Our expert says:
As a general rule, because with many ( though not all ) antidepressants, many ( though not all ) people who stop them abruptly may exp[erience some withdrawal symptoms ; and because some people stop using an AD too soon, before the depression is finished, so it might return.
Therefore it is always best to see the prescribing doc, best of all a psychiatrist, both for an assessment to check whether this is a good time to stop the meds, and for a personal plan for how to gradually reduce and stop them.
I deplore the nowadays common situation that psychiatrists are too fully booked up so that they don't, as we used to, keep some spare gaps in their weekly schedule for emergencies and urgent matters. Have you tried phoning his office for advice on the specifics here, and regarding your wish to go without the meds so as to fall pregnant ?
Don't be in too great a hurry, its best to get this right. Part of my concern is not being clear WHY you have been taking the Cipralex for 18 months. With a single or first ( or 2nd ) Depression, one usually stays on the meds for around 9 months or so, to have the best chance of remaining well after stopping. Only, usually, after a third depression is is usual to recommend that someone remain on an antidepressant long-term. What matters most in regard to your pregnancy plans, is the exact diagnosis and the expertly assessed risk of a further serious depression during a pregnancy. Some ADs are safer than others during pregnancy, and the issue is to balance the risks of remaining on a carefulyl chosen med during pregnancy, with the risks to mother and baby of remaining drug-free during pregnancy IF there is s significant risk of a serious depression during that time, as depression itself is also not good for a dveloping baby.
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