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Author Topic: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?  (Read 204 times)

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Offline touckie

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Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« on: June 27, 2014, 02:16:51 AM »
Hi, I am just wondering if anyone has any insight to this switch that might ease my mind! I am freaking out because I have had some bad experiences with switching meds in the past. Recently I went up from 25mg zoloft to 50 and it made my anxiety have anxiety!! I was overly concerned with everything my body experienced and it freaked me out. I felt like when people were talking to me, that they could tell something was wrong or that I looked like I was on crack or meth or something...  I had a hard time looking at someone while they spoke to me and felt like it was really hard not to fidget or move..  I also felt that I needed to look in the mirror because I was afraid I looked too pale, like I was sick or something.. ANYWAYS, my dr wants me to try prozac 10mg now. Im just a bit nervous that I will have the same kind of reaction. :(  It sucks. Any advice would be great. Thanks!
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Offline insights

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2014, 04:05:38 AM »
Recently I went up from 25mg zoloft to 50 and it made my anxiety have anxiety!

Unfortunately, this is quite common for antidepressants to make anxiety worse initially. It is because of the almost immediate increase in serotonin activity. This does soon settle down, though it may reoccur whenever the dose is increased. You could try increasing the dose in smaller steps, by 12.5mg instead of the full 25mg for a week. And/or ask the doctor to prescribe a small dose of one of the benzodiazepines to ease anxiety levels for a couple of weeks (if s/he's a benzophobe then the prescription antihistamine hydroxyzine (Atarax, Vistaril) which has moderate anti anxiety properties is an alternative worth trying).

Quote
ANYWAYS, my dr wants me to try prozac 10mg now. Im just a bit nervous that I will have the same kind of reaction.

10mg Prozac is about the equivalent of 25mg Zoloft so you may not have a problem during the switch, but you may experience the same increase in anxiety when the dose goes up to 20mg which is usually the minimum effective dose.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline Snoopy10

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2014, 09:03:07 AM »
Hi touckie, I completely empathize with your feelings of people staring at you and thinking you are on something but I promise you, it's likely that they are not.  I have found that people in general worry more about themselves than they do other people so even if maybe they notice you are hyper or pale they will dismiss the thought in about 2 seconds and start thinking about what they will have for lunch that day.  When I first had anxiety I thought everyone could tell. But when I started sharing my problems with people, they were completely surprised. No one could tell anything!

One thing that has helped me get off thoughts of worrying about myself and what people think and reversing it is to get the conversation off me and on to the other person. If I am having a bad day, and someone asks me how I am (at work, let's say) I will say "I am well, how are you? What's going on with (such and such) " and generally the person will start talking about themselves and I can relax into a comforting world of active listening and not having to talk. Trust me, no one will notice a thing about you if you keep the conversation about them! It also helps get your mind off your own internal dialog, to listen to someone else's story.

Hope that helps and hang in there with the drugs!
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Online Never-Quit

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2014, 11:04:24 AM »
Hi, I am just wondering if anyone has any insight to this switch that might ease my mind! I am freaking out because I have had some bad experiences with switching meds in the past. Recently I went up from 25mg zoloft to 50 and it made my anxiety have anxiety!! I was overly concerned with everything my body experienced and it freaked me out. I felt like when people were talking to me, that they could tell something was wrong or that I looked like I was on crack or meth or something...  I had a hard time looking at someone while they spoke to me and felt like it was really hard not to fidget or move..  I also felt that I needed to look in the mirror because I was afraid I looked too pale, like I was sick or something.. ANYWAYS, my dr wants me to try prozac 10mg now. Im just a bit nervous that I will have the same kind of reaction. :(  It sucks. Any advice would be great. Thanks!

Hi Touckie,  :action-smiley-065:

I can really relate to your problem   :sprachlos020: - I too had, big anxiety issues on starting any Antidepressant,  - especially "Increased Anxiety"  :dazed:

What I learned from my own 'First Hand Experience'  - that the better Psychiatrist and Doctors (which I consider to "Best Practices")  will use "Combination Medication Therapy" for someone who starting an antidepressant for anxiety).

 I wish they would have done this when I first starting my antidepressants  :yes:,  to help me control my panic attacks and anxiety - when first starting an antidepressant such as Prozac, and it really helps in helping me stay on it for 4-6 weeks - until I would start to feel the positive benefits of Prozac (which for me, was the most stimulating, but also best one of the BEST  :happy0062: for me (I have been using Prozac for the last several years 20-40 Mg /day).

My doctor explained to me that "Combination Medication Therapy" would accomplish the following:

1.   My doctor used both an Antidepressant/SSRI and a low dose of Benzodiazepine - which really helped me immensely. :yes:

2.   My doctor explained that the Antidepressants will take up to 4 to 6 weeks  ::) to begin relieving anxiety symptoms and in some people if used alone - it can actually increase anxiety initially during the first few weeks  (as It did with me…) .  Which is one reason I had such a hard time staying on antidepressant.

3.   My doctor, further explained to me that the benzodiazepines are fast acting anxiety blockers (bringing me relief within 30-60 minutes) to stop my Panic Attacks caused by a Panic Disorder, and could also  help shield me from additional anxiety that may initially arise from the SSRI or Antidepressant that I was taking (Prozac) . :happy0151:

You may want to ask your doctor about this, It really made a world of difference for me!  :grinning-smiley-003:

My two cents  :twocents:   

I had a couple of doctors who would not prescribe me a benzodiazepine  - but, once I made an appoint with a Psychiatrist they were more than happy to give me the correct medications to help my Panic Disorder and Anxiety attacks.


Combination Medication Therapy -

The strategy is to hold the individual on low-dose benzodiazepines (e.g., alprazolam 0.25 to 0.5 mg tid or qid plus antidepressant) for four to eight weeks. When the patient's panic has abated and antidepressant levels are adequate, the benzodiazepine can be slowly withdrawn.



Hope this helps,

Feel free to send me a PM if you have any questions  :action-smiley-065:

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Offline touckie

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2014, 04:35:18 AM »
Thank you all for the great info first off! And now for a quick update. So I slept alright after the Prozac and woke feeling a bit groggy, but not too bad.  I did notice however that i was very short fused. I was rather bitchy actually.  I had zero tolerance for much.  As the day progressed i felt calm and almost sleepy or zoned out, and then had episodes of being veru agitated.  Slamming doors n such. It felt uncontrolled and freaked me  out so i looked it up online to see if prozac and fits of anger had any correlation.  What i read was that it did and that some people even hurt others while on this stuff.  ;(  this sent my anxiety up a notch and i decided after reading these replies that maybe the Zoloft would b better and would help if I paired it with my klonopin.  So tonight i took the 25mg Zoloft instead of the prozac. This back n fourth crap won't mess me up right? I didn't think about the half life of prozac being longer than the Zoloft when I popped the 25mg zoloft in my mouth. .  This is what I'm freaking out on tonight now..  I really hope things will b ok
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Offline insights

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2014, 07:34:11 AM »
Slamming doors n such. It felt uncontrolled and freaked me  out so i looked it up online to see if prozac and fits of anger had any correlation.  What i read was that it did and that some people even hurt others while on this stuff.

That is possible with all antidepressants, but rare. Furthermore, the experience after taking one pill is no indicator of how the med will affect you with ongoing use.

Quote
I didn't think about the half life of prozac being longer than the Zoloft when I popped the 25mg zoloft in my mouth. .  This is what I'm freaking out on tonight now.

It shouldn't make much difference. That 10mg will hang around for quite a while, but both it and especially the 25mg Zoloft are small beer.

Ian
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NOTE: I'm not a doctor, and particularly not yours, so there may be factors I'm unaware of. Therefore all advice is of a general nature and you should consult your doctor before following any of it, especially before changing med doses.

Offline redapples

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Re: Going from low dose Zoloft to Prozac..?
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2014, 12:57:04 PM »
I've gone through that years ago from Zoloft to Prozac.

Also agree with the other poster that having a low dose benzo ( in my case, Lorazepam aka Ativan) did the trick while getting used to the antidepressant).

My doc told me that going on an antidepressant can worsen things "temporarily" for about a week or so...hence the lorazepam.

I tried the first week without and by the second week decided why feel more anxiety if I don't have to?

Another thing that I prefer about the Prozac is that it stays in the body longer, meaning, if you miss a day....or even 3 days...you don't have to worry about discontinuation symptoms. (I have a tendency to forget my Prozac at times- even with a calendar.... :sprachlos020:

I went off Zoloft because I was too spacey and still having lots of anxiety even after 9 mos. (this was years ago). Went to Prozac.

Anyway, going on Prozac went something like this (for me).

1st week: nervous tension...body feeling tense. obsessive thoughts increased...more anxiety than usual but no panic attacks. Slept great but needed a nap after breakfast. :yes:

2nd week: still a bit of tension...obsessive thoughts decreasing....worse in the a.m.   anxiety but no panic attacks ....slept great- needed a shorter mid day or evening naplet.  :yawn:

3rd week: obsessive anxiety melted away...get up in the a.m. feeling refreshed. very little anxiety, going places that I avoided. Energy * a calm type, not the nervous type* - starting to feel great.


I should add that I'd weaned off of prozac after years on it, as my doctor and I wanted to see if I still needed it. I did well for quite some time but this past spring, the anxiety did come back.... so here I am, week three.

I've kept the original log of the first time on Prozac and was so surprised to see that both times starting it were the same. I should note that I also take Lorazepam as needed. I need less now. Weeks 1 I needed it 4x daily. Week three I needed it 3 to 2 times per day...

Now, only as needed...some days I do...some days I don't (Lorazepam)

I take my Prozac every day with breakfast so I don't forget. :action-smiley-065: :action-smiley-065: :action-smiley-065: ;D
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