Mirtazapine withdrawing nightmare

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Hello All,

               I have been taking antidepresants for 15 years, first 11 years on citalopram which worked great and kept me well for 11 years. Then 4 years ago i fell over and they stopped working. After trying many others i ended up on Mirtazapine. Initially they lifted my depression and i went up to 30mg. For a long time i kept getting stomach problems and a burning tongue. It was decided between myself and my gp that the mirt was probaly causing this as i had all the tests going to rule out anything else. I decided it was time to come off. I was told to drop the dose to 15 for 2 weeks and then stop. Gees that didnt work, and i was so ill i went back on them. At first i thought it was my illness returning and carried on with the medication. Then 6 months later i had another go and the same thing happened.It has took me the last 2 years to work out whats going on. My depression has long passed an what i expereince is horrendous withdrawal symptoms. I can now literally create symptoms by myself. If i drop the dose to 22.5 then i feel good for a few days then withdrawal hits, up the dose back to 30 and they dissappear. However on 30 i feel heavy headed and increased boughts of anxiety. Drop the dose and these symptoms go, ok for a few days and then withdrawal symptoms appear. Doctor has told me i need to come off them and totally agrees with what ive told im. However i am still unable to get off them and feel trapped. I was given propranolol 10mg 3 times a day to see if that would help with withdrawal but they dont. To give you an example i can be going through my day, anxiety levels start to rise, take the propranolol and nothing changes, take 7.5 mirt and the anxiety dissappears, although my head becomes heavy. Being a professional person and pretty level headed, i am now trying to plan my escape from this nightmare. It would appear that i need to drop the dose at such small increments that my body can get used to it. Cutting my pills to do this will be a challenge and a half.I am sort of relieved that i finally realise what the hells going on. This has taken me over a year to work out with a diary entry every day. The doctor stills tells me they are not addictive, but i have to disagree. Everyone around me who love me have always said don't play with the dose, as they think its all to do with my thought pattern, but as with anyone with depression you have to rely on your own thought pattern. 3 weeks ago i saw a different doctor and he said stay on the 30mg and ride it out. I took his advise and had 3 weeks of waking with a hangover, and heightened anxiety through the day. At the end  of the 3 weeks i thought stuff it i'm not going to take a tablet tonight and see how i feel tomorrow, that day was the best i'd had in months, no anxiety, clear head, feelings of happiness, and appetite, if the tablets were doing what they are supposed to then a single missed dose in months would not have made any different? Anyone who thinks withdrawing from an antidepressant is straight forward,you might want to think again, and of course if anyone has a solution to help me i would be extremely grateful.

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  • Posted

    Mirtazapine has made no difference at all in my life, but then again I don't really want this life. So maybe I'm being mean to Mr Mirt with all his well meant intentions.
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    • Posted

      Hi Prince ...

      Mirtazapine has those who feel a benefit and those (like me) who don't ...didn't in my case as I've come off it.

      Quick question (and there's a reason for me asking it):

      Q: ..'If you won 1million £s next week what 3 things would you do to improve your life and the lives of those you love most?'...

      Be well (or atleast better) soon...

      Peace

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    • Posted

      Hey Karl, I had a lousy evening last night felt dreadful, every part of me said to increase the dose but I didn't, this morning feeling emotionless but trying to just get on with the day. Spoke to the dr yesterday and she said I was doing the right thing and to just keep going, easier said than done, hope all is well with you all the best Craig
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    • Posted

      I feel for you Craig ..seems like you've tried every approach to coming off ..yet STILL are caught in that cycle you've spoken about.

      All I can think/say (and its easy for me/others to advise ...we don't walk in your shoes) ...is, keep going with ZERO dose BUT at the same time do tiny things/activities/tasks etc to DISTRACT yourself. Reason I say that is I'm wondering in your case WITHDRAWAL has in part due to the PLACEBO effect; meaning YOUR MIND PREDICTS WD SO AS SOON AS YOU REDUCE/COME OFF MIRTAZAPINE YOUR MIND TELLS YOUR BODY TO EXPERIENCE THE EFFECTS OF WD. Does that make any sense? (remember placebo effect is a factual phenomena).

      Even if placebo has nothing to do with it ...keeping distracted somehow (focussing your mind as much as possible on say a movie, walk in the sunshine, simple domestic tasks, going to visit a friend/relative, getting out the house to do something like shopping, watering flowers, meditating, reading positive quotations/sayings, going for a massage ..anything!) ...surely will help (even a little) get you through another day OFF Mirtazapine.

      I don't want to downplay anxiety/poor mental health or withdrawal from powerful meds/drugs ...I have struggled for years and fought my own demons, but TRY to 'squeeze' whatever goodness you can out of anything ...even the sunshining may help in the fight against Withdrawal (which is temporary). Also give thanks that Depression has gone. That alone is a MAJOR POSITIVE ....how I wish I could say that sad

      I know few things are easy ...but if you've come off Mirtazapine it'd be such a shame to revert back to taking it when you may have been 1, 2, 3 (a few days) away from being both free of it and free of any/all associated withdrawal effects.

      KEEP AT IT CRAIG ...I AND OTHERS ARE THINKING OF YOU!

      Peace...

      [Only my humble non-qualified thoughts n opinions, so REMEMBER if you need medical attention Craig, be sure to contact your GP or Hospital].

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