Paxil and Zoloft Withdrawal Symptoms Worse than Doctors Tell You

by | Aug 21, 2013

If Paxil or Zoloft are being recommended, you might want to form your own second opinion by reading some testimonials written by those going through Paxil or Zoloft withdrawal.
Psychiatrists and doctors have done only a small amount of research into exploring what they call the SSRI discontinuation syndrome despite many complaints from those taking the drugs. (SSRIs are a class of compounds broadly used as antidepressants.)
Before going off patent, Paxil made $11.7 billion in sales for GlaxoSmithKline and Zoloft made $30 billion in sales for Pfizer. Both SSRI drugs continue to be sold today along with generic counterparts created post-patent by other companies.   Back in 1997 the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry published a research paper that attempted to explore all the medical literature and any controlled studies on SSRI withdrawal symptoms. They did find evidence that such symptoms like “flashes in my peripheral vision and headaches”, “random flashes of split-second dizziness…like a mild electrical jolt in your brain” and “electric shock phenomena” were real and, of course, suggested further study rather than suggesting action to protect patients taking the drugs.
They also reported these symptoms could last “up to 3 weeks” – quite a modest time period compared to patient reports.
Paxil and Zoloft withdrawal symptoms topped the SSRI list with these:
  • dizziness/vertigo
  • nausea
  • fatigue/malaise
  • gastrointestinal symptoms
  • vomiting
  • abdominal discomfort
  • agitation
  • insomnia
  • myalgias (muscle pain)
  • tremulousness/tremors
  • “electric sensations”
  • headaches
  • abnormal dreams
  • “withdrawal buzz” – intense distracting sensation within the head and disorientation or dizziness
  • visual hallucinations
  • crying spells
  • paresthesias -a sensation of tingling, tickling, prickling, pricking, or burning of a person’s skin
One of the few controlled tests the researchers reported was done on a group of patients given Paxil for stuttering. (Why an antidepressant was given for stuttering was not explained.) Six weeks on Paxil, then half the group were taken off Paxil and half got a placebo. They discovered those coming off the drug experienced euphoria followed by aggression and suicidal impulses along with dizziness, blurred vision, nausea lethargy and insomnia.
The descriptions of the medical researchers seem coldly impersonal when contrasted with descriptions written by the patients experiencing the withdrawal.
Here are a few stories from people trying to get off Paxil.
“I’ve been taking Paxil 20mg for 12 years…a month ago I went down to 10mg and I am now down to 5mg. Even tapering slowly, I have had TERRIBLE withdrawal. I have had severe headaches and lightheadedness, and have felt very depressed, like I can just cry all day. My dreams have been crazy at night; I have been having a lot of nightmares that I wake up from. It has been awful and if I didn’t exercise like I do, working out 6 days a week, I really feel like I’d be suicidal. Tomorrow I take my last 5mg. It is so terrible I have been tempted to go back to 20mg. But I am determined to get this evil crap out of my body. I just want everyone to know that they aren’t alone and wanted to share my story. I am hoping to make it through this…”
Another writes:
I did not have serious mental issues.  I was originally prescribed Paxil to treat mild situational anxiety.  I am shy in social and work settings.  I have been trying to wean myself off of Paxil for 7 months.  I am better able to manage the symptoms at this point, but am unable to stop taking the drug. As I lowered my dosage from 40mg/day to 10mg/day over the course of 4 months, the withdrawal symptoms became unbearable.  I was confined to my living room for most of that time.  Once I finally finished weaning, I entered a two month window of clarity.  I felt clear minded and confident in a way that I hadn’t experienced in years. Unfortunately, I crashed about two months after stopping Paxil entirely.  I was again confined to my living room floor, feeling desperate and suicidal.  I was forced to start taking Paxil again because I felt that my life was in danger.  I have been able to get back to 10mg/day, but my quality of life has diminished again to bare existence”
This person then lists over 30 symptoms he’s had during Paxil withdrawal, none of which he had before taking the drug.
Here is one from the UK:
“I am just at the start of my fourth withdrawal – some four weeks in – and I am determined for this withdrawal to be my last. I am planning this withdrawal over two years and reducing using the liquid form of Seroxat, coming down from 30mg to nil. (Paxil and Seroxat are brand names for the same drug – Paroxetine) I’ve been on this drug for 11 years, since I was 19, and I have almost killed myself on each of the three previous attempts at withdrawal…”
Another patient writes:
“I was prescribed Paxil by my doctor during an especially stressful time in my life. I had no history of mental illness nor was I diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. I took this medicine, actually a very low dose, from 2001 – 2005. When I decided to stop taking it, I cut my dose back gradually and weaned myself off of it entirely. I began having gastric distress. This began as I was cutting back on the Paxil and continued long after I quit taking it. I had diarrhea every day for 2-1/2 years. This lasted all day long, every day. It affects everything that I do, from what kind of job I have, where I go, vacations, where and what I can eat. I have had many tests run by specialists and there is no other cause for the diarrhea…
It is known this drug causes bowel incontinence, bloating, horrible gas and pain along with the chronic diarrhea.
I wish I had known what this drug would do to me before I started taking it. Please do your homework. The doctors will not tell you about the side effects and withdrawal symptoms, nor will GlaxoSmithKline, the makers of Paxil. Can you guess why they don’t tell you? $$$$$$$$$$$$$$”
Here are some descriptions of Zoloft withdrawal:
“Briefly: I stopped taking Sertraline (Zoloft) in early January. My daily dose at that time was extremely high: 300, even as high as 350 mg. a day. I’d been on it for over 4 years–it was prescribed following a knee injury in an aftershock of the Northridge earthquake… the doctor thought the antidepressants would give me an extra boost to help my recovery.
By the time I stopped I was showing signs of serotonin toxicity (constant anxiety) and was also (according to my husband and dentist) grinding my teeth like crazy every night. I decided to stop cold turkey, and prepared for a few bad days at least, knowing a little about potential withdrawal effects. So, at first, the dizziness, nausea, “electric shock” feelings, wild dreams, etc., didn’t bother me all that much.
After two straight weeks, though, the continuation of those symptoms plus other ones–itching (not tingling or burning) all over my body, something I’m sure were seizures (a feeling of suddenly falling, sort of “blacking out” but not quite, followed almost instantly by tremendous muscle jerks in my legs or arms … it was almost impossible to get to sleep at night from the itching, “falling” and muscle spasms. .. It is now nearly three months since I stopped taking the Zoloft. …I’ve put on somewhere between 10-15 pounds over the past two months. My energy is low; I feel like I’m slogging through water much of the time… It’s not getting worse; it’s just lasting and lasting and I feel exhausted and unsure how to proceed. Whatever they say about these drugs being “not addictive” — I could testify that I have reached a point where I literally crave my Zoloft, where the only thing stopping me from calling the pharmacy to refill my still-existing prescription is will power.
I believe it’s an issue of tremendous importance — to people like me, certainly, but also to the thousands if not millions of people who thoughtlessly and trustingly pop their antidepressant pills just to make it to work every day. Not to mention the future generations of children who, if they have their way and start using these drugs for so-called “early childhood” psychiatric illness, may end up having their brains scrambled forever. The specter of permanent, unalterable damage is truly frightening…”
And another person writes:
“Please, please, PLEASE someone tell me how long these withdrawal symptoms are supposed to last?! I’ve been tapering off, 25mgs. every two weeks from 150mgs. and am now at 50mgs. This weekend I should be cutting that down to 25mg but I don’t even think I’m going to make it through the damn day! My symptoms are the same as others … dizziness, nausea, anxiety, eye/vision problems, irritability, going to slam my head into a wall, slam others as well … when it the name of all that is holy will it stop?! I seriously contemplated stopping my car over a major bridge yesterday and jumping.”
This person has a withdrawal symptom no one has solved:
“I stopped my Zoloft cold-turkey (I know… I know) about a week ago and I have been feeling like I just want to die. To escape the pain it’s caused, that is. I’ve been on 100mg for about 2 years and it’s the absolute hardest drug to come off of…. My head feels heavy; I wish I could just rip it off sometimes. It’s like a headache but not. I couldn’t shower for about 3 days because I couldn’t stand up long enough to do so! My head would feel light and I would get dizzy and I would get heart palpitations and then my vision would start to go so I would have to lay down very quickly. I’m still having the palpitations and the head pain. My eyes are very itchy; don’t know if that’s a side effect or not. I, too, have gained quite a bit of weight from being on the Zoloft. And I’m another who would have refused to take it had I known about such side effects…
My ears have been clicking and popping for 2 months now.  It started when I stopped the Zoloft, but I’ve been everywhere to try and figure out what’s going on. I’ve been to 3 ears, nose and throat doctors and 2 dentists because two of those docs thought it could be TMJ.  So I went to a TMJ specialist… he told me I had none of the symptoms. The clicking is driving me so crazy that I just can’t do it anymore. I sleep as much as I possibly can just so I don’t have to deal with it. I was in the emergency room last night because I was crying so bad because I just can’t take it anymore… Well, I got a CT scan and it ends up coming back perfectly normal… The doctor suggested I go to my family doctor and talk to her about going BACK on the Zoloft because he believes that’s the only thing that will EVER help this stop.
NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!  I don’t WANT to go back on that xxx!!!!  I don’t ever want that back in my body.  I’ve got enough problems now thanks to that stupid drug!!!!! … I refuse to take any more SSRI’s.
These companies need to be held RESPONSIBLE for what they do to us.  They COVER the symptoms, they don’t CURE them. Not to mention the fact that they create brand NEW ones!!!  Something really needs to be done.  I can’t live my life this way and I shouldn’t have to!  None of us should!!  We give in because we feel like we’ve lost all hope and that there’s no other choice.  But they know exactly what they’re doing.  And if they don’t, they certainly don’t seem to care!
No one else’s ears click??  I don’t know what to do.  It feels hopeless.”
This person is correct –the drug companies don’t care about these patients and these stories. Many of these people had no mental or emotional problems to start with but were prescribed these drugs for various reasons by a family physician they trusted. Side effects and withdrawal symptoms were not mentioned.
It’s ironic that in June 2012 GlaxoSmithKline paid a tiny amount in a class action lawsuit for falsely advertising that Paxil was non-habit forming or addictive and for failing to disclose the risk of possible symptoms if a user stopped taking Paxil.
“Class Members of the Paxil class action settlement who can provide Proof of Purchase can receive a full refund of the out-of-pocket expenses they paid for Paxil during the Class Period, provided the total amount of claims does not exceed $8.5 million.
Class Members without Proof of Purchase can still file a claim to receive up to $80 of out-of-pocket expenses, provided the total amount of these claims does not exceed $500,000.”
Imagine going through the horrors of this drug and receiving an $80.00 refund and knowing the drugs are still being sold to new victims.



  1. Lisa N. is a new website to raise awareness of the risks of antidepressants.

    Its aims are:
    to share stories of people who have been harmed by antidepressants and other depression medications.

    to make people aware of the side effects of antidepressants and the difficulty of withdrawal.

    to explain that adverse reactions to antidepressants can cause suicide, violence and homicide.

    to draw attention to the potentially life-threatening conditions of serotonin syndrome and akathisia.

    It also features a comprehensive list of useful books, films and links to other organisations.

    The team on are Professor David Healy, Katinka Blackford Newman, Sarah Culshaw and Dr. Ed White.

  2. Douglas Strasburg

    I wish I had looked into this sooner. I see a psychiatrist at the VA who started me on 50mg of Zoloft. Three months later she asked how it was working for me. I told her that I didn’t think it was working at all, so she upped the dose to 100mg. Three months later the same question and answer, she ups it to 150mg. Three months later, you guessed it, same question and answer and ups it to 200mg. I sent a secure message to her letting her know I was about to run out and needed a refill. I get a message back stating she is out of the office and I’ll have to take it up with her when she gets back. I sent a reply saying whoever is covering for her should do the refill in her place, but the response was to wait until she gets back. I took my last dose today and I don’t know when she’ll be back. I took cymbalta for a while and I thought comming that was the most miserable experience of my life. So when I started reading what everyone was going through, my heart sank. I would love to force feed every scientist and scumbag involved with these drugs a high dose for a year, lock them in solitary confinement then cut them off cold turkey. Then whoever survives can report their findings. Sorry for the rant. Please don’t take cymbalta, the withdrawal symptoms hit as fast as a few hours after a missed dose and don’t go away quickly even after taking the missed dose. I read somewhere that taking a 20mg prozac ccan help with the symptoms. If anyone has any firsthand knowledge of this, please let us know.

    • Ca

      Wow… Im so sorry about your experience. I was also prescribed Cymbalta and it gave me horrible palpitation, I ended up in the hospital, I thought I was having a heart attack. I switched to zoloft after and that helped, but I just came off of it almost a month ago. I want to try and control my self and seek other natural treatments. Because its true, these drugs don’t cure anything. They just put a “band-aid” and make you forget your problems. Which to me is worst, because you are in denial almost of real
      Things happening in your life and when you’re taking these drugs you kind of accept something that you wouldn’t if you were off of them. ( I’m not sure if it that makes any sense) better yet you kind of let everything slide, and put up with things that one shouldn’t. And about making scientists take the meds and stop it cold turkey, I wish we could. Only then they would understand how horrible it feels. Anyway, good luck to you and hope you feel better!

  3. Lu

    (I apologize in advance for the long post) I have become acquainted with zoloft (sertraline) since the age of 12. That was about 13 years ago. The doctor explained my weird behaviors was likely a result of Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) Prior to that at the age of 8, my mom was concerned I was still in deep conversations with my imaginary friends and an over active imagination, and with an unfavorable family history of schizophrenia, and a past of molestation ( I had no memory of) it was likely I was acting out in the form of psychotic depression. But I never even felt depressed until my mom would tell me things like I wasn’t normal or that I acted like my dad whom was rarely present. My mother also suffered a great deal of issues that until I got older didn’t understand. She was mean but nice, loving but distant. But shes all I had. So the years of yelling and screaming just made me very sensitive. I never really got sad even with dad disappearing a lot. Puberty sucked though. I still had imaginary friends but didn’t talk about them. But all the sudden when I was around people, even in class, or passing in the halls the bathroom I just would constantly panic. I didn’t know why but it fell like they would screaming at me and making fun of me because I was weird or shy. I couldn’t eat out in a restaurant with hiding behind my mom. Finally when my dad started come back around and try to take me places I’d freak out and cry, and he got irritated with me asking why was I being like that. The worst part I really didn’t know. That’s when they finally put me on zoloft. First 25mg, then 50mg a month later. Slowly I started to get better, at least the says I learned to take it. Then when we would move and change doctors I’d be off of it cold. In the start of high school I’d figure maybe I’d be okay with it. So I stopped taking it all together. WORST NIGHTMARE EVER. By the third week,I stopped washing my hair, dizzy The migraines, heavy head, burning ears and the sensitivity to light and sound had manifested, then random shadows then whispering all negative thoughts repeating like a broken record. Finally I broke down and had blacked out. When I came to I was informed I tackled and tried to choke out a friend, bit the other friend and clawed my face and arm. after calling my mom, they gave me one option: be admitted voluntary or be escorted my an ambulance. During the couple weeks in the hospital and several months later they treated me like a guinea pig with after a month switch up my meds Seraquil cymbolta, concerta, and paxil. finally they stopped at 175 mg zoloft, wellbutrin 75 mg and aderall 25 mg. I was a zombie for a while, but at the same time grateful. When returning to school, people at school would call me names and either where mean or acted scared of me. Eventually I was taken off wellbutrin, then I had the grand idea in the beginning of junior year to be all natural and quite everything cold. By middle of the year and toward the end I had relapsed again, but instead of harming others, I tried strangling myself. My teacher thankfully didn’t call my mom who would have admitted me again but I was pretty much babysitted. Went back to the psychiatrist and insisted I returned to zoloft. Which I yet again missed doses frequently and just suffered depression and less anxiety. At age 22 I was introduced to prozac… All I did was cry , snot ball cry at the drop of a hat and couldn’t suck it in. I finally was just getting able to hold down a job… one that finally didn’t see me taking my meds like be being liability or worse a criminal. I was so paranoid of losing it, and even more depressed I was weighing my co workers down because of being a scatter brain train wreck. I begged for zoloft back…. I’ve taken it more religiously for a year and a half now at 100 mg. My anxiety was gone, but the dark gray cloud started seeping back,.. and the inevitable stuck feeling. I explained it to my doctor of now 5 years whom is a family doctor and friend. He put me on viibryd, saying it would work better in a month and I could be me.. several weeks or so went by and a break from work, nothing really. this was my first week back… and I have had massive diarrhea, knots in my stomach, dizzy disoriented and crying. Today I have cried and wanted to scream, throw things and literally wanted to walk in from of a fork lift. I feel so helpless… paranoid of losing everything I finally achieved on my own after life long negativity of being told I wouldn’t be able to hold a job or be by myself. I’m conflicted to giving up on all meds though I know if I miss anymore Ill be fired and thus be going through withdraws and being homeless. My biggest dilemma.. if the med is supposed to let me be me, does this mean this is me? Lost and deranged? Or was the content zombie me? I’ve been on meds for almost my whole like I don’t know what me is! I don’t know if I actually need the medicine or have I become addicted to it? Again sorry for the long post. But any advise would be appreciated…..

    • Tina

      My doc prescribed me paxil and I am LIVID that she didnt mention the withdrawals. I was on prozac which isnt as awful. I was losing weight due to no appetite I had lost 10 lbs since the time I saw her a month ago. Rather than looking into it more she assumed the prozac killed my appetite and switched me to paxil. Turns out I was losing weight and such due to problems with my esophagus and stomach. 2 months later I got a piece of meat stuck in my esophogus that I had to get removed. I’ve been trying to wean off this evil crap and I feel so horrible. I’ve tried before but I was working so inevitably I had to keep giving up so I could keep functioning due to the physical nature of my job. I’m unemployed now and trying to make the most of the opportunity but man the brain saps are absolutely horrible.

      The fact that paxil immediately came up when I googled brain zap is so telling. I feel like I got fucked up by a doctor that was out of her element.

    • jay r

      tina did you ever experience nerve pain

    • jay r

      i understand how you are feeling its almost like these doctors make money either way so they fail to tell you of major risks if any. the only thing they say is oh the fda wouldent approve a drug that is not safe . believe me if they get paid enough they might and over look the symptoms. They dont tell you that after trying a drug you might be screwed up for life after. you have to find that out on your own

    • Leslie A Patrick

      How are you doing now? I was on Zoloft since age 15. Everytime I try to get of of it, I get so stuck in my head that the outside world is a blur. I feel like my brain is permanently altered and I can’t function without it. Tried Prozac, and cried constantly…

    • jay r

      Seems like i have some nerve pain. the other day i had a cold right foot then last night i had burning feet. Now who really knows if that is a side effect of of the paxil

      i have to go see my doctor i still have no idea what is going on . it seems like after i eat a meal i get really cold feet which i had not before all the bs

  4. C Ann

    Was prescribed zoloft by an on call gp 15 years ago after suffering the traumatic unexpected loss of my father and my 2 youngest children. The initial dose was 150mg daily, I honestly couldn’t say if it helped or not in the beginning because I was in a daze & don’t remember much of the 1st couple years after losing my family. About 1/2 way through my 5th year of taking zoloft, I made an appointment with my GP to discuss discontinuation. He was against it & informed me in order to quit cold turkey (which he was very against) that he would like to put me at an inpatient drug rehab facility. I panicked, all I could picture was a scene from “1 flew over the cookoos nest”, it actually scared me to where I decided to stay on them. Year 7 After losing my insurance, I couldn’t afford my meds & tried to make them last longer by self weaning (taking 1 every other day). The brain zaps, or feeling of falling on the evening of the days I didn’t take it were awful. A few months of that & the 2 to 3 migraines a month I suddenly started having (had to go to ER for shot) were enough to say Im done. I quit completely and about a week into quitting, I experienced a rage like I never even knew existed. I’ve never ever been hot headed or temperamental in my life. Suddenly I was screaming & breaking things over stupid things like stubbing my to or losing my keys, then sobbing hysterically til I’d pass out from exhaustion. I wound up in the ER with a knife wound in my stomach but no recollection of how it happened (I was home alone except my weenie dog). They released me the following evening to the care of a friend. A follow-up with my GP had me back on my full dose of 150mg. I must have been back to see my GP a dozen times over the next 3 years complaining of migraines, excruciating muscle aches, ringing in my ears, dizzy spells, heart palpitations, zero labido, stomach upset, hair loss, very bad memory loss even forgetting words I knew, they just wouldn’t come out which is not good for an english major that use to pride herself on her writing skills. Constantly thirsty, unable to focus on a task & sleeping habits became random. Still my GP insisted it was all in my head. Then year 10 I lost my oldest child tragically, my GP upped my dose to 200mg a day & gave me bupropian (sp) for muscle pain. Immediately after taking the 2 together my left arm & fingers had pin pricks the nurse said it would go away, after 2 weeks my pinky was numb & from shoulder down it felt like I whacked my funny bone all day every day. I quit taking the bupropian & the pain lessened but has yet to completely go away. I changed GPs & started grief counseling. After being with the 3rd counselor for a year I finally got someone to validate my concerns & refer me to a wellness doctor that is a naturalist & takes the extra 2 min. to listen. Had blood work done & my Iron as well as vitamin D was dangerously low, she said she had never seen iron levels so low. She has me taking supplements & has started weaning me off zoloft, I’m down to 75mg daily. This has been for 5 weeks now, the only improvement I’ve noticed is a little less fatigue. The brain zaps arent as bad but the ringing & buzzing in my ears has quadrupled and almost all sounds are driving me mad. I’m snappy & emotional, sleeping 12-14 hrs straight, the sun or other bright lights are unbearable, my nails have started chipping splitting falling off in layers to the quick, the vision in my left eye is now extremely blurry & there are these odd pearlescent yellow tinted splotches on the whites of my eyes and dark flecks of color dotting the color of my eyes with a dark ring around my pupils, I have no muscle strength I can’t even pour milk from gallon jug. And I suddenly got these tiny bright red dots (like size of tip of ball point pen) all over my stomach which spread to my chest, sides, upper arms, and a few on my upper thighs within a week. GP says ohh those are just cherry hamangiomas no big deal, you probably just never noticed before. BS! I know what my body looks like as I am with it 100% of the time, and having 500+ suddenly appear can’t be just “never noticed before”. But what can I do if “experts” minimize my concern & make me feel like a ignorant child.

    • eva prifti

      I am so sorry for all this pain. I have experienced excessive thirt especially at nigt. My vitamin D and iron were very low. What helped me to wean off was vitamin D. The more I took D, the less zoloft I took. Keep getting stronger with the vitamins.

    • jay

      Everything that you mention sounds like what paroxaltine did to me feels like i hit my funny bone at times muscle weakness i ended up with a rash which seemed to form around that time who knows . Seems like my feet get really cold some crazy stuff head feels like its burning

    • H Sal

      I’m so sorry for all the things you have been through C Ann. I recently got off Zoloft cold turkey after being on it for 5 years. I took it at the 150 mg dose as well before I got off it when the meds were making me nauseous. The withdrawal symptoms I had were terrible as well and were similar to the ones you had. I became extremely irritated at things people said and was just not myself. I avoided my friends and family. It wasn’t me.

      I’m so worried that I threw my life away by making this decision. Coming off these medications I began experiencing horrible brain zaps that made me feel like the serotonin neurons in my dorsal raphe nucleus were frying. What are these brain zaps and why are they located in the back of the head right where the dorsal raphe nucleus is located…

      Could getting off zoloft cold turkey have damaged the serotonin neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus and this is why I hear the brain zaps? Maybe this serotonin damage is causing all the symptoms we have been experiencing by coming off these drugs cold turkey.

      What gave me hope was reinstating the sertraline medication and restoring my serotonin levels. The fact that you experienced all these horrible things the 3 years after being on zoloft for 150 mg have made me lose hope. It seems as if the damage has been done and there is no recovery. Please can someone tell me there is hope for us..

      Anyone with a cold turkey story of coming off zoloft 150 mg after 5 years and reinstating the medication and getting better can you please reply to this comment? I’ve been worried sick.

  5. Moreen

    Wow… these stories are frightening! I saw some people here have taken Zoloft for only a few weeks and had withdrawal… I took one pill. ONE. 50mg I had the worst reaction to it. The night I took it I would stop breathing whenever I nodded off to sleep! I had severe anxiety and panic like I have not had before, shaking, racing heart beat, and vertigo. I called my dr and they told me to stop taking it because the breathing issue was an allergic reaction. A couple days later I started having muscle spasms all over my body started in my neck and back and then deep in my chest cavity. They have since gotten better but the vertigo has gotten a little worse. Been feeling those brain zaps you guys have mentioned too. Hopefully since I only took one pill these symptoms will go away faster. I plan on calling my dr again if not. It has only been a week. I just don’t trust her anymore. I asked for anxiety help because I recently developed Sciatica and it has been stressful trying to get a diagnosis. I only wanted to feel better and now I feel worse and have sciatica

    • jay r

      moreen did you ever get better? i was on paxil for just 7 days some of that stuff you explained sounds like what i have felt i am pretty scared only 7 days of paxil and i think i am screwed up for life almost numb fingers and red skin and a pain on the right side of my chest under armpit

  6. Jess

    I am 22 and I have been on Zoloft for two years and finally began seeing a psychiatrist who wasn’t blindly putting me on antidepressants and treating me like a guinea pig. He has me taking lots of vitamins and natural supplements that have helped tremendously. The next step in our regimen was to remove Zoloft from the equation. Even though I began tapering off of it at 50mg increments (I had been taking 150mg originally) when I got down to 50mg, I began to experience severe muscle pain, all over body aches, joint pain, prickling sensations in the skin, and intense fatigue. It felt like the flu but I didn’t have a fever. My fiancé and I were flummoxed until he figured out that it was due to the withdrawal symptoms. After finding this website I realized that I was withdrawing from this drug. There is a sense of relief in knowing what the problem is, but at the same time I have to take high doses of ibpruofen every day to counteract the pain. Hopefully this is done working through my system soon and I can resume my normal life. This psychiatrist had me take a brain chemistry test and we found out that my brain only produced 60% of the serotonin that it should, meaning that Zoloft was not even effective in helping me with depression because it was merely redistributing the 60% I did have so the “trick” of the antidepressant didn’t even work for me! Basically I found out I was taking it for nothing. I also learned that it is not safe to be taking if you are pregnant or trying to get pregnant. My fiancé and I want to start a family after we are married and learning that I could have caused harm to our future child unintentionally and unknowingly was a huge shock. I highly encourage everyone who is on Zoloft to take a brain chemistry test and figure out what the problem really is so you can get off of this poisonous drug and replace it with pure natural supplements that will actually increase the production of chemicals in the brain instead of tricking your brain into thinking it has more and thus making you reliant on the SSRI. God bless you all!

    • Gwynda E Severn

      Hi. Could you tell us what natural meds you’re taking?

  7. Mandy M Robinson

    Im so glad to find this forum but now scared to death! Im 41 and my first day on paxil 20 mg. Lastnight i felt those zaps and felt trippy if you will. Almost like a dizzy high feeling. No pain but my vision is messing with me .I have high bp already so im taking 30 mg of nifedipine. My anxiety and manic episodes are far worse without this so im hoping for some positive remarks. I suffer from PTSD on top of things. I take care of my mother and my two year old so reading these are worrisome. I have to be able to function. So far today it started with diarrhea which feels like my behind is raw to the touch but my moods are calmer. Im not as quick to go off per say. My headache though is horrible. I took tylenol so praying that helps. Does anyone have good things to say or should i get off this immediately? I took prozac for 3 years and was able to wean myself off with little issues. Praying i enjoy my life again soon!

  8. Ray

    It’s time. This all started October 25 2015. Sitting at home watching NFL, not worried or stressed about anything. Then it happened: my heart went into a tachycardic frenzy. I had no clue what was happening to me. For 45 min. I sat in the bathroom, not sure if I was going to drop dead right then and there or if a trip to the hosp. was necessary. Eventually it subsided, but never in my 41 yrs of life has anything frightened me like this. The fear compounded with confusion kept me up all night.
    Two nights later, it happened again. No chances, off to the ER. BP was pretty high (mainly due to what was happening), HR >100, but I was told it was not a cardiac event as like the other night it stopped. I was in no pain, no sickly feeling, just extremely jittery. I was prescribed BP meds & a diuretic.
    That Saturday (will never 4get as it was Halloween) while on my way to work, my right arm started shaking. The ‘episode’ returned almost like clockwork. I turned around & went right back to the ER. Same thing: BP & HR high due to ‘episode ‘ but still no cardiac event. I spent the night for observation, & I tell U: it was pure hell! I shook and trembled the whole night. The ER personnel were completely baffled. I was then given potassium tabs & once again the ‘episode’ ended. The next morning a cardiologist came to see me. He was an older phys. so I believed him when said my heart was strong & undamaged. I went home with a halter monitor, and it must have come nack negative as I was not called to come back immediately.
    So since then: everything all my fellow sufferers here have detailed in this forum. Diag. w/ Panic disorder; prescr. SSRIs & went thru the heaven & hell of them; felt my old self come back only to lose it; good & bad days; physical symptoms that come & go; wash…rinse…dry…etc.
    FFWD to today: 11 weeks off SSRIs, seems like a new discontinuation symptom everyday. It’s so bizarre that I’m able to function (work, home, social) while constantly feeling like I’m going to die from some disease the medical experts missed. Just expecting my body to shut down @ any moment. But…it’s been three years. Wouldn’t it have happened already? One of so many ‘what ifs’ that run thru our minds when dealing with this anomalous affliction.
    I still don’t know the how, the why, or the where of this thing. Physical, psychological , emotional, chemical…spiritual…supernatural?? There are theories on all of them as each has factors that do indeed present themselves (supernatural I’ll explain another time).
    I feel for everyone here, and so glad that there others (not really as there shouldn’t be) to share here. These forums have been very helpful, so I implore everyone to keep posting & sharing on up to the day that we rid ourselves of this blight on our lives.
    Thank You All.

  9. Carla

    My boyfriend’s mom said that antidepressants are the new oxycodone. I didn’t believe her until I stopped taking Zoloft. Ive been feeling numb brained, hyper, crying a lot, sick to my stomach and having extremely vivid dreams. My hands feel like they are freezing cold, and my body’s temperature is messed up.

    • kayla gradil

      Hi Carla, I’m going through the exact same thing right now. I came off 150 of zoloft a month ago. I have been very hot, nauseaus and vivid dreams. Did they get better for you? It’s horrible!

  10. Becky

    I can’t believe how relieved I am to find this page. I thought I was going out of my mind while withering off Zoloft. My doctor is giving me blood tests to see if I have arthritis because of how uncomfortable my body is everyday, especially at night when I am in bed or sitting. My entire body feels like I have to stretch it, all day, it’s such a weird, uncomfortable feeling, I have to keep getting up and moving around, stretching. I was on 20mg for 6 years, went down to 10mg for 6 months then to five for 1 month. When I got to 5mg, that’s when my body started with that uncomfortable feeling, sometimes tingling and itching and crazy amounts of zapping in my brain. My eye sight would suddenly flicker(I can’t really explain it) and I almost felt dizzy and like my head was dropping or maybe it was just a heavy feeling. I originally took it for anxiety in my life, no doctor, pharmacist or shrink ever told me that this could possibly happen when coming off of the drug! OMG, I never would have taken it. I have 4 kids, a husband and very busy work life..not to say I am training for the Boston Marathon and not off to a good start with all the problems that I am having, especially lack of sleep. HOW LONG WILL THIS LAST???????? It has been 4 weeks since I have been Zoloft free and I still feel crappy, however, I refuse to stop exercising and qualifying for the Boston Marathon. All these doctors, pharmacists and shrinks should be ASHAMED of themselves!!!!!! Although yoga and running is not the cure to stop the withdraw symptoms, it does help relieve some of them and gives me a piece of mind.
    All my symptoms from going off Zoloft are as follows: Muscle/nerve itching, tingling, pain, light headaches, insomnia, irritability, restlessness, hard to concentrate, brain heaviness, zapping in my brain and eyes. This really sucks since I was hoping to feel good coming off this drug, instead it caused even more anxiety.

  11. Jackie

    If anyone in this group is still experiencing problems from these drugs please go on YouTube and watch Faster EFT. Testimonials from people and the practioners. What a gift!

  12. Stephan Southwood

    I just finished reading this entire thread. I share many similarities with me if the post I’ve read. The main difference between myself and others in my background. I was an active heroin addict for 8 years and now at the age of 32 have been clean for five years. I’m sure many people reading this are asking why mention that, what’s the relevance? It’s important because not only does it speak to the chemistry of my brain but it also shows that I have a lot more experience with withdrawals then I would ever have liked. I ended up telling one of my doctors, my addiction specialist who has me on buprenorphine, about my g a d resurfacing and was subsequently put on 25 mg of Paxil. I started taking this SSRI looking at it from a neurochemical perspective. What the hell do I mean?? I mean that I understood the principles of the nervous system and had a good enough understanding to know that between the nerve synapses are these micros scopic gaps. Within these gaps lives something reffered to as our serotonin reuptake mechanism. It’s a natural occurring function that regulates serotonin. Well after completely altering my natural serotonin production through my addiction my addiction specialist thought it would be a good idea to put me on an ssri. After being a person who intravenously administered narcotics, I didn’t think twice about being put on Paxil. Over the last year my dose was increased to 50mg a day. Well I recently lost my monthly supply, and made the cognitive disciscion to stop cold turkey because it would be easier than getting an early fill. I’m one week in and holy moly. I’ve been through heroin withdrawals more times than there are days in the year. I’ve been through benzo withdrawals more than once… probably the worst off I’ve ever been. The withdrawals from my Paxil scared me to the point of doing some online research. Every symptom that has been described I have. At first just really dizzy, then 2 days later the brain zaps. The vertigo and dizziness seem to be connected. It’s been over 2 weeks now and I have yet to leave my house. Im surprised I was even able to write this. Don’t let anybody undermine the serverity of your pain. I tend to suffer in silence, but even so the people whom I tell this to are seriously worried about me. To the point where it’s starting to scare me. Sry for my lack of focus, I’m still very confused and in a fog

    • Delores

      I have been off of Paxil for 3 months now and I am still having with draw symptoms. I keep feeling dizzy light headed and headaches . I refuse to go back on this medication. Although it is tempting because I know all the symptoms would go away. This is my 3rd attempt getting off of Paxil . The symptoms are getting less n less but still having them on and off. Hopefully they go away soon . Best of luck hang in there .

    • jay r

      for sure been atleast 3 weeks since i stopped and i have blurry vison and nerve3 like pain sometimes and tingling in the finger tips i wake up hands feel numb crazy stuff i now take a multi vitimin . but i wonder if i now need vitimin d3 i have herd that and fish oil helps i guess to get rid of the withdrawls quicker.

  13. Kristin Turcotte

    I had been on Zoloft/sertraline for about 17 years or so. I had major depression/anxiety/insomnia when my son was a toddler. I know I needed something as I couldn’t sleep and yet couldn’t get out of bed. It was definitely physical, but also spiritual. After going to doctors and them prescribing me Zoloft , going to Christian counselor, lots of prayer, and being in God’s word I was able to function. Thankful to God for all of that. As hard as it was he used it for me to draw closer to him. In previous years I have tried to get off the sertraline, but felt too awful. I thought it was because I needed it, but after reading other people experiences realized it was the side effects of withdrawing. In the last 2 months I have cut back from 50mg, to 25mg, to almost nothing. I think the last time I took a 25mg was almost 2 weeks ago. I have had a lot of same symptoms, flu like, brain zaps, dreams/nightmares, crying spells, anger outbursts, etc. I chose to decrease dosage beginning of summer so to have the sun, be able to exercise (walking etc) and I’ve also been taking vitamins, politics, and eating healthy. You can go online to get tips on food you should be eating and vitamins to take while withdrawing from meds. I know it has helped me. I have my God and my friends and family for support also. The withdrawals have gotten less and we will see if they go away completely.

  14. Stacy

    I would never recommend paxil it’s a demons from hell,from taking it to stop taking it, only God knows what I’ve been through and I only take a month supply.

  15. Joan

    My daughter had been taking Paxil, Adderal, Xanax & sometimes Vyvanse. She hanged herself June 30, she was 27. They are evil drugs & the Drs who prescribe them should be held responsible. 💔

  16. Katie

    My pediatrician put me on Zoloft over year and a half ago for anxiety to help deal with my depression and anxiety in high school. Since she is a pediatric doctor she told me that it is one of the only drugs she is allowed to prescribe for anxiety since it is so mild and clean. I’ve never been on a dose higher than 75mg because the side effects was intense stomach pain. Every time I would transition to a lower dose I would get intense dizzy spells and if I forgot to take my dose for as little as two days, I could barley function. Now high school is over and I’ve already started college and I don’t experience as intense anxiety as I had. I now see a regular doctor who told me he would like to see me come off of Zoloft and came up with a transition plan for me. I’ve come all the way down to >25mg and I’ve gotten to the point where I should just stop taking it completely but the withdrawal for me is so horrible even at a low dose that I can’t drive or stand for too long. It’s where I can’t make my pills smaller by breaking them so I grind them up and lick a fingertip of seperated powder to try to ease the symptoms but it doesnt really help. The benifits of this medication nowhere near covers the ammount of grief it puts you through to come off this medication. Luckily I haven’t had noticeable emotional reactions but this physical response makes me crazy and I just need it to stop. How long before it stops?

  17. cuatedeuce

    I am a retired veteran with 70% disability. One disability I have is severe anxiety. I was recently prescribed 50mg of Zoloft. I had minor side effects but they never came back after a couple of days. About two weeks after, my PCM increased my dosage from 50 to 100mg. I like to drink alcohol, but I cut back on the amount I drink per day. The first day when I took the 100mg, I only had three beers. The second day I drank seven beers. I went to sleep and a few hours later my head became so dizzy that it actually woke me up. I was having a severe panic attack. I have never had a panic attack before. After the first visit to the ER, I decided to quit drinking. Cut the story short, after four visits to the ER in three days with a psychiatrist visiting me on my third visit,the psychiatrist told me to cut back on my zoloft to 50mg for five days and then start taking Buspirone. The first day of cutting back on the Zoloft, I had one severe panic attack that I went to the ER (that was my fourth visit) . The second day I had another panic attack, but my wife helped me overcome the attack by having a conversation and talking about random stuff. I am still on the second day, had three more panic attacks but they are becoming more manageable and not as intense. It is becoming easier to handle the attacks and I think I will no longer have anymore panic attacks once I get through my withdrawals . I told my PCM that I’d rather stay on my 50mg Zoloft because I feel normal with it.

  18. krystal

    NP gave me 100mg Sertraline for 2 years but the prescription ended and she hasn’t approved a refill yet and it has been a week and half. Any movement gives me a tiny black out, constant dizziness, stomachache, aching, shivering, vomiting..) This is actually Hell. I want to die here and right now. I can’t stand feeling like this. Please tell me how long will this last?? The Sertraline didn’t even help me; i was still depressed. God, I want to die.

  19. Gary

    I am down from 200 mg to 84,4 mg Just now getting hitibrlieve stomach cramp anxious Really get hit hard if no sleep night before but got to get off This Anyone else deal with the stomach cramps ??

  20. April

    I’ve been on and off Paxil since high school. I just weaned off of it this past month after being on it about 3-4 years. I went to the doctor beforehand and he swapped my pills from extended release pills to the others that you can split in half. My dosage went from 12.5mg ER every day, to 10mg every day for a week, then half of a pill every day for a week, then half of a pill every other day. I had migraines, sweats, and dizziness throughout the whole process. It was miserable. I even threw up from motion sickness at one point. Luckily, I did not have any suicidal issues like some of the reviews I’ve read. I’ve been totally off of it for about a week and a half and have gotten a couple headaches again, but I am finally done with it! I seem to have been a little emotional the last week, but I’m hoping it’s just due to a lot of changes I am going through with my life. Anyways, word of advice to anyone coming off of it: go to your doctor first and make sure if you are going to split the pills in half that it has a perforation line on the pill. If it does not have one, you will need to be sure you get swapped to the one that is not ER that has the line. It can be dangerous to split ER pills because they are not designed to be split and it breaks the extended release seal if you break them. Good luck!! Stay strong!

  21. Tess

    Dear Christa, Now that we understand that these are withdrawls we can handle it, I’m in the same boat was on Z for 8 years, off for 8 months. Just ride the tide and know it WILL go away. Zoloft and the other anti-D”s not only cause these side effects but also dumb us down by calsifing the pineal gland in our brain. This is a medical agenda! What helps de-calsify the pineal is take a tbsp of apple cidar vinegar in 8 ounces of water a day!! God bless you, have faith!!!! Let me know how you are,

  22. Cheryl G

    OMG. These medications are scary. I started taking 100 mg. dose of Sertraline 9 months ago. Although I have been on antidepressant for many more years than I wish to mention. Changes at work affected my anxiety and depression and to survive the environment my doctor recommended Sertraline. I am no longer at that workplace. I decided to eliminate antidepressants/anti-anxiety medications from my life. I did try reducing the Sertraline to every other day for a week and then completely stopped. It has been one week since I had any medication. I too have had the electric shocks, nausea, light-headedness, weakness, tingling skin and probably some other side effects related to withdrawal. I am determined to go the distance and not take any antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications.
    I purchased liquid serotonin for when I have had difficulty sleeping. It has precautions too. I am also keeping an eye on the amount and timing of tea and coffee I drink to help with sleeping. I am fortunate that I do not have children at home and my husband is out at work during the day so I am able to control my days. I find taking a walk or riding my bike helps me manage how I feel. Managing depression, anxiety, withdrawal from these medications is tougher than I thought. I am going to hang in and beat this demon!

  23. biuadmin

    I am writing this because when I went through withdrawals and I searched the internet for positive stories of SSRI withdrawal, there weren’t many and I promised myself if I made it through the hell, I was going to let others know that there is light at the end of the tunnel. There were times when I truly didn’t think I was going to be able to do it and because most of the people who shared their experience ended up going back on I didn’t feel too secure. BUT, i am on the other side of it now and here is my abreviated and hopefully not too dramatic story.
    My experience is pretty basic. I weaned myself down on Celexa for about 3 weeks thinking that was enough time. I had been on 20mg of Celexa for almost 10 years. I was tired of feeling like I wasn’t feeling anything and thought that I should be able to just pop off these pills. I have found out that I was dead wrong on that—take your time—wean off for several months. It is truly the way to go, slow and steady.
    My nightmare started about 3 weeks after I took the last tiny portion of a pill and lasted for almost another 5 weeks. That is where I am now. I finally feel like I am out of the dark place. Keep in mind though…a few days ago, I felt very sad and weepy so I think it can come and go. But that blast of emotion was nothing like the 3 weeks of battle I went through during withdrawal. While I was in the thick of it, it was the darkest place I have ever been. I realized that if this is what depression is, I never had that before and should not have been on these drugs. I was an anxious chick. Nervous but not depressed. There is a problem with how these drugs are being prescribed, but that is another post entirely.
    So, I realized at week 3.5 that I wan’t able to climb out of the dark place and I had terrible sadness and loss of will to do anything. I didn’t eat, sleep, ran a fever, then would freeze, none of the dreaded brain zaps that folks talk about (thankfully) but more scary was just the feeling that my life was just unfix-able and I was doomed. NOTE: I have a good life, great husband and kids, I am happy–that’s why I didn’t think I needed the pills anymore.
    So, my advise, MEDITATE, I never did before, but it truly helped me to get in touch with the positive and I continue it to this day. I am sure I don’t do it “right” but it is good to get out of your noisy head. There are a lot of guided meditations online. DO IT. Take 5-HTP. It is an enzyme. Again, not a vitamin person either, but this stuff helped immensely to lift my mood. I am still taking it, supposed to help with raising the serotonin levels which plummet during withdrawal. It worked for me. I recommend it highly.
    But the one thing that would have really helped me that I couldn’t find was support from people who had been there and got off the drugs. I did it. It was so hard and I am not a whiner, but it sucked and it took a long time. You can do it. I called the doctor btw, he was nice but thought I should go back on. I was crying and in the thick of it when I called him. It was funny that he kept trying to get me to just take 10mg…I said NO, I AM NOT GOING THROUGH THIS AGAIN EVER. He called in a prescription anyway. Even he didn’t have faith that I could do it. Kinda sad. It is really hard, no doubt and there is NO shame in going on again, if I needed to I would have, but by week 7 I needed to see what lay on the other side of the darkness. What is there is real life, where I feel things, where I cry at a sad story and I admit that I am scared a lot BUT I AM NOT NUMB. I am present in my life, for the good and the not so great. But it is all okay. If it is your time to get off, know that it is possible, but don’t beat yourself up if you can’t.
    I hope this helps someone.

  24. Katheryn

    I took Zoloft for 3 months back in 2017 and my ex stole my pills but I was starting a new life elsewhere and decided I didn’t really need them so I just never filled another prescription. I had no side effects whatsoever but after exactly 1 week, I had that weird tingling, pricking and creepy feeling accompanied by serious itching …it was BAD!!! Its been exactly 1 year later and I’m still struggling with these symptoms. I have noticed that taking an anti-inflammatory like ASPIRIN helps much more than Benedryl but there’s not much else that can be done. I’m devastated that I might have to live with this for the rest of my life just because I took this fucking drug for 3 months. I almost want to go back on the damn thing so it will go away. Not sure what else to do..

  25. Ellen Bridgewater

    I was on Paxil for 19 years. 7 months ago, I felt healthy and content enough to go off. I was on only 5mg. for the past years. 7 months ago, I weaned myself off. The last day (by that time I was taking 5 mg. every 4 days) my brain was expecting a boost from the 5 mg. and all hell broke loose. However, I knew what to expect through research, but I will tell you it was very difficult. I got through the dizzy spells and nausea (I smoke medical marijuana for Crohns Disease, the pot helped). However, the psychotic breaks were almost unbearable. 2 days of happy, 2 days of miserable. Every other day I thought I should go back on. Thank God for my husband and kids!
    I did seek help from my Homeopathic Doctor and she gave me 5-HTP to help my symptoms along with extra Vitamin D for natural Serotonin
    I am very proud to say that I have reached my 3 month mark and feel pretty damn good!!! I also lost 13 pounds! If that’s not a boost, what is?!!

    • jay

      Hello i recently had a cannabis panic attack felt like crap for 3 days finally a week later my doc pescribed paroxiltine 20 mg after 5 days seemed to have horriable side effects so i had to stop i noticed leg pains cramping sore chest hot sweats trouble sleeping racing heart sometimes wanting to faint nerve pain in hands and feet numbness blurry vision ect.

      I decided after the 5th day to take only half a pill the next day then stop. 2 days later cramping which went from both legs to only the left leg hot sweats chest pain in the middle headaches. Nerve pain seemed to go away after 3 days off the stuff but still had like muscle chest pain 3-4 days in im watching the debates at night my left eye goes black spots for 3-4 hours seemes like then next day seems like im normal again vision is kinda ok .

      about 3 days later a friend asks me to help him do some fall cleanup i suddenly dont feel good my chest is sore in the middle so i decide to goto the hospital again they say prolly aniexty worrying still after waiting 40 mins to see the guy he chats for 10 mins then says see ya.

      Next thing you know later that night it stops seems like no more sore chest muscle after leaving the hospital but then the next day i notice genital numbness on the left side it seems like so now im scared luckly after 2 days this problem seems to go away . i should add it seems like after i stopped the paroxaltine i was able to sleep 7-8 hours again no weed no pills.

      during my original hospital visit they had gave me some hydroxine which seemed to help if i started to panic i hadent had to take that since the paroxitine expect one day where i felt like i was going to faint.

      anyways Since then i have started to take a multi vitiaman . dont know if that helps or what i have also noticed a rash under my armpit which i am treating i wanna say its getting better but who knows it seems like you take 2 steps forward and 1 step back.

      Now im thinking what if i have some type of bactiria infection or disease that has been unnoticed or am i just withdrawling from both paxil and cannabis?

      i seem to feel good like improved mostly other then slight speech being off hear and there. i kind of have trouble trying to process going out to places longer then 25 mins away alone occasional heart race and
      now it seems like the old nerve pain has came back into my left foot mostly the back and in my hand between the thumb and the finger towards the left the past 2 nights soreness under the left peck near armpit i had like a numbness and tingling in my left arm but i was somehow able to sleep i woke up today and still felt it . kinda went away as i went out and did things but now of course i have to try and sleep in several hours like a normal person do not know if i will be able to greatly.

      I hope the meds did not screw up my body perminately maybe i am still withdrawing i hope this problem clears up.

      So far out of the 2 times i saw doctors at my office and at the hospital they said my vitals seem good but have yet to do any blood tests or anything no ekg or anything i do not know if higher chloresterol is kind of adding to anything as i am unsure of the levels since 2019. they checked my sugar at the hospital and said its wasnt too high maybe i had ate something..

      If anyone has any ideas or delt with this from the generic paxil please let me know i am a 37 year old male even my doctor said i am too young to be dying off i seem fairly healthy. I am not sure if i will need to go to a hospital if things get really bad I do know that i have an appointment with a doctor at my office 2 days from now but not sure they will find anything. Also not sure if some childhood trauma might have screwed with my nerves and they just started to get worse idk from what i noticed the generic paxil seemed to aggravate them i had not had problems in a year or more.

      crappy thing is my doc is a pa they dont really know that much i just want to sleep without no weird things happening for a few nights. Its almost like the nerve pain comes and goes but you watch when i try to goto sleep boom.

      If this sounds like anything anyone has dealt with please let me know like i said.

      was not trying to right a book anyways thanks for listening hope this helps people from dealing with this med i paniced one time from too much weed i dont think that called for this med paxil sure i was off for 3 days alil worried but ive been managing with out meds even took a hit off of a cart vape thing since and nothing happened.

  26. Fary

    As they say psych docs reall have no clue how these meds work this it is all trial and error

  27. Gary simone

    I have had enough he FDA is suppose to protect us Sadly they have failed Let’s all be honest Big Pharm runs the show You think Xoloft is roughcoming off try Klonopin Aldo the horror stories you read are just so sad We need to stop this madness Anyone want to join me email me

  28. Pete

    Hi there,
    I thought I’d post because not everyone has terrible withdrawals from Zoloft. I completely sympathize with those who do get it bad, but for anyone who happens across this page and is worried that it’s going to be horrendous, here is what happened to me: I was on 25 mg sertaline for about a year for anxiety, then bumped up to 50 mg daily for about five months due to winter depression. I quite cold turkey a couple weeks ago, and it hasn’t been that bad for me. I get the brain zaps (which are kinda fun at first) and I am a bit messed up gastrointestinal-wise, but other than that and some mild lethargy, my life hasn’t been negatively impacted. I know 50 mg is a pretty low dose, but I just wanted to help people not dread the jump unnecessarily. I do recommend tapering, eating healthy, exercising, etc., but just know that it might not be too bad for you. Again, if you are one of the people who is affected badly, that is a total bummer and I am sorry, but for those reading, that doesn’t happen to everyone. Work and home-life have been very manageable and it’s nice to feel emotion again.

    • citytravelbug

      Thanks for posting this. I am 2 weeks into withdrawal, so far, so good…. but was worrying after reading other’s experiences. Good to know its (potentially) not all terrible.

  29. j

    I recently have stopped taking Zoloft after being on 200 mg for almost 15 years it was never necessary to stay on it my parents owned a pharmacy and refills were easy never an issue . I have taken almost 2 months to wean down to completely 0 now for over a week . my issues are not being able to sleep restless legs arthritic pain in my feet nerve damage causing numbness in my arm and hand stomach issues heartburn . if I turn my head from left to right it feels like it’s moving in slow motion side effect that I am familiar with, but is in absolute insane thing for somebody to have to deal with . irritability and a whole Nother level I have thrown things at cars I have punched machines I have yelled and talk to myself more than ever in my entire life it is had an epic level . something completely new is that I have wanted to kill myself and very vocal about it and I’m sure about it and I have never ever felt that way before and never would let myself get to that point of feeling that way this drug is an evil evil bastard . regardless I stop taking it and will never take it again but these drugs are prescribed very’s easily and it’s a solution for somebody with a severe problem and even then I’m not 100% sure but it shouldn’t be prescribed so easily just like other pills . I don’t completely understand what Zoloft is doing and it’s with drawl phase I don’t know what’s real and what’s an actual issue by the fact that I have nerve pain numbness my big toe hurts and I’m always active and I just ignore it and the fact that I can’t sleep and then I am angry to a level of almost going to jail and wanting to commit suicide which is something that I would never do makes me believe that none of these drugs should be in existence

  30. Ellen Bridgewater

    I’ve been on 15 mg of Paxil for 20 years. For the past 8 years I was only taking 10 mg. and then 5 mg. For the last 3 months, I was taking 5 mg. every other day, then one every 3 days, until I was done. The 3rd day after not having any, I became very dizzy and nauseous. I’ve suffered with Crohns Disease for 45 years but I was also experiencing ‘different’ bloating and diarrhea. Just plain nasty. And here I thought I was doing it right. I’m glad that I found this site to find out that what I was feeling was ‘normal’ for getting off this crap. I know now, that it’s going to take awhile to get all of this poison out of my system, but there is NO WAY I’M TURNING BACK!! I do want to share with you that 6 months ago I started on a product called Kyani. It’s pure nutrition. It has helped my Crohns symptoms dramatically and I felt good enough to get off Paxil. I’ll be doubling up on the nutrition and see if that might help my side effects of getting off this poison. I’ll let you know what happens!

  31. Ellen Bridgewater

    I had been on 15 mg. of paxil for 20 years. Got down to 10 to 5 mg. over the past 8 years. For the last two months I was taking 5 mg. every other day until I finally stopped. I thought I was doing it right. On the 3rd day that I didn’t take any, I became VERY dizzy and extremely nauseous. I’ve had Crohns disease for 45 years, but still noticed ‘different’ diarrhea and bloating. I did find a product called Kyani which is pure nutrition and have been taking that for the past 6 months. It has helped me get off of many prescriptions and, nutrients that I couldn’t keep in my body anyways. It is my 4th day of being dizzy and I’m going to double up on the Kyani. I’ll let you guys know if it lessens the days I’m going to go through feeling this way. However, NEVER AGAIN WILL I TAKE THAT POISON! WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS!!!

  32. Lydia

    I really felt impressed to write a comment just in case it might help someone else who will be/or is in my situation. I was prescribed Zoloft back in the beginning of January at the lowest dose, 25 mg. I first started taking it because the spring semester had started and I felt anxious about going back. I decided to take the easy way out, as I really did not have intense anxiety, and decided to see if I could get prescribed some anxiety meds. I met with a psychiatrist and she immediately prescribed me Zoloft and also propananlol, 10-20 mg as needed. I immediately had side effects, diarrhea, heart palpitations at night, fatigue, but kept on it hoping it would go away. Then she bumped me up to 50 mg the next week and that’s when things hit the fan. My anxiety had increased to levels I never experienced before. The palpitations were worse. I started experiencing neck tremors and spasms. I should have taken that as a sign from my body to stop the medication. Instead I went back to my psychiatrist and she claimed I shouldn’t be experiencing this stuff on Zoloft and she switched me to Prozac 10 mg. Things got worse. I went almost a week on Prozac, till I woke up at 5 am not being able to go back to sleep, feeling completely manic. Thinking I was either going to die, or black out and harm someone else. This was all stemming from the intense anxiety. I was afraid to take anything, such as propanonlol to calm my racing heart. I kept trying to get in touch with my psychiatrist and she would not answer her phone. I was afraid to take my next dose of Prozac so called my pharmacist who told me to not take my next dose as I was only on it for about a week and I should experience no side effects. I was still feeling awful by night time and checked myself into a urgent care. They gave me Ativan to calm me down and put me to sleep and prescribed me Xanax for a couple days until I could get into with my psychiatrist. They also told me I should start cutting my pills in half to take a lower dose of Prozac. Attempted to over the course of a week to get in touch with my psychiatrist. Finally decided I no longer wanted to be on this stuff as I felt truly out of My mind. Over the next three weeks I experienced heart palpitations, feeling like I wanted to throw myself out of windows, vertigo and dizziness, intense headaches, fatigue, depression, the worst anxiety I ever felt in my life, feeling like my life was unreal, feeling like others were unreal, insomnia, loss of appetite and motivation, praying that everything would end. At exactly the three week mark things started to slow down. In fact, on the fourth week, now I only experience a bit of more anxiety than usual, and sometimes feel like life is unreal. I think that stems from the horrific process and now being able be to actually drive and visit with friends and family when I was unable to. I used to not even be able to play the piano which is something I did for years and would provide comfort but during this time made me more stressed out. My head also hurts from time to time but I actualy appreciate it because I know my brain is working hard to repair what those awful pills did. I just want to give anyone who reads this long thing hope. You can make it through. Your brain will heal. You are so strong and will make it. The second time I checked myself into urgent care because I was having chills and my brain zaps had just started I was terrified and begged them to check me in to overnight care. The doctor and nurse pretty much laughed me out of the place answer basically made me feel crazy because I “should not but have been experiencing withdrawals for only being on SSRIs for three weeks”. They were wrong. If you’ve only been on this medication for a short while it can affect you and you are not going crazy. You will make it. What helped me was taking vitamin D3 4,000 iu. Taking fish oil/omega 3 3,000. Exercising. Limiting my alcohol. Not smoking. And remaining as patient with myself as possible. Sleep will also do you a load of good. And force yourself to eat if you have to. Your body needs that fuel. I’m only 22, but I thank god my brain healed itself relatively fast.

  33. Milly

    I started taking 50 mg zoloft in 2000, then 6 months later increased to 100 mg for anxiety. Like most I put on weight, didn’t have downs, but didn’t have ups either, stayed on a neutral plain, my memory was affected and I felt I just drifted along in life, rather than experienced life, and I still got anxious. I was more patient and less irritable. Decided it was time to get off this drug. In January 2018 I reduced my dose to 75 mg and stayed on this for 3 weeks, felt slightly light headed but that was all. I then reduced my dose to 50 mg for a couple of weeks without any real symptons, so reduced to 25 mg and was waiting for any symptons, but nothing.February 27 2018 was the last time I took the 25 mg. Each day I was anticipating symptons, but hoping that I would be free of them. Third day after full withdrawl the symptons started, but I am still one of the lucky ones because my symptons are minor compared to what I have read. I become light headed towards the afternoon, which intensifies towards evening. I am also less patient and get cranky easier. What I have found to help me through this is to focus my attention on something. I make sure I eat well and stay hydrated (I live in the tropics, very hot and humid), I find distractions help me, for example if I can focus my attention away from myself it helps. These things have worked for me – doing jig saw puzzles, watching a movie (where I need to focus on the plot, not just everyday TV with commercials), going for a walk, swimming laps at pool, exercise and dance classes, reading and doing outdoor activities such as gardening. I am hoping that my symptons will not increase and over time will decrease. I’m not sure if age and lifestyle have a bearing on withdrawl symptons, but to put it all into perspective, I recently retired and am over the age of 65. I think what has helped me the most is that I really didn’t need zoloft in the first place and that I have decreased the dose gradually over time and keep myself occupied. Hope this may help others.

  34. Jason B.

    Interesting to me that a doctor would prescribe a drug without a strong warning about the side effects of missing a few days. I have only been on Zoloft for three months but neither the doctor nor pharmacy said anything about it. This could have went very badly for me. I never had feelings so dark and unexplained body actions. Warning: May make symptoms worse or cause more problems than you ever had!!!

    • jay

      jayson if you ever see this know you are not alone i had a cannabis panic attack and shortly after they tried to give me paxil without expalining that it has some of the worst side effects out of anything and might even last a lifetime i just cant believe a doctor wouldent even tell you of this they almost do not care about you. it can be discurageing

  35. Sarah

    My husband has been on 100 mg of zoloft for about 2 months and felt like he was in a cloud, flat affect and the dose showed no efficacy in his depression. He has been diagnosed with Depression. His Psychiatrist has weaned him to being off after the normal weaning schedule. He is scheduled to see his dr on 2/7. he has been weaned completely off for 4 days. He feels like he is in a cloud still, anxiety, and fatigue. However last night he had an episode of severe anger, paranoia, meltdown, and i was ready to call 911. he calmed down with 1mg of xanax, however he was very scary, threatening and nasty. not his personality. is this normal, as all i have read is more of the physical symptoms of weaning off this med not severe anger, paranoia, etc. does anyone have an ideas? or could this be unrelated as he does not have a history of these symptoms. Much appreciated. Concerned wife.

  36. Davy

    I live in the country and had access to well water. Lots of the posts say drink plenty of water but the tap water that comes out of the faucet has chemical like chlorine and fluoride. I felt a lot better after drinking well water. I hope my suggestion helps someone.

  37. Elisabeth

    The withdrawal is hard, but it will pass. You can do it. This is what it is to live one day at a time, sometimes one hour, or even minute or second. But it will pass, and you can make it. Just keep taking deep breaths, and pray, pray like never before for the renewing of your mind, and it will come. Sweet release from this bondage that we are letting go. This withdrawal is hard and long, but when you are finished, it will be over. It Will pass. Keep going. You’re only one more day from it getting better. Withdrawal does stop, but only if you keep going. Remember your goal. It is to never have to go through this again. It is never to be afraid of having to go this again. It is FREEDOM, and it is so worth every painful day of withdrawal that comes with. Let your pain empower you, because it will remind you of how strong you need to be, but not for much longer, friend. Because I promise you, it will pass.

  38. Nicole

    I just started Zoloft 2 days ago. I’m taking half of a 100mg tablet. I don’t feel anything yet, but after reading all of the stories, I don’t even want to take them anymore. I’m hoping that I stop early enough to not experience these symptoms you all have shared. Thank you for saving me.

  39. Tara

    I’ve been slowly weaning myself off of Effexor. I have decreased my dose from 75 mg/day to about 47 mg a day over a period of 3 months. I have quit Wellbutrin cold turkey over ten years ago and it was absolute hell. I thought I had a drug allergy at the time as there was not as much info about discontinuation syndrome. I also have had a period where I missed my Effexor for three days. This was pretty horrible as well (brain zaps, nausea, diarrhea, restless legs, emotional lability). I have decided to do it very slowly this time. So far my symptoms are minimal. I started a blog about my experience to bring awareness to this issue. I wish I had known all the facts before starting an antidepressant over 14 years ago! At the very least people will have all the information available if they decide to go down the medication route. I certainly would have tried all other options before popping a pill. I am also reading the book Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker. I highly recommend it. It deals with the rise of all of these powerful psych drugs in our country. Good luck to everyone trying to get off of these powerful drugs.


    I’ve been slowly weaning myself off of Effexor. I have decreased my dose from 75 mg/day to about 47 mg a day over a period of 3 months. I have quit Wellbutrin cold turkey over ten years ago and it was absolute hell. I thought I had a drug allergy at the time as there was not as much info about discontinuation syndrome. I also have had a period where I missed my Effexor for three days. This was pretty horrible as well (brain zaps, nausea, diarrhea, restless legs, emotional lability). I have decided to do it very slowly this time. So far my symptoms are minimal. I started a blog about my experience to bring awareness to this issue. I wish I had known all the facts before starting an antidepressant over 14 years ago! At the very least people will have all the information available if they decide to go down the medication route. I certainly would have tried all other options before popping a pill. I am also reading the book Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker. I highly recommend it. It deals with the rise of all of these powerful psych drugs in our country. Good luck to everyone trying to get off of these powerful drugs.

  41. Saeed

    Hi everyone
    I’m a 32 years man who just lost my engineering IT job , my car and about to loos home,
    been under SSRI medication since 2012
    been taking Paxil for almost a year for 40 mg .
    Now my car towed while iI was sleep as always(usually used to sleep 20 hours minimum strait nonstop and waking up with dehydration ) and my medication was inside the car its been 4 days I didn’t take any dose of Paxil cause everywhere was closed even today Towing company denied me to get my stuff and my Meds when I even explained how I,m feeling
    So its just horrible and I’m just trying to wait till tomorrow to call my doctor to refill that for me again.
    Then that the time to reduce the dosage which is gonna be my first plan after this horrifying experience.
    It was a big shook in my brain after seeing the side effects of SSRI meds.
    Thanks dear GOD who still giving me power to stand.

  42. Tony Reese

    I am so glad I found this page.
    This is my second attempt to stop taking Zoloft (cold turkey), and I am a miserable wreck. I was first put on Zoloft after a breakdown that was brought on by the death of my father. In the years since, I’ve went through some other meds, but Zoloft seems to have always been the main one, at different doses. While on Zoloft I experience lack of drive, almost no libido whatsoever which in turn is straining my marriage, and I’ve gained 60 to 75 pounds. But I feel worst trying to get off zoloft. I was hospitalized my first attempt. I really feel like I should go to a ‘ward’ now but I’m trying to tough it out.
    I’ve been off my zoloft for about a month, maybe more now, and I still have terrible headaches, bouts of crying to laughter, diarrhea, my head feels huge or heavy at times with a rushing sensation, my eyes ache almost constantly, really odd dreams at times, and my sleep is so messed up I can’t seems to get enough rest but it’s hard to sleep but I fall asleep almost at a moments notice while on the computer, reading, or trying to watch TV. There are more symptoms but I feel like I’ve ruined my mind and body and need to get back on the zoloft, but I don’t want it.

  43. arney

    I was recommended to take Xanax for my anxiety, which I started taking about a week and a half ago. It only helped me the first day, and after that, I started to have increased anxiety problems during the day, rather than just in the morning. Then I cut my dosage 3 days ago, and stopped taking Xanax 2 days ago. Yesterday, my anxiety increased even greater and now I have insomnia problems, and even a few moments of suicidal ideation. Turns out there are withdrawal symptoms with Xanax, even if you took it only for a little over a week! I write all this, because just yesterday, I was recommended to try either Paxil or Zoloft. I am SO GLAD I read this article today, realizing that I will most likely have just as bad symptoms with these 2 other drugs, and maybe with any other anti-anxiety pharmaceuticals, but it sounds like withdrawal time with Paxil and Zoloft is MUCH long than for Xanax. For whatever it is worth, I have found that during my Xanax withdrawal, the edge of the anxiety is slightly lessened by taking olive leaf extract pills, and smelling natural orange or lavender aroma therapy liquids (the latter provides a very short reprieve from the anxiety, but is still helpful). Guessing that the best way to deal with anxiety is continue work with my therapist, to learn not to be so worried about life, something I learned to do from growing up in a very dysfunctional family.

  44. Robert

    My son now 20 has been on zoloft since he was 14. Prescribed by Psychiatrist for depression and anxiety. He started him on 75mg and upped it after a month. He was on 100mg for about a year and the doctor decided to lower it down to 50mg. My son then 15 told the doctor that after a month that he wasn’t feeling well so he upped it back to 100mg. I trusted the doctor in what he was doing. He would ask my son questions on his 30 visit and as far as we could tell my son was ok. This went on for the next year. My wife and I tried to encourage my son to try a lower dosage but he refused. If we would have known then what the affects of what this poison was doing to him, we would have never allowed the doctor to prescribe it to him. Fast forward, my son in the last 9 months has skipped dosages and refused to take it in the last 30-45 days. He blames my wife and I for allowing the doctor to give him zoloft. He blames us for all what he is going through (withdrawals) because of the affects of zoloft. He has lost 30 pounds this year. His mood swings have been mostly angry and destructive. Continues to say he rather die then live this way. This has brought my wife and I to our knees being witness to what this poison has done to my son. He himself has decided to get off cold turkey, but we have continued to tell him that he needed to gradually wean himself off. He also refuses to even go to back to his Psychiatrist. So I have tried looking for another doctor hoping that my son would see someone else for his condition. But he has convinced himself that the whole industry is in it for the money and isn’t trying to help anyone. I can’t argue.
    We just spent the day in the ER for his rapid heart beat and numbness he was feeling in his arms and hands. He also was having a hard time catching his breath. The doctor did a complete blood work and even a catscan. All came back negative, He proceeded with that my son was having an anxiety attack. The doctor pretty much told us that my son really needed to go see his Psychiatrist or find another one. So all the symptoms he has been having he has been keeping to himself for the last month. Yesterday was the first time he really experienced the affects of being off zoloft. Or maybe we have just been blind to the fact. After reading all the post here, I can’t imagine my son dealing with this by himself.
    I took my son in last Friday to his primary care doctor thinking there was something medically wrong with him. We went on the doctors orders to have complete lab work done. Our follow up visit is tomorrow. I have a feeling that other than just a few vitamin deficiencies, it’s going to be that there is nothing medically wrong with him. I have reassured my son that we are here for him and are going to go through this with him. It pains me to see my child (young man) have to endure what we originally thought would make him feel better turn out to be poison and turn his life upside down. I pray everyday that son can again live a normal life.

    • Abe

      robert, I’m 28 now, i took these braindamaging meds at 26, side effects went away, but i’m afraid i’m not that kind of genius i was before, and i’m more afraid i wont, I was complaining to anyone i see about the drug but their reactions were not more than blaming me for following my parents advice, or mocking at me for failing to build an autonomous life, no one cares anyways, try to push him off the drugs for good and search for another placebo, also brain training and social skilling isnt late for a 21 years old, he still has his twenties to bake, and parents who care. another thing, all what i have learnt from this experience is not to shift the blame on someone especially when he does never care, or cares just emotionally saying, finally it’s me who was been delivered this drug and was been an experiment rat, all what we can do is making something out for our sake and restore the sanity and integrality of our brains, blameshifting is never a solution, because we have only one brain that follows us all our lives.

  45. Daneger

    I have been on Zoloft for as long as I can remember. I was on 50mg and just last year I decided to go off of it. I slowly went off in a 2 week period it might have been a bit Longer. After a few weeks I was completely off! I had only a few mild widraw symptoms one was heart palpitations but I have had those for years so that was normal. The other was a slight upset stomach almost like cramping. My biggest issue was the side effects I had while on Zoloft. About a year latter I went back on Zoloft because anxiety started to kick in again and I was still affected by the side effects so I am going off again hopefully it goes as smoothly as last!

  46. Rachel

    Overall Zoloft has been good for me, but if I ever wanted to transition off the drug I’d be screwed. I had a problem refilling my prescription and ended up missing my doses for two days. Those two days were pure hell. I had horrible dreams, I am talking about suicidal dreams that would leave me waking up panicked and covered in sweat. My head would feel like it’s exploding and I’d get massive body shivers that caused me to convulse. And that was from only missing two days on the lowest dose of Zoloft. I also couldn’t eat or stand up without a 50% chance of vomitting. So even though I do enjoy a much more balanced mental state on Zoloft, the fact that I don’t think I can ever be off the drug is pretty horrifying.

  47. Mary

    I tapered off Zoloft 25 mg. I had been taking it for 8 years. It has been about 5 weeks since stopping it completely. I have dizziness, pressure in my brain, nightmares, sleepiness, balance issues, and so much more. I was hoping I would feel better by now, but from what I have read, it may take a lot more time. I NEVER will go back on this medication again. It is comforting to know that others understand. Thank you for your comments.

  48. Debra C. Williams

    Is this dizziness from withdralal from Paxil and will it ever stop? HELP!

  49. Debra C. Williams

    I stopped Paxil after 24 years by tapering down by Drs. orders. I have had A dizzy head from getting down to 5 mg. from 20 mg. for 3 weeks. Is this withdrawal and will it ever go away? Please help!

  50. Paul

    I have been on and off these drugs,currently going off zoloft 200mg,I was put on them for anxiety and social phobia, I get to the max dose ie 200mg of zoloft for 10 years and have to switch drugs cause they don’t help,to be honest I would rather be shot in the head then deal with the withdrawal symptoms

  51. Matt

    I’m wondering if what I’m gonna thorough for the past week is withdrawals. I was on Zoloft for 20 years for panic attacks. I tapered off with the help of a dr about 8 weeks ago. No more brain zaps but starting a week ago today I’m getting severe depression doom and gloom (the panic attacks were easier than this). And now this feeling that is giving me worst attacks. It’s like I have a cloud over my brain I feel like I’m not in my body. It’s hard to read it almost hurts my eyes but the worst just started yesterday it feels like my arms and legs are shutting down like a lethargic muscle feeling. It’s scaring the crap out if me and causing huge attacks. Can someone try and put my mind at ease and tell me this is still withdrawels even after 2 months?

  52. Missy

    I myself am a VICTIM of Zoloft. It has been one of the worst things that has happen in my life! I started on 50mg and a low dose of xanax when my father passed in a car accident. My GP put me on this three days after him passing and told me I needed a psychiatrist. So I started seeing a psychiatrist and over time I wasn’t noticing any relief from my depression or any positive changes. At this point I was up to 100 mg and after being on it for 2 years my psychiatrist decides it could be making some of my symptoms worse with him saying due to my mood swings he now diagnosed me bipolar and starts lowering my dose. Then as I am going on with this I have always loved my sleep but I am now at the point I love to sleep but now I have no life and do nothing because all I want to do is sleep. He then diagnosed me manic. So now going from 100 mg then 50 mg to 25mg to none I started having withdrawal symptoms not knowing what was happening. I started feeling like I was coming down with the flu to couldn’t get out of bed unless it was because I had to run to the restroom with a migraine so bad I had to stay in a dark room with my eyes covered with a wet washcloth. After about the 6th day thinking it would ease up with no sign of relief and research to find out this is withdrawals I took a 100mg Zoloft and within 3 hours all of the symptoms I had for a week were completely gone. My dr wanted to put me back on Zoloft at 25mg and I myself thought there’s has to be away this will eventually stop one day. It has been a little over a year and still to this day every 3-6 days I have to take some Zoloft when I feel the withdrawals coming on. This is a nightmare I literally would give my right arm to be able to function and feel well enough to just live. This medication has not only took my life from me but has took my 5 year old little girls mom away from her. I literally cry because going out to my back yard to swim with my daughter or outing we could be doing together I never feel well enough or have the energy to do any of them! So if you haven’t already became a victim to this horrible trap do not ever take this medicine under any circumstances!

  53. Haley Knight

    I stop 100mg Zoloft cold turkey about 4 weeks ago! Yes I know I know I’m a horrible person…. not the right thing to do but I didn’t care! I had had enough. After 7 years it was time and my doctors kept on telling me we will discuss that later. But I wanted it now. I took it for social anxiety and anger problems. I was under extreme stress at that time from owning my own business.
    I didnt know which one is better wining off or just stopping but I assume they both hurt like hell! I would suggest winning off as the suicidal thoughts are out of this world when stopped.
    After 2 weeks I got vertigo, vomiting, abdominal cramps, the headaches from hell, extreme depression and mad as hell at everyone. It is very very bad to stop it as I did. But it has been 4 weeks going on 5 and the headaches are beyond my control. They haven’t stopped. And irritability. So be warned.

  54. Eric

    I take about 100mg daily in pill form, I feel fine

  55. Linda Cooper Beebe

    Thank you so much for posting this article! I was on Zoloft for about 5 years. My psychiatrist put me on it for an anxiety disorder after I went through an extremely frightening incident in my life. I suffer from Benign Essential Tremors and when he first put me on the Zoloft, he had me gradually increase the dose up to 200mg. But once it made my tremors so bad, my arms would involuntarily flail around during the night and wake me up.He then had me gradually reduce the does until the flailing stopped, which was at 100mg. I remained at that dose for a couple months when the flailing started again, so I reduced it down to 50mg, which my doctor said was the lowest effective dose. I was on it ever since until I recently told him that I was ready to stop taking it. He had me carefully titrate off of it over a month, but I chose to stretch out the titration myself to about 2 months. I just took my last 25mg does 2 days ago. I was on the lookout for withdrawal symptoms that he warned me about. The only thing I noticed that was likely related was extreme fatigue and brain fog. However about a month or so ago, one of my ears started being plugged up. It was sporadic at first, then started plugging up every night after laying down. It felt like when you increase your altitude while waiting for your ears to pop and equalize the pressure. Shortly after getting up, it would pop and I’d be fine after that. I tried several times to clean out my ears with peroxide in case I had a build up of wax, but that didn’t help. So I thought it must be congestion, even though I felt fine. It is now affected that ear for longer and longer periods after getting up in the morning. I’ve had to tell my coworkers to please speak louder to me, and today my ear just wouldn’t pop and open up. I was so frustrated, I was ready to make a doctor’s appointment, although none of the online research I did mentioned any cause other than congestion or wax buildup. Then I thought of how I just took the last dose of Zoloft, and I wondered if that could be a cause. I googled Zoloft withdrawal ears, and found your article. You mentioned ear popping and clicking, and I think it must be the Zoloft causing it for me too. I know you posting this years ago, but I’m hoping that you are still alerted to comments and that you can tell me how long it was before this symptom cleared up. It’s driving me a little crazy, not only because of the feeling of pressure, but also when that ear is plugged, I seem to be quite deaf in that one ear.

  56. limericksavant

    What should I do when my doctor ignores my request for Sertraline refill? I requested one over a week ago and she has still not responded to the pharmacy. I have been taking some lower dose pills from a couple years ago because I am afraid of withdrawal symptoms but I am concerned about her disregard for my safety.

  57. Sherri

    I was on Zoloft for 15 years, I tapered off Feb & March of this year. I had no idea about the withdrawal effects until June when I couldn’t take it anymore and started researching. I have been dizzy lightheaded I still cannot walk a straight line. Super hot freezing cold shivering. The electric zaps I thought I had a stroke. I still have all these symptoms and there are days I just can’t think straight. Does anyone know of anything natural that can help?

  58. Gail

    Can someone tell me how long it will be before I start feeling better, wiened off of Zoloft starting last June, of 100mg, and was down to 25mg by Oct, was on the 25mg since October and started weining off in April , for two months, now I am off of the Zoloft for 5 days, and am feeling dizzy, nauseated, no appetite, can I feel better before too long, I am 70 years old, and am thinking it might be worse at my age, I have been on several anti-depressants, and have felt horrible on them for the last 5 years, every time I weined off of them, the withdrawals were so bad , I would end up in hospital and they would just put me on more, I need to know does anyone get through this without it being a long long time, and what could possibly help with the process, it is hard to cope with feeling this way

  59. katherina M broussard

    I have an enlarged heart crippling arm and chest pain ,,, I stoped Zoloft cold turkey ,, the only thing that keeps me happy is prayer Gods help and ,,taking care of my child and 4 other kids that are my cousins,, they all bring so much joy to my life

  60. abidale001

    Just told my psychiatric about side effects of drugs, you can guess what he would never agree about, well this is normal …. benifits rule, so i started searching in internet called “illusional reference” by this psychiatric , just after i realised an important persistent deleterious change inside my brain, this “delusive world” led me to 10 pages of non selfcontradicting results, all saying same thing, and all judged as “charlatans” refering always to my “wise” psychiatric, he proposed me to take higher dose of stronger quality of same kind of meds again, believe me, even if he offered me a new brain with super faculties, i just wont blindfoldly trust any psychopathic psychiatric again.

  61. Kelley

    I cut down to only 5 mgs a day after being my doctor convinced me paxil would help but it didn’t help for my anxiety at all. I’m now 2 weeks without and still expierencing every single one of these symptoms. Please do the research before you decide to take them I wish that I had 7 years ago.

  62. Randy

    I was suppose to gradually increase my dosage to 200+ mg/day. I started out at 25 mg and felt like I was shot with an elephant tranquilizer. After that I decided to just stay with 12 mg per day. I was on this dosage for the past 5 months. Yes! Such a low dose but I was constantly tired, light headed and on ‘robot’ mode. There is something very bad about this drug. I sensed it from the start. I was taking Anafranil (Clomipramine) but wanted a ‘new’ and ‘improved’ medicine with fewer side effects so I was told Zoloft would be a good choice.
    In the past I took Welbutrin, Citalopram and I can’t remember what else along with the main medicine – Anafranil. Doctors like to push the drugs. Zoloft is by far the WORST! I read the labels and side effects and I’m confused when we are taking drugs that come with side effects that are the same as the reason why we are taking the drug in the first place. An antidepressant whose side effect may increase thoughts of suicide and depression etc… (crazy)
    Even on the low dose I was taking… I still feel all the side-effects everyone has mentioned (except the brain zaps). I am going to tough it out no matter how long. It has been 5 days now and I’m not using Zoloft again. There are lots of drugs out there so I urge people to try your best to take anything other than Zoloft.
    If there is anyone else out there… don’t give up! Your body is just trying to get rid of the poison that is in Zoloft.
    I was taking Zoloft for minor depression, anxiety and a touch of OCD.

  63. Lisa

    Last summer i stopped taking it because i couldn’t afford it. Two months i waited for symptoms to go away. When they didn’t go away, my husband borrowed the money to shuffle me off to the nurse practitioner and get my meds. My fix. And literally I shuffled because at 50 years old i felt like 80 with a limp, stiff and barely able to speak. I lost 20 pounds. I often panicked brain shocked and light headed. Just take the pills. I got better and went back to college to get a different career in nursing. After a year and a half I did better. But wait- -I haven’t had pills for two weeks and just a week ago got ill. Of course no money for pills. Is it possible for withdrawal symptoms to be worse than before? I have symptoms I never had then: I am an itchy all over mess. I have electric shock in head and lightheadedness followed by panic every so often. I can’t study because im often crying. Everything startles me and i cant tolerate normal sounds or touch. Just leave me alone because you’re annoying me and I cant get it out of my head to rip my skin off. Rip my body parts off. My ten year old child wants to touch me to ease my tension but its annoying me because the touch makes me want to hit myself. I am getting lightheaded and annoyed. I want to hit myself and i am panicking. I have to let her touch me for her benefit.

  64. L A

    10 days off Paxil.. I started this medication 8 months ago.. Doctor began me at 10 and was on 30mg…After being on 30mg for about 4 months I went into severe depression..I had no hope and no motivation.. Taking a shower was hard to do and was sleeping all the time. Called Dr said to lower to 20mgs..I did but my symptoms didn’t change instead I got worst. Anxiety increased and ability to just get dressed was horrible. 4 weeks later I stopped the is my 10th day off and still feel horrible.. Brain zaps and dizziness horrible.. Also very depressed.. I am determined to get through this.. Also not sleeping and when I do dreams are vivid and scary..I was put on this after a bad reaction from taking Lamictal for 8years..I have done a lot of research on the withdrawals of this medication Paxil.. The brain zaps can cause seizures.. Please don’t take this medication.. The only other medication I found hard to come off on was Effexor . Paxil is rated like coming off cocaine or heroine..I have been on a lot of different medications in past. I am bipolar.. Trust me I have tried all but Paxil was the worst drug I have ever taken and with the worst side effects and withdrawals.. Best of health for us all.. Do alot of praying to get off this medication…

  65. Angie

    I’ve been on zoloft generic 22 yrs and Dr told me to go on a different type for 30 days then back to zoloft. Said it would work better again. That’s been 3 days and the brain surges are awful. I am tempted to go back to zoloft now and not wait .I barely slept last night….I’m exhausted, feel foggy and agitated. Ugh…..

  66. Kim

    I have been on Zoloft 200 mg for 5 years. It helped with situational depression. I decided a while back to wean myself off. I dropped 50 mg every two weeks. Nice and slow.
    I have had bad leg aches.

  67. Caroline

    Thank you Kari , I’ve been 2 weeks cold turkey , feel really bad , but going to hang in there.

  68. Melissa

    Please. Before you get on zoloft read this. this is so important I got on Sertraline (zoloft) at 17, i’m 20 now. I never thought of the side effects because i was so suicidal i needed help. When i first got on 25 ml I was fairly happy. My depression was so severe They wanted me on more so they tapered up to 50 ml. When we i got up to that I had the munchies and was VERY hyper. I would frantically clean because my Obsessive compulsive disorder was spiked. I don’t remember the side effects that happened when they bumped me up all the other times (by the time i was 18 or 19 i was on 200 ml). I started having progressive side effect that happened over time. The munchies died off and i was not eating that much. Around the time i was on 100ml I ended up gaining about 20 pounds in 2 months. My periods got to where i would have them once every 3 months. When i confronted the doctors who prescribed me the medication they said they have “never heard of this happening” but when i talked to my primary physician she said it was definitely the medication. So i definitely felt lied to and i’m still angry about it. This continued even after i started tapering off. I started tapering back in May of 2016. I’ve been officially off Zoloft for almost a full month. The withdraws have been terrible. I have terrible head ache. Depressive mood swings, anger issues, severe dizzy spells, tremors, severe panic attacks, with nausea and vomiting. Knowing that this is only the half of it makes me feel hopeless. I honestly wish i would have never gotten on this medication. It helped at first but caused more issues in the long run. Not to mention the if you get pregnant on this medication your baby could have birth defects or you could miscarry. There’s no telling what all else it’s doing to my body.

  69. jay

    Someone pleae explain what a brain zap everyone is talking about feels like? I have a hard time with the brain fog and have verbal glitches when talking. Weird. This has never happened before Zoloft. Anyone else constantly loosing their train of thought and short term memory too from this medication? My biggest concern is the verbal glitches that comes when talking.??

  70. Jim Hays

    I started on Zoloft 20 years ago with 50 mg. It worked for anxiety and depression pretty well, but happiness and sadness were both muted, but I was getting by and my OCD had gone 90% away. The along came Celexa and Lexapro and they weren’t any better. Six months ago, I switched to Cymbalta because it might be a fit for my back pain. Recently, I had a couple of medical problems than caused me great anxiety and my psychiatrist that I should switch back to Zoloft. I started with 20 mg. Zoloft for a week and then fifty for a couple of weeks and then reduced the Cymbalta fro 60 to 30. The first day or two, I was fine. Then started the crying jags, had no appetite, dizziness and felt like I was the most worthless person in the world and that I was a burden on my family. It reminded me of friends who had been on crying drunks. After 3 days of this hell, I chickened out and upped the Cymbalta back to 60 and within a couple of hours, I felt much better. I had no choice if I was to be sane or functional. I am taking 100 mg Zoloft and hopefully when I start to go off of the Cymbalta, the side-effects won’t be too severe. Zoloft served me pretty well, but never never ever take Cymbalta as a substitute. It is a terrible drug. I feel trapped. Fortunately, a 1/2 mg. Klonipin has enabled me to sleep or I would be in real trouble. I empathathize with all of you and there are a million of us out there. Cry to friends. Get help. Get a new psychiatrist. You can and will feel better with the right treatment and sooner than you think.

  71. Christy

    I was 48 when my Doctor suggested Zoloft for my symptoms of Menapos. I was prescribed 25 mlg…Now 50, two years later, i made my own decision to stop taking cold turkey. The reason I wanted to stop was because I had no emotion, i never ever cried, i never laughed much, i always felt like my emotions were on auto pilot. I stoped taking 2 weeks ago, no seeking and no discussion with my Doctor…..the first week was Very scary, dizzy spells, brain zaps, moody, and at times, felt like I wanted to crawl out of my skin. I told myself this is just withdrawal and i will be ok. My brain was altered for two years and now it will take time to get back to normal. This is my second week and i can tell that it is getting better, withdrawal not as bad, although still having brain zaps and tingling on fingers and toes…i will get through this and be ok and so will all whom is experiencing this horrible ordeal….There is light at the end of this tunnel?

  72. Korg

    Guys, you WILL have side effects using these poisons! I was on Praxil (Paroxetine) first from 2006 till 2010 and then on Sertraline (Zoloft) from March 2012 until November 2016 and it has been pure HELL!!
    I am now almost two months clean and I still have MASSIVE ISSUES! I believe the damage done to our brains may last forever and going back on them will just put a nail into our coffins.
    We should all SUE the pants of these demons who make these poisons and sell them to idiotic doctors and just regurgitate the same crap over and over and don’t give a damn about what actually happens inside of you when you are trying to get off of these poisons.
    I have most of the symptoms, the vibrating one, the nervous stretching, the tachycardias every single damn night for over 2 years now! the shivering, the muscle spasms, the phantom nerve pains in my extremities, the random itchiness around my body, etc.
    And I am having horrible panic and anxiety attacks out of the damn blue when I never, EVER had a panic attack in my entire life before taking SSRIs!!!!!
    I absolutely HATE with my entire body, soul and mind the medical profession for being demonic accomplices to the corrupt and evil big pharma industry.
    Do NOT ever, take again these poisons if you have managed to wean off of them. Hang in there, it will NOT get better if you go back on them and tell anyone, especially doctors, if they tell you to get on them again to shove them up their arse!

  73. Ethel

    I so appreciate all of you sharing your experiences. OMG, Iactually don’t remember how little no I’ve been on this drug and my doctor retired so not sure I can retrace my time. I do remember anxiety being severe and preventing me from driving on freeways. However I’ve gained lots of weight, had severe post nasal drip, and become an introvert (always tested as an extrovert) but now prefer my own company. I’ve been on 50mg for years just not sure how many. Three weeks ago started breaking them on half. Immediate vivid dreams. Then started feelng light headed and head aches. Three days ago (Sunday) I started taking 1/3 of a pill so around 17 mg but of course it’s not cut evenly So the amount is varying. On Sunday I got very dizzy while pulling weeds, felt sick to my stomach, profuse sweating, spent the rest of the day in bed. Felt like I had the flu yesterday and today! I have to tough this out because I never want an antidepressant in my body again! I wonder how many months of suffering I must endure?

  74. Nurse Amy

    Fyi, antidepressants are not addicting. If you are taking one to treat low levels of brain chemicals, you need to keep taking it.Sometimes it helps to switch to a different one if what you are on currently is not working as well as it used to; please talk to your doc about this.

  75. RAY

    Thank you to the writer of this article and to those of you who have commented on it!!! After spending yesterday and last night in some parallel universe I decided to see if the symptoms that I had were caused by running out of Paxil a few days ago (not sure how many days) and it appears that I have most of the symptoms of withdrawal cold turkey. Luckily I found a few 10 mgs to use until I see a new Psychiatrist in two days when I will voice my desire to get off the medications that, quite frankly, have NOT helped me. I have been on and off, increased and decreased, several medications over the past 10 months and going on my fourth Psychiatrist because of red flags that I have had from the others. I won’t even get into the bizarre experiences that I’ve had, hopeful that the new one will listen instead of talk for just a few minutes of our session. But what a day I had yesterday with depression, tremors, the fog, chest pain, rapid heartbeat, etc. I thought about going to the ER last night thinking I was having a heart attack but I did not even have the energy to get dressed. So glad that I found this article and I just hope that the dosage will bring me back to sanity sometime today. The title of this article says it all… “PAXIL AND ZOLOFT WITHDRAWAL SYMPTOMS WORSE THAN DOCTORS TELL YOU.”

    • Darlene Stiegler

      Hi Ray,
      I’m sorry to hear about what you’re experiencing. I was on a low does of zoloft 25mg for 6 weeks and have now been off ( cold turkey) for 8 weeks. The brain fog that I felt while being on and off have finally started to subside. If you don’t absolutely need to be on this drug please don’t. I’m not a dr just someone who had horrible side effects from this.

  76. Connie

    OMG I hate this drug. Zoloft.. I was on a 100mg for 3 or 4.years. well I ran out. I thought then I want to stop taking it. So I stopped for 2 weeks now. I have headaches, nausea and brain shockers… Sounds like little crickets in my hears when the brain shockers happen. If I get over the withdrawals I will NEVER take this drug ever!!

  77. Robin

    I started taking Zoloft and Ativan in 2012. It was necessary and very helpful. At the time, I was told I would most likely need to take these drugs for the rest of my life due to the anxiety my depression and PTSD. However, over the last 18 months I have been slowly decreasing my dosage from 300 mg of Zoloft to 50 mg and decreasing Ativan from 10 mg, yes it’s a somewhat low dose, down to 2.5 mg by breaking the tablets in half. I have experienced some unpleasant side effects, but by taking so long to withdraw from the drugs, my discomfort is not as profound. I do experience full body tingling and burning, vertigo, blurry vision, and headaches. These symptoms are not terrible and I am able to deal with them. For people wanting to get off of these drugs, it is my best advice to all of you to do it extremely slowly. Literature for withdrawal from these drugs indicates the best course of action to be entered into a detoxification program. Under physician care. Since most of us cannot afford such a venture, consultation with your doctor and going off slowly would be my advice. Good luck to everyone who is trying to get away from these foul meds. It has been an exceptionally interesting Journey. Good luck.

  78. Amanda R Harris

    Omg! I can’t take this.. I can not sleep.. I have the brain zaps and now I have the clicking noise in my ears… zoloft is a devil

  79. Jen

    I too have been on Zoloft on and off for many years to treat minor anxiety that was causing sleep issues. Only 25 mg but the three times I’ve done withdrawal have been horrible; crying spells, insomnia, irritability. I work as a mental health therapist, so I see these things all the time. It is very difficult to go through it. I am about two months in to this current withdrawal and symptoms are horrible; haven’t slept in a couple of days. I do have low iron that doesn’t seem to go up and have read that Zoloft can impact iron absorption. Please take care of yourselves! There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Having positive support around you is the best thing.

  80. Nancy

    I just happened to see this string of comments when looking up side effects of getting off of Zoloft. I’m so happy I found this. I thought it was just me and that I was experiencing some weird virus or something. Now it’s all starting to make sense. I’m into the end of my first month off of Zoloft. I decided on my own to reduce then go off completely. I didn’t think I was having any real issues but now I see the acid reflux the diarrhea the stomach pain, constipation and general exhaustion and feeling of malaise was due to this. Night sweats, strange dreams not to mention a few. I am not going back on this mind altering drug! I gained about 30 pounds while on it for the last several years. I wish everyone here peace and wellness. I don’t think Zoloft is the answer for me.

  81. Steff Eugen

    I have been taking Zoloft for 3 years. I went in and talked with my doctor about getting off of it. He asked me if I had any side effects such as low libido. I said yes. He didn’t suggested I go off of Zoloft and get on Wellbutrin. I started to wean myself off Slowly by taking a half a dose of Zoloft with a half a dose of Wellbutrin. I did this for 2 weeks. Then started taking the Wellbutrin twice a day. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling like I was going to crawl out of my skin. All of my muscles hurt my lower back was so painful Headache nausea tingling all over my body. I called my doctor the next morning when the office opened. The nurse called me back after she talked to the doctor he suggested a whole nother antidepressant. I have decided to go off all medication cold turkey. Wish me luck and pray for me that I don’t have have horrible withdrawal. But beyond these drugs will make you crazy.

  82. Connie Ryon

    I have been on antidepressants for 22 years. Different kinds cause they would quit working. A couple months ago I started tapering off Lexapro. I have chills, sweats, headaches, dizziness. Feels like the whole room is moving at times. Nausea, stomach pain, gas. It’s awful but I’m determined with God’s help I will get through it. I had lost about all my ability to cry and feel any type of compassion while taking these antidepressants. Thank God that is changing. Not bad crying spells but the ability to feel again. I am on disability due to PTSD and the judge told me that doctors years ago just really didn’t know how to treat people with depression. I am determined though in Jesus name to be who I know I am supposed to be. God bless us all

  83. Carol Eshom

    I am so glad to read all these shares. I am going through a lot of physical things right now, so I didn’t know how much of it was due to the withdrawal from Zoloft. What a revelation!
    I tapered down for 6 weeks, from 100mg per day to 50,25 and then 25 every other day. I had symptoms, but through prayer was able to work through them. Now that I am completely off of the medicine, I am sick as a dog. Nausea is the worst and heart palpitations, fatigue and listlessness. I was beginning to think I had a horrible disease. Now I know that I just have to wait it out and keep relying on Jesus to give me strength. We so need to be educated about what we put in our bodies. I thought I was, but I was wrong. I will continue to pray, for myself and everyone who is going through this hell. With God all things are possible. If you have no place else to turn, turn to him.

  84. Laura

    Glad I found this blog. If I had known what this Zoloft was going to do to me I would have not taken it. I was on two years at 100mgs, it was making me excessively sleepy, I put on 30lbs of body-fat which has been very difficult to get off, I have never had a problem getting lean. I have also experienced everything else others have noted on here: nausea, severe gastrointestinal pain, dizziness, headaches, electrical brain zaps, this is a real tough thing to go through, I can hang with some of the symptoms but the nausea and gastrointestinal problems are debilitating, I have weaned off of the 100, to 50, 25 now finally at zero, hoping I will feel normal again and not physically ill all the time, I just want to feel consistently healthy again.

  85. Theresa

    Yep, Nice to know I am not alone. I have however, found that I have been taking Paxil far longer than anyone else out there so far. I started taking Paxil about 21 years ago for sever anxiety attacks. The attacks got to be so bad I was hiding out in my home. My Dr. suggested Paxil to me and within a month I was anxiety free and loving life again. I have always been on a low dose of 10mg to 20mg. I did notice some side effects but nothing awful. Paxil did reduce my emotions and I did gain a lot of weight but that was nothing compared to how bad my anxiety was. About ten years after starting I tried to get off Paxil but my anxiety attacks came back very quickly so I started the Paxil again and decided it just wan’t worth going off the stuff so I have been on it continuously since. Now, About 5 years ago I started noticing I was having problems with my memory, being able to multi-task, being constantly tired, migraines, general feeling of unwellness. I have had almost every test know to man to find out what was wrong with me with no answers. Then I started hearing that all these things must be my imagination. Some accused me of being a hypochondriac. Two years ago I lost a very good job because of these symptoms. Since then I started having the brain zaps even though I was taking my regular dose along with dizziness and several other strange things. This last winter I had a bout of depression and my Dr. had me increase my Paxil and my side effects went wild. I was going crazy. We realized that my body was telling me that it was done with Paxil and I had better listen. I needed to get off it immediately. I looks like many of the problems I have been having are actually a result of my body trying to tell me it was in distress because of the Paxil. My Dr. agrees with me on this. We just don’t know if some of my problems are reversible or not. I have sustained some small vessel brain damage and have been diagnosed with mild neurocognitive disorder. Before now they didn’t know what had caused these but are now thinking it could very well have been my many years on Paxil. I am now in the process of withdrawing from Paxil. I starting weaning slowly down over months and my final dose was a month ago. I am dealing with brain zaps, dizziness, nausea, insomnia, tingling feet at night, evening flu like symptoms, shakes. I am hoping I won’t have too much longer to endure these and hopefully my body can recover from all the abuse. So far my anxiety has not returned. (keeping my fingers crossed) I know I still have a ways to go but I’m glad to hear that there have been some success stories. Good luck to all

  86. Carolyn

    Hi All. I thought I would leave a reply since I have been withdrawing from Paxil after almost 20 years. My last dose was June 5th and I am just now starting to feel better. I tapered off only after 10 days. I think I had all of the withdrawal symptoms including extreme anxiety. The good news is that I lost 23 pounds since June and the symptoms are reducing. The night sweats, hot flashes, rashes, brain zaps, depression and diarrhea were horrible. I went weekly to my therapist, went to many AA meetings(alkie) worked out 4 times a week and took a lot of supplements. Not sure if that helped but at least it couldn’t hurt. Nine weeks of hell but I am telling you that I got through it.

  87. Lance Fristoe

    I’ve been on 100mg daily for 18 months. My Dr. said no refill without a visit to see him. I decided to quit cold turkey. Been having some insomnia, vision changes and anxiety. However, the most prominent problem is that I’m horny as hell. That zoloft really puts your dick in the dirt. Hopefully I’ll come out of this better and get my manhood back.

  88. Jeri

    I have taken Sertralin (Zoloft) 50-100mg for about 4 years now. I just stopped cold turkey and have been off of it for 3 weeks now. I was prescribed Zoloft for my anxiety attacks and decided that i was tired of having to take a drug everyday especially since i have less stressful events happening in my life at the moment. I have had terrible withdrawals including the brain zaps, nausea and vomiting, muscle pains in my legs, dizziness and this very quick feeling of falling (something that is very hard to explain) which causes my entire body to tingle and somewhat of a blackout feeling all in a quick instance. This has been pure hell and had i known there was a possibility of having these withdrawals i would have thought long and hard before agreeing to putting these drugs in my body. Reading other peoples testimonies has got me feeling even more uneasy knowing that these things can affect my life for up to a year. I dont know if im that strong to be able to deal with these symptoms for that long but i dont want to continue to use this medicine daily. This is a very frustrating thing to have to deal with. I just got married and understand that if/when we decide to get pregnant i won’t be able to continue taking it so better now than later is what im thinking.

  89. Sarah Lee

    I can’t beleive they are still selling this drug. I was told by a psychiatrist 4 days ago that zoloft and seraquil were not addicting and I asked him straight out. He gave me no information on it.

  90. Sarah Lee

    I was just put on zoloft about 3 days ago. I decided to research it because I don’t know much about antidepressants and I just don’t trust doctors. I’m glad I did research. I asked my doctor if the medicines he prescribed me were addicting and he said no. He also prescribed me seraquil and that’s even worse from what I hear. I’m not taking the seraquil.
    I have had depression and suicidal thoughts for the last year at least. (before taking the medicine.) So I wanted to know if it’s worth it to the people like me? I lost my mom 2 years ago and took care of my boyfriend while his body was shutting down and needed a liver transplant, (he got it Aug 2015 after faithful praying everyday thank the Lord) but ever since my mother died, I just don’t know how to go on. I am inside all the time, gained a bunch of weight, and think about suicide almost daily. This is all before the medicine, I just started taking it 3 days ago. The only side effects I’m having is nausea and feeling tired, and anxious in the morning for a min. I haven’t been “happier” since taking it but I haven’t been sad. I don’t think about dying. I feel detached and… weird. But people say in 2 weeks they are back to there old self after taking it. I just dont want to get stuck on a medication like this. How long can I take it without getting addicted? Is this drug worth it for severely depressed people? I’m thinking no.
    These prescription companies are nothing but drug pushers. But I know drug dealers that cared more about my well being. Good book to look up. Side Effects; The Hidden Agenda of the Pharmaceutical Cartel. I think it’s a short book. Heard about it on another site.

  91. E

    I’ve been on 20 mg Paxil for 2 or 3 months now, and I’ve been weaning off it for about five days. Been cold turkey for two days. I know you’re probably supposed to do it slower but I can’t stand having this stuff in my body anymore, and these comments are just making it worse to think about it being in my body. I am so angry at my psychiatrist, she ignored my mother’s concerns that Paxil might be dangerous for me and suggested it as if everything would be fine. I’m 18 and have had severe depression and anxiety since I was 15, but I would do anything rather than have this awful withdrawal. On Paxil, it caused complete sexual dysfunction, insomnia, and I suspect was making me sort of dulled emotions-wise, though I’ve been dealing with shit like this for so long it’s hard to tell what’s the medicine and what’s me. Now I’m off it for good, and I’m having brain zaps as I type this, was shaking and nauseous last night. I’ll be changing my psychiatrist and getting a new prescription medicine soon this year. Never fucking Paxil again. It’s a special kind of hell to need SOME kind of medicine because of your mental illnesses-and then to have the medicine fail you like this. I wish all of you the best of luck.

  92. Marissa Porter

    Please see this website for great tapering advice and support :

  93. Bonnie

    This is a story that will give some of you nightmares.
    I first was prescribed this medication by my family physician in 2003 who took some test and said I had hypothyroidism so I was prescribed Paxil for depression.
    I could not take the Paxil 20mg it cause me to want to sleep all the time. So I then got to change to Zoloft started at 25mg then upped to 50 mg and through the years after 2008 increased it to 100 mg. I am taking the non brand Sertraline because its cheaper. I’ve been at 100mg since 2008 it is now 2016. So I have been taking this SSRI
    medication for 13 years…….
    I was then put on Wellbrutron HDL 300 mg because I felt that the Zoloft was not helping enough I was experiencing some signs of depression and anger issues. I was also put
    on Ativan 1mg tablet, that I could bite on for rage. I would use it to help me sleep. taking 1 tablet at night.
    I eventually found that Wellbrutron HDL and then decreased to 150 mg. After the fact I was told I may have PTSD. I later decided that I wanted to get off of Wellbrutron
    and started cold turkey this was in January 2015 Bad mistake. I ended up in the emergency room hallucinating and said I was suicidal. So I then went back on the medication back to 175 mg.
    I later decided 6 months later in June 2015 to do it the right way and wean myself off of the medication. I have had no side effects from doing this. So I decided to wean off of the Ativan as well because I got out of the stressful job I was in and one of the reasons I needed this medication. I weaned myself from it. I didn’t have any side effects.
    So I thought well Ive gotten off of those medications it should be no problem to get off of Sertraline (Zoloft). In February 15, 2016 I decided to wean myself from 100mg to 75mg the next week then 50mg , then 25 mg, then 12 mg, then 0 mg. Its now March 15, 2016 and I’ve not been taking any since Saturday March 13,2016.
    All the past week has been rough with 12 mg and then to 0 mg. My symptoms are all what others have said:
    *Insomnia, *Anxiety *Bran zaps,*Fatigue,*dizziness, *Feeling like walking on water, *Nausea *vomiting *diarrhea,* anger, *depression, * crying spells,*mood swings,* irritability,* sweats, *itchy skin specially on arms, shoulders, legs, back of ears. I’ve been going to the gym during the past 4 weeks has helped but the past week I’ve felt so tired.
    I went for a drive the other night and almost didn’t make it home, I had to pull over from the dizziness and nausea. Last night I drank some tequila shots and it got me really angry and paranoid. I was upset with my husband, I went out to drive, I made it back home after texting to my husband, we argued. I went to bed slept 7 hours got up at for 5 hours went back to bed for 7 more hours. Some nights are just in and out of bed.
    I will not give up though at times I want to go back on the medicine but I can kick this medicine in the butt. I don’t need it and I can do this. I will go and get tested to make sure this shit is out of my body and make sure my thyroid medicine is at its correct level.
    I think my physician should not of put me on this medicine that through cognitive therapy I could of done it without the medicine. But I stopped going so I guess he felt that
    this would be a temporary solution. Had I known about the HORRIBLE withdrawal symptoms I would of not gotten on this medicine.
    I pray for those who are addicted to this medicine. I pray that in 2 months I don’t have to go back on this medicine, because I won’t, I don’t want to be taking this for the rest of my life. My life is better now. I am stronger and I can do this. I know many of you out there feel helpless. But talk to your loved ones, they can help you through this and
    exercising helps as well. And eating well because if you eat well you can get the serotonin you need from your diet.
    The SSRI’s get in your blood stream and your body craves more and more. Your body can just take it for so long that it doesn’t work any more. That’s why the depression comes back.

  94. Gypsy

    I came here due to reading up about weaning off Zoloft. What I’ve read here has made my decision.
    I have fibromyalgia, which means I’m in pain 24/7, all over my body, but especially in specific places and points. I’m exhausted, depressed, and dealing with lots of anger and anxiety. Finally decided to tap out and apply for disability, applied for Medicaid, and 9 months later finally got the ‘caid. So I’m seeing a rheumatologist for the first time.
    Fibro affects your sleep because of the pain and pressure points. She (the rheumatologist) was adamant I must have help to sleep. Lyrica stole my long and short term memory, Cymbalta made the walls melt, Wellbutrin caused insane palpitations. I did not want to take any antidepressants, period, but I’ve had doctors refuse to treat me anymore for refusing meds, and I need help to win my disability and regain independence, even if I’m poor forever. So I let her convince me to try Zoloft.
    Two nights I took a full 50 mg pill. My pain was somewhat better, but I had a fierce case of the nods the whole next day. My PCP freaked out over my BP on the third day, and I was having really mild palpitations, so rheumatologist said cut it in half, and if that doesn’t work for me without issue, take a quarter or just go off it.
    She prescribed this shit before my blood work came back, and once the results were in she knew I was vitamin &D deficient and prescribed supplements. She now feels that once my levels are back up, I’ll sleep, hurt less, etc.
    I’ve been on Zoloft five days. After cutting my pill in half for the second night, I had insane dreams, woke up clawing and scratching at my chest, panicking about fire, weird stuff going through my mind, vision wonky, extremely nauseous. I had the thought that I should kill myself to escape go through my mind. I screamed internally, like someone jumped out of a closet and scared me – I knew this crap can make people suicidal. I focused hard on telling myself “It’s just the drug saying that” over and over. The episode eased about an hour later. I finally got back to sleep three hours later.
    My pain isn’t better on Zoloft. I wake in the middle of the night every night since cutting to 25 mgs. Night before last my night’s sleep consisted of 2 two hour naps. I’m alert and energetic during the day, but the night sweats, lack of sleep, low back pain and general toxicity of putting unnecessary chemicals in my body make it most definitely not worth it. Reading these withdrawal horror stories? I’m out. Perhaps only five days isn’t enough to put me through that hell.
    No Zoloft for me tonight. If I experience unbearable withdrawal symptoms, I’ll take a quarter pill (I have a pill cutter) and Stop again. If I again get unbearable withdrawal symptoms, I’ll take an eighth.
    Basically, I’m going to nope outta here quick. Because, hell no. My problems are too big already.
    I will find a doctor willing to prescribe Xanax to take as needed when I can’t sleep due to anxiety and pain (stress causes tension, tension triggers horrible fibromyalgia flares). I have 4mg Zanaflex, but some nights it simply isn’t enough. Zanax doesn’t have side effects (at least for me), no withdrawal effects (at least for me) whether I take it for a night or a month of nights. My PCP will not prescribe it. My rheumatologist will not prescribe it. My psychologist doesn’t prescribe at all. If I’d been able to get what I knew worked for me I’d have never filled the Zoloft at all.
    And now I’m really scared. And rambling, I’m sorry for that. But y’all told some scary effing stories. Bless your hearts. I want to give everyone such a hug.
    Hang in there, you guys. ❤

  95. Kari

    ITs nice to know that other people go through the same thing. I was on 50mg/ day sertraline (Zoloft) for 5 years. I had wanted to treat infrequent panic attacks and anxiety I was having with something short term like lorazepam or something on that order – small dosage only when needed. BUT my doctor is SO AFRAID to prescribe narcotics she put me on zoloft after a few years of trying to talk me into it. I weaned myself down to 25 mg / day for 5 weeks and then 25 mg every other day for 5 weeks and now for a little over 2 weeks have not had any. It has been HORRENDOUS. Brain zaps, stomach upset, crying about everything, anxiety, really bad acid reflux and heartburn, itching all over my body and temper outbursts for no reason. I cannot believe a drug that is supposedly not addictive can do this. My symptoms are starting to diminish ever so slightly and I am going to hang on through the bitter end, I have noticed that ibuprofen tends to help somewhat. NEVER EVER AGAIN will I put an antidepressant in my body.

    • Darlene

      Hi Kari,
      I went off zoloft 2 weeks ago after only being on 4 6 weeks ( I went cold turkey) . The withdrawal symptoms are horrible. Headache, feeling in a fog is the one that is the worst for me. Crying, feeling like I don’t/ can’t do all the things I use to do, shakiness. Can you tell me how you are feeling now. Have the withdrawal symptoms gone away?

    • Lisa

      HI oak in the same boat as you, I was on 25 mg for I think two months then I upped it to 50 and the side effects were bad so I stopped cold turkey. Like you I was only on it for probably six weeks maybe a bit more. I thought I had the flu my appetite is zero and I keep thinking that either my cats are walking around when there someone in my backyard with the both of flashes in my peripheral vision. I just learned that comingdown off the Zoloft has withdraws. I’m going to do in all green juice cleanse to try to flush everything out of my system. How are your symptoms doing? Did they subside?

    • Darlene Stiegler

      Hi Lisa,
      I’ve been off for 12 weeks now and have finally started feeling myself. the brain shivers have lessened but still feel them from time to time. The brain fog has pretty much gone away. I’m going to my dr Monday to have hormones checked which I believe was all this was from the beginning and should have never been put on zoloft.
      Stay strong!

    • Christa

      I was only on Zoloft for fifteen days 100mg for panick attacks and anxiety after having my first child. I literally have sat here and read this entire forum thread and I have just about every single withdrawal symptom you guys listed. I don’t know how long this is suppose to last but it really is pure hell.. The vivid nightmares are the worst and the anxiety won’t let you get any rest. I understand wanting to end it all because of the withdrawal of this drug and I wasn’t depressed at all before I started taking Zoloft. Tapering down doesn’t even help either so I decided to just stop taking it completely three days ago. I hope my brain isn’t messed up forever. I’m going to try to find a serotonin natural supplement and hope it gets me through this. I’m sorry for all of you still going through it like me I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy.

  96. Lauren

    Hi! I am 17 year old girl I’ve had anxiety on and off my whole life I had bad reactions to the medications when I was in 2nd grade so I’ve always just dealt with it. Well recently I had a baby and it stresses me way out cause I also have autoimmune disorders so I was having anxiety about taking care of her on top of not feeling good. So my doctor proscribed me Zoloft 50mg I took it for 3 months and started having bad side effect from it including making my autoimmune disorders so much more so I decided I needed to wean myself off of it once my pinky toenail fell off and I had a constant headache. So I cut down to 25mg and then 10mg and then stopped I have not had Zoloft for a week and oh my god I’m in HELL constant headache, neasuea, cramps, dizzy, neck feels heavy, tired all the time and I get sudden horrible panic attacks. I will never take this medication or any medication like it ever again. I would much rather have anxiety then feel like this. I hope I feel better soon because I’m seriously going to lose my mind. I’m used to feeling bad because of my autoimmune disorders but this crap is unbearable it’s taken everything in me to make it through this week if I have to feel like this for weeks or months I will seriously lose my mind.

  97. untetheredsoul

    I have been taking zoloft for a little less than a year now. My doctor and I decided that it would be best if I stopped taking it, so I have slowly been cutting down my dosage intake. I am not myself right now. I feel completely numb. I don’t know how to keep my relationships up, and this makes me very upset with myself. I have the most amazing guy in my life, and sometimes I just don’t feel anything towards him or anyone else. I am so angry with myself for that, usually I am a hopeless romantic.I have no energy whatsoever, I’m dizzy and my head feels heavy, I oversleep, the list just goes on and on. All of the comments break my heart. I’ve read several saying” I feel crazy.” I have that thought cross my mind continuously. I just feel absolutely crazy, and I want this feeling to go away! I want to be ME again.

  98. pblarr

    Is there anyone out there who got off it and no longer has withdrawl symptoms?

    • Nancy

      I’ve been on 50mg of Zoloft for about 2 years. I’d recently decided to start tapering off so I’ve been taking 25mg for. Few weeks now. I don’t have the brain zaps people mention but I have horrible constipation and profuse sweating, like hot flashes, constantly. I’m a little nervous at times and my personality is definitely more extroverted but not not in a bad way. I put on 20 lbs in a year and I’m 45 so it could also be a combination of pre-menopausal/withdrawal. I just want to get off this crap as that is the only medication I’m on. Also my cholesterol is high due to gaining the weight. Gotta get my mind and body back to where I want it to be. Oh and nausea! Lol but I’m determined to push through!!!

    • Asher K

      YES!!! I was on 25mg Zoloft for over 10 years to level out my hormones after a miscarriage at 4 months. It helped at first but every attempt to wean off the drug was horrible. Finally in 2012 I decided there was no turning back and did it. The first five months were ROUGH! My mind would race, small things would send me into a rage and any little upset like missing a plane connection would render me useless. I literally couldn’t think my way through normal obstacles. Needless to say all of this wasn’t normal for me (before zoloft or on Zoloft). Then one day at the airport while having a melt down it hit me that I looked like a complete idiot who couldn’t think themselves out of a wet paper bag. I stopped what I was doing and thought this isn’t me. My life sucks; I can’t deal with anything; how am I to survive like this? Then I started thinking how I used to be before Z. I was able to calmly think through kind of issue and put a plan in action. There are the key words “calmly” and “think”. That when I started making positive steps to a full recovery. Every time I would feel out of control I would shut my eyes and slow my mind down with controlled breathing and start thinking. I wouldn’t speak until I could tame the tongue demon and think rationally. If that meant leaving a meeting and going to the bathroom then I did it. I would take a walk and think. I also changed my diet to non processed and non GMO foods and started exercising. I had great family support. All of these things helped tremendously! In all it took 9 months to a year to fully recover and it was worth the struggle!

    • Alice Concannon Dupre

      Thank You. I’ve just finished reading your very helpful and hopeful comments! It a year later so you may not be on this site,but if YOUR ARE,THANK YOU,AND GOD BLESS

    • Kari

      Yes!!!! I posted on February 11 regarding the horrible actually terrible withdrawal I was going through after weaning myself off for the previous 10 weeks. Today is May 12. HANG ON and don’t look back!!!! It was horrible for about 3 months and at that point I realized that a lot of things that have been happening to me the past few years were not just me – it was actually side effects of the Zoloft. For instance I have had such a hard time concentrating at work – it took everything I had to get one thing done during the day. That is completely GONE now – I actually go to work and WORK – and all the other side effects are gone too. NO more brain zaps, crying outbursts etc. So hang on – you will get through it and it is so much better once you do!!! I feel so much happier now than I have been in awhile – such an ironic thing – happier after getting RID of an antidepressant.

    • yana

      Hi Kari,
      Just wondering if I could hear more about your tapering story? I am tapering now and would love to know what is my best route to getting off these poisons.
      You can email me at

    • Kimberley Richardson

      Thanks for the feedback. It’s been two months since I stopped Paxil, and I was wondering if it would ever stop. It is getting better, but still having issues. I’ll just keep hanging in there.

    • Kim Perkins

      My story: I was prescribed Zoloft after the birth of my son for post partum depression at 25 mg. it got me through the worst of it. Insurance switch caused me to have to go to a new doctor. The new doctor told me that 25 mg was not the therapeutic dose. So up to 50mg I went. The dose worked fine for about a year. It helped with anxiety and irritablity/depression but never with my insomnia. As of two months ago I felt my depression return. After reading about the side effects of withdrawal I figured I would just tough it out. What a week it has been. Brain zaps, crying spells, extreme fatigue, diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea, horrible restless legs and insomnia, vivid strange dreams, feeling of stuffiness in the head and dragging thoughts. After 7 days the symptoms happen less often but still present, specifically the nausea, insomnia, fatigue, strange dreams and loss of appetite. The brain zaps are gone as is my desire to cry for no reason. Odd feeling in the head diminished but not entirely gone. I will post back in a week to let everyone know what has lessoned and what has continued.

  99. L

    Interestingly enough I was never suicidal prior to taking Zoloft. I was extremely exhausted all the time and have been under tremendous stress so my primary put me on 50 mg of zoloft. Then after I became suicidal he increased the dosage to 150 mg per day. It did not worked so I stopped cold turkey. I was crying every day and was dreading to get up from the bed to face another day. I told my doctor that I stopped taking the zoloft and he sent me to a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist did not want to even take me on as his patient as I know the rule: you tell you doctor you are suicidal that day your doctor is forced to report you that moment and commit you to a mental hospital for 48 hours on suicide watch. So when he asked me if I am suicidal I told him “not today”, and he told me to leave his office and he will not be my doctor. I went back to my primary and he convinced me to go back on Zoloft which I did 100 mg. Now the panic attacks started while on zoloft and to deal with that my primary also put me on zanax. I would take 100 mg of zoloft in the morning and 4 to 5 hours latter I would get a panic attack like clockwork and I would take a zanax to deal with the panic attacks. When the panic attack was so bad that I could not breathe and I really thought I am going to die, and my muscles were frozen I was taken to the ER. The next day I cut my zoloft to 50 mg. However, the damage was already done. Not only I was suicidal by I would have waives of panic attacks throughout the day. I then cut both zanax and zoloft all together. I was an absolute mess for about one month, anxiety, crying spells, anger, feeling empty inside. However, after one month I was no longer suicidal and I came back the way I was prior to taking the zoloft in the first place. However, my story does not have a happy ending as in order to deal with my highly stressful work and meet many deadlines I took gabapentin and tramadol to keep me focus, and I got horrible panic attacks again and took some zanax, and now I am back on zanax, with anxiety attacks, suicidal and crying spells. However I will never go back on zoloft again.

  100. sue

    I have been on Zoloft for 18 years, 50 mg. Lately, my iron levels have been low so I decided to do some investigating into my meds to see if anyof them could cause iron deficiency, and sure enough, Zoloft, if taken for a long time, prevents the body from absorbing iron so I decided that’s it. I quit taking it 2 weeks ago without my Dr. knowing. Most of my side effects are physical………..bloating, acid reflux, brain zaps, light headedness. Twice, after eating, I have had abdominal pains, diarrhea and wretching over the toilet like I was trying to vomit but nothing was coming up. I’m sure the wretching isn’t good for my hiatus hernia either. Tell me this will all go away please.

  101. Cait

    I get so angry as I read these posts because I can feel everyone’s pain. I ended up at the hospital this week because the withdrawal has been so so bad. I have never felt like this. Before I was taking zoloft, I was anxious. I’d take anxiety any day over these withdrawal symptoms. I basically had a doctor tell me that is was mostly in my head and that if I tried to have a positive attitude about zoloft, I would be surprised by how much better I would feel. Gag. I only took zoloft for 8 months and have been weaning for 2 and am still so dizzy. I just want to feel better.

    • Les'lee


    • Brad

      Zoloft exists your system rapidly, 200mg takes about 4 days. The issue is your brain now has to start making it’s own serotonin and it takes time for receptors to rebuild.

  102. sandra k Sloper

    I have been on Zoloft for about 5 yrs. I quit cold turkey about 2 months ago. I have been feeling bad all summer. Terrible headaches, nausea, my eye hurt, my neck, agitation, light headed, weak, loss of appetite, etc. How long does this last? I think I should have talk to my Dr. About maybe getting weaned off. Do you not have side effects if you are weaned off? I going to my Dr this week and break the news to him. If I survive this visit, can he put me back together again?

  103. Snow

    My son (24 yrs old) was recently prescribed Zoloft for depression. I don’t know the dosage, but I’m worried about his present state of mind. I’m on Paxil. Withdrew once. It was pure hell. I experienced a depression relapse and the doc suggested I start taking it because it worked for me. I cried because I knew I’d be on it for life at that point in time. Fifteen years later, I’m still taking it. I function but I’m still depressed. Not a day goes by that I don’t think at least once about ending my life. I can’t/won’t because 1) I’m gutless and 2) I can’t do that to my boys. If it weren’t for them, I’d crawl in a hole and never come out.

    • Diane Bolden

      Omg hang in there. God please help her. Give her hope and work wonders where she never thought possible. In Jesus name Amen.

  104. ML

    I have been on 200mg of Zoloft daily for about 5 years now.
    A few days ago I decided to quit “cold turkey” because my suicidal depression came back even though I was on the drug, so I could see it wasn’t helping.
    So far (it’s been 3-4 days) I haven’t experienced any terrible symptoms; I get the tingling which I used to get whenever I missed a dose or was late, so I’m used to it and it’s not that bad. But I have had no nausea, dizziness, headaches, nightmares, anxiety, or anything like that. I will update if I do start to experience any withdrawal symptoms (which I hope doesn’t happen, fingers crossed!).
    I would also like to mention that I too gained about 50 pounds since being put on this disgusting monstrosity of an antidepressant.
    For a brief period (couldn’t have been more than a few weeks) I had also been put on Cymbalta in addition to my Zoloft when I was really depressed. The side effects (sweating a pool in my sleep and waking up drenched every day) were too much so I quit that as well, and that time I had the worst anxiety/panic attack in my life, where I was hyperventilating, crying hysterically, and couldn’t breathe so I begged to be taken to the ER. That was a terrible night, but after that I was good and experienced no long-lasting withdrawal symptoms.
    I hope all you sufferers get the relief you deserve!

    • J

      Ok but what inside of you thought that you could go cold turkey on 200 mg. that’s just asking for withdrawal

    • Nick Ross

      I’m curious to see what your update on this is seeing it’s been two years since you posted. I was on 200 mg. And I have the worst headaches, is it the bathroom 50 times a day, electrics shocking, can focus, very lethargic, restless leg, itching, extream irritability, moments of anger, unable to sleep, constantly tired, and suicidle thoughts regularly. I’ve been taking this drug for years and no longer what to be a prisoner to it.

    • Sunny c

      Hi, Nick. I went of Citalopram 8 months ago. Wow. It’s been hell. How long have you been off? How are you feeling? I went cold turkey and that was a bad idea. But, I when it quit working I felt soooo bad that I just gave up on it all. Are you weaning off slowly? M

  105. Mary

    3 weeks off this drug i have a numb leg. Muscle twitches all over. No appetite. Weight loss. Headaches. Weak neck. Fatigue. Nausea. Bone aches. Tingling. Never ever again. Ever

    • Dave

      You ever get over these? I have them now.

    • Katherine Block

      Are you feeling better Dave? How long do the side effects last? I’m in my 2nd week. I have severe headaches, brain zaps, week and dizziness! I took Sertraline for 3 months. I WILL NEVER TAKE THIS CRAP AGAIN!!!

    • denise bertolami

      I can’t believe this…
      Withdrawal from Zoloft crossing over to Prozac.
      Not good.
      Tightness in chest

  106. AC

    I’ve recently quit a Zoloft generic and get dizziness pangs now and then, as well as digestive tract issues. Although I haven’t had that reaction to quitting SSRIs before, that’s the last time I allow them into my body. Hopefully, it will get better with time and not get worse. I agree that the drug companies don’t give a damn about the patient, any more than the patient gives a damn about the drug company’s balance sheets and all those poor investors who need more money this quarter. Money and medicine don’t mix; this is the root of many a problem in modern medicine.

  107. Lisa

    I was put on Zoloft by my GP when I complained to her about anxiety symptoms I was experiencing (related to menopause). I was on 100 mg for about 2 years and in the past 60 days, lowered my daily dose to 50 mg.
    I just got over the stomach flu, and missed my dose and decided that that the end of it for me.
    I had noticed headaches, and light dizzy spells when I lowered my dosage, but didn’t know it was withdrawal. Now that I have completely stopped the Zoloft, I have headaches that are focused on the back of my head, dizziness and nausea, crying spells, anger spells, difficulty in mentally focusing, miscellaneous body aches and pains, lethargy, occasional tremors, and a sensation that my body is vibrating.
    I would have never taken this “medication” had I known the risks of long time use and withdrawal.

  108. Michelle

    Okay, had a chance to get through it. I have reduced my dosage over a few weeks and have been at zero dosage for 3 days now. Been having body tremors, incessant tingling sensation in my face (only made bearable with Benadryl), crying spells, irratibility, naseaua, gastric symptoms and HORRIBLE stuttering.
    Pre-Sertraline I was emotional (as most late teen/early 20’s girls who have been through trauma would be) but not to the point where I couldn’t function and for the majority of the time enjoy life.
    On Sertraline I gained 30 pounds that I could not consistently lose, I was anxious constantly, had constant mood swings, was very socially anxious and would have a difficult time functioning in public.
    I have tried coming off before, but every single time I would have the withdrawl symptoms (crying, irratibility, tingling) and everyone around me told me I needed to get back on because I was “crazy” when I wasn’t taking them. And I believed them… even though I had NEVER been like this BEFORE taking Sertraline.
    Thankfully I did some research and found that I’m NOT crazy, this drug is messed up and I am going through withdrawls. This sucks, but at least it will stop, eventually. I want my life back!!!

    • Siobhan

      I thoughtt I was dying of some horrible disease! Then I started doing research and found out that everything I was experiencing was from withdrawl. I want to get off this drug. I also gained about 30 pounds that I have been unable to lose.

  109. Doyle Mills

    From what I’ve observed, people start taking a psychiatric drug, are on it a while, then if they stop, they get some horrendous bad effects. Then this effect is used to prove to them they “need” the drug. It’s a trap.
    Somehow everyone knows that drugs like cocaine, heroin and the like have severe withdrawal effects and forget that Paxil, Prozac, Zoloft and all of them have similar or worse effects.
    Can you imagine a heroin user, who doesn’t have a “fix” today, has some withdrawal and someone said, “obviously he needs the heroin”? It wouldn’t happen. And it shouldn’t happen with these psychiatric drugs either.

    • Elaine

      I agree with it seeming to be a ‘trap’, I have been on zoloft for over 10 yrs. I do not need to be on it, When I started menopause my primary physician put me on
      Prozac when I told him I was having trouble sleeping and confided in him that my husband was being a pia (he was). After exactly 14 days I had an horrible reaction to the Prozac I was told to immediately stop taking it and I went to a mental health in-house facility because I had horrible mind racing and could not stop crying…I never had mind racing ever!! And I hardly ever cry. The psychiatrist there put me on zoloft to help with the symptoms and it did. I’ve tried several times to get off and every time the mind racing would start up again. I am now in the process of coming off of the zoloft a tiny bit at a time, the side effects are very unpleasant but I know they won’t last due to reading the success stories. Since being on zoloft (never over 75 mg) I have had 2 major surgeries a hysterectomy and surgery for kidney cancer. All of the Zoloft bs was caused by my good intending primary Dr. Trying to `help` these drugs should only be administered by a psychiatrist and never for someone who is just having trouble sleeping!!

    • Patti

      My daughter is 10 1/2 and was prescribed (by her neurologist) Zoloft for her anxiety (missed half of her school year due to anxiety last school year)…She was diagnosed with asd and adhd….(on a gluten free, preservative free, dye free, organic diet)……She was up to 6mg zoloft per day in liquid form. After continuing severe violent meltdowns we decided to stop the meds she was on(Abilify-7mg plus the Zoloft). We first weaned her down from the Abilify over five days. Then after seeing a new psychiatrist stopped the 6 mg of Zoloft..cold turkey. The next day we started her on adderall (5mg). The following day she had heart palpitations, foggy head, racing mind, diarrhea….doc said to stop adderall because those were side effects. But could they have been Zoloft withdrawal symptoms? Is 6mg of Zoloft enough to create withdrawal symptoms? Violent outbursts/meltdowns continued today….pacing… stimming…..psychiatrist wants to try vyvanase….should we wait until Zoloft out of system? Any words of wisdom.

    • blissfulloop

      stop giving your daughter all this and switching her on and off and see a nautropath please!

    • patty

      Don’t give kids SSRIs. Don’t medicate your kids,. Holy fuck…

    • Lynelle

      I am 46 and have been on Vyvanse for 3 years. Until Monday of this week I was on 60 mg and we are slowly decreasing the dose. On 50 mg for this month, and so on. I have had no side effects. For me this was the only one that helped my ADHD or whatever label you want to attach to it. I also have been taking SSRI’s for 15 years. I had taken Paxil following childbirth
      to treat anxiety and PTSD. Paxil quit working after 10 years and I tried to go off of it at least 3 times but the brain zaps were so bad the only way to stop those were was to go on Zoloft. Currently I am going off from 25 mg of Zoloft and have only been able to tolerate 25 mg for the past yr so I am withdrawing from a low dose. I have been off of it for nearly a week and the damn zaps are back, I am nauseous on and off and my skin itches….it was so bad the other night I couldn’t fall asleep and had to take a benedryl. I am determined to get through this. I quit smoking 9 mo. ago with Nicorette and am 3 months free from that too. I take 300 mg of Lamictal and have no plans to do any changes with that right now.

    • Tee cloud

      Sorry you have had this horrible time. Do u know of EFT tapping. It’s a valuable tool to know.

    • Hannah

      I am currently going on week two from stopping cold turkey from 200mg of Zoloft. I’ve been on it for almost 3 yrs. I was put on it two weeks before i gave birth to my son. They were worried about my depression and anxiety.. I’ve tried 2 other times to go off this medication gradually but have failed and returned to taking it do to the withdrawal symptoms and being a new mother. I just haven’t been able to do it.. This time my Medicaid was canceled and I’m unable to pay for it till I have some extra cash.. I’m trying to stick it out just so I never have to go through this again.. I also normally take Gabapinten for mood and nerves damage from breaking my back right before finding out I was pregnant.. Yeah, its been crazy… Im at a loss.. But I’m not giving up.. My son deserves better.. I will get off these medications and go down a much needed natural path for help with my issues. There’s gotta b a better way

    • Sarah Winnett

      I’m with Doyle his comment says it all. I am is week 2 cold turkey off Zoloft a low dose for 26 years. I can not see much the electric shocks with vertigo are causing half the vision I normally have, as for the rest of me it is hell and should be illegal. More information needs to get out about the practice of poison for profit.

    • Melissa Hicks

      Paxil is the worst drug out there! I have gad and it made me more anxious and mood swings. One day I was outside and my cat if 10 years walks up and I couldn’t remember his name! It scared me so bad that I requested to be weaned off of it. My pcp weaned me off of it in only two weeks and I’m going on week 3 and I feel so awful but I have two kids to take care of. I’m exhausted, nauseous, dizzy and having flu like symptoms. I am 35 years old and I’ve never felt this awful in all my days. If I didn’t have kids I would be wanting to check out

    • CCHR

      Thank you for telling your story. Please go back to your PCP and ensure that you have a full medical examination. There are many physical reasons why a person can feel the way you are describing.

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