Getting off of Zyprexia

My son has BiPolar schizoaffective. He has been taking shots once a month and Zyprexia everyday. I heard that these horrible drugs can cause the brain to shrink and take 20 years off of your life. I would like very much to see my son get off of the Zyprexia and go natural. He is 37 years old so I really doubt he would listen.

I have PTSD, ADHD, BiPolar, etc. I am very much against these drugs for him because of my experience and of what I have researched. I was on Seroquel for about 25 to 30 years. I found out that it could closely minic Alzheimer’s. My short term and long term memory was compromised. I lost almost all of my jobs because I was always asking questions that I now was related possibly to the medication. I was then put on Depakote. After a year on it, I found I had lost 100% of my memory. I almost died in June, 2017 because Depakote had robbed me of my memory to eat for about a week. They insisted to go to Emergency because my potassium had gone down below 2.7 and they thought I have a heart attack or stroke. When I had been on Depakote for about 4 months, I could not remember the year we were in. I was like a walking “Zombie”. When I discovered this, I went “cold-turkey” and got off of the medication which should never be done. I have had horrible insomnia, intrusive and suicidal thoughts. The suicidal thoughts were almost constant but I don’t know if I would have had the nerve to try it out. I have been miserable. However, I just started taking Lithium Orotate and I think I feel better. And, the main happy part of my getting off the medicine is my memory is coming back better than it has been in years but still always to go.

Enough about myself. Back to my son. First of all, I think the doctor would be adamantly against him getting off of the medicine. I would really like him to see a Holistic Psychiatrist which only uses natural vitamins, minerals etc. to cure mental illness. Unfortunately, I have found only one locally but she charges $250 per hour and does not accept insurance and I don’t know why; perhaps insurance companies do not recognize “Holistic” anything which I think is terrible. I found out that if you eat organic sprouted brown rice and black beans, garbanzo beans and others (organic probably better) can reverse schizophrenia and other mental disorders because it produces natural niacin which is a big factor.

Sorry to be so “long-winded” in this message. But the main question is, how long does it take to wean yourself off of Zyprexia?

I went cold turkey on 20mg tablets after taking them for two years and the withdrawal was terrible/crippling so I would imagine the tapering process is long.

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Thank you for your reply. I am not sure how much he is taking. I am thinking of raising money for the Holistic doctor if I can convince him to go.

It’s a nasty drug in my opinion. I put on so much weight and was heavily sedated. There are better options.

If your son has schizophrenia he should stay medicated. Maybe try switching antipsychotics?


Scottb, how long ago did you get off of your Zyprexia and do you take anything now?

Your son may be better off with his medications. Not everyone can use homeopathic treatments and do well. If the medications are helping him, he should stay on them. If the medication is causing him problems, he should discuss with his doctor whether or not another treatment is appropriate. It feels as though you are trying to make that decision for him.

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About three years ago now. I am currently between Haldol and Abilify. I am getting sick of side effects but I have no choice but to take them.

Homeopathy should not be the first line of defense unless medication is not helping at all or side effects are way too much, in my opinion. There is a rich medical literature about how it is difficult to treat schizophrenia without causing problems in the nervous system in general because of the nature of the disease. Regardless, this is your son’s choice, and you seem to want to press your way of doing things on him.


Please don’t try to convince your schizophrenic son to come off meds because of youtube videos.

There is no alternative to anti psychotic meds.

Do you want to be responsible for him thinking he can fly and jumping off a building?

None of the alternative treatments you’ve mentioned have anti psychotic properties.

Don’t fall into the deadly trap of “holistic” or alternative treatments. And it can be a deadly trap.


Beans and rice will not cure schizophrenia.

Niacin will not cure schizophrenia.

Diet and supplements are great, but in addition to treatment.

If that particular med isn’t working for him, there are others. You didn’t say how HE feels on it, which is really what’s important. He may be getting some relief.


He is brilliant (wrote a 2000 page book on poetry and lyrics). As a child he was asking questions I could not answer. I have been told I am smart (probably because of my BiPolar) but he is so much more brilliant. I would not be able to convince him to do anything he had not researched for himself.

As another side note which I did not know earlier but probably many do is that Abe Lincoln and Winston Churchhill both suffered with BiPolar.

If he is brilliant, then let him make the decisions on his treatment, perhaps? He seems to be capable of weighing his options based on what you say.

@Adlergal, I’d like to encourage you to join our forum for Family and Caregivers that can be found at:

While this is a peer support forum for people with schizophrenia and other closely related psychotic disorders, the Family forum is specifically for people like yourself, who have a loved one they are concerned about.

Also, please let your loved one know about this forum as they may find it helpful.

Best of luck,

Volunteer Moderator