I am a 31 year old teacher who
has been on paxil for 2 years to treat my panic
attacks. I tried to get off paxil 4 times and
always experienced horrible side-effects that
caused me to go back on my 30 mg daily dose
of paxil. After gaining 60 pounds and getting
rid of several doctors, I lucked out. I found
a great doctor who, working with her psychiatrist
friend, helped me get off paxil in just 9 days.
Here's the plan:
Days 1-3: 30 mg paxil/
Day 4: 20mg paxil/ 20mg prozac
Day 5: 10mg paxil/ 20mg prozac
Days 6-9: 0mg paxil/ 20mg prozac
I then stopped taking prozac.
I never thought this would
work. I thought my doctor was being naive and
I'd be back in ther in 2 days telling her to
find another plan. I'd tried slow weaning before
and was too sick to get out of bed at 25mg a
I'm not saying this was easy, but it was nothing
like I'd gone through any other time I tried
quitting. I had no panic and almost no head
zaps. I did spend a lot of time asleep and I
didn't drive for a couple of weeks (my choice
not to due to lack of need and attention span.)
I have been off paxil for 22 days and am now
experiencing some panic and insomnia, but I
also went off 2 allergy medications and birth
control at the same time I did this so my body
is a little unhappy right now for may reasons.
If you have tried other ways to get off paxil
and have been unsuccessful, go to your doctor
and try this! Good Luck!
How I quit:
Organic diet for the first week. Vegetarian
only. Week two organic meat introduced. Only
fluid was water or cammomile tea. Cammomile
tea bothered my stomach so relied solely on
water. After week one nicotine craves decreased
80% (I quit smoking when I quit paxil - both
I also take 1 tablet Stress
Formula B supplement with 100mg vitamin C and
1 capsule Vitamin A to help with energy and
Use organic diet for as long
as you can to help remove the toxin build up
in the body. It is amazing how good the body
feels when there is a reduction of processed
crap when you are trying to recover from this
Water, water, water. Keep
hydrated. Stay in airconditioning during summer.
Avoid direct sunlight to prevent dizziness,
palpitations, and skin rash. Talk to anyone
and everyone about what you are experiencing.
It helps. Believe in yourself. This is not you.
It is the drug. Acupuncture works very well
to balance the body. Breathe slowly and enjoy
everybreath. You will make it. My husband wonders
why I was ever on the drug in the first place.
He says I am better now than I have been in
two years. I believe he is right. Hang in there
and don't give up. You will make it.
I'm a primary care doc. i've
had a few of my patients who are discontinuing
SSRI's tell me that they've felt remarkably
better immediately after eating some chocolate.
tho' i usually give folks who are stopping a
short-acting SSRI like paxil some prozac for
a couple of days (the prozac's long half-life
minimizes symptoms) chocolate might be worth
considering, since there's some evidence that
chocolate may affect neurotransmitter levels.
"I am a 25 year old medical
student, and I have been on paxil 20 mg for approximately
9 months for anxiety. I wanted to get off the
paxil because of the sexual side effects (no libido,
anorgasmic) that were wreaking havoc on my marriage
of 6 months. I knew paxil could cause withdrawal,
so with my psychiatrist's consent, I tappered
my dose over 2 weeks: I week at 10 mg, an 1 at
5 mg. This was supposed to prevent withdrawal,
but it didn't. When I went down to the 5 mg, the
withdrawal began. I had incredible migraines almost
every day, incapacitating nausea, dizziness, lethargy,
hot flashes and chills, blurred vision, a strange
noise in my ears when I turned my head, nightmares,
etc. I eventually ended up in the ER due to the
migraines and althought the doctors didn't know
my symptoms where due to paxil withdrawal, even
though I told them I had just stopped taking it.
But the ER doc gave my PHENERGYN, which is basically
an antihistamine that works on motion sickness.
It is the ONLY thing that has helped me get through
these last 2 weeks. It eliminated the nausea,
decreased the blurred vision and sounds in my
ears, and stabilizes the dizziness. I am not a
doctor, so I am not advocating that this is for
everyone, but it really helped me with my symptoms.
I think anyone with similar sx to me should discuss
taking phenergyn or another antiemetic (anti nausea/vomiting
med) with their doctor. I'm at two weeks post-Paxil,
and it gets better every day. KF"
Another way to at least feel better
and feel like you are doing something to help
yourself is to try sublingual Vitamin B12 (sublingual
means administered under the tongue.) It's NOT
regular B12; the package will actually say "sublingual."
I couldn't find it at the regular drug store-type
chains, so I found it at my local GNC store. I'm
suggesting sublingual instead of vitamin tablets
because sublingual administration is supposed
to be as effective as getting the B12 shot but
cheaper and more pleasant. FYI - B12 is used for
nervous system regeneration, for added stamina,
for aiding in proper blood formation, and often
used to help handle stress. I also have been drinking
at least 64 oz. of water each day to help me feel
like I am flushing the toxins from my body. Good
luck to you all!
I now have been off of the paxil
for only 2 weeks total the St. John Wart Hypericin
I only took for two days and I have no withdrawal
symptoms at all!!!! I think I am through it and
very happy!!! So I definitely recommend the Hypericin
to help other withdrawers to find their strength
to get off the paxil!!"
again - [drinking] lots and lots
of water does help.
The more gently, the better.
2. Pill cutters are fab-u-lous! Less than $3.00
@ the pharmacy, they allow for the accurate halving
o' those pesky pills.
3. Paxil exists in liquid form! Tell the neighbors!
Wake the kids! If a 5 mg-dosage drop is too harsh
on your system, the oral suspension liquid goo
(orange-flavored, no less!) allows you to taper
as little as one mg. at a time.
4. You're not going crazy."
Please advise your readers to
try acupuncture and Chinese herbs to help them
deal with their withdrawal symptoms. I have done
so and it is very helpful. Any reputable acupuncturist
will know how to treat you and what herbs to give
you for this problem
I started my own formula for the
withdrawal process: Tylenol for the head aches,
Dramamine for the motion sickness and dizziness.
i eliminated all alcohol, pop, and caffeine. To
get to sleep i would meditate and do breathing
exercises. I also took Tylenol pm to cause drowsiness.
i began taking in large amounts of water. And
prayed. Hope this helps someone!!
I wrote you a while ago about
my withdrawing off of Paxil using Valerian and
Skullcap. Just to update you. As of today, I am
taking 1/4 a pill and will be completely off the
Paxil by Saturday. I am doing GREAT! Aside from
some very short lived symptoms of light headedness
and headaches, I did super! For the symptoms,
I popped an extra Valerian root. This would take
the dizziness away and allow me to calm down.
To boot, I was on my period during the bulk of
the withdrawal. I am impressed with the success
of the natural herbal way to get off the drug.
As for the night terrors that brought me to the
Paxil in the first place... I have tried to get
a couple of them, but with meditation I was able
to quickly pass through them and go back to sleep.
There is a way out of the drug and I am here at
the other end and hey.. It's pretty neat!
Life is cool ...I'm off paxil
and all other SSRIs! How? Yoga, Tai Chi, Acupuncture
during the withdrawal. also a twice a day cocktail
of 5HTP, Saint John's Wort, SAME, Vitamins, Flax
oil, and pet therapy( my dogs)....good luck to
all. Try the natural route It works!
...If anyone else that is writing
to you is having trouble with massive night sweats
I have a suggestion of trying to drink plenty
of water during the day. It seems to have been
I was able to get off 10-15mg
of paxil/day with little withdrawal by fasting.
The third day I was extremely tired, (could have
been caffeine withdrawal). Fasting is great to
ward-off depression. I realize fasting is not
for everyone but in my case it was the best way
I ever got off paxil, (it was a 10 day fast)
I am a "lay" counselor
at the church I attend and have just helped someone
come out of "paxil hell" and have found
Dr. Ann Blake Tracy's book a tremendous help .
I had the honor of speaking to her by phone for
over an hour because I was doing research on "bi-polar"
diagnosis. Plus, I had ordered her book and tape
on coming off of SSRIs' back in January to help
my friend. She specifically recommended a special-ordered
Noni juice. When I talked to her by phone 2 weeks
ago, she again reiterated the effectiveness of
Noni juice, not just for SSRI withdrawal, but
also for people who are in their "manic"
phase in depression. (We're talking serious delusions!!!)
She has seen incredible results with this Noni
juice. She believes that it has a particular digestive
enzyme that dissolves excess seratonin in the
body. But, don't buy the kind in health food stores-it's
not processed properly.
Good luck to all of you that are
trying really hard to get off this drug. You can
do it. Here are a few suggestions: . 1) Believe
in yourself. Control your mind and thoughts. Throw
away negative thoughts and replace them with positive
affirmations. 2) Drink lots of water all throughout
the day. I don't mean the minimum amount of water
(64oz) I mean at least 100 oz each day. It keeps
your body flushed. It will also give you lots
of energy. 3) Take a high potency multi-vitamin
with herbs 4) Walk at least 30 minutes a day,
7 days a week to your favorite music. 5) Journal
each day about how you are feeling and goals that
you are setting for that particular day. 6) Eat
healthy- It will make you feel better overall
plus it will get off all the extra weight you
gained on Paxil! (smile) 7) Get professional counseling
and read lots of self help books. Try to stay
with one author that you can relate to because
they all have different methods and philosophies.8)
Enjoy your wonderful life after Paxil !"
..I did find that taking a Vitamin
B supplement or a Multivitamin with B has dramatically
increased these symptoms. Vitamin B is also useful
in abating some of the side effects of the medication.
am finally Paxil free after 3
tries:)) You asked me to send you the schedule
I used so here it is:
Original Dose: 40mg
Week 1: 30mg
Week 2: 20mg
Week 3: 10mg
Week 4: Day 1: 5mg
Day 2: 10mg
Day 3: 5mg
Day 4: 10mg
Day 5: 5 mg
Day 6: 10mg
Day 7: 5 mg
Week 5: Day 1: 5 mg Started: Prozac 10mg
Day 2: 10mg Paxil + Prozac 10mg
Day 3: 5 mg Paxil + Prozac 10mg
Day 4: 5 mg Paxil + Prozac 10mg
Day 5: 10mg Paxil + Prozac 10 mg
Day 6: 5 mg Paxil + Prozac 10 mg
Day 7: 5 mg Paxil + Prozac 10 mg
Week 6: Prozac 10 mg
All through the above schedule, I had some withdrawal
symptoms like headache, nausea and mild panic
attacks. I was told that I could take Advil for
the headache, Gravol for the nausea and I did
deep breathing (deep breath in through the nose
and blow it slowly out of the mouth) about 3 to
4 times and it took care of the attack.
read 2 accounts of people who
took 5-HTP while withdrawing from paxil, both
of them reported tremendous success. I tried this
as well, and theresults are astounding.
I wake up with the zaps, dizziness, everything.
Two hours after taking 150mg of HTP, it's as if
there was no withdrawal to begin with.
Well, I am amazed, but this worked.
I reduced my dosage to 5mg per day after being
on 10mg for weeks. I was on the 5mg's for a
week or so before quitting. I don't think that
there is a true tapering off of this medication.
Anyway, I have been having all of the dizziness
and the "electrical shock" sensations
as well. I tried the dramamine and sudafed and
IT WORKED! This is the first time in 5 days that
I have not been almost incapacitated by the sensations.
I took bonine which is meclazine. It is the non-drowsy
formula of dramamine. I also simply took sudafed
since I am a little more sensative to large doses
of pseudoephedrine. I took 60 mgs of sudafed rather
than the 120 mg's that are in the aleve pills.
Thanks so much for offering a solution to this
Iquit paxil by only taking the
dosage that I was prescribed when I would begin
to feel the symptoms which made it unbearable.
In other words I would go as long as I could w/o
it until I would feel symptoms. This began at
36 hours, increased to 48, then 3 days etc....
until I was off it
I found taking benadryl helped
me to sleep. It also helped to mellow me out.
Be aware though that when you stop taking benadryl
that the symptoms come back but it is a good asprine.
Best of luck to all the victims of this drug...The
withdrawls do go away eventualy.
...Also, I found that popping
a Dramamine helped loads with the dizziness and
vertigo, and figured I should mention it.
I suffered severe withdrawl from
Paxil that hit me like a ton of bricks, I got
dizzy, felt detatched from reality, had the bad
"electric shocks" and felt suicidal.
I smoked some cannabis (marijuana),
to try and ease the pain, and found that all side
effects immediately and totally disappeared, but
returned once the pot wore off. Smoked pot for
three days, and was never bothered by side effects
I recently quit taking Paxil
cold-turkey a week ago. The first two days were
the worst, but it is slowly getting better.
Here are some tips that I have found helpful:
* Take 2 Amino Acid vitamins with each meal
* Kava Kava herbal supplements also work really
well for any anxiety you may be feeling at this
* Drink LOTS of water---it'll help ward off
a lot of your dizziness(or in my case, feelings
of fainting), and it'll also help flush the
Paxil out of your system
* Chew on a piece of ice if you are feeling
jittery or anxious (Hey, it works for me!)
* Taking a Niacin vitamin every other day will
also help get the Paxil out of your system,
therefore decreasing your withdrawl period
My story is a long one. But
I will keep it short. About 4 years ago I suffered
a serious snowmobile accident. Chronic pain,
PTSD, and major depression have been with me
ever since. The standard course of action for
meds are pain meds narcs.(oxycontin), Paxil
40mg, and Neurontin. After taking all of the
above for about 2 yrs., My continued complaints
of chronic fatigue led my dr. to take me off
of something. He started with the Neurontin.
Bad Move. Within the week all of the described
paxil side effects kicked in. The side effects
peaked with 3 of the worst and DARKEST days
of my life. Feeling near death again (the first
was the accident) I finally got ahold of a Psychiatrist
who would see me immediately. He went right
to his Rx pad and wrote one for Neurontin 300mg.
We then decided to start the paxil tapper. He
also is having me use benedryl to help curb
the INTENSE retsless leg (and everything else)
syndrome. I take about a half to 1 teaspoon
of children's liquid benedryl. The combination
seems to really help. I am also tappering off
of the narcs at the same time. I'm a little
shaky, but doing O.K. I'm hoping to completely
free of both in the next 2 - 3 weeks, God willing!
My advice for paxil suffers = ask your Dr. about
the Neurontin. And definitely use the Benedryl.
0.5 tsp every few hours throughout the day,
with a little extra to help sleep at night.
... Anyway, one thing I've also
been doing is supplementing with Glutathione;
I read about this supplement and how Paxil depletes
it from your system. I tried to quit Paxil a
few months ago, and experienced all the horrible
withdrawal symptoms, but this time, I don't
know whether or not it's because of the Prozac
or the supplement, but I feel fantastic. Could
also be that I've added running back into my
Hi. I just wanted to let everyone
know that caffiene seems to make the withdrawal
effects from the paxil weaning worse. So go
without the caffeine if you can. I felt terrible
the past two days and today I left off the caffeine
and I can honestly say I feel 100 percent better
than I did yesterday. I have been on 1/2 dose
of my usual 30mg dose for 13 days. No dizziness,
just mild aches and pains and changes in my
appetite and taste. So,no caffiene for me until
this is past. thanks for a great site. S.M.W
...Self treatment: Water, Water,
Water - and quit the coffee, which is a
stomach irritant. No wine or beer either. Quit
all stomach irritants -
munched on pretzels and rice. I ate small meals
but it would upset my
stomach. I take multi-vitamins every morning.
Take Aleve for headache -
seems to reduce the zaps too - Aspirin is OK
too. So, I'd recommend a
pain/fever reducer taken every 4-6 hours. Also,
keep cool - wade in a pool
if you can. I used an antiacid tablet for stomach
upset and oh yes,
Dramamine is wonderful!!! My allergy decided
to kick in. Sudafed helps
with that and the regular version (not the non-drowsy)
seemed to help me
sleep more restfully. For the psychological
side: lots of chocolate (I
craved it), HUGGED the kids (my 2 and 4-year
old boys), received support
from my best friend and husband....
...I found that the intense
dizziness that I get may not have anything to
do with my panic attacks, but possibly the withdrawals
from the Paxil. I took the last one on Sunday,
10-20-02. The dizziness started last night,
Wednesday, 10-23-02. I thought that I was gonna
have to take it again today. I work for a chiropractic
doctor/acupuncturist/herbologist and today I
came to work and told him what was happening.
He took my pulse and said it was extremlely
weak and he looked up some stuff on the different
herbs and supplements he had. He gave me one
called Sheng Mai San which is a ginseng & ophiopogon
formula. I took three of them about 11:00, another
three at 4:00, and am supposed to take another
three tonight. It is 4:37 now and my dizziness
is almost gone. I know this is a long story,
but thought this might help someone else. The
herb is made by Treasure of the East and again,
it is called Sheng Mai San. I still have not
had a Paxil since Sunday and am going to continue
to take this to see if it works.
I use a nail file to file off
a bit each day. I use a piece of graph paper
and use that as my guide--slowlyslowly shrinking
the dosage. So far only a
hint of a headache. Some flatulence well ok
more than a little.
I'm taking ginseng, ginger and vitamins. I exercise.
So far I'm ok.
My suggestion is to see a chiropractor.
He helped me through all of the headaches, brain
zaps, and body aches. (Klonapin also helped
with the anxiety & terrible insomnia.)Also
exercise- I feel that working out helped a lot!
My suggestion :
For singles : surround yourself with one or
two loved ones and enlist them as help mates.
To watch over you. Talk to you in the middle
of the night when your nightmare is preventing
you from going back to sleep. To encourage you
to eat, even when your nausea and/or acid stomach
gives you the reflex not to. To FORCE you to
go to the gym (perhaps it is good for them also?).
Different sweat - better sleep after.