What does it feel like if Fluoxetine is actually working?

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What are the common symptoms/feeling of improvement? Do you just wake up one day feeling normal?

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  • Posted

    I started to realise daily the side effects getting less and less, I still get odd bad hour but not bad days.

    I also became more and more relaxed, noticing that I didn't seem to panic or get anxious, this has been over 6 weeks.

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  • Posted

    No anxiety- the world is a safe place again. That's the best way I can describe it. Took me ten weeks. I no longer have morning anxiety or diarrhea. My appetite is back. I feel adventurous and interested in life again.

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    • Posted

      That is awesome! I'm at 31/2 weeks. I have seen some improvement in my energy. I used to feel very drowsy and dizzy before starting on Fluoxetine. Now I'm able to drive without getting dizzy or my eyes trying to constantly shut down. My appetite has also improved. 

      I'm still struggling with insomnia and lack of interest and motivation for daily activities. The mornings are the worst! Just don't feel like starting another day.

      I'm currently taking 1/4 pill of Lunesta 3mg in order to sleep through the night (used to take the whole pill). Do you recall how you felt at your week 3 and 4? 

      I really hope for things to get better within the coming days. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone in this group. I know we will make it to the other side.

      Thanks!

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    • Posted

      This is so lovely to read, I'm one week in and am really struggling with the sickness and diarrhoea. I get terrible anxiety in the morning too and it feels a relief to read someone else has too. Did you feel your anxiety was heightened when you first started taking it? Sorry I know this post is old and have no idea if you still check it at all.

      Can't wait to get some life back!!!!

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    • Posted

      Hi Cheryl,

      I know everyone is different but how long did it take for you to feel better? I am on week 9 and still v tired all day and appetite diminished, no energy but anxiety is less, as you say, not scared of everything anymore  and less stressful but i just want to stay indoors, no enthusiasm and it takes me ages to do a simple task, I need to psych myself up just to go on my lap top. starting to worry as I need to start earning soon but there is no way I can envisage going for interviews and then going to work. very worried but in a way enjoying just not freaking out all day and crying and desperate so anything is better than that but I need to work at some point. 

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    • Posted

      Hi Louise

      I just wondered whether your tiredness has passed yet? I really struggled with it too. So much so that I changed meds for a while. Went back onto Fluoxetine and started taking them at night instead of morning. Within a couple of weeks the tiredness had gone. I have been on them for 10 months now and am feeling really good. Hope you are getting on ok?

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    • Posted

      Hi Jo,

      I had to stop taking them. I was like a zombie. Could hardly.move from the bed to the bathroom. Dreadful anxiety increase, sweats, irrational thinking, fear...just hideous. I booked a flight to Goa and dragged myself onto it. Two weeks of sunshine, good food, nice people, yoga, walking, swimming rebooted my system and I am 70% improved. Continuing with yoga and Ayurvedic diet. Avoiding all additives, junk food etc.. Head is in better place and coping better. Will never take anti depressants again. Happy for you they are helping , we are all different but for me the holistic way is the best now.

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    • Posted

      I'm on week 9 and feel so nervous today it's like I'm going backwards is that what you wasn't like on week 9 I'm becoming desperate now should I stick this out ? Feel so down and nervous any advice would be great 

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    • Posted

      Hi??

      I know it has been 6 month but I really need your help.I have been on prozac for 11 weeks for panic disorder and depression.My sleep patterns have relatively improved and I no longer have anxiety.But my depression has improved by like 10%.I still have no motivation,almost no appetite and the morning are really the worst (just don't feel like starting another). 😫😪😠😩??

      It haa been 6 month since you posted this, So if you don't mind can you tell me how your journey on florexitine was(how and when each symptoms of your depression got better and specially your appetite and when did your mornings became pleasant again).Please please please email to

      Moderator comment: I have removed the email address as we do not publish these in the forums. If users wish to exchange contact details please use the Private Message service.

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    • Posted

      I'm on 20mg. When I started on 10mg for 7 days, I was sort of ramped up from my condition and kind of excited that a large home project was going well. I was off work for 7 months from PTSD/Adjustment Disorder/Major Depressive Episode. Between massive caffeine and pushing myself to "work" off my condition, I was already revved up, when I wasn't crashing. It is theorized that the Depression, vis a vis symptoms like tiredness, is your body's antidote to being "up" from the PTSD. I was never sad, just confused and tired. Even on the 10's for the first week I felt calmer AND more energized. The official dogma is that it should take a month or more. I moved up to 20's and was fine but was recovering from surgery during week 3, not eating, and taking many other meds. During my surgical recovery I had a setback, couldn't eat, lost 25 pounds (190 to 165), and was sort of scared, but stayed back down on 10's for a while, then back to 20's. I didn't recognize it at the time as a Fluoxetine sign, but food shows, pizza commercials, recipe pictures, even other peoples meals were beautiful to me. I was joyful to see the beauty of the food. I didn't feel sad that I couldn't eat. My fitness for duty psychologist focused on it as a sign of my recovery, the feeling of joy, the new eyes on the world.  Occasionally a morning drowsy would hit me. And at first it seemed to cut my need for sleep, waking every 1-1/2 hours. But I could fall back asleep! That drifted to the point where I now need more sleep than ever, waking is difficult, but the day is mostly awake. I think its the Fluoxetine, but I'm also mostly off of caffeine, such that a small cup will wake me up for hours.

      ?The bottom line is that it SHOULD take more than the 10's to feel something, 10's are mostly a starter dose checking for bad reactions, but they CAN offer a therapeutic response. You are more likely to feel the benefits during the 20's or higher, by virtue of the strength AND the build up. Give it time but pay attention. The chances are in your favor, and there are other meds to try.

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    • Posted

      Hi Werner just wondering how you are doing in life I've just started 10mg of fluoxetine on my 11th day and it's a tough one no motivation cloudy head and really tired so want then a racing head any info would be much appreciated thanks amy x

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  • Posted

    Yes, exactly as the other described.

    Recovery creeps up very slowly - I've not heard of anyone just waking up well.

    Side effects will very slowly ease off - sometimes so slow you hardly notice it.  I started to notice I was more relaxed, my mind able to focus more, enjoying things a little more ......... then one night I was at an exercise class I suddenly realised I hadn't thought of 'it' for a whole hour!! 

    Early morning anxiety was the last thing that left me.  I'd wake every morning with awful anxiety, but by the end of the day it had worn off and by evening I'd feel quite happy, relaxed and more like my old self.  This happened daily, and the nice feeling began happening earlier and earlier in my day.  One day I woke up and realised I didn't have anxiety ...... it just got better and better.

    Recovery often comes in waves - you might start feeling well, happy and then find a few days or a week later you'll feel bad again.  This is normal and will happen time and time again ..... but this means recovery is happening.  Eventually the bad times get less intense and less frequent, and the well time get stronger and more frequent.

    Don't try and hurry it - you can't.  Let recovery come to you.  It will.

    The wait is worth it.  The world becomes a happy place again.

    K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply Kate. This is the first time I go through depression and anxiety. At first I was on citalophram and had a horrible reaction to it that sent me to the ER. Then my GP put me on Cymbalta, but did not see much improvement in 11 weeks. Most of the time I was feeling dizzy and drowsy throughout the day and with very low energy. I also had horrible insomnia.

      My Psychiatrist took me off Cymbalta and prescribed Fluoxetine 20mg. I've been on it for 31/2 weeks. During this time the dizziness and drowsiness is almost non existent and my energy seems to have improved. I still have to take 1/4 of Lunesta 3mg. Will the natural sleep eventually kick in? Also, every morning is quite a challenge getting out of bed. I just don't feel like starting another day. No motivation at all. Once I get up and take a shower I tend to feel better. By the evening time I feel better than the morning and afternoon.

      will the morning energy get better? 

       

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    • Posted

      Different meds suit different people and It's often trial and error finding the right one for you.  Glad to hear you're having good progress with this one.

      Yes Imany people find the mornings the worst.  It isn't always an indication of how the rest of the day will be though. 

      Every morning was awful for me, and like you, once I got up and got going the day got better.

      You'll probably find your days will get better and better over time - just let it take its time - you can't hurry it, but it will slowly happen.

      Expect to have bad mornings for now - they will eventually ease.  Your sleep should eventually return to normal too.

      Remember, you are recovering and it will take time.  It does get better and your mornings will eventually be pleasant and full of energy.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate! Your words are very uplifting. I was starting to get a little desperate, since this whole thing started almost four months ago.

      Thanks again!

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    • Posted

      It's horrible isn't - people underestimate what depression and anxiety actually are - completely different to what anyone can imagine.  Only suffering with it can give you a complete understanding of how it feels.

      You're not alone - it's very common.  You will get over this - you never think you will at the time, but you will.

      K xx

       

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    • Posted

      Thanks! I'll complete 4 weeks on Wednesday. Should I give it more time to make more improvement? I heard of people saying that 4 weeks should be enough time for an AD to work.

      Does that sound accurate?

      Thanks for taking the time to respond. You are a tremendous support.

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    • Posted

      Four weeks is very optimistic. It can take up to 12 weeks, depending on how well you metabolize the med. I don't say that to depress you even more but to tell you to give it the time it needs to work for you. I'm completely me again after 12 weeks. And I feel like I'm a stronger person for going through it all.

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    • Posted

      It takes different times for different people - took me 6 months - but please don't be alarmed by that timescale - we are all different.  During my recovery it wasn't intense all the time, it had got easier as the time went by.  Don't put a timescale on recovery for yourself, because if you're not better by then you'll feel despondent.  Just let recovery come to you in its own time - I often say count recovery in months, not weeks.  It can take a long time as its quite gradual.  But ..... the wait is worth it.  You might however feel much better in 4 weeks - but please don't expect it.

      During recovery you might be up and down too.  Sometimes you think you're feeling better and getting there and suddenly find yourself down again.  This is normal and this pattern often repeats itself throughout recovery.  Some people get better real quick.

      Take the meds, let them work, and just wait - and when you're fed up with waiting, then wait some more.  Perseverance and patience will pay off in the end.

      Please don't worry about how long it takes - you will get there.

      K xx

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate! Since I'm not working at the moment, I find it difficult to occupy my mind in other activities and I feel that makes things a little worse.

      I look forward to the days where I will have the energy back.

      Since your recovery was quite lengthy, was there any specific activities that helped you through the process?

      Thanks

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    • Posted

      Hi Moises

      It is difficult trying to keep occupied because usually you just want to slump on the sofa, stay in bed because of lack of energy.  Occupying yourself won't distract your mind completely, but its a start of trying to carry on as normal and eventually you'll begin to enjoy whatever else you're doing.  Even a daily walk in the evening helps - and its free smile

      Its no good frantically trying to do something else and then keep checking to see if the illness has gone, because it won't be.  You can't get rid of the illness like that, and doing things frantically causes tension, and tension leads to anxiety.

      My son had a breakdown 2 years ago and had a hell of a time and couldn't work for 4 months.  I encouraged him to take up music and I accompanied him to an African djembe drum class and he also joined a guitar class - things he found difficult becuase socialising was hard for him.  Throughout his recovery he religiously went to these music groups and he began to take real interest in them.  He recovered after 9 months and today, 2 years later, he still plays drum and guitar and is now in the performance group.  He's now off medication.

      Also during his recovery I went walking with him every evening and also cycle rides.  He didn't enjoy them and didn't really see any scenery .... but he kept going.

      For me, I joined a dance class - again the music was such a healer.  15 years later I'm still dancing and now a teacher smile

      Music is good for the soul - movement too.

      Exercise is good as it helps burn excess adreneline (anxiety), and it also raises endorphins (feel good hormones).  It is difficult to do anything too strenuous if your body isnt ready, but walking is good.

      Also taking a calm attitude to life in general is good.  Anxiety thrives on stress, so learning to calm down really helps.  Walk slower, drive slower, just float along and try not to rush from A to B.  Eat healthily (if you can) and sleep (if you can).  All of this whilst you wait for the medication to work helps to heal your body.

      K xx

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    • Posted

      Hi Kate,

      Thanks. I'll pick up some of the great suggestions you mention. I've been going to the gym every other day to at least fast walk and run on the threadmill for 30 minutes.

      You are absolutely right about the "wave" like recovery. Yesterday I had quite a bit of head pressure and weakness, but today is much better.

      Thanks for all the support you provide, not just to me, but other members of this forum. I've seen your comments on other posts and are full of hope and inspiration.

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    • Posted

      The gym is perfect - great for anxiety and depression.  It'll help elevate your mood.  

      Yes that's it - this recovery wave happens little by little ljust ike that - it starts small like perhaps not so much head pressure and weakness, then it might come back for a while.  Next something else will be relieved and will come back, and then something else and before you know it you'll start realising you feel ok - and then you'll feel really ok and then you'll feel 'omg I feel wonderful'.  That's how it creeps up.

      Am only too glad to help.  It'll might be you on here one day helping others when you've recovered biggrin

      K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks Kate! I look forward to that day.

      My doctor increased my dose to 40mg as of this week (week 5). Should I expect side effects? I have read some comments saying that it's like starting from scratch when the dose is increased.

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    • Posted

      You often do get side effects with each dose increase - yes, it can feel like starting again, but again they will settle.  Always best to increase when the previous dose has settled.  

      I always think its best to let a dose settle and then stay on that dose for a lot longer afterwards too as you might recover on that particular dose.  If you find your side effects don't settle on a particular dose then it might be that the lesser dose would suit you more.  Its trial and error finding the right meds and the right dose .....wink

      K x

       

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    • Posted

      Just to reassure you that Fluoxetine can really help. I have had depression since my teens, now 35. I've tried most SSRIs, and this one was the one that helped me. Stupidly I stopped taking it earlier this year as I wanted to get pregnant. Just had a painful breakup and things have not been great last 4 months or so. I've started fluoxetine again and very hopeful. It also helps talking about our struggles.

      Take care

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    • Posted

      Hi all, first time on this forum and yes totally yes to your comment katecogs.  I totally underestimated depression and was quite 'dismissive' of it when my father (he still does) had it when I was growing up.  You truely do not know what it's like until you have experienced it.

      As for the topic of conversation, for me personally it did take around the 6-7 week mark before I started to feel better (on 20mg per day).  I guess they way to explain it is you become more stable if that makes sense.  Have read all kinds of horror stories about the effect pf prozac but it's been great for me.  Best advice is to also maintain a healthy die, exercise, socialise and generally live your life.....all these plus the prozac are what did it for me smile

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    • Posted

      I was the same Jae - I never knew anyone who'd had depression but heard of it and used to think why can't people just make themselves happy?  Something I found out when I became ill with it.

      Totally agree - healthy lifestyle and treat yourself kindly and gently when having bad days.  Don't know where I'd be without SSRI's.

      K x confused wink

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    • Posted

      Thanks Isabel! I'm on week 10 on 20 mg. I have noticed some improvement, but still have no interest or pleasure for daily activities or things I used to enjoy. I'm also battling insomnia. I take 1/2 pill of Lunesta in order to sleep.

      It all started with sort of a break down, back in late March. At first I was put on citalopram, but it gave me a bad reaction, ending in the ER. Then I was on Cymbalta for 11 weeks, with no improvement.

      I'm really hoping that Fluox will take me all the way to recovery.

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    • Posted

      I don’t know if you still are on here. I have been on Effexsor XL 37.5  for 20 days, a low dose because I am a poor metabolizer. Is it common early on to feel good one day, then anxious/depressed the next needing a Klonipin. I feel like a yo-yo.
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    • Posted

      Hi Lynn

      Yes I'm still around wink ..... and yes it is very common to feel good one day then anxious / depressed the next.  It can even be like this in one single day.  Your body is adjusting and you'll feel like its 3 steps forward and 2 steps back all the way.

      Shows the meds are working.

      K x

       

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    • Posted

      Did you have to take any Xanax or the like when you first started on the antidepressant. I was on 50mg of zoloft for 20 years worked great then pooped out in June. I am trying Effexsor now but it’s been so long since I started an antidepressant I’ve forgotten what it’s like. The anxiety is awful at the start. 3 weeks today at a dose of 37.5 and I have had two days last Friday and Sunday when I felt just about normal no need for xanax. Then yesterday horrible anxiety needed Xanax. Today starting okay not bad anxiety. When do you know if you need a higher dose. I am a poor metabolizer so don’t know if I should kick up to 75 if I am seeing improvement at 37.5. The 4th year anniversary of my daughter’s death has thrown me for a loop. Should I stay on my dose until I meet with my doc next Tuesday when it will be a month, and just take Xanax on the days anxiety is bad. Confused about what is progress in the beginning. Thanks for your help.
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    • Posted

      With previous anti depressants I used to have Ativan as well - but on SSRI's no I didn't have anything else.  

      Usually when you start SSRI's the dose can take 4-8 weeks to settle so its a good idea to stay on one dose for a while.  A larger dose doesn't always mean it'll make you any better than a lower dose - its just what suits your body.

      Oh gosh I am so sorry to hear of your daughters passing - I just cannot imagine sad xxxx.  Anniversaries are always tough ....... 

      Yes I'd stay on one dose until you see your doctor next week.  Xanax will bound to help through this difficult time for you too.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Three weeks in,just had a few good days,then woke up at four am this morning with anxiety am I backsliding or part of the recovery.
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    • Posted

      That's absolutely normal and seems to be part of recovery.  It'll feel like 3 steps forward and 2 steps back all the time.  They're called blips / setbacks and they'll come and go.  Try and go with them - they'll pass.

      Shows the meds are working xxx wink

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    • Posted

      Hi Kate, go to the doctors tomorrow for med check. It will 4 weeks on 37.5. Don’t know whether she will have me go up to 75 Effexsor the regular starting dose. My anxiety is much better, I could go without any anxiety Meds on many days the past 10 days. Yesterday felt long waves of sadness but kept myself busy in the garden. Did you increase your dose on Meds during recovery. Did the side effects come back as bad as when you first went on. How long did it take for you to feel your old self. Some days I have felt just about my old self

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Lynn

      Are you taking these meds every day?  Its just that you said you could go with meds on many days over the last 10 days ........  

      Glad you're feeling the anxiety is better - you might feel the side effects again when increasing, its normal, and will wear off after a few weeks.

      I think the long waves of sadness are expected at the moment - your body is still settling on the meds.

      No I didn't increase my meds.  I originally started on Seroxat (can't remember the dose), stayed on them for a year but they didn't suit me so I was swapped to a different sort, after another year they were discontinued so was put onto Citalopram 20mg and stayed on that dose for years.  I recovered on Seroxat but seem to remember I had side effects when I swapped from meds to meds as my body settled on them.  I only had side effects on Citalopram when starting them, and never had any more because I didn't increase my dose.

      It was around 3-4 months I started noticing small changes like feeling normal, and it was 6 months when I recovered - and I got better more and more after that too.

       

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    • Posted

      I take the antidepressant Effexsor everyday, but have not needed the anxiety medicine Klonopin. I still have the waves of depression during the day but the anxiety has gone way down. I hope the depression eases in the next month. 
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    • Posted

      Ah I see biggrin  

      That's good you can feel the anxiety has eased - the depression should ease over time too.  My symptoms went little by little, one after the other.  They didn't all go together.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Last night I had horrible gas and then cramps and stomach ache can side effects come and go like this it’s been a month
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    • Posted

      Mmmm I didn't have any of those, though have read it can upset the stomach a bit.  Maybe make a note of what you ate in case its that combined with the meds?  Check with your doctor too, though I'm sure it'll pass.

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    • Posted

      Went to the doctor and was raised to 75mg of Effexsor 5 days ago the usual starting dose. Thankfully the side effects are not as bad as the initial ones getting on were. I see slow improvemnent and hope to stay on this dose for awhile. Anxiety comes in waves but some days not at all. I feel tired around 4 in the afternoon but stay awake so I can sleep at night. I need to take a Klonopin most nights so I can sleep. I have been going out more and go to the gym to exercise most days. I am trying to be patient and have confidence that I will get back to normal. Start therapy tomorrow for PTST and have done acupuncture twice now which helps. How long did you stay on the antidepressant after you were well? At 67 I might never go off it gets me back to my old self. Thanks for your help.
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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for this report. I have been on week 8 (most of the time I was adjusting to 20mg then 60mg). Recovery is coming slow and I was looking for a little inspiration to keep me going with it.

      Thank you!

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    • Posted

      Hi radiant

      Glad you found my post helpful - not many doctors tell you what to expect so it can be confusing.  Yes recovery is slow isn't it ....... you hardly notice it really.

      Hope it goes well - just keep going, it does get better.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hi katecogs. I have now been at 75mg of Effexsor for 5 weeks and getting much better. At about 85%. Wondering if I should go up one more time or stay at this dosage for another month. Today had anxiety and some racing thoughts. Can you have blips in your treatment this far in. I keep thinking I should go up to 112.5 to get a full recover. Did it take you more than 5 weeks to fully recover?
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    • Posted

      Hi Lynn

      I didn't take Effexor so am not sure of its dosage.  I took Citalopram, though all these SSRI's do the same though and give the same side effects etc.  Citalopram maximum dose is 40mg so I'm not sure if 75mg Effexor is high or low.

      However ... I do know you should stick on one dose, especially as you feel its working.  I recovered on 20mg of Cit which is half the max dose.  Increasing doesn't always means you'll feel any better on it, but its what suits your body.  

      Yes you'll have blips throughout recovery - it took me 6 months to recover and I had them all the way through.  They did ease through this time though and were easier to cope with.

      Recovery can take many months and it looks like you're doing well.  5 weeks is a relatively short time, though equally a good way for progress.  

      I took meds for 16 years - and have read its recommended to take them for at least a year.  I believe you can take them for life if needed and I certainly wasn't in a hurry to come off them wink

      Racing thoughts are just a side effect of the anxiety - as the anxiety eases so too will the thoughts.  Just let them come and go and they will go in time and eventually not bother you.

      Hope that helps xxxxx

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    • Posted

      I am on the lowest therapeutic dose goes up to 225mg. I have been feeling much better except for the last 24 hours anxiey when anxiety came back. Did not know if this sometimes happens out of the blue
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    • Posted

      Ah I see.  The dose you're on seems to be working for you I reckon, and think its just more time thats needed so the blips will eventually ease and stop.

      Yes it does happen out of the blue - often.  You think you'e doing well and suddenly find yourself feeling like you're back at the beginning.  Its quite normal and they will stop in time.

      K xx

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Lynn

      Yes perfectly normal on these meds and recovery.  You'll get many times when you feel like you've gone backwards.  They get less as you progress until they don't happen anymore.  Just carry on ... it will pass.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Tried going up another dose for a week but way too high for me. I will stay on the lower dose where it is an ssri and wait it out for anther 6 weeks. If it doesn’t work I’ll try fluoxetine .
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    • Posted

      A higher doesn't mean you'll get better any quicker and we all suit different doses.  If you're getting good days on the dose you're on then maybe stay on that for some time yet.  You will get good and bad days on any dose - low or high.  I took Citalopram and only ever took 20mg (the highest dose is 40mg).  I didn't need to go that high.

      Also remember recovery can take many months (6 months for me), so its best to stick on one dose and one meds for many many months before you can tell.

      Lots of people chase recovery and hop from dose to dose then meds to meds and all this to-ing and fro-ing with side effects from increasing and symptoms from withdrawing, then the same starting new meds only to find they have to go through the same process all over again.  SSRI's will not give you a quick fix - they take a long, long time to work.

      Just give the meds / dose lots of time xxx wink

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    • Posted

      Yes - and all through recovery too.  Waking was the worst time I think.  Throughout recovery I'd still wake feeling dreadful, full of anxiety but though the day started like that it got better and by evening I'd feel completely well ....... only to wake again the next day and go through it all again.  The good feeling spread more into my day until at 6 months I woke with no anxiety at all.  

      These feelings don't go in an instant, but they take time for all to disappear bit by bit, one by one.  You won't suddenly wake up one day and its all gone, but it will creep away slowly.

       

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    • Posted

      Thank you. I am going to Houston Texas to visit a friend and then going on a cruise in mid February. Don’t know where you live but this winter in Vermont in the states has been brutal with snow, greyness, and below zero a lot this January. It hasn’t helped getting out miss working in my garden. I just want to thank you again for all your help. You are such a wonderful person. Just knowing you can get through this is wonderful. I am going to therapy to deal with the trauma of losing one of my daughter’s four years ago. The antidepressant helps dealing with it all.
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    • Posted

      Ooooh I love cruises!!!!  Where are you off to?  Last we did was 4 years ago to the Caribbean ....... heaven razz

      I'm in the UK and whilst we've had some snow, it's not as much as you've had.  I've never liked January as always find it grey and seems a slog to get through (following Christmas too).  I so look forward to the Spring (my favourite time of year).

      Yes its good getting outside - being amongst nature and the fresh air and sunshine helps lift the spirits so much.  My mum loved working in the garden and called the flowers her babies biggrin

      Oh bless you - I am so sorry about the loss of one of your daughters sad xxxx.  I'm sure you'll find therapy very beneficial and help you deal with this and yes the anti depressants will help you too. xx

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    • Posted

      We are also going to the Caribbean, a stop in the Cayman’s, Cozumel, and Jamaica. My first cruise
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    • Posted

      Yes I had thoughts running through my head all day - fearful thoughts, negative thoughts and I felt lots of sorrow and sometimes anger too.  At one point I had lots of anger which used to frighten me.

      The medication helped with all this plus I read lots of books about what was happening to me.

      Oooh the Caribbean too!!!  How lovely cheesygrin  We went to Dominica, Antigua, St Kitts, Barbados, Grenada and stopped off at the Azores sailing from Southampton and back again.  You'll love it - there's so much to do on board and you're waited on, and the food!!!!!  Our first cruise was the Baltic - Belgium, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia and Germany.  We're looking at New York next which is then followed by a train journey to the West coast and back ........ cool

      Not long to go until your cruise then biggrin

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    • Posted

      It feels discouraging after having a couple of really good weeks in early January and then having the anxiety come back in the am. Did this happen to you?
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    • Posted

      Yes many times - it happens to everyone.  Its called a setback or blip and it seems its how recovery works.  Doesn't matter what dose you're on - you'll still get them.  Just think they're a necessary part of recovery and try and just let all feelings and thoughts be there - they'll go.

      Recovery doesn't mean the symptoms will just east over time and disappear, but instead they disappear and come back time after time ........ but it does get easier and they'll finally stop.  Its always 3 steps forward and 2 steps back.

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    • Posted

      Yes exactly - as I recovered and got better I'd still wake every day with horrendous anxiety which got better throughout the day - only to wake again and do it all again.  Groundhog day cheesygrin

      This is completely normal and that anxiety first thing in the morning will eventually stop.  It took 6 months for me to be completely anxiety free and the early morning anxiety was the last symptom to disappear for me.

      It will go.

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    • Posted

      Did you see your prescribing doctor all the way through recovery? Did they tell you it could take a while to recover?
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    • Posted

      It was a while ago ..... about 1998-ish when I started recovering.  I think I saw my doctor often when I was recovering, and I think I only saw the psych team twice.  The meds were relatively new here back then and remember the psych doc explaining with diagrams how the meds worked but don't remember anyone saying it would take a long time.  I wasn't told there'd be setbacks either.  I actually just thought they were just another medication to try and didn't expect to recover at all, so it was quite a surprise when things started happening.

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    • Posted

      Thank you. I went to see my NP and she assured me that it could still take a while for me to feel like my old self. She is keeping my Meds where they are after 8 weeks. She told me that trauma can take a while especially losing a child. She said too keep going to the gym, therapy, and a trip to a warm relaxing place could help me a lot. My husband and my other daughter don’t really speak much about Kyra so I cry and get angry ,when I am alone now it helps with the aniety when I let it out
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    • Posted

      Hi katecogs, Just wondering if you are still on this site and if were you on anti depressants for anxiety and what were your symptons?
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Hi raj

      No I'm not on medication anymore - but yes I was on it for anxiety and took it for a good 16 years - came off it about 18 months ago.  Do you mean symptoms due to the meds?  Apart from having anxiety symptoms i.e. anxiety, depression, restlessness, feelings of unreliability, headiness, unable to concentrate etc etc, the meds exaggerated these symptoms plus gave me nausea, insomnia and an inner shake.  The nausea and insomnia subsided after a month or so, and the anxiety symptoms eased over the next few months with anxiety being the last symptoms to disappear after 6 months.

       

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    • Posted

      I just started fluoxetine and reading your encouraging and motivating words has been very helpful and has made me very excited to feel better! Thank you so much you are truly making a differencebiggrin
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    • Posted

      I just started taking fluoxetine two weeks ago.  I don't know if it's helping.  How can you tell? Is it possible to tell this early? I had good days when I first started taking it because I was in the hospital in a safe environment, but now that I'm out I've slipped backwards.  I cried for almost three hours last night.

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    • Posted

      People deal with loss differently.  I'm someone who needs to talk through any situations whereas my husband tends to go quiet on things too.  Yes exercise is one of the biggest things that's recommended - exercise helps burn excess adrenaline.

      How are things today?

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    • Posted

      Its good to talk isn't it - and knowing people have gone through this and out the other side too is helpful.  It will get better.  For me, though it was horrendous to suffer I strangely now feel grateful for the experience as its made me look at life differently and to also appreciate every little thing in life.

      K x

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    • Posted

      2 weeks is really early to tell.  Some people do feel well in the first few weeks then find side effects start setting in, and a few people start feeling well straight away.

      Throughout recovery your emotions and mood will be up and down (down days are blips / setbacks).  One day you'll feel hopeful and can see the way forward and then next day you'll feel like you're back down in that dark hole again.  That's perfectly normal and seems to be the way recovery works.

      Many people start seeing changes around 3 months ...... some earlier and some later.  Just keep going with your meds / dose, relax towards those difficult days and remind yourself this is just part of the healing process.

      There'll be many blips, but pass through each one and you'll begin to see in time they'll get easier and you'll begin to feel like yourself again.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Got back from my cruise which was nice to two feet of snow in Vermont. Finally went to see a psychiatrist when I was in Texas and the antidepressant I was on was not working well at all. I am cross tapering to get on Lexapro which is an ssri., from venlafaxine which is a snri. He said he rarely prescribes venlafaxine because it is very hard to withdraw from. I am now down to 37.5 for 3 days but have brain fog, headaches and exhaustion, but I think after 10 days the Lexapro is starting to work.My anxiety has been better the past two days so I am optimistic. I will not attempt to withdraw from the old antidepressant to zero for a month when the Lexapro is fully working. Hope you are doing well. I’ll keep you updated.
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    • Posted

      Ooooh the cruise!!!  How was it?  Wow 2 feet of snow?  Makes us in the UK look feeble as we struggle with a few inches haha cheesygrin  Trouble is we're never equipped to deal with it and everything grinds to halt here. rolleyes

      Yes Venlafaxine is an SNRI - similar to an SSRI but work on different neurotransmitters.  An SSRI and an SNRI both affect absorption of serotonin, but an SNRI also affects norepinephrine levels in the brain - so depending on which 'chemicals' are depleted depends which of these meds would be more suitable for you.

      Withdrawing from meds can be tricky, but cross tapering will help stop the full side effects I expect.  Glad to hear the anxiety is feeling more eased.  Don't forget it could rise occasionally, but don't worry as its often just the way meds work and its your body settling down.  

      Good idea not to rush to withdraw from the old meds - slower the better so your body adapts.

      Thanks am doing well, though suffering with a cold this week sad  I hardly ever get colds (I swear its because I always take zinc ....... and strangely I haven't take it for a while) ...... mmm eek

      Yes let me know how its going!!

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hey Kate! You seem to be quite the popular person on here! Thought I would run something by you, I have been on fluoxetine for almost two weeks now. Started at 10mg and upped to 20mg over the course of 10 days, this is my second day taking my 20mg (I’m set to take another I. About 2 hours) but is it normal to wake up feeling way better and that the world seems like a safer place? Like does that mean that the meds are working? I still don’t have interest in things I normally do but went for a walk and felt like I was viewing the world differently like it wasn’t an anxiety filled hellhole. Sorry if not allowed to use that language. Pretty much I am having some side effects still but when I drag myself out of bed I feel almost semi normal
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    • Posted

      Hi I'm not Kate, but a recent fluoxetine patient. Anxiety and Depression mixed, confusion, hypervigilent, exaggerated fight or flight. Forced off work. All caused by long series of incidents at work. My new personality didn't play well at home either. A year of therapy and six months off work did not make enough improvement so went for meds. My life had felt like what I think you are describing. Within a couple days of starting the 10's four months ago I felt the new world you are seeing. Forced my way back to work, where I am no longer triggered by abusive boss. Side effects were possibly some light dizziness that could also have been caused by rapid weight loss from unrelated surgery a few weeks after pill start.  Another possible side effect is occasionally feeling cold and "quiet". Like low energy needing a time out, nothing bad. Also, needed much less sleep at first. Woke frequently but could actually go back to sleep. That leveled out after several days.

      Good Luck!

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    • Posted

      Yeah only side effects for me so far are dry mouth at night, slight headache that lasts like 1 minute and an up and down feeling, like I woke up this morning feeling great, then I was bleh and took a nap then I was ok again then not. So sort of like a roller coaster. I’m guessing that means the meds are starting to work and that gives me hope, I want to be rid of my anxiety and my agoraphobia. Good luck to you too man
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    • Posted

      Haha am I? cheesygrin cheesygrin  I know I talk too much lol eek

      Yes agree with Brian.  Some people do find at the beginning they feel great but sometimes its short lived and that is often then followed by side effects which last quite a while.  Also some people do recover quite quick and some take a really long time - everyone is so different.

      But yes, usually you go through a mixed bag of feeling great with some symptoms still lingering, and this can also change day to day.  But it does sound like the meds are working and this mix of emotions and feelings is just your body adjusting to the meds.  It should eventually even out so you feel good all the time.

      Don't be in a rush for it to happen and don't be surprised if you have a sudden bad drop.  It doesn't mean the meds aren't working or you're ill again, its just a blip and more body readjustments need to happen before it evens out.

      As you recovery you'll find your interest will pick up.  I remember when I recovered I suddenly started noticing everything around me from how pretty flowers looked to how leaves on a tree shone in the light ........  Before I'd have just said 'what flowers' and not even seen them rolleyes

      Yes thats right - you do start viewing the world differently and you won't be constantly thinking anxiously, or seeing everything through anxious eyes.

      Mornings are often the worst - but once up, your day can be quite different to how you first feel.

      I took 6 months to recover on meds, for some people its much quicker and others even longer.  Give the meds as much time as they need, ride that bumpy road and just keep going.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hey Brian

      I know that feeling of having an abusive boss - I left my job 6 years ago because of a vile b*tch who I'm sure had a toxic personality - this wasn't the cause of my anxiety btw as was recovered by then, but it started to affect me and as I wasn't being listened to decided to quit as couldn't go down that road again.  Its appalling how much of it is around. eek

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    • Posted

      Yeah today is much worse than yesterday..I kept having dreams of people killing me, not attempting to but actually doing it, it was very scary. Constantly tossing and turning and didn’t get a restful nights sleep at all and my anxiety is at an all timw high right now, thank god for the klonopin I took an hour ago or I would be toast. I’m getting to the point where I can’t handle this anymore, I’m getting scared of my doses and want the side effects to stop. I’m so overwhelmed at the moment and don’t know what to do.
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    • Posted

      Yes that happens - some days can feel really bad, and others bearable.  Over time this up & down different days gets easier as the anxiety eases. The first weeks really are the worst on the meds - they heighten your anxiety (oh joy), so it'll get worse before it gets better.

      It can take months to start feeling better, and getting through those early weeks and beyond that can be tough.

      Exercise is good as it helps burn the excess adrenaline.  Just a daily walk will help as also being outside is very therapeutic, but if you can't walk far from from home then just being in the garden is good.

      I'll message you too.

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    • Posted

      Hey Kate, so I took my first dose this morning and have been extremely emotional! I’m assuming it’s the fluoxetine. What do you think? I didn’t think it would have an effect on me that fast.... maybe it’s just me
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Jennco - yes it probably is, it can play up your emotions.  There'll be a few strange side effects I expect but they do wear off.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Made it through 2 weeks today. Side effects mostly stomachaches and cramps, constipation and of course anxiety. Have a horrible cold virus so hard to know what is a side effect now..  I am eating and sleeping better. Trying to stay patient. It’s still really cold here so not able to work outside. Spring is supposed to start next week. 2 “ of snow this morning.
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Ah a cold can sometimes set you back a bit too - weird how the body responds to everything.  The side effects usually wear off which can take a few weeks or even months sometimes.  Glad you're sleeping better - all these side effects ease little by little, one at a time wink

      Blimey - is it still snowing?  Sprint is here now and we've gone from snow a few weeks ago to 25° sunshine!!  Crazy British weather ....

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    • Posted

      I just hit the 4 week mark 28 days in. Just reading your posts keeps me going when my patience gets real low. Just knowing others have made it through gives me hope.
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Lynn

      Well done for getting to 4 weeks!  Yes it can be tough, not only suffering with anxiety / depression, but dealing with the meds too.  Glad my posts have helped - and yes just that little bit more patience - just keep going as you'll begin to feel small changes.

      K x

       

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    • Posted

      Therapist who was pre scribing Prozac at at a clinic I was going to told the social worker that at  28 days I should not be having bad anxiety still and maybe I need another antidepressant. Did the drug initiationly heighten your anxiety for a bit.  I am eating again and sleeping again. I see a new psychiatrist on Monday near home. I know from my last experience it can take 8 to 12 weeks to kick in. Also from reading this forum. Why do educated doctors pull the rug out from you.
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Sadly educated doctors are often clueless about these medicines, which behaves like no other medicine.  They, along with patients who first start out taking them, have no idea what it feels like or just how long it takes - until they try them.

      It seems the most educated are the people who take these meds.

      No don’t change meds.  If you tried another type of SSRI’s you still wouldn’t be well by 4 weeks, so would he want to try even more?  Yes it can be around 3 months that you start noticing changes and it might be more months before feeling really well.  Everyone’s different so it could be quicker or longer for you.

      Recovery comes in waves too, so when you start feeling better don’t be surprised when the anxiety comes back as it will come and go.

      I am sorry your doctor isn’t knowledgable ... but don’t forget it’s your body and you’re in the driving seat.  When you’re better you can go back to him and say ‘see, I told you so’ lol.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hi Kate thank you so much for all your posts they have helped reading them this morning.  I have completed four weeks on fluoxitine and had an awful day yesterday anxiety adrenaline rushes went to gp who prescribed me a sleeping tablet to take if I need it.  Don't feel to bad at the mo just feel sick any advice wouldn't be greatly appreciated .  I was one of the them who was doing really well and then had that really horrible day yesterday

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    • Posted

      Hi Edward

      4 weeks is still early, and you're doing well getting that far already.  Those first weeks are the worst.

      Recovery does come in waves, some days feeling far worse than others.  Exercise helps as it burns excess adrenaline, and endorphins make you feel better too.  Sometimes even just a daily walk in the morning is good - and its good to be outside amongst nature.

      Those blips will come and go though (waves) - it seems all part of recovery.  Accepting they'll happen, don't fight them, relax towards them and let each one pass is better than tensing and fighting them.

      Sleep is good, though of course that can be an issue for a while, but it should return.

      Just keep going ....... the meds can be tough and they do heighten symptoms for a while, but it really does get easier.

      K x

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    • Posted

      Well guys this is 10 weeks and 1 day had a awful week and a half failed to get to my local shop after walking half way there yesterday so today I'm going to try again I'm shaking but we have to keep trying so that's my intention today I have my son with me today so hopefully this will help wish me luck guys simple things have become so difficult and I'm sure a lot you can relate to this but I know baby steps is needed just trying to stay calm and control my thoughts I will post later how I got on fingers crossed for me x

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    • Posted

      I just hit 30 days today too Edwardsamy. Worked all day in my garden with horrible anxiety and intrusive thoughts. I forced myself to go into town and not give in to the fear. Yesterday was better, when will this stop. I take 50mgs of Trazadone and I sleep through the night . Then morning comes and back to the horrible anxiety.
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    • Posted

      Hi lynn I am waiting for things to calm down a bit doctor prescribed me zopliclone to take to help sleep had first one last night never again woke up feeling empty low it's horrible will just stick with it and a few hours is better than no hours sleep

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    • Posted

      I take a very low dose of Trazadone 50mgs.  It’s an old tricyclic antidepressant which is used a lot in the USA for sleep, works real well for me fall asleep quickly and stay asleep for 7 hours. Even my Fitbit shows I am getting more deep sleep. I was on Ambien a couple of years ago, which was like what you were subscribed
      Report Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Hun thank you for your support I'm feeling ever so slightly better than I did I went to the shops with my son yesterday and then I just took a walk to the shop with my niece and walked back alone a neighbour was talking to me when I was walking into my close I kinda panicked a bit just wish I could feel more relaxed although I'm not as anxious as I have been how are you doing Hun ? Xx

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    • Posted

      I got given some kind of anti anxiety drug couple of weeks ago and omg the next day after taking it I felt pretty much right back to square one felt so bad so I didn't take anymore I seem to be sensitive to these meds although never used to be like this I go and see mental health nurse in a few days I don't particularly want to change to a different med so maybe I ask if mine can be upped a little I been on 20mg since I started hope your ok your doing amazing it's horrendous what where going through but by hook or crook we will get through this xx

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    • Posted

      Well done for 10 weeks wink  Staying calm is great, relaxing towards the feelings is the way forward.  Don't try and control your thoughts though - you can't.  Just let the thoughts come and go - they're only there because of the anxiety.  They will fade in time and become less bothersome .....

      K x

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    • Posted

      My husband says that My outlook is happier 

      I have been on it many years at 20 mg

      More energetic to accept the downers.

      Meaning you can get through people challenges.

      Try and stay active drink water  for hydration.

      I try to drink 3-20 oz containers is my goal and up fiber intake

      To prevent constipation.  I really like Oat bran cereal, Grapenuts or all-bran

      is a great way to start the day  and then I walk 15 min. in the morning and 30 min in afternoon with a dog The app on my phone is telling me steps .About 4000. and I pushing to up the steps

       

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    • Posted

      Thank so katecogs you are a massive inspiration and it's a very kind thing your doing helping others not a lot of people will do that sounds like you are a very caring person and that's a massive quality I would like to say I appreciate every bit of advice I see you posting and thank you from the bottom of my heart xx

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    • Posted

      Could I ask you katecogs if you ever upped your dose through your recovery I have been on 20mg from day 1 and now nearly 11 weeks in I think I need a extra boost so was wondering if you ever upped your dose ?xx
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    • Posted

      Hi Jane

      I was on Citalopram which is another type of SSRI's - my son was ill with anxiety 2-3 years ago and was put onto Fluoxetine 40mg (also recovered now).  I took Citalopram 20mg from day 1 and no I didn't increase my dose at all - only because I didn't really know you could lol rolleyes 

      It is difficult knowing what dose is best suited to you personally, and a higher dose doesn't mean you'll get better any quicker.  It does though mean it could suit you better as everyone responds to different doses and different SSRI's.

      Have you had any moments of clarity (feelings of being 'normal', like you) at all?  Do you feel the side effects have eased or the anxiety is eased, even if only slightly?  That's often how recovery seems to start, and its often so slight its not noticed.  Its just that if you haven't felt anything at all then it may be a good idea to increase, but if you've been feeling those moments of feeling normal / happy, then it may be well to sit it out further.

      Increasing meds will give you side effects temporarily again (oh hum) .... and no matter what dose you take you'll still go through the same pattern in getting better (still get blips / setbacks).

      Because its all so different for each person its always hard to know what is best.  What does your doctor say?

      K x

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    • Posted

      Thanks katecogs not really felt myself at all it's like a constant on edge feeling it's awful not getting much lift when I achieve things like going shopping or speaking to people I feel like I'm petrified of people focusing on me so if I'm walking alone and I bump into someone I panic and my head starts shaking not that people notice I just feel it when I make eye contact I'm like that even with my own family never experienced that before it's horrible xx

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    • Posted

      I'm so glad to hear you and your son have recovered it's so nice to hear every time I go down like this I feel like I'm never going to get out of it this is scaring me more because different symptoms I'm experiencing which is like a constant anxious state it's just horrible I been on this drug 11 weeks tomorrow god only knows how I have come through the side effects which have been the worse I have ever felt off any antidepressants but stuck with it because I had tried a few others before it so had no choice really my doctor makes me feel like I'm a constant burden been waiting days for her to get back to me so I can ask for my dose to be higher xx

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    • Posted

      Hi Jane

      Yes I remember feeling constantly on edge - irritable and angry too, almost as if I had constant PMT.

      No you don’t get instant relief when you’ve achieved something - its almost like you have to recover ‘blind’ (doing things and take meds but not having anything to show for it - not for a long time anyway).

      Yes it was bad enough when I went through this, but it was doubly worse when my son did.  I’d rather it had been me as watching your own child suffer was torture.

      That’s very typical of anxiety - when you’re in the midst of it all your thoughts turn negative and you won’t see a way out at all.  When you’re having good times your thoughts turn more positive and you gain confidence ……. then of course as soon as a blip happens all that ‘good’ goes completely out the window.

      I spent 16 years on antidepressants which did nothing for my anxiety - eventually was put onto SSRI’s (when they first came out) and within 6 months I’d recovered.

      Oh I’m so sorry you have that experience with your doctor - ‘bedside manner’ makes all the difference.  You have a genuine illness just the same as anyone else - it does make me cross when people have this behaviour towards those who suffer with anxiety / depression.  Its real - its not in our heads.

      Did you get to speak to your doctor?

      K x

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    • Posted

      Hello, just read through this whole thread and it was really helpful, if anything to make me feel like I'm not alone in this battle.

      Kate, you are amazingly helpful. Really hoping you can give me some words of wisdom to help my though.

      I was on lexapro for a month, it made my depression SO MUCH WORSE. I talking constant crying, constant sadness and hopelessness. It was awful. Before the meds, I would have good days and bad days, but those all went away and were just bad. All the time.

      Ive been on fluoxetine for 3 days now and I am concerned with some conflicting feelings. Im on 20mg and have been taking at night. I tend to stay up very late and sleep about 5 hours a day on work weeks. Im on a diet that gives me more energy so generally I am not tired even with 5 hours sleep. 

      I found that within 1 hour of taking the meds I feel an energy burst, and the bad anxious thoughts are quieter. I go to bed shortly after this though. When I wake up, the thoughts are still there and sometimes racing. I find I do not cry for the first half of the day, but sometime I have to fight back tears. Around hours 12-15 I crash. It feels like the meds just completely stop and a veil is lifted and the depression comes back. The anxiety comes back. Everything is upsetting. I feel alone, hopeless, like no one cares about me if I even existed. This happens when I am at work, and especially when I get home. Im fighting a lot of issues with being afraid of losing my best friend or being replaced or hated by other people, and those feelings come at my full force. I just cry, and want to dissapear all the while feeling horrible.

      Im sure it will take time to adjust, but I feel like if its doing anything at all for part of the day that is a sign it might help me. But what if the dose is wrong, or what if this isnt the right med? I can't take much more of this... I just can't. When Im in the heat of a panic attack I am so afraid, and I cry because I am so scared of how much it hurts. Right now I am coming up on the 14 hour mark.... and I am afraid. I can feel my chest getting heavy, and I can't focus on my work. I know what is coming soon..... Please tell me there is hope  [sad]  I cant even talk to my best friend about this anymore because Im so scared to push him away by constantly daily being a problem with my isses. I feel alone.

      Side effects also include being cold quite often, loss of appetite. Sometimes my stomach will make sounds, but I feel like if I ate I would be sick or just pick at my food. I skipped my lunch today and haven't eaten since last night. 

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    • Posted

      Hi lynn not sure if your stil on here but just seeing how your getting on feel like am reading my self when am reading what you have written am having awful anxiety in the morning and then ok afternoon so hard JUSY wanting to know if your feeling better yet x 
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    • Posted

      I switched Meds couldn’t take it anymore. On venlafaxine for 12 days. Stayed on Prozac for 8 weeks at 20mg couldn’t go higher.
      Report Reply

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