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Old 11-18-2003, 07:20 PM   #1
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MariaS HB User
Exclamation Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

Hi everyone.

I have been on 20mg of Celexa for about 5 moths now. I would like to stop taking it very soon, and I was hoping I could get some advice from anyone who has stopped taking an antidepressant, especially Celexa.

I know I have to wean off of it slowly, but I have some questions, like:

How long should this weaning process take, and how long do I stay on each "lower" dose? Is there anything natural I can take to help minimize any potential withdrawal symptoms? How likely is it that I will have any severe withdrawal effects?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Last edited by MariaS; 11-18-2003 at 07:21 PM.

 
Old 11-18-2003, 08:47 PM   #2
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Is the Celexa working for you? Why are you wanting to go off of the medication? More information would be helpful to everyone. Please reply back with info.

Sickman

 
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Old 11-18-2003, 11:53 PM   #3
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MariaS HB User
I'm going off the Celexa because I never intended to be on it for long. When I started, it was because I was having very severe panic attacks. I simply wanted to get through that phase.
Needless to say, I am no longer having panic attacks. I'm having some anxiety, but I believe it can all be managed through relaxation techniques and natural supplements.

 
Old 11-19-2003, 01:27 AM   #4
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Well Maria, If I were you I would consider taking it a bit longer, but if that your desision, fine.

There is no rule for SSRIs discontinuation, but the slower you do it the better. Something like taking 10 mg for couple of weeks then taking 10 mg every 2 days for a week then every 3 days for another week.

Good luck

 
Old 11-19-2003, 03:21 PM   #5
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I agree that you should stay on it for a few more months as said. Your panic attacks have stopped and that means the medication is probably working. No one, even me whats to except anything as condition and always wants to get off of the drugs. If you are having a little anxiety now and then I would wait to see if it goes away with a little more time. After you are anxiety free, then try going down, very, very slowly. When you drop to 10mg stay there for a month or so. Determine if it is withdrawal (which will go away) or if it is condition. If 20mg of Celexa is all you need to stop panic attacks, that is nothing. You are a fortunate person with this disorder. I don't see worrying so much about the withdrawals from the drug itself going off to fast, it is the adjustment to the reduction in seritonin that you need to go slow on. Celexa, which I take also, is a seritonin drug in a class closer to Serzone, which I was on. I went off to fast while changing to Celexa, and it wasn't a pleasant thing to go through. If you are going to go off no matter what, be smart and take a long time doing it. There is no hurry and you will really be able to tell if you are ready or not. Good luck

Sickman

 
Old 11-19-2003, 05:02 PM   #6
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MariaS, when you decide to get off the Celexa, or any other psychoactive drug, wean yourself off slowly. The best way to do it is a 10% cut off the original drug every week or two. Some people are able to taper off faster than that, but 10 weeks is a safe reference. If you feel withdrawal in the process, you can slow down the taper. Not everyone experiences withdrawal, but this is a good precaution.

 
Old 11-20-2003, 05:50 AM   #7
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Re: Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

I was just coming here to post on this same topic. I have been on 20mgs of Celexa for 2.5 years now and am already in the process of weaning off. My therapist had me drop from 20 to 10mgs for 2 months and have now been taking 5mgs for about a week. I am having the worst headaches. Dr said I could stop taking it completely in three weeks. I accidentally missed a dose yesterday and felt absolutely miserable! I don't know if I am gonna be able to do this. So far on 5mgs, I am a little dizzy and dealing with the headaches. I'm wondering, from anyone who has done this, how long do the withdrawals last? I mean, when I stop all together do I just need to stick it out for a few days and it will go away?

I really want to be able to do this. I am taking a HUGE step in my life and moving away from my family is a little over a month and I would like to be off the Celexa by then. Panic and anxiety has run my life since I was 11 and I am now 22. I am finally at a point where I am not dependent on anyone to make me feel better and I can deal with it on my own. I want this to work in the worst way! Any knowledge, advice?

Thanks, Nikki

 
Old 11-20-2003, 07:20 PM   #8
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Re: Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

hi guys... i was on celexa for about 2 years on and off. make sure you tell your doctor you want to get off it don't do it yourself. the first time i was on it for about 7-8 months. 20 mg i took it at night .then i fealt like i was myself again so my doctor said take half for 2 weeks then half every other night. then i was off feeling good. then i guess once it was fully out of my system i statrted feeling anxiety again. i had to start all over again. the longest i was off it was about 4 months then recently about 2 months ago i went on them again and got so sick , my body shaken, stomach pains that i had stomach spasms, heart palpatations, light headed i fealt doopy like so i went off them totally. it was scary i guess my body just finally rejected the pill. but now i feel like i need pills again. someone told me once you take them you will always go back to them caus they make you feel better... but good luck and stay well

 
Old 11-22-2003, 09:28 PM   #9
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MariaS HB User
Re: Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

Thank you all for the information and the kind words.

 
Old 11-25-2003, 04:34 AM   #10
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Re: Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

MariaS,

I would advise against weaning off the meds. I too, was on Celexa, I got to a point where I didn't want to take it anymore. So, I tried weaning myself and the attacks came back worse than before. Needless to say, I was switched to Paxil Cr because the celexa didn't seem to work when I went back on it. SSRIs are not habit forming, so if it works, keep taking it. Since I have been on the CR, I have felt great! I will never try to wean myself off meds again. God Bless.

 
Old 11-25-2003, 09:08 AM   #11
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MariaS HB User
Re: Weaning off Celexa - Please help.

Doug, thanks for the advice.
However, I'm not comfortable with the idea of being on an anti-depressant for the rest of my life. Everywhere I read abou this, it seems to me the reason some people experience such severe anxiety when they discountinue a med, is due to the withdrawal effects. I'm willing to give it a shot.
Like I said, I never intended to be on Celexa for long. I'm still a firm believer that it's more than possible to deal with this in a much more natural way.

 
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