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Hi Old Friends! I have another AD question....
      #310177 - 06/29/07 04:24 PM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

Hey Everyone!

I have been so MIA for about a year now, but I have checked in ever so often.

I have a random question and I thought maybe someone on here would have some answers.

I've been having a lot of anxiety and panic attacks lately- I think triggered by life stress such as school finally ending, internship ending, potentially having to move, the job search etc! It's been awful and is really interfering with my quality of life.

A few weeks ago my doctor prescribed Zoloft to attempt to help with the anxiety. I took it and it made me feel awful. I ending up only taking it for about 3 days because I was having constant panic attacks (it aggrevated my condition significantly and it's still worse now- prior to zoloft I was having 1 panic attack a week, now I just have a general sense of constant anxiety which i've never had before), major anxiety, I was throwing up, feeling brain zaps, and at times felt like I was going crazy (no better way to explain it). At one point I thought that I was going to have to be hospitalized. I stopped taking it immediately and was semi normal after a few days (but the anxiety has stayed higher than it was prior to starting zoloft at all).

I decided to take nothing at all, but my anxiety is still really bad and I have to start working again really soon. My doctor prescribed Lexapro and told me to give that a shot. I've heard good things about it here on the site, but do you think it will induce the same feelings that the zoloft did. I literally thought that I was going insane at the time and it makes me scared to try something else. However, at the same time I want to try something else because this anxiety is getting ridiculous.

Does anyone else have any experience like this and/or felt this way on A-D's? Is it worth it to give another kind a shot? I'm just nervous b/c they both basically do the same thing.. I just don't it to make me worse like the zoloft did.

In other news I hope everyone is doing well! I've missed you all! Unfortunately this year has been crazy, so it's been hard for me to get online as often as I'd like.


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Re: Hi Old Friends! I have another AD question.... new
      #310184 - 06/29/07 07:21 PM

Reged: 06/16/03
Posts: 705
Loc: NYC

I haven't posted here in a quite a while myself! I guess thats the trend of the week. Anyway, for better or worse I have some personal experience of your problem. I am surprised that zoloft was prescribed as its intended to treat depression, and there are drugs, (Buspar for one) that are specifically for anxiety. If you aren't seeing an actual psychiatrist, maybe it would be a good idea to do so. (You're a therapist aren't you? So you probably know that already.)
I'm currently on buspar and am weening myself off of zoloft because I told my doctor that I'm ready to try to get off of both of them. Its been 3 years now. Anyway, I recommend you look into buspar and other anti-anxiety drugs. Also XANAX. I've taken just a few in the year since it was prescribed, but I carried them with me everywhere for about 6 months like a pharmaceutical security blanket! They are a valium relative I think. I take them if I'm having a panic attack and they totally bring me out of it. Its really useful that way.
You may be extremely sensitive (like I am) to all of these type drugs and should talk to your doc about starting slow. For instance, I only take 12.5mg of zoloft per day which is half of the smallest pill they make and I had to start by taking it every other evening. If I took it in the morning it messed up my stomach and I wouldn't be able to leave the bathroom, but my psychiatrist told me to try the evening and it helped for some reason. The buspar also, I'm on a geriatric dose according to what I read online. (I'm in my 30's)
I hope some of this is helpful. Its an awful thing to go through and even though so many people experience it it seems as taboo as ibs or even more, to talk about it. (did you read about Penelepe Cruz ahving a panic attack on an airplane this week?)
There are books too of course. Just type panic attacks into amazon and you'll find lots of books and lots of reviews. I used one of them and wrote myself some notes that I force myself to read when having an attack. It can help a little, especially if I catch myself early.
Hang in there.

Ladies & gentlemen take my advice, pull down your pants and slide on the ice.

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Re: Hi Old Friends! I have another AD question.... new
      #310195 - 06/30/07 07:05 AM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

Hi Hawkeye,

Thanks for your response! I am a psychologist, but to be honest, they really don't teach us anything about medications. Plus, I work only with Children, so the types of drugs that I am familar with aren't used in adults more often than not.

I am going thru my regular MD which is a problem, but my insurance doesn't start up through my new job until August 1st- so right now psychiatrists aren't covered.

I did ask about Buspar, but they said that the side effects make it harder to take- whereas the newer SSRI's work for anxiety and have fewer side effects. Who knows though, b/c my experience was TERRIBLE!

I do have some Xanax that I was supposed to take as needed (this worked prior to the Zoloft when my anxiety attacks were once a week tops)- but at this rate, I'd need to take them daily and my doctor said that that is not a good idea. Plus, they make me incredibly tired so I avoid taking them as much as possible. It's really hard for me to function at work on Xanax.

I did order some books for amazon so we'll see how they work. However, being a psychologist is a downfall b/c when I went to the doctor she was like wow, you are an expert on anxiety. You know exactly what to do.

But NO, I know exactly what to tell people what to do. It's much harder to do it on yourself. Despite all the relaxation techniques in the world, I still have a general sense of uneasiness and worry.

Thanks for the suggestions. I really dont' know what to do about this.


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Re: Hi Old Friends! I have another AD question.... new
      #310198 - 06/30/07 08:47 AM

Reged: 06/28/05
Posts: 940
Loc: Massachusetts


When I was on Zoloft I had a constant panic attack. I would wake up in the a.m. feeling like the bed was shaking and it was my heart beating. They put me on Paxil and I have been fine. I guess everyone reacts differently. Good luck. Panic is a bitch.


nůs somos o que nůs somos e o descanso ť merda

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Re: Hi Old Friends! I have another AD question.... new
      #310532 - 07/05/07 05:25 PM

Reged: 07/05/07
Posts: 5

I am also a Ph.D., I work with teenagers. I use the The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook, by Bourne alot. You can get it on Amazon for about $20. Hope this helps!

IBS-D "spastic colon"

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Hi, Darlin' Sorry you're feeling this way.... new
      #310815 - 07/09/07 04:52 PM
Yoda (formerly Hans)

Reged: 01/22/03
Posts: 3682
Loc: Canada

I know how you feel. When I started on Paxil, I was terribly jittery for the first week or so, with panic attacks, etc. The initial side effects usually go away after a week or two (yeah, no problem, right????) Remember, AD's often affect people differently. Um, e-mail me. I'd love to chat more -

I would HIGHLY recommend zen meditation, and mindfulness meditation. But for now, if you're in or on your way to an attack, really simple here - sit in a yoga pose, close your eyes. Breathe in 1 out 1. Breathe in 2 out 2. All the way to ten. Focus on your breath. Let your thoughts enter your mind, acknowledge them and let them float away on a cloud.

Love ya! A.

Formerly HanSolo. IBS, OCD, Bipolar, PTSD times 3.

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