5 mg reduction after years

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I'm currently on my 4th week of a 5 mg reduction. I was originally taking 30 mg of cit for 7-8 years and now on 25 mg. The last couple of days I've been experiencing feeling down. I am also having some problems within my current relationship. I've been crying everyday for the past 3 days.

Part of the reason I began to reduce was because I was having numbing and low sex drive side affects that were beginning to show in my relationship. I have always been aware of these side affects but have tried my hardest to not have them effect my partner.

I'm uncertain if to go back up in dose at this point. At such a small reduction I'm scared that feeling low like this is a sign that maybe I need to stay on the dose I was on.

Anyone experience depression as part of withdrawal?

Any feed back is greatly appreciated.

Thank you

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18 Replies

  • Posted

    hi,

    with only this small reduction ,and the symtoms described ,it looks to me unlikely to be from the drug.

    usually the WDsymtoms are very profound ,mainly at the phychosomatic level ,and secondary from the phy chological level.

    This is my experience from my WD procedure from this drug ( very very slow in a period of 2 years! ) .

    in my oppinion, wait some time more before you decide to return in the higher dose ,and look if you can improve your present state of life.

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  • Posted

    Just as your body reacts with side effects when you start to take an SSRI, it will do the same when you withdraw
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  • Posted

    Hi Michelle

    I came off these meds before and I found I became very emotional and could cry at anything - and I mean anything (someone else's child would perform in a play and I'd be the one blubbing ....... or I'd see an injured bee and find myself crying over it)???!!  I found it hard to control my emotions over the smallest of things.  It did calm down, but was definitely able to cry more easily.  Citalopram soothes your emotions, and it is often hard to cry when taking these meds - come off them and your emotions return.

    Feeling flat may not be the withdrawal effects of the drug - what you could be experiencing is low serotonin, which is what I get.

    Bear with me a little.  Serotonin is our 'happy hormone' and low levels of this can play havoc with our mental and physical well being - depression, anxiety, sleep problems, over eating / under eating, tiredness, muscle aches and a whole host of other unpleasantries.  In a nutshell (and I'm not going to get the scientific names correct, or the correct explanation, but you'll get an idea) ..... Serotonin travels along a nerve (there are billions of nerves), leaves that nerve and travels along the neighbouring nerve.  In between the nerves is a space where the Serotonin collects before being reabsorbed to the next one.  Citalopram and other SSRI's are Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, so they inhibit (delay) the Serotonin being reabsorbed to the next nerve making them wait there whilst they collect more ....... this action makes us feel good, happier.  When we come off SSRI's the Serotonin isn't 'collected' and often goes back to be normal again.  If you don't make enough Serotonin, you can start to feel flat ... which is what happens with me.

    When I've come off these before I took a natural SSRI called 5-HTP and l-tyrosine (both non prescription and are bought over the counter), and they (apparently) have a similar action as Citalopram and other prescribed SSRI's, but without the unpleasant side effects and doesn't affect your sex drive (some people do feel some side effects though, but not like Citalopram produces).  You can start and stop 5-HTP at any time - no need to wean on/off.

    You can't take 5-HTP when you're on a prescription SSRI as both have the same action and they don't mix.

    It could be that your body is adjusting still, and you'll feel ok again in time ... or you might find that your Serotonin is low.

    I'm down to 5mg Citalopram too (from 20mg) and am still feeling fine.  I will go back onto 5-HTP and l-tyrosine once I stop Cit.  It might be something you could try too.

    So for me, when I've come off these meds before I have experienced a flat feeling, and taking 5-HTP and l-tyrosine helped me.  The crying ..... well, I just used to keep a big hanky in my bag rolleyes

    So you could persevere and come off completely and then try 5-HTP etc or increase your Citalopram temporarily and see if your emotions settle.

    Sorry for the long reply wink

    K xx

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    • Posted

      Hi Kate

      Great info from yourself as usual your experiences have helped me a lot , I have remained on 20mg for the past 6 months defiantly feeling better. I am still having lots of thoughts ( seem to still be constantly checking in which does effect mood) Can cope with this have read lots of books and try to not analyse , face the thoughts and let the thought float through. Just wondered reading your reply about serotonin, as the changes in mood can vary within minutes on and off through the day. Is it something I need to keep on working on with accepting or am I still a bit low in serotonin and need to increase. Would love to hear your point of view.

      Lynn

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    • Posted

      Should read definitely feeling better!! (Predictive text๐Ÿ˜ฌ)
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    • Posted

      Hi Lyn

      Yes that's a good approach - letting the thought be there and floating on through - this in time desitizes the thought, making it less important, and eventually not bothersome at all.  Everyone has thoughts (good and bad) and often the bad thoughts are fleeting and don't bother people.  When they're accompanied with anxiety, they frighten us and so the thought sticks to an already tired mind, and then keeps on scaring us - and a cycle sets in.  When you take medication which helps to heal our anxiety (that old Serotonin again), usually the thoughts start to lose their power and importance, and gets put back into perspective, and eventually dismissed as nothing more than a fleeting thought once more.  I was plagued with weird thoughts, causing me huge amounts of anxiety, and then the anxiety kept the thoughts in my head.  I worked on each thought, letting it be there, telling myself they were just a symptom of anxiety, and with the medication too, though they were still present in my mind for some time, the anxiety about them lessened until I had the thought but they didn't bother me as much.  Eventually the thoughts were put to the back of my mind and still today, they don't bother me even if I think of them.

      It might be that even though you're feeling better, you still have to give it more time ... or of course increasing your dose might be the answer (we all respond to different doses).  I recovered after about 6 months, but do remember from then on I improved more and more as time passed and reckon by a year I had improved even more.

      Of course working on and accepting these thoughts is still vital too - but maybe with that dose increase it could be just the extra push it needs?

      I know the maximum dose of Citalopram is 40mg, though some people struggle on that - again we're all different.  It may be worth talking to your doctor and maybe try an small increase to see if that does the trick (remember all increases/decreases come with side effects briefly again).

      When I first started on SSRI's it was quite a while before I found the better medication for me (dose was fine).  Citalopram is my third type of SSRI - first one didn't agree with me, second one discontinued and was lucky third time around.

      I always say its trial and error finding the best SSRI suitable for your body, and then finding the correct dose to suit you too.

      Decisions ..... always decisions.  

      Hope that helps???

      K xx

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    • Posted

      Typo's rolleyes

      Densensitizes .... not desitizes ??

      Good approach should have been 'right approach'

      biggrinbiggrin

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    • Posted

      Thanks for this Kate

      Have spoken with doctor she is happy for me to give it more time or increase if I feel I need it. Like you she states we are all different there are no rules. Think I will give it a bit longer and see how it goes what's another few weeks, that's something I have learnt ??

      Lynn

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    • Posted

      On reading back you are right, defiantly does read well, I like your humour Kate๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€

      Lynn x

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    • Posted

      That's the best I think, waiting a bit longer on your current dose (because often week to week things can change), and then try a dose increase (again having to wait to see if it suits).

      I've been reading that there is (or will be) a DNA test that people can take that will determine which anti depressant will be more suitable for them before starting one, and which helps avoid unnecessary side effects and wasted time.  Apparently its based on 2 liver enzymes which will point you straight to which medicine will beneficial / tailored for you ... because there's not one single reliable med that suits all.

      Interesting!! biggrin

      But yes, keep on with the relaxing and accepting the thoughts, and I'm certain that and the correct dose will in time lead you to recovery.

      K xx

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    • Posted

      That's really interesting news! Hope we never need it again though! Out of curiosity, do you ever get up in the morning feeling sort of OK, then by the time you're sitting with your first cuppa , you feel you could go back to bed for another sleep?

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    • Posted

      Oh I could always go back to bed - anytime of the day rolleyes  Not sure if that's the medication or just me (probably meds).  When I first took these meds years ago I couldn't get to sleep, but now its the opposite.  I'm sure I was a cat in my previous life who just slept loads eek

       

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    • Posted

      I could sleep on a clothesline. Waiting an hour or so before I go shopping. Saving loads of money because I just shop once a week latel, only buy what I need!
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    • Posted

      Hi Kate,

      Thanks so much for your explanation.  I was hoping that with such a small reduction, I wouldnt get depressed again.  It has been so long since I started this medicine, I have forgotten if I was this depressed before.  

      I wanted to at least get to 20 mg in hopes that it would help with the side affects.  The good thing is that emotions have come back.  But too much emotion can be overwhelming.  I'm praying that my body can acclimate.  

      If I ever am able to get off, I will def try the supplements you suggested.

      Thanks so much!

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    • Posted

      I've been on 5mg for around 6 months and at first I felt the drop when I reduced.to that dose initially, and then my body got used to it and I've been fine ever since - and no withdrawl effects either.

      This week I decided not to reduce by 5mg every other day, but instead I crushed the 5mg up and took 2.5mg.  4th day in taking only 2.5mg and strangely today I've just noticed it again - feeling flat.  Its my body readjusting.

      Yes you do forget what it feels like, and sometimes it can be a little shock again.  

      I'm sure your body will adjust - you could always try 2.5mg so the drop is even smaller?

      K x

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