdrawal" and adverse effects are serious neurological reactions to powerful "drugs" - do not take this condition lightly.

7.  These conditions almost never recognized by any medical doctors - hospitalization/appointments can be futile/potentially injurious.

8.  PSSD, anhedonia (no emotions), memory loss, brain zaps, etc are scary - don't worsen them by taking more drugs, supplements, and medications.

 

Stimulant free since September 20th, 2014; SSRI free since September 1st, 2013


#51 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 04:17 PM

Hi Mort, Seems like we have had a similar experience with anxiety. I am your age and have was on meds for about as long as you. Don't know how Lexapro compares with Effexor. Looks like you tappered fast like me. Did you have insomnia? I am considering reinstating a small amount to see if it helps any. I would like to just stay off but I really don't know if it is the wisest choice. How do you distract yourself now and in the past? I really have no interest in anything now. You would think something simple like watching a comedy would help but I am emotionally flat right now and can't even laugh. Ughh. It would be nice if we lived by the ocean and didn't have to battle winter.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#52 Mort81

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 10:11 PM

Hey we do have lots in common.  I know Lexapro per Milligram is much stronger than Effexor so I dont know what effexor Mg would equal Lexapro or what other factors effect that like body size ,age ,sex, or  Wd symtoms expected etc....... I think its based on the person and is completley unpredicatable. I know lots of Lexapro stories and so many of WD symptoms vary.

 

I had trouble sleeping before meds , during meds and now after meds. I was always okay though going to work or school off of 2-4 hours of sleep. I would catch up on the weekends. But now during withdrawal my body is so weak that I cant function off no sleep anymore . I usually cant fall asleep but I dont have insomnia because I eventually do fall asleep but I than have trouble waking up. Usually my body has been so much sicker in the morning so I never wanted to get up because I feel so awful.  

 

As far as reinstatement. I found this site 7 months after I was suffering from WD and I was still suffering tremendously . So when I posted my story and read advice I was terrified that reinstating has the chance to make it worse. I thought this is so awful right now anything worse I coudnt handle.   You have only been off for a month ?? If so I would definatly try to reinstate a very small amount to reduce the WD. 

 

I am sorry you cant laugh , Its so crazy ,  It wont be like this in the long run . You are so fresh off the meds. For me since I couldnt work out or play sports which was always my outlet for anything . I watched sports and silly shows like southpark and family guy and movies I went to drive ins all the time during the summer aswell . Sat by my pond near my house when  I was strong to walk there and just watched fish and birds. I dont know why but I found alot of peace in that. I started reading again but not about things that have to do with WD. Or of I did read about WD I tried to only read positive things. Anything I read that started to get negative I stopped and still do.  If your emotionally flat and cant laugh what could be a good distraction ...... hmmmm Is there anything right now that you really like that you could enjoy to pass time ? video games . books , long walks?  could you do light exercise or are you too weak for that ? I know there is only so much we can do.  seriously we need a beach here .


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#53 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 21 November 2015 - 01:12 PM

Dalsaan - I am 5 weeks completely off Effexor. Wrestling with the idea of reinstating. I was off for a couple of months in May and June before my depression and anxiety kicked in. I ended going back on for something like 10 weeks- progressively upping my doses before realizing it was doing squat. Then tapered off. All of this on and off must be screwing up my system and this is why I am leaning towards staying off.

I had only a handful total hours of sleep this week. My eyes were burning and almost shut and my head felt like it could explode any minute. With such lack of sleep my mind was going to some dark hopeless places. I took 1mg of lorazepam and it worked or I was so exhausted and passed out. I got like 5hrs and it was sweet! I woke up to zaps, and dizziness. High five!
I can't rely on benzos and get addicted to them. These ADs can mess up your system in so many ways and some people may end up taking other pills for things like sleep, blood pressure, diabetes, seizures etc. Drug companies must love it! Once you get on one drug you will be a regular customer and take others.

I read one of your previous posts on doing something monotonous to help with sleep. And your advice not to clean guns or chop wood. That made me kinda smile for the first time in ages. Thanks.

Mort - thanks for being reassuring that things will fall into place. It feels like I am permanently damaged and can't think right. My brain is either blank or thoughts are scattered that i can't have more of a convo other than small talk if I try. Lexapro might be stronger but Effexor messes with other NTs.
I would normally like watching South Park too - especially the older ones. And Dave Chappelle for a laugh. I used to watch thought provoking movies and murder mysteries but now my mental capacity is diminished. Maybe I should just watch nature shows for stimulation. For distraction, I play board games like Scrabble. I will still watch sports but I am not really enthused. I used to play Proline to make games more exciting but I am not bothered. I wish I was artistic or could play an instrument. That might help. As for exercise, I am not too weak to do light stuff but my motivation is pretty much non-existent.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#54 KarenB

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Posted 21 November 2015 - 02:56 PM

I am 5 weeks completely off Effexor. Wrestling with the idea of reinstating. I was off for a couple of months in May and June before my depression and anxiety kicked in. I ended going back on for something like 10 weeks- progressively upping my doses before realizing it was doing squat. Then tapered off. All of this on and off must be screwing up my system and this is why I am leaning towards staying off.

 

That depression and anxiety might have been withdrawal symptoms or it might have been your pre-existing issues.  Either way it's a good idea to put things into place now for managing if it comes up again.  By now you've probably seen the thread on non-drug techniques for managing emotional issues - I found a lot there that helped me. 

 

Healing and managing depression and anxiety isn't easy, there's no quick answers, but I've come to believe it can be done if we accept it, stay focussed on healing, and keep putting supportive things into our lives.  I've spent most of my life dealing with this, and have been through times of hitting rock-bottom with no hope at all, but in this last year or two I've got a stronger hope than ever that I can do this.

 

Two books that helped me enormously were In An Unspoken Voice:  How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness by Peter A Levine, and In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts:  Close Encounters with Addiction by Gabor Mate.  Both authors have talks on you-tube.  

 

You can do this, you really can.  People are so much stronger than doctors give us credit for, and right now you are probably finding reserves of strength you never knew you had.  

 

Hugs,

KarenB    


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

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

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


#55 Mort81

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Posted 21 November 2015 - 09:28 PM

Hey I understand now. Your right if you tried reinstating and had continued to up the dose with no results than its probably best to stay away. Your system needs a long break to return to normal 

 

I am very confident that your not permanently damaged. Your brain is temporarily out of commish which is causing  the lack of focus and inability to have convos. Don't think damaged think more along the lines of adjusting. I also believe it's gonna take a few  years not weeks to see if you have lingering  depression and anxiety under neath all the WD issues. That doesn't mean your WD will last that long. Its gonna get way better before that. 

 But i also believe that even if you do have anxiety and depression it will be 100x less than it is right now. Neuro emotions caused by WD are so much more intense, as others have used the terminology its like anxiety and depression on steroids.  The anxiety I've had during WD has the intensity as if I was being attacked by a shark.  The anxiety before WD was just being scared to do school presentations or speak in front of new groups and social situations because I was embarrassed of being unsuccessful. 

 

I am addicted to a benzo unfortunately a really low dose oh and an acid reducer! Pharma got me there but when the AD symptoms go away Ill get started on those. Probably the acid reducer first, thr benzo I am going to take alot of time and care to get off. but nonetheless your right about drug companies benefiting from AD. Once someone gets hooked on these the chances are they will get hooked on something else. It's such an evil industry and 99% of our doctors are in bed with them.  Its like an organized mob or terrorist group wreaking havoc on the public. It works so well cause they feed off people with anxiety or depression so when those people complain of crippling side effects it must be in their head so let's up the dose or add another! 

 

I also love prolines.  I never win but it adds a bit  more excitement. I usually just play football prolines. Nature shows and clips I always watch. I even watched shark week though they scare the hell out of me . Southpark is awesome is totally takes my mind of things. Art and music is therapeutic. Im not good  at either but its never to late to try it out. The passion will come back I know its frustrating its just gonna take time

 

For some reason I've been effected so bad physically. Probably 80% of my symptoms are physical. I tried 10 min of the bike and 10 min of beginner yoga 2 days ago and I still have a headache and increased anxiety from it. The only thing I can do is tell myself it won't always be like this.  Which is the truth ive read it over and over again but the waiting game is frustrating. I know once I am able to get through all the side effects and be normal again I am going to live an enhanced life. It will  be better than it ever was before 


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#56 starcontrol2

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 08:42 AM

Hi uncomfortablynumb,

I keep reading your topic. I never had insomnia before withdrawal. I mean, on occasion everyone gets rough nights but like this, never. Also, the quality if the sleep is not there and combined with crazy fog and I am totally out of it.

Here are my thoughts on exercise. I never go to gym but I played various sports very regularly. I can't really play soccer now, I am too out of it. I still try to do grappling a little, I can be on my back, just defend and get owned but...
When I started feeling severe withdrawal back in summer I almost instinctively started using treadmill and swimming, I never did these before. I used to walk a lot too early on. Unfortunately exercise didn't help my sleep but it does relief worst depression and anxiety. Sometimes i go to treadmill and swimming in such a bad shape I don't know how i do it but i do sometimes get more clear headed after exercise and almost always have a calming effect 30 min after. I am not pushing exercise but seems like you have been a sport person and you may tolerate it better.
Canada, what a beautiful nature, i go there fishing every year, sadly this year I am too disabled to have gone :(

10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg


#57 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 22 November 2015 - 12:40 PM

Star - same boat. I never had sleep issues prior to this. I hope it comes back in time. I can't be taking meds to sleep. This is how they get you to be a continued customer either way.

I go for walks. Right now I would probably fall on a treadmill. Swimming would be good but I am not feeling very social to hit a gym or ask one of my clients to use their pool. I think one of those boxing bobs would be good to release some tension and frustration.

Yeah, Canada is beautiful for nature. I have only travelled within Ontario. Maybe some exploring would keep me busy during this rough time because I am not working now. Seriously, don't know how ppl can remain working. Guess it depends on the type of work.

Mort - good that you at least tried yoga and the bike. Did you go to the gym for those? How much have you recovered in the 11 months or year? Say percentage-wise? How is your memory by the way? A lot of my long term memory is a blur. I sucks you will have to get off a benzo as well. I read they can be a little trouble. I am fighting not to get hooked. I didn't take Ativan last night and I only got an hour sleep! FML!

Have you had full blood work done? How about MRI? I am considering both. Although it is difficult to schedule MRI.

I have read a lot of success stories and it seems like most eventually recover from ADs. Just worry I will be broke and pretty much friendless by the time that happens.

They say you should work on coping skills while going through this. I no longer have the original stressors of university and not knowing what I want to do with my life. I think exercising, listening to music would be sufficient to ease my anxiety and depression. But this exponentially increased neuro emotion crap, no meditation or CBT is very effective for me. Just gotta weather the storm. My next goal is to meet up with a friend... 5 months is a long time not seeing or talking to anyone. No one can understand this torture unless they go through it.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#58 Mort81

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 12:35 AM

Hey I totally here you about everything. How do people work through this I have no idea. I think we are all affected so differently. My memory has not been affected. Cognitively I am no different. Not even 1% other than the neuro anxiety. Physically this has affected me the most and lately neuro anxiety within the last 2 months has been Sureal.


I have had hundreds of tests done mri, cat scan you name it. I was in the hospital early on for acute pain in my stomach . Early on in WD I was hoping something small would come up and I could stop the suffering. However I was being convinced by my doctors that WD didn't exist so I thought I needed to find out why I was suffering so much and to fix it. My last blood work was a few months ago and at that point I was in a wave of physical weakness. It was so bad that I couldn't stand up more than 5 minutes. I barely left the house. My cells showed they were a bit high but only a little bit nothing I was told to worry about . Since than my body is much stronger and im due or a check up in a week. Honestly if I didn't need to get a monthly note for my Job to be held I wouldn't see any of these doctors other than the one who understands WD, which I just found last month. I am traumatized by all the doctors and their lack of knowledge. Ive seen almost 10. Each one offering a different option and a new medication.The whole process wore me out and contributed to way more stress than I needed. Had I listened to any of them Id be in way more trouble than I am now. I don't wanna hate or fear anyone but they almost killed me lol!

The good news is that I am just over a year and Ive recovered alot. I was suffering so much for a long time. I was in such physical pain in my stomach. I couldn't eat for 3 months. Baby food and liquids even hurt me. Now I can eat almost anything I want steaks, milk products, bread even which used to set off a reaction. My stomach is 80% recovered. That was my worst symptom for 10 months. So my guess is that your memory will probably be almost fully healed within a year. Numbness seems like another strong one for you so I would say it will somewhat similar. However it may leave way faster. I am only guessing and comparing those two symptoms to my two worst symptoms.

My physical weakness was my second worst symptom. It is probably 50% healed. It didn't fully kick in until 6 months ago. It has only gotten way better in the last month. So maybe if I give it another month ill be able tolerate light exercise. I guess its alot like my stomach. At first I couldn't eat food than bit by bit 1 year later im eating steak and lobster. Other symptoms have lingered but drastically weakened. I think this year will be a huge year. I am very optimistic that by the end of year 2 ill be 85% fully healed or more. I think you could be healed much faster. Some people heal within year 1. I think someone named whatever CT 4 MEDS at once and took just over a year to be close to fully healed.

I did the workout at my parents. They have a good bike and I just use the computer do some light yoga. I will re-try the same workout after the new year. My guess is my weakness has to get 15-20% better. Walks for now should help me build up.

I can say your theory of weathering the storm is very accurate. When neuro emotions hit all you can do is take cover and wait for it to pass. It does pass but its a rough Storm.

The fact that you are recognizing the truth about recovery is huge. I understand about feeling broken and friendless when it's over. That is one side of the coin. The other is you will be liberated and have a new appreciation of life and will enjoy it more than you ever would have. Some friends might stick by you. The ones that dont probably wouldn't be much help to you down the road anyway. Trying to get out with a friend is nice. If its an understanding friend than its a huge bonus. Doesn't mean he or she has to fully get it but just to be supportive. I have 2 people in my life who understand it. My GF and my mom. But it took them 7 months to realize how bad it was. I felt alone for the first 7 months.

Ive looked at it like I am in Jail but im holding a lottery ticket to cash when I get out. Sure my career might be gone, money lost but I think if i actually feel healthy nothing will matter anymore.
Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#59 starcontrol2

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 09:09 AM

Hi,

I wish i was 11 months out like Mort !
Just like Mort, i had a lot of tests done, mri, eeg, bloodwork. Everything is fine. Integrative dr did more tests, stool, blood, saliva, of course, some things are off but I bet they are for everybody but nothing that would pin point or cause the symptoms. Compared to Mort, physically I am doing ok psychologically very tough. Trouble sleeping, deep depression, dp/dr of varying intensity, head and eyes feel drunk, don't care about anything other than my misery, family sort of just there, I can go on and on. I don't want to tough it out but since reinstatement didn't work I feel i have no choice. Since I am able to somewhat tolerate exercise I try to do it. I wouldn't be able to travel my moods are too unstable, I feel like a drunk driver. Routine at home helps a little. I can't believe this will be over some day but it must.
I go to city pool i just pay the fee and don't talk to anyone.
As for working, i am hourly contractor, a programmer at national institue of health, of all places, where is that health institute when i am in so dire state!!! I was full time contractor before maybe i could have taken medical leave but now it would be unpaid even if allowed. If i was gov employee...
Most of my projects are in maintenance mode, I can't write any code now. Maybe canada is more employee friendly here they won't hold anything, might as well get any $$$ while i can.

10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg


#60 oskcajga

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 11:42 AM

Hi,

I wish i was 11 months out like Mort !
Just like Mort, i had a lot of tests done, mri, eeg, bloodwork. Everything is fine. Integrative dr did more tests, stool, blood, saliva, of course, some things are off but I bet they are for everybody but nothing that would pin point or cause the symptoms. Compared to Mort, physically I am doing ok psychologically very tough. Trouble sleeping, deep depression, dp/dr of varying intensity, head and eyes feel drunk, don't care about anything other than my misery, family sort of just there, I can go on and on. I don't want to tough it out but since reinstatement didn't work I feel i have no choice. Since I am able to somewhat tolerate exercise I try to do it. I wouldn't be able to travel my moods are too unstable, I feel like a drunk driver. Routine at home helps a little. I can't believe this will be over some day but it must.
I go to city pool i just pay the fee and don't talk to anyone.
As for working, i am hourly contractor, a programmer at national institue of health, of all places, where is that health institute when i am in so dire state!!! I was full time contractor before maybe i could have taken medical leave but now it would be unpaid even if allowed. If i was gov employee...
Most of my projects are in maintenance mode, I can't write any code now. Maybe canada is more employee friendly here they won't hold anything, might as well get any $$$ while i can.

 

The number 1 rule for suriving antidepressant withdrawal/adverse reaction is:  Have money.

 

The number 2 rule for suriving antidepressant withdrawal/adverse reaction is:  Have money.

 

Want to guess what rule #3 is?

 

There's few other things more important than money to surviving withdrawal.  Do everything you can to secure as much of it as possible while you still can.  No one will give you any, unless you're a unique individual or you have a family or retirement, etc.  This condition leads to homelessness, loss of family, and more - but if you have $ this can all be avoided. 

 

I cannot emphasize the importance of $ enough for surviving withdrawal.

 

Folks that downplay the importance of $ to surviving withdrawal have a source of money themselves - it's sort of a predominant theme in American/western culture to downplay the critical importance of money - even though it's painfully obvious that not having enough cash is directly related to poor outcomes in many areas of life.


8 Words of Wisdom about Adverse Effects and Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Syndrome:

 

1.  Please do learn about this condition by thoroughly reading 1) Dr. Healy's website and SurvivingAntidepressants.

2.  Please read books like: 1) Anatomy of An Epidemic and 2) Mad in America.

3.  Success Stories do exist.

4.  Please be extremely cautious about reinstatements, recreational drugs, supplements.  Even low doses can complicate matters.

5.  Transfer all financial assets into your own name (hint: relationships end).  Do not spend money wastefully.  Keep your job as long as possible.

6.  Psychiatric drug "withdrawal" and adverse effects are serious neurological reactions to powerful "drugs" - do not take this condition lightly.

7.  These conditions almost never recognized by any medical doctors - hospitalization/appointments can be futile/potentially injurious.

8.  PSSD, anhedonia (no emotions), memory loss, brain zaps, etc are scary - don't worsen them by taking more drugs, supplements, and medications.

 

Stimulant free since September 20th, 2014; SSRI free since September 1st, 2013


#61 KarenB

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 07:17 PM

That is so frigging true.  I am lucky - my husband is supporting me through this.  I've often thought that without his income and emotional support I'd either be on the street or dead or in one of those hopsitals...


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

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

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


#62 Mort81

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 10:49 AM

Hey I am 15 months off so I am happy about that but I still feel like I have a ways to go. I think I am 60-65% recovered overall at the moment. I think when I am able to get to 80-85% than ill be able to return to my normal life.  Osk your right about the money. Honestly not being able to work or get disability is just as frustrating as the WD itself. Its almost impossible to hold onto any type of job . This syndrome basically drains you of all financial assets until you are healthy enough to get back into it. I do have to admit if I had money it would have taken alot of pressure off. I would have quit my job so fast already instead of squabbling  into a doctors office every month to beg for a note to keep my job for another month, which the doc has no idea why I cant work so shes reluctant to do so. What a taxing monthly experience that I have to go through. The financial and career aspect of WD has been just as bad as the WD itself. I know that sounds crazy but its true for me. If I could go away for a year and drop everything I would do it. 


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#63 vetdoc

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 02:59 PM

 

Hi numb

 

I have been tapering three drugs for over 2 years and it is definitely a difficult journey. I will have to be tapering for at least another year or 2 to keep withdrawal symptoms to a minimum.  I tapered 40 mg valium doen to 2mg in about 1.5 years with minimum withdrawl symptoms by going slow and having an exacting tapering plan.  I  am now tapering the antidepressants and I will tell you they are much more difficult for me then the benzo. All I can do is continue knowing there will be windows of relief and waves of discomfort all along the way.

Yes you will recover eventually it might take 6 months it could take years,but it will happen.  Patience is the key, although it can be maddening, because we want our altered brain to return to normal homeostasis and be well

today.  Slow and steady wins the race.

 

I wont tell my whole story again it is posted but, I will tell you I have suffered all the symptoms you mentioned, and then some.(depression, marked insomnia, severe fatigue , weight loss and weakness, memory loss, agoraphobia,  decreased mental acuity, constant brain fog,   Yes these drugs can wreak havoc and take a portion of your life away, but with patience and slow tapering I think we can regain a good portion of our lives back.  

 

I am still tapering and still working albeit not as efficiently as I used to be at work.  Since I am fortunate to my own business I allow my self to take days off when I am in a bad wave and haven't' slept for a few nights.  The windows of relief are much more frequent then the waves now, but every wave reminds me of how bad it was and still feels scary that it will last forever, but it doesn't. 

 

The most horrible symptom I struggle with is marked insomnia and I haven't been able to completely get relief.  I may have a week of decent sleep and then boom minimal sleep for 4-5 days.  The anxiety of knowing you won't sleep of course magnifies the problem, and dreading night fall as it comes along  I try to tell myself at these sleepless times it won't kill me not sleeping much for a few days, but it is still brutal.  I suffered from some insomnia thruout the years, the reason for the valium,  but my insomnia is much worse in withdrawls.

 

All I can say I empathize with you and all others struggling to get off these meds and wish you all good luck. Hang in there.  This to shall pass.

 

vetdoc


 polyharmacy cocktail  FEB 2012 after hospital release , Wellbutrin 300mg xl once day, Lamictal 200mg daily, Klonopin 2mg Doxepin 7mg

 

 Klonopin micro taper started Dec  2012, C/O to 20mg Valium 12/2013, down to 1.5mg as of 10/01/2014,  updose to 1.6mg valium Oct 10/2014, updosed 2mg valium December 18 2014

 

Wellbutrin taper from 300mg, started  Jan 2015,  Wellbutrin 275mg, Jan 24 2015,  wellbutrin 250 mg, Feb 25,2015   225mg wellbutrin June 5, 200mg,July 2015, updosed 225mg, September 2015, 206mg, October, 2015 187.5mg, November  updosed to 200mg  May 2015, wellbutri167mg

 

Currently     Wellbutrin 187mg,      Lamictal 200mg,   Valium 2mg,    Doxepin 5.4mg July 09/16

 

 

 

 


#64 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 26 November 2015 - 10:54 AM

My insomnia has been really bad last few days and I am becoming more severely depressed and anxious. I really don't know what to do. My brain is scrambled and I can't have a regular conversation or do anything to distract myself from this mess. :(
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#65 Mort81

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Posted 26 November 2015 - 11:11 AM

Im sorry Numb! The only thing I can tell you is that it will get better I promise !


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#66 vetdoc

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Posted 26 November 2015 - 04:16 PM

My insomnia has been really bad last few days and I am becoming more severely depressed and anxious. I really don't know what to do. My brain is scrambled and I can't have a regular conversation or do anything to distract myself from this mess. :(

Numb  I know the insomnia is maddening.  The more you focus on it, the more anxiety ridden and depressed you will get.   Try and tell yourself as hard as it is this just a horrible symptom from the drugs ,but it won't kill me and it will pass.  Find something to distract yourself from just ruminating and focusing on the symptoms.  Anything can work even some mindless TV, just to distract yourself.  Also try some deep breathing meditation.  Just sit quietly and inhale then exhale slowly and deeply, all the while focusing on your breath not your symptoms or how you feel. If your mind waunders back to your symptoms let it go and bring your focus back to your breath.   Do this for ten minutes twice daily  It may soumd simplistic but it will help with your anxiety and dpression.

 

Have you tried melatonin 1mg an hour before trying to sleep.  Hang in there trust me I have been where you are many times.  Even though it feels hopeless at times do not give up hope, it will get better I know first hand. Unfortunately it will take some time, so stay strong until it passes.


 polyharmacy cocktail  FEB 2012 after hospital release , Wellbutrin 300mg xl once day, Lamictal 200mg daily, Klonopin 2mg Doxepin 7mg

 

 Klonopin micro taper started Dec  2012, C/O to 20mg Valium 12/2013, down to 1.5mg as of 10/01/2014,  updose to 1.6mg valium Oct 10/2014, updosed 2mg valium December 18 2014

 

Wellbutrin taper from 300mg, started  Jan 2015,  Wellbutrin 275mg, Jan 24 2015,  wellbutrin 250 mg, Feb 25,2015   225mg wellbutrin June 5, 200mg,July 2015, updosed 225mg, September 2015, 206mg, October, 2015 187.5mg, November  updosed to 200mg  May 2015, wellbutri167mg

 

Currently     Wellbutrin 187mg,      Lamictal 200mg,   Valium 2mg,    Doxepin 5.4mg July 09/16

 

 

 

 


#67 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 26 November 2015 - 07:48 PM

Thanks everyone for taking the time to show you care. I just worry that since I tapered fast I will suffer. There are many horror stories out there. I just read that SSRI and SNRI kill sperm count. That has even depressed me more. Does it rebound? I have no energy to go to a clinic to get a count done. Had to see psych today bc lack of sleep is taking its toll. He gave me Remeron for two weeks. Anyone try this? Magnesium, warm milk, chamomile tea, and melatonin didn't help.
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#68 KarenB

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Posted 26 November 2015 - 08:11 PM

Sounds like a bad idea to me. 

 

http://survivinganti...n-mirtazapine/

From the above link about mirtazapine/remeron: 

 

As with other psychiatric drugs, we recommend trying a 10% taper of mirtazapine per month, based on the last dosage you took. If you get withdrawal symptoms from a 10% taper, go down by smaller amounts. See Important topics in the Tapering forum, particularly http://survivinganti...0-of-my-dosage/

A very common withdrawal problem with mirtazapine is rebound insomnia, which reinforces the need for very gradual tapering.

 

 


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

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

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


#69 Mort81

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Posted 27 November 2015 - 06:08 AM

Hey Numb im not sure id risk trying the Remeron out.  A new drug being introduced to your system is extremely risky at this point .Usually a more experienced mod would only recommend reinstating the original AD at a low dose.  I fought my doctors on 3 different meds for my WD symptoms . I got prescribed something for sleep might have been Remeron, something for pain Lyrica and there was something else I forgot. I almost took them because I was extremely desperate to get relief. I believe it would have been a massive mistake.   One of the mods will have more experience on this than me. As far as thr sexual side effects go. I haven't talked too much about it ln my thread but for me I was kinda numb on AD .  When I went off I became hyper sensitive in that area.  Its clearing up now and is pretty much normal. So im assuming same will happen for you with sperm count. How long it takes is the question that nobody knows here. 


Was on 30mg (Lexapro) for 7-8yrs20mg for 3 months (This was my choice my Doc wanted me to drop much faster)15 mg 2week10mg 2 weeks 5 mg 1 week0 since August 24th Clonazapam. Currently 0.10mg daily. PPI Dexlant 20-30mg for last 29 months currently at 30mg

#70 uncomfortablynumb

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Posted 27 November 2015 - 01:49 PM

When you are desperate for sleep, what can you do? I didn't take the Remeron yet. I took my last 1mg of Ativan and got okay sleep - 4 or 5 hours. I got up with my regular dizziness and headache. But the brain zaps are less today. This would be the only improvement experienced so far closing in on the six week mark off Effexor.

How long until the body regulates sleep properly? Or how long until improvement happens at least? Not sure if there is an answer. Lack of sleep is starting to make me very weak. Is that what happened to you, Mort? Or was the weakness related with your digestive issues?

I have no issues with my junk function thankfully, but I don't know if my sperm count had been affected. These drugs are horrible. Their impact seems like something you would read in a dystopic tale - create emotionless zombies that cannot procreate.

My depression/anxiety and not being able to process thoughts well is really concerning. It is almost like being in a vegetative state and being consciously aware that you have lost mental abilities. An example of how bad it is - if I read or watch something for distraction, I can't have any deep discussion about it or share my opinions. Has anyone experienced this? How long until there was obvious signs of improvement?
10/2006 - Celexa 4 wks - not effective 10/2006 - Effexor - kicked in within 4 wks at 112mg dose. Over 3 yrs worked fairly consistently well but began having relapses of depression and anxiety. Upped dose to 150mg or 187mg and was fine. On Effexor, I was always taking workout energy supplements2009 - Effexor started pooping out and tried adding Abilify to no avail. Then tried Pristiq which also didn't help.2010 - Back on Effexor at 150mg. Surprisingly worked again, but less effective. Slowly started losing Effectiveness over 3 years.2013 - tried Zoloft, Nortriptyline, and Wellbutrin. Each separately for 4 weeks. Didn't give longer because they all were causing heart and other issues. 2014 - back to Effexor and it worked just to get me functioning. 04/2015 - off Effexor after a 2 month taper from 150mg. Was doing well for 3 months off meds but still taking pre-workout supps. 07/2015 - stopped taking my pre-workout energy supplement because I was abusing it and taking it for long periods. Stopped that cold turkey and quickly fell into depression and anxiety. 07/2015 - back on Effexor. From July to August slowly increased dose to 187mg and it didn't do anything. 09/2015 - began weaning off Effexor 37mg drops every wk. Then half of 37mg for a week to nothing on Oct. 16. Cue W/D symptoms 11/01/2015 - reinstated 37.5mg Effexor for a day and quit because it made me feel worse. Then 10 beads. Gave up. 12/01/2015 - Doc prescribed many different week trials to address insomnia Gabapentin, Seroquel, and Remeron. Settled on 15mg Remeron and was completely recovered until winter 2016. Was weaning slowly during the year. Symptoms returned especially insomnia. Reinstatement failed. After no improvement and extreme sleep deprivation March 2017, desperately tried week or less trials of trazodone, elavil, and doxepin.
Experiencing severe insomnia dizziness,headache,brain zaps. Severe anxiety and depression. Mind is mostly blank - difficulty thinking/concentrating. Hard to socialize. Poor long term memory. Depersonalization/unreal feeling. Emotional flatness. No interest or motivation.

#71 IHadPassion

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Posted 27 November 2015 - 02:40 PM

Numb,

 

I don't have the sleep issues, but I am and have experienced exactly what you're describing about the cognitive issues.  I almost feel like sometimes I have Alzheimer's/dementia though I know it's because of the withdrawal.  Things that were once cake for me now take 5 times the effort and focus.  I used to be a master multi-tasker and now can only manage one thing at a time.  I'll write a sentence or email, only to review it and see that half of the words didn't make it from my brain to the page, etc, etc.  And I have caught myself in a catatonic state, staring at the wall for half a minute.   

 

Things have gotten slightly better, though still far from where I was prior to medications.  I believe part of it is actual cognitive issues directly related to the medication and part of it is caused by the ensuing anxiety and depression.  I would even say that most of my anxiety and depression is being driven by my cognitive issues.  As a distraction from it, I started using a App called Elevate which has various games that are supposed to develop and maintain overall cognitive abilities. 

 

I believe this is what people most often refer to as "Brain Fog" though to me it's more of a Brain **** storm compared to what I used to be capable of.  I haven't found any supplements that help, though by staying away from activating substances (e.g. caffeine) I am able to mitigate it's impact and control the severity.  Right now I'm just hoping for the best that it will all come back someday.  I'm taking the approach that if I don't use my mind and let it get lazy, it will only get worse, so despite the embarrassment of struggling to find words or hold an intelligible conversation I force myself to engage with people and exercise those functions. 


Year 0:      Social anxiety, obsessive thoughts, NO depression, NO suicidal ideations

Years 1-2: Ativan (benzo) <1mg as needed, not abused but developed physical dependence

Years 2-3: Paxil (20mg) augmented with Adderall XR (10-20mg) due to withdrawal from Ativan

Years 3-Present: Severe depression, headaches, psychiatric hospitalization, lost job, etc.

 


#72 oskcajga

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Posted 27 November 2015 - 02:48 PM

I would recommend reading the success stories in my signature.  These stories lay out a realistic time frame for recovery from this condition.


8 Words of Wisdom about Adverse Effects and Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Syndrome:

 

1.  Please do learn about this condition by thoroughly reading 1) Dr. Healy's website and SurvivingAntidepressants.

2.  Please read books like: 1) Anatomy of An Epidemic and 2) Mad in America.

3.  Success Stories do exist.

4.  Please be extremely cautious about reinstatements, recreational drugs, supplements.  Even low doses can complicate matters.

5.  Transfer all financial assets into your own name (hint: relationships end).  Do not spend money wastefully.  Keep your job as long as possible.

6.  Psychiatric drug "withdrawal" and adverse effects are serious neurological reactions to powerful "drugs" - do not take this condition lightly.

7.  These conditions almost never recognized by any medical doctors - hospitalization/appointments can be futile/potentially injurious.

8.  PSSD, anhedonia (no emotions), memory loss, brain zaps, etc are scary - don't worsen them by taking more drugs, supplements, and medications.

 

Stimulant free since September 20th, 2014; SSRI free since September 1st, 2013