Posted , 7 users are following.

Hi there,

My partner has recently changed rather rapidly from Paroxetine to Mirtazapine and is experiencing the most awful nightmares.

Is this a common side effect or a sign that this medicine should be changed? Any help gratefully received.

I have watched him going through rapid withdrawal under the supervision of a GP and now he seems to live in fear of the dreams he has.

Would be glad to hear from anyone who has had a similar experience.

1 like, 15 replies

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15 Replies

  • Posted

    hi the medication he is trying to come off is really known for having really bad withdrawal symptoms and the best way to help that is to do it very very very slowly and taper down as slow as he can its the most awful the mirtzapapine is actually just as bad to come there is a fb page for people who are coming of the MIRT

    ITS called the Mirtazapine survival page that may help you i haven't heard of the first one that he is coming of but i would strongly ask your GP for something else to try I am taking Lovan and that works fine snd the mirt is a huge weight gainer hope he gets some help it must be absolutley horrible to watch him suffer please go seek help from your doctor i would start taking them again till you can see your GP especially if he is really suffering

    sending lots of love and please keep us posted

    thank you Donna

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    • Posted

      Hello, i think its helpful to remember that everyone metabolises, responds to and withdraws from AD's differently. I am the other end of spectrum with Mirtazapine where it has undoubtedly saved my life and have not put any weight on whilst taking it. The key is to give the medication a chance to work and not to react too quickly with doseage changes. BEST OF LUCK TO YOU

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    • Posted

      Thank you donna,

      Your response has been most helpful regarding mirt. It is hard to say if this is causing the nightmares or whether he is still in withdrawal from Paroxetine.

      The GP is getting further advice as to what to do. Personally he was advised to come off the Paroxetine way too quickly, from 50mg per day for 18 years to nothing within 5 WEEKS!!!

      Horrific in my mind

      Yes he has gained weight on Mirt which is not good

      Thank you for the facebook link.How I wish GPs would have more education regarding these very strong mind altering drugs. It is not good when you cannot rely on your doctor.

      Yes I will keep you updated as to what happens, Cheers

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    • Posted

      Hi Jon,

      Yes I am sure everyone is different but I think my main concern is that he has been raced off one AD too quickly and put on another too quickly without much specialist knowledge,

      I feel GPs are woefully undereducated and only now is his GP seeking help from the mental health services.

      I am so pleased mirt was a life saver for you and you responded well.

      My partner was on Paroxetine for 18 years and to come off in 5 weeks is little short of crazy. He was fine on it and it was necessary to change it because of side effects regarding sexual dysfunction.

      difficult situations indeed. Wishing you all the best.

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    • Posted

      Completely agree. My GP just agreed with whatever i said. It's not their fault but they often don't have the expertise or time to deal effectively with mental disorders. After 7 months of chasing Mental Health NHS partnership i finally managed to speak with a psych. In the end i complained to PALS (Patients and Liaison Service) and within a few weeks i received a phone call with a Pysch and now have a plan of action on my medication. Don't give up on the system. Just need to harass and chase to be seen. Agree that 5 weeks after 18 years is insane. I was on Sertraline for 16 years and started coming off 7 months ago and still on 50mg

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    • Posted

      Thank you for that info Jon. are you taking the 2 meds together still?

      Yes GP's are not trained for this and the cuts to the mental health services are having a knock on effect on anyone who needs help in this respect

      My partner is a mild mannered person normally so he does not cope well with having to chase people up.

      I will see what happens after the GP contacts them, she did apologise that they had dragged their heels on this one.

      I have a feeling she was working from the GPs handbook on anitidepressant medications and switching from one to another.

      Yes the system is not good as with so many other things at the moment so I quite agree with the need to harass, after all it is our heath they are dealing with.

      PALS may be a good idea, Many thanks.

      I do think he needs specialist Psych help to sort this.

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  • Posted

    Hi, it's a tricky one, I'm on a very low dose of mirtazapine from 30mg to 7.5mg. I tried to withdraw from it but because of sleep deprivation went back on it. I too suffer from very vivid dreams but I'd sooner that than no sleep as that can bring complications in itself. I hope your partner finds a solution.

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    • Posted

      Hi jules,

      Thanks for your reply, it is indeed a tricky one.

      His sleep is erratic so initially mirt helped this but the dread of nightmares is not something anyone should be expected to tolerate.

      I had them myself coming off Diazepam and that was a biggie:(.

      I have the feeling this will all take a while to sort. I wish you well and will keep everyone who has answered updated. cheers

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    • Posted

      i went of mirts got down to 5mg then started taking LOVAN its awesome no side effects no weight gain and helps me sleep while coming of the mirt i took valium to help me sleep that helped heaps there is a face book page called survours of MIRTAZAPINE really awesome page sorry for any spelling mistakes the reply on this page has no auto correct good luck hopefully you will make it thing of you and all of you trying yes most GPs are clueless when i told my doctor he went on the page and read it and joined not under his name his wifes lol but they dont know unless told from the people like us all

      sending you my love ❤❤❤

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  • Posted

    Oh dear I'm afraid I had a horrible time on mirtazapine (nightmares and feeling sleepy all day to mention but a few) it took me about 10 months to get off it. Could he ask his doctor to prescribe something else? Honest to God I would not recommend that medicine to anyone Best of Luck X

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    • Posted

      Hi April,

      thanks for your feedback on Mirtazapine, yes it would seem to suit some and not others.

      My partners doctor has left him on a low dose 15mg while she consults the mental health team as to what to do next.

      It is really bad when he had to sleep with the radio on for fear of awful dreams, when I was away. I am back now and the dreams seem to have stopped but he is not himself at all.

      A normally mild mannered person has turned into someone I hardly know.

      What did you eventually take successfully after mirt?

      It is hard to watch someone suffer and any advice would be gratefully received.


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    • Posted

      Hello Anne, I am now taking venlafaxine 150, for the last 12 months and I am going back to my doctor this week for a review as I find they have the effect of making me a bit sleepy and loss of libido, seems there is a new antidepressant on the market that does not have these side effects.In regards to your beloved I also had a change of personality while taking mirtazapine, since tapering off them I have felt more myself, I have good days and bad days but my doctor has prescribed 5mgs of Valium to take if I'm having a really really bad day eg. Anxiety, feeling shakey ect. Now I have read how mirtazapine has been a lifesaver for some but for the people who it disagrees with it really disagrees with a vengeance! Tell your partner not to give up hope, there are LOADS of other antidepressants out there and he will find one that suits, the only advice I can honestly give is get away from mirtazapine as it so obviously does not suit him, not one bit. Love and best wishes April💐

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    • Posted

      Hi April,

      Thank you for your informative and sympathetic post, so glad to have people like you on this forum.

      Yes the change in personality is the most scary thing, especially when the person affected cannot see it themselves at the time.

      He has reduced to a minimal dose of 15mg until his GP gets the advice from mental health services as to what he can try next.

      Mirtazapine would appear to be the "Jekyll and Hyde" of antidepressants 😕

      I wish you well with your progress and will keep you informed of how things pan out.

      Thank you again,

      Love and best wishes, Anne

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  • Posted


    As mentioned by one of our re-pliers, everyone reacts differently with mirtazapine, but I personally had terrible nightmares and bizarre ones at that. I am off of Mirtazapine because of the weight gain, having two artificial hips and and artificial knee the extra weight gain was not good.I am on Effexor, which I would like to get weened off.It is one of the hardest anti-depressant to get off of...I have been on anti-depressant fo rever, like over 30 years different ones...I personally, (now this is my opinion) that doctors are too quick to prescribe anti-depressants, and not give the patient alternatives like proper counselling, I know some people it is a chemical imbalance in the body.

    #1 As per Donna mentioned no one should come off of drugs cold turkey, the withdrawal systems can be horrific.I did it before with my Effexor and honestly I will never do that again.

    Now I am in Canada and I was very fortunate to have my GP send me to a professional doctor dealing with patients with anxiety, deep depression, bi-polar...OCD...yo man that is ME...and they helped me, through weekly counselling etc...and of course proper drug treatment, worked with me until the correct one was found...and this is all paid for through our Ontario Health Care...

    #2 Definetely go back to your GP, and get an alternative.

    Good Luck, in my prayers....

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