Can I lower my dose

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I've been on fluoxetine for about 10 weeks, went up to 40mg about 6 weeks ago, I've really tried to be patient with the side effects but his last week my anxiety is just as bad as before I started these and my depression has increased. I don't have a doc appointment for 2 more weeks but want to get off of these, if I go from 40mg to 20mg until my doctors appointment will it have a lot of side effects?

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  • Posted

    Recovery comes in waves so your anxiety will be up and down for a while yet. This is quite normal. It is tough on these meds but persevering does pay off.

    However if you want to withdraw try and stick it out until you see your doctor. Reducing takes weeks / months so you can avoid withdrawal.

    K x

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply, I am trying to be patient but I thought the worse of it would be over by now, I just want my life back. I'll try to wait until I see my doctor

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    • Posted

      Not really - took me 6 months to recover.  Some people recover sooner and some even later.  You can't hurry recovery - it'll happen for you in its own time.  It really is worth persevering as many do give up before the meds kick in.

      But we are all different of course..

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hi Kate 

      I'm only just starting my 6th week - going ok up and down. Do you have any advice on how to reduce to minimise withdrawl side effects when you make the decision to stop? My plan is to only be on these for 4-6 months all going well. I take 20mg per day. 

      Thanks in advance.

      Cheers Craig  

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    • Posted

      Hi Craig

      I've read that its best to stay on meds a good year before thinking of coming off, which minimises the return of the symptoms.  When I came off meds I spent a year doing it and reduced by 5mg each time going from 20 / 15 / 10 / 5 / 2.5 / 1.25 / 0 and I didn't get any withdrawal at all.  I came off once before and that time reduced by 10mg each time over much less time and had withdrawal.  So doing it the least possible over the longest time I found was the best.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks K 

      That's really interesting and encouraging. Docs push to do it fast. 

      I have had a hell of a time going on to them and will prob stay on for 6 months (this is what the doc recomended). I was put on them as I lost control of my sleep and developed massive anxiety towards sleep and the sleeping medication I was taking - this was on the back of a business trip overseas. What I didn't realise before this is that am prone to anxiety and I loaded a heap of stress on top! Even at the start of 6 weeks, I think I know know my self so much better. 

      Anyway need to keep focused on my recovery, but typical of me I jump to the end goal =). 

      Thanks for the advice. It's really appreciated. 

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    • Posted

      I have come off these meds before and did it really really slowly. I was so happy that my Doctor directed me that way as when I finally stopped I had very few problems.
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    • Posted

      Yes I've read so many posts here from people who've been advised to come off much too quick and they end up in a worse situation than when they were taking them.

      Stress is usually the forerunner to anxiety ..... and nobody ever sees it coming until its bit you hard.  Yes, you can't hurry recovery because you'll just end in going round in circles.  Everything has to be done slow and relaxed.

      Hope it goes well.

      K x

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    • Posted

      It was so long ago... but I do remember my Doctor at that time saying that typical society always wants a quick fix... they want the drugs to start working quick.. then when they do they want to stop them quick. I think even if you feel like the weaning off is slow.. I say go even slower! It will not kill you to take your time. I have no desire to ever come off them again.
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    • Posted

      Hi Kate 

      I'm at 6.5 weeks. 20mg per day. 

      I get good patches of days, but feel quite disconnected most of the time. My anxiety has dropped and I have some days that are very emotional. I know it's very early, but is it normal not to have good full days? It's like I get snipits of feeling good/clear then back to this very disconnect or emotional feeling. 

      It's kind of like I get blips during each day, some. stronger than others. 

      Keen to get your thoughts. Ta, Craig

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    • Posted

      Hi Craig

      Sounds like things are happening for you then.  Disconnection (or depersonalisation) comes about because you're constantly watching and questioning yourself day after day making you tired, which makes you feel detached from the world.  Being emotional is typical too - everything about your being is magnified at the moment, and emotions will be too.  I cried many, many times.

      Yes its normal not have good full days.  Little by little your body is healing, so these good spells will start happening mixed with the illness still.  For me I started having glimpses of 'normality' which lasted maybe an hour to start with, then I started feeling calmer in the evenings only (I didn't know I was recovery still), and then the calmness gradually crept into the afternoon, then by midday, mornings and finally I started to wake with no anxiety.  This all took me 6 months (3 months from when the good feelings started), but throughout all this I'd still wake every day feeling dreadful and get blips when I'd have days of not feeling good.  Even though I'd wake with bad anxiety it slowly eased off during the day.

      It creeps up on you real slow, so you will get the feelings of good / clear and slip back into the disconnected feeling.  The good feelings should slowly increase little by little.

      It is a strange process and one we can't hurry.  Your body is healing itself so let it take as long as it wants.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate, this is exactly what seems to be happening to me (I think). Mornings are slowly getting better week on week (they are actually my best time once i get up and motivated), and I used to get anxiety from 12-3pm daily quite badly (this seems to be reducing with a notable calm feeling happening earlier). Sometimes times I stil get anxiety in the evening. Orgionally I just had anxiety all the time. 

      People around me say im  improving also, I just cant seem to tell half the time.

      Thanks Kate - I'm early days, so the next couple of weeks will be interesting. 

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    • Posted

      Yes you're most definitely in the middle of recovery.  When I recovered it happened so slowly I didn't really notice it, and when my evenings regularly became calmer I began to wonder 'surely not'???  Yep ... it was biggrin

      It takes a while for your body to get out of the habit and for your nerves to calm down.

      It will get better and better - 100%.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate, I'm back to work half days next week so looking forward to getting busy. No dobut it will be challanging at times. Thanks for your time and encouragement =).

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate, will do. 

      You are a star with all the support you give perople on here! 

      Cheers, Craig 

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