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  1. Hi everyone - I've been reading a lot of the great advice and support here for a while and thought I'd finally tell my own story in the hope there might be some help available. I was diagnosed with CFS / Fibromyalgia in 2017 and by December 2018 had been recommended antidepressants several times as a way of combatting the symptoms (acute leg pain and anxiety mainly). You probably won't be too surprised to learn that what happened next made things ten times worse. I was prescribed Mirtazapine right at the end of December 2018 but after four weeks thought better of it. I informed my GP who advised me to simply cut my dose in half for two weeks and stop. I felt fine for a few days and met a friend for a glass of wine (again, this was approved by my GP). On the way back I suddenly felt awful, vomited when I got home and had crazy dreams that night. Within 24 hours I couldn't get out of bed, felt like my head had been hit with a baseball bat and had suicidal thoughts for the first time in my life. Feeling totally alien, I hoped the feeling might fade but when it didn't I sought advice from the GP again and was eventually persuaded to take a second drug to "fix" things. This was Sertraline and I was taken up from 0-100mg over three months and back down again the reverse way for the next three months when it had become clear it wasn't helping. Knowing what I do now I cant believe the speed at which this all happened and like many others, before I realised what was happening it was too late. It's now 19 months since I have taken anything yet I feel worse and worse. The main symptoms are anhedonia, depression, depersonalisation, suicidal ideation and PSSD. I also have numb head, teeth and arms. My instinct has always been not to take anything again, especially having read that 3 months is the optimum time for reinstatement, but I guess things are pretty bad. If I were to reinstate could there be any benefit at this stage? If so I'm not even sure which of the drugs would be best to re-instate? I felt stunned coming off the first one and then slowly even worse (with PSSD developing) coming off the second. If I decide to simply wait it out and continue to abstain when might I see a turnaround I wonder? Any thoughts much appreciated thanks
  2. Hello, I quit drinking alcohol 11 years ago and a doctor at that time thought the anti depressant Zoloft would be beneficial for my "anxiety" from quitting. This is how I started using these drugs. It has taken me forever to finally quit. I'm a 43 year old male. I've quit Lexapro 2.5 mg 24 days ago and have had the worst three day stretch to date. I feel extremely tired and fatigued. I feel symptoms of brain fog, memory failures, cognitive decline, crying spells, sadness, slight headache, head pressure, eyes tired, some body ache, and slight brain zaps. I'm trying to stay positive and day to day but this is brutal. I feel like a zombie and would just want to sleep. I also have mild sleep apnea in which I have started using a cpap machine a week ago but have found no relief. I think I'm going to stop using the Cpap machine for a month to rule out the machine being the cause for recent three day stretch. I want to believe that the withdrawal symptoms are what is causing me to feel this way but I'm unsure now. I have always had some of the described symptoms on a day to day basis before. These symptoms went as far back as the last two to three years. They weren't nearly as severe. I haven't heard of anyone having the described symptoms as a result of actively taking the antidepressant drug. If this is something that can be confirmed I would feel much more at ease as I would have to wait out the withdrawal process. I guess I am looking for words of encouragement and hopefully some validation that these symptoms are from the withdrawal and this is a normal process. Last night I started myofacial exercises as an alternative to the cpap. I know it will be sometime before I see any benefit from them. I also ran 2 miles yesterday. This morning I practiced some Pranayama and will continue this daily. I'd appreciate any feedback and thank you for reading my story. Matthew
  3. End of this August I start having severe Chest Tightness which triggered panic attacks thinking I was not breathing. My primary physician put me on 25mg Zoloft. Sure the chest tightness was relieved in two weeks but the real nightmare started .... depersonalizations, deattachment from reality, suicidal thoughts, extreme panic attacks , fear living my house, desperation, nausea in my soul!, eye issues like on of my eyes was focusing at a different level than the other, non stop fear for no reason, going literally crazy.... and the symptoms continue during tapering making my doctor including my husband who is a physician to say it is my illness progressing and not the medicine. At the moment I am bedridden can’t function, I am loosing my mind and only had a few hrs of a window feeling normal during the tapering. The doctors want to put me in antipsychotics , at the moment I am not sure if they are right that I am loosing it or if it is withdrawal... How could 3.5 weeks of sentraline destroy me? I am desperate I can’t take these feelings anymore . Any help advice?
  4. Hi everyone, so glad I found this website. Have been struggling with terrible side effects since starting SSRI medications in August 2020 due to health anxiety following a traumatic miscarriage in June 2020. Been utterly terrified by my symptoms and every time I approached my GP they denied it was side effects from the SSRIs. A brief history: Aug 2020 - started 15mg Mirtazapine, increased to 30mg 2 weeks later. Signed off work shortly after this. Restless Leg Syndrome became unbearable and had to abruptly stop taking it after 6 weeks. RLS eased almost immediately. September 2020- GP switched me to Paroxetine which I took for 3 weeks before RLS worsened again and muscle twitching started in left leg & foot. Told to stop abruptly. Tried 2 weeks of no medication but muscle twitching persisted which fuelled my anxiety more. October 2020- GP told me to start 50mg Sertraline. My muscle twitching became more intense and general feeling of fatigue in muscles, particularly left thigh/knee. Developed complete restlessness, couldn’t stop bouncing my legs and felt like my entire body was crawling. GP told me to continue with medication for another few weeks. After 7 weeks, anxiety higher than ever and twitching/restlessness worsening, GP told me to stop Sertraline - either cold turkey or to take it every other day for a week. I did the latter. Took my last Sertraline 50mg dose on 18th November. December 2020 - paid for a private neurological consultation as I was so worried about the muscle twitching. Examination was normal apart from twitching. Consultant said he thought I was suffering from RLS & PLMD exacerbated by SSRI use. January 2020 - side effects still going strong. Muscle twitching, restlessness, muscle/joint stiffness, tinnitus, tight sensation at sides of neck/throat which make speaking and swallowing harder than normal, panic attacks, insomnia. I have also started feeling what I am assuming is depression as a result of the side effects and constant anxiety. I am currently taking magnesium citrate at night to help with RLS. Neurologist prescribed cocodamol to take on nights my RLS is really bad, so taking these as and when required. Also taking iron and folic acid as recent blood results showed both of these were pretty low. After reading some of the threads on this forum, I started taking high strength fish oil tablets. I am so desperate to feel ‘normal’ again. I have a beautiful daughter who is 2.5 and the light of my life and I am finding it so incredibly hard to navigate my way through this every day without being overcome with fear and panic. Any advice would be greatly welcomed. Thank you.
  5. hi, i'm thankful to have found this site but i really wish i would've found it at the start of my medication journey. i'll give some background on everything before i describe my situation now. so i started zoloft/sertraline in october 2019 when i was 19 years old, i was put on 25mg to start because i was essentially having one long panic attack that lasted several weeks and as a result i became agoraphobic because of how terrified i was of what was happening to me. i had a house visit from my doctor who prescribed me zoloft (i'd actually been prescribed diazepam too a couple days prior, i refused to take it and thank god i did because i dread to think how that could've turned out). it's funny looking back, my doctor told me word for word "this is the ssri that causes the least side effects, you will probably feel nauseous for 2 weeks and thats it". boy, she was so wrong. i started 25mg (took me a while because i was terrified of medication) and the next month involved awful nausea, debilitating dizziness and worse anxiety. i also had these strange instances of complete dread, i had moments where i couldn't even look out of my window because of the intense fear i was feeling. my memory of this time is foggy but i believe by december i was already on 50mg. i then spoke to my doctor again in january and expressed my worry that i was still nauseous and i was still having awful panic attacks, her response was to stick it out and to also bump up to 100mg. i really dont remember much from when i was on 100mg, i just know i didint feel real and i came back down to 100mg a month later. from feburary 2020 to september 2020 i managed to stay on 50mg of zoloft, however throughout this time i was still experiencing nausea, occasional bouts of dizziness and really intense panic attacks. i was also insanely sensitive to everything, sometimes even a notification on my phone would send me into a panic attack spiral that would take 2 hours to come down from. needless to say, none of this helped my agoraphobia and arguably made it worse. i really dont know why i stayed on zoloft despite all this, my doctor just kept telling me to stay with it so i believed that it would get better. in september 2020 i rang my doctor again because i couldnt take the panic attacks anymore, her idea was to raise me to 75mg. the next 8 weeks on this dose was awful, i experienced awful dissociation everyday, i would look at my own hands and be terrified because i didn't believe they were mine. so novemeber 2020 i came back down to 50mg again and i stayed on this dose again until februrary 2021. in february, my panic attacks got worse out of nowhere, i was once again have long attack and sometimes multiple a day and i couldn't take it anymore. i rang my doctor and she swaped me to citalopram and i was to do a cross taper. in retrospect, i really think this was done wrong? my cross tapering schedule was this: - day 1: 35mg zoloft - day 2: 35mg zoloft - day 3: 25mg zoloft - day 4: 25mg zoloft - day 5: 25mg zoloft and 5mg citalopram - day 6: 25mg zoloft and 10mg citalopram - day 7: 15mg zoloft and 10mg citalopram - day 8: 10mg citalopram this seems so fast and to make it worse, even after this i only stayed at 10mg citalopram for 5 days before i went to 20mg citalopram. this was all under my doctors orders. needless to say i didnt stay on citalopram long, it made me feel so ill that i was essentially stuck in bed the whole time and i also had a couple days where for the first time in my life, i experienced suicidal thoughts so i knew at that moment i desperately had to get off. i got back on 25mg of zoloft mid may, this time just a direct switch. i actually spoke with a different doctor to check this was okay and his recommendation was just to cold turkey the citalopram and not get back on anything to which i said a strong no. so from mid may 2021 to july 2021 i stayed at 25mg zoloft and i knew i just wanted off all medication at this point because i was fed up of messing with my system. the whole time i was on this 25mg, i guess i was going through withdrawal? i had constant brain zaps, awful nausea, fatigue and dizziness plus a lack of appetite and still really awful anxiety/panic attacks. at the time, i just thought i was not adjusting well to being back on sertraline so i just desperately wanted to get off zoloft. my doctor told me to alternate 25mg and 12.5mg for a week, take 12.5mg for a week, alternate 12.5mg and nothing for a week, then just come off. this terrified me intensely but i still tried the alternate 25mg and 12.5mg for a week but this really messed me up, i felt so ill doing this so i decided to just stick with 12.5mg. so this is where i am now, i have not made any changes since. i've been at 12.5mg for 2 months trying to stabilise and i dont even know how to move forward after this, this whole experience has just exhausted me and terrified me to do any more adjustments to doses. my withdrawal has also been really bad so far, i've experienced: dizziness, vertigo, muscle weakness/intense fatigue, tremors, going hot/cold, sweating a lot, nausea, loss of appetite, unsteady when i stand and walk, out of body feelings, brain zaps, spikes in my anxiety or sometimes just whole days of anxiety, headaches... im probably forgetting some but that's all i can remember right now. i've spent the past two months just curled up on the sofa getting through the waves and trying to distract, waiting for windows which i do sometimes get but lately its mostly all waves. my withdrawal had a moment too at about 4 weeks where i thought it was better, my appetite came back for about a week, and then i crashed again and i've been in that wave since. also another note is that my doctor refused to give me liquid sertraline or 25mg tablets, so currently i'm cutting a 50mg tablet into quarters, so am i even getting a stable 12.5mg dose? probably not. anyway apologies for the long introduction post but i feel my whole messed up history of dose changes is needed because i'm not sure my body ever really adjusted to anything ever. but it would be lovely to get any advice on how to move forward, i'm still going to hold at 12.5mg because my dizziness and brain zaps are not as bad as they were a month ago so i'm scared that reinstating would bring that back, but i'm happy to stay at 12.5mg though i'm not sure when to tell when i should taper again? thanks for any help!
  6. Hi all, my story is so very long but the short story is i was on zoloft 50 mg for 15 years (only drug i was ever on). I tried multiple times to get off but would get severe discontinuation syndrome each time so i thought i just had to stay on it for life. I will go into those symptoms if you ask. Anyways about 4 years ago i developed benign fasiculations and resting tremor. It took seeing multiple docs and finally a second neurologist and he said this is common with zoloft. So i had to get off it but i was scared to death because of the severe discontinuation that i would compare to heroin withdrawal. So i was so scared i never went back to the doctor and thought maybe i can live with BFS and the tremor. But then my neurological symptoms got worse and led to parkinsons which was drug induced and dyskinesia. The facial grimacing was way more annoying than the fasiculations and it affected my blood pressure too, thats how parkinsons works, it affects the autonomic system so i had bad orthostatic hypotension and that was dibilitating but somehow i pushed through. I had many more issues, if you ask i can write about them. Anyways this time i was ready to get off zoloft so i go to the doctor and he says "wow you've been on it for 15 years" and i thought "WOW you idiot. Your office is the one who has been prescribing this to me all these years". They never once told me to make an appt if i hadnt been there in a few years, they just kept refilling it. They should require patients to have biyearly appts and check them for neurological signs and if the patient doesnt make an appt than they should not get a refill. I am very mad at my poor healthcare and management (total lack thereof) but again my story is so long i can write it if you ask. Anyways my doc said to wean off over like 2 months. That was too fast so i did it on my on and weaned off 50 mg over a 6 month period and for the first time i did not get discontinuation syndrome! I was scared to death but i did it and was shocked i did not get discontinuation. Weaning that slow is the answer. I only had some mild things like some mood swings, swollen lymph nodes which always happens when i wean off for some reason, headaches, i can go into detail if you ask. My neurological disorders are also going away. I am 20 days off zoloft and feel great and i would say my neurological issues are like 80% better and i hope to recover completely with time (i might have permanent damage). Anyways i am posting because i am very angry at the healthcare community for their lack of knowledge on how zoloft, though rare, does cause dyskinesia, BFS, and parkinsonism. Docs do not seem to know to look for these signs and put a stop to it before irreversible damage occurs which is a disability. They are too freely handing out these meds to your average person with basic stress that can actually manage without meds like seeking CBT, meditation, yoga, qigong, etc. i am one of those type of people. Patients are never checked up on on these meds. I know personally from working in gastroenterology for years that almost everyone is on anxiety or antidepressants and that to me is a crime because every single one of them are having unexplained problems with a lot of expensive negative testing and they are frustrated but no one is relaying it is the medication causing it and how imperitive it is to get off it. I am against all these meds (unless the patient has true mental disorder like bipolar or is in a stage of suicidal ideation etc). I am just very angry. For me, to address that, i want and need to raise awareness but i feel no one would believe my story because it is so rare but i think more common than we know because it is being unreported and doctors dont know enough to spot tardive dyskinesia etc so it takes years. Anyone else with a story like mine?
  7. bubbles

    bubbles

    Hi everyone I'm in my pre-taper phase of going off 20mg of Lexapro, which I've been on for 5 years. I've got an appointment to get Lexapro in liquid form to aid the taper in a couple of weeks. I've tried this before, and not succeeded, but am determined to get off them this time. At the moment I'm spending a few weeks setting myself up to have a good run at this. I'm: * filling up my freezer with home made meals for bad days.. * getting really organized at home. * taking a good multi, folate, magnesium and fish oil. * lining up some distractions, like audio books and a (hobby) evening course. * getting enough sleep. * cutting out caffeine. * doing clinical pilates as a way to transition into some more exercise. * getting some sunshine and fresh air every day. * introducing mindfulness meditations as a daily thing. * might start that tapping EFT thing I've seen at Dr Mercola's website - just can't hurt! At this stage I expect to start my taper at the end of the month. Or so... Bubbles
  8. Hi, after lurking for a bit and doing a bit of reading on antidepressant WD, I've finally decided to create an account here to plan & document my tapering. Apologies, this will be a long introduction. I'm a 23 yo woman who has been on antidepressants for 4 years, after being diagnosed with depression and anxiety (although I suspect I've suffered from both since my early teens). I was in uni when it happened, and was having a bit of a breakdown. I was very suicidal, isolated myself from most people I knew, walked out of exams, spent days crying on the floor lol the whole nine yards. I was blessed with a super understanding GP who advised me to take a year off and seek therapy. He also asked whether I wanted to try medication. I was desperate to stop feeling that way, so I started taking 50mg Sertraline / Zoloft (which I still think was the right thing for me to do at that point). I got a therapist and worked through some stuff. No unmanageable side effects from the meds, and they kept me from thinking about wanting to commit suicide all the time so I could focus on therapy. Unfortunately I also started to abuse weed around this time, it was an easy way to feel instantly less miserable and to get to sleep, and I was drinking a lot too, although depending on your uni experience you might say I was drinking the standard amount for a student. But I was 'functioning'. I was hanging out with friends, going out, and just enjoying having time off my studies while being in a uni town. Honestly a lot of that time is a complete blur for me from the depression/weed/alcohol, so I'm not too sure about the exact timeline. But I didn't stay on sertraline for long because at some point I got some weird blistery skin rashes on my legs and a (different) doctor told me it might be from the sertraline, so I got switched to paroxetine instead. I don't really remember the withdrawals from switching, because around the same time my grandma passed away and I got dumped, so I was an emotional trainwreck and didn't really attribute any part of my mental state to WD. I don't think I tapered at all when switching, though. All was mostly fine for a while after that. I managed to finish my studies, moved in with my partner, and things were looking up. My GP would ask every now and then if I wanted to keep taking the paroxetine as he could see I was much better, but I kept putting it off, scared of my depression coming back. I knew I couldn't stay on it forever and that the longer I was on it, the more difficult it would be to stop. Plus I noticed my libido decreasing more and more. So in April 2021 I asked my GP if I could switch back to sertraline, since I couldn't remember having any problems with libido on it, and I knew the withdrawals weren't meant to be as bad. (Most of the GPs I had after the skin rash thing happened didn't seem to think it was due to the sertraline, but just kept me on paroxetine since I had already been switched). I told my GP I was concerned about withdrawals, having read a few anecdotes on reddit, and the general consensus there seemed to be that paroxetine was one of the worst SSRIs for withdrawals. He reassured me that only happened if you quit cold turkey, and told me to space out my dose to every 2 days, then every 3 days, and then start taking sertraline (!!!!). That went about as well as you can imagine. I felt miserable all the time, had really vivid nightmares, woke up soaked in sweat almost every morning, got brain zaps, dizzy spells, etc. I was really lucky that those WD effects lasted only a few weeks. After a little while of being on sertraline, I felt a lot less horrific (although the bar was low at that point), but one thing that remained was intense intrusive thoughts about self harm and suicide. I told this to my GP and he upped my dose to 100mg. After a few weeks, I started feeling a lot better. My libido was still really low though, and I started to wonder whether the antidepressants I had been taking had also contributed to other things, like my weight gain, increasing digestive issues. Then, after having a blood test done for a completely unrelated reason, while visiting my parents (in another country), I found out that I had high cholesterol levels (LDL/'bad' cholesterol), which is almost impossible to attribute to my diet and lifestyle alone. The doctors there said that genetics were definitely at play, but that it was very likely that the antidepressants had something to do with it as well. Which finally brings me to today. Looking back, I now think that the intrusive thoughts I had earlier this year were leftover WD effects from paroxetine, and not a result of being on too low a dose of sertraline. I don't know how much of the cholesterol, weight gain and digestive problems can be attributed to long-term antidepressant use, but I won't find out unless I try to come off SSRIs. I just got back to the UK and told my GP I wanted to start lowering my dose very gradually, citing my previous WD experience as a reason for precaution, and all I managed to do was to get a recommendation of 75mg to start instead of the 50mg she initially recommended. She also wants me to wait until the new year to start tapering and said I should stay on a consistent dose of sertraline for at least 6 months before reducing the dose, and told me that liquid sertraline was reserved for those who couldn't swallow pills. Needless to say I'm not going straight down to 75mg, and I'm not going to wait to start the taper. I'm waiting for my pill grinder and capsules to arrive, and I'm focusing on having a really good diet and sleeping pattern in the meantime. Wish me luck...
  9. I'm wondering if anyone has any experience/knowledge regarding switching from sertraline to fluoxetine. I'm currently on 25mg of sertraline daily. I've been taking this drug for 11 years on and off and have been trying to taper, but find it very difficult. My doctor has switched me to prozac WITHOUT a crosstaper. (Because fluoxetone has a huge half-life it is easier to taper, which is why he is switching me.)He says to take 20mg of fluoxetine every 2 days and cease taking the sertraline immediately. Information on the web regarding crosstaper from sertraline to fluoxetine states to cease sertraline before starting fluoxetine. This is in contrast to other cross tapers betwenn SSRI's (e.g sertraline to paroxetine etc) which recommend crosstaper. It's all confusing. To make matters worse I start a new job a week on monday. I've ceased the sertraline yesterday and am starting the prozac 20mg every 2 days. Apparently this dose of fluoxetine is roughly equivelant to 25mg sertraline. My question is, will I be ok for my job starting in 10 days? I suffer pretty bad from nerves, so I don't want to walk into the job on the first day on the verge of apanic attack. Also, fluoxetine has a very long half-life and takes a while to build into your system, so I'm worried if this will be enough to combat the sertraline withdrawal.
  10. Well, who knew you weren’t supposed to just stop taking this stuff when you felt like it? Back in January 2020, I had gone to the doctor 3 times over a one month period swearing I had kidney problems based on some symptoms I had. After the third appointment and all tests coming back normal, the doctor diagnosed me with anxiety and prescribed 25 mg Sertraline. I started taking it immediately and within a few days I had developed limb pain. I didn’t relate it to the medication and actually thought it was a symptom of anxiety. Another week or so went by and limb pain spread to joint paint and then to this feeling of being bruised or punched in my thighs, stomach, hips and chest, even though bruises never surfaced at that point. I also had an off and on lump in my throat and my voice would randomly go hoarse. By end of March, I had rigid muscles, had gained 30 lbs and clusters of red dots and small bruises were forming all over my body. I thought I was developing a serious blood disorder and since I had seen a hematologist in the past for iron deficiency anemia, I was able to get an appointment without going through my gp. A few weeks before the appointment, around mid-April (so 3 months on Sertraline), I read online that bruising was a rare but possible side effect of the medication. I quit immediately to see what would happen, and within about three weeks the bruises, red dots and some of the pain disappeared. Everything was normal at the hematologists. However, even though the bruises went away, I had started getting these other issues like “restless arm syndrome” (only way to describe it), dizziness, numbness in feet and hands, muscle twitching, panic attacks and other things I can’t remember. After my appointment, since my blood tests were fine, I reinstated the 25 mg Sertraline in early May. I had no clue these were withdrawal and assumed I had developed either a severe neurological disease or Somatic Symptom Disorder. I still can’t believe I went back on the meds, but as soon as I did all hell broke loose. The withdrawal symptoms went away but I developed horrible muscle cramping to the point I couldn’t hold a phone, pain in response to any kind of touch including my pants rubbing against my legs or someone touching my hand softly. I had pain in my ears, eyes and throat. The bruises and red dots came back immediately and with a vengeance. At this point I knew it was the Sertraline. And I was only on 25 mg!! I managed to stay on for around three more weeks then quit cold turkey again. Right away I got a plethora of symptoms: -restless feeling all over -Muscle twitching all over body -muscle weakness -this weird warm feeling that started in the back of my head and spread down my spine (I no longer have this) -loss of coordination -pulling in my thumb, forefinger and cheek on my left side like they were trying to move themselves (This doesn’t happen often anymore) -brain zaps - not really sure if that’s what it is since it feels less like a zap and more like someone holding an electric razor up to my head in different spots. -Numbness/tingling in feet, lower legs, hands (I no longer have this) -Nausea -panic attacks -short of breath -forgetfulness -dizziness -loose feeling in joints like they won’t hold my limbs together -joint pain -cracking joints -muscle pain -buzzing in legs and feet -palpitations -feeling like I would fall down (I no longer have this) -this feeling in my sinuses like they would tighten and then clear up (this is rare these days) -general soreness -lump in throat -insomnia - often only getting 2 or 3 hours of sleep at night -acute fatigue (this feeling of intense fatigue that feels like I spent hours working out in the sun that will last maybe 20 minutes to an hour) -heartburn There were so many more I can’t think of. I’ve been off the medication around 4.5 months now, but not much of this has improved. A few of the scariest symptoms seem to have gone away, probably around the three month mark, and with the remaining symptoms, I have gotten a few windows recently. The body pains used to be constant, but now I get a few days off per month. This encourages me. At the same time, I’ve developed new symptoms recently like intense stomach discomfort, palpitations and the lump in my throat, although I had this when I first started the meds too. Many symptoms have gotten less severe/intense and that helps a lot. The craziest thing about all of this is that my highest dose was 25 mg! Not to mention I was only on it 4 months total. I’m really hoping I’ll be back soon to post a success story. I remember reading a post from a success story poster that basically said whenever a symptom would go away temporarily, even if it came back and hung around for a while, they knew it would be gone eventually because it had shown its weakness. I wish I could remember who it was because it’s completely true and that has really helped me get through the last few months. I'm not sure how to post my timeline in the signature, but it’s pretty short so I’ll leave it here. 25 mg Sertraline from January to mid April. Cold turkey mid April to early May. Re-instated 25 mg Sertraline from early May for next three weeks then cold turkey again. Have been off for 4.5 months and take no meds or supplements at this point.
  11. English is not my first language! I am panicking from 2009 to 2018, taking clonazepam 5 mg Lexapro. I got used to the cold turkey lexapro, I tried the cbd oil. I got really bad. I can never go back to Lexapro again, I have had watery diarrhea ten times a day for months. I tried Zoloft, 25mg for 3 weeks, 50mg for 1 week. I’ve never felt so much from any medication before, I can’t get out of the apartment, I can’t get up, my whole body hurts, I’m anxious, I’m really sick. I stopped taking Zoloft cold turkey 2 days ago, today I started taking 2.5 mg of lexaprot to avoid more trouble. But I feel like I'm starting to feel bad. What to do?
  12. Hello, I’m new and needing assistance. I was on paxil for many years and tapered slowly. I was unable to stay off the meds. I was put on paxil, then 20 mg cymbalta, then 12.5 mg sertraline. All had to be stopped due to side effects. I stopped taking sertraline after a fast taper in April or May this year. It seems like I had every withdrawal symptom listed. August was awful. I had major anxiety, panic attacks, blood pressure spikes and insomnia. I feel unstable. I am having trouble doing things like going to the store due to anxiety. My doctor has prescribed me liquid sertraline and I took 1mg today. It triggered tachycardia. I just don’t know what to do.
  13. Hello all, long time reader first time poster. Firstly I just wanted to say how awesome it is to have such a place to go and receive help for what can only be described as a nightmare that thousands of people seem to go through. So here is my story which I will end with a few questions I have. As you can see from my signature, I was placed on 50mg of Sertraline (Zoloft) in September 2009. This is when my life was turned upside down. I was originally placed on this drug because I visited my local doctor comlaining about some anxiety that I was getting after I drank alcohol. I must say that for a period of about 8 years I was a heavy binge drinker. I was a typical 18 year old who went out every weekend and got blind drunk with his mates. This was obviously starting to take its toll on me once I hit 25 years of age and that is why I visited my doctor. Well I was in there for a total of about 10 minutes before he prescribed me 50mg of Zoloft telling me this would help with taking the edge off of my anxiety. I did what he suggested and this was the worst mistake of my life. I returned to the doctor within 10 days of starting 50mg complaining of the worst symptoms (severe agitation, anxiety and now depression). Unfortunatley I could not see the original doctor so I saw another doctor there at the time. He said I must need a higher dose and that 100mg was the normal dose he puts his patients on. He also prescribed valium to me (which I took a couple of times). The next 3 months of my life was like a horror film. I became suicidal with severe symptoms that I had never experienced before going on the drug. I seem to settle after about 3 months, but it must be said I never was without symptoms, but they were less severe. Around 12 months after starting the drug, I began to get more severe symtoms. I returned to the doctor and he once again up'd my dosage to 150mg. The next 3 months were a nightmare again, severe agitation etc. For the next 6 years I floated between 100mg and 150mg. I spent thousands of dollars on therapy to treat an apparent panic disorder; although I didn't mind the therapist, the information we went through just didn't seem to apply to me i.e. I wasn't thinking any of the ways he was suggesting was causing my symptoms. It wasn't until I started looking into more natural ways and researching antidepressants that I realised that maybe the drug could be the problem! Lightbulb moment! I have read a lot of books from authors like Peter Breggin, Joseph Glenmullen, etc. which I am sure most of you have read. I also have been doing a lot of work with a nutritionist. I had a 23andme test done and found out a couple of interesting points. I have a COMT gene mutation which means I break down adrenaline and dopamine slower and I also have a mutation in another gene which I can't remember the name of which means I break down serotonin slower. What this actually suggests to me and my nutritionist agrees is that I may have been quite toxic with levels of serotonin which was causing serotonin syndrome. Alot of my symptoms were a mirror image of serotonin syndrome (agitation etc.). So as you can see from my signature, I began tapering in February 2016. My problem now is that I seem to have hit a huge brick wall. I may have tapered a little fast and was hit with severe withdrawal symptoms which have not gone away. I have been holding at my current dose of 60mg for almost 4 months now. This past 4 months has been the worst 4 months of my life. It started with severe symptoms like pounding headaches, vomitting, insomnia, not being able to sit still (severe agitation) as well as some depression. It has progressed from there to now being just severe depression. I am not depressed about anything in particular other than the way I feel. It is like I am completely numb with emotions aside from being really upset. I have no appetite and really struggle to get through each day. I am very fatigued and lack motivation to do the most basic of things. I am pushing through it as best I can still working fulltime and excercising a couple of times a week plus playing golf on the weekend. I must say that I have a great life. I love my job, I have a beautiful wife and young son (8 months) and honestly have everything to live for. It is just these horrendous symptoms are ruining it all. So finally to my questions and looking for advice from some veterans on here. What should I do next? Should I continue to hold at 60mg until things get better, or should I continue at a 10% taper and see if things get worse or perhaps better? From previous drops, I seem to have a period of improvement on symptoms for about 2-4 weeks, and then it begins to decline until I drop again. I am not sure whether that means I should keep reducing or slow down. Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks all.
  14. Twinmom's Introduction topic: twinmom-long-term-effects-of-ssri-discontinuation _________________________________________________ Hi, Something reminded today me of my time on this forum back around 2015, and I came to report that I've been doing very well for the past several years, after about 18 months on Zoloft, and a probably reckless (Dr prescribed) tapering approach back then. I think it took about 3 years with some ups and downs to feel fully recovered (2019 stands out). My mood changes and uncharacteristic short-lived depression symptoms can be particular intense during certain times of the month, but the older I get the better I know my body, and these mood swings are not related to my medication history with an SSRI, but from increasing PMS and menstrual symptoms in my mid-40s (apparently this is a thing - extra tough periods in your 40s). 2017 and 2018 (both antidepressant-free) were also very good, but I think there was still some still some unresolved stuff. I remember trying counseling a few times for anger/irritability/anxiety/depression related management, and it was too difficult still for me to process in that way (I have found verbal therapy sessions are too draining for me). But now, probably over 6 years later, it all feels like very much in the past, and as noted, I know my body and mind better than I did before. I know that I'm very sensitive to any medication. I know that conventional doctors try to help me with various mild medical issues with medications (e.g., hormone-based medications), and that I need to strongly advocate this fact that I have intense side effects to most medications tried. And that this sensitivity probably only gets more as I get older. My lesson learned over time is that I'm very sensitive to most medications, and that I need to advocate this fact when talking with my medical professionals. Healing thoughts to everyone out there struggling.
  15. Hi Everyone, I started taking meds for depression induced by panic attacks from trauma in 2013. Skipping to 2020 my therapy at the time was Venlafaxine 300mg, Quetiapine 25mg, Mirtazapine 30mg, Amitriptyline 25mg and Perphenazine 2mg. I felt like I was in a good place in the sense that I wouldn't call myself a depressed person anymore and my anxiety was manageable most of the times, indeed my life was far from being perfect but also wasn't that bad from my perspective at that point, but also I started to slowly realize that a lot of symptoms that I tough were caused by some other factors, were actually the product of the side effects of the medications I was taking. I'm talking about tachycardia, weight gain, tinnitus, light sensitivity, tiredness, lethargy, reduced libido, and most important of all, reduced cognitive abilities, loss of memory, lack of focus and attention, extreme difficulty in learning new things. For most years that I was on my medications I was really unaware and oblivious to the facts that these drugs could produce such harmful side effects, and it never occurred to me either that my periodic relapses through the past years could've just been symptoms of withdrawal rather than the actual authentic depression and anxiety coming back. At the end of 2020 I wanted to start coming off the meds and I lowered that dose of Venlafaxine from 300 a day to 150. After some time that I called my psychiatrist to told him I wanted to continue and taper the meds we had kind of a rupture, since he told me on the phone that I could taper the meds by myself since they didn't present a high enough risk to give me real trouble, based on his opinion. Of course I thought that was an absurd and unprofessional way of dealing with a patient. I must say that he was a private psychiatrist, and would take 150€ every appointment, so because of this I would go to see him just every 3-5 months since I couldn't afford to go see him every month, other wise I woud contact him on the phone. I guess he was irritated since he didn't agree with me getting off the meds and and didn't want to deal with me since I didn't represent that much of a money income for him, but I can't say for sure. So in the end even tho I knew I should've taper my meds with the guidance of a psychiatrist I still did it by myself, I was supposed to go see a public psychiatrist but since Covid and Lockdowns there were no availability in any hospital at the time in my city, that pissed me off and I said screw it. In the first part of the 2021 i fast tapered Quetiapine first, going from 25mg to half pill for couple of weeks at max than stopping and did the same with Mirtazapine from 30 mg to the same process, although I probably took the 15mg dose longer. You know at the time I still wasn't that much conscious of what really I was doing and how the withdrawal was really affecting me. I know I was really irritable, but I was associating that to fact that I stopped smoking in April of 2020, since then I started to have a short fuse, so I didn't really let the withdrawals get to my head. Like I said, I was in a better place in that time, willing to do changes. Than during the summer of 2021 I tapered Venlafaxine also at a fast pace, from 150 to 75 to 37.5 all this in less than a month I think, also it wasn't linear, there were days where I took a dose again because this time I was really struggling with severe mood swings and brain zaps. The 24 of July is when I totally stopped taking Venlafaxine, I was just taking a single med that was a 2 in one having 25 mg amitriptyline + 2 mg of Perphenazine, I was taking this med from like 2016. Stopping Venlafaxine really opened up a whole lot of emotions, I would cry so much and so easily, watching videos, movies, listening to music, I also was able to have really high highs and just felt so human, but I also became really obsessive, started having a lot of intrusive thoughts. At the end of August it's when I noticed that I was taking a hit, I started to feel depressed in some days, a depressed state that I didn't feel for a long time before. My mental stability got worse, I still was able to enjoy life, but I begin to have this underlying state of anxiety and depression, or at least this intense physical feeling that was telling me that something wasn't right, and sometimes it felt really really awful and I couldn't distract myself. At the beginning of October I decided to get help and did get an appt with a psychiatrist and also a psychologist in a mental health center. The 6th of October i stared a new Therapy: 5 mg of Vortioxetine to get up by 5 mg every five six days until I will reach 15mg, and 15 mg of Mirtazapine. That's when I started to slowly to develop anhedonia. Mid October psychiatrist took me off Mirtazapine cause I could stand it no more. I made an appointment with my psychiatrist the 5 November because the Vortioxetine just numbed me down and also my anxiety was increased, I guess it's because I also stared a new work in October, and it's a freaking call center. My interests and libido were really hit by Vortioxetine, I couldn't enjoy nothing like I used to, no the music, not drawing, not walking in the sun, nothing, would just lay down in bed on my phone all day after returning from my work, that was my state by the end of October. The 5 November my therapy was changed to 50 mg sertralin And 1mg of Trifluoperazine and man my anhedonia got worse. After 10 days I couldn't take it and took another appointment with my psychiatrist. Her opinion was that the anhedonia was actually a symptom of my depression and just couldn't convince her that I didn't feel like this before the new therapy and that it were the new meds. At the end she took me off me from Sertraline and told me that I could stop it right away since I just took it for ten days, it was most probably a mistake to listen to that advice, but I was eager to regain my emotions back so I did what she said and just stop taking it, basically just taking 1 mg of Trifluoperazine and that's it. I stopped taking Sertraline the 16 November, and after a week without it i didn't see any improvement in my emotions, and to add to that I started feeling brain zaps. Being the frustration and the paranoia I thought it was the antipsychotic that was numbing me down, so the 20 november I took half of it, the 21 November a quarter of the pill and it's 2 days that I'm not taking Trifluoperazine. But I had a really bad depressing moment yesterday, and I'm scared that I'm going to face a rebound that could drive to me suicide, and that thought terrifies me when I think about it, I don't know if I should reinsert the Trifluoperazine or maybe the Sertraline but at a lower dose and try to taper, even tho I'm already 9 days without it. Also the 19 November i did the second dose of the Vaccine and I'm having fever and flu symptoms from the 20 November and I needed to ask two days off at work today cause I just feel sick and can't do anything other than being from bad. I'm scared for my well being, don't really trust the psychiatrist, really hate the meds but I don't know what's the right choice right now, I don't know if I'm going too fast, if this is going to pass or if I will spiral into a really bad mental place like I haven't for a long time. Please help me.
  16. Hello Thank you for accepting me in to this group. I have always faced adversity and never ever took any medication. I always felt these were life situations that all of us must face - and that there isn't a fast fix - only time will heal - which it always had. But when my son was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoma Leukemia - I forgot all about the above and listened to my GP to take something for this pain that hurting my very soul. So I took Zoloft and stayed on it for 8 years - Then on December 3, 2011 - my GP and I decided it was time to start tapering off Zoloft. Unfortunately Zoloft only comes in 25, 50 and 100 mgs in capsule form. I had to taper 25 mgs at a time, albeit I stayed on that amount for 4 months at a time. Took a year and a half to finally get off it, which was on May 17, 2013. My tapering experience: I had litte WDs in the beginning - first was the dizziness, arms and legs ached, headaches, groin pain to the point where I had a hard time walking, indigestion, - all these symptoms except the dizziness and headaches disappeared. I was coping quite well all through withdrawals - but I didn't know what was coming, was not prepared at all. When off completely May 17, 2013 - again for a couple of months still able to cope with WDs. Then around 6 months off - WDs seem to get worse - visual disturbances, anxiety, worsen headaches, lightheadedness - pins and needles all over my face and chin, daily migraines, tight band around my head - DP, crying all the time - night sweats - morning anxiety - All these symptoms started mildly around the 6th month period off - then they just got worse and worse and around 18 months of until now there has been no let up at all. Day after day with high anxiety, crying every day, distorted vision in one eye I think caused by the headaches. I am literally in hell - and I wonder if maybe I will be like this for the rest of my life. Also recently I have lost a person whom I love so much, never to see that person again. I think my WDs are even worse now because of it. There is no hope left in me...- Zoloft is the only medication I have ever taken and do not take anything at all - not even vitamins.
  17. HopefulDawn My medication and health history before I took sertraline just in case it is relevant. I realise I might be recognised by some of this but I feel if my experience can help others and possibly help research it is worth it. . Have mild athsma but rarely took inhalers. . Took antihistamine certraline 1 per day for allergic rhinitis for a number of years. . Took cocodamol fairly soon before starting sertraline. . Have a mild case of cerebral palsy from birth. spastic hemiplegia . Autistic (aspergers type) Brief overview of when things happened and symptoms: January 2018: Was struggling with a breakup, had an anxiety and issues getting to sleep; I really was hoping for counselling or someone to talk to and I believe that would have helped me but instead was given sertraline. First day I took it I was fine, second day I took it I was fine and on the 3rd day morning I began feeling unwell. My jaw started biting together on its own (like when your very cold but much more forceful), I was having numbness in different body parts, had mydriasis (really dialated pupils) I felt like I was dying in a way and I suppose that was when my personality was changed and my emotions changed. My sense of time altered. Began having movement issues where my body would freeze up and I couldnt carry out actions as my body would stop as if I was playing musical statues. Weird feelings when I moved sometimes and weird kind of pain in my body which was very uncomfortable. Feelings of terror. Emotional lability where I could not control my emotions they would just happen.Twitches. Went back to the dr: was offered propanolol but I refused it not wanting to take any more drugs. Got an MRI on my nerves as I thought I was developing MS but that wasn't the case. April 2018: I believe I developed depression which I had never had before; this lasted until January 2019. During this time I was having waves of feeling uncomfortably physically and also spells of emotional lability, movement issues and some others. Each day they would be less severe and less frequent though. During this time I pushed myself to keep busy a lot even though I could not feel positive about things as much. If I always did something like drawing or talking to a friend it would keep me distracted. I will not go into all the symptoms because there were sooo many. All of these things occurred in waves and windows pretty much like how a lot of you guys experience things. Slowly things got better and most have gone away 2019 I was back at uni but I had to take a year out as I am not as resilient physically anymore and get cognitive symptoms.If I do too much symptoms come back. Before I took sertraline I would not have considered the things I did as too much. My grades dropped as I kept having fatigue, difficulty completing actions, weird feeling skin and weird pains. I am hoping to go back to complete the year September 2020 but I feel it will be quite a struggle. April 2020 I feel as if my personality is back 100% which kind of seemed to happen overnight. I decided to join as I am still having issues mainly fatigue, weird feelings/pain in my skin and through my body, sometimes internal vibrations and tremors if I do too much (too much being walking to the shop and carrying shopping which I used to have no problem with, doing too much fitness), sometimes muscle stiffness and twitches, heavy feeling limbs, I seem to get worse with exercise, often delayed and I thought perhaps i'm developing chronic fatigue, my mum thinks I have signs of fibromyalgia but now I think it is still side effects from this drug. I still get cognitive issues sometimes which makes me worry I won't be able to go back to uni and also feelings of terror but thankfully they are much less frequent. Official diagnosis from the dr now is: movement disorder due to anxiety 😕 however my anxiety has basically gone now so I now know it is not only anxiety at all it is definitely physical. Thanks for reading I hope this helps someone
  18. Hello. Im a 39 year old female from Norway and I am now two weeks of Zoloft after a 4 month tap off. I was on this medication for 20 years (yes it's crazy and scary) and before I decided to go off it I had started feeling pretty severe side effects and also from looking back I don't feel the medication ever really helped me. I was suicidal while on it years ago. Sorry for any typos since English is not my main language and also I am so sick right now I can barely hit the letters. Extreme nausea, diarea, dry mouth, very very sensitive to sound and light and I cry ALL the time. I swear I have never in my life, not even when losing loved ones, have I cryed this much. Im not a person that easily cries and at this point is starting to scare me and also having an affect on my family and friends. I don't know what to do and don't know how to get thru this. Its taking a toll on those around me to, they dont complain but I know it must be hard. I also learned a close friend have brain cancer and less than a year to live so I truly feel like I'm gonna lose my mind. I get these wawes of this intense fear that I can't really compare to anything else I've felt. Are these "normal" withdrawl symptoms? How long will they last? Is it dangerous in the way that it can be so straining on my heart I could have a heart attack? Any advice will be so very very welcomed. Thank's for taking the time to read. Bea
  19. I would like to say hello and thank this website for giving me hope. I have spent the last few days reading a lot of the posts and have found them to be full of information and great advice. The success stories are wonderful to read. I have never been in a medical situation like this and I was feeling lost and alone until I found Surviving Antidepressants. I was put on Zoloft (50 mg then upped to 100mg) in February 2016 due to depression over a long-term illness that at that time was still un-diagnosed. I got a diagnosis for my illness in April of 2016. I was hospitalized for that illness both in April and March and it was eventually brought under control. Once I got home from the hospital (both times) I was very weak and I had very confused thinking. I had multiple at-home treatments and medications to keep track of. Somewhere in there I messed up my Zoloft and either went cold turkey or was only taking it intermittently, but did not realize it at the time. Starting in May and ramping up in June I had all sorts of symptoms, which nobody in the medical field could figure out, including me. I was put on Gabapentin (600mg then upped to 900mg) to help with the symptoms. My symptoms included headaches, nausea, feeling hot and sweating but having a low body temperature, as well as the feeling of internal tremors in arms and legs, and actual external tremors. I also had jerky arm movements. I had what I call “vertigo light”, the whole room didn’t spin, just the floor moved when I tried to walk; I felt like I was drunk. I had brain zaps, motion sickness, insomnia, dizziness, nausea, and pressure in the ears like when flying on a plane. My memory was also bad. After endless nights of searching the Internet with my symptoms I realized I had withdrawal. Counting the actual amount of pills in the bottle and looking at the day it was prescribed confirmed that I had not been taking my medication. Once I realized what was going on I contacted my psychiatrist and I went back on at 50mg, which was twelve days ago. A dosage that high might be a mistake after reading about “reinstating” here on this sight, I don’t know yet. Since reinstating the brain zaps and vertigo have disappeared, and the other symptoms have gone down in intensity, however I am getting them more frequently. I’m now getting them every day, for at least a few hours and sometimes all day. Before going back on Zoloft they were really brutal but only for a few hours at a time, none of this all day stuff. Klonopin seems to help however my psychiatrist has suggested that I use it sparingly, he said that the Gabapentin should be helping with the symptoms. By the way, I feel I have an excellent psychiatrist. He did warn me when he put me on Zoloft not to go off of it without talking to him first and that there was tapering involved. He also responds to my frequent and desperate e-mails on a timely basis. I do recognize though that I need to be proactive when it comes to my health. This is my first time with a drug in the SSRI class. At this moment my goal is to stabilize. Eventually I would like to get off, but right now I just want the physical symptoms to go away. By the way, the depression, which was acute in February, seems to have disappeared, both while on and off the Zoloft. I am open to opinions, questions, and suggestions. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
  20. Hi all, I am quite new here but I think I really need help and support. I was diagnosed with OCD when I was 18 years old and I was prescribed sertraline 400mg( yes 400) and fluxetine at the same time. I was using them for couple of years and I was literally sleeping all the time. I could not keep my studies or even a normal everyday life. After a few years my OCD turned into severe depression. For which I had to keep using sertraline. Since then I have been using this medicine in at least 100 mg and I have suffered hypersomnia and cognitive impairment. Back in highschool I was very good studies with some nationwide medals in science. But since i have been taking antidepressants my mind is not able to learn new things or remember stuff. I have decided to stop the medicine but I feel I have lost a lot of time and I am not sure if my mind will be able to be as sharp as it used to be. Also I have heard that there a risk of dementia. Can you please help me if you have gone through a similar process?
  21. Hi, I am 31 years old, and been taking Sertraline 50mg since 2005, for generalised anxiety disorder. I attempted to taper several times in the past, all unsuccessful. In January 2018, I thought I was mentally in a good place to try and reduce the dose again. I started tapering by taking 25 mg 1 day a week(50 mg 6 days) for one month, then 25 mg for 2 days a week for another month etc. I have now been on 25mg everyday since June 2018. Initially I had occasional, mild withdrawal symptoms like vertigo and sensory sensitivities. But I had major, unexpected negative life changes and multiple bad news over the summer of 2018, and have been (understandably) more and more emotional. My anxiety has been getting more, and now it has become unbearable for me. I keep randomly crying, and feel extremely worried All. The. Time. I cannot relax or calm down, and feel a shortness of breath most of the time. Random anxiety attacks followed by diarrhea have become a regular thing. I am worried about leaving the house on my own. I am thinking about increasing the dose again, as I just can't cope with the debilitating fear and worry anymore, but then I will have suffered all these months for nothing. I thought I was in a stable point in my life when I started the taper, but now, after having dealt with a very difficult year(unrelated to the taper), I feel like now is actually the worst time for this. I have no support as all my family live abroad(and my parents&close relatives themselves could do with emotional support right now), my kids are very young and they constantly need me(and nursing a toddler is draining as it is...), we are in the process of selling our house and moving (not sure where to yet), I haven't had therapy or counselling in years and don't really have anyone to confide into... Should I just give up, go up to 50mg and try again when my life is stable? Has anybody had life events interfering with their taper like this?
  22. I am a 27 years old man. I was on sertraline 100mg for about 8 years. While being on the medication I could not attain penile erection. Tried to have sex with my girlfriend multiple times but failed everytime. My penis felt unresponsive to any sexual stimulus. This was very distressing and hence I stopped taking the medicine by slowly tapering it off. It has been 10 months since I last ingested the medicine but the sexual dysfunction is persistent. I still cannot attain erection and in an addition I have been facing the problem of severe premature ejaculation since I stopped taking the SSRI.Moreover, my memory has been highly affected by the drug. I struggle to remember everyday things. I cannot concentrate. I don't feel emotions. It feels like I am dead from inside. And I almost always feel a burning sensation in my brain. The drug has profoundly impacted my brain functions. I am very helpless right now. My life has become an unbearable tragedy. I don't know what I should do now. I am in a long distance relationship with a girl who wants to marry me. I am desperate to have a family. But I am afraid to go further given my condition. I am completely helpless and somehow surviving the distress caused by PSSD. I am eagerly waiting to hear from my peers in this forum.
  23. Hi everyone So I have been debating whether or not to add my situation or just continue to read the success stories as they really help me. I decided to add my own story as I’m hoping people can give me some hope! So I had my daughter after a terrible pregnancy, I had a condition that put both baby and me at risk and I was rushed into hospital every week heavily bleeding. I was told each time that anything could happen and everytime I work up bleeding in the middle of the night I panicked that I was going to loose my little girl or die and leave my other daughter behind! This carried on for 15 weeks until eventually another heavy bleed left me in the operating theatre and baby girl was born. we were both poorly for a week or 2 but eventually both of us went home. I then discovered I was profusely sweating, especially at night time, and when I say sweating I mean getting up 3 times a night to change my underwear towel dry myself and change the sheets EVERY NIGHT! Anyway, this lack of sleep on top of baby crying all night left me sleep deprived, and like most mums this is fairly normal, I’ve been a new mum before but this was different, the sweats on top of baby crying left me with about 1 hour of broken sleep a night! We also had a house extension going on, my partner away at work and a teenager to care for…. I kept going to the doctors to see why I was sweating and they kept putting me on antibiotics, in total I had 6 courses over 4 months! I felt ok for about a month other then the lack of sleep the sweating subsided a bit, however I began to feel anxious for the first time in my life, I started to be panicking a bit and thinking negatively, then Covid came! I panicked further as a new mum I was worried I would get Covid and it would harm my baby, I started to have my first panic attack I couldn’t swallow properly and my body shock my mind raced, I rang the doctor and there and then he put me on 100mg of Sertraline (Zoloft) over the phone, I took the pill as I wanted the panic to stop, my body was shaking and that is where the hell really began!!! I felt like I was dieing, my body shook, my brain racing, I was vomiting, crying, shivering, heart racing, sweating, it was hell! A different doctor reduced the dose to 50mg and told me to keep going “it takes time for them to work” I stayed like this for 8 weeks, I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep as every time I closed my eyes I was thrown straight back out in a panic. I went down to 6 stone, I kept ringing the doctor and all I was told was to carry on. At this point I needed help so I was recommended a homeopath, she gave me lots of different remedies that I didn’t know at the time probably made me worse. I just needed help, anything, I took vitamin injections I got acupuncture but nothing helped I got worse, I started having suicidal thoughts, I rang the doctor again and there and then they told me to stop, don’t take it again they said. So that’s what I did! In known to me I just cold Turkey! I then spent the next 4 months in further hell, more of the same thing, anxiety through the roof, brain feeling foggy, weird thinking, heart palpitations no sleep no appetite. I also got the merina coil fitted, this made me feel even worse, I had no idea why??? I now assume this was due to my nervous system being sensitive, but it would be good for someone with any knowledge to confirm this? so when I thought I was going to die from weight loss I rang the doctor again, she prescribed me mirtazapane! I didn’t know I was in WD I just thought I was going mad!! Initially it did nothing for me, after a few weeks I noticed my appetite increased and I could sleep, however I still always woke in a panic and the anxiety waves still came and went, especially around my period. However inbetween the waves I always felt “weird” I had No emotion, no sympathy, no feelings and weird repetitive thinking. at this point I just accepted I am doomed forever, I have something seriously wrong with me and no doctors will help. I continued to search and search for answers, I then saw a hormone specialist and after some extensive tests she concluded I had a hormone imbalance with having very high estrogeon low progesterone and extremely high cortisol! I started natural progesterone and supplements to bring the cortisol down. I then slowly began tapering off the Mirtazapane as I knew it didn’t let me feel normal, I felt weird all the time with no break, my anxiety was the same in waves so I started to reduce and eventually after 5/6 months I stopped (7 weeks ago) i am now in WD from Mirtazapane, and maybe still the CT feom sertraline too I don’t know?! I feel strange and definitely experience the waves and windows, I had 3 good days last week I enjoyed my babies 2nd birthday, are and danced but now I’m feeling rubbish, I’m waiting for my period but it doesn’t seem to be coming, I find around this time in the month my symptoms get a lot worse, I never suffered from any pms prior to AD’s so not sure why this is? Nervous system maybe? I feel like I’ve been to hell and back and still there, I can’t wait to feel normal again and get through this, I feel like I’m living in a dream, like this is not real! The anxiety is awful I still can’t eat very well and I’m loosing weight, I can’t handle any stress, and feel overwhelmed with simple tasks. im really hoping someone can provide me with some hope, some encouragement, and maybe tell me how this all happened to me as that’s something I ponder on frequently. Why did this happen?? I was fine before that panic attack, maybe I was just so sleep deprived and my hormones were all over the place and the stress of Covid just got too much? My hormone doctor thinks my cortisol was so high during pregnancy as it was so high risk it probably heightened even more when Covid hit and sent me over worrying! Unfortunately I then got prescribed that terrible tablet and the rest is history! anyway that’s my story, I just hope and pray one day I can read it back and it will all be in the past! xx
  24. I used Zoloft for 5 days only and it did my body terrible. I didn’t know stopping the meds would cause withdrawals. I can’t get back on because I’m not even having attacks like that but what helps with the withdrawals. I have parathesia, brain fog, ears ringing. It sucks!
  25. When i started using zoloft and how i became clean. i started using zoloft in 2017 at 16 years old. now since june the 6th i came clean. what i experiences was weight gain . brain fog, and zombie feeling. impossible to break certain patterns. Worsening depression. now spark in the eyes after year 2 hormone imbalance that caused breast growth it was slowly, first i barely noticed anything only after year 2 i started noticing bad things happening. The decrease and tappering of from zoloft was pure hell and nothing more, i experienced depersonalisation, mania, worsening depression, dizzeyness, alot of mental stress, racing toughts. from 25mg till 10 mg i barely noticed anything, only when passing 10 a slightly discomfort until 5. then every mg down was a 2 days of hell. Withdrawl symptoms i got. Heavy mindfog. Depersonalisation and dissacotiation POIS like symptoms after sexual intercourse(mild) no libido or extreme high libido, racing toughs(alot) Autopiloted/impulsive behaviour. now i finally came clean, i noticed slight improvements. Positive outlook on the future, less brainfog (only after dopamine detox) Spark in the eye returned. breast growth decreased alot. Depersonalization goes away sometimes. i started to recognize my toughts again. My libido came back. Extreme rise in testosteron But i'm now about 6 weeks clean but i still suffer sometimes alot of these symptoms mostly because of dopamine rushes or anxiety, and confrontations. Heavy brainfog Racing toughts depersonalization and dissacotiation Depression and negative tought patterns Very impulsive behaviour and emotional. Agression especially towards my doctor or zoloft manifactioner it feels almost as if i became dumber or something. atleast it feels like it. My question is how long until my brain is completly healed, and how long till i can have dopamine rushes again? it goes better but i get these waves/cycles sometimes, but after the waves i see this light path that i hold on to and i feel awesome for a few moments of the day or the whole day. Almost bipolar. This is my first post, and i'm also not from a english speaking country. but i truly want to have advise or tel people my story
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