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Tony, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 121
Experience:  UK trained Mental Health Nurse. Experience in acute care, Rehabilitation and Drug & alcohol treatments.
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I was started on Lexapro and Xanax 0.5 mg about 5 years ago.

Customer Question

I was started on Lexapro and Xanax 0.5 mg about 5 years ago. I have been experiencing weight gain, yet I eat a good diet. How do I wean off the Xanax? I think it is the culprit in my unexplained weight gain. Can I safely just quit taking it?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Tony replied 5 years ago.
Tony :

Hiya, My name is***** a Mental Health Nurse. May I answer your question for you?

Tony :

Ok, I can see you are offline but I will try to provide a response to your question.

Firstly, may I assume that you were prescribed Lexapro and Xanax for depression and anxiety?

Secondly may I ask just how much weight you have gained? Current and previous weight.

Lexapro and Xanax can both cause weight gain as a side effect but factors such as your age, diet and excercise are the most important considerations when looking at weight gain.

You have stated that you have a good diet but if you are not exercising at all you may still gain weight. People also generally gain weight as they age as a result of the metabolism slowing and an overall decrease in everyday acitivity.

Tony :

In terms of weaning off the Xanax, you should not stop taking Xanax abruptly. It is a Benzodiazepine...this body quickly develops a tolerance and dependance to Benzodiazepines.

You should taper the dose down before stopping taking the medications in an attempt to avoid withdrawal symptoms.

Tony :

Many schools of thought also advise when withdrawing from short acting Benzodiazepines such as Xanas that you should switch to a longer acting drug such as Diazepam.

Tony :

You should discuss these different withdrawal methods with your prescriber, doctors often have their own methods...all of which achieve the same goal and not necessarily any harder or easier than another method.

Expert:  Tony replied 5 years ago.
I noted that you were attempting to type in the live chat platform, There seems to be some issues with this so I have switched do the Question and Answer format.

Please feel free to ask further questions here before accepting / rating my response.

Thanks for your question,