How to Treat Effexor Withdrawal


Effexor is a medication that is used to treat depression and anxiety. It is usually prescribed in cases of major depression or treatment-resistant depression. While it is difficult to discontinue the use of any antidepressant, Effexor withdrawal can be particularly brutal. Common withdrawal symptoms include insomnia, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, agitation, headaches, hallucinations and blurred vision. In addition, there is often a “brain-zapping” that occurs. Fortunately, there are ways to minimize the side effects associated with Effexor withdrawal.

Things You'll Need

  • Supplements such as valerian, chamomile and gingko biloba
  • Yoga DVD
  • Yoga mat
  • Prozac (optional)


Work with your doctor to wean off of Effexor very slowly. If your doctor is already weaning you off of the medication slowly and the withdrawal symptoms are extreme, return to the full dose. Then start weaning off of it again even more slowly. It's imperative that this is done with the full support and supervision of your doctor.

Take supplements. Certain vitamins and minerals may help to calm your nervous system as well as provide a mood lift. Chamomile is a natural supplement that may counter the anxiety that is often a part of Effexor withdrawal. Gingko biloba can be used as a natural mood booster as well as an aid in easing the confusion and hallucinations that may occur. Valerian is an excellent supplement to take to ease insomnia. It also has a mood boosting affect.

Take another antidepressant to help treat the withdrawal from Effexor. It may appear counterintuitive to add more medication to your system when trying to take less, but Prozac is often prescribed to ease withdrawal symptoms from Effexor. You will still likely experience withdrawal symptoms, but they will be easier to handle. Once you have discontinued taking the Effexor, continue to take the Prozac for two to three weeks afterward. You will then slowly taper off of it. The withdrawal symptoms from Prozac are minimal if it’s discontinued slowly.

Practice yoga regularly. It has a calming affect on the central nervous system. In addition, it promotes relaxation and body awareness. It’s important to nurture your body and mind during the withdrawal process. A great way to do this is to purchase a yoga DVD and mat. While it’s often best to attend a class first, this may be difficult to do when suffering from Effexor withdrawal symptoms. Make it a goal to practice yoga at least two times per week.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not discontinue using Effexor without tapering off of the medication.
  • Consult your physician before starting a new diet or fitness program.
  • A health care professional should be consulted for proper dosage information before taking any supplements.

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