Withdrawal from Sertraline

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
July 27, 2015 | 288 Comments


  1. This story is really very well written its unbelievable you were even put on medication in the first place let alone end up on several at the same time. Some of these psychiatrists are just unbelievable. It really is terrible what you went through.

    • Hi I came off Sertraline and I am suffering beyond belief. I have horrendous tendonitis which is all over my body and I am in pain every day. My GP told me to stay on Sertraline but I decided it was messing me up completely and I thought I was going mad. Best thing coming off but my body and mind will never be the same again.

      • Hi Anna thanks for this post. It is really helpful. Fiona how are you? I am nearly two weeks off setraline and feel horrendous. The brain zaps are continuous, not stopping all day. The rage that I have been feeling is scary and totally irrational to any given situation. Is there an end in sight?? Thanks Catherine.

        • Thanks to everyone as it’s helpful, at first I didn’t make the connection between this strange rage and sertraline, of course that I new something is awfully wrong with me. it’s hard enough trying to keep strong after stroke now this!?
          what to do now.

          • Hi Ana, I’ve been on sertraline for 10 months now and desperately want to come off it. My life circumstances have improved so much in the past few months, having also met a wonderful man who loves me for me and is 100% supportive. I asked the psychiatrist 2&a half months ago to take me off them and due to the fact it was his first meeting with me(I’ve met with a different doctor each time I’ve had appointments over the 10 months which is just ridiculous!!)he wouldn’t agree for me to come off them as he didn’t know me and therefore obviously didn’t want to take the responsibility!! I’m soooooo worried about coming off them now, which I’m going to insist upon in December when I have my next appointment. I have been experiencing ear problems, severe brain fog and “speech stupidity” and insomnia ever since I went on them!! I was put on them for what was deemed chronic ocd but my life circumstances and a very bad relationship were the underlying cause of my unhappiness/depression and my anxiety and OCD (which I had always suffered with to some extent) becoming so severe… I don’t want to feel bad again as a result of withdrawal symptoms but I hate the side effects associated with sertraline and want to just be me again, drug free and happy!

          • Yes i know what u mean i wish i never had Zoloft i want to get off them my doc insist me stay o them like wtf.

          • I know this has been a couple years but was just wondering how you are doing now. I went off Sertraline last September and still feeling depression, sadness and anxiety. Doctor said it’s not withdrawal but my anxiety and depression has returned. I cannot go back on medication….

          • Hi I just read this now and yours comment is sort of the most recent here (2020) I’m literally lowering my dosage of sertraline daily this is my 1st week and I been fine so far just a bit of chest pains that I eat somewhere online was part of withdrawal (I’ve been for heart checks and ecgs etc) so im confident its nothing serious. Wanted to know how you got on with this and if its worth coming off. I haven had any bad experiences with this medication I could take it forever but im afraid of the long term impact on my brain 🧠 best to be medication free and live I guess

          • shaheen, I am so sorry you are experiencing this, however it has given me some comfort to know I’m not alone and not dying! I took sertraline for about a year and my dr weaned me off of it over a 6 week period with my last dose being around August 1. I sit here tonight, 3 months later, experiencing severe anxiety and tightness in my chess and shallow breathing. I think my doctor thinks I am nuts. She sent me to a cardiologist to make sure it wasn’t my heart and I checked out okay. Just this week I started having the brain zaps and I thought “here I go again”. I’m so glad that I found this thread.

          • It’s comforting to know that I’m not alone, although it’s not so comfortable to realise how many people seem to be suffering such awful withdrawal symptoms.
            I’m still going through them and I’m finding it extremely difficult. I seem to get all of the symptoms and I think they are severe. On top of the well described ones I seem to be having my personal little batch of problems. I keep clenching my teeth and forming a vacuum in my mouth causing soreness to my gums and teeth. The muscles in my neck and shoulders seem to be in constant spasm and nothing I have tried relieves it. All my muscles ache and although I know that’s a known problem, I can barely force myself to even try to do anything because I get so exhausted. I’m having constant palpitations and am short of breath with the slightest exertion. I know it’s tempting to suggest that my symptoms might be caused by other things but I know they’re not. My GP obviously thought so as I’ve had chest x-rays, 24/7 cardiac tape for a week, cardiac ultrasound, any possible blood test looking for any other pathology etc etc and all have been normal. I’m getting very despondent now though because I keep telling myself it will end soon, and I’ve been saying it for many weeks.

          • Come of sterline tablets I have gone crazy since coming of them been tired had mood swings and not eating probably

        • hi, i’m kendall
          off of sertraline for 3 weeks now, and i’m living my own hell on earth. losing hope, but i’m tying to hang on as hard as i can. it’s so hard to tell if it is withdrawal or my own imbalance. reading these stories help.

          • Kendal checking in to see how you are feeling now? I was only on Zoloft for two weeks and I am getting horrible withdrawals. Brain zaps and panic attacks and depression.

          • Hi Kendall- have you found the FB Group “Zoloft should be Illegal”? LOTS of people suffering the same thing from this vile medication…I’ve been struggling with withdrawal for 3 months after being in a baby dose (12.5 mg) for 10 months ):

        • I am off setraline a few months now. The brain Zaps finally stopped after I started taking turmeric but the raging anger and depression are the worse they’ve ever been in my life. I’m trying to slow down and be “normal” but the intense stress is physically making me sick and I’m trying to control it but it’s damn near impossible

          • Hi I’d been on Sertraline and pregabalin for health anxiety plus Zopiclone to aid sleeping for past six years.I gradually weaned my myself off the first two and haven’t been taking them now for four months.I’ve got to say though I’m now feeling terrible crying over the slightest thing irritable,moody,angry shouting at my husband,pressure in my head and electrical zaps head feels like it’s shrinking insomnia the list goes on trying to fight this but it’s becoming more difficult.

      • Hi Fiona, I am keen to find out how you are getting on as I am also going through withdrawal. Has now been two weeks and I feel so down. Thanks

        • I am in second week of withdrawal also. Terrible. We had planned a vacation after 3 years of cancer surgery and chemo and radiation. I was depressed and told my doc. She prescribed sertraline. After several weeks on it, I had gained 15 lbs and couldn’t stop over eating. Decided to stop drug with docs help. So am on 1 pill a day and have been very sick—-in the chair, barely eating or drinking. Lost 15plus lbs but I am sick—brain not working, in bed and chair groggy, sleep some but not good sleep, stomach and bowel on the rampage—tendons painful, can’t get ready for vacation. Thank god, I found this site. I am not alone. When I had cancer, I found a site called SMART PATIENTS.COM. It helped me a lot. So do all of you.

      • Hey Fiona,
        Hows it all going with your tendons? Im having the exact same problem as you. I tried coming off escitalopram twice and both times i got sever tendonitis that only settles when back on the drug but never the same again.

      • I am once again trying to get off sertraline, I have been taking the highest dose for about 7years, all of the above happen to me .the hardest part is trying to act normal in front of family, who I have hidden my mental health problems from my whole life.
        I feel so ill and don’t know how much longer I can go on.
        Family members rely on me is elderly parents and grandchildren. I have barely no energy and currently trying to set up a cleaning business because I can’t work for a company because of feeling ill most the time .
        Also as well as the other symptoms my memory is dyer. I feel so desperate.

        • Hi I have been on medication for 35 years I was put on it after my first child.diffrent one.then 10 years ago I was put on sertraline for very bad OCD depression and anxiety. They made me put weight on and didn’t really make much different to my problems.so 3 weeks ago I decided I have had enough of being on this terrible drug.its poison, since stopping it I feel terrible I have out bursts of this anger that i cant control I’m anxious and have horrible sad thoughts.i really dont no what to do.will my mind ever settle down i dont no who i am anymore .just want to be happy and enjoy life.😥 will these feeling go away as I dont want medication ever again.any help with this would be great .thank you 😘

          • That’s good to hear. My mum just passed away and I’m all over the place but want to come off setraline , not taken for past two days , I’m in grief anyway so I thought I might not notice the symptoms , I don’t know

          • This is exactly how I feel. Went off Sertraline last September and still not feeling well. Will not go back on meds…..

          • Jules here….I went on Zoloft in 1993 for an hormonal in balance at 34 years old. I was already peri menopausal and exhibiting signs..I can only explain in one way…not being able to keep it together….forgetfulness, anxiety total lack of concentration, and brain fog. Was working as a server which I had done my entire life up until that point…couldn’t function. Went to my family Dr. and he put me on this new pill called Zoloft. It literally saved my life.
            Fast forward to menopause and 56 years old….went on bio identical esterdiol patch and promethium (progesterone) I thought nows the time. I started tapering for at least 5 weeks down to buying a pill splitter, until the dose was 12.5….was I stupid…..dr told me no worries about the taper and getting off. At this time I was doing Atkins and I thought what I had was the Atkins flu…..until the bad symptoms arose…..feelings of dread that I didn’t want to be alone, anxiety so bad that I thought I was going to die. Ended up in the hospital with a bad kidney infection……so I went back on it and Xanax, low dose as needed….felt great again. Fast forward to 62years old….different this time…did more research and the time frame between the two tapers I noticed it wasn’t doing anything for me…I would forget to take it for a couple days and get the foggy head….so I decided to try again…..even though I am exhibiting the following symptoms that come and go except for the muscle spasms in my legs, and ass; severe shortness of breath, severe fatigue, headache, and anxiety….my head feels clearer…I’ve been off since around first week of February….the worse is the body pain in my lower body…..I am determined to persevere….I do a lot of praying…

          • This is exactly what I have been experiencing, I have struggled to come off of it. No one would believe me. I really wish I could be off this drug for good. You described the same symptoms I currently have. Have you had nerve pain at any point before sertraline? I had it on a regular basis sertraline made it disappear but now it’s worse than ever when I’m off this drug. It destroys my memory.

        • I’m 4 weeks off sertraline, been on highest dose 5 years, decided to go cold turkey Xmas day , struggling crying headaches, vertigo horrendous, hoping there’s light at the end of the tunnel as I hate my life at the moment and nobody knows 🙃

          • You have to wean off slowly. I went from 100 mg. To 50. For 2 weeks then stopped. Not what my doctor recommend. But I was on it for 6 years. I couldn’t even cry when my parents passed. Lost my sex drive. Lost basically all emotions. Currently off it for 3 weeks. I’m tearing up at the drop of a pin. The brain zaps are crazy. Starting to get my sex drive back. But it’s a slow process. I guess I’d rather be a ball bag then to feel nothing. I’m positive it will get better soon

      • Fiona, it’s been over a year and a half since your post. How have you been? I have been off for 2 months after being on Sertraline for about 17 years. Having withdrawals also.

        • I too am experiencing withdrawal from sertraline. The palpitations are driving mad, the back pain I’ve been experiencing for two years I’m almost convinced it is because of the sertaline. It’s nerve pain but mo MRI can detect a problem. How do I ease the symptoms I’m not sure il cope much more.

          • Hi
            I’ve been off sertraline 2 weeks. I weaned myself off (PROB NOT as slowly as some on here) and am already experiencing palpitations day and night. I have been on sertraline 3 years approx and when reading the leaflet for it, it said not to take more than 2 years. Hence why I came off it. Also reading up on it sertraline interferes with thyroxine that I am also on so why I was put on it in the first place I don’t know although whilst on it I had no problems (I was on lowest dose 50). I’m hoping that if I ride the wave it will slowly pass and it will go. Reading the posts on here I think the side effects depend on the dose taken in the first place and the amount of time spent on them.

          • I was on sertraline for 9 months and never had a problem when I came off them now however after being off them for 15 months I am starting woth anxiety again so I am thinking about going back on them I feel terrible started having panic attacks again last eeek out of the blue, I just wish I could tell myself that I am ok and not have to go back on the tabs

          • Hi Bev I’ve been o Sertraline for 2 years and been thinking I needed to come off them as was feeling angry all the time in the last 6 months I was only on 25mg a day as anymore than that gave me really bad stomach issues. I’m on my 6th day of not having Sertraline and today have been having dizzy spells all day and feeling flushed. I hope it does get better and I’ve had a cold for 4 weeks so maybe it’s it going because of sertraline and now because of withdrawals.

          • Hi Joanne.
            I feel the same, been on 50mg of Sertraline for over 12 months initially on 100mg but reduced due to the shakes, stopped now for just over a week dizzy, buzzy head (yes buzzy head feels like it’s buzzing/fizzing), feeling low and NO patience, had head cold for 5 days is it just coincidental?? I dont know, the worst effect it dizziness dont feel safe driving so it has effected my job. Wish i had read all the statements before taking the dreaded drug, I wish I had not bothered, but we trust the medical professionals judgement they don’t ever give us the full down low on drugs.Going to stay off them dizzy fizzy or whatever it’s a better option than man made chemicals invading my body.
            Keep strong Merry Christmas xx

          • Hi
            I have stopped taking Sertraline, I have been on the lowest dose, from the start, for about eight months. I decided to stop immediately and not gradually. I had a really bad cold about two weeks in. The worst side effect I am experiencing are probably the brain zaps, if that is what they are. I get what sounds like a bird tweeting and a sort of dizzy sensation.

          • I’ve been off for a week… feel buzzy , nerves jittering but feesl like Im getting my bran back slightly . Instead of speaking gibberish
            Bit dizzy but hopefully will settle..
            Hope you feel better soon.

        • 27th April 2019

          I came off sertraline 25th March due to excruciating leg pains. Four weeks on the pains have not eased. The pains are in the calves, ankles, top of foot and toes. I also have flu-like symptoms and at times a little off balance. THe doctor told me to stop statins for a month. I will see do ctor in two weeks but feel I should see a specialist.

          Can you perhaps give me some hope that the pains will ease. Thank you.

          • I forgot to mention that I had excessive sweating while on tabs. This has eased before the leg pains started. I also have the brain zaps which have been mentioned. I described these to doctor as a ‘flapping in the head’. Each afternoon I have nausea and fatigue. I would be grateful to learn if these will stop. Thank you.

          • Hi Maureen.
            I too had excessive sweating one of the main reasons for stopping Sertraline. I felt constantly overheated fan in the bedroom th in the lounge fan at work it became a bloody nuisance. Always fanning myself with my available object it was awful. Cold turkied (if thats a word) stopped over a week ago. Feel dizzy. Fuzzy but WILL NOT RETAKE EVER……

          • How are your symptoms now? I quit 5 days ago only on for 3 weeks but symptoms are not nice

          • hiya. how has your journey been going?
            i also quit 4 days ago and side effects are so bad, i thought i gave myself food posioning from eating wild blackberries but upon researching setraline i tick all withdrawal boxes apart from headaches so now belive its these such Not helpers overly prescribed by our doctors. they will ease off sooner rather that later i hope but im determined not to go back on them. hope your journey has been kind to you

          • Hi Sophia, I’m wondering how you made out? I have only been on about 3 1/2 weeks 25mg and today was the last pill I will take..

          • How are you now. I started 13 days ago with 25 mg then up to 50mg. Never been so sick. I’m going to wean off of them.

          • See the specialist. A regular doctor may not help you. Some will lead you okay, just be on high alert with what they suggest.

            I’m going on month 5 of withdrawal from Zoloft, 50 mg. The weird side effects have gone away (brain zaps, dizziness, numbness, etc.) But the akathisia is still here, to some degree.

            After visiting my doctor about 2-3 months ago, I decided not to listen to him, as he wanted to re-administer the Zoloft at 25mg.

            I have decided to go a more natural route. I take BrainMD’s Neurolink and their Focus and Energy supplements. I also take propranolol, 40 mg, to help with the akathisia. It is also beneficial to take fish oil, vitamins B3 and B6, a good probiotic, and multivitamin.

            Doing this has helped a lot, but it will start to wear off after a while, but the akathisia will more calm.

            What I read that may help are the following:

            A healthy diet
            Positive mindset (this will be tough, but we are in this together)
            Becoming more spiritual
            Being more proactive
            Fresh air every single day
            NAD+ IV Therapy (just found out about this)

            Those were just some recommendations. I hope this helps.

            People who go through this will get better. There was a man who took antidepressants for over a decade and he decided to stop. He claims to be 75% better after 4 years clean. From my knowledge, he did not supplement anything. Some people will read that and possibly freak out, but this is a journey. WE WILL GET BETTER. It all goes up from here. There are videos on YouTube on this. Check it out!

          • Hi there Cam.

            You seem to know a lot about this. I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind me privately messaging you? Regarding withdrawal symptoms…

            Kind regards


          • I have been on Sertraline for about 20 years and about 2 years ago decided that I no longer wanted to be on the drug because of the negative side affects. I came off in a tapered way and was fine for about 6 months and then I started to feel really unwell again. I went back to the doctor and he put me straight back on Sertraline again. Last year, I again wanted to come off the drug and exactly the same thing has happened. They say that the withdrawal affects should all have worn off after a couple of months but my experience is very much a delayed reaction kicking in after about 6 months. I do not have any cofidence anymore in the medical profession and I know that if I go and see my doctor, then he will want to put me back on Sertraline.
            I think that the list of things to try was very helpful and I will try all of the suggestions as I really don’t want to be on medication for the rest of my life. It is not easy as I am very emotional and tearful most of the time which I know deep down is not how I feel. Neither do I feel depressed but the withdrawal affects make it seem as though I am. The trouble is that once you are on Sertraline it becomes a self perpetuating cycle. If you come off it, you have the withdrawal affects and the medical profession then identify the withdrawal affects as the underlying problem and put you straight back on it. This just can’t be the right way to deal with the problem. It can’t be right for the solution to always be long term dependence on Sertraline. Even the notes that come with it suggest that it shouldn’t be used for the long term. The trouble is that it will take a lifetime before the long term negative side affects of Sertraline to be properly understood but all the comments on this site will help to provide a better understanding until this happens

          • Thirteen weeks since I stopped taking sertreline and during these weeks I experienced changes,. I still had pain but not excruciating and these were in different leg areas. Each week bought a change and although painful, things were changing. At 11 weeks I was pleased to tell the doctor that pains had eased just leaving a stiffness around the knees. My knees are painful and will be having them xrayed to ease my mind.
            However I can cope with this as I can’t believe the awful symptoms have eased. Fingers crossed.
            I hope this will be of some help to someone.

        • I’ve been at 100 mg of Zoloft for 20 years! Cut my dosage in half 3 weeks ago. I’m nauseous and tired and feel weird. I couldn’t figure out what’s wrong with me. It dawned on me it must be the Zoloft. I hope this gets better.

          • Check out the FB group “Zoloft should be Illegal”- they offer suggestions on slow tapering and are very supportive.

      • I have been taking this and thought i was going insane , lots of bad ugly outbursts with my beautiful daughter and family then so sorry next day, I could not understand why I was going to the toilet 6-7 times a night some days, could not walk straight, had strange sensations in my head that woke me up, just started having sweats during day and night, my hair would get wet. I commenced Sertraline due to unbelievable grief but I will now find the correct way to come of this medication, I AM SO GLAD I FOUND THIS SITE and I am not alone anymore.

        • I’ve recently taken myself off 150mg for almost 2 years. I’ve been off 2 weeks. I went to my GP today because I keep getting dizzy and my brain feels like it’s vibrating and I’ve had unbelievable rage.. I feel like I’m in a dream like state.. Kinda, its hard to explain. I’ve got the electricity feelings, horrendous nightmares, I maybe sleep 30 to 40 minutes a day. And I mean day. I am terrified to sleep at night. I’m a 46yr old woman with a freaking nightlight. I sweat profusely from the back of my head.. I tremble and shake, my vision is blurry. I’m nauseated 24/7. I can’t recall some things. I went to call my wonderful little dog I hand picked 5 years ago and couldn’t remember her name. The harder I tried the emptier my head felt. I’m terrified of how I feel. What really scares me is the sudden rage. I’m always so patient and I will take tons of crap before I get upset, and usually I cry not tell and say cruel horrible things to the people I love. I raged this morning at my mother in law who is the kindest person in the world. All the sudden I snapped and started bawling and apologising over and over. I kept asking her and my husband “What’s wrong with me?? This isn’t me! I’m so scared”. She kept hugging me saying it was okay. But it’s not. I was a monster with my words. I hate myself for the things I said to that wonderful woman. Not to mention the 2 rages that happened Sunday when I discovered my husband ate my cheese sticks. I cried and apologised to him. I’m VERY lucky to have a very supportive husband and In laws. We told all this to my GP and she said I must have an inner ear issue and set me up to see a ear doctor. I said “what the hell does an ear problem have to do with the rages and the headache I get every single day and all the other things??”. She said, we have to start somewhere. Then she asked me when I stopped the sertaline. At the time I was upset and didn’t really think about that until right now. It’s almost 1am I’m watching TV in bed listening to my husband and 2 dogs snore and it hit me! I immediately started searching on Google for anything about people stopping this medication. Thank God I found all of you. Although I’m very sad to learn there are others like me… And so many! Wth is going on?? Obviously my GP knows something to ask me about when I stopped! But instead of being honest she’s saying it’s my ear! Btw when she looked in my ear she said it looks fine. Does the rage stuff ever stop? All the issues I’m having and that scares me the worst. I hate myself for verbally hurting the people I love. It sucks because unfortunately I’m very good with cruelty when I’m that angry. It hits me so fast and hard I don’t even know what I’m doing until it’s too late. I’m thinking I should just take it again so all this will stop. I don’t care about me. I care about the people who are suffering because of me. Laura

          • Hi Laura.. I’m new to the “Sertraline Withdrawal” thing. Actually, I stopped the med about 3 weeks ago. I had NO IDEA of such withdrawals! The palpations have been HORRIBLE.. had ambulance called to my home once a week for two weeks! Was told the palpations could be caused
            By caffeine.. Immediately started deleting caffeine from my life. The passed few days I have been getting really angry. Normally I take and take and never show anger towards anyone (it’s such a horrible feeling to get so angry)! TODAY, I have experienced a sudden headache that left me staggering and feeling as though I needed to find seating, AND FAST! ‘Have experienced bouts of uncertainty of my sanity (that I was loosing my mind and felt like I was going to have to be put in a straight -jacket)!! Coming to realization and DESPERATION to NEVER FEEL LIKE THAT AGAIN, I had my son go to my pharmacy and get my refill on the Sertraline!
            Feeling anxious, scared, angry, sad, confused, and hopeless to the ability of my own mind, I REDUCED MYSELF INTO TAKING THE MEDICATION AGAIN!
            I have a Dr appointment next Thursday, and will be letting the Dr know, that unless my medication be changed to something I feel safer taking, he can go on and get that “jacket” ready!!

      • Hi there, I was on sertraline for 10 months
        And after that I tapered it with the help of me Gp
        Now it’s been 3 months every day is a hell
        Depression, severe leg weakness palpitations
        Headaches gastric problems
        So many issues came up.I quit my job
        Can’t go outside because of panic attacks
        Have lovely family with two kids can’t enjoy my day to day life
        Don’t know what to do but really can’t go back on sertraline .
        This drug changed my life in a very negative side
        I was a very happy soul but now everything changed really don’t understand how to lead my life happily
        Can somebody please advise me how to deal with this anxiety
        Thank you

      • Hi Fiona, hope this gets to you, I stopped taking Sertraline about the same time as your post about tendonitits and I’m suffering greatly with the same problem, can you update me on your state of health and did you find a way to cope with it? I’m really desperate.

    • I’m now 3 month off sertraline after being on them for 5 years. The withdrawal is absolutely horrendous although there are now very short windows happening. It’s insane that GP’s don’t have a clue about the withdraw effects and damage they do to our brain’s both on and when we come off them. The amount of symptoms is crazy, I’m now at a stage where I have extreme anxiety and horrendous stomach issues, last week it was depressive thoughts and migraines! The amount of symptoms and the cycles they come in are beyond belief! I’ve done a lot of research into these and I’m expecting to be like this for at least another 6 month due to length of time I was taking them. Pure poison!

        • Is there a support group or something for people struggling the effects of this med? My girlfriend is in the mist of suffering and I’m so worried about her. She’s not herself and it pains me seeing her in so much physical and mental anguish. I have a history with addiction and know support was the biggest factor that helped me. But I don’t even know if support groups exist for SSRIs or something of this nature. Any advice is appreciated.

        • I’ve slowly tapered off of sert. And working with a herbalist to help me. This week I am down to half a tablet every other day. I am so dizzy I just sit in the couch all day, when I can. I started to run in the morning which does not effect my dizziness and makes me feel good. But at night it’s awful. I sleep well. If it’s really bad I take half my pill. But I’m trying not to. Everything else is good

    • Has anyone experienced severe insomnia? Any suggestions? Doctors keep trying to increase Mirtazapine but we won’t do it for fear of further withdrawals. We are 9 weeks clear of Sert but the symptoms are horrendous

      • Ask your GP to prescribe Melatonin. If s/he won’t, you can order them online but unfortunately very expensive in the UK. In North America you can buy it over the counter very cheaply, so if you know someone flying from that direction you could ask him/her to bring some.

        I take 1/2 of a (chewable) 5 mg pill each night and have done so for years when and if I need. It is a natural hormone designed to regulate sleep and produced by the pineal gland in the brain. If I take too much e.g 5 mg I will have sleep that is too deep and dreams that are too vivid! My UK dr did prescribe 2 mg slow release pills which work as well as my (Canadian) 5 mg ones. The instructions with the prescribed UK Melatonin:
        Side effect warning for medication overdose:
        Warning this drug may make you feel drowsy! I kid you not. Awesome side effect for sleeping pill!
        Then it has a list of dangers: The effects of this drug in combination with …(sorry I forget) has not been tested therefore exercise caution. What a lot of houy!

        Melatonin has been taken by millions of North Americans for decades. It is effective as sleep medication. I wake up feeling rested and refreshed. It works. No addiction or sense of grogginess when you wake. You do need ot tinker with the exact amount you take. Good Luck…

      • I have stopped taking sert only yesterday the muscles in the top of my shoulders are I. Agony. I never slept on it unless it was with a sleeping tablet or 4 !! I suffered terrible insomnia. Last night I took sleeping tablets. Tonight I may not. I’m also on quitipine which is meant to help you sleep but it didn’t help me. Thought I was the only one who suffered. I’ve been to see the crisis team today and waiting on a call back. They said something about mitazapine. Are there any bad side effects to that. Xxx

    • Hi I have been on Zoloft for about 5 years I am on 50gm now i have cut down to 20gm this is my second day feeling a bit restless but i am going to stick with it then I will take something from the chemist I have looked out some good reviews I hate the fogness also its just no me.

    • Hi All,
      I am in the process of tapering off from sertraline and I’m not sure what to expect so your comments really help me to prepare myself, new
      I’ve been on sertraline for 2 yrs and 4 months. Started at 50mg. due to menopause symptoms. I was angry and getting volatile. my PCP put me on Sertraline and thank God, saved my marriage. All was well until just 3 weeks ago I went for a physical and changed Primary Dr who asked me on my 1st visit if I was depressed, I said no, he then suggested I increase my dose to 75mg (1 1/2 pills). Thought that was strange, I read and researched and decided to ween myself off of the drug myself. I am on 50mg every other day for 2 weeks then will go to 25mg for another 2 weeks. I am afraid after reading everyone’s posts but I need to do this. Will keep you posted.

    • I understand that this was written several years ago but I just wanted to know if the author was ever referred to a neurologist for the condition Functional Neurological Disorder as the symptoms described are all
      Symptoms of FND which is what I have. I was also had a sacral neuromodulation procedure to stop an overactive bladder. I have recently been prescribed seteraline for non epileptic attack’s which present during stressful times and around my monthly cycle due to the FND illness but I am not keen to take these due to the side effects I am also not depressed therefore feel these drugs are dangerous to take to “try” to see “ if they make a difference”

      • Dont start it. I was prescribed this on Dec 18 2019 for anxiety. Took it for 15 days and it caused some awful side effects and depression. Stopped 3 days ago and having withdrawl after only 15 days nasty stuff

        • Sophia, I have been on Zoloft 12.5 mg for 9 days. Tried Prozac prior to that and lexapro. All have made me anxious. How much were you on those 15 days and how do you feel now almost five months later?

        • Hi Sophia, was just wondering how long your withdrawal lasted? Like you i only took this for 16 days and I’m on my third day of withdrawal, dizzy, fast heart rate, headache, not feeling like me at all. Just hoping it’ll only last a few days as I only took it for a short time.

        • Hi Sophia …I was on sertraline for 4 weeks …I call it the nazi drug ….I decided to wean off it although my doctor wanted me to up the dose!!! I was prescribed it for extreme anxiety caused by neuronitis (dizziness and unbalance) why on earth would a doctor give these to someone whose anxiety is caused by dizziness? Outrageous and lazy! After a week the withdrawal symptoms are awful ….mainly dizziness bad headaches, muscle pains, restless legs and jaw pain going up into my ear? No one else has mentioned this? Anyway I’m now a week off them …how long did yr symptoms last ..I need HOPE. Doctor now wants to put me on amitriptyline and Valium which I’m not going to do. Every doctor should be forwarded this site.

    • Thank you for publishing this story, I’m extremely thankful for finding this forum knowing I’m not alone I read through dozens of stories here talking about their symptoms. For me personally I took Zoloft for around 8 months for my depression after a move to a different country and adjusting to the new education system in high school and a new language it was very difficult but I realize now it was something I probably could’ve handled without meds or self harm. So basically I took zoloft and it helped me a lot it helped me noticeably with my social anxiety and following that, my depression. But afterwards I moved back to my original country because my parents saw that I was emotionally and physically drained which I’m extremely greatful for and I started to withdrawal from them myself I tapered off slowly maybe not slow enough but without my phsyciatrist since last time I visited her she suggested I take Prozac and another anti anxiety med (Prozac is a more active ssri so my parents just made me quit). My withdrawal symptoms included:
      -fast heartrate(palpitations)
      -CONSTANT nausea
      -Brain zaps
      -EXTREME anxiety
      In addition to that at some point I had my temperature rise and I basically always felt like I was going to pass out or die. But my tests just suggested I had a slightly lower than usual immune system my parents said it’s withdrawal symptoms but the symptoms that were described online didn’t seem to match all of mine ( but afterwards I found this forum and I found others who struggled through similar symptoms to mine) so my parents also suggested I had dystaunomia which I believe is a side effect from withdrawal. So It took around a week for the medicine to actually go out of my system and afterwards the side effects became worse before I would only have brain zaps. So for around a full month now I’ve had these side effects from withdrawal however they did get better now they are more manageable and I haven’t been depressed I feel better than ever it’s just my body that is in pain I guess so what helped me manage my symptoms better was
      – excersize daily (not too hard just do some walking everyday for atleast 30 mins and do swimming )
      —eat healthy ( no junk food no sugar more veggies fruits and drink ALOT of water to help detox your body )
      -take some supplements vitamin B and fish oil helped me (don’t take too much for too long though because I noticed my body didn’t take extra vitamin B too well)
      -have a healthy mindset (your mind guides your body if you think negatively like oh shit what if this isn’t withdrawal what if I’m dying or what if it’s something else or what if..etc or if you think you wish you were dead etc..than your body will take that in and it will make it even harder for it to heal itself love your body and love yourself even if it’s hard try to convince yourself (day to yourself every day that you are healthy and stable and a good person etc.. it may sound cheesy but it REALLY helps) replace your negative thoughts with those positive ones)
      If you follow these steps it’ll help ease your withdrawal symptoms and it helps knowing you aren’t alone it’s gonna be ok just keep fighting through it everyone’s body reacts differently so don’t panic just take some tests if you are physically healthy it’s probably your mind 🙂 goodluck to you all ❤️ You can do this😊

    • I’ve gone a month trying to ween myself off and have gone 5 days without any. The symptoms everyone has described…is crazy!!! I’m vomiting around 3-4 times a day, have a twitch in my eye for ages that I couldn’t explain, the shock like feelings throughout my head and body is nuts! Have a dry mouth all the time that I couldn’t explain. Angry quickly but calm at other times until someone gets me angry. Absolutely amazing help here. Have I taken myself off them too quick? Been a full year since I started 50mg tablets.

      • I was put on Sertraline over 15 years ago for anxiety. It helped me tremendously at the time. I was on 50 Mg at that time. In November my doctor moved my strength to 100 mg, which I took for a month. At that time I decided that if it was just going to be continually increased, I would rather come off it altogether. My doctor agreed to give me a wheening off schedule which I followed until this week. I was down to 25mg every other day at this time. It seemed like I would start to feel better and then have to take a pill and the withdrawal symptoms would start all over. So three days ago I stopped the 25mg. I think i need to get it all out of my system.
        My worse side affects are the brain zaps, and severe headache. My sleep patterns are actually better off than on Sertraline, although my dreams are more vivid. I’m beginning to sleep longer periods at a time. After reading these comments I hope that the lingering side affects do not last as long as they have for most of these folks.
        I feel better in some ways since I tapered off. I am definitely not as dizzy now as I was on Sertraline. I also feel more alive and less withdrawn now than when on the meds. While on the med I would never have had the nerve to write this. I feel like I am getting my life back.

        • Carol how long did it take for you to start feeling better? I’ve been on Zoloft for the last 9 years at 75mg and I eventually want to taper off of them but I’m so afraid of the withdrawal symptoms. Do you feel fully better now? How many months of suffering did it take?

    • I am going through this same exact thing right now!! It’s been day 5 and I’ve been to the hospital 2x… No one believed me!!! The hospital didn’t know what was wrong with me either and gave me benadryl!!!! Im so scared this Will be forever 😭

  2. Message posted with permission:

    “…I developed nystagmus, a rapid eye movement that would appear once in a while whilst reading or focusing my eyes on a close object.”

    I’ve had this! – but never linked it to the drugs. It’s exactly as she described. Didn’t happen all the time, but enough of the time to think “that’s a bit weird”.

    • WOW, I have been talking to my eye doc about this exact same eye issue. When I concentrate on something like reading, there are times that my eyes will just dart quickly to the right and then I have to refocus on what ever it was I was looking at! He said he was interested in this as he thought it might be from head trauma from a wreck I have in the 70’s. But it makes sense that isn’t where it came from as it has only been going on in the last 15 years it seems. In that time I have been on and off of Amitriptyline, Effexor, Klonopin, Trazadone, Zoloft, Xanax, and am currently still on Lexapro after a seven month messed up taper. Scared to death to try and get off again!

      • after being on antidepressants for about 7years, first fluoxetie and then sertraline since around feb 2018, ive come of sertraline cold turkey style going from 100mg to 50mg every day for 2 weeks then nothing for a week as advised by the doctor in transition to start a new ssri as the sertraline was messing with my digestion.

        But after 2-3 days of not having anything i had so many withdrawl symptoms i felt so unwell.

        It left me too unbalanced to start the new ssri so i have just kept off everything and gradually the withdrawl symptoms seem to be reducing.

        However i am still left with exhaustion, really sore eyes, dizzyness and moments where my eyes kind of lose focus and gitter around… so its to helpful to read on here that this seems to be a symptom other people have had.

        shows how strong these tiny sized pills are! scary stuff and i hope not lasting effects

        • Hi I have been on sertraline and pregabalin for nearly five years along with Zopiclone sleeping tablets.
          During the past six months I’ve weaned myself off pregabalin and during the last two months gradually come off the Sertraline but I’m not feeling to good.I keep getting pressure in my head,feeling hot and cold,
          high levels of anxiety and mood swings and angry and biting every ones head off is this normal?
          I’m thinking going back on the sertraline as really struggling please help.

          • Hi Sandra. I’ve been on medication.fpr 40 years .back in the day when valium was used. I reduced those, which absolutely scared me.sitting corners.not wanting to be around people so much more. So hence years on still been on them so frightenedoff coming off. Had medication changed one after the other. Felt let down by doctors. But I took the decision over a year and half ago to week my self off.
            I’ve come down from 200 to 25. I’m not rushing, for every reduction has given me systems that I’ve had to fight through. Alone time. Massage.these help. DONT GIVE UP. YOUR NEARLY THERE. I’m going to reduce even lower ,but it’s only 6 weeks since last reduction. I’m in no hurry .neither should you.be kind to yourself.

          • Hi Sandra, I’m 20+ years on ssri’s. Max dose at 100mg. Tried several times to go off but failed. Was told to go off too fast. Finally, after going off on my own, from 75mg to zero in 6 weeks, I went to ER. Was put back on 25mg to start of zoloft. Found a great psychiatrist and went up to 75mg over time. A year and half ago or so decided to lower my dose. Been lowering it every 3 months by 6.25mg only. Still get withdrawal but it is much less than the standard reduction scale drs use. I go thru a compounding pharmacy for non standard doses. So far so good. Been having no symptoms inbetween cuts, except a week of mild withdrawal, diarrhea and flulike wanting to sleep, mostly. Once that passes, I’m good as new. Some people require going even slower. Will take me 2 years to quit 75mg in the end, if it all works out. I’m just reduced a few days ago to 43.75mg from 50mg. Am feeling tired and foggy but I time my cuts near the weekend when I can sleep more. I started ssri’s way back due to panic attacks and depression and anxiety from my life at the time with issues to work out. A good therapist and supportive family probably would have been enough but like others I was handed a script for Paxil. That started a long road I wish I never took. But I believe I’ll be off altogether and end up just fine, even after 20 plus years on it. Just have to do very small, non-standard cuts. Cutting at 25mg at a time I think is way too high.

          • Hi Lisa,
            I have been on sertraline 150mg for approx. 6 years now (started at the end of my first year of uni). I tried to taper off last year but I’ve been on a rollercoaster of anxiety ever since. This year I’ve taken almost 3 weeks off work over two different periods because the anxiety has been so bad I can’t function – were you able to continue working with your symptoms? I ended up going back up to 150mg (I had got it down to 100 last year) last week and am finding it very difficult just to get through each day – I feel panicky the moment I wake up, eating and drinking make my stomach so uncomfortable I can’t rest, I don’t feel strong enough to even walk around the house… something tells me I’ll never be able to live without it now.

          • Hi! I am so glad I have come across this page as I thought I was going mad. I was put on Sertraline a few years ago due to low mood while going through the menopause.

            Around two months ago I started to wean myself off them as I am not one for taking tablets as I do believe they cause more harm than good (which is what I think we are now all experiencing).

            During the weaning period, of which I am now at the end, I have experienced rages and outbursts like some mad woman which has had an effect on my family. Also bad headaches and pain in my joints as well as brain fog, dizziness etc all of which I can now associate with the drug. I only hope it subsides fairly soon, but there is one thing I can be sure about I will see it through because I will not be going on any anti depressant again. I also hope this gives a little comfort to anyone else who is feeling the same, as it did me when I read the page. WE ALL NEED TO STAY STRONG AND NOT LET IT TAKE OVER LIVES. GOOD LUCK EVERYONE.

  3. Today, like every day for the last 5 months, I was wondering why I just don’t go to the gp and tell him… tell him what?

    And then this new Rxisk story landed in my inbox.

    My drug(s) may not have been sertraline but the withdrawal has been the same.
    So where was I… ah yes, what to tell the gp.

    Explain to him, in the space of 10 minutes, that all the physical ailments that I suddenly developed between October 2012 and December 2014 seem to have been the effects of long-term polydrugging (but that’s another story) combined with withdrawal;
    explain to him that the numerous standard blood tests were never going to show anything as there is no test for withdrawal;
    explain to him that the investigations into query Cushing’s, query Meniere’s, query gynae cancer, query other sinister stuff, were never going to show anything;
    explain to him that all the above tests and investigations were a waste of NHS resources as they were never going to show withdrawal;
    explain to him that the referral back to MH services has left me worse off;
    explain to him that the shrink looked at me wide-eyed in disbelief when I showed her photos of my grossly swollen feet, the massive bruises, the blister-covered feet and peeling skin, when I recited the list of physical pains, sensations, infections, lesions (sickeningly similar to those in Anna’s story);
    explain to him that the shrink’s ‘treatment’ of my ‘dip in mood’ (her very words) with an off-label low dose sedating antipsychotic to ‘help with emotional changes’ (her very words) has ripped the soul out of me, left me incapable and alienated;
    explain to him that I couldn’t get to see him because I literally couldn’t get to see him;
    explain to him that I need to get off this off-label cosh before it kills what’s left of me, but not to bother the MH services who caused this in the first place.

    All this. In 10 minutes. So I put off. Another day.

    LAST GP APPOINTMENT December 2014

    Reminder to self (on smartphone)

    Pins and needles, feet, legs, hands,
    Aching feet, worse at rest
    ‘throbbing’, twitching, fizzing under skin – can see it
    In bed, skin ‘hurts’
    Restless legs,
    Memory, concentration, forgetfulness, headaches, palpitations

    I declined the gp’s suggestion to ‘treat the symptoms’ with amitriptyline or gabapentin.

    So why don’t I just go to the gp and get it over with? Quite simply, I daren’t.

    • Anne

      You have articulated the entire raison d’etre of RxISK. Many of us feel scared to go to our GP and tell him (she isn’t any better) that the treatment is the illness we want to be treated for. Doctors often turn nasty and we often do not know which way our doctor will jump and we suspect the worst.

      A RxISK report is partly designed to produce a slight leveling of the playing field. Some doctors will realise they have to take you more seriously if what you are complaining about is recorded somewhere and the somewhere takes you seriously.

      There are two things that can be done with a RxISK report – one is to get help for your problem. The other is to help us all by building a map of doctors who listen – who aren’t scary to go to. And if we do this we will help strengthen these doctors in any efforts they may make to stand up for us


      • I wish someone could help me david
        Ive ways loved my life I had always been fighting fit. Developed a brief health anxiety which developed into panic attacks leadinge to a n e mainly to speak to the raid team as my family told me how good they were. Was told not to Google it and given diazapam
        Then prescribed more. Eventually a consultant began to get involved said against my wishes I’ll be fine taking more along with sertraline. Suddenly I began getting more and more bed ridden. Skakey unable to function as everything day went by. Every day I would say are you sure the tablets are making me feel.worse oh it’s such a low dose they would say you’re not addicted. I stopped as soon as I was certain things weren’t right but on stopping had a totally uncharacteristic psychotic episode which ended me in a psychiatric ward. I am still part of this now albeit on weekend leave. Nobody will listen. To the fact I have withdrawals or the medication put me there. The consultant says merely out of your system in 3 days. I feel like hell and have to fight my way out of this fight my way back to the job I still have the house amazing son and life I had that die to these tablets have been within a few weeks been brutally taken away from me. I have to beg and plead to the woman who now controls my life who actually I had responsible for taking it away. But I am just classed as delusional no evidence. Who am I to take on the NHS and question her when she screams into my ear you alhave a disease. Do you want to die in here. This system where I innocently went for help has poisoned me labelled me and shackled me up in the most barbaric place in the middle of summer with other mentally ill people where I cannot even get fresh air in the middle of summer except for a few minutes every 2 hours. They have takeny health my freedom and my beautiful son away from me. They all believe they are gettin me better to pump something into me then something else. It’s torture and it’s slowly killing me

        • Oh my god it sounds like something from the victorian times poor you ,what a nightmare, your story drove me to tears ,and I felt compelled to reply this being the first time I have ever reply ed to anything , don’t give up on your freedom

    • Dear friends.
      Thank you for sharing your story.Mine is similar to yours.I quit talking Zoloft 3 wks ago.Withdrawal symptoms are there. Im taking Benadryl 25 or 50mg every 6hrs,depending on the severity of the symptoms.it helps..
      I also take Clonidine patch for high BP.It’s helpfull. Benadryl is definitely worth a try. Clonidine is a prescription medication.Wish everyone speedy recovery.

      • Mira (and all) it’s been years since your post, but yes, Benadryl can be a huge relief when tapering off an SSRI like Zoloft. Benadryl (aka diphenhydramine) can work as a very mild sedative to reduce anxiety, but more important, it works on the histamine receptors that can generate anxiety–that “something is wrong with me and/or my body” thinking.

    • Wow. You are right in every which way. You are telling the truth from your experience. Amazing person thank you thank you thank you…tbh really needed to know that I don’t need signed in or a new life. Thank you god bless you time is your chum lol amazing.

  4. David

    Thanks for the encouragement. Means the world to me.

    Shoulders not very broad any more and skin not as thick as it was but am gearing up to get to the gp, Rxisk report in hand (and miraculous medal in pocket!).


  5. Anna you are doing so well ! You got out of the death grip of our medical system. Now your on the right path to healing! I am 11 months free of the antidepressants . I am experiencing small windows and symptoms are slowly getting better. We will all get whole again ! It keeps getting better. I have over 20 recovery stories saved to my phone of folks like us that have 100 percent recovered. Anywhere from 6 months to 5 yrs. It happens for all of us.

    However I have completely given up on doctors. I have seen 4 doctors and all want to treat my WD symtoms with other precriptions and pain killers.Had i listened to them id b in a heap of trouble. The only thing i need them for now is a doctors note for my Job so that when i am able to work again , i can get my job back. However you wouldn’t believe how hard that is . And Im not even getting EI. No money . Im gonna be healthy soon i can feel it .

  6. “I have yet to regain confidence in my mind, my body and in the medical profession that so brutally violated every part of my being and that almost killed me.”

    Regain confidence, and disown embarrassment. I think the embarrassment has to go first. I was going to say “shame” but I can’t feel ashamed of what I did while possessed.

    Doctors are people with access to things I cannot get legally. I diagnosed my own cancer. If I had believed my doctor I’d be dead. She had two chances, a month apart. Ten days after her second failure a specialist and a scan announced Stage 4 with liver metastases.

    If I require another surgery I’ll be a fool if I don’t videotape every encounter.

    If I feel like taking drugs I’ll call a dealer.

  7. I sometimes wonder (cry) how many more of us there are like you Anna, and me – and everyone courageous enough to post their stories here. The evidence builds inexorably – like you, but a different drug, my severe reaction to stopping olanzapine started 3 months after that final, little blue pill. Like you, I got (repeatedly) the message that none of what I was experiencing could possibly be due to withdrawal ‘because the drug would have cleared from your body within 36 hours.’ And of course – the appalling trap of being told that what you are experiencing is down to psychiatric illness/somatisation/conversion disorder/ functional neurological symptoms – and so on. It’s such a tough road to travel and I wish you well.

    It takes more courage than I’ve got to ask my GP for his opinion, let alone take a Rxisk report to him. My journey through the system left me scared of medics. But it would be so great to build a network of sympathetic GPs.

    • An excellent idea, Sally ….. “build a network of sympathetic GPs”
      We must peruse on HOW this could be achieved – let’s try to make it happen.

      I recently went to my GP and told her the shocking information I’d discovered about SSRIs and Seroquel and that I was absolutely certain that the reason for my hospital admission (to an horrific, locked mental health ward last year and ‘bi-polar 2’ diagnosis) was due to my adverse reaction to the Sertraline she’d prescribed just a few weeks before my admission during which time she doubled the dose as I was getting so much worse! I told her I had stopped all medication and would NOT be taking any more.

      My GP was sympathetic – she listened to what I had to say – took down the names of the “saviours” I referred to (Dr Healy and Dr Peter Breggin) and said quite poignantly “Jane, I would never have prescribed you anything that I thought would do you harm”. And I believed her….. but felt so very angry about this example of the blatant ignorance of GPs ….. of course, I blame Big Pharm and their corrupt marketing practices ….. but, nevertheless, I remain dumb founded as to how intelligent, medically trained professionals can be so completely duped???

      It seems that I’ve been very fortunate with withdrawing from Seroquel (managed completely by myself based on internet research) – two months now drug free and feeling very well (great to feel like ME again) ….. I’m aware that I’m possibly still not clear of the danger zone…… but I have my fingers crossed. I do feel so very sorry for the many of you whose story is significantly more painful than mine.

      Anyway, back to the main point – sympathetic GPs – we must work out how to recruit and form a network – maybe I’ll have a word with my GP and get her thoughts and comments (‘cos I reckon she owes me!)

    • This is a much needed support group. I have been on the trust the Dr rollercoaster of never-ending prescriptions that will fix my problems..only to end up worse bouncing from mental institutions to unemploymemt to finally this time zoloft. 6 months in my anxiety, insomnia, and rage(which wasn’t present before) have multiplied by a million. Everytime I tell my boyfriend I am being poisoned by big pharma and I feel lost and try to quit my ssri I have fits of crying and confusion and tantrums and just not making sense in general as to why I’m freaking out. So obviously I am depressed.and need to stay on them.people don’t understand what a bitch the withdrawals are. You know you arent yourself youre out of control.and all Dr.’s want to do is prescribe seroquel or say..oh my you have borderline personality disorder or you need lithium because youre bipolar or you need a shot if this horse tranquilizer in your ass because I’m a Dr. And youre just an idiot patient with mental health issues.and how could crazy people have insight into their own well-being. The injustice of mental “I’m-health” facilities is more than an outrage, it’s inhumane, disgusting, tragic. all along.. Been ruining lives and destroying families. How do we end this blight on our society and actually help those who are suffering? I am trying to taper off zoloft without support from Dr. Or boyfriend. Help.

      • Hi
        It’s a first week of my stay off sertraline. I didn’t stay on it for too long, nearly 4 months, but I was on 100mg. I didn’t have any support from my GP. Today I wasn’t normal at all. I felt like I’m tripping and my eyes there rolling up. Nasty electric shock/pain in the both temple sides. Feel like crying. I’m 38 years man and I feel like I’m on my knees. It’s really hard. That’s for shearing this with us. I do hope everyone is going to feel better soon. I wish everybody quick recovery.

        • i promise it will get better. i am male, 46, and was on sertraline for 8 years. went through horrible anxiety for about 6 months after stopping. now, just through the other side. exercise helps as does magnesium, zinc, no alcohol and healthy eating. wishing you well.

          • Hello John

            Thank you for your encouraging comment. I am 2 weeks off sertraline after 5 years. I have spent 2 weeks almost in bed with flu UTI type symptoms.
            I was if able planning on going back to work and thought maybe exercise may help as you said in your post. I do a few classes but would you advise to increase this ? I am also plant based diet and take supplements . I am determined to ride this through this time so it is nice when someone says there is light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you again

          • Hi Maria,
            I got off sertraline with my last dose being on Aug 30. It’s been so rough. Are you still doing ok?

          • Hi K,

            Thank you for asking ,very kind. I had to go back on half a tablet a day, unable to function . I will get off this other half next summer hopefully 🙂

          • hi ive been on surtriline now for 5 years. 50 mgs and before that I was on citalopram . I have decided to try and taper off myself by taking a tablet every other day but after reading the scary withdrawels im scared . Any advice please.

          • Do you still feel better? I’m down to 12.5 mg but not feeling okay at all.

    • Taking 2 antidepressants.Also on ativan.These drugs have destroyed my brain and my life.Still tapering and in hell.So sorry for your struggle.

  8. Hello Anna, may I welcome you to the club of the needlessly damaged as our doctors failed to recognise that what was wrong with us was their drugs. Your are now moving in safer and wiser circles. You will find within yourself and with the support of the rest of us who became members of this club through no choice of our own the strength to overcome the road the may well lie ahead. It can be rocky and it can be arduous and it shall at times feel as if there is no end in sight, however it WILL get easier through time. I am now 7 years post 225mg venlafaxine and at present appear to be coming out of another bad wave, the last 2 years have been tough for me, however we do learn ways of dealing with this as time progresses and I really do hope that your mind and body recover quicker than my own has done. Best wishes to you.

  9. I have been through similar and still in horrific withdrawal ( tapered off several drugs, slowly but not slow enuf) after 10 months. My question is how do I keep living with this withdrawal and horrific anxiety?! Its supposed to get better….
    It’s all I can do to keep myself alive!

  10. Nicely written. I was poly drugged for 15 years. The biggest mistake I made was to enter a psychiatrist office for insomnia and stress (from a car accident). One drug became two and three and four and doses went up and up. The drugs caused unbelievable physical symptoms (incontinence, horrible muscle spasms, shaking, nausea, sweating, rashes, clenched jaw, shooting pain up my face, dizziness, bizarre stuff) sending me to numerous specialists and having unnecessary testing and procedures. Not ONE doctor ever connected it to the drugs I was on.

    I’ve been drug free for 10 years and still feel shame I was wrongly diagnosed and drugged. I found my psychiatric label caused doctors to prejudge me before they actually saw me.

    I am so sorry the mindless drugging still continues. I wish you well and glad you realized what psychiatry was doing to you “in the name of caring”.

  11. Hello everyone: I was put on Paxil and lorazapam for ten ears after one panic attack due to menopause. I had to wit my job when I decided to go off of it as my personality had become horrid. My gp took me off of the Paxil in 3 weeks saying that it wasn’t addictive. I went through hell! I lost 40 lbs in one month. All my skin Peeled off like I had a bad sunburn not to mention the insomnia, headaches, crying and feeling like I was detached from myself. I finally got to see a pdoc at the Er a I thought I was dying. He told me I had to get on another ssri a I was taken off are too quickly. So now comes sertraline. The side affects along with the withdrawal were hard to fathom, but I managed after about 2 months to start eating again. I was on sertraline for 8 months at 125 mgs. During this tme he tapered me off of the lirazapam which wasn’t too bad because of the backup of sertraline. So, the sertraline has never made me feel right so after being on it for 8 months I decided to get off of it also. I did a 3 month taper and was careful to level out before dropping dosages. For 2 weeks I was great after the initial tapering. But then bam! Major head zaps, crying all the time, tremors in legs and arms that are nonstop and every so often a new little thing that will only hit me once and then be gone. Also insomnia and weird dreams. I have passed through the rage thing and the whooshing in my ears, but every morning I shake so bad and lots of hating myself for mistakes I have made in the past. I have no help from my family as they tell me I am lying and that I should try another med as they think I need them. I really don’t. I have never been depressed. I have been sad and angry and hurt, but never suicidal. I am now 7 weeks off of sertraline and am wondering if anyone can help me in knowing how much longer these withdrawal symptoms will persist. My daughter gets very angry at me when I try to explain to her how I am feeling and walks away from me or tells me to just shut up. It’s very very hard on me. I am hoping this will end soon as I was only on sertraline for 8 months. I am hoping I am still not having withdrawals from the Paxil that was yanked from me so fast. Please, if anyone could help it would be so nice to hear from anyone who believes me. I have had one two windows in these weeks but they didn’t last long and right now this shaking feels worse than ever.

    • Paxil is a devil to get off of. It took me 6 months, maybe longer. After I got down to 5 mg I just quit. Maybe that was too abupt? I thought my symptoms were from a car accident, but maybe I was withdrawing from Paxil. I lost 20 lbs in 6 months after the last tablet. No appetite, frequent urination, and waking up at 3 a.m. every night. I was put on 20 mg of Prozac when I was going thru a divorce, and regret that I ever allowed that to happen. It numbed my feelings, messed with my sleep and made me feel wired. I don’t think a person needs to be medicated for crying in relation to a stressful situation! It’s a natural reaction.

    • hi,
      I am currently reading your story and am experiencing everything you were going through.
      I was on sertraline 100 mg for about a year or more and i tried to stop cold turkey earlier this month.
      Its been two weeks and ive had horrible side effects and i am contemplating going back on as i am unsure what to do.
      I was wondering how things have gone with you and if you have any advice.
      Hope all is well

      • Hi Jonah I’m doing the same as had terrible pains from this currently in bed getting better please tell me how you are getting on

    • I am so sorry you’re going through this. I had been on zoloft/sertraline for about 17 years and just tapered off and took my last pill 2 months ago. Having withdrawals. Not sleeping as well, brain zaps have gotten better, crying spells (my kids don’t understand), bad thoughts, etc. I have my bad days and then days that might be better. I have listened to a docu series on brain and gut health. Taking supplements such as fish oil, vitamin D, one a day, and eating a lot healthier. Trying to get out and get fresh air when walking. I truly think this is helping withdrawals not be so severe. Not eating sugar, one cup of coffee in morning, chamomile tea at night. I’m sorry about your daughter. My kids don’t understand, but she shouldn’t be telling you to shut up. Do you have someone who understands that you can talk with regularly? God has been helping me. I will pray for you Madi.

      • Hi Kristen,

        I have been on SSRI’s for the past 8 years. First Paxil for 4 years and now Zoloft. I am on 200mg of Zoloft and although I still experience anxiety I have been trying to take myself off of it. I went from 200 to 175mg and have been feeling a lot more anxiety. I am at the point where I feel like I dug myself too deep of a hole to get out. I want to take the next ste and reduce to 150 but I’m worried it’s going to create even more anxiety and make it harder to function.

      • Kristin
        I’ve been on Zoloft going on 18 years no one really believes the struggle we go through each day. Been trying to take myself off went from 100 to 50 been on 50 for couple weeks. Having heart palpitations bad along with the anger insomnia bad thoughts with lots of other symptoms I seen on this site too. I just found this sight and was wandering how u are doing now. And thanks to all who have shared their feelings and stories u all will be in my prayers.

    • I have ear whooshes! I am 5 days off cold turkey. Was on 100mg I’ve been on sertraline since maybe July I think. Before that I was on citalopram and have been on SSRIs for 15 years. I’m off work for 3 weeks now with digestive issues. I wanted to come off citalopram so got referred to a psych who-you’ve yessss it-put me on sertraline.
      I’m determined to beat this. But I’m struggling today.
      Any help to ease symptoms?

      • hi cariad, i was on citalopram 20gms for ages, then went on zoloft 50gms was only on them just over 3 weeks so decided to come of them straight away i have ear wooshes ear ringing and wobbly legs, i will suffer this not having any more of that shit

        • I AM SOOOO GREATFUL for all the comments. you all have helped me 100percent more than my doctor. Not sure why doctors poopoo our issues.I am feeling all of what you all have shared. Thank you all.

  12. Thank you Anna for the story well articulated. It is the story of my life but from cymbalta. However, I think…at some point I was prescribed sertraline in the 6.5 years of poly drugging. Yet the dominant ones were cymbalta and zopiclone . Im 6 months off all psychiatric meds but still a challenge to go through a day. Anxiety still there but manageable. Biggest challenge is the depression which I never had before taking these drugs. But…in all these we are healing yet slowly. We are more than conquerers.

  13. I’ve been taking 200mg of Zoloft for many years, and now I’m trying to cross-taper to Lexapro for the last several months. I was doing well until I dropped from 50mg to zero. Now I feel like crying all the time or jumping in front of a bus. I don’t want to even leave the house. Getting through a day at work has become hell. At least I know I’m not crazy (well, not much). I’m not hopeful on when this is going to end.

    • I stopped Zoloft and wasn’t able to function. Fact is I just ran out of prescription and wasn’t seeing anyone for a prescription. Always had easy jobs and retired with nominal monthly income. I’m chickenshit to stop any polydrugging due to becoming uncomfortable in social settings and visibly so. I have psychiatrist sister and brother in law’s . They must be conventional drs. They support drug use. Being 67 and drug dependent isn’t the way I want to continue. Seems to me any shrink wants to continue the big pharma approach to treatment. I stay away from them now. They all suck including family ones. I’m hoping it’s possible to get off the sertraline on my own but doubt my chances are very good. We never know how long it will take.

    • I’ve been on sertiline 200mg for 3 years now been weening self of for a month . As soon as I went from 50mg to 0, which is only 3 nights now and I’m now doing so well. Def having the witdrawl sun. Doing this to start viibryd, which I’m on lithium carb 300mg at nights. Im a mess right now but I wasn’t that bad before I stopped the 50mg sertaline. No one gets it, im snapping af , sensitive to light and sound big time. Hearing these storeys t freaking me out on how long these symptoms last. I still have to work and plann my wedding thats taken place in first weekend in Sept. Jeez. I dont know. Thank u.

  14. I have been in a similar situation to you Anne, I’m glad you are healing. When is this unnecessary suffering going to stop?

  15. Thank you for this. I ended up at the doctor with urinary tract incontenance when coming off sertraline. I have been off sertraline, xanax and soidum valproate for two years. It was hell and the system engaged in payback, scapegoating, harrassment and related violence typical of treatment of whistleblowers. I have one drug to go. My life fell apart but things are a lot better now. These drugs were not necessary and caused depression, anxiety and self harm and suicidality. I am now a middle aged woman struggling with metobolic issues and hormonal imbalances and entrapment by the medical profession. I have given them credit and sympathy they did not deserve and they take no responsibility as patients are vilified and victimized and medically assaulted and otherwise abused. We are too scared to talk about it but pharmaceutical genocide is about right – but we live in fear to talk about it. I hear the pain and anger of so many victims. I find mediation and yoga helps – and giving up dairy and coffee. Thanks

  16. I spent five or six years off and trying to get off of it and was finally able to endure the withdrawal side effects by taking Wellbutrin. It was the only thing that made the brain zaps bearable. That might not help everyone but it took the edge off. It took six to seven months for the brain zaps to go away. I woke up one morning and felt like I had come out of a fog. I have never done any illegal drugs but I can’t imagine that withdrawal from them could be worse than this. Can you imagine them telling a heroine addict that the withdrawals were a sign they needed to start back taking heroine. They would never tell them that. It’s ridiculous.

  17. Thank you for publishing your story on a topic that doesn’t seem to truly get any media coverage. I’ll relay my story, in case someone else is battling this negligence.

    Had a painful stay in the hospital that made me change my entire approach on life and see a therapist to handle problems. I told myself i will follow everything the psychiatrist says to give it a fair shake. I know i’ve been depressed for 20+ years but dealt with it via alcohol, etc. Went sober and started therapy. Started on my first SSRIs. And what i also think is extremely important is that i didn’t realize these were generic versions of these drugs…never the actual brand name. never thought this was a big deal–until this escapade. see other people’s reports on this.

    Anyways, began with lexapro generic: was awful : sweated like a had dengue fever, felt worse than before. Stopped and went to zoloft generic, was more tolerable, so stuck with it. physician kept saying won’t notice a difference until 3 weeks in. Again, results were minimal, but i stuck with it, trying to give this process a fair shake. couldn’t truly function, so he/she added wellbutrin generic to mix.

    started to have horrid shaking and tremors in all hands, legs, even up to torso. After 3 weeks of that, i had to punch out. these drugs completely changed who i was–and not in a good way. the MD seemed as apathetic as could be and i could tell he/she didn’t really care about my health. so i quit cold turkey and now have this god awful balance / feeling in my head that feels like slow cement every time i turn head. it has lasted 3+ weeks now. I’ll deal with my own suffering on my terms. The psychiatric industry and the fda needs a serious reality check. And guess what if it actually happens, it will be too late for our generation.

  18. Anna – thank you for your story. I have the bladder symtoms you wrote about…
    Cystoscope, bladder wash, CAT scan – all proved negative. The pain is disrupting and symtoms are disrupting my life. Will it ever quit???
    What did you do for this part of the evilness of this drug?
    Bless you.

    • I’m going through the same thing. The UTI symptoms started 5 months ago and slowly got worse and now i can’t even leave the house because i have to pee every ten minutes.
      Went to three different urologists and they found nothing.
      Pain meds don’t work.
      They even gave me morphine at the E.R. and it had no effect.

  19. I’m so glad I found this. I mean, terrible sad considering what you experienced, but glad to know that I’m not “insane”. I’m weaning off sertraline right now. I was only on it for about 7 months, then weaned for 2 weeks, and then stopped. I’ve been fully off for a week now, and I’ve never felt so horrible. The wd symptoms continue to intensify, too. Migraines, eye floaters, the constant feeling of being sea-sick or walking on a trampoline. Everyone thinks I’m crazy, (except for my amazing husband whose heart aches for me) even my doctor who’s “cynical these symptoms are related to sertraline, as it has a very low likelihood of causing withdrawal symptoms”. Thanks, doc. I’m sad to know this could go on for a while, but hopeful that my short duration taking the meds will work in my favor. Can anyone else offer any advice for how to wait this out? If I would have known this was a possibility, I would have never started the drug in the first place. Shame on me for not researching post-sertraline life. Now I get to deal with the 20 lbs I put on because of the drug AND withdrawals. Sigh. 🙁

    • Hi Jess I’ve been on sertaline 25mg for anxiety due to menopause ,I had small stroke 5 weeks ago so started blood thinning medication .i decideded I wanted to stop Setraline so I have 10 days in I’m terrible dizzy light headed wish I had never started taking it.hope we get better soon as I’m fed up and wonder how I will get back to work as I miss it so much .?

    • I have been prescribed sertraline for stress. Doctor told me I was under stress for the reasons ( young son had leukaemia at 2 and now being full time career for son as he has fairly moderate/ high autism, changed from worker to full time parent). Blood pressure was high so prescribed me ramipril which works well.also prescribed me sertraline as she said it would make me feel better and that it was an anti anxiety drug that I can stop taking when feeling better. However the sertraline played havoc with my love life in a massive way being hours and hours with no end in sight. I stopped taking them 2 weeks or so ago and am now experiencing a pulse through my head, hot all the time or really cold. I was only taking the sertraline for about 4 months but the withdrawal is staggering. I was on the lowest dose. Thought I had developed heart issues but reading all these similar comments believe I’ve been experimented on. Practically impossible to see go to discuss these issues. I’m going to keep not taking them and see if cold turkey works

  20. Thank you very much for sharing your story. It is so well written and speaks to what I’ve been going through. I’ve been on other medications for short period of time and coming off of it was easy. Zoloft has been different. I had gotten on it for post-partum depression. I had forgotten to take it for a few days and thought I would just go off it. Horrible mistake. I started experiencing body aches (flu-like), headaches, weird all over numbing sensation, extreme rage, and anxiety, crying spells, etc. My Dr started testing me for lupus and suggested I actually raise my dosage, which I did. Still not knowing it was withdraws causing my body aches. Upon raising my dosage I felt terrible from the side effects and after a month decided I would wean myself and now I’m down to 25mg. No withdraws.

    In my pursuit of health I got a 23&Me DNA test and uploaded my raw DNA into Livewello which revealed that I along with other certain medications, I don’t detox Zoloft properly. Meaning I would not exerprience it’s benefits and it would just sit in my body creating toxins. This only confirmed what I felt was happening when I was on my highest dose. My results also revealed that I don’t absorb B12 and other things properly so I have to take a methylated form of the supplements. I feel so good and have not been depressed! Again thank you, and I wish you well.

  21. Hell on earth. Agreed.

    I was on 50-100mg Zoloft for 20 years!!! Few years ago, doctor also added 5/325 Hydrocodine and Pramepexole for RLS.

    I recently weaned off Zoloft over a 2 month period because a new specialist said the Zoloft may be causing the RLS.

    Now after being Zoloft free for a few weeks, most days the symptoms are unbearable.

    1. achy pain all over
    2. dizzyness
    3. zaps throughout upper body almost constantly
    4. restlessness

    NSAID’s kind of help. Exercise kind of helps. Stretching kind of helps. Meditating kind of helps.

    I’m on the ledge of wanting to start up Zoloft again to take away the WD symptoms… but thankfully I’m not there. It’s comforting to know there is a community out there who “get’s it”.

  22. I have been on / off antidepressants since I was 13. I’m in my early 30s now. Everyone I have successfully got off them . I will have something really stressful in life or something that will cause the Drs to say I need them . I’ve even been on brand new ones like viibryd . I remember being on lexapro in my early 20s and having a horrible reaction to it, it made me violently aggressive . I’ve also been talked into taking antipsychotics which my new dr found I was allergic to what ever was in them vomiting walking up a small incline . Telling my friends they need to go home because as soon as I would take the medication it was zombie time lights out. I’m currently on day 10 cold turkey withdraw from sertaline . I am taking supplements , but I refuse to ever take another antidepressant in my life again. In my opinion they didn’t help me or hurt me , it was just a way to have someone hooked financially and rx wise for the rest of my life . And sertaline and viibryd and all the rest I’ve been on don’t let me express emotions . Emotions are healthy that’s what life is for . Stop telling people they need these drugs when in actuality antidepressants are almost 98% flouride!!!!! A dumbing down agent, let that sink in for a minuite . I wish everyone the strength to listen to their own body and mind , and not what psychiatric docs tell you , you need . Because they can’t live ur life . Looking back I was always so suicidal on antidepressants then if I was on nothing . RED FLAGS!

  23. I wholeheartedly agree with you about this. My problem is that I have a very low tolerance for pain, so the longest I’ve been able to be off antidepressants is 3 days. This is why I still take Sertraline. I’ve been on several others over the yrs, being tapered off from one to be put on the other. If I so much as miss 1 dose, I become so messed up that I don’t dare miss another one. I had always been told that none of the antidepressants I had been on could cause withdrawals, much less, overnight. Very rarely have I had a Dr. that actually makes me feel like I believe them and trust them without a doubt in my mind. I have never felt that way when it came to receiving meds from a mental health care professional.

    Thank you for posting this. I wish I was as brave enough to do what the rest of you are doing.

  24. Hey there. I enjoyed reading your story, even though it’s about something horrific. I spent the better part of my adolescence in and out of psychiatrist’s offices and experienced strikingly similar occurrences to you. The field of psychiatry seems to attract people who want to make a ton of money but who are not really in it for the good of humanity. You’d think that being in a helping profession would put them in better touch with other people, but the field as a whole is lacking in kindness, empathy, and understanding. The fact that pharmaceutical companies pay psychiatrists to prescribe their drugs is not helping, either. I’m still trying to gain balance after getting off sertraline. I thought it was a life saving drug but it turned out to be the opposite.

  25. Dear Anne…. thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing your story. I’ve been on 200mg of Sertraline for over 15 years and have slowly tapered off them myself. I’m so relieved to read that you had bladder issues and pelvic pain ( I only say this out of relief that I’m not alone) I feel like I did when I have birth. I’m determined to battle through the pain and I hope that you are fully recovered. I’ve personally suffered with anxiety to various degrees for most of my life and now at 45 I want to get my life in order. Many thanks again for easing my worries. Take care of yourself x

  26. I had been on citalopram (SSRI) for about 6 weeks when I tried to stop. About three days after stopping I felt absolutely terrible (uneasy, very anxious, headache, dizzy, restless etc etc).. I also had a horrible moment that night when I was falling asleep – I managed to grind my teeth subconsciously and at the same time there was an extremely loud and chilling screech in my ear that I’ll never forget. The next day I went back on it and instantly felt relaxed and very relieved.

    A couple of weeks ago I switched to 100mg sertraline and I find that it does help with my anxiety but I am worried about coming off it in the future. I don’t want to be on it for over 6 months… Both my parents have been on SSRIs in the past (for around 6 months) and they didn’t experience long term withdrawal effects.

  27. January 2016 I was initially prescribed sertraline 50 mg to cope with the stress of ongoing toothache . After 3 weeks of being on this drug my dentist pulled out the correct abscessed tooth and the pain vanished . So I decided to stop taking the sertraline as I wasn’t stressed and ironically since starting the sertraline I had developed terrible muscle pain down my right hand side which I thought could be siatica . Anyway I stopped the sertraline and from that day onwards I have been in and out of doctors for the ongoing leg pain and all the other terrible side effects that I am now enduring . After stopping the sertraline the pain in my leg didn’t go . I visited countless specialists osteopaths , Physios , Chiropractors etc . Dr then put me on citilipram for a month to help with the stress . Did nothing after a month so I came off it cold turkey experiencing more side effects (sickness , diarrea , shaking , leg pain ) … Then I was referred to a neurologist who prescribed Amitriptyline for leg pain ( caused my heart rate to run like a train , and my hair to fall out ) …then Lycra ( which did the same )…. At this stage it was 4 months of having terrible leg pain & endless side effects including losing 2 stone in weight . So the doctor advised me to take the sertraline again . I took it for 8 weeks ( was so ill sick every morning , leg pain , ached all over , body feels rigid down right hand side , dizzy , totally felt like my body wasn’t my own ) … FINALLY I decided to come off it immediately … Yes I still had my leg pain but these side effects are unbelievable … Previous to this experience I would have said I was one of the strongest individuals you could meet I ran several estate agencies ( prided myself on the fact that I hadn’t had a day off sick in 10 years ) …. Look at me now I’m 6 weeks off sertraline & that other huge cocktail of drugs that I had before it … I wake up every morning wretching , my whole body aches, I’m literally stiff down my right hand side , my eyesight is blurry , I have pins and needles everywhere and a tremor in my upper right arm , I don’t feel like I’m in my own body, in a total fog , crying constantly as I keep thinking I must have some terrible disease as how can this be withdrawl ? Driving my husband mad by my constant moaning , listing of symptoms & googling ( it has become all consuming I think of nothing else ) …. ITS CRAZY ..I also have an autistic son to look after which is near on impossible…. I just keep praying that these symptoms will subside … Someone give me some hope PLEASE !!!!

    • Hi there fellow sufferer. I was given the “wonder” drug sertraline 2 yrs ago suffering with extreme anxiety due to my twins being born at 24weeks. At 1st i thought hurrah iv stopped crying all the time!! But after a while i realised i was a person i didn’t recognise. Yes i wasnt crying but also i wasnt feeling anything at all for anything!! Poor husband started realising i was never going to be interested in bed activity again bless him . I became a robot. I decided to withdraw from the tablets instead of withdrawal from life. Its been 3 weeks and i think im seeing light at end of the tunnel albeit far away. Uti is awful. Anger is awful. Body sweat awful. Headache awful. Insomnia awful. Etc etc but….. I feel empowered by th future. Keep going keep going it Will be worth it xxx

  28. Thank you for taking the time to write your story. I have been on sertraline for over 6 months. I started with 50mg and now I am on 150mg. I feel horrible and more depressed than ever. I have decided to go off sertraline gradually. Only taking 50mg now. Today was difficult. I had severe headache and a brain zap. I have decided to go to therapy and work on my anxiety. Its going to be a difficult road but l have faith. You are very inspiring.

    • Hi Monica, just seen your input on steraline. I started off on them in July 2016 after endless panic attacks and being anxious all the time. I started off with 50mg then onto 100mg from July to November everything was going perfect! Well at least I taught it was! Come December and I started to have violent outbursts, feeling no emotion and not being able to sleep. I was fighting with family member, friends and my boyfriend of 7 years at the time. After the new year I felt like I needed to come off these as I wasn’t sleeping and my mind was on overdrive. I went back to my gp and she put me up to 150mg and thats when things got a lot worse. Sucidal taughts, outrageous behaviour and just having no motivation. After two weeks I decided enough was enough and went back explaining they are not agreeing with me. She gave me a prescription to be wheneed off them and so I began. As I cut Down to 100mg I still felt the same with frustration I stopped completely. It’s being 6 days now and now feel like I’ve come back to reality. I’ve lost my boyfriend of 7 years, I am so behind in my college work and feel like I wasn’t me the last 6 months. It’s like coming back to reality!!.. I’m doing fine dealing with what I’ve lost and taking it one day at a time but I am concerned about the dizzy spells I am getting. It is like I’m floating and I get tightness in my head. Is this normal? If so how long does this last? Thank you

  29. Anna, I can’t describe what I am feeling right now reading your post. I have been going through the same withdrawal effects for the past three months. I decided to cut sertraline cold turkey and the withdrawal effects are the same as yours. I can relate because I imagine throwing myself in front of buses or from high buildings, thinking about the fastest ways to commit suicide among other very negative ideas. I have taken sertraline for 3 years and cut it three months ago. I couldn’t understand where these mood swings were coming from, I have big lack of concentration, negativity, depression and anxiety. I have a great life so all of these effects didn’t make sense but your post boosted greatly my morale. I am holding on to my decision to never go back and you should hold on to yours.. We will make it through this slowly and steady so Anna you’re not alone.

    • Hi Daniel,

      How are you doing these days, were you successful after quitting zoloft, did you ever go back on it, or any other anti depressant?

      If you have not gone on anything, did you completely go back to normal and did your mood get stabilized?

      Please get back to me.

      I got off Zoloft after 6 months of being on it, quit it cold turkey 3 months ago. First month had crazy brain zaps, but then it all went away.
      I now have some random anxiety due to being laid off and hopeless, bad timing. Not when I quit zoloft.

      So I have been having mood swings, but no other personal phyisical symptoms, just depression due to my career and other unknown things.

      I wonder if my brain will completely heal if I stick to it and never take it again. I hated my life on Zoloft, felt like a zombie.

      I am hoping you can come back and share your experience, 3 years after.

  30. Anna, I want to thank you for writing this post. I have been on a personal mission to end all of my prescription medications with Sertraline being one of them. It was prescribed to me more than 10 years ago. I, like you didn’t feel any different while taking this pill but as soon as I started to wean myself off of it, the problems started. I never attributed the symptom I was having to the sertraline and even going to doctors for the dizziness, insomnia, aching, anger, etc., nothing was ever fixed. I had to do my own research to diagnose myself. I was taking over 13 pills a day and with acupuncture help have managed to drop down to just two pills a day. The sertraline being one of the last. I was taking it just 3x a week and my script ran out and I decided to not fill it. Now, three weeks later, headaches, dizziness and a foggy feeling, anger like I’ve never had before, emotional crying at the drop of a pin, backaches, fatigue really bad. Why isn’t there information available to us before being prescribed this junk? Big Pharma is criminal and playing with humans. They don’t care what our health is because it is only about the greenbacks. We need to take control of our own health and I admire your tenacity and refusal to succumb to the drugs. I wish you health and a peaceful life free of poisonous drugs. I know I am almost there…God Bless

  31. My son is only 8 years old. A paediatrician prescribed sertraline for his anxiety, assuring me that he had rarely known any child to suffer side effects from it. No one told us it could lead to suicidal thoughts. (In Australia the drug does not carry this label.) After 50 mg a day for about 6 weeks, his anxiety hadn’t improved, and he started to self-harm, and talked about wanting to kill himself. The paediatrician saw him and said we might need to increase his dose. When he finally ended up in ED, they told us to take him off the sertraline, although it was “highly unlikely” it was causing the acute anxiety he was now experiencing daily, often for no apparent reason. A child psychiatrist suggested an anti-psychotic drug. My husband and I almost split up because I refused to give him this new drug. My beautiful 8 year old boy is now living through withdrawal hell. The mental health team who have come on board keep insisting we send him to school. Two days ago I tried. He lasted 45 mins and when I arrived to collect him, he was crying and cowering in a corner. It’s been two weeks since he stopped taking the sertraline. We don’t know who can help him, when the doctors refuse to acknowledge their drug is the cause. I’m so frightened for him.

    • Hi i feel very sad to hear this. I was in my late 30s when started with initial dose of 25mg and felt worse than ever. Side effects do include increased suicidal thots. It took me 2 months to adjust to this dose. I can imagine the effects on your young child. Do seek out qualified child counselors and doctors who are more careful with these antidepressants.

  32. I can’t believe this stuff doesn’t get more media coverage. Sertraline is absolute utter poison. Whoever invented it should be shot. I had mild anxiety and depression. The stuff that a simple diet fix and exercise would have cured – which I only know NOW.
    But of course, nope, Doc says “take this”.

    Emotionally made me feel like a zombie, and physically turned my anxiety up to 11. Shakes on cue when I missed the med by mere hours. Insatiable appetite. DECIMATED my sex drive and performance. Smashed my endocrine system to the point I am now on TRT therapy as I have the Testosterone level of an 80 year old and I was 25. And let’s now forget the most terrifying of all – horrendous nightmares and sleep paralysis. The stuff is hell on earth. Throw in those brain zaps and restless legs, and this stuff doesn’t belong anywhere but the bin. It’s criminal how poison it is.
    I’m 29 now and completely off (I was at 26) and I’m STILL not right. Sex drive has never returned as it exactly was, and although I feel great, I still feel somewhat unbalanced. All I can say is don’t even contemplate this crap, or if you are on, get off as soon as you can. There are SO many other options. Even steroid hormones like DHT and Testosterone are incredibly effective antidepressants.

  33. Back in June 2016, I saw my doctor bc I was feeling life; stressed about my upcoming wedding in July, starting graduate school in August, and my daughter turning 16 and driving. My step-daughter getting married a week before out wedding. She basically suggested that I go on Zoloft 25 mg. I was very apprehensive but decided too. I figured since I didn’t have a chemical imbalance I would be able to get off this medication no problem. So on Dec 11, 2016, after 6 months, i weaned down to 12.5 mg for 2 weeks and then stopped. OMG OMG, on Christmas day, I felt as though I had come down with the Flu, slept the entire morning and afternoon with a heating pad for all the body aches. The next day Dec 26, I felt nauseated and very sea-sick and had severe diarrhea. On Dec 27, diarrhea stopped but urgency continued, everything I ate caused me to have to go to the bathroom. My stomach cramped for about 3 days. On Dec 30, no symptoms I was feeling okay, then on Dec 31, my head began to hurt. A very atypical headache that over the counter Motrin couldn’t fix. It was bad and lasted 3 days. On Jan 2, 2017 I decided to go to the ED, my CT scan was normal as were all my labs, and the headaches continued.It has been all hell. Two nights of insomnia and odd headaches so severe, I can’t do anything but sit inlace with a hot pack to my neck and forehead. I do know and have hope that things will get better, but for all those out there, please DO NOT allow your physician to put you on this because you are stressed out about life. There is nothing abnormal about feeling anxious about things such as getting married, or some life changing event. For all those out there, yes there is hope. i did take Zoloft back in 2009, again for a dumb reason. I had knee surgery as became down because I couldn’t work out like normal. I was on 100 mg and took it for 3 months. i decided to come off of it and weaned down in 2 weeks, I suffered sever night sweats, and lost about 15 lbs but came off it no problem. This time with a lower dose but longer duration, the withdrawals are much worse. JUST STAY AWAY FROM THIS TOXIC DRUG!!!!

    • Hi Josie, those headaches you are describing are similar to what I’m going through. I was only on the medication for 2 weeks, but I was not consistent with my dosage (I was prescribed 25mg to take once a day). I skipped days, which I think is what made the side effects worse. By the second day of the first dose I felt like I had the flu, but didn’t. This feeling would come and go for the entire time I was on the medication (two weeks). The headaches were the worst though. Started the second week, pain at the temples that would last a few seconds coming and going throughout the day. I had about two weeks of relief now that same headache is back. I’ve never had issues with headaches in my life until I touched Sertraline.

  34. Hi, i am on here looking for advice. I have over the last three years to try to get my anxiety down and now get bouts of depression as i feel powerless. The powers that be have tried lofepramine, duloxetine, seroquel, mirtazapine and now zoloft.

    I have never felt so ill as on this one. From day one, nausea, anxiety worse, nightmares etc. I have decided after TEN days i can take no more and would like any advice on best tapering method. Will these ten days cause massive detox or can it be done gently?

    I now know that ssri meds are not for me. The future is uncertain as i am still not better, but wont take any more of this poison. I am so full of fear havint to use diazepam every day just to get through.

    All helpful advice gratefully received.

    • Hello Ann,
      First of all l really hope you are feeling better.
      I stumbled across this site while looking for advice on my own withdrawal of antidepressant medication.
      I too was given diazepam to help cope with severe anxiety from the side effects of medication. We seem to have similar experiences l am a 54 year old woman who has suffered anxiety and depression for most of my adult life.
      l have taken antidepressants for most of my adult life they did seem to help l was able to live a full rewarding life despite low mood and anxiety.
      Four months ago l asked my G.P if l could try a different antidepressant as l was sad after losing three close relatives in just over 12 months.
      This is when my nightmare began not only did the Sertraline cause more anxiety l was almost manic completely overwhelmed by horrendous physical symptoms and panic attacks like l had never known needless to say l thought l was losing my sanity. My G.P referred me for an outpatient psychiatric assessment l was prescribed an anti psychotic drug Quitiapine and believe me l thought my end had come after two major panic attacks in the middle of the night l could hardly wake up managed to phone my daughter slurred speech dehydration and muscle weakness l went back to on G.P and asked for a second opinion.Last Monday l saw my psychiatrist and described all my symptoms l have now been taken off all medication !! Thank goodness l will cope with all these withdrawal symptoms and do everything l can to get better l am not putting poison in my mouth again l have never felt so near to death. These drugs can be lethal some people may improve on them but they are not suitable for everyone. My advice is see your G.P regularly and try and get support front a counsellor or family or friend you are not alone too many of us have felt the same but you need to be sensible always seek professional advice good luck try and do some meditation breathing properly helps and find things that interest you to keep distracted. When you feel better get out in the fresh air exercise and take up a hobbies above all be kind and believe in yourself you will get better hope knowing others understand will make you feel your not alone.
      Take care Debra

  35. I’m part of that ocean too.When a person feel
    some emotional or mental characteristics or have
    any problem that could’nt solve:First;pray to God.
    Second:go to good Profesional Psichology.If you
    need some pill,use it one week in a low dosis.,con-

  36. I’m so relieved to have read this post as I am experiencing so many of the side effects mentioned above. I have been on 200mg sertraline for over 4 years and to be honest felt in such a good place that decided I no longer needed them. I stopped taking them three weeks ago and my god have I gone through it. Pain in my left side which the doctor has said it’s sciatica? Feeling permanently hungover, can’t sleep but then sleep too much and constant snapping at my poor family. I went on them initially because I was having panic attacks and at no point in over 4 years have the gp’s suggested I come off of them. My husband thinks I should start them again because of the side effects but after reading all your posts I think I should persuavere, any advice would be truly grateful. X

  37. Finding this site have been reassuring that I am not alone when wanting to get of this tool of a drug. Starting this drug was the suggestion of my wife (now X) to knock the edge of you know. So I asked my PCP to give me a little something for that edge, and he whips out a prescription for Sertraline. Nothing big 50mg every day.

    Within weeks I found my fear of driving gone, this is great, take trips with the family now as my constant on and off the gas pedal was over. I was no longer anxious at work and could deal with other people in a civil manor as apposed to going off the handle. Life was good.

    Appetite, ah, never lacked on but now it was on, gained 25 lbs in one month. Once the PCP saw this he would not write any more scrips and wanted me off of it. This is when the search went on for a doctor to write me my med’s. Got a doctor to try out different pills all with the most horrid side effect, arms flailing, jumpy, cramps. Told him this would not work for me and back to sertraline.

    Now my PCP wants me on a list of drugs for all my ills from my weight. I am embarrassed to get on a scale but I know somewhere barely south of 300lbs. This from a person who has completed 10 marathons/ 1/2 marathons and was 165 when I went for the drugs.

    Yeah life is grand I can stay up all night drink, smoke, and eat like no one can. I have got to get off this. I have been on 200mg daily for about a year at the behest of my psychiatrist and now he want to add another drug. I’m done, going to take 100mg for a month, 50 for a month, 25 and so forth until off completely.

    My only side effect is brain zaps, annoying but not debilitating. I will keep you up to date as I can this has been the worst 5 years of my life. Overeating, no sex drive, and an uncontrollable overeating.


    • After ditching the ween method and going cold turkey I can finally say that all the side effects have disappeared and David is back in town.
      It has been a very long 3 month’s. Dreams at night have been vivid to the point of feeling real except for there extreme subject matter. Night sweets would cause me to literally soak the bed from head to toe. Brain zaps would leave me paralyzed more 1 to 2 seconds. Mood swings would be of the most extreme, from complete joy, to homicidal lunatic. However even after all this I am back to me. I realized about 6 weeks ago while looking in the mirror and touching my face, in a very strange instance that “David” was back that I was in touch with a real person again, not an over medicated android.
      It was worth getting of these drugs and I am so sad of what they cost me in my life, marriage, home and job.

  38. Hello, thank you for sharing your story. I was prescribed Sertraline last month by a regular MD to treat “anxiety”. I had been in and out of the doctors, urgent cares for about three moths due to chest pain. After different cardiology tests it was brushed off to anxiety. I started taking Sertraline about four weeks ago, once a day for about two weeks. Keep in mind I wasn’t consistent with taking it every night like I was told. I think I took about five pills out of the thirty I was given over the course of those two weeks. During the first week (a few days into taking the first 25mg pill) I started feeling like I had the flu. Body aches, feeling feverish week etc. I never actually had a temperature.I just brushed it off to catching a small bug. By the second week I started experiencing the worst migraine/headache like feeling at my temples. This was accompanied by earaches, and again that flu like feeling I had had the first week. The headache did not subside by the next day (which is not common for me). At this point I was beginning to think it had to be the Sertraline as it was the only medication I was taking. I took the final 25mg pill the second day of the start of the headache, and it made it a hundred times worse. I trashed the remainder of the pills. That headache lasted for about eight days, coming and going throughout the day. I’m not sure if I was having the “zaps” but sometimes I would get shart pains at my temples that lasted a few second then disappeared. I felt much better after the eight days, this lasted a few weeks. Now the headache has returned about five days ago. Not sure if this is related, but I’ve never had issues before with migraines and headaches until I touched this medication.

  39. Please read The Mood Cure by Julia Ross to learn about SSRI withdrawal and amino acid therapy. You might be able to get rid of the low-serotonin symptoms such as the anxiety by supplementing with 50-200mg of 5-HTP OR 500-2000mg of tryptophan every 4 hours. 1-6mg of melatonin when you want to go to sleep. These amino acids (the building blocks of protein) are what your body craves and will rebalance you. You will know when to stop them because the symptoms will come back on them meaning you don’t need them anymore.

    • Thank you Emily for this information and resource. I have been taking only 25mg of Zoloft every 4 days for a few years now and have done fine but the last two months think I have been experiencing a tolerance to the drug as I have been getting a host of withdrawal symptoms. I never stopped taking it but my body is naturally doing this I think. I have been looking for natural supplements I can take to help alleviate these symptoms such as the anxiety. I have just ordered 5-HTP as well but I will get that book and find out more. Anyone else experiencing a tolerance to the drug and spontaneously feeling withdrawal symptoms without actually stopping the drug? By the way I have been on Zoloft for almost 20 years so that probably explains the tolerance issue. I’ve wanted off of this drug for some time now but couldn’t manage it before because of the withdrawal symptoms.

  40. Hi everyone. I have recently just come off Sertraline after finding out I was pregnant as I didn’t want to take any chances to harm the baby. I just wanted to know if anyone has suffered the same withdrawl symptoms as I am…

    I was on 50mg, and I did not half my dosage, I had only been on them a few weeks and then just stopped altogether but I am feeling very dizzy, and my senses are heightened alot, for example the lights are alot brighter and sounds alot louder which is making me feel anxious, i also feel very lethargic and have number dingling in my hands. Im hoping this doesnt last long. Anyone else suffered from this?

  41. I ended up in the hospital I died had a stroke and a heart attack I had been on seroquel for 10 years for insomnia 200mg then about 4 years ago was put on citalapram can’t remember the dosage and proppanol for anxiety 60mg that happened on 3/2/17 obviously I survived but they yanked me off all of the meds but the propanolol I had a drug induced QT prolongation from the seroquel and citalapram sorry my story is all over the place my withdrawal symptoms are horrendous at this very moment I am missing my grandma’s funeral and I love her more than anything it’s killing me inside but my anxiety level is ridiculous I know there is no rational reason for this anxiety it’s purely from withdrawal but that doesn’t help me thoughts of suicide and how to do it were present a month after I was told to stop taking those meds no one told me I would lose my mind I am sad you guys are going through this withdrawal but I’m happy to know I’m not alone this is the first time I have ever posted on one of these forums and my brains broke right now lol but your story’s give me hope I am going to keep fighting and my hope for all of you is to get well

  42. I respect and admire your courage and persistance and sharing your journey but I am controversially going to take the opposite direction, the medication honestly saved my life. I have had severe social anxiety and OCD since my early teens, I could not go into a store, I could not get a job, I could not socialize with anyone, I was almost a mute my entire adolence, I had severe panic attacks that would drive me to the ER constantly. I had disturbing obsessive thoughts, I saw counselors and none really helped although it felt good to talk to someone but it did bot get rid of my panic attacks and anxiety problems completely, it was in 2014 after I lost my job that it became unbearable, I had constant nausea which set off my anxiety cause I also have severe emetophobia, I,was in my bed constanstly just wanting my pain to end. It was then I was put on Sertraline 50mg by my doctor, and it changed me for the better, I,really have not had a panic attack since taking the drug and I can socialize to a tolerable degree where before I couldn’t socialize at all, the only time I do suffer severe anxiety and symotoms is when I stop taking the medication which is indicativie that I have a chemical imbalance (one that I was probably born with) that needs to be treated with antidepressants. Without the medication, I know I would be living in an absolute hell, the Sertraline makes things manageable, but not 100% perfect. You still have to work on yourself through therapy, ect. I had tried everything before going on medication (diet changes, exercise, therapy, even meditation) nothing got rid of my anxiety. Granted I’d rather not be on medication but I honestly think back on how I was before and what a miserable person I was and I realize I have to do it for myself. The only side effects I did have are food cravings, weight gain which luckily I can manage, bizarre dreams and soemtimes I get heart palpitations which are minor and I still don’t know the long term affects of the drug but I honestly dont care. Again, I am not 100% better but the medication made it so I can at least function. If there does come a time I need to come off the medication.

  43. Oh gee. Your story is so heartbreaking. I know exactly how you feel. I too am expiercing withdrawal symptoms and its terrible. Ive also developed nystagmus and i am scared. I feel really bad.. 🙁

  44. Thank you so much for this post. I’m coming off of 200mg of Zoloft and 75mg Wellbutrin. It doesn’t seem like a good combination but I was a minor when I began this medication and listened to my psychiatrist and parents. I’ve never been able to put words to these feelings I get and it’s relieving to find someone that can. I was shy, insecure, and life happened to me too and apparently that is not normal. Now, I decided I want to come off of these meds and I now FEEL crazy with these symptoms.

  45. Has anyone tried herbal st.John’s wort?. Iv been weaning myself off 50mg sertraline slowly over a month. Halving then every other day to nothing. Withdrawal side effects horrendous so im trying herbal to take the edge off. I got them from Holland and Barrett so decent stuff. 1 a day. Fingers crossed they help. Cold turkey does not work. Please wean slowly off this evil drug.

  46. A can’t believe how many go through this 🙁 am so thankful for your input Anna as a would just have thought my anxiety is back.. a went to GP with anxiety that a just couldn’t deal with anymore and got put on sertraline.. a didn’t know anything about this drug or any anti depressants for matter or fact a just wanted to feel better! This drug gave me the worst side effects and made my anxiety worse which a never thought could be possible considering it was already unbearable! A lasted 10 weeks on this before telling doctor get me off this it’s not working! She told me to just stop it as it’s not addictive the withdrawals where to bad a had to take small doses until a could come off… I’ve been off 6 weeks and have suffered insomnia when I’ve always been great sleeper… the inner vibrations is exactly how a feel daily and didn’t know how to explain that but that’s exactly it.. it’s all day everyday.. I have anixety and a don’t know if it’s the damage from this drug.. I will not be seeing a doctor as all they want to give you is drugs… am going down the healthy eating and exercise route and supplements if any of that will even help I do not know but am suffering daily and have three girls to look after it’s awful.. everytime a leave my house a want to run back home.. as the inner vibrations get worse and a just wanna burst into tears cause a can’t handle it

    • I totally understand where you’re coming from when you say that everytime you leave your house you want to run back home. I’m feeling that too now. I have been withdrawing from sertraline for over two months now because I grew a tolerance to the medication after taking it for over 19 years. For the past 5 years or so I’ve only been taking 25mg every 4 days and even at that low dose and low frequency I am suffering now. I haven’t even stopped the medication yet which I will shortly be doing as soon as I have less symptoms than I currently do. I suffered with the dizzyness and headaches to begin with, then a great amount of malaise and now loss of appetite and flu-like symptoms. It’s horrible for anyone to have to go through this. I am lucky in the sense that I don’t have a job to go to. Don’t know how I would function then. I want to get off this evil medication. I’m tired of being controlled by it and who knows the harm it is really doing to us. Hang in there. We are not alone. I am using the PointOfReturn.org program for support in getting off this med. I am not using my doctor. She would only talk to me about changing to another medication. Don’t give up. If you really want freedom from sertraline, know that it is possible. It takes great courage but many others have done it before us. We can make it through to the other side. Keep pushing on and use the support of many on here and on other forums.

      • hi, thank you for sharing your story,,, its hell…I was on setroline for about 4 years a while ago, I weaned off when my life picked up dramatically after taking them…I was off them for about 1 year and a half and then one morning I woke up in a sweat and shaking and scared I wished I was dead…. I crawled back into bed hoping this feeling would leave me,my sister convinced me to go back on zoloft she said it is about quality of life she has been on and off for 30 years….so I went back on them and started feeling normal again… about 8 months ago I lowered my dose down to now 25mg, I want to stop even that but am so so scared as I live alone and not sure if I can cope if things go horribly wrong again…what do you think

  47. Hello Anna, my name is Sandy, the story your wrote is remarkable. What’s more remarkable is that you survived your living nightmare hell. I know, I’ve been there, too. I just finished writing a book (rough draft) on my experience held hostage by the Mental Health-care field for 35 years, heavily drugged while barely surviving multiple ‘cold-turkey’ withdrawals, and at the end I’m including 4 personal stories so people can get an idea how others suffer as well. We were never really alone, although we believed we were. I think just knowing this was how I was able to heal. (I’m completely drug free today.) I’m asking permission to include your story. Thank you Anna, and God Bless you… Sandy (sanderella57@att.net)

  48. Hello Anna,
    I’m so glad that you wrote your story, I think this will be a help so many people who want to come off anti depressants. We rely too much on what the doctors tell us instead of trusting our own gut instincts.
    I came off Sertraline 2 weeks ago cold turkey and the zaps started about a week ago along with leg cramps, feeling sick, sweats and rapid heart beat.
    But I have found light at the end of the tunnel. I started taking CBD oil a week ago and it has helped immensely with the withdrawal symptoms. The oil has recently become legal here in Ireland THANK GOD. Within a a couple of days of taking it I started feeling better, I don’t feel any anxiety, I’m sleeping great and I have energy like never before and my thoughts are so clear. For the first time in my life I have direction and I am 48 years old now. It was a friend of mine who recommended the oil, she too was coming off anti depressants and she said it has helped greatly. The doctors here won’t prescribe this yet. But there is big demand from people here with all sorts of ailments looking for it. We need to go back to nature for healing instead of filling Big Pharma’s pockets.
    My Dad died last year and I found it really hard to deal with my emotions, I suffered panic attacks, anxiety, depression. This is why I was put on Sertraline in the first place. It was grief and I should probably have gone for councilling instead of looking for a quick fix in a pill. But then I was thinking about my Dad and all the meds his doctor had him on for various problems including anxiety.( My Dad became depressed after my brother died from menangitis 7 years ago). So I believe it was all the meds my dad was on that killed him in the end, and I thought to myself I don’t want to end up like that, and that’s why I came off Sertraline. And I will never take an antidepressant again.
    Thank you Anna for your story and the inspiration it will give to others.

  49. Hi Everyone,

    First, I have to acknowledge how much respect I have for everyone posting their stories. It takes a lot of courage to talk about these experience and to expose ourselves in a world that stigmatises mental health issues and then doubts our experiences with the meds.

    I suffer from PTSD due to childhood abuse. I started taking Lithium about thirty years ago, added Welbutrin and Seroquel about 15 years ago, and added Sertraline about 2 years ago. Taking the Sertraline was amazing in some respects. My moods dramatically improved, like a sky suddenly becoming clear. But around the same time as adding Sertraline my blood pressure shot up to dangerously high levels. I’m fit, vegan, and meditate regularly, and now the doctor wants to put me on blood pressure meds. Nope. The other thing that happened was that while my moods shot up, certain other body parts went in the other direction…..

    I’m trying to get off the Sertraline now. I cut down 25% about three weeks ago, and 50% last week. I’m getting headaches, flu symptoms, and some anxiety and anger. I believe the reason the withdrawal has been relatively mild is because, like the last writer, I’ve been taking medical cannabis.

    I started with a pure CBD oil for daytime (10%), because there’s no euphoria, so I can continue working. Then I added a low THC strain (12% vaporised) for nighttime so I could sleep without the Seroquel. This is the first time in 15 years I’ve been able to sleep without it, and I wake up feeling more refreshed than ever, and find it easier to fall asleep than ever. Other than the side effects my mental health is better than ever.

    I’m in Canada and doctors are allowed to prescribe medical cannabis (MC) here. I get it from a provider called Tweed. It’s tightly regulated but once you have the prescription you can access a wide variety of strains and concentrations, and the staff are extremely knowledgeable. Now my biggest problem is the ‘munchies’ at 3am!

    I explain all of this so that others will know how to access MC, or at least have another reason to advocate for it. If you’re in the US, may the universe intervene to help you!

    I have some questions about the Sertraline withdrawal. Are headaches, nausea, and tiredness all recognised symptoms? I assume if they are that they are as intense of long-lived as each person is different?

    Also, I read in one of the comments that Julie Ross’s The Mood Cure is a big help. I read the book and it’s completely contrary to the latest nutritional research on mental health, serotonin and diet. I consult a professional nutritionist who researches all the questions I ask her. The latest research shows that protein inhibits the passage of serotonin over the blood-brain barrier, and that healthy carbs are loaded with serotonin that the brain can access. Someone should check out Ross’s connection with the meat industry, because she basically says that you need to eat tons of meat to have good mental health. Beef has been classified as a high level carcinogen by the WHO, and she says you should eat it a lot.

    Again, I thank all of you for your comments, and I thank the people who have organised this site. I have never seen myself as a victim, but I am regularly struck by how those without mental health struggles are so unable to understand and relate to what it takes for us to get through a day, while being so free to judge us.

    Stay strong everyone and love yourself. You’re worth it.

  50. Thank you all for posting. I’d been on Citalopram for a couple of years for depression and had become a zombie. I was sleeping 12/13 hours a day. I had no enthusiasm and zero motivation. My hair was falling out and my joints ached. So the doctor changed my prescription and put me on Sertraline.
    Some of my symptoms went away but I suddenly started suffering from anxiety. My stomach knotted the moment I woke as if something awful was going to happen. After only six weeks and having forgotten to take the tablet one day, I decided to stop taking it completely and went cold turkey.
    I was ok for a week but then the brain zaps kicked in and more intense anxiety and ANGER at everyone I’ve ever known.
    It was during that week that the BBC screened ‘The Batman Killer’ a documentary about James Holmes who had come off Sertraline and went on to murder 12 people in a Colorado cinema in 2012. The programme was examining whether the drug had played a part in the killings. He’d been on a high dose but had decided to stop taking it.
    There are many anecdotal examples of individuals who’ve been on SSRIs committing aggressive acts when they come off them.
    And if I, a 65 year old woman, can feel such anger towards others as a result of stopping a considerably smaller dose of this drug, imagine how coming off a larger dose might affect one’s thinking.
    Was I told any of the withdrawal risks at any time? No!
    I’m just happy to have stopped this drug. I can persuade myself these withdrawal symptoms will pass at some time and I know the tremendous anger I feel is just another of those symptoms and so I keep telling myself it’s not real.

  51. I have stopped taking sertraline for five months and still suffer with the zaps in my head. It’s bad in the evenings when I go to bed, it’s very frightening feeling.

  52. Great to know I’m not going mad and there are others, but what can I do to help lessen these symptoms?

    Leg pain, shooting pains, headaches, nausea, worrying dreams and weepiness

  53. Hi I have just found this group and am really thankful for all your comments I have been in Setraline for about 6 weeks now and I have decided to start weaning myself off it I am having the most horrific dreams nightmares and can’t take it any longer I hope I am doing the right thing but I am just so desperate for all this to stop

  54. I was put on sertraline to help me with my anxiety and stress. I had been working 70-80 hour weeks for years ina high stress job and started waking up in the middle of the night with panic attacks. As much as I didn’t want to take the meds I will say they did help. Now it’s three years later and my job is gone and I’m self weaning off the meds. It’s been a little over two weeks since I stopped taking them (I reduced the dosage over time by halving the pills and then quartering them). I have crazy dizziness and mid occasional nausea but thankfully no other withdrawal symptoms (hopefully I won’t get others). I do notice that if I sleep too much (I love to sleep in and always have) that my dizziness/nausea is so much worse. I’m wondering if anyone else has kept track of their symptoms and correlated any triggers? On the flip side wondering if anyone has found non medicinal ways to treat the withdrawal symptoms. For example, I also have noticed that if I snack frequently/always have something in my stomach (similar to when I had morning sickness during pregnancy) then I can usually keep the nausea at bay. I’d love to hear from other people what they do to “treat” the symptoms and or help avoid them. Similarly I’m worried that my anxiety will come back due to stress. Anyone do anything that helps them keep it in check that doesn’t have to do with medication? Thanks!!!

    • To keep the anxiety and other symptoms at bay try exercising. I myself am going through the same thing you are. I have severe anxiety and Akathisia. Nausea, the whole works. I will be trying 5 HTP after my the symptoms diminish and my brain starts to return to normal. You could try that. You can make it through, my prayers are with you.

  55. I would first like to say to all of you that have posted on this forum that I am very grateful and thankful for your posts. About 5 weeks ago I was put on Zoloft for Depression and Anxiety. 25 then bumped up to 50. To say the least I felt like I got poisoned. I had delusions centered around every thought, severe Akathisia, and homicidal/ Suicidal thoughts. I came off the drug about a week ago and am feeling so much better. Sure I have a lot more anxiety, nightmares, and being tired but it’s well worth it for what I felt like while on the drug. I went back to my psychiatrist and she immediately tried to put me on more meds. That was that, I’m never going back on antidepressants ever again. I hope everyone who reads this comment and others alike will find hope and peace throughout this dreadful process.

  56. Hi all omg I’m so glad I found this, I was put onto setraline after have my hysterectomy about 10 yrs ago. At first I thought they worked, helped with the night sweats but never with the no sleeping. I carried on. It then took away my sexual drive, my emotions and my weight stated to steadily increase. I went back to the docs and he put me from 50 to 100gm I still didn’t feel good, my whole body didn’t feel like me anymore. I had forgotten who I was. I had CBT this didn’t work for me. I went back to the docs again and they put me on 150gm. I thought I was losing my mind. I want me back again. I want to laugh like i used to and enjoy life. These tablets supposed to help. They wasn’t. Then I down loaded a book on audible and I decided to come off cold turkey. I know it’s the right thing to do but I now have really bad withdraw symptoms. Like the achy body, insomnia, head zaps, fatigue, dizziness, forgetfulness . I want this to get better. I really hope it does. Thank you for listening Annette

    • Hi Annette, it’s been about about 2 weeks since I got off the drug, and I still feel crappy. I have nausea and severe anxiety/ Depression but it will get better with time. How long were you on the medication?
      I personally don’t have the brain zaps like you do but I have just about about every other symptom.
      I will keep you in my prayers.

    • Hi Annette. how are you getting on now since stopping Sertraline cold turkey? I’m doing the same as feel like I’ve lost my mind, really don’t trust these drugs.

  57. hi.
    im a 41 year old male and have been on citalopram or prozac for roughly 6 or 7 years. have tried to come off previously but always went back on after a month or so. i am now 4 months off completely and realize it was witdrawal that made me go back to the pills. my symptoms are extreme rage and anxiety. headache in the front of my head and between my eyes. ridicilous crying spells. chronic fatique. depression. lethargy….i used to play hockey soccer golf go to the bar or movies or play softball. now i can barely function. i need to lay down for the night by 5pm. i have zero interest in anything. i think of suicide every day. i wad never depressed before the pills. i have an undiagnosed ear issue which my doctor said wad anxiety. so he gave me prozac. it has 100 percent ruined my life. the pills made me numb and crave alcohol from the moment i wake up. which is why i cant reinstate.
    my only hope is time. if i make it that far. god bless all of you suffering. be strong for your loved ones

  58. Hi everyone . So I was put on setraline about 4 years ago. I can say that I felt so much better since I’ve taken them and I don’t struggle with anxiety anymore. But like everyone that has posted their story here I have struggled coming of them . A year ago I tried to stop them and after 3 days of not taking Setraline I was feeling dreadful. Crying for no reason, getting angry for no reason, sweating and not being able to function , so I thought it’s because my anxiety and panic attacks are still in me . 3 days ago I tried to come off Setraline again and after being ok for 3 days today I was extremely dizzy , I can’t concentrate and my vision can’t focus . I had to drive my daughter to school and realized that am a danger on the road and I’ve put myself my daughter and others at risk . I got home eventually and again I had to take the pills so I can put myself back together to be able to get to work and pick up my daughter from school. After taking 50ml of Setraline , within 1 hour I started feeling much better . Now I realize that because of this medication my brain does not work properly to the extend that I can’t remember what day it is or what time I start work after looking at the Rota a few times . Now I am so scared that I won’t be able to come of this medicine and if I try to I won’t be able to function and look after my daughter . I’m only 30 years old but I can see how this medicine is messing up with my head. Anyone can advice on how I can make this process more easy ? Thank you

    • Please join “surviving antidepressants” and learn the 10 % reduction technique. It has been proven to work and it causes the least harm in discontinuing these horrible drugs. Please join the forums for assistance in getting off. Really great people. surviving antidepressants.com

  59. Stopped the 50mg last week after only taking it for 4 weeks. I had to cease due to horrendous tremors. I found benadryl and diazepam helps.

  60. I was put on a number of meds starting at 10 years old and kicked them all by tapering myself cutting pills at 25 yrs. I once took Straterra, Zoloft, and Singulair( not including inhalers). After I had my son at 26 I needed antidepressant bc the father quickly changed once we became pregnant. I started Zoloft but tapered off bc of my blood sugar being out of control( soemthing I noticed may have only happened when I was on antidepressants as I’ve always had low blood sugar issues but not sure why and I am skinny and healthy so docs will not test for diabetes).. I took Zoloft again when my son was 2-3 yrs. One episode I switched from Zoloft to Lexapro. I got so sick like a had bad Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I couldn’t wake up bc it made me feel like I needed to sleep 24/7 and had to speed risking car accident to get to work on time. I was so dizzy I nearly fell down stairs as if I was drunk on occasions but I was sober. I had taken Lexapro with no issues in the past but that time was different and dangerous. My general practitioner stopped it immediately recommended Effexor and Trazadone since the Effexor may pep me up, Trazadone will help me sleep. I did a follow up telling her I was exercising and doing yoga and fine. I was recommended Trazadone for sleep but never filled the script. I honestly can get by with Zytrec or Benedryl sometimes just half tab at night if I need help to sleep and I know what will happen. I have bad allergies. If I take half a tab at night I need to take allegra or soemthing in morning or I may get a really bad sinus headache. I do not want to try any new unpredictable treatment when I can just exercise yoga and eat healthy and deal with life that way. Plus the book ” feeling good the good mood therapy” has helped a lot as well as surrounding myself with people who listen, care, and love me back. I would recommend that book the exercise and healthy diet full if fresh food and omega3s and surrounding yourself with loving souls. I accidently got gel Zyrtec.. you cannot cut it and it seems to be stronger for me and I make mistakes during the day due to drowsiness poor judgment and lack of concentration due to the fog. I never took gels before. I picked up zytrec gels on accident..I only take them on the weekends.

  61. I am meeting more and more people who started on this and now are on poly drug treatments with anti-psychotics.

  62. Withdrawing from *any* medicine, especially one which affects brain chemistry, takes time. I see many people complaining of Sertraline causing their journey to antipsychotics, but the truth is this is the drug where most GP’s start when symptoms are coming on – where you end up will depend upon the real underlying illness. Remember, Ebola symptoms start as a cold, then makes you feel a bit fluish and drowsy, then shuts down your organs. This is why diagnosis of any illness is so difficult – all human bodies start off displaying symptoms in the same ways. So before you start blaming any drug for your current situation, remember you were likely on a track to the same destination but drinking different cocktails in the dining car to your fellow passengers. Depression and progressive psychosis all start with feeling down and maybe some anger issues – that’s why so many patients who end up in hospital may have started out on simpler drug regimens such as Sertraline.

    Having taken Sertraline for some time, it was obvious my problems were not going to be fully covered by it. It was like trying to put a square peg in a very slightly off square hole – you could do it, but the result was not really smooth. I had, in the past, taken paroxetine, which is much more difficult to come off. All the symptoms described by those above whilst coming off the drug are exactly what happens when withdrawal is too fast. There is no such thing as a two month withdrawal period. Everyone is different. Some people can go “cold turkey” without a single problem, for others it will take much much longer.
    The method I used for withdrawing for Sertraline is the same I eventually used for Peroxetine. I reduced the dosage by 10% per week. You can do this by asking your GP to prescribe more items of a lower dose – tell your GP you want to come off the drug in stages. Once on the lowest dose possible, take it either every two days or in a 3/2 cycle. That is take it in the morning on day one and midday on the second, then the afternoon on the third, then night on the fourth, then miss a day and do the whole cycle again but with a day in between. i.e Take in the morning, miss a day, take at midday, miss a day, take in the afternoon, miss a day, take at night, miss a day. Then do this again, but miss two days.
    Always, always, always, always drink *lots* of water. I mean six pints a day the whole time you are going through withdrawal. Yes, you will pee a lot – that’s the point! Finally, at *no* time take any kind of pain killers for any withdrawal symptoms unless you need them for some other condition. If you do, you will mess up the withdrawal process.
    Now here’s the crap you don’t want to hear, but listen up and listen well. You need to keep as mobile as possible. If you are able bodied, walk, run, jog, whatever but do it until you are out of breath. If you have some condition that prevents this, ask your GP for a recommended regimen – just get off your proverbial ass. If you don’t those drugs will hang about in your system for years.
    I don’t care if I come over as being a bit of a dick. You say you want to withdraw from a prescription drug, well this is what it takes. If you’re not willing to do what it takes, stop whining about it on forums. Misery loves company, but company does not reciprocate. If you are wondering, the “addiction cycle” of Sertraline is only one month, it’s your body which is doing the “Withdrawal Whinge Waltz.” The brain is like a demanding child; give in to its crying for ice-cream once and you’ll be hearing that tantrum forever. Same for any prescription drug.
    FYI: I no longer need Sertraline or any other SSRI because my problem was not serotonin but norepinefrin and poor absorption of folic acid. You know folic acid, the stuff pregnant women take to make sure their baby has good brain and spine development. You didn’t think your need for it stopped after being born did you? There is now very little folic acid and boron in the modern food chain. They add it to bread in the UK, but if you don’t eat bread then you are certain to be deficient.
    Guess what, the symptoms of that look like depression, too.

  63. Hi again it’s been nearly 3mths since being off and was seriously thinking about going back on until I came back into this site. I still not 100% as now I’m crying all the time and feeling anger. But I do try Mindfulness which does help. I can say this has been so hard. I lost my mom in law in April too. I feel everyone is against me no matter wat I try to do. My husband hardly speaks to me if he does it’s because we argue. My daughter is my world and I’m sometimes horrible to her. I hate my job at the moment but I still try and smile but inside im hurting. In someways I feel this is a good thing as when I was on the tablets I didn’t feel anything. So not sure what’s better. I hope I just need a break. Weight is still an issue for me. Do you think this is normal? After just coming off them for 3 mths. Thanks Annette

  64. I’ve ended up in the hospital when I got taken off Sertraline (100mg). I was on it for a year and then I couldn’t sleep and it wasn’t doing anything anymore. My gp changed me to 15mg of Mirtazapine right after I stopped taking Sertraline… it was HELL! I lost consciousness twice, I was sure I was having a heart attack, my arm was paralysed and my chest tightened. I was hospitalised for 24 h and they found nothing! I was back in A&E 12 h after and they told me it’s anxiety. My symptoms were so bad but like yourself I never linked it… now Mirtazapine has helped but I’ve gained so much weight that I’m coming off of it… I was prescribed Propranolol and gosh it helped my symptoms so much. Now hoping to get off Mirtazapine completely next week, wish me luck!

  65. To all you people recovering or currently suffering I’m sending you all positive thoughts and healing for each of you. I am also suffering and hopefully will start to recover now I am fully off sertraline.
    I’ve been on it for over 4 years. The dose has varied over this time. The majority of time I’ve been on 150mg.
    I’ve suffered with anixety and panic attacks for around 18 years now. I’ve been in and out of the system. My relapses are always more severe than the last. The last one 2 years ago being the worst and I’m still amazed how I made it through. Crisis team were heavily involved at this point. When the deemed me as “well enough” I was released from their care and I was then put on a waiting list for 3-4 months to have 3 separate assessments for them to asses what treatment I would be best suited to under secondary mental health care. I was then added to another waiting list for an additional 14 months. In this time I have had horrendous stomach and digestive problems. I have gained over 3 stone in weight (still while going to the gym 5 days a week, I even paid for a personal trainer).
    Over this last year I’ve had CT scans, Ultrasounds, numerous blood tests, even a Laparoscopy and nothing came back that anything was wrong. A couple of months ago I’d just had enough and explained to a GP that I thought sertraline was causing these issues (which they soon dismissed) I asked how much longer I would need to wait for my referral to come through, so I could hopefully get the treatment that would help me so I wouldn’t need to take these “masking the issue” pills anymore.
    I think it was roughly a week or so later I received a letter from the hospital that I was no longer on the waiting list (which I’d be on for 18 months) this was due to the doctor chasing up where I was on the waiting list and asking their advice about me reducing my dose at some point. They said I obviously no longer need the place as I’ve talked to the GP about me reducing my dose, that means I’m in a good place and will no longer be eligible for the care as they don’t see I need it.
    Heartbroken was an understatement….
    I have since weened myself off the tablets about 2 weeks since. I’ve got the itchy skin, some headaches and I am short of breathe all the time. Which causes me to
    panic. I’m really hoping this passes soon.

    Thank you for taking time out to read my experience and for all your experiences it really does help to know you’re not alone.

    Remember you are:
    BRAVER than you believe, STRONGER than you seem, SMARTER than you think & LOVED more than you know.
    Stay strong 💪🏼

  66. I am so glad to have found this. Over the past 18 months I have been on 100mg of Sertraline and got horrific migraines.

    I was told that under no circumstances were the migraines related to Sertraline. The solution was to prescribe me amitriptyline and another migraine releasing drug, as well as drugs to counteract the mixing of two anti depressants and a prescription for anxiety attacks (basically beta blockers). At 24 I felt like a walking talking pharmacy and I couldn’t leave the house without having them with me for fear of an anxiety attack.

    Whilst on it I have been plagued with suicidal thoughts and the solution was to up the dose.

    I tried to wean myself off the Sertraline a couple of months ago and it was horrific. I am currently three days of a reduced Sertraline and cold turkey on all other prescriptions. Already I feel like I could throw up, I can’t eat and feel like my heart could beat out of my chest.

    Finding this has definitely helped me realise it’s the drugs and not me, for so long I have been told that it’s not me, it’s a chemical imbalance in my brain which caused the anxiety and the drugs will cure it. Now I’m not so sure…

  67. Hi Anna,

    29 August 2018

    I’ve been off Serdep for two weeks now.

    A week after stopping the medication, I thought I was having a panic attack. I was driving to work and suddenly felt light headed, hot flashes and blurred vision. At this time I hadn’t pieced together that it might be the withdrawal symptoms, so I passed it off as a rate occurance.

    Then four days ago I started feeling a tingle in my lower face, particularly around my mouth. This was coupled with dizziness and slight nausea. My initial thought was that I was pregnant, by after getting my cycle, ruled it out. I’ve also been experiencing sleeplessness, which I’m sure is also a side effect of withdrawal.

    Since then I’ve had daily symptoms of tingles in the face and lips, dizziness and spats of blurred vision.

    Today I decided to Google my symptoms in relation to the withdrawal of the Serdep and came accross your post. I’m so happy that I did and can no relate all my symptoms to the withdrawls.

    I initially started the medication a year ago as I was going through a divorce. But I’m now in a happy relationship and feel the need for the medication is no longer there.

    Thank you for sharing your experience and I know it will help many of us who struggle with coming to terms of the withdrawals.

    Warm regards,
    Natasha Gibson

  68. I been on sertraline 20 plus years I was so fed up feeling ill I have stopped my sertraline I was on 200mg yes at moment I am having withdrawals but I no its withdrawals and nothing else my mood has improved greatly I feel for first time in a long time that life is good I feel positive I have quit smoking I no longer have that awful thing they call brain fog THERE IS LIFE AFTER SERTRALINE stick with it u will win the battle I did good luck guys

  69. I hate this tablet hate it
    I want off and its easier I feel to just run away and be away from every one
    This feels worse than the breakdown I was going though and the reason I was put on them
    I mistrust doctors and feel alone and battling alone
    Glad I read this
    I stopped comely and I ain’t going back on them
    These chemicals like it or not ain’t going into my body any more.
    Good luck guys thinking of you all and thank you for your stories
    Sorry your struggling x

  70. Hi my name is Laura. I have been on sertraline for 10 years 200mg every day. 4 weeks ago my doctor agreed I was ready to come off it as there was no reason for me to still be on it. First it was to decrease by 50mg every 3 months which I I am currently on 150mg I am already feeling sick and have constant headaches. If I bend over it feels like my head is going to explode. I have had severe back pain for the last week. Is there anything I can do to releive these withdraw symptoms. I would be extremely greatdull for some advice as I don’t think I can go on like this for long periods. Thanks

  71. Hi i am Rose
    I was taking zoloft sentraline 50mg for about 4 months.
    Because doctor ask if it is working or not, i said no cause i dont feel any benefit of this drug.
    Then doctor changes my zoloft to axit mirtazapine 15 mg.
    I started to get symptoms of come off zoloft althought the same day i started to take axit mirtazapine. ( stop zoloft 2 days then start axit mirtazapine).
    4 days after taking axit mirtazapine i stop cold turkey because this symptom scared me. Now i have been off 7 days and still with the withdrawal symptoms. Doctor said go back on axit mirtazapine or zoloft.
    I said to myself NO !! NEVER !!
    I dont care with this withdrawal symptoms. Come off cold turkey or slowly will make me get withdrawal symptoms anyway. And it will make me longer and harder to come off. ADDICTIVE DRUGS!!!! For me it’s bullshit my doctors said its not addictive drugs.
    Ii am confidence that i will be alright although bit suffer because on drugs will harm me WORSE than this withdrawal symptoms. So why should i go back on to get bigger problem!! And this withdrawal symptoms will be gone 100% in a periode of time. My belief!!
    And i won’t get any worse withdrawal symptoms. Again my belief!!
    And i am confidence i can pass it and i have kids who love me and support me.
    I hope i and everybody who got problem like me can get their life back and healthy and live a normal life again.
    Keel faith!
    All of this is only my opinion for myself
    I am sorry if it is wrong.
    I hope it can be usefull.
    Take care everybody

  72. Reading this story has been the only sign that I’m not going crazy. It’s been about 2 months since i tapered off of Sertraline. I was on it for over three years. During the initial tapering and week after I felt better than I had in all those three years. I began to think the drug was keeping me in a trance-like state. As the weeks went on so many physical symptoms started to happen. Nausea, chest, back, and neck pain, weakness, fatigue, vertigo, rapid heart rate, shallow breathing. 2 months down the road and I am still crippled by these things. Every now and then the depressed thoughts will seep in and consume me. I wake up every morning hoping for a day free of symptoms, but I don’t want to resort back to the drug. It is a struggle every single day. This article helped me feel less alone and feel heard. Family, friends, and doctors all look at you in confusion when you constantly complain and worry about the way your body feels. It is nice to know there are other sufferers out there that understand.

  73. Hi everyone I’m 7 weeks post discontinuation of sertraline and I have major tinutis but the main symptom is insomnia I’ve now gone 4 night no sleep at all and I’m beside myself …Does this get better! I’m taking melatonin and some time gets blocked but they don’t help!

    • Hi, I currently have the same exact symptoms as you, now going on five weeks after taking just one sertraline 50mg pill. Did you eventually get better?

  74. Kevin
    Where do I start, I’ve suffered from depression most my life but never even thought of taking medication to help myself, until my divorce about 8 years ago I was so down I couldn’t stop crying so decided to go to a psychiatrist for help not realising at the time I was just going through what everyone goes through when you have a divorce so the psychiatrist decided to put me on seroquel I felt great but the only problem was I was a zombie no dreaming no thinking nothing so the only problem with that drug was that when I was on it for a few years it started affecting my heart so I went back to see the psychiatrist and he changed me from that to olanzapine which which stopped effect in my heart but I was still a zombie, so one day I decided that I couldn’t live this way anymore so I started doing my own study and found out how dangerous these drugs were that they put me on ,could not believe that some doctor would describe these drugs for me so I decided to go cold turkey ,what a kick in the ass I got , so I went to my GP that I really trust ,so he suggested that I go back on the olanzapine and he described me Sertraline and then slowly come off olanzapine, which I did, so I slowly come off olanzapine over a long time so finally when I was off olanzapine I still had bad side effects from that. It’s been 6 months and I’m still having withdrawal symptoms but I’m still on Sertraline after reading your stories I’ve decided that I think I will come off Sertraline I didn’t realise how bad it is for you I thought it was just a standard depression drug not as bad as olanzapine the Sertraline has made no difference to the way I feel I’m on the highest dose you can be on I’ve had most of the symptoms that I’ve read about on the internet I realise that there is a site for every drug the same as Sertraline that people are suffering from taking ,the doctors I trusted ,let me down I decided to do my own studies into what can help me years ago I picked up a book called Louise Hay amazing woman if you get chance read one of her books the problem was is that I read her books but I didn’t put her theories into practice. So not only do you have to look after your mind you have to look after your body so I started looking after my body and amazing things happen I started eating organic foods organic products I was amazed how many organic products are out there I use lavender oil for my mind chamomile tea just eating the right foods I’ve lost over 14 kilos that the medication put on me ,I go for Thai massages I know I need to go and see a homeopath. So what I’m saying is that everyone is different everything works different for certain people so try things and see if it works for you but don’t give up I’m feeling a lot better now but my next battle will be coming off Sertraline so I’m glad I found this site to see some of the problems I’m going to have to face. From now on I’m going to study everything I put in my body I’m only put in my body what God has put on this Earth not what doctors put in there pills, good luck to everyone there is a light at the end of the tunnel even though depression feels like a heavy weight on your shoulders keep pushing for it💗

  75. I forgot to mention, the intense awful nightmares that I had for the two months of weaning from 200mg to 50mg. I would wake up crying and bathed in sweat. The nightmares were so horrific I would feel uncomfortable telling anyone what happened in them. Please be aware of this as a withdrawal symptom. At the time I thought I was going mad, only later I realised it was the sertraline withdrawal. I don’t get them anymore thank god. There are probably a myriad of other withdrawals that I had/ still have but can’t think of them
    All now! Terrible terrible drug

    • I’m having this exact same issue. Intense vivid dreams 3 or 4 times a night!
      I hope they will start to reduce soon.. they’re so draining mentally emotionall and physically. I’m not getting anywhere near enough sleep and I’m almost afraid to go to sleep.
      I’ve been taking sertraline for 2 and a half years. I felt the time was right to come off them. My GP strangely told me not to worry about tapering off them and to just stop immediately as I was only on 50mg. There was no way I was going to do that so I started by taking half a day for 3 weeks. Then I started to take half every other day but this made me feel horrendous!
      I’ve now not taken any for 2 weeks and the main symptoms I’m experiencing is fatigue, severe irritability, lack of concentration and these awful vivid nightmares!
      I pray that they stop soon as I really don’t want to consider taking the medication again!
      Does anyone have any recommendations for alternative natural medicine?

  76. Hi again it’s 2 a.m. you guessed it slowly coming of my Sertraline, I’ve had time to think about my comments and I think it’s wrong to blame the GP, if you think back to when you first went to see your doctor you were desperate for help the fact is that you’ve left it too late and if you were to be telling you what I’m about to tell you you would have called him a Quack and went to another doctor until you got the pills or the easy way out just like I did, I’ve been doing a lot of internet searching there are thousands of reasons why you have depression and there is no Magic Bullet, you could have had a trauma in your life , all the food you’re eating all the products that you use to clean your house have a close look at the chemicals that are in the deodorant use everyday or the shampoo what cleaning products that you use I had a good look and could not believe what they put in them numbers certain names you don’t understand like I said before certain people are different one chemical that affects me won’t affect you, so I’ve decided to do the so called hard way, I eat organic food when I can use organic cleaning products I don’t drink or smoke only drink water yes these products cross More but so does alcohol and smokes, there are stores now like vitago even Woolworths and Coles has organic products just by doing that I’ve lost heaps of weight which makes me feel better I go for long walks once a week I have a Thai massage there are organic teas and oils out there that will relax your mind get yourself test to see what sort of vitamins you are lacking what chemicals you have lingering in your body keep away from foods that have added sugar yes it will be hard to do but these big companies have got you hooked on sugar it’s amazing how good food taste so after saying all that it could just be that it’s in your DNA so you need to move to foods and products that will support you ,no one has the Magic Bullet after saying all that certain things may work for you but don’t work for me ,just got to try💖

  77. Sertraline yes we’re all blame on the drugs, these are my beliefs if you’re reading the comments on one of those sites it means that Sertraline is not working for you ,you don’t like the side effects so you done your own study and looked into a the drug just like I did, but I’m sure we’re only a small majority most people that are taken these antidepressants and they are working and not even looking at these sites because they’re happy with the results and they’re willing to take the chances of the side effects the reason I started looking is because I knew it wasn’t working and my body was telling me that it wasn’t working for me I’ll give you an example last night I had some salmon I know from eating salmon before that I get acid reflux so not only did I have withdrawal symptoms from Sertraline I had acid reflux mixed in with it so I had to work through it and pick which one was affected me any which way my point is that your body will tell you when it’s no good for you there are probably millions and millions of people taking depression drugs that are fine on them one of the effects of coming off depression drugs for me is I can start feeling my mind working a lot better so here is one thing that is helping me with my thoughts, most people when they get up in the morning and they look outside and they see that it’s raining they say what a miserable day, so that is a negative thought I’ve been reading Louise Hayes books maybe you should give it a try it might work for you, your body will tell you when there’s something wrong if you decide you want to change your diet after you eat some food see what it tells you it might be an hour a day or two days after so when you go to toilet your stool is supposed to be a certain way I realised after years and years mine wasn’t right because I done some Internet searches I changed my diet, when you go to the doctors and explain to the doctor what’s wrong with you ,all you’re doing is passing on what your body is telling you experiment it’s not going to take 5 minutes it’s a lifetime job anyway it’s time for work, time to look in the mirror and tell myself I’m doing a great job💕

  78. Literally reading this has given me hope when every second of the day I question my sanity is this me are these feelings part of me my anxiety without tablets. I question will it get better I question how much longer I can go on for I question who I was who I am …

    I am 8 weeks post my last sertraline tablet I am now on sleeping tablets as the nights on end with no sleep were unbearable. I don’t seem to get any windows just constant days of feeling so low ..anxious..tinnutis…blurd vision ..feelings of overwhelm ..

    I wonder when it will end will it get better surely I should be ok now it’s been 8 weeks but not according to many others of us suffering it’ takes months!

    Reading this has cemented to me it is normal it’s ok and will ease as time goes on. I want to be free of these drugs..

    I am on mirtazipine at night which I plan to stop next year which I know is another uphill climb but I will do it ..

    Let’s not let these things best us

  79. Anna, I can’t tell you how much this has helped me today. I thought I was losing my mind. I weaned myself of sertraline earlier this year, from around June onwards, breaking free of it fully around August 2018.
    I thought I’d be okay. I knew nothing about this.

    Since coming off sertraline, I have become overly sensitive and emotional, bursting into tears for very little reason. Embarrassing as I am a male in my fifties. And I work in mental health.

    Recently, I have been experiencing difficulty sleeping. Urinating more than normal. I am also experiencing some paranoia. I had a twinge or mild sensation in my testicle, nothing severe, and no signs of anything being wrong.

    I became convinced that I had an inguinal hernia, even though there is no evidence of one. And I could not get it out of my head. And I was too scared to go to the doctor about it.

    Then I became convinced I had cancer, although again there is no evidence I can find.

    This has been just over the last two to three weeks.
    I suspected that my mind was at fault for some reason, but I didn’t link it directly to the sertraline and withdrawal symptoms until I went looking online and found this post.

    This has brought me a lot of relief in just moments, but I am worried about where this is going to go.

    I am going to have to be very strong psychologically without any drugs at all until this passes fully.

    I just hope that it will. Its only just the months of no sertraline for me at this point. I pray to God that the next three months are better and see me healthy and happy again.

    My faith in doctors and the medical profession is zero right now. I’m turning to prayer and belief in self healing to get me through this. I wish all of you well on your journey away from this medically induced hell.

  80. I started Zoloft 50 mg 11 days ago, and my right arm started (tremor) Can I quit cold turkey? Please advise. Thanks

    • eddy
      get off asap unless you are 100 percent sure u need the drugs. there are 1000s of us destroyed by these toxins. please trust me. god bless

    • Hi,

      As a 7 year user I don’t even know you so I could just tell yeah it’s good to carry on but please stay away from these drugs. They will ruin your life. Throw them in the bin where it belongs.

      Have been off citalopram for three months now after 7 year use, I still get emotional on little things and feel like the end of life but I keep the faith and hopefully will get back to normal once I belong.

  81. I have been on 100mg sertraline for nearly 2 years along with Proponalol 40mg Due to a severe episode of depression. I was told by the General Practitioner that these 2 tablets work well together. I personally think the tablets worked for me. (Although I did sometimes question myself – was it just psychological?).

    The first 6 weeks of taking the medication I felt great. Colours seemed brighter, I felt more confident, Happier in myself, I felt like I was ready to take on the world.

    A year into taking them I forgot to take the sertraline with me on a holiday for 5 days. BIG MISTAKE. The holiday was spoilt due to the side effects which occurred on the 2nd day of the holiday. DO NOT CONSIDER EVER COMING OFF SETRALINE FROM 100mg TO NOTHING. THE SIDE EFFECTS REALLY ARE UNPLEASANT. And don’t be a numpty like me and leave them behind because it really will spoil your plans.

    I informed my General Practitioner of what happened and he said ‘don’t come off the tablet, its not going to kill you so continue with it’ that was basically his words so I continued to take the tablet without questioning it anymore.

    I was given a medication review by the consultant at the local pharmacy last week. He questioned the sertraline and wanted to know why my General Practitioner was not giving me regular medication reviews. (Bad practice obviously). The practitioner was really friendly and helpful. We came to an agreement and decision that a plan would be as follows;

    reduce by half – take 50mg daily for 1 week
    2nd week – take a 50mg tablet everyday, miss 1 day out
    3rd week – take a 50mg tablet everyday miss 2 days out
    4th week – take a 50mg tablet everyday and miss 3..
    and so on until off the medication completely.

    I’m currently on day 7 of 50mg. There are side effects. I’m dizzy, stomach pains, bloated, electric spasm’s in my head, horrible headache, i feel like my head and body are jolting without being able to control it? and very sleepy. I’m literally pushing myself to do what I normally do on a daily basis.

    I’m going to try my very best to let the side effects beat me!

    I’m going into week 2 now! wish me luck. I will keep updating daily or every few days to let people know how its going as I feel this forums are good to refer to when doing a similar thing.

    • Still experiencing various side effects on 50mg – dizzy, electric spasms in my brain, moods appear a little different. I’ve nearly come to the end of week 2. The day of taking no sertraline i experienced no side effects at all which was strange.

      Week 3 should be interesting. 2 days without tablet.

  82. I went on sertraline 50mg following the death of my mother in particularly horrible circumstances and a tricky transition from university to working life. Initially and with the addition of propranolol (and the occasional diazepam) they really helped me. When I finally qualified in my profession, started seeing somebody amazing and was settled in a house I loved I decided to come off them.
    Within a couple of months everything had gone downhill. House owner needed the house back, I wasn’t finding enough work and my partner quit her job and decided to move a 5 hour drive away. In the end I decided I had nothing to lose so I went with her and we stayed there for 5 months before coming home together. While I was there my anxiety/depression came back and a dr put me back on sertaline and propranolol. I saw no real improvement and was struggling to sleep and to control my temper so when we got home another dr increased my sertraline to 100mg.
    It took me 3 months to realise it but this increase was the worst decision possible. The dose increase actually correlated directly with an increase of anger and even aggression plus more sleeping problems.
    My regular doctor has taken me off sertraline and commenced mirtazapine. I’m still allowed propranolol and diazepam whenever I need them. I’m a pharmacist so he trusts me with them which is nice. Like a lot of you said I’m having awful dizziness but my mood has improved and my anger/aggression are dissipating. I’m seeing a counsellor and starting CBT which will hopefully be beneficial too!
    I guess the moral of this long post is that yes Sertraline CAN be very helpful like it was for me in the beginning but it can also make things worse. Listen to your body like the original poster has and don’t be afraid to speak to a doctor you trust (or your pharmacist, we are quite knowledgeable 😉 ) if you feel like the medication you’re on doesn’t suit you. I’m hoping my swap from sertraline to mirtazapine plus therapy will get me back to my normal self!

  83. Anna,
    I’m so touched by your story. I’ve been on Sertraline 100mg which was increased to 125 mg a few months ago and I just found that I couldn’t cope anymore. I was put on them to treat depression and social anxiety disorder and after falling apart one day in the grocery store I went to my GP and told him I needed something stronger. I just want my life back. So he put me on a new drug called Trintellix and started gradually weaning me off Sertraline. I’m now taking 25mg of Sertraline and 10mg of Trintellix and I feel awful. Trying to work has been so hard. I’m trying to be there for my son who has special needs and just when I thought I was feeling better and there was a light at the end of the tunnel here I go again. I feel so depressed, cry all the time, have bad dreams, and sleep for hours and hours but still it’s not enough. I feel like I could sleep all day. I’m afraid to take more time off work for fear of losing my job and I’m a single mother. Bur right now I struggle to get out of bed and put one foot in front of the other. I haven’t been in a relationship for years and I’m so afraid that I’ll be alone for the rest of my life. But I have to get my life back and feel well again before I can even think about that. Honestly the only thing that keeps me going is my son.

  84. I have researched and researched Setraline since being prescribed it. Reasons I decided to take it was my friends. I was crying all the time. Had the worse 3 years due to moving house and feeling so lonely and isolated. Leaving a steady job of 14 years, and on the verge of losing our house. I felt terrible guilt. My main problem is trying to make a career for myself as I doubt my abilities and nerves always get the better of me. For anyone who may understand this or can relate to this, all the changes and stress I have been told have brought on a spiritual awakening. I think this has been a major factor for a lot of my problems, from making me withdraw from people, feeling like I don’t know myself, experiencing some unusual things (very long story), feeling like my intuition is so high that I’m very wary of people. It’s also a time when you realise who is not good for you anymore. Physiologically I have issues since being at school, being bullied and also through my life people thinking I’m thick. All this has caused me paranoia, upset and so much frustration. So now I’m desperate to make my own business work for my own sanity! I’m scared I can’t do anything else as I struggle to pick things up quickly and nerves take over. So after thinking I couldn’t see the wood for the trees and my brain constantly analysing my life and every person / situation, my friends advised I go on antidepressants. I went on them when I was 18 years old and they really helped my anxiety / depression, very bad panic attacks. However, this time round I was prescribed Setraline. I too experienced horrible side affects in the first 3 weeks. I was on edge the whole time, constantly biting on the right side of my tongue. I was even more anxious and nervous. I wasn’t really nervous before, I just obviously suffered depression and anxiety. But Setraline really made me nervous and on edge. Hot flushes etc etc. I realised I had to ride the waves and by 3 weeks I felt better. I went on holiday and drank alcohol and wasn’t 100% my real self but I was feeling ok. However I’m guessing the alcohol set me back because when I returned I didn’t feel so good. My daughter also started school which was a big thing for me as Iv spent every second of the day with her. I also felt like the school drop off / pick up is like being back at school! Trying to avoid certain people and it was causing me so much anxiety. Couple of weeks later I felt like I was on cloud 9!! I read at about 6 weeks you can feel good. One week later and I felt rubbish again and asked the doctor to increase my 50g dose to 100g. She thought my anxiety was me but she still increased my dose. I continued to bite on my tongue, couldn’t sleep very well, tremors and shakes, nerves and edgy (trying to hide this from people). I just knew Setraline wasn’t suited to me. After 4 months I was starting to wean myself off. I stopped this year on 23rd Dec. Very close to xmas but I was good. I decreased from 100g to 50g for 1 week, then took 50g every other day for 2 weeks, roughly till I run out. On the 27th I noticed strange tingling in my lips and dizziness. I could barely move my head and I would feel these waves off dizziness and tingling. I also felt my chest tightening and I thought here we go… this is the withdrawals you get after coming off antidepressants. I had this when I came off them when I was 18 years but that time it was intense nervousness and panicking feeling. I’m now 3 weeks on and have stopped biting on my tongue and most symptoms nearly gone. However, I didn’t enjoy the school pick up and am getting paranoid and analytical again. I also had 6 sessions of CBT free from the NHS which I’m sorry to say wound me up!! Didn’t help me at all at times but Iv put some of the practices in place. I also had counselling private which didn’t help. I know what my issues are. It was good to talk to someone though. I have felt very agitated this last week!! Very short fused and snappy!! Very angry etc. Iv had weird dreams for the last month, I wouldn’t say nightmares just weird and what I would rather not have. I’m just hoping all these side affects go soon. I hope I don’t go into reammision as I have read we should take antidepressants for at least 6 months.
    So my findings on Setraline:-
    They really helped me rationalise my brain and see clearer. I stopped crying. However I did have the numbness you can get with antidepressants where I didn’t have so much emotional feeling which I didn’t like. I felt more positive. However, the nervousness and feeling on edge I couldn’t cope with. I may be an anxious person sometimes and be a worrier, but this making me worse and I could tolerate it. They are suppose to help anxiety!!! I and my doc looking at my side affects agree I am one of the few to suffer such side affects. Think she thought it was a bit unusual?!?
    I would say to anyone, if you have any doubt about Setraline or your instincts are telling you something isn’t right, then get off them. Unfortunately it can take some people trying several different antidepressants before you find the right one. It is daunting having to start again and flush the other one out your body, but if that’s what it takes…
    My doctor did ask me what antidepressant I took when I was 18. I know I moved house / areas and the rubbish surgeries here don’t have all my notes on system, however I know they have my file somewhere so they could check?!?!. If need be I will ask again if she can look through my notes or locate them. Bit worrying!
    I also always felt quite flat while not on antidepressants due to being so stressed, however I did experience some highs, something I didn’t get while on Setraline. So I’m just hoping I can stay off them now altogether because after reading these stories, sounds horrendous what people have been through. I know those feelings off your heart beating through your chest etc, Iv been there. I hope you all get through it. I suppose the longer we are on them, perhaps the longer for them to leave the system.
    As for my spiritual awakeness (if that’s what happened), I was in such an isolated desperate state that the thought of anyone else going through the same thing affected me so much that I wanted to blog about it, as it’s something you just can’t talk to anyone about unless they have gone through it. There is stages to it and I think I’m pass the worst of it. I keep finding money on the floor lately, I see 2222, 2212 (lots of synchronicity of numbers), and I see hearts formed in different places. These are all signs that I’m on the right path! If anyone gets all this?!?

    • OMG Sash….please read my story. after being on anti deps for the best part of 17 years. I am now 4 weeks into cold turkey. Just before Xmas I was agoraphobic, seeing death visions and the clock was gong crazy’s d still is. Everytime I look it’s 10:10, 12:12 etc. I woke twice in the night once at 3.03 and 7.07….it’s doing my head in. Apparently angel numbers. A heart imprint also appeared on my chest which is the mirror image of a necklace I wear with my late dogs paw print on! A spiritual awakening who knows? I am going through extrem anger and self loathing right now…just verbal…but that’s enough. To me these are all connected with the sertralin I just don’t know how. I also feel that my intuition is very high…if I think of a word….it will be the next word I hear or see, or I think about someone and they phone. I am quite freaked out. And well coming off these tablets again…..very hard. I am desperate not to go back on them. I keep trying to tell my boyfriend to leave me alone so I don’t lash out too but he doesn’t get it and then takes my anger personally however much I tell him I can’t help it. My heart goes out to you all on this journey of hell.

      • Am thinking off coming off my sertiline I was on 50mg witch kept me nices and calm also told the doctor they kept me belaced but for some reason he high my dose before Xmas and I bin feeling so drained and don’t know what to do with my self I push myself has I got two young children my partner don’t understand why I feel so tired most day my heart races my body aches all over so hopefully coming off them would be so much better then on medical x

    • Thanks for posting about your experience.

      I was also taking Sertraline for about 4 months and stopped a couple of weeks ago (though I have taken a couple of 12.5mg doses in that time, because I was feeling so blehhh).

      I wasn’t sure if 4 months was really long enough to experience significant withdrawals, but I have been getting definite ‘brain zaps’, plus chest tightness, shallow breathing, general aches and pains, etc. Some of the symptoms are hard to describe which is why I also just use the word “blehhh”!

      Yesterday and today have been particularly bad, but reading about your experience (and others here) has at least reassured me that, yes you can experience significant withdrawals after only taking for 4 months, so I just need to get through it, without panicking or assuming something is more seriously wrong, or that I’m just completely falling apart (which at the moment is what it feels like!)

      Anyway I hope you are in a much better place now and thanks for sharing your experience.

  85. I have been off mirtazapine, which I took for 6 years. Apart from the “usual” symptoms in withdrawal like nausea, dizziness, anxiety, stomach issues, I have horrible muscle, tendon/nerve pain, dont know exactly what hurts. The pain is unbearable. Has anyone experienced this? For such a long time?

  86. I’ve been taking 100mg of Sertraline daily for about 3 years. I had terrible anxiety and panic attacks that made it hard to function before then.
    I’m now slowly coming off this drug. I went down to 50mg a day about 2 weeks ago, but things aren’t going so well. I feel sad much of the time and cry often. I’ve had some stomach pains. I woke up with a panic attack starting this morning, but managed to fight it off.
    I’m a bit scared. MY GP thinks it shouldn’t be difficult to stop Sertraline and I want to be free of it.
    I’ve taken Prozac and Mirtazapine before. They didn’t help me just made me numb. Sertraline has made me better: no suicidal thoughts, no major anxiety episodes but I do feel limited mentally. I’m 72 now and unsure if the way I feel is just ‘old age’ or if it’s the meds.
    Maybe I should just keep taking the pills. I dunno.?

  87. I am mortified. I have been on Floxetine and changed to Sertraline for over 20 years. I decided it was time to stop taking them as l haven’t been the same person for a long time. I want to be …… dare l say it normal. My doctor hasn’t seen me to review my treatment for well over 2 years. They just keep prescribing it every three months. I really don’t have any faith in the doctors ( even though my father was a consultant) but sadly he is no longer with us to advise me. I really don’t know which way to turn. Do l carry on taking them or try and wean off them on my own?
    Any advice would be greatly received.

  88. I went on Sertraline for only about 8 months now. I first started taking 100mg when I had a major depressive episode. I couldn’t function day to day without panic attacks or bouts of crying. The depressive episode came at a time in my life that I was so stressed, very alone and my relationship wasn’t doing well.

    The Sertraline seemed to help, but caused me major insomnia, I would twitch all night long, sometimes not sleeping for days. But I’m not sure that the sertraline even helped my mood at all. Things started to get better in my life, stress was down, work situation got better. And those things seemed to help my day to day mood more than I could contribute to a pill.

    After the insomnia wouldn’t stop, I’ve decided to quit cold turkey. Against the advice from my wife (who’s a physc nurse).

    5 days without a pill and I’m sleeping a million times better. For the past 3 nights I’ve slept 12 hours solid for the first time in months. Today I’ve started to experience pretty heavy waves of dizziness, flu symptoms , and a buzzing sensation in my head.

    Most importantly I’m not experiencing any negative self talk, suicidal thoughts or anxiety issues.

    The long and short of it is if you feel like these pills aren’t right for you, you should stop. These doctors spend 10 mins with you talking about random things in your life and thick a pill is going to solve all your mental problems. It’s ridiculous. I’ll never put that poison back into my body.

    I hope you all recover quickly and stay well.

  89. Hello, I’m Rebecca I was on sertreline for 2 and 1/2 years. They really helped me in the beginning! I was with an abusive partner and 2 weeks after been on them I left him. I’ve never looked back, in a happy realationship now. I haven’t dared come off them until I forgot to take a few before Christmas this year and then I thought I’ll try and go cold turkey!! I know, bad decision! However I haven’t had any withdrawals until over the two month mark and then this week has been awful!! Headaches, nausea, floaters in my eyes and generally feeling unwell. I went to see my doctors and he said that I will be having withdraws! But I can’t believe they would happen over two months after my last pill?? Has anyone else had this?? I’m a very active person but feel shocking this week ☹️

  90. I’ve been on Sertraline 50 mg for 3 weeks and 3 days. I’m so dehydrated. Hate it. I want to stop. What do I do to get off this crap. I’m 66 and a breast cancer survivor. Doc prescribed for my worrying about recurrence. Help please.

  91. This is amazing. I just got off sertraline myself and am experiencing some terrible withdrawals, especially for a drug that is ‘non-addictive’. I sent this to my whole family I love it so much and you have amazing writing skills. Thankyou for taking the courage it must’ve took to write and post this!!

  92. Thanks so much for sharing, this site is really valuable. I put my son on sertraline after he himself asked for a doctor as he was depressed and sad all the time. I have deep mistrust of psychiatrists but agreed to the pills at first 50 then 100mg. I felt we had no choice and no one to advise as family are useless unsupportive and in fact mentally abusive. My son is only 16. I really hate this drug it has been only roughly 3 months but he’s had nausea cramps terrible headaches with one episode of his temples bulging out at the sides. Severely messed up his sleeping he’s missing so much school I now have the doctor saying he’s got to switch to something else but I’m very afraid now and want him off completely. I just want to work out his feelings with regular counseling which we never tried consistently due to it being too expensive. I am unhappy with psychiatrist who was told all this and knew of my fear of meds for my teenager yet who insisted it was fine to take it and he could stop anytime if necessary, and he also didn’t want us to do Counselling but wait first as he wanted to see how the drug worked. At first it appeared to relieve him but then with all the awful symptoms he has now and still his anger issues haven’t disappeared I’m thinking it was just the placebo effect. I don’t trust this doctor anymore as he never inquires after us never checks back on how he’s doing unless I write or call to ask advice. I’m wondering if anyone here on this forum knows if being on sertraline as a teenager for 3 or 4 months then trying to wean off is dangerous for my son, and how should he do it? I’m afraid to ask doctor as he makes me feel stupid like I’m a fussy Mom when indeed all I want is safety for my son. Please advise and thanks so much to everyone for any perspectives you share.

  93. Hi Anna,

    I am starting my tapering. I wanted to see where you are at now as it is 2019. This was the following message I sent to a forum that sums up what I am experiencing:

    Hi my people, wanted some advice if anyone has experience.

    I have been taking antidepressants / anti anxiety meds for the last 4 years pretty consistently and I want to successfully come off for good. I am highly sensitive as it is and in the last two months I’ve been trying to taper off of sertraline specifically. The physical / mental symptoms have been sort of confusing to distinguish / handle.

    I don’t really know if I can trust my psychiatrist at this point he just sees it as “you were feeling better when you were at a higher dose and now you’re at a lower dose and you feel worse so go back to the high dose”. And is telling me I’m relapsing.

    Basically I can’t tell what’s going on, what’s effecting me if I have the flu or if I’m withdrawing, if this is temporary or if I’m relapsing. I’d like to think I can tell myself what is needed to be aware of what my body is experiencing at this time. A mind over matter approach I guess?

    I understand I may need the medication, i also understand this current phase of my life may not be the best time (I’m going to be moving to a dif apartment soon) / my doctor said summer is a better time to do so (I live in Chicago). I just 100 percent do not want to be on the meds when I have kids someday but that won’t be for 5+ more years. I just felt it would be more difficult the longer I wait.

    Please let me know what thoughts you guys have if any! Success stories or advice from your own experience / what you’ve seen. Thanks all much love

  94. Thank you for posting this story and I’m sorry to hear about the ordeal that you have been through. These doctors that recommend these drugs have no idea the damage that they do to the body and how they really make the root of the problem even worse. They fail to consider basic tenets of health like the gut microbiome and common root causes of anxiety and depression like chronic inflammation and nutritional deficiencies, problems which these drugs make worse. Sertraline hydrochloride should seriously be illlegal. There is a better way.

  95. Thank you so much for writing this. As weird as it sounds I found comfort knowing I’m not crazy or alone. I had tears going down my face as you described every way that I’m feeling myself. Thank you.

  96. I’ve been taking sertraline for 3 weeks. I no longer want to as i’ve since done research into them and don’t feel the side affects are worth it and don t want to be stuck on something that i don’t really need. I have anxiety but manage it well at the moment.Am i likely to still have withdrawal symptoms after such a short period of time?

  97. I have been on 150mg of Sertraline per day, for about 6 years! Today I decided I wanted to begin the tapering process. So the pharmacist suggested dropping to 100mg per day to start, and we will review in one months time.
    After reading all of this, im now terrified! Have I made the wrong decision!!

  98. I stopped taking Serdep 50mg basically a generic of Sertraline. I was on it for 20 odd years after post natal depression. I tried once or twice to stop taking but felt horrible so just went back on. Nearly 2 months off and there are some good things and bad things. Good is that I finally feel like my brain has come out of hibernation. I have energy and can think.Bad is that I feel emotionally unstable. I feel rage at the slightest issues. I went to a homeopath who said it is just me getting familiar with emotions again. For 20 years I have felt like a zombie. Emotionally numb. Have battled to sleep and am trying nowtrying to wean off Alzam … OMG this is basically new age valium and highly addictive. My GP never warned me about this.
    I do not trust doctors much. For them it’s too easy to write a script rather than actually ask questions. I’m supplementing with fish oil, B12, multivitamins and magnesium and overall thinking the pros outweigh the cons.
    Thanks to everyone who has commented it makes one feel less alone.

  99. Hi all,
    I literally googled serta weaning being the cause of my anxiety. I haven’t been this anxious in a long time. About a month ago I stopped Sertra after going off it and weaning myself. I’ve been on sertra for about 4 years now, highest dose was 150mg, I started at 16 I am now 21. I have OCD thought related and I wasn’t correctly diagnosed until 16. I’ve been through hell, I’ve put my mom through hell.
    After four years of being relatively anxiety free with the odd trigger, CBT helped tremendously. I thought that Serta had done nothing. I was so so wrong, my anxiety now after so many years is killing me. I’m trying to write and study exams and I can’t focus my mind is in a constant loop with my thoughts. i have vertigo and I am constantly irritated and aggressive, my social anxiety has improved but doing public speaking has been bringing me down.
    I am terribly sad that I was given Sertra by an old psychiatrist and that was it. I wish I had never done that and I would’ve liked an alternative or natural stuff. I feel like I may never go off it, I was trying so hard to prove a point that I was ‘cured’ of anxiety.
    The fact is that I can’t actually go off it, I have to understand it’s a chemical imbalance and that serta is the supplement.
    I am so tired of it, it’s so exhausting.
    This post was really a blessing, it’s always terrifying why you can’t understand where anxiety is coming from, and often it just pops up out of the blue, know I know it’s the discontinuation. Thank you for this, you’ve helped relieve me of that, I’m sure you know how it feels.
    I’m going back on serta and I will see how I go, I don’t think I’m ready to stop.
    I’m actually crying as I type this, I never cry but this has been terribly hard.

    Again, thank you.

  100. Hi All

    Thankyou Anna Your story really touched me hope your well, I am 47 and have been on various antidepressants over the past 25 years, I have been on Trazodone and Mirtazapine for the past 10 years I am 3 months off Trazodone and down to 3.75mg Mirtazapine to say it has been emotionally and mentally testing is putting it lightly wow.
    Anyways after a little slip. The doctor decided to put me on Sertraline 50mg 2 1/2 weeks ago no real results as of yet just insomnia,nervousness,feeling edgy,very self aware and no food, was going to come off doctor said this is normal after first starting,give it a chance,im not sure what to do for the best.
    The thing is I was near enough clean of antidepressants just on a crumb of Mirtazapine and was feeling the best I have felt in years sleeping well which I have not done for many a year I was just feeling normal the madness was fading could think at my own will,nice and calm not perfect but getting very close to peace of mind.
    It had been a real battle getting to that position,broke me many a time to get there, just not sure what to do now for the best,trust in the doctor or jump off the sertraline now.
    I try and explain the prolonged and debilatating agony involved with these drugs to my family and they can`t comprehend it,just look at me as if I am puddled.They say maybe best to do as doctor says, trust in the doctor.They said that in the victorian times,when they would prescribe heroin for a cough or give it to a baby to help with teething problems,and same in the 20th century with valium.
    Been sad but relieving reading all of your stories knowing your not alone helps. Thankyou.

  101. Thank you so much for posting this. I was wondering if I was the only person going through this with this so-called “harmless” SSRI. Sertraline is “supposed” to be one of the lesser intrusive SSRI’s. I had previously taken Effexor over the past few years t deal with work stress. I had taken Paxil years ago for depression and had lasted years free of any meds. I had a nightmare getting off the Effexor last year. When mild depression and anxiety set back in, my physician and I decided on Zoloft as a mellow alternative. What a surprise: it made me more anxious and more depressed. The only response I got was to be patient and increasing the dosage. That was not the solution. I finally staged down and tapered my dosage over the past 2 months which has been hell but I am hopeful I am over the worst part. Finally getting semi- decent sleep and started a program to personal recovery. Thank you so much for validating my experience. I wish you well.

  102. Im 28 ive been on sertraline since 2011.. a LONG time.. 100mg.. ive not had them now for 4 daya due to my doctors messing up… my withdrawals are horrendous. I have two kids under 5 and i just feel like the worst human. Im so sick and have the zaps. Lethargic. Leg pains just feel like an empty shell of pure pain…. i need help. I feel so alone and not me anymore. What do i do??? My tablets will be ready tommorrow…. i know il be ‘normal’ when i take them in other words. Function. I just feel so mislead by doctors and pharma. Please help. Im 28 female and i just want to be a good mum and human again its such a horrible feeling

  103. Hi,
    I just started taking the medication a week ago. And I don’t like it. I’m thinking in stopping before is too late. Would i still experience the withdrawal symptoms?

  104. I can’t believe the amount of comments on here just as I was feeling so lost with no one who would understand. I’ve been on sertraline for 5 years and started tapering off 3 weeks ago. We did one day on the tablets, two days off then each week increased – so one day on 3 days off and when it got to four days off, the symptoms really got a lot worse. Serious irritability and getting so angry at the smallest things, terrible dizziness/vertigo, ok one minute and full of rage the next, no appetite, depression again and it got worse today where I started to have small suicidal thoughts followed by 2 hours of crying and sadness. I’ve had two days where I’ve not been able to work, one being today. I called the doctor (mine is on holiday so I had a different lady) who was lovely and told me to go slower and have 3 days off but I’m thinking it needs to be slower again. The side effects are absolutely awful. The loss of appetite I can deal with, but the anger and sadness and crazy switching between the two is confusing and painful. My boyfriend has been so supportive but it’s starting to weigh him down. After one of my outbursts I feel so horrible and apologise profusely but it gets old. It’s so nice to find a place with support like this. It was only two hours ago I was sat by the water on my walk to work crying and feeling completely lost.
    Will my symptoms ease and does anyone know/think I should take it slower?

  105. I have been off of Sertraline for 3 weeks now after being on for 11 years.
    Oh god, does the UTI symptoms ever go away?
    I literally have to pee every 10 minutes and it feels like my bladder is on fire.

  106. Doctors often prescribe Prozac to help transition off of Zoloft and the other short acting agents. Prozac has a much longer half life and helps to eliminate the discontinuation syndrome.

  107. I’m so emotional after reading this because although I didn’t take sertraline for longer than a few days because it interacted badly with Busprione, another SSRI, and the effect it had on my system has left me spent, sick, with a racing heart and thinking I was doomed. I thought I was alone in this. I have thought that my pounding heart means I’m about to die, at 39 and with so much to do still. Leaving a loving husband and a family that loves me. An ECG and blood work saying my heart is fine didn’t even convince me. I have been struggling with anxiety attacks that last for several days. Feeling utterly paralyzed. But after reading this, I know part of it is sertraline withdrawal and I feel like I can breathe again. This shall pass. I’m not ill. I’m not mad. I just some obstacles to overcome. Thanks for sharing your story, Anna. You’re story has helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you so so much.

  108. Reading these just goes to show how we humans vary – and how medicine treats as as identical for their ‘purposes’.
    I have been on Sertraline for over 5 years at 100mg and have tried to come off it several times. I have never experienced any of the physical symptoms – dizziness, headache, etc just tended to get very upset about things again and for my family’s sake restarted. My mother died suddenly of a heart attack in 2010 and my family all rejected me and mine for no given reason. I am also in bed, in pain and on oxygen 24/7 and a few weeks ago I heard that my estranged younger sister had died of breast cancer in her 50s . BUT I am doing an online course in CBT. Anyway I have now had to stop – and will not go back on Sertraline – as my Respiratory Consultant says it has been linked to sleep apnea – stopping breathing when asleep! I tapered to 50mg then 25mg – using my trusty pill-cutter! – and have been off it for 10 days. I had one day with a headache on day 5 and no dizziness, nausea or sleep problems. On day 10 I got rather upset about a practical issue. But we go on and I have noticed how much more empathetic I now am – I cry at tragedies in the news and watching the horrific films on the recent anniversary of the Battle of Midway for example. SSRIs do make one cold and uncaring to an extent and it is good to be back in the real world in that respect rather than apart. I hope this helps – listen to your brain/body and hang on in there as not being on this drug must be better in the long run. Also it would be Citalopram that my GP would put me on given the possible link between Sertraline and sleep apnea…

  109. Hi,

    I have been on Sertraline for only 6 weeks and don’t feel like they are helping me at all, infact i feel more depressed and low with absolutly no energy and have gained a bit of weight. I started with 50mg and have no gone up to 100mg. After reading these posts i want to stop taking them all together. I know its early days but i consider myself lucky to have discovered this forum so early on. I would really appreicate anyones opinion on how i should ween myself off them? Should i just stop taking them cold turkey, as its only been 6 weeks or how should i do this?
    Thank you!

    • Been on. Sertraline for only 4 weeks ..10 days off .. can’t sleep for more than 3 hours .. whole body aches … feeling numb

  110. I was on sertraline, clonazepam and alprazolam for over a two month span, on and off, and I’m also a marijuana smoker. Of all these things i mentioned the marijuana helped me the most except i had to cut it off due to swallowing issues (that’s under control now). But going back to the cocktail, i was prescribed by a psychiatrist the sertraline and clonazepam, actually the sertraline was prescribed to me by my primary doctor, who also encouraged me to get tested for ALS because of the swallowing issue (great seed to plant in the head of a depressed individual). I took a 25mg once, hated it. So i self prescribed xanax, at least they’d help me sleep, and went back on the marijuana. After a visit to the psychiatrist i was put on a dose of 50mg sertraline daytime and 1mg of clonazepam at night. At first I thought ok I’ll do this and see how it goes. Didn’t go well at all. I was switching back and forth between the clonazepam and the alprazolam, the sertraline was making me too stupid and sleepy, so started taking both sertraline and clonazepam at night. My days were a blur. I didn’t wanna do anything. After my pills were done i had no refills and i said ok, time to cut it off. Now I’m going on 3 weeks since i took my last doses of sertraline and clonazepam. Caught a cold or so i thought, then Insomnia took over. Few days later my calves and every other muscle is twitching nonstop. Went back on the alprazolam just so i could get rest. I even started smoking marijuana again. Making my twitches even worse. Depression and anxiety came back with a vengeance. Although i had been tested for ALS and all came back normal now i swear that that’s what i have, but it makes no sense to me. What makes sense is that I’m on withdrawal from the mix of pills and weed, plus drinking on too of it all. Had the brain zaps, too, but those are gone now. The twitches, however, drive me off the wall, and consume my mind with malignant thoughts of diseases i may or may not have. Even thought i feel strong and active some days i have zero energy, and it worries me. After reading this article i can assure myself that I’m indeed going thru withdrawals, i see many people here going thru the same. I am determined to stay off all medication and go the natural way, let my body and mind heal and continue praying that I’ll be close to normal again one day. Glad to see I’m not alone. Note to self: sometimes the solution is worse than the problem.

  111. I have been taking 25 mg. of Zoloft for about 16 years. I started when I had postpartum depression after my first kid. really just needed Progesterone but my ex husband who is a monster and is on so many different antidepressants wanted me on the pills. He said he would leave me if I didn’t take them. Well, I should have said, then go. instead I took the Zoloft which led me to other drugs because of the side effects of Zoloft. Over the years I have tried to get off the drug about 9 times. I failed every time. a few weeks after the last dose I always felt like I was going crazy and got back on. I read this book, wish I could remember the name, but the guy won a Nobel prize for writing it. He talks about how SSRI’s are the most dangerous drugs on the market. They destroy your brains ability to function on its own. He said if you have been on them for over one year then your telomeres are shrunk forever and you won’t be able to come back from that. Zoloft has never helped me. it just made me dependent on a drug with lots of side effects. Now I have finally decided no matter what the consequences I will get off this horrendous drug. I am at 12 mg. no matter how I am feeling I will never get back on an SSRI. I am taking one mg a day of Ativan to help me with this. I wish I could take 2 mg of Ativan a day for awhile but my dr. and all doctors are afraid of opioids even though I have noooo history of any kind of addiction except the Zoloft. Many doctors have told me that if I can’t get off of it then I must need it. Such a scam and a lie. the truth is that SSRI’S were never made for mental problems. They just decided to use it for that purpose. Its a scam from the pharmaceutical companies. don’t fall for it. wish me luck.

  112. Hey is anyone expririencing restlessness and heart palpitations coming off zoloft? Im withdrawing for around a month now and now my restlessness started up and sometimes i have heart palpitations. The other effects ppl have mentioned are happening too but i wanna see if people cab relate to these ones. 🙁

  113. Thank you Cam! What you said has been so very helpful! I’ve been on Sertroline for 11 years now. And not necessarily because I NEED it, but because of the intense withdrawals. I explained this to my doctor, so her solution was to deny my symptoms telling me they are all in my head, that I have depression, anxiety and OCD, and she UPPED my dosage. So defeating😔 But I AM OVER IT. I’ve been weaning off for about 5 months now from 150mg to 25mg now. I’m trying to go slowly, but the closer I get to zero, the worse my symptoms (physically, psychologically, emotionally) get. I’m frustrated that I trusted my doctor and the system to help me. So I am taking the control from my docs and doing this myself….with a lot of prayer also. Who better to heal me than the Creator of me!?
    Suggestion: I have been reading a book called “Switch on your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health”. Please read it!!! I’ve also been taking 5-HTS Plus. It’s a natural supplement for mood and relaxation. It contains B6, B12, Calcium, Magnesium, Griffonia Simplicifolia seed and Inositol. I take one in the AM and one in the PM. I’ve also been exercising every morning. Helps get my jitters, anxiety, stiff muscles, electrical current feeling running through my body, heavy thumping heart, negative thoughts, feeling of incapability out.
    Oh this is so hard and I don’t know when I’ll feel “normal” again. But our bodies are designed to heal. We are more powerful than we give ourselves credit for. We can do this together!

  114. And thank you Ana for sharing your story❤️ It takes people like you to get the ball rolling and lead people to the proper resources for help and healing.

  115. Hello,

    I took sertraline for just 3 and a half weeks. It was causing weakness, nausea, no appetite, no energy, hot flashes/burning sensations at night. I thought it was a virus or something. I also seem to have this tickle cough after I eat or drink sometimes. So I stopped cold turkey. Immediately the hot flashes at night disappeared. I thought that was a good sign. But i guess not. I’ve been off for about two weeks now and I don’t know what to do or think anymore. I feel horribly ill most of the time with some tiny windows of being ok. I’m paranoid about everything that my body does like peeing or digestive health. It’s affecting my life and watching my baby girl grow up. I’m in hell. I’m not smart enough to know what to do or what helps. Any suggestions? Thank you.

    • I have been on both medication for not two week but 2 months given by my PD.But I dont want to continue it as I think I have side effects from the meds.After tapering im having digestion problem.Trying my best to stay strong in mind.Kindly reply

  116. I’ve read nearly all the responses on here and it’s telling how it appears that worst sufferers of withdrawal are those who stopped anti depressents abruptly or those who did a very quick taper. There is a significantly important article I read by the NY Times which challenge the prevailing narrative on what tapering should entail in terms of duration and dosage. It seems the best form of tapering, which avoids many of the side effects listed, is that which takes take place over several months or even years and where the final dosage comes down to 1/40th of the maximum amount of medication the user was on. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2019/03/05/health/depression-withdrawal-drugs.amp.html

    I’ve been on setraline for around 3 months now at a very low dosage of 25mg and am keen on coming off it. Its worked well at treating anxiety I developed after my wife developed cancer. However, I do believe that the combination of CBT, exercise and healthy eating should be sufficient for me to manage my anxiety and I intend to use the next three months to under take a tapering of setraline which will see a reduction of around 2mg per week for the next 12 weeks. However, if I feel that a change in dosage leads to increased mental issues – such as brain zaps which I experienced after drinking on setraline for successive days – then I’ll just extend the duration of the taper. Setraline is not a perfect drug but I often feel that the negativity many are experiencing with the medication is due to poor medical advice by physicians on the duration it takes to actually work and the associated period the tapering process should take. Strongs to all out there and just remember that when you feel at you worst, know that it will eventually get better. Be patient and kind to yourself

  117. I was taking 200mg zoloft while in the military. Recently got out about a month ago struggled for a few weeks but working out helped a lot. So I was thinking its time to get off it and its been tough. at first i felt nothing but after like 3 days I got this left chest pain and feel fatigued all day. Can barely workout or do anything that makes me feel good. Just feel tired all the time and my chest does hurt, not sure if that’s normal? So today I gave in and started taking zoloft again. I feel bad, but with the stress of current world stuff going on I just don’t know if this is a good time to try to stop taking my meds. I would just randomly cry out of nowhere and that sucked too. Woke up the last 2 days just crying. is that normal for withdrawals? I’ve never gone through it so just curious

  118. Hi I’ve been on sertraline 50ml for 3 years,I didn’t know when the doctor gave it to me for stress that you would get withdrawal symptoms if you ever come off it,the reason I stopped it was because I had trouble getting it as I was working and did my prescription online but they changed the website so I did it wrong in that time I had gone 2 weeks without it and then the withdrawals set in my leg was shaking going downstairs I’ve had blurred vision felt drunk when I was going to work,had really bad anxiety unbearable at times really bad fear and panic also crying sometimes and feeling really low, extreme fatigue aches and pains,bladder urgency all the time it’s now been 4 months and 2 weeks and I’m praying it will just go away it’s horrible but there is one thing I won’t do and that’s go back on sertraline ever again I just wish I could turn back time,and I just wish I would of looked it up online before I took this horrible drug because I would not have taken it in the first place my heart goes out to everyone on here because I know what your going through and I’m just wishing there is an end to this I’ve tryed drinking loads of water and taking vitamins and minerals but seems to make me worse does anyone know on here what would help me get through this your help would be much appreciated.

    • I’m in the same boat as you.
      I came off zoloft in october 2019 and things have just been getting progressively worse ever since.
      The bladder and bowel dysfunction have made it so that i cannot leave my house and my anger and irritability have made things hard on my family.
      I was on zoloft for 12 years and now 7 months after stopping i have yet to experience a window.

  119. Hi Anna I think it’s really good that you have written your story as I’m going through all them symptoms that your experiencing and it’s really hard and I was just wondering if there is anything you had taken to get you through that’s really good to take and how long did it take you to get better,your help would be really appreciated.

  120. I have been reading all stories about Zoloft (Sertraline) which were all interesting and educating.

    Male/38, I have been on Sertraline for 4 months although I did not have any anxiety or depression, wondering, why my GP prescribed in the first place. However, I abruptly stopped taking the med last month, exactly 30 days from now. I don’t have any complications, headaches, brain zaps, or nothing at all. The only thing I feel is a sexual dysfunction which is really frustrating for me because I was sexually active. One month from quitting the medication, should I restart it and tapper it gradually or stay the same to recover? Please share your experience and offer me any advice and suggestion. Thanks in advance

  121. Hi everyone-
    I recently tapered off Zoloft after being on it (75mg/day) for 10 months due to severe PPD. I took my last pill on July 16th. It’s been 11 days without the meds and I still have brain zaps, headaches and irritability. However the last three days, I’ve had terrible digestive issues. Has anyone experienced this? I found it strange for this to start 11 days later. My taper schedule was 75/50 rotation for two weeks, then 50mg for two weeks, then 50/25 for two weeks and then 25mg for another two weeks and then I stopped.

    Just looking for some hope that these symptoms will eventually resolve. Take care everyone.

    • Hey Lisa, guess what? My symptoms also started right after 11 days. I took my last dose of 6.25mg of Sertraline on Sept 16 and I didn’t have much trouble with it until now my legs have gone numb and I feel pain in them, I feel nausea and anxiety. Have no idea what to do. Did your symptoms improve since you last posted on 28th July? If they did, please do let me know as I desperately need help to get rid of this once and for all and move on with my life. Thanks

        • No Ally sadly I’m having the worst of the withdrawal for the last 10 days. My anxiety is at peak and this is all due to the withdrawal. What about you did you lose your symptoms? My heightened anxiety is uncontrollable, leading me to panic attacks. I have no idea what to do. How long will it take before my symptoms end and subsides forever and I become normal again?

  122. Iv been wondering why I’m feeling the way I do. Muscle tension, extreme dry mouth and eyes, itchy all over, not feeling, ringing in my ears, teeth hurt, clinch my teeth often, metallic taste, …I take several medicines and the only thing that changed was taking generic Zoloft for 3 days cause they didn’t have brand. Iv been on brand name for years! Generic hasn’t helped me in the past but I took it those 3 days because I thought surely the active ingredient would be good to have.
    It’s been 4 weeks and the symptoms started happening like 2 weeks ago. Guessing it might be the inactive ingredients in generic
    glycerin, alcohol (12%), menthol, butylated (BHT)

  123. Lads and Ladies, I can assure you that psychiatry is the enemy of mankind and either they have sold their souls for a few cents, or they’re extremely incompetent and ineligible to practice medicine OR they just gamble and speculate with our lives by prescribing poisonous medicines like Sertraline (SSRI) without clinical trial. Even if they do run clinical trials and know that these medicines can destroy one’s life, they’d still put us on those since they’d trade money for lives. But this is not the time to lose hope or despair, in fact, it’s time for a revolution after all our tears have turned into rage. I had already been going through hell and struggling with extreme throat burning (whenever I speak) due to acid reflux, before I took this medicine to make things worse, assuming it would help me with my throat problem, huh!. Fortunately, upon suffering through the withdrawal symptoms, I came across this post, and I’m glad I only took this medicine for only a mere period of 3 months, but nevertheless, it has made me think about committing suicide over no less than ten times! I can’t thank the heavens enough for making me come off this poison within a few months. I don’t know what would have happened had I been on it for a few years as I already struggle with a lot of reflux issues, causing symptoms directly in my throat as a result. It’s been a week since I had my last reduced sertraline dose of 6.25mg (more or less). I can’t tell you guys what I’m going through, and as to make things worse, not only my newly-earned symptoms, provided by this so-called bloody medicine, made things worse but the symptoms I already had, have been exacerbated by the withdrawal of this medicine. My throat never burned with this consistency before I took this futility. My only hope is for these symptoms to disappear so I could then focus on my pre-existing symptoms. I’d like all of you to post an update regarding your current condition and how you’re dealing with the withdrawal symptoms, even if you tapered off of it safely by following the adequate procedure. We have to warn everyone who could potentially be a candidate for these butchers(doctors) to target and we have to raise our voices so the supply of this poison gets halted.

  124. The story is well written and I can truly relate to some of the side effects of taking Zoloft. In December 2019, my marriage abruptly ended. I was an emotional wreck so I began counseling in January followed by my PCP prescribing Sertaline/Zolft in Feb 2020 as I wasn’t making much progress. March 2020 I lost my job of 13 years and for a day I thought I was going to insane. I had never lost a job and I was drowning in student loan debt. Let’s back track to Feb 2020 I also had a horrific UTI, something I had only encountered twice in my life. To date, the UTI’s are still on going, coupled by awful vaginal odor and some weight gain. I won’t blame the Zoloft on the weight gain as I am a foodie and Covid had me paranoid to even leave the house. I’ve seen the GYN, PCP and Urologist for all of them to tell me I’m fine. BS!! I never had vaginal odor, and frequent urges to urinate combined with discomfort until I started this drug. So after working Google over time, I decided to discontinue the Sertraline. Well today Oct 30, 2020 I have stopped taking the drug for 6 days and I have had the worse headache lasting longer than 2 days, the vaginal odor is some what better but I’m crying a lot again and not sleeping much. Not to mention my pet is dying so needless to say I’m stressed. I don’t want to take the Zoloft as I feel it’s the cause of some of my recent issues but I am depressed again. This forum has given me some hope as there are others who share a similar experience. Any suggestions how to proceed without going back on?

  125. Glad I found this website. I have been experiencing intense sleepiness, lethargy, and neurological pain. I thought it was age-related stuff in my tendons, but the reports I’ve been reading is this medication has a huge cluster of withdrawl symptoms. My shoulders and arms tingle like they’re waking up. Not quite off it but have reduced from 200 mg daily (4 years) and am now down to 50 mg daily. A psychiatrist on telemedicine gave guidance to come off, and she had me half it daily, but the symptoms of withdrawl were severe (panic attacks like I couldn’t get a full breath of air), nerve pain, longer than normal sleep periods. I’ll be off sooner than later and will glad to be off it. It created more negative than positive results for me. It created a cycle of unneccary problems I could have done without. But I’m in the final titration stretch and feeling hopeful!

  126. 4 weeks on 25mg setraline cause I was having chest tightness, and four weeks tapering very slowly, and now 6 weeks OFF setraline and I have been non stop depersonalized. I live in a dream like state , never had this before the drug, I started having it 4-5 days after starting the drug and kept getting worst. At this point even though 6 weeks off, it is so bad that feels like literally I am going crazy. I ll not mention the physical symptoms since they are manageable and have subsided, but all I think all day is if the depersonalization/brain disconnection/loosing my mind feeling doesn’t go away, I can not keep living like this. It’s pure hell. I envy all of you having to deal with other symptoms but not depersonalization. Doctors will of course not acknowledge it is due to the drug but it is actually mentioned as a rare side effect. I am 42 never taken medicines before, always been a happy , active person, and after such a sort time in setraline I don’t even know if I ll recover to be able to take care of my two lovely boys 5 and 8. After 6 weeks off this drug without much of improvement I don’t think I ll recover. And no one believes it’s the drug but I know it is. At the end it doesn’t make any difference who believes what, I suffer beyond a human can’t take… my only hopes are in God now….

  127. So beautifully written, I was on lexapro for 8 years after being severely bullied and then prozac for 2.5 years after an abusive relationship and decided I was done when I met my fiancé and wanted kids. I was a horrendous mess for 8 months and still struggle to this day (almost a year later). My psychiatrist tried to put me back on Paxil to help my “incurable anxiety” and it helped but I felt like a zombie so I stopped that one as well. I refuse to try anything else, you are not alone. I still haven’t found anything to help with insomnia (still having to take seroquel but don’t want to be on it anymore either but can’t sleep without it, it’s a catch 22).

  128. Just wow!! I sat here for an hour or So , to read through every comment , this is one of the scariest things I have ever read but what scares me more than that not one person who, reported back that everything has subsided and return back to normal , is it the drug? Is it the person? How could each and every person experience such extreme side effects and no one report back that there is an end to this madness? People dealing with with drawl symptoms post one year??? Most of the things that I read if it doesn’t subside within a few months then it’s likely your original symptoms have returned ,not side effects. I have a teenager on 175 mg For a year ,about to turn 18 and I am deathly afraid that he will be stuck on the stuff forever but now I’m even more afraid of what is going to be like if he tries to get off this dreadful medication. How can I have any confidence sending him off to college if he tries to get off this while he’s away at school this is a freaking nightmare please tell me that this is going to be OK

  129. I have been off and on Paxil, sertraline for ten years after Ptsd from combat took over my life at the end of service. So I will note my feelings and observations. I am currently withdrawing for a third time each time before this falling back into the psychiatric loop. My observations:

    FELLING HUNGOVER – Remember when you wake up after a night of drinking nerves cold and freezing hot?

    EAR RINGING – I have been blown up a few times I have tinnitus this is like an aggravated version with ear canal fullness (like popping your ears and feel like you cant. Like waxy I guess.

    WOUND HEALING- I had a bone graft done the day before I ran outta meds I have had a bone graft before and felt achy before. But the hell of this closing and healing it has still not closed after two and a half weeks. I am having this pain seems to be aggravated by withdrawals like flu-like symptoms but no signs of infection or “Complications”.

    FUCKING HEART- Shortness of breath and heart palpitations, a mixture of anxiety, but so far more positive anxiety if that makes sense. I contribute this to a rush of nerve sensations (I have been medically suppressed from anxiety and depression for a while)

    COLD ASF – I cant get warm and when I do, I’m to hot this contributes to constant need to want to take hot showers and hot baths constantly.

    INDIGESTION AND STOMACH UNEASINESS- Due to increased withdrawal symptoms, I take pills (with plenty of water) still feel em in my throat… Maybe nerves.

    SLEEP DISORDER- Just realized after two weeks I have started to not get complete sleep while freezing hot.

    These are the worst things I am experiencing RIGHT NOW!

    However, I have experienced moments of complete fatigue that were satisfying because I believe the SERTRALINE AND HYDROXYZINE meds kept me from depressing to that state. This quickly subsided and now have insomnia.

    Will I continue? Fuck yeah! I am done feeling like shit every day, and then for weeks because I miss a day.. I am gonna continue this for myself. This may suck forever but I do feel a pep in my step and not so dormant.. I wish everyone an awesome recovery… We r together in unity of shittyness ugh lol Embrace the suck! We are more day closer to not feeling like this. Look up Paul Stametz I believe this is the way…wish the VA was up to speed… praying for you ALL!

  130. Many thanks to everyone that shared their experiences here. Reading your posts has been very helpful to me. I’ve been on 150 mg of Sertraline for 3 years due to experiencing high anxiety. Recently I decided that I’d like to try to come off the drug and reduced it by 25 mg per week. A week or so after taking the last dose I experienced chronic back & joint pain. This also impacted on my sleep and most nights I found myself waking up at 2am with my mind racing and having to get up and start work to take my mind off the anxiety. I went to the osteopath 3 times for treatment for my back and also visited my doctor / A&E for pain relief. Nothing worked and I thought I was going mad!! My depression also returned and my family & I noticed that I’d became very snappy at home so I decided to go back on 50 mg of Sertraline. That was 4 days ago and I’m amazed that all my previous pain / sleep problems have vanished!!! …. hence why I searched the internet & found this thread. As much as I’d love to come off Sertraline, I don’t want to experience the back pain & for my mood to impact on others. Therefore, I’m going to take a few months to regroup before deciding with my GP what to do next. Thanks everyone and best wishes to you all x

  131. Hi, I found this thread and I wanted to share my experience because it truly has me in a terrible place and I need some type of solace for it. I was on sertraline for about a year and half. I was prescribed this front my gynecologist for PMDD (pre-menstrual dysphoric disorder, and hormonal issues. I went from 25-50mg to 50-75mg based on the severity of my hormonal issues once my period date was coming close. I won’t lie, sertraline did work very well for me for that purpose. I was very evened out and much more under control for the first time in my life and it was nice to experience that. But, after some time I noticed I was gaining some weight and then more weight and it started to really bug my self confidence by a lot. I started to not feel so good about it anymore along with some other physical symptoms that damaged my well being. So, I made a pretty rash choice to taper myself without my doctor because I didn’t want to wait for my appointment with her to do it. I went from 50mg to 25mg for one week, to 12.5mg for another week. Then I stopped. 3 days later I started getting the typical brain zaps and other things that come along and those things have since gone. The one thing that hasn’t gone though that has been holding me hostage for almost two weeks now.. the headaches. I have never in my life experienced such excruciating head and neck pain. I don’t know how or why it works this way.. but I feel like I’ve sustained a concussion that just won’t quit. These headaches go from eh, to not good, to worse, to sometimes unbearable. And I’ve really tried everything. I suspected a sinus infection because it’s been pretty centralized in my sinuses.. steroids, antibiotics, excedrin, Tylenol, nasal spray, Sudafed, ice packs, etc. I’ve become extremely light and sound sensitive. I can only handle the tv for a short time. At night it is the worst. If I lay down, it’s awful. I try to sleep upright which helps, but it doesn’t help my neck. I’m wondering if it’s this discontinuation syndrome I’ve been reading about. But I can’t be sure. I’ve been struggling immensely. I don’t feel depressed or plagued by anything such as that.. but I’m getting to be very upset at the fact I can barely function from the headaches. I really wish they’d subside.. because it truly sucks! And who knows how long that will last. Based on everyone’s stories, it seems to vary. I’m feeling super defeated at all of this and I’d love to have some normalcy back. Sorry to all others on here who have experienced terrible symptoms due to thus medication. I wish you all the best!

  132. I found your account quite disturbing as I read every word sympathetically. After 2 years on 100mg Sertraline I am beginning my own tapper. I am in my second stage, stage 1, 100 down to 75mg, stage 2, 75mg to 50mg. This has been done over 2, 10 day tappers. My next stage will 75mg down to 62mg (approx) over a 1 month period and then follow that tapper monthly until I am on 0mg. I hope for a successful withdraw, as you did. I was fascinated by your account, but was not shocked by the account of the dismissive attitude of so called professionals, we know our bodies better than anyone. As I wish you all the best on your recovery and return to “normality” I also hope the best for my journey also. I am very interested in your success so please keep us updated, and this is extended to all the other people who have shared their journey via the comments in this thread. All the best to you all. Xxxxxxx

  133. This would explain so much with what is happening to me right now. I was on Sertraline for a good many years. My psychiatrist was tapering me off of it. Then my Rx for it expired and I didn’t push for a new one. Big mistake. October was not a fun month for me.

  134. Finding this thread has been a Godsend.
    I am on about week 3 of quitting zoloft cold turkey and was looking for hope. I have been on zoloft (various dosages up to 150mg) and wellbutrin combo -on and off for last 10 years and found at times it really helped me during phase before I started period and, to help me get through a difficult job situation….as well as a series of miscarriages. I decided I wanted to try to come off of medication because I was tired of feeling numb, disassociate, apathetic. I wanted my range of feelings back and have decided that I am willing to weather the storm of what is to come in order to be “me” again….sensitive, emotional, empathetic, at times hot headed “me”. So here we go, I am having headaches, pelvic pain, severe lower back pain, teeth pain, sound sensitivity, lack of energy and motivation…. crying more then I have in awhile and bouts of extreme irritability. I am married and have 2 boys, youngest 13….who I am most concerned about effecting. But after reading all if your stories and experiences, I feel so validated and just know that I have got to get through the muck of withdrawal no matter what….and commit to be free of meds. I have hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and will use that hope to carry me through. There are gaps of light that I’m experiencing, even though most days are not symptom free…. yes, I’m crying more than usual (but fuck guys…the world is a sad place right now and I think that’s actually a natural reaction no?) BUT I’m also laughing more than I have in awhile…. genuine, uncontrollable, laughter when I find something funny. I feel more back “in my mind” with each day that passes.
    I have not had a libido in a very long time and while that hasn’t come back…. that’s one of the things that I’ve decided to endure this fight for….
    I just never questioned whether the meds were doing more harm then good or if it would be difficult to stop…but I’m glad I found this forum to know I’m not alone. I want to send everyone in the forum a big thank you for sharing…and a hug and love to anyone reading this. I pray that relief is in our future and that by reading all these stories a seed of hope and community has been planted in you as it has in me. This struggle is real….and it’s hard as fuck. Life is hard. Praying that with the pain and suffering you get little moments of beauty and peace as well.

  135. I’m so glad I found this page. I’ve been feeling so awful the last few weeks whilst I got through Sertraline withdrawal. I’ve been taking it for 8 years (long history of anxiety and depression with various medications, but this is was my first time on Sertraline and by far the longest stretch I’ve ever taken medication). Since I started taking it I’ve not been asked back for a review one single time. 8 years on Sertraline without speaking to a single medical professional about my mental health. I went all those years ago, told them I needed something for my anxiety, went back two weeks later to adjust the dose and that’s it. Just keep getting the repeat prescriptions and taking the pills. Day after day after day…

    So when I recently really felt like it was time to come off them (I was just feeling so numb and flat and not like myself anymore. Complete apathy and no emotions either way), I did it myself. I did the right thing and reduced my dose over a long time before eventually stopping. But I was not expecting these withdrawal symptoms. Insomnia but crazy dreams when I do manage to sleep, severe lightheadedness and vertigo, nausea, headaches, body aches and pains, restless legs, crying constantly etc. But the anger is like nothing I’ve ever felt in my life. The slightest thing makes me a snap and become so aggressive. I can’t control it. It’s horrible. I know I wanted to feel something but this was really not what I meant 🙄

    I’m actually so scared that this has the possibility to go on for much longer.

Leave a Reply