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-   -   Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after (https://www.paxilprogress.org/forums/showthread.php?t=51460)

samarie 02-09-2011 10:40 AM

Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Hello all. As I posted in my introductory thread, I'm currently four weeks (as of yesterday!) Celexa-free after a relatively quick six-week taper that my doctor supervised. I've heard many stories of individuals who experience significant improvement of their withdrawal symptoms after 6-8 weeks off the drug (i've also heard of people quitting cold turkey who've had to withdrawal to speak of...:evil2:) so, that is, for the time being, the point I'm really looking forward to.

Currently, I'm having much more physical symptoms of withdrawal than emotional, which is good. When I was previously on Lexapro in 2009, I attempted to taper off (again, with my doctor's help) and experienced two weeks of the most severe panic attacks I've ever had after a week on the first decreased dose. The fact that I've been fiddling with my dose for almost 10 weeks without any unreasonable anxiety makes my heart sing! I definitely feel like I'm doing the right thing.

As for physical symptoms:
Dizziness - and varying degrees of dizzy at that. I was at a store with my mother right after Christmas, so I was still on a low dose, probably about 5mg from my initial 20, and I literally felt like somebody had spun me around, I couldn't walk straight at all. The dizziness has subsided, to an extent. I'm still a little wobbly on me feet on occasion.

Fatigue - I couldn't get by without a 2 hour nap every afternoon On Celexa, something I never did before, even as a child! I must say, it's gotten better. I can make it without the naps, although I still feel exhausted all the time. However, I've been told this is one of the first things to go when the withdrawal subsides. Can't wait to have my natural energy back!

Dehydration/Thirst - This was particularly bad while I was on the Celexa, and it seems to have subsided a little. I need to drink a lot of water though, A LOT. I have a 24 oz water bottle I carry around with me constantly and I refill it probably about 5 times a day, or I start feeling all dizzy, shaky, and dehydrated. This is one of the worst side effects of SSRIs, I believe. It was bad when I was on Lexapro too though not as bad. I've heard that anything messing with serotonin and norepinephrine have a real dehydrating effect on some people.

Other things - Shakiness, confusion, disorientation, depersonalization, intense hunger, and intolerance to exercise, caffeine, and alcohol have all gotten a little better, but are still there. I must say, I'm a lot worse in the mornings than I am at night. My drinking alcohol in particular is a lot better. I can have multiple drinks and feel happy and giddy, rather than like I've been tranquilized and start falling asleep after a can of beer. Caffeine makes me feel dehydrated, however, I'm helplessly addicted to caffeine, and I'm not willing to go through caffeine withdrawal while doing this whole Celexa song and dance. So, I suffer on with an extra glass of water for every cup of coffee/soda I drink. I noticed that my hands have been shaking A LOT over the past week. It gets better the more hydrate I am though. The increased sweating, thankfully, has started to wane. Geez...

In all honesty, this past week has been pretty rough. My first week in general off meds back in January was good, and I had a lot of energy. It kind of plateaued for the past two weeks, and now I really feel crappy. I keep having waves of depersonalization that kind of freak me out, like all of a sudden I'll feel really spacey and out of it, and start to panic slightly, but then it passes. However, I'd heard from multiple places that sometimes, with Celexa withdrawal, you feel worse, and then start to get better. I really just want my life back.

Anyways, this is mostly just for me to keep track of how I'm doing over the next couple of weeks/months. Of course, any support or advice would be more than appreciated!

(I also just wanted to say that a couple of days ago, just for kicks, put in some of my withdrawal symptoms into the Symptom Checker at WebMD--Again, just for laughs, knowing all of what I'm feeling is the effect of these nasty pills! It told me I should seek medical attention immediately! Which is funny, I'm going in for my third physical since I've been on meds in a few weeks. Each time, I've been checked for thyroid problems, heart problems, diabetes, blood pressure problems, and even a neurological scan, all coming back perfectly normal. It's a true shame really, as all my tests have shown I'm in perfect health. It just makes me beyond angry what these meds have done to me...)

samarie 02-11-2011 01:16 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Alright, not a great past few days. The dizziness was pretty bad for the remainder of Wednesday, and I woke up yesterday with a really bad sinus headache, followed by a fever yesterday afternoon. Now, I have no idea whether or not withdrawal can make you more susceptible to illness, but regardless, I'm trying to take care of myself. LOTS of Vitamin C and tons of water too. I've been taking ibuprofen with psuedoephedrine for the sinus headaches. I've heard from multiple places that pseudoephedrine can trigger panic attacks, so of course I'm a little weary, but I've had about four doses in the past 36 hours and am feeling emotionally fine.

The sucky thing is that I can't really tell what's withdrawal and what's being sick. I've felt beyond exhausted this past week (like I'm going to collapse to the floor exhausted), which was relatively new. I'm really trying to keep optimistic, that the exhaustion is just from whatever sort of cold I've picked up, and when I start feeling better, I'm going to find that the withdrawals have lifted substantially.

My hands have also been shaking like CRAZY, to the point where I can barely write. I have no idea if anyone else has experienced this.

I had a long conversation with my dad the other day. He's been on several different medications in the past, and has had his fun getting off them. He has anxiety and OCD like me, but also suffers from PTSD, anger management issues, and fibromyalgia. Anyways, he basically told me, "you've gotta be patient. You can't just expect to get off a medicine and start feeling 100% the next morning. It might take a few more weeks. It might take a few more months, but you'll get there."

So really, just trying to stay positive. I also should not that since Wednesday night I've started taking about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar diluted with water every night before bed, and when I wake up every morning. Half of me is (half-heartedly) hoping it'll help me lose the weight I've gained, the other half is (really half-heartedly) hoping it'll somehow "detox" me and get my withdrawal over with. We shall see. It can't hurt right?

GraceC 02-11-2011 06:30 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Hi Samarie, Sending you best wishes.

Hang in there!

GC

samarie 02-15-2011 11:49 AM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
5 Weeks as of today! I'm so excited!

This weekend was really rough, as I had a really bad headcold/sinus infection complete with a fever. Lots of fun. But today was the first day I've really been out and about. I actually went to the gym today, for the first time in over a week! I still get these bouts of shakiness and dizziness which really suck. That is, in all honesty, the symptom I can't wait to get rid of. It makes me feel like I have some sort of chronic illness. How ironic, I'm in perfect health!

samarie 02-17-2011 01:03 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
5 weeks, 2 days...

The past few days have been REALLY rough, anxiety-wise (thankfully not withdrawal symptom-wise). I've been dealing with (of all the ****ing things) a pregnancy scare for the past few days, which has driven my anxiety to full-throttle, pre-medication freaking out.

The bad news is, it was sucky feeling like this. The good news is, I'm about 95% sure I'm not pregnant, AND, this is the first time I've felt such extreme emotions of ANY KIND for a year and a half.

There are three settings when you're medicated. There's mild amusement, which is the highest setting, generally the happiest you can be. There's neutral, what you generally are most of the time. Then, there's the lowest setting. Depression, anxiety, new horrible feelings you get that you've never had before. It feels so good to actually FEEL something again, even if it is somewhat irrational anxiety.

The weather in New York, where I currently am, is also BEAUTIFUL. I took a long walk outside today, and I'm planning to go to the gym later this evening. I'm eating super healthy, and I have a lot of wonderful things to look forward to. I'm going to visit my family this weekend, my birthday is on the 28th, and in three weeks I'm taking a (well-deserved) vacation to Florida.

You're all in my thoughts everyone, keep me in yours as well!
:happy:

samarie 02-19-2011 05:18 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
5 weeks, 4 days...the BEST day I've had in a long time. Today is, in all seriousness, the most "normal" I've felt since August 18, 2009, the day I took my first Lexapro and set myself off into this complete hell I've been living. It could not be more fitting, i think, that yesterday was the 1 and a half year anniversary of my first day on SSRIs. I've also lost 8 pounds since January 11! 8 pounds! I could cry! I'm at 126 from 134, without making any real changes except for cutting out the Celexa! What a wonderful day :happy:

GraceC 02-19-2011 08:12 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Samarie,
I am delighted to hear this good news! You deserve your happiness.
GC

samarie 03-03-2011 12:31 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Ugh, I don't know what to do. I'm so angry. My doctor prescribed me some fluconazole to take care of an infection I've had for a while, and I feel like it's completely thrown off all the progress I've made so far. I feel exactly as I did as when I was on Celexa, and I'm terrified this is going to set me back another seven weeks! I was almost two months I was off, and now all these symptoms coming back with a vengeance! I was finally starting to lose weight, now the intense hunger is back. I feel dizzy, nervous, tired, disoriented. I've been doing research up to my elbows on the effects of fluconazole, and it can totally retrigger a withdrawal in someone who's finally off of an SSRI. so, fantastic. I wish I didn't take it. I so wish I didn't take it, because I knew there was a possibility for an interaction, and I took it anyway because the pharmacist told me it would be fine. But clearly, it's not. What does a pharmacist know about these drugs? The same as a psychiatrist I'm sure, very, very little. I'm just so, so, so angry. All my progress, out the window. It's gone. I'm right back to square one.

GraceC 03-03-2011 04:19 PM

Re: Celexa - Quick taper, four week mark and after
 
Samarie, I don't think all your progress is out the window and you're right back to square one. You are on a journey; this is a road bump. Stay on course and you will be fine.
GC


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