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Lexapro Withdrawal
  1. #241
    Patty123 is offline New Member
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    I glad to have found someone discussing the 'shocking' effect of withdrawl from SSRI. I have this exactly as described, turning the head or eyes can result in an electrical shock feeling coursing from head to tips of fingers -- very unpleasant. I have talked to my doctor about this who has dismissed it as a side effect of medication reduction. Wrong. I stopped 10mg a day a week ago and for a week I felt okay. Over the last three days, however, irritable (misanthropic!), flu-ish -- I was hoping it was not the lack of Lexapro (10 mg seems like such a small dose) but I guess it is. I also take 600 mg of Wellbutrin -- stopping the Lex because of the cost -- I can't afford to take both. I have about two tabs of the Lex left, but I do not want to refill because of the cost. Bummer. I guess I should break a tab in 4 quarters and take this over the next week. Maybe that will help get me over the slump.

    Does anyone else feel as though vision has been disturbed?

    Best of luck


    Patty

  2. #242
    catrth is offline New Member
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    I have monitoring this forum for a couple of weeks, since reducing my 10mg dosage of Lexapro to 5mg. For the two weeks I reduced the dosage, the only thing I noticed was increased energy. I have been on Lexapro for over two years. My counselor said to get the effect you need, you should be on it for at least eight to nine months. When I went on it, it helped me tremendously. It's hard to remember how bad I felt before taking it. However, because of the weight gain and the extreme tiredness I have felt for the last several months, I decided to get off of it. I remembered that the caution on the insert for the drug said not to just stop taking the drug without consulting your doctor. When I called the doctor's office, they said to wean myself off, reduce the dosage for a week or so and then get off. I've been completely off for about three days and have only had a slight headache. So, hopefully, I'm one of the lucky ones. Will let you know if anything develops.

  3. #243
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    Hi Patty -

    Sounds like you have had similar withdrawal symptoms. I have had problems with the vision and "brain zaps" especially if I move my head too quickly. It has gotten better in the 7 days since I cut my dose in half. I am considering cutting the dose to 5mgs in another week and stick with 5mgs for a few weeks thereafter. Each day has been an improvement for me and I hope for you as well.

    Take care,
    Kris Nuss

  4. #244
    auntybiotic is offline Senior Member
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    Nuss what dose did you start with and how long have you been on Lexapro. Curious, do most of you take your Lexapro in AM or PM??

    I really would love to know what many do as my daughter taked it at night and this nay be the reason she is up most of the night.
    Thanks

  5. #245
    catrth is offline New Member
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    quote:Originally posted by auntybiotic

    Nuss what dose did you start with and how long have you been on Lexapro. Curious, do most of you take your Lexapro in AM or PM??

    I really would love to know what many do as my daughter taked it at night and this nay be the reason she is up most of the night.
    Thanks

  6. #246
    catrth is offline New Member
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    quote:Originally posted by auntybiotic

    Nuss what dose did you start with and how long have you been on Lexapro. Curious, do most of you take your Lexapro in AM or PM??

    I really would love to know what many do as my daughter taked it at night and this nay be the reason she is up most of the night.
    Thanks
    I took it at night. My doctor told me to take it before bedtime because it would probably make me sleepy. I had to take it earlier than bedtime because I was too groggy in the morning if I took it right before bedtime. It made me sleep deep and hard. Best sleep I had had in years. One reason I've decided to get off it is now it is making me sleepy all the time. I could sleep 24 hours if I let myself.

  7. #247
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    Hi Auntybiotic -

    I started with 10mgs in am and after about 2wks went to 20mgs in the am. I was experiencing tiredness throughout the day and problems falling asleep at night. It was as if I could not shut my mind off. It was best described as "mania" at bed time up until last week when I decided to cut my dose in half. I found myself wanting to do my normal household chores at a time when my children needed to be tucked into bed. Over the last few weeks I was spending my days in what I call a "funk" or "fog". I was taking non-drowsey sinus meds just to stay awake! I am completely amazed at how much better I feel in a week. Is your daughter still experiencing withdrawal symptoms?

    Thanks,
    Kris

  8. #248
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    Auntybiotic -

    I forgot to include that I have been on Lex for a year. (Gee. and I thought that in a week my mind was getting clearer.) Anyway, anything I can offer to help let me know. I am actively looking got holistic/natural supplements to help me thru the withdrawal. I am using magnesium citrate.
    Kris

  9. #249
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    I am currently trying to wean myself from 20 mg Lexapro. This is not easy but I think I can do this. Having support from my husband, who went from Zoloft to Effexor to nothing last year, helps tremendously! I started taking anti-d's - in particular Paxil - about 11 years ago. I had some anxiety attacks and discovered I have hypothyroidism at the time. I still wish my dr (who i no longer see) had only put me on thyroid meds instead of both at the same time. Maybe I wouldn't have needed the anti-d at all. Since then I tried once to get off Paxil when i was pregnant about 5 years ago. I went back to my "lack of emotion" stage along with having w/d symptoms. When i had my second child I was swiched to Lexapro for post partum issues. A few months ago, i decided to talk to my dr about getting off entirely as i was tired of feeling tired and lacking any libido. About 3 weeks ago i went from 20 mg to 10 - i felt so much better! About a week and a half ago, I went to 10mg every other day - now I am taking 5mg every other day. So far, I am dealing with mild dizzy spells (brain zaps) and today I am dealing with nausea. (I did not take any today.) I feel lousy physically but emotionally am doing great. I am not brain tired all the time. Like I said earlier, having family support means so much! Pray for me y'll and I will keep you updated!


    2eatchoc

  10. #250
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    My last dose of Lex was yesterday afternoon. I took 2.5mg. I had horrible nausea and dizziness (the last dose before that was Sunday afternoon when I took 5mg) The 2.5 made a really big difference. I felt so much better. I was able to enjoy my husband's softball game.

    Today, I am REALLY nauseated and dizzy and have a really bad headache. I am also cold one minute and hot the next. I have two kids ages 5&2 and taking care of them while going thru this is very hard.

    Does anyone have any suggestions for the dizziness and nausea? Maybe I should take 2.5mg everyday for awhile and then try every other day again. I think I dropped down too quickly from 5 to 2.5.

    The up-side is that mentally I feel so much more alive and (my husband appreciates this) I feel so much more desire sexually than I have in years!

    My advice to anyone thinking of going on anti-d's is to try everything else first - the w/d is AWFUL!


    2eatchoc

  11. #251
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    2eatchoc -

    I understand completely about the mental clarity. I too feel soooo much better after cutting my dose in half from 20 to 10mgs. I have a 4 1/2 and a 3 year old and they are going thru the motions with me during the day. My husband sees a huge difference also. As far as the nausea and dizziness goes, I have intermitten bouts with that and the headaches. I took tylenol arthritis every 8 hours the first two days I cut my dose down and I didn't have the headaches. I would only suggest staying on the small dose a little longer and consult with your Doc. Maybe check out some alternative natural supplements. I have gotten some helpful info just by searching sites about depression. Your doing great!! Best wishes and keep posting your progress.
    Take Care
    Kris Nuss

  12. #252
    Patty123 is offline New Member
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    Hi All --

    Thanks much for providing the information that allowed me to realize my 'flu' and misery was due entirely to Lexapro withdrawal. YOu would think I would know this, having had the experience before. I went to the dr yesterday. She gave me 10mg samples to wean myself off over the next six weeks. I took half a pill and bounced back in three hours. I understand now that even taking a little bit of this stuff matters. I will take 5mg for about three weeks, then 2.5 for a few, then 2.5 every other day (as my dr said--Just lick the pill for a week...) I want to be rid of the ssri, even though I can't give up the Wellbutrin...but maybe I can lose some weight over time. Lord knows I can't shed a pound while taking this stuff. BTW: Wellbutrin has been very good for the return of libido and is supposed to be weight reductive --although I hae not had this experience yet. I need to lose about 20 pounds, all of which I blame of ssri.


    I'd love to know if anyone has shed ssri pounds after stopping the meds. Hope?


    Patty

  13. #253
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    I am having such a hard time with this lexapro thing now. By yesterday evening, I was so nauseated and dizzy i ended up taking 2.5 mg to take the edge off. Then at bedtime, I couldn't sleep and got so anxious and scared of my feelings. I am so glad Ron was there to tell me it was ok. Everything seems magnified now. My excitement over going to the beach in Sept, my fear of my emotions, my sadness at sad things, my frustration, etc. Maybe this wasn't such a good idea. I emailed my Dr. - I took another 5mg this morning and am going to take at 2.5 to 5mg every day for the next week and see how that goes. I want to be "ok" for my son's 5th birthday party next Saturday and definitly ok for the beach. Maybe if i can "even out" on that amt I can drop down again from there. Maybe i am trying to go too fast. I loved how I was feeling emotionally up until last night. It may just be withdrawal i will have to work thru. (People have said this on the website) I am crying now for no reason. It feels good to feel "good things" again but I seem so overly sensitive too. Maybe it is all the emotions slightly supressed for 11 years coming out. My 2 yr old just saw me crying and brought me a teddy bear and a blanket (which was so sweet it made me cry more!) Will this go away or am I doomed to taking drugs for the rest of my life to avoid panic attacks and crazy crying?

    I asked my husband to call me from work when he can talk to me some. I think I will check out some websites for suggestions. Pray hard!



    2eatchoc

  14. #254
    auntybiotic is offline Senior Member
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    Zeatoch,

    You will get better, give it about five months which may seem long but one day at a time", that's how you will get thru.

    Go to the Health Vitamin Shoppe and ask them to order BACH's "White Chestnut" Flower Essence Drops. Taking 4 drops under the tongue 4 times a day will help the anxiety pass. You can also order it online.

    Carlson's Fish Oil provide Omega 3"s which will help ward off depression and help with weight loss issues.

    When you get down to 2 1/2 Mg you may ask your doctor for the Lexapro Liquid samples and go to 2 Mg then 1 1/2 MG then 1 Mgthen 1/2.

    This will ease the effects after stopping.

    Keep in touch.
    aunt y

  15. #255
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    I am doing a bit better today after taking 5mg yest and again today. I emailed with my dr and I am going to stick with 5mg daily for awhile and maybe go off later. I am dealing with the aftermath of "panicy" feelings yesterday. The fear and adrenalin generated from them doesn't go away in a day. Will keep you all updated.

    2eatchoc

  16. #256
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    Aunty

    I am going to check into the White Chestut drops! Thanks for the suggestion!

    2eatchoc

  17. #257
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    2eatchoc -

    While I am not a doctor, however, I have been on 20mgs of Lexapro as you were so I thought maybe I would pass along some things you may want to try to help ease the withdrawal. As I had indicated before, I cut my dose in half over a week ago. I have had mild withdrawal symptoms. After doing my own web search I found info on 5-HTP. Please try googling it on the web as 5-HTP. This may be what you need to try. It is a natural seratonin booster and helps with food cravings too. I have not experienced weight gain with Lexapro but I am still taking the 5-HTP as a natural supplement to increase my seratonin. I have been taking Omega-3's for over 2 years. A great product recommended by my family doctor is Res-Q 1250. The website is n3inc.com. They are a little more expensive than store brand "fish oil" but I swear by them as I believe they have attributed to my weight stabilization and great cholesterol levels. I had an off day too yestrday but I was able to get out of the house and take my children to the pool and talk with other adults. Make sure you are talking to someone about your feelings. It's ok to cry. The same thing happened to me when I went 3 days w/o Lexapro. I was a mess!! Please keep in touch and I hope that this helps. You're doing great!! I am a stay at home mom and I know some days are tougher than others even without going thru all of this.

    Take Care
    Kris Nuss

  18. #258
    sleepyton is offline New Member
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    Hi all,

    For narcolepsy and cataplexy my dr. has prescribed Lexapro. After reading about all these withdrawal symptoms and people feeling off all the time, i'm wondering if just dealing with the original problems (take a nap, and not be too emotional) is better than being on a drug that has all these odd symptoms.

    The Dr. said take 10 mg at first. I took one last night at 12:15am, and by 3:30am I was full awake. By 5:30 I was able to sleep again, but only tossing and turning up until 10am. After one dose I'm yawning and feeling this ..whole body sensation of like...relief almost every time I yawn. Now its about 12pm and im still yawning and feeling sleepy (could either be from lack of decent sleep or the meds)

    I dunno, i like being able to sleep whenever i want to, i just hate feeling sleepy when i don't want to. But constnatly yawning and not being able to sleep is just worse in my opinion. Earlier this year I tried for 9 weeks Imipramine, which only slightly improved my reactions, but allowed me to sleep only 5 hours every night before i begin a long 3 more hours of tossing and turning. I went cold turkey off of 2 pills of that and was relieved to sleep once more.

    So anyway, the point is...should i even bother with lexapro?

  19. #259
    2eatchoc is offline New Member
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    Thanks, Nuss - It sure helps to know I am not alone. I am so blessed to have a husband who loves me and cares enough to listen and talk with me ever day. I will google those things when i finish this message. I know what you mean about being a stay at home mom too - my boys are picking at each other right now!

    2eatchoc

  20. #260
    Patty123 is offline New Member
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    In response to "should I even bother" -- These drugs work -- they have worked for me. It's just the 'going off' that is awful. I have been taking antidepressants for more than ten years, and despite my gripping about them here on this forum, I also have to say that they saved my life. I don't believe I can function effectively without some sort of help with the obsessive negative thoughts, the social anxiety, and the panic. Medication has allowed me to be successful as a mother and as a professional. That said -- after ten years I have to wonder how my brain might do on its own. The wellbutrin (600mg -- a lot) I take works on dopamine levels, not seratonin, and so I am interested to see whether I can get off the ssris altogether. Plus, the 'big-ee" I want to lose weight!

    I think it is important to give these drugs the credit they are due.

    Patty

  21. #261
    Nuss is offline New Member
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    2eatchoc -

    I'm glad that I could help. Certainly using your judgement is best in any case but mostly I wanted you to know that you are not alone. I too have a wonderful husband who keeps me going even on the worst days. As always, there are pros and cons to any advice so make sure that you explore both sides of the info I mentioned in my previous message. Good Luck and keep me posted when you can.

    take care,
    Kris Nuss

  22. #262
    crazygal is offline New Member
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    After going back on them last week (Briefly I took one for two days) I am once again clear and fingers crossed, the symptoms are going away. the brain zaps seem to be gone. The nausea is starting to ease. I have had a really bad week not being able to eat most foods and being sick from even the though of having to eat something. This is the first morning I have woken up without the overwhelming desire to throw up. I am hoping things are on the up and I am more determined than ever to stay off them. My mood is better and I don't seem to be as snappy as I was. On the down side I am in the middle of an extremely painful period. While I was on lex my periods were a lot less painful - ah well such is life!

  23. #263
    auntybiotic is offline Senior Member
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    Crazy Girl,
    Sounds like you are doing well. Try Vitamin E for the painful period cramps, it really helps the cramping.

    Keep in touch.
    aunt y

  24. #264
    catrth is offline New Member
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    I guess I'm one of the lucky ones. I've been completely off now for over two weeks and have only had a slight headache, but my energy levels have zoomed up. I feel like doing things I didn't feel like doing for a couple of years, simple things like reading. I used to read all the time, but just never felt like sitting down and reading after going on Lexapro. Now, I feel like reading again.

    Hope things go better for everyone.

  25. #265
    Katt is offline New Member
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    Hi all! Like most of you, I too was on Lexapro, for a little over a year. But when it seemed like the dose I was on wasn't working anymore, and I was still having some depression (along with other side-effects) I started doing some research about what the heck "Lexapro" really is. Basically it's a poison! I have been doing non-stop research now into actually finding out was is the CAUSE of my anxiety/depression, not just a "quick-fix pill" And I agree, I only went to the doc. once, and they just kept filling my perscription!!! I quit cold-turkey myself about a month ago, and my horrible dizziness and flu-like symptoms are mostly gone, although I still have some here and there. Just as a recommondation for you all, I am reading a fantastic book called "Depression-Free, Naturally" or (7 Weeks to Eliminating Anxiety, Despair, Fatigue, and Anger from Your Life" by Joan Mathews Larson, PH.D. It is soooo worth the read, my eyes have been opened, I'm already feeling better, and I am off ALL my drugs! She uses all natural supplements, and actually explains in DETAIL what the heck is making us all feel the way we do. There is a CAUSE!!! Good luck to everyone... I'm on the slow road to recovery, but at least I finally feel like I am going in a safe direction (for once!)

  26. #266
    cherubino49 is offline New Member
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    I found this post through google and I just want to say how thrilled I am to find some allies in the confusing jungle of prescription drugs.

    Lexapro changed my life. It helped even out my seratonin levels and my emotions. Unfortunately it also led to an unsightly 25 pound weight gain! ACK! I stopped taking the pills (10mg/day) altogether about 2 weeks ago and took up running in hopes that the rise in endorphine levels would negate my need for the drug.

    At first I had terrible migraines and I cried A LOT. Now I'm in the hot flash stage, though none of these things have been severe enough to impede on my quality of life too much. I'm looking for help with this weight loss issue though... It is really as bad as everyone says to get rid of our SSRI-induced pudge?? HELP!

  27. #267
    auntybiotic is offline Senior Member
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    SSRI's slow down the metabolism. Try taking Omega3 Fish Oil.It helps with the depression as well as aids in weight reduction. Let us know how you are doing. How long did you take 10 Mg of Lexapro?

    After you go thru the physical withdrawal from Lexapro, expect at about a month to experience the emotional withdrawal where deep depression sets in and possibly depersonalization. This will pass in time.

    Crazy Girl, Nuss, Johnny Sceptic how are you doing..worried thatyou guys haven't posted..are you OK??

  28. #268
    invisible777 is offline New Member
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    Hi,

    I was on 20 mg Lexapro for 9 weeks only and the side effects were worse than what I was being treated for, so I went off of it at the beginning of August. I didn't taper it down, I just stopped taking it. At first I didn't have any side effects from stopping it until just a few days ago...about 2 weeks after stopping it. I feel the same symptoms that I felt when I started taking it especially the flu-like feeling and sweating. These symptoms hit within an hour of taking the first pill and I will never forget how I felt for that first week, and now I'm feeling those same symptoms. I know it's caused by Lexapro, I just didn't think it could affect me this late after stopping it and after being on it for only 9 weeks. Ugh!

  29. #269
    crazygal is offline New Member
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    Hi all

    Aunty I'm doing ok thanks. I haven't been in form for posting much. I have been feeling a little down. I haven't seen my counsellor for about a month now and things haven't been great in general. However I am seeing her next week and I'm hanging on in there. I have decided to take it easy on myself for a while and slow things down a bit. I am still off the meds and plan on staying that way. Now I just need to sort through all the balls of yarn which have become tangled over the years. I will just do it one strand at a time and I know it will be worth it in the end.
    Invisible try to keep going things will get easier.
    I hope the rest of you are doing ok smiles for all of you
    Take care

  30. #270
    Luna Tick is offline New Member
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    I've been weaning myself of 10 mg. Lexapro. I was taking it for 9 mo. and gained 20 lbs. while eating right and exercising.
    I feel very dizzy and have nausea and BAD hot flashes. I tried Antivert, but only got thirsty.
    I've taken Prozac and Serzone and stopped without serious distress.
    Anyone have solutions for dizziness? Maybe I should take 2.5 mg. every other day?

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