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SSRI's key difference? have a few queries

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Hello Everyone,


First post here, so Hello!, i am AA,


I used to be on 200mg of Sertraline, made me feel like a robot, i wasn't exactly doing badly, but i was basically just existing, i came off that in February this year, i went cold turkey instead of tapering the dose, THAT was a crazy three weeks!. 


One thing has lead to another and now I'm back on the meds, this time ive gone on Citalopram at the starting dose of 20mg, today is my third day on and i gotta say im not feeling nearly as bad as i did in the first couple of days of the Sertraline. on the Sertraline i lost a ton of weight and basically couldnt function for two weeks.


so far i just feel a vague buzz, like a bit of a lift. ive had some problems with my guts, but again not nearly as much as on the sertraline.


Anybody have any experience switching between these? and if so did you find after a break from SSRis your body was more accepting the second time around?


Sorry if my post is badly constructed, I'm still a bit jittery and keep getting distracted.


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I will just comment that if SSRIs don't work for you, there are lots of other anti-depressants that your doctor can try.  We also urge people to stay on a drug for at least 6 to 8 weeks to give it a chance to work.


I'm moving your post to the forum dedicated to antidepressants.  You might get more responses there.



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I take citalopram, and it is my favorite of all the SSRIs, and I took them all except Luvox and Viibryd. For me, it worked fast. I also noticed that little lift almost immediately. To be honest, I never get much of a response from antidepressants, but I got a little response from citalopram which actually is a huge deal for me. It is great for my anxiety.


Incidentally, I was taking citalopram, and my pdoc put me on Lexapro when it came out. I did not get that little lift, as you correctly describe it, from the Lexapro, and I asked to go back on the citalopram. I've been on citalopram for the last 13 years except for a one-year break that I took when I thought it had stopped working. I was wrong, and I was glad to get back on it.


Good luck, and like Olga said, give it six weeks to fully work.

Edited by jt07
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Yeah, i was on setraline for a good year, i know the drill w/ regards to letting them settle, the first two weeks are always the worst. my head is everywhere. but so far i definately feel better than i did with the sertraline. 


Thanks for the luck, good to hear you found one that helps. my experiences on setraline were not exactly encouraging. but then again i used to drink on them a lot, and i mean bottles of spirits a day drink, not the odd beer.

i ended up going home in police vans a couple times :| seemed to drive me crazy.

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SSRIs take weeks to a month to kick in.   I would just wait until they taper you up and your on it for 4 to 6 weeks before you give the doc some feedback.   I had side effects that made Chill-xia not so good but Wellbutren and Buspar worked fine.   That took a few back and forth dose changes to work.   Think long term results and good luck!

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Hi AA - I'm also new here.


I've been on a lot of different anti-depressants including Sertraline and Citalopram. The difference you're finding is probably due to the different chemical composition rather than taking a break between SSRI's. Unfortunately it's really unpredictable which ones will work for a particular person and which (if any) side effects you'll get. 


Totally agree you need 2 months at full dose to work out whether a particular drug is helpful for you.


Generally citalopram tends to be mildly sedating/soothing so it's a good one if anxiety is part of your condition. Good luck!

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Hi AA,

It's fine by me that you asked - as long as you don't draw any conclusions about your own treatment based on it! Look into just about any medication on the market you'll find people who claim it's a wonder drug that saved their lives and people who say they had horrific side effects and regret going anywhere near it... experiences do vary that wildly.


Well I didn't have any stomach problems or feel at all robotic on either of them.


Citalopram did seem to lift my mood some - initially it pulled me out of a hole of a long severe depression, and for the first 6 months I was more stable, coping better and less anxious, although still fairly unmotivated.  I was on it around 3 years and came off it because I had started alternating between feeling ok one week and acutely depressed the next.  Side effects were feeling a bit more sleepy during the day and a bit of weight gain - neither was extreme and so I only realised they were due to the Citalopram when I came off it.


Sertraline was years ago. As far as I can remember I was functioning OK a lot of the time whilst I was on it - but I would have nose dives into sudden severe but short-lived depressions. I didn't have any really bad physical side effects, but it's possible the agitated states I get sometimes  were worse while on it and more out of control.


In my case though my depression is "treatment resistant" -  I'm in the minority where neither drugs nor therapy have helped. Also it's complicated by mood swings (not bipolar disorder but a tendency towards it.)


So yeah - I have a bit of a long history with this stuff.


Was just looking at what you said above about drinking... drinking heavily means you're not really giving the anti-depressants a chance, because alcohol itself has a depressant effect. Sounds like you already know this though! :)

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I really like my Sertraline (Zoloft right?), wouldn't trade it for the world. I get a little boost from it. I also take Wellbutrin too. Zoloft worked the best for my anxiety, however not always, hey that's what benzos are for any way :)


I've lost a lot of weight and kept it off while on Zoloft and Wellbutrin. Wellbutrin is great for depression but sucks for anxiety why I take both.


What ever works for you that's all that matters. We are all different.

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Zoloft made me jittery and anxious. But other than prozac (which made me manic), I haven't tried any others.


I've never heard that effexor was the strongest anti-depressant. I think it really depends on what works for you. My artificial ranking (as in this is not really true, but how I have internalized it) is that MAOIs are the strongest, but have a lot of restrictions, tricyclics next, then SNRIs, then SSRIs. But again, what works for you is what's best.

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