How to Quit Antidepressants—Very Slowly!

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have you ever wondered what problems

people can experience when they stop

taking their antidepressants stay tuned

and find out the title of this video is

called how to quit in a depressant very

slowly but we of course have to tell her

joke and this one a youtuber sent in to

me why did the snake lose his case in

court well he didn't have a leg to stand


I feel sorry for that snake but anyway

we must go on so today's topic I did a

video many many years ago called is

there a time to stop taking

antidepressants and in that video I said

antidepressants don't work for everybody

and a matter of fact many people I don't

help but there are some people they do

so the question becomes after maybe six

months or a year or two years of taking

these drugs feeling better

having your symptoms relieved a person

will say to themselves well is this a

good time to stop or should I stop and

that's what we talked about in in that

video so in some cases a person will say

you know if it ain't broke don't fix is

I'm feeling pretty good these these

medications are working the side effects

are nil or maybe minimal so you know I'm

just gonna keep going on and take them

indefinitely but in other cases people

will say you know I'm doing a lot of

things besides doing these drugs I'm

doing Douglass's as a brain maintenance

program I'm exercising I'm sleeping well

I'm eating well I'm doing affirmations

I'm meditating I'm doing mindfulness so

how do I know you know

what's doing what maybe these

mindfulness or these lifestyle habits

are really really doing the trick and

maybe the drug is sort of not helping

anymore so maybe I should get off the

drug and so they decide to well so far

so good I mean whether to keep taking

your antidepressants or stop them it's

an individual choice but what most

people don't realize is if you've been

on these drugs for a long

time getting off them is easier said

than done this is because while most

psychiatrists are very well trained and

had a prescribed minted medications and

get people started they have little or

no training on how to get them to stop

or how to you know wean them off them

this brings me to an article New York

Times that caught my attention recently

with this title how to quit

antidepressants very slowly doctors say

but what's really provocative is the

subtitle which reads mustering solid

evidence two researchers have denounced

standard psychiatric guidelines for how

to best wean patients from depression

medications well it turns out that

patients who go off their their

depressants too quickly can experience

severe withdrawal symptoms including

insomnia high levels anxiety and

something called brain zaps which many

of my clients have told me about they

just define this as sensations of

electric shock in the brain and there's

actually a name for this process it's

called the discontinuation syndrome

psychiatrists have actually given this

name when people come off these drugs

and they get these horrible symptoms and

for years they have been downplayed by

the psychiatric community as simply

being symptoms of underlying mood

problems now a pair of British

researchers have broken ranks with

established psychiatry in that country

and have argued that they did the paper

by the way and Lancet psychiatry if you

want to look it up and they argued that

any responsible withdrawal regimen

should take place over months and even

years not the standard for weeks that is

the general you know advice to

psychiatrists give there's a guy named

Mark Horowitz who was one of the authors

of this paper he's a big-shot Ebro he

adds the research felt at Britain's and

National Health Service and he says I

know people who can stop suddenly and

have no side effects no problem but he

says other people have to pull apart

their capsules bead by bead to basically

go off these drugs without any problems

and we now have provided the science to

back up what we've seen all along

so what is this research that dr.

Horowitz cites well in one study in 2010

I was yeah one study in 2000 then

Japanese researchers found that 78% of

the people who tried to get off

paxil experienced severe withdrawal

symptoms and boy my patience my patience

my clients have been telling to this for


paxil is a really really hard medication

to get off of however when they went

ahead and they spread the time out over

nine months to a number of years then

only 6% of the patients had withdrawal

symptoms from 78% down to 6% in another

study conducted by the Dutch just last

year 2018 they found that 70% of the

people who had difficulty getting off

effexor and paxil were able to do so by

safely following an extended tapering

regimen reducing their dosage by smaller

and smaller increments until they were

down to one fortieth of the original


well my takeaway from these studies is

pretty clear I'm on two medications

right now and if one day I decide to go

off them I plan personally to work with

my doctor to taper these things off over

a long period of time just to reduce the

risk for me of any unwanted side-effects

what I like about the studies that

validates patients reports of their own

experiences here's a quote from a

psychiatrist she says it's tremendously

frustrating when patients describe a

different experience than the physicians

expect and don't feel they're being

heard hey I can relate back at the

beginning 1996 I took this medication

called effects her one dose and I was

catapulted into an agitated depression

later diagnosis akathisia

I went back to my shrink and I said you

know I'm a wreck he said no no no you

you only took 37 point five milligrams

infects her it's not possible not

possible I said hey man I know in her

system I'm pacing back and forth hitting

myself honey one from shrink a shrink to

try to tell them what had happened to me

and nobody believed me

turned out years later something called


this restlessness and pacing was shown

to be a side effect of certain

antidepressants so

I was right but nobody believed me at

the time so if anybody out there is

thinking about stopping your

antidepressants you might want to think

about working with a practitioner who's

had experience guiding people through

this process especially over a long

period of time now there's a local

practitioner here in Portland who wrote

a wonderful book about this process

that's highly regarded among at least

people like me or laypeople

it's called a harm reduction guide to

coming off psychiatric drugs and there's

a free download of this book you can go

to WWE course project net and you'll

find a way to download the book and if

any of you do so and you do apply it let

me know what happens and let me know if

it's helpful and for that matter please

tell me your experiences now of any time

in the past you've tried to come off

antidepressants if there were withdrawal

symptoms maybe not but whatever your

experience was I love to hear about it

so again I want to say that coming off

of drugs psychiatric drugs is no easy

task it's harder than most people

thought it was but there are protocols

out there and there are people out there

who can help you this has been Douglas

block I thank you for watching this

video I really appreciate your tuning in

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earth and until we meet again I wish you

the best in human health recovery thank

you so much