It's only been day 2 (insurance cancelled) of withdrawal & so far I've been feeling as though when I'm walking to whatever destination, my body arrives but my brain delays its arrival. I feel extremely anxious, nauseous, short-tempered, dizzy, sensitive & confused. I like how I felt while taking Effexor but these withdrawals are unbearable... how much longer can I expect to have them?
Many people need to withdraw from Effexor gradually. Abrupt withdrawal as you are doing can cause extreme side effects which can last far longer when you have stopped so suddenly. There are many reports from others about it being horrible to come off of it. Call your pharmacy and find out about possible cheaper ways to get it. And check out healthcare.gov to find out about far cheaper insurance policies. With insurance, Effexor can be just $4.00 a month. Health insurance could be vitally important depending on what happens to you. Under ObamaCare, you will soon be taxed for not having health insurance. Good luck.
I have been on effexor for about 2 years now and the same thing happened to me when my insurance was cancelled and I tried to quit suddenly but my symptoms got so bad at one point that I ended up caving and spending the 300+ dollars to have my prescription refilled. So I decided after that I was going to use what I had to slowly ween off of it as best I could. I started with a half a dose every day for a while until I felt I could go longer. Then it was every other day. After that I tried only taking them when I started to feel the nausea and vertigo coming on. After time it started to go longer. I could wait 2 or so days before taking another half a pill. At some point my body just started rejecting it. Every time I would take a pill I would vomit it right back up. I tested it after that and just didn't take any. I would get dizzy yes, but it was very tolerable. Soon enough that went away and now I feel better than I have in years.
I didn't realize how much that stuff took over my body. I feel free now. I would recommend getting off it if and when you can. There's also a few things you can do that help immensely. Vitamin 5-HTP, omega 3 oils, and a daily vitamin can help with the mood side affects. I found that a benadryl helps with the dizzy and vertigo and putting an ice pack on the back of the neck really helps with nausea. Now, I am no expert and this is just my story and how I got through it. I know it feels like the side affects will never go away, coming from someone who has beaten it, they will eventually subside. Just be strong :)
I have been on effexor for over 10 years. I originally was prescribed the med for anxiety. I have tried a few times to rid myself of the med but met with severe withdrawal symptoms. I also have brain delays. I am extremely short tempered and feel like I'm getting a cold. My head is heavy and when I move my eyes I get a strange feeling in my head. I cry a lot. I seem to be in a daze. It is simply awful. I have read and read on the topic. I brought myself down to .75 mg. Then, I took the pill apart and divided the beads. I did this for a few weeks. Then, I tried to go off completely but it's been a disaster. I have read that others separate the beads to roughly 35mg. They take it every other day. Then once every three days and so on until they are off. I am going to try this as I went from 35 each day to stopping and it hasn't worked. I feel horrible. Please anyone help!
I have been on effexor xr for a year and he had increased my dosage a couple months ago. And now I'm without insurance. I have to wait till the next enrollment period on the healthcare.gov sight before I can see about insurance through there. My hospital here has outpatient social workers that can help me grt my refill but I hate the fact that they schedule the appointment so far away from the day I need it to be refilled. I have been taking a lesser dosage to conserve what pills I have left. I hate the withdrawal symptoms.
My only daughter died on April 3, 2013 of an accidental drug and alcohol overdose. On October 27, 2013 her grief stricken boyfriend died too. I was non-functioning at that point. My Dr. put me on Effexor and I have hated it ever since I started it. I was feeling the occasional brain zaps and dizziness from time to time over the year but didn't know it was from the drug until I went off of it completely.
My doctor weened me off by changing my dosage from 150 to 75 and then after a month down to 35 and then told me after a month of 35 to stop taking it. I did that on October 27th 2014 and it has been hell.
The first two weeks I couldn't leave the house because the dizziness and nausea and brain buzzing was overwhelming. I finally went back to work last week but I a cannot drive, I can barley handle the elevator ride to my floor. It has been 4 weeks and I feel like this is my life sentence.
I went to a new Dr. today because mine retired and he said there really isn't anything he can do except refer me to a shrink for medication management.
If I knew there was an end date to all of this, it would be easier to take. I would have thought that a month of being completely medication free, I would be feeling much better by now. That is not the case and I am feeling defeated.
How can any Dr. in good conscious prescribe this crap? It is pure poison.
I've been on Effexor, and later Effexor XR, 225mg a day, as well as two other meds (Lamictal 200mg & Seroquel 50mg), post hospitalization for severe Depression, for 14 years.
Five years ago I began seeing a wonderful counselor who has helped me accept and love myself, and I'm hoping this will help me through the following: Recently, I decided I want to find out who I am without these meds in my system. I made an appointment with a respected psychiatrist in my area, for the sole purpose of discontinuing the meds. The supervision of a professional is very important to me due to the horror stories I've read about discontinuing each of the 3. I first saw him a month ago. We started with Effexor. I decreased 37.5mg every for days. When I dropped to the last four days and the final dosage of 37.5mg, I felt waves of dizziness and nausea, with slight headache. This got better over the four days. My last pill was 2 days ago. I have slight headache, dizziness and nausea, sensitivity to light and noise, and fast cycling hot flashes. Actually, it's not near as bad as I expected. Not saying it's pleasant, but doable. I haven't had the underlying, slightly depressed uneasiness I've felt for years on the meds, my cognition is definitely clearer, and I've been more assertive and less reactive.
Yes, this is only the beginning, yet worth the journey, even if at some point in the future, I need to start meds again.
This is an oldish forum - but thought I would add something for anyone that is going through withdrawal at the moment, though I suppose the information is much like what everyone else has said.
Have been tapering off for about 8 months - 150mg - 136.5 - 75 - 36.5 - and when I ran out 8 days ago, I decided to go off it.
The first 2 days were fine, day 3 I started to get the head-zaps, day 4 was montrous, and I barely could get off the couch - Head zaps, and nausea. Then day 5 it seemed to ease, and I started to return to my normal routine. Day 6 I was completely snappy and impatient, and since then I have been calmer, and the head-zaps are very minor.
As a side note: I have been trying to lose weight (I am about 30kg overweight) for 2.5 months, and have been losing only 200-300g a week, despite going to the gym and doing moderate cardio and weights, and having about a 1500 calorie deficit. In the week that I stopped the pill, I went down 700g. I am not sure if its connected or not, but I have often wondered if I put on so much weight because of the pills.
Also, I am way more motivated and have a much greater clarity in my head.
I've been having a horrible time getting off Venlafaxine. I was taking Celexa for about 4 months and wanted to stop because it didn't help with my depression/anxiety plus it had some bad side effects. I was having a hard time getting off of Celexa (which seems like a joke after experiencing Venlafaxine withdrawals) so my doctor prescribed me Venlafaxine to get off of the Celexa. She prescribed me to 225 MG. My depression disappeared for about 2 weeks and my anxiety was better. I took 225 MG for almost 4 months and I can't believe what a total zombie it turned me into! I was extremely dazed all the time and almost felt drugged. I started to feel like the dose was way too high for my body. My body felt strained like I overdosed and couldn't digest the medicine. I couldn't think at all. At first I barely slept then I started sleeping up to 18 hours a day. I couldn't get out of bed, I was just too tired to move.
It would be a strain to even move my arm because I was so exhausted. I even got into an accident while driving. It was like I checked out for a second while driving and all of the sudden I noticed the car in front of me was stopped but it was too late. It took me a while to understand what had happened because I was so dazed all of the time but I stopped driving after that. I felt like I woke up finally and I was in total shock that I hadn't seen how crazy this medicine was making me feel. Anyway I started my withdrawal and have went from 225 to 150 to 112 to 75 to 37.5 to 1/2 of 37.5 in 4 months. I've been on half pill for about 2 weeks and have been having a really hard time. I'm still very tired ALL of the time. Even at this dose I feel like I need to go to bed after being up for 2 hours some days. I don't even remember what it's like to be myself anymore. I can't think clearly at all. Some days I feel extremely depressed, suicidal, and just hopeless. I want to burst into tears a lot and other times I get so irritable. I'm a nervous wreck. I feel like I'm going totally nuts some days and it's scary. I live alone but my family knows that I'm struggling with withdrawals. I'm 19 years old and this has totally put my life on hold. I had to take off school this year and I have no social life anymore. I've been trying to stay awake longer now that my dose is lower but If I can manage a relaxed seven hour day I feel like I've been up for 78 hours. I feel totally out of control of my life. I want to be off this medicine so bad! I will never take another medicine again after this. I am really having a hard time at this dose of about 18 MG. It's almost as hard as when I lowered from my highest dose. I'm not sure If I should start cutting the half pill in half or just start taking it every other day as my next step. I take daily vitamins, fish oil, and B12 everyday. Does anyone know any other supplements that might help at all? Also I'm wondering if anyone who has lowered their dosage like I have could comment on if the withdrawals keep getting worse from here? Sorry for such a long post but it feels a lot better to be able to share this with people who understand! Any feedback/advice is really appreciated!!
I am coming off of venlafaxine. I first started with 1/2 the pill, then I did a 1/4 of the pill. Now I stopped taking it and I am on day 3 without it. There are not enough words to express how I am feeling right now. I keep hearing this weird noise in my ear or in my head. My vision is shaky, I feel very hot, and my mood is horrible. I am miserable. I just wanted off of it because I felt like I lost myself taking it. I wasn't happy or sad, I couldn't remember the last time I laughed or cried. I felt emotionless. Now I'm in a horrible mood, I'm frustrated, And I feel terrible. When will this stop?? I feel like I just got off of a 10 day nonstop Merry-go-round ride. Yuck!!!
Effexor XR was (sadly) the only drug that worked with my anxiety and depression. I've been weaning off now for two years, going from 225mg to 37.5mg in the first year. Since January of last year, I've been trying to wean off the 37.5 dosage - the lowest available in capsule form - and it's been difficult. It's an incredibly slow process but I have at least avoided some terrible side effects. The only way it seems to work FOR ME is by opening the capsule and counting out the beads (I stopped completely yesterday, after getting down to taking only five beads). If I eliminated too many beads in one day, my brain would tell me. What has helped me manage dizziness and brain zaps when they come about is lots of water & fruit, fresh food (nothing processed), no alcohol and daily DHA oils (I'm allergic to much fish/shellfish, so I'm not getting essential oils that the brain needs. Flora has a vegan DHA capsule, so no fishy burps).
Daily walks in the sunshine (on days when I dont' feel well enough to do 30 mins of full cardio) help with the anxiety. Juicing also seems to have helped on days when the brain zaps were particularly terrible. I don't know if there is any scientific basis for any of this - or if all elements of my plan are necessary. It's just what is working for me at this moment. Best of luck.
I started out on 75 mg. approximately 8 years ago and stayed on that dose for a year. I easily weaned myself down to 37.5mg and had been on that dose (generally sub-therapeutic) for 7 years. 6 months ago I cut 37.5mg tab in half to stave off nausea, diarrhea and vertigo. 1 month ago I cut the 37.5mg tab in one quarter. As long as I took this very small amount I did not experience any withdrawal. Last night was the first time I did not take an effexor tab in 8 years. I have mild underlying queasiness and mild nausea when I turn my head quickly however I expect this to pass. My plan is to take a drug holiday, take yoga, treadmill 3-5 times a week, and biofeedback. I wish all a successful wean off of this med.
I was on Effexor for about 10 years. I was on 375mg for most of that time. I easily got down to 150mg about a year ago. Then it got hard. I got down to 75mg but the side effects were unbearable so i went back to the 150mg. With my dr help I tapered to 75mg and then switched to Prozac for one week. Took half the dose of prozac for another week and was done. Initially it was great. Very few side effects. 6 weeks have passed and I find myself crying, irritable and so dizzy i can't get out of bed. I am not sure if these are side effects or my anxiety and depression. The dizziness is unbeatable. I cannot eat or i vomit. I will never let anyone i know or care for use Effexor. Anyone know of these are withdrawal symptoms after so long?
Im now up to day seven without taking any effexor. I started weaning down from 150mg just after Christmas. Im hoping that I'm over the worst of it now but I think without this forum l would have given up at day 4 and gone back on the meds as I was feeling so terrible. Thank you all xxx
- Effexor Information for Consumers
- Effexor Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Effexor (detailed)
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