Tips on minimizing withdrawal symptoms from Effexor (aka Venlafaxine)

Posted by richyrich @richyrich, Nov 2, 2016

I have been taking Effexor/Venlafaxine for years and tried to get off it a few times but each time I try to give up the chemical withdrawal symptoms are a horror story and I give up giving up. Anyone got any tips or tried and tested strategies? Thank you

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@grandmar

Hi All…
Just wanted to check in.
I completed week 3 of my withdrawal from Effexor. I am doing this VERY SLOWLY!!
As a reminder, I am taking 300 mg of Effexor daily. I take it in the form of a pill, 2 75mg in the morning and 2 75mg at night. I can't take slow release because of my inability to absorb it properly.
Anyhow, as I said, I am taking my time with this process. I am in no hurry and will let my body and mind be a guiding force. I've been on Effexor for over 13 years (one dosage and/or one form at a timt).
To start, cut one 75 mg into 1/4s (evening dosage). I've been taking my 2 full pills in the morning and alternating between 1-3/4 and 2 wholes every other night. It's the end of my 3rd week tonight. Starting tomorrow night, I'll be taking 1-3/4 pills every night. My goal will be for another 3 weeks.
After that, 1-1/2 every other night for 3 weeks, etc.
I know it is a very small amount but I want to try to have the least amount of withdrawal symptoms as possible. Unless things are utterly GREAT, I have no intention of coming off 100%. My goal is 75mg in the am/pm.
Now I don't know if what I am feeling today is withdrawal or weather and barometric changes but I've been having what feels like restless hands/arms and feet/legs. More annoying than anything. I live in Florida so the temps are certainly better than up north. Today we went from the 50s to 80s. I know how many of you might be rolling your eyes wishing for temps like that, but when you live in a warm climate, even the 60s is cold. And as I said, barometer can impact, not just temperature changes.
Wow, that's a lot of writing for such a small med reduction. Lol!
Enjoy the rest of the weekend!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@grandmar

@lioness
I'm really not sure if it is from meds. The more I think of it, I think the restless legs and arms are from my arthritis. It does NOT hurt. It is more annoying. Think of trying to go to sleep and you toss n turn because you can't find a spit that feels comfortable; this is pretty much how it feels.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@grandma– Good morning! RLS, restless leg syndrome is a nerve condition of unknown cause. There is an uncontrollable urge to move your legs (in my case) and moving them helps to lessen the urge, much like trying to loosen an elastic band because it pinches. As soon as you loosen the band the pinching stops but it's back as soon as you release it. Trying to get comfortable is almost impossible. There are meds for it, like requip but it doesn't always work for me. It's just another annoyance but I don't know if it's related to arthritis.

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@merpreb

@grandma– Good morning! RLS, restless leg syndrome is a nerve condition of unknown cause. There is an uncontrollable urge to move your legs (in my case) and moving them helps to lessen the urge, much like trying to loosen an elastic band because it pinches. As soon as you loosen the band the pinching stops but it's back as soon as you release it. Trying to get comfortable is almost impossible. There are meds for it, like requip but it doesn't always work for me. It's just another annoyance but I don't know if it's related to arthritis.

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@merpreb
Thank you.

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@grandmar

grandma- you are more than welcome

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@grandmar

@contentandwell
Good morning,
The BIGGEST reason I want to significantly want to reduce my Effexor is because my memory is shot!! I am hoping I am not too late to counteract this side-effect.
In addition, I often feel like my head is 'cloudy' and last but not least I've not only put on weight, but losing is a lost cause no matter what I do.
Enjoy what is left of your weekend…
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@grandmar Ronnie, I totally understand. These drugs are so insidious. I worry about people I know who are taking them but they apparently feel they are necessary. Perhaps as they age they will become less necessary, I hope so.
JK

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@merpreb

@grandma– Good morning! RLS, restless leg syndrome is a nerve condition of unknown cause. There is an uncontrollable urge to move your legs (in my case) and moving them helps to lessen the urge, much like trying to loosen an elastic band because it pinches. As soon as you loosen the band the pinching stops but it's back as soon as you release it. Trying to get comfortable is almost impossible. There are meds for it, like requip but it doesn't always work for me. It's just another annoyance but I don't know if it's related to arthritis.

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@merprep I,ve talked about this before but there is a old remedy that works for RLS and that is pickle juice or mustard .As soon as your legs start go to the fridge and drink a good swallow of pickle juice . A friend carries mustard packs when out and RLS starts .Try it next time .

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@grandmar

@lioness
I'm really not sure if it is from meds. The more I think of it, I think the restless legs and arms are from my arthritis. It does NOT hurt. It is more annoying. Think of trying to go to sleep and you toss n turn because you can't find a spit that feels comfortable; this is pretty much how it feels.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@grandmar pickle juice try it

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@contentandwell

@grandmar Ronnie, I totally understand. These drugs are so insidious. I worry about people I know who are taking them but they apparently feel they are necessary. Perhaps as they age they will become less necessary, I hope so.
JK

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@contentandwell
I don't know if age has any impact on the diseases of anxiety and depression.
Many people have a genetic component or chemical component.
I don't think these can change with age other than needing less meds.

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@lioness

@merprep I,ve talked about this before but there is a old remedy that works for RLS and that is pickle juice or mustard .As soon as your legs start go to the fridge and drink a good swallow of pickle juice . A friend carries mustard packs when out and RLS starts .Try it next time .

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Oh boy. I'm not sure that I could swallow pickle juice. But I thank your for your suggestions. What do mustard pack do for RLS?

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@lioness

@grandmar pickle juice try it

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@lioness
Why pickle juice? From any special kind? (dill, sour, bread n butter?)

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@merpreb

Oh boy. I'm not sure that I could swallow pickle juice. But I thank your for your suggestions. What do mustard pack do for RLS?

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@merpreb Its the vinegar in the mustard as in the dill pickle juice that is what relieves the cramps ,twitching of the legs @grandmar I don't know if this helps the hands but give it a try won't hurt.Of course the other thing make sure you get enough magnesium in your diet or supplement.With my fibromyalgia I take 600 mg a day

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@grandmar

@contentandwell
I don't know if age has any impact on the diseases of anxiety and depression.
Many people have a genetic component or chemical component.
I don't think these can change with age other than needing less meds.

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@grandmar I feel that any time you can cut back on meds without negative consequences, it’s good. No meds are without side-effects. I have managed to decrease two meds with doctors’ approval. One of the good things about my PCP is that he does not seem to easily prescribe medications. Obviously you should never decrease the dosage without checking with your doctor. In both of my cases blood tests showed the decreased dose was doing what it needed to do.
JK

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