Tips on minimising 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

Liked by Bek, LynneB, kelly76, echams1 ... see all

@lisa0878

I am doing pretty good. I've been off effexor since may 16 and ues It was horrible but I'm doing fine now. I weened down to 37.5mg and I took that for a month then just stopped!!! I'm not at all saying it was easy it was like I said horrible but I got threw it. Why would you recommend lexapro or paxil or whatever antidepressant when your trying to come off them. It's just a vicious cycle.
All I take now is a klonopin for my anxiety and that helped me with my complications from comming off of effexor as well and like on day 4 and 5 when I thought I couldn't come off it cause I felt so bad I went and got an IV and they gave me a steroid and benadryl and something else for my headache. After the ER getting me straightened out I felt better. I mean i still take motrin for this headache that won't go away but I feel that if you wanna get off You can do it!!! Just get it over with and do it. Its gonna be uncomfortable for awhile but I def wouldn't be trying to take more depression meds to just have to end up having to come off those eventually.. I dont know this is just how I feel. IT is possible to come off effexor I did it and I feel alot better. I still take my klonopin and motrin but I've been on anxiety meds for over 10years and will probably never come off those. I dont want too either because I do need them. I have bad panic attacks and anxiety. Effexor should be banned it should be a scheduled drug like pain pills and heroin. I can't believe we all had to go threw this to come off. Its crazy but it can be done and if you are ready just Do it!!!! If I can do it anyone can.

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I'm glad it worked well for you, but for each of us the experience was different. For me, anxiety and panic were making me housebound and robbing me of quality of life. I've been able to go anywhere and do anything for years, and I wasn't about to accept having to spend the rest of my life with such limitations. I tried all kinds of things, which I've detailed on here before, and was not getting any relief, so my decision was to go on a different antidepressant to see if it would help, which it did. Again, for each of us it's different; we each have our own path.

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@secretwhitepop

As long as it’s not Effexor, I’ll give it a shot. Still mourning my dad, still moving, still trying to secure employment, and mom still has dementia. Right now I’m deciding to go easy on myself and family and try Lexipro. A pediatric dose has had a wonderful effect on me in the past. So at least that is comforting. But so does acupuncture. Which I will go back to. I just need to find one in my new area.

All of the changes I’ve made in my life are from the weening and I’m terrified to realize that I’m a bit bipolar. And the mania leads me to buy things and move and switch jobs and do all sorts of things that later stress me out. The Zoloft then Effexor helped me to plant roots, for which I am grateful. For my sake and for the sake of my family, I think roots should be planted again. If I was young and single, eh, I’d keep on keeping on.

I’ve had a couple suicides in my family (folks I never met) and anxiety and depression on both sides. So I come by this honestly.

I am so grateful for this site!

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@bubbles,
Awe, I totally understand. My mom and daughter share being bipolar.
My mom demonstrated this by not being able to control herself when angry. Which was often.
My daughter does best when she lives her life with my only grandson without any family being involved in her life.
This is something I cannot control, not being in contact with them. It hurts too. I know things are best for her when she keeps her world small. Very small. Its her choice.
The thing I do best is to share love and healing with the people I meet. It is their choice to take advantage of it or not.
My daughter doesn't want it.
.
I am interested to read your list of hyper symptoms you posted. And glad you made the connection between your actions and bipolar. Just in acknowledging this you take control of your life….there are other things to follow up with but first recognizing the most important thing…recognizing AND admitting!!!!
.
Suicide is in my family too. My brother…and friends. I myself have felt suicidal 1000's of times…no lie…And I never followed thru cuz it almost destroyed the family. I couldn't do that to them again.
Bright Wings, I am going to go be sad for a while.
.

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@brightwings

@bubbles,
Awe, I totally understand. My mom and daughter share being bipolar.
My mom demonstrated this by not being able to control herself when angry. Which was often.
My daughter does best when she lives her life with my only grandson without any family being involved in her life.
This is something I cannot control, not being in contact with them. It hurts too. I know things are best for her when she keeps her world small. Very small. Its her choice.
The thing I do best is to share love and healing with the people I meet. It is their choice to take advantage of it or not.
My daughter doesn't want it.
.
I am interested to read your list of hyper symptoms you posted. And glad you made the connection between your actions and bipolar. Just in acknowledging this you take control of your life….there are other things to follow up with but first recognizing the most important thing…recognizing AND admitting!!!!
.
Suicide is in my family too. My brother…and friends. I myself have felt suicidal 1000's of times…no lie…And I never followed thru cuz it almost destroyed the family. I couldn't do that to them again.
Bright Wings, I am going to go be sad for a while.
.

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I had a psychiatrist for several years. She was great and very conservative when it came to prescribing medicine. It took several years before she administered Zoloft and then, when I complained of the side effects, she warily prescribed Effexor. Which worked. But one thing she told me but did not put in writing was that, if she were pushed, she would diagnose me with bipolar disorder. But since I was so high functioning, she did not want to put it in writing. Didn’t want to commit to it.

My anger can get out of control, however. People say I’m scary. But the histrionics were sort of normal in my family. It wasn’t until I got into the real world and away from my family that I realized it was a little over the top.

My husband is a loud yeller, too. But I understand him. And maybe that’s why we get along! He doesn’t mean anything by it, we’re just both kind of loud 🙂

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@lisa0878

I am doing pretty good. I've been off effexor since may 16 and ues It was horrible but I'm doing fine now. I weened down to 37.5mg and I took that for a month then just stopped!!! I'm not at all saying it was easy it was like I said horrible but I got threw it. Why would you recommend lexapro or paxil or whatever antidepressant when your trying to come off them. It's just a vicious cycle.
All I take now is a klonopin for my anxiety and that helped me with my complications from comming off of effexor as well and like on day 4 and 5 when I thought I couldn't come off it cause I felt so bad I went and got an IV and they gave me a steroid and benadryl and something else for my headache. After the ER getting me straightened out I felt better. I mean i still take motrin for this headache that won't go away but I feel that if you wanna get off You can do it!!! Just get it over with and do it. Its gonna be uncomfortable for awhile but I def wouldn't be trying to take more depression meds to just have to end up having to come off those eventually.. I dont know this is just how I feel. IT is possible to come off effexor I did it and I feel alot better. I still take my klonopin and motrin but I've been on anxiety meds for over 10years and will probably never come off those. I dont want too either because I do need them. I have bad panic attacks and anxiety. Effexor should be banned it should be a scheduled drug like pain pills and heroin. I can't believe we all had to go threw this to come off. Its crazy but it can be done and if you are ready just Do it!!!! If I can do it anyone can.

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@lisa0878
Hi Lisa,
You mentioned “Effexor should be banned it should be a scheduled drug like pain pills and heroin. I can't believe we all had to go threw this to come off.“
First, I disagree that Effexor should be banned. It has been a beneficial medication for many. However doctors need to be more responsible when prescribing it and be more upfront with information on Effexor.
Patients also have a responsibility to know what they are being prescribed and why. According to studies 20-30% of prescriptions are never filled and 50% of patients don’t take medication as prescribed.
The withdrawals you suffered are most likely due stopping to quickly or taking to large of cuts etc.
If you ever decide to discontinue Klonopin it may be just as hard to stop as Effexor. Small titration schedules and patience are essential if you want a withdrawal free or virtually withdrawal free experience.
Jake

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@brightwings

Lost another long post…darn it…BW

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@brightwings
Hey kiddo,
I usually write my posts in notes then copy them in connect. I’ve had the same problem.
Jake

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@brightwings

@lisa0878
Good for you girl…I am so proud of you.
And please remember we each get a personal choice to use an antidepressant if necessary.
Bright Wings

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Yes your right. Especially if u need to take them and need them of course. Depression is horrible

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@jakedduck1

@lisa0878
Hi Lisa,
You mentioned “Effexor should be banned it should be a scheduled drug like pain pills and heroin. I can't believe we all had to go threw this to come off.“
First, I disagree that Effexor should be banned. It has been a beneficial medication for many. However doctors need to be more responsible when prescribing it and be more upfront with information on Effexor.
Patients also have a responsibility to know what they are being prescribed and why. According to studies 20-30% of prescriptions are never filled and 50% of patients don’t take medication as prescribed.
The withdrawals you suffered are most likely due stopping to quickly or taking to large of cuts etc.
If you ever decide to discontinue Klonopin it may be just as hard to stop as Effexor. Small titration schedules and patience are essential if you want a withdrawal free or virtually withdrawal free experience.
Jake

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I agree that I will def have withdrawls to come off klonopin.
I probably went to far as to say banned. I guess I just thought withdrawls were something somebody on narcotics would have to go threw that's why I said same category as a narcotic

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@lisa0878

I agree that I will def have withdrawls to come off klonopin.
I probably went to far as to say banned. I guess I just thought withdrawls were something somebody on narcotics would have to go threw that's why I said same category as a narcotic

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It's ok to have a strong opinion about something that's caused you pain. I'm happy to hear you are doing well!

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@brightwings

Sandi, go read your personal messages…

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@brightwings I dont see any new messages from you

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@sandij

@brightwings I dont see any new messages from you

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Dated .may16 if I remember right. BW

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You know, its been an unusually good day. I have been relatively pain free, spirits up, except for the sadness earlier. I felt it and honored my feelings, then I was done. Took years to get here and to be able to do it like that. I think just days ago I would have balled my eyes out.
.
No CBD for 2 days…don't need it…how cool is that. I am getting things done that I could only think about doing days ago.
.
Today I volunteered to be publicity for the new Events Committee I am on for my Tribe. I started writing things the 2 groups I worked with accomplished over the course of 15 years or so.
One group started meeting in a church basement to talk about sexual abuse and in 15 years we went Internationally with 5000 attending a convention. When it was time for my lecture, I just looked at the faces in the front row cuz speaking to a crowd of 5000 is intimidating…
I also worked with Ulster Project, an organization devoted to ending the prejudice between Catholic and Protestant In Ireland. We would raise $20,000 each year to bring 20 teen from Ireland to as America. It changed the incredible segregation they each went thru. Then had 40 kids for a bit over a month and we would go to all kinds of events..fun and food were also included everywhere. They each attended the other religions church…I ran those teenagers into the ground!!!! What a ball I had being part of all this in the past…I am thrilled I am starting a life again…I isolated way to many years after my husband died…
Night all, Bright Wings
I believe the reason I am accomplishing so much is my new pendant of Shungite. I was reading up on it…MOST OF ALL I HAVE ENERGY.
My thinking is different. Clearer, no old age fog…I feel 5 years younger. My fingernails are so hard, and I can practically see them growing…I am marveling at what I am observing…FROM A ROCK????
I am all in on this one. James has been looking at this one also for personal healing. He said he will be ordering a large batch of Shungite and start working on the stones. He does exquisite wire wrapping. He made me an Angel many people comment on.
Ok, tired, rambling…good night all…Bright Wings

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@brightwings

Dated .may16 if I remember right. BW

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Yes, I remember that one

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I am having a problem with anxiety after being completely off effexor since Feb. what do any of you recommend for this that is not addicting and possibly on an as needed basis. I have an appointment with a new physician tomorrow

Liked by Leonard

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@saku

I am having a problem with anxiety after being completely off effexor since Feb. what do any of you recommend for this that is not addicting and possibly on an as needed basis. I have an appointment with a new physician tomorrow

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Anxiety returned for me, too, and I now take 20mg daily of citalopram, which is generic Celexa. (I understand that Lexapro, which is very similar to Celexa, can be effective, too.) I also have a scrip for 10mg Valium as needed, but I haven't needed to take any (although I do carry the pills with me). Because citalopram causes changes in brain chemistry, I presume there's some sort of withdrawal process in going off it, but I certainly can't imagine it being as difficult as venlafaxine/Effexor. Also, because my anxiety (and panic) became so debilitating, at this point I have no intention of trying to get off citalopram. The relief I've gotten from it has been immense.
Good luck to you!!

Liked by Lisa Lucier

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@saku

I am having a problem with anxiety after being completely off effexor since Feb. what do any of you recommend for this that is not addicting and possibly on an as needed basis. I have an appointment with a new physician tomorrow

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@saku
You can click on my name and read my past posts–I listed the specific supplements and qty I'm taking (the best list is on 1/01/19). For something that will give relief on as needed basis, you can ask your doctor about Valium (diazepam). I use 1/2 to a whole 10mg dose on occasion.

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