Lexapro Withdrawal Symptoms- Nightmare!

Heidi Ferrer

Me and Bexon on the pier- those are huge joke Forrest Gump shoes my feet are in.


Oh crap you guys, the Lexapro withdrawal symptoms are really kicking in bad. I cut down the dosage for three weeks, and now I’ve been completely off it for one week.

The last three days or so I’ve had these odd moments of suddenly bursting into tears for no reason. It’s not PMS, because I’m not at that point in my cycle, I’m in what’s supposed to be my “happy time.”

I cried violently last night (over nothing) and this morning woke up feeling bad, teary and very emotional. Then I cried again. I’ve had night sweats, insomnia, more anxiety than normal, and weird nightmares. So, it’s party over here at my house!

Actually it is sort of is a party on and off in one strange way, these wild mood swings I’m having include what seems to be about 1,000 times more blood flow in my body, which makes me want to have sex with my husband almost all the time.

That’s mostly a good thing, my husband is thrilled, it’s just…different. My vagina wants to go off on her own on an Australian Walkabout without me. I hope she writes.

And by the way, I was not non-sexual on the Lexapro, I didn’t lose my sex drive from it and I still had “O’s.” It’s just now it’s jacked up like I’m a dude or something.

You may not want to know more about the specifics, so I’ll stop there, but you can follow me @GirltoMom at your own risk.

Besides the sadness/crying, I feel a little dizzy and tired, I’m not sleeping well. I’ve had some horrible nightmares which feel different than my usual occasional ones, somehow darker and scarier.

Meanwhile I partially quit the drug to lose the weight gain I’ve had in the past year of being on it. And guess what, the withdrawals are making me eat more. I have moments of feeling starving, especially at night. So I’m gaining from getting off of it. F*ck.

I’m trying not to freak out about that, but it’s upsetting me. Summer is coming and I want to at least look cute and fit into my Summer clothes. I’m thinking about calling Jenny Craig  and joining, I feel desperate. I’ve gained 20 pounds on this drug so far.

(You can’t really tell in the above photo, but trust me.)

I don’t look huge because I’m tall, and I’m trying to celebrate my boobs looking quite spectacular and focus on the positive, but still. It sucks. My pajama pants are even getting tight!!! I can barely pull them up.

These feelings make me want to drink, to be honest. Ok, this is what happening right now, but I did have a beautiful, fun weekend visiting my Mother in Law Linda in beautiful Ojai, California, staying the night and then driving down the Pacific Coast highway by the ocean on a perfect day, down to a very fun child’s birthday party on the Santa Monica Pier. We rode the rides and had mini Oreo cupcakes and it was super fun.

I felt good all day yesterday until last night. Those of you who follow me on Twitter know I use it mostly for raunchy jokes and lies I wouldn’t put here, it’s sort of like I’ve created a character on Twitter who is not really me, but may be a tiny part of me, the wild and crazy “Id” with NO filter.

I’ve been tweeting a ton because it distracts me from the symptoms and makes me laugh, kinda blows off steam, but I guess Twitter could become an addiction in itself.

I’m not worried about that too much right now, but I clearly have a majorly addictive personality!

I feel like what I need to do is exercise, call the doctor and tell her what’s happening (but I’m scared she’ll prescribe me more drugs because that’s what she does), shop for healthy groceries, go to meetings, etc…

I searched online and found chat rooms that said these symptoms are common and last (for some) 4-5 weeks after being completely off of it. I don’t know if I can take 4 more weeks of this.

Bex is fine, he’s awesome. Everything else is going ok. I know it will cheer me up to see you ladies in your red dresses! It will get better, right?

Sorry for the rant. Help.

~ Heidi

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109 Responses to Lexapro Withdrawal Symptoms- Nightmare!

  1. Melanie says:

    First of all, I’m really sorry you’re going through all of this. I know saying, “It’ll be over soon” doesn’t really help, but it will.

    You look so cute in that damn dress!

    As for the weight loss, do what you need to do. If you can’t stop thinking about it and focus on just staying sober, join Jenny Craig or do whatever you feel is necessary, to get you back at your “fighting” weight. I’ve got you in my prayers.


  2. praying for you! focus on staying sober and possibly – call a doc who will listen and reassure as opposed to prescribing something different? i hope it all passes SOON.


  3. So one can have withdrawals from Lexapro? Holy crap. And I didn’t know one could gain weight on it (or maybe I did and don’t remember)…that explains an awful lot. (Like, I’ve put on about 30 pounds since they doubled my dosage in September. I thought it was just because I was just a huge lazy sloth…)

    I would be scared to death to NOT take it anymore, since I was kind of a demon when I didn’t take it.

    This is kid of a weird comment, coming from me, the girl that knows the ins and outs of every type of drug I have to take, but I’ve been on this one three years and I never thought about the weight gain, because that didn’t happen till the dosage doubled, and I didn’t put the two together until, like, five minutes ago.

    Things that make you go HMMMMM…..


    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I totally get that. I didn’t even see it coming, but I guess I’ll lose it now.

    • Nina Florence says:

      I have gained about 20 pounds since my dosage was doubled a year ago! I thought it was menopause, but am now convinced that increasing my dosage was the worst thing for me! I am experiencing many side effects that I’ve tried to attach to going through “the change” but it doesn’t add up! I am working with my dr. To wean off, as I am one of the rare people who suffer severe withdrawal symptoms! I get the “brain shivers” pretty badly and increased sadness and breaking down in tears, but I’m going to stick it out cause being on a drug that makes me feel like crap isn’t worth it! I initially went on it during my fathers illness, extended hospital stay, and hospice for his final days… I was caregiver and still am for my mother now, but life is good for me and I just want to stop pouring bad chemicals into my body! Wish me luck and thanks for listening!

      • Heidi Ferrer says:

        You can do it, Nina! I’m so sorry about the loss of your father. I am also one of those rare people who got bad withdrawals, and maybe we’re not so rare. Yep, 20 pounds in a year sounds about right. I recently lost 15 pounds since going off it, exercising and watching calories. I’m getting back to where I was before and I feel great, you will too. :-)

  4. Eva says:

    Ugh. Getting off of anti-depressants is awful. I have major headaches and get suicidal. You might call your doctor to get some Xanax. That really helped stabilize me until the withdrawal went away. Usually, it takes me about two weeks to get off a drug. So, I hope it doesn’t last as long as 4-6 weeks for you. That’s hell.

    I have to say though, if my vagina went to Australia without me, I just might have to replace it with a penis. I’d be just that angry with it.

    Your Twitter Id sounds like my sense of humor. Going over to follow you. :)


    It gets better! I promise!

  5. Melissa2 says:

    Hi Heidi, saw this post and really needed to comment. I tried to quit Lexapro cold turkey, and that was a HUGE mistake. So the next time I decided to try, I decided to keep cutting my dosage down, bit by bit, every month. I started on 10mg, then went to 7.5 for a month, then 5, then 2.5…all month by month. Then, when I got to 2.5, I started skipping a day, then I would skip two days….it probably took me 6 months to get off. But I had such bad head spins, felt horrible, when I went off too fast, that I decided slow was best. Take your time! While Lexapro helped me so much when I needed it, getting off of it was hell. Good luck!!

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Thank you, Melissa! I’ve thought I might go back on a tiny bit if it gets too bad…I still have the pills.

    • Nina Florence says:

      How are you feeling now? I went through the same thing first time I stopped Lexapro. I’m now weaning off with Dr. help. Still having withdrawal symptoms, but much milder! I just want to get back to feeling like me again!

  6. Tonya Perkins says:

    Heidi, I took Lexapro years ago and went through the same things, the nightmares were the worst. Hell there ain’t too many that I wasn’t perscribed at one point. Xanax caused memory loss that I still deal with and Zoloft caused my hair to no longer hold a curl to save it’s life, thank God it still holds hair color or I’d really be upset, no curl and no memory I can handle just not gray hair. I’ve missed talking to you, if I ever win the lottery I have sooo got to make it out to Cali to see you guys. I’ve always wanted to walk down Rodeo Drive and I can’t imagine a more awesome woman to do it with!! ♥

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I love ya girl, I’m still here! Email me if you want to talk or text me at 310-467-4541. Do come out to L.A.! Thank you for telling me about your experience, how’s sweet tuff Nora doing? XOXO

  7. aTXtumbleweed says:

    I started to type out suggestions a few times and ended up erasing them because, well basically, I have no clue what your going through!! Stay strong and headed in the right direction, and this too shall pass. I’m sorry your going through all of this – it must suck big time!! Hang.In.There!! (and ask the dr for help if you need it – ok I’m done)….((((HUGS))))

  8. Katie Cook says:

    I hate that you’re having a rotten time. Here’s what I was thinking as I read your post…of course you want to drink. That part shouldn’t surprise you. Any crappy emotion you feel is going to make you want drink. That’s been what your body’s done for so long it naturally wants to go there. I know that’s not news to you, but I was thinking if you just say to yourself “Well, Of COURSE I want a drink right now, it’s what I USED to do. But now I do other things when I’m stressed or sad or upset or scared. I call ________. I write in a journal. I bless the virtual world with my hilarious wit and brutal honesty. I hug my superhero son. I walk barefoot in the park…” I’ve had my battles with addictions and I keep trying to remind myself of what the new me does.
    Sharing your struggles with total strangers is so very courageous and it helps us as much as it helps you. They say time heals all wounds. Bullshit. Hard work, faith, guts and facing your fears heals. You are a champion. I hope you tell yourself that Every. Single. Day.


  9. Brandi says:

    I’m sorry you are having a tough time, I feel your pain. I was on lexapro for a couple of years about 3 years ago and I slowly weaned myself off of it. I constantly felt like I was floating, and not the good kind of floating either. I felt separated from myself, then I’d have crazy dreams that made me want to claw my eyes out so I could wake up. I had those symptoms even for about a month after I was off of it, then it got better. Just try and get through it, because it does get better!!


  10. Ginny says:

    Oh honey, it sounds so hard. It’s hard to see the road ahead right now, but I’m SURE it will get better. The road to betterment isn’t an easy one, but you’re giving it everything you’ve got and you should be so very proud of yourself. I am! Been reading your blog for probably about 6 months, so I think I started right around the time the shit hit the fan.

    Think about everything that’s happened over the last 6 months. Your body is probably all sorts of WTFFFF? and OMGGGGG! Everything’s changing! I know it can be frustrating when you don’t immediately fit into the mold of what you expect yourself to be. I think we all go through that from time to time, we live in a “now” society. Two words I’ve become very familiar with is patience and persistence. It takes both to overcome those big hurdles, doesn’t it?

    I myself was a huge pot addict for a long time. A lot of people don’t realize that you can become addicted to it, it’s just not as common I guess. Or maybe it is, seeing as you live in California. I don’t know. Whatever. I smoked so much that the barking cough was making my back hurt something awful. Morning and night. And sometimes on my lunch break. I spent waaaay too much money on it, and finally one day, I’d had enough. I quit. After 15 years of smoking, I put it down. I would be lying if I said I don’t look back from time to time and go….just one little puff?

    Buuuut we all know where that leads us, and it’s never anywhere good when it’s something you’re horribly addicted to. I used it to deal with stress, marriage problems, boss problems. Fuck, if I messed up when plucking my brows, that was a damn good excuse to smoke. And of course I loved celebrating with pot too. Addiction is versitile like that.

    The first week off of it I either got crazy mad or crazy upset about every.little.THING. I had night sweats. Insomnia. I had trouble telling when my body was hungry. I found out that when you overeat you are SUPER uncomfortable, which I never noticed when I was smoking – munchies anyone? I hadn’t had consistent dreams for years, and then all of a sudden had super weird ones. I remember one where my ex-boyfriend and I met up in some futuristic robot land where we were, well, robots…and we rode wolves with wings. And when our wolves were tired we took public transit. Weird shit man. The second week was slightly better. And the third week. And so on.

    I can honestly say I will NEVER regret the day I quit. Never. There are so many things I couldn’t have accomplished if I had allowed myself to continue down that path. Right now I am completely drug free – both legal and illegal – I am beyond proud at myself, and with every day that passes, I can do my little victory dance where I get to say, “I win, suck it, pot.” Or something more graceful if you’re not me.

    Long, I know, sorry! But at least I distracted you for a few minutes, right? You’re welcome. :)

    BEST of luck, sweetie, you’ll get through this. It will get better. Patience and persistence….

    P.S. That little boy of yours is ADORABLE.

  11. Jodi P. says:

    Holy Crap. I was considering weaning from Lexapro (I’m on 1-1/2 times the highest normal dose, ’cause I’m just batsh*tcrazy like that). Thank you for sharing this important info; I’ll bear this in mind when I get brave enough to go there. Hang in there and GOOD FOR YOU!!

  12. Heather says:

    You know even just a tiny little sliver of one of those pills is better than nothing. I weaned myself down to a sliver and was still so nervous about quitting that I considered licking a pill every night for a week. Fortunately I’m not THAT crazy (I licked the last pill two nights in a row and then my husband caught me and made me go to bed).
    Boy does it get better.
    (Hi, I’m heather)


  13. Brenna Darazs says:

    I so hear this. I’m titrating down from Paxil; withdrawal is absolute hell. Hang in there. xo

  14. Casey P says:

    Wait, so you stopped taking Lexapro because of weight gain or there were other issues too? I’m just a bit confused. Your reasons are your own, no judgement here I promise. Heck I quit going to a therapist I liked because he had this smelly candle I couldn’t stand and I just couldn’t be around it anymore. I have my own protective fat layer, so I tend not to notice minor changes in my weight, the fat layer has been with me for a while since I’ve been a juvenile diabetic for 14yrs now. (I wonder why they still call it juvenile once you’re an adult?) Anyway. I take lexapro and while I’ve had the odd dreams from time to time I haven’t had nightmares while taking it. I also take Trazadone which is a tricyclic antidepressant that helps with insomnia and anxiety/depression. I ran out of that while on vacation in FL and was a horrid beast by the time we got home and I could refill it. Then my Lexapro prescription ran out on Thursday and I had to wait until today to have it refilled. I did however have one of those odd dark and twisty dreams on Saturday evening and I hadn’t had Lexapro since Wednesday evening. I take 20mg nightly, and 150 of the trazadone. BUT as far as the weight thing, I take Topamax for severe migraines and a side effect of Topamax is annorexia, so sometimes it balances out a bit.

  15. Heidi Ferrer says:

    May I just say, I love you people.

  16. weezafish says:

    It’ll pass honey, it’ll pass. You’re stronger than you know and your humour will get you through. “My vagina wants to go off on her own on an Australian Walkabout without me. I hope she writes.” Awesome. Just.


  17. Bibiana says:

    I’m coming off Lexapro, as well. I’m weaning off it, while staying on the Wellbutrin, in the hopes that my vagina will come back from Australia when I’m finally done with all of it.

    OMG, I have been crying at everything. I never cry, and I burst into tears because my daughter finally did a back hand spring.

  18. DEB NEWPORT says:

    I hope you start to feel better soon. I am also coming of some meds and started this 21 day beachbody reset program today, basically i am bringing my body back to optimal workings! Well no caffine or sugar, and let me tell you I am dragging a** today. The food is wonderful and filling, but it is hard to let go of the sugars! I will let you know how i do, but most people are dropping 10-15lbs in the 3 weeks, and phasing out meat and dairy are part of it, so I have high hopes. Check out my website if you want to learn more about it, it is a spiritual journey and you get a bracelt to wear to remind you how strong you are changing your body. The receipes are easy and healthy and I hope to continue eating like this for good!

  19. jenn jenn says:

    Hang in there! I tried lexapro years ago for 6 weeks and hated the side effects so much i didn’t touch another anti depressant for over 8 years. I have had chronic depression all my life, and I’ve tried to self medicate and just white knuckle it, and therapist talk it out…after turning 30 I’ve decided enough is enough already and have been on Prestiq for over a month. There are side effects (of which the appetite suppression is the best :)) and it hasn’t been a miracle fountain of happiness and energy BUT, it has helped. Someone recommended it to me, a sweet woman who I jus met and got into a lil convo with, so I thought I would reccomend it to you. I’m afraid of the side effects for when I decide I’ve been doing ok long enough to wean off of it, but for now im just trying to make the most of feeling halfway decent for a change, and deal with that bridge when I cross it. Good luck, and much love from up here in nor cal!

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Thank you so much, Jenn! What a sweetie you are, and I must say it seems unfair that you’ve had to deal with this for so long- Ugh, genetics! I am rooting for you too, love. Please stay in touch and keep me updated if you can. :-)

      • jenn jenn says:

        Yes, genetically speaking I’m screwed lol. My mom had bipolar and took her life, so it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to wake up one day feeling completely nuts! But people like you who blog about mental health issues and addiction, etc help reduce the stigma. Which I know will save someone’s life, who will get the help they need rather than feel hopeless and give up. One day at a time you are helping create a sisterhood of awareness and soliderity (so) and its very much appreciated :)

        • jenn jenn says:

          Oops i meant to write *(sp) meaning I don’t know how to spell soliderity haha

        • Heidi Ferrer says:

          Oh, Jenn, thank you for saying that, I’m right in the middle of the storm, so sometimes I can’t see it. I’m so, so sorry about the loss of your Mom. This week is hard for a lot of people without their Mothers, sending you big hugs and a lot of love, sister!

  20. Danielle says:

    Thank you so much for writing this! I am 9 days into my withdrawals and seriously wondering if I was this much of a basketcase before I started Lexapro. Headaches, dizziness, mild flu-like symptoms AND I either want to rip someones head off for looking at me or cry when I see a cat. I also plan to blame my weight gain on it, thanks.!! Makes me feel optomist that I will lose it. I do find working out really helps.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I feel your pain! My withdrawals finally ended. It feels like it took up to 2-3 months for me- at least 2.

      • JOANIE PETERS says:

        thanks so much for sharing! i am trying to come off of Lexapro and am struggling so much! aggression, tears, anxiety. i hope and pray my marriage survives this. so good to know others are going through the same. love you all for sharing!

        • Heidi F says:

          Knowing it WILL end, you can try to be as kind and gentle to yourself and your spouse as possible, ya know? Give yourself a break and practice self care. Hugs!

  21. happygirl says:

    I am so very sorry for what you are going through but am so glad you were brave enough to post this! I now know that I’m not alone. Up until last week I was on Lexapro for over a year for depression. I slowly gained 30 pounds! I worked out 12 times a week and injured my spine in the process to lose the weight but I would only gain more. When I told my doctor about the weight gain she rolled her eyes and me and said that none of her other patients gained weight on lexapro. She also misdiagnosed me. I am bipolar 1. Although I told I had episodes she didn’t believe me and thought I was suffering from depression only. Now that she actually got to see me having a mixed episode she took me off the lexapro and put me on lithium. I have been having so many of the same withdrawal symptoms you and others are having. It’s pure hell and when I told my doctor that I am having withdrawal symptoms she again said none of her patients have withdrawal symtoms from Lexapro and that she didn’t know what the heck was wrong with me. I’ve been off of it for 9 days now. I am praying the withdrawals end soon…I’m also looking for another psychiatrist! I will keep you in my prayers!!

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Thank you for posting this! I feel your pain, I really do. I had the symptoms for maybe 2 months or a little longer, but it really got bad when I went down to zero Lexapro. I think the crying fits were the worst part. I tried to go down slowing, first to half and then a quarter of a pill over weeks. It was the going to nothing that really kicked it in! It will pass, I promise, my experience was that it helped to cut down to a quarter of a pill every other day, than every third day, then every fourth day, etc. Hope this helps! XO

  22. jolinda says:

    Hi my names jo.
    I’ve been slowly reducing my 20mg lexapro. 2 weeks ago i stopped altogether. I m feeling so teary like right now. Ive had the flu symptoms for weeks, dizziness and a floating feeling.
    Feeling pretty alone so I’m glad i’ve found this place and read every ones stories. Thank you :)

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Yes, I got the floating feeling and the dizziness, too! I’m so sorry you’re going through this, it sucks. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, though, I’m off of it completely now and the withdrawal symptoms are gone.

  23. Pamela says:

    Hi there,

    I’m so glad I came across your website today. I’m having huge issues with coming off of Lexapro cold turkey, and shutting down sugar and white carbs. I’m drinking a cream soda right because the little store doesn’t carry Gingerale and I’m so dizzy I can’t walk 100 yds. to the other store across the street to get some. I’m dizzy and woozie in my head the likes of which I’ve never seen. Just wanted to write to let you know that I was laughing and chuckling instead of feeling bad while I was reading this post. You are a gift! Thank you!


  24. Candy E. says:

    I thought I had some terrible disease until I read the comments. I have been taking Lexapro 20/mg. for 7 years. I was a kindergarten teacher, had a total of 60plus students and was expected to have them reading by the end of the year. I went on Lexapro so that I could be a patient, kind and soft-speaking teacher! Now that I have gained 25 pounds and retired, I decided to get off Lexapro. I am on my eighth day of withdrawl and have been experiencing many of the same symptoms– nausea, vomiting, stomach cramping, and pin-prick feelings on my ankles. I went to my GP, told him my symptoms so he put me on hormones for the HOT flashes. He didn’t even comment about my going off Lexapro. SOOOOOOO Glad I read this column. Thank you all so much. I even laughed today!

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Oh Candy I’m so sorry you’re going through this, but I’m thrilled if the comments help you feel even a little better about it. That is what the internet community is all about! :-)

    • graciewilde says:

      Ha! I stumbled on this – don’t ask me exactly how b/c I couldn’t trace the route- but it has been uber useful. Like others I am withdrawing from lexapro – don’t know exactly why – wanted to find out what was under it? I was on it for 8 years and this comment from Candy was awesome – public school middle school teacher trying to hold so many things up in the air — wish I could retire but can’t happen –
      anyway, thanks for the info! you make me feel all right!

    • Vanessa says:

      Hi Candy. Demands of teaching got too much for me along with way too many students(34 2nd graders) and behavior problems. I broke down a year ago so I was put on Zoloft(terrible side effects) then put on Lexapro 20mg. Went ahead and retired early so just finished taking last pill 5 wks ago but still feeling the so called “dizziness” along with other symptoms. Just trying to live life and find a new career while enduring the withdrawal. Unfortunately the Dr.s don’t acknowledge the side effects on or coming off of the drug. Hang in there! Thank you all for sharing.

  25. Kevin says:

    Funny I happened on your site today. It seems like most of your posters are female. I was on Lex for 2 years and weaned myself off I am now going thru my first week of nothing. Definitely have felt the floating sensation and a little irritable. The worst is the weird sensation I get when I move to quickly, feels like head is spinning. I really hope this goes away soon. Had nightmares last night. Didn’t really enjoy those. There must be a light at the end of the tunnel. Just need to find it. Thank you for this forum.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Kevin,

      Yes, I had that lightheaded or floating feeling, too. I had nightmares as well. It will go away, that was my experience anyway, so stay strong.

      • Kevin says:

        Thanks Heidi I will. Everyday gets better than the last.

        • Catherine G says:

          I think I am still just in the middle of mine. And if I wrote any more angry letters somebody is gonna charge me with harassment.

          • Heidi Ferrer says:

            I know what it feels like to know you have been wronged. I usually regret angry letters, but sometimes they must be written both for you and for change to happen. Definitely don’t beat yourself up about it, I would make sure your prescribing doctor knows what you’ve gone through, so they at least can warn other patients.

  26. Nina Florence says:

    Thank you, Heidi! I just replied to a post from April, but wanted you to know I am so thankful to know I’m not the only one with the withdrawal symptoms! I just started weaning off, about 5 days now and I’m feeling the floating and now the brain shivers! I’m on 20 mg and started alternating 20, 10, 20, 10… I can definitely tell the days I’ve had the 10mg dose the night before! But I’m gonna push through this no matter what! Glad to know I have your blog to come too :)

  27. Laura Durham says:

    Heidi – any chance you were on Lexapro any part of your pregnancy with Bexon? My daughter had IS (which resolved) but after reading on the recent class action lawsuits, I’m curious if there is a connection? Thanks! (And it’s also so great to see Bexon’s progress! I joined ISOP in 2009 and remember your family.)

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Laura! No, no chance I was on Lexapro when I was pregnant. I began taking it when I was almost 41 and had Bex when I was 37. I wasn’t on any medication when pregnant. I took Lexapro for depression and PTSD following two years of Bex’s scoliosis treatment in the 10 casts- it wore me down emotionally. Had he been diagnosed sooner and more importantly, had the L.A. doctors given us the right medical advice, I don’t know if it would’ve had as intense an affect on me- he would’ve had many less casts and hospital trips, anesthesia, etc. Hope you’re well!

  28. Catherine G says:

    I went up to 40 mg with shrink following along. Suddenly I started having the worst lower body cramps. Thought it was the lack of exercise but it was the drugs. Since I was cutting back I might as well come off as the damn stuff eventually stops working for me anyway. But now I am at the “off stage” and thank God i do not have human roommates. I think I would kill them. I have written angry letter sot everyone I know and night after night I have a huge series of nightmares that are so weird that I could make some of them into novels. Diseases. Control freaks running my life… This sucks.

    I have been on drugs now for 30 years due to severity of issues. I go through the same process every time. On. Side effects or failure to work anymore. Off. Feel good once I get past the initial weeks. After several months again I started back down the Pam sprayed slide. So tired of this.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Thank you for your comment, Catherine, I had bad nightmares too- and mood swings- it sounds like your experience has been even worse. I’m so sorry that you’re going through this!

  29. bioya1 says:

    Been on Lexapro 10MG for a year. Decided to get off it on Jan. 10, 2013. Took me 1 month to withdraw(.5 mg for 2 weeks, then alternate .5 mg and 0 mg for the next 2 weeks). It’s been a little over a month and I do not take it anymore. Symptoms I now experience: Brain flashes, irritability with everyone, tired, insomnia, some depression, and some dizziness. I know that there are others that have undegone the same thing. I just wonder, how long before I can expect normalcy?
    Thanks to you, in advance.

  30. Cher says:

    Wow, I looked up side effects from Lexepro withdrawel and I’ve been reading this for the last half hour. My doctor didn’t fill my prescription last week and I let it run low so I’ve been off the Lexapro for almost a week now. But my doctor increased it to 20 from 10mg and I’ve been afraid to take that dosage, so I’ve been cutting the pills in half. On some days I take 20 and most days, I take 10. What’s been worrying me the most is I’m having a huge weight gain. Also, once every 3 months there is this horrible ordeal just having the prescription renewed which leaves me without them for a week or longer. So, I’m always going through the withdrawel symptoms. Now, I don’t want to go back on the pills anymore. I do feel suicidal daily. I think I’m too strong to let that happen! But, I’m feeling scared! Honestly, I don’t want to touch the pills again. I am willing to go into Cedars and and for help to withdrawel but, I would like to do this myself. Anyway, thank you Heidi for starting this on-line. I’m not feeling willing to go to meetings right now. No desire to drink, but, not willing to give up a pain patch for a medical condition. Trying to use faith and prayer and telling my Boyfriend what I am feeling so someone knows. Thanks for letting me vent!

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Cher,

      Thank you so much for sharing what you’re going through. Yes, my experience was the withdrawal got really bad when there was NO Lexparo in my system. When I ate just a piece of a pill, I felt better the next day. But when I went to zero in my body, that is when it got really bad.

      This is just my opinion, but if you would like to go to support meetings I would not let the pain patch stop you. You don’t have to tell everyone or anyone if it is prescribed and needed. The suicidal thoughts- let me say I have had fleeting thoughts of that for many years in my life. I’m told that is normal, but planning is not. If you go beyond fleeting thoughts or get too low, promise me you will call someone, seek help and support, see a doctor, etc. Drug reactions including alcohol can make you not yourself. It WILL get better, I promise. Hang on!!!

      Please stay in touch, I read the comments every day.

      Love, Heidi

  31. Cher says:

    PS, crying alot! I hope that goes away!

  32. Michelle says:

    I am so grateful I found your blog. I have been off Lexapro for 11 days now and honestly I am not sure how much longer I can cope with these withdrawal symptoms. I quit cold turkey and I can see now that was a mistake. I had no idea you could have withdrawal symptoms from an antidepressant. Right now my symptoms include, constant dizziness, anxiety, tension headaches, sensitivity to noise, mood swings and agitation with my children (at least more than normal). I feel sick to my stomach all day and exercising (which usually helps to alleviate my stress) seems to make me feel worse. I have to take a sleep aid to fall asleep and I know exactly what you meant about having nightmares. The brain zaps are terrible. I had a migraine that lasted 6 days last week and ended up in the urgent care to try and get some relief. The doctor gave me shot of Toradol and an anti-nausea medication. I too wanted to stop taking the Lexapro because of weight gain. The weird thing is I weaned myself off of it the first time I started taking it because I got pregnant. I didn’t quit cold turkey though but I didn’t have any withdrawal. How long until you felt better? I have 7 children. Ages 13,12,9,7,6,3 and 11 months and I feel like I can’t care for them right now because I feel so terrible. I am desperate for these symptoms to subside. I started taking the Lexapro again about 7 months ago when I begin having severe panic attacks and anxiety. I have been doing some really intense EMDR work with an amazing therapist for some trauma I have experienced and my panic attacks are gone and my anxiety is manageable. Between God and my therapy I felt like I was ready to try and get off the Lexapro. But now I am not so sure. Any advice to cope with these withdrawl symptoms would mean so much. My kids need me and I feel terrible that quitting this medication has such a hold on me. The medical field says antidepressants are not addictive? Then why the withdrawal? Thank you for letting me vent.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Michelle, I’m so sorry you’re going through all of this! And with seven kids, I can’t imagine the stress you’re under. One thing I did was go back on a small amount when I couldn’t take the withdrawal symptoms, of course I am not a doctor- but I cut to half a pill, then a third, then a quarter…you can buy a pill cutter at a drugstore like CVS. Some people do this very slowly, over many weeks or months.

      I have to say for safety please do talk to a doctor about the weaning method I’m describing. I felt it still was bad when I went to zero, though, especially about 1 to 2 weeks after going off of it completely. But going back on a small amount helped.

      I take Gabapentin now, that is the only med I’m on, and I really like it. It’s helpful for anxiety and mood swings. I find it does not numb me at all, just makes me a little more able to deal with life. It is also under the name Neurontin. It’s not an anti-depressant or a benzo, more of as mild mood stabilizer. Non-addictive, as I understand it. It is sometimes prescribed for Bipolar 2, this may be off label, as they say. I know everyone is different.

      For me, the whole Lexapro withdrawal ordeal was about 2-3 months, and that includes the weaning part. I personally want to avoid more drugs based on that gnarly experience, but a lot of doctors will just keep prescribing like crazy when you say you feel bad in any way- that is one thing to be aware of. I said no and stopped going to that doctor. Be empowered to change docs if you need to. I don’t want to say not to take anything, whatever keeps you breathing and functional.

      Feel free to stay in touch and let us know how it goes. Hang in there! Hold on. It WILL get better.


      ~ Heidi

  33. Dee says:

    I am so glad I found your blog. I was on Lexapro for almost 6 years due to PTSD. I thought I did everything right in terms of weaning. My body is super sensitive so I went very slow. I stayed at a 2.5mg dose for about a month before jumping off. Today marks 3 weeks and the withdrawal is the worst it has ever been. My stomach is tied in knots, so much so that it wakes me up at night. Everything I eat makes me feel sick. I cried like a baby today for NO reason. I have so much muscle tightness and soreness in my back, neck and shoulders that I can barely workout. I got off of this stuff with permission from my Dr but had to read about withdrawal via the internet! I kept running to the ER thinking I was having a heart attack or something because of the back and stomach pain. I just want my life back. I am a fitness professional but I put on 25lbs due to this drug and no matter how hard I workout I can barely get the scale to move. I also want to feel alive again and not like a zombie! I read that this could takes months to get over. That makes me sad. I wish I would have known all of this info before I got on this drug.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I’m so sorry that you’re going through this Dee, I don’t think I had the back and stomach pain, but I remember achy legs. I, too, wish I had known about the withdrawal dangers before I went on it, the doctor played it way down and said IF I ever went off of it, I would be weaned and “I think you’ll be fine” she said or something like that. I feel like doctors ignore the negative side effects and dismiss patients who have them. My bad withdrawal did not last more than 3 months, if that gives you any hope. Hang in there because it is worth it on the other side!

  34. Nina Schunck says:

    I am grateful to Lexapro because it helped me so much with my Fallopian tube cancer diagnosis a year ago. I had never taken an anti-depressant before and was glad that Lexapro was effective for me. I did not plan to remain on this drug for longer that a year, and I was going to wean off Lexapro when I read from Andrew Weil that Lexapro has been implicated in Ovarian and Breast Cancer. I quit cold turkey 26 days ago! It has been challenging. I have aches and pains, anxiety, crying jags, headaches, sinus pain and my body temperature is very low at times. It’s a struggle, but I am determined and handle each symptom as it comes along. Exercise, which saves my sanity, feels good while I’m exercising, but afterwards I pay a price! As walking and running have been my salvation for years, it sucks! I have complete empathy for anyone going through even a portion of this.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Nina, I’m so sorry that you’re going through all of those sucky symptoms. I hope you are cancer free, now! Just getting a diagnosis like that seems like it could put a person into depression or PTSD. Sending you good thoughts and energy that you will get through this soon and feel like yourself again.

      ~ Heidi

  35. savage says:

    i was only on 5 mg of lexapro for about 4 yrs. weight gain and low lobido really really suck. i have finally decided to stop taking it and now i feel really bad. the dizziness and feeling that something is not right is the worst. i have actually lost weight but i feel so uneasy. please tell me this will get better.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I’m so sorry, there are also a lot of stomach bugs going around this winter, just a thought- but if it is the withdrawals, it will get better! Actually it will get better either way, with time.

  36. Kate says:

    I was on Lexapro 10mg for one year. Recently was raised to 20mg. Stayed on that for five days. Through a series of events beyond my control, I found myself going off cold turkey. I am in my third week of withdrawals and still feeling terrible. Dizziness, nausea, insomnia, disturbing nightmares( I never have nightmares), foggy brain, unable to focus, body aches, and the worst extreme tiredness I can ever remember and I’m in my late sixties. I have basically spent the last three weeks in bed. I cant exercise, for me, it makes the symptoms worse. I keep hoping that this will end soon, but somehow, it feels like I still have a long way to go. Taking this med. is something I will not do again. I will find healthier ways!!

  37. Pingback: Sweat Is Fat Crying | Girl to Mom…trying to become a grown up before my kid does.

  38. Linzi says:

    Hi, I’m so glad that I found this page! I took lexapro 10mg for 1.5 yrs. I actually felt really lazy and had no energy while I was on it. I also gained 20kgs in the 1.5 yrs which has put me in the obese category. :( My doctor and I once spoke about increasing to 20mg but he said the weight gain would be even worse.. So I said no way, I’ll stick to 10mg!
    I have tried to stop taking lex a while back but the withdrawals left me feeling awful so I went back on. The second time that I wanted to stop I went to my doctor and told him that I wanted to stop, I also mentioned that the last time I tried to stop, I got really bad withdrawals and felt horrible. He said ‘well I think it’s best that you stay on it’. That reason kind of pissed me off and I thought, I don’t want to be stuck taking this forever!!!
    One week and 4 days ago I had a good friend visit from interstate. I knew that we would be drinking a fair bit of alcohol (when I would drink I didn’t take lex-for me alcohol affected me so much more if I took a tablet that day). I stopped taking it for 4 days and then thought what the hell, I may as well just stop altogether. So far I have been feeling ‘brain zaps’ which i can feel in my mouth also, dizziness when I move quickly eg turning around, or making any sudden movements. Crying fits- so bad that one day when I spoke to my mum she said she was driving over to see me straight away, anyone would have thought that my closest friend had passed away, the crying fits are so intense! Insomnia and nausea. Back pain and prickly,tingly feelings over my face. Suddenly feeling like i could rip someones head off-this feeling is fleeting, it lasts perhaps 20 seconds or so. The best part of it though is that I have so much energy! I haven’t felt energetic in so long and it is AMAZING! And yes, I have been craving sex, which I didn’t while I was on lex.
    Excited about these withdrawals being over and done with! And being free from the comfortably numb feeling that I experienced while being on lexapro.

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      It may take time, and you may want to cut down slowly if the symptoms are still bad, but you WILL get past the withdrawals and I think it will be worth it! It was for me. I had bad crying jags, it was crazy. I’m so happy to be free of it.

      Thanks for commenting.

  39. Emily says:

    I’ve taken lexapro for over 12 years -beginning with 5mg for a few years, then 10, 15, and 20 mg for the last 9. I felt like I have not ‘needed’ it for the last 5+ years having learned coping skills, better breathing, and improved nutrition.

    I tried perhaps 2-3 times to decrease the medication by 2 mg per day and couldn’t get past the first week due to the incredible nausea, dizziness, and vertigo described also by others.

    Want to know what is working with zero physical side effects? Tapering with the liquid by .5 milligrams about every 7 days. I’ve gone from 20 to 16mg over the last 8 weeks and feel terrific. Seriously, I’m going off lexapro and I feel terrific. For context: I had been very leery to try, because I get withdrawal if I’m a few hours late for a dose!

    Friends, if you are feeling sick from withdrawal -GO SLOWER!!!!!!! (I tried to go from 16.5 to 15 (jump to 1.5mg reduction) last week for 3 days and the nasty symptoms were there. I returned to the .5mg tapering and feeling great again!)

    Lex comes in 20, 10, and 5 mg tabs and a liquid. You need the liquid to taper slowly! The liquid is expensive, so I take half a 20 mg tab, half a 10 mg tab, (=15 mg) then add the liquid depending on the remainder. This is the cheapest way. They special order the liquid at the pharmacy -have them do this if they don’t carry it! It is worth it!

    Tell your doctor, tell your pharmacist -this works! You don’t need to feel so awful -just go slower!

    Also, make sure your vitamin d, iron, and b vitamins are up! Don’t take poor quality/ drugstore vitamins -they are unregulated and make you feel worse. Instead, my favourite is New Chapter Only One. It doesn’t have herbs in it, which can interact with meds and is organic, food based. I take a half a tab at a time because they are rich enough in vitamins to split.

    Good luck everyone!

    Oh, I do have a few emotional things -the first two weeks angrier and irritable, then a little sadness, and now the last week some euphoria. I know that it’s just me adjusting to the med changes and that really helps to know its temporary and not to worry. :)

  40. anna says:

    Hi Heidi,
    I just found your site and your experience with Lexapro withdrawal. I scanned the posts made by people and your replies and it looks like it took you about 3 months to get over the withdrawal symptoms. I weaned down to 1.25 mg for about a week and have been completely off Lexapro for 2 days now and feel terrible. I’m not working right now so I can stay in bed when I feel really bad (mostly in the mornings). Can you recommend anything to help with withdrawal symptoms? I’m taking B vitamins, a multiple vitamin daily, flax oil and ginger daily.
    Thanks!! Hope you’re doing well now. :)

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Anna,

      I’m so sorry you’re going through that, it was rough for me. Yes, I feel like it took about three months to feel free of withdrawal symptoms and honestly, it seems like it got much worse when I went to nothing- it was easier as long as I was taking a little bit. I’m going off of memory here, and I always want to be careful to say that I’m not a doctor of course, I can only speak from my own experience.

      That said, exercise always helps me with any mood stuff. Even just walking. Also regular hot showers or baths- take especially good care of yourself, as if you were your own child. Also, I need to keep my blood sugar level and eat healthy foods regularly, with enough protein and healthy fats. I always need potassium and magnesium foods- like avocado and other fruits and veggies.

      Mentally knowing that something has an end point helps me if I’m getting depressed about an illness or a difficult time. I like positive quotes and music, if I’m low, I seek out comedy and avoid sad drama, even in entertainment. I’ve said before I take Gabapentin also, I still do- I like it. It seems to help with mild mood swings, but it’s not a cure-all. I do believe in meditation and/or prayer and also support, I ask for help when I need it, whether in therapy or a support group or from a doctor or online.

      See a doctor if things get really bad, medication withdrawal can be serious, but I did make it through fine.

      Very best of luck to you and thank you for commenting :-)

      XOXO- Heidi

  41. Lee says:

    I went of 5mg Lexapro cold turkey about two months ago. I was only on it for a few months. Major weight gain, loss of energy, sweating in bed. I also was taking Zyprexa 2.5mg for sleep. I went cold turkey off of that and what a nightmare. Way worse than Lexapro. My depression has come back and I don’t know where to turn next. Can anyone help?

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Lee, I’ve never heard of Zyprexa. I’m so sorry that your depression has come back, it’s the worst. I wish I could give you some unique advice, but other than eating healthy, trying to get exercise and good sleep, thinking positive thoughts and meditation and prayer (if you pray) can help pull you back up the ladder, so to speak. However, if it is a chemical depression and or severe, you may need to try another med. Of course, I’m just a blogger, not a doctor, so I’m not qualified to suggest one. Hang in there and remember that depression lies. It will get better. Love, Heidi

  42. Karine says:

    First off I would like to say superb blog!

    I had a quick question which I’d like to ask if you do not mind.
    I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your thoughts prior to writing.
    I’ve had a hard time clearing my thoughts
    in getting my thoughts out. I do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are usually lost just trying to figure out how to begin.
    Any recommendations or tips? Cheers!

  43. Billi says:

    Im very happy to have found this blog also….I was searching the web about Lexapro withdrawls and how long they will last. Ive been on Lexapro at least 10 years now and have decided that I want to try and go off. My life is better now and not in a abusive relationship anymore. Im a much stronger woman now. Now let me mention about a month ago I just decided to go off Aspartame too (aka Diet Soda) and that was really hard, the withdrawls from that are bad too. The chemicals ive put in my body so many years now is soooo crazy! Its wonder I cant loose any weight!! So thinking im wonder woman now I decided 2 weeks ago when I ran out of my Lexapro to just not refill and have gone cold turkey. Which first week I thought this isnt so bad, THEN about end of 2nd week its started coming down like a tornado! First the Rages of anger for stupid little things just piss me off and then cry about them. Pushing everyone away cause just cant stand people right now and better left alone. But the worst is the dizzness, just wears you out trying to do anything because everytime you move its like trying to do it on a roller coaster. Also the overpowering sounds and light that bothers you too. You just want lights down and everyone quiet! But thats not normal life when you have a 16 year old daughter and a understanding boyfriend trying to live in same house. So for now im trying to make it thru, knowing now it was a huge mistake going cold turkey but its been 2 weeks now and not starting this over. Just hope the dizziness gets better real soon cause I do work at a job that requires focus and looking at a computer all day. So for anyone out there that is going thru this just remember this is hard but it will make you stronger. After last couple months going thru 2 chemical withdrawls I should be able to take on the world lol. If any help on how long you have to go thru the dizziness or anything Natural that I could take to help, Id be happy to take advise! The good Lord made this land to heal us but we just keep putting these chemicals into our bodies and wonder why we are feeling so strange. Prayers to all that are going thru this cause its not easy especially someone who has depended on it for alot of years. Its nice to hear people who understand what it is your going thru right now, makes you feel even if just a little bit better :)

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      I’m so glad this blog helped you a little bit! Be careful if things get worse, but if you can handle it and function well, then maybe you will be able to stay off it without titrating- cutting back slowly. Hopefully you will get over the withdrawals soon. Again, I always want to say- I am not a doctor, so please take good care of yourself and see a doctor if needed, we want you safe, love.

  44. cathi says:

    Hi, I’m so glad I”ve found your website. About 17 days ago my doc stopped my Lexapro, 5mg and put me right on Prozac 1ml. The first week wasn’t to bad, but since then has been very difficult. I am very sensentive to all meds, not just antidepressants. I have been on them since so called menopause, big mistake. Last January I stopped cold turkey and after about a month went back, cause of side effects. Big mistake I should have hung in there, but was so bad I went back. Began taking Lexapro again with horrible side effects. They have lasted all summer. Sodoc decided it was best to stop it. Now guess what side effects again, from withdrawal. I was wondering since I’m on such a small dose of Prozac how long do you think they will last. Any information will be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Cathi

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Hi Cathi, I wish I knew so I could help, I’ve never taken Prozac. If I had to guess I would think it would be anywhere from a couple of weeks to three months- just based on my Lexapro experience. I’ll never take SSRIs again if I can possibly avoid them. Hang in there!

  45. caroline says:

    So its 2 AM and I’m suffering from every withdrawal symptom imaginable and this page is 1. Reminding me that I can get through this and 2. Keeping mind off the tremors in my back and legs. Thank you so much to everyone who posted and to you for starting this. Just got to stay positive I guess.

  46. Lana says:

    I have been on escitalopram for about 2 years and decided Monday to quit taking it cold turkey. Friday was a bad day and yesterday I cried off and on all day the least little thing set me off. Had a bad headache and finely got it eased up putting a wet cloth on my head. Today so far I have been okay just occasionally I’ve had this funny feeling in my chest like I can’t breathe. Don’t know if it’s from that or fear. I am just so tired of having to remember to take it and gaining weight I have put on about 30 lbs since I started and feel like a blimp. I go Wed to a place called “Renew health and wellness and will have a pellet put in my hip. It will help me get my body straightened out with the right hormones. I did my blood work last Wed so he will know what I need. Praying this will be the answer to my problems and I can stay off meds. I am glad I found this website. Lana

    • Heidi Ferrer says:

      Lana, good for you for taking care of yourself! It’s sometimes so hard to advocate for ourselves when we don’t feel good. I’ve been forgetting to breathe, lately, a heavy feeling in my chest that feels like fear or anxiety, too. My Mom has breast cancer and that is surely part of it…

      I heard that love is the opposite of fear, so I’m trying to practice gratitude and think of what and who I love.

  47. Troy says:

    Wow, I am someone who usually trusts my doctors and am not great at doing research on my depression meds. About 7-8 weeks ago, I misunderstood my psychiatrist’s instructions during a med change. I have a host of meds I take for severe depression and chronic pain. I won’t go into all of that, but during my dr’s visit about 8 weeks ago after complaining about worsening depression, I thought she told me to stop Lexapro. I “remember” asking her if I shouldn’t go off slowly, but she said no, I should have no problem. I thought that sounded strange and I should have questioned it, but it came along with some other med changes and I guess I just wasn’t thinking clearly. I went off 20mg of Lex overnight. I have never suffered more in my life. This is literal hell. I am only functional at this point because my general prac. gave me Zofran for the dizzy/nausea stuff. It has helped, but as soon as it starts to wear off, the horrid withdrawal stuff comes back. I have now missed 15 days of work off and on. During all of this, I visited the ER and happened to mention my dr. taking me off Lex cold turkey. He just said “hmmm.” I had a CT scan, MRI, thought I had MS, etc., etc. It was only by coincidence that I mentioned quitting Lexapro during an emergency visit with my psychiatrist that we realized what was happening to me. Please, I so hope you are right that I will be better soon. Everything in my life is suffering, my job, my family, my friends, every single thing. I don’t believe there should ever be a drug out there that requires this kind of hell to get off of. Thank you for this sounding board. I finally have a little bit of hope that I will survive this and still go forward with trying to achieve mental health. Depression is a scary thing…

    • Heidi F says:


      I’m so sorry you’re going through all of this. If your symptoms are being caused by Lexpro withdrawals, it will get better with time. It’s possible that you have a combination of things going on, but always remember, depression lies. It tells you things will never get better and it’s just not true. One day the sun will come out. It will. And it’s worth it to get through the bad and awful crap for that beautiful day. Hang in there!

  48. Vonnie says:

    As a nurse I realize the tapering of SSi. For me I haven’t taken everyday like I should. So I thought no problem. First off I put my self on Lexapro 2 yrs ago. I have been dealing with chronic back pain. Just after my 50th bday I ask my PCP to increase my dose from 10mg to 20mg. My blood work came back with a hypoactive thyroid, so on synthroid I went. Which was amazing. I finally went to pain management (after 2 yrs of PCP saying I should). I have decided not be be on Lexapro any more. Two HUGE reasons. It has dampened my orgasms. I have recently started dating again… The other is tramadol. This is the pain relieve of choice for me. I have a huge hang up about opiates. I’m a nurse in a hospital that see’s the addicted on a daily basis. I will NOT be one of those. My pain management doc won’t give me tramadol because of the Lexapro. So my dumb ass just stopped. I am sitting here tonite in a manic state. Nausea, tingling, manic….Couldn’t figure out why then it hit me. Dumb ass you have to take weeks to wean off of the SSI. Guess what popped a pill and will do it the right way from here on out.

  49. Kristen says:

    I have been on various SSRIs for half my life. I was recently taking klonipin and lexapro (20mg) and came off the lexapro and Klonopin at the same time. I thought my crazy feelings were from the Klonopin, so I went back on a low dose (5mg) of Lexapro. I had horrible anxiety and sweating on it, as well as GI issues. So, after a few weeks, I came off of that. I now believe my crazy withdrawal was actually the Lexapro! I have almost constant anxiety and swings of hopelessness and gloom and doom. Especially irrational thoughts of, “the world is over crowded and their won’t be enough food!” These are especially horrible panic attacks that wake me up in the middle of the night, combined with insomnia. Occasionally, I have times of calm, but that is usually due to exercising and maintain an extremely healthy diet. I also get brain zaps and similar side effects as reported by others here, and more frighteningly, I haven’t had my period in 3 months and have an initial diagnosis of PCOS. As a scientist and Doctor, I over analyze all of my symptoms and want instant relief, however, it appears that the process of resetting your brain takes quite a bit longer. I am taking Ativan occasionally for the serious panic, and that has helped, but I am cautious about the addictive properties. Any advice other than time, good diet and exercise is appreciated. God Bless

    • Heidi F says:

      Hi Kristen! I’m so sorry you have been going through all of that. I’m not a doctor of course and everyone is unique, but Klonopin is something I used to take a long time ago myself. At first it helped my anxiety, but it would make me tired as it was leaving my system- also, benzos can be a trigger for alcohol abuse. It seems they can help for a while and then backfire on you. If you stop taking them, the anxiety can be worse as you adjust. I definitely say people have to do what they have to do to stay alive and function, but for me, I need to stay in balance in all other ways to not get thrown under the bus. That includes healthy diet, keeping blood sugar balanced, exercise, sunlight, cognitive therapy and positive thoughts, staying away from triggers, even emotional ones…sleep is very important. Praying and or meditating, and staying in touch with friends or family who understand and not isolating. Does that make sense? Helping another person or just being kind in the world also gives me a lift. Books and or music that lift you, do what gives you joy. I still take Gabapentin and it evens me out a little bit without any side effects. Love to you. Heidi

  50. Cristy says:

    Hello. Just wanted to ask about your weight since you’ve been off of Lexapro. I’m one of the MANY who gained 20+ lbs while on it. I stopped taking it a month ago & haven’t seen a lot of change yet. Please tell me there’s hope!

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