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awalkerphoenix

Vision symptoms: floaters, snow, blurred or dimmed vision etc

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awalkerphoenix   
awalkerphoenix

I know this question is asked a lot, but what I don't get is, shouldn't these drugs b e out of my system after 7 weeks? I feel like I am getting worse the longer I am off. For people like my family and wife, how do I explain to them that I am still suffering from a drug I stopped taking almost 2 months ago? Why is it getting worse and not better? I was only on the drug for 9 months...

Edited by surviving
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Altostrata   
Altostrata

AW -- Withdrawal symptoms occur on reduction or cessation of a drug. That's what withdrawal means. The drugs are out of your body, that is exactly why your nervous system is complaining.

 

Antidepressants are not technically addictive, but they cause physical dependency. When you reduce or stop dosage, you can get withdrawal symptoms, just as heroin addicts get withdrawal symptoms from kicking heroin.

 

People experience various intensity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal. For some, maybe the majority, it is mild and over in a few weeks. Medicine bases its assumptions about withdrawal on these people. For others, withdrawal is more difficult and lasts longer.

 

It's hard to tell how long it will take any one person to recover. It could be months, it could be years. In your case, because you are young, it probably will be a shorter period.

 

Because doctors insist that withdrawal takes only a few weeks of recovery, they deny prolonged withdrawal exists and don't have any information on how it resolves. That is why we have started a peer support Web site. We are providing support and gathering information on recovery from prolonged withdrawal syndrome, which medicine largely pretends doesn't exist.

 

You have been to many doctors searching for a quick cure for your symptoms. You can keep looking -- as so many of us have -- but there is no definite treatment for withdrawal syndrome. There is no pill you can take to make it go away quickly. We have suggested ways you might alleviate your symptoms. We have all found from experience that all we can do is, very gently and little by little, help our nervous systems to repair themselves.

 

You need to find some things that can work for you. It takes patience, inner strength, and a positive attitude to work through this. All of us have had difficulty explaining our situations to family, friends, and employers. If you have questions about that, please start a topic in the Family forum.

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awalkerphoenix   
awalkerphoenix

But people do get out of this? It just feels so permanent when you are dealing with it on a daily basis. These floaters are killing me and I feel like they will never leave. All I hear from people is "they are natural, you just have to get used to them."

 

The doctor doesn't see any floaters or anything wrong with my eyes. They started over night when I began to taper. It has to be the drugs! The only reason I was put on it was because my doctor kept trying to convince me that I had migraines, which I never did. My only problem was VN. When I said I felt fine on the drug, I meant I had no side effects. Once I started getting better with VRT, I decided I no longer needed the drug. Plus my doctor was not monitoring me at all.

 

When I would see him after a few month he would just say "Try going up to 75mg...now 100mg..." I didn't have migraines or anxiety problems so why stay on it? Plus I had multiple other doctors giving me other drugs all at the same time. None of them thought this was strange or weird. I am not even close to bedridden. My sleep is good and I work full time. My balance was great for about a month or so while off these drugs too. The only thing I really noticed once I started tapering was the eye floaters which is very, very common with AD withdrawal.

 

They are not "real" floaters which everyone suggests. Bunches of them showed up over night within days of my taper. I am young and healthy with no eyes issues whatsoever. I have seen the Opthamologist twice and he had done thorough checks both times. He says my eyes are perfect and he sees no floaters or other issues. I DO NOT have migraines.

 

I know I have/had VN because my gaze stability has greatly improved with VRT. I had weeks where I didn't think about my VN or imbalance. I really thought I turned the corner. I know these drugs did something to my Nervous System because I can't walk outside without being blinded by the sun and seeing black and clear objects floating all over the place as well as visual snow.

 

My biggest problem now is the chicken and the egg. Am I having vestibular problems or withdrawal problems. Is one causing the other? As far as any other drugs, there was a time about 10 years ago when I used Zoloft for about 2 years. In my late teens I would get terrible nervous stomachs and throw up a lot. I had no problem on Zoloft or getting off. I came off of it because I outgrew my anxiety problem. I was anxiety and drug free for about 5 to 6 years. The only reason I started trying these other drugs was because I could not figure out my vestibular problem.

 

Also, walking around dizzy all day and not knowing the problem did create some anxiety, so the Nortrip did help me. But once I started to get my balance back and more confident I decided I wanted to be drug free.

 

Other than the vestibular and withdrawal symptoms causing some depression and anxiety now, I don't have any "real" depression or anxiety. I love my job. I love my wife and family. Everything is good. I just want to feel normal again and it has been a year and a half since I felt that way. I am scared I will never feel like my old self again. I cannot stress enough that this vestibular problem has nothing at all to do with anxiety or depression. It is real. I had testing done three times showing that I had severe loss of my input on my right side. I have almost conquered this problem which is why these floaters and eye problems that seem like something so minor to many people on this site are such a big deal to me.

 

I had 16 months where I couldn't walk or think straight, now I got these things that affect me every second my eyes are open. I am content now that this problem is here and may be here for awhile, but I would feel way better if I knew these problems were normal for someone in my situation and will eventually get better and go away. Thank you for your time everyone, I am really having a hard time right now.

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

But people do get out of this? It just feels so permanent when you are dealing with it on a daily basis. These floaters are killing me and I feel like they will never leave. All I hear from people is "they are natural, you just have to get used to them." The doctor doesn't see any floaters or anything wrong with my eyes. They started over night when I began to taper. It has to be the drugs!....

 

AW, don't despair. Recovery is slow but you will recover.

 

I believe your reasoning is sound, your symptoms are a result of the drugs and withdrawal.

 

You seem to be in the self-blame phase, where you go over and over the mistakes that led you here. (I think when we do this, we are reviewing history, hoping to undo it.) Please do what you can to stop blaming yourself.

 

When you do this, you can start dealing with your present situation.

 

Everyone here is suffering from medical error, as you are. This is a very, very difficult realization to make.

 

Hang in there, we're here for you.

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awalkerphoenix   
awalkerphoenix

The scariest thing is the eye stuff. Hard not to think that these things in my eyes are permanent. Is it possible that the withdrawal has affected my nervous system and will just improve in time? And by possible, I mean others have had the before and gotten over it?

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Maybe   
Maybe

Hello all,

 

I was wondering if anyone has experienced the following symptoms concerning the eyes:

 

Sometimes, when I close my eyes, I see weird white circles spinning around and then slowly dissipating or moving out of sight. Never seen that before my wd, so I think it is related.

Another thing occurs when I move my eyes to the far left or right that something flairs up for a second. Like a flame or lightning.

 

Did anyone else notice such weird symptoms? They do not harm my eyes I hope.

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

I believe those are relatively normal phenomena, Maybe.

 

Everybody gets the white circles (I think that's activity in the optic nerve).

 

The white flashes on the sides are signs your retina is getting older, and very common.

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Maybe   
Maybe

I am not getting older. Never ever! :)

 

Well, it is just weird that I observed them only after/during wd. But maybe because I much more sensitive to reactions/feelings now. Who knows.

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Punarbhava   
Punarbhava

I am not getting older. Never ever! :)

 

 

LOL! Older? I'm planning on a re-birth so aging is not an option. (LOL)

 

Well, it is just weird that I observed them only after/during wd. But maybe because I much more sensitive to reactions/feelings now. Who knows.

 

 

TBH, I haven't experienced the white circle effect, that you describe and that Alto speaks of however, I've had many other visual disturbances with eyes open, as well as closed.

 

 

What Alto shared is also true, however, like you I've never had these events prior to WD and the fact that they are lessening in intensity and frequency proves that they are WD related in my case. I did have white flashes that appeared like clusters of bright stars with tails attached (looked like shooting stars) but those occurred earlier in WD.

 

I also notice re: the eye movement to the left and right will create visual effects, not to mention, create brain sensations/disturbances. I believe this type of eye movement is stressful to the brain, hence creating these distortions/images/sensations etc.

 

Do you get the white circle events only when you are trying to drift off to sleep? I find that many "closed eye" visual effects are related to this time of day, although the left/right eye movement stuff and other stuff can occur at any time of day.

 

Many times, just before drifting off to sleep I will experience soft white light visual aura type effect. Other times I will have visions of unknown faces pop into my visual domaine (eyes closed).

 

They don't feel as if they are mental images but rather, they are real visual images despite being unable to actually see (due to my eyes being closed).

 

I also get panoramic, movie-like events visually displaying as I start to drift off to sleep. It's very strange.........like the optic nerves are actively engaged visually displaying a random scene, face or event, that the brain is independently and randomly constructing, despite closed eyelids and complete darkness.

 

It feels like a Pre-dream like state but not actually a dream since I can SEE the image rather than experience the mental image as I would in a dream state.

 

It's difficult to articulate and even more difficult when my brain won't cooperate ATM. (LOL)

 

In any event, I'm pretty certain, like all other symptoms, this will remit once you recover more fully.

 

Much More Healing to You, along with many "ageless" years. (lol)

 

 

Punar

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Maybe   
Maybe

Hey Punar,

 

no, not always while I try to go to sleep. I do not even know when they appear, totally random and only lasting some seconds while I keep my eyes closed.

But overall I mostly get an increase in symptoms when I lay down to sleep, but even before I drift off. Right after I lay down, things start to get worse or weird. Very seldom during the day, mostly in the evening.

Maybe this is some kind of anxiety reaction? Real wd (besides my initial adverse reaction) started with the brain zaps when I wanted to sleep as far as i can remember. Maybe my brain remembers that horror when I lay down...

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

no, not always while I try to go to sleep. I do not even know when they appear, totally random and only lasting some seconds while I keep my eyes closed....

This sounds like the normal optic nerve stuff.

 

But overall I mostly get an increase in symptoms when I lay down to sleep, but even before I drift off. Right after I lay down, things start to get worse or weird....

 

I have a bad period when I lay down and start to relax, too. I'll start to get sleepy, then that goes away and I get hot and wakeful. It seems like that needs to wear off for about an hour before I can start to sleep again.

 

I interpret this as a paradoxical reaction to the relaxation of sleep, which sets off my alerting system. This has been going on for quite a while. It's a very, very dilute form of the sleep panic and awful insomnia I had earlier in withdrawal syndrome.

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Maybe   
Maybe

Yes, same here. But my sleep is actually quite fine. I can even sleep up to 9 hours on the weekends (seldom though), but get my 7 to 8 hours on the average. But I had bad sleep problems in the beginning of wd for some weeks and then again in "phase 2" after around 4 months till I went to the hospital.

 

I really wonder how much of all these symptoms is really psychological because of the wd trauma...

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

Withdrawal trauma? How could that train our bodies to fear sleep???

 

It does sound like perhaps you've developed a habit of anxiety about small things that could be normal.

 

Maybe, it sounds like you are definitely on the mend. Despite some difficulties, you're sleeping well.

 

Let's celebrate that!

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Maybe   
Maybe

Ah, I thank you for your optimism. Problem is, I have slept well for the past 12 months :D

 

I have two major symptoms left that really keep me from living a normal life again. Weird feelings in the back of my head and neck and the terrible movement sensitivity (dizziness). Slight movements with my chair are instantly noticed by my nerves and stopping the car as well. It sometimes feels terrible.

 

The rest of the symptoms is endurable, but those two can let me feel like my body is falling apart...

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tramond   
tramond

I Have been at the occulist a week ago because of my red, dry eyes and the creazy blurry vision I do have sometimes!!

H said I do have an eye infection and gave me antibiotic eye-drops!

Today I ghad an apointment again!

So my eyes aree still red, dry, burning and the blurry wision comes and goes!

So he made a test with my tear liquid with the result that I just do have half of the usual liquid annymore!! So my eyes are verry bad protected and I have to take drops to fill the liquid up!! He said do you have other problems with mucus membran and I remembered my diarhöe and the snotty nose witch I have nearly permanently! He sai..well it could be a hormonal problem!!

 

to the blurry unsharp vision he said, this is a neurological Problem! If it wouldbe an eyeproblem it would be constant!

 

So Wyeth/pfizer...............thank you verry mutch again!!!!

You distroy comprehensive!!!!!!

 

Greets to all

Leon

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

traymond, do what you can to cope with this symptom. If it's withdrawal-related, it will change and get better.

 

Are you drinking enough water? It sounds like you may be dehydrated. Drink lots of water, especially in the first half of the day.

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tramond   
tramond

Hoi altrostra!!

Thats a real good idea!!!

 

I do drink tooooo mutch coffe all day.........and to less water!!

 

I will try to change!!!

 

Greetings and thanks for your advice!!

 

Tramond

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serotonin   
serotonin

For me its already 6 month! And this is the worst month!

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Barbarannamated   
Barbarannamated

Tagging on to this eye discussion altho I doubt there is relation.

 

I have Post Vitreous Detachment (glob stuff at back of eye, not retina). Was nearsighted at young age, LASIX in '98. -10D to near perfect, then back to -3D, no explanation. Due to this, I'm high risk for back of eye probs. Glob floaters bad now, it's difficult to see thru. Like a cloud curtain, but not dark as it would be w retina detachment. Sun/light helps but I'm in Wash DC area--very dark, rainy, no sun. Docs tell me there is nothing that can be done short of a vitreectomy (sp?)-extreme measure. Omegas may help.

My question: anyone familiar w this or any relation to meds? It's very disturbing and they say it will get worse but I should adapt to it (2 yrs and not happening).

Clouds in the sky and clouds in my eyes. It's dark in here. :-(

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stan   
stan

hoi Tramond,

 

dry eyes are common symptoms of withdrawal from antidepressants and benzo, i have it and also dry mouth, withdrawal inhibits saliva or/and eyes water; hope it will go away,

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Shanti   
Shanti

Tagging on to this eye discussion altho I doubt there is relation.

 

I have Post Vitreous Detachment (glob stuff at back of eye, not retina). Was nearsighted at young age, LASIX in '98. -10D to near perfect, then back to -3D, no explanation. Due to this, I'm high risk for back of eye probs. Glob floaters bad now, it's difficult to see thru. Like a cloud curtain, but not dark as it would be w retina detachment. Sun/light helps but I'm in Wash DC area--very dark, rainy, no sun. Docs tell me there is nothing that can be done short of a vitreectomy (sp?)-extreme measure. Omegas may help.

My question: anyone familiar w this or any relation to meds? It's very disturbing and they say it will get worse but I should adapt to it (2 yrs and not happening).

Clouds in the sky and clouds in my eyes. It's dark in here. :-(

 

Hi Barbarannamated. I had retinal tear and have that vitreous glob stuff floating around too. It can be annoying.

 

One thing I've noticed with the withdrawals is it's like my eyes are leaking off an on. They leak quite a bit. It's not quite as thick as sleep but not as thin as tears. Is this from withdrawals I wonder? I wonder what I can do.

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Shanti   
Shanti

Oh, and I wanted to say to Tramond that I am having weird vision issues with the w/d. Sometimes my vision gets pretty blurry for no reason. Or sometimes it's like I have a film over my eyes.

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Barbarannamated   
Barbarannamated

My PVD began before WD, so cannot correlate. My vision was very bad since childhood, so tough for me to judge. I have noticed that it gets worse w flying. On a plane. Pressure changes, perhaps.

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Roads   
Roads

I have something like RLS (yes restless leg syndrome)... but in the eye! My eyes are so uncomfortable and itching that when I close my eyes, they keep twithing. Last night, It was so bad I was craving to ****** them off. I hope it won't show up again this bad tonight... Really annoying.

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Guest damnnardil   
Guest damnnardil

I am experiencing what I would call kind of a self tease. Because of my energy level and the stiffness or soreness in my legs and the lack of endurance from my antidepresssant, I have a very predictable cycle I go through. I work out and jog once every 3 days for about 3 hours. By the time I am done with this enormous workout, I feel like I did before I had any medicine in me. I am sharp, I can think clearly, my moods is very high and positive, I feel like my witdrawal or depression or really it is more anxiety, is pretty much gone and I can go on with life. By the time I take my next two or three doses of medicine that I am weening off of, My brain returns to the withdrawal or anxiety condition until my next work out. Don't try and tell me I should jog every day or every other day, less time and it would serve me better. Been there done that. This is what works for me and it is very frustrating, knowing I am going back down and it is predictable. I have at least a year before I'm off the meds and so I have to endure a year of predictable ups and downs. Damnnnnnnnnn! :angry:

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poodlebell   
poodlebell

I had an eye test just over a year ago and the optician said that I had too much pressure and was going to get glaucoma. I went to the hospital for the tests and they found nothing wrong. Its all seroxat, and hopefully it will right itself in time.

 

poodlebell

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Claudius   
Claudius

I have eye twitching and pressure issues which started about 15 months in WD and still continue until today, now more than 50 months (4+ years) off. Of course I tend to belileve this is permanent, because even the hardest cases appear to recover within 2-3 years. And that from "only" one drug (Paxil/Seroxat) in the "lowest" dose of 10 mg...

I am now unable to work for almost 4 years and still not reovered, but way better than my lowest point ever. I see perspective, have plans, but just need to postpone them because of the still nasty issues.

And my social anxiety is back in some way, it was almost gone under the PAxil, in that sense it was indeed a wonder drug to me. But restarting after the unimaginable w/d horror is of course no option anymore.

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elbillingino   
elbillingino

Decided to bump this because I am being driven mad by damned eye floaters!!!!

 

It's actually a key component of the almost constant cognitive fog/derealisation that I'm suffering. It's like watching a degraded movie there are so many of the little things in the 'background' and bigger floaters in the 'foreground'.

 

Does anything help with this, other than time?

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Barbarannamated   
Barbarannamated

Decided to bump this because I am being driven mad by damned eye floaters!!!!

 

It's actually a key component of the almost constant cognitive fog/derealisation that I'm suffering. It's like watching a degraded movie there are so many of the little things in the 'background' and bigger floaters in the 'foreground'.

 

Does anything help with this, other than time?

 

I have a history of bad eyes (very nearsighted at young age, LASIX in 90s, post vitreous detachment) so not certain what to attribute to drug use/withdrawal, but the last few weeks have been brutal with floaters, clouds, sandpaper dry eyes. It all contributes, as you mentioned, to the DP/DR and general feeling of living in a haze. I suspect it's exacerbated by allergies currently.

 

I've been advised to use Omega 3 by optometrists. I've also tried some of the supplements for vision that contain lutein. I go through a lot of OTC eye lubricating products.

 

I'm about 2 years post last dose and this just flared in last month with very dry and windy weather in Southern CA.

 

I hope this helps in some way.

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elbillingino   
elbillingino

Thanks Barbarannamated. Will try what you've suggested. I also suffer from allergies - now having a bad reaction to antihistamines since I had a bad reaction to reinstating sertraline too late. I'm still able to take my steroid nasal spray which seems to help somewhat

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Melphill   
Melphill

I had the most bizarre symptoms yesterday. I currently weaned my Abilify dose from 2mg to 1.8 mg 12 days ago. I felt extremely hot and experienced a visual disturbance. I was working on a computer and all of the sudden I couldn't see the first 2 letters of any word. I tried not to panic. Then I began to see wavy lines in my peripheral vision especially my left eye which I developed an eye twitch in about a month ago. I went to my boss at work and told her I thought that I needed to go home. She wanted me to go to the Emergency Room, I work in a hospital, but I wouldn't go. I took a break and had some peanut butter and graham crackers because this episode took place about 10:30 a.m. and I hadn't eaten breakfast yet. Right after I ate my snack, my vision came back to normal and I felt fine. I was able to go back to work and finish my day and I felt fine for the rest of the day.

 

I was wondering if anyone else has experienced anything like this. I know that Abilify can cause diabetes. I didn't know if maybe my blood sugar was low. What ever the reason, I am certain that it was related to weaning down on the Abilify. I am only going to lower my dose by 0.2mg per month. I can't wait to get off of this potent poison.

 

I have to say that Abilify did pull me out of a severe depression 1 1/2 years ago when my adult son told me that he is transgender. But I have been working a 12 step program and have learned coping skills and can't wait till I take my last dose of Abilify. My memory is terrible and I just pray that all of the medications that I have been on for last 25 years have not put to many holes in my brain or shrunk it to much!

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Altostrata   
Altostrata

Changing dosages of any psychiatric drug can cause this kind of reaction. Let's hope this was a passing adjustment.

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Djones1984   
Djones1984

I seem to have developed more, or am more aware of eye floaters in withdrawl and they are driving me crazy. I have had some eye floaters for a long time but was able to cope better before withdrawl no I see them all the time and they drive me nuts. How do you cope with them? Anything that can be done to alleviate them?

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amiss   
amiss

When I had DPD, I was more aware of floaters. They're not harmful, just annoying. I attribute it to hypervigilance. My anxiety/hypersensitivity went down I haven't noticed them since. Only when I look at the sky now. 

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Needmylifeback   
Needmylifeback

The scariest thing is the eye stuff. Hard not to think that these things in my eyes are permanent. Is it possible that the withdrawal has affected my nervous system and will just improve in time? And by possible, I mean others have had the before and gotten over it?

What I suggest is to recall a time when a physical symptom or circumstance seemed unbearable and interminal.... And recall when it did end and life was good again. It helps me remember, no matter how bad it's been or for how long, it WILL change. It never stays exactly the same for terribly long (even when it's the same for several years it DOES eventually change!). In the midst of the dankest night, it's always darkest right before the dawn. And it simply cannot rain forever; you may be in a rainy season right now!! But the sun will shine again. I always replay how I ended up somewhere like I am looking for breadcrumbs to find my way back out.... It's especially helpful when you are dealing with multiple issues at once. I am not blaming myself as much as I want to find my way out of the darkness and not end up back in this spot again. We need to be pro-active advocates for ourselves bc our drs sure aren't fully invested enough to watch out for us. My state is very thin on decent neurologists! But if your area has a good one, maybe if your symptoms don't begin to improve in the next couple of months, you could ask a good neurologist to help you rule out residual damage from your time on this med?? From your description of symptoms I would ask a neurologis about the source of these issues. I am hoping you are just about to turn the corner!!

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