I'm new to the site, and I know this question probably gets posted a lot here, but since everyone's different I wanted to post my specific case...
Starting at the end of May I started having problems with depression & anxiety. I'm still not 100% sure what brought it on, but probably to do with selling our condo due to it being a very stressful environment (noisy neighbours, noise from the street & parking garage, useless building management, etc), and also I had a pretty bad iron deficiency.
To help me cope with the depression & anxiety, I was put on 10mg of Cipralex (Lexapro's name in Canada) in early-to-mid June. The doctor then upped it to 20mg after a week or two (he said that was the maintenance dose. It isn't.. 10mg is. I think he was confusing it with Celexia..). I started seeing a psychiatrist and she had me reduce back down to 10mg in August I think, which I did with only a day or two of withdrawal symptoms a couple of weeks later.
I was feeling fine for a while and since my problems were likely situational, and my husband and I want to start trying to conceive in early 2011, I decided to go off the Cipralex, starting in November.
I was on 10mg/day, and at the advice of my psychiatrist, tapered off as follows (this is the same way I went from 20mg down to 10mg):
Week 1: 10mg Mon/Wed/Fri, 5mg the rest of the days
Week 2: 10mg Mon/Thurs, 5mg the rest
Week 3: 10mg Mon, 5 mg the rest
I followed this pattern to get from 10mg to 5mg, then again from 5mg to 2.5mg (I bought a pill cutter). Then I started it for 2.5mg to 0mg, but was finding that the starting and stopping was causing problems; I'd be okay one day, and feel terrible the next. So I did the first two weeks of the pattern, but decided not to take the final 2.5mg dose.
So my last dose of 2.5mg was about a week and a half ago (Thurs Dec 23). I've been feeling pretty bad off and on through the past week and a half.. some days better than others, but today's been another bad one (I should point out that today is the first day back at work since Christmas)
My main symptoms are:
-General "not good" feeling, usually in the evenings, but sometimes in the day
-Feeling like I'm drunk or in a memory.. hard to describe, but just that I'm not quite in my normal reality
-Sudden short dizzyness, off and on throughout the day. Seems to be worse with sudden head movements, as well as going up & down stairs. This seems to have stopped in the past few days. Not sure if it's gone for good or not.
-Increased heart rate. It's still in the "normal range", but my pulse normally sits around 60 when I'm walking around, and I've counted it at 80bmp when I'm lying in bed, so it's high for me
-Diarrhea most mornings, and sometimes at other times, as well as some nausea sometimes
-Some anxiety with a couple of small almost-panic attacks (I'm getting good at not letting those happen, but I can feel that they've tried to come on)
I also went off my birth control after October, but I think everything's fine with that as I've had two normal cycles.
So my question is, how long can I expect this to last? I'm pretty sure it's just the withdrawal, but when I'm feeling bad, I'm not convinced (the nature of the beast I guess). I know it's different for everyone, but I just feel like if I could have an idea of when this is going to end, I might have an easier time getting through it..
Let me know if you need any other info to be able to give me a more accurate idea.. but I think I've put it all in this long rambling post!