Zoloft withdrawal

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Charles is trying to reduce his daily Zoloft dosage. For reasons I canít explore in public he wants to reduce his dependency on the Ďtherapeutic community.í Most people donít know that they diminish their personal liberty when they place themselves under the care of a psychiatrist or psychologist. At the most terrifying extreme they can commit you to an institution. More mildly you can be ordered into programs and treatments. And in many states they can summon the policy to insure that you comply. By virtue of a college degree and passing a state run test acquire legal power over their, ahem, clients. Or over a stranger who let loose with one wild act. Rarely happens? True. But what a hellish surprise to find your life circumscribed by someone who is just an average moron with scraps of paper on the wall. Shrinks are supposed to be scientists arenít they? As if humans follow paths as predictable as subatomic particles. They are more like the man in the garage trying to figure out why your car isnít working. But even the most mundane person is more complicated than an automobile. Mental illnesses are like politicians. They come and go by election. The American Psychiatric Association gets together and votes them in and out. Not long ago my love a pretty guy wouldíve made me a man with a sick mind. Given the right social pressures being gay could become a disease tomorrow. A few benighted state legislators may have tried to make pi equal to exactly three but physical constants aren't the playthings of politiciansí silly whims. Why the diatribe against therapists? Charles is spending most of his time with a friend. A less stressful place to be while he copes with his Zoloft reduction. A mix of curse and blessing. Charles is hard to be around right now. My feelings were so deeply hurt the other night I felt it was time to call out life together over. My mind knew better but my heart was twisted out of shape. (No, I havenít been stupid enough to tell him.) But Iím lonely. Iím not a sociable guy. If the great majority of mankind would go hang itself tomorrow I wouldnít miss them. When Iím lolling on the couch his arm isnít there for me to reach out and squeeze. Cutting his Zoloft dosage is a good thing in itself. He takes 200 mg a day, about as strong a dose as is given. After a few years Zoloftís help ceases. You find yourself taking this Ďnon-addictive drugí solely to keep from going into Zoloft withdrawal. I canít help but think of Zoloft prescriptions as moral crimes. Zoloftís limited efficacy is well known among the psychiatrists who prescribe it. Their only solution? Add another drug, say, Zyprexa. They also know that trying to quite Zoloft is as nastily painful as heroin withdrawal. So Charles is feeling angry and depressed because heís striving to make himself other than a perpetual customer for drug companies. If I were to find myself rich tomorrow Iíd want to hire thugs to drag pharmaceutical company executives into alleys so that their faces could be beaten into bloody pulp. : Charles eventually succeeded: Quitting Zoloft : Related: Shrinks and pills

Comments

zoloft also kills erections and denies orgasms. if one does ejaculate, the cum dribbles out the piss-slit like mayonnaise from a cracked jar.

I am irritable and my head feels liek it swims in pain when I move or my eyes look up to quick. I tried tappering until I finally ran out. I am miserable and wish I could hide in my bedroom but I have three kids. This is horrible!

The guy that I live with didn’t taper. He cut from 200 mg to 100. Then none. It was two months of ugly hell. There’s no getting around that it hurts, hurts badly. After the nasty weeks he found himself free of Zoloft. Once the withdrawal was over his days haven’t been any harder. He discovered he’d been taking Zoloft only to avoid withdrawal.

It was two months that were horribly, nasty. But once it was over he was finally free.

I’ve been on Zoloft for about 9 months now.Started with 50 mg went up to 100 mgs& weaned myself back to 50 mgs.My doctor is on vacation & only have about a weeks worth of Zoloft left.Can’t reach my doctor.When I run out and the Zoloft side effects start happening,is there anything that I can take to make the withdrawal easier.Maybe Librium,B vitamins,Gaba etc.I’m already feeling some side effects.Tingling in the lips,teeth,face,especially when I turn my head quickley. Thank you! Sid solarski@earthlink.net

Months later and Charles hasn’t taken any SSRI and is doing as well without them as he did with them.

Hello -

I don’t know what everyone is talking about. Zoloft is non-addictive, all its side effects take place while you are taking it - not after. I have taken 200 mg for about 4 years and just recently went off of it “cold turkey” (look at me, I’m sounding like a smoker) about 4 weeks ago because I ran out and didn’t have the money to pay for a refill.

I do not feel much different at all besides maybe a little more tears, a little more telling myself that I’m okay…don’t need the panic attacks, etc…Normal depressive stuff. I hope that everyone is okay and that you realize any dependencies to Zoloft are mental - not physical.

I agree that dependencies to Zoloft are only mental. I have been taking Cipramil for 2 years when I stop taking them I didnt have any withdrawal problems. For the last year I been taking Zoloft (50mg) and stoped taking them in July. In first week I had nightmares and thats it. Maybe because it was small dosage I didnt have any problems. First day of withdrawal I said to myself: This drugs didnt help me, I`m living the same sad life. No drug or psyhiatrist can help You as You can help yourself.

I am presently weaning my way off the zoloft. I have been on 100 mg for almost three years and went down to 50mg two weeks ago. I am just now noticing some minor side effects; nightmares, moodiness, some depression, and skin breakouts on my face. Are the breakouts common? The more I read about the withdrawal symptoms, the more I feel them. I was relieved to hear from Amy above. I know that Zoloft has helped my depression and anxiety tremendously. I just don’t want to depend on it. The other reason I want to stop is slight weight gain. Has anyone had this after a few years on Zoloft? Has anyone lost a few pounds after stopping? My last question is how will I manage without Zoloft. I do have zanax handy but I don’t want to get hooked on that so I avoid it when necessary.

I was on zoloft only for a year…I started at 50, went up to 200mg. Just about a week ago I stopped taking it cold turkey because I found that I was only taking it purely to avoid withdrawal symptoms. but anyways..presently I am going through hell…dizzy spells (zaps), EXTREME nausea…all that stuff. But i think it will be worth it to be free of that shit.

I have been taking zoloft for 6 years. Has anyone else taken it that long or longer? My doctor said that I could take it for a few months then quit and start again if needed, but my life just seemed like one tragedy after another, so I have never been able to completely stop. I quit for a year once before and in about the 11th month I had a what I call a non-stop panic attack. I had insomnia, anorexic eating habits, if I started to fall asleep, I would zap awake, I thought I was going to be possessed by the devil and I wouldn’t even leave my house. My husband tried to take me to a hospital because I was convinced that I was going to hurt someone in a state of unconsiousness. Needless to say, after getting back on the zoloft, in 2 weeks, it all stopped. I never had any of the bad side effects that you all are speaking of but now I’m afraid to get off it again and I don’t want to take it forever. Any advice? Can I ever be “normal” without it?

I just went from 200mg to 100mg and am starting to have chest pains. It is hard to breathe and I am worried about going to work.

I can’t wait to be Zoloft free. The drug makes me feel sick constantly. I don’t ever remember feeling this awful before taking it. I have terrible vivid dreams constantly and it is just too much…………………..help!

It’s been about one week since I stopped taking zoloft. I’m currently unemployed without insurance and therefore, can’t afford to go to my doctor. Bu, I’ve been feeling REALLY weird. My pulse starts racing at the simplest movements, I feel dizzy all the time, my face reddens and I start sweating for no reason, and my face has some sort of tingling pressure. Is this normal or am I dying?????

Dizzy,

I feel the same way too……..Walking across the room makes me feel very tired and my head is DEFINATELY spinning. I am sorry to hear about you being unemployed and not being able to afford going to your doctor. You are not alone my friend.

I think one of the key issues here is that Zoloft affects each person differently. Zoloft fundamentally tweaks your brain chemistry. Consider a less mysterious drug: alcohol. Many people I’ve know are affected by alcohol very differently. Some get tired and go to sleep (me). Some become obnoxious, some violent, some drink themselves into oblivion in a quest for more.

Disclaimer: If you don’t believe that a lot of different people experience different effects, there is no point in reading further, please go on living in your fantasy world, but remeber, reality is that which, when you cease to believe it, remains. Pardon my digression.

Clearly Zoloft is the same. Note that your brain controls a lot of your bodies functions as well as your consciousness. Going on or off Zoloft, or increasing or decreasing dosage, may have profound effects on your behavior and how you feel physically.

Currenly I’m going off Zoloft. I had an extremely bad job that in which I was stuck. I was laid off, which is one of the better experiences I’ve had in my life, and now I’m going off of Zoloft. I feel really dazed and light is driving me crazy. I want to crawl into a warm cave and sleep for a month. Unfotunately, I have young children and can’t concentrate fully on recovering.

I think Zoloft can be helpful to some people who are experiencing depression, but to suggest it can’t have serious, life affecting side effects is wrong. Some people may have little effect, others a tremendous amount. I am one of those others. To all of you who are trying to get off of Zoloft, like all drugs, it will eventually get out of your system and your body will achieve an equilibrium again. It is critical to keep this in your head while you detoxifying. Sometimes it seems like it will never end, but take heart, it will.

-tj

I have taken Zoloft for almost three years. I have always been overweight. Since the start of taking this prescription, I have steadily gained even more weight. I feel that it made me even more sedentary and lazy. About three months ago, I stopped taking Zoloft. In about the past six weeks I’ve been experiencing shortness of breath, or the feeling of not being able to catch my breath. This could happen in any circumstance, not only if I am trying to excercise or climb a staircase. It is not a feeling of excercised induced breathlessness. Sometimes I will wake up in the middle of the night feeling breathless. I am breathing, and I don’t know whether it’s the anxiety that is waking me, or the breathlessness. Has anyone ever experienced anything remotely close to this??????? Please write if you have.

I have taken Zoloft for almost three years. I have always been overweight. Since the start of taking this prescription, I have steadily gained even more weight. I feel that it made me even more sedentary and lazy. About three months ago, I stopped taking Zoloft. In about the past six weeks I’ve been experiencing shortness of breath, or the feeling of not being able to catch my breath. This could happen in any circumstance, not only if I am trying to excercise or climb a staircase. It is not a feeling of excercised induced breathlessness. Sometimes I will wake up in the middle of the night feeling breathless. I am breathing, and I don’t know whether it’s the anxiety that is waking me, or the breathlessness. Has anyone ever experienced anything remotely close to this??????? Please write if you have. I also can cry at the drop of a hat, sometimes for no reason. Am I depressed because no one can tell me why I feel breathless, or anxious, or in the middle of withdrawal, or what?!!! I don’t want to take this drug for the rest of my life, but when you stop, it seems to pull you back to it like a magnet. That makes me even more depressed!! It’s a vicious cycle!

I’m came on this site hoping to find a quick answer to why I was feeling off today. I’ve been sweating a lot, anxious, dizzy and just funny feeling. I was only taking Zoloft for about 2 months, and then I kept forgeting to take it on time and since I wasn’t experiencing any immediate withdrawal symptoms like I have with other anti-depressants, like Effexor, I stopped altogether. That was less than a week ago and I’m now starting to feel weird. I think people have made very good comments above such as, addiction and withdrawal can be phsyical as well as mental, and also that drugs affect people differently. I just hope I get over this funny feeling soon.

Hello to all Zoloft people in withdrawl! I am a nurse practitioner and prescribe and have taken Zoloft myself. You are experiencing what is called a “seratonin” syndrome and it is quite bizarre and worrisome. However, there have been no reported deaths to my knowledge from zoloft withdrawl. Your neurons (ALL neurons, not just brain ones) DOWN REGULATED themselves to seratonin while you took the Zoloft. Think of it like the neurons became desensitized to all of the seratonin that floated around when you were on Zoloft. All of the symptoms mentioned by each of you are directly related to the physical withdrawl…ataxia, nausea, rapid heart rate and shortness of breath. Eyes hurting and vertigo. All of it. I also experienced the heart racing and the breathlessness. It’s scary. Withdrawing slowly from Zoloft does not mitigate the symptoms either. But, if you get really uncomfortable, see if you can get someone to get you some 25mg samples to stay on for a month or two. Good Luck to all of you! OH! Vitamins with B-complex and minerals are very very helpful.

i had taken zoloft for 4 days..i am really sick…dizzy, dialated pupils, upset stomach, headache, neckache, diarehha, dry mouth, weakness in my legs, a cotton feeling behind my eyes……this zoloft is bad news..i quit 2 days ago and a psychiatrist wants to put me on paxil CR instead…so after leaving his office, i ripped up the prescriptions and went to my chiropractor….to naturally keep my nervous system running smooth…..

i was told that drugs leave your system in 48-72 hours….i was also told to drink as much water as i can stomach and eat very large meals…..and sleep as long as i can at night for 2 days….

i went to my family physician with minor anxiety over the death of my cousin, and was hoping to be refered to a therapist for talk therapy only, but my doctor started talking about zoloft and even handed me samples of it…. he wanted to add another medicine with the zoloft in 2 weeks…and that i may have to take viagra…. he wanted me to be a walking pharmacy…when i called him to tell him how sick i was on zoloft, he told me to stop taking it and see his buddy psychiatrist immediately….like he was trying to cover himself…..

all i wanted was to talk to someone and i got this pill that causes terrible sickness….what the hell are these doctors thinking?..what the hell are these drug companies thinking?…what the hell are they doing to people?

i don’t feel like myself right now…i am so melancholy and frazzled….this is not me….this is not how i want to live my life…in a drug-induced state…i’m not a mentally sick person, just someone who is mourning over the death of a loved one and a little overworked….

this is a sign….a sign that i’m not supposed to take this stuff…it’s poison…pure sickening poison….when this is over, i am going to live my life to the fullest and say to hell with doctors and their quack remedies…to hell with the drug companies and their inventions of misery…to hell with depression…

i will win…please join me in taking your lives back without that “dope”

These comments have been so helpful!! I am having a bad withdrawal from zoloft (have been taking 50 mg for several years). Nightmares, nausea, shocks, crying, irritability, shakiness, depression, rapid heart rate, panic, feeling of having gone crazy, etc. I went off two weeks ago because I have gained so much weight while on it. I went off quickly to avoid having to call and get appointment for refill. My shrink had told me to slowly decrease and start Wellbutrin at the same time. Should I have done what he said? Or is it okay that I just wanted “out” of the world of meds ASAP? How long will this terrible withdrawal last? What can I do to make it less unbearable? Has anyone else had the issue of weight gain and did it go away after getting off? I feel quite alone and would love any support or information!

thanks so much after taking Zoloft atmg a day for months, i too had had enough of being a walking pharmacy and dependant on chemicals to manange my life. i decided that i would stop my medication to, never before have i had such side effects and i have had a mix of drugs over the years.

it is arelief to know that it is like having alcohol - my system doesn’t like that too much either. so i will persist with the withdrawal and hope it getas better.

Good luch everyone !

These comments have allowed me to find myself - with the current withdrawals i am going through. i’ve been taking 100 mg for about 2.5 months now and quit taking the zoloft altogether 4 days ago. 2 days ago i started to notice a slight lightheadness or dizziness when I moved my head quickly. 1 day ago I began to notice the dizziness more frequently when shifting my head. Today while excercizing along with the extreme dizziness and disolutioned feeling I felt a bit of numbness in my finger tips. The above comments have allowed me to realize that these are truly symptoms of withrawal. For the last three hours up until I found this site I was beginning to allow myself to believe that I was losing it. To all of you who have been on the zoloft for years - good luck!!!!!! These companies and doctors need to be restricted, governed and reviewed. -cr

hey I’m glad I found this website. Jesus…I was on zoloft only for a few months…I went from 25 mg to 50, to 100, then to 150 very quickly. I noticed I wasn’t doing good in my schoolwork because of it, I was becomming very lazy and drinking a lot. I figured something out: zoloft gets rid of a lot of the negative thoughts and feelings. but guess what? you need Some of those negative thoughts to get your ass to do stuff! Light stress is a good motivator.

Anyway I just quit it cold turkey about a week ago..and just recently..I’ve been feeling very weird. I felt almost “drugged out” or something. When i turn my head or move my eyes around, I get that weird dizzy feeling you get when you’re high. And I’m completely sober when this happens! lol.. Also, when i look around, it almost feels like there is a skip in my heart beat. Hopefully this is just mental.. Anyway my balance has really been off lately…and I actually had a slight pain in my ear, and I thought maybe that’s what it was. Then i thought maybe it’s the zoloft withdrawal. now after hearing some of your posts, I’m pretty sure it is.

Thanks

I tapered off Zoloft, finally finishing three weeks ago. I’d taken it for seven months - the last in a string of pills. I’d been trying, trying so hard to get someone (doctor, psych.) to get me off antidepressants. They would not do it. Would not do it. I knew, from previous experience (getting so tired of being a walking pharmacy that I flushed all my effexor) that I couldn’t get off it without help weaning off.

Finally, now, I’m no longer taking Zoloft. I feel much the same, mentally. Physically I’m a wreak. I can’t sleep, I eat too much, my heart races, my head is pressured, I get dizzy in only small movements. While, only the first week containted severe mental distress (I called my mother a bitch. It was a bad bad week.) a majority of the problem are these lingering after-effects.

I think anti-depressants, along with therapy to guide you, can be positive. The problem is doctors and psychs who push the pills like some fucking miracle drug. They just aren’t.

this is the 3rd time i am trying to go off zoloft. iv’e lost several friends and a boyfriend and maybe a second boyfriend… we’ll see if he can stick it out… i have been taking 50 mg. for 7 years. i cut back to 25mg for a few months then nothing but then i have what i call an episode- that when something stressful happens i get agitated angry- almost an inner rage! i cry uncontrolably, i feel ashamed of myself then really defensive towards people about my behavior. i feel crazy, insane!!!! i know its all the side effects but still cant control my behavior- i want to regain control over myself.

I successfully quit zoloft and zyprexa! (amoung other drugs “they” put me on. Thank God I am off! I was trapped at one point in the whirlwind of psychiatric drugs but I am FREE!!

through my tears, i’m reading all this and i wanna make everyone read this my kid my flatmate my boss and all who (seem to my paranoid and or canny)attempt to trivialise what i’m experiencing here and i felt guilty again

2 months off 200mg a day i slept last night but not tonight i fear

i have been so angry and hurt and sure that i am judged harshly by all

should be accustomed to that my depression is just like it only now i feel almost elated ecstatic unravelled and i was soooooo ravelled zoloft keeps us useful we can work we just can’t feel my mum died and i did cry but not much now i feel it i feel every fucking thing intensely

you have all made it much better i am certainly not the only one who knows about this

the tingling, numb stuff back in big bursts at 2 months off zoloft love to you lotsa love

hey dudes zoloft can suck my ass !!! i’m feeling weird that i went off now . I have been taking them for 3 years now and just went off cold turkey. The first few days were all right but then suddennly i’m getting these brain zaps and shit.It’s been about 2 weeks and the zaps are slowly going away. Now i’m experiencig pressure in my head and when i bend over it feels like my head is going to explode. Sometimes the symptoms make me have anxiety but i know it’s from those stupid withdrawals.Hope they quit soon and never am i going to take that shit again!!!!!!

I’ve been taking zoloft for three years and decided to go off of them cold turkey. I don’t want to rely on them anymore. The first few days were all right but then all of a sudden i am getting these brain zaps and it’s really pissing me off!!!!! Anyway they are finally almost gone , but now my head feels like it’s got alot of pressure and i have a constant headache (also pissing me off). So i thought i’d write and tell you guys and girls what i am going through. And i hope the withdrawal quits soon so i can be normal again!!!! See ya dudes!!!!!!!

I cannot believe some of things that I’m reading here about quitting cold turkey. I’ve been seeing one of the top Psychopharmacologists (I guess that’s fancy for “shrink”) in the country and she ALWAYS says that you MUST gradually step down from Zoloft. I went from 75mg then 62.5mg for 2 weeks then 50mg for 2 weeks, then 37.5mg, etc. It’s the only way to do it. If you want to feel better, listen to your doctor and do it the right way, even if it costs you another refill or visit… it’s worth it. Good Luck.

Hello lovely people, I quit Zoloft many years ago, after a year and a half of using it. I quit cold-turkey, and smoked pot for the withdrawal. The withdrawal lasted about a year. The key thing is learning to accept that you may never be happy and/or numb your entire day, all year, for the rest of your life. Ups and downs will occur, so if you wake up in a good mood - carpe diem. It may be your last one for a while, maybe years. It’s a long road, but sometimes you have to make that choice. Stick it to the man! try organic. Good luck everyone

I have been taking Zoloft for almost 6 years. For the past 3 years I have been taking 300mg per day. Why would a doctor prescribe that much Zoloft? Anyways, I’ve been weaning myself off of the Zoloft for the past 2 months; decreasing the dosage 50 mg per week. I have finally stopped taking Zoloft for about 1 week now. I feel like my brain is floating in jello, slamming into the sides of my skull everytime I move my head, or my eyes. I have severe cold sweats at night, I cry all the time, I am a miserable person to be around. I even feel suicidal at times. Zoloft is one of the best and worst things to happen to me. In conclusion, I ultimately hate the drug. Good luck everyone.

Sorry to hear the pain you guys are going through but heres a question..Did the zoloft actually help you and was it worth it?

I have been somewhat shy all my life but It seems to be developing into worse problems over the past few years,I avoid pretty much all social situations like parties and going out to bars,stuff like that and sometimes when talking to people I will blush really bad and sweat.Somedays im fine and stuff like that doesnt bother me.I also have been getting anxiety attacks where it feels like im having a heart attack or something and usually happens at home.The first time it happened I was so afraid I was dieing or something and went to the emergency room and they said I was fine,I was really weak and felt weird for about 5 days after that happened.Then it happened again about 6 months later. I just want to be happy again and be myself,I dont know why this is happening to me and I dont want to see a shrink because there is nothing that has happened in my life that I couldnt deal with on my own. Can a regular family doctor decide if medicine would work for me?

I got off of Zoloft. The first attempt, following Pfizer guidelines, was literally a nigtmarish failure. Six weeks after my last dose I was throwing glassware against the wall and having bloody nightmares which included pinwheels of baby arms. I went right back on-to just below my previous dose. Then I told my doctor that I was going to drop down 3mgs at a time. I had to guess at what 3mgs really was because I had to very delicately cut each pill. Going down @ 3mgs every 6 weeks and taking Ativan to ease the anxiety, it took six months. It would take a year for someone taking the normal 50 mg dose, but God is it worth it. I have my mind back-my creativity, spirituality, and caring. It’s great. For the original anxiety problem, I did the “Attacking Anxiety” course that’s advertised in the middle of the night. I don’t see those commercials anymore because I sleep at night now-Zoloft free. Now I dream about my husband.

I’m glad I found this website. I have had all the side effects mentioned above, and it feels good to know I’m not alone. I started taking Zoloft in 11/1999, after my first panic attack. I continued taking it until 8/2001(Wow, what a ride that was.) After I could not afford it anymore I stopped taking it, and it really messed me up. In 2001 I attempted suicide, but it was intervened and I was brought to the hospital. The General Hospital I was brought to, offered me Zoloft again for free, they gave me a week supply(which I started taking the day I was released) and told me to call for a follow up visit where I would be able to talk to someone, and get a full prescription. Well, after about 2 days of calling the hospital it led me nowhere! I never got to meet with anybody and I never got the prescription refilled. Since then I’ve returned back home with my parents and am now on Paxil. Let me tell you, Paxil is no help either. Maybe I feel a little better, but I know I will have to get off it eventually, and that worries me. I can’t work, I don’t sleep, and when I do sleep, I have awful nightmares, I have no sex drive, I still get dizzy spells(or the “zaps” as I like to call them,) overall I still feel like shit(excuse the French.) The only thing that helps me now is alcohol. I know that sounds bad, but, what is one to do? I wish these doctors and pharmaceutical companies could feel what I do, just for one day…Good luck to all of you, and know you are not alone. Also, sorry for any spelling errors!

Also, wanted to thank “Richard” for starting this post online…Thanks, Richard, and good luck still to Charles.

I never suspected this mention of Charles’ problems with Zoloft would prompt what has followed. He’s been off Zoloft for a long time now.

He finally got a new psychiatrist who put him on Lithium. Everybody who heard that was shocked. Lithium did him tremendous good. But it made him break out in a skin rash.

She followed that with Anafranil. The Anafranil has helped him quite a bit in the month he has been taking it. His hypochondriasis has abated greatly as has his general anxiety.

I am two weeks into it,have all of the above symtoms,Feeling real bad but aleast now I know I am not alone.They put me on this crap after quiting a terrible alcohol problem(Iwas A huge stiff)this is just as bad as quitting the 25 years of alcohol abuse. Everyone hang in there and if you are reading this to decide if you want to go on it DONT!! Zoloft does nothing to help your depression It just makes you accept it. It completely robs you of life and motivation.Thank-you Richard for starting this post it has helped me alot.I wish I was a happy gay atheist or a happy anything. Take care of YOURSELF Dan

Thanks to you all. I began taking Zoloft a few years ago, 2 weeks out of the month, for hormonal anxiety around my menses (believe it or not, that was how it was first prescribed to me). About two months ago, my youngest child was diagnosed with ADHD/bipolar disorder and at that moment in time I had to make a decision to place him on medication in order for him to stay in school (he’s 6). I told myself if I would put him on meds, then I too would be on meds full time. And thus, have been on Zoloft 50 mg daily for the past two months. Within one month, I stopped my exercise routine and meditation and took up smoking. I realize I’m much more level-headed (numb is more like it), but I’m concerned with this lack of feeling (orgasmic and otherwise). Before taking the medication, I was incredibly out of balance emotionally. And now, I’m much more pleasurable to be around. My kids needed a break — we all needed a break. Three days ago, I got a really bad case of the flu and stopped taking Zoloft. Last night, I had unbelievable nightmares, none like I had ever experienced. And this morning, I turned to the internet for information. I’m thankful to have run across your posts regarding Zoloft and possible side effects. This is not a medication I wish to be on any longer. Thanks for sharing your stories. My best to you.

It does get better! It has been 3 months off the Z after a 2 month wean. I was on 150 per day for a year. I weaned down to 12.5mg a day than every other day & tah I stopped completely. The shocks down the arms & fingers were really scarey. They’re completlely gone now. I found it best as I still do taken it 1 day at a time. My very best to you all!!

I was on it for less than a year, but I ended up going to 100mg daily very quickly…I went to therapy, but all that did was stress me out because it took up time that I needed to study (I’m in engineering, studying is all I have time ot do). Last week, I ran out, but because it was Christmas, I had shopping and wrapping I had to do (once again, the engineering and studying for exams took up all my time until then). She’s not open on Fridays, the first day I had any time at all. The first day off was fine, I didn’t feel any different. But since Tuesday, I’ve been dizzy and light-headed all the time, nauseous, having mood swings, chills and shivering, and hearing noises (that’s the most annoying of them all, because with it, my eyes go completely out of focus, very scary when you’re going 100km/h on a busy highway). Luckily, I have a friend who’s been on meds for years and let me know that all this stuff is just basic withdrawl symptoms. He took 6 months to get off the stuff before, and still went through it. All I know now is I don’t want to ever be on it again, it did nothing except give me a bad reason to get up in the morning and go to bed at night (I was depressed and reaching for it every morning, and by the evening, maybe 12 hours later, all the effects had worn off and I was worse than ever). I have a boyfriend who’s trying to help, but he’s out of the counrty, and being intolerable the way I am, we’ve mostly been fighting. I know that eventually I will get better, and from now on am advising everyone I know to never get on this crap, cause it’s more expensive than it’s worth, both money-wise and physically)

i was on Zoloft at 100 mg for three years. It finally stopped working as far as the panic attacks were concerned. So the doc switched me to Paxil which is working great. i have bi-polar type 2 and should be on mood stabilisers, but the doc thought that mood stabilisers would fuck up my writing and creativity. Over the years i went on and off Zoloft and never really experienced much withdrawal. i had terrible withdrawal when i ran out of my Paxil though and experienced non-stop panic attacks. But for me, it is a trade off. i couldn’t get sober without my SSRI, no matter how hard i tried. i am just coming up on five years sober now, and that is more important to me than being on or off meds. Orgasm is somewhat harder on SSRI’s but i am still as horny as i ever was though. And i actually lose weight when i am on SSRI’s as i feel less need to “fix” myself by eating. And now i am at a nice 138, although i would like to get to 130………..er, no…. now we are getting into Pro ANA and eating disorders…. i think i can (just about) live with a little fat on my bones….. for now……

But i monitor my doses, and lower it during periods of low anxiety or depression and raise it when i am feeling totally panicked. At the moment i am taking 35mg of Paxil (normal is 20 mg) but by February, i could be down to 10 mg a day if i am feeling OK. If sleep becomes a problem during these times, i take some Trazodone. (although i haven’t taken any of my Traz. now for over a year) Buti am too scared to stop taking my SSRI. The last time i did it was over five years ago, and the result was an alcohol relapse of biblical proportions. And let me tell you, having the dubious distinction of having the record in Williamson County for the most PI’s in a week (three)is not one i ever want to try to attempt again. So i guess i will continue taking Paxil until it stops working … and then….. well i will burn that bridge when i get to it. hugs jimmy

hey. thanks, all. :-) google rocks in that it helps folks find sites like this in 5 minutes!

zoloft has been great for me in many ways, but it was time for me to move on from it. i was on it for about 4 and a half years after recovering from a psychotically-depressive episode in may of 1999. those drugs (anti-psychotics) are the truly evil force, although a return to sanity required them at the time.

anyway, in the past several years, i went from 50 mg zoloft up to 100 back down to 50 then to 25 … went back to 50 mg in the past year. when i ran out of meds just before christmas week and my psychiatrist’s voice mail droned on tiredly for 3 minutes directing various callers to other employees, etc., my motivation to squeeze into his limited schedule was extraordinarily weak.

i had no idea about the dizziness and weird tingling i would experience, and the nightmares have been fairly freakish. the two most interfering symptoms for me, though, have been sleeplessness/restlessness at bedtime (which has NEVER before been an issue) and my tendency to have a very short fuse, especially when it comes to my dear but talkative 5 year old daughter, god love her. irritability, too - the inner rage - yuck!

all of that is slowly diminishing and i do have to actively do “sanity checks” and make sure i’m not losing it. at this point, i know i will be okay. and i know that if i start to slip and i can’t work through things, i will consult my shrink. i’ll still do talk therapy once a month or so, too.

the right pharm drugs at the right time can be really helpful, but i do think consumer education is so vital, even “soft” education like this blog where folks share experiences. so, thanks to all of you (running out to get some B vitamins now …), and remember that you are not alone in this (sometimes painful) journey. i fimrly believe that the truly sensitive people in the world have got it right. stoics are missing so much.

feel. love. experience. live. smile. be grateful. peace to all.

kris

i am a 19 year old and have been taking zoloft for 10 years i want to get off but don’t know how do i do it slow like instead of 3 in a half pills 2 in a half….i don’t know how to stop not talking. please someone tell me..

i didn’t realize that there were any withdrawal symptoms that went along with zoloft. I’m 15 and i started taking it early august and just completely stopped about the end of november, at around that time i thought i was coming down with something because as i have read- like a lot of other people i would get very dizzy, if i turned my head too quick or anything i got light headed and everything would spin, and i have also been so much more irritable. Even recently, my face will get very red and i come down with low grade fevers about 99.9 often and i’m wondering if its all from the zoloft..?

Hi, I’ve only been on zoloft since August for post traumatic stress. I started at 50mg and now I take 150mgs. I didn’t think too much about withdrawal until my insurance had a hicup and I missed 2 days until it was filled. This is pretty scarey shit, only 2 days and I had the zaps of dizzy spells, and weird tingles down my arm into my fingers, tremors and I felt like I couldn’t focus my brain, my ears kept ringing & I had an ache in one. I read that alot of people have these symptoms for months. So whats better? Cold turkey or weening? My Dr. wants me to stay on 150mg for 2 more months before weening. I’m just not a happy camper. Good luck everyone.

Well, after two months on 100 mg, i just stoped taking it. I dont know if i should have because i seem to be getting withdrawls. My hearing fades, along with my sight. It felt like i was getting shocks throughout my body. I dont know if thats soposed to happen? I really dont find Zoloft nessasary, because i believe as a person im entitled to have negative feelings, hense the reason why i myself stoped takeing it. But can anyone tell me what i should do? Should i go back on it, then slowly go off it? Or should i just stay off it?

kris….

I hope you have a better time coming down from Paxil than I did. I was on 40 mg. I was gaining weight and was non-orgasmic - hell, I didn’t want to look at another man! And that was depressing enough! After a while it seemed as if the Paxil just quit working. Anyway I got the psychologist out of my life and the psychiatrist and his drugs, also. Coming off Paxil was hell, even though I did it over a month. You almost have to go down in 5 mg. intervals (I dropped from 40 to 30 and almost went nuts… hitting my head on the wall, getting angry, etc…).

Now I am, well, better… not the best and still at times seriously depressed, but at least it feels real.

thanks, lij. i’m doing so much better. libido is back and all that good stuff - thank heavens!! life is good. i know that i can maintain the right brain chemistry at this point by forcing myself to exercise regularly, eat right, etc., and that’s how i’m coping. i’m also journaling a bit to make sure i can follow patterns and such. this is working for me. yay!

to address the cold-turkey folks … please ween if you can. it will be so much safer and less traumatic for your body and brain.

christina — ptsd is serious stuff. don’t ween too soon and make sure you’re doing the talk therapy stuff as well. when you are still in crisis mode, it is not wise to stop your meds, period. when you are out of the black hole and feeling stable and able to manage things for a good long while, and you think the meds are just limiting your emotions, that’s different.

peace to all. smile — sometimes using those muscles will fool your brain for a spell. ;-)

kris

2 weeks of hell from this garbage. Eye movement caquses shocks ect very hostile and moody. Up down slurred speech ect. Scares the shite out of me. Well HOW LONG FOR THE WEIGHT TO GO???? I REPEAT HOW LONG BEFORE I START LOSING THE 100 POUNDS I’VE GAINED. Listen I was a professional athlete. Olympic class swimmer and so forth. I never had a weight problem. Is 2 week maybe three too soon to lose a pound or 2 please someone whose been there give me a little support. Fat and single with no libido is f”ing” depressing if you ask me.

Hello fellow Zoloft “addicts”. Forgive me if I sound bitchy but I too am weening off zoloft. I was taking it for 1 year 5 months. started at 50mg for 3 months then 100 for the rest. I was a good “patient”, I took my meds every day, and now I am following my doc’s order to slowly taper off I have been only taking 50mg for a week now and boy do I feel it. I searched google for some help with the withdrawals and found this site. I was dissapionted to hear most people talk about how awful their lives are on this drug. I can honestly say this drug changed my life for the better. it saved my marriage, my job, my life. I was almost to the point of agoraphobia. I wish I found zoloft sooner. It quieted those negative thoughts clouding my head, and now I can actually go out without feeling like i’m going to die. But, along with the good comes the bad- weight gain, no sex drive. A small price to pay for my life back. To those of you considering a drug to help you and found this site don’t be discouraged, talk to your doctor and find out what will work for you. To those of you going through the withdrawals like me, keep telling yourself it can’t get any worse so it must get better- right? what goes up must come down. Any positive coping statagies appreciated.

moe is right. zoloft is great for some, and at the right time. i needed it for a time, no doubt, and i’m fortunate to be in a place where i know i can cope without it once again.

my coping strategy is to remove myself from situations where people are getting on my nerves, because i know that most of the irritation i experience lately is withdrawal. i listen to a lot of music, too, especially sarah mclachlan’s and sting’s latest albums … and always through headphones.

k

I have a few questions about Zoloft. I have not started taking it yet. I went to the doctor to get help for these anxiety/panic attacks that I have. I have only been having them for about 3 months now. When I have one I start breathing heavy, I have rapid or increased heart rate, sweating, and I fell realy scared. I was precribed 50mg of Zoloft. The questions I have are…After you have been taking Zoloft for sometime and it is helping you, how long do you have to continue taking it? And, after you stop taking it will you go back to the way you felt before or does it help you even after not taking it? Please e-mail me back you thoughts at IndyDiva19@aol.com. Thank You.

I am not a doctor or anything but I went through everything you are going through and I would love to help if I can. I started with bad panic attacks almost 5 years ago. The first was the worst, I was smoking marijuana with a friend and I almost don’t want to think of that moment it was so scary. I felt like I was not there, like things were not real, I looked at may hands and I could not connect what I was doing with who I was, with if I was a real person, it was awful then I snapped and noticed it wasn’t the drugs and something was “wrong” with me. I ran around the apartment and freaked out for hours until finally worring myself to sleep. When I woke up the next morning my life changed. I researched what happened to me, I was 21 at the time and a college student, my mother had heart problems when she was 27 and had to have a pacemaker, she had a team of 15 doctors working on here because it was so strange for someone so young to need a pacemaker but anyways I immediatley thought something was wrong with my heart, or maybe a stroke. I am sure you have felt these panic attack symtoms. Also then I was in the middle of a huge depression in my life and one day I snapped for the better. I went to the doctor, a 21 year old man very strong and fit, I was in tears, I told the doctor I tried to fight the depression but I wanted to try meds. He said “give me one year, and you will feel alot better” Well he was right, it sounds corney but I looked in the mirror and said this things won’t beat me and I changed my life. I got a girlfriend, came sober, I left years of drinking and drugging to cold turkey. Now it is five years later and I feel better overall. I went on Zoloft for 2 years the first time, I did the trick. I thought I was cured and went off myself, I don’t remember any witdrawl symptoms. Then the depression came back after a year and I decided to go back on it, this was a little over a year ago. Last week I ran out of my meds and was out of town. The withdrawl symptoms are just as described in previous postings, dizzy, tired, grumpy and slightly depressed. I went to the doctor today and he said it was withdrawl, I can understand why some of you hate the drug, but I feel it has helped me put my life back together and I don’t look to end usage for the near future. I like Zoloft and think it helps me overall. I would love to help anyone going through panic attacks or depression, feel free to write me anytime. I remember when I started with the depression, strangers who had been through everything helped me the most. Please feel free to contact me , I am no doctor but I will try to help if I can. r_garcia76@hotmail.com

wow- i am experiencing AWFUL withdrawl….however, even as i read other comments, i still wonder if “they” (those who have written comments), are really feeling exactly like me, because i can’t function. for about a year, i have been taking 200mg a day. i battled with those who cautioned me about zoloft by saying, “if it helps, and my doctor trusts it will improve my life, i’m all for it”. well, i should have listened to those who warned me it isn’t as though taking Zoloft is just as taking a “TYLENOL” to relieve a ‘heart’ache. i’ve never felt so depressed and in true emotional pain. my crying is out of control, and i am alarmed at it myself. i’ve always believed you can ‘will’ your way through challenges, but this is UNBELIEVABLE. i resent my doctor for down playing the consequences of zoloft, and i resent that a bout with PTSD (which i thought was just a rough bump in the road of life), has lead me through such an upsetting journey after having just graduated college, and finding what i thought was true love. seems with the numbness and inability to make my own clear, logical emotional choices, i have lost me somewhere…..anyway..IT SUCKS! But most importantly, how long will all this shit last: the drenched night sweats, ridiculous fatigue, the spinning, the panic, the fainting misery, the sensativity to EVERYTHING! i read a year(s)…HELL NO! This CAN’T be!!! Can it???? PLEASE someone out there, can you talk to me about my options? Remedies?,…etc…. lee

I cannot comment on withdrawal yet since I’ve only been on it for 6 weeks. I am currently taking 100mg/day and my MD wants to keep me on it for at least 6 months. I have noticed a big difference, for the positive, in my condition. Prior to taking Zoloft I was just an empty shell staring into space. I did not want to be like this. I deserved better as did my family. I did alot of research prior to starting up and read this web site. It was and is a big help. I did get the dry mouth, shakes and the occasional night sweats but nothing that was unbearable. The symptoms only lasted a couple of weeks. My MD also prescribed some “sleeping pills” to help me get some sleep. Prior to taking Zoloft I couldn’t sleep a wink. But now I am sleeping without having to take the sleeping pills. I exercise daily and am seeing a therapist. My MD says if you are relying solely on the “meds” to cure yourself the process will take longer. I don’t know what the withdrawal will be like. I do plan on following my MD’s advise. Thus far he has not steered me wrong. I guess for anyone who is thinking about starting Zoloft or has been prescribed it, do your research. Read as much as you can. Finally do not get discouraged. You may not feel like you are progressing but your friends and family will notice the upswing before you do.

Best wishes…. Ed

I stared with 50 mg. of Zoloft a litle over 2 years to help relieve the symtoms of post traumatic stress disorder, which came about after being directly involved in the WTC 9/11 disaster and the aftermath that followed. I quickly graduated to 100 mg’s to help with the stress and anxiety from my job after 9-11-2001. To tell the truth it did help, only at first. You don’t realize how insensitve you become and downright carefree, to the extreme the little everyday things that would seemed to bothter you disappear and you don’t give a damm. Numb is the correct word, I guess. The weight gain just crept up on me maybe twenty five pounds and again I didn’t give a damm. I tried to wean myself off beginning around the holidays, first 50 mgs then 25 then nothing but probably in too short of a time period. The first week was okay, but after that all the classic symtoms lightheadedness, headaches, brain zaps, some strange nightmares (while using Zoloft I had very few dreams at all) and sometimes I find it impossible to concentrate. One day It feels as though it’s over only to have it come back with a vengence the next. I think I can tough it out, I hope? To tell the truth I am feeling more alive and alert (at times) It’s good just to vent

I love this website! I also am trying to get off Zoloft (without the Dr.’s help) The dr. tried to convince me that my weight gain 30lbs in 4 years wasn’t due to to the Zoloft and to stay on the drug.Absolutely impossible. I thought I was loosing my mind. I’m finally glad to hear the truth. I too am experiencing withdrawl symptoms but will stick with it until I’m free. I’m convinced Dr’s and big drug companies must be benefiting off me and I’m damn sick and tired of it. Hang tough everyone!

Hey all…I have 2 situations to share. The first is my 16 yr old daughters. She was showing signs of OCD and depression. I took her to both a psychologist and a psychiatrist (at the former’s urging). She was started on 50mg of Zoloft which rose swiftly to 150mg, and the doc wanted to raise it to 200mg. Well, she started having xtreme panic attacks. So bad to where I had to get a cell phone to where the school could call me any time, and we quit going out in public because she couldn’t handle it. Sobbing, shaking, etc. She cried all the time. She said it did help her ocd a bit as well as the depression, but the anxiety attacks were just killing her. We took her off the Zoloft, and she had very little side effects coming down. Now Zoloft free, she has no anxiety attacks, and has no desire to go back on anything. She said it just didn’t help enough for her. She continues to be edgy and snappy. Much less “bright” then she was on Zoloft. It seemed to bring out a softer gentler child. While I’m glad she feels better off of it, the difference was big to me minus the anxiety crap.

As for me, I went on Zoloft at 2 weeks post partum. I felt paranoid and depressed, and my anxiety was through the roof. I was started at 50mg, then to 75mg, then up to 100mg. At first it was great. I had patience, the anxiety was gone, I was sleeping better etc. Then when I moved from 75 to 100, it just kind of quit getting better. I was upped because little symptoms were starting to reoccur, and the psych felt like I had “leveled off at 75 and needed to go higher.” I started getting awful mind blowing headaches. My depression started getting really bad again, and I just felt funky. It was over a few weeks time that it progressed. I finally decided that enough was enough, and I wasn’t going to keep up, up, upping. So I quit taking it the way I got on it. I never realized that SSRI’s had withdrawals before I quit. I knew my daughter had forgotten her dose before, and she got really enraged and shut down just after one dose missed, but I kind of blew it off. Oh am I sorry I did. I would of stopped at 50mg! Here are some of the things happening since I stopped taking the Zoloft.

Heart palpitations Extreme dizziness to where I’m walking into walls Feeling of being “sick” all the time No energy Bloody hideous nightmares Weight gain of about 7 lbs Feeling like my head is “buzzing” or “floating” (very hard to describe, but it sucks!) My hearing is not as good. (I swear this sounds weird, but I could hear just fine before I went off Zoloft) Feeling like I’m about to fly into a rage Suicidal Dull throb all over my head Night Sweats Can’t lay still These are just what I can think of right now.

I swear when it first started happening, I thought I was dying or something. Then I found this site. I am now absolutely 100% convinced it is due to the Zoloft. Yes it worked for a while, but if I had known this would be the other side of it, I would NEVER have started! Good luck to those going through it, and blessings to those who choose to stay on their SSRI’s!

I stopped taking zoloft about a week ago and started well butrin, I take the ssri because of the depression I get in when I am hormonic. I have taken Zoloft for 8 years and thought I would make a change to Wellbutrin since they say it has a low sexual side effect (I don’t ever care if I have sex, doesn’t go over well with my husband). Well I feel okay when I take the Wellbutrin in the morning for a while but it seems to wear off during the day and I start to have bad side affects at work. From anyones experience how long do they last if you go cold turkey off Zoloft. I don’t think I can take the side effects I am just thinking about taking the Zoloft for the rest of my life.

I started on zoloft over a year ago after my father died. I went through some mild depression along with panic attacks and I was convinced that the only thing to get me through it was medication. Zoloft seemed to be a safe & reasonable alternative to keep from feeling the level of anxiety I was feeling. At first, after a few weeks, it seemed to help. After about 2 months I was feeling “numb”. Forget happy, angry, sad, excited, etc…there was no emotional feeling for me. My sex drive was non-existant & I hated feeling “out of it” all the time. I’ll admit, I was feeling content for the majority of the year I was on Zoloft but it was like I didn’t give a shit about my emotions and where my life was leading. I have 3 children & a husband who adores me. I feel like I’m cheating them out of who I really am because I forgot who I was!!! I’ve heard so many horror stories about going off anti-depressants but I really don’t need to take them anymore. I’m tired of the cold sweats, funky vision, nightmares, low sex drive, forgetfulness, “don’t give a shit” attitudes. I’m sure a lot of you guys have experienced the same feelings. Anyway, what is the best way of getting off this “non-addictive” medication???? I’ve heard that weaning is pretty safe but there are still unavoidable withdrawal symptoms. Any suggestions?

I was on Zoloft for about a year, but stopped taking it about a month and half ago. The first couple weeks of my withdrawal I felt tremendously screwed up. I experienced paranoia, horrendous anxiety, violent mood swings, shortness of breath, dizziness (or a constant feeling as if you are on drugs), depression, problems keeping my balance, and several other symptoms. As of now, some of the symptoms have decreased and others have remained the same, such as my axiety, slight paranoia and emotional imbalance. I believe Zoloft only aggrivated my symptoms and impaired my seratonin production in my brain, resulting in mental disfunction. Basically, doctors prescribe Zoloft and other SSRI’s like candy, and people should realize the danger and harm these medications are actually doing.

I was on Zoloft for about a year, but stopped taking it about a month and half ago. The first couple weeks of my withdrawal I felt tremendously screwed up. I experienced paranoia, horrendous anxiety, violent mood swings, shortness of breath, dizziness (or a constant feeling as if you are on drugs), depression, problems keeping my balance, and several other symptoms. As of now, some of the symptoms have decreased and others have remained the same, such as my axiety, slight paranoia and emotional imbalance. I believe Zoloft only aggrivated my symptoms and impaired my seratonin production in my brain, resulting in mental disfunction. Basically, doctors prescribe Zoloft and other SSRI’s like candy, and people should realize the danger and harm these medications are actually doing.

I love you guys so much for your truthful confessions on this topic that society wants to keep secret. I refuse. You are helping everyone who is going through a difficult situation to understand it. In a hundred years we will view brain function issues the same way we view body function issues. Identify, diagnose, and treat. See Richard Restak, “The New Brain”

My daughter who was born with receptor issues that led to eye problems and learning disabilities. She had profound anxiety that led to asthma and chronic breathing difficulties that completely interfered with normal development. One of her gifts is sports, and this was interfering severely with it. She couldn’t play because of panic attacks.

She was placed on 50 mg of zoloft which at first was like a miracle drug. Her anxiety dropped and her thinking became much more organized. But after reading this column I explained to her that going off zoloft could be a very serious event, and that if she ever wants to do that, there is a way to do it… very gradually.

I have a similar anxiety disorder as my daughter, along with depression, and some OCD. Prior to asking for Zoloft, I read and considered all the messages in this column very carefully. I am trying a new strategy.

The brain has over 100 neurotranmitters that are linked in a delicate and complex pathway. The levels of these are all cyclic, according to chronobiology. (e.g. chemotherapy works much better at 5 am because of the % of cells in rest phase.) Similarly have to let your brain recover, instead of hammering it with a serotonin upregulator all the time. That is normal biology. My idea is to go on and off Zoloft once every three days and optimize it for my schedule. I sleep in and detox on the weekend. I get the panoply of symptoms, but this wonderful column gave me the courage to recognize and survive them. Cell receptor remodeling takes about a month, so I don’t let it build to freakazoid levels. This is a total smart drug for me. Tylenol 3 stabilizes the rage, pain and misery that Zoloft withdrawal causes. Tylenol 3 should only be used at the peak of crisis, as it is addictive. It also wears off in three days, producing general pissy rage, but the Zoloft evens that out. Brain chemistry is dynamic and unique to each person. We need a way to assess it. This is not a one size fits all world. This is my own personal experiment, you and your doctor should chart yours. Find a smart one.

Thanks,

  • Dave

Hi im 21, and have been on Zoloft for about six months. I got on it for stress and anxiety, and sleep problems. Well in my opinion, My sleep problem is worse, I lay in bed for hours, and then get up and stay up untill I am totally exausted, thats at about 5 in the morning when I finally get to sleep, then I have either very disturbing and weird dreams, or just nightmares, and I dont get up untill 3 in the afternoon, so my day is totally wasted. I still feel stressed and all the anxiety, Im lazy and dont do anything. Im no better, and maybe a little worse that I was before I started takeing Zoloft. And I can’t go off of it because the withdrawl make me feel like I am so dizzy that I might pass out, and with a 1 year old son, that a little scarey, and I also feel like my heart is beating funny. I dont know what to do, I just want to be able to sleep like a normal person, and not feel so damn unhappy all the time. thanks everyone , It did really make me feel better to read what all you were going through.

Zoloft affects each person differently. Mybe you need to try something else or mybe you don’t have a chemial-inbalance. I have to say the side-effects were a little strong at first and going from 25 to 50mg but they go away. I went to my family doctor and I have been taking Zoloft for 3 months. I’m able to sleep better and I still work out at least 3 times a week. Working out helps you feel more balanced. Make sure to drink water right away in the morning and through out the day. Coffee in the morning is good too! Don’t take more milligrams than needed for your body type. I’m starting to feel like going out more and I’m more comfortable sitting with someone I just met. It does help some people.

This is all very interesting. I’m researching Zoloft because my therapist strongly urged me to look into an anti-anxiety anti-depressant. I’m having a hard time managing my anger around my 2 small kids. We’re about to move and I’m very nervous about dealing with it all, but from all the comments here it sounds like it is not worth the trauma, and maybe I should just find some good pot??!!!

I am so glad I found this web site!!!!! Courage you all, we can make it! I was taking Effexor for a while and had horrible side effects (heart racing, pupils so dilated that people at work thought I was high, insomnia, tremors that would wake up my husband cause they were so violent). Then, the doctor/shrink who prescribed the Effexor, put me on Zoloft. Number one: It didn’t make me feel better but put me in a lousy coma where all I wanted to do was to watch James Bond Marathons for the rest of my life. All of a sudden, I wasn’t motivated anymore to find a better job . Luckily enough, I had a call back from a previous job interview and got the job! Meanwhile, the same symptoms I had on Effexor appeared again while on Zoloft (I could never sleep unless I took more drugs(sleeping aids and/or Kolonopin)). This time, the added bonus was I had become totally unable to achieve an orgasm and didn’t care at all wether I would have sex in the next ten years or not. Great if you’re married by the way… Number two: These drugs are NASTY, they affect your body in tremendous ways! When I told my doctor that I couldn’t go on with all these side effects, one of her remarks was “well, how great was your sex life before the medications?” I could have strangled the old bat! Number three: I quit Zoloft over a 2 weeks period(100mg, 50 and 25) and although I was on it for just about a month, I’m having terrible withdrawal side effects. I AM SO HAPPY I FOUND THIS SITE!!! I thought, just like evreybody else that a) I was losing it or b) that I had a brain tumor !! I litterally passed out the other night (hurting my nose and knee in the process) and had blurry vision. After which I puked my entire dinner in the arms of my dear dear husband who had to hold me while I was sick because I was so dizzy (lovely saturday night). I have dizzy spells all the time and am terrified to pass out behind the wheel. My eyes feel weird, I have HORRIBLE nightmares with body parts floating around… Number four: Now that I’ve read so many other testimonies, I am not scared anymore. I know I will eventually get better and my body will rid itself from this crap. I am going back to my yoga and running which I stopped doing while on these drugs. Life can be stressfull, even more for some than others…we all carry all sort of emotional baggage but I now know, taking these drugs is not a solution unless you’re about to commit suicide, and the people who prescribe them should be held responsible for the potential disasters that their patients lifes may suffer. Same for the drug manufacturers. I’ve looked for an hour on google before finding this site, all the links I found were about buying the damn crap! You’re not allone, hang in there. If you’re reading this, scroll down to the bottom of this page and speak your mind!

I have been on Zoloft for 2 years; the first year I was on 50mg. now I am on 100 mg. Zoloft has changed my life; prior to Zoloft I was in a state of almost constant depression, I could never see the good in life, on Zoloft I am a completely changed person. My relationships are more positive and I have probably saved my marriage. I am working now and love my job, where before I would start a job only to quit due to my negative attitude. The job I am working now is very similar to the ones I had before. I did gain weight at first, but now I am losing weight (13 lbs.) since December. My Doctor told me that if you are taking Zoloft you should limit if not stop using sugar, alcohol, caffeine and stimulants. I have cut out sugar, white flour, alcohol and caffeine and I have lost weight and feel wonderful. I have not faced the the decision of having to go off Zoloft. Zoloft is the only medication I take so I do not feel like a walking pharmacy. It is true everybody reacts to drugs differently. I guess I am one of the lucky ones that Zoloft has helped. Good Luck to all of you.

I have been taking Zoloft since 1998.The day after i started taking it, i felt like i was finally myself after 19 years. Before, i had tried everything- exercise, correct diet, therapy, vitamins, change of scenery, pot, alocohol,etc. nothing really made my brain feel right until i tried zoloft. It made me feel like i always thought i should feel. I could now relax and talk to people. i quit waking up in the middle of the night thinking i was going to die, and although i still got sad, it was usually for a legitimate reason.it did not numb me or take away my emotions. it just leveled them out.I’ve been taking 50 mg for 5 years and recently i decided to cut it down to 25mg. i have been sad and emotional and just plain ridiculous, but i know it will stop. it’s called withdrawel. it sucks, but i’m ready to try less drugs. i would never change my decision to take it for these past few years.it has made such a positive difference. it’s not for everyone though- if you don’t react well with it almost immediatly, don’t take it anymore!! it can be a nasty drug with nastyy side effects and i dread the next few weeks of dealing with this, but i’m ready. don’t let doctors push you into anything, but do what you think is best for you. i’m here to tell you it has been a miricle.

zoloft was prescribed to me be-cuz the doctors have been tricked by the pharmacutical(mispelled) companies. I only took zoloft for 6 weeks in 2002 and I still have the weird brain feelings, numb body parts and depression. My message to all readers is to eat salmon/walnus (fatyy omega acids are good for you), pray to the most high and truly believe that you can get through this….faith is what’s keeping me alive!!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you for starting the page, thank you to everyone for sharing. Thank you for letting me know that I am not slowly going mad as I try to get out from under Zoloft. Thank you again.

all those who suffer from zoloft should work together to find a solution. Whether it’s putting pressure on the FDA or creating a support group. Those who are interested contact me via e-mail with your nickname and and contact info… e-mail: zoloftgroup@yahoo.com

(dj from new jersey)My other comment posted on February 7, 2004 11:38 PM

Anyone who says that Zoloft doesn’t have side effects or withdrawal symptoms is full of shit…If I am without it for 3-4 days….I start to get extremely dizzy, tired, cranky, and numb…I hate it! I’m weaning myself off of it…because it is really not good for you..in the long-term…they say it is not “habit forming” but why are there so many other people with the exact same withdrawal symptoms that I have…definitly not “just in the mind” Does anyone know how long it lasts?????

I have read all these and decided I want to get off Z. I have put on so much weight its not funny and I dont even feel like it’s working anymore.(the zoloft) Been on it 4 about 4 years… 150mg at present, keen to get off. I have experienced the withdrawal when i havent filled my script time. The dizzy head swishy brain is so weird..i hate it so i quickly go get more. today i am doing something about it.

been on zoloft for 2yrs. 100mg. must say that if i had found it years ago, my life would have been different, better. the stuff is awesome - for me. however, i don’t like taking drugs, i wanted to switch to wellbutrin to aid in stop smoking, and i ran out. these factors led me to cold turkey against my doctor’s advice. having bought an ionizer for my house at the same time, plus a cold going around, i wasn’t sure as to the cause of my physical problems. bottom line, withdrawal symtoms. they’re getting worse. it’s been a week. teeth, light sensativity, extreme dizziness, muscle spasms etc… i really grew to think something was wrong with me. thank goodness my doctor explained the truth. he does want me to take a small dose while detoxing, but i really don’t want to. this truly sucks, but i’m glad i took it when i did and still through the withdrawal wish i had taken it sooner. today, i’m going to try it without a thing - i have not even remotelly crashed emotionally since ceasing my dosage. i’m sorry for the poor typing and such, i’m in bed now. anyway, good luck all and don’t forget that everything in life has two sides - i see this one as the bad side to a coin that enabled me to see who i could be.

I was prescribed Zoloft shortly after my wife past away, tragically, in 1992. She was only 49 yrs. old and the mother of our 5 children. I wanted to die too, just to be with her. We had been married for 32 years. She was only 17 and I was 19 when we married back in 1960. We had been married 32 years. Our youngest child was 20 yrs. old, recovering from Testes Cancer. I couldn’t die now because they needed me, and God, I needed them.

I sought help from a counselor (Physiatrist) and was given both Zoloft and Lorazepam (Adavan) to treat me for Depression and Anxieties. I started with 50mg a day, to gradually 200mg’s during a period of 2 years. I have continued this medication for almost 14 years.

I don’t regret taking the meds…I needed them to help me cope and be there for my children. They are all married now and doing well. Some have their own families (Kids) and I still miss my wife. However it’s now time to get off this false sense of what I think is the real me, and become the real me. Over the years I have re-married, however my sex life has been, and still is, non-existent, I have been overweight for years and still growing, tired, and somewhat lazy. Last month I started, on my own, to withdraw from Zoloft. I went from 200mg’s to 150mg’s for 2 weeks, then 100mg’s for 2 weeks, and finally down to 50mg’s for two weeks, then stopped. I will continue to take the Lorazapam for awhile before I start the withdrawal on that med. Lorazapem, like Vallium, is a controlled med. that is addictive and requires a long withdrawal time span.

It’s been almost 2 weeks since my last dose of Zoloft. I started the “Southbeach Diet” in order to start eating the right foods (GOOD MOVE)…,but it’s very hard to tolerate the effects of the Zoloft withdrawal. Sleeplessness, terrible vivid dreams, flu like symptoms, constipation, stomach aches, agitation, the need to keep moving, anxieties, heart palpitations, anger, moody, mixed emotions, depression. etc…

BUT, I know that these side effect are just…TEMPORARY SIDE EFFECTS,…AND, THAT THEY WILL EVENTUALLY GO AWAY. The best thing to do is to accept the fact that this is a necessary step to getting back to our NATURAL LIVES, and we will…Yes we will because we want to!

The key ingredient, however is prayer…prayer is POWERFUL. Pray for strenght & courage and we’ll overcome this facade of “mind altering drugs” and resume a natural life without the mask.

God bless us and help, but we must help ourselves.

olebob

I was taking 225 mg for a week, then 50 mg for 3 weeks. During that time I got sick with a very bad sinus infection (maybe a viral one too). Family doc put me on antibiotics and a nasal spray. He sent me for blood tests that day (before I had started any of the new meds.) Liver enzymes came back sky high-so high that he sent me for a hepatitis screening. It came back negative, but my psychiatrist told me to stop taking the Zoloft NOW! He was afraid I might be one of the people to experience the rare side effect of liver failure. So now my right side is in pain-sometime subdued and sometimes stabbing and often some where in between. And I am experiencing all of the serotonin syndrome that nurse practitioner Kathy was describing. I delayed calling my pychiatrist about the liver problems because the Zoloft was helping with the depression, mood swings due to PMS (even the cramping was less severe), and I was no longer slogging my way through life as if going up stream in a swamp. CRAP!!!!

Typo in my post. I started with 25 mg, not 225 mg :-0 oops My psych thought I wouldn’t have side effects of withdrawal since I had not been on long and I was still taking such a low dose - he was WRONG!

I’ve been on Zoloft for over a year due to a difficult boss and strained work situation.

Good side effects of Zoloft: I laugh more, things don’t bother me as much, I am not as stressed, I am easy-go-lucky now.

Bad side effects: NO sexual desire, headache (like everyday), laziness and a don’t-care attitude, sleeping all day, difficulty in waking, nauseousness, diarrhea (or up to 6 bowel movements a day), and anxiousness (I would get these strange foreboding feelings, or a sense that something bad was about to happen).

So due to the bad side effects I, too, am weaning myself off this drug. Now I have to contend with the Zoloft withdrawal side effects which for me are irritation, anger, moodiness and impatience. I also have what I call “jiggly” eyes - when I turn my head my eyes don’t seem to follow as quickly and my eyes feel like they are “jiggling around in my eye sockets for a second or two. That’s even more worse than the sense of doom feeling!

Thanks for input by #16 and #23, I know I am not going crazy. And thanks to God Almighty for guiding me to this website and answering my prayers.

SKA

Forum: The Neurology and Neurosurgery Forum Question Posted By: Gayle on Saturday, April 29, 2000 Thought this would help all…Viking

I have been taking only 25 mg of zoloft for about four years. My doctor prescribed it because of unending headaches. It really helped and I felt fairly well the whole time I’ve been taking it. However, in reading recently that permanent changes in the brain are showing up on people with longtime use of antidepressants (particularly serotonin reuptake inhibitors) I have decided to stop taking it. I realize now you must do this by a schedule. I don’t know how to go about this and wonder if you could even suggest something that would be sensible. I tried cold turkey and by the fifth day, I was weeping and angry for foolish reasons, my heart was beating in strange ways, particularly if I turned my head from side to side. I felt like how I’ve felt before I was about to come down with the flu. This is frightening to me. Can you please suggest something to make this a more gentle process. I tried cutting the half of the 50 mg tablet in half and got a bunch of crumbs. How can we take 12 and 1/2 mgs without that happening. And is that what I would do. Start taking 12 1/2 mgs. for a length of time. Then where do I go from there?

Thank you for any help

Answer Posted By: CCF Neuro[P] MD, RPS on Saturday, April 29, 2000

Dear Gayle:

There are plenty of medications out there to use for headaches. So, I hope you will find the correct medication. There are a few reports of patients who have taken the SSRIs and have some dystonia. However, it is not known if the SSRI was the initiator or something else. There is a theoretical concern and there is a fraction who thinks longterm treatment is not a good idea.

I would suggest that you talk to your prescribing physician. See what he/she says. I usually start by going to a every other day dose for 2 weeks, then twice a week for 2 weeks and then finally once a week for two weeks and then off.

Sincerely,

CCF Neuro MD

I was on Zoloft for a very short time, only about a month. I started out at 25 mg, and was on 50 mg when I quit. I was having such severe night sweats and insomnia that it was driving me nuts. Since I’ve been off Zoloft, which has been for about three weeks, I’m still having really bad night sweats. Have other people had the same experience with this problem? How long do the night sweats last???

I’ve been on zoloft since Spring of 2003 for the purpose of getting through a very bad situation. I was told its non=adictive. A few months later I figured I could just stop taking it. Cold turkey brought on immediatly horrible side effects, hard to explain, but a wierd dizziness, like my equilibrium was off. I just felt disoriented to the max. Went back to my mare 25 which doesn’t seem like a lot compared to others who take much bigger doses. Recently my doctor asked me if I am still depressed. I figured not, since the situation has passed and only time with heal that one. She said to continue 6 weeks at 25, then 1/2 for another 6 weeks. I wanted to get off sooner so I thought a pharmasict advise would work, take a few weeks, 1/2 then a few more weeks every other day. Well, I’m back on my 25 again after weeping horribly, having screaming fits and the horrible disorientation once more. I guess I didn’t ween off well enough. I really want off this stuff, and its seems only weening slowly and then some is the key. I should have just trusted in the LOrd to see me through rather than this mental pill. It did calm me some, but I still struggle with the situation. I think these pills are hurting alot of people than helping. Some need it, some others don’t. Withdrawal is not pleasant and I pray I can get off this mare 25 ASAP

I have been on Zoloft for about a month now 50 mgs. Yesterday was my first day of weening of to 25mgs … thought I was having a heart attack tonight, was definitely having some kind of a panic attack. I am very disappointed I had hoped that since I wasn’t on it very long, that it wouldn’t bother me to get off!! I also wanted to mention that the reason I was on Zoloft is because the doctor thought I was having anxiety attacks. I had been in and out of doctor’s offices and having test for 3 years and no one could figure out what was wrong with me so it must be anxiety! I accidently came across a website on Aspartame! I discovered I had aspartame poisoning. 92 symptoms depression and anxiety are 2 of them not to mention it mimics MS, Lupus, Parkinsens…. if you are a diet soda drinker or Nutrasweet user, you MUST see this website www.dorway.com. You will freak out!

Wow! It is truly amazing to me how many people are going through this. I have been on 200mg of Zoloft every day for 10+ years. At times I have taken other medications with it. Whenever I tried to reduce the dosage, I had the most horrible side effects: not only the tingling and dizziness, but moments when for no reason I burst into tears. It took me a long time to realize that this is NOT the depression! This is the withdrawal symptoms of the Zoloft. So, I am finally off it. I dropped down by 25mg a week, and finally got to zero last week. I feel awful, and I am only hoping that it doesn’t take too long for my body to recover.

Some of the syptoms I am having include: dizziness tingling (zaps) throughout my body lethargy hot and cold flashes very vivid dreams general feeling of ickiness

I am taking lots of vitamins and such to help my body, and am seeing my accupunturist every week for now.

I do have to say that the Zoloft did help when I first started taking it. But I probably should have only been on it for about a year. And NO ONE ever warned me about withdrawal. If I had known what the symptoms were, I would have been able to get off it a long time ago, but I thought it was the depression returning. Personally, I would love to see a class action lawsuit against Phizer. They had to have seen these symptoms in the trials, even when people were only on it for a few weeks.

Richard, thanks for opening the discussion, and thanks to everyone for sharing their experiences.

Melinda

I have been weaning myself off Zoloft for 2 wks. Went from 100 mg to 50 to none (yesterday) Was on 100 mgs for 1 year 6 months. Today I am experiencing, what feels like electric shocks going through my body, nausea, lightheadedness, dizziness. I have felt so good mentally for all this time, but I did gain about 20 lbs in this year and half so, I wanted to get off of it. My sex drive was…. blah since I was on it. I am also feeling flu like symptoms today. I thought I was getting sick but since I searched for withdrawal symptoms, I think this is what I am having. My dreams are vivid too- some nightmares. I am almost tempted to just go back on but I don’t want to if I am emotionally better… I guess I just have to stick with it and deal with the withdrawal symptoms and hope that given time, I will feel better. If it is non-habit forming then why do we feel this way? How long does it take for the symptoms from withdrawal to go away???

i took paxil for 4 yrs and switched to zoloft after that. Both are very similar but zoloft worked better for me. But if i miss a day i feel sick. i get a headache and feel nauseated and dont want to do anything. i really want to get off of it but i am scared that i will be worse than i started. if anyone can help me please email me. oh yeah this drug has ruined my sexual life. i am 21 and have been taking these since i was 16 and a virgin….now i am no longer a virgin but i feel nothing!! i never have because of these pills. i am totally numb down there and that is a big problem in relationships. i wish i would have never tooken pills and went to counseling. but the doctor said they werent addicting and she was quick to give them to me. now my psychiatrist said i should have went to her first. i hope someone can tell me some advice or help me get off of this!!I dont wanna be on them 4ever…sweetchica1024@hotmail.com

I have tapped completely off of Zoloft. What can I take in place of it for my bad impatient nerves?

I am 17 years old and was on zoloft for 2 years before I finally stopped taking it. I was feeling fine, until for no reason I started feeling “disconnected” Almost like a dream. I feel like a zombie, and I started taking it. I am not going to ruin my sex life with some drug, I am not taking it, I feel like shit, and I wanna die. Zoloft is the worse thing to happen to me.

I’ve been on Zolfot for nearly 4 years. I was fine taking 50-100 mg depending on the time of year. This winter my Dr. decided to take to 200 for mid winter depression. When he reduced it in half to 100 I became very ill, and thought I was going crazy. Now he is tapering me back from 200. My problem is I am bi-polar and always have be on an anti-depressent. This has been best on yet. I wonder if there are any safer alternatives which won’t cause me to gain weight

i’ve been taking 150mg zoloft for about 18 months. my doctor had written a ‘regime’ about going off it and i decided to. a couple of days after being totally off the drug i got a cold..it went away but now i feel weak. groggy weak… i’ve been having bad nighmares and i feel really tired. there’s no apparent stress in my life and i feel great about everything….so i reakon it must be this drug withdrawl…i don’t want to go through this whole saga with the doctor…it’s so expensive to see them and they seem to waffle on so as to cover themselves. i know i’m not sick like as in the flu..i certainly don’t feel depressed..any suggestions about how to get through this experience…make it as painless as possible??

I found this site when looking for an explanation for my stomach ache while withdrawing from Zoloft. Thanks, Richard, for starting it! I’ve been taking Zoloft for about four years, to manage depression triggered by a bad work situation. The medication helped me cope. I had that awful sliding down a greased funnel with no bottom sensation, and what Zoloft gave me was a solid grounding to climb up from. I have a new job now where I’m happy, and consider myself lucky! (Although I made a big effort to get a new job; it was hard work as well as luck that got me there!) I’ve tried to go off Zoloft 6 months ago and had a depressive episode and went back on. I’m giving it another go. I’ve been taking 50mg for ages, and was advised by my dr to take a half dose daily for two weeks, then stop. She warned me to expect a slump time five or six weeks after stopping. I’ve been on 25mg for 10 days now The only side effects I’ve been feeling are some warm times (mentioned by some people above) and a dull tummy ache, around my diaphram which feels like the sensation of taking aspirin without food (which I haven’t done). I’m relieved that I’m not experiencing some of the extreme symptoms mentioned above. I asked a naturopath for some advice to manage this time and briefly her recommendations are to eat well, and maintain an even blood sugar as much as possible. If necessary have regular snacks, of things like almonds or apples. Get omega 3 oils, like fish or flaxseed into your daily routine. Eat soy products. She also suggested passionflower. Remember that relaxation in whatever form suits you, meditation, tai chi, dance, laughter therapy, singing, yoga, can give physical benefits to brain chemistry. Do deep, controlled breathing. Look for Liberated Eating by Jennifer Alden for a serotonin program through nutrition. Good luck!

I am a (male) Dane, currently trying to get rid of Zoloft. I started on it four years ago, when I was going through a serious dispute with a former workplace. In the beginning, I felt it worked good for me, but later I had my doubts. After having had a new job for a couple of years, I felt better, and ready to reduce Zoloft, which I did during spring 2003. Unfortunately I then found myself unemployed again, and during winter I returned to a daily dose of 100 mg. I didn’t feel much better for it, and my doctor sent me to a psychiatrist. He told my that I was “severely dysfunctional” due to my depression, but was just very good/clever at compensating for it, and that I should probably have a bigger dose. Bullshit. Since january, I have reduced slowly from 100 mg, over 75 mg and 50 mg, to now 25 mg (a half pill), and feel no worse in general. Sometimes I feel better than ever, sometimes it can be as bad as when I was depressed. I don’t see any major difference compared to when I was at 100 mg though. So what’s the point in taking it? In the meantime, I’ve managed to build a nice wall in our living-room (I have a wife and two kids), so now I have a small office/workshop room for my computers, books and tools. I don’t feel depressed - are you depressed if you think the world in general sucks quite a bit, when in fact it does?

I just read today that 1 in thirteen of the adult population of Denmark was on some anti-depressant. Now, if that isn’t an indication of what a mad society this is …

A request for advice: should I step entirely off Zoloft now, or take 12.5 mg (a quarter pill) for a couple of weeks? I’m most inclined to the latter.

-Lasse

I’ve been on 150 mg. of Zoloft for about nine months. I recently talked to a woman who got tardive dyskinesia after only 19 days of SSRI’s this scared me so much that I decided to go off the drug. I’ve been doing it slowly for a few weeks now and I have’t taken any for the last two days. In addition to feeling edgy and teary, I’m feeling dizzy and I have waves of numbness down my arms. I’m trying to find some info about Zoloft withdrawal and I’m not finding much. How long is this going to last? Is there anything I can do to ease the discomfort?

I’m 19, I’ve been on zoloft since september. When I first got on it, I lost nearly twenty pounds. And weighed 110 lbs, the least I’ve weighted since I became a teen. I couldn’t eat, I would try and my stomach would turn, I lost my appetiete. The doctor told me my body would adjust. Aside from that, I was horribly irritated by every little thing. I couldn’t control tempers, I drove my roomate out. I actually felt more depressed, my pychiatrist actually kept adding higher doses, and sleeping pills, and luvox. I couldn’t get my prescription filled one month, and it was awful, I was sick, nightmare, where I woke up all night long, nervous sweating. When I started back up, I just started at my own dose again, four days later maybe, and I had to go through every adjustment again it seemed. I still have little hunger, and am always irritated. I hate zoloft. It sucks, Im on it and what makes me feel better makes me worse in another way.

How validating it is to read these comments. I’ve been on Zoloft for 3 months and decided not to have my perscription renewed. My OB/Gyn suggested Zoloft in response to “How’s it going…” and before I could even complete my sentence, he handed me a little brown bag with 6 weeks worth of samples. I realized a bit of “mood stabilization”, could tolerate the intolerable cricket-dick at work, and felt spells of outright euphoria, all the while knowing that I probably needed to spend my money on yoga or other means of release.

It’s been a week (I was taking 100 mg) My first symptom after a couple of days was that “jump out of my skin” sensation when I moved too quickly — or the dizziness when I move my eyes quickly in a direction. It hasn’t been a week yet, and I wonder when I’ll need to remove the blunt instruments and scissors.

These comments also provide some justification for the violent nightmares I’ve had recently. Hopefully this will be over in a couple of weeks. (at least no one has died due to withdrawal; however, it could be dangerous to drive)

Wellbutrin, Buspar, Paxil, Zoloft…I’ve gone through them all. I’m just now on the tail end of stopping the zoloft, and I have to say i’m genuinely through with the Psychiatric community. It’s not what my friends, family, and of course the docs wanna hear…but that’s how it’s gonna be. I can’t really say I believe in the idea of a chemical-imbalance, or mental -illness persay,(with the exception of those who suffer from psychotic episodes, schiszophrenia, bi-polar disorder,etc.) And that’s not easy for me to admitt to. I’ve spent the vast majority of my adult life contemplating suicide. Sometimes because of adverse circumstances, sometimes while dealing with feelings that I can’t as yet explain. Like crying your eyes out, and in the middle of the thing you actually have to ask yourself what it is exactly you’re crying for. I guess the way I’ll look at it from now on is exaclty the way mankind looked at these things long before the advent of the mental-illness craze…the human mind is earth’s true final frontier, and we’ll probably never fully understand it’s mystery! Besides, when you think about it, sure i’m un-employed, sure work spaces make me “clostrophobic”, sure i’m my own worse critic, and sure I may never be able to find a woman who’ll love me regardless of my shortcomings, but dammit…that’s what makes me unique, instead of a boring sack of flock following pop-culture livin’ crap! And by the way, from what I hear, when it comes to any kind of de-tox, sweating is a good thing. For example, ever been drunk out of your goard, then stepped into a sona for about 5 minutes? You come out smellin’ like alcohol, and more than halfway sober!

Ok, ready for this? I am a mother of three who just found out I am pregnant with my 4th child… Soooo I decided that I have to go off my Zoloft, quit smoking, and reduce my caffine from 5 cups to 1 cup per day. Let me tell you about side effects. I have been feeling so bizarre lately that I can’t function normally. I can tell you that nothing Im experiencing is worse than the Zoloft withdrawal side effects. I decided to search frantically for some rational explanation for the way I am feeling. Of all the side effects, the dizziness is killing me. Whether I lay down, stand up, turn my head, look straight forward, in motion, or still, the dizziness is always with me. I had weaned myself from 75mg for a week, to 50mg for a week, then 25mg for two weeks, and have been off it for about a week and the dizziness seems to be getting worse. Could someone please tell me when this will go away.

I have been taking Zoloft for over 11 years. I am in hell. I cannot afford a refil and am on my fifth day without zoloft. I have tried to ween off dozens of times but the side effects have always stopped me. 100 mg. a day/ $100.00 a month for 11 years. I want my life back and love to hear any suggestions on how to get this shit out of my body for good!

Wow! Great to feel so not alone. These “doctors” are so irresponsible and greedy. They’ll prescribe anything from a company that wines & dines them! I went on “Vitamin Z” (Zoloft) about 3 years ago due to extreeme panic attacks while being in relationship w/a true jerk. Once the rel-ship ended, so did the panic attacks, but then the atrocity of September 11th happened, so I not only stayed on Zoloft, but upped my dosage. Initially it definitely helped my panic, and also assuaged my daily desire to die, but I feel I’ve been on the drug almost a year too long. I gained 60 pounds (you read that right). Always been overweight, but never ballooned like this! Have quite a few friends who also had extreme weight gain. I’m told Zoloft removes your “satiety mechanism” at higher doses—I was on 100mg. I seemed to retain water so badly that none of my shoes or jewelry fit! Then made some positive major life changes, i.e. moving out of the pit of Los Angeles to a smaller town in nature, getting a slower-track job, etc. so decided to try and wean off the lovely Zoloft. The “doc” at Clinic assured me that due to my low dosage (25 mg) that I’d have no withdrawals. How do these doctors ever, ever get beyond med school???? I weaned slowly, then stopped after 12.5 mg twice weekly. I’m still tweaked! Horrific leg cramps, wacko dreams, very irritable, eyes feel like they’re going to explode. Also way too many night sweats. I’m hoping not another week of this. I’d love to see a class action suit against Pfizer, count me in! I take Omega-3’s, lots of fish, yoga, and I hate to admit that meditating 15 min. every a.m. helps aLOT w/anxiety. I have very little patience with people while going thru this withdrawal, and I’m normally a very patient type. THanks to all for your honesty and best of luck.

Hi, I’m from India. Been taking Zoloft for three months, 50mg/day. Started withdrawal around 10 days back and I’m doing it very slowly, but still suffering from withdrawal effects, like insomnia, nightmares, tremors and weakness in legs. Luckily, I’m not on a high dosage and quitting it completely shouldn’t be a severe problem, I’m already half way thru, 25mg/day now, and decided to withdraw from the rest when i get a month long vacation. I’m loaded with a lot of work right now. I just realized how costly this shit is in America, around 72$ for 30 tablets of 50mg each. The same medicine which goes by the name daxid in India(supplier Pfizer itself) costs about 32Rs for a strip of 10 tablets, which is less than one US dollar( currently 1 US$ is 45 Indian Rupees). What I’m getting at is that even the poorest of people in India could afford zoloft, which is not the case in USA. I’m shocked by this surprisingly large difference in rates. I personally believe that these pharmaceutical companies are all crooks, read somewhere that Pfizer doesn’t even provide the customoers with an official list of withdrawal effects of zoloft. Can not somebody sue the company in your country? Finally, thank you all for your helpful comments, helps me become mentally strong. Sorry if you’ve had a tough time understanding my english

I weaned my self off Zoloft; the last pill was a week ago. I am having the clasic withdrawals: dizzy, the shakes, moody and so on. Today I have been extremely dizzy and sick to my stomach, so I had my niece (a nurse) take my blood pressure and it was 158/100. It is normally 128/76. I am wondering if anyone else has had their BP taken while experiencing these symptoms???

Well I have never been so angry before. I cant believe that there was not any warning about these withdrawal symptoms. I started taking Z in august of 01 and it was great but I wanted to get off of it in the summer of 02 but it made me so sick that I could not work and then I went back on it. I have never been over weight in my life and my five foot frame is not at 145lbs. My doctor has put me on prescription diet pills for the weight, sleeping pills for the sleeplessness and then I drink coffee all day long to keep myself out of bed and away from the t.v. I dont know about you but I think that there should be a warning about these life altering side affects. I went on Z to overcome my depression but when I became overweight I just became even more depressed!!!! I have quit now and just had a really bad panic attack, I got up and walked right out of my class the day before my final and made my mom drive up to my college and pick me up. Im gonna put up with the symptoms by just laying in bed for a couple of weeks but what the hell can I do about all this wieght!!!! I eat very small meals and very healthy meals but the pounds are still here. I know it is a lot to hope for but will the pounds just melt off!! If anyone wants to get a lawsuit started count me in!! -Kristina

I have been on Zoloft for about 8 months. Am now reducing the 100 mg to one third a day. Terrible symptoms much as others have described. Am thinking of reducing to one third every second day. Any ideas of whether I should do this gradual withdrawal or just go cold turkey. I hate being on this shit. An answer would be appreciated. Thanks

Captain Nemo, cold turkey or weaning off it is all the same; either way you will have to go though the withdrawals! It hase been three weeks now and I am just starting to feel a little like myself.(remember I said a little) I keep telling myself, “I AM STRONGER THAN THE MEDICATION AND I WILL PROVAIL!!!)
Good Luck! Tom

How long with this “gooshing” in my brain continue??? I slowly withdrew from 200mg to 100 to 50 to 25 then I fgured screw it.. I can handle it, but it has been a week now and the “gooshing hasn’t stopped. I, too like many others on this site just don’t want to be dependent anymore. I also had signifigant weight gain but I am not sure if this was zoloft’s fault. I am surprised, too that zoloft is so frequently advertised on t.v. Then again, once they get you hooked, think of all the money they can make. I am just hoping that after withdrawing I feel fine and whatever it was that made me need them is history…Barbara p.s.. any comment about weight gain and length of withdrawal would be appreciated

i started taking zoloft after a terrible headache i had for 2 weeks. I was cat scanned, x-rayed, and spinal tapped (wich by the way disabled me ALOT more than the withdrawls are). I was sent to see a therapist and after only 2 hours was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder. I am a severe case of it. The amount of stress i was going through just being at work and going to the store was creating tension in my neck muscles. I went from a maxalt darvocet clorzoxone cocktail to zoloft in 2 weeks time. Now, 5 months later, i haven’t even had a sinus headache… but was begining to scare my girlfriend and family. I was the hulk on steroids as far as anger goes. I quit taking the zoloft and now i dunno wich way is up!! i turn my head and almost instantly black out. As far as the drugs working differently on each person…i have to agree and feel i am unique example to that. My sex drive quadrupled on the pill…my stamina went up…and my over all climax was greatly intensified. My doctor still can’t figure that one out

A few years ago on Christmas morning i got poisioned. I know it sounds crazy but i was wearing an elves hat that i wear every Christmas while exchanging gifts with my family. My hat fell on whatever white powder that was on the lawn. Besides my forehead & my eyes turning beet red i felt lkike i was going to faint. I had such a bad case of dehydration that i must have drunk bottles of water nonstop for at least 4 hrs. Obviously my body made me flush the poision out of my system. As time went on this experience shook me up inside until finally people suugested i take an anti-depressant. First i was on Efexxor & now Zoloft for the past 3 years. I have gained at least 60 lbs. & have tried to get off this horrible drug a few times. This last time i have been off it the longest now for 16 days. The first week wasn’t so bad but now i am jumping out of my skin,dizzy,dehydrated,i feel like when i walk it is an effort & i feel like i am walking on a slant. Thank you for this website so i know that i am not dying. This drug is the worst thing that has ever happened to me. I feel numbness & tingling & like i am not in the real world. I pray for this to end. I will follow up in a couple of weeks about how i am feeling. I have recently made a very good new friend & she has helped me enormously. She is the first person i know that has said to go off it & that i will be okay. To call her if i need to. She i s the only person that knows that i am doing this. I thank God for her & hope that this withdrawl won’t last much longer. Can some of you please tell me how long it took you?

I’ve been on 50 mg for almost 4 yrs. I finally decided to give it up because my shrink was being a jerk. I tapered, but my worst complaint is severe dizziness. There are times when I can hardly stand up straight, and heaven forbid I have to turn my head. Last time I missed a few days I couldn’t walk straight and almost passed out. My shrink seemed very surprised that I was having any withdrawal symptoms - he told me it was very unusual! I’ve been off it for 2 weeks now - when does the dizziness stop?

I’ve been taking Zoloft for 10 years and have been unsuccessful at getting off. I started at 50mg and then quickly went up to 200mg. It seemed to help for the first year and that’s it. I was in denial thinking that my life would be worse if I quit taking it, but I was just scared to get off. That is why I stayed on so long. Here’s what I am going through today after being off for 10 days (I had to take one pill). I figure I’ll go as long as I can and then take a pill (100mg) again, it get’s so overwhelming that I can’t quite do the cold turkey thing, but almost. Here’s what my days are like: I get up feeling so tired and weak. The baby cries and now I feel it’s all I can do to keep my composure. I get in the same old ‘married couples fight’ but now I cry so hard and blurt out horrible things and think horrible things. I feel like someone else is controlling my actions. My head feels clogged, hot, tingly, headachy, and dizzy. I get such bad ‘zaps’ when I try to exercise. I am nauseous and feel like I’ve just come off a roller coaster - like motion sickness. I am so hungry. I can’t get sated. Did I mention that I cried when there was the slightest controversy with me husband? Yes, I do, and at the store, and gardening and writing this note…get the picture? It’s like so much emotion welling up inside of me that a battle or fight with someone feels good. I get to expell the feelings that are brimming up and over the edge. I feel a pressure of holding in pain, heartache, tears, etc., even if there is nothing bad going on in my life. I can not wait to get over this withdrawl because it is so draining. I just have to keep it together a little bit longer. Have stength everone that feels this.

I searched for this subject to see if there was some other reason that I could be feeling this way-even fearing a brain tumor, or something dramatic along those lines. I thought that this drug was supposed to be the one that didn’t give you the serious withdrawl symptoms, but after reading the entries on this site, I feel rather stupid. Does anyone know how long this is supposed to last? I am tempted every morning to start taking them again just so I don’t have to dread the onset of another dizzy spell, or migraine like shooting pain.

ive been on zoloft for a few months now. The panic attacks have subsided but I now find myself hiding in my cave (room) and drinking heavily. I called my girlfriend a fat lop and she hates me now. things arent getting better. any ideas?

Hey Big Al, it is your other personality, Big Al. don’t worry about it. Drink through it. I am so saaad. Wait now I am happy…I hate my job….I like big girls…..when will this all end….1 pill 2 pills 3 pills 4….who’s that knocking at the door….they walk in (I have no doorknob)…..well what do you know…..It is a MOOSE!!!! Help me

I am thankful to have found such a site as this one, because I didn’t know that I may be facing some hard times ahead in trying to get off the zoloft. Zoloft did have its benefits for me, and has helped me in a lot of ways. I am a student with a trememdously stressful courseload, and being on zoloft has increased my performance and grades by a great deal. This is due to the fact that I can actually focus without expending so much energy on anxiety. For those of us that do have such debilitaing anxiety problems, meds like zoloft make it possible for us to function in society.

However, I have experienced some of the negative effects of the drugs as well. Being a 27 year old woman who had been 135 lbs. since the onset of puberty, I gained 10 pounds since I started the drug in July 2003. Moreover, I have experienced the feeling of emotionlessness and also have absolutely no sex drive, which makes me feel like a neuter being, and my boyfriend suffer also. I have also had the strange colorful dreams and nightmares (but have kind of enjoyed the bizarreness of them I must admit-kind of like a trip)

I have also experienced the ‘magnetic’ effect Zoloft seems to have, since I tried to taper my 50 mg dosage to 25 mg, only to become painfully depressed for no good reason. To avoid being depressed, I raised my dosage again, only to feel fine again.

For these reasons, I have made the decision to come down off of the 50 mg dosage Zoloft, and in the 10 days since I have stopped taking the drug, I feel awful. I am inexplicably tearful and depressed. I am having fits of rage over the most minor inconveniences. I am dizzy, suffering from what feels like irregular heartbeat, and I am extremely and perpetually nauseated. I pace around, and am almost afraid to be alone because I am not sure what I am capable of doing. I feel as if I should be under surveillance because of these instability. I have had some personal hardships occur in recent days, but these feelings seem some how unrelated to reality.

I have only been on 50 mg for 10 months, and I did taper off for about 10 days. Maybe this wasn’t sufficient and I should have tapered for longer, but I was unaware of the potential severity of withdrawal symptoms. Maybe I figured that since I was on a lower end dosage, I would be OK. Maybe I should have been warned better. This goes to show that we all have to take care of ourselves, and not rely on what doctors tell us (in spite of their so called expertise). My experience makes me fear for those who are on higher dosages for longer amounts of times.

I guess the main point of this post is to advise people to ‘do their homework’ and weigh all of the pros and cons of going on psychiatric drugs BEFORE going on the meds (so you don’t end up like me, going through surprise withdrawal). Just make sure you know what you are getting into before you make any decisions. I wish you all the best.

I have been off of zoloft for about 10 days feels like forever and my side effects continue. Somedays are worse than others and when my allergies or sinuses are acting up it seems to magnify my withdrawl symptoms. I started taking St. Johns Wort w/Vitamin B complex. I am not sure whether it is making a difference or not. I just want this to stop. I have been on zoloft 100mg for aprox 4 years. Has anybody heard of any other herbal rememdies to help eleminate side effects? Does it get better and then stop or does it just stop? Does anybody know? I am hangin’ on but, it is hard!

Amy, you are a MORON………

When I take zoloft it causes me zero side effects, therefore zoloft must not cause side effects for anyone while they are taking the medication…. right ??

I am bipolar and take many strong drugs (lithium, seroquel, sleeping pills). My husband sat curled up on the couch in fetal position for 15 years, unable to do anything except barely get to work and blame me for his depression, which started in childhood (No! I didn’t know him then!)
I finally got him on Zoloft and he is now active and alive. Plus after 23 years of premature ejaculation we have a real sex life - he thought I was a bad lay the whole time - but I was a lot more experienced, (failure to communicate, I guess) Sorry, I won’t ever let him go off Zoloft, just like I stay on my medications to function, too.

Angie

hello my name is charlotte and i was wondering if someone can tell me how to ween off of zoloft without getting the bad side effects? thank you hope someone can help

Nightmares, insomnia mostly from 100 mg to 50mg. I’ve been tapering very slowly and /still/… I also really have to watch my temper and, naturally, the world around me is making that hard (why I went on the Zoloft in the first place).

I’ve been on Zoloft for about a year and I’ve been lowering my dose for the past month. Im now down to 25mgs every other day. If I try to go that extra day without it I start feeling extremely dizzy in the afternoon. I also get migrane like headaches; where if I look at light for very long my head hurts worse and I get real dizzy. I hate Zoloft. I think it’s poison. Im just basically sick of antidepressants period.

Please do not try to quit Zoloft cold-turkey. My husband has been taking Zoloft for about four years. Two months ago he decided to go cold-turkey. Two days into the abstinance he knocked me in the jaw. Five days into the Zoloft withdrawal he tried to kill me by strangling me. This man does not drink or use any mood altering substances (other than the Zoloft). Thankfully he is back on the Zoloft. I think he learned his “cold-turkey” lesson.

So glad to find this place. I have taken Zoloft for 3 1/2 years now. At one time I was taking 200 mg. but eventually dropped to 100 mg. I tried to get off the Zoloft and the Klonopin at the same time earlier this year (at the advice of my shrink). Whew, what a trip! So, I started taking both of them again. When I told the shrink about the dizziness, nausea, and insomina, he said “sounds like you are having some serious withdrawals.” No kidding.

He then advised me not to get off both at the same time. So, now I am only trying to get off Zoloft. I weaned off as I was instructed but am experiencing horrible side effects. Extreme vertigo (dizziness and nausea), insomnia, lethargy, short temper, and feeling sooo tired.

Today is day 9 and the dizziness is still with me. I’ve been having a lot of headaches and I believe my blood pressure may be up. Also, having diffculty breathing especially when I am up and walking around. Some days are worse than others.

I keep telling myself it is getting better. I am not as nauseated as I was a few days ago. Maybe the nausea will help me lose some of the weight I have gained since being on Zoloft…40 pounds!

I noticed along with the dizziness, I have been hearing a buzzing sound (kind of like crickets) when I turn my head too quickly. This started on Day 8. Sounds weird I know.

I’ll keep posting so you will know what each day brings. I am hoping I will be over this in a few days. Maybe I’ll be one of the lucky ones.

But, then, there’s the Klonopin to get off next. That’s another story and another place.

Thanks to all of you for posting here. At least I know I’m not losing it all together.

Hello, I took 50mg of Zoloft for 6 months. I weened off of it completely exactly 11 days ago. The first few days, I felt almost no difference. I actually got worst after a week. After a week, it stopped getting worse but did not improve. Yesterday, the 10th day was a little better. Today the 11th day, is even better, but not out of the woods yet. I feel it will take a month before I’m out of the withdrawl symptoms completely.

My symptoms include, headaches, sever dizzyness, electrical buzzing (especially when moving my eye focus or moving my head). My vision is blurry sometimes. I’m tired, and withdrawn. I’m depressed at times and get teary eyed easily. My head constantly feels empty of thought or emotion. It is like you’re brain dead. I also feel nausea, and insomina. I don’t feel vertigo (room spinning) but It is a bit more challenging to walk and stay balanced. I don’t feel short tempered, but I’m more irratable.

I’m writing to let people know these are normal feelings and that you should not go back to it if you feel these. Fight them, it will get better. This is my 11th day and I feel things turning around. I’d rather suffer a little now then continue on this stuff for a long time which will just prolong my suffereing.

My recommendation for getting off is you should do it VERY VERY SLOW.

1st week, take the same dosage for four days and 25mg less for three days (alternate these). As an example, if you’re on 100mg, then take 100mg Mon, Wed, Fri, & Sun and 75mg on Tue, Thu, & Sat.

2nd week, take 25mg less all week long. 75mg for those originally on 100mg.

3rd week, alternate between 25mg and 50mg less. For the person originally taking 100mg (in the example above), that would be 75mg for four days and 50mg for three days (alternate).

4th week, take 50mg less all week. 50mg for the example above who was on 100mg originally.

5th week, take 50mg and 25mg (alternate). Similar to previous weeks, 4 - 50mg and 3 - 25mg.

6th week, take all 25mg.

7th week, take 25mg for 4 days and 12.5mg for 3 days.

8th week, take all 12.5mg (break the 25mg in half, or 50mg in quarter)

9th week, take 12.5mg every other day for four days.

10th week, stop all together.

If the symptoms come back, fight them. They will come back no matter how slow you ween off. They are less severe if you take 8-10 weeks to get off 100mg and 4-5 weeks if you’re on 50mg. They symptoms might come back earlier, for example, when you go down to 50mg, but that’s ok, let them. Again stay strong. It is like fighting a drinking or somking urge.

After 10 weeks, it will take you 3-4 weeks of ZERO ZOLOFT to feel near normal again. You know about the withdrawl symptoms now. If you get different ones, stay on this posting and ask others to share their stories.

Good luck all staying Zoloft free. What a crazy drug. I’ll be happy to do without it. I know after reading many of you, my life will go back to normal, even if it takes 2-4 months.

Thanks all. God bless. You may e-mail me for questions or comments at kzetouna@yahoo.com.
STAY WELL!!

Dear All,

Hi this Shaikh Here and Iam very Much tensed about a Woman who is very Close to me but she never gives me a Chance to Touch her Iam Just wasting my Money like anything on her But after Spending the Money also Iam Not Getting What I wanted So Please Help me Out in this, I want some Indian Medicine to make her Horny and have a nice time with her she should come in search of me after having that Tablet, So Can U tell me Which Tablet Can I give her and what is the Cost of the Tablet and Where Can I get the Tablet?

Iam a residen of Bangalore City, Karnataka State &Country India So Please Reply to my Mail Immediately.

Waiting for Ur Positive Reply

Thanks & Regards Shaikh

My age:32 Years on Zoloft:9 Amount:200mg/day Time spent tapering off Zoloft:6 months Time free of Zoloft: 1 month Symptoms: I friggin feel like I am going insane. EXtreme paranoia, psychosis, mood swings, violent thoughts, depression, manic behavior, too much freakin stuff to list. I took a bunch of pills, I didn’t want to die I just wanted to not be . How long is this going to last? I went through the dizzy tingly floaty crap too. SSRI’s are EVIL they should be illegal. What can I do in the meantime, I smoke weed sometimes again when it gets horrificaly bad. Oh and I have really bad social phobia, some of you listed anxiety and I was wondering if what you really meant was social phobia ( can’t even friggin call someone, usually you feel like people are staring it one specific feature of your body/face in public, bunch of wierd crap) I can’t stand this but I have to. And if I have to see that goddamn friggin commercial with the stupid little rock and at the end they say zoloft is non-habit forming I think I will kick in the t.v. I break things that are mine and I hurt myself , otherwise i would break other peoples stuff and hurt them. I am losing my friggin mind is there anything that will help? Good luck to all of you people going through this hell, and those of you who are considering starting an SSRI ,,,DON’T!! p.s. PHUK U PHIZER!!!!! (cuz u KNOW they have people that work for them reading these message boards)

It has now been almost 2 months since i went off Zoloft. I have never been happier. In my last posting on this site i said that i would write back & let everyone know how i was feeling. I am feeling great! The side effects are now truly over! That horrible drug is out of my system. I have had a few panic attacks since then but nothing that i can’t handle so far. In these past 2 months i have rekindled old friendships, made a couple of new ones,have started to change careers & have lost 10 pounds. It is very hard at first to go through the withdrawal but it can be done! I am so grateful for this website to let me know that i wasn’t going crazy or dying while i was going through withdrawal. I hope this helps all of you.

Congrats Bertie, Im glad to hear your story.. I am on a 6 mg/ day dose and just afraid to take that last step because of all my previous failures at quitting zoloft. I’d like to think either I was so screwed up before I went on the med. that I need it, but after the initial month or so on it, I was getting relatively zero therapeutic affect. Now I just have to brace myself for the hell that I personally experience coming off zoloft. Oh and to the person who experienced violent thoughts, I too get that way when I miss a days dose or try one of my hapless attempts to quit. I feel angry and sick thoughts of violence fill my head, as well as downright disturbing dreams at night. Thanks pfizer, go fuck yourselves….

Help. I started taking Paxil back in 1993 after having a depressive episode after my husband left me alonw eith 1year old twins. I was living in a city where he was my only family, when he kicked me and the children out, rented the house, and moved to another city. Long story short, I was on it until 2001. My docter asked if i’d noticed significant weight gain and i had, about 40 pounds. She swithched me to Zoloft. At first it was great. I felt better and lost about twenty pounds. Gradually, it began to be counter-effective. I became irritable. I started having sexual side affects and gained 60pounds over a three year period. I decided to quit cold turkey. I’ve been off for a little over a month. Intitally it was hell. I was queasy, vertigo, vomiting, sweats, and bizarre dreams, not to mention the head zaps. It’s gotten better with one exception. I have started to exercise like crazy…(I walk 3 miles a day, ride my bike 3miles and do 45 minutes of exercise, and i’m still gaining weight. Does any one know why? I’ve been taking the omega 3 oils like advised, but nothing. Also, my stomach looks like i’m 6 months pregnant. I weigh more now than when i was full term with my twins. Someone please help me. This is starting to depress me and i don’t want to fall into a cycle.

Thanks

well, i broke down and took the pill again. I work in a meter calibration lab and need 110% at all times. It was a 7 weeks ago i started again. last week i got pissed at the stupid pill and quit again. i HATE that fact that a non american shrink with a peice of paper prescribed it to me.

BUT…i think i may have found a way to ease the symptoms, as i have had NONE the second time around. True it has been only 2 weeks, but last time i felt it the next day. I drink 4 liters of water a day. No pop, no junkfood, just water and meat. This seems to be working for me. And it can’t hurt to try it for a week. I am not an atkins freak, i just like my steak.

Thw ay i figure it is they say that zoloft remains in the body for some time after you take it. Maybe it takes a month to get it ALL out, and that is why we feel this way? I don’t think the doctors know for sure either. I am gonna try goldseal next week with water, will post with the results.

you guys are freaking me out… if i said i felt normal after taking zoloft i would be lying, but some of that smack some of you guys are talking about leads me to believe you need an INCREASED dosage of setraline…. freaks

fordy,

Freaks eh? This must be a joke to you. We are trying to beat this nasty thing and you are sitting there mocking any attempt we make to make it easier.

We can’t all be 16 at home with mommy there to make it better. What happened? You not get a playstation game you want and get depressed? Seems like your issues stem deeper than ours. Time to visit the shrink again dude. I’m sure mommy will pay again for you

I came across this site looking for info on whether or not it may be the Zoloft making me sleep more than when I wasn’t taking it, thats the only ‘side effect’ I’ve had. Just wanted to say, maybe it is being over-prescribed for minor problems, but for people like me, Zoloft is a lifesaver. I’ve been depressed all of my adult life, was depressed as a teenager but got no help, everyone just said that it was normal for teenagers to be depressed. As I approached my mid-twenties the depression grew worse and worse, despite everything in my life going rather well. I wanted to die, I didn’t want to get out of bed, I could barely get up to take a shower half the time. Not having medical coverage to pay a doctor to tell me I was depressed (no shit I was depressed), I did some research and eventually bought myself some Zoloft online, at first I took a whole 50mg tablet and it made me grind my teeth, took a half of one and thats been working for me ever since. I am happy and starting my own business, doing volunteer work, getting all the things done I’ve always wanted to. No more thoughts of what the best way to kill myself would be. I’m sorry Zoloft isn’t working for you guys, but it DOES help some people. TO be honest I don’t care what the future side effects are, if it takes thirty years off my life, I’d rather live a short happy life than a longer one where I’m miserable for no reason. I’ve been on it for over a year now. I stopped taking it for about three weeks when I forgot to order more and then didn’t have the extra cash right away, I had no ‘withdrawal symptoms’, except by the second week I was starting to feel slightly depressed again, was crying over mildly depressing issues, it was like when I wasn’t taking any Zoloft, but not thinking suicidal thoughts yet, so I figured I’d better order it again before I went back to the way I was. No sexual side effects for me, but I am a woman so maybe it is different for men…? I’m actually more interested than I was when I was depressed. I honestly believe that antidepressants are being prescribed for the wrong problems, but to say it should be banned or whatever isn’t taking into account those of us who thrive on them.

I started going off zoloft about a month ago, i tried to cut back, but eventually went off cold turkey. Then came the withdrawl symptoms. The weirdest of all was the dizzy spinning feeling i get when i move my head sometimes. This is especially bad when i exersise or workout. After that came the nausea-this is horrible. I am still experiencing the nausea. Don’t let a shrink tell you you can go off it without side affects. Thats Bull shit. However i think its a good idea not to start it at all. Its just another f*g drug.

Well…. the way I look at it is, some people NEED drugs, for example if you have dangerously high blood pressure, you will probably greatly benefit from taking drugs to regulate it. And if all you can think about is ending your life for no reason at all, you’ll probably greatly benefit from an antidepressant. It’s entirely possible that if I stop taking Zoloft, I’ll feel depressed, want to hurt myself and others, have wild moodswings and out of control PMS, but if that happened, I wouldn’t blame the Zoloft, since thats the way I was before I started taking it! So, yeah, I think its way off to say it should be illegal. I’d take it even if it was illegal, in fact, I think it’s illegal for me to be buying it without a prescription, but oh well. But I agree that you shouldn’t start taking it just because your doctor is handing it to you. I think it and other drugs get prescribed all to often for minor things that aren’t life threatening. ( I did find out why I’ve been sleeping more lately, it wasn’t the Zoloft, I have anemia and am now on iron supplements to correct it.)

I was using Zoloft from October to the end of May at 100 mg. It was prescribed for panic attacks that I had four days in a row. The doctor said I should take this until March. However, when March came around he didn’t recommend a reduced dosage. I wanted it reduced because I had a terrible academic year in grad school and I was sleeping until 2:oo in the afternoon on the weekends. I felt like I didn’t care enough about things. My reactions were slow and I was letting things go. Plus I gained 20 lbs. So I cut my pill in half for a month. I was then at 50mg. Then I quit taking it at all two weeks ago. I can’t sleep every other night, have earaches, experienced a little dizziness, and I am more emotional. However, I know I am experiencing withdrawal and it should go away soon. Good luck to everyone who are reducing dosages etc.

The fourth day on Zoloft and iwoke up with a terrible headache. I never had one that bad. Also ive noticed im making uncontrolled facial expressions.Almost wrecked today in traffic because I couldnt concentrate.Couldnt focus my eyes while getting my hair cut at the barbor and almost passed out in the chair.I thought that i was crazy until i found this site. If that only took four days thank God im quitting .Will I have any problems quitting after only four days on this stuff? Please let me know.

Thanks for starting this site, Richard.

I am confused, though. Many posters here have asked for responses, but I haven’t been able to find out if they got them, what they were, or whether they are accessible to others, or if any of this is even possible. Clicking on the highlighted number at the top of the post only indicates it is creating a permanent link, as far as I can tell.

Clearly, I’m missing something. Help…..?

hi, my boyfriend quit zoloft cause our doctor refused to see us anymore. plus his new insurance wont cover zoloft. so he had no choice but to quit cold turkey. he is having some symptoms that im not sure if they are related or not cause he also has a really bad sinus infecion. he is really tired and has asbolutely no energy. feels sleepy all the time. he is very weak, what he could normally pick up he absolutely struggles with. when he moves around he gets dizzy and nausiated. one night he made dinner and ate then all of a sudden out of nowhere he started to sweat terribly and ran to the bathroom and threw up. he said that he has alot of pressure in his head and that he doesnt feel like he can think clearly. the doctors put him on prozac now cause that is covered on his insurance. is that a good thing? is that going to help with his withdrawl symptoms? i dont know anything about prozac and what it does to a person. i feel so terrible for him cause i dont know what i can do to help. i went thru a terrible ordeal going off paxil. good god what a nightmare. so i know what he is going thru. only he isnt as bad as i was, thank goodness. does anyone out there know of anything that helps with the withdrawl symptoms? i know someone said drink lots of water and he certainly does that cause thats about all he can hold down. in the past few days he has only ate like three times. he has been taking tylenol for his head pain but it doesnt seem to help much. as i am writing this he is asleep on the office floor curled up on a beanbag! i wish i could help! any suggestions or comments are welcome. you may even email me personally at amynjay@msn.com . just make sure you put zoloft as the subject so i know not to erase it. take care of each other. thanks for listening. Jays Girl

I was in a car accident and they told me i had post tramatic stress due to one panic atack. i was put on 25mg not tald i was to cut the 50’s in half i took those by mistake since i was fine they told me to contine. i dont feel i need this anymore tried to wean myself off i did 25 for a week then every other day for a week then every two days for a couple of days and i was dizzy but not super bad mind you i have only been on Zoloft for maybe six months. i currently cant sleep dont eat dinner because i think i would throw it up anyway. i am so dizzy sometimes i almost fall. i have horrible dreams and did not think i t was related until reading others comments. For being non habit forming it certanily a hard drug to get off of. i amwondering when it will end.

Today is the sixth day since I made the decision to throw my Zoloft down the toilet. I was getting tired of feeling like I was “broken” person who needed to be repaired. Luckily I was helped tremendously by Zoloft, but I feel that I now have so much going for me that I am ready to live without my little helper. This decision was done behind my psychiatristís back, and I am regretting committing this foolish act.

Like many of the people Iíve read about I am feeling like hell. Iíve been having extremely vivid nightmares (when I am able to catch an hour or two of sleep) that keep repeating day after day. Itís like watching a really bad movie over and over and over. On top of that Iíve woken up twice, unable to catch my breathÖvery scary sensation. I really thought that I was going to die in my bed! Iíve also been experiencing the feeling that electricity has been shooting down my arms, making my fingers tips tingle. At first I chalked that up to the fact that I was not taking enough calcium, something that can happen often when, in my case, I lost a parathyroid gland during a thyroidectomy. I have uncontrollable fits of crying at work that I have been trying to disguise by pretending that they are a result of raucous laughter. (How embarrassing!) I also use the excuse that I am menopausal, but I know the real reason for this bizarre behaviour. I havenít been able to make eye contact with people when I am talking to them and that in itself is making me paranoid. I donít even want to get into my unsteady gait; suffice to say that it looks like Iíve been hitting the bottle.

Yesterday I couldnít take it any more and went to my Family doc because I couldnít get in to see my psychiatrist for 3 weeks. I was in the midst of a full-blown panic attack, yet my family doc didnít seem to appreciate the seriousness of my foolish act and instead wrote me a prescription for Remeron, another anti-depressant. I couldnít disguise my rage and disgust at his lack of understanding and help and after calling him a f*ing moron I stormed out of his office.

Iím terrified that I wonít be able to cope without any type of medication to help me live a normal life, yet on the other hand I am terrified of having to rely on a drug to bring joy back into my life.

thanks to all those who have shared about withdrawal from zoloft. two weeks ago i began to wean myself off from adose of 150 mg.went to 75 mg.for 7 days then to 50mg for 7 days. the reason for this was severe diarrea. let me tell ya i am a 44 yr. old man who up untill 4yr. ago used every street and pharmacy drug there is. i have kicked coke,xanax,vicidon,alcohol etc,etc. i have never experinced withdrawal like this. i am so fucking dizzy and swim headeaded i cant stand it. i thought i had an ear infection. had myself checked by a doc.told him about coming off zoloft he knew right away that was causing my symptoms. he sent me home with a starter kit for effixor. can you believe that? i know they wanna help,but let me get off one before starting another. besides are not the side effects and withdrawals worse than the symptoms? i was being treated for panic and anxiety. living sober can be a bitch sometimes. regaurdless i plan on staying that way. how long will i be dizzy?

This site is so interesting… I came online to find out if my dizziness could be a result of going off zoloft. Whelp, guess I have my answer. I started zoloft about 9 years ago for Seasonal Affective Disorder, and year by year it’s become harder to stop taking zoloft during the summer months. The last 3 years I’ve just taken it year round. But I suddenly feel like i don’t need it anymore. I tapered for about 2 weeks, and am now dizzy as can be. I’m a swimmer with a 10k swim coming up, but the swims and turning my head to breathe make me really dizzy. Even officemates have noticed. I feel some consolation to know that it’s zoloft-related, I just hope it’s short lived! Thanks all for sharing!

This string has been a very interested read. I was started on SSRI’s in 1996 following a stress related heart attack. (That’s another story in itself, and in an effort to find out why a man aged 46 with no ‘heart disease’ could suffer one, I subsequently became a guinea pig in what became a world-first discovery linking stress, panic attack and heart attack. This was written up in the Australian Medical Journal and the findings are now accepted globally). The SSRI helps reduce the role of noradrenaline, which causes a whole lot of other natural body chemicals including adrenaline to build up around the chest wall and cause the main artery to the heart to spasm shut. In my case it was only a minor spasm, but it had the effect of a full blown heart attack (ie interrupted blood flow to the heart). Anyway, whilst Arapax, Zoloft and most recently Cipramil helped me immensely in the early stages, in the last year or two I found myself losing the plot - disinterested etc. What finally brought the whole issue to a head was when my wife told me I had lost my business drive because our business was suffering. So after 6 years I went cold turkey. I know, I know… but it has been worth it. Let me tell you about the side effects that no-one talks about though. We read all about the nightmares, brain zaps, weird feelings and weight gain (all of which I have suffered),but the drugs also do nasty things to your body. 1. SWEATING. Profuse. The slightest physical activity causes massive sweating. It can also develop a metallic smell which is very unpleasant. Severe night sweating is common. 2. DESENSITIZATION OF THE SKIN. Sufferers talk about orgasm problems and so on, but what is actually happening is that the SSRI reduces the sensitivity of your nerve endings. Consequently, what happens is that you don’t feel the cold. Strangely, I also seemed to lose sensitivity to alcohol. Drink lots, don’t get drunk until WHAM you’re so pissed you can’t stand up in the space of seconds. You also lose sensitivity in the penis (and presumably for a woman, in her clitoris). For a man, the shaft and particularly the head of the penis lose almost total sensitivity. This is why in these columns men talk about having to ‘pound away for hours’ in an attempt to achieve orgasm. It does happen, and is such a relief when it finally does, but the poor female is half crippled with the effort. Doctors tell you that an orgasm happens in the brain - the sex organs are merely the delivery system - so it means that you and your partner really have to get yourself ‘sexed-up’ in order to achieve success. You actually have to be quite violent with it to get to orgasm. Incidentally it took me about 5 days after going off Cipramil for the sensitivity to return. I felt like jumping for joy. My wife thinks it’s pretty neat too - now she doesn’t dread the heavy, never-ending pounding.
Real life has started coming back to me in phases. The sweating has stopped, the weird, fantastic dreams (nightmares) have stopped. I am starting to feel the cold again. I can only drink a couple of glasses of wine before I start to feel tipsy. The brain zaps are still happening weeks later, although lessening off. Most of all, I am feeling like I am in control again. I feel more vibrant and willing to make things happen in life, particularly business.

In conclusion? The drug helped me when I needed it, and at the age of 54 maybe I am taking a risk going off it, considering my medical history, but I am glad to be free (5 weeks now). The medical profession seems happy to put people on SSRI’s, probably because it takes patients out of their clinics for a time and they feel they have helped, but long term the drug becomes a problem.

The main difficulty seems to be that different people have different amounts of seratonin and other brain chemicals in their bodies to start with, and the drug therefore affects individuals in completely unpredictable ways. In any event, you do survive as long as you persevere. Good luck to all those going through similar things. Georgie.

I was put on zoloft after i was hospitalized for severe depression. I have been wanting to get off zoloft for quite a while now. (150 mg) Then I decided to definitely do it last week when I forgot to take it for a few days in a row. I got so ill, and threw up, got super depressed and started having panic attacks. I decided that if that is what happens when I don’t take it, I don’t want to be on it at all. My fiance says he’ll be supportive even if I get depressed again, but I’m really scared. I can almost deal with the nausea, but the depression is awful. Is there anything I can do to lessen the severity of withdrawal?

Wow. As a nurse I had no clue this drug had withdrawal symptoms. My M.D. prescribed it for anxiety attacks about 6 months ago. I got on-line and checked about side effects and didn’t find anything about withdrawal. In fact my m.d. said she wanted to put me on zoloft instead of paxil because paxil can be addicting. I started on 50 increased to 100 and then took myself back to 50 to wean off. After a week I stopped altogether and on the 3rd day I physically felt crappy. Figured it had to be due to the zoloft and restarted. I am now in the process of taking 50mg every other day (just started this week) and today am having many of the symptoms described above. I read the comments from the nurse practicioner re: no difference in reducing slowly and quitting altogether and am thinking she’s right. Good thing I’m on vacation this week - but what a hell of a way to spend it. How long are the most intense physical symptoms lasting for you guys? Now wishing I had done what I did this time with researching the drug and searched specifically for ‘zoloft withdrawal’. Guess I didn’t think I had to worry about that.

I also was given Zoloft by my Doc because I lost my twin unborn babies and went into a deep depression. I’ve been taking it for 2 months and felt o.k. for a while but then stated to feel like numbness as far as feelings went and was forgetting a lot of important things and was very lazy so I decided to stop taking the Zoloft even though my doctor recommended that I dont. Well, withdraw is so bad: Upset Stomach, chest pain, dizziness and more dissiness with nausea, zap’s, twiching in my right eye.I wish I never had taken this drug being that I have never been a meds person, not even when I get headaches do I take meds ever.I hate this feeling. How long will this last????? Hang in thare everyone because it’s a bumpy ride.

Thanks Richard for this web page.

The truth about Zoloft is that it affects each person differently. Some may have side effects, some may not. Some may suffer from severe withdrawal, some only a little, and some none at all. I have taken Zoloft 4-5 years ago off and on for depression. I tried Celexa after that and was very happy. It did not have the sexual side effects of the Zoloft. When I became pregnant I had to go back to Zoloft because it is safer. At first, I had no problems other than dry mouth on 50 mg., but it was not as effective as the Celexa I had previously taken and was very happy with. The Zoloft worked better at 100mg for me but the side effects were too severe. I took the Zoloft for 2 years through 2 consecutive pregnancies for mood swings and it was helpful. I am 5 months postpardum and trying to discontinue the Zoloft to see how I feel on my own. Whenever I had missed just one pill, I would start to have withdrawal. I would sweat and become dizzy. Noises and moving my eyes too quickly made me feel like all of my nerves were juming at once. Now that I am trying to quit, I have started weaning myself slowly. I went from the 50mg I was on down to 25mg. I did not have withdrawal doing this. I stayed on 25mg to 2weeks. I then took 25mg every other day and that is when the withdrawal started. I became very sick after several days of doing this. I was vomitting and had diahrrhea(possibly from a virus too)but I also had the usual symptoms of dizziness, fatigue, flu-like symptoms. I felt awful. The Dr. didn’t know if the withdrawal was causing my vomitting and diahrrhea too. He said 90% of the body’s seratonin is in the gut, not in the brain like it was thought to be. He said quitting too quickly could possibly make you very sick. He told me to stay on 25mg. every day for a while longer-at least until my body felt more stable. They say Zoloft is non-habit forming and that’s a load of crap. Maybe some people are fortunate enough not to have withdrawal, but some of us feel it terribly.

I forgot to mention, I thank God for helping me through all the sickness, I would never be able to do this without Him. I can’t think straight now because of some withdrawal, but wean slowly!!! that’s the key. You can do it.

I feel for everyone here, as I have been on and off Zoloft for over 7 years. I’ve done the cold turkey thing. I’ve weaned myself off of it for months and months at a time. Whenever I’ve gone off the meds I’ve felt suddenly alive again, a curtain lifted. However, for reasons unrelated to addiction, I don’t think I’ll be lucky enough to ever live completely without an SSRI.

One thing that I noticed was that higher doses of the Zoloft left me in a stupor. I couldn’t get out of bed. I started crying 2-3 times and day and feeling helpless. I felt like I was in a tunnel or wrapped in a blanket and could not experience the world or the people in it. I modified my own dose and went down to 50mg, which turns out perfect for me. People experiencing those severely debilitating side effects might benefit from a lower dosage during the duration of their treatment, and I assume the withdrawal isn’t as bad either (i’ve only gone cold of 150 and 200).

I envy everyone here and support you. However, there is one thing that worries me in some of these reports. Talk to your doctors! If you want off the meds and you are sure, they will guide you off them. Zoloft and other SSRIs and anti-depressants have high-occurance of suicide during rapid withdrawal. No doc would ever suggest going off Z. cold turkey. The general side effects of withdrawal can’t be avoided, but please consider talking to your physicians/psychiatrist before and during the process, for your own safety! And if you experience really bad or debilitating withdrawal symptoms, like anxious suicidal thoughts, don’t hesitate to go to the emergency room either. Just like overcoming the stupor and the painful withdrawal, you are worth it!

I have been diagnosed with about ADHD and depression about 13 years ago. I was on Tegretol, Lamictal, Zyprexa, and Zoloft all at the same time! I tried to go off the Zoloft at first, but all I could was sit in my office and stare at the floor. I would not talk to anyone. Went off the Tegretol in January with big improvement, that took a month, the Lamictal was easy, now Zyprexa just last week. This one is really tough to get on and off of. I had to go off because I am fat and my cholesterol is too high, and Zyprexa will do this. I can’t sleep, I am tired, and I hope this junk has not wrecked me. I may try to go off the Zoloft later with the help of the advise above and decrease the dosage daily, but it was a wonder drug at the time: the cloud went away. What a way to live.

I have been on the zoloft for 11 years now. I never really had side effects, until recently. I was on 100 mgs. for most of the years, and about a year ago it was upped to 150 mgs. because I felt like it wasn’t working as well as before. I’ve got problems with extreme sweating, weight gain, social anxiety, excessive sleeping, and pains in my joints and muscles. I would really like to go off the Zoloft, but now I am afraid because of all the side effects. What now?

I have been on zoloft for 5 years now. I tried once before to get off of it without my doctor’s approval. I explained to him about the withdrawal symptoms, but he seemed to just dismiss them. Anyway, a few things in my life happened and after 6 weeks, for the betterment of my 3 children and husband, I decided to go back on it. That was almost two years ago. I slowly gained weight even though I try very hard to lose. I feel groggy all the time and I have to nap almost everyday. I am so sick of never having energy. I’m on 100mg, and have been for the last year and a half. Hopefully, I will be free from the feeling of needing zoloft to live. I have 4 kids now, and I’m scared to go through withdrawal. With all of the help and information I’ve gotten from this site, I know if I persevere, I will end up better than before. Thanks for this site. I thought I was losing my mind even though I was on zoloft. Oh, for some reason I’ve been gaining weight very rapidly the past 8 months. The only thing my doctors can find is perhaps the zoloft is doing it. That is even more incentive to get off the drug. I’ve gained 35 pounds since I’ve started taking zoloft. I can’t even keep up with my kids I’m getting so fat. I started on zoloft for post partum depression. Now I’m only on it because I’m afraid I’ll lose my mind if I don’t take it.

God Bless all of us!! Thanks.

It’s been about 6 months since I have been off Paxil completely. I think the weight gain alone contributed to more of my depression than the stuff I was dealing with at the time I started. The ballooning weight completely ate at my self-image so (in my eyes) it was a zero-sum game.

SSRIs were supposed to be only short-term solutions but it is so profitable to have involuntary repeat customers that don’t match the clinical definition of “addicted.”

Glad you got off it so quickly.

Hi everyone, it makes me really happy to hear other ppl have suffered as much as I have (sorry if that sounds bad but..). I was wondering, I have been taking Zoloft for almost 4 yrs everyday, but recently, for a few months, I decided I’d take it only randomly, like sometimes 3 days in a row, sometimes 2 days in a row, sometimes every other day, sometimes I missed a few days in a row. It took a few months to have the dizzyness, etc. come back since I wasn’t taking the medicine every day, and I’ve been taking Zoloft every day for 5 weeks since the dizzyness, etc. has come back, and it’s slightly better, but I’m not normal yet. Now, what I’d like to know is, if I can be experiencing withdrawal from not taking Zoloft every day, and that will it take longer than the normal 4-6 weeks to get back to normal ? Thanks a lot for any help.

Hi everyone. Good luck to you all. It’s helpful and theraputic to know that I’m not alone.

Here’s my story:

I have a bit of OCD having to do with internet useage and porn. I started to get mildly depressed due to this and my wife called me on it. She mentioned that I was always aggravated and annoyed and not fun to be around. I get this way because I’m annoyed with what I’m doing and how I hide it. I have two small kids and I need to control my attitude and anger better around them and my wife.

I finally went to the doctor to get some advice, and, honestly, some meds. I was hoping for Xanax or Valium so I could just chill out when needed, but my doc suggested talking to someone, or trying meds like Zoloft or Paxil. I’m not really comfortable talking with someone, so I opted for the meds. I should have simply asked for Xanax. I was given Zoloft. I started at 25mg for two weeks, then 50mg for four weeks, then 100mg for a week. My GOD that shit is the devils medicine… The Zoloft, starting the first day, made me feel like I was on speed, but without the added benefit of being hyperactive. My eyes felt like they were bugging out of my head, my jaw was constantly clenched, I’d grind my teeth, and I couldn’t sleep for shit. When I finally went back to the doc to get a refill, that’s when he pushed my up to 100mg, even after I told him about the side effects I was having. I took the 100mg’ers for MAYBE a week. Side effects were more prominent, so i threw the rest of that crap in the trash. Within a couple days I noticed what I now realize are withdrawal symptoms. I thought I was getting another sinus infection …

Dizzyness at the slightest head turn Bright lights bugged me out Loud noises bugged me out Agitated, restless, fatigued. Slight earaches Body aches, as if I had been working out, but I hadn’t been…

The good thing is that I’m sleeping better (it’s been nearly a week of Zoloft-free me), the bad news (besides the list above) is that I’ve had some very disturbing sexual dreams. I rarely remeber any dreams I have, but a couple this week have been sexual and disturbing to say the least.

I just want you all to know that you’re not alone, and thank you for letting me know that I’m not alone. I may be a bit depressed or anxious, and I need to get control of my OCD issues, but I don’t plan on using anti-depressants again in my lifetime. I’ll stick to pot if I need to chill out.

My plan moving forward is to work on my anger issues and my OCD issues day by day. I need and want to be the best Dad for my kids … that’s what they need and deserve.

Stay strong, stay healthy, and remember … everything in moderation.

Take care.

i was on zoloft for post tramatic stress. i was taking 100mg a day, and at first it seemed to help. then i couldn’t afford it anymore and stopped taking it. i stayed off of it for about a year and started having panic attacks, then i went back on it. it helped the panic attacks but, i felt like a zhombie all the time. i was on it a little more then a year this last time, and i weaned myself off but, i should have waited longer. its been about 5 months since i completely stopped taking it and i still feel like shit. i’m paranoid all the time. i can’t stand to be around people, i’be had brain zaps. when i was on it i couldn’t care less about sex, now my libido is out of control. and my heart flutters and my head feels numb. I think doctors will prescribe anything. they don’t really tell you what the long term effects are. i think we should all start trying to work through are problems naturally, without taking drugs. i hope everyone starts to feel better. it does make me feel better to know i am not alone in this. best of luck

Wow, this is very enlightening, and my best wishes go out to those dealing with such difficult issues.

Funny, but my story is quite different… and not as severe (so far) as most that I’ve read here. I’m pretty much a normal (middle aged) guy who is both sensitive and perhaps a bit high strung. I’ve been to a therapist and we’ve worked on my issues, but I’ve never had any real mental “problems.” I’ve had “so called” anxiety attacks, but only about a dozen or so in my lifetime.

Anyway, enough of that. My primary care physician is convinced that I am a majorly anxious person with hypchondria. I ask, is it hypchondria when you defecate blood? Is it hypochondria when you have a sinus infection? Sheesh.

(Hang in there, I’m getting to the Zoloft, but it’s a round about route) Recently I’ve been having some sleeping problems, wherein my snoring keeps waking me. Went to a sleep doctor to check out for sleep apnea. Nope. To help he gave me Sonata. Useless (for me). I was crankly and missing sleep, and asked him for something I’ve taken before (Ambien) and he was dead set against it (Addictive, he says). After not returning my calls I went to my PCP for the same. Here’s where the Zoloft comes in.

Knowing that he also is against anything “addictive” I was EXTREMELY nervous seeing him to ask for it. My blood pressure (normally 120/75 controlled) went up to 180/110. This just convinced him even more that I needed something to “calm me down.” In the past he tried me on Celexa, and after two weeks I couldn’t stand it. I quickly became asexual and very nervous. So I reminded him of that. He put me on Zoloft (25 mg for 4 days, 50 mg for 5, then 100 mg), and Trazadone (to help me sleep) and see him in 3-4 weeks.

Well, I decided to really, REALLY see if this would help. I was encouraged by two people I know on SSRI’s who are doing very well. But even before I got to the 100 mg level my sleeping problem turned into true insomnia. Zoloft very quickly destabilized my emotions, (I am pretty much an “even keeled” person) taking me from morose to elated states for no apparent reason. I went from dizzy to super alert, and became unable to even fall asleep (at least I could do that before I took it). Like Celexa, I’m MORE nervous, and asexual again.

I’m not willing to give it “enough time” for me to become “used to it.” This sucks, so I just stopped (like I did with Celexa). Although it’s only been a day (I was on it only two weeks), I felt better than I have the entire two weeks. Hopefully this short period will not be enough for me to have withdrawal symptoms of any significance.

The point is, while there are people for whom SSRI’s can work wonders, I also feel that there are people for whom it is poison. Problem is I’m not confrontational and my Doctor gets quite angry when I take it upon myself to stop something that I feel is hurting me.

He doesn’t want to prescribe Ambien because to him it is “dope,” yet he’ll say that we’re going to try a bunch of SSRI’s instead (until we find one that works). And, speaking of dope, Trazadone doesn’t help me sleep, but get’s me high as a kite! Although I’m looking for another doctor, so far the ones I’ve found also want to put me on SSRI’s. Beginning to feel like a conspiracy. I’m fine, thank you.

At least I found one who feels that Ambien is just a (mildly habituating) good sleep aid. And for that I’m feeling much better. Not something I need all the time.

Anyway, I don’t care if he is gonna be pissed. I’m not taking any more Zoloft!

I have been on Zoloft for about a year. I was sick with anxiety for 10mo. I hid in my room and slept the pain away. I was even freaking out one time when I was watching TV with my mom one time. I thought that this was it. Being in bed for the rest of my life and not being in my son’s life really got me down. My doctor kept giving me high does of all different kinds of meds. Then one day my friend told me about Zoloft. I went to my doctor again and I told him that I wanted to try Zoloft. I told him that I want to take a low does and then find the does that was good for me. Started from 15mgs to 25mgs, then on to 50mgs, and finally ended with 75mgs. My body doesn’t like high does of anything. I am still on 75mgs and I never want anything stronger then that. Now reading other people’s comments is scaring me. If Zoloft can help me get up and go outside to get the mail without being afraid then so be it. I am going to continue to take it. I need it like someone who needs thier heart medicane to live. I just want to know if taking Zoloft forever would make me some kind of crazy forgetful person in my older years? Is anyone out there been on Zoloft for a really long time? Are you okay or not, please tell me. Thank You for reading what I wrote.

zoloft isnt just a mental addiction. I know this because I know myself and I do not have an addictive personality…no smoking, no drinking, no drugs….never even tried a cigarette. Anyway my point is that I am a 24 year single mom and I was put on wellbutrin for mild depression and anxiety, nothing major, and I did not like the way it made me feel, so my doctor put me on lexapro…which made me gain 50 lbs in a very short time frame so I cut that out and switched to zoloft. So I still felt anxious and depressed also no energy…tired all of that, so recently my doctor had me stop taking Zoloft and start effexor xr…i stopped 200mg of zoloft and immediately went into 37.5 mg of effexor XR and I am feeling withdrawal symptoms..majorly…headaches…tiredness….major anxiety, depression, aggitation, restless, insomnia, you name it I have it…from switching from such a high dose of one med to a lower dose of a new med….also these are symptoms I would often feel if I had forgotten to fill my zoloft prescription or didnt have time to pick it up, if more than 2 or 3 days passed without taking it I would pretty much lose it and I never understood why I was feeling that way until I realized it was everytime I hadnt taken my Zoloft in a few days….so that is definitely not a mental addiction…my body reacts physically I dont tell myself I need it and that I am going to freak out without it…that would be a mental addiction…and that would cause those things to happen for that reason, these are things that happen to my body when I dont even know why at 1st! Also everyone out here has to realize that each person is individual and different so you cant say people are not feeling what they say they are or tell people that their withdrawal is not valid…because different medications do different things to different people. Someone else could get off zoloft cold turkey with no problems at all…this is just my experience!!

I started taking zoloft after being diagnosed with severe hypothyroidism my thyroid was at 107 normal range is between (0.5 and 5.5) The Dr. thought i could use zoloft 50mg for my mood swings. i’ve been on it now for about 1 year. When i started taking zoloft he suggested i would need to be on it for about a year, he told me how to taper off but never mentioned the withdrawls i would experience when stopping the zoloft. i feel like crap, the dizziness, nausea, electrical shocks(zaps) mood swings (which i went on the meds for),and jumpiness to loud noises. I went in to see a new Dr. before finding this website and after for a follow up. The first visit he wanted to do lab work to see where my thyroid was at, he thought it might be too low. Not knowing what it felt like to have your thyroid be too low i agreed with the Dr. and didn’t think it was from the zoloft. my thyroid was within normal range 2.44 so i told him about the websites i’d found with people going through withdrawls from zoloft just like me experiencing the same things, he said don’t believe everything on the websites it’s not from the zoloft you have probably have virdago. i still thing i’m not crazy and it’s the zolof, why would so many people experience the same thing? thank you all for your stories it’s nice to know i’m not alone.

I am on week 4 of quitting. I went from 100 to 50 to 25 and this is day 4 of nada. I had headaches but today is the absolute worst. I have the brain sloshing around in my head and nausea. I am having my gall bladder taken out on friday (its wed) and hope the pain meds they give me will help with the withdrawal. I too wish to thank everyone for writing. I now know I am not alone in what I am feeling, I will survive and just have to help myself thru it. I am scared about the mood swings and am thankful I live alone. Oh yeah, its that time o’ the month coming up and I know I will be crankier so those that know me, run for the hills!!!! Good luck everyone

kath

I was on Zoloft for 2 years at 50mg a day. I stopped taking it about a week ago and have been experiencing some of the things described here. Every time I move my eyes I get a “zap” and it started making me very irritated. I read on another message board about some people taking Benadryl (diphenhydramine) to help with this until the side effects wear off. I took one about 3 hours ago and I am already feeling much better. I still get some very small shocks once in a while, but it is a great deal better than it was. I figured Iíd post this here since this is the first site to come up on google while searching for ďZoloft withdrawal.Ē

Zoloft withdrawal is real - I ran out of my meds about a week ago and right when I ran out I contacted my shrink (who I stopped going to about 6 months ago - too expensive) for a refill. She refused. I was like, what the hell am I supposed to do now? So I just went cold turkey and let me tell you I haven NEVER felt worse in my entire life - headache, night sweats, vertigo, nauseau - all of it. I can’t concentrate or even go to work. I’m finally caving and going to an internist today for more zoloft. I guess I will be on this crap the rest of my life. I’m wondering, as a single woman, what would happen if one day I decide to have a baby. You cant take zoloft when you’re pregnant, or can you? This is a powerful and scary drug not to be messed with.

Hi Everyone, I have been on Zoloft since mid-1999. I went off of it for 4 months 3 years ago and once for 2 months a year after. I just went off of it again for the third time due to becoming pregnant about a month ago. I don’t remember any serious side effects the first time. The second time, I had tingling, numbness in my fingers, and extreme irritablity. This time has been the worst; I have experienced tingling in my tongue, numbness in my fingers, extreme aching deep in my muscles, headaches, trembling, difficulty sleeping, extreme irritability, and being very tired. It lasted strong for about 2 weeks and has gradually gotten better(in exchange for morning sickness, lol). I am not sure if I felt more withdrawal symptoms because I had been on it longer, or what. I also noticed I lost weight when I was initially on Zoloft, and after about 3 years gained a small, but noticable amount. I believe Zoloft has helped me in many ways, but was it monitored correctly? And should I have been on it so long with so little known about the long term effects it can have? Any thoughts?

One more thing, Angela -up above- Rock On!! I agree it’s not a something just in your head. (The withdrawal symptoms, that is.) You can’t have all these people coming up with the exact same withdrawal symptoms and say that it’s all in their heads, give me a break!!!! I have done a lot of research and reading on Zoloft-if you go to the official website you can look up tons of info. The funny thing is, is that there is not much on the withdrawal which makes you wonder how much of it has been REALLY studied before it is rushed off as the latest depression-anxiety-O.C.Disorder-PTSD-Panic Disorder-Social Anxiety Disorder-Etc. CURE…….seems quite a tall order for one drug. Maybe if everyone in the U.S. took Zoloft we would have a perfect society???!!! LOL, just kidding!

I’ve been on Celexa, Paxil, Effexor and now Zoloft.. I hate it. I see no point in being on it, as everyone including my doctor thinks I’m just going through teenage angst (whenever I wind up in the hospital, my meds get switched.. thus the lovely cocktail).. just because I’m 18. There is a history of depression on the maternal side but I, of course, am ‘faking it for attention’. Bitter digression aside..

Anyhoo. I stopped taking the.. orange ones (500 mg?) about three days ago now, and I feel like shit. I’ve had a swollen throat and fever like strep throat, but I haven’t heard anything about the bacterial culture. I can’t walk straight or sit down or do anything without these insane dizzy ‘pulses’.. It’s like a wave that slams into my head until I nearly faint. I also get hot spells, but my skin is cold. I’m always tired, I’ve had NO sex drive since I’ve been on it, my eyes feel dry.. like after a long flight. I’m nauseous and all that fun stuff too, but the main thing is the dizziness. I’m falling down and getting mighty bruises.

Is there anything to help this at all? I’ve been smoking pot to help me sleep, and it seems to help with my moodswings.. but this dizziness is insane..

I’m still taking Zoloft, i’m so scared of stop taking it, I feel like i’m in some type of jail that I will never be able to scape. the doc. increased my dose from 100mg to 150mg, I took it for a few days and then went back to my original dose cause I was feeling so sleepy, but I still feel sleepy, and have weird dreams, when i wake up it’s hard for me to tell what was real and what was just a dream, I also seem to hear stuff, but people say that noone heard anything, this only happens in the morning while i’m still in bed, but it worries me cause it never happened to me before, not even when my dose was increased from 50 to 100. I do have other side effects, like sweating a lot, no sexual drive at all, and at times i feel numb, i have gained weight, I’ve even started cutting myself after i started taking Zoloft. I want to get out of it, but i’m scared.

I’ve been on Zoloft for a little over two years. Started like many on 25mg, then 50mg, now 100mg. I have been suffering with ringing in my ears for nearly two years. I’ve had a cat scan, MRI, blood tests, you name it. Nothing can be concluded except that I must have tinnitus. I’m 42 years old and I’ve heard of tinnitus happening as one gets older, but I’m currently under the belief that Zoloft has caused it, or brought it on early. Six days ago I quit Zoloft cold-turkey. I’m experiencing nausea, dizziness (the slanted-walking feeling), severe zaps (like voltage in the head) moving my eyes about seems to bring this on too, and yes, the infamous tinnitus is still there. I’m hoping that once the 4 to 6 week period has passed that maybe the ringing will stop. I will report back at that time with any news, good or bad. Thank you to all who have shared their withdrawl feelings, I was quite relieved to hear that the zapping was not just isolated to me.

Thank you so much for this. I started taking vitaim Z when I was 18, my first year of college. It was hard being young and starting the adventure of my new life with this drug. I can’t really tell if it has helped or harm me. I was and still am figuring so many things out right now I feel that Vitaim Z just took some of my young adult life I can’t get back. Now I’m 21 and just decided to get off and am going crazy. I can barely drive to school because I’m so dizzy and I have been feeling rage like never before. I have never been so mad in my life. I’m glad to be getting off it but it is hard to. Every minute of the day I want it back. Non-adictive I beg to differ, but have no proof but my feelings. I’ve been at the hightest dosage 200mg and 45mg of busar at the age of 19. I don’t think its right to do that to someone so young. To the parents out there please think twice about letting your children on this powerful drug. They can do more harm than you think when you’re not a stable young adult. Influncing decisions on your sex life and having bad side affects when you don’t know how to hold your liquar. Thank you agian for this site and hope everyone the best. I’m trying hard but trust me it’s very hard. Good luck!

I took Zoloft for over a year. When I stopped abruptly, I spent about 2 weeks with a most curious symptom; when I would move my eyes, a buzzing like thousands of flies inside my skull would ensue! Otherwise, it was fairly painless. I was abroad at the time and away from the stress of life in the States. Easier than giving up tobacco by a long shot.

I am home from school again today (I am a teacher) because I am having the constellation of symptoms you all know so well (if you have been reading prior comments). I too began taking the Evil Z in response to an immobilizing depression….I had NO idea that there was the possibility of physical addiction or this crazy, crippling withdrawl and have stopped a couple of times without knowing this. I caught on the last time when the withdrawl depression became far worse than any initial depression, so went back on. Is there no class action suit on this? Is there a place where you can go and wean off….like a Zoloft rehab? Why isn’t there a mandatory statement of withdrawl/side effects when you commence taking this drug? I was totally NOT an informed user! I have a question…has anyone experienced a loss of faith or spirtuality on the Evil Z? I have, so I wonder if it is me or the drug. One fascinating thing I discovered about withdrawl is the short term phenomena of hypersexuality. I was in a state of constant sexual arousal (cool because on Evil Z I was dead from the waist down like the women in Vonnegut’s “Welcome to the Monkey House” who were taking the “ethical birth control pill”.) This constant state of arousal was complemented by incredible orgasms that would come one right after the other like in Penthouse letters or something. It was fun for a few hours, but also scary to not be in control. I hit the net and found references to this and was satisfied that it would calm itself down. (about 12 hours). Fuck Pfizer is right! I am going to start documenting all of the ill-effects of this hideous drug for when the Big Lawsuit comes. Everyone out there, keep a diary of any Zoloft related complaints. Keep documentation of all prescriptions, have access to all physician’s records related to initial prescription of Z or withdrawl from it. Document all missed work time or ill-effects in job performance related to withdrawl or day-to-day use of Z. For those of you who have been so depressed that you have been hiding/withdrawing from your lives…this drug is NOT the answer. You cannot trade one infirmity for another. This will be one of the biggest monkeys on your back that you could ever anticipate. Please look up something like “bootstrapping therapy”. I did this for myself after ineffective therapy and this drug did little for what was really wrong. I was at a Pampered Chef party the other night and every one there except one woman was on one antidepressant or another. 10 out of 11! I found this frightening. It harkens back to Huxley’s “Brave New World” where everyone was on Soma (not the muscle relaxant, but a fictitious make it all go away kind of drug). What kind of world precipitates millions of antidepressant users and what kind of world results from millions of antidepressant users? It gives one pause. I’ll bet Pfizer is getting plane loads of Evil Z ready to take to South Asia to help tsunami victims. I wish some brave whistleblower at Pfizer would have the cajones to stand up and say what we all know is true about Evil Z. I would rather be a victim of my own depression that someone else’s addictive pharmaceutical. Peace and love, The Schoolmarm

It is wonderful to find this site: It makes me feel normal finding out that others feel the same symptoms as I feel trying to get out of the Evil Z. It has been a very long road to me, I feel like I haven’t lived the last 10 years with all my heart and conscience because of the drug.
I took the last dose of Evil Z (50 mg) about 2 weeks ago and reading your testemonies gave me strength to keep going. I will not get back on the drug. I want my life back. Thanks, everyone. This shall pass.

Why is there an advertising for Zoloft at the end of this page, when we are all victims of it and trying to free ourselves? It is very insensitive.

What a relief to find this information!

I was severely burned in a work accident 20 months ago. I was 8 weeks pregnant at the time. The pain of the recovery was unbelievable, both pysically and emotionally. I was very limited in what I could take for pain due to the pregnancy. After hanging in there (barely) for six months, my doctor put me on a Fentanyl patch for the pain and 100mg of Zoloft for the anxiety and PTSD. Zofloft was recommended by my OB/GYN because it was considered safe in the latter stages of pregnancy and while breastfeeding. The Fentanyl-Zoloft combination caused me to immediately lose interest in sex and gradually gain weight, but it definitely made me more able to cope with the physical and mental agony. I went from wondering on a daily basis if I would have been better off dying in that fire to believing that, although it would be a long road, I would make it through.

I weaned off of the Fentanyl after a year because it was a narcotic and I correctly anticipated withdrawal symptoms. I don’t know why, but I never expected them with the Zoloft. I was in the process of cutting from 100mg to 50mg and had a week-long delay in filling my rX. I have been having awful dizzy spells, fuzzy-headedness, severe facial flushing episodes, weird dreams and sudden emotional swings all week. I was wondering if maybe I had a brain tumor or something until it occurred to me to do a search on Zoloft withdrawl.

I’m planning to take the 50mg for a while, until I get through the stress of my remaining reconstuctive surgeries. Now I know that I’ll have to be much smarter about weaning down and eventually off of it when the time comes.

Last fall I gave birth to a beautiful, healthy son despite all of the trauma my body and mind had been through! I am still breastfeeding him and would love to know if anyone else has experienced Zoloft withdrawals while nursing. I’m wondering if he’ll experience any of the afwul symptoms when I go off it or when he weans from nursing.

Your feelings?

Please share your feelings about Zoloft withdrawal.
Thanks,
Richard

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