Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 295150

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Re: Lexapro effects (and a few questions)

Posted by steve3211 on December 31, 2003, at 23:02:02

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects (and a few questions), posted by reluctant on December 31, 2003, at 19:42:12

> hi,
> (i'm new in these parts)
> I'm about to start lexapro myself. while I obviously can't tell you about my experiences with lexapro, I know from personal experience (and from hearing about many other experiences) that nausea & stomach upset is very common with the SSRIs. It should go away in time; meanwhile, what time of day are you taking it? if you take it at night you may be able to sleep through the worst of it. All depends on whether or not you can sleep on the stuff, I suppose. Also, you might try ginger.
>
> I'm switching to lexapro from zoloft, which i've been taking together with wellbutrin 200 mg. (The wellbutrin for one year, the zoloft for 2 months) While I'd taken zoloft in the past with good results & few bad effects, this time around it turned me into the Queen of Naptime, and wasn't really helping much at all besides to take away the temper that had begun to develop on the wellbutrin (can't bite people's heads off whilst sleeping, you know). So essentially it negated the bad effects of that drug, but also much of the good (more energy & spark). . . my pdoc seems to think that lexapro might do the trick. I am skeptical, but willing to give it a try. Has anyone out there made the zoloft-lexapro switch? anyone taking lexapro with wellbutrin (actually generic bupropion, I'm poor & no health insurance)? Suggestions on time of day, etc? I'd especially like to hear success stories: it's helpful to know about potential pitfalls & I'll welcome all advice, but too much exposure to other people's side effects sometimes leaves me very jumpy about every yawn, itch & stomach gurgle.
>
> - I avoided going back on medication for years & was doing sort of okay, but then last year things began to grow dark again & I couldn't pull myself out alone anymore. I became terrified that I would miss my entire life while wandering between "sort of okay" and "not at all okay" & so I'm finally accepting help where I can find it. I nearly lost my sister last year & it made me realize the urgency of winning this fight - we only get one shot at this life thing.
>
> take care.

Hey Reluctant,

This is the first med for me also, and it can be strange. I find that I have no appetite and I hate that and I also find that it is making me restless in the late afternoon. I take it in the evening around 7:30. The restlessness is a little worrisome and I wonder if I will ever be able to eat well again.
Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects (and a few questions)

Posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 8:53:26

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects (and a few questions), posted by steve3211 on December 31, 2003, at 23:02:02

Steve -

well, giving your doctor a call is probably not a bad idea. once upon a time i was put on prozac, and wasn't able to eat for two weeks & was "restless" to the nth degree - actually dangerously manic. you sound pretty in control of yourself - how're you feeling apart from the physical (if it's possible to make that separation)?

-r.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. steve3211

Posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 9:05:06

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects (and a few questions), posted by steve3211 on December 31, 2003, at 23:02:02

I just took my first 5 mg last night, so we'll see & compare notes. What's going to be in my side-effect grab bag? I could use a little appetite suppression (tho not THAT much) & nervous energy might beat utter sloth . . . I hope it works out for both of us. But, again, if the SEs are too much, at least talk to your doctor. Eating is important - and two weeks is a long time.

r.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by steve3211 on January 1, 2004, at 10:43:57

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. steve3211, posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 9:05:06

> I just took my first 5 mg last night, so we'll see & compare notes. What's going to be in my side-effect grab bag? I could use a little appetite suppression (tho not THAT much) & nervous energy might beat utter sloth . . . I hope it works out for both of us. But, again, if the SEs are too much, at least talk to your doctor. Eating is important - and two weeks is a long time.
>

Reluctant,
Right now I just drink a lot of protein shakes and eat when I can. Mornings are the worst. I am just into my second week which they say is the hardest part, but I dry heave like crazy every morning. Really starting to wonder if this is good for me I will be talking to my doctor tommorrow.
Steve
> r.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 16:12:29

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by steve3211 on January 1, 2004, at 10:43:57

Glad to hear you're going to see your doctor - let me know how it goes. dry heaves every morning sounds pretty wretched.

I had a hell of a time getting out of bed this a.m. - kept falling back into deep sleep - but once I did I felt ok. otherwise nothing to report. no news = good news? or, no news = no news, I guess.

r.

 

Re: Lexapro - Does sleepiness mean it's working? JohnFromCalifornia

Posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 16:27:28

In reply to Lexapro - Does sleepiness mean it's working?, posted by JohnFromCalifornia on December 31, 2003, at 19:21:13

John, it sounds like sleepiness is pretty common w/ lexapro & other ssris. of course, so is hyperactivity & insomnia, so go figure. you can get side effects of a medicine without it actually doing anything positive for you - so i would say that your sleepiness indicates that there's a drug in your system that makes you sleepy and may or may not do anything else. though, as you say, your energy is good once you're up and around, so give it time & see if your mood follows suit.

-r.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by Marietta on January 1, 2004, at 17:02:14

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by steve3211 on January 1, 2004, at 10:43:57

I, too, am just starting my 2nd week on Lexapro -- which i might add it the first time i have taken any anti-depressants in my life. I'm 44 and after the end of a long-term relationship, found the depression and low-self esteem was awful but now I don't know if i have the will power to continue on the Lex. I have lost 17 lbs this last month tho not ALL attributed to the Lex....I eat when i have too but the really only bad s/e is i can't sleep at all!! and I feel dazed and sleepy all day long. It's hard to focus at work. Where i used to could do 5 things at once, keeping up the fast paced, high stressed work load that is expected of me is a chore...and the gym?? forget it! I'm afraid i'd pass out from lack of food and energy.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Marietta

Posted by Mariposa on January 1, 2004, at 17:33:02

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by Marietta on January 1, 2004, at 17:02:14

> I, too, am just starting my 2nd week on Lexapro -- which i might add it the first time i have taken any anti-depressants in my life. I'm 44 and after the end of a long-term relationship, found the depression and low-self esteem was awful but now I don't know if i have the will power to continue on the Lex. I have lost 17 lbs this last month tho not ALL attributed to the Lex....I eat when i have too but the really only bad s/e is i can't sleep at all!! and I feel dazed and sleepy all day long. It's hard to focus at work. Where i used to could do 5 things at once, keeping up the fast paced, high stressed work load that is expected of me is a chore...and the gym?? forget it! I'm afraid i'd pass out from lack of food and energy.

Sorry to hear you are having such a bad time of it. Insomnia is HORRIBLE!... I had suffered it most of my life and it was a major contributor to my depression. But now w/Lex I sleep SOUNDLY, and through the night, none of this waking up at 3AM and staring at clock until alarm goes off.

I had a rough time w/se's first 3 weeks, then depression and anxiety got worse around 4-5 wk. I hung in there w/encouragement from this GREAT board and now it's almost a year later and I'm doing much better. Please give the meds a fair chance to work for you too, a couple of weeks is not quite long enough to know if Lex is for you.

Good luck!~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by Marietta on January 2, 2004, at 11:41:04

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Marietta, posted by Mariposa on January 1, 2004, at 17:33:02

Thanks Mariposa for the words of encouragement. Last night i skipped my dose and took .25 mgs of xanax and got some uninterupted sleep (3-4 hours) then was able to actually GO back to sleep. I think i'll take 1/2 my dose of Lex tonite...and do that until i go to the doc next tuesday. I have read on here that some started off slowly on Lex (2.5 and 5 mgs working up to their optimal dose). I just think starting 10mgs up front whacked me out! I know it's not good to self-medicate but i HAD to sleep at least ONE night!

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Marietta

Posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 12:17:38

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by Marietta on January 2, 2004, at 11:41:04

> Thanks Mariposa for the words of encouragement. Last night i skipped my dose and took .25 mgs of xanax and got some uninterupted sleep (3-4 hours) then was able to actually GO back to sleep. I think i'll take 1/2 my dose of Lex tonite...and do that until i go to the doc next tuesday. I have read on here that some started off slowly on Lex (2.5 and 5 mgs working up to their optimal dose). I just think starting 10mgs up front whacked me out! I know it's not good to self-medicate but i HAD to sleep at least ONE night!
>

Yes, I think starting at 10mg might be part of the problem, I started at 5mg, and in retrospect, if I knew then what I know now, I probably would have started at 2.5mg instead. Some people can jump right in and take 10mg, it probably would have killed me since I had such a rough time w/5mg. I would have done exactly as you have, I might even have been scared off totally and decided that such a kick-butt med was not for me.

Best of luck and HANG IN THERE!~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 13:02:38

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by reluctant on January 1, 2004, at 16:12:29

You know its funny. I can't tell if I am getting better or not on this stuff. I think I am. I feel wretched in the morning and then things seem to calm down and even out mid morning to afternoon, but then I will get a little speedy and restless in the evening. Last night I could not sleep with my usual restoril and had to take half a xanax to sleep. I really don't want this to start causing me insomnia. I talked to the meds nurse today and she said to hang in there. The way I am feeling at moment I guess I will. Does anyone get a little speedy on this? Is that a side effect that will go away? Supposed to go up to 10mg shortly but do not know if I want to do that.
Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Steve3211

Posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 13:50:10

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 13:02:38

> You know its funny. I can't tell if I am getting better or not on this stuff. I think I am. I feel wretched in the morning and then things seem to calm down and even out mid morning to afternoon, but then I will get a little speedy and restless in the evening. Last night I could not sleep with my usual restoril and had to take half a xanax to sleep. I really don't want this to start causing me insomnia. I talked to the meds nurse today and she said to hang in there. The way I am feeling at moment I guess I will. Does anyone get a little speedy on this? Is that a side effect that will go away? Supposed to go up to 10mg shortly but do not know if I want to do that.
> Steve

Steve - how long and how much are you taking?

I am currently taking 20mg, will be on Lex 1yr in Feb. and have had good results. I did not experience any *relief* until week 9, actually got worse around wk 4-5. If you have only been taking a short time, please don't get discouraged, literature says 6-8 wk, even though some people get results sooner than that. Should give it at least that long before you decide whether it will work or not.

At the 4-5wk mark I was sure Lex was NOT going to work as I got worse instead of better. However, I stuck with it with encouragement from the GREAT people here and I'm so glad I did.

Best of luck!~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S.

Posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 14:01:39

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Steve3211, posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 13:50:10

Mariposa,
I have been taking it for approx 1.5 weeks. 5 days at .25 mg and now 5 days at .5 mgs. I am feeling restless and speedy sometimes in the evening which I don't like and complete lack of appetite. Any comments or similar s/e's.
Thanks Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Steve3211

Posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 14:35:22

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 14:01:39

> Mariposa,
> I have been taking it for approx 1.5 weeks. 5 days at .25 mg and now 5 days at .5 mgs. I am feeling restless and speedy sometimes in the evening which I don't like and complete lack of appetite. Any comments or similar s/e's.
> Thanks Steve

Yes I had similar se's, lost 10lbs. because of the lack of appetite, but that will eventually go away. I eat normally again, some times overdo even. I needed to lose some weight so was glad for that se. I did go through a carb craving phase, I just couldn't get enough Chex Mix!! That too went away. The *speedy* feeling was also a se I experienced, will pull one of my old posts so you can read.

So far what you have described seems to be typical se's. As far as increasing dose, you should be able to decide, w/doc's help if it is really needed. I was feeling poorly, a lot worse depression and anxiety around wk4-5 and doc upped my dose from 5mg to 10mg, and that did help me.

Just try to think positive thoughts, drink lots of water and come back often for support!~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211

Posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 14:53:30

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Steve3211, posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 14:35:22

Check Lexapro thread further up page for my old post.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211

Posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 15:51:39

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211, posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 14:53:30

Thanks for all your support Mariposa. Funny, I'm having little mood swings when I'll think I'm doing ok, then I'll get anxious, then depressed especially when not eating. Did the speediness subside? What dose are you taking?
Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211

Posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 18:59:12

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211, posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 15:51:39

> Thanks for all your support Mariposa. Funny, I'm having little mood swings when I'll think I'm doing ok, then I'll get anxious, then depressed especially when not eating. Did the speediness subside? What dose are you taking?
> Steve

Currently at 20mg, started @5mg, went to 10mg 5th week, 20mg 5th month.

Speediness feeling did subside, right befor I started feeling improvement. It took a while but glad I stuck it out!~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211

Posted by JohnFromCalifornia on January 2, 2004, at 21:34:51

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211, posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 15:51:39

> Funny, I'm having little mood swings when I'll think I'm doing ok, then I'll get anxious, then depressed especially when not eating. Did the speediness subside?

Steve, like you I'm a newbie to SSRIs and finding Lexapro is quite a trip! I'm ending my second week and I feel different every day. I started out being sleepy ALL the time and if I let myself would sleep almost around the clock.

Then I started getting these night sweats -- what women call "hot flashes". Weird as hell.

But I noticed the things that were NOT happening. After 10 days or so the things that used to drive me nuts (people who didn't go when the light went green) stopped doing so. And the negative thoughts I had when trying to go to sleep went away.

In fact, I sleep better now than I have for years. My sweats have almost gone away. Though I can't say my depression is a thing of the past, I'm impressed by the power of the med if nothing else. I'm going to stick it out for two months MINIMUM. It might be what I need.

Whichever way you go, good luck! -- John

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Mariposa

Posted by cajunbelle on January 2, 2004, at 21:51:14

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Steve3211, posted by Mariposa on January 2, 2004, at 13:50:10

Hello..I am not sure If I have posted this question before or not,but I went from 5 mgs of Lexapro to 7 1/2 mg..Which in my 5th week I started to feel bad again.About 4 or 5 days ago I increased my dosage to 10 mgs (am now in my 6th week) I really dont feel depressed but I have increased sleepiness (low motivation) and have lost the increased energy that I had at 7 1/2 mg.Is it normal to lose some of the good effects Or kinda tetter totter back & forth whenever the lex is increased?If so about how long does it take for the new level to stable out?
Thanks again & hope you have a great New Year !!!
Cajunbelle

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. cajunbelle

Posted by cajunbelle on January 2, 2004, at 21:53:41

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Mariposa, posted by cajunbelle on January 2, 2004, at 21:51:14

Also ..does anyone know If it may take a little longer than the full 2 months to get the full affect from Lexapro?

Cajunbelle

 

Re: Lexapro effects - insomnia

Posted by reluctant on January 2, 2004, at 22:00:48

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S., posted by Steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 13:02:38


If the med is making you speedy & keeping you from sleep (pretty common, I think), I'd suggest Bedtime Tea from Yogi Teas. I have bouts of insomnia fairly frequently with & without medication & this stuff does wonders. It has valerian & skullcap & some other things in it, and manages to not taste terrible despite the skullcap. (the name of the herb makes it sound deadly, but it's not - though I suppose if you took a whole lot of it it might not be so good for you). I find that it gives me a warm feeling in my stomach and then I gradually slow down & drift off. In the morning I feel fine, there's no grogginess. NOTE: I've never done any research into drug interactions with these herbs; if you are very sensitive you might want to check up on it. but personally, i'd rather drink tea than add yet another pill to my day.

what did your doctor say, steve?

happy to say that the transition from zoloft to lexapro seems to be going well. I feel pretty good, & hope to feel better. yay!

-r.

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211

Posted by steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 22:23:46

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211, posted by JohnFromCalifornia on January 2, 2004, at 21:34:51

Hey John,
Very similar to me. Will soon to be going into my third week and am hoping things subside. I have noticed that some things are not bothering me as much but I am hoping that it evens out. keep posting. Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects - insomnia

Posted by steve3211 on January 2, 2004, at 22:30:43

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - insomnia, posted by reluctant on January 2, 2004, at 22:00:48

Reluctant,
Doc just said to keep with it, that my body and mind are adjusting. So far I will stick with it.
Steve

 

Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211 JohnFromCalifornia

Posted by Mariposa on January 3, 2004, at 9:11:14

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - Steve 3211, posted by JohnFromCalifornia on January 2, 2004, at 21:34:51

> > Funny, I'm having little mood swings when I'll think I'm doing ok, then I'll get anxious, then depressed especially when not eating. Did the speediness subside?
>
> Steve, like you I'm a newbie to SSRIs and finding Lexapro is quite a trip! I'm ending my second week and I feel different every day. I started out being sleepy ALL the time and if I let myself would sleep almost around the clock.
>
> Then I started getting these night sweats -- what women call "hot flashes". Weird as hell.
>
> But I noticed the things that were NOT happening. After 10 days or so the things that used to drive me nuts (people who didn't go when the light went green) stopped doing so. And the negative thoughts I had when trying to go to sleep went away.
>
> In fact, I sleep better now than I have for years. My sweats have almost gone away. Though I can't say my depression is a thing of the past, I'm impressed by the power of the med if nothing else. I'm going to stick it out for two months MINIMUM. It might be what I need.
>
> Whichever way you go, good luck! -- John
>

This is GREAT!!! Sounds like you are doing better already, not getting as aggravated as usual.

The sweating will go away after a while.

SLEEP!!! That is what Lex has done for me too. I was an insomniac befor Lex, a contributing factor of my depression. Now I sleep SOUNDLY THROUGH the night, no more waking at 3AM to stare at the clock until alarm went off. THANK YOU Lex!!!

Hang in there and hopefully you will get good results also~~~8|8

 

Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. cajunbelle

Posted by Mariposa on January 3, 2004, at 9:29:55

In reply to Re: Lexapro effects - P.S. Mariposa, posted by cajunbelle on January 2, 2004, at 21:51:14

> Hello..I am not sure If I have posted this question before or not,but I went from 5 mgs of Lexapro to 7 1/2 mg..Which in my 5th week I started to feel bad again.About 4 or 5 days ago I increased my dosage to 10 mgs (am now in my 6th week) I really dont feel depressed but I have increased sleepiness (low motivation) and have lost the increased energy that I had at 7 1/2 mg.Is it normal to lose some of the good effects Or kinda tetter totter back & forth whenever the lex is increased?If so about how long does it take for the new level to stable out?
> Thanks again & hope you have a great New Year !!!
> Cajunbelle
>

Yes I found that to be the case. It seemed like just when I thought I had a handle on things, I would start to feel different. I moved around the time of dose from morning to afternoon to evening, and back to morning to try to sinc up how the med was acting to how I had to run my life. I felt tired in the afternoon so I moved time to try to get the tired part to happen in the evenings. I would say things *settled down* after about 4 months, and then I got *used* to my dose and started backtracking again, so doc raised dose to 20mg at 5th month. So far I am still doing well at 20mg, but doc did say if I start having troubles again, we could look at raising dose to 30mg.

Dealing with Lethargy - I had a lot of trouble with this, feeling like I could nap all the time, or just too tired to do anything. For me it was kind of an *illusion* (or maybe delusion)...it was like the brain was tired and unmotivated, but the body was willing and capable. I had to force myself to ignore brain, get up and get moving and the tired feeling would evaporate. Also drink coffee to help get going. I find Lex can be *energizing* once I tackle a project.

Listen to your body, if you feel like a higher or lower dose would be better, it probably is. I knew at 4 months that I was not doing as well and felt an increase was in order, doc agreed.

Keep thinking positive thoughts!!!~~~8|8


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