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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Hi I’ve weaned off Effexor 3/months ago. I thought I was fine and 2 months after got bad palpitations.. I got sick and then got bad anxiety and panic attacks. I’m now on quetiapine. Helps a little but my thoughts are horrible and I can’t distract myself. I get depression and anxiety.

Just wondering if anyone felt better re starting them? I’m worried about having horrible side effects and mentally coping with extra pressure.
How do I survive side effects from re starting or getting on a new anti depressant?

I don’t know what to do because I don’t feel like I’m coping well .

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@mum1989

Hi I’ve weaned off Effexor 3/months ago. I thought I was fine and 2 months after got bad palpitations.. I got sick and then got bad anxiety and panic attacks. I’m now on quetiapine. Helps a little but my thoughts are horrible and I can’t distract myself. I get depression and anxiety.

Just wondering if anyone felt better re starting them? I’m worried about having horrible side effects and mentally coping with extra pressure.
How do I survive side effects from re starting or getting on a new anti depressant?

I don’t know what to do because I don’t feel like I’m coping well .

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Also is it possible to get my life back by getting on medication again. Right now I feel I’ll never be normal.. suicidal thoughts suck so bad and scare me. I have four kids I want to watch grow up but same time in suffering and don’t know how to get on track.

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@mum1989

Hi I’ve weaned off Effexor 3/months ago. I thought I was fine and 2 months after got bad palpitations.. I got sick and then got bad anxiety and panic attacks. I’m now on quetiapine. Helps a little but my thoughts are horrible and I can’t distract myself. I get depression and anxiety.

Just wondering if anyone felt better re starting them? I’m worried about having horrible side effects and mentally coping with extra pressure.
How do I survive side effects from re starting or getting on a new anti depressant?

I don’t know what to do because I don’t feel like I’m coping well .

Jump to this post

Also had chest pain the last month and result are ok apart from having atelectasis at the bottom of my lungs. I’m 33. I’m worried this pain is inflammation after getting off effexor?

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@mum1989

Also had chest pain the last month and result are ok apart from having atelectasis at the bottom of my lungs. I’m 33. I’m worried this pain is inflammation after getting off effexor?

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Dear mum1989, I have lived most of my life on anti-depressants and medication for anxiety and panic attacks. I was diagnosed with Brain Cancer almost 2 years ago. Thus my depression, anxiety and panic attacks have been more intense. I was on Effexor for a long time and was recently switched to new medications. They have been extremely beneficial. I take Cymbalta and Abilify. I also take Clonazepam as needed. Also, Hydroxyzine Pamoate (Vistaril) for anxiety. Believe it or not, I use the Vistaril more than the Clonazepam. It does not make me as drowsy as the Clonazepam. All medications react differently on us all. I do see a therapist every two weeks to talk to. If you don't have a therapist, I would suggest finding a good one. It does help so very much. My best wishes to you and I hope I was able to help.

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@mum1989

Hi I’ve weaned off Effexor 3/months ago. I thought I was fine and 2 months after got bad palpitations.. I got sick and then got bad anxiety and panic attacks. I’m now on quetiapine. Helps a little but my thoughts are horrible and I can’t distract myself. I get depression and anxiety.

Just wondering if anyone felt better re starting them? I’m worried about having horrible side effects and mentally coping with extra pressure.
How do I survive side effects from re starting or getting on a new anti depressant?

I don’t know what to do because I don’t feel like I’m coping well .

Jump to this post

I tried to go off of Effexor for the first time 10+ years ago. The psychiatrist suggested I decrease me dose every 2 weeks by 75mg. I was at 450mg/day. I was great for about 4 months, but then had panic attacks for the first time in my life and severe anxiety / panic that wouldn’t go away for four days straight. I ended up going back on Effexor at 300mg and have been on that since. It worked for me…I’m not happy about it, but it might help for you if you are feeling at your limit day after day with no end in sight. That doesn’t mean you can’t try something else later when you feel stable, or try to get off it again.

I can’t believe that doctors can’t give good advice on this stuff. I’m not a medical professional, I’ve only been through my own experiences, so take it as you will.

I hope you get to a good place soon – with or without medication. There are multiple threads on the topic so if you’re up for it search around

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@kermit2021

I tried to go off of Effexor for the first time 10+ years ago. The psychiatrist suggested I decrease me dose every 2 weeks by 75mg. I was at 450mg/day. I was great for about 4 months, but then had panic attacks for the first time in my life and severe anxiety / panic that wouldn’t go away for four days straight. I ended up going back on Effexor at 300mg and have been on that since. It worked for me…I’m not happy about it, but it might help for you if you are feeling at your limit day after day with no end in sight. That doesn’t mean you can’t try something else later when you feel stable, or try to get off it again.

I can’t believe that doctors can’t give good advice on this stuff. I’m not a medical professional, I’ve only been through my own experiences, so take it as you will.

I hope you get to a good place soon – with or without medication. There are multiple threads on the topic so if you’re up for it search around

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Hi Kermit, I meant to post to you but got busy with daily work. I'm so glad that Effexor is working for you. I was on the 300mg daily. I was also prescribed Effexor to help with my chronic pain issues. I totally agree with you. Trial and error. We all have to be our own "medical doctors" lol lol. I know it's not fun feeling you can't live without medications but when they are needed I'm thankful I can get help. Take care.

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@kermit2021

I tried to go off of Effexor for the first time 10+ years ago. The psychiatrist suggested I decrease me dose every 2 weeks by 75mg. I was at 450mg/day. I was great for about 4 months, but then had panic attacks for the first time in my life and severe anxiety / panic that wouldn’t go away for four days straight. I ended up going back on Effexor at 300mg and have been on that since. It worked for me…I’m not happy about it, but it might help for you if you are feeling at your limit day after day with no end in sight. That doesn’t mean you can’t try something else later when you feel stable, or try to get off it again.

I can’t believe that doctors can’t give good advice on this stuff. I’m not a medical professional, I’ve only been through my own experiences, so take it as you will.

I hope you get to a good place soon – with or without medication. There are multiple threads on the topic so if you’re up for it search around

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I had one tablet a few weeks ago and my anxiety was high and I felt it made it worse. I was told by mental health not to go back in it to it calmed down as effexor was very activating medication. We’re you off effexor for 4 months?

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@mum1989

I had one tablet a few weeks ago and my anxiety was high and I felt it made it worse. I was told by mental health not to go back in it to it calmed down as effexor was very activating medication. We’re you off effexor for 4 months?

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I was off of Effexor for about 4 months. This was after following a 6 month tapering schedule and working with my psychiatrist.

It sounds like you’re working with a mental health provider to manage your medication? These medications affect us all so differently, and what works for one person doesn’t work for the next person. If you’re not happy with your current mental health provider it might be worth asking around to see if there’s someone else who could help you? Your primary care doctor might have some suggestions?

Betnlar made a really good suggestion about finding a therapist to talk to. I think it’s crucial to have someone other than the person who’s prescribing your meds to talk to in depth – so someone else knows what you’re struggling with. These things we struggle with are very real, and not everyone understands.

I hope you find what you need soon!

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Hello, I just have a few questions and I so hope someone will help me.

I am 73 years old and have been on Effexor for 6 years
I want to get off Effexor but the smallest capsule is 37.5mg and that is what I am on.
When I try to stop I get so sick I nearly hit the floor last time I tried.
How do I get off Effexor if I'm already on the lowest dose and there are no other Effexor pills with less mg's.

Thank you in advance, I really need help with this. Annie

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@jvarga

Hello, I just have a few questions and I so hope someone will help me.

I am 73 years old and have been on Effexor for 6 years
I want to get off Effexor but the smallest capsule is 37.5mg and that is what I am on.
When I try to stop I get so sick I nearly hit the floor last time I tried.
How do I get off Effexor if I'm already on the lowest dose and there are no other Effexor pills with less mg's.

Thank you in advance, I really need help with this. Annie

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Hi Annie, I totally understand what you are dealing with. I had to stop Effexor. In the process I was started on a low dose of Cymbalta. In withdrawing from Effexor I was very sleepy and sluggish. I made it through the withdrawal as hard as it was. I believe the Cymbalta definitely helped me through the issues. I'm not sure if you are looking to completely stop all medications or looking for another anti-depressant. I've always heard the first 3 days of coming off these types of medications can seem horrible, but that to shall pass. Good luck with your issue. I hoped I helped in some way. Betty

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I ran out of my medication for three days and experienced brain zaps, stroke like symptoms and very strange dreams. I know that when I do go off of this medication it will need to be slow.

What were the reasons many of you decided to go off? I am taking this for anxiety. I would like to get off of it sometime.

Thanks for sharing this information.

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@rcap238

I am in the process of eliminating Viibryd. When I found out my new insurance did not cover it and generic offerings are in litigation I can not afford the 400 dollar price point. I tapered off from 40 but just like all the other meds, it’s a path of torture that requires serious discipline to fight through. The hardest part is your brain on delay. Personally I have issues of streams and (no idea the medical term) but a shock that trembles through my body. Loud noise is bone crushing and it’s just feeling worse than having Covid. All SSRI’s should be pulled, they only numb you to just get by.
I did get a recommendation to supplement with magnesium to ease the zaps. (I’m not a doctor) and it seems to help. I wish everyone the best of luck on this poison and take over of the brain. I really hope I can post a week from now and report I am doing better. Right now It’s hard but I will not succumb to the challenge. I always tell myself ”it could always be worth” thanks to my doctor for enough “starter packs” to taper down. Same withdrawal effects of lexapro if not worse. Good luck everyone.

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Interested to learn how and why you weaned off Lexapro please. I’m sick of being numb. I think if I wasn’t I might be able to solve my problems better so that I don’t need any antidepressants. This way I’m too numb to do anything about anything .

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