New to Sertraline (Zoloft)

Posted , 9 users are following.

Here goes nothing. (LONG POST) These forums having been my only small hope for the past (almost) 2 weeks. I'm going to share my story and progress in hopes it helps someone one day (plus I could seriously use the extra motivation). I've always OVER thought and stressed out about EVERYTHING, and I mean everything. Even in grade school. I also grew up with a pretty messed up childhood (sexual, physical, and mental abuse). Despite it all, I was a pretty happy person. However I could not stop having panic attacks and anxiety, and as I get further in college, the more often it happens. I finally broke with a MAJOR panic attack. I couldn't stop shaking for days, and my boyfriend had to call in to work to stay with me because I was so scared of being alone with no one to calm me down in case it happened again. I even made an emergency trip the next day to see my couselor (who I've only been seeing for 3 weeks now). I thought I was going to have to go to a mental hospital to be evaluated. Long story short, I went to the doctors 3 days later. They prescribed me Buspar (5mg day and night) and Citalopram (10mg). They are small doses, but I'm very sensitive to medications. Let me just start off by saying citalopram was NOT for me. The side effects were terrible. I would wake up shaking and so scared/paranoid. My hands were sweating 24/7. I couldn't eat, and panic attacks happened every morning. I was physically exhausted, and would wake up every 1-1 1/2 hours when sleeping (when I could sleep). After the 5th day I called the doctor (freaking out with anxiety) and he took me off the citalopram and switched me to Zoloft as well as upped my Buspar to 10mg day and night. Today is my 5th day with Zoloft. My appetite is slowly coming back, and sleep is a bit better. I'm not sweating nearly as bad. It does however make me have "bathroom" issues, but only in the morning. I yawn and I'm tired a lot (could be from lack of sleep). As far as my mood, I do not feel as anxious. It's still there, but most times I'm able to control it. I believe it's slowly helping with my intrusive negative thoughts. I will say I do feel a bit down and dull. Like a "hopeless" feeling and lack of motivation, even though I know logically things get better. I was not depressed before this, but I just think my body is tired now from everything. I try eating because I'm at a healthy weight now (20 y/o female 130 lbs.). I may not have waited to get the full effects of the citalopram, but I'm determined (within a heathy mental state of mind) to get through the first weeks of Zoloft. 

If you made it through reading all this, I thank you!! I will keep posting my progress 

If anyone has questions or would like to keep in touch to support each other let me know!

Support and positivity,


1 like, 44 replies

44 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Allie,

    Big hugs to you for sharing. 

    I have taken different meds for depression and anxiety over the years. I’m finding Zoloft to be the best with the least side effects. You might get headaches, toity issues, sweating, upset tummy and blurry vision in the beginning....but for me, many of these side effects lessen over time. I’m at 6 weeks 50 ml and life is getting back in focus. Hang in there Allie. I hope this med works out. Please let us know your progress. xo kat

    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply! These past few weeks have been very very hard. It's all I think about now 😥 Sometimes I can distract myself which is nice. When you first started did you have any issues sleeping? Or a lighter "depressed" feeling?

    • Posted

      I did struggle with sleep at first, but I think I was so deep in cortisol that it took a few days/a week to settle down, my anxiety got the best of me. I sleep very well now, I take my Z right when I wake in the morning. Last couple weeks since I’m happier and calmer, I’m sleeping again. Really deep sleep. And the sleep is very important to my head. The other deal is that you are watching/observing yourself constantly looking for a difference or I mean the drug to just kick in.  When I stopped waiting and looking to feel different, it just happened and I let it. I just was happier and calmer one morning. It was my turning point. I hope yours comes soon. x kat
    • Posted

      Thanks kat! I made plans for myself to stay busy tomorrow. Fingers crossed!!
    • Posted

      How long did your blurry vision last? Did you notice it worse at different times throughout the day?
    • Posted

      Bob, I still have the blurry vision and it became a bit worse when I upped my dose to 50ml. Yes, I find the morning worse and when I’m tired. I also find looking at my phone or TV for long periods, then looking away is annoying as my eyes don’t adjust as well. I found webpage discussing this Z side effect and that it’s common to this med. I also have TMJ and tinnitus which sadly makes the blurry vision worse.  Best luck to you. As for me, I’m going to go purchase new drugstore glasses.  x kat
    • Posted

      Kinda the same as what i've got with the blurry/abnormal vision, it comes and goes but always worse looking at a computer screen or TV. Its hard to describe it to people I can see perfectly well its more like my focus is slightly off and can't see as well in dark environment (must be something to do with amount of light) - I've had this for 2 months before I even started taking setraline (started 3 weeks ago) but this all kicked off because of sudden onset of anxiety. Been to the eye specialist twice who said there is nothing wrong with my vision as its 20/20 also had a brain MRI and nothing wrong there.  I do notice in the evening that I get slight double vision but it's very faint... and goes away if I change the position of my eyebrows or blink a few times, very odd but must be something to do with tired muscles around that area. 

  • Posted

    I’m about 5 weeks in, started at 25 and increased once a week til I was at 100. The jury is still out on whether or not this is the right dose but I’m feeling better than I was. Depression and anxiety makes us all feel so small and helpless. 
    • Posted

      So very true. I use to think I was "too strong" to let a mental disorder get the best of me, little did I know!! It's caused me to have issues with relationships, work, and pretty much every little day to day thing. We just have to push though. I see my counselor tomorrow, and making changes to better myself (hopefully)

      Hope they figure out your magic dose! Sending support and good vibes!

  • Posted


    thank you for your post.

    unfortunately just like you I've been going through some abuse in my childhood .I always been feeling different from others ,always sad ,struggling with making friends, worrying about the most ridiculous things ,not being able to relax. Around 8 weeks ago I had enough and I went to my G.P and I broke down in front of her started crying and saying that I can't continue like this,and she prescribed me sertraline 50 mg ,first 5 days was terrible I was having terrible side effects, but after that I could not believe how good I was feeling for the first time in very very very long time ,but then after 6 weeks it started to get back to my old bad feeling and I went to doctor again and he doubled my dose to 100mg .for the first week I was feeling very anxious but now today I'm feeling good again so I'm very helpful.

    I hope you will get better soon.

    P.s. English is not my first language so I do apologise if the spelling is wrong. 🙂

    Take care.

    • Posted

      I'm glad you're feeling bettersmile I'm still stuck on the highs and lows. This morning I was fine, this afternoon was a different story. I cried and just felt plain depressed. I was not depressed before this, but this road has been very long and hard): 

      Staying positive 

  • Posted

    Day 6 Update: This morning was great, I laid in bed for an hour and a half watching funny videos. Usually once I'm up, I start my day by pacing to the living room with anxiety. I got up an went to the gym (only for 20 minutes because that's all my weak body could handle), I did some household chores and then went to my counseling meeting. We are addressing my issues of insomnia (only having since the start of the medicine). Last night I only woke up twice, which is pretty good. We also did a score sheet of my anxitey and depression levels. I scored severe on both sad I knew I would about the anxitey, but the depression kinda surprised me. After my counseling meeting, I went to the book store, then went home and felt so low. I cried for like 30 minutes and just felt down, dull, and "hopeless". That feeling stayed until my boyfriend got home from work and I talked it out with him. I am now "fine". Anxiety isn't bad, I just hate the "low times". During the low times I feel like I have no motivation and I don't want to do anything, and that I'm not going to ever get better (which I know is untrue). Counselor said to give the meds more time to adjust, and to call my doctor if I notice anything getting worse. Anyways... That was day 6 of this new journey. 

    As always, I'm here to talk!!

    Sending positive vibes and support

  • Posted

    Needing support right now): things are very hard. I feel physically sick and I'm trying to not freak out with anxiety. I had a terrible dream last night that was very vivid. Woke up with a panic attack. Need motivation and a bit of help ):

    • Posted

      Hope you are feeling a bit better. The lows are really horrible. Here if you need to talk xxx
    • Posted

      Sorry, can you go outside for a short walk to clear you mind? Most times all of my anxiety symptons simple melt away whilst I’m walking, taking in fresh air. Big hugs to you today. x kat 
    • Posted

      I think I stayed in bed too long this morning and it made it worse. I do horrible with free time. Tomorrow I'm going to get out of the house. Tomorrow I'm off work, which kinda sucks because that means I have all day to try to stay busy. Wish me luck!! Trying to be positivesmile

    • Posted

      Good Luck Allie! Do something to pamper yourself that will keep you out of your head. Let me know how you are doing tomorrow. Consider yourself hugged. x kat

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