Sertraline Withdrawal Advice

Posted , 5 users are following.

Hi everyone, new to the site but I found some of the threads here helpful so thought it might be beneficial to me to post.

On monday I started taking sertraline, 50mg. Wednesday morning at about 2am I started having severe panic attacks that started when I couldn't get to sleep. These lasted about 36 hours...never had panic attacks before In my life (I'm 25 years old) so i was absolutely petrified.

On the advice of my doctor I stopped taking the sertraline after just three tablets and started taking propranolol for the crippling anxiety.

My symptoms are fading but I still feel incredibly anxious - I'm used to anxiety, but not this strong and it seems to be worse in the morning. I'm also unable to stay asleep only getting about 5 hours a night. I have a few other symptoms too and just generally feel very ill and 'not right'.

I'm shocked that this is happening after just 3 long can I expect this to go on? I'm very tired and frightened, and would be very appreciative of any advice.

0 likes, 8 replies

8 Replies

  • Posted

    Can I ask what your GP gave you Sertraline for?
    • Posted

      It was for depression. The Propranolol was for the panic attacks but now I'm not sure what is causing what symptoms. Heart isn't racing but I can feel alot of anxiety in my chest, dizziness, hot flashes, nausea...
    • Posted

      It could be either. I'm just about to stop propranolol as it's had zero effect on curbing my OCD having went off sertraline cold turkey last July. You do have to give SSRI's the opportunity to kick in to your system regardless of the discomfort and confusion they may cause your body and mind. Apart from bad nausea, I wasn't too bad settling in on sertraline but I'm well aware everyone is different and will react differently to various medications. Propranolol seems to give me a tightening in my chest and increase heartrate so that could be a factor for you. Was sertraline the first medication your doctor mentioned to you?

  • Posted

    Oh no BethieBee that sounds terrible. I have been so frightened of taking sertraline as I am particularly sensitive to medications. I plucked up courage and took just a quarter of a tablet a few hours ago and am already getting physcial effects which I did not expect. I am terrified of my anxiety and agitation getting worse as they are so bad anyway. I am also terrified of getting a panic attack. What you have experienced sounds very scary but well done your doctor in taking you off. I am particuarly worried about insomnia as my sleep is terrible already due to the anxiety - last night I had such broken sleep even with sleeping tablets. I was awake most of the night with anxiety and feelings of doom and that was before starting sertraline which I know can have lots of start up effects. Maybe starting on a lower dose will be an idea for you if you haven't been put off completeley or it might not be the medication for you? 
    • Posted

      Sorry to hear of your anxiety troubles! At the moment I can really empathise, I hope sertraline works for you.

      Right now I think I'm not going to try anti depressants again for a while - I've been so ill and petrified of whats been happening, and I was so nervous about them just taking them made me anxious! Right now I just want to get rid of all these intense side effects as they're stopping me...from doing anything at all really sad I don't know if this is the sertraline affecting me or the propranolol!

    • Posted

      just wanted to share my experience..I started Sertraline 25mg about 3 months ago..increased gradually..12.5 mg at a time, to my current dose of 75mg..I felt side effects with every increase, even though small increases..I started treatment for depression and extreme insomnia..I had some extremely hard, very tired days..each increase took about 7 to 10 days to adjust..I knew it would take time to adjust to this medication..made the decision to try, working through each will probably have side effects with every increase, no matter how small..they will resolve..for me I decided to try this medication after discussions with my Dr, some choice, my commitment to give it a chance. It is a lengthy process. My sleep is so much better..look forward to going to bed at night, not dreading a wakeful depression is is slowly has worked for me..with time. Hope, if you decide to start this, you have good results too😊 of luck
  • Posted

    I had the same problems with this medication. I too halfar a pill for 5 days and it took me months to start feeling normal again. I started going to cognitive behavioral therapy and it was very helpful. My therapist said that there are better medications made for depression and anxiety and sertraline isn't always the best fit anxiety. I glad that it helps some people but I've done enough research on it to know that I'm not willing to takeep it anymore. I hope you find something that works for you. Good luck!
  • Posted

    Hey BethieBee,

    From my experience on citalopram another antidepressant, I experienced similar symptoms going on them and coming off them. 

    I too have been given Sertraline and kinda expect the same symptoms, I had panic attacks in my sleep and a racing heart, vertigo, pins an needles, sick feeling in my stomach constant panic feeling all round but it did get better after about 3 weeks. Everyone is different, I know its terrifying beause I started the citalopram again at 20mg and had the whoosh of side effects and I come off them from sheer fear I was seriously ill cos of how bad I felt. Now ive been given sertraline Im researching an trying to build some knowledge from others experiences, personally I dont think I gave my second time round on meds a true shot, it is pretty ard going the first few weeks but you should stay in close contact with your doctor and even keep a mood diary whilst on the meds.

    Hope this helps, stay positive


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