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Withdrawal or mania???

(49 Posts)
BoxofFrogs Thu 29-Apr-04 21:14:11

I am trying to come down from my dose of ADs. I have managed to get to 10mg a day from 20mg, and at first only felt physically unwell. However, in the past few days, I have been feeling really agressive and paranoid. In the evenings, I feel like my brain is rushing ahead of me, if that makes sense. I am almost afraid of driving because I feel so weird.

I have looked on the internet for withdrawal symptoms, but paranoid delusions do not come up! The strange thing is that I did not feel like this before I started taking the pills, so I don't think that I still have the depression that I initially started taking them for. I am really worried now though, as it is starting to affect my interaction with people. I was really vague this afternoon at a coffee session, and kept wondering during conversations if I was sounding mad, when I know that I was talking sense. Also, when I am alone or not busy, I start to have thoughts where I invent a scenario and it always ends up in me getting angry at something the person has said. It is all very weird and scary, and I think I'm going mad.

Has anyone else felt this way when coming off pills? I'm so scared, but it is hard to articulate how I am feeling. I am managing to live my life without seeming mad in public, but it is getting worrying.

kizzie Thu 29-Apr-04 22:27:10

Box of frogs - which AD were you taking and how quickly did you withdraw.
You're not going mad - it sounds like withdrawal.

BoxofFrogs Fri 30-Apr-04 20:23:43

I am on Cipralex, and have been reducing for about a month. I did 10mg from 20mg first, but then felt really unwell (physically). Then I increased to 15mg for 10 days. I then alternated between 15mg/10mg for a week(ish) and then went down to 10mg a day. At first I was fine, but after a week on 10mg, I got this 'mania'.

BoxofFrogs Fri 30-Apr-04 20:55:17

Can ANYONE help?

BoxofFrogs Sat 01-May-04 16:47:41


ks Sat 01-May-04 17:28:16

Message withdrawn

JennH Sun 02-May-04 21:37:10

I was on cipramil a while ago, and came off it without any side affects. ADs can affect everyone in different ways so it is best to have a chat with your Dr

To be honest your symptoms sound like you are very stressed, more than mania.

Take care.

BoxofFrogs Sun 02-May-04 23:25:47

Kizzie, KS and JennH - thanks for taking the time to reply. I was beginning to think I was invisible (I'm not paranoid...everyone IS out to get me )

Anyway, I took an extra 10mg yesterday, and that did help a bit. Today, I went back to 10mg only, and had an awful headache most of the day. However, I feel better this evening. I have had a busy day, which seems to have kept my mind from having the chance to brood. Maybe that is what I need to do until I have managed to get used to the lower dose of AD.

Am going back to my non-mad name now. Thanks again, Chinchilla.

carlyb Sun 02-May-04 23:37:12

A few years back I came off prozac and felt very strange. It is no wonder that you feel the way that you do. Give yourself some time to get over this withdrawal.
It is like any chemical - even caffine, nicotine, when coming off you are bound to have these reactions - but they should pass quickly.
You can end up worrying that something is happeneing to you and you are going mad. You aren't, it is just your body adapting, keep telling yourself that it will pass. It isnt you it is the drug.
One of my friends recently came off of codine and was going through hell. Don't under estimate how these drugs can affect you.

I agree with what other people have said about consulting your doctor if it carries on.

Good luck and if you want to chat by all means cotact me.

kizzie Mon 03-May-04 20:36:36

Hi Chinchilla - sorry Ive been away for a couple of days.

I unfortunately got addicted to seroxat so know a bit about all of this. (Dont worry - Cipramil isnt the same as seroxat. Its taken me more than 2 years to get off seroxat and it has been a total horrible nightmare-but seroxat has a specific withdrawal problem. The others just need to be reduced carefully)

Anyway - from your note it sounds like you are going a bit too quickly. You didnt say how long you have been on the cipramil??

Some people come off with absolutely no probs at all but if you're still feeling unwell then I think a 10mg drop is probably too much.

Obviously ask your doctors advice but you could maybe do this:

Take 20mg for a couple of weeks until you feel ok again.
Drop by 5 mg to 15mg for approx a month until you feel stable then reduce by 5mg at a time - if you still feel really rough you can even reduce by 2.5mg at a time by cutting the tablets (is cipramil tablets or capsules.)

Try not to worry - you will get off them, just a bit of a hoo haa.
Let me know how you're getting on.

WSM Tue 04-May-04 13:09:12

If you click on 'babies pages' on the l/h siad of the page. Surname is hughes, dob is 08.08.02, password is trumpet !

Won't be remotely surprised/offended if no-one can be arsed to go through all that rigmarole though !!!!

WSM Tue 04-May-04 13:10:01

Oh f*ck, I'm so sorry that should've been posted on another link. That'll teach me to have 2 MN windows open at once. So sorry again.

Chinchilla Tue 04-May-04 21:39:21

Well, sorry to whinge ladies, but I am NOT mad, just depressed still. Last night the black pit of despair came to call and is currently residing in the pit of my stomach. I have increased my dose of ADs back to the 20mg, and am going to hang on in there until they kick in again. P*ss, cr*p and b*ll* is so unfair. Why can't I just be HAPPY???

WideWebWitch Tue 04-May-04 21:59:23

Chinchilla, just wanted to say sorry you're feeling so bad, I hope someone else can help.

JennH Tue 04-May-04 21:59:46

Chinchilla I am so sorry you are going through this. I suffer from depression too and its awful, have you been back to see your GP. Maybe a different medication would help.
Do you have an form of a talking treatment?

eddm Tue 04-May-04 22:34:06

Sorry to invade the thread but JennH, did you get my message on your name thread? Really hope you saw that I hadn't intended to criticise you, message was obviously poorly worded if that's the impression I gave you.
Invasion over.

eddm Tue 04-May-04 22:45:28

Chinchilla, sorry to barge into your thread, did a search of the BNF, the doc's guide to medicines, for you but didn't turn up much. It's here if you are interested: BNF Also worth checking with MIND, the mental health charity, their website is here
Good luck.

kizzie Wed 05-May-04 09:51:01

Hi Chinchilla - You're doing the right thing. Wait until you feel ok again on the 20mgs and then see your gp about reducing more slowly.
Let me know how u are.

ghengis Wed 05-May-04 10:10:46

Chinchilla, I too take Cipramil/Citalopram and am stuck at 40mg. I have been taking it for about 2 years and reduced from 60mg to 40mg about 5 months ago with little/no side-effects. I tried to go to 20mg about a month ago and felt great for the first 2 weeks. After that the paranoia set in and I had never suffered from that before. I left it for about a week but felt I was going downhill rapidly and it SCARED me - you have my sympathy. I weighed up whether it was worth making everyone's life a misery but chickened out and went back to 40mg. I felt better immediately but haven't felt consistently 'better' since. When I feel more stable I will try alternating 40mg with 20mg and see if that helps. Lol at the 'just want to be happy' phrase - it's my mantra Hang in there and we'll get there in the end.

marthamoo Wed 05-May-04 14:50:17

Spacemonkey told me to look for this thread and there it was this morning when I had no time to post. I wrote a post on Monday then deleted it as I decided I sounded like a lunatic.

I have been on Cipramil since ds2 was born (he's 29 months now) and have been weaning off it since January. I have been on 10mgs a day for three weeks (was on 40, then 30, then 20) I thought I was doing OK til about last Thursday, when that horrible black cloud of depression came down again. Sunday and Monday were awful - I cried a lot and spent a lot of time sitting about staring into the middle distance. I am not so weepy now but still feel very *flat*

In addition I have the most horrible spaced-out feeling - like my thought processes are dulled. And that feeling you mention, chinchilla, of wondering whether people think you are sounding mad. This morning, I went to a local Mums and Tots group and there was a woman there who was heavily pregnant last time I saw her. She wasn't pregnant anymore but there was no sign of the baby and I couldn't bring myself to go and ask what she'd had in case something had gone wrong. In fact I got quite panicky about it. Totally irrational. I also keep feeling very anxious for no reason at all.

I tried to talk to dh about it at the weekend but A) it's hard for me to articulate it and B) he doesn't understand. You would think he would, after 7 years of on and off depression (since my ds1 was born) but the best he can come up with is that I'm a "moody cow" and "I love you but you're hell to love with when you're like this." He also tells me I should be happy. Duh...I know that.

I'm going to try and keep going on 10mgs, I am hoping this horrible "detatched" feeling will pass. I can almost cope so long as I'm not rollercoastering up and down, raging and weeping, like I was over the weekend. This muggy headed *flatness* is just preferable to that, at least.

So can I be in the "I Just Want to be Happy Club" too?

marthamoo Wed 05-May-04 14:51:35

That should have been hell to LIVE with....

ghengis Wed 05-May-04 16:10:35

<<<<<Hugs Marthamoo>>>>>>>

marthamoo Wed 05-May-04 16:17:05

Thanks ghenghis (((HUGS))) to you too.

Chinchilla Wed 05-May-04 19:41:00

Ghengis and Marthamoo - thanks, and I'm sorry you are having a hard time too. At least I'm not the only 'mad' one

kizzie Wed 05-May-04 19:48:45

Hi everyone - sorry I am sooo boring about this but am just going through a 2 plus years withdrawal nightmare from seroxat and seem to have read hundreds of articles about it.

Seroxat has the worst withdrawal symptoms but there is growing evidence that all the SSRI's need to be reduced more slowly than GP's normally recommend.

Everything you have all written sounds exactly like withdrawal.

One of the ways of telling seems to be that if you have felt quite well on a dose for a while then reduce and feel terrible quite quickly (and then when you up the dose again you feel better quite quickly) then it is probably withdrawal. The argument is that a new depressive episode would take longer to kick in (a few months- certainly more than a couple of weeks).

From a dose of 40mg then a lot of people are ok to drop by 10mgs at a time (wait on each dose until you feel totally stable before reducing again). If any problems then go back to original dose - wait till stabilise then reduce by 5mg at a time.

Below 20mg however you may find that 10mg is just too big a drop (10mg at 40mg is a 25% drop. 10mg at 20mg is a 50% drop).

Try reducing by 5mg and if this is too big then reduce by 2.5mg.

It is a faff but you will get there.

Sorry this is so long and waffly.

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