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Zoloft Long Term and Return to It
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Zoloft Long Term and Return to It

Hello- I took 50mg of Zoloft for about ten years and my sex drive was still great (just a bit of delayed orgasm). I never really considered that I shouldn't take it; I just did it faithfully all that time.  Last summer I decided I might not need it (life was going very well) and tapered off rather quickly.  Within a month I was in the most unreal and debilitating depression of my life. It was a nightmare. I was really on death's doorstep and could barely get out of bed.  Worry and anxiety were rampant. I tried to get back on Zoloft with my doc's advice but even after going up to 100mg it wasn't helping with such a severe depression.  And my sex drive at 100mg was dead (either from the zoloft or the depression or both).  After many drug changes over the last six or seven months, I am finally stable with Remeron 30mg, and still trying to pick up the pieces from the "train wreck" of depression I went through (still have a tough time) via therapy and hard work.  One problem remains from all this that even my pscychiatrist cannot solve-- My sex drive has been practically gone since the beginning of the deep part of the depression last summer.  It was VERY healthy on zoloft all those years.  Now, when I am only on Remeron I have little to no urges and problems with weak erections and awful premature ejaculation.  When the doc augmented the Remeron with Celexa, it helped with the premature ejaculation but killed my desire even more. We are stumped as to how to get my desire back while also getting rid of this premature ejaculation problem.  I am about to suggest going back on 25 mg Zoloft with a bit of Wellbutrin (while staying on Rememeron), although we have been trying to avoid the anxiety from meds like this, and my doctor thinks the zoloft (or any other ssri) will kill my sex drive even more.  He doesn't seem to understand the weak erections and premature ejaculation problems, especially when I tell him I had neither on Zoloft all those years.  Needless to say this has been hell on my relationship, going from a healthy sex drive to having little desire and wondering if I'll ever be normal again.  
Did my sex drive shut down for good after I came off Zoloft after ten years?  How can I get it back, as it doesn't seem to be there whether I am on or off an SSRI?  Is it possible that my mental wiring has been altered to the point that I can't get back to where I was?
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I do not believe that you  have injured yourself in terms of brain function from the use of these medications, and I would not spend all my time trying to figure out the right combination of drugs to restart yourself.  Think of it now as a loss of confidence, and talk to your doctor about Viagra to regain your confidence, and then your sex drive will follow....
18 Comments
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Avatar_f_tn
That's a really tough predicament to be in. Remeron is known for being an antidepressant that doesn't have many sexual side effects. But everyone reacts differently to these medications. Is is possible that your depression isn't in complete remission? Perhaps you feel "better" but the depression hasn't compeletely lifted? SSRIs are notorious for losing their effectiveness over time. Many people,my husband included, have switched from one to the other. Did you ask the doc about trying a different SSRI and tapering off of the Remeron? My husband stopped Zoloft for several years and is back on and having success with it again. I don't know about it permanently altering your brain chemistry,but it must alter it for a time and there's sure to be after effects that last after discontiueing the drug. I would look at maybe just taking Celexa/Lexapro or another SSRI, Prozac maybe? And maybe tapering off the Remeron? You can always resume it immediately if you start feeling terribly again. Remeron is very fast acting. Remeron has some side effects that people find intolerable,namely fast,significant weight gain. Also, look at Buspar for something to take to alter the delayed orgasms of an SSRI. It has worked for my husband like a charm and it takes only an hour for it to start working. Just some ideas.. good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I have read soooo many forums about this because I have had terrible withdrawal experiences. I began using Zoloft back in 2006, I decided that I wanted to stop taking it, so I gradually tapered off the drug, only to experience this "brain shiver" sensation and irritability. So of course I began using the Zoloft again. Voila, the symptoms dissapeared!! I once again 4 months later decided it was time to stop, so I tapered down from 50mg to 25mg and then 25mg every other day until finished with med. Well everything seemed to be fime for about 3 WEEKS, then all of a sudden, I started getting those brain shivers/zaps intermittently, then I felt dizziness, then I was feeling like my brain was wrapped in cotton, very foggy and spacy. I then developed headaches. This has been going on now for one month, I feel terrible and even sounds and bright lights irritate me. I spoke to a psychiatrist that I work with and she asked me all these qustions, she then suggested that I see a neurologist. She told me that in no way could I be having symptoms this far after taking Zoloft, especially since I didn't begin experiencing the symptoms until after 3 weeks of discontinuation of the drug. I have scheduled an appointment with a neurologist to see if I have something else going on. I am really nervous and I strongly believe that I am experiencing a really bad side effect from Zoloft. I would appreciate if anyone else came forward that had w/d so long after taking the drug and describe all the symptoms if any that are related to mine. This completely sucks and I am even tempted to go back on the drug just to make all this wacky **** in my head stop. I have NEVER had this experience in my life until after the second time I took Zoloft. The only other medication I am taking is Albuterol and Advair inhalers for my asthma. I am really miserable and not one professional seems to care much less understand what the hell is going on.
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I have read soooo many forums about this because I have had terrible withdrawal experiences. I began using Zoloft back in 2006, I decided that I wanted to stop taking it, so I gradually tapered off the drug, only to experience this "brain shiver" sensation and irritability. So of course I began using the Zoloft again. Voila, the symptoms dissapeared!! I once again 4 months later decided it was time to stop, so I tapered down from 50mg to 25mg and then 25mg every other day until finished with med. Well everything seemed to be fime for about 3 WEEKS, then all of a sudden, I started getting those brain shivers/zaps intermittently, then I felt dizziness, then I was feeling like my brain was wrapped in cotton, very foggy and spacy. I then developed headaches. This has been going on now for one month, I feel terrible and even sounds and bright lights irritate me. I spoke to a psychiatrist that I work with and she asked me all these qustions, she then suggested that I see a neurologist. She told me that in no way could I be having symptoms this far after taking Zoloft, especially since I didn't begin experiencing the symptoms until after 3 weeks of discontinuation of the drug. I have scheduled an appointment with a neurologist to see if I have something else going on. I am really nervous and I strongly believe that I am experiencing a really bad side effect from Zoloft. I would appreciate if anyone else came forward that had w/d so long after taking the drug and describe all the symptoms if any that are related to mine. This completely sucks and I am even tempted to go back on the drug just to make all this wacky **** in my head stop. I have NEVER had this experience in my life until after the second time I took Zoloft. The only other medication I am taking is Albuterol and Advair inhalers for my asthma. I am really miserable and not one professional seems to care much less understand what the hell is going on.
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I went ahead and began taking Zoloft 25mg yesterday. I was experiencing such bad symptoms from the w/d of the medication, that I went and got my prescription refilled. Well today I feel back to normal, I am not having the brain shivers, the cloudy feelings, the irritabilty. This was sort of a test I was doing on my own, and I was right. It was the Zoloft w/d that made me experience those symptoms. I want to know if anyone else has tried this and if they feel normal again. If so, we need a class action suit against the drug companies to put out a warning label that has these symptoms included. Now I feel like I will not be able to stop taking this medication because I NEVER want to experience these symptoms ever again. Mind you, I have NEVER had any symptoms like this before I was ever placed on Zoloft.
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Avatar_n_tn
I've been reading so many comments also on this forum, and Im of the opinion that these withdrawals that youre having (even several weeks later after stopping) are quite common. Im no expert, but judging from the amount of experiences Ive read about, the side effects will indeed go away eventually. Every person is different, but I noticed many comments suggesting around 2 months from the time you first start weaning off. Although I did also read one that said 6 months - not sure if this is just a rare case though??

In any case, the main thing is weighing out if you need the meds for your particular problems, or if you can survive without them. My suggestion, dont keep taking them if your only reason is that you are afraid of the withdrawls. Oh, and try a new doctor - a second opinion is always a good idea i have found!

Hope this helps...
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Avatar_n_tn
I took Zoloft from 1995 thru 2005.  I didn't have any bad affects during that time.  Within a month after I stopped taking Zoloft, I started having mild hypertension which has gotten worse recently.  Several months ago, I was diagnosed with hypothryoid...am on low dose synthroid.  It seemed my hypertension was a bit better for about a month or so.  I am having some other problems lately, sleep apnea (think I had this for years...but just diagnosed).  My nerves are bad, and I am about to start Zoloft again (25mg).
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had all those symptoms from Zoloft w/d, I also get the involuntary muscle spasms as well.  It is the worst feeling in the world and is completly unbearable at times.  After just being off a couple of days there's dizziness and my eyes will roll around in my head.  I take 50 mg a day for the past 2 years and I never would have started taking it had I known the w/d would be so bad.  
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Avatar_n_tn
I suffer from anxiety and had a few nose surgeries and I'm just wondering everytime I seem to read something about my nose/syptoms I seem to get those symptoms does that sound like something to do with anxiety.please feel free to email me please thanks in advance..


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Avatar_n_tn
Zoloft may very well ruin your sex life and drive.

For me, I cannot "get it up" with a forklift.

Thankfully, I have a loving and understanding wife and her and I find amusing ways to entertain ourselves despite my limp self.

I still get aroused but only fully firm and hard just prior to the explosion. Doesn't make for a great evening.

Yea...it sucks big time.

Viagra...no help.
Cialis...no help.
Levitra...no help.

But nothing some good tender loving from a great wife can't fix. Just have to learn to adopt new strategies to fulfillment.

Besides, its fun to learn new things.

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Avatar_n_tn
My daughter started on Zoloft about a month ago.  She started getting these tremors...her teeth chatter and her legs and hands shake..it is getting worse. It almost seems like a seizure...the Dr knows and gave her a rx of Klonopin to stop these symptoms.  I have several questions...one is about the shaking...does this go away?  Also, the Klonopin...how long before it will help with these tremors?  She is taking these meds for depression as well as anxiety disorder.  She is feeling better mentally...with the depression but these tremors start about two hours after she takes the Zoloft.  
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Avatar_n_tn
See my optimistic blogging on anxiety at
www.nopanicattack.blogspot.com
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been taking Zoloft for about 8 years for anxiety and severe panic attacks, 50mg daily.  With great results  no complaints.  But about 2 months ago my perscription was filled with the generic which I was happy to get. And now for about amonth I have been anxious and having panic attacks again.  The only thing I can attribute this to is the change from name brand to generic, but maybe I'm wrong.  Has any one else had this problem.  I can't go back to the way I was 8 years ago,  Any body out there who has had panic attacks will know what I mean.  IT IS HORRIBLE !!!!!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
ATTENTION: THE ONLY THING THAT HELPED ME WITH THIS HORRIBLE FEELINGS FROM ZOLOFT WITHDRAWAL WAS BENADRIL 25MG. EVERY 6 HOURS, PLEASE TRY IT, IT MAKES YOU FEEL A LITTLE BIT ZOMBY BUT BETTER THAT THE OTHER EFFECTS, STILL ON 25 OF ZOLOFT, BUT IF IT WASN'T FOR BENADRIL I WOULD STILL BE ON 100 MG. PLEASEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1 GIVE BENADRIL A TRY, YOU DONT LOOSE ANYTHIN TRYING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been on Zoloft for about 5 years now (I'm a few days away from my 20th birthday) for depression. Unfortunatly...I am one of those people who inherit it from family members. I started on 50 mg and moved up to 100 mg about a year and a half ago. I have always been good about taking my meds since I was a little kid (I also have ADD) but when I got to college it was harder for me to stay in the habit. Our dorms at school have community bathrooms so once you get ready fro bed you have to stagger down the hall if you want to take anything. In my case it took several trips because I couldn't cary everything (toothbrush...toothpaste...face wash...etc) in one trip. I eventually got lazy and would decide to wait until morning...and then forget about it. BAD IDEA!

Basically what all that led up to is this. I've been stupid and missed a dose or two here and there. You have to be VERY careful with this stuff. I've had to miss classes because of missing doses. My biggest withdrawl (withdrawal) symptoms are dizzyness and what I call "strobe-lighting." If anyone of you has been anywhere near a strobe light then you know what I mean. You see one thing and then move you head and see something else in a series of photo-type sensations. Normally, I have to miss three doses to get like this...but I can't drive, can't stand for long, feel like I'm in a fog, etc. A  few hours after I take my medicine again I'm back to normal. BE CAREFUL!

I hate being hooked on this stuff (even though everything official I've read says that it is "non-habit forming"...that's a lie...).

It really helped me when I was going through a very hard time but I think I'm about to talk to my doctor and have her either help me switch to something else or try living without any form of antidepressants for a while. I don't have side effects...but going without it has made me realize just how dependent I am on this stuff...THAT is what scares me the most.

Wish me luck...and BE CAREFUL WITH YOURS!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
i've been on zoloft for almost three years now and i have an incredibly horrible memory.
i've probably gone through withdrawl (withdrawal) from just FORGETTING to take it at least a dozen times. obviously this can't be to healthy...
probably the worst incident is when i was feeling incredibly dizzy and confused from the absense of the zoloft and i ended up crashing my car!
please be so careful to REMEMBER your pills :)
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been back on 25 mg zoloft for 10 days and missed one day (9th day) and felt better and then took one yesterday and felt terribly high w/anxiety again. The half life is 26 hours. I was wondering how that comes into play with not taking it any more at all.
Am I gonna feel withdrawals after only 10 days of taking it on only 25 mg???  The last time I did take this for a long period of time was of 15 years ago and was on a higher dose so memory does not help in this case.
Takin my Ativan like I usually do could be of some help but reading a posted blog in one case of one lady taking this for only 3 days has got me a little worried. I will believe in mind over matter and will roll with it but I was just looking for maybe a bit more information from anyone...
Thankyou
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Avatar_n_tn
i may have all of you beat on how many mg of zoloft i take per day...200mg (for the past 2 yrs) i have run out of it, and haven't had any for one week. i have been fine until right this moment. feeling light headed, a little insane, and am having hot flushes. the reason i took the dosage i did was because i took it for panic attacks and not depression. i can't wait to feel clear headed again so i can read about everyones experiences, etc. i do have an immediate question that someone may be able to answer. i have gabitral ( i think that is how you spell it) and cymbalta on hand. do you think it would be okay to take one of these in liue of zoloft? it will be 2 more days until i get more zoloft...and i am a bit freaked. i hate the ZOLOFT and willl share these stories with you once i get through this moment..semi panic attack! yippee~
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