I've been on effezor 16 years. It helps me tremendously w/ anxiety and severe depression. None of the risks of effexor were known @ the time I began taking it.. My Dr. said since it is so effective for me, there is no reason to try and get off it. I'm sure I'm going to be an Effexor XR lifer. Opinions/ideas on me staying on it for life? I'd love the feedback. Thanks!
I too take several medications for my mental health and expect to be on them for life. I figure if they are necessary to help me function and lead a productive life, then so be it. The alternative just doesn't seem like an option as I can't live with severe depression and anxiety. I've accepted my mental health condition and continue to work on improving it through talk therapy, and the medication allows me to do so.
My doctor switched me to Effexor about 3 months ago because my body was so used to another anti-depressant it was not really effective anymore. I'm surprised it is still working for you after 16 years. In my opinion, any doctor that tells a patient they will be on something for life, other than medication for a life threatening disease, only wants to continue to treat the symptoms without ever getting to the cause. If you don't mind my asking... is the doctor who prescribes your Effexor, a regular MD, or psychiatrist? Sure, if something is working, there is no need to switch to something else, but personally I would be alarmed if one of my doctors said I would be on it for LIFE. Isn't he/she interested in finding out the cause of your anxiety and severe depression?
You're lucky it's worked for so long. There's no way your Dr. can know it won't stop being effective one day. That's what often happens. Should that ever happen to you, your Dr. should try an antidepressant that functions similarly to effexor and it will probably work for you. It doesn't have to be a problem and it's not worth being concerned about.
Hi EffexorForLife (heh cute name),
I was talking with my Doctor recently, and she said, something along the lines of - my med has been of such benefit to you, I want you to consider the idea of being on my med the rest of my life. I brought up that a lot of people "resent" their mental health medication - an example being folks who are bipolar (many feel very good when they are in manic phase because they feel invincible, etc., and their medication keeps this manic phase from happening). I told her that I get EXCITED when it's time for my dose of medicine. For the first time in my life, I feel HOPE, I feel HAPPY, I feel OPEN to talking to people, I want to go places and spend TIME with people, I am MOTIVATED to clean my house... the list goes on.
I can imagine after 16 years of being on a medication, you've grown used to it, and maybe even forget how bad things were before you started it. Because I'm on so many scripts, I decided I would try to stop one that I had been on for about 6 or 7 years, and when I titrated down to about 50% dose, the pain came RAGING back, and I was like OMG I LOVE YOU my medication! Now, I appreciate it like nothing else, because I forgot how much it has helped me over the years. Your Effexor might be working the exact same way - though I don't suggest you perform the same experiment. LOL Anyway, if a medication has changed your life and keeps you healthy, why not stay on it for life, right? :)
- Effexor Information for Consumers
- Effexor Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Effexor (detailed)
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