20mg to 40mg and feeling strange, advice?

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Hi all,

I was prescribed Fluoxetine 20mg on 4th June 2018, I was quite fortunate that I never got any of the bad side effects listed except constantly yawning and feeling tired, but after 3 my sleeping improved and at 5 weeks I definitely felt an improvement in my mood with a few down days but they weren't anywhere near as intense.

On the 7th week, I started feeling down and hopeless again, the kind of 'down' I felt before the medication started to work- so my GP increased my medication from 20mg to 40mg on 3rd of August 2018. I'm on week 2 and the only way I can describe how I feel is strange. My chest has been a bit tight, I've been grinding my teeth in the night again, and I feel more anxious than usual. I know in my head that I need to give the 40mg a little longer to work but it feels quite draining trying to give it a chance when I didn't experience any negative side effects on 20mg.

Should I give the 40mg longer to work, or should I go back to 20mg? Is there any point in going back down now that I've gone up or will the 20mg just not work now? I've always been dubious about my emotions and the week that I felt very down on 20mg I was due to start my period, so I'm now starting to think that it was just the hormones that brought me down further and that maybe I shouldn't have gone up on my dose.

I'm still very new to medication and I feel like such a bother asking the GP a million questions about it, but I wondered if anyone here has had a similar experience to me and could offer some advice / encouragement. I'm really not sure what to do.

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  • Posted

    Continue taking the meds as prescribed.  When I was on 10mg I had no side effects at all, but on the 20 mg I have had some increased anxiety as well as the STRANGE unexplainable feelings.  For whatever reason it takes a long time for these meds to really kick in and work.  If I were you I would give it at least a month or two on the 40mg and see how you continue to feel.  I myself might get my dose upped in the next 2 weeks if I do not see anymore positive improvement as I am still struggling.  I know its weird how the braing works and your subconsious might tell you one thing but you feel another.  I am a highly motivated, outgoing individual but when I get down with anxiety I become a recluse and everything scares me.  I just know its going to take time for the meds to kick in again and I know better to not stop them cold turkey or even stop at all in the future because I do not want to relapse again.
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  • Posted

    Give the meds a chance! When i upped from 20 to 40 (last week) i felt really weird. Like hyper but tired, i can't really explain. I have now been on 40 for 1 1/2 weeks and starting to feel some improvements in my anxiety i think.

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  • Posted

    I know what you are talking about...I just increased from 10mg to 20mg a week ago.  I noticed I feel anxious and just this morning my chest felt weird, like hot or something, and my eyes were watery, blurry hard to explain.  But after a few minutes it all stopped.  Sometimes I feel prickly.  I had side effects on the lower does that lifted after 3 weeks, and from what I have learned when you go up in dosage it can take 4-6 weeks to level out and feel better.  I am so glad I found this board, just reading others are having the same things keeps me from freaking out!!! 
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    • Posted

      Agreed! It's so reassuring to hear others going through the same ordeal, makes you feel less alone in the world of mental health! It's odd because I've heard a few people say they started on 10mg but my GP told me that 20mg was a low starting dose, 10mg seems insufficient considering it's useage and that most dosages go up in 20s not 10s. I think that perhaps the initial 'hype' we get (in my experience anyway) from taking that extra step in taking care of our mental health by accepting medication negates the initial negative effects of the drug but once it becomes routine and some of us hit that increase we realise just what it does to our brain chemicals in order to start balancing our moods. Our minds and bodies are amazing really!

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  • Posted

    You are so right, I feel less alone now for sure since I found this board.  I don't know why my GP started me off on 10mg, but by the time I checked in with him almost a month later I told him I knew I needed an increase because I take mine at night and by 2pm the next day I would start feeling anxious.  I was hoping I wouldn't notice any side effects by increasing, but there are some...like the feeling of dred, aniexty, I have started some essential oils (breathing them) and that has calmed me, it just scary when it comes out of no where!!

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    • Posted

      Have you tried taking your tabs in the day? It's advised to take them day time anyway as they can keep you awake at night, mine make me quite tired but funnily enough do keep me awake if I take them at night and as you've experienced- I felt anxious around mid day the next day. It's possibly just coincidence or just a state of mind, but as soon as I started taking them in the day time I felt a lot better again. Despite yawning 24/7 haha! Fluoxetine has a very long half life so technically it 'shouldn't' matter what time of day you take them, it's dependant on what side effects you experience: insomnia or drowsiness for example, but don't be worried about switching up what time you try and take them whilst you work out what is best for you smile

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  • Posted

    I haven't tried taking during the day...funny thing..I always had to take melatonin to go to sleep at night, but this knocks me right out.  I might switch it up and see how it goes.

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