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  1. Hi, I’m new hear, I’m sorry if I have any gramatical errors, my native language isn’t English. I’m 18 years old female, I started sertraline at 14 and was been on and off sertraline (I used it total for about 2-3 years) I started when I was 14 and Stopped at 17. My last dose was about 4 months ago and I was on sertraline for 4 months (50 mg I think). I stopped because I learned about pssd. However I don’t think I tappered correctly. I didn’t knew how to. I’m now battling with pssd, a really severe depression, really severe derealization, brain fog, and I’m really suicidal. I don’t know what to do, I’m really really bad mentally and I’m desperate for help, for someone to bring hope to my life, but I don’t want to go with a psychiatrist, should I go with a therapist/ psychologist? I’m extremely depressed and derealized and can’t stop thinking about killing myself. (I’m not sure if I can talk about this here, but I really need help). I just want some hope about pssd, I’ve read here that pssd is just like any withdrawal symptom, it can take years to get better but it will improve and I really wish this happens, I also really wish to be myself again and not want desperately to die.
  2. See journal articles about PSSD in Papers about Post-SSRI Sexual Disorder (PSSD) Please note that SurvivingAntidepressants is a site for tapering and recovery from withdrawal syndrome. While we see PSSD sometimes as an aspect of withdrawal syndrome (and we see gradual recovery from it as well as withdrawal syndrome), this site is not specifically for discussion of treatment of PSSD or its neurological origins (which at this time are highly speculative). If you wish to discuss symptoms, theories, and treatment of PSSD, please go to these sites: PSSDforum http://www.pssdforum.com/ Yahoo group SSRIsex (log in to http://Yahoo.com to join) Facebook group (log into Facebook.com to join) Various pages on Rxisk.org
  3. Hi all, I'm at a complete loss regarding my situation so I'll start from the beginning. During the summer of 2016 around july I began taking Sertraline 20mg for what I would now describe as mild anxiety, when struggling with initial sides of increased anxiety and sudden insomnia my doctor prescribed me flupentixol which I then took with the sertraline for around 3 months and then went cold turkey on due to severe drowsiness. I continued the sertraline for around 9 months before going cold turkey. I'm so confused regarding my situation because in order to cope with the insomnia I also smoked weed every night whilst taking it to help me sleep which seemed to work wonders. Even after dropping the sertraline I continued smoking weed in order to help me sleep. I had actually never smoked weed prior to this insomnia (I was 26 BTW) and it was a friend's suggestion. Anyway I attempted to quit smoking several times last year after dropping the ssri but noticed an extreme feeling of anxiety at all times whenever I did and and inability to sleep until early hours of the morning. This pattern went on until early this year where I smoked once again before bed internally praying that I would be able to stop somehow. That night and for the next month I suffered the most extreme anxiety attacks I never thought possible, which definitly helped me to cut the weed permanantly. The strange thing is, ever since then I have experienced various symptoms associated with withdrawal which are, Extreme rage/anxiety/depression constantly alternating. Headaches sometimes unbearable migraines. Horrendous restlessness which after reading some accounts on this site I think is akathisia. Burning and aching throughout my body. Extreme hatred towards family and friends which comes and goes. Blurred vison Awful digestive problems (burping nonstop everyday, diarrhea and constipation and bleeding. Bloating Brain fog feels as though someone has hold of my brain smothering it. Vibrating in my ears. Sometimes I spend the entire day crying uncontrollably with anguish twisting my hands and feet with worry and anxiety. Muscles twitching all day and almost zero appetite. I guess my question is, Can withdrawal sometimes take a year to fully manifest? because the weed aswell as cbd oil seemed to keep the anxiety and insomnia at bay then suddenly almost a year after dropping the sertraline I developed all these mental and physical symptoms. Or is there something else wrong with me because I've had cameras in me, been to three different doctors and various homeopaths and they say everything seems fine when it clearly isn't. I've lost my job my friends three stones and it feels as if I've lost control over my entire body and mind. Someone please help lol. I have many other symptoms to an extreme degree but I've actually lost track of everything I'm going through. Still sane though I think.(hope)
  4. Hi there- Looking for reinstatement advice. After having a panic attack in mid-March 2020, I was prescribed klonopin for acute episodes, along with Lexapro to take on an ongoing basis. Before the panic attack, I was having symptoms of general anxiety (difficulty relaxing, circular thoughts, insomnia, etc), though I never felt depressed. I did not heavily research these drugs before taking them. The klonopin was effective in calming me down and allowing for sleep, and in late March 2020, I began taking a very low dose of the 10mg Lexapro that I was prescribed- about 2.5mg for a week, up to 5mg for 5 weeks or so. At first, I felt great-- I could sleep, my thoughts were logical and clear, and I was able to remain positive despite being in NYC during the height of the pandemic (and working an incredibly stressful job). In early June 2020, I increased the dosage to the full 10mg pill. By late June, my brain was hazy, I had rapidly gained about five pounds, I was extremely tired, and I was having a difficult time orgasming and decreased sexual thoughts- though I still had some libido, lubrication, arousal, etc. I consulted with my doctor and decided to come off the Lexapro, and though she said to decrease the dose over 2-3 weeks, I did not think too much of it. I dropped down to 5mg for a week and felt improvements in my sexual desires/sensitivity. The week after I dropped to 2.5mg, and then stopped altogether. For about a week or two, I felt the withdrawal- I felt anxious, depressed, and agitated, but attributed it to coming off the drug. August 2020 until about 14 days ago, I felt incredibly flat- no strong emotions, along with severe sexual dysfunction (numb clitoris, inability to orgasm, no libido, no lubrication, no sexual thoughts, etc). Upon reading this and other forums, I have concluded that I must have PSSD. I decided to reinstate with my doctor's guidance; I started at 2.5mg 14 days ago. The first two days I felt an increase in my libido and emotional functioning, but that initial bubble has since stopped though I have continued to take the low dose. I'm looking for advice if I should continue at this dose, increase to 5mg, or try to slowly taper back down? This has been incredibly distressing so appreciate any guidance (and hopeful stories!). Many thanks.
  5. Hi all, Im male 23 from South India. English is not my first language so please forgive my grammatical mistakes. I had a bad breakup with my Ex girlfriend and went into depression,low libido and anxiety disorder. I was put on Escitalopram 5mg for one month(Mid September to mid October 2018) and I just Cold turkeyed it. My libido didn't improved but anxiety disorder was cured. First 2 months im completely fine but after that I literally faced hell. Below are the withdrawal symptoms that I have faced till date. 1. Insomnia :- I hardly slept 4 hours with this symptom. This is observed in mid January to mid May of 2019. After that it gradually improved. Now I'm able to sleep six and half hours of sleep. I feel like it improved around 70%. 2. Eye floaters :- This one just freaked me out. I started observing them since mid Feb 2019. They are really bothersome for me that time because, i can see them on my PC screen too. Gradually they disappearing. I can say they reduced to 50% of what they were earlier. I think eye folaters are related to sleep. So I hope it may be cured once im completely recovered from insomnia. 3. Diarrhea:- This one comes and goes randomly. I don't know when this will go completely. 4. Sweating :- It started in End of May 2019 and still there. 5. Loss of appetite :- No improvement at all. 6. Lack of confidence (no comments) 7. PSSD :- This one ruined my life. I have no feelings at all. No emotions nothing. Visual simulation is not making me erect anymore. I was suicidal after reading about PSSD. Now it's been 1 month since im using black maca powder. It helped to get back my morning erections and random erections. Now I'm getting erections just by fantasizing something by closing my eyes. But the URGE or DESIRE to have sex is ZERO. I'm planning to continue on Black maca for some more months. If it not works then im gonna try Inositol and SJW. Interesting thing is...... I don't know that Antidepressant do give withdrawal symptoms. My doctor didn't warned me regarding this. I passed through this hell without knowing about it. Last week i got to know about this website and then I understood what I have been through. As I was unaware of withdrawal symptoms and PSSD. I felt like I only had low libido. So I just did all the necessary stuff to bring up my testosterone. Like hitting gym(mainly squats), eating veggies (mainly leafy vegetables) fish eggs nuts, sunbath (for vitamin D). Yes, I definitely gone through waves and windows. But Im unaware of them. So I cant figure out when I had wave and windows. Hereafter I will note it. I have read so many success stories on this website and they truly helped to build my confidence. I need all of your support and advise for me to recover from this pssd. I will keep posting my status on regular basis. Thankyou all (namaste 🙏)
  6. ADMIN NOTE Here is cake's Introductions topic: Cakesgimmecakes here. I was asked to give an update. I am fully recovered from Prozac withdrawal at this point. It's been 3 years and 2.5 months EXACTLY today. The issues SSRIs left me with are things I'm still contending with, which are hypothyroidism and adrenal fatigue, digestive issues. I no longer blame any symptom I have on Prozac withdrawal. Prozac is a distant memory now, and I'm so grateful I have ME back. Things that helped me: Magnesium Vit D Sun in the morning on retinas Digestive enzymes No sugar - you must be strict with this; it matters because the inflammation and blood sugar swings sugar causes stress out an already stressed-out central nervous system Spirituality Mediation - rewire your brain to relax, it works Avoidance of any pharmaceuticals Walking/running/exercise Socializing CBT/therapy - this is huge Sleep when I could get it Supplement tolerance was low for a long time. I could not take fish oil or many, many vitamins. I was unable to sleep for years. NAC helps me sleep now, and controlling blood sugar. I have learned so much from my experience, and I am still angry about what happened to my life because of Big Pharma. I do not go to Western/allopathic/conventional doctors; I only seek natural remedies and holistic/naturopathic/functional doctors. Depression is truly about dysfunction elsewhere in the body. Low T3 in the thyroid, cortisol issues (read: stress), nutritional deficiences, poor communication with others/not feeling fulfilled by goals/lack of goals that truly fill the soul, no exercise, SIBO/candida/digestive woes, wonky reproductive hormones, poor sleep, toxic humans you're around, bad job. Truth: Life will never be the same after you expose your brain to these toxic chemicals. In time, I do believe society will catch on to the dangers. Pills are a quick fix for temporary issues, which excellent nutrition, sun, exercise, and therapy can take care of in most cases. We trusted our doctors and got burned. I do believe in science and that the body is designed to heal itself and the brain has incredible neuroplasticity capabilities. This is why exercise and nutrition are so important. They do make a difference. I encourage everyone to read up on the actual science behind meditation. It's not quackery. It helped because it does change the brain for the better. People recover. I'm living proof. YET, life is not perfect. I struggle with fatigue and bad moods, but my life currently is pretty stressful, and I am dealing with thyroid and adrenal issues. This is life. To this day I still pray for those suffering from psych issues and psych drug withdrawal most evening. You are not alone. Keep the faith. I believe a power greater than me is more powerful than any drug, and there can be miracles. HUGS XOXO
  7. Hello, My name is Tomasz and I'm 30 man from Poland. I took sertraline for 3 months almost two years ago and lost all sexuall funcions. No libido, severe ed, pleasureless orgasms, total genital numbness and also emotional numbness. I do not have any wave and windows - just constant emptyness and disconnection from my sexuallity. Pre-ssri it was very strong part of my personality. I do not believe in any recovery story - its been two years and not a single sign of progress..cant event get it up to porn...
  8. Hi I took effaxor for 5 months 75mg. I stopped 4.5 months ago and still stuck with PSSD. How hopeful should I be, do people here recover substantially from PSSD?
  9. Hello all Forgive me if this should have been an intro topic, I couldn't decide whether to post it on the intro forum or here. This mainly focusses on my PSSD, one of the last parts of my withdrawal to abate, but I will eventually post a broader story that covers all aspects of my withdrawal success. This was originally posted by me on PP about a week ago - I had just joined, and then it was shut down. TheAutomator's PSSD Recovery Story: Hello all. I’ve always been a lurker on various forums, but never one to make a post. However, I feel that I owe it to everyone going through the same things I have been, to share this story. I took Lexapro, followed by Zoloft, for about 8 months in total, back in 2011-2012. I was 24 at the time, and had always had a raging sex drive. Not to give you waaaay too much information here, but I easily masturbated 3 times a day, every day! The most subtle of sexual thoughts could put me into heat. My sex drive was a strong part of my identity, and I never imagined anything could temper it. Well, as the familiar story goes, within a few weeks of starting on SSRI’s (for long standing issues with depression and a new job in a horribly toxic environment), My sex drive began to fade (amongst a whole host of other side effects). Physical sensation was significantly diminished, and the ability to have or maintain an erection was marginal at best. It was entirely impossible without direct physical stimulation as well. Orgasms felt like almost nothing. In my mind I was still sexual, but my body no longer functioned. It was hell. After 8 months, I quit over a 1-2 week period. Lexapro had crapped out, and Zoloft was now doing the same. The side effects (including the one in question here) were too much. I had tried various other ADs before starting these two meds to no avail, or with serious side effects. I decided I was finished with meds. The next 6 months were emotional hell. I slipped for a week and started Zoloft again, but quit promptly. Months passed and my sex drive wasn’t coming back. After reading about PSSD online, I became terrified, and angry at myself for ever trying these horrible pills. I had flatlined – maybe a 10% improvement since a quit and that was it. A year had passed. I tried every supplement under the sun (as I’m sure many other desperate sufferers have) and soon learned that I was sensitive to many of them, often feeling worse in a variety of ways. I developed a new rule – if it’s not in normal food, I won’t take it. Fish oils yes, Rhodiola no, for example. I tried licorice root once and had the worst two weeks of anxiety and insomnia in my life. I wanted to die. In the end, no supplement really did much for me, with the exception of inositol. Inositol, while doing nothing for physical sensation or arousal, restored my orgasm to pre SSRI levels in a matter of days. It also made me drop the 25 pounds I had gained *after* quitting ADs (with absolutely no change in diet). I had been unable to stop the gain, no matter what I tried, how much I controlled my calories. I had given up. My metabolism was screwed up – another lovely gift care of SSRIs. Inositol has been a god-send here. In the second year I started to experience the “windows” that people talk about. It first started over a weekend. I felt, overnight, almost 75% back to normal in every way (sensation, drive, erections). It was amazing. The sceptic in me feared it wouldn’t last, and he was right. 2 days later I was back to my old new self. Over the year, I had 2 or 3 more such events, lasting up to a week. I felt hope… I wasn’t broken, just malfunctioning. Toward the end of that second year, which is about 3 months ago, I had what I thought was another window. But this time it didn’t really go away. Instead, the entire pattern started to invert. I was mostly functional, but had windows where I’d lose my sex drive for a few days! I was again skeptical the first month, but it has persisted, for 3 months now, and all the while getting better! I quit all my supplements (just to try and figure out if anything was helping and anything wasn’t) and I felt even better! It seems as if some were making matters worse, not better! I now consistently wake up with morning erections every night (I forgot how annoying those can be!), and can become physically aroused without direct contact (just thinking, or with visual stimulation). Women and sex drive me crazy again. I’m not 100% of my old self yet, maybe 80 or 90, but after what I’ve been through, this is heaven. I’ll be sure to return in a few more months for another update. I hope anyone who reads this will keep hanging onto hope. It was the other success stories that I read online that kept me sane. My PSSD lasted longer than I took the freaking SSRIs for, but it eventually started to remit. I think yours will too! It wasn’t a gradual recovery, but a lot of flat-lining, false starts, and eventual rapid change. It’s been like trying to start a car that doesn’t want to crank. A lot of nothing, the occasion where you alllllmost get there, but then the engine goes off again, and then finally that one good turn of the key that gets you over the hill! Keep cranking
  10. Context [This thread may sound familiar because when I felt the most hopeless and suicidal I made a different thread on PSSD forums, but some user copied that thread here to hide the fact it was the same person as another banned account. I waited to post here until I got to know at which points in time I was supposed to take my medicine. I've been off them for about a year] I started taking the anti-dipressant Zoloft/Setraline for Depression, the stress and anxeity I have from my aspergers and Pure OCD. Everything usually felt dark, heavy and really really sad but there were moments of happiness. I've always been over emotional on the inside, although it might have not looked like that on the outside. I hesitated getting Anti-Dipressants for a long time because I was afraid of permanent affects. I intentionally did not read internet horror stories so I would still take the pill and was truly convinced by my doctors that if I'd stop taking my pills, I'd go back to normal. But that isn't the case. I haven't felt like the same person ever since. I kept having a strong urge to meet up with an old crush of mine again (in the platonic sense) after a long time of not seeing her. I even had dreams about it. When I finally did, I felt almost nothing except physical tiredness even though we technically had a good time. It was that moment I realized just how little actual happiness I can feel yet how easily I can still feel physical pain and tiredness and I started to feel hopeless again. I then also realized how little I felt for the most recent ''crush'' and how back when I was in love with that old crush it was so strong it was unbeliabale. [Timeframe and dosage] I have now finally been able to contact my psychiatrist to find out in which two periods I was supposed to take them. one of about 4 months. The other of about 8. However, I'd sometimes forget my dosage and I stopped cold turkey twice sometime before the end of these periods. -Period 1: -12 December 2017 to -6th of march 2018. -Period 2: -10th of april 2018 to -somewhere in november 2018. It's likely I already stopped by december as I pretended to take them for a while. Something seems off here too, I remember there was a longer period of time I stopped taking in between these two periods. Likely because I also pretended to still take. This means it's likely been a bit more than a year since stopping. In each period I started with 10 mg, very quickly moving to 20 and feeling relatively positive results. Then after moving to 50mg I'd feel too emotionally blunted and it'd scare me so I'd stop and I'd thought it'd go away. Only it didn't. [Experience] The first time I took my pills I immediately felt a bit of relief but thought such quick effect must be in my head. I did quickly get stomach cramps, flatulence, constipipation and diarrheah issues from it which lessened over time. I didn't notice much else at first. Then I got super over emotional and went through one of the hardest periods of my life. I couldn't stop crying and I was constantly anxious and tense and barely slept at all. As it went awayIfelt much less anxeity than ever, I felt a bit more energy and could think more positively. I used to always have an anxious/nervous feeling in my stomach regardless of how I actually felt and it was gone. However I also couldn't feel orgasms anymore and had genital numbness.I still liked the effect for a while. My thinking got more positive and I thoughtI could finally beat depression if I'd just work at it. I was less emotional, but that seemed like a good thing. Until the dosage was upped to 50 at one point and I felt like a complete zombie and I started to get freaked out. I noticed that all this time even on the lower dosage I couldn't cry well and I wasn't actually any happier and in fact found it even harder to feel happy. I cared less even less about doing anything than I did before because I couldn't take anything seriously and nothing made me feel better so I may as well do nothing. I stopped cold turkey (dumb I know) so I'd get all my emotion back but I didn't. I didn't really notice that much initially. Except that I got a lot more tired,. Like..A lot more tired. [Lasting issues] Now I have these issues.. -Cognitive: -General ''brain fog'' type feel. Worse short term memory, much worse concentration, can't process information well esecially if new, More interrupted sleep no matter how calm I am (partially already had this due to GERD), a left eye that twitches a lot, blurry vision that resets a brief moment after every blink, and even less motivation. Like way less. Busy places are much more distracting and tiring than they used to be, yet the anxious feeling I'd usually get from them is gone. I've barely felt functional. It also effects how well I can hear in noisy enviorments and process speech sound. -Emotional: -More irritability/anger. Blunted emotions in general. Harder to cry. Harder to have sympathy/empathy. The hardest to feel feelings are happiness and sadness. Happiness even harder, yet I have no trouble feeling stress. I notice my body still reacts physically asif the feelings are still there (my voice sounding sadder/softer, my heart rate increasing..), yet I can't sense the emotion on the inside like I'm on some kind of anasthetic. I can tell I need to cry but then can't unless in extreme scenarios and when I finally can I don't feel it nearly as well. At least I never lost my ability to laugh. I still get goosebumps/shivers in my head/chest area from certain thoughts, though I tend to need to force this out of me by thinking instead of it triggering by something happening around me making it feel incredibly forced and I notice a disconnect between the no response reality and the excitement of thinking about my desires. My stomach area feels the most numbed of all. It has made me feel more suicidal than I was before. It feels like purgatory. And Like I'm watching a movie of my life instead of living it. -Sexual: -Genital Anasthesia (asin no sexual pleasure from touch) as well as anorgasmia type PSSD. Already had this a bit due to a past porn addiction but it wasn't that bad at all. If I just touch myself to imagery, anything else would be more exciting. If I conciously think about how exciting this is supposed to be, I get shivers down my upper body and am in a state of enjoyment. More than with anything else at least. But I constantly notice the disconnect between feeling nothing of pleasure in my lower body. Especially with the orgasm I feel absolutely nothing exciting whatsoever which is a total anti climax. A sneeze is much more tense. I now have a biological urge (My libido remains unaffected) that I can't actually satiate. No matter how calm I am or how excited I am mentally, my body does not co-operate to make it physically enjoyable yet functionally/on the outside everything works fine. -Other: Still have some gut problems. As a result I have trouble doing anything at all that isn''t more involved than browing random internet forums and listening to gaming reviews on youtube. [Not taken seriously] My dad told me I'm just making this up to avoid having to solve my problems and that its all in my head despite me wishing that was true. Sure I don't know which issues are all caused by the pills but I sure do know it made that nervous feeling go away ever since so it DID make permanent changes. Doctors and psychiatrists and the like don't believe it's possible. My mom believes it's possible but she acts like it's better than what I used to be and that I should just accept this and hope it gets better. Both parents think I shouldn't believe ''those people on the internet and that you're not part of them''. My mom keeps getting mad when I get mad about the problem because ''Well what do you want me to say or do?''. Even though when I was wrongfully treated by a past school of mine my parents fought them with rage yet when my humanity is taken away from me they just expect me to suck it up. Most people either don't believe it at all because doctors say effects can't persist, OR they kind of act like they do but I can easily tell they don't believe and instead just want to support me feeling better. People keep expecting me to function on the level pre ssri. They keep telling me I'm smart yet I'm struggling for reasons that aren't depression. They keep expecting me to care about small things when I even have trouble caring about the things I used to care about most. [Progress] PSSD has not showed a single bit of progress. I've been having a less difficult time feeling sadness however. Tiredness has been lessened by living a better lifestyle but I still don't feel like my old self even though I didn't do these things back than. To not feel like I'm mentally handicapped from tiredness, I started to eat on time everyday and pay more attention to what I eat (including so I get less GERD,) for which I stopped eating late in the evning). I went to the doc for a blood test and the result was low vitamin d and low bloodcells (which I likely have always had yet back then I wasn't that tired) but anyways I got vitamin D supplements (I'm black so it's higher than usual). I started to put all my screens on low blue light filters. I also started to go to go to bed and wake up at certain times (though eventually staying asleep is futile). I want to add some exercise to it soon and make some adjustments to make my GERD better. I today got noise cancelling headphones so I can actually hear what I want to listen to outside. PLEASE SOMEONE give me hope my emotions can get better. Everything feels so pointless when putting in effort to do things only leads to more tiredness and no happiness despite in the past being able to feel happiness.
  11. Hey all, have been lurking for a couple weeks and am in a pretty rough place as to withdrawals. had recently been on fluvoxamine for a long time, roughly 3 years on and off. Managed to quit around March this year with no discernible side effects. Feeling relatively good, OCD(reason I had been taking drugs) was up and down, but life was good. Family was unaware I had stopped, kept telling them I was taking the dosage even when I wasn’t. One family me ever was insistent that it was the be all end all and that I need to take the medication. To this day I am so angry at the glorification they have it, they are in my opinion a detriment to society. Anyway, after an ocd outburst one night, said family member told me they were not going to leave the house until they had witnessed me take it every night. I was adamant to not take it as I knew how it stifled sexuality and caused numbness. One day just so they would stop nagging me I foolishly took a whole 300 mg dose. As soon as that happened I felt an unease as if I had done something horribly wrong. Fast forward the next couple weeks, had stomach cramps at night, difficulty sleeping, but nothing too bad. Then on August 15, I realised I had completely numb in my penis area, there was no arousal and No libido. The 3 weeks since then have gradually gotten worse. In addition to what I believe is PSSD, I have had this strange unexplainable feeling of discomfort in my upper back, as if it’s impossible to relax. Insomnia has been terrible, literally waking up every 20 minutes or so to the point of waking up 15-20 seperate times a night. Extremely dry body, no relief from taking a shower after waking up. No motivation to do anything except eat and lie in bed. It’s been 5 weeks since that dose, and am thinking of reinstating to a lower dose of fluvoxamine just to counteract some symptoms, but scared of making PSSD even worse. Should I reinstate now and then hold for a bit, I read all the withdrawal and reinstatement info already but would like some personal advice. been to gp, urologist, of course they do not think an antidepressant from one day could have caused all this. please need some help, thanks
  12. ☼-branyan-from-pp-genital-anesthesia-and-pssd Hey guys! Branyan here from the old PP forums. I haven't written in any SSRI or related forum in almost 2 years now. The reason being? Things for the most part have been pretty damn great. My actual life is great. I have a great career started. I am finally independent and financially stable. I've had a couple of short relationships in between now and when Paxil Progress ended. During that sexual relationship I almost NEVER had one problem. Not only that, things were pretty freaking great in that department. I never had any problems getting it up, and sex was frequent and very good. Now there is still some of the genital numbness, and spotty libido, but was scarcely a worry. So. fast forward. We broke up. Not the right time in our lives, etc etc blah blah. Now the libido and functioning goes right back down to nothing good. This has been the pattern in the post SSRI/PSSD world for almost 5-6 years now. In the relationship things work great. Outside of that relationship, even when by myself things just dont feel very good. I realize how lucky I am. I'm grateful to have what I have. I'm so lucky. I'm not even really complaining. I just kind of needed to vent because its kind of scary. And in the past the one habit I've made is obsessively trying to hook up with girls or look at porn to keep testing if things are working. And I want to be a lone for a while and do some more soul searching. The last girl i was with I was very upfront about the PSSD stuff, and we took our time to get to sex and that made all the difference. I cannot discount the emotional and psychological part of it. It's almost as if the PSSD has made those components so strong that I am now 'demi-sexual". If you look that up it basically means you can't be aroused without an emotional connection.. I've got a lot of work to do in therapy to deal with this. I need to listen to my rational mind and not the fearful part. I can do this. I'm of course open to any and all questions as I know that my story has been used as a success story for many people fearful of PSSD around the internet.
  13. I got off 75mg zoloft in about 2 months, had horrible withdrawal and went back on 2 months later on escetalopram. Got off escetalopram over the course of 2-3 months ish... wasnt a 10% taper but also wasn't too fast of a taper either. 6 months drug free and I experience anhedonia, and in those 6 months I had ***** up symptoms, unexplainable anxiety constant hyperarousal etc bunch of ****. Should I go back on escetalopram maybe? is it too late for me to reinstate?
  14. Hello everyone UK Association and Website for PSSD sufferers - We are forming an association for sufferers of PSSD in the UK with the goal of increasing awareness of PSSD and all other related enduring problems having withdrawn from antidepressants. We're working with other PSSD associations from around the world. The website will be ready soon, and we'll then be contacting clinicians and researchers to attempt to raise the profile of PSSD and encourage dialogue, research etc. If you're interested in joining and being updated, please join us on discord: https://discord.gg/U6EphsV The website will include stories of those suffering with PSSD. It would be particularly helpful to have sufferers from the UK to contribute. However, if you're from another country where your voice is not heard, we will include your story. Here are some guidelines to help: It would be helpful to include: - Something about what your life / health was like before PSSD / antidepressants to give context. - How you got PSSD - What your symptoms are - What your experience has been with attempting to get treatment. - The impact that PSSD has / has had on your life on the lives of people close to you. - What you're hoping might change having told your story. - A thank you to whoever is reading. - I suggest that you try to keep what you write below 1000 words. The goal is to express your feelings and experience but try to not go on so long that you might lose the reader's attention. Here are some examples from the Canadian site to help you: https://pssdcanada.squarespace.com/our-stories If anyone has relatives or someone else close to them who would like to contribute something about how this has affected the person they care about and how it makes they themselves feel, that would also be great. I know that many of us feel (justifiably) angry at pharmaceutical companies, psychiatrists, doctors etc. However, please try and leave accusations, blame, anger about lack of action out of your story because this is likely to undermine what we're trying to achieve. We want clinicians and researchers to empathise and to try and help us. Therefore, the tone is important. Busy people are less likely to want to try and help if they feel like they're being attacked. We will address the need for pharmaceutical companies to be held to higher standards regarding the risks of antidepressant use elsewhere in the site and within the aims of the association. Thank you and Best wishes to everyone!
  15. I’ll keep the introductory story short since this is a forum about antidepressants and withdrawals. In June 2018, after being physically unhealthy and constantly stressed out for a couple years, I got depersonalization/derealization after smoking some marijuana. I kept having panic attacks because I wasn’t aware of what was happening with me, and those made the symptoms worse, inducing more panic. The downward spiral led to a visit to the doctor. I couldn’t take the nightly panic attacks anymore. He prescribed me 10mg Lexapro, thinking I just had depression and anxiety, which was bumped up to 20mg after a couple weeks. The side effects were exactly what you’d expect. I felt zoned out all the time, blunted emotions, increased appetite, gained 30 pounds, sexual dysfunction, fatigue. All of these side effects lessened after a couple months, but remained to an extent. The panic attacks stopped, the anxiety gradually calmed down, but the zoned out feeling became sort of indistinguishable from the depersonalization and derealization, which sucked and is why I really wanted to get off the medication, along with the weight gain and sexual side effects. The psychologist I see biweekly said this would be fine, and that 6-7 months on the 20mg dose was enough. I started my taper on February 1st, cutting down from 20mg to 15mg. The withdrawals were really mild. Basically I felt like I was coming down with a cold for 2 days, that feeling went away, and I didn’t feel any different than I had on 20mg. March 1st I cut down to 10mg. This time I had some electrical-like feelings in my face for a week, which went away. I started feeling a little bit more like myself. April 1st, cut down to 5mg. The electrical-like feelings spread to my arms, but went away after a couple weeks. On May 1st I stopped taking Lexapro. Here are the withdrawals I’ve gone through since stopping Lexapro: Electrical-like sensations throughout the whole body. These have almost entirely gone away now and are usually isolated to a hand or my face. Brain zaps. For some reason I only got these when moving my eyes from side to side. When they happened, my sense of hearing would momentarily change. The fan in my room would briefly sound like the ocean. Loss of appetite. When I was on Lexapro, I used to kill a mountain of food no problem. This was way higher than my appetite before Lexapro, so I guess this loss of appetite is somewhat normal, although sometimes I don’t care to eat now, even when hungry. Anger. This comes and goes, but wasn’t a big part of my personality before or while on Lexapro. I’m usually very agreeable. Most of my anger is towards the doctor who put me on this medication in the first place, in fear that the medication has put me into a deeper hole than I would be in right now had I been given an accurate diagnosis of panic attacks and depersonalization. ”Cortisol mornings”. Last week I had a few of these and they were devastating. I became obsessive about every withdrawal symptom and was convinced I will never recover from any of them. I had one this morning and it sucked. The fear is near the intensity of a panic attack, but not high enough to start one. No more insomnia. I’m a night person. Have been most of my life. Now I’m sleeping 9pm to 5am every night, with no difficulty getting to sleep. This could also be because I cut my caffeine from 4 pops to 2-3 pops daily. Caffeine just isn’t doing much for me right now, and I don’t want to ramp up my intake in fear of inducing a panic attack and getting thrown back into the worst of depersonalization, which has somewhat alleviated. Burning sensations. These typically occur in my feet very intensely, and moderately in my genitals and wrists. I suffered a bout of this last week for a few hours, and am suffering from it a little bit right now. Ear ringing. This happened quite frequently when starting the medication and would go on for around 30 minutes. Now it only lasts maybe 20 seconds at a very low intensity. This may not even be a withdrawal symptom. Sexual dysfunction. I won’t say I didn’t have genital numbness while on Lexapro. I most certainly did. But as I tapered this gradually reduced. Then after 2 weeks off of Lexapro completely, they went numb. After experiencing the burning sensations last week, I regained some feeling, and over the next couple of days I regained even more. Then a lot of feeling went away, but not totally, and some seems to have come back today as I’m experiencing the burning sensations again. I haven’t had any of the other sexual dysfunctions like erectile dysfunction, loss of libido, or delayed/no pleasure orgasms since the first few weeks of starting Lexapro. Floaters. Hate them. They’re also part of derealization. Flat emotions. This comes and goes like many of the other WD symptoms. Some days I’m pretty content, other days I feel complete dread, and sometimes I feel totally flat. Combined with depersonalization, this is a tough one. That’s pretty much it as far as my WD symptoms go. I’d have to agree with the observation here that most WD symptoms tend to come and go, but they’re less severe and don’t last as long during each wave, and my baseline seems to move towards recovery. Anyways, I know 10 months on antidepressants is baby level stuff to a lot of the members here and I just wanted to ask some questions about withdrawal because I’m kind of anxious. How long would you estimate my recovery from WD will take given the dose I took and the length of time I took it? I know there is no definitive answer, and giving me one would heighten my anxiety if that time came and went and I still had some WD symptoms, but a ballpark would be helpful. I’m 28 years of age. What can I do to speed up the process of recovering from WD symptoms? Right now I take a multivitamin daily, as well as some fish oil 2-3 times per day, and get 8 hours of sleep per night. I will admit my diet is crap, also tfw no exercise. Do any of the WD symptoms, such as burning sensations, numbness followed by feeling, leg tingling, etc indicate my nervous system is repairing itself? What can I do to help my nervous system go back to normal?
  16. Hi all, New here. Was on Sertraline for 2.5 years until this Christmastime. Initially 25 then 50mg, attempted to go up to 100mg under the direction of my doctor. Suffered significant diarrhea due to this change, and so went back down to 50mg. And that is when the real issues started. Though I was not aware of what was happening. I was prescribed it during the midst of the breakup of my marriage, which started to break down due to the fact that my ex suffered significant pain on intercourse, which had meant our sex life had pretty much always been one of disappointment and difficulty. Towards the end of last year, I started to realise something wasn't right. I was in a fog, I have moved several times in the last few years as I got my life back on track. I moved to the Bay area in June. I am in the process of trying to start a new relationship, which started just before Christmas last year. I had the sudden realisation that I was having significant sexual side effects. To my horror, once I realised this, I also 'came to' and realised that this had been going on for maybe 6-8 months previously, and progressively getting worse, but I simply hadn't noticed because I had been in a complete fog. I was skipping doses... just unaware of my surroundings. I was having brain zaps, dizziness, confusion, night sweats, significantly decreased cognitive ability, memory loss, depersonalised. I remember people commenting that I seemed distant. I remember my doctor up in Fort Bragg California asking me last June if the sexual side effects were problematic and I cheerily said 'no'. When in fact they were - but I simply wasn't aware. How can that be?! Cue seeing my general practitioner, who is managing my medication here in the Bay area, plus quickly making an appointment with a psychiatrist. Psychiatrist - who was the only one I could get an appointment with at short notice - told me I didn't have depression, and could stop taking the zoloft immediately. I told him I wasn't comfortable with that, and would like to taper, and was met with a response that I was the kind of person who got anxious about taking pills, and promptly asked me what I would feel comfortable with. Clearly he didn't believe in the need to taper at all. We ended up doing a taper over 2 weeks. To 25mg and then cold turkey. I then went back to my GP as I did not trust the opinion of a psychiatrist who went against everything I had read. I am working to get in with another psychiatrist, but no appointments until April. My GP has prescribed Wellbutrin, I am 2 weeks into that but honestly want nothing more to do with antidepressants. It is also making me break out into a rash and increasing anxiety. At present I am about 3 weeks in to withdrawal. I get spells of intense anxiety, partially I think due to the wellbutrin, partially due to WD. I did have anxiety before being prescribed an SSRI. My brain gets tired easily. On the positive side, I have started dreaming again - just little bits and pieces. Mostly odd/weird dreams, but dreams nonetheless. Sometimes I wake in a sweat and a panic. But if I can find a way to go back to sleep then often I wake up calmer and more in my body. The sexual side effects worsened initially, but have probably plateaued about where they were before I stopped sertraline. However, I am now aware of just how much difference there is between how I am now, and how I once was. Suddenly my memories of what it was like to have a solid erection have come back. Memories of past sexual encounters where I didn't feel ashamed and broken. And so my desire to be sexual is something I have to fight for. My new partner has been very understanding, but I have to get myself out of a mindset of shame in order to want to be sexual in any way. Sometimes I can, sometimes I can't. I have started to be aware of birdsong, smells that I had forgotten about - woodsmoke, flowers. And I am generally more aware of myself and my environment. Like waking up from a long sleep and wondering where on earth I have been. Some sensation has returned to my genitals. But not much. Sometimes I notice what I feel is desire and attraction. But it feels weak. And erections are weak and unreliable. I have a meditation practice. I have started running and taking longish walks. I am taking fish oil with my food, and working hard to stay positive. I have a network of friends who are amazing and show up for me. At this point I am hopeful as things are early on in the WD process and I am coping. However, I am petrified that I will never get to fully enjoy sex again. It feels cruel, given that my past history was one of being a very sexual person, in a relationship with someone who couldn't give me a fun sex life, despite their best attempts. I am angry that I am in this situation. No one mentioned long-term sexual side effects or withdrawal when I was being counselled for this drug. It wasn't even mentioned as a possibility, although sexual side effects during treatment were. I will not be beaten. One way or the other I will become okay with myself again, whatever that looks like. I would very much like it to look like a regular healthy sex life and relationship again. Who knows. Maybe it will be with an asexual partner or as a Buddhist monk. But I have hope and am working to keep in a positive mindset overall. Not going into these negative thoughts, but just keeping moving at all cost. This is my journey thus far. I'm grateful to be here with you all...
  17. Hi all, I've lurked in the forum for a little while now but thought I'd finally introduce myself to give my bit to the community and hopefully track my progress too. I took citalopram 20mg for 6 months in the first half of 2018 to try to help with symptoms of generalised anxiety. I tapered (in what I now know to be a rather quick fashion) over about 10 weeks and hence have been antidepressant-free since August 2018, one year ago. Luckily, I never really suffered with many of the physical side-effects that many describe here, whilst on the drugs, tapering, and off the drugs. But the biggest thing for me by far has been the sense of blunted emotions, anhedonia and sexual dysfunction that has arisen. I noticed these increase gradually while I was on the meds, and then increase dramatically after coming off. Whilst on the meds and even tapering, my overall experience was mixed - whilst the dulled emotions and sex drive bothered me, my anxiety was definitely reduced and I did have more of a sense of resilience to difficulties. The problems really started once off the meds. I assumed that these side effects would go away once I was off, but they actually got significantly worse. Combined, they have really led to a real sense of having lost who I was. The loss of libido has been particularly upsetting, having had quite a high sex drive previously and sex having played an important part in my life. Almost as bad is the loss of enjoyment in music, which I simply don't experience in quite the same way any more. A phrase that resonated with me a little was that of listening to an orchestra, but with the strings and percussion missing. You hear the music, but it just doesn't quite seem full or right. Emotionally I feel less empathy and love which impacted my relationship. The anxiety has still been numbed, the one small positive. But everything is numb. With regards to my sex drive, it's not at 0%, and I do have windows where things seem better, but they feel so fleeting and hard to grasp onto. And often the more I chase these feelings (via porn, say) the further away they seem. Progress seems so painfully slow and there are definitely low periods where I feel like it's never going to recover. But there are times when I can be aroused somewhat by porn/sex and a few magical times where it seemed like everything was back to normal. Recreational drugs sometimes helped me feel something too, though clearly aren't any sort of long term solution. I have found forums like this a mixed blessing. There is an awful lot of negativity around, from people sadly in a very bad place, who have been suffering for 3/5/7/10 years etc who are convinced that this is permanent, they'll never recover, life isn't worth living etc. In my bad times it can be very easy to follow this line of thinking, look at the timescales involved and fall into despair. Nevertheless the forums have been an invaluable source of information and sometimes inspiration - I tend to try to focus on the success stories and positives rather than wallowing in the tough bits. I can completely understand why most people wouldn't want to hang around here when they feel as if they've recovered - they move on with their lives - and I'm convinced that there is a lot of unreported recovery. People don't stay in the hospital when they are better, as the saying goes. Also however painful and slow, it would just seem very surprising to me if anything like this was really permanent. Brains just don't work like that and they are capable of remarkable healing, given enough time. I've recently been in quite a bad wave, brought on to a large extent by difficulties in a relationship which has now sadly ended in quite a difficult and messy way. Though I feel numbed, the end of the relationship has clearly impacted me and in a sense I guess is manifesting itself in this complete anhedonia (rather than high anxiety, which it might have done pre-meds.) Though I feel horrifically numb and flat at the moment, it's all still a bit recent and I know that I need to give myself some time and a chance to heal from the break-up. Anyway - I'll try to pop back here to post any updates I have or answer any questions from fellow forum members. Variance
  18. NOTE: This topic has been merged with a very similar one posted in the Tapering discussion, so there is some duplication of post subject matter. ~Jemima Hello everyone, I am currently tapering off of Zoloft, 25mgs, after a very short time of taking it [7 weeks] due to the fact that I do not like the emotional numbing it causes. I love to feel a range and depth of emotions. My taper plan is half a pill for 2 weeks, than a quarter of a pill for another two weeks, and then completely stopping. I don't really have a pill cutter to taper more slowly, although I have considered slowing the taper. My withdrawal so far has included emotional breakdowns [can not stop crying due to the thought of being emotionally numb forever], and increased anxiety, which I am on Ativan for. I hope that I am not emotionally numb forever...I'm scared of never being able to feel again. I start crying because I fear that all of my senses will be reduced forever and I will live in a world without color. I am going to begin day 6 of the taper today...currently at half a pill or about 11.5 mgs...wish me luck.. theelt712
  19. Hi everyone. Long story short, I lost someone close to me and was having a difficult time dealing w/ the grief. Went to my GP who prescribed Lexapro. I only took a small dose for 3 months. Like immediately, my genitals went numb, especially my clitoris area. I dealt with it for a while because my doctor said it should get better with time. When I realized it wasn't improving at all, I came off of it, tapering fairly quickly. Fortunately for me, I didn't experience withdrawal symptoms. Then again, I didn't really experience much improvement in depression anyway. I suspect I was never depressed. Just sad. I expected the sexual numbness, no libido, and lack of orgasm/very weak orgasm to improve upon stopping but I am 4 months out with very little improvement. I feel like vaginally, I'm less numb but it's as though my clitoris isn't even there still. I can climax with my BF but it takes so much time (and A LOT of pressure ... feels like I'm wearing like 2 layers of clothing over that area is the best way I can describe it!) A lot of times I seriously just fake it. It's so discouraging. I feel bad for him because our sex life has totally changed. I was a very sexual person prior to this. I could orgasm very easily and quickly and had so much sensation. I hate to say it, but I don't even feel as attracted to him as I used to. I mean I am, but overall, I'm just so much less sexual and sensual now. I'm angry at myself for taking the Lexapro. I wish I could've been strong enough to not even mention it to my GP. I replay that scenario a lot in my mind. Of course, I've read a lot of horror stories about PSSD, so I'm very scared that this will be permanent for me. I did come across some of Altostrata's posts though, which were very comforting. In my research I haven't come across as many women's stories, so it was refreshing. Overall I am doing much better emotionally now- that's the annoying thing. Like I feel like I probably never needed the stupid Lexapro in the first place, but here I am with these lingering effects from it. I would appreciate any hope or encouragement because this whole thing keeps me awake some nights, as much as I hate to admit that. I just feel like it stole a part of who I am. I should add that I also have Lupus and worry that that complicates my recovery further. I don't know though. Thanks for listening. I wish everyone well.
  20. Hi everyone PSSD, Drugs and Rock N Roll Youtube Channel - We now have a youtube channel featuring music videos and information videos created by PSSD sufferers. The goals is to get 1000 subscribers so that we can generate funds from the views for research etc. This is also a means to raise awareness. Please go ahead and subscribe to the channel and listen to some of the music. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCn8GM6PmO-a7oP0LOxUv3iA/videos If you're a musician and want to contribute, please send videos to: sexdrugsandrockandroll.pssd (at symbol) gmail (dot) com Thanks and best wishes
  21. I was given 20 mg of Prozac back in 1997 for depression. I was still technically a minor back then. I had an initial "high" from the Prozac which was mistaken for me not being depressed anymore. A few months later, Prozac stopped working and I had completely lost my sexual functioning. I told my doctor about this, so I was switched to Effexor. I kept on being switched from medication to medication in an attempt to achieve the initial "high" of the Prozac and to reverse the sexual functioning but things just got worse. One day I was put on a medication called Wellbutrin and that caused a manic episode from the first dose which caused me to have to be put into an inpatient facility. I was now switched from just being depressed to having bipolar disorder. I was put on Depakote which stopped the manic episode. Depakote caused me a lot of suffering, so I decided to cold turkey the medication about 6 months later. This led to another inpatient hospitalization and now I was polydrugged with Depakote and Zyprexa. This was the first polydrug combination I was on. This combination of medications was even worse because I was sleeping at least 16 hours a day. After another 6 months or so, I cold turkeyed both of these medications and that led to another inpatient hospitalization. I was fortunate in some ways to have the Zyprexa removed and be able to function somewhat ok on just Depakote and now Klonopin. I stayed on Depakote for years but my sexual issues were never solved and I had a lot of other side effects from Depakote such as multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease like symptoms. In around 2005, I discovered the first person who had described the same sexual issues I experienced. It was called Post SSRI Sexual Dysfunction. I discovered forums similar to this one, and consumed books by people like Dr. Breggin. In 2007, I was able to successfully withdraw safely from all medications by switching over to lithium and valium and using a compound pharmacy to taper down. I felt a lot better and recovered from some of the damages caused by the medications. I began social drinking in 2008 because I felt like I missed out on such a big part of my life. About 6 months later, I completely lost my ability to sleep probably due to the alcohol damaging what the benzos had already damaged. I was forced into a state psych ward and given a diagnosis of bipolar NOS, psychosis, anxiety etc. After 3 or 4 months in the state psych ward, I left on a combination of Depakote ER and Ativan. I had to eventually updose the Depakote ER and switch to Klonopin again. So for the last 3 years or so, I've been on 1250 mg of Depakote ER and 3 mg of Klonopin. While I am not suffering nearly as much as I did when I was bombarded with antipsychotics like Haldol and Geodon, life isn't nearly as good as I know it could be. That's why I want to get help in coming off of the Depakote ER and Klonopin safely. My confidence level is a bit low because I feel like I may be damaged beyond repair due to being on dozens of psychiatric medications and due to the past experience with insomnia I freak out when I cannot sleep and that is what is happening now. I started to taper off of Depakote ER on 11/24/2014 and I'm on 750 mg Depakote ER now and 3 mg of Klonopin. That's my intro but I'm not sure what to do next...
  22. I'm tappering off Cymbalta after starting it on december 2015. I didn't realize until it was too late, but while on cymbalta I lost the ability to feel, so i decided to quit I tought it coulnd't get worse, but now that I´m tappering I feeling even less, I guess that´s part of the withdrawal
  23. Hi everyone, just wanted to share my story (and hopefully my eventual recovery). I am 20 years old, and was 19 when I started on 50mg of Sertraline I was prescribed it in Feb 2015 for social anxiety and took it for a month. Quit cold turkey because I felt pretty depersonalised, and cause of the sexual side effects. All of my symptoms came on during my time on the drug or shortly afterwards. They are: Dulling of emotion/Anhedonia - Have felt sadness a few times, and anger a few times. No joy, no passion, maybe some flashes of love but that's it. Unable to relate to characters in books/TV. Dimunition of visual imagination - I used to daydream constantly prior to taking the drug. Since cold turkeying the pictures in my mind are very blurred and I am no longer able to daydream. Loss of creativity - Before the drug I used to read a lot, and when I read I always felt like ideas were constantly popping into my brain. Since I stopped medication this no longer happens. I feel like I am reading the words on the page very superficially.. Physical numbness in brain - Feels like there's a great pressure in the frontal lobe of my head, almost like it is torn (but there is no pain) PSSD - No libido, anorgasmia, difficulty getting and maintaining erections (too much information but I want to be thorough here) No fatigue behind eyes - this one isn't necessarily negative, but since stopping the drug my eyes never get tired regardless of how much time I spend using screens or reading. Possible other symptoms that could be unrelated: Muscle twinges (very mild), worsening of eyesight (20/20 vision pre medication), urine delay (is considerably better now) Improvements - I saw very positive changes when it came to anorgasmia and erections around 6 months into my withdrawal. Unfortunately it seems like in the past 2 months things have gone back to square one. The physical pressure in my head varies a lot, and is definitely much better than it was at the start of my withdrawal (though it still gets very bad). I couldn't read for the first 6 months of this withdrawal because I got absolutely no enjoyment out of it and that was depressing because I used to love reading prior to the drug. Now I read a bit, and it feels nicer than doing nothing I guess, but seriously if that's an improvement in my anhedonia then it's 0% to 1%, because I still have zero positive emotion. General - I feel hopeless about recovery a lot of the time. I have suicidal thoughts but would never commit suicide because of the effect that would have on my mum. I browse through the forums looking for recovery stories, but it seems like most people who recover haven't had this constant anhedonia, and were in a more turbulent emotional withdrawal. If anyone who is in my position, or anyone who was in my position but recovered, could reply I'd be very grateful. Many thanks, Raven
  24. hi everyone, I have been reading posts on this website for a while and decided it's time to join and tell my story. I was diagnosed with Anxiety, depression at 14. I didn't go on meds till about age 19. I first took Paxil for about 6 months when I was severely depressed then stopped because of the side effects. At that time I wasn't taking it regularly or every day so I didn't have or notice any withdrawal symptoms. I started taking wellbutrin around age 24 for about a year or so from what I remember. I stopped that as well because of the side effects. No withdrawal symptoms from what I remember. Then I read about 5htp(5-Hydroxytryptophan) on the internet. Which was what I thought a "natural" anti depressant. I read that 5htp is a replacement for tryptophan which was no longer sold in Canada or US. I took this for about 4 years and took 100mg a few times a week with food. I remember reading somewhere that this should only be taken short term and not long term. But of course I didn't listen. I recently stopped taking 5htp about 2 months ago. Since then I've had some sleeping problems, headaches and pain in my stomach. But nothing too major. However the main reason I am here is because of PSSD(Post-SSRI sexual dysfunction) if that term even applies with 5htp. I first noticed problems last summer when I met a girl. I had problems with getting an erection hard enough for intercourse. I never thought much of it at the time because I didn't really like her too much. However I met someone I did like about 4 months ago and had the same problem with my erections. I also had problems getting an erection when I masturbated which started about 4 months ago, and was getting delayed ejaculation, premature ejaculation and loss of feeling which was a real alarm for me. I wasn't too much into porn when I did masturbate before and just used my thoughts(hot women etc) when I did masturbate. But once I started having problems with my erections I started watching porn thinking that it would help. But it didn't really help that much or if anything made it worse. So I went to the doctor got blood work done, urinalysis and check for low testosterone and he said everything was fine, it's just Psychological. Since I stopped taking 5htp 2 months ago and all supplements my erections have improved somewhat and get the "morning wood" on and off but it's still a big challenge. My question to everyone on here is do you think 5htp can be the cause of my sexual dysfunctions? I've read posts from other members that have had pssd but again that was from taking prescribed anti-depressents and not 5htp? Sorry for the long read and I hope this was the right place to post this. I don't know what else to do. Thank you all for reading.
  25. NOSEXscitalopram I am a 23 years old male and I was prescribed antidepressants 2 years ago, which permanently damaged my sexuality. It was Spring 2017, after a stressful period of time caused by anemia, I began experiencing symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder. I started having depersonalization, a state in which a person feels "detached" from their mind, thoughts, and emotions. I tried psychotherapy for 2 months, but it was not beneficial for me at all, therefore my next decision was to make an appointment with a private psychiatrist. He prescribed me an antidepressant called ‘Escitalopram’ (also known under the brand names of Cipralex and Lexapro) and said that these medications were well tolerated and the ‘only side effects’ that most of his patients experienced was a dry mouth. A couple of days after starting the antidepressant, my genitals became numb and my sexual functioning decreased by around 50%. I literally felt like I was 90 years old! During my second appointment, I reported this side effect to the psychiatrist, and he reacted by prescribing a different antidepressant. Unfortunately, it was causing the same problem. We then tried a third one which caused more sexual side effects. I kept taking it for about 3 weeks and decided to quit as I had had enough. My psychiatrist informed me, that I might get withdrawal symptoms which are mild and last around a week. When I discontinued the medications, I went through hell! I experienced horrible brain zaps, anxiety, sadness, shaking, insomnia, sweating, and severe problems with concentration - it all lasted about 7 weeks. Additionally, the sexual side effects still persisted at that time - I thought that it could not be possible, so I visited my GP. I had all sorts of medical tests that revealed no abnormalities. Furthermore, I got back to my psychiatrist with the issue, who said that in some cases antidepressants cause permanent sexual dysfunctions. I was terrified. Then I got referred to a urologist, who confirmed that my problem was caused by the antidepressant and unfortunately there was no treatment for it. I am now stuck with permanent damage from these medications and there is no help for me and many sufferers at all. This issue was first reported to regulators in 1991 and the first time any regulator actually confirmed the problem and requested updates of all SSRI/SNRI leaflets was the European Medication Agency in May 2019. Still, there is no research into it and many GPs say that PSSD does not exist. How horrible life can be when you have a condition, which existence is denied by pharmaceutical companies and even medical professionals. I am in an anhedonia state, which negatively affected my progress at university, and destroyed my relationship. I do not think that I will ever be able to have my own family that I have always dreamt of. Antidepressants permanently damaged my sexuality and left me suicidal. But of course, these medications are still recognized as safe and there are more and more people who are prescribed and take them worldwide.
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