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Found 107 results

  1. staystrong: My story

    Hello comrades, In mid-June of 2017 was forced to ct all AD's as I was in a mess mentally ever since a reckless intern in a psych ward put me on 25mg of Thorazine to which I sustained some kind of brain damage. in 2007 I underwent neurological malignant syndrome due to a small dose of Geodon taken with 60mg. Nardil. (see my intro for more details) Anyway after the AD ct my reckless Dr. put me on 900mg. gabapentin but quickly dropped to 300mg. Now almost 4 months out I realize the GBN is making me more depressed. flat, anxious and stupid along with unrelenting blocked bowels. I made a drastic cut to 160mg and was suicidal, raging and my brain felt like sludge. Going to try a very slow taper once I get a script for liquid GBN. Anyway wondering if anyone else finds GBN makes them depressed and flat. Plus the extreme cog fog and constipation. Are there others who cannot safely taper at 10% or higher. Please I am so messed up right now I am basically bedbound. I currently take 300mg. GBN in the am. Would love some feedback..................peace to all................ss
  2. Hi, After reading many many posts, I'm more confused than ever ... I just obtained a prescription to have Pristiq compounded and reduced by 10% of current dose each month in hopes of getting off this beast. After reading some of the posts, it appears that it may not be a good idea to compound this drug because of the extended release properties of the 50mg pill. Is there anyone on this site that has had success tapering off of this drug using a compound pharmacy to do a 10% taper per month? I"m now nervous to get the prescription filled after reading some of the posts. I contacted the compound pharmacy (Guardian Drugs in Toronto, Canada) and they have the same reservations about crushing the extended release tablets as they tell me, that while they can do it, they don't know exactly how the compounded drug with react in my system. In compounding it, the drug will most likely be weaker (by exactly how much they can't say with any accuracy) and therefore she cannot say with any certainty whether or not it will cause withdrawal symptoms which I am desperate to avoid. Tried to taper off about five years ago (second or third try) by cutting the pill and reducing it gradually and had such bad withdrawal symptoms, I thought I was going to go mad so back on the stupid drug I went. The compounding pharmacy offered to call my family doctor and suggest to her that I switch to Effexor (75mg) which she said is equivalent to 50mg of Pristiq. She said that Effexor is much easier to come off of and much easier to compound. She said it didn't sound like my family doctor has much experience with coming off antidepressants (don't think my doctor is alone on this point). She also suggested reducing the Effexor by 5% each month rather than 10% to help avoid withdrawal altogether. She said it is better to taper very gradually and to take as long as possible to get off these drugs. Even a year or more sounded reasonable to her. So I guess my questions are (1) is it feasible/best approach to switch to Effexor to taper or am I just switching to a different beast even more difficult to get off of? (2) should I just get the Pristiq compounded and hope for the best ... ? (3) better suggestions/experience than the above two points? I would really like to get off of Pristiq, have been on anti-depressants far too long and never able to get off of them properly because of the horrific withdrawal symptoms so basically I've been held hostage by a little pill and would like my life back. Tired of feeling flat and not having any real emotions and don't want to Stepford Wife/Walking Dead it anymore. I've been taking 50mg of Pristiq for about 7 years and prior to that was on Effexor extended release 37.5 x 2 for about the same amount of time. Any suggestions from people with experience getting off these drugs would be most welcomed and appreciated. Thank you for reading.
  3. Hello! I would like to begin a very slow taper of Fluoxetine (10mg) about 7 years. Attempted two years ago but didn't do properly and doctors convinced me that it wasn't the reduction of medicine doing this to me (oodles of withdrawals). Reinstated to full dose. I am currently on tablet form. My question...I want to do a 10% conservative reduction. Should I continue on tablet and cut and weigh or should I transition to capsule and count beads ( not time release ).. Requested liquid from doctor but was told since I am on such a small dose liquid would be too difficult. I am nervous to begin this journey for fear of what happened before but am going to forge ahead. So....cutting and weighing pill or counting beads and weighing for capsule? Which will allow for a more accurate, easier very slow reduction and someday jump off??? Would appreciate feedback please!!!
  4. Hello everyone! I am a new user here. I've lurked around this site before but have yet to introduce myself. I was a Prozac user for a year from August 2015 - September 2016. I had taken it for social and general anxiety. I was on 20mg/day. Initially, I was actually doing fine and great emotionally but had side effects like massive fatigue everyday (not even 3 cups of coffee could wake me up!) and constipation every time I went to poop (sorry for TMI). I also felt like a zombie for a brief period in which I was neither happy nor sad. In May 2016, I decided to abruptly stop taking the Prozac by choice without consulting my doctor (bad move!) and had brain zaps and mood swings which I assumed as worsening depression. I then just asked my doctor to simply increase my dose because I thought I was getting worse (bad move again!). I was put on 40mg/day from June - August 2016 in which I was ok at first but then I was hit with a panic attack so severe I had to rush to the ER. For that week, I was having very severe symptoms. So I was instructed to go back down to 20mg/day. From then on, I decided to stop taking it a few months ago in September because I felt better and didn't want to rely on medication anymore to make me happy. I consulted with my psychiatrist who said for me to just take 10mg for one month and then I can stop. I did just that. Over the month of October I was fine and felt completely normal. However, I realized symptoms would come later once the month of November started. I have since felt every type of symptom under the sun including brain zaps, hot flushes, insomnia, irritability, tingling sensation of the skin, anxiety, shortness of breath, sweating, tremors, and slight vertigo. I have never felt these symptoms in my life til now! I've talked to my doctor and he doesn't believe in withdrawals. At this point I feel helpless. I am experiencing waves and windows in which I have waves of really bad flare ups and then windows of good normal days where I feel fine. But they keep cycling back and forth. I now have questions to ask: 1. Do windows of no symptoms mean that my body is getting better? 2. Should I reinstate the Prozac and taper off more gradually? Someone suggested I shouldn't because I've already been clean for 3 months now. But what do you guys think? 3. Will symptoms go away if I keep pushing cold turkey? 4. Should I try medical weed to help ease tthe symptoms? I want to try natural ways of healing
  5. Hi everyone. I am hoping to get some much needed (and very much appreciated) advice on my situation. As you see, I had been on Sertraline for almost 2 years, or around the two year mark, before I began a too fast taper in 2016 which lead to my withdrawal syndrome in September 2016. My doctor had me taper in 6 weeks completely off Sertraline, jumping off at 25mg and not even tapering the 25mg, just cold turkeying the 25 per his instruction. Well, I was feeling some withdrawal symptoms, I just didn't realize what they truly meant, and my doctor had told me not to worry 'they will clear up in a few weeks" well they didn't really clear up, but actually got worse two-three months later. I want to make this as short as possible so it is easy to read, but long story short, I ended up reinstating Sertraline at 12.5mg first week, at the same time tapering the 30mg of buspirone my doctor had tried to test out on me for almost two weeks. Each week, he upped my dose of Sertraline during my reinstatement, until I reached 57mg and my body rejected anything above the 57mg. However, I did not know anything about withdrawal or tapering back then, and realize that I was put on way too high of a dose for reinstatement. This has me very scared and very anxious, I try hard not to be, and most of it is likely neuro related, but I wonder what I can do if I feel it's too high? I've got the anhedonia, but I've had this since December, and it actually was brought on more or less by my doctor trying to put me back up to 75mg, maybe that was just a coincidence, but I am not so sure. Each adjustment of the sertraline left me with worsened insomnia, worsened panic, trembling and what I can only describe as body jolts every morning for four months straight. And trying to sleep at night I felt like I was having seizures almost, where my body would jolt me awake just as I was drifting off to sleep, heart would be racing, fear and panic would run rampant and worsen in the morning. I still have mild teeth chattering every morning and especially when the anxiety or stress comes on. I reinstated pretty quick, where I reinstated as soon as my withdrawal symptoms started getting worse, I didn't wait it out even though I really wanted to. I didn't want to go back on the medication after what it had done to me, but didn't know what else to do. Then, everyone I trusted, my doctor especially, had me convinced I had developed several new mental disorders in a matter of three days. I was so so scared, and my anxiety was through the roof. I really stressed myself out a lot trying to figure out "what was wrong with me" because I did not know at the time. On top of that I had the professionals I trusted assuring me it was my "symptoms coming back" (they actually said that right after I already told them I never ever had these symptoms before in my life, not even one of them.) Then I happened to find SA, during my research into my symptoms and the ssri I was taking. I learned a lot in one night, and my jaw dropped. My gut had been telling me all this time it was the drug, it was withdrawal. But I ignored it and listened to the "experts" instead. HUGE MISTAKE!! Now I am stuck in a situation that makes me fear for the future, and not sure what I can do now that I am back on a higher dose. If I would've known better, I would not have allowed my doctor to titrate me up so high. I would've sat at the lowest possible dose, even the 12.5mg. My withdrawal symptoms had really settled down a lot for the last two or three months now though. My appetite came back, libido came back, depression lifted almost instantly upon reinstatement, the anxiety and panic took a while to lift but that has really settled down a ton and only sporadically (maybe lasting a second or two) I'll feel a blip of panic and anxiety (typically when under a lot of built up stress), and my biggest gripe for withdrawal symptoms as of now is the anhedonia, but even that was beginning to lift where I'd get moments of joy or contentment or my interests peaking through the veil of anhedonia. My sleep actually went back to normal in the last week or two, and I haven't been waking with the dread or anxiety for the past three months now, and I have been feeling pretty good except now I got back into this wave and I think it's because I'm stressing over tapering and my dosage after what I read last night. I read on SA someone said that being on too high a reinstatement dose can permanently damage your brain, where you will never heal from it. So I am really scared... I really need advice or wisdom on where to go from here. At this point, I worry I'll always feel this way and I'll never recover any further than where I currently am. I'd be fine if I felt somewhat normal, where I could handle the withdrawal symptoms temporarily until they pass, and I do admit that on my better days I certainly can handle them. But I feel like reinstatement was pointless or worse for me than just muscling through the withdrawals after what I read about high dose reinstatement. I feel like A) it's going to take forever just to stabilise on this dose and B it's going to be painful trying to taper when the time comes, due to that I may have permanently damaged my brain with my reinstatement. I guess what I am wondering now is, do I stay on this dose and wait for the anhedonia to completely go away, or how do I know when I am ready to begin tapering? At this point I am just feeling very confused and afraid about my dose and tapering in the future. I feel lost. I'd really appreciate any help! Thank you!
  6. Hello All, Not sure if I am posting in the right section, so apologies in advance. I am feeling quite lonely within no one to turn to on the same wave length.. I've been trying to get hold of a shrink I started seeing a few months ago. Left 3 messages asking him to confirm our regular sessions after a holiday break but he has not responded. I know that he is around, as I dialled his number by mistake yesterday and he did answer it. Unfortunately, I couldn't talk as I was not calling him. Anyway... The very sad is that the fact of him not calling me back, makes me feel,.for some ridiculous reasons, inferior and a bad person! My worth depends on whether he calls me or not! I KNOW it's ridiculous and probably due to my general feeling down and out of sorts but this awareness doesn't makes much of the difference... I also feel like a "bad " person, this feeling I'd experienced even before taking the meds so it's not a withdrawal..Probably, this badness has some routs in my childhood, whatever, now it feels real as ever... Sorry for putting it out there, I don't know who to turn too. After all, my psychotherapist is ignoring me (probably I've done something wrong, "bad girl "). Anyway, thank you for reading it and any thoughts, words of the encouragement would be appreciated... F47 PS Really, getting disappointed with the psychoanalysts here in France..
  7. My third and hopefully final attempt to get off Paxil is here I start March 1st of this year, which is just around the corner. I have a lot of hope It will be over 3 years, but I feel good about my taper plan. Thankful for this site of encouragement and testimonies - I will be praying for freedom for you all! I've included a photo of my handwritten taper plan. The length of time is in months. Will keep this updated for whoever cares to read. Let's do this.
  8. Hi, I thought I'd share this as it's quite relevant, not 100% sure if this is the right subforum, will post in both this and research. PDF of American Journal of Psychiatry article or Summary and excerpts from study in the Journals forum of survivingantidepressants The pretty pictures are from page 4 onwards in the PDF. (Admin note: Pretty pictures here. See this post for graph of "perfect" 10% taper of previous dose with 4 week holds) What these fellows did here, was attempt to measure serotonin transporter occupancy at various doses for 5 different drugs. (Zoloft, celexa paxil, effxor and Prozac, not in that order). They fit curves for both the oral doses and blood concentrations. Long story short for anyone who doesn't know, SSRI’s ‘work’ by binding to the serotonin transporter protein (SERT) and stopping it doing it’s normal thing (reuptake of post-synaptic serotonin), resulting in serotonin hanging around for longer. Now a couple of interesting things: -at minimum therapeutic doses in every case, there was about 80% SERT occupancy. That shocked me personally. Even the minimum doses are locking down 80% of your brains reuptake ‘capacity’. Higher doses do more but it’s obviously not linear – they actually have plotted curves, and they’re quite a good fit statistically, particularly for the blood concentrations. Really good in fact. Point here though is that there’s a long way between 0% at no drug and 80% at the minimum dose. -the curves man, look at the curves. This gives a fairly good indication of why some people find tapering necessary. You NEED a percentage taper just to get a linear decrease in SERT occupancy. Linear decreases in dose will actually hit you with exponentially increasing drops in SERT occupancy, particularly drops between the minimum therapeutic dose and 0 Basically, this paper provides a real basis for percentage reductions in dose when discontinuing SSRI’s. I realize I'm kinda preaching to the converted and telling people what they already know, but it seems there may actually be a real reason why some people find it necessary to do these percentage tapers to get off SSRI's. Caveat: I have no idea what the relationship between SERT occupancy and post synaptic serotonin is, it’s probably not linear since if it was higher doses would have basically no effect, but this is nevertheless very interesting to look at. They were only looking at one part of the brain but pointed out it correlated strongly to elsewhere. Moderator notes To search for whether there is a study for your medication, google the generic name of the drug with these other two search terms: 5HTT occupancy If you find a paper, please post the both the name of the medication and a link to the paper. 2016-July-01, Cymbalta (duloxetine) MMarie found this paper on dose and 5HTT occupancy. The site, academia.edu, requires login: http://www.academia....orter_occupancy Link to screen shot of dose-occupancy and dose-plasma concentration curves 2016-November-12, Anafranil (clomipramine) and Luvox (fluvoxamine) Link to study on occupancy vs. dose Link to chart of occupancy-dose relationship
  9. Hello, My name is Lauren and I am trying to get off Zyprexa. This week was my third time attempting. This is the third time that I failed, too. I was prescribed 5 mg of Zyprexa one year ago this month for bad anxiety. It worked instantaneously. Within a month, I didn't fit into my clothes anymore, which was okay with me at the time because this drug was to be "temporary". I wanted to see if I could take the lowest dose possible and still have it have a therapeutic effect so I started taking half a couple months after being originally prescribed, so i went from 5 mg per night to 2.5 mg per night. So, for the majority of this year I have been on 2.5 mg per night. There were no symptoms of withdrawal when I reduced my dose from 5 to 2.5, it was seamless. The dr. tried switching me to a different med that didn't cause weight gain. He put me on Geodon and after 3 weeks of taking that I felt awful. Overly charged and agitated, sleeplessness, restless body. So, I stopped Geodon and went back on Zyprexa. Soon after that, I tried cutting my zyprexa in half to try to get off of it. I wasn't taking accurate cuts so I know I was getting different dosages each night. I felt funky after a few days of doing this so I went back to taking it regularly. I couldn't quite completely recover from the Geodon incident and felt depressed, so I started on a low dose of Effexor (75 mg). I also thought that it would help me be able to get off the Zyprexa because I'd have a back up. A couple months later I tried again. This time I tried taking it only every other night instead of every night. after 3 days I felt funky so I went back to taking it regularly again. This week, I tried that same method once again. I lasted one week of feeling completely normal until yesterday i started feeling funky again. A little nauseated, agitated, nervous, and floaty. So, once again, I am going to go back to taking it regularly because with the holiday this week I do need to be "on". Am I feeling withdrawal, or am I just not well without the zyprexa? I know if I can't answer that I guess no one else really can. I'm so lost right now. I feel like a prisoner to this medication. I've gained 25 lbs in a year and still gaining. I developed high cholesterol since taking this medicine. I am fatigued daily because it is sedative. I want my normal life back! I'm so fearful I'll never be able to be free of zyprexa. Taking it every other day isn't working. I read that the recommended taper is 10%, and I'm all for that but how the heck do you get an accurate dosage with a pill? Especially this one, it's not flat and round, and kind of round all over and it's already a very small pill. Thanks for reading and any help is so appreciated. Lauren
  10. Im ahmed i live in UAE, i have been stuck with lyrica for more than a year and took high doses up to 900mg a day with short intervals. Now i am trying to control on 600 max a day sometimes i weaken and take 750 or 900 yet rarely. I have felt WD symptoms when i tried cold turkey and when strong reduction from 900 to 300. Its not nice..i believe it created some anxiety for me. Anyways i read most reviews and the tapering seems good and i want to stop it eventually. Thing is in uae we the doses 300 150 and 75mgs only and no liquid solution. The tapering method i read says 10%..can i get help wit this one? And i would like understand i am.not an epileptic patient yet i worry if i might have a seizure while stopping this..does tht happen. I took this medication for a long time but not consistently until the past year and few months. Id like someone to comfort me with this cause my anxiety triggers mostly about the buzzing sensations, fainting, seizure, some weakness, but not regularly. I have good days and some bad days. Thank you for reading
  11. I was on Prozac for around 6 and a half years, 50 percent of the time i was on two 20mg tablets and the other 50 percent i was on one 20mg tablet. I self tapered for around a month and a half by taking one every other day, then every 2nd day, then every 3rd day...etc and eventually i was off them. I took my last pill nearly a month ago. I am feeling withdrawals. Bloating, bad skin, rosacea-like symptoms, irritable, anger, aches and pains, negative thoughts. Its very uncomfortable and debilitating BUT i would be able to stick it through if i knew i was on the right path. I'm just worried that i messed up because of how fast i tapered. I don't know wether to keep going or if i should start taking prozac again and taper more slowly?
  12. Hi there! I am a 30-year-old spitball who's always been extroverted and outgoing, just with a lot of anxiety. About 5 years ago, I experienced a sudden onset of depression for the first time. I've always been anxious, but never depressed so this was new and very scary for me. I had dark thoughts, was questioning what life meant and why any of us should care, etc. I scared myself so bad, I moved home to my parents for two weeks (they live in the same city, 20 min away) because I did not want to be alone with my thoughts. At this time, I started seeing a therapist who referred to me a psychiatrist. One session with the psychiatrist in, she decided I should go on 100mg Pristiq. For the next few years, that's what I took and I felt 100% back to normal. I felt so good, in fact, that I decided I want to cut my daily intake in half to 50mg. I did that, and the weaning was pretty rough. I'm lucky in that I didn't experience "zaps" or "flu-like" symptoms. It was moreso heightened anxiety and constant crying fits, when there was nothing to cry about! I finally came out on the other side and have been on 50mg for the past few years. Now, to current day. As someone who never had a history of legitimate depression and who is in a very different spot in her life now than she was 5 years ago, I've decided I want to get off of Pristiq. Just reading the horror stories about how hard it is to get off it is pushing me to get off of it. This is a scarily strong drug that I don't want in my system anymore. If I go through this tapering and realize I do need some sort of antidepressant down the road, that's fine. But I don't want it to be Pristiq. So starting in July, I began a tapering schedule that is going like this: July-August: 50, 50, 25 (so 25 every third day for a month) August-September: 50, 25, 25 (so 50 every third day for a month) September-October: 25, every day for month October-November: 25 every OTHER day for a month November-December: 25 every third day of the week *I also just started taking 15mg of Deplin 6 days ago to help curb withdrawal side effects and take .5mg of Ativan up to 3x a day if needed The first month was fine. But this second month is turning out to be incredibly hard. For the last two weeks, my anxiety has been elevated immensely. I wake up every day with a pit in my stomach. I've been having dark thoughts. I find it hard to concentrate and am overwhelmed incredibly easily. I am also extremely irritable. This weekend was the worst. Total panic attack and crying breakdown. And today I couldn't go into work. I just want to sleep. This is not me. It never has been. I am a relatively happy, excited, alive person and am struggling very much with this process. I am scared I'll never come out of it, that it doesn't get better, and I will turn into a shell of myself. I just wish I knew when to expect a turnaround. At what point in this tapering does it get better??? I don't want Pristiq to "win"; that is, I don't want to get back on it. Any advice, suggestions, comments, are welcome. Thank you.
  13. Hi my name is Sherry and I am on my second day of tapering off of Gabapentin 400 2x daily. I have been on it since last September. I have gained 28 lbs. on this jacked up medication. I just can't sit around and wait until it's even more out of hand. If anyone has already gone through it please leave me any helpful tips. I have the capsules and I have cut down to 400 in am and 200 at night. Thanks.
  14. Hi, I'm new here and would really like advice on tapering or taking my adult autistic son off of Abilify. He's 32 years old and lives in a group home and goes to a day program. Abilify is the only med he's on. 10 mg daily, other than clonazapam prn for agitation or if he has an outburst. He does have a rare disease in his knee which he takes pain meds for and also may cause sudden outbursts. He has been on many different types of meds to calm him and stabilize his mood which really havent been the answer. We just would like to try to get him off and see if he able to regulate on his own. I think the outbursts he has (infrequent but very sudden) may even be caused by the abilify. Also he's never previously really been interested in masturbation and lately this is becoming more frequent. Not that I think or tell him it's bad, but just not the norm for him. He's and adult with limited communication and mentally about the age of a 5 year old in some ways. My concern is tapering and having the staff who work with him on board to deal with any possible withdrawal symptoms, agitation, outbursts, depression, etc. Any advice or information would be greatly appreciated.
  15. Hi, everyone! Doing a slow taper off prozac. Been on 20 mg for about 30 years. Have tapered to 10mg will be on that for approx- 3months. I have now the liquid that I will start in 3 weeks on a taper of--8mg for 7 days.then 6mg for 7 days. then 4mg for 7 days. 2mg for 7 days. then 0. Does that sound like a good way? Hope I am doing this correctly. Any comments appreciated. Thanks. Carol
  16. Hi Everyone! Long time listener, first time caller etc. I found this site and the *amazingly* helpful advice here almost a year ago when I started making serious first steps into tapering off Effexor. Abridged personal history - Started Effexor for General Anxiety around 21 years ago after a short period of trying Zoloft, Remeron and Buspar. Tried to come off once around 10 years ago after tapering off over four months, but that didn't really work, and life circumstances were not ideal, so I've spent the last ten years working insanely hard to get to a place that I felt confident in along with my Psychologist and Psychiatrist where I could give it another go. So six months ago I found a great compounding pharmacy and started the taper, going down 10 percent each month, which has been going great! It's been going so great though, that I feel I've reached a plateau, and that at the current rate, it could take another three years using this method! So - I was just wondering if anyone here has any anecdotal or personal stories of what might work to potentially accelerate the process, so I can get it closer to a further 6-12 months. What would be a conservative figure to drop down by for this timeframe? Curious to hear how other people approach this Thanks in advance!
  17. Moderator note - link to Severntiger's benzo thread: Severntiger: Tried Valium Cold Turkey - Evil side effects - Now Attempting Tapering I am 39. I have had chronic insomnia and anxiety all my life. From age 14 I have had drug and alcohol addiction and dependency problems. In 2014 I discovered, through a friend, an illicit source of good quality Valium where I could get as much as I wanted when I wanted through the post. I started off using them as "occasional use" to help me sleep when there was an emergency situation the next day, e.g. job interview, having to move home but then it quickly turned into using them for stressful situations, e.g. noisy flatmates, stress at work etc. and that of course turned into most days. So for the last 2 and a half years I have been taking Valium more days than not with an average dose of 52mg a day. I started to get seriously worried about my sleeping pill consumption end of 2015 and so in 2016 and 2017 I have recorded my Valium (and other sleeping tablet) consumption every single day. Therefore I have been able to work out each month how many days I took Valium and what the average dose is. Oddly my Valium consumption has been sporadic, e.g. not every day or the same amount every day. e.g. my latest record before I decided to try cold turkey. 06/07/2017 – 30mg 07/07/2017 – 30mg 08/07/2017 – 30mg 09/07/2017 – 1 Nitol 10/07/2017 – 60mg 11/07/2017 – 90mg 12/07/2017 – 1 Nitol 13/07/2017 – 80mg 14/07/2017 - Clean 15/07/2017 - Clean 16/07/2017 – 1 Nitol 17/07/2017 - Clean 18/07/2017 - Clean 19/07/2017 – 30mg 20/07/2017 – 30mg 21/07/2017 – 120mg 22/07/2017 – Didn’t sleep as too much Mephadrone 23/07/2017 – 90mg 24/07/2017 – 60mg 25/07/2017 – 60mg 26/07/2017 – 80mg I then tried to go cold turkey, using Zopiclone to help sleep, until I ended up taking 75mg of Zopiclone on 02/08/2017 and 03/08/2017 and hallucinating and going AWOL and not being able to function at work or outside work. Last Friday 4th August, 5 days ago, I then threw all my Zopiclone in the bin and decided I was going to come off everything. And its here that the nightmare has started For 4 days I didn’t sleep a wink, apart from 3 hours passing out after necking a bottle of wine at 3am one night. I had the worst anxiety/panic attacks I have ever had. I felt that my skin was crawling, apparantly. My flat mate said I was wide eyed, on edge, jumpy and acting crazy. Sunday night after 3 Nitol I still couldn’t sleep a wink and Monday (2 days ago) I tried to go into work but couldn’t function properly ( I am trying to hold down a Management Accountant job) and after another sleepness night and rising panic I had to admit defeat, phone in sick yesterday (Tuesday) and look to the internet for help where I learnt that going Cold Turkey was the worst thing to do and that Valium was worse to come of than herion. So I panicked big time and went to the doctor. Thankfully the doctor was very nice and agreed that tapering off was the best solution and he would help me come off them legitimatly so no need for the black market. I am now on 20mg a day for 4 weeks then to go back to him and see where I am and try to reduce the amount. He hopes I can get off them by Christmas. I took 20mg last night and immediately calmed down and slept for 5-6 hours and feel shattered but much better today. My question is: Do I now go onto 20mg every evening before bed? Or do I try to go without any Valium every now and again and see how many clean days I can get before any side effects kick in in which case I can just take 20mg again before bed?
  18. My personal history is in my signature, but I'll put it here in my introduction aswell. I tried three different anti-depressants from December 2012 to December 2013, to treat anxiety. The first was Celexa, the second was Zoloft and the last one was Prozac. In December 2013 I had a manic episode after being on Prozac for a month and a half. Then I stopped taking any medications for about a month. Then I had a second manic episode in February 2014. Then I visited a psychiatrist in March 2014 and was given a bipolar diagnosis (now I know it was an anti-depressant induced mania, not true bipolar disorder). So I was prescribed Lithium 900 mg in March 2014. Then in April 2014 I started taking 50 mg Zoloft again for anxiety (along with the 900mg lithium I had just started taking). Since that time, I have spent 1.5 years at a 50mg level, 6 months at a 100mg level, 1.5 years at a 75 mg level. As of a couple months ago, I am now at the 50mg level again. (Not knowing much about withdrawal, my reduction from 100mg to 75 mg was a single 25mg reduction all at once- I survived that but didn’t recognize the withdrawal symptoms at the time, and I will not do that again! 6 months later I started a process of going from 75mg to 50mg, in 6 to 12 mg chunks. So as of May 2017, I am at the 50 mg level. And I am still taking 900mg Lithium. Luckily I have not experienced any manic behavior since the second manic episode in February 2014. But I know that Lithium withdrawal can cause mania so I know that I need to be careful not to make reductions too quickly.) Now I need to figure out how to taper off BOTH Lithium and Sertraline. My question is- how do I know what order to taper off this drug combination? -Seeing as antidepressants are what triggered a manic episode in me a couple years ago, it makes sense to taper off / quit Sertraline first … and it seems like it would be best to wait to wait to taper off Lithium until I feel “stable” after quitting the antidepressants. -But on the other hand, these two medications seem to have opposite effects. Antidepressants seem to be a little bit more stimulating. Lithium seems to be a little bit more sedating. If I completely quit my antidepressants first, am I going to be extremely sluggish and glum (having no positive emotion)? Could the antidepressant withdrawal effects take longer to recover from in this scenario, because I’m still taking a high dose of Lithium? What do you guys think about my situation- how should I proceed? Has anyone here tapered off the lithium/antidepressant drug combination? Thanks in advance for your help!
  19. Hi everyone, I have been on Citalopram for 9 years. I haven't needed it for a good 4 so decided to see my GP who advised alternating 20mg and 10mg every other day. Multiple GP's have totally underestimated withdrawal challenges. I started alternating the week before last and felt ok, probably over confidently, i decided to drop to 10mg every day 5 days ago. I have flu like symptoms, spaced out and headaches and insomnia. I'm now not sure what to do? Should i keep going as i have got this far or will ot get worse so should i take a 20mg and how often etc? I'm getting on a flight today and need to feel in control of my symptoms a bit more. Any advice would be deeply appreciated, please.
  20. Pete333 33 years

    Hello, I've suffered with depression for 33 years. 12 years with no medication because I thought I just needed to try harder. Finally my father, who had suffered with it too found me a helpful church counselor who convinced me I needed medicine. This saved my life. The first medicine Anafranil kept me from suicide. It got me back to work more steadily and made me able to live. Then I started 21 years of Zoloft and then Paxil. Oh, with 3 years of Pexeva in between and it was fine. But government insurance changes forced me back on Paxil the last 3 years or so. I lost my 26 year marriage. The day after my mom died my wife asked for a divorce and exploded my family. I had only 1 son who partly stayed with me for the last 5 years. The other still treats me well but lives with his mother. She and I are on good terms and I am a Christian who doesn't believe in divorce. Just FYI with some of this stuff. About 5 years ago i couldn't work any longer and it was the excuse my wife needed to do what she wanted. Anyway it left me alone with idleness and depression and lonliness in a new town where I could afford to live. 6 months ago I went back to my original counselor and wanted to try to taper off, which she is good with. BTW, my GP knows nothing and just wants to try new meds. Ive tried them all and can only take a few. So, after gut trouble started 14 months ago I have was taken down from 30 mg to 20 mg Paxil. Didn't suffer that I noticed. Then I noticed that in a 6 month period of time I had missed 25 days of Paxil. So I had steadily and accidentally tapered to what amounted to about 15 or so MG. Vitamin B complex made me angry! I am afraid to take 5htp with Paxil. Any suggestions on safe supplements? Will my gut ever get any better? My family tends to have IBS D anyway and I have had it for 14 months and am trying to live on Imodium. This site came highly recommended as experts in the field. I have only met one psychiatrist who knew what he was doing in 33 years. So........... Pete
  21. Hi Y'all, I have been taking an SSRI since 1993 ????. I was prescribed Prozac for Panic D/O. I am now committed to ending my addiction to this poison. Knowing there are many others that are going through the same process is very comforting. I am grateful for this forum and everyone's contributions. With trepidation and hope.
  22. Forgive the strange title: I believe those words relate to an ancient Zen story. Anyway: a little about me....I have been on Seroxat (Paxil) for close to 20 years, have tried 2 or 3 times before to quit it, I am over 6 weeks into my latest attempt, and it ain't easy just now. I have done a gradual tapering; I used to just about (but not really) get by on 20mg....Ended up during that time living and working in another country ? , finally burnt out over there and admitted defeat. Came back to the UK. On the advice of family, went up to 30mg (not for the first time). The recent tapering has involved: back to 20mg for at least 6 months; then down to 10mg for over 6 months....Down to nothing for the last 6 weeks. (With hindsight, and reading a couple of other posts on here, etc, I realise this was probably too quick). I would say all withdrawal symptoms are mental rather than physical; although I know these two aspects are intimately linked and interacting, I've done it slowly enough to avoid any of the classic "shock" sensations associated with Paxil - or what one might call "Seroxat Flu".... Also, my sleeping patterns don't appear to be too much disturbed. Not too long after I returned from another country my father died. I am 42 years old and lost my mother to cancer at the age of 13, so am effectively now a middle-aged orphan. Have one sibling, a sister, who also has mental health problems, but there is much bitterness and anger between us (even though we do deep down love each other). We haven't spoken for about 6 months. She accuses me of only ever contacting her when I have a problem or am down, so I'm fairly stuffed down that avenue at the moment ? I have never had a proper romantic relationship...Almost hardly ever had sex - and usually not got much "out of it" due to the SSRIs and probably some emotional problems too. I was diagnosed with Body Dysmorphic Disorder in 2000....I am just about managing to hold that at bay at present, but depression and some catastrophic thinking patterns are vying for space in my mind.....I am trying to stay in the moment as much as possible, trying to meditate....Some sporadic success here does alleviate some of the emotional pain occasionally. I try to treat myself to certain material things, or life events, every so often, and that helps also. When my dad died, I inherited more money than I have had in my life; but it is relatively little considering the cost of living in the UK these days. I have already squandered a small fraction of that money on one occasion on a girl - an example of lust over love, my own vulnerability and loneliness and naevity - but I have mentally put that behind me. I tentatively manage to hold down full-time work; how well I am actually functioning at work depends on each individual perspective of my various coworkers - as strange and obtuse as that sounds. I suppose I am trying to say that I gel well, in terms of compatibility and likeability, with certain coworkers far more than others. Anyway. I have written far more than most people would easily be able to digest in one sitting.....If you got this far then thank you so much ?
  23. Psychiatrist has told me to stop Sertraline from 150, down to 100mg the next week, then down to 50 the next, then stop (not because my depression has eased but because it doesn't seem to have helped at all. However, online I see that people are recommending a much longer tapering. . The problem is, when I rang the surgery today to try and voice my concerns about this and some other things I wasn't sure about, I was told by one of the staff to just follow what the psychiatrist says. I tried telling her that I had to go away for three months to work in a place where I have no friends, family or doctor, but she didn't seem to want to listen. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Is this too quick a time period and if not, aren't I just dependent on whatever a certified doctor tells me to do?
  24. Hi, Currently taking 150mg of sertraline a day and looking to ween myself off it. How would i go about doing this? I did some digging and it seems to go by 10% a month of lower dosage. Is this correct? Also, could someone explain why liquidising the dosage is better? Is there no other method of safely tapering? I was going to reduce it by 25mg a week consecutively. Would this be non advisable? Thanks.
  25. Hello, I'm new to this site (although I've read a lot of your content by now), and I'm so grateful I found it!! I've been suffering from anxiety disorder and depression since I was a kid, around 8 years old (I'm 30 years old now). I've been in countless treatments since then, too many to remember. I've been taking Cymbalta for about 8 years now, I've tried going off cold turkey and obviously failed miserably and had to be put back on Cymbalta 60mg. Currently I am taking 30mg. My doctor said I should try alternating days to try to taper off, and since reading your content I realized this was the wrong approach. So I bought the Gemini 20 digital scale and the gelatin capsules, and I'm ready to start today with my 1st 10% reduction. I know I'm affected by withdrawal symptoms because when ever I forget taking mi pill I start getting brain saps, confusion, fatigue, etc. So I'm hoping this approach will help me taper off without any harsh side effects. I'm also taking Itravil, this is Clobenzorex, 30mg once a day. Basically I was prescribed and started taking this because of the fatigue I was experiencing, which now I believe could have been a result of the reduction in dosage of Cymbalta... So I don't know exactly what effects this medication will have in my withdrawal. Hoping for the best!
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