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Anxiety This forum is for seeking advice on anxiety and stress related issues.

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OneWithTheSkies Offline
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Unhappy Is Zoloft the best medicine for Anxiety? - October 29th 2015, 02:12 PM

I read it's only good for depression and when I took one (100 mg) I got terrible full body tremors then got sick the next day. I have severe anxiety which basically deals damage to my life. I often wake up with nightly panic attacks. My doctor prescribed Zoloft for me. First I take 100 mg. I could cut it down to 50 mg, but I'm really scared of the side effects.
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Re: Is Zoloft the best medicine for Anxiety? - October 29th 2015, 06:19 PM


Sorry you're struggling with anxiety and side affects of medication.

I think it can be treated for anxiety as I am pretty sure I know someone else who is on it for the same reason although I might be wrong and remember I'm not a medical professional. I would however suggest you talk to the doctor who prescribed you it to see what the next best step for you is. Sometimes if the effects are bearable even if they are hard, we have to experience them for a week or so but if they really are that bad, it might be your GP will want to change it to something else.

Hope this helps.

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Re: Is Zoloft the best medicine for Anxiety? - October 29th 2015, 07:33 PM

Sorry to hear your struggling. If you're finding that you are having side affects from the medication, I would recommend you talk to your GP and she/he can get you onto a different drug if there might be a better alternative. I am not a medical professional, but I know there are tons of drugs that treat anxiety so it could be worth it to talk about an alternative. Because of the nature of drugs like Zoloft, I wouldn't reduce how much your taking without talking to your doctor first.

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Re: Is Zoloft the best medicine for Anxiety? - October 29th 2015, 08:50 PM

No, no, no, never start off on 100mg of Zoloft! I'm not surprised you felt awful!

SSRI medication has a profound effect on the entire body (not just the brain) and, whether you are starting it or stopping it, you must do it gradually.

I started off on 25mg (building to 100mg) and felt dreadful for several weeks whilst my body adjusted. That was 9 years ago (I'm no longer on any meds) and unfortunately these days the smallest tablet size is 50mg.

Even on 50mg, you would feel rough for at least 3-4 weeks, possibly longer. However, once you got past that initial phase, you would hopefully start to feel better. The dosage could then be increased to 100mg if necessary, although you might find that 50mg is enough.

Can I ask whether you have been seen by a psychiatrist?

It sounds to me like it was a regular doctor who prescribed you the medication. General practitioners often have limited knowledge of psychiatric medicine and, as a result, can make some pretty bad decisions. I have personal experience of this.

The reason I ask whether you have been seen by a psychiatrist is that treatment for anxiety works better when medication is combined with behavioural therapy, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). A psychiatrist can arrange this for you.

Based on my own experience, I would not suggest taking the medication on its own. Nor would I suggest you take this medication under the "supervision" of your current doctor, as s/he clearly has very little idea about what s/he's doing.

My best advice is to get yourself seen by a psychiatrist and be advised as to the best course of treatment for you (it may not even be Zoloft*). You can then be properly supervised whilst you start taking medication, as well as having the opportunity to augment it with other types of therapy.

Zoloft is strong stuff and must be used properly and carefully or you can really mess your head up (again, I say this from experience).

~ Jasmine

*You're right that Zoloft is often prescribed for depression. It is particularly useful for people who have a comorbid diagnosis, such as depression combined with an anxiety disorder, e.g. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

To answer your question, "Is Zoloft the best medicine for anxiety?" Not necessarily. There are many types of medication that can be prescribed for anxiety and what works for one person may not work for another. Finding out what medication works for you may take some time and you may need to try more than one type.

This also leads me on to the subject of whether medication is even necessary for you. Anxiety is an in-built response to perceived external threats and most people are anxious for a reason. They may not be aware of the reason, but there usually is one. What I'm saying is that if you can get to the root of the problem and deal with that, you may not require medication at all. A psychiatrist can help you with all of this so, again, I really recommend that you see one.

Be kind to yourself.

Last edited by JazzyJazz; October 30th 2015 at 04:03 AM. Reason: Adding extra information.
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Re: Is Zoloft the best medicine for Anxiety? - October 31st 2015, 05:12 PM

Hi Sam,
First, it is concerning that you are starting out with such a high dose of medication. I take an antidepressant (not Zoloft) but I did not start out with such a high dose.
It may be useful for you to research the medical facgts about Zoloft (ie. dose, side-effects, interactions with other medications Etc.)
You really should talk to your doctor or psychiatrist as soon as possible because it is not healthy for your body to go from nothing to 100MG of a medication.
Also, we cannot really tell you which medication is best for treating anxiety because there are many SSRI's alone and they are not even the only category of antidepressant/anxiety medication. The best way to know what the best medication is through trial and error. Let each medication you are on work for sometime (generally 4-8 weeks) before really considering changing it.
If you are having serious side-effects that are not going away and that are unbearable than talk to your doctor and request a change in medication but other than that, it really takes time and depends on individual biology.
Hope this helps and that you feel better soon.
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