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

@medfree17

So I ended up making the decision to come of the Venafalaxine! Best decision ever! I have been constantly taking my CBD oil and I have never felt better! I have not taking any meds for 2 whole days and this is the first time in over a year! I am feeling fantastic right now because of it! I highly recommend trying! To everyone struggling stay strong and don’t let anxiety get the best of you. Be open about it even if people don’t understand. It has been the best form of therapy for me plus the CBD oil ❤️

Jump to this post

@tennesseegirl
You rock girl, just my humble opinion…bright wings flying at last

REPLY
@medfree17

So I ended up making the decision to come of the Venafalaxine! Best decision ever! I have been constantly taking my CBD oil and I have never felt better! I have not taking any meds for 2 whole days and this is the first time in over a year! I am feeling fantastic right now because of it! I highly recommend trying! To everyone struggling stay strong and don’t let anxiety get the best of you. Be open about it even if people don’t understand. It has been the best form of therapy for me plus the CBD oil ❤️

Jump to this post

@amelia42, how kind of you to support others when you are going thru it yourself. My hat is off to you. How are you handling the anxiety or rushes of emotions? I had to say out loud…self regulating…then look up…don't drop that chin. It has to do with what chemicals are being dumped into your brain…IF YOU FEEL LOUSY DO NOT LAY DOWN OR if you are laying down, GET UP. Again it affects what chemicals are released.
Other times, there is nothing to do but say, and this too shall pass…
Cuz some days are like that. Hang in there, we are all with you. Bright Wings

REPLY
@amberpep

Hi …. I've been taking Effexor for about 2 years now, and I'm usually very conscientious about taking all my meds. daily. Well, last Saturday I ran out, and because of the date of the month, I had only $1.00. I have not had any since last Saturday. Today was the first day I noticed anything at all ….. I felt dizzy and didn't feel I should be driving anywhere. My dear daughter went and picked them up for me, so about an hour ago I took one. I'm wondering why I didn't notice anything sooner ….. I sure expected to.
abby

Jump to this post

@amberpep
Our bodies are all different. I suspect you are on the extended XR caps. That lasts a lot longer in your system than the pills. I often forgot to take XR caps with out symptoms.
What are your plans? Are you going to keep taking it or get off? Keep coming back, bright wings

REPLY
@medfree17

So I ended up making the decision to come of the Venafalaxine! Best decision ever! I have been constantly taking my CBD oil and I have never felt better! I have not taking any meds for 2 whole days and this is the first time in over a year! I am feeling fantastic right now because of it! I highly recommend trying! To everyone struggling stay strong and don’t let anxiety get the best of you. Be open about it even if people don’t understand. It has been the best form of therapy for me plus the CBD oil ❤️

Jump to this post

After reading SO many comments I'm going to buy CBD oil tomorrow. Thanks for the suggestion. Here's to hope!

REPLY
@sawiety

I wanted to pop into this community for personal support and to help others that are tapering off of effexor xr or venelafaxine.

I follow a strict Paleo diet and have eliminated or reversed 5 chronic, autoimmune diseases. Effexor is my final (12th) drug to get off of. It’s been a 3 year process and I’m thrilled to report I no longer have ulcerative colitis, ADHD, eczema, hypothyroidism and anxiety/depression. Most of the medications were easy to eliminate, but effexor has taken more planning and self care.

Last July (2017), I decided it was time to begin the tapering process. I was only taking 75 mg., but knew from the experience of accidentally skipping a dose, that I should not follow my doctor’s orders of getting off it in one month. After all, I had been taking it for nearly 18 years! So instead, I began by taking 10 beads out of the capsule.

I did ok, but it was a rough start. Thankfully it was summer and I didn’t need to be near my fifth grade students. I continued with the taper and got to 37.5 mg and settled there for a few months while preparing for my son’s wedding.

Since January 2018, I’ve been decreasing the dose by about 2 beads every other week. For the most part, this has been manageable, but I’ve had days where I’ve felt nauseated, dizzy and agitated. I’ve needed to be so careful in my job as 10 year olds do not deserve to be treated unfairly. So, that’s a big reason why I’ve taken this slowly.

Now it’s the following summer and just last week I went from 15 beads to 10 beads. I had a fairly good week until day 6, which was yesterday. I experienced hot flashes (not typical on a Paleo diet despite my age ~ 53 years), apathy, fatigue and the occasional brain zap. Today I do not want to function, but I don’t feel depressed or anxious ~ just unmotivated.

I’m slightly nervous about these last 10 beads. I intend to drop to 5 beads in 6 days, and then down to two and hopefully in a month, I’ll call it quits. But, I’m nervous about the final dose. The few dreadful experiences I’ve encountered are enough to make me nervous about the whole thing.

Anyhow, this endeavor will have taken me a solid year. But I feel the slow tapering was worth it for me. I am such a sensitive person and I don’t handle physical symptoms well. I know that my diet (no grains, sugar, pasteurized dairy, starches or legumes), has been a positive in all this and has probably made this transition easier than for some people. Nonetheless, my brain wants to be off this junk.

Definitely Omega 3 fats and high quality fish oil have proven to be helpful. These are part of my diet anyhow, so just upping the dose has proven beneficial. Hoping to rely on this during the final stretch.

I’ll write again when I totally get off it. Each time I dropped a few beads, my brain reminded me it was time for the next dose. Unsure what will happen when I eliminate it entirely. Would love any advice that anyone is willing to share.

Jump to this post

@tennesseegirl
Oh my gosh, your dad And husband? My gosh, the same thing happened to me. I am so sorry!!!
Long story short, my mom died 6 weeks after I was given a prophecy I would be the mother of the world…I looked up at God and scoffed. I said out loud, while looking up at God, I have an 81 year old mother with Alzheimer's disease, I am not going anywhere God! I have a 75 year old husband who is healthy, I am not going anywhere. (This probably sounds like an extreme answer but remember, I had already gone on a trip around the world with my mom for 3 1/2 months. I knew what happens when prophecies are given.
Long story short again, my mom passed away 6 weeks later. Dec 14…on 1/11/11 I completely integrated all the rest of my personalities. (My mom was my greatest abuser). THEN 6 weeks after that, my beloved husband fell and died in 8 1/2 hours.
Now I know God did not cause any of that to happen.
When I heard later in the year, I should go be a missionary in Africa, my answer was, "I'm going God!". Lol I did too. 6 months in Kenya
Forgive me for getting distracted with my story. How are you handling the grief? Concerned, bright wings

REPLY
@medfree17

So I ended up making the decision to come of the Venafalaxine! Best decision ever! I have been constantly taking my CBD oil and I have never felt better! I have not taking any meds for 2 whole days and this is the first time in over a year! I am feeling fantastic right now because of it! I highly recommend trying! To everyone struggling stay strong and don’t let anxiety get the best of you. Be open about it even if people don’t understand. It has been the best form of therapy for me plus the CBD oil ❤️

Jump to this post

@amelia42
CBD oil is more than hope, it works!

REPLY
@liz223

My heart hurts for you. I lost a young adult child. Maybe someday I can write my story.

Jump to this post

@liz223
Oh my dear, my heart is bleeding with yours. I know I used to held so much in…long story short…it contributed to my physical problems. The pain I was not talking about was breaking my body. I have had 19 surgeries. All that stopped as I started sharing with others.
WHEN YOU ARE READY…we are here to listen and "be with you". No one should do this alone. Smiling and holding out my hand if you choose to take it, great! If you don't choose, that is great too because we don't force anyone to do anything here. Sending a wonderful hug if you choose to accept it. You can always throw it in a drawer to save for later. Smiling at you, Bright Wings

REPLY
@arachel

I've been posting pretty regularly here since I started my withdrawal from 150 mg back in January. This is my second attempt at getting completely off of Effexor. The first try came in 2013 at my then doctor's encouragement. He thought I had been on the drug too long and he was right. Ten years was too long. Unfortunately, this doctor was not very well versed in this drug and how to guide a patient through the wean down process. After a very bumpy road, and six months into trying to withdraw, I ended up in the emergency room in the throws of the worst panic attack of my life. Diagnosis was "withdrawal" and I was encouraged to get back on the drug and I did. In retrospect, that recommendation was wrong, wrong, wrong. I was down to 10mg and if I had a doctor who knew what the hell was happening I could have gotten past that downslide and off the drug instead of back where I started. Five years after that incident and still taking Effexor, I was back in another doctors office. He also encouraged me to wean off the drug. He, like the other guy, didn't have any better insight into how to do it except to try to put a day between dosages. No, no, no…..wrong again. You can't skip a day without adding some Effexor to your diet. This time I felt I would be my own best advocate and I started with this forum. Somewhere here (don't quite remember who it was) I read that people were opening the capsule and removing the little beads in slow degrees until you've reached the ultimate goal of zero. Now, that seemed logical to me. That's how I started to do it. I got myself down to 75mg and then down to 37.5 with very little consequence. By the way, my doctor was completely against my doing it this way, but his way was too painful, so I took things into my own hands. I continued to open the capsule decrease the beads until I had 10 little beads left in the capsule. This was two weeks ago. It's here where I started to have a few problems. I started to have horrific nightmares, some dizziness and nausea and weird feelings in my head . The nightmares are the worst part. Two days ago I quit completely, zip, zero, nothing. Today was a bit better than yesterday and I hope that the nightmares start to subside but as long as I have my husband beside me to hold me during the night I'm going to see it through. I'm sitting here now with a glass of wine at my side….definitely helps….and the feeling that no matter what happens I will get on the other side of this. It bothers me that the medical profession, full well knowing how powerful this drug is, does not know how to help their patients to a successful result. Why do we have to suffer to achieve this end.
P.S. I want to note that I read that Fish Oil supplements are helpful with this process. I do take fish oil and maybe that's why I've gotten this far, but it's just a guess and after all, it doesn't hurt to try.

Jump to this post

@arachel
How are you doing now? Its about 8 days later…please share with us again. Smiling at you, Bright Wings

REPLY
@arachel

I've been posting pretty regularly here since I started my withdrawal from 150 mg back in January. This is my second attempt at getting completely off of Effexor. The first try came in 2013 at my then doctor's encouragement. He thought I had been on the drug too long and he was right. Ten years was too long. Unfortunately, this doctor was not very well versed in this drug and how to guide a patient through the wean down process. After a very bumpy road, and six months into trying to withdraw, I ended up in the emergency room in the throws of the worst panic attack of my life. Diagnosis was "withdrawal" and I was encouraged to get back on the drug and I did. In retrospect, that recommendation was wrong, wrong, wrong. I was down to 10mg and if I had a doctor who knew what the hell was happening I could have gotten past that downslide and off the drug instead of back where I started. Five years after that incident and still taking Effexor, I was back in another doctors office. He also encouraged me to wean off the drug. He, like the other guy, didn't have any better insight into how to do it except to try to put a day between dosages. No, no, no…..wrong again. You can't skip a day without adding some Effexor to your diet. This time I felt I would be my own best advocate and I started with this forum. Somewhere here (don't quite remember who it was) I read that people were opening the capsule and removing the little beads in slow degrees until you've reached the ultimate goal of zero. Now, that seemed logical to me. That's how I started to do it. I got myself down to 75mg and then down to 37.5 with very little consequence. By the way, my doctor was completely against my doing it this way, but his way was too painful, so I took things into my own hands. I continued to open the capsule decrease the beads until I had 10 little beads left in the capsule. This was two weeks ago. It's here where I started to have a few problems. I started to have horrific nightmares, some dizziness and nausea and weird feelings in my head . The nightmares are the worst part. Two days ago I quit completely, zip, zero, nothing. Today was a bit better than yesterday and I hope that the nightmares start to subside but as long as I have my husband beside me to hold me during the night I'm going to see it through. I'm sitting here now with a glass of wine at my side….definitely helps….and the feeling that no matter what happens I will get on the other side of this. It bothers me that the medical profession, full well knowing how powerful this drug is, does not know how to help their patients to a successful result. Why do we have to suffer to achieve this end.
P.S. I want to note that I read that Fish Oil supplements are helpful with this process. I do take fish oil and maybe that's why I've gotten this far, but it's just a guess and after all, it doesn't hurt to try.

Jump to this post

I'm really not doing all that well. I've gone through some terrible days The withdrawal was more than I could take and the doctor feels that my brain is just not producing serotonin on its own. I did wean off very gradually and methodically but in the end it wasn't enough. I started taking Effexor again, but it will take a few weeks before I feel better. Thanks for asking.

REPLY

All I can say is my withdrawal from EFFEXOR over 8 years ago is NOT something I would want to experience again. I can say I am more at peace with myself and others without this DRUG. Withdrawal from these type of DRUGS can be lethal w/o proper supervision. Sad that professionals are NOT better educated or just don't care…

REPLY
@medfree17

So I ended up making the decision to come of the Venafalaxine! Best decision ever! I have been constantly taking my CBD oil and I have never felt better! I have not taking any meds for 2 whole days and this is the first time in over a year! I am feeling fantastic right now because of it! I highly recommend trying! To everyone struggling stay strong and don’t let anxiety get the best of you. Be open about it even if people don’t understand. It has been the best form of therapy for me plus the CBD oil ❤️

Jump to this post

Yes my CBD oils is hemp. It is THC free

REPLY

@parus
I am so with you on this.

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.