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  1. I was on Sertraline for 6 weeks. Week 1,2 - 50mg Week 3 - 100mg Week 4 -50mg Week 5,6 - 25mg Stopped. I still suffers PSSD symptoms 3 months after stopping the ssri. Was the tapering wrong? What I need to do now?
  2. Hi! I've been lurking on this website for quite sometime now (Over 2 years) desperate for answers and hope. I thought I’d make an introduction post just to keep track of my own progress alongside others. My memory is foggy in some parts because when I first cold turkeyed my Luvox 200 mg I didn’t think anything of it and was quite fine without it. But my rough estimate is I cold turkeyed 7/2020. I didn’t notice any symptoms regarding withdrawal until 10/2020 that’s when I relapsed in my OCD with the intrusive thought “What if I don’t love my partner?” And I spiraled into crying and anxiety. I’ve struggled with HOCD for 6 years and it was the main reason I was put on Iuvox. Funny enough throughout those 6 years my sexual function and emotions stayed in tact. But as soon as it hit 10/2020 the symptoms started almost immediately. i even developed depersonalization to the point I didn’t even feel like a woman (which I’ve never wanted to be trans or a man so it was strange to FEEL like a stranger in your own body) I started feeling so depersonalized that even talking or seeing myself freaked me out and made me feel like I wasn’t me. I think this is one of the scariest things a person can experience. The following months I had impending doom because I thought me and my bfs relationship was in jeopardy - I suddenly didn’t recognize him even though we’ve been together for 9 years and I was always in love with him. My family became foreign too and it was hard to connect with them alongside my depersonalization. When this all happened I messaged my primary care doctor to up my dose but reinstating did nothing. i stayed on 100 mg of Luvox. Fast forward to 3/21-7/21 - I had massive panic attacks where I almost believed I was about to have a heart attack. It was hard to connect with people and cognitively I declined. Making basic conversation with people was hard. And then my fiancé proposed to me and I had a panic attack during only making me believe we weren’t meant to believe. Not thinking it was due to the pill I dumbly cold turkeyed. Who would think it could impact you so much? Not me. This was also the time my sexual dysfunction took place. i realized I couldn’t feel anything during sex. My ****** became numb and even urinating felt different. It didn’t matter how much I touched myself I couldn’t feel pleasure - but scariest of all I couldn’t feel arousal. The natural feeling you get just by being kissed by my partner was gone. And then suddenly I coudn’t feel romance. And I know you don’t know me but I’ve been OBSESSED with romance my entire life. I’ve written stories about love, watched only romance anime and movies, blushed over stereotypical romantic scenes. But suddenly without attraction or emotions I couldn’t feel romantic towards my fiancé. Which scared the hell out of me. 8/21 - I became emotionally blunted. I felt neutral, even the anxiety that always bothered me was numb. I didn’t care about my job, my family, my fiancé, my cats or what happened to me. 4/22 - Emotionally blunted, again the sexual dysfunction and romantic attraction are what worries me the most. I know it’s the medication because I feel no desire for anyone else. It’s hard to laugh naturally and connect with people. i took a Thorne gut test and tested positive for gut dybosis and out of range bad bacteria. Supplements Im taking: • Fish oil • magnesium taurate •butyrate •multivitamin •liposomal vitamin c • vitamin d •Korean panax ginseng I’m tapering by 10 mg every month. I’m at 62.5 mg of Luvox currently
  3. Greetings, after what has been almost three months suffering from a wide array of changes and symptoms that began once I stopped taking Clomipramine (Anafranil), I have finally decided to make a post here and seek out help. I was initially against it because I thought I would be digging myself deeper into a hole, but see no alternative at the moment in regards to finding hope and assistance. This really all began when I started taking Clomipramine, but manifested itself as mainly ED related problems. Nothing like emotion and attraction seemed to have been affected while I was taking Clomipramine. I was given this medication to “attempt” to help with OCD, and Depression aswell as Anxiety. I have always been a straight male (24), with a healthy sex life. I have always found women attractive, and had no issues before taking and stopping Clomipramine. The issues arose around Dec 22nd of 2021, and I will describe them below: As I stopped taking Clomipramine, I found a number of hellish side effects or symptoms that began upon cessation. These include below: -Lack of Emotions (Not sure how to describe this) -Lack of Attraction to Women (Definitely has been the MOST difficult to bear) -Sexual side effects: such as Low Libido and what first started as inability to get erect, but around the middle of February I noticed subtle improvement in this department. I now am struggling with pre-mature ejaculation, almost to an incredible degree. I am able to get erect, but it is difficult, and I have pleasureless orgasms. -Incredible amounts of anxiety over this entire situation, and feelings of complete despair and hopelessness. It’s odd because I almost feel the things I have been going through in my dreams aswell. The only thing I experienced while on the drug was ED, and difficulty reaching climax. It seems everything else began once I stopped taking it. I have taken anti-depressants in the past without issue upon ceasing them. I did smoke Marijuana while taking anti-depressants in the past, and smoked it once or twice while using Clomipramine. I was actually hospitalized for about half a month in January of 2022, because of how difficult this has all been. I feel hopeless, and completely lost. I am unable to live life without my sexuality, and feel betrayed and angered that the medication I was given to help me ended up doing this instead. The Dr. I have narrows it down to my OCD, and Anxiety. He almost refuses to recognize what I am dealing with. I will admit some concern over what part OCD might be playing in all of this, and if I am making everything worse with what has been called my “sticky brain” (attachment to problems and inability to stop thinking about them, researching about them, and worrying about them). I am looking for hope from people who’ve been in the same situation. I’ve looked online for people who’ve mentioned lack of attraction and recovery but have found few stories if any. It’s all been very surreal, and any assistance might be beneficial at this point. Thank you, and sorry for the length of my post.
  4. 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?
  5. 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
  6. Hello guys , please spare a few minutes to read it and help me with this. I am from India 25 male In April of 2019 ,during my 3rd semester break, I had a breathing issue (one side nose block )and a sleep (cycle )problem,so I went to ent doc- dx with right sinusitis (not severe ) . For the sleeping cycle issue ,he told to see psychiatry (his wife ) and she prescribed DEP®@n L combination of ( Le×@pro 5 mg + clo≠zepam 0.25 mg ) for 14 days and told to stop After stopping , I had symptoms like - heart pounding ,anxiety , concentration issues, irritability . So I expected it to go away, but it didn't .So I went to another psychiatrist after 6 month (oct 2019),and he prescribed p®@xil (p®@xidep cr 12.5 mg ) ( oct 2019 to Jan 2020) i took for 3 months. while taking this durg my irritability ,anger increased .After stopping the drug I had symptoms of acid reflux ,pounding heart , muscle twitching,anxiety ,anger issue , irritability , indigestion i couldn't eat like before my food consumption decreased,sweating at night , waking at midnight 2am ,mild erectile dysfunction , orgasm decreased slightly ,mild heat intolerance . These severe affects lasted 6 months (aug 2020) and gradually decreased ,but the following symptoms did not -anxiety ,acid reflux, sexual side affects Somehow, I graduated in 2020 Feb 2021 due to exam pressure my sleep cycle changed - anxiety increased so I decided to take it again p®@xil (p®@xidep cr 12.5 mg ) this was the biggest mistake that i have ever made. . While taking the drug I felt dizzy all the time . on 12 th day I got severe gi distress and complete sexual dysfunction that shocked me so I stopped (Feb 2021) that drug cold trukey after that I had total sexual dysfunction ,can't feel emotion,severe acid reflux, heat intolerance ,throat pain ,blurry vision ,fatigue ,muscle pain , shivering, frequent urination ,fear increased , social anxiety ,panic attack,bloating , inability to burp , indigestion,muscle twitching, heart palpitation , headache,bounding pluse , wake up at midnight , can't able to sleep at right time always varies , exercise ability decreased , anger to the peak , irritability, confusion,can't concentrate ,eyelids felt always tired ,anxiety increased . this lasted about 7 to 9 months severely (June 2021) and gradually decreased .now this is my 17 th month slightly improved i can exercise more than 20 mins but still have most of this symptoms especially total sexual dysfunction ,anxiety ,indigestion ,muscle pain , concentration problem . In my first 2 attempts I couldn't study properly and in my 3rd attempt I did some but not enough, so I failed in all my attempts. I am going to write another one this year .my problem is that i can't study for long (8hrs-10hrs) and have concentration problem .Almost wasted a year and a half of my life .i have read "withdrawal and tapering 101".i am planning to reinstate very low dose ssri ? Anyone here been through something similar and recovered ? What lab tests do I have to take ? Can anyone help me with this ? I am obsessed with my sexual dysfunction always thinking about it makes me sick . My friends passed the exam a year ago ,but I am still struggling . I shouldn't have taken antidepressants 😔 What should I do ? Plz give me some suggestions
  7. 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.
  8. Please note the following: 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 https://pssdforum.org/ Yahoo group SSRIsex (log in to http://Yahoo.com to join) Facebook group (log into Facebook.com to join) Various pages on Rxisk.org
  9. Hello, I am 24 years old, male and have suffered from anxiety disorder since childhood. The slightest excitement makes me nauseous, causing me to vomit. Over time it got worse and worse until I decided at 18 that I would start therapy. I did this for 3 years, unfortunately without success. At 23 (late 2019) I started taking Paroxetine (20 mg) because I had extreme university stress and was about to graduate. Within a few weeks I was feeling fabulous. The anxiety and nausea were just gone. I found my first job, my first girlfriend, and was able to do things I had never done before. I also had no side effects whatsoever. Anyway, I didn't really notice any changes. The side effects that occurred when I started paroxetine are gone (numb penis). However, I decided to stop paroxetine again and was hoping that I could go on without medication. Within 2-3 weeks, I stopped paroxetine. That was December 2020, however, within a few days I started to suffer of premature ejaculation. But after a few weeks, this side effect was gone. I was then perfectly fine without the drug for the next 6 months. Until I panicked again. So I took paroxetine again. But this time 10 mg. I took this for 2 months and slowly stopped. From 10 mg to 5 mg and then completely stopped after 2 weeks. The reason I didn't want to take paroxetine anymore was that I couldn't have sex. It would have been my first time, however, I had problems to get and hold an erection. Before taking this med, I was kind of hypersexual and aroused easily. I didn't have this problem when I took paroxetine from 2019-2020. The last time I took paroxetine was 08-28-2021. As the last withdrawal, I suffer from premature ejaculation. But it is still difficult to get and hold an erection. I also have the feeling that it actually got worse when I stopped. Also the desire to cuddle is not there. I feel very little love. Something like anhedonia? To me it sounds like PSSD. I don't know what to do. I took paroxetine for 1 year and did not have such problems. And these 2 months have destroyed my brain. I should have never taken the drug a second time. Unfortunately, I was never aware of the side effects. I didn't know that side effects could continue after stopping.
  10. Hello everyone. I have spent the past two decades on Effexor and the past year on Nardil. I have now completely stopped all medication and I am having overwhelming anxiety that subsides by the evening. Very consistent intrusive rumination on unreasonable fears that increases the anxiety to unfathomable levels. I started taking the medication very young, but I’ve never experienced anxiety like this. I had steady and debilitating withdrawal while coming off the Nardil, but not anxiety. Is this still withdrawal or is this just my underlying condition? I really do not want to go back on medication, but I can’t hold out indefinitely. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
  11. 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)
  12. Hi all you brave WD-heroes out there! I have been reading a lot of posts on this site during the last year which has given me an enormous comfort when things have been extremly hard. I will try to write my story in english even if I am a swede… So are you ready for my horror story? Its an ongoing nightmare that doesn’t seem to end. Ok here we go… Since my terrible divorce in 2017 my health had been decreasing and in 2019 I finally made the horrible decision to try Sertralin. I have always been sceptical towards SSRI but I was now in a place where I had to try the pills. Right away, from the very first dose, I felt an akward feeling in my body and in my gentials. I started to feel a tiny bit better while taking the pills but I also felt that it affected my CNS. After 4 months I felt ok and thought ”well now I can stop taking this poison and everything will be alright”. OMG I was so wrong….I quit CT because my Dr told me the pills were like candy and that everything would go back to normal the day I stopped taking them. That must have been the lie of all times… Month 1 Brain zaps Month 2 - 5 Completely numb penis Pain in my penis Pain in legs and feet extreme anxiety nervous feeling in my entire body Impossible to have sexual thoughts brain fog Anhedonia DP/DR Need for isolation Cognitive issues Memory issues blurry vision fatigue Month 6 - 9 All the above but now I also got penile atrophy and shrinked penis. I never have morning erections and erections can only be made by force. Month 9-11 Now is were I saw some improvements in my cognitive functions. My body was not as nervous and I had moments of feeling ok (like 50%). My penis did not hurt as much but still severe shrinkage. Month 12 (Now) I still have some cognitive and memory issues and also some brain fog but this has gotten better. Anhedonia and the PSSD is making me really low. Just watching my penis being completely dead and shrunk makes me so afraid and also suicidal. Its like a have electricity from my waist down to my feet making a mess of everything in that area. I have quit alcohol, coffe, sex and training. I can not handle any of this which is something I grief badly. Thinking about a life without sex makes me very suicidal. I am a good looking guy in my late 30’s and I just want to go on with my life and perhaps meet a new partner in the future, that dream seems permanent destroyed because of 4 months on Sertralin. Isn’t that great… It feels that I now only exist because my precious children needs me. I love them so much even if the Anhedonia and DP/DR has affected my feelings for them aswell which is terrible and makes me cry. Going through this WD is so lonely because no one understands what I am going through. I really dont know how much more I can take. Its been so many years of dispair and geting this WD-stuff is just to much. I would say that my brain has gone from 0% to 60% this year which feels good but my penis has gone from 0% to maybe 10%. Getting my penis and sexuality back to 100% seems impossible, something has been broken I guess. Guess I am just looking for some comfort and understanding from people who knows what I am talking about. ❤️ Take care!
  13. I decided last spring that I wanted to stop taking my lexapro. I was 29 and had been prescribed 10mg since a suicide attempt at 20. I did not do a ton of research into tapering beforehand, or tell my doctor about my plans. I went down to 5mg rather quickly, around easter (I didn't keep track so the dates are all approximate). I stayed at 5mg for a few months. In June I saw my doctor, told her what I was doing and proceeded to lower my dose to 2.5mg every day, then every other day, coming off some time in July. I felt like a veil had lifted, I had more energy and motivation than I had in years, colors were brighter, I was in touch with all of my emotions. Towards the end of September, I started to feel low mood creeping back in. I live alone and do not have many friends in my city, largely due to quitting drinking in 2020, so I chalked up a lot of the mood to that. This is where I should also mention that for about 6 years, I've been taking benzos in one form or another almost daily, and for the past 3 I have taken Valium every day. I never had a prescription. I noticed that I had been increasing my dosage in step with my low mood, and for this reason and a variety of others, I resolved to begin a taper. With benzos I was more aware of the long and arduous process. I started tapering down from 20mg daily valium in October and I am currently at 11mg a day. I finally made an account on this website because the intense depression and ahnedonia, and the sexual dysfunction I've been experiencing, are getting to be excruciating, to the point that I do not always want to be alive. I have a counselor who specializes in benzo withdrawal and a psychiatrist who is able to prescribe now, but I am looking for any help I can get. Is it normal to not be hit with SSRI-discontinuation symptoms for a few months after going off? I have a hard time sorting through what can be attributed to SSRIs and what is benzos. Today I am extremely concerned about PSSD. When I first came off of Lexapro I did not experience sexual issues at all, but starting in November, I began to notice alarming changes; decreased pleasure in orgasms, less forceful and less "fruitful" ejaculations, premature ejaculations. As a 30 year old guy who wants to have a family one day, these symptoms are very concerning. I am hoping to find other people here who can offer their experiences, and, fingers crossed, give me some hope that what I am going through is not permanent. I apologize for the rambling nature of this post. I am grateful that this community exists.
  14. Well, first I want to thank Alto for creating this site which helped immensely during those hard times (and there were many ) and also to all the members whom helped along the way. I finished my taper 4 years ago this month after I believe was 3 other month long tapers had failed. This last time I started a 10% taper in December 2013 after being on mostly 10 mg . Paxil and a few runs of 20 mg. I finished my taper I believe April 15th 2015. The last 6 months of the taper which was basically dust particles of Paxil was brutal. The next year was pretty rough with anhedonia and being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that I am certain ether Paxil or the antibiotic Levaquin caused (if you read my story you will find that Levaquin started this whole cascading process of decreasing health and medicines. Year two I was feeling better but still not myself. Not really interested in my prior hobbies. Year 3 is when I was really starting to change back to ME again and was interested in lots of things again. The only thin that has held me back is the physical pain from my autoimmune issues. I have considered myself healed for about a year now but it seems like there was even more to come, which is where I'm at now. Doing just great ,although I do have lower libido than I thought I would. Without TMI , was the equivalent of an 18 year old until about the time Paxil pooped out on me. I was 45 then and now 50 so I guess this might be considered normal aging but I will never know🙄. Anyway, all parts work but not as good as before and not as often, so for the PSSD people, it does get better, but at my age now I'm not sure how I'm supposed to be🤔. So there it is in a nutshell, things are really good, I'm in a shitload of pain from AI issues but life is still great. It's been a really long time since I have been on here and I don't visit too often at all anymore because I'm too busy at life. I'm going to post a link to my story so anyone interested can see how I was able to do it. If anyone has any questions, I will try to answer when I can because I'm so damn busy at life again.
  15. Hi all, Long story short. Was anorexic last year until Christmas, starting recovering from that/weight restoring in January 2016. One of the ED therapists I worked with told me anxiety peaks once weight it restored, which happened (although didn't learn this until recently) - end of April 2016 I went into psychiatric hold because the anxiety was making me suicidal. Big mistake. Doc there put me on 20mg of Citalopram. For the next month I did therapy which along with an occasional Benzo resolved the anxiety. By May the Citalopram kicked in, with all its side effects. Extreme nausea, dry heaving, insomnia, weight gain, hunger cues messed up (already were from anorexia, but worsened), acne, gynecomastia, swollen fingers, fatigue - so bad (daily nausea was excrutiating) I nearly killed myself at the end of June. But I finally found a good doc, who through the next month of tests, determined it was the meds. Began tapering first day in August, 20 mg to 15 mg. Took a supp called Serosyn with 5HTP, L-theanine, and B vitamins. Withdrawal consisted of chapped lips in in the first week, increased hunger (I could be full but my brain still screamed to eat), fatigue (different form than when on 20 mg), wired feeling and weight gain. Leveled off a bit after 3 weeks, although I should have stayed there longer (but I didn't because the effects of 20 mg have been so bad that I've been trying to get off asap). 2 and a half weeks ago went down to 10 mg. Like before, chapped lips in the first week, wired feeling persisting, continued weight gain, and insatiable hunger. As before the lips are healing, but the hunger is still messed up (early fullness, insatiable hunger). Tired still, waking up hungry even after eating a lot at night. Haven't exercised in 8 months - first b/c of anorexia recovery, by now b/c exercise messes up my hunger cues/I cannot seem to physically eat enough. Worried I've been too aggressive with the taper, and that I'm doing irreparable damage to my nervous system. I wonder if I should reinstate 15 mg (scared it won't help/cause more complications) and start a slower taper? Seriously scared reinstating will mess things up even more, but equally scared that I've dropped too fast and have messed up my nervous system irreparably (and that my hunger cues/weight, which have been messed since starting anorexia recovery, are doomed for life). tl;dr: 20 mg citalopram was full of terrible side effects, dropped to 15 and then to 10 pretty quickly, and paying the price; wondering if I should wait it out for another week to see if anything improves like the 20-15 drop, or reinstate 15 and go slower from there (also scared I'm ruined for the rest of my life, I've had to quit a lot of things because of this damn med). On the bright side, gynecomastia, acne, and such are improving as expected. But this messed up hunger is getting at me (as is the weight gain and general crap feeling that I've had ever since starting this med).
  16. Branyan's success story: branyan-pssd-successchallenges First posted this today in the Symptoms forum, but since it is my first post I will post it here in hopes i can get some replies Keep in mind, that in addition to the sexual side effects (which in all honesty are the biggest deal to me, considering i lived with all the other symptoms while on the Lexapro itself and maintained a good life) I deal with cognitive difficulty, food and drink sensitivies, etc etc. "Hey all. New here. Since coming off Lexapro (after being on from Mid 2007 to March 2010) I have experience a slow decline in my sexual function which platuead in about Febuary. Generally speaking I feel unaware of my penis and sexual realm. I feel that has something to do with the pudendal nerve. Even when I can achieve an erection it is mostly numb. I cannot get visually aroused 98% of the time, and would be unable to have sex or feel intimacy at this point. This after enjoying 2 very good sexual relationships while on Lexapro. Keep in mind that the sex declined as the years went on on Lexapro. And I am only 23! Interestingly enough, the only facet of my sexual function that is somewhat intact is the actual orgasm which still feels really good. Anyway. I have been over to the YAHOO PSSD group and seen the despair over there. It sounds like this is a permanent deal, although I have had many people try to convince me otherwise. Any success stories out there> "
  17. hi I’m spoonbill I’ve been anhedonic, cognitively impaired and mentally I’ll since highschool I’m 2016 when I abused a lot of adderall and mdma. Although I was more functional. My history also includes a couple years of Prozac st like age 13. But when it really got bad was last December after 5 days of cymbalta. I had tried a few ssris and sunrise for about a week or two previous to the cymbalta. I was also taking various nootropics like psilocybin, nac, lionsmane but I think for those 5 days I was just taking cymbalta anyway this cymbalta completely changed my awareness. It made me more numb, caused pssd, and made my executive functioning waaay worse. I’m like a different person. I’m way more miserable. Less witty and struggle with so much irritation and inability to see social lines and communicate. I just cannot understand how this happened. It feels like brain damage to me. I feel trapped. And suicidal for the first time in my life. It’s been months and only partially improved. I’m working 40 hours a week and suffering. **** man. What do I do? I don’t even like the same things or think or see things the same way any advice is appreciated . Keep your head up. I know how it is.
  18. Violets Escitalopram Lexapro Cipralex Protracted Withdrawal Hello everyone, I have been thinking of posting a success story for a while, and after some questions in my private messages, I have decided to return here to give some hope to the ones that are suffering with PSSD. Here is an excerpt from my original post about my experience back in 2019: "I started on 2,5mg escitalopram in december 2018 for GAD and severe depression by my GP. I gradually increased the dose up to 7,5mg and was on this dose for a couple of weeks (until january 7th) I then decided to taper down again, as the drug made me careless, emotionally numb, impaired my cognition and significantly decreased my libido. So I stopped it after 2 months (last 2,5mg pill taken 8th of february). Since stopping I suffered two weeks of acute physical withdrawal (flu-like symptoms, nausea, dizziness etc) but I thought that it would be over and I would go back to «normal», but now it is clear to me that I also suffer from protracted withdrawal and the symptoms are scary and debilitating. I suffer from parasthesia, brain zaps, tinnitus, severe derealization, emotional numbness and extreme apathy to a point where I can’t force myself to get up and eat. I feel completely braindead and my cognition is ruined, the past month has gone by in a haze and I can’t remember or recollect much of it. This is extremely terrifying and almost worse than the original depression. I feel dead, even though I’m alive." ______________________ I am happy to share that since then, I have pretty much recovered. From the very long list of symptoms that I suffered (anhedonia, complete apathy/avolition, complete emotional numbness (NO emotions at all), no feelings of hunger, no libido, full genital and nipple anesthesia, severe cognitive disfunction, muscle aches/wastage, changed hair structure, dry skin, no sweating, tinnitus, visual disturbances (some visual snow/unclear vision/focus), gum health issues, high pulse/breathing issues leading up to a week long hospital stay), I now only have one or two of those symptoms left, which are pretty minor anyways. That is some decrease in libido, as well as permanent tinnitus (barely noticeable), which are pretty insignificant at a greater scale of things. It took me about three months after cessation to start experience tiny improvements and it took me almost a year to start feeling somewhat like myself emotionally. The first thing to improve was my cognition, which started improving after about 3 months, then the anhedonia started to lift around the 6 month-mark, together with some of the physical symptoms. The emotional and the sexual dysfunctions were the last to go and improved majorly at the 1-1,5 year mark. I must note that I haven't taken any medications or specific supplements (other than some B-vitamins and Omega 3) ever since my horror experience with Lexapro and I am not planning on doing so either. Therefore, I do consider my "recovery" natural. Anyways, now, after three years, I think it is safe to say that I am fully recovered and I am mostly back to my "old" self. I have since graduated at my university, gotten to experience amazing new things and places and also managed to find a loving partner. Even though life still gets hard at times (like it does for the most of us), and I still have days where the depression rears its ugly head, I now have found ways to deal with it, knowing it's only temporary. I also feel like this entire PSSD-experience has made me a lot more resilient and I want people in a similar situation to know, that there is definitely hope, no matter how many symptoms they experience and how hopeless it might feel at the moment. Best, Violets
  19. Graphic content PIED - porn induced erectile dysfunction PSSD - post SSRI sexual dysfunction Before reading, this will be long, i will really appreciate if you take few minutes to read and help me diagnose if my issue is related to ssri or not. I put some sexual details about myself to describe my dysfunction. My story : 1) Background: i am 26 years old, healthy, fit, was hypersexual, high sex drive, masturbated alot, abused porn in the last few years, but never had an issue, i was able to easily get erections in 15 seconds just by resting my hands on my penis, unvoluntary 1 hour long hard erections during long bus rides, unintentional embarrassing erections when a kid jumps on my lap, with no sexual intention. Was able to get hard just by thinking about sex. Now in just a matter of few months, i have zero libido, erectile dysfunction, no urges to masturbate or watch porn. After abstinence, i get brief moments( minutes) of good libido followed by hard erections, only able to have erections in the morning as soon as i wake up and still in bed. Other than that i am dead and unable to get aroused or have erections with the exception of those brief moments i told you about. I have two explanations, porn induced erectile dysfunction and sexual exhaustion or PSSD. Now for the Story : in December, due to anxiety and panic attacks from stress in college, visited a psychiatrist, he prescribed to me venlafaxine (TEDEMA) 10mg. And a benzodiazepine prazepam 10mg. in December, i used venlafaxine 10mg twice a day for a week, then once a day for a week and i stopped. and prazepam occasionally until February. In February, i started venlafaxine but only for a week until my dose run out and stopped. I also used propranolol during January to control my panic attacks. I stopped the snri because i had delayed ejaculation, which i reach the edge of orgasm and it runs away so i have to try hard to trigger an orgasm. Also my penis looked smaller flaccid. In January, i noticed that sometimes when i masturbated, my penis wasn't fully hard, i gave that to 40mg propranolol side effects. In February, March, i suddenly lost interest in my girlfriend and i broke up with her, but i still masturbated and watched porn daily, i notice sometimes my penis wasn't as hard as it used to be. But only sometimes. In April, i notice that when masturbating, i lose erection as soon as i stop stimulation. At that moment i was shocked and since then, i had no libido to masturbate, watch porn. So could PSSD come after some months, or was it because of my excessive porn use and masturbation? Last year i could masturbate 4 times a day and always rock hard. What i tried for recovery: I learned about nofap(abstinence) in August. So in September, i stopped porn and masturbation, i didn't have any desires anyway. After 40 days, i had consistent morning wood of good quality for 2 weeks. After that, it was inconsistent and varied in quality. I had 3 days around day 50, where my penis became very sensitive, and each time i lay in bed, i get very aroused and felt extremely horny followed by the hardest erections i had in a long time. Then back to zero in the evening of the 3rd day. There were short brief moments of libido but they don't last more than a minute. I try talking dirty with a girl i know on the phone to test myself, it feels like a job, i get occasionally a weak erection that lasts seconds. But there were times where suddenly after a while i get very aroused and have an erection. At day 70, i masturbated 4 times with few hours in between, first time i had inconsistent erection where it could be good then fades away. Secons Second time, i had a good erection all time, 3rd and 4th time, i was limp and slightly hard as i was about to ejaculate. I regained morning wood after 3 days. Now and since few weeks, i only can have an erection in the morning if i try to stimulate myself with hand, not very strong but good overall. But in the afternoon and night, no matter how hard i try, i cannot make my penis become erect. Also some mornings i feel some libido and i could get erections by fantasy, but only while still in bed before waking up. Please help me diagnose if this is pssd or porn related. If this is pssd, definitely i will prefer to die, i had bad days where i punch the wall and the closet, i cry in bed every night feeling bad about myself, and i think about suicide especially i am alone and i don't have family or friends. I never cried since i was 14 after my father's death, now because of pssd worries i broke down and cried. I quit college, lost all hope and motivation for life, please don't tell me it's depression, i was depressed all my life but never had sexual dysfunction like this.
  20. Hi! First of all apologize for my english, it’s not my native language. I’m a 35 year old male and I’ve been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and depression when I was 21. Since that moment I took so many different antidepressants that I can’t even remember all their names. Until I was 30 years old I took mainly Lyrica (Pregabalin) and Entact (Escitalopram) and I never experienced any sexual collateral symptoms from them. When I was 30 years old a traumatic event changed my life (the girlfiend I had since I was 22 left me) and those meds were no longer effective to treat my anxiety and depression. Since that moment I changed a lot of different types of antidepressants (and also some antipsychotics) without any sexual problem. The one who worked better for me was Anafranil (Clomipramine) 25 mg. I started taking it 2 and a half years ago in combination with Lantanon (Mianserin) 15 mg and Rivotril (Clonazepam) 3 drops each day. I have to admit that they worked great for my symptoms, I was feeling very well. I started taking them in May 2019 and after some months I started suffering from anorgasmia. My psychiatrist assured me it was a temporary effect of Anafranil. During the following year and a half I was single, so not sexually active. Anyway I noticed a progressive decrease in libido but I didn’t give too much importance to this problem (my bad). I also replaced Mianserin with Trazodone for a couple of months because for a certain period it was difficult to find it in my country. 5 months ago I had the first occasions to have sex in 1 and a half year and was in that moment that I truly realized how my libido has been destroyed by the meds. I tried to have sex in 3 different occasions but failed miserably every time. Since that moment I can’t achieve a full and stable erection without Cialis (but it doesn’t work all the time) even during masturbation. I immediately told to my psychiatrist about the situation and he told me that Anafranil could do that but it was reversible. So I stopped taking Anafranil in October 2021 and I started taking Buspirone, since he said it has always worked to resolve those side effects of tricyclic antidepressants.I took only Buspirone for 3 weeks but without any significant improvements. So I decided to go to an andrologist, who prescribed me a “rehabilitation therapy” with cialis 5 mg 3 times a week for a month (ormonal values are normal). In his opinion my impotence was caused by a mixture of organic and psychological factors. At this point I started panicking. I went back to my psychiatrist and I explained him the situation and told him I was afraid i got PSSD. He told me that there isn’t any scientific evidence of PSSD and that it is all in my head. In his opinion i developed an obsession for the sexual dysfunctions I had when I was taking Anafranil and now some psychological dynamics cause the dysfunctions to persist after discontinuation. He prescribed me another SSRI (Fluvoxamine) in order to get rid of this obsession. I told him I was too afraid to take it because I’m worried it could worsen my symptoms but he answered me there isn’t any risk. I went to another andrologist two months ago who prescribed me 3 months of Cialis Daily (5 mg) and one month of complete abstinence from porn and masturbation (???). The abstinence improves the situation a little bit and Cialis daily almost resolved the ED but I’m afraid to develop tachyphylaxis taking it every day. I found a new psychiatrist who believes me and recognize PSSD. She told me that there’s no cure and the only thing I can do is to avoid SSRI and wait. Two months ago I started to do cognitive behavioral therapy to reduce the distress caused by the situation, which helps me a little bit. At the moment I’m taking only 1 drop (0.1 mg) or Rivotril (Clonazepam) any other day to contain the severe anxiety caused by this condition. Since I stopped Anafranil I don’t suffer of anorgasmia anymore but my libido is still very low and I have pretty severe ED along with a strong anhedonia and cognitive dysfunction (sh*tty memory, can’t focus etc..) Right now because of this situation i suffer from extreme anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts every day. Anyway I try to stay phisically active (I run 1/2 times a week) and to spend time with my friends to get some relief from this mental torture but I can’t open up with them because I’m ashamed of the condition I put myself into. Since I also have traits of OCD I’m worried that psychogenic factors could play a huge role in my situation, preventing me to feel any possibile improvements.
  21. 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
  22. 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
  23. 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.
  24. 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
  25. 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
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