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  1. #1
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    Question Criteria for coming off medication

    how do you know when it's safe to try and come off anti-depressants? i've been on them for well over 2 years now and i think i may be ready. i don't want to make the wrong decision though. i think my doctor would be fine with it because he suggested it before but at that time i didn't think it was the best choice.

    does anyone have any insight for me?
    ~ our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising each time we fall - confucius
    ~ it is the journey, not the destination, that matters
    ~ keep hanging on, the sun will come shining through for you again

  2. #2
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    It's something you should discuss at the time with your doctor and/or therapist, of course.

    In general, however, I think it's about asking yourself questions such as:

    • how well am I handling stress these days?
    • how stable are my moods and emotional reactions these days?
    • how much anxiety am I experiencing and how well am I managing anxiety?
    • have I made progress in resolving the issues that led me to start taking medication in the first place?

    That's not an exhaustive list, of course, but I think it's basically a matter of looking at what's happening in your life currently and how well you're coping with medication. If you're still struggling even with medication, it's probably better to keep taking it for the time being, unless there are any compelling reasons for discontinuing the medication sooner.

  3. #3
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    • have I made progress in resolving the issues that led me to start taking medication in the first place?
    this is the one thing i'm unsure of. i have made a lot of progress but the issues haven't been completely resolved. would it be wiser to stay on the medication until one completes psychotherapy?

    i will certainly be discussing this with both my doctor and therapist but in the meantime wanted some other feedback as well to try and help myself make the best choice.
    ~ our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising each time we fall - confucius
    ~ it is the journey, not the destination, that matters
    ~ keep hanging on, the sun will come shining through for you again

  4. #4
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    Hi Into The Light. I have altered and lowered dosages of meds quite a few times, ofcourse always with my doctors direction and supervision, like you are doing.

    My doctors and I decided to try lowering my dosage, as I was still not stabalized on very high dosages. After giving it a honest try at the high dosages, 4 months, we decided to lower it and see how things would be.

    First thing I would suggest is go very, very slowly and have a good understanding of your symptoms vs withdrawls. My dosage decreases were spread out over a month span per dosage decrease. Also, if you find the symtoms are coming back, get to see your doctor ASAP and have the dosage corrected to where you were stabalized. Do not delay that process.

    What meds do you take Into The Light, if you don't mind for me to ask?

  5. #5
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    thanks nicnak. i'm on celexa right now.
    ~ our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising each time we fall - confucius
    ~ it is the journey, not the destination, that matters
    ~ keep hanging on, the sun will come shining through for you again

  6. #6
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    Quote Originally Posted by Into The Light View Post
    this is the one thing i'm unsure of. i have made a lot of progress but the issues haven't been completely resolved. would it be wiser to stay on the medication until one completes psychotherapy?
    I guess I'd ask how difficult and/or distressing is the remaining work in therapy likely to be for you?

  7. #7
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    it may get pretty difficult. so best to play it safe then until i'm done?
    ~ our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising each time we fall - confucius
    ~ it is the journey, not the destination, that matters
    ~ keep hanging on, the sun will come shining through for you again

  8. #8
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    I have never taken Celexa before.

    I have been on Luvox, Paxil, Prozac with Risperidal, Effexor XR with, Risperidal and then tried Effexor XR and Wellbutrin with Risperidal. Now currently only on Effexor.

    Gosh, reading through that list,

    Anyhow. Personally with all of them, when I lowered them, I only really got a slight headache feeling, I will try to explain. It was sorta like a slight haze feeling with a few coordination issues. So I had to be careful with that. When raising from sitting or laying down. Also when walking down stairs it seemed weird. So I just held the hand rail and took my time

    Dr Baxter worded his post perfectly!

    One other thing too. Please never forget, that there is no shame in having to raise the dosage back if need be. If it works that the decrease is good for you, fantastic! But if not, there is always another time to try to lower it. Just might not be the right time just yet

  9. #9
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    Re: Criteria for coming off medication

    Quote Originally Posted by Into The Light View Post
    it may get pretty difficult. so best to play it safe then until i'm done?
    I don't know the circumstances - again, something to discuss with your therapist - but my guess would be yes.

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