zoloft and nursing - Mothering Forums
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Postpartum Depression > zoloft and nursing
MamaKoala's Avatar MamaKoala 03:44 AM 03-03-2003
I have been taking zoloft for 7 weeks at 50 mgs. I think it has been helping. I am still nervous about nursing while taking it, although ds seems to be fine. i need some reassurance from other moms.

also, i have very easy bruising now. i heard that might be a side effect. anyone else??

SarahShrader's Avatar SarahShrader 12:14 PM 03-03-2003
I have been nursing since my little guy was born 9/02... i got on zoloft at 3 days post partum. It has been the best thing for me, and i have no side effects, and my son seems fine. Once in awhile I get guilt pangs, but I am such a better mommy and wife b/c of zoloft. I have been able to enjoy my life so much more; my depression was terrible.
i am so grateful for technology and western medicine in this sense.
Mommasgirls's Avatar Mommasgirls 12:37 PM 03-03-2003
I started taking Zoloft 100mg when I was eight months pregnant. I nursed Abigail for 15 months while taking it. She is perfectly fine. She walked at 13 months,started talking in sentences at about 22 months. Developmentally just fine Try not to worry about it.
Graceoc's Avatar Graceoc 12:40 PM 03-03-2003
I just started taking it this week and I am already feeling better!!!! Dr. Hales book has it as a L2 which is safe for nursing. I honeslty have no guilty feelings about nursing and taking it since I know that the mother I have been the past 10 months without it is MUCH WORSE then any minimal amout that would pass on.......
QueeTheBean's Avatar QueeTheBean 10:00 PM 03-03-2003
Can't believe this question--I logged on here to ask the very same thing!

I went to my doctor today (gp) and she said there were NO antidepressants safe to take while nursing! I was really surprised & she said she'd check for me again. I specifically mentioned Zoloft, as I took it 5 years ago with great results.

So nice to come here and read these stories---

Thanks, ladies!

QueeTheBean's Avatar QueeTheBean 10:02 PM 03-03-2003
Not sure that ame through right after I read it--

just want to clarify that I am glad to read that you all have been successful taking ZOloft and nursing. I am hoping my doctor will read Hale and agree to prescribe it for me!
princess buttercup's Avatar princess buttercup 02:34 PM 03-04-2003
my doctors were so unhelpful about meds.
I was pg when depression hit me like a wall. I was a total mess. Finally got up the nerve to tell them. They put me on paxil, then I switched to zoloft. (they said...if it is really bad you have to weigh the chances of taking medication with the depression and decide...real helpful) I couldn't believe how uninformed they were.
I quit the meds before delivery(felt better, wanted to reduce possible side effects). Later when depression came back, I asked about BFing and meds they said....you should wean. (I had to insist I was going to breastfeed, did research (I asked a lot of questions, like why is it okay to take during pregnancy and not while BFing?
I discussed this with a counselor/psych(mental health, not the doctors office) and the consensus was that zoloft was the "best" to take while BFing because of its "half life" (it stays in your system a shorter time) than some of the other anti-depressants, reducing transfer to BM. I went to the doctors with this info and had the counselors office call and discuss the topic. (I hope the "next" mom in my situation doesn't have to go through all this!)

I totally agree that I would have been much less a functional person and mother without the meds....

ps...still nursing still on meds
mama2girls's Avatar mama2girls 07:14 PM 03-04-2003
Princess B, what a sad story! My doc put me on Paxil and knew I had no intention of weaning. I took it through A's entire bfing experience and M's pg and bfing so far... I just switched to Zoloft (thank god, seems to be helping more, less side effects and hopefully won't have the cloudy head feel when I go off).

MamaK, My psychiatrist recommends Zoloft for nursing moms. I'm tkaing a little more than you, and I definitely think a happy mommy is worth it! I am taking 100mgs daily and plan to both take it and bf M for an undetermined amount of time!!
Quilter Mama's Avatar Quilter Mama 01:00 AM 03-18-2003
My situation was a little different in that from day 1 (that I finaly admitted I was depressed) I was offered meds right and left.
After 6 months of PPD and dealing with massive guilt about it I started Zoloft. I hate to admit it but I can't believe how much it helped! I also called the La Leche League medicine & breastfeeding hot line and they said Zoloft had the least amount of transfering over through breast milk, something like a millionth of a %.
I will try to find that # and post it on this thread. I remember that it cost an additional fee, like a 976 number,and was based out of UCLA.
gossamer's Avatar gossamer 01:23 AM 03-18-2003
I am so glad to see this thread up. I have been on anti-depressants for 10 years now. In my family it is genetic, my mother, grand-mother, great-grand-mother, aunts and second cousins all suffer either from depression or Bipolar DIsorder. I have to take ANti-depressants. WHen I try to wean my self off of them, I get very suicidal, have no energy and lose my faith. I have been worried about the effects it might have on my new little baby I'm growing inside, but if I don't take the meds, I try to take my life. Better to be a medicated live mother than dead unmedicated mother. I am glad y'all have had such positive experiences. Sorry for rambling.

Jish's Avatar Jish 01:36 AM 03-18-2003
Gossamer, for goodness sake, stay on your meds!!!!! I have a family history of clinical depression also (my mother, grandmother, aunts, etc.) but it only hit me full force this last year. I don't know where I would be without my meds. I am so glad you have something that works for you.
gossamer's Avatar gossamer 01:44 AM 03-18-2003
Thank you jbcjmom. I wasn't trying to be morbid or anything, but some people think it's a choice to be on meds or not. I have been accused of not really needing the meds, and of wanting to med myself into lala land. BUt if you truly are depressed, the meds are a god send. I am glad to see the stigma is not as great as it was even just 7 or 8 years ago. I am also happy to so many mamas have found what works for them. It can be hard to find the right meds and the right dosage. Prayers for all of us.

Jish's Avatar Jish 12:24 PM 03-18-2003
Wait a minute, your meds send you to la la land???? Mine just make me normal. I want some of yours.:LOL :LOL :LOL

Isn't it funny how misunderstood depression is? My mom has suffered for as long as I can remember, much of it not on meds. She had a crappy marriage and was pretty much "depressed" also, as other people see it. You'd think that growing up around it I would have had a clue. I didn't know that you could have depression and not be "depressed." I also suffer from anxiety that focuses around my health, and occasional panic attacks. I have ativan to take for these, but I haven't had to take an ativan since December. Jeesh, even the Ativan doesn't send me to la la land.

Note to self: talk to shrink about getting drugs to send me to la la land...
gossamer's Avatar gossamer 02:34 PM 03-18-2003
I know what you mean about seeing your mom go throught it. My mother was absolutely frenetic right before she was diagnosed. SHe slept maybe 1/2 an hour a night and the rest of the dya, she was ont eh move like Speedy Gonzales. So when I started feeling down and lethargic, I thought,"I can't be depressed because I have no energy. I can't be depressed because I still get up and go to work every day." HA HA. I was fooled. I was DEPRESSED! I am glad you don't have to take your Ativan any more. What a triumph for you.

Bladestar5's Avatar Bladestar5 03:19 PM 04-03-2003
I had to bump this up again and ask you nursing moms how many miligrams you take? I think I was on like 150 when I was pregnant, and I want to go back on it. I have bipolar. Anyone else?
Rachel Fox's Avatar Rachel Fox 03:26 PM 04-03-2003
I did paxil while pg and nursing and am now nursing 2. The guilt was very hard for me and still is sometimes, but I know I am such a better mother for it. I was having panic attacks and getting to the point where I feared leaving the house. I was a huge mess. My midwife was very supportive and knowledgable. She said the same thing, that I need to be healthy in order to take care of my babes and having a totally stressful, fearful pg would be worse. I know i'm a good mom and there are far worse things I could be doing.
Quilter Mama's Avatar Quilter Mama 06:36 PM 04-03-2003
The highest I ever went with Zoloft was 50mg. I haven't been diagnosed with bi-polar although sometimes I wonder, but the 50 took enough of the edge off so I could function.
tara's Avatar tara 03:24 PM 04-05-2003
I was prescribed paxil mostly because I've been on it previously and it tends to address my symptoms better than the other few meds I've been on. It took 40 mg to do the trick, and when I've weaned down to 20 my symptoms start to return. When I was prescribed paxil, the doc & pharmacist showed me studies in which the medication was undetectable in breastmilk. That helped me feel better about taking it.
mama2girls's Avatar mama2girls 07:48 PM 04-06-2003
Blade*5, I take 100 mg of Zoloft while bfing.

Tara, I participated in one of those studies with dd#1 and Paxil. I posted my results here. It's the fourth message down.

I really don't feel guilty since I know that I am a much better, calmer, more paitent and understanding mommy when I take my meds. If this is what it takes for me to be the person I used to be, then so be it (Bzzzzz)!

tara's Avatar tara 01:35 PM 04-07-2003
Thanks for the info, AM mom!
ellery's Avatar ellery 05:18 PM 05-10-2003
i tried paxil it was awful now im on zoloft and it works great i bf no side effects and i fell pretty good but my doctor is also great. Good luck and get ahold o ppd before it gets u.
Pookietooth's Avatar Pookietooth 08:24 PM 06-03-2003
I take prozac 10 mg, and worry that my son's thrush is caused by a reaction to the prozac
mommy2andrew's Avatar mommy2andrew 10:35 AM 06-04-2003
I was very scared thinking the zoloft was hurting him, He is perfectly fine. Your baby will be fine the doctor knows what he is doing. So please dont worry. If u are worry u could switch to formula..thanks laura
Jish's Avatar Jish 12:03 AM 06-07-2003
Studies have shown that minute traces of the meds pass through the breastmilk to the baby, so much so that it is typically undetectible in the baby's blood. Remember that formula is derived from cow's milk which comes from cows who have often been given growth hormones and antibiotics. The antibodies in human milk can not be duplicated in artificial milk and artificial milk is a meager substitute for mama's milk. Most professionals educated in breastfeeding and medications will tell you that ssri's are safe for nursing mothers and that mothers milk is still preferrable to formula.

I would hate for any mama to give up a wonderful breastfeeding experience because they are worried about taking a SSRI.

***Keep in mind that MAOI's and some other medications given for things such as panic and anxiety (the Benzo's and mood stablers) are a different story and a professional should be consulted.
mommy2andrew's Avatar mommy2andrew 09:10 AM 06-07-2003
I choose to bottlefeed and thats my choice. I have post-tramatic disorder and antiexy order. Babies can sense when mom is nervous when breastfeed so thats why I opt for formula and he is just as healthy as breastfeed babies. With meds I choose not to breast feed because of my mental and emotional well-being.
JessicaS's Avatar JessicaS 01:13 AM 06-08-2003
Zoloft is considered the safest SSRI for nursing moms.

I had severe anxiety disorder and PPD after we had some tragedies in our families after the birth of my dd.

I don't generally take meds but I was really having problems and the Zoloft really helped me. I stopped taking it after awhile as I was doing much better.

Babies can sense when mom is stressed but IMO they would still sense it whether or not they were nursing.

mommy2andrew you won't fail at being a mom for not nursing. Breastmilk is the ideal food for babies but sometimes things just go wrong or mom isn't doing so well.
mommy2andrew's Avatar mommy2andrew 01:26 AM 06-08-2003
When I was pregnant everyone asked " Are u going to breastfeed"? I heard it from WIC,ladie at my baby showers,in magazines. Why is it such a big deal? By making moms feel
for not breastfeeding. I took my son to the doctor and the doctorasked if I breastfed I told him no and he: and looked . He made me fully like my son was colicky cause he wasnt breastfed. I know women who breastfed and there kids were sick with colds,allgeries,etc..With me being on Zoloft shrink said breastfed,pill,and baby dont mix. There little brains are still developing..Thanks for letting me vent.
JessicaS's Avatar JessicaS 01:48 AM 06-08-2003
They do that because breastmilk is the best food for babies. Formula is not. Colick is often caused by formula because it is harder to digest. They were just being honest. It is the truth.

I don't agree with your shrink that Zoloft and breastfeeding is bad.

It isn't a miracle cure and babies will still get sick. My allergies are very severe but my daughters are not nearly as bad and I thank breastfeeding for that.

Everyone has the right to choose whether or not to bf situations are different for each mom and each case of depression and anxiety. I am not trying to judge you or say you were wrong. I wasn't there, I don't know what you went through and I wouldn't dismiss someone's depression as a poor reason not to nurse I don't know anythng about the situation.

The original poster had a question and I do not agree with the information you are providing for them. We don't have to agree that is fine but I am trying to provide more info.
JessicaS's Avatar JessicaS 01:56 AM 06-08-2003
Another link


MamaKoala, you mentioned bruising. Zoloft can make you bruise more easily but I would mention it to your Dr.
mommy2andrew's Avatar mommy2andrew 10:27 AM 06-08-2003
My son weighed 6pds 13.6 ounces at birth now he weighs close to 12pds from formula. I just dont think its right for other mothers to judge because some of us dont breastfeed. He is perfectly healthy. I wasnt breastfed and Iam fine.
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