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Thread: Antidepressants/Anti-anxiety medication

  1. #1

    Default Antidepressants/Anti-anxiety medication

    Hello there.

    I realize that we have a depression thread already, and thats fine and all. For this thread, I'd like to focus on the risks and benefits of antidepressant and anti-anxiety medications all to themselves.

    I've been very unhappy with life for a long while. Probably the past 9 years or so, I believe. I've tried to avoid taking these sorts of things, but my family, my doctors, counselors and some friends are all pushing me in the general direction of SSRI class medications. I'm having an especially hard time of things right now.

    To those who have been on these sorts of things for a long while, how much due they help you? Are they effective? What are the side effects? Is it true that suicidal tendencies increase when taking them? Do they make you happy, or merely numb? This is a subject that I've needed to understand more about in general for a long time to begin with, so the experiences of other members who utilize these medications will be a great aid towards my understanding.
    Last edited by Bluestars; 09-Nov-2014 at 04:58.

  2. #2

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    I've been on SSRIs for anxiety since I was 18, so 11 years. The only thing I can say is that they work great for me. I can now function normally without panicking about minor stupid crap constantly and I can actually think things through instead of constantly having thousands of catastrophic racing thoughts interrupting each other. Mine (sertraline) doesn't make me sleepy or numb. Just less panicky. The only two side effects I've noticed are decreased sex drive (only when they had me on a high dose) and weight gain because serotonin is also involved in letting your brain know how things are in your stomach.

    The withdrawal symptoms are unpleasant, however. In people with depression, stopping the SSRIs might worsen depression and cause anger, rage issues, or suicidal thoughts. For me, since I don't have depression, stopping them just gives me headaches, nausea, and really bad anxiety.

  3. #3

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    I can't comment specifically about SSRI's. Years ago I was on imipramine, a tricyclic anti-depressant, for about two years. All drugs affect people slightly differently so side effects and efficacy are not the same across the board. I would say if you can manage without the drugs via other methods then great. However, if you can't then it wouldn't hurt to try them out under your doctors supervision. Remember, you decide how well you can tolerate them and if they are working. I wouldn't let someone else tell you these things. I would also take things you read online with a grain of salt. Peruse the scientific literature, not the "Oh My God, Prozac is Killing Me" Forum. The main thing is if you really need help with depression, drugs in combination with counseling and other treatments can work, just be your own advocate.

  4. #4

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    I have been on Celexa since 2001.
    It works great for me and I do take it at night because it can initially cause a little drowsiness.
    IT also effects the libido in that you might be interested in sex but you do not finish what you start.
    Since I have been on it they have developed a concern about cardiac dysrhythmia, so I can not take more then 40 mg a day. That holds me fairly well except for in the late winter when the seasonal depression adds to the clinical depression.
    I do not feel down or numb to life with it, this just takes the "yucky" feeling away. I still have to do coping skills with higher levels of daily stress.
    The "BIG" warning that they give with Celexa is that there is no, zero, none, zilch drinking with this. Any alcohol can cause some kind of cardiac muscle electric conductivity problems. In short layman terms Alcohol can cause your heart to not beat correctly and defibrillation will not restart it!!!!!!!

    The major warning with any anti-depressants is that they will either hit it right the first time or it will take 9-12 months to get the right kind and amount figured out. There is no in between. I hit the 12 month part of the equation. I was put on five different ones. One drove me up the wall. Another one did nothing except help me gain 30 lb. is 34 days. The other two did absolutely nothing for me. they finally went with the Celexa. It took 30 days before I got any benefit, but as soon as I took it, I definitely felt something. It just takes a long time to work up to the working level.

    I did stop it after I had been on it for 9 months and the with drawl is not pleasant. It definitely takes longer to come off of it then going on.

    It does help me a lot.

  5. #5

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    I've been on SSRIs for about 6 years for depression. I'm a big fan of them. It looks like you kind of want general experiences, so if I don't address one of your specific questions let me know and I'll try to answer it.

    I started on Zoloft. It helped with my depression, but made me fairly anxious. It was a definite improvement, however, so I stayed on it. A year or two ago I wanted to try to stop taking it (more on that later), so my doctor switched me to Prozac because that's one of the easiest ones to stop due to its long half life. It turned out that Prozac was a lot better for me than Zoloft - there were some lingering depression symptoms it cleared up, and I haven't had any anxiety since I switched. I decided that feeling better was fairly nice, so I'm still on it. In fact, I think I posted about that - I'll find the thread when I'm not typing on my phone.

    Increased suicidal ideation is a risk if you're under 25. However I've seen data that the number of suicides has increased since those warnings came out because people were leaving depression untreated. I'll see if I can find some evidence to support that when I'm not on my phone.

    They do not make me feel numb. In fact it's the opposite for me. I feel numb when I'm depressed, and the SSRIs actually let me feel things again. When I started them they did make me feel spacey and relaxed - but that was actually fairly pleasant, and it went away within a week.

    I did have some sexual side effects early on. I could get an erection but couldn't orgasm (and not for lack of trying). That got better after a while, and the improvement in depression was worth it.

    I was not able to drink on Zoloft. Half a glass of wine made me feel all the bad parts of drinking a much larger amount and none of the good parts. Prozac hasn't been a problem for that - but drinking while depressed isn't a good idea anyway.

    I guess part of what I'm getting at is that every SSRI is different. If you do start one and don't like it for whatever reason, a different one is likely to feel very different.

    Some people also have trouble stopping SSRIs. I've tried a couple times, and it hasn't been good. I didn't have any of the classic withdrawal symptoms when I tried to stop zoloft, but I couldn't remember things. It was a little scary, but going back to my normal dose fixed it immediately. I also got a bit of a recurrence of depression when I lowered my Prozac dose one time - but it also went away when I increased it back to normal. Everyone is different, however, and I think I'm on one of the extremes for difficulty stopping an SSRI.

    If you have more questions about my experiences let me know and I'd be happy to answer them.

  6. #6

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    Here is the previous thread I started that might be interesting to read:

    https://www.adisc.org/forum/showthre...elf-acceptance

    And here's the link to the paper about increased suicides after the start of the black box warnings in the US:

    http://www.bmj.com/content/348/bmj.g3596

    It appears that the study was not particularly good, however, and maybe it was overblown a bit in the media.

  7. #7

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    Made my sister want to kill her self .
    Shop lift steal every thing she did was ok took a lot to get her off them almost killed her.
    Google the negative effects of ssri drugs .
    Read all you can .
    I'm not a fan of them

  8. #8

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by foxkits View Post
    Made my sister want to kill her self .
    Shop lift steal every thing she did was ok took a lot to get her off them almost killed her.
    Google the negative effects of ssri drugs .
    Read all you can .
    I'm not a fan of them
    Most psychoactive drugs work differently for different people. For some, they work very well. For others, they cause unacceptable side effects or don't work at all. Really only a doctor can tell you whether or not a particular drug is likely to work for you. And even then, sometimes weird stuff happens.

  9. #9

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    I was on Zoloft for a few years and though it helped me with depression & anxiety it did make me numb emotionally. Sexually SSRIs gave me "dope dick" I could pound away until exhausted in my girl but never come, no erection problems. My shrink recommended Ginkobiloba and that did help. Oh AND I gained 30 pounds that 15 years later I've only shed 10 of. I read an article stating that a few years on SSRIs can cause permanent changes in the brain's serotonin use negating their requirement so I quit taking Zoloft. My life is not perfect but I am a lot better depression wise and no longer side-effected or medicated. I do not regret taking and even recommend SSRIs when needed but beleave in many cases they can be weaned off of after a few years .

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nam Repaid View Post
    I was on Zoloft for a few years and though it helped me with depression & anxiety it did make me numb emotionally. Sexually SSRIs gave me "dope dick" I could pound away until exhausted in my girl but never come, no erection problems. My shrink recommended Ginkobiloba and that did help. Oh AND I gained 30 pounds that 15 years later I've only shed 10 of. I read an article stating that a few years on SSRIs can cause permanent changes in the brain's serotonin use negating their requirement so I quit taking Zoloft. My life is not perfect but I am a lot better depression wise and no longer side-effected or medicated. I do not regret taking and even recommend SSRIs when needed but beleave in many cases they can be weaned off of after a few years .
    I'll second the dope dick effect. Also I generally had less interest in sex overall when I was on the higher dose. But that was fixed by lowering the dose.

    I never felt emotionally numb. Quite the opposite. I was able to be content and engaged, rather than constantly worried and anxious.

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