Jump to content
Jewlz

Jewlz: Scared of the withdrawal process

Recommended Posts

Jewlz

I’ve been taking anti-depressants and a mood stabilizer for 20+ years. I want to wean off duloxetine first. I’ve experienced horrible withdrawal symptoms when I failed to get a refill about 3 years ago. After about 2 days not taking duloxetine I was in full blown withdrawal and it was a flipping nightmare. That experience led me to believe I would never be able to not use the drug. I am to the point of being tired of dry mouth, dry eye, constipation and sweating. This may not be a good time to wean as I’m planning my daughter’s wedding for next fall and going to school part time. I will be 59 in 2018. Finding this forum is a godsend for me and hope I can be active even if I’m unable to start a taper right away. I’m really scared that I will never feel like the self I was before taking these drugs. I’m not even sure if I remember, which is even scarier and causes some anxiety if I focus on it too much. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Gridley

Hi, Jewlz and welcome to SA.  I'm glad you found your way here.

 

To start, we ask all of our members to fill out a signature with your drugs and dosages so that members and moderators can understand your situation and better advise you.  Your signature will appear at the bottom of each of your posts.  

 

Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 

 •    Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses.
 •    A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
 •    Any drugs prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
 •    Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
 •    Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016.

     
To get you started, and familiarized with the protocols followed by SA, I am linking a couple of topics so that you have a better understanding of what is recommended here and the steps that you can take to minimize your withdrawal symptoms.

 

What is Withdrawal Syndrome?

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

Share this post


Link to post
Nordica

Hi Jewelz - I feel the same as you. I have been on antidepressants since 2004 and wonder if it will ever be possible for me to be free of the drugs. In my case, they were absolutely needed but now I wonder if they are doing me more harm than good. I have had disturbing side effects of weight gain and loss of memory. It is also isolating since I don't know personally friends in this position.  Makes me feel very alone. 

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Hi Nordica - I don't have many friends or family who know about my struggle. In the last 3 years a lot of things have come to light. I didn't realize a side effect of duloxetine was dry mouth. I ended up with parotiditis (swelling of parotid salivary gland) and my face swelled up so badly I looked like the "Nutty Professor." There was about a years time when medically I couldn't figure out what was going on healthwise and there was some pretty scary speculation. So basically my whole body is dry, I get the shakes and sweat profusely out of the clear blue! It's disgusting and I was just sick when I completed my signature. It's one thing to talk about psych drugs I've taken and another to see it in black and white. I've talked to my psych about weaning off the duloxetine but have some happy, but heavy duty stuff going on (my daughter's wedding next fall and school for me) and need to be present. Tapering may not keep me in a good frame of mind. Oh and headaches that feel like someone is taking my head and squeezing it as hard as possible. Those usually wake me up out of my sleep or will hit when I first wake up and stretching. I hate this crap I'm isolated with. There will be medical journals written about all of these psychotropic drugs that have damaged people and their lives. 30 years from now people will be like - what? how could that have happened?

 

Thanks for reaching out. It's always nice to know someone else walks in similar shoes. Not that I want the shoes....but you know.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Altostrata

Welcome, Jewlz.

 

That is a lot of duloxetine. Fortunately, there are ways to go off it gradually, though it might take a good while. See Tips for tapering off Cymbalta (duloxetine)

 

You're taking 300mg lamotrigine per day?

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
DC112

Hi Jewlz.

 

You are in a good place for help, advice and support! I wish you the best on your path! 

 

Dan

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

In my first post I talked about being scared to start my taper from duloxetine 90mg. The holidays are here (how did that happen?), I’m going to school for an Associates in Science in Health Information Management, and my daughter is getting married in Fall 2018. I’m anxious to get started especially after becoming part of this community. My plan still in thought is after the holidays to go down to 80mg a day. If  I can stabilize after what I know will be withdrawal effects, maintain that dosage until after the wedding and then go down to 70mg for same length of time 6-9 months and continue down 10mg at a time until my brain has adjusted to performing its duties without outside chemical interference. I’m seeking input, opinions and first person accounts of anyone who has attempted a withdrawal from duloxetine and results. My main purpose is to not delay getting started on my taper and to be fully capable of day to day living and being there for my daughter in planning for her big day! Saying thank you now for support and input. Jewlz

Share this post


Link to post
baroquep

Hi Jewlz, I'm not sure if you have had the opportunity to review the recommendations made by Surviving Antidepressants and wanted to stop by and link you to the threads so that you have a solid understanding of how to taper safely off of Duloxetine.  Rest assured that it is possible to safely withdrawal from these drugs while minimizing withdrawal by tapering at a slow and steady rate.  I have added a couple of tags right under your username at the top lefthand corner of the screen and if you click on those tags "cymbalta" and "duloxeine" you will be connected with other members withdrawing from these particular drugs.  Feel free to connect with other members, by posting in their introduction topics, they are a supportive group who know what you are dealing with and are happy to help out where they can.  

 

Surviving Antidepressants (SA) recommends that a person taper by no more than 10% of their current dose with at least a four week hold in-between decreases.  The 10% taper recommendation is a harm reduction approach to going off psychiatric drugs.  Some people may have to taper at a more conservative rate as they are sensitive to even the smallest drops.
  
To get you started, and familiarized with the protocols followed by SA, I am linking a few topics so that you have a better understanding of what is recommended here. If you have any questions or need clarification, please do not hesitate to post your questions back here in your introduction thread and one of the moderators will get back to you.  Again, welcome to Surviving Antidepressants, I'm glad you found the site before starting your taper and have the opportunity to taper safely off of Cymbalta for good.  

 

Before you begin tapering what you need to know

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

Tips for Tapering off Cymbalta / Duloxetine

 

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Alto-yes 90mg duloxetine daily and 300mg daily. Way over medicated. If I think about it too much it makes me upset that a medical doctor could knowingly prescribe meds that interfere with some of the most important functions in our bodies. I can’t focus on that though, bums be out way too much!

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Thank you for pointing me to some helpful articles. I’ve developed a taper plan to reduce by 10mgs that will take me down to 20mg strictly using the available doses for duloxetine. The pharmacy I use is also a compounding pharmacy which will be helpful going from 20 to 10mg and then 0! I’m still wrapping my head around the ‘hold’ time. 

Share this post


Link to post
cokemachineglow

Hi Jewlz,

It sounds like you`ve come up with a good taper plan - I truly think that finding the article about tapering by 10% saved my life. As someone who has been tapering off their meds for about 1 year now, I can definitely say that starting slow is really the way to go. I started a bit too fast, and started to have bad wd symptoms until I significantly reduced the taper. I won`t sugarcoat it - it can be really discouraging to go so darn slow when all you really want is to be free, and feel real emotions, but slow and steady is really the best course, I`ve found anyways. 

 

You can taper off - if you have some upcoming time off work, or a 3 day weekend that might be a good time to start. Just a thought. 

Cokemachineglow

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Hi Cokemachineglow-

 

Thank you for the encouragement. I have the plan in place, now I just need to execute. That will be the challenge for me. Maybe after the holidays, I’ll have a few weeks before 2nd semester starts at school. I was thinking about getting a script for Xanax to help me thru-ha! Old habits. Actually I would like to find a psych counselor that can guide me thru.

Share this post


Link to post
manymoretodays

 

Hi Jewlz,  found you.  Thanks for the msg. 

 

On 11/14/2017 at 1:52 AM, Jewlz said:

Thank you for pointing me to some helpful articles. I’ve developed a taper plan to reduce by 10mgs that will take me down to 20mg strictly using the available doses for duloxetine. The pharmacy I use is also a compounding pharmacy which will be helpful going from 20 to 10mg and then 0! I’m still wrapping my head around the ‘hold’ time. 

 

Do you get what baroquep was saying about considering drops of 10% of your previous dose  each time?  Look at the links provided about 5 posts up.  Not 10 mg. each drop.  10%.   That could be important in reducing withdrawal effects and staying functional through your withdrawal,  and in general is a more judicious harm reduction approach.

 

10% of each previous dose.  Not of the starting dose.  Please consider that.  Cymbalta can be a rough one and especially since you have been on it for years now.

 

I'll have to read more of your introduction/journal later.

 

Welcome aboard.  :)

 

Love, peace, healing/recovery, and growth,

 

manymoretodays

 

Oh.......how did you find your way here?  And have you read "Anatomy of an Epidemic" by Robert Whittaker or any other stuff that inspired/ led to your recent decision to come off Cymbalta in a different way ?  I guess I am always interested in others beliefs around psycho meds. and their psychiatric experiences in general.

 

I vote no on Xanax, especially if you have been off it for awhile.  I was only briefly on Klonipin and then once Ativan........briefly, as they zombified me completely.   I never really enjoyed the couch potato or bedridden existence called "treatment". 

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

mmt-

here's what I was thinking...I'm at 90mg now-10% would take me down to 81mg which is impossible to dose unless I count beads. So I'm gonna see how the 90 to 80 goes and will hold there for at least 4 weeks. I'm very sensitive to drugs. I switched my dose of cymbalta from 3-30's to 1-60mg and 1-30mg. I swear that has given me slight withdrawal-headaches every day, isolating myself, unmotivated-blah! The metabolism or whatever happens once I take this junk must break down differently with the way I'm taking it now. I made that change mid-summer. So yeah. Eli Lilly execs need to be strung up in a dark closet by their toenails, along with whoever approved cymbalta at the FDA. 

Share this post


Link to post
manymoretodays

Hi Jewlz.  Hope you found your way back:oB) 

 

So hey........you could also consider doing the bead counting thing and go down that way........just a few beads at a time.  I'm not sure if one of the links provided discusses that method, probably or browse around.........particularly concerning tapering Cymbalta or Effexor, which are cousin like meds. and come in capsules with beads.  It takes a bit of study and careful counting and measurement at first but then you can control the decreases more efficiently, even going slower than 10% and maybe not even getting much W/D.

 

Hope your day is going well.

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

mmt!!

 

I've found my way back!  Thanks for the guidance!  I've book marked this page so I won't forget.

 

Okay, so if I go down 10% from 90, it will be 81 which my plan is to take down by 10 mg to 80mg. I'm typing out loud right now,  if I do okay with my hold at 80mg, 10% would put me at  72% , and then 64.8%, and then 58.32%. Hmmmm-I understand what you're saying about 10% v 10mg. I have some time to think about it, I get the shakes (from the drugs, of course), so counting beads could turn into a bit of a bead mess. :o

 

My day is going well, thanks for asking. I hope yours is going well, too!

 

Jewlz

 

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Journaling

 

It's funny how I thought I was doing so well on my AD and mood stabilizer (Lamotrigine). I don't know if I was trying to fool myself or the shrink.  In any case, I'm thankful I''m here and finding the support that is really important as I contemplate and prepare myself for weaning off the meds.

The thing that gets me the most is I make plans to lets say just go to the store to get the turkey and other things that go along with dinner for next week and I wake up and do not want to leave the house. I get disappointed when I realize oh I need to go to the store, but I really DON'T want to leave the house. And so it goes. I do get out in late afternoons 2x a week for school and usually 1 weekend day, but not always. I can bury myself in studying to pass the time. And then as soon as the sun sets I come alive, still not going out to the store, but not feeling as lethargic and unmotivated. I've been keeping ungodly hours binge watching  netflix and in the past week have not gotten to sleep any earlier than 2am!  And I'm not even tapering yet. Then I get depressed or a little down. I don't want to own being depressed. What's really sad is I used to be vibrant and social and loved living. I still love living it's just dulled down, a lot. Now the next challenge is to fix dinner. Usually I forgo the task and end up snacking which is not good either. 

 

Today was better than yesterday, which is good!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Gridley

Jewlz,

 

I saw that over in the Tapering forum you mentioned supplements.  The two supplements that SA recommends are magnesium and omega 3, which can be helpful for relaxing and for 

 healing the central nervous system. You can read more about these supplements below.  I have found the Magnesium Glycinate form of Magnesium to help with anxiety.

 

Magnesium

Omega-3 Fish Oil

 

Start only one supplement at a time so you can monitor its effects on you.  Start at a low dose.

 

Best,

Gridley

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Thanks Gridley. I've read about supplementing magnesium. Isn't this the one that is gentle on our brains?  I think that's what I read. Right now I'm using up my supply of JP(juiceplus+). It's so expensive but they came out with their own omega product this past summer. It's not omega fish oil, but oils derived from fruit seeds. I found it interesting. I am not endorsing this product, just speaking to my own experience.

 

Enjoy the evening!

Share this post


Link to post
Jewlz

Journaling-actually got outside today and studied with a classmate and went to Aldi and the grocery store. I was so scatter brained while I was out shopping. I got in to Aldi and realized my purse was in my book bag. Thank goodness I only had one item in my cart and no one took it to use while I ran out to retrieve my pocket book. The grocery store was a little bit busier and I parked my cart down an aisle to look for something and then forgot which aisle it is was on. Had a slight panic over that but was able to gather myself and find it. When stuff like that happens or if I see an old friend while I'm out and feeling happy, the duloxetine sweats creep in-hate when that happens. It's almost like any emotional range I have makes that happen. All of these symptoms I'm realizing are part of the drug which gives me a different perspective. Last night I spent quite a bit of time studying action potentials, synapse, calcium and sodium channels, serotonin binding on the post synapse neuron. I have lots more to learn. Reading and pictures help give me a better understanding. So, yes today was a good day-2 in a row!

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.