I have currently been off Cymbalta now for over 3 weeks. I spent somewhere between 6 and 8 weeks weaning because I read horror stories of people coming off this medication. Every two weeks I experienced horrible headaches for a day or two while my body got used to the current dose. When I finally took the last dose, I spent the next three weeks fighting vertigo. I think it’s finally passed, but what a nightmare. Although, from what I read it could have been a lot worse. I have never experienced any issues when weaning and stopping prior anxiety medications, so this was surprising. If I end up taking long term medication again, at some point in my life, I plan on researching not just the side effects while on it, but the side effects coming off it because I don’t want to go through that hell again.
It’s definitely a battle every day to keep myself in check. Most days I am eager to go to the gym, but there are days I force myself to because it is how I am battling the anxiety. With anxiety some people also experience panic attacks. I am one of the lucky ones. (Sarcasm). Last night I had my first one in a couple of years. They come on out of the blue and despite what I read about panic attacks, they do not last for a few minutes. Mine tend to last for hours. I usually wake up the next day so drained of energy I can barely function. It feels like I have just been run over by a truck and have been awake for days on end. However, this time around I took the medication, Xanax, which my doctor prescribed. I had expressed to her that I could handle the everyday anxiety medication free, but I could not bear to go through a panic attack. While the Xanax took the edge off the panic, it did not magically make it disappear as I had hoped.
While I’ve kept my anxiety and depression at bay through nutrition and exercise, a friend of mine recently commented that I seemed a bit “unplugged”. I am definitely more emotional. More easily to “fly off the handle”. I rehash daily incidents that irked me with such raw emotion and animation, I leave friends, family, and complete strangers asking “What just happened?” Maybe I need to up the anti and work out more.