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Anyone have low-symptom taper?


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#1 Madeleine

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Posted 04 February 2017 - 04:01 PM

I'm wondering if anyone who is tapering and is close to the finish line can share if they have had a low-symptom taper.  


March 15/2017: 3.75 zyprexa; January 16/2017: 6.25 mg; down from 10 mg December 2016
200 zoloft. Tapering that next.


#2 KarenB

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Posted 04 February 2017 - 04:39 PM

In May I will have been tapering for 2 years.  I am still a long way from the end, but thought I'd reply because since I began tapering by the brassmonkey-slide method I've been having extremely minimal symptoms.  Usually I'm in one long window, and when I do get a wave of a day or two, the symptoms are minimal.  I often feel a bit guilty here on SA due to my lack of suffering ;)

 

I totally recommend finding that tapering 'sweet spot' instead of pushing through. 


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.


#3 Madeleine

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 05:04 AM

Thanks so much for sharing Karen. It's reassuring to hear.

March 15/2017: 3.75 zyprexa; January 16/2017: 6.25 mg; down from 10 mg December 2016
200 zoloft. Tapering that next.


#4 BuddhaMama

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 09:06 AM

In May I will have been tapering for 2 years.  I am still a long way from the end, but thought I'd reply because since I began tapering by the brassmonkey-slide method I've been having extremely minimal symptoms.  Usually I'm in one long window, and when I do get a wave of a day or two, the symptoms are minimal.  I often feel a bit guilty here on SA due to my lack of suffering ;)

 

I totally recommend finding that tapering 'sweet spot' instead of pushing through. 

 

KarenB, what is the brassmonkey-slide method?


OFF Paxil 1996-1997 CT, no w/d sxs

OFF Celexa 2002 (6 months) CT, mild and brief w/d sxs

OFF Ativan 1mg-Cold Turkey 2014, WD Syndrome for several weeks despite intermittent use over 9 months rather than daily use.

OFF Lexapro 3 doses only February 2015 (increased depression)

OFF Paxil 3 doses only July 2016 (increased anxiety)

ON Remeron 15mg daily since AUG 2016 for PPD/PPA/PPOCD Tried cutting dose by 1/4 tablet  December 1, 2016, one week of intense withdrawal headaches, reinstated 15mg dose December 8, 2016.

ON bioidentical Progesterone cream 50mg/day originally started for self diagnosed estrogen dominance April 2015, continued use during pregnancy to alleviate hormonal headaches October 2015-July 2016, continued postpartum to help with mood July 2016-present.

Supplements: Magnesium, Fish Oil, Probiotics

Tried Methylfolate Sept 2016 to "potentiate" Remeron - ended up experiencing worsened side effects (mainly irritability bordering on rage) Discontinued after two doses.

BEGAN REMERON TAPER Feb 2 2017 by switching to different manufacturer of tablet mirtazipine (manufacturer that matches my liquid solution). Holding 15mg dose until adjusted. Plan to eventually do half liquid, half tablet (still 15mg), then all liquid (15mg), then .95ml of 15mg per ml liquid (a 5% reduction) depending on how I respond to adjusting from tablet to liquid.


#5 brassmonkey

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Posted 05 February 2017 - 09:54 AM

The Brassmonkey Slide Method is a modification of the 10% every 6 weeks taper that is recommended here. Basically it is dropping by 2.5% a week for four weeks and then a hold for an additional 2 weeks. This gives a total of 10% every 6 weeks.  The idea behind it is to spread the symptoms out over several weeks instead of having then hit all at once.  I have had great success with it over the five and a half years I've been tapering.  I started at 40mg of paxil and m currently at 0.16mg.  I will be ending my taper soon.  I have to say that compared to others I have had a much easier time of it.  I know several people who CTed 40mg of paxil at the same time I started to taper and they are still having a rough time of it.  As you can read in my intro thread I'm reentering life in a big way and have the slow taper to thank for it.


20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mg it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking


#6 MRothbard

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Posted 06 February 2017 - 06:45 PM

Yes on the low symptoms. Mine are exacerbated by alcohol and caffeine (duh, right?) . exercise helps. Taking a good multi and some omega 3 as well.


September 2014 to July 2015 - 20 mg Lexapro, 30mg Mirtazipine

 

August 2015 to November 2016- 10mg Lexapro, 30 mg Mirtazipine

 

Nov. 2016 to present - 10mg Lexapro, 3.75 mg Mirtazipine


#7 GiantsWSC

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 08:59 PM

For the most part my tapering has been relatively low symptom except for an episode last March that required me to updose. With finally hitting the 1mg mark I'm hoping the rest of my taper is kind to me like it has been for Brass.


Taken paxil for 15 years

Tapering since Oct 2013 from 10mg Gemini 20 scale

Oct 6, 2013 9.2 mg Nov 27 8.6mg Feb 2 2014 7.8mg March 16 7.4mg March 30 7.0mg May 18 6.2mg July 6 5.8mg Sept 7 5.4 Oct 19 4.8 Dec 14 4.6 Feb 8th 2015 4.2mg Mar 22 3.8mg May 10 3.4mg July 19 3.2mg Sept 6 2.8mg Nov 8 2.5 mg Dec 27 2.3 Feb 14 2016 2.0 Mar 19 updosed to 2.5mg May 4 2.4 June 12 2.2mg July 31 2.0 Sept 11 1.7mg Nov 13 1.5mg Jan 22 2017 1.3mg Mar 19 1.0mg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


#8 Findingmyidentity

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 09:20 AM

Nice to hear about low symptom taper. Im at about 16mgs of paxil. I dropped from 17 to 15mgs and i got bad insomnia and night twitching. So i went back upto 16mg.
I've been on paxil for 11 yrs. Could this be the reason i got bad insomnia? Thank you.

#9 Madeleine

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 10:00 AM

It seems there are so many stories of people tapering off then being hit by withdrawals. I can understand why that would happen with a too-fast taper? Are there any members here who tapered slowly, got off the drugs and then felt okay 2 3 4 months down the line? If so, please share your experiences.

March 15/2017: 3.75 zyprexa; January 16/2017: 6.25 mg; down from 10 mg December 2016
200 zoloft. Tapering that next.


#10 TikkiTikki

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 06:41 PM

Nice to hear about low symptom taper. Im at about 16mgs of paxil. I dropped from 17 to 15mgs and i got bad insomnia and night twitching. So i went back upto 16mg.
I've been on paxil for 11 yrs. Could this be the reason i got bad insomnia? Thank you.

 

Yes I'd say so. Though Paxil is notoriously awful to taper, and symptoms can occur at any point of the taper. How slowly are you going?


Celexa (Citalopram)

40mg    June 2006 - June 2009

60mg    June 2009 - late 2010

Tapered then resumed

40mg    Dec 2010 - April 2013

Tapered (over 3 months) drug-free (4 months)

40mg    Nov 2013 - Jan 2017

20mg    30 Jan 2017 - 18 April 2017

18mg    19 April - 5 May

16mg    6 May - 19 May

14mg    20 May - 

 


#11 TikkiTikki

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 06:42 PM

So far my taper has been low-symptom. Some increased irritability, and some early morning cortisol spikes, but really manageable. I'm in the early stages though.


Celexa (Citalopram)

40mg    June 2006 - June 2009

60mg    June 2009 - late 2010

Tapered then resumed

40mg    Dec 2010 - April 2013

Tapered (over 3 months) drug-free (4 months)

40mg    Nov 2013 - Jan 2017

20mg    30 Jan 2017 - 18 April 2017

18mg    19 April - 5 May

16mg    6 May - 19 May

14mg    20 May - 

 


#12 ChessieCat

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 10:53 PM

Other than a few hiccups when I first started tapering after joining SA, my taper has been low symptom.  I have been tapering a little less than 10% of my previous dose, did a long hold when I got to 50mg (being a tablet) and I'm planning on doing a medium hold as I get down to 20mg because I have plenty of 20mg capsules.

 

I went from 100mg Pristiq to 50mg for 3 weeks then found SA end of October 2016 and updosed to 75mg and I am now down to 25mg.


Reminder to self:      P A T I E N C E       I want to go faster    but I won't

 

Antidepressants:  25 years - 1 unknown, Prozac (caused muscle weakness), Zoloft; Cipramil CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks soon after)

Pristiq:  50mg mid 2012, 100mg beg 2014 (mild Serotonin Toxicity)     Current:  Pristiq 24mg (from 19 May 2017)

 

Tapering history & graph

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

 

Podcasts:    Let's Talk Withdrawal

 

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.


#13 Julz82

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Posted 10 May 2017 - 01:05 AM

The daily micro-taper is working wonders for me. Instead of cutting 5% overnight every 4 weeks, I do it gradually so that at the end of the 4-week period, the micro-cuts add up to 5% but I also stay highly flexible, holding if symptoms ramp up.

While I am not totally symptom-free, I swear by this method!


2004: Anorexia & Depression -> polydrugged as a result  :wacko:
- Venlafaxine(MR): 75mg
- Escitalopram: 60mg ...
- Diazepam: 10mg bedtime prescribed, no c/o
- Clonazepam: 4mg
 
2010: New Life in the UK - psychologically much better
GP wants to lower Escitalopram (side effects on heart) -> 2011 to 2014: come down from 60 to 15mg in 5mg steps (I had no idea)
January 2014: (after dropping from 20mg to 15mg Esc.: withdrawal symptoms seem to disappear) but plagued with exhaustion ever since - "Excessive Daytime Sleepiness" rather than CFS type (??)
 
December 2014: I decide to taper off Benzos...
 
May 2017 update:
- Venlafaxine(MR):  75 mg      
- Escitalopram:       0              (tapered last 15mg Nov-Feb 2017)
- Diazepam:             4 mg       
- Clonazepam:         Jumped 5 May'17 after a 2-year and 5-month taper!!!
 
No longer anorexic nor depressed, but apathetic/flat and exhausted (excessive daytime sleepiness).
 
Varied balanced diet, no processed/refined foods. Plenty water. Yoga & Mindfulness.
Multivitamins - B and C supplements - D3 25 micrograms Magnesium Citrate: 400mg 
 
 
 

#14 Findingmyidentity

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Posted 10 May 2017 - 07:04 AM

Im going to go really slow. About 5% per month. Also seeing a therapist to help with the original issues and as symptoms arise. How far along are you?

#15 catnapt

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 03:35 AM

after a few too fast tapers and CTs and a, thankfully, successful reinstatement, I am doing a slow taper now and the slower and steadier I go, the fewer symptoms I have.

 

I am at 0.2mgs of lexapro and will continue my taper based on symptoms.  as of right now I expect the taper to take up to 2 more years- Yes, even at this tiny dose.
My thinking is that, IF I had done the "10% every 28 day" taper in the first place, I would be finishing up roughly in 2 yrs anyway, so why not give my brain a break.

I have been on SSRIs for about 20 yrs or so and have a long history of other pysch meds; I'm now 61, so healing is typically slower overall as one ages, so- why not be kind to myself, right?

 


1974-2002 many psych meds, all types; longest used drugs include lithium, seroquel, SSRI's zoloft & celexa; many CT's off drugs

2002-2015 on varying doses of lexapro, as  high as 40 mgs, but usually 20mgs

June 2015: tapered too fast to 2.5mgs, then to 2.5mgs every other day Dec 2015:  found SA forum; holding at 2.5mgs 

Early May 2016: jumped off at 2.5mgs, not smart- crashed in late Sept.

Oct 26 2016  reinstated liquid lexapro 0.05ml/day at night, dose +/- til settling on 0.15BID (0.3/day)= windows and waves

Jan 8, 2017 too quick switch to single dose in the morning, 0.3mgs (bad mistake, led to a crash)

Jan 12,2017 added low dose zyprexa for SI, took infrequently as rescue med, last dose Feb.15

Jan 26,2017 lexapro 0.27mg Feb 25 lexapro updose back to 0.3mg due to unrelenting severe insomnia

March 1,2017 insomnia worse, back down to 0.29 to 0.27, to 0.25- improving!! March 17 0.24 April 7 0.21 May7 0.20

March 7, 2017 added low dose lamictal, adjusting dose based on response (currently ~12.5mgs)

Supplements: Magnesium taurate 250mg, chromium, pro-biotic, biotin, glycine 


#16 artSet3561

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Posted 16 May 2017 - 03:51 AM

brassmonkey - I should perhaps have done more reading and I would have come across this earlier. I have been doing the 10% taper method and suffer dreadfully every time I drop, I figured it was just something I had to rough out. I might change to your method once I have stabilised on this last drop. At such low doses I assume you are on liquid? I make my own but I only have a 5mg syringe atm which makes dropping by tiny % quite difficult and not an exact science


50mg sertraline daily for past 4 years

December 2016 - 12.5mg daily - Moved to liquid doses

January 2017 - 10mg

March 2017 - 9mg
May 2017 Dropped to 8mg, having some side effects but coping, just waiting for it to even out again.


#17 Gridley

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Posted 16 May 2017 - 05:29 AM

Brass is in China where he has difficulty accessing SA, but he used a Gemini 20 scale for his Paxil taper, not liquid, and got down to a very, very low dose before jumping off to zero recently.


Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg. since 2004 for depression.  January 6, 2017, began 2.5% taper per week for four weeks with 2-week hold. Jan. 6 19.5 mg, Jan 13 19 mg, Jan. 20 18.5 mg, Jan. 27 18 mg, Feb. 3 two-week hold, Feb. 18 17.5  mg, Feb. 25 17.1 mg, Mar. 4 16.7 mg, Mar. 11 16.3mg, Mar. 18 two-week hold, April 1 15.9 mg, April 8 15.5 mg, April 15 15.1 mg, April 21 holding at 15.1 mg, May 5 resume taper at 14.7 mg, May 13 14.3 mg, May 20 13.9mg

 

Lorazepam 1 mg for colitis-related stress 1986.  CT 1992, reinstated a few months later.  CT approx. 2000 with no difficulty.  Since 2011 1mg for insomnia at bedtime. Decreased to .75 mg mid-2015 with no difficulty.  September 28, 2016, increased to 1.5 mg in a split dose of .5 mg, morning, afternoon and bedtime.  April 21 began crossover to locally available brand.  May 5 completed crossover and holding.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986, prescribed for ulcerative colitis pain.  CT 1991, experienced bad flare-up of colitis, reinstated a few months later.  Jan. 27, 2016, began every-3-weeks 10% taper.  At 30 mg began experiencing dizziness; at 25 mg experiencing anxiety as well as insomnia; at 19 mg - more anxiety; at 15 mg - more anxiety; August 30 discovered SA, updosed to 25 mg and holding there.    

 

Supplements: theanine, omega fish oil, vitamin E, magnesium glycinate, Natural Balance Happy Camper, VSL3DS probiotic, vitamin D3, digestive enzyme, zinc, fo-ti.  Enerphos (phosphoserine) for insomnia. 


#18 TikkiTikki

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Posted 19 May 2017 - 02:47 AM

I'd love to know too!


Celexa (Citalopram)

40mg    June 2006 - June 2009

60mg    June 2009 - late 2010

Tapered then resumed

40mg    Dec 2010 - April 2013

Tapered (over 3 months) drug-free (4 months)

40mg    Nov 2013 - Jan 2017

20mg    30 Jan 2017 - 18 April 2017

18mg    19 April - 5 May

16mg    6 May - 19 May

14mg    20 May - 

 


#19 Lorin

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Posted 20 May 2017 - 01:31 AM

why no one answer?its good question
maby ask it in other forum here

 

 

* merged similar topics


2007-2015- zoloft 100 mg
5-8/2015 taper zoloft 12.5 mg every 2 weeks
3/2016 -11/16 lexapro 20 mg

24/11/16 - 1/1/17 lexapro 15 mg
1/1/17-22/2/2017 lexapro 10 mg
23/2/17-23/3/17- lexapro 7.5 mg

24/3/2017-11/4/17 lexapro 5 mg

11/4/17-lexapro 3.5 mg