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Lexapro vs Zoloft

Was just kind of wondering who has better luck on which med for anxiety and panic attacks?
16 Responses
480448 tn?1426952138
Hi there!

That's kind of a difficult question, as obviously everyone has very different experiences.  One person may see great results with one med, and others may find that the other is effective.  It's very much a trial and error kind of process.

I WILL tell you that both Zoloft and Lexapro are very good choices for a medication to start with, to try for anxiety treatment.  Zoloft remains the most commonly prescribed antidepressant for anxiety, and Lexapro is probably a close second.  I personally have been on both meds, at different times, and both were very successful for me.  Both are also typically fairly easily tolerated by most, which is why they're also good choices to start with.

If I were to make a recommendation, I would tell people to try the Zoloft first.  Remember too that it will take a while for obvious improvements to be seen.  It can easily take 6-8 weeks or more, therefore it's a process that requires some patience.  It would be nice to see more rapid improvements, but it doesn't work that way.  So, whichever medication you decide to try, just remember you won't know for a while if it's going to work for you or not, and you may end up needing a few dosage increases as well, which will add even more time to the adjustment period.

Also, remember that while medications are helpful in decreasing the symptoms of anxiety, they're not a "cure".  The real progress happens in settings like therapy, where one can learn coping mechanisms, and how to change the anxious thinking cycle.

Can you elaborate a bit for us on your history of anxiety, how long you've been dealing with it, and what kinds of things you've tried to manage it?

Best of luck, keep us updated!
Avatar universal
I was on 200 mg of Zoloft and it stopped working last August. Have been on and off different meds all fall and winter and just not working for me. So she has started me back on Zoloft once again but people are saying it most likely will not work again for me, so I am wondering if I should just stop it and start lexapro instead.. I have awful anxiety and panic attacks which I have had for 20 years.. I am just starting to to CBT so hopefully that will also help!!
480448 tn?1426952138
I agree with you completely, it makes sense to try the Lexapro, especially considering you were on a significant dose of the Zoloft, and it seemed to be petering out (which happens).  That would be my advice.

I'm happy to hear that you're starting CBT, that's excellent!  THAT is really the key to long term management.  The meds can really help diminish the symptoms, but it's the thought process we have to change.  THAT is what brings longer lasting relief from the anxiety.

Keep us informed on how you're doing!
Avatar universal
I have switched from zoloft to lexapro one month ago tomorrow and the depression has not gotten better. I am on 10 mg. crying easily, low mood.  when someone does a direct switch does one still have to wait the 6 weeks?  I am still jittery as well, started bioidentical progesterone as they think this is hormonal.  
Avatar universal
May I ask do you have anxiety with it? I would think it will take time for that to get into your system but I would ask your Doc!!
Avatar universal
May I also ask why you are switching?
Avatar universal
The zoloft never seemed to work well,  would have jitteriness, sweats and would seem to stop working around my period.  I am going to see a naturopath and starting progesterone as she thinks that is my issue but I didn't feel I could go off a antidepresant yet so asked to switch to lexapro.  Lexapro doesn't seem to be working well, still jittery crying spells etc.  Never had anxiety before so at a loss at this point, am only 39 so very frustrating.  
Avatar universal
Was just wondering how Lexapro is working for you? I am up to 100mg of Zoloft and still very anxious, it does seem to be worse when i get my period?
Avatar universal
Well it seems to work ok but took a good 4 weeks to notice anything which seems unusual since I was already on zoloft.  I am so much worse before my period and taking natural progesterone but that takes time too.  Still get jittery at times.
Avatar universal
Are  you still on the 10mg lexapro? I am starting to see that my anxiety is very high right when my period starts!!
Avatar universal
Yes still on 10
Avatar universal
Is Lexapro more non-stimulating then zoloft? Zoloft made my anxiety worse, shaky hands and insomnia.
Avatar universal
I also noticed that on my second try with Zoloft. I started Lexapro last week and still noticing almost the same thing, still very anxious but I need to tell myself this too shall pass!! Give it time!!
480448 tn?1426952138
Absolutely!  Both of these meds pretty commonly cause an increase in anxiety initially, and also many people experience that "jittery" feeling, like you've drank WAY too much coffee.  I had that with both meds, but the good thing is, those side effects really ARE short lived for most people.  You just have to stick it out for a few weeks, allow your body to adjust.
Avatar universal
I was switched from Effexor about 4 weeks ago to Zoloft 25mg because Effexor didn't seem to be working 150mg?  Also take 100 mg of trazadone.
I have had an upset stomach & diarrhea now for about 4 weeks, so my dr told me to stop the Zoloft to see if that was causing the problem for a few days?
Is that normal?  I hate to sink further down or have to switch to yet another AD.
I've tried several in the past , but they all seem to stop working?
Avatar universal
natural progesterone 400 mg's rectally saved my life when I was in my late twenties. I had PMDD.  This is from a compounding pharmacy.  Since you have your period you start the med on the fifteen day from the day you bleed, then 10 to 14 days on med.
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