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Thread: First timer - questions about sertraline?

  1. #1
    CharlieJackpot
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    First timer - questions about sertraline?

    I've been struggling with depressive moods for years, and after a few weeks of near-crisis I finally plucked up the courage to see someone about it today.

    I saw the nurse practitioner who prescribed 100mg sertraline daily and made a referral to counselling. She admitted she didn't know a lot about mental health but has given me a month's worth of meds to try while I wait for my referral.

    After coming away and reading up a little on sertraline I'm getting a bit worried - is 100mg ok to start with? Lots I've read says 50mg is more usual, and side effects might be more likely with the higher dose?

    I'm also worried about some of the side effects I've read about, mainly how the meds affect sexual function. One of the main problems I've had for years is very low sex drive, and this has caused major issues in my relationship (I'm female btw). I've always assumed this had something to do with my moods and anxiety, but I'm worried that sertraline will make this much worse.

    I realise I should speak with my doctor about this, but I'd have to pluck the courage back up and I'm sat at work now worrying! Any thoughts or experiences would be very gratefully received

  2. #2
    Princess Sparkles Paula's Avatar
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    Hi and welcome

    I haven't used sertraline but plenty of members here have so will be able to let you know their experiences. Additionally, there's a section on the forum with information On this drug http://www.dealingwithdepression.co....eiw-Sertraline

    Try not to worry too much about the list of side effects. Every medication has long lists, and most are unlikely to happen to you. However, everybody reacts differently to meds so, if sertraline doesn't suit you, there are a myriad of other drugs to try.

    Finally, ADs can take up to 2 months to really begin to help, so it's not an overnight fix. All I can say is, talk to your family and friends and ask for support, be kind to yourself - if you need to rest, rest, and talking here will always help
    The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.

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  4. #3
    Boss Lady ;) Suzi's Avatar
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    I can completely agree with Paula.
    Hi and welcome to the group!
    Do a little of something that makes you happy every day!


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  6. #4
    Guardian of the North and kipper holder Angie's Avatar
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    Hi and welcome to DWD
    If you canít fly, then run, if you canít run, then walk, if you canít walk, then crawl, but by all means keep moving.
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  8. #5
    Hero Member rose's Avatar
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    ADs can cause problems with sexual function, but so can depression.
    Everyone is different but I can't say I've seen a difference with sexual function apart from the first few weeks (it can be more difficult to orgasm, for example, but that side effect seems to go away after a few weeks)

    50mg is usually the starting dose for sertraline as far as I know. If you start at 100mg you are more likely to feel side effects; that said if the nurse felt that you need a higher dose straight away then it might be best to give it a go.
    My suggestion is that you keep a simple diary of how you feel and go straight back to the doctor if you feel like you are getting worse; don't be afraid to seek support.

    I've been on Sertraline. It didn't actually work that well for me, but that said, that's why there are so many different ADs out there, because some work better for some and not others.

    Unless you were told otherwise, it would be best to take it in the morning.
    Welcome to DWD

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  10. #6
    CharlieJackpot
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    Hi everyone, thanks for the lovely welcome

    I think I'm probably worrying about taking the meds so much that I'm causing myself to feel worse than I really do. I think it's also made worse that the nurse didn't really tell me anything about them or discuss side effects or dosage with me, so as soon as I picked them up I immediately googled and found all these horror stories!

    I spent most of yesterday feeling sick and I've had a mega headache since last night, but I'm sure they can both be explained by the fact I've barely eaten for a few weeks and am worrying like mad.

    It's lovely to speak with people who get it - the only person who knows about this is my partner, although that's very rocky at the moment so we're not even speaking a great deal. I wouldn't even know how to begin talking to my family about it and I don't really see close friends enough to bring this up with them.

    Do people generally find that meds work better than talking therapies or vice versa, or a mixture of both? Is it usual to do both at the same time?

  11. #7
    Hero Member rose's Avatar
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    In my personal experience, therapy was useless at the beginning because I was so caught up in how I felt.
    The meds took the edge off in order for me to start thinking straighter again. Then I started doing some CBT on myself and went through NHS therapy which worked really well.
    Its really common to feel worried about taking a new medication. Remember that you will see horror stories online because people tend to talk more about the bad stuff than the bad stuff.
    Sertraline was the medication that I had the least side effects with. If you are worried about the dose then go back to the doctors. Have you taken your first dose yet?

  12. #8
    Princess Sparkles Paula's Avatar
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    With depression, a combined approach of meds and therapy is normal. As Rose says, the ADs give you some breathing space to start talking through how you feel, and how you can change the way you think. You'll probably find you'll have enough time for the ADs to start doing their job before you get your therapy appt.

    Wrt your oh, are the problems you're having because of the depression, or are they part of the trigger? A good resource to talk to family and friends is www.time-to-change.org.uk
    The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.

  13. #9
    Boss Lady ;) Suzi's Avatar
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    Do you know why things aren't great with your partner?
    Do a little of something that makes you happy every day!


  14. #10
    Hi there and welcome tp DWD.

    I have used sertraline in the past and I was started on 50mg and moved up to 200mg. I can only echo everything that Rose has said. I personally didfn't suffer any side effects when taking them, but everybody is different, and usually they will die down within approx. 2 weeks anyway.

    In regards to therapy, I tried that route before medication and it was a disaster. I actually felt worse than I started out but later when using AD's the therapy was more helpful.

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