Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Help for Cymbalta Withdrawal - This Could Save Your Life! (Duloxetine Withdrawal)

2 COOOOOOMMENTS! Now you speak up!
I promise to return to my attempt at humour after this post.

PLEASE NOTE: I am NOT a medical professional and this is only my personal opinion and experience. Please talk with your doctor for treatment options, and NEVER self-medicate. Stay safe.

This post is a serious one, and it is offering up a possible solution to the brain zapping, shivers, shaking, nausea hell from Cymbalta withdrawal (Duloxetine withdrawal) that I experienced personally.

After attempting to taper my dose of Cymbalta (with my doc's approval and instruction), I was still violently ill. Even reducing my dose by granules left me feeling like I was going to die. Anything less than my full dose made me feel so unbelievably ill.... I wish it on no one. After days of suffering, and a trip to the hospital emergency room, I was connected with a doctor who did all she could to find a solution.

I was literally shaking uncontrollably in front of her and every time I moved my eyeballs, I'd get a brain zapping sensation in my head, like a live wire was electrocuting me between my ears.

Another drug may help and/or shorten your suffering.

The solution to Cymbalta withdrawal for me?
A low dose of fluoxetine aka Prozac aka Sarafem.


Not a full dose, it was literally 20 mg. And it brought me back from incredible suffering and the uncontrollable side effects of discontinuing Cymbalta.

It is meant as a short term buffer. From all I've read and understand, the worst physical withdrawal symptoms of Cymbalta/Duloxetine last for about three weeks after stopping the medication. I am personally very sensitive... being on the medication made me feel unwell every day, which was a big part of why I needed to get off of it. But I've tried many antidepressants over my lifetime and this was, by far, the most hellish and debilitating to stop. Never mind having to take care of a preschooler.

So please... even if you don't wish to be on another medication long term, consider this gap-stop action to save yourself from suffering. I was at the end of my rope from the physical illness I was feeling from Cymbalta withdrawal. The fluoxetine was a life saver. Just a low dose of fluoxetine (Prozac) was all it took to let me cope. I still experienced some of the symptoms, but at a fraction of the intensity.

So, this blog as a whole has been viewed over 320,000 times. If this one post about Cymbalta and Prozac can help even one person, it's worth publishing. And for those who know me personally and wish to judge me for my candor... well... Imma bite my tongue on that one.

Talk to your doctor. If they aren't familiar with this treatment protocol, ask them to speak to a hospital pharmacist, or a colleague who may be more familiar with Cymbalta in general.

Please don't suffer any more than you already are.

I'm sending light and love and hoping this information can help someone out there.
Any questions, please email me via the address on the "Contact Us" page, though I cannot give any specific medical advice, because I am just a regular schmuck and no doctor.

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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Coming off of an antidepressant, with a preschooler, and very little sense of hope

4 COOOOOOMMENTS! Now you speak up!
Here I sit. Quite still actually. There are hot tears rolling down my face and I'm pretty sure that my lab is merely sitting beside me out of pity. And you know what? I'll take it.

Say what you will about stigmas, and widespread knowledge of mental health, and acceptance. Say what you want about fighting a good fight, and remembering there are brighter days ahead.

Then imagine yourself curled up in the fetal position on the dog-drool covered couch, face mashed into a blanket, fancy mascara crumbling in a hot stream down your cheeks, too ill to move. Every eyeball shift, every head tilt resulting in a brain zapping hell that can't be described unless truly experienced.

It really sucks because it feels so lonely. The text to your hubby that says you're suffering probably just comes off as melodramatic. The physical pain and the physical withdrawal from the antidepressant Cymbalta.

But add in one more factor.

Have your wonderful, lively, bright eyed preschooler ask you repeatedly to please play with her Paw Patroller toys. You just can't. And then she sees your sobbing, messy face. And wants to know why you're crying.

My feeble attempts to explain that mommy's body is ouchy and that mommy just feels so sick just feel meaningless. I can't explain that this is a long fought battle that seems to keep ending in failure. That mommy is trying to find a way to be happy after a lifetime of hurt from various places, and a chemical imbalance in my brain.

That mommy hasn't slept through the night in over three years, and that Cymbalta has been the culprit for a good 18 months of that. I now see it's made me an angrier person and I've wasted some of her most formative years suffering physically from the effects of the drug.

And it isn't my first rodeo.

And I can't actually walk upstairs on my own accord at the moment, so I listen to her jam away on her piano Gramma bought her, while she sings her own made up song that she wants mommy to be happy. And that she is sad when mommy is sad. Seriously. Feeling low and then lower.

And as I can gut wrenchingly visualize her sitting in her therapist's office 15 years from now, she still manages to get a brain-buzzingly silent giggle out of me as she wiggles her butt to her song.

She tells me I'm a good mommy and all I can reply with is choked sobs. Counting the minutes until my mentally stable husband walks through the door.

Why am I writing this? I really don't know. I guess it's just really painful so I wanted some of it out of my head.

We went to a play date earlier in the day. I've been altering between no medication and a tapered dose. With Cymbalta, you can't just cut pills in half, you just dump granules out of a capsule. I haven't counted, I've just been slugging through. So I didn't want to miss her play date.

In a room full of joyous kids and happy moms and I feel like I'm dying. But I try to smile. I try. I try to joke, I try. The more of a downer I am, the less people want to be around me, for good reason. Everyone is fighting their own battles. No one wants someone in their life that is constantly negative or focused on all that is wrong. I've been told, more than once, that person is me.

It is just getting really old. Exhausting.
I want more for her.

And it hurts to feel so alone.

Oct. 28, 2016.

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