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Avatar universal

switching from paxil to zoloft?

Hi I have been on paxil for nine years.. I am currently 25 and feel like the paxil isnt working for me..
I also had tried stopping paxil for four months cold turkey.. it was HORRIBLE.... so i went back on 10 mgs.. now ive been on 10 mg for 3 years.. I just switched to zoloft over night.. as a doctor reccomended.. I am worried I will have paxil withdrawls symptons.. I really hope I dont.. I am taking 50 mg of zoloft..
i have felt ok since and its been four days... hopefully it will be fine..
i would just like to know anything on doing the switch drastically and if zoloft is maybe better then paxil.. from what i hear it is..
thank you
20 Responses
Avatar universal
I am doing the same thing but going from 37.5 Paxil Cr to 100 mg Zoloft.  Paxil increased my weight and blood pressure. I was on it in varied doses for 5 years.  I am 2 wks into switch over, cutting back paxil weekly.  I am really tired, mind is racing more.
Hope this goes okay, and my weight and blood pressure come down. Anyone else?
Avatar universal
Hey it feels reassuring that you are doing the same thing..
I am only on my fifth day.. my head feels a little heavier.. but in general im ok.. does it get harder.. I hear that by the third week the zoloft will be completely in your system..and you should be better...
So you are cutting down on paxil and at the same time taking the 100 mg of zoloft?
I mean sopposedly zoloft is a better drug, its more recent and its easier to get off of in the end...
anyways keep in touch..
Avatar universal
Let me warm you that you will probably go through hell if you stop the medicine so fast. It takes alot I mean alot longer for the medicine to leave your system. I speak form experienece and from doing extensive reaseach. You have to wean yourself of the drug slowly. The longer you've been on it the longer it will take to wean yourself off. I took paxil for 9 years and it took me almost two years to stop the drug completly. By the way all of the ssr'is have horrible health/mental side effects. For me they were, elevated blood pressure, diabetes, hypothryroid, depression, anxiety, and I am still dealing with some of these things even after being of Paxil  for moths now. I am not trying to scare you. I am just giving you the facts here. SO do your own research. Look up the info on people who have actually  taken the drug. Look into paxilprogress.org. This site offres great advice.
Avatar universal
I just switched from Paxil to Zoloft after being on Paxil for 5 years. I am having severe nausea, but no ther side effects. Has this happened to anyone else?
527657 tn?1214051850
I have been on paxil, zoloft, and many others but have come back to the paxil. its the most calming of all it takes away my anxiety and depression the others did not they seemed to have a more energy type effect on me.  The prozac was the worst my heart raced and i thought i was going to have a heart attack but the zoloft kept me awake at night and very antsy during the day, for me im sticking with paxil. Im on 10mgs right now i was on 20.
Avatar universal
How does one taper off paxil to zoloft.  Does the Dr. leave you on both drugs at the same time (low dose) and then take you off one, when the other kicks in?
Avatar universal
There are different theories on this with psychiatrists, none based on anything but anecdotal experience as far as I can tell.  My own view is that one should taper completely off a medication before trying another so one can tell what symptoms are withdrawal from the old med and which are side effects of the new.  Also, new meds don't really act exactly the same as an old one, so they really can't deal with withdrawal that well.  Some are closer than others, but Paxil seems to be a pretty unique med.  There's a book called Antidepressant Survival Guide by Joseph Glanville that discusses one theory on this.  
Avatar universal
I too am switching from 37.5 mg Paxil CR to 50 mg Zoloft. I have been on Paxil for 11 years. I wish I could find that psych that prescribed it to me back when I was 16 and scream at him. Over the years Paxil has seemed to stop working for me and the wonderful doc's soultion was always, "Well...let's up the dose" and then "Well...let's try the controlled release formula. Well this fall my panic attacks got so bad that I was calling in sick to work and found myself becoming very agoraphobic so my psych recommended i switch meds. I have heard how horrendous it is to stop Paxil and was VERY anxious about this process. I was assured that since I was replacng 1 SSRI with another (Zoloft), that I "shouldnt have any problems". Yeah right. At first my doc recommended I alternate Paxil and Zoloft (i.e. take Pazil one night, then Zoloft the next) for a week. Alternating meds didnt help my panic attacks at all so doc said "try Xanax". I researched Xanax online and saw that its horribly addictive and can cause seizures during withdrawl (ala wonderful Paxil) so I decided not to go that route. My doc then said to just completely stop Paxil and begin taking the Zoloft daily. Within 2 days I became super dizzy, lost my appetite, found myself sobbing over sappy TV commercials, and alternated between feeling starving and nauseaous. I'm now on day 5 without Paxil and am unable to go to work. My doc now wants me to up Zoloft to 100mg but I HATE THAT MENTALITY of "just up it[dose]" cause thats what got me here in the first place! I'm gonna stick it out with Zoloft 50 mg for at least 2 weeks and re-evaluate then if need be. Any suggestions?
Omg, I have been slowly weaning myself off Paxil which I was on for 15 years and stopped working for my OCD. I went from 40 mg down to 30 for two weeks with no side effects. Then down to 20 mg of Paxil with 50 mg of Zoloft. Felt nauseous and anxious . Then first day down to 10 mg of Paxil upping 100 mg of Zoloft and it was horrible. I has insomnia BAD, dizzy, flu like symptoms and hearing white noice in my head not to mention extreme hot flashes. So I went back to taking Paxil 30 mg and contacting my doc. If I am going to stop Paxil I might request a hospital stay for a week or two.
Avatar universal
First, are you seeing a psychiatrist or a regular doc?  Neither knows much about this, but regular docs know nothing.  You should have tapered off the Paxil before switching, in my opinion, because when you switch, you can't tell what's a side effect of the new med and what's withdrawal effects from the old.  If it were me, I'd go back on the Paxil, which should resolve your new symptoms, and taper off more slowly.  When I was finished doing that, and it could take a long time depending on the person, then I would try the Zoloft.  They are not equivalent drugs; no two drugs affect a person the exact same way, and Paxil is in a class by itself.  As for Xanax, it is often used short-term to mitigate the symptoms of withdrawal, so that's not so strange.  Klonopin is often used as well.  I don't think upping the Zoloft is necessarily going to do anything about your Paxil withdrawal.  Sometimes psychiatrists will use Prozac to switch, because Prozac has a long half life whereas the others have very short half lives, and getting people off Prozac tends to be easier than getting them off the short half life ssris.  Don't know if it works or not.  Good luck.  And switch docs.
Avatar universal
After spending the whole day sobbing, I called my medical doctor who told me that this was a "common side effect" of switching SSRI's however my psychologist told me that bouts of incontollable crying is NOT a typical side effect and that I should dump Zoloft (after only 5 days) and switch to Effexor. Now I'm totally confused and dont know what to do...I dont want to go back to Paxil CR because that will prolong this process of weaning and I HATE PAXIL! I wish I never took that drug to begin with...Any ideas?
Avatar universal
Whats better-Effexor or Zoloft?
Avatar universal
If you can handle the Paxil withdrawal, then okay.  If not, the only way to stop it is to go back on it and taper more slowly.  Again, neither Zoloft or Effexor, which is an entirely different class of medication, will necessarily do anything about your Paxil withdrawal, and sobbing is definitely a sign of ssri withdrawal.  I can't tell you what to do, I can only suggest, based on my experience and my reading, the proper way to go off a med, and your doc isn't doing it that way.  And if you don't like what Paxil's doing to you, you probably won't like Effexor, either.  Because Effexor tends to be more stimulating, I wouldn't want to use it while I was in withdrawal from Paxil, which is difficult enough alone, as you're learning.  I would choose Zoloft over Paxil, but again, only after I was through weaning off Paxil the recommended way, which is a slow taper, as slow as you need, and if at any time you can't handle it, go back on the last dose at which you felt fine and taper more slowly.  But all of these are your choice.  There's a book called The Antidepressant Solution by Joseph Glanville that discusses withdrawal very thoroughly.  Good luck with whatever you decide.  But again, given your doc's seeming lack of knowledge about withdrawal symptoms, I would find another to help you through this.  
Avatar universal
I am trying to get pregnant again Ive been on Paxil 20mg for 3 years!   I wasnt on meds with my other 2 pregnanices so I am worried about the paxil effects on fetus's heart! My pysciatrist (cant spell it) said Zoloft is safer but I shouldnt be on anything the 1st trimester!  But Im not pregnant yet so stopped paxil 2 days ago and took zoloft 25mg 2nite!  Feel just a lil anxious so far!  But I know its not gonna work fully for me, since she said my comp. dose close to paxil 20mg would be Zoloft 50mg!  Well see what happens!  I tried to taper myself off paxil before taking 10mg but everyday I was staying jittery and needed my doses like a junkie!  Im nervous but I have to atleast try!  
Avatar universal
I started my switch from Paxil (30mg) to Zoloft a week ago. I've been on Paxil for 6-7 years. I have always struggled with Paxil withdrawals after just one dose ('wooshing' 'zapping' etc etc). Since I HATE the withdrawals, and the Paxil just wasn't 'working' anymore and since my husband and I are trying to get pregnant, I decided to switch to a different medication.

My psych wanted me to switch to Zoloft overnight, but I informed her I was too scared of the withdrawals. So, she has me on 1/2 Paxil dose, 1/2 Zoloft dose. I was GREAT for 3 days.

Then... the withdrawals started. Not nearly as bad as cold turkey, but they are there. Wooshing. Nausea. Zapping. Headaches. Fatigue. Crying for no good reason.

My psych wants me to stop the Paxil tomorrow and do full dose of Zoloft...I am scared! Should I wean this quickly?!
Avatar universal
I have been on paxil for ten years and the last year and a half it has not worked like it use to. So my doctor started weaning me off paxil 50mg to 40mg for a week then 30mg for three days then 20mg of paxil at night with 25mg of zoloft also at night.I seen the doctor again today and now Im taking 50 mg of zoloft in the morning and 20mg of paxil at night. The reson that I have been on ssri"s is for terrible panic attacks with agoraphobia. I dont know what to do I just cant live like a prisoner in my home any more and thats what the panic attacks do. So dase anyone know if zolof is good for someone with really bad panic attacks and Anxiety? Thanks Danielle.
Avatar universal
i am not sure as I was on Paxil and felt pretty good. I was on Paxil for a couple years and weaned off myself. Recently went on zoloft 50mg for 2 weeks now and feel terrible. The anxiety attacks seem to come on often. maybe the zoloft hasn't kicked in yet but it sure has made me anxious. I am not sure what I am going to do, and see the doc tomorrow. I am considering switching back to Paxil.
Avatar universal
i have been on zoloft for 9 years worked really good for panic,phobias, obsessive thoughts. not working any more thinking of trying paxil.
Avatar universal
Hi I think it's different for everyone as I am 25 and on Zoloft 100mg but it's not working for me so I have to try and get it straightened out.  I have only been on Zoloft so I don't know what it is like to switch mess but I do know that switching without being weaned off can have some horrible effects.  Please keep us informed because i will be switching soon and I want to do it the right way.
Avatar universal
The problem I see with all this is we need to ask the advice of the people who studied the make up of drugs,,,,the effects of one drug to another,,,,,not a doctor who has little pharicalogical training ,,,,ask the advice of those trained in the field .
Avatar universal
Hi. I was taking 40 MG of Paxil and my doctor switched me to zoloft overnight I was on Paxil for 2 years I am starting to have withdraws from them.. I feel as I'm falling all the time.. so I'm doing research as you are best of luck..
O have been on Paxil for 3 mths, got up to 40 then dropped to 20 then back to 30 for a week then starting getting ringing in my ears.!! None stop I'm going to get off them now but don't know exactly what to do started smoking weed again going to get my medical MJ license thinking it's the better way to go maybe. The reason I went on is because I got hurt and have muscular skeletal pain and ptsd from it but the ringing in my ears is just adding to it now. I can't take it anymore
Don't exactly understand what you're saying -- you took Paxil for pain control?  It's not used for that.  You mention PTSD, but that's not just having a bad experience and feeling bad about it, it's something different and more complex, so again, not sure exactly what you're treating and now you're adding pot to it?  When you changed your Paxil dose, did you do it under a psychiatrist's care or on your own?  This is a very very difficult med to stop taking and when you dropped in dose you could have gotten a bit of withdrawal from that.  If memory serves the usual dose is 30mg, so also not sure how you got all the way up to 40 in such a short period of time -- that usually happens when the drug starts to poop out, as these drugs can do for some people.  Are you playing around with drugs on your own as if you're doing some sort of self-experiment?  Need more detail here, this is not a drug to play around with.
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