Please talk to me about meds.. - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 7 Old 12-17-2008, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am considering starting antidepressants for anxiety. I am not sure what to expect and I guess I am really looking for success stories mostly. I also have some concerns. I am specifically worried about weight gain, especially since I recently lost a lot of weight and I would like to keep it that way. I am also concerned about the meds making me feel like a different person. I want to get rid of the anxiety but I still want to be myself. I guess I am hoping some of you will share your good experiences with me. I am particularly interested to know if your parenting changed for the better after meds. I just feel like there is so much more I could give to my family if I am not focusing on worrying all the time. Thanks!
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#2 of 7 Old 12-17-2008, 07:23 PM
 
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I have been on a few different meds for anxiety/depression (anxiety though is really my "thing"- I'm a worrier for sure) at different points, and all worked to varying degrees.

I had great success with Zoloft, the first one I was on. Took it for 2 years through a rough patch in my life after my dad died, then weaned off it no problem.

When I had 2 toddlers and at my wits' end with anxiety, I went on Effexor. Did help with anxiety, but at the same time I didn't like how easily I flew off the handle, and the physical withdrawal effects if I happened to forget a dose.

Last year I retried Zoloft, but had bad gastro effects- proof that our bodies do change over time, so then my doc switched me to Lexapro. I stayed on it for a few months, felt that I was doing better and weaned myself off. That was a mistake, because I just went back on it when my anxiety was relentless this year and devolved into full blown depression as well. It did help, after about 3 weeks. Now though I'm having some issues with the dosage as I've had a couple bouts of breakthrough anxiety/depression, and my doc (finally got hooked up with a psychiatrist) has just upped me to 30 mg. I'm hoping and waiting right now.

Just know that it is very common to have to try different meds, different dosages before you get it right. (I should reread my words when I am feeling down about this all, LOL). But seriously, it's true.

And yes, when I am free of anxiety, I am definitely a better parent. I am more patient, more joyous, more easily able to let the little stuff slide. And kids are soooo in tune with mama...which means they reap the benefits as well as us. It did not change my personality at all- I think it brought back the real "me", if that makes sense.

Also- I did not gain weight any of the times I was on meds. If anything, I was better able to maintain a healthy weight because I had more motivation to exersize and plan healthy meals.

((HUGS)) fellow mama. I know how hard this can all be.

Happy mumma to Mr. S (7) and Ms. D (9) .
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#3 of 7 Old 12-17-2008, 09:46 PM
 
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Hi! I am currently taking 10 mg of Lexapro for obsessive worrying (obsessive thought disorder), which is sort of like concentrated anxiety (about one thing at a time).

I had real doubts that it would work, but it has. I feel much more relaxed and can actually focus on things other than my worries - like my kids and husband, most importantly. I can actually feel happiness, plan for the future, look forward to things, enjoy the moment.... things I couldn't do before because I was so obsessively worried all the time.

I am maintaining my weight, but I do find it a little harder than before, like I have to be more vigilant and eat less junk (which isn't a bad thing, really, just not as much fun as before!). So I haven't gained, but I've been verrrry careful about it.

Mom to dd (8), ds (6), and dd (1)

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#4 of 7 Old 12-17-2008, 10:33 PM
 
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Just a thought... you mentioned you just lost a bunch of weight. Is the anxiety new? Hyperthyroidism can cause weight loss and anxiety.
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#5 of 7 Old 12-17-2008, 10:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The Anxiety is not new. I have been dealing with it on and off for six years. Because of good therapy I have very long anxiety free stretches. I am just getting to the point where dealing with it when it does pop up saps all my time and energy. I feel like my mind is exhausted and my parenting is suffering. I still plan on going to therapy. I just feel like I need to consider something else because this really does affect everyone around me. As for the weight loss,I lost weight intentionally by doing weight watchers, so it had been very gradual. I do wonder though if I should get some blood work done. Did your doctor order blood test before starting meds?
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#6 of 7 Old 12-18-2008, 12:29 PM
 
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My Dr. didn't order blood work before starting meds but *I* had it done, through my Dr. They didn't suggest it. It's good to rule out other possibilities.
I am afraid though that its trial and error with meds. They affect different people differently iykwim.
Have you tried the natural calming stuff like valerian, kava kava, gaba? The natural SSRI's can also affect anxiety; 5HTP, tryptophan and S-ame.
If you've tried those things and they didn't work and your anxiety/panic is not all the time maybe you just need a PRN of a benzodiazapine like Xanax or Klonopin. Those drugs are addictive narcotics though and need to be used with caution but can really help in panicky moments.

 
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#7 of 7 Old 12-18-2008, 08:55 PM
 
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Same for me... Dr. didn't order tests, but I asked for a full panel to check everything hormonal - thyroid, pituitary, estrogen/androgens, etc. It was very helpful because other things were ruled out and we found out I had low thyroid, which explained some depression, weight gain, etc I'd been experiencing. Although I still went on meds, I think I was probably able to keep it at a lower dose than if my other issue hadn't been discovered.
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