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  1. Hi everyone, I'm new here. I've been searching the internet for days for some sort of support group and I've finally found you. Okay I'll give a brief history. I've been on antidepressants since I was 17, I'm 32 now. My first AD was prozac which didn't work at the time, so I was then put on Venelaxfine which worked but made me slightly manic. I was on Venelaxafine from 2002 until 2006 I think. I was then put on cipralex, then after a bad break up where I couldn't sleep or eat I was put on Mirtazapine which I wasn't on for long, then I was on citalopram and then we did a full circle back to prozac. I was on prozac for around 7 years, it was great stuff for me. I got over my break up, found a job, made friends and have been very happy. Over the last year I have been finding myself become more and more anxious, it felt like an internal anxious that I couldn't control at all. So after a bad anxiety attack over 3 weeks ago I went back to the doctors who prescribed me a double dose of prozac (so from 20mg to 40mg). I took this for a few days but my anxiety was 100 times worse so my mum suggested just coming off them for a few days to see how I felt. The strange thing was after coming off my anxiety went. I wasn't feeling that constant adrenaline feeling that I had been feeling for months or even a year. I went back to the Drs and they gave me sertraline as I was afraid of coming off everything all together. I was given a low dose of 25mg sertraline. I was on sertraline for 2 days and I noticed that my vision in one eye had gone and I couldn't see very well and the pupil in that eye had gone huge, compared to the other eye pupil which was a normal size. So I came off. As I came off on the weekend I couldn't see a doctor for a few days, when I did see a doctor and explained what had happened and that I was really worried because I'd come off cold turkey. He asked how I felt and I told him I felt fine. I had been dizzy, headachey and had odd dreams and the odd little bit of panic before sleeping, but nothing too bad. So I've been off prozac for 10days now and completely off sertraline for 4 days. I'm hoping to stay off the ADs completely now. I am nervous because I couldn't find online any people that had experienced coming off prozac. I'm taking B complex supplements, flaxseed oil, magnesium and l-lysine supplements to see if it will help. I'm so worried that when the prozac is out of my system completely and I level that I will be depressed again, but right now I feel good and positive, just really nervous.
  2. ***Apologies for the length and how disjointed this post is. My brain feels like scrambled eggs lately. ha*** Hi all. I am glad to find a place of support while going thru this as I feel very much alone and afraid. I guess I will start by copying and pasting my drug and W/D history that I had to type up during registration. I do not have the strength or brain power to do it again right now. I will just highlight the recent, pertinent bits of my history. Last 6 years as follows: *2010-2012 10mg Lexapro. Withdrew. Off for 4 months./hard W/d but did ok. *2012-2013 Wellbutrin XL 150mg.Off and on a couple times by itself and later to offset Zoloft side effects. No issues withdrawing, but it increases my anxiety when on it. Otherwise, it was the "nicest" AD ive been on. *2013-2014 Zoloft 50mg.On it a year and a half. Went off due to 30# weight gain and sexual issues. Difficult W/d but somehow got thru. Stayed off A/D for about 4 months again. *Tried Buspar. 2 weeks before I had to stop due to the intense anger it caused. *2015-recently Back to Lexapro 10mg for 10 months. Worked ok but I wanted off meds. Tried to taper from 10mg to 5mg in Late Jan/Feb 2016. Was great for first 4 weeks or so before it hit me. Went thru 3 weeks of bad, cant get off the couch situation before reinstating at 10mg. Helped for about a week or so. Then way back down in depression. Psych put up to 15mg. Same thing. Then 20mg. Which I did NOT handle well at all. Developed RLS type symptoms etc. Went back down to 15. Then 10. RLS type stuff went away.Did a "prozac bridge" to taper the rest of the way off from 10 to 5 to 0 of Lexapro.Been off Lexapro since 5/7/2016 *2016- Prozac 10mg to help get off the lexapro. Started it on 4/30/2016. Seemed to tolerate the 10mg Prozac then bumped it up to 20mg at Psychs suggestion. Did not tolerate well at all. RLS type stuff came back. Heart palpatations, weepiness, excessive tiredness. Went back to 10mg. Then 10mg every other day then 0mg as of 5/31//2016 Still have RLS. *2010-2016 Xanax (anywhere from 3mg a day back in 2010 when I first started Lexapro down to .25 in the am and .5 at bedtime currently. ) *Not sure it is relevent but I went off Prilosec at the same time I started tapering the Lexapro* Symptoms since this started: Major depression Hopelessness Back pains off and on Restless legs/Akathisia? Lethargy Loss of interest in pretty much everything I loved Disconnected from myself Loss of appetite Irritability Personal Info; 45 year old female. 3 kids, 25,22 and 19. Ex military spouse for 20 years. No longer in marriage. In a relationship with a wonderful man. Now thats out of the way, I must say this is by far the worst and longest W/D and mental episode I have ever had. I have been diagnosed with depression and anxiety, but mostly am an anxiety sufferer. GAD and Social Anxiety. I thought I knew what depression was before this year. I thought anxiety was worse than depression. I was CLUELESS. This mess over the last 5 or so months has rendered me basically useless and hopeless. I have no hope over anything, no interest in anything. Ifeel like a waste. I have the weird RLS/Akathisa thing going on which I never had before. It makes getting a good nights rest so hard, which in turn makes it all worse. I spend everyday just trying to drag myself thru the day. Which drags on forever. I was a stay at home mom for YEARS and I am currently unemployed. I have lived in my current city for 5 years and I have no friends here and my kids are grown (they live about an hour and a half away) so I am trying to deal with loneliness on top of this other stuff. My boyfriend does not have a big family here either so thats not an option. I want to move closer to my family but cant until he can sell the house here which will be at least another year. I am introverted so usually it does not bother me THAT much but the since I have been going thru this mess, it really weighs on me. I do not want to off myself, but most everyday I wonder why I am even bothering to stay around and go thru this. I feel so ran down.I do not want to die so please dont think that is what I am saying. It is just that even having those feelings scares the crap out of me. This hopeless disinterest scares me. As I said, I have never felt like this for very long (maybe a week or 2 max) and never this intense till I tried to get off the meds this time. The other W/Ds i went thru were a cake walk compared to this. My psychiatrist is no help. He pretty much asks me what I want to do. So I have lost all faith in him. I did CBT for a year. From 2010 to around 2011. Then I moved 800 miles and lost my therapist, of course. I currently live in a very small rural town and would have to travel at least an hour to see a therapist and that is not possible. That is all I have to the energy to write at the moment. Again, my apologies for being so scattered. I hope this is just withdrawal. This is NOT me, this is NOT how I usually am. It is so scary right now. I am telling myself to just hang in there awhile longer and let the W/D do its nasty thing and it will get better. I feel like I am dissapointing my family because 5 months out, I am still a wreck. I just want to be me again. I want to do the things I loved and be loving and make jokes all the time. Not be trapped inside myself, feeling like I am being held hostage and drained of happiness and energy and life. If anyone has anything to say, any advice, ANYTHING, PLEASE please please feel free to say it. I just feel so alone in this. And HUGS to all of you that are going thru this too. I hope we all feel better soon. Thanks Jujube
  3. I have been on 23 psychiatric medications over 20 years, some more than once, and endured many uncomfortable side effects as a result (ended up in the ER once where I was approached with disdain and told I should have just stopped taking the medication and “rode it out” at home). The few times I havd tried to stop to say I felt horrible would be an understatement (ended up in the ER here too where I was just provided with the very medications I was trying to stop taking). The longest I lasted off of medication was 3 months before going right back on them to alleviate what I was feeling. It did not occurr to me that what I was feeling might be “discontinuation ayndrome” or “protracted withdrawal”. I just assumed I was unable to function without medications and doctors did not say otherwise. The few times I went off of medications there were minimal instructions, no talk of what to expect or how to alleviate what occurred…even when I asked I recieved vague ambiguous answers. Two months ago I decided, “enough is enough”, after experiencing unpleasant side effects on 100mg of lamictal. I had started at 25mg in the beginning of April 2016 and was up to 100mg by the end of May 2016. So in July I began tapering. At the time I started a new job and my insurance hadn’t kicked in. I could not afford my doctor’s fees, but I knew it was the lamictal causing me to feel ill and was very uncomfortable, so I went about it myself. I tapered for one month and experienced some withdrawal, but nothing horrendous and was off of it entirely for 3 weeks with little trouble. Last week I began to feel worse than I have ever felt. My brain is in a fog…I can’t remember things and keep zoning out. I feel deeply lost in my head…almost as if I were zapped with electricity. I am highly emotional and agitated. I just want to be alone. Everything annoys me…lights, sounds, people. Having crying jags, quick mood swings, a slight tremor, and weakness in my extremities, paranoia, hopelessness, absolute terror (keep waking up sweating and terrified), heart palpitations, slight cough amd flu-like feeling, restlessness, stomach issues,just want to sleep, weird sensations, the list goes on. I’m not sure of how I can continue to work like this. I sit in my office and either cry or nap, then pull it together when I have to interact with someone. I am not sure of how to determine if this is just mee off of medication and I really do need to be on medication or if this is me experiencing “withdrawal”. My insurance only covers “typical psychiatrists” who will probably suggest the next med. I would love to see a holistic psychiatrist because they would look ay my whole being…test my hormones, genetics, etc among various other things that typical psychiatrists don’t take into account, including reccomend supplements/diet changes to ease withdrawal. However, the cheapest I have found so far asks $650 for consultation and $450 each visit after. I do not work in a field that is lucrative and I can't afford this. So basically now I feel like it’s just another experiment on my body to contend with only I have no guidance. I am reading about supplements and started taking ashgawanda, but without fancy testing how do I even know what to supplement??? There are so many options (5-htp, SAMe, l-tryptophan, licorice, gaba, st. John’s wort, vit b, vit d, ltheazine, fish oil to name just a few I have read about) and I don’t want to keep toying around with my body. Basically I feel lost and angry and just needed to vent. I joined Kelly Brogan’s Vital Mind Reset program yesterday so I am hoping that helps somehow. I am so jittery and unfocused I can’t seem to get started. I just wish I had a little more guidance. I hate our psych system with a passion today. I’m scared that this will last forever and wish I could afford the treatment I need.
  4. Hello, warriors! Thanks for having me. I've been perusing this site for years, and the HOPE it offers is priceless. I have a few questions. 1. It's over now, but I'm curious: I tapered 10 mg from March 2015-Nov. 2015, at 1 MG a month. Was that too fast? 2. I've tested for high cortisol at noon, evening (6 PM), and bedtime, making it nearly impossible to get normal sleep. How long did your raised cortisol last after you withdrew from your SSRI? I have read that this issue resolves itself eventually; I'm just wondering how long it took for you. I appreciate any insight you have.
  5. Hello I'm new to this site. I was on Prozac since I was about 28 recently over about six months tapered off with the help of my doc. When I was on them I was like a machine and became quite professionally successful, was this sparky but 2D version of myself. But then I think something clicked about five years ago and I was like the medicated and depressed but also really angry and irritable in the mornings. Sometimes I think I had a couple of bipolar episodes of doing things like cheating on my husband etc without really being aware what I was doing or the consequences and (I'm not blaming the meds but...) I look back and think how did I not think through some of the things I was doing? I wonder if I couldn't feel negative emotions as red flags that signalled 'CONSEQUENCES AHEAD..' Now, I am terrified of all the emotions am feeling as I haven't felt any real emotions in so long. The only things that help for me are running for 30 minutes in the morning followed by ten mins mindfulness meditation and a little yoga. Even then, whenever I get under some work pressure or feel a little down, I instantly think 'OMG I need to get on those pills as I will get depressed again.' But it does pass. What I love is not being tired all the time, not being apathetic about anything other than work and not having those awful night sweats I also take 5-HTP which I really think works. I have more happy days than not and my husband said I seem so much better off them, more fun, less tired and less angry all the time (so strange, all my anger has gone since stopping the ADs). Also, sex drive and ability to orgasm was very low (from being very high in my 20s), now all that is back I REALLY don't want to go back on those medications and lose it again. I just find these negative emotions so overwhelming and find dealing with them so very difficult. Though I never, ever feel suicidal (like I did in my 20s) and am always so surprised that eventually they all pass if I just distract myself. The worst is work when I have a deadline or when I feel lonely. I'm just scare one day it will all build up and I'll get depressed again and wonder if being on a pill to stop that might be better. Almost like a preventative. Any thoughts more than welcome or if there is another similar post I could read that would be great.
  6. I took Prozac 20m for anxiety and had to stop after a week due to severe side effects . MybMD suggested a stop cold turkey since it was affecting me and had to stop working . I asked him it was ok to stop cold turkey sice I had read that it should be done slowly and he said it was fine that I shouldn't have any issue . I asked to be lowered to to 10mg and see if I will been a bit better since I had heard it took a few weeks for my system to get used to it . I got my prescription for 10mg and took it that night and next day was horrible. I decided not to take anymore . It's been 5 weeks and I'm still feeling severe weakness some day more that others, fatigued, I feel off balance and sensitivity to light and sound . I know its withdrawal syndrome now . Been going to see the MD almost every week since then and of course he tell me it has nothing to do with the medication . I've had blood work done and everything comes back fine . He even did a toxicology test and the results came back saying I have to trace of Prozac in my silly stem and that it usually leaves your body 2-3 after you stop . I don't believe that but oh well . I'm able to work part time but still have a hard time especially in the mornings because I was up with burning skin and a feeling of nervousness in my stomach and shakyness . Usually feel better in the afternoons . I just want to know if anyone has taken it for a short time like I did and how long it might take for this to go away ?
  7. I'm reaching out to see if these symtoms are familiar to anyone and if so, will how long before the go away?Prozac 60 mg a day for 30 years. A psychiatrist gave started my on Prozac for anxiety after I experienced my first panic attack explaining that anxiety was a form of depression. My life has gone quite well given the typical ups and downs it can bring.My primary care doc retired and I was having problems getting an appointment with my new one so I decided that maybe I should just wean myself of of Prozac which I did taking 60mg every other day, then 40mg every other day and finally 20mg every other day and when it ran out, I was done. This was about 3 months ago. Today I am living in my own private hell wondering if I am going through the change of if this is Prozac withdrawl. I wake up feeling fine but then getting ready for work the fog rolls into my head, I feel dizzy , like I'm looking out of someone else's eyes and I cry. I cry in the shower and focus on my breath until I can finish getting ready and can go on to work. Work is such a fog. I can not think to answer any complex questions and it is a struggle to get through the day trying to appear "normal". Thoughts of unworthiness course through my head and I cry and I cry. It seems like all I do is cry. Because I am trying to cover this up by going in the bathroom to focus on breathing or finding somewhere else to get it together, by the time I get home, i am exhausted....and by the way I have never been someone to cry at the drop of the hat...I am going to make an appointment to see my new doc next week..sometimes I feel like I might have a brain tumor or something... could this be Prozac withdrawl??
  8. My doc had me taper to aggressive, and withdrawals have hit. Do I go on a low dose and stabilize or continue with the withdrawals symptoms and hope for the best. It been 4 months since last dose.
  9. I took Fluoxetine (Prozac) 10 mg for a little over 4 months for mild depression and anxiety (should have went to couseling instead). I've not really had any real mental health issues. In hindsight, it was a mistake. Started taking it in January, stopped beginning first week of May. I did not take it consistently. Only when I remembered to take it. I stopped taking it cold turkey about 5 weeks ago. When will my withdrawal symptoms fully subside? I still have a bit of mental/physical fatigue, dizziness, mild anxiety, blurred vision, neck pain/stiffness and dull headache. My symptoms are worse in the morning and lessen around evening. Also, I'm not quite able to fully experience true emotion--other than sadness, that I had previous to antidepressants. How long does this go on, and what can I expect? This was my first antidepressant ever. So I have no other experiences to compare it to and no one else to ask about this stuff. Doctors kind of brushed me off I have improved slightly since the withdrawal began 5 weeks ago. But, the remaining symptoms linger and I'm wondering how long this all might last? Please help me if you can? I need to hear from people who understand and can provide insight, comfort, and hope. Please help. What can I expect? Also, right now, I only take vitamin B complex to help with my energy levels and D3 for a deficiency. Nothing else. My diet has improved nutrition wise, and I've lost 20 pounds in a litle over a month as a result. But no worries there, I had a little extra to spare. Fruits, veggies, chicken, fish, water, and the occasional granola bar when I catch a sugar craving. That's my daily diet since this all began. I'm 31 years old.
  10. I need help. I am struggling and need some reassurance that what my second doctor has done is right. About 6 weeks ago I went to the Doctor and told her I was ready to get off of antidepressants. I was feeling good and also suffering some side effects such as memory loss, lack of libido and anger. I had been on Pristiq 100mg for 3 years and Lexapro 20mg for 7 years before that. I am in a new area and did not have a good relationship with this Doctor. She was very brisk and said the first week I should drop to 50mg Pristiq and then stop. There would be some uncomfortable withdrawal effects for a couple of weeks, but it would be okay after that. I did that and for about 3 weeks suffered the horrendous effects it seems many people get such as shaking, back pain, sweating, insomnia, depression, rage and nightmares. It was awful, but I was counting down the 2 weeks thinking it would get better. At around week 4 the physical symptoms were gone, but I was hit by the most intense anxiety and despair that I have ever experienced. This continues today. I went to a different Doctor who put me on Lovan 20 (fluoxetine) as she said it would be much easier to taper off of when I was ready. It has now been 9 days on Lovan and I still feel so desperate and anxious. She said the Lovan will take 2 weeks to work, but shouldn't I have felt something by now? I still can't stop crying. I was also given valium 2mg, which I hate taking, because I wanted to be off meds, but I have no choice because i feel so bad. Yesterday the valium didn't work (I took 3 tablets). I cried all day and called Lifeline twice. The only relief comes at night. I am not sure why this is happening now as night used to be my worst time, but around 8pm is when things feel better (and when my husband is home). I need constant company to feel better, but my husband is at work and I think I am ruining his life. He is so wonderful, but really stressed at work and I am adding to it hugely. I am now wondering if the answer would have been to go back on Pristiq rather than a different med, but now I suppose it is too late to do that. I don't have confidence in my Doctors and I have been to 4 now. The latest one is very kind and says this should work in 2 weeks, but what if it doesn't? Please can anyone help? I am so desperate and afraid of how to get through today. I have a counselling appointment, but my mind is so all over the place I don't know if it will help much. It is as if I am not myself anymore.
  11. Hello all I am so grateful to find this site. I’ve been vacillating about joining, but now here I am. I feel kind of silly posting because when I read some of your heartbreaking stories mine aren’t as bad, but still, here I am and I’m suffering in my own way and would be honoured to get help or insight from those who have gone through this (going through this!) before me. So, I’ve had life long anxiety, which I never got help for (say, 25+ years). This all came to head after I had my baby late 2012 in about March 2013 with an EPIC nervous breakdown after months and months of gruelling anxiety and depression. I was in a terrible state. Psychiatrist convinced me to take Lovan 20mg and I reluctantly started and I honestly had such a huge relief of my symptoms within a week or two, which was a shock to me. My psychologist didn’t believe that my improvement that quickly was real, which was a weird situation to be in. I stopped seeing her after four sessions and haven’t had therapy since. My psych was happy for me to stay on meds and started talking about coming off about a year in. She just said skip days until you’re off and left me to it. I stayed on meds another year because there was a lot going on in my life and I was terrified of doing it without the medication. Once that settled down I started the ‘taper’ in about June last year (2015) and was off in a month. I honestly don’t think I had withdrawals but there was a time about six months in that I got those old familiar anxious thoughts and feelings and terrible anxiety. I found this site and was so shocked to find out about withdrawals and tapering. That helped me push on and not seek out medication again. But here I am another six months later in the same position. I feel like such a damn mess. No motivation, crippling anxiety, family life falling apart. Not working well in the office. Not reaching out to friends. Hanging around in bed or at home glued to the internet or tv while my husband and child are out living life. Creating a terrible wedge between my husband and young child - them against me. I try to put on a happy face to the outside world but inside I am such a jumble of tangled up mess. I have some physical symptoms too - migraines, back pain, weird burning fevers, insomnia. Not sure if this is real illness or withdrawal symptoms. When I’m golden I have a pretty great wellness program for myself. Exercise, supplements (including a bunch for MTHRFTHR gene), a great diet at 50/50% gentle carbs/fat-protien, no alcohol or any other prescription medications. I do meditation (Headspace) although it sometimes annoys the heck out of me for some reason. I’ve read up on reinstating and I think I’m too far from tapering off to do this, which is kind of devastating. I’m at a lost and not sure where to turn. Is it withdrawals, is it relapse and if I leave it will I spiral into a hideous breakdown again and ruin my already fragile life. Thank you so much for listening.
  12. Hey guys! I stopped taking Prozac 15mg last September, so about 9 months ago already. Things were kind of rocky at first, but smoothed out with time. Now, ever since May, I've been hitting a rough patch after rough patch, and cannot get out of this rut. Does anyone know how long it actually takes my brain to function normally again after taking Prozac for 3 years? I heard it could be different for everyone, but this is getting a little ridiculous. I have never experienced this before, and nothing horrible has happened in my life. It seems that after a couple months of not being on Prozac anymore, my mood dropped and I started feeling horrible again. I read online that the brain is not used to producing so much serotonin because the pills did it for me, so I am wondering just how long it could take for my brain to patch this up. This has been ruining my relationships with family, loved ones, and friends. It is affecting my school work, my job, and how I am living my everyday life. I feel down all the time, and rarely experience happiness and joy. My mind seems slower, and it takes me a long time to understand and comprehend things sometimes. If anyone has any information that could help me get through this and/or understand what is happening, that would be great!
  13. Hello everyone. I found this site a few months ago but only now do I feel I have the mental strength to write anything remotely coherent. I am in no way recovered but I hope my story offers some encouragement to those in acute withdrawal particularly those who cold turkey. As a teenager I suffered anorexia, I was hospitalised several times and things got pretty serious. This was back in the 90s and there was not the specialised care available that there is today. The professionals tried there best but did not know really what to do with me. This went on for years I would put weight on to loose it again, my poor parents suffered terribly. Eventually some bright spark suggested a antidepressant, I was 5 stone and eating nothing and I believe I did not metabolise the drug properly. I became a zombie which frustrated me more as I could not exercise. Roll on 2 years and at 18 I started to improve I gained some weight went back to college but I could fine no happiness in life, I felt flat, empty with little enthusiasm and basically wanted to sleep constantly. Looking back I did not feel depressed I could still work and function I just felt flat and lonely. Anyway on my Drs advise I began seroxat I think it was 20mg but not sure. I took this for 4 years, I have to say it did help I became less withdrawn and got more joy from life, but I had regular periods of unexplained illness, I would became almost chronically fatigued for days on end unable to do anything but sleep. I'm trying to cut this shorter so I will summarise. Seroxat was hell to come off, I tried several times and ended up doing a cold turkey which was rough very rough ( although my standards on rough have recently widened ) It took but 6 weeks to get any improvement but even then I cried constantly and My Dr put me on prozac and lorazepam for the sleeplessness. A week later and I mean a week I had gone from crying all day everyday unable to do much at all to, up at 7am In the gym then off to work, the change was unbelievable and my Dr was slapping his self on the back and I was beside myself with happiness. Roll on 5 years.. I'm still doing great Iv cut down to a prozac every other day and changed lorazepam to diazepam but I only take very small amounts of this maybe 5mg a week. Roll on another 3 years I'm in prozac 20mg every 3 days and same amount of diazepam. I'm ok but get more anxious and worried about stuff but I'm working and functioning ok. 2014 I decided the prozac is done I'm happy I'm working I have 2 kids I don't need 7ish mg of prozac. My Dr says just stop your virtually off it anyway worse you will get if flu like symptoms. So I do. I remember a few days after stopping feeling fantastic so relaxed happy and full of joy. Roll on 2 months and I start to get very stressed with the kids I tenner throwing a plate at the wall and just standing there and crying. I felt angry all the time and I'm the most placid person in the world. Roll on another 2 months and things start to get serious I can't sleep I toss and turn all night, I'm stressed and angry 24-7. 6 month after stopping prozac the sh@t really hits the fan. My whole world turns. I won't go into all the symptoms as from reading on the site I know you have felt them. These are the top 5 though # fear ( I will not use anxiety as it does not convey the true horror of this feeling. A word has yet to be invented to describe it) # severe agitation ( maybe akathesia ) # severe insomnia nights on end without sleep and massive muscle jerks # severe depression and it brought it's friends DP DR and SI # severe neck pain, ear pressure, jaw pain To basically stop you all dropping off I got no breaks for 5 months. I narrowly avoided involuntary hospital admission. I also had a massive reaction to another AD I think it was cirtralopram. After 7months after acute and nearly a year after CT, Im starting to see some improvement and you cannot wipe the smile of my face when i do. It does not last long, the max I have had is 5 days and I still have very poor sleep but I genuinely thought I was the one that would never get a window. There is hope all you have to do is wait.
  14. Hello Today marks three years off antidepressants. I took Prozac for 16 years at 20 mg. My taper was 4 weeks at every other day, the psychiatrist said this was fine. I know now that it was ridiculous. I slowly went down hill and at month 4 I hit rock bottom. Words have not been invented for what happened. A year later I would still regularly be found screaming and bashing my head on the floor. Two years later I still had horrendous depersonalisation I would find it impossible to look at everyday objects without completely freakimg out. Three years on I'm still severely debilitated. My main symptoms are Chronic fatigue Fibro type pain especially in the neck and upper back. Muscle pain and twitches Vision problems constant blur and a film feeling over my eyes that I can never clear Headaches Ear pain Jaw pain Vertigo Dizziness Insomnia chronic Constant eye twitch Restless legs Agitation Anxiety Severe depression especially am The only medication I have taken in 3 years in clonidine which I believe helped but it made my bp so low I would faint several times a day. I had depression and anxiety before Prozac and was medicated at a young age so I don't really remember it too much. I know I will be the exception on this site and I respect everyone's beliefs but I do think there is a place in the world for antidepressants I just think they are hugely over prescribed hugely misunderstood and should only be prescribed for the sickest of the sick the ones with no other choices and it should be short term of possible. I feel very let down by Drs. I have seen 7 psychiatrists in the last 3 years including Dr Healy, who is an extremely nice man.All but dr healy and one other diagnosed serious depression and anxiety. I have taken magnesium glycinate for 3 years but can go months without it and notice no difference. I can't tolerate fish oils they make me very anxious. I would appreciate any thoughts/ advise
  15. im so pissed i was told that i would have no withdraw from prozac. yet here i am 3 months in and i feel worse than ever. I use to be an active person and now i can barely get up the stairs I'm so weak..when i try and talk to my friends first question i always get is why did you go off your prozac? And maybe you should try another anti depressant.. I am never going back on any of them i thing they are another way for big pharma to control us and get our money.. Anyways i did read a book called the mood cure by julia ross and have been taking supplements she recommends. Mostly it is the tryptophan that has helped me with my insomnia that i appreciate them most. But its really scary to be a completely different person than i was a few months ago and no-one really understands.. they just say you probably have a serotonin deficiency and need to be on meds..And i want to say to them do you know what its like to go 7 years without being able to achieve an orgasim?? From what i can tell there is no real solution for what i am going thru.. or any kind of timeline.
  16. I am now 60. In 2000 when I first took Prozac, it is 20mg. In 2003 when I tapered it off at 2mg every month, symptoms appeared about 9 months later, I am very sensitive to sound. So I retook it again to the previous dose. In the following 4 years. I have tried 3 times to taper it, the last time I am so cautious I tapered it off at 1mg every month. I wish I could succeed. I don't mind waiting. I took more than 1 and half year to go to the last phase, at which I took only 2mg. One day, in a cruise, I have a serious dizziness and can't stand. I thought it is seasick. After that, the problem is aggravated, I had all the flue symptoms, say feeling cold, fatigue, headache, irregular heartbeat and highly sensitive to light and temperature. Always felt freezing. No doctors could render me any help. Their treatment is invalid. I was left in deep depth of darkness, I have been struggling for 6 months lying on bed in deep depression until I gave up and retook Prozac again.However, I have to increase my dose to 30mg from that time onward. In Hong Kong, no doctors can help patients out with these situation. They are not taught in school nor do they open their minds to learn the facts. When I consulted my Phsychiatrist on my tapering symptoms before, he was quite shocked to hear about it. It seems that it is the first time in his life to hear about this case. And I am the only one who have ever had these withdrawn symptoms. The Chinese are very prejudiced against people who took any kind of psycho drugs. All these years, I am so lonely and so delighted to find your organization to walk with. My daughter is now working in London, I visit them very often. I am thinking to find a reliable neuropsychiatrist to help me to withdraw the Prozac. Wish someone could give me advice.
  17. Hi everyone, first post on here so will try not to jabber too much. I'm a 40 year old guy and have been on ADs twice in my life. I first took SSRIs when I was prescribed 20mg Fluoxetine for work-related depression around 15 years back. For about a year they seemed to work (in some way I relied on them after I got through the depressive phase) but gradually I felt more and more 'robotic', agitated and detached. And my sex drive went down the pan...lost all interest. In fact, lost all interest in everything. All felt grey. So, after two years on them, stupid me went cold turkey, expecting to return to normality fairly quickly. But it was not so. The disinterest got much worse. I stayed with the CT and it took a good 2yrs for 'me' to come back...though the libido never really did but in 2010 seemed to be showing signs of life again... ...UNTIL I had an allergic reaction to an antibiotic and was put on 10mg Citalopram back in October 2011. I was told I'd need to stay on the meds as I'd been on them before. I wasn't depressed at the time but blindly went along with the doc as the allergic reaction had shaken me up pretty bad. Initially, I felt mildly euphoric and life felt easy, I felt coolly un-anxious. But I couldn't ejaculate during sex, no matter what. And it got worse, to the point where I felt totally sexless, my desire just vanished in the worst way possible. And I started having crazy moodswings. So the doc switched me to Fluoxetine 20mg, after about a year on the Cit. No change. Dead libido, moodswings got even worse, pacing and inexplicable bursts of anger...so guess what? Cold turkeyed them again. Late 2013, about 4 weeks of big WDs, constant brain zaps and 'delayed vision', followed by huge bouts of anhedonia/apathy that still persist. And THE worst PSSD. No arousal, thrill, just this deadness in the pleasure centres of the brain. I can still love and see attractiveness but that 'engine' is...gone? It's horrendous, feel like half a man, like I'm out in the cold looking in all the time. Had tests, all showed fine but in a really good relationship right now that I fear is gonna suffer down the line. It'd kill me because we're so close and loving but I'm...inconsequential. 8 months and we just don't do it. Don't wanna lose her, we're truly soulmates. Want that connection back. That 'spark' in the brain...not there. For anyone or anything. Hurts so bad. I...just feel unsexual and I can't get my head around it. Nightmare. Am I totally messed up now, any hope, anything I can do? Tried ED drugs, various herbs, "He's dead, Jim". What a pickle.
  18. Hi Alto & fellow Survivors, Thought I would update you on my progress. So in July of 2011 I had reduced my Pristiq down to the minimum (50mg). Pristiq, just like it's predecessor Effexor has a very short half life and therefore more intense withdrawal symptoms than the old fashioned Prozac. So I switched to Prozac - the first day I think it was 80mg, then 60mg for a day or so, then 40mg for a few weeks, then down to 20mg. It was at this point I wrote my original post and took Alto's advice to let myself stabilise on the 20mg. This was a very difficult time but I just persisted with it. I was able to get the Prozac in a tablet form under the brand name Lovan which allowed me to slowly reduce down to 5mg over the next 5 months or so. During this time I experienced many days where I was nauseated, would sometimes vomit or feel as if I was about to at any moment, had brain fog, felt anxious, felt depressed, but these symptoms fluctuated and sometimes were way better than others. I began to feel my emotions coming back slowly, which I had not felt in a long time. When I was on Pristiq I was just numb, no good emotions, no extreme emotions, just nothing. I also became a little more outgoing and made friends at school more easily. I was able to keep all my appointments & turn up to class everyday and get assignments done (sometimes i needed extra time and this was granted) despite feeling crappy. However, when I went down to the last 5 mg, my anxiety took a turn for the worse. I started to have increasing intrusive thoughts that were extremely distressing and this made me feel suicidal. I began to exhibit symptoms of OCD, developing obsessions and compulsions (both mental & physical). My therapist did not diagnose me with OCD but she TREATED me for OCD for the next 12 months to help me learn how to manage the distress and anxiety and that is something that has really helped me get by. At one point in around November/December 2011 my Doctor commnced me on Abilify 10mg as he thought was concerned about these thoughts in the contxt of his bipolar diagnosis. He chnaged my diagnosis to Bipolar 1 and interpreted these symptoms as 'verging on psychosis'. My therpaist and myself both disagreed with this as at no point did I ever lose touvh with reality, have thought insertion, broadcasting, thought disorder, ideas of reference, halucinations etc. However the Abilify did lift my mood, decrease my anxiety (not initially but within a few weeks)and help me feel less suicidal, and i was able to finish the schhol semester. But of course I then had to taper off the Abilify (I stopped the Prozac 5 mg as soon as I started the Abilify). I tapered off the Abilify 1/4 of a tablet every week until I was off it by the end of January this year. I was on break from school at the time, and put a lot of effort into looking after myself physically from that point on, more vegetables, more good fats, more fruit, more meat, more exercise, more social contact, and more SLEEP! Since then I have continued to focus on physical health to relieve mood & anxiety symptoms. The big thing that helps me is a walk every day. If I don't do that, I start to get flat. I also put into use every day the skills I learned in therapy to deal with anxiety. I was able to finish my degree in July and have since started working full time in my new profession, so i am off disability, I'm contributing in my own way and feel the rewards of that, and I've been slowly integrating healthy lifestyle choices and making a routine around work. I have to be very careful to stay in a routine as best I can, fit a walk into my day on MOST days, eat fruit and vegies and see my friends every second week or so and get enough sleep. My life to others probably appears very boring at the moment, but I am quite content. I keep up with my chores, am organised, and I have less episodes of feeling depressed, & my anxiety is more managable. I haven't felt those old suicidal feelings for several months now although i still have periods of feeling down, but these are less intense and go away quicker. And I haven't had any symptoms of mania whatsoever. Eventually I hope to be able to start some hobbies (or at least one)and start doing a few extra outings like the movies and theatre etc, but now I feel I just need to focus on the basics of staying well. My friends are amazed that I am my old self again if not better! So that is a success story of sorts. So if you are struggling - persevere. Get the support you need from friends, family, therapists etc to see you through this difficult time. part of coming off meds is learning adaptive techniques of coping with symptoms other than taking medicatiosn, and this isn't easy to do on your own. Take care of your physical health, and be compassionate with yourself. Your brain is amazing and is not doomed to always feeling these effects of psychotropics, It will heal and adpat in time. Mine is still adapting, but I'm a lot better than where I was.
  19. Call me Kylo. I've been know to tear computer consoles to shreds with my unstable lightsaber when I get bad news. I was first diagnosed with anxiety, maybe GAD, in about June of 2010. My son was born in February of that year and I made the decision to quit my job and play stay-at-home dad for a while. My anxiety, which I'd dealt with in the past, dating back to at least high school, but never really identified it, went from dormant to bad to worse in a matter of days. I finally consulted my GP and I was placed on a low dose of Celexa and given Clonazapam for the bad moments. I stayed on this for about a year before decided I was better. I tapered off the Celexa and all was good for a couple of months. Then my anxiety and ruminations put me back into the depths of mental health hell. Were these withdrawal symptoms or an actual relapse? I now wonder. GP thought relapse, and decided after hearing me complain about excessive sweating that we would try Fluoxetine this time. Maybe there would be less side effects. The onboarding for that dug was probably the worst 8 months of my life. Depression took the reigns and left me exhausted. Anxiety kept me from sleeping. I was on a 20mg dose for probably four years before upping it to 40mg around summer of last year. This period was a rough one in my life. The sudden death of my 28-year-old brother-in-law put my wife of 13 years (diagnosed with OCD right before it happened) in a fragile state to say the least. In October 2015, she decided she needed to move out and get her head right. Side note: she also felt she didn't love me any more. At the same time she had returned to a drinking problem we'd experienced before. We reunited in November and are still together, so there's a happy ending there so far. Especially for my darling 6-year-old boy who is my everything. December came, and after experiencing my separation and hearing things from my wife about my confidence leve, I decided I was tired of being on my antidepressant. Maybe it was weighing me down and hiding my old self. Sweating still gave me rashes, and many times when I'd take the pill I'd get the worst case of heartburn unless I took it at the precise right moment in the middle of dinner. I did not consult my doctor at this time. I went cold turkey. I don't feel so bad about the former - I never got the impression he knew what he was doing prescribing those drugs. The latter, cold turkey, was likely less than intelligent. It's been about two months since my last dose and I feel the other shoe starting to drop. Am I relapsing or withdrawing? I honestly don't know. Today I find myself wondering, should I get back on the AD, or power through to the other side. Did the AD actually help anything? Am I doing more harm than good by cleansing myself of it? Is it a cleanse at all? If ADs don't work, then what pulled me out of that first anxiety event? These questions led me to Google, which led me here. Withdrawal/Relapse symptoms: wanting to cry, anxiety, depression, despair, moments of acute anger (where I'd normally be angry, just more pronounced)
  20. Hello everyone! I just joined here and am hopeful to get some information and support. I have been on fluoxetine for about 8 years and zoloft about 4 years prior to that. I still get anxious here and there and sometimes feel really sad for no reason. I should actually be happy and thankful for everything going on in my life right now! So why the sadness? Why the anxiety? Why the nervousness? It's so frustrating to me that when I am at a good place in my life I should be feeling GOOD and HAPPY I really want to start coming off the meds but am really scared. I don't want to relapse and especially don't want to feel this way.
  21. Hi all. I have been reading many post on this excellent forum for a while now. Time to say hello and start my own journal thread. A bit about me Don’t know if my story is very unique... I am broken. I have been on meds for a long time. I have tried to quit several times, failed and failed again. Struggle with low self esteem and dysthymia for as far as I can remember, but somehow still manage to keep my life together (at least it looks like that from the outside). There is a lot of negativity and dysfunction in me, and I have a have been in different kinds of therapy on and off. No real problems with anxiety before starting to taper the meds. During my more brighter moments I’m also very very happy for having a decent career at work, an loving girlfriend, a few really good friends, my cats, basic health and many other things that are important in life. The medication I was put on Venlafaxine in 2000 at age 33 after a separation that triggered both my first panic attacks and clinical depression. I needed the medication then, for perhaps 1 year it saved my life. Continued taking it out of habit and lack of good support from any doctor that knew something. During the 14 years on meds my life was actually quite ok. Most things worked fine, I was balanced and sane. No anxiety, no depression, stable mood and a quite active life. So why change a winning team? I wanted to try to stop taking meds when I realized that I had not cried at all for ten years, not even when one of my beloved cats died, that my life simply was not containing any real highs and no real lows. I somehow missed out on important emotional parts by taking SSRI/SNRI. The more I read on the subject, the more convinced I got that I really have to quit. Still, depression runs deep in my family, and I might end up having to take a low dose for the rest of my life. The plan is of course to not take any meds at all and deal with my problems in therapy instead. I have much more faith in talk therapy than in long term medication. Others probably see me as a rather calm person, but I’m also very restless, uncertain and often not patient enough for the slow pace that discontinuing psych meds demand. Sometimes do to to big drops or other drastic changes in meds or life. I know it's not good for me, but I can't help myself. SSRI is clearly the devil and benzodiazepine is his/hers evil partner in crime! The antidepressants keep my demons in their cages and benzo soothes my restless soul like nothing else. I have very mixed emotions to the medication. I don’t like to be dependent on them but the last 14 years I have always felt better on meds than off. Perhaps that has to do with the lack of patience. My current tapering project I started my current tapering from 150 mg Venlafaxine (Effexor) in April 2014. Have tried to follow all the tips on keeping it slow, stable and safe. There has been a lot of stress with traveling, new job, major illness in the family, big changes in my important volunteer engagement and a new love relationship during this year. So far I have managed to handle all these changes and the withdrawal effects without falling apart. There is still too much stress but compared to before tapering I’m trying to keep my ambitions fairly low and try to limit all activities and persons that generates stress. If withdrawal becomes worse I guess I will have to lower my ambitions even more. As you all know, lots of time and energy goes into dealing with waves, new emotions, mood swings and increased anxiety. In March 2015 I was down to 30 mg Venlafaxine per day, with some very clear withdrawal issues. This might be a too fast taper, but that was the way I did it. The withdrawal got a bit worse, and I slowly started started self medicating Diazepam (Valium) on a daily basis. However, I wasn’t feeling bad enough to reinstate or increase the Venlafaxine dosage. Two months later, in May 2015, I felt stable enough to start bridging to liquid Fluoxetine (Prozac) during 1 month. Hope that the long half life of the Fluoxetine will make the final steps down to zero manageable. I had to increase the dose a bit and now, in June 2015, I’m on 12 mg Fluoxetine (3.0 ml) which equals about 40 mg Venlafaxine. Not sure that this was the right move, but all previous attempts to go lower than 40 mg Venlafaxine has failed miserably and resulted in reinstating. The main drawback with Fluoxetine compared to Venlafaxine, is that it makes me very tired. The fatigue is constant and the energy levels way below normal. I feel like sleeping all the time. To deal with the lows I occasionally self medicate with the pain medication Tramadol, that clearly boost the serotonin levels. Try to not take it more than once a week, since it's easy to get dependent. I occasionally take other substances too, but never with such a frequency that they become problems. I know my limits in that area. I drink alcohol but not more than once a week and never more than a few glasses. To handle the anxiety i self medicate with Diazepam (Valium) or Alprazolam (Xanax). The last 2-3 months I have been taking between 2 and 5 mg Diazepam every other day. This is way to too frequent, and I’m clearly become dependent on the benzo now. This has happened before and I am slowly tapering the Diazepam. Currently taking about 1 mg per day. My main non-chemical weapon against the anxiety is the meditative relaxing audios from excelatlife.com and the headspace.com meditations, that I do on a daily basis. Recently I have started doing the “mixing the cake batter” anti-anxiety exercise that seem so help. I am not into supplements. Have tried both Vitamin E, Omega 3 and Magnesium at different occasions, but not found that it makes any kind of difference at all. At the moment I’m suffering quite a bit from both anxiety (mostly in the morning), mood swings, general nervousness, fatigue, memory loss and lack of motivation. Not sure what is related to the meds and what is new emotions emerging from the low dosage of SSRI. Sleep is one of the things that works fine though. I’m not giving up this time. I will follow through even if it takes several more years. Not sure how often I will update this journal or if I will get involved in the discussion on this site. Based on all my failed attempts to taper I do however believe it is very important to both give and receive support from others in the same situation. A big thank you to all the people who contribute to this site! You save lives.
  22. i am from the neighbouring county to you whitelily and i want to come off from 300mg amisulpride per day and 40mg prozac per day as they make me obese.
  23. I would like to be able to wean myself off antidepressants, but have not been able to for more than a few weeks at the most. I am currently consulting a specialist in Bioidentical hormone therapies. I think I have thyroid issues also, and would like to see if balancing my thyroid will help eliminate the need for antidepressants. I found a link to this site on a Facebook group I am in.
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