Sunday, February 10, 2013

Day 5 getting off Paxil: 3 realizations

For those who may go through getting off Paxil (paroxetine) in the future, I realized two things this week. The last 2 times I did this it was Paxil CR, the controlled release. I did not have the physical withdrawal symptoms I am having now - the dizziness/woozy feeling and feeling sleepy and a bad headache the very first night (thank goodness that hasn't come back!).

I think it must be easier to wean off the CR. Instead of cutting it in half (So I basically have taken myself from 20 mg to 10 mg this week), you just start taking it every other day for two weeks, then every third day, etc. for about a month or so. It must stay more evenly in your system as you wean off.

I also realized the CR offers a lower dose than what I am on now. I believe both times I was on the 12.5 mg CR.

I didn't get CR this time because at the time I got back on I was getting divorced and didn't have a job, and the CR did not have a generic and was quite expensive. But if someone had to go the Paxil route and had good insurance, I would recommend the CR.

I also would advise anyone to NEVER do it cold turkey. Always talk to your doctor and step off of it gradually. If you read the posts at this messageboard, you will see the people who went cold turkey had a really hard time. I can't imagine.

Well, on the morning of Day 5, I feel less dizzy. I hope this trend continues! I have more sympathy now for people who have to withdraw off anything - drugs, cigarettes, coffee. I've never had to do that (someday I'll probably have to give up coffee, but not today!!). But I can see how you would find yourself after days and days of feeling sick and weird and physically strange, that you would want to make that feeling go away and the easiest way would be to take whatever it was that made you feel "normal."

Yesterday, I just wanted to feel normal again and was feeling sorry for myself when I realized, wow, this could be SO much worse. It's even worse for other people who've gone through the same thing. They got migraines and diarrhea and a fever. At least I wasn't on a high dose.

So I prayed and pushed myself forward. Today I feel better. And if I can help it, I don't want to EVER again take a medication that is this hard to get off of. I do not want a chemical to have that much control over my body.

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