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Medication Recommendations

Hi All,

I was wondering if you could provide any recommendations/experiences with depression meds.  I've taken Prozac since April 2007, however, it does not seem to help enough.  Plus it has had some unpleasant side effects such as weight gain, anxiety, and loss of libido.  I've read that Wellbutrin is often prescribed where weight gain and sexual side effects are a problem.  I've also read Wellbutrin can contribute to anxiety.  

Also, I was wondering your honest, fair, opinion on two things:  1) whether depression medications are really helpful long term and are they overly prescribed (and worth the side effects and eventual withdrawal "fun") and 2) whether you think your psychiatrist/prescribing doctor really takes the time to understand what they are prescribing and whether they listen (or discount) when you have a problem with a medication.  I find so many people having issues with medications and time after time the recommendation from others is to "talk to your doctor", which I find interesting since it is your doctor who prescribed the drug giving you problems.  I could use a confidence boost in regards to psychiatrists........

5 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi there,

As far as recommendations on meds, they affect everyone differently.  I CAN tell you what I've been on and the good/bad of them.  First was Effexor XR.  I had a lot of side effects; the main one being increased anxiety.  Then I switched to Cymbalta.  Basically the same thing as Effexor.  Still extremely depressed.  Then Celexa...Was so-so.  Better, but still had intense ups and downs.  Right now, I'm taking Wellbutrin XL and Lamictal.  The Lamictal seems to be working really well to stabilize my mood.  For some reason, right now...I am VERY irritable and lots of anger episodes occuring.  So, not sure this is the right combination for me.  But that's where I've been.

I think if you find the right meds, they can be life savers.  The ARE overly prescribed by doctors that don't have experience in psychiatry.  Guess where I got my Effexor?  The gynecologist!!  I didn't know where else to go.  I eventually was referred to a therapist.  Started seeing her and she referred me to a GREAT psychiatrist.  If you see specialists (not your general practitioner), you will get better results.  I think my psychiatrist really does listen to what I say, or she wouldn't be switching my meds when I bring up a concern.

I guess you just have to find the right doctors for YOU.  People that you feel comfortable talking with and who will listen to you.  If you have a general prac doctor that you like, ask for a referral to a psychiatrist.  Also, just a thought here:  my therapist and psychiatrist WORK TOGETHER to figure things out for me.  If I go to therapy and am having a really hard time with the depression, she will call the psychiatrist right then and there and discuss the issue.  I think it is VERY important to find doctors like this, who will work together.

Anyways, enough of my ranting.  I just have finally found these two docs who really want to help me, and I'm very appreciative of them...and so glad I found them.  Looking back on the last 6-8 months, I do feel better overall....and it's because of the care of these docs.
Avatar universal
Thank-you sweetie for your candid response.  I appreciate the feedback.  Sometimes it feels like I'm the only person struggling with depression and medications, etc.  I have no one in my life, no one close who understands.  Sometimes I think they just want me "to get over it".  Lord knows I have tried...and continue to try.  Its a daily struggle.  

Does anyone know of any good, mature, chat sites for those going thru depression?

Avatar universal
Hey there WW,

On Wellbutrin/Lamictal also (on Lamictal starter kit right  now). Not sure I can tell the difference, but then I never have been able to tell much about Wellbutrin.  Zoloft, I recognized..gain lots of weight....almost like having the munchies...but with Wellbutrin I can't tell...just started Lamictal so I'll let you know...
Avatar universal
creston - i haven't found great chat sites about depression.  i'm mature; you can talk to me :)  you're definitely not the only one struggling with meds and depression.  not everyone understands though...that it's not something you "get over."  it's  hard work to make it better.  and some people are depressed and they totally act out (promiscuity, ect) so they think you should just be able to deal with your depression in the same ways.  not true...anyways, if you feel like talking, i'm here.

spooked - i'm still on the lamictal starter kit, but am like most of the way through week 5 (100mg)...which reminds me, i need to call the doctor to get a regular script for it!  i've noticed a huge difference w/ the lamictal added to my "cocktail."  now...wellbutrin...i started on 150 and then went to 300, and now i'm back down to 150 (was suffering extreme agitation and irritability - unable to function).  so since i started the 150 again (today), i don't feel as "on-edge" as i did on the 300.  but, i'm feeling my anxious.  but i guess that might be just because i changed the dose.  the lamictal makes me very dizzy and i think i'm experiencing those "brain zaps."  have you read about those?  and i'm extremely tired even though i have been sleeping well.  so, i don't really know which med is doing what.  wellbutrin has supressed my appetite.  have you noticed that?
Avatar universal
Thank-you so much for the insight and support.   You are right when it comes to people not understanding and dealing with depression differently.   I have dealt with it different ways throughout the years.  Some healthy, some not.  Promiscuity--or least the thought of had been a problem.  I'd like to think I'm over that...its a viscious cycle.

I'd love to hear from you any time.  Again, thank-you.  

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