I've been on 225 venlafaxine xr for years and lately I've been depressed and anxious..

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I'm going to ask my psychiatrist to try me on something else.  I hope there's a way to reduce the venlafaxine and add something else at the same time to cut down on withdrawal symptoms of going off snri's.  

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  • Posted

    Having quit Venlafaxine once cold turkey, the last time I did it, I really took my time, and I did not get any withdrawals.  I was on 150mg daily.  The first time I had been on it for 4 years, but depression returned within 6 months.  Last time I had been on it 5 years, and I took 10 months to withdraw.  I honestly had no withdrawals at all.I was on anti depressants for 30 years.  I have now been druyg free for 18 months, and doing pretty well.

    I am in my 70s now and I found that I did well on some anti depressants, and had side effects with others.  Venlafaxine (Effexor) suited me well.  I insisted on having names brand Effexor as generic Venlafaxine did not work for me.  I only went on it towards the end of my withdrawal so I could get it in pill form and cut them into smaller and smaller doses. 

    Your psychiatrist should be able to advise about starting another whilst still on Venlafaxine, but please withdraw slowly as you can get pretty awful withdrawals if done too fast.

    Good luck.

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    • Posted

      Hi Anne240 I would just like to say a big congratulations for being drug free for the last 18months and your in your seventies to well done you.i have just turned 65 and I have been on one antidepressant after another I also take sleeping tablets because without them I can't sleep I have been on venlafaxine for a long time but I have tried to get off it pass two months but failed miserably now back on it although small dose any wayi am just hoping and praying I can get off both and be like you,.you made me smile to know. It CAN be done xx
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    • Posted

      Hey yes it definitely can be done.  The thing is to take it really slowly.  As I said, it took me 10 mon ths to withdraw.  Most people do it much too fast, get bad withdrawals which they cannot cope with, and then go back on it. 

      I am amazed and pleased that after 30 years I am doing well without anti depressants.  In the past depression has always returned, but I reckon if I have gone 18 months now, drug free, I am more or less free of that awful illness.

      Yes I have ups and downs, good and bad days, but on the whole, doing good. 

      Perhaps you just did the withdrawal too quickly.  Do as I did, and take it very slowly, reducing a little at a time.  My doctor suggested I try without.  She helped in the initial stages, but then I had to work out the rest for myself.  I never had follow up after I quit.  And a bonus was I lost all the weight I put on whilst taking Venlafaxine.  I never took another drug whilst withdrawing. 

      I do have insomnia, but will not take sleeping pills.  My probloem now is old age!!  Got bad arthritis and sciatica!!  Oh well, at least I do not take anti depressants any more, and fingers crossed, I won't have to again.

      I can help you through the withdrawal if you want my support.  Send me a private message and I will tell you how I did it.  Venlafaxine is so difficult to withdraw from, because I have read here and other forums how people struggle, like you, to withdraw from it.  It helped me, but I am glad that in my old age, I do not, as yet, take any prescribed medication. 

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