Hi! I believe I can be of help with this issue.
is the generic name for what most people take as Wellbutrin. The XL designation means it's an extended release version. So this means that whatever the situation, you should not cut the pills you have because the coating is part of the release of the medication.
Bupropion is not an SSRI so withdrawal symptoms are rarely as severe nor as awful feeling. However, they often do occur and so you need to be monitored by your doctor. That means that this needs to be done with your doctor in the know. I can tell you: doctors do not take it well when patients make medication alterations without consulting them and coming up with a mutually agreed plan. So please do that, okay?
Especially at your age (I'm the same age group so I'm not calling us both "aged") you need to have this monitored as you've been taking the Wellbutrin for a very extended period.
The way to taper off effectively to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms is to start off with the 150 mg XL version of the Bupropion for 1-3 weeks. Typically it's done only for about a week or 10 days and then you would assess severity of withdrawal symptoms. But at 65 you might give it a little extra time.
You would then stop completely. Or you would switch to non XL version in smaller dosages and begin to taper off with those smaller dosages at 1-2 week intervals.
The type of symptoms that are most common are headaches, irritability, lightheadedness, nausea. But you need to be monitoring yourself and reporting to the doctor symptoms to decide on any changes to the plan.
You might also consider adding a behavioral component to your treatment for your depression and anxiety. While behavioral treatment requires more effort from the patient than medications and is not as quick acting, it doesn't have the side effects nor withdrawal symptoms of the medications. If you would like to introduce a behavioral treatment, feel free to ask me another question about it.
Okay, I wish you the very best!
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