Contemplating Zoloft increase to 250mg/day for now

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smittythepig
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 3/7/2007 2:54 PM (GMT -6)   
This is actually kind of targeted to Geebs. I have been having issues for the last 7 or 8 months after a good 8 or 9 years on 200mg/day of zoloft. Instead of switching to something else I thought it might be good to try upping my dose of zoloft first. My doctor should be calling sometime today and I will discuss it with him, though I already had a meeting with my psychologist today and he thought that seemed like a very logical decision, at least before trying a totally different medication. Even though 200mg/day is the recommended maximum, some people have gone over this with good results and there are some who are even on 300mg/day.
 
Geebs, I know you said this worked for you. Just wondering if you had any problems when you increased the dose at first, and did you end up having any additional side effects at that dose or not? Also, I was wondering if you'd tried the generic version of zoloft and if so did you notice any difference.
 
Thanks!

harry4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1449
   Posted 3/7/2007 4:09 PM (GMT -6)   

Immdoubtful about going over the max, although some psychiatrists do

alternatives are to add a second antidepressant or something to augment the zoloft

info about augmenting antidepressants on the internet

IMO 9 years is too long, you should have learned CBT and rekaxation and quit years ago


recovered former longtime anxiety and panic attack sufferer and helper of other sufferers  but no training or  qualifications in medicine or psychology, any remarks that may be taken as advice must be confirmed with doctor or other health professional
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Howlyncat
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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 3/7/2007 5:42 PM (GMT -6)   
I am hoping Geebs will see this but I too think thats a long time for that med use and maybe you should check out other meds that would work with the zoloft
There is a free online CBT if you want it let me know
Wishing you all the best
LYN
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t36
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/7/2007 6:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Are yoy gaining weight from zoloft
 
smittythepig said...
This is actually kind of targeted to Geebs. I have been having issues for the last 7 or 8 months after a good 8 or 9 years on 200mg/day of zoloft. Instead of switching to something else I thought it might be good to try upping my dose of zoloft first. My doctor should be calling sometime today and I will discuss it with him, though I already had a meeting with my psychologist today and he thought that seemed like a very logical decision, at least before trying a totally different medication. Even though 200mg/day is the recommended maximum, some people have gone over this with good results and there are some who are even on 300mg/day.
 
Geebs, I know you said this worked for you. Just wondering if you had any problems when you increased the dose at first, and did you end up having any additional side effects at that dose or not? Also, I was wondering if you'd tried the generic version of zoloft and if so did you notice any difference.
 
Thanks!

Aussieangel
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 510
   Posted 3/7/2007 9:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I was on and off zoloft for almost 12years. Zoloft isn't just used for anxiety and some people do need life long anti-d meds.
 
I was on 200mg weaned down to 150mg then got sick again last year. I was put back up to 200 and when that didn't work I went up to 250mg before the pdoc decided my body had built a tolerance to the zoloft and cold turkeyed me off it. nono That's one big no- no.
 
Do you think it could be your body has built a tolerance as well? If it has and you go up it just means more to withdraw from.

t36
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/8/2007 8:17 AM (GMT -6)   
I am on 100 mg and my doctor says it is ok to stop cold turkey. The only reasons why I want to stop is weight gain and exhaustion!!

Geebs
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 184
   Posted 3/8/2007 8:45 AM (GMT -6)   
I had diarrhea for a few days and insomnia for about a week. Keep in mind that I also take Trazodone in combination with Zoloft, so that adds something to the mix. I ended up taking 250mg of Zoloft with 125mg of Trazodone for about three months.

It definitely helped me, even though I worried the whole time about whether it was "pooping out" on me. I eventually lowered the dose to 225mg for another four months, and then back down to 200mg. I have continued with 125mg of Trazodone. I am doing fine now with no anxiety/depressive symptoms.

My psychiatrist says it is not uncommon to go over the FDA dose limit for SSRIs. He told me it happens and is usually a better choice than discarding a medication that has worked well for a long time, unless of course, you cannot tolerate the side effects.

The SSRIs have a very wide theraputic index and supratheraputic doses can and do help many people.

t36
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/8/2007 9:10 AM (GMT -6)   
Did u gain weight on Zoloft?
 

smittythepig
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 3/8/2007 9:30 AM (GMT -6)   
thanks. that's what my psychologist said as well - that he feels that if something has worked a long time then it's probably a better first step to up the dose than to switch to something else. if that doesn't work then it would possibly be time to consider something else. so i may try that. my old PCP told me that he believes that definitely some people need lifelong assistance in the area of anxiety and depression. i mainly have anxiety although there is some depressive symptoms as well. but i actually got on the meds initially because of OCD that was causing the anxiety. at any rate, i am starting to believe that it is possible for me in my situation to potentially be drug-free at some point in my life if i really work at it, though i don't know if that will happen or not. i also am fine with the fact that if i can indeed get off the meds i may have to go back on them at some point in the future. in the last year i have lost my father, my first child was born a few weeks later, we bought a house, i changed jobs, and i moved to a different state. these are truly all major life events and i think i coul have handled one or two of them ok on my own. but all together they have broken me down and i am finding it hard to find security and meaning and a sense of self after all this change. clearly my mind is sensitive to stress and i've just had too much. so i think i definitely need some extra help. i also try and read a lot about all of this (drugs, therapy, etc.) and i am seeing a psychologist. but i currently definitely need some kind of medication to help. i started trying some things the psychiatrist suggested (celexa, adderall, buspar) but have stopped them all for fear of side effects and long-term problems. i may need to be brave, stop reading all the dooms-day drug reviews on the internet and give maybe the adderall and buspar another shot.

anyway, as for gaining weight, see my post in the other thread about zoloft and weight gain that was originally posted a week or so ago.

geebs - have you used the generic version of zoloft before?

a.l.
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 279
   Posted 3/8/2007 8:30 PM (GMT -6)   
Smitty-
I have been on Zoloft for the last 11 years- most of the time on 50 mg, but currently on 200 mg due to extra stress from my both my husband and me being out of work. At one point, I felt like the 200 mg was not effective and talked to the doctor about switching meds. She said that it really isn't a good idea to switch to another med during a period of high stress (which includes all of the changes you have recently gone through), and that it is better to stick with that med, perhaps adding something to supplement it. So, with this in mind, it sounds like you are on the right track with trying to stick with the Zoloft. And, by the way, I recently started with the generic Zoloft- I really do not notice any difference...
Hope things work out for you!!

Geebs
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 184
   Posted 3/8/2007 9:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, I take generic sertraline and I haven't found it to be any different than the brand-name. As far as weight gain goes, Zoloft has been far better for me than Paxil was. I probably gained about 20lbs....which is not a big deal.

With regard to long-term medication, this is a decision you and your psychiatrist have to make together. Personally, I have a very long history of anxiety and depression, in addition to years of alcoholism (sober for 15 years now), and have found I need to stay on meds. This is not unusual, but not everyone needs to stay on medication forever.

If you found something that works, my psychiatrist believes in sticking with the winner. There are no guarantees when switching meds.

Let us know how you do!
GEORGE

smittythepig
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 3/9/2007 10:11 AM (GMT -6)   
thanks george. it's been a confusing couple of weeks. i went from thinking i should start taking several different meds and treating the anxiety, depression and ADD, to thinking i'll deal with a mild case of ADD (which i'm still not even convinced I have) on my own and possibly even getting off the zoloft as well and going med free. i went to a psychiatrist who prescribed all these new meds, then a psychologist who i have been seeing for a few weeks now who though helpful to talk with hasn't really recommended anything in particular at all. it's both frustrating and empowering to realize that ultimately the docs work for you in a sense and you are the one responsible for deciding what you take or don't take and what you're problems are or aren't.

i do believe the zoloft has had an effect on me in the sense it got me out of a bad brain lock many years ago when i was so obsessed with something i thought about it every waking moment for months on end. that's actually what cause the extreme anxiety problems. and once i started taking it i was again able to talk in front of a classroom of other people and not hyperventilate. some of that may have been part placebo, but there was definitely some biological work being done. but i think that was fairly limited and i think with the right tools i can live life medication free. the problem is that that requires a lot more effort. but it seems the benefits make you ultimately stronger and last much longer and can make you better prepared to handle relapses when things get tough.

so we'll see. every day i think a little differently about what to do next. it might not be the best time to get off the meds completely. but that may be a future possibility.

Geebs
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 184
   Posted 3/10/2007 10:25 AM (GMT -6)   
My suggestion would be to work closely with your psychiatrist and psychologist so you have a "double-whammy" approach to treating your symptoms. Psychiatrists usually focus on deploying the benefits of medication to provide maximum relief, while psychologists focus on addressing the underlying coping skills and life issues.

I am a firm believer in combining medication with psychotherapy. Medication is never a cure and everyone has issues that need to be dealt with in therapy. That said, there is nothing wrong with taking medication long-term if that's what you need to do.

Good luck and let us know how your're doing!!
GEORGE
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