I’ve Started My Final Medication Taper – Lexapro!

Lexapro Antidepressant Taper
Scary and exciting!

After mentally preparing to reduce this medication (the fear is intense! This is an SRI, and I’ve been on them for 12 years!) I woke up April 4, 2018 and just KNEW that that was the day.  And since I already came off one med, I know I can face whatever temporary challenges arise!

So I got out ma knife, cut my 20 mg pill into 17.5 mg and swigged it back. I had great energy, so just before noon I went to the gym for a workout.

Discontinuation Symptoms

On the bike ride to the gym, and when seeing bright TV screens, I could tell that my eyes were sensitive and I had blurry vision.

Antidepressant Discontinuation Symptoms
Headache, blurry eyes, tunnel vision, irritable, brain frustration.

In the evening, my eyes felt set back in my head, I had mild tunnel vision, a headache and heaviness behind my eyes, I as crazy irritable and my brain felt an inner frustration.  Likely because I was not giving it the same level of chemical mood-regulating hormones its been used to.  My brain actually felt pissed off!  ha ha!

Then Improvement

On this day 1, I ate all fruit that day, plus a mostly raw salad for dinner.  And I slept great that night.

The next day (day 2) I ate well again all day until dinner when I craved a cooked meal of rice, fried tofu and cooked veg.  Day 3, after a 10 hour sleep, I woke with inflammation, swollen eyes, sinus pressure and body soreness.  But I could tell that this was a build up response to the cooked foods and my body just craved more detox.  Only my eyes were still slightly blurry but they were coming back into focus!

So really, only one half day of any real discomfort, then minor effects over the next 2 days.  It went better than I expected!

Now I’m going to stay taking this 17.5 mg level until I feel my body has come back to great and I’m ready to do another taper.

I’m Off Seroquel! One Med Down, One to Go…

It’s April 1 here in Vietnam, but no joke!  Last night was the first time in over a year that I didn’t take any evening dose of Seroquel!! (Quitiopene fumarate). Now, I didn’t fall asleep until past 2 am (this med put me in a sleep coma every night for 12 hours), but I fully accept any withdrawal effects of this last dose.  And I’m hoping they are not too bad as I did spread out this dose to two weeks from my last reduction.  I had been taking 13.5 mg since March 17).

All the pills I WON’T be putting into my body over the next few months and the fruity goodness medicine I’ll be eating instead!

I just love how free I feel, as though it’s one less chemical my body is chained to.

“Freeeeedommmmm!!!” (Quote from Braveheart. Didn’t William Wallace slam a quick piece of fruit into his mouth before charging into battle??)

 

Down to 13.5 mg Seroquel! Whoot!

I can’t believe I only have a half pill now to go!

I’m going to need to take this final drop very slowly as I’m coming off too quickly (spurred on by the awesome flushing of my body taking place with detoxification).

I know this because I’ve been getting headaches, irritability and extreme low energy and apathy.  Likely caused by my brain not being able to adjust itself quickly enough from chemical dependence.

Biggest detox side effects so far:

Down to a half pill of Seroquel!
  • Insomnia, digestive upsets and weakness.

Biggest Med Withdrawal Symptoms so far:

  • Headaches, depressive states and irritability.

 

What I Ate This Week

Eating this way has been KEY to coming off my medications.  The fruit is allowing my lymph system to cleanse and detox the meds from my system.  I have a strong knowing that I could not have stopped my medications without first opening my toxin drainage system.

Here was my week of exactly what I ate.  (It is not specified, but I drank a lot of fresh water as well).  I’ve also included my med doses and any other supplements.

March 15, 2018

25 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • Breakfast:  10 passion fruit
  • Snack: 2.5 dragon fruit
  • Lunch:  chocolate, banana, coconut smoothie   (1 & 3/4 cup fresh coconut milk, 10 baby bananas and 2 tbsp cocoa)
  • Snack:  3 guava
  • Dinner: medium size salad (greens, 1/2 roma tomatoes, olive oil and balsamic dressing, 1/2 cup garlic hummous on top) 3/4 cup blended pumpkin soup (fresh cooked pumpkin blended with ginger and coconut milk)
  • Eve:  1/2 cup banana/cocoa/soy milk smoothie

March 16, 2018

25 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • Breakfast: 1/2 large papaya
  • Snack:  13 small bananas
  • Late Lunch:  Smoothie (2 small bananas, 1 cup soy milk, 15 almonds, 2 tbsp cocoa)
  • Dinner:  2 fried eggs and 1 cup cooked white rice (I had sore bowels and felt like I needed to halt the cleansing effect with a cooked meal).  Rice is a fast brake.

March 17, 2018

12.5 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • Breakfast:  2 dragon fruit
  • Snack:  2 mangoes
  • Lunch:  13 small bananas and 1 fresh coconut
  • Dinner:  3/4 cup cherry tomatoes, 4 slices cucumber, 1 cup cooked white rice, 2 fried eggs, soy sauce

March 18, 2018

12.5 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • First thing: 1 fresh coconut
  • Breakfast:  3 dragon fruit
  • Snack:  2 cups blended greens in coconut water
  • Lunch:  10 small bananas
  • Snack:  1 guava and 21 fresh jack fruit segments
  • Dinner:  papaya salad (shredded papaya, shredded onions, 2 tbsp peanuts, yummy fresh dressing, garlic) 4 fresh salad rolls, peanut sauce, 1/2 cup lime water

March 19, 2018

12.5 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • Breakfast: 1 pomelo
  • Snack: 2 mango and 2 guava
  • Lunch: 2 spring rolls (had fried inside pieces), rice noodles with cucumber, lettuce and peanut sauce.  4 squares milk free dark chocolate.
  • Snack:  4 bananas and 1 fresh coconut water
  • Dinner:  4.5 guava

March 20, 2018

12.5 mg Seroquel (from 75 mg), 20 mg Lexapro

  • Breakfast:  3.5 mango
  • Snack:  2 avocado with salt
  • Lunch 1: 1 banana (had insane bowel cramping and didn’t want to eat.  I think I was digesting and passing the fried bits of yesterday’s spring rolls.  Poor detox choice? ha ha!)
  • Lunch 2: 1 medium papaya
  • Snack:  banana cocoa smoothie bowl (4 small bananas, small can natural coconut milk, 1 tbsp honey, 2 tbsp cocoa) and 1 banana chopped on top.
  • Dinner:  2 pomelo

Starting Medications and Daily Doses

Starting my detox journey, I am taking the following medications daily:

Escitalopram Oxalate (Lexapro) – 20 mg

  • I have been on this med for at least 2 years.  I’ve been on various SRI’s for 12 years.
  • My side effects:  constipation and low libido

Quetiapine Fumarate (Seroquel) – 75 mg 

  • I have been on this med for about  a year.  The Lexapro stopped working, and so my MD added this medication to supplement the Lexapro.
  • My side effects:  crazy tiredness, excessive sleep, upset stomach, stomach pain, constipation.

Update: Check out my Symptoms and Side Effects Comparison Chart

Starting Doses