This topic in the threads was closed on the site three months ago, but nowhere in the responses did I see an answer to how long the symptoms last... can some please comment? I am experiencing everything you all described... and could not believe my eyes when someone else used the word constant "rebooting." I've been saying that to my husband for weeks. Someone please tell me this will all go away and this is not really who I am or what I have to live with.I've weaned myself and it now has been a week off completely. Just writing this post is making me cry
My name is Gordon: I can offer no advice but, would suggest that if possible, you speak to your GP/therapist regarding your symptoms and perhaps they can be addressed through an anti-anxiety agent. There is no exact time limit for clearing of the half life of particular medications. What you have used to 'balance out' a deficit/surplus in neurotransmitters(which are there to address the neurotransmitter imbalance), not being there, the problem will reassert itself, perhps manifesting in different ways. Try very hard not to despair. I have been through this on numerous occasions and you WILL come out the other side. Please feel free to keep in contact and do not feel that you are alone in what is being experienced. Gordon
dkowdawg2, For me all depended on myself. I suffered from PPD. I was taking LEX 20mg. And I would constant make myself or (reboot) do things around the house and spent time with my 2 girls. The rebooting I had was only while being depressed. Not on the withdrawl. I would litterly tell myself to get up from bed. I didnt want to get up or do anything. So What I did to keep me out of the house and out of bed was to start a garden. Due to the enclosure at home, I had constant thinking of nonsense that didnt even make sense. SO starting a garden during the withdrawl was a big help. I built a retaining wall, bought some many different flowers, solars lights, animal figures, anything associated with outdoor garden. What really motivated me to get out of the house was thinking if they had bloomed.
Also what I learned during the withdrawl is that its all in our mind. We think of nonsense and then believe it. Try to get out of the house and start a project outdoor. Why dont you start collecting different color hanging baskets?
Think about it, you will get out of the house, drive to your local store, such as Menards and spent time there. Keep your mind and thoughts on a project that will keep you motivated. That way you dont have time to think about your withdrawl.. I realy hope something I said helps. Good Luck.
I'm not able to "connect" to your comment about "rebooting" and not sure what you're taking Lexapro for, so my comments are based solely on my personal experiences from "serotonin withdrawal syndrome" from both Lexapro and Zoloft. I am currently diagnosed with OCD, GAD, and ADHD, but was first diagnosed was post-partum depression and OCD over 13 years ago. Began 200 mg of Zoloft daily in 1998... which was (mostly) successful for me until I became pregnant with my 2nd child in 2003 & had to discontinue all meds. Began 10mg of Lexapro mid 2006 when my OCD and anxiety peaked beyond the point I could manage without meds.
In response to your question... "how long the symptoms last"... based on my online research & personal experience... the withdrawal symptoms from Lexapro, Zoloft and other SSRI antidepressants seem to vary, in length & severity, depending on the dosage and length of time on the medication, plus individual tolerance. Regardless of the dose and/or amount of time on an SSRI antideprssant... I've personally experienced withdrawal symptoms within 2-3 days of missing a dose or deciding to discontinue the med... and the unpleasant symptoms have lasted weeks into months! Based on my comments below, I can only suggest that you evaluate the reasons why you began taking the Lexapro, how it improved your "quality of life" vs. the reasons you decided to discontinue the medication and any recurrence or increase/aggravation of symptoms relating to why you started taking Lexapro to begin with.
I've only managed to slowly "taper" off of Lexapro once (about 9 months ago), while switching over to Celexa (mostly because of the similarity of the molecular formula of both drugs & Celexa was much less expensive). Unfortunately, Celexa seemed to greatly worsen my depression and did nothing for my anxiety. Deciding to go back onto Lexapro about 3 months ago (considering how hard I "fought" to wean myself off it, all while dealing with the very unpleasant "withdrawal" symptoms)... was one of the most difficult decisions I've made in a very LONG time. My personal withdrawal symptoms consisted of brain zaps, headaches, dizziness, nausea, severe cold and flu like symptoms, sharp stabbing pains in my head & ears, intense skin sensitivity (similar to the brain zaps... being touched caused a very uncomfortable "zinging" or electrical sensation... med term "parasthesia"?). My withdrawal symptoms from both Lexapro & Zoloft have lasted at a minimum 6 weeks... and unfortunately, some symptoms lasted 3+ months.
I don't know that I've answered or addressed your question(s) in any way. I simply hope that by sharing my personal experience(s), you know that you ARE NOT ALONE! And that only you can decide the benefits of the med vs. its side effects vs. your ability to "survive and outlast" the withdrawal symptoms. I'd also encourage you to research "serotonin withdrawal syndrome" and compare the symptoms described to what you're personally experiencing. Reading so many posts about everyone's experiences with Lexapro scared the crap out of me. However, I've been on this medication "roller coaster" for 10-13 years. Finding the right SSRI, SSNRI and/or other combination of medications, is frequently time consuming and often very frustrating. I strongly suggest researching your condition(s), suggested treatments and medication(s) AND never be afraid to ask your prescribing Dr. questions... and be persistent! Don't let your prescribing Dr dismiss your questions, your symptoms/side effects, or the information you've researched. Not all Drs are equally informed or experienced with serotonin syndrome (too much serotonin) or serotonin withdrawal syndrome (physical withdrawal from an SSRI antidepressant and/or lessening serotonin availability)... both are very REAL syndromes with VERY REAL symptoms that strongly effect your daily ability (or inability) to function.
Hang in there! And feel free to comment or ask any additional questions.
I've been looking for the answer to the same question. I have been reading and reading about lexapro and it's side effects and especially withdrawal symptoms. I found out I was pregnant and weaned according to my psychiatrist's directions -- turns out i was weaned way too quickly (from 20 to 0 in 5 days), but i guess it's lose/lose since i'm pregnant. I am experiencing horrific symptoms, and my husband and i can't figure out how i'm going to take care of my children when he goes back to work. i can barely function. i'm having trouble typing this, and i'm usually very good with words. PLEASE read the post initiated by auntybiotic about weaning her daughter off lexapro. it is by far the most helpful info you will find. there are almost 9,000 posts, but if you skim thru it it's worth it. also, look for posts on lexapro by an erinkj. oh, and search for "Lexapro - Withdrawal symptoms?" --another good thread.
it is scary how many people have been given misinformation about "no weaning side effects" and "safe while pregnant" by their doctors regarding lexapro. it is also scary that i consulted with TWO different physicians about weaning and NEITHER know anything about the symptoms i'm having or how long they can last (months in worst-case scenarios according to many posts).
AND EVERYONE, PLEASE REPORT YOUR NEGATIVE SYMPTOMS TO THE FDA! NOT ENOUGH PEOPLE REPORT THEIR SYMPTOMS AND SIDE EFFECTS, AND PEOPLE WHO TRUST THEIR DOCTORS (LIKE ME) END UP ON THE WRONG SIDE OF UNINFORMED!!! Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088 (it says this right on the lexapro site -- what it doesn't say is ANYTHING about withdrawal symptoms... no mention whatsoever of what happens when it's time to STOP taking lexapro.)
My husband was prescribed Lexapro for anxiety and stress. Six weeks later he killed himself. I have lived with my husband for nearly 17 years. He has always had a little stress and tension in his life. Mostly due to caring for his parents, children and grandchildren and constantly worrying about his siblings. He was a true family man. The day before his death he had canned green beans and tomatoes. He took his grandson for a haircut and got one himself. He did a little work for an elderly couple a few miles down. He worked in the garden when he got home. We had a spat. I figured he was hot and tired due to working outdoors in 90 degree weather. But nothing really different than any other. I figured it would all blow over just like all the others have before. The next morning he was gone from a gun shot wound to the head. The day of his death, was the same day as his nephew's birthday party. He worshipped his parents and his father's birthday was the following day.
Their 50th wedding anniversary is next month. My husband and I have been planning a party and looking at new wedding bands for over a year now for his parents. We had planned to take the kids to Coney Island that week. He has a new grand baby due in October. He was a wonderful man who looked at least 10 years younger than he was. He had energy and stamina and would help anyone who needed it at any time. And just like that he is gone!
- Lexapro Information for Consumers
- Lexapro Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Lexapro (detailed)
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