Citolapram withdrawal

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Hi, this is my second attempt to withdraw from citolapram. I was put on ten years ago after the birth of my son. I was only 21 and thought they were like an antibiotic !! How silly of me. Nothing was explained about the tablet. Fast forward 9 years and decided to come off them. My doctor told me it was safe to do so in 2 weeks. This lead to a major breakdown and me going back on the citolapram. This time I have weaned very slowly and only just felt effects where I am at the minute which is on 5mg. I’ve been on this dose around 5 months and I feel ill constantly. I actually feel like I’m dying ! Hot sweats then chills, tremors, feeling sick, depressed, teary the list is endless! Really need some help as I feel so alone. Should I go back on a higher dose or ride it out ? 

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16 Replies

  • Posted

    Your doctor said safe to do it in 2 weeks?  There are no words .......

    I withdrew from these twice, both very slow, second time I spent a year coming off and that time had no withdrawal symptoms at all.  If you come off fast or go cold turkey you'll be ill and will probably cause a breakdown ..... as you sadly discovered.

    Though you're now on 5mg, I wonder if you've still reduced too quickly and not allowed each reduction the time it needs for your body to adjust.  If you just too big a dose you'll get withdrawal, and equally if you do it by just 5mg but don't stay on each reduction long enough you'll again get withdrawal.

    I bought a pill cutter and cut my 20mg into 4 making each one 5mg.  I reduced by 5mg each time and stayed on each reduction about 2 months.  I thought that if at any time I felt unwell then I'd stay on the current reduced dose and if it continued then I'd just go back up again by 5mg.

    I went from 20 / 15 / 10 / 5 / 1.5 / 1.25 and crushed the last 2 doses as they were too small to cut.

    If you find 5mg reductions are still too much and you get withdrawal still, then you can crush the 5mg and take half of it making the transition even smoother.

    If you're feeling constantly ill on this current dose then maybe you should reinstate another 5mg back into your dose (making it 10mg) and wait for your body to adjust?  5 months on one dose and you've not settled is a long time.

    K x

     

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  • Posted

    Thank you for your reply. Withdrawal is so confusing because the first 2 months at 5mg I was ok. Just wondering if there can be a delayed reaction? And now I think Is it the withdrawal or something else. 
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  • Posted

    It’s so hard to decide I keep thinking if I do go back to 10 when I withdraw again will I have to go through this so do I keep going and hope they will settle. I feel like an emotional wreck at the minute and just can’t make a decision. It’s so good hearing from other people because I do feel totally alone. Even more so that my gp just seems to have no understanding of withdrawal. K x 
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    • Posted

      How long did it take you to get down to 5mg and what dose did you start at?  Yes I have heard some people have a delayed reaction.

      Did you feel completely well before you started withdrawal?  When I came off meds the only thing I noticed was that I could cry again.

      Its very sad that a lot of GP's don't have any understanding of SSRI's at all, let alone withdrawal.  Its very unprofessional of them.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Was it a relief cry? Or an anxiety cry? I mean some people say there emotions are block..but not me I still have my normal emotions ..cry when is a sad situation..I laugh when I see something funny..and pain when I bump into a wall....lol
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    • Posted

      It was neither.  I just found sometimes I'd cry at the smallest of things - a little puppy, someone else's child who'd fallen over, a squished ladybird ....... the normal things you'd feel awwww about, I just blubbed.

      Yes SSRI's do dampen your emotions, and some people find they can't cry at all.  When I was on the meds I was able to cry, but not as I used to (before meds).  When off the meds I suppose my emotions just came back with a little more vengeance before settling down to normal.

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    • Posted

      Oh ok for me before meds the crying was for everything I use to cry at that Sarah McLachlan commercial about dog abuse all the time...I say as soon as three weeks into celexa no more crying .. thankgoodness my emotions are normal now..
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    • Posted

      Yes when we're not well our emotions are felt 10 x more than normal - thinking too.  Everything.  The meds certainly do bring things back to normal intensity.

      K x

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  • Posted

    Hi I started at 30mg after my breakdown and then was at that dose for a year. When I started the withdrawal I reduced by 5 mg every six weeks. When I got to 10 I was a little wobbly I could definitely feel my emotions again and I had felt numb for some time no happiness no sadness. As I say I felt ok on 5mg for around 2 months then started to feel ill. I also find in withdrawal my immune system is low I seem to get everything. K x 
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    • Posted

      That's a great reduction as it eases your body back down again.  

      You know I found understanding anxiety was one of the most helpful things for me ..... along with the medication.  Having this knowledge helped take away a lot of the mystery and fear, so when I was ready to withdraw from meds I also had lost a lot of the fear of it.  When we first start suffering with anxiety you become afraid of it, and end up in a cycle on anxiety / fear / anxiety and keep fuelling it, keeping it alive.  Your body goes into fight or flight, become tense and naturally fights it.  Doing the opposite by letting your body relax to it, letting it be there, going with it eventually helps to dampen it down.  There's more into this of course ......  I can send you a link to a fantastic website and book that will really help?

      K x

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  • Posted

    Yes please I’m willing to try anything x 
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  • Posted

    Tapering no more than 5% every 2-4 week's to give your brain enough time to adjust.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for the link and I will order the book.  Still can’t decide wether to put dose back up. Think I will try and ride it out for a little longer. Surely the body will settle eventually ?? 
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    • Posted

      I think you'll really like the book - I devoured every word.

      Always tough decisions isn't it - I agree, ride it out a little longer ...... and if you still don't feel right then maybe up to just 12.5mg.  Its a slight increase and often the brain doesn't notice it.  The body will settle - everyone is different.

      Feeling depressed and teary on 5mg - maybe you aren't ready to come off yet?  Is it the lack of serotonin from the the meds thats making you feel like that or is it being on these meds thats doing it ...........

      Since I've been off meds I've taken 5-HTP which is an over the counter natural alternative to Prozac.  I need it especially in the winter months as thats when I feel my spirits are lower.  I'm feeling just as well as when I was on Citalopram.

      That's something to consider maybe when you're finally off meds - as these cannot be taken together.  5-HTP can be started and stopped any day with no weaning on / off and there's no side effects (other than maybe indigestion for some).

       

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  • Posted

    Yes that’s definitely something to consider. How long were you on citolapram if you don’t mind me asking? X 
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    • Posted

      I was on Citalopram for around 16 years.  Was in no hurry to come off considering I felt completely normal on them biggrin  I recovered on 20mg and after a few years reduced to 10mg for a maintenance dose.  Before I withdrew completely I'd gone back up to 20mg for a while.  So yes - about 16 years.  You can take them for life if you need.

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