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Buspar (Buspirone) Withdrawal Symptoms: How Long Do They Last?

Buspar (Buspirone) is an anxiolytic drug that is used as a safer treatment option for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Many doctors prescribe Buspar to their patients’ for anxiety because the benzodiazepine class of medications like Xanax carry significant withdrawal effects and are linked to dementia. Many of the benzodiazepines are also highly addictive with potential for abuse – Buspar does not carry this risk.

This is a drug in the azapirone chemical class that functions as a partial serotonin receptor agonist and influences dopamine to a lesser degree. It also does not function the same as an SSRI medication, but may be used as an augmentation strategy to help increase libido and energy. Many people end up withdrawing from Buspar because they try it and realize that it’s not really doing much of anything.

This is a medication that works well for select individuals, but it may not do much of anything in others – even at higher doses. For these reasons, it is obvious that most people that end up taking it will eventually stop. Most doctors and psychiatrists will suggest that there are no withdrawal effects that you need to be concerned with – and for the most part, they are correct. However, there are still reports of individuals experiencing withdrawal symptoms while coming off of Buspar.

Factors that may influence Buspar withdrawal include

Since there are no major withdrawal symptoms associated with Buspar, whether you quit cold turkey or taper doesn’t really matter. Most people’s individual physiology will determine how they respond to this medication (e.g. whether it actually works) as well as whether they experience any withdrawal symptoms.

1. Time Span

How long were you taking Buspar? If you were on it for an extended period of time at a higher dose, there is a greater chance that you are going to experience some sort of “withdrawal” symptoms when you stop taking it. Those that were on Buspar for a shorter duration are not likely going to experience a withdrawal.

2. Dosage (5 mg, 10mg, 15mg, 30mg)

As with any medication, usually when you are on a higher dose, it has more of an impact on the brain and nervous system. If you were on the highest dose of Buspar, you may want to consider tapering back down to a lower dose before you quit.  Most doctors and psychiatrists will advise people to simply quit cold turkey.

3. Individual Physiology

Everyone reacts differently to being treated with Buspar. Some people experience anxiety relief and find that the drug works great. Others find that it doesn’t do much of anything to aid in the relief of anxiety. Certain people respond well to lower doses, while others require higher dosages to get a good effect. Your individual physiology will play a role in determining whether you experience any symptoms following discontinuation.

4. Cold turkey vs. Tapering

Most doctors suggest that there is no major discontinuation syndrome associated with Buspar. This means that many people are able to quit taking the medication cold turkey and notice absolutely zero withdrawal effects. With that said, if you have been on the medication for an extended period of time at a higher dose, you may want to still taper.

The half life of Buspar is very short (3 to 5 hours), so lowering your dose by 5 mg per day is recommended if you want to play it safe. If you want to play things ultra safe, reduce your dose by 10% every month. The only reason a person may want to consider tapering is if they were on a high dose for an extended period of time.

Buspar Withdrawal Symptoms: List of Possibilities

Although most people don’t report any major withdrawal symptoms from taking Buspar, others do experience a withdrawal. Compared to other classes of medications such as benzodiazepines or SSRI’s, coming off of Buspar should be relatively easy. If you experience a withdrawal period, it should be relatively short-lived. Below are some symptoms that have been reported from stopping Buspar.

  • Anxiety: Most people take this drug to help with anxiety. When they stop taking it, it may lead to an increase in anxiety and nervousness. If you are coming off of Buspar and your anxiety skyrockets, just know that it will return to a normal level.
  • Fatigue: Some people get really tired when they stop taking this drug. Usually the fatigue and lethargy doesn’t last for an extended period of time. The first few days you stop taking this medication may result in you feeling tired, but this will go away.
  • Dizziness: This is yet another common symptom associated withdrawal from most drugs. Fortunately the dizziness that you may experience when coming off of Buspar is not going to be nearly as intense as that associated with SSRI’s.
  • Drowsiness: There are reports of drowsiness upon discontinuation of this medication. Once again give things a few days and this symptom will subside.
  • Headache: This is a very general symptom associated with stopping any psychiatric medication. If you develop a headache, just know that this is extremely common.
  • Insomnia: Since Buspar works well for anxiety, this helps some individuals fall asleep at night. Anxiety in itself is very stimulating and can keep people awake. If they experience rebound anxiety when they stop taking Buspar, it may lead to insomnia.
  • Lightheadedness: Some people experience lightheadedness as a withdrawal symptom.
  • Nausea: There have been reports that people experienced nausea when they stopped Buspar. Fortunately there weren’t any reports of vomiting that accompany the nausea. If you feel nauseated for a few days after you begin withdrawal, this will go away.

How long does Buspar withdrawal last?

Let’s rephrase the question: “Is there such thing as Buspar withdrawal?” For most people, there are no notable symptoms that occur when they stop taking Buspar. Therefore there really is no withdrawal period. With that said, if you are one of the individuals that do experience withdrawal symptoms, it is important to know that they should subside quickly. Most people will not experience any sort of discontinuation effects after they have been off the drug for a couple weeks.

If you are having a difficult time with the withdrawal process, make sure you are engaging in healthy activities such as: getting plenty of exercise, eating good foods, getting plenty of sleep, and socializing. By engaging in healthy activities, your brain will return to homeostatic functioning sooner than it otherwise would. You should also keep in mind that everyone reacts differently to medications.

Although most people do not experience a withdrawal, there are people that have reported unpleasant symptoms when they stopped Buspar. If you have quit taking this medication and would like to share your experience with “withdrawal” (or lack there of) in the comments section below, it may help someone else coming off of this drug.

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{ 106 comments… add one }
  • Elke Park October 8, 2014, 7:27 pm

    Well I just want to say that I have had every last side effect on the withdrawal list of coming off buspirone cold turkey, so I’m guessing that I am one of the few who do have withdrawals. It’s an extremely awful feeling.

    • Lilly October 11, 2014, 5:37 pm

      I have had headache depression, jitters, and crying jags. And this is from tapering…

      • Emily October 26, 2015, 4:40 am

        I agree and I’ve just been trying to taper down from 45 to 40 to try reducing my amount. I am experiencing heightened emotional state…easy to be upset and cry/increased anxiety. It makes me wonder if it is truly just a withdrawal side effect or if I’m just doomed to have a certain level of anxiety and depressed mood without this medication.

    • Rob June 22, 2015, 4:47 pm

      Agreed, I’ve had many of those, especially the jitters, on a 10mg dose 3 times daily.

    • William Counts May 17, 2016, 2:24 am

      I had horrible withdrawal after running out of Buspar for 3 days.

    • Jessica August 24, 2016, 1:06 am

      What are you feeling?

    • Thomas J Wiggins October 8, 2016, 11:21 pm

      Same here. I feel ya…”It’s an extremely awful feeling.”

  • Alex October 17, 2014, 6:37 pm

    I was on 60 Mg of Buspar a day for about 5-6 months. A few days ago I quit taking it “cold turkey.” These withdrawals are no joke. I’m currently experiencing all of them and they are not fun. I strongly advise a taper.

  • Jackie October 22, 2014, 4:15 am

    Well I just started this medication & I love it but… My doctor only wants me to take 1 dose/day instead of 2 for the 1st week. OH MY GOSH!! The break inbetween doses is slowly killing me. The neausea is unbearable along with dizziness & the worst migraines I have ever had in my life & I don’t get migraines but I do in between doses. I’m afraid to take 2 doses a day from this. I’m at a lose & that’s why I’m on this website.

  • stephen October 28, 2014, 12:40 pm

    My mom was on 45 mg/day for 2 weeks and then was lowered to 30mg/day because of nausea. She has been crying for days and it is one of the worst experiences of our lives. I wish there was a way to ease these withdrawal symptoms. Does anyone know anything that helps?

  • Ryan December 3, 2014, 4:08 pm

    I was on Buspar around 25mg daily (5mg x 5 times daily) and talked to my doctor about switching medications. He said to stop taking Buspar cold turkey and gave me Celexa instead. This was eight days ago. I am in such f#cking hell right now and I don’t even know why. I am confused about what amount of frustration is coming from my medication change VS what amount of frustration is coming from normal reactions to events around me. It hurts. Cold sweats. Wishing my brain could vomit. Complete awareness, I can’t slip into an activity or just become focused on something other than my stream of consciousness. I’m nauseous. Panic attacks.

    • Joshua December 10, 2014, 7:21 pm

      Ryan, I feel very bad for you. The Celexa might be the very thing causing all that, at least moreso than the buspar withdrawal. You need to take a sedative, maybe even Buspar itself to alleviate all that you are feeling. Your doctor may be unaware of what he is doing, especially if he is just a regular doctor and not a psychiatrist. If you can’t take Buspar, try drinking a little alcohol (if you don’t have a problem with alcohol) to alleviate the symptoms some until you can get a sedative prescribed. The experience you are having is why some people have committed suicide on SSRIs. If you can’t get a sedative, you might need to go off the Celexa. Work with a therapist or psychiatrist with this. The book Prozac Backlash by a Harvard psychiatrist tells you all about this. Good luck!!

      • Jamie April 2, 2016, 1:35 pm

        Joshua, my husband got worse when he started taking Celexa. Everyone is different.

      • Kaci August 20, 2016, 12:46 pm

        For anyone reading this, NEVER self-medicate with alcohol. Nearly all of these depression and anxiety drugs come with warnings against drinking, and with good reason! You wouldn’t take two drugs with known interactions; this is the same principle. Before getting this desperate, call your doctor. If you don’t trust him/her, call your pharmacist. Don’t sabotage your health just to feel better for a few hours. (And I have a chronic pain/neurological disorder, so I am speaking from experience.) Be kind to your body; it’s the only one you’ve got.

    • Theresa Walker February 17, 2016, 2:37 pm

      Ryan. As I’m curled in a fetal position, reading this and going through my own cold turkey withdrawal agonies (from Buspar, Seroquel, Wellbutrin, and Klonopin, simultaneously), I had a chuckle over your very apt description: “wishing my brain could vomit.” I didn’t think I had a chuckle in me. I’m not trivializing your own agonies, but you’re quite eloquent while in agony. My communication skills are pretty much limited to moans, groans, sobs, and one very-needed chuckle. We’ll get through this.

      • Katherine March 4, 2016, 6:14 pm

        My thoughts after reading The Ashton Manual (online) about withdrawal from all the meds you were on: slow tapering, first from the Klonopin, wait four weeks after all symptoms are gone, then work on tapering off the antidepressants. Please don’t take my word for this, please go to the Manual and read for yourself what it takes to get off these horrible drugs which f*** up our brains terrifically.

    • Alex July 28, 2016, 5:15 pm

      I only had anxiety before buspar, never severe anxiety attacks like I’m having now after quitting cold turkey due to insomnia/lightheaded and only being in 15 mg per day. Can’t eat, feel insane and not normal, Complete nightmare even had a trip to the ER. It’s been 7 days since I stopped. “No withdraw symptoms” my ass.

      • Chrissy August 10, 2016, 11:48 am

        Same. I was having issues with anxiety. My doctor put me on Buspirone awhile back. It seemed to help at first but then nothing. I was getting panicked again during meetings, etc. My doctor switched me to escitalopram. I stopped Buspirone, waited two days, and then took it. That night I had a severe panic attack. Never had one that bad before. I felt insane.

        I had to wake my husband up and ask to be taken to the hospital. We went to my moms instead and got one of her Xanax. I stopped the escitalopram, of course, but now I’m cold turkey and it’s been 4 days of feeling out of control. Last night I had to fight myself to not take a Xanax. (I’ve never been one to take them daily and don’t want to start now).

        Feeling out of control, the bad thoughts, the restlessness… Sucks so much. I wasn’t like this BEFORE taking Buspirone. I can’t blame escitalopram cause of the one dosage. It would be out of my system by now.

      • Kathy Osmundson November 5, 2016, 12:37 pm

        Just took my mom off of Buspar and she is having anger, crying, not eating and in general acting weird. Has been 3 days and my dad is ready for a heart attack because of her behavior. Doctor told us no side effects to quitting but something is wrong. She has been on 10 mg for a long time and wondering how long it took you to feel better.

  • Peter December 4, 2014, 10:22 am

    Anyone with chest pains while on Buspar and going off it?

    • dezere December 16, 2014, 3:19 am

      Yes. I’m currently coming off of it and I also have this problem.

    • Skippy January 14, 2015, 3:53 pm

      I’ve been taking Buspirone 10mg 3-4 times a day for several months and recently stopped taking it. I’m having severe chest pain, muscle pain, I can’t sleep, and am also experiencing numbness in my arms/legs, plus migraines. If I don’t feel better soon I’m going to see a doctor. I feel alarmed, like something is really wrong. I fricken hate this feeling. I’m having a hard time functioning.

      • William Counts May 17, 2016, 2:33 am

        A numb tingling feeling all over. I only take 15 ml a day. I was out for 2 days believing there wouldn’t be any withdrawal. I wouldn’t recommend anyone stop “cold turkey”.

      • Cece July 24, 2016, 10:16 pm

        Did you make it through and are you off of the medications? I am going through the same thing and I want to come off but I feel like none of the doctors have answers and they just want to keep feeding me pills? I don’t know if I need them or not I just know I’m sick all the time and I’m tired of being sick and panicking and feeling like I’m dying.

    • Jdawg November 5, 2015, 4:58 am

      YES! My Heart has been racing over 110 beats a minute. I feel like I’m dying. I stopped cold turkey from the buspar and was taking Celexa 40 mg and the buspar 2 times a day. Now I’m taking the Celexa and Welbutrin SR. This is Day 9 and I’m so shaky.

    • bernadette March 9, 2016, 6:18 pm

      Yes! I have had chest pain everyday the past 3 days since going off it cold turkey. I was having chest pain on it though. The only thing that helped with that was 0.5 Klonopin but my doctor doesn’t want me on that so I was prescribed the buspar. I decided I will just live it with the chest pain and panic attacks because I feel worse with all the medications we have tried.

    • Kaci August 20, 2016, 12:32 pm

      I had chest pains in the beginning, but they went away. I did go and get checked out by my PCP to make sure it was just a drug side effect and nothing serious, but I ended up staying on the drug. The side effect slowly diminished until it went away entirely.

  • Debi December 13, 2014, 3:53 am

    Going off Buspar for a week and totally miserable with headaches and cold sweats. I had been on 5 mg 3x a day for 11 months. Don’t really know what to do! Losing my mind and it’s the weekend.

  • TERESA HERMAN December 20, 2014, 6:56 pm

    I was on Buspar for 20 years, yes 20 years. I have very high anxiety and panic attacks. Then, this year I started having incredible high racing pulse, palpitations and extremely high blood pressure. I thought it was just my old age causing my heart to go crazy. Well, after taking Buspar everyday, my heart went racing crazy all at once. Then every time I took it, I was in dangerous territory, like heart attack dangerous. So, I went cold turkey! I still take my .5 mg of Xanax 3 times daily, but the dizziness and lightheadedness is still driving me crazy.

    I am taking Trazadone to sleep, and Melatonin when I get so anxiety ridden that I can’t stand it, but my heart is all back to normal. Yes, I still take beta-blockers but my dangerous racing heart has stopped. I can’t even believe I didn’t know it was the Buspar until my heart screamed out loud, ‘quit taking the Buspar’. Hope you all look out for extremely high PULSE rates as well as extremely high BLOOD PRESSURE. Good luck! I want to be pill free one day, but one or two a day is better than 5 or 6. :-)

    • Tanisha Hadley December 23, 2014, 5:23 pm

      Wow. Thank you for your comment. Very happy for you =)

    • Beth October 9, 2015, 1:18 pm

      Look up serotonin syndrome. I have been on 30 mil 2Xs a day and viibryd, 40 mil 1X daily for almost a year. Then they added ultram because I fractured my leg. I was having heart problems, blood pressure problems, to which I already had anyway but they got out of control. I actually was being overdosed and nearly died. I had a heart attack and I already have congestive heart failure that got worse. You stopped the buspar cold turkey and luckily I did because I would be dead. After a week without the buspar I was almost a new person although now I have to find a new anxiety med but they viibryd and buspar interacted along with the ultram.

      Serotonin syndrome is very dangerous. I am only having a bit if cold like symptoms and a little bit of body aches along with fatigue but they said the fatigue could be from the heart. Be very careful! Always check for interactions because I was put in this stuff by my psychiatrist and I have had surgeries and all kinds of other Drs who would comment on the dose being high of the buspar but nobody mentioned that those 2 could cause the toxic result.

  • T January 5, 2015, 5:09 pm

    I have been weaning off buspar since before Thanksgiving, I am now down to taking it twice a week, I have had a headache for 10 days now and an upset stomach for about three days. I am tired all the time, but try to keep up with house work to keep myself busy and use heat and cold packs for my headaches. Good luck to all of you. Cannot wait to get off this med completely, been feeling so much better without it.

  • Alice January 27, 2015, 10:46 am

    I started tapering off Buspar in July 2014. I experienced electric shocks through out my legs, headaches, insomnia, dizziness, lightheaded, feeling of throwing up, muscle aches, sweats and chest pain. I’ve been off them almost 7 months and I still can’t sleep my legs haven’t been the same since. I get this creepy crawling feeling throughout my legs and I just want to keep moving them and rocking back and forth. Its been miserable!

    • Beth F March 3, 2015, 8:30 pm

      I have been experiencing the leg crawl thing too. The doctor wants me to take ANOTHER pill for Restless Leg Syndrome but I am sure it is from the Buspar. It is so disturbing and I haven’t taken the newest pill she prescribed. It is an anti-seizure medication. I wonder if anxiety isn’t the lesser of these evils.

    • Eric Matthews May 7, 2015, 2:54 pm

      How long did the other symptoms last besides the leg issue? It’s been 12 days for me and I am still having all the same issues as you?

  • Edward February 27, 2015, 4:18 pm

    I was on 10mgs twice a day for several months. But it recently began severely interacting with my ritalin (ADD) to the point I was having panic attacks and suicidal thoughts. Stopped my ritalin and both went away immediately. Began tapering off buspirone a week ago. I’m down to 5 mgs twice a day. Anger appears to be the biggest problem. I’m a docile, empathic person by nature. But weaning off seems to have put my emotional control off balance.

    • Emily October 26, 2015, 4:47 am

      I have felt the same anger issue when I’ve tried to wean off of Buspar. It’s very unsettling getting angry easily and feeling unlike my usual even tempered self. I’m still currently on Buspar with Celexa. I hope to eventually be off of everything, but maybe that’s not in the cards. Good luck however things go. Xx

  • Eric March 4, 2015, 10:56 am

    This drug is horrible. I am currently experience withdrawal symptoms of extreme nausea and dizziness so much that I actually stop breathing momentarily and my head spins so much I can feel my eyes rolling to the back of my head followed by onset urge to vomit. The episodes last about 45 seconds and afterwards I feel shaky and nauseated.

    • Bianca September 20, 2015, 10:08 pm

      The same exact thing happens to me not from withdrawal but from taking it in the first place. The dizziness is horrible. I am going to taper myself off because I am pregnant and cannot handle it. I first was taking 5mgs twice a day for a month. It wasn’t doing a thing for me so the psychiatrist made me up it to 10mgs twice a day. I’ve been doing that almost a week and the last 4 days I have been getting these horrible symptoms. It doesn’t help me at all with my anxiety and all it does is make me extremely dizzy. Screw this!

  • Mary March 15, 2015, 4:20 am

    I was on buspar for three months and stopped suddenly a few days ago and I have a lot of nausea and really bad freaking headaches. Wish my doctor never put me on it. I feel so sick!

  • Amy March 21, 2015, 7:09 pm

    I was on 60 mg per day. Now tapering 10% per month. On my second taper, fifth day in, and am very anxious. I take 50 mg of Seroquel per night to sleep and am on 7 and 1/2 mg of Valium per day. I wake up feeling high anxiety but drowsy after 6 and 1/2 hours sleep, my doctor suggested that the Buspar may be to blame, thus the taper. No other symptoms except high anxiety and diarrhea, obviously from the taper.

  • kc March 25, 2015, 8:49 pm

    I have lost track of the # of years I have been on this med. I recently had no choice but to suddenly stop taking it because of a gap in insurance coverage personally and unable to buy it out of pocket because it’s too expensive. I have been having horrible withdrawal symptoms. I did not think it would be this bad but it is. I can barely function. it’s not been pleasant in the least. My anxiety is worse then it’s ever been, practically debilitating. I don’t recommend ever quitting ‘cold turkey’.

    I’m tried/exhausted no matter how much sleep I get. I’m lazy, no ambition no drive… and have to literally MAKE myself do everyday tasks. I think female hormones are changing big time with me right now too so I have double whammy. its miserable. I’m grouchy, nothing is comfortable, antisocial… the list of negative symptoms goes on and on and on. I pray for the day… which should be soon that I can get back on buspirone.

    Because my life without it is totally unbearable and no one not even my husband understands that. I hate that I’ve not choice but to take this medicine but am very thankful that I do live in a society that allows me to get this medication and it does in fact help me. If anyone needs to talk, I am here for you. That’s been my biggest wish is to have someone to talk to who understands and has been through this. I don’t wish this on anyone.

    • Pwoper June 21, 2015, 5:04 am

      I’ve been recommended to take 8 mg of busprione per day, despite my repulsion to conventional medicine. I am just taking it because of the pressure of the doctor and my family. My family spent a lot of money on that doctor, and I do not want to give them reasons to bash me. I am writing this comment and telling you a little about me cause I found the solution to my anxiety, and it is a consistent and high intake of raw fruits & vegetables.
      Even more important than taking healthy foods is avoiding taking the bad ones (mainly unnatural stuff).

      I’ve suffered quite a lot with many many health issues in the last 9 years, and the only thing that worked for me is the raw diet. Currently, my food intake is about 95% of raw fruits and vegetables, and my anxiety said goodbye on the first days of my diet. Try it, I bet you’ll get better. :) Wish you the best!

    • Luis February 2, 2016, 7:33 pm

      How are you feeling now?

  • yitzz April 6, 2015, 6:46 am

    I was taking buspar for a few months 15 mg a day. After stopping a few days ago I feel like something is pulling me down in strength and mood. I also get bomb tiered in middle of the day.

  • Rex April 18, 2015, 7:50 pm

    Have tried to educate myself about buspar, and know that, if it works for someone, it is highly valued. Went on small dose–5mg, 2x/day, to begin treatment for background anxiety. Did OK for first two days, tolerated the jangly dizziness and emotional swings. Also noticed considerable flushing. Third day had increasing nausea, and then–Zap! A really intense hot flash, and blood pressure spiked to 167/89. It’s now 18 hours later, and BP is still around 150 (I’m normally 135/80). To be really scientific, I know I should try another dose and see if the flash and spike re-occur, but I’m gun-shy. Guess there just are some people for whom it does not work. Sigh.

  • Summer Black April 23, 2015, 8:24 am

    I have been on the maximum dosage three times a day for about two years. I quit cold turkey and amd feeling senses of alarm and excitement. I have had little to no appetite but have managed to eat some bland tasting food. Overall I am feeling very positive about my future and being extra sensitive to maintaining my diet with small portioning and conducting moderate exercise.

  • Ardyce May 13, 2015, 8:58 pm

    My daughter took 20 mg. a.m. and p.m. She stopped taking it in December cold turkey. In April she fainted twice. She was taken to emergency and released. In May she had a seizure and we went to emergency again. The next day she went to work, started crying and had rapid eye blinking for several hours and a severe headache. She was hospitalized overnight and had an EEG which showed epilepsy in the back of her brain. If I knew this was a withdrawal symptom, I would never have put her on this. Please be aware of this drug.

    • Tracey January 3, 2016, 9:49 pm

      I’m so sorry to hear your daughter’s story. So they think after months off of the medication it is still to blame for the epilepsy? I didn’t know withdrawal symptoms could last MONTHS after quitting cold turkey. Is that common?

  • Lindsay June 4, 2015, 2:06 am

    I was on buspirone for 6 months/10mg 3x a day. I’ve recently began tapering off and it has been difficult to say the least. I do get headaches every single day, definitely feeling more anxious but I will be done with anxiety medication in 2 weeks and I cannot wait. Overall mood has been better, I feel like a normal person again. I would suggest to taper, but just prepared there may be side effects either way. Also, lightheaded at different times but usually subsides after about an hour. This med does nothing. Natural ways are always better. Good luck to everyone!

  • Ell June 12, 2015, 7:31 pm

    OK…I thought I was the only one. Everywhere it says no withdrawal…but that can’t be true! My legs are so antsy and I am unable to keep still! My mind is racing like nothing else…when will this stop!?

  • Tara June 14, 2015, 8:33 pm

    Very helpful comments about Buspar. I can identify with some of the withdrawls.

  • shawna June 30, 2015, 6:43 am

    I am currently coming off of 5mg of buspar 3x a day for last seven yrs. Cold turkey. I’ve noticed that I am experiencing tingling and throbbing in my left arm esp. Blurred vision shortness of breath or not feeling like I can get a deep breath tightness in chest and tiredness off and on. My blood pressure has also been higher than usual around 160/90 when it is normally 120/70.

    For the most part I feel pretty good haven’t experienced any panic attacks. I think the buspar was one of the most beneficial things to ever come into my life it gave me a life and I think overall it replaced what was missing in my brain enough that I can carry on normally now I guess we will see in the future.

    • Robyn April 29, 2016, 11:15 am

      I can relate. I was off of this for about 3 days and I started to get chest pains and my left arm feels tingly. My anxiety has increased.

  • Daniel July 6, 2015, 2:37 pm

    I was taking 30 mg a day since April of buspirone and I was not taking it regularly. I went to 60 Mg since I dropped clonazepan in June. I started to take regularly and everyday I was feeling oppressed. I was losing my breathing capabilities and was extremely tired and sleepy. I was swearing a lot even when it was cold. I had chest pressure and could not sleep for more than an hour at the time at night. I was jittery all over my body. I went off and it has been 3 days. I feel much better but I still have same symptoms but at a lesser degree. I am so happy I stopped. I assume I will be off completely in about a week. It is very frustrating and you can’t function right.

  • Karema August 1, 2015, 3:58 am

    I’ve been on Buspirone HCL 15mg twice a day for a little over a year. I started tapering myself off a little over a week ago. The first time I just stopped taking it at night and I was fine. Then I cut the pill in half and only took that in the morning. I feel like crap! I have the worse headache of my life, I’m nauseous, I have stomach cramping, I’m exhausted and I feel like I can’t move, I’m in so much pain.

    I just want to sleep. I’m lightheaded , extremely dizzy and jittery. It has been about 5 days and I’m hoping it stops soon. I didn’t even realize it was the medicine until I began thinking about how my life has changed changed to try and figure out what’s wrong. It hit me that it could be the medicine and I looked it up and found this page.

  • JP August 3, 2015, 11:48 pm

    Was on Buspirone for just over a year…5mg once daily and had to reduce to 2.5 because of the side effects. Started tapering off about a six weeks ago and have been completely off for three weeks. Experiencing severe hot flashes, some dizziness (which I didn’t attribute to the Buspirone withdraw until reading everyone’s posts) and twitching muscles which I developed while on it. Has anyone else experienced this withdrawal symptom? I hope it stops soon, it drives me crazy.

    • Imasweetgirl2005 April 30, 2016, 4:17 am

      I have had the muscle jumping and also feeling tight at times. It feels like I can’t catch my breath sometimes. My doctors say I shouldn’t have any symptoms that this is a mild medication. I wonder if putting them on this drug would help them change FDA minds about introducing to the market. Anyways I’m tapering myself off this medicine.

      It’s making me feel symptoms to even be on it. I am trying to think how was anxiety before taking it. And thinking heck anything better than these medications. Klonopin withdrawals are also so crazy. Unbelievable they put these medications on the market. Praying things get better.

      Stay positive. Watch surroundings. Eat healthy. Watch carbs and sugar intake. Feel your days with a lot of things to help keep your mind busy. Watch your safety at all times. GOD BLESS.

  • Renee August 14, 2015, 9:29 pm

    I only took buspar for a little over a week. Most of it was on 5 mg twice a day, and then for one day, upped to 10 mg twice daily. I started noticing an increase in depression, so I stopped cold turkey and had to go to urgent care today because of withdrawal symptoms. I can’t stomach any food, can’t stay hydrated even when drinking fluids, I feel like I have to really put effort into my breathing at times, I’m still getting spells of depression, gastrointestinal problems, and irritability.

  • HM August 19, 2015, 8:43 pm

    I have been taking 20 mg of buspar for many years but mid spring I increased to 30mg due to increased anxiety. In June I increased to 60mg but felt worse on that high of dose, I experienced extreme anxiety. After seeing the doctor was reduced back to 30mg. After second day of reduction I am not feeling the extreme anxiety but I am feeling withdrawal symptoms (dizziness, brain feeling in a fog & feeling jumpy). Hope it ends soon.

  • Denise August 28, 2015, 3:52 pm

    My family doctor prescribed me 90mg a day. I was on it for two months. Sometimes it would help sometimes not. My anxiety attacks started increasing. My psychiatrist said that my family doctor had no business prescribing a medication for a psychiatric problem. He told me to quit cold turkey. I have been experiencing most of the withdrawal symptoms for the last six days. I called my psychiatrist and he said there is no such thing as withdrawal from buspar!

  • Bruni September 9, 2015, 10:56 pm

    I am 77 years old. A psychiatrist put me on buspirone 5mg twice a day. I took the pills for 2 weeks while having MORE anxiety. I developed severe high blood pressure and my Atrial fibrillation came back. My family doctor took me off cold turkey. After 2 days I had the worst nightmare in my life, getting headaches, and I cant sleep more than 1-2 hours a night. I am now weaning off the medication, and I will find some natural supplements for my anxiety. I am a vegetarian, walk 30 minutes plus every day with my dog. I say that there are withdrawal symptoms.

  • Peggy October 13, 2015, 12:37 pm

    Was only on this drug a short time but when on it horrible heartburn which I have never had in my life. When went off it cold turkey had chest pains so bad I had to go to the ER (further testing at hospital proved my heart was in excellent shape). I did not know of the horrible effects of this drug or I never would have tried it!

  • Paula October 18, 2015, 11:01 pm

    I was put on Buspar 10mg 2x/day about a year and a half ago. I was in a med transition and needed it for anxiety, as community services board would not prescribe benzos. I also take Xanax 1mg at night to help with sleep and have for years without abusing it. The buspar did wonders for the anxiety. Now that my other psych meds are ok I went of Buspar cold turkey.

    I have had no side effects. My blood pressure is running high, but don’t know if related. Would agree with the person who said that mostly natural diet and exercise is essential. However, not to mislead, I am currently struggling through a “down” cycle with much lack of motivation and depression. I don’t think it is related, as I am not anxious, just depressed. Have had BP for over 30 years. The down times come, what can I say.

    Recovery is about reaching out and weathering through them and not beating yourself up for them. But I am not pressured to work, so my heart goes out to those who have to. I have chosen to be poor and somewhat functional most times. Even happy most times. Stress is a definite trigger no matter how I practice my wellness plan. Took me many years to admit that!

  • Donna October 29, 2015, 5:30 am

    I’ve stopped the buspar recently as per my doc. Became increasingly depressed, and didn’t correlate the two. Spent most if my 12 hour shift at work crying on and off. Have feelings of sadness, shame, and guilt. Not feeling very peaceful… Hope it goes away soon :(

  • Wendy December 6, 2015, 10:07 pm

    I started on Buspar a little over 2 months ago, building up to a 15mg dose. After about 2 months I decided it was too sedating and began to take myself off of it. I cut the dose in half expecting discontinuation to be easy. Boy was I wrong! I’ve been feeling very sick for the last week including headaches, all over body aches, uncontrollable shaking, feeling cold and nauseated.

    My doctor suggested going off cold turkey but I am very hesitant to do that after the reaction to cutting the dose in half. Did anyone discover anything which could help ease the withdrawal symptoms? I’ve been taking lots of Tylenol and aspirin. Still not noticeably better after a week.

  • carolyn martin December 14, 2015, 9:33 am

    I stopped taking Buspar cold turkey because I had run out of my meds and had no way to get to the pharmacy to get it refilled. I had been taking it for 3 years, twice a day, so I did have some withdrawal…I had the jitters and insomnia for 3 days, then I couldn’t get enough sleep for a few days after that…And I had some nightmares. I just kept telling myself that I was going to be ok and it would be over soon.

  • Toni December 20, 2015, 5:36 am

    I am experiencing every symptom. They made me quit cold turkey. It’s hard enough having GAD. To make you quit cold turkey and have all the symptoms. Bless all of you in your journey.

  • amber December 30, 2015, 4:36 pm

    I’ve had all the withdrawal symptoms from quitting cold turkey. The drowsiness, dizziness and nausea more than the rest. The drowsiness is almost overbearing. It’s been almost a week.

  • Amy Hopper January 3, 2016, 9:40 pm

    I have been experiencing anger while being weaned off buspar. Is that normal?

    • Rob August 12, 2016, 8:33 pm

      Yes that is very common.

  • Teddy January 4, 2016, 2:00 pm

    Buspar, I just got tired of taking something that made me a zombie. I chose to live my life drug free. I took it when I was going through a depression but soon realized Doctors would just like to have us on a pill mill and see as many doctors who can dole out pills. One even gave me seizure medicine yeah I had some depression, yeah I was going through a move and looking for employment.

    Pills??? Not the answer. Live in the now don’t look back and get up have a cup of coffee, a easy breakfast, do a quick 7 minute work out and get back to living. Doctors…giving someone a pill doesn’t always help.

  • Ashley January 11, 2016, 3:02 am

    I only took two doses (7.5mg) one day and stopped taking it because I woke up in the middle of the night shaking uncontrollably. Well, it’s been a week now and I have been in the hospital with rapid heart rate, tingling on face hands and feet, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, chronic fatigue, fuzzy brain, etc. This has been the worst experience of my life. And I can’t stop crying. I really hope this stops soon. How long have everyone else’s withdrawal symptoms lasted?

    • Luis February 9, 2016, 9:04 pm

      Ashley, it sounds to me that you are experiencing common symptoms of anxiety which are most likely not related to the Buspar. Buspar is considered to be the safest of all psychiatric meds. What did the results from your ER visit say? What probably happened was that you took 15mg of buspar which may have caused your heart to race a little which made you very nervous. This nervousness has led to your anxiety. How are you feeling now?

  • Val January 13, 2016, 9:44 pm

    I’ve been off buspar for awhile, because I can’t afford even the generic right now, and I’ve been alternating between insomnia and fatigue. When I do sleep, it’s usually not until anywhere from 7 AM to noon. I haven’t had much of an appetite either.

  • Heidi January 16, 2016, 5:05 pm

    To suggest that there are no withdrawals from BuSpar is dangerous and WRONG!

  • Julie January 23, 2016, 7:21 pm

    I had been on Buspirone for a few weeks, I was in a bad wreck at the end of November and right after that my son was diagnosed with terminal cancer, I was a mess. The drug, 30mg daily, has caused hand tremors so bad I could not use the keyboard and my balance was off. My legs felt like lead. I decided to taper off and found the hand tremors stopped, my balance is now normal and I am not yelling at my poor dogs who, I am certain, thought I had lost my mind. I might still have panic attacks at times but I know they won’t kill me and breathing into a paper bag seems to stop them in their tracks. I am glad to be off this horrible medication!

  • Georgianna January 26, 2016, 6:07 pm

    I’ve been taking Buspirone 15mg., four times a day since March 2015. On Januepary 20, 2016 I ran out and was unable to refill them. So today is day six foe me without them and I’m experiencing: insomnia, nausea, fatigue, anxiety and headaches. Two sleepless nights so far, which is crazy because there should be no withdrawal from this medication.

    • Luis February 9, 2016, 9:05 pm

      How are you feeling now?

  • Brian January 31, 2016, 1:51 am

    For 5 days now I have been detoxing ALL my meds. including Duloxetine and Buspirone. The side effects are real, at least for me. Thats how I found this site. God is good and I will trust in him.

  • Natalie February 23, 2016, 1:53 am

    I have only been on it for a month and I can’t take this medication. It has made me extremely mean and hateful. So mean that it scares me. Now I’m going through the withdrawals. I have the worst headaches and I’m dizzy while I’m sitting still. This is a horrible feeling. Best of luck to everyone.

  • Kelly February 28, 2016, 2:26 pm

    Only on 5mg 2X a day since October (almost 6 months) horrible neck ache evey day, trouble breathing and chest pain. No that is not from anxiety it’s the pill… They told me cut each dose in half. But I feel too quick of a taper. Even cutting a morning dose in half leads to diarrhea 12 hours later. I noticed no one has mentioned that effect. I will be trying 10% a month decrease… Effects suck. I see I am not the only one with a sleep issue too. Thanks.

  • Felix March 8, 2016, 1:41 pm

    I was on buspirone for 12 days and every day that went by was worse than the previous. I’ve been off of it for six days and every morning I feel super tired and weak. Sometimes I have fast heart beat but come afternoon I feel better. Anyone experience something similar to this? Should I be concerned? I’d greatly appreciate any responses.

  • Pam March 13, 2016, 4:50 am

    I am currently taking buspar but think I need to get off of it. I am having episodes of zoning out for 30-45 sec. I seem to just freeze up and don’t respond to anyone talking to me. I don’t hear anything. When I do “come to” I don’t even realize anything has happened! Has anyone ever had anything like this happen? I have had an EEG and an MRI done to rule out seizures. They all came back negative for seizures.

  • Kathy March 25, 2016, 12:33 pm

    I have been on buspar for about 2 weeks. At first I thought it was helping my anxiety. Yesterday at work my chest started hurting and it hurt pretty bad for a couple hours. For a couple of days all I feel like doing is crying. I have to make myself do anything. I am not normally this way. I work two jobs. Today I have decided that I am not taking it anymore. I am very nervous about this. My chest is hurting as I am typing. I am supposed to leave for vacation by myself and drive 800 miles. Not sure about this. My heart has been racing off and on for a few days and my blood pressure is elevated. No more buspar.

  • Thom April 1, 2016, 6:42 pm

    This stuff is evil. Been on 60mg a day for a year. Stopped cold turkey. I’m in physical and mental hell. It’s only been 3 days. I pray this ends soon!

    • Ali July 12, 2016, 5:12 pm

      Did the hell of Buspar end?

  • Buddy April 18, 2016, 7:58 pm

    I have had also every withdrawal symptom also – plus sweating!

  • Punked April 24, 2016, 4:04 am

    I’ve been on Buspar for 20 years and throughout this period have briefly discontinued it several times. The suggestion that there is no withdrawal syndrome associated with Buspar is absurd. Whoever wrote this article must be an industry shill. Every doctor who has prescribed Buspar to me has spoken of the need to taper off it lest one experience severe withdrawal symptoms.

    Every other Buspar user I’ve ever known has agreed that it is a very hard to get off it. After taking it for 20 years I’ve had bad reactions to two batches from different suppliers only a month apart. The symptoms are essentially the same as withdrawal but seem to be caused by taking the bad batches. It has rendered my barely functional for several months and totally disrupted my life.

  • Loi May 20, 2016, 4:01 pm

    Buspar withdrawal symptoms are very real. Heart palpitations, tingling sensations in the head arms legs, more anxiety than before, zombie like, suicidal thoughts… And the bad thing was when I talked to the pharmacy about those symptoms, she said yes that happens with Buspar… she should have told me that info when I picked up the prescription. LOL

  • SerentityDowns12 June 1, 2016, 12:45 am

    I had no withdrawal symptoms after being on 5mg once a day for 1 year. Cold turkey because I felt it was causing depression which I never had. So I’m only on my clonazepam once a day by itself again. Glad to be off buspar!!

  • Fbenzo June 21, 2016, 7:07 pm

    Has anyone here tried Buspar by “itself” without withdrawing from other psych meds beforehand? I’m currently taking just a low dose of Lexapro but still have side effects from Klonopin/ADD med/high dose Lexapro withdrawal from many months in which I stopped cold turkey (big mistake). Dr prescribed this to be a less addicting than benzo/SSRIs. Do you get withdrawals from trying it for 2-3 days then quit cold turkey?

  • Teresa Torrance June 26, 2016, 7:29 pm

    I’ve had all the side effects mentioned for a week now. I’ve got two more weeks to taper off. Right now I feel terrible–dizzy; very, very, tired; irritable, and feel like crying. I’ve taken buspar for at least six years so it’s going to be rough getting off of it I guess. I’m stopping it because I feel anxious anyway so why keep taking it?

    I’ve stopped taking Cymbalta and haven’t become a basket case so I think it’s time to stop the buspirone also. I want to see if being off these drugs makes me feel any better than being on them. While on them I’ve felt anxious, depressed, sad, and like crying–the very things they were supposed to help. It’s hard to know what feeling normal is like after taking them for so long. I’m going to find out.

  • tara July 6, 2016, 9:52 am

    I had terrible withdrawals. I was on 45 mgs a day for 2 yrs. and was told to quit cold turkey. Cold sweats, agonizing anxiety, nausea, crying at the drop of a hat. I could go on and on. I just suggest taper.

  • lin43 July 11, 2016, 7:28 pm

    I’ve been on buspirone 5mg for almost 2 months. I am experiencing upset stomach and nausea. I would like to easily come off the pill, but not sure how too. On vacay and this feeling is terrible. Any suggestions any one?

  • Ali July 12, 2016, 3:36 pm

    I have just had the most horrible experience with Buspar. My doctor prescribed this for my GAD, when she gave it to me she said “at anytime you don’t feel it’s working just discontinue use, it may or may not work.” I took it for 2.5 months, and then decided I’d stop as I was noticing no difference. I stopped two weeks ago, I woke up with very sore joints, my neck shoulders and back, I was in near agony (and this is not an exaggeration) then the stomach pains started, of which I thought were caused by taking too much Advil to alleviate the joint pain.

    I ended up in the ER getting an IV for my stomach pain and a prescription for acid blocker. Then the sinus like pain started, and my face and head were numb and tingling, I was scared to death, I honestly thought I was dying. I went to the doctor, got on antibiotics for my “sinus infection” but the pain and numbness in my face and head only got worse. Also I stared to have panic attacks, nothing at all could help me calm down, I was sweating, and crying uncontrollably.

    I also woke up screaming, two nights in a row, I had horrible nightmares. I was honestly ready to go check into the psych hospital. I really thought I was going to die. Somehow, because my doctor said there was no issue in just going cold turkey on the Buspar, I didn’t make the connection that I was suffering from withdrawal of Buspar. I spoke with my therapist and she suggested to me that maybe it was the discontinuation of the Buspar.

    I got to reading and sure enough, there ARE issues. I started back on buspar last night (10 mg, 8 hours apart, 3x per day) I’ve so far taken only two doses, but other then some residual muscle stiffness, all my other symptoms are gone. I am in shock that this happened, and that I stupidly never investigated withdrawal from this. This experience was terrifying and I’d caution everyone from taking Buspar, I am now headed back to my doctor to set up a plan to slowly taper off Buspar.

    It’s not the benign little non-addictive helper it’s been made out to be. I normally am not very sensitive to most drugs and never in my life have I dealt with withdrawal, (I was even on Paxil, and Prozac and never had issues). I’d much rather deal with my GAD on my own with no help from Buspar. In my mind Buspar is a dangerous drug. Please use caution.

  • Key July 20, 2016, 4:55 am

    I’m quite sad, because I only took it for two weeks and seen nothing, so I quit taking them I was prescribed 15mgs taking half twice a day. I’m a bit small so it was good for my weight I guess however, I have had the worst feelings with this drug before I stumbled across these page I thought I had an illness of some sort and doctors could not find it and clearly it its because of this pill.

    My panic attacks are the worse I feel nauseous, dizzy, I’m always tired but can’t sleep and my chest feel like I’ve been punch in the the spot over and over. This drug should be removed it’s only making people worse. It’s been almost a month I have been having this problem. Which I started a month ago for two week and then stopped at first when I stopped nothing but a two weeks later this appears. I can’t deal… Something has to be done.

  • Eric July 31, 2016, 7:38 pm

    I took one 7.5 MG pill (it was half) at 10am this morning with a glass of water. A couple hours later I felt pretty good, maybe a little cloudy, however at around 3 hours I started to get depressed. It got worse and worse until I could not do anything. I am on hour 5.5 now and I feel only slightly better.

  • Bridget August 5, 2016, 6:33 pm

    I took buspar for 3 weeks. It worsened my anxiety. I stopped it and it has caused full body adrenal rushes and shocks. It is making me extremely nauseous. I have numbing and tingling in my face and a tight feeling in my neck. It’s the worse feeling I have ever had. How can they say there is no withdrawal when the comments are full of horror stories?

  • Jenn August 18, 2016, 3:25 am

    I have fatigue, and headaches. Everyday. Back of my head to my neck and side burns. My anxiety as also increased.

  • Dianna September 17, 2016, 6:51 pm

    I have experienced a racing heartbeat from taking this! Only 10 mlg 2x’s a day! After reading all of these comments I’m afraid to just stop taking it but these palpitations are scaring me! Nausea & heartburn I’ve experienced as well! I’m very upset with myself for falling into this chemical relief as I feel worse off now than when I began this journey threw medication misery!! To all of those out there suffering these affects I feel you & there’s gotta be a better, holistic approach to feeling alive again! This BS isn’t it I know that now!

  • Andrew September 18, 2016, 1:37 pm

    To say there are no withdrawal effects from buspirone is an insult. I went from 60mg daily to 40mg in three days and experienced depression for a week. It made work almost unbearable. After that subsided I decreased from 40mg on Sunday to 0mg on Friday and was nearly bed-ridden for five days. I had flushed skin, tingling sensations, racing heart, anxiety, unjustified anger and flu-like symptoms.

    A week later I took 5mg of buspirone, gradually increasing back to 30mg a day just to keep the withdrawal, anxiety and depression at bay. I’d like to try add SAM-e while I taper off buspirone and see if that helps. Has anyone tried it? Anyone know of conflicts between buspirone and SAM-e?

  • Amy October 11, 2016, 12:49 am

    I have to say I have been taking 5 mg three times a day for the last six months and I recently went from three pills to two over the last month. Tonight I started on one pill a day. The withdrawal symptoms are horrible for me. I’ve had weird thoughts in my head for awhile now, but now that I’m coming off of it, I’m really obsessing over the thoughts and becoming depressed occasionally about it all.

    Feelings of shame and guilt. Occasional insomnia as well. Hoping once I’m done, it all goes away. I hate this!

  • Tracy October 25, 2016, 9:31 pm

    Coming off buspar cold turkey is as rough as taking it. I experienced dizziness lightheadedness so stopped taking it with approval from my doctor. It has been 12 days now and I still am dizzy and feel like I am walking funny from this. It’s sucks, that’s why I stopped taking it 3 months and the dizziness would not stop. Some days were better than others, but having dizziness and brain fog all the time is no way to live. With the panic attacks being here and there they are almost better to deal with than the effects of this medicine for me.

  • John duff November 24, 2016, 8:14 pm

    The withdrawal effects are hellish. My Dr advised me to quit cold turkey and assured me that there would be no withdrawal as buspirone didn’t work like SSRI meds. Was she wrong!!!!!! Anxiety goes through the roof way more than I had before being prescribed this med.

    My head feels like it’s being clamped at the temples. I also suffer from derealization which I had basically under control. If you suffer derealization I would recommend you stay away from Buspirone as it makes it a lot worse. Especially when withdrawing. Anyone similar….?

  • Shyla December 3, 2016, 11:44 pm

    I know this post is old, but did anyone feel like the withdrawal symptoms got worse at the times you would’ve taken the Buspar? I always took mine at 8am and 3-4pm, and that’s when I feel the most lightheaded and foggy!

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