Successful Clozapine Withdrawal and Return to Health

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Last Updated on March 8, 2021 by Carol Gillette

Staff members and residents were always innovators in the process of tapering. When I experienced symptoms of withdrawal, staff members were always there for me.

In Fall 2002, my senior year in college, I was taking Senior Design Build Studio and Independent Architecture Competition Design Studio at the same time. I would work until 3am, sometimes even later. I would be driving back and forth to school and constantly catching myself falling asleep. After I completed all my projects and finished the semester my body broke down on December 30, 2002 and my mom took me to the emergency room.

After being evaluated for a brief time, I was placed into a confined hospital. Over the past fourteen years some of the psych medications prescribed to me by psychiatrist have been: Geodon, Depakote, Wellbutrin, Clozapine, Effexor, Benztropine, Topamax, Abilify, Saphris, Lithium, Klonopin, Prozac, Ativan, Ambien, and Propranolol. For two years, beginning in 2015, I was able to taper with much difficulty off these psych medications, except Clozapine. I continued to used Ativan and Ambien as needed, which was a couple times a month.

At home I noticed that every time I tapered on my own, my physical, emotional, and mental symptoms decreased, at first. Paranoia was the main reason I wanted to taper Clozapine on my own, the paranoia was just too powerful. As my mother and I observed this I realized that I needed to go to the lowest possible dosage, or completely withdraw.

Some of the symptoms I had on Clozapine before coming to Alternative to Meds Center were altered perception of reality, paranoia, fear of socializing, anxiety, insomnia, isolation, fear of going outside, and being in public places, fear of any forms of technology, an inability to focus, an inability to think, an inability to concentrate, an inability to sit down or sit still, an inability to read, and an inability to exercise. On the third day after tapering Clozapine, I would experience three hours of uncontrollable anxiety attacks!

Some of the side-effects I experienced on Clozapine were extreme anxiety, electric shocks to the spinal cord every five minutes, lasting for up to three hours, electric shocks when I looked at computer screens or cellphones, the torment of akathisia, involuntary body movements, involuntary jaw movements, tightening of my throat, muscle constriction of my tongue, eyes twitching, myoclonic jerks when I tried to fall asleep, and continuous brain shifts that happened throughout the day.

On a typical day at Alternative to Meds Center I would get up and eat a healthy gluten-free, dairy-free breakfast. Then I would go to the detox shop, Monday through Friday, every morning. Then in the afternoon I’d eat lunch and go to classes on nutrition, mindfulness, yoga, happiness, toxicity, vitamins, and individual therapy. In the evening I’d eat dinner and after dinner I would have group therapy. On weekends I went on outings, hikes, rock climbing, and excursions with a professional guide from Alternative to Meds Center. I went to architecture sites, animal parks, and a spa resort on the weekends. Staff members at Alternative to Meds Center introduced me to mediation and yoga. I attended a few seminars on meditation and yoga while at Alternative to Meds Center. The Alternative to Meds Center staff also accommodated my special interest in outings. I was also able to go shopping for groceries when needed. I did art therapy and worked on art projects while at Alternative to Meds Center.

Staff members and residents were always innovators in the process of tapering. When I experienced symptoms of withdrawal, staff members were always there for me.

Alternative to Meds Center is a holistic facility that is structured around Environmental Medicine, Orthomolecular Medicine, and the psychology of nutrition. Thank you to all the staff members at Alternative to Meds Center that help make their system function. I now have so much respect for Environmental Medicine and Orthomolecular Medicine and the possibilities they create. These concepts and modalities saved me from a very dangerous drug, Clozapine.

I couldn’t have done it without the team at Alternative to Meds Center. I took Clozapine for a total of 14 years, 7 months, and 1 day. I began tapering my psych medications in May 2015 at home, without successfully tapering Clozapine. Even though it is different for everyone, it took me total of 83 days to taper off Clozapine at Alternative to Meds Center.

At Alternative to Meds Center I lost over 20 pounds while in their program. While there I balanced my hormones, started using technology consistently again, reduced my paranoia, began socializing again, began a healthy and fun diet, and began working on my physical fitness. I read three books while at Alternative to Meds Center. Today I’m gluten-free, sugar-free, caffeine-free, dairy-free, and I no longer crave sweets.

I can’t thank the Alternative to Meds staff enough. I want to say to residents and individuals choosing to come to Alternative to Meds Center, there is no facility in the United States like Alternative to Meds Center. Their teamwork, expertise, experience, and successes make them the only choice for psych medication withdrawal. I highly recommend Alternative to Meds Center for psych medication withdrawal.

~ Kirk

Successful Clozapine Withdrawal and Return to Health
Medical Disclaimer:
Nothing on this Website is intended to be taken as medical advice. The information provided on the website is intended to encourage, not replace, direct patient-health professional relationships. Always consult with your doctor before altering your medications. Adding nutritional supplements may alter the effect of medication. Any medication changes should be done only after proper evaluation and under medical supervision.