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on fluoxetine (prozac) for three weeks. When will I start feeling better?

(43 Posts)
notagiraffe Mon 01-Feb-16 09:12:10

It seems so slow to work. Never taken this long before for a drug to take effect. Citalopram lifts my mood instantly but I just sleep my life away on it and really can't afford to right now if I'm going to ever finish my degree and earn a living. But I can't take this low mood for much longer.

Does anyone have good stories of Prozac taking a while to kick in but then being effective?

Joopy Mon 01-Feb-16 22:26:33

I found it took a couple of weeks but then really worked well. Be kind to yourself and good luck with your degree, it's hard studying whilst suffering with depression. flowers

notagiraffe Tue 02-Feb-16 00:02:36

Thanks Joopy. I wake up every morning thinking: will today be the day I start to feel brighter? Hasn't happened yet. But I read on another thread that it's one of the slower ones to work, so will hang in there. At least I don't feel doped to the eyeballs like I did on Citalopram.

notagiraffe Wed 03-Feb-16 14:06:33

bump

it's three weeks now and I feel no lift in mood at all. Should I ask for yet another AD to try? The other day even the chemist said tome sympathetically, 'Not working?' because he's processed so many different bloody types of AD for me over the years. I'm so tired of this. Wish there was another way out of it.

Mumblepot26 Fri 05-Feb-16 11:34:32

Hi how are you feeling now? I have taken Prozac on two separate occasions, first time it took two weeks to work, then second time round I didn't really notice any change until four weeks in. Once it started working it was brilliant!! Saved my life. Really hope it works out god you too x

notagiraffe Sat 06-Feb-16 13:40:29

Hi Mumblepot thanks for asking. It's been just over three weeks now and I'm beginning to feel a tiny bit better. Still very low energy and motivation but I noticed that I'm finding it easier to break the loop of vicious, negative thinking with CBT style intervention, which I couldn't do for months because it was so strong and so relentless. And I've been out a few times - mixing with people, which I found incredibly difficult a few weeks ago. Small steps. but I hope it's a turn around. I just seriously need to get well enough to work and do housework as it's all mounting up which in itself is a massive source of stress.

getting headaches now. Just mild ones. Nothing I can't deal with, but it's unusual for me. Is this a side effect?

willowcatkin111 Sun 07-Feb-16 21:20:34

Took me a while last time too - think it may well have been over a month. I am 3 weeks in this time and still waiting but it did work eventually so hang in there.

notagiraffe Mon 08-Feb-16 10:34:35

Thanks Willow. Feeling sad again today. But I had alcohol over the weekend and have realised that it really doesn't mix with fluoxetine for me. I just want to be well enough to start work again. At the moment, the thought of work makes me feel physically sick and terrified. I just want to bolt.

notagiraffe Mon 08-Feb-16 10:35:30

Hope you start to feel well again soon, Willow.

willowcatkin111 Mon 08-Feb-16 11:56:19

Headaches could be a side effect - I always got one if I forgot to take it for a couple of days. I had one all weekend too so maybe it is. Haven't taken mine yet today - at the 'what's the point stage' but will now. Try not to worry about work. I have had to forget about working for a bit too and it is hard. Dh doesn't really understand - housework issue the same and he thinks I should be able to do it as I am home all day. I wish! Hang in there .....

Carbsnomore Mon 08-Feb-16 12:05:16

What is your dosage? If you are on the standard of 1 cap per day ie 20mg then speak to your GP about trying 40mg for 2 weeks. You can also use the tablets (as opposed to capsules) to try 30mg, but considering g the tone of your posts and as it seems to be a long standing affliction, I'd have the 40mg chat.

I'm sure you've had lots of discussions about doing psychotherapy in parallel if the cause of your depression lends itself to that (so I won't bore you with that).

Good luck flowers

PS am not member of medical profession

notagiraffe Mon 08-Feb-16 17:40:00

Thanks Willow and Carbs. Seeing GP on Friday, so might ask about dosage increase. God I feel I can't go on like this.
Never been keen on the idea of psychotherapy but am at the stage where I'd try it. I just can't bear the idea of dragging up the past. What's the point. It's happened. No digging and blaming my upbringing would change it. It is what it is and I'd rather try and focus on the good things about the past that the tough stuff.

Yeah Willow it's hard to get DHs to understand. I don't really try to be honest. I know he gets frustrated and thinks I should be able to just get on with stuff. But that's the whole issue with depression. That's what you can't do. That's the road block in the brain. Grr.

Carbsnomore Mon 08-Feb-16 20:01:45

Hello notagiraffe. I'll keep checking this thread to see how you're doing. The 40mg approach is advocated by some doctors (not sure about UK) in situations which sound like yours. Some people simply do not respond to 20mg a day or they need a kick-start of 40mg which can then go back to 20mg when they're "up and running".

I very much appreciate your point on psychotherapy...it's so personal.

For you and willow too flowers

willowcatkin111 Tue 09-Feb-16 21:10:20

Would second the dosage point - I did not get any effect until I went up to 40mg. Still very up and down and having headaches but will wait it out impatiently

notagiraffe Wed 10-Feb-16 08:21:22

This is very helpful. I'm tempted to just ramp up the dose but will wait till Friday when I see GP. Thank you so much carb for keeping an eye on this thread. That means a lot to me.

Carbsnomore Wed 10-Feb-16 14:10:12

Good luck OP and really interested to know what your GP will advise.

VeronicaDinner Wed 10-Feb-16 14:18:33

Sympathy, OP. I have been trying to find right antidepressant and dose since middle of December.

It has finally clicked this week. But it took three different types to get here.

notagiraffe Wed 10-Feb-16 17:02:06

Out of interest Veronica, what worked for you? I got on so well with Citalopram for years but after about five years it had slowed me to a comatose state and I'd put on 20lb in weight most of which I still haven't lost.

VeronicaDinner Thu 11-Feb-16 02:17:33

Trazodone is what worked for me eventually. It doesn't cause weight gain or loss of sex drive (in fact, it can be a side effect that it causes the opposite!).

I had ruled it out because it makes me feel lethargic, which you mentioned in your OP. I had tried a low dose that was making me slightly lethargic and slightly less depressed. But just recently gave up taking another SSRI that made me horribly anxious and went back to Trazodone at a much higher dose.

It does make me feel very sleepy in the morning, but this dose has wiped out all feelings of depression. It's easier to motivate myself with just normal sleepiness, than trying to motivate myself with depression, which I'm sure you know zaps all your energy out of you anyway.

I think you know within two to four weeks if an antidepressant isn't working for you. I would always recommend going back and keeping trying to find the one you click with.

Bit like dating, I guess smile

notagiraffe Thu 11-Feb-16 13:49:20

In that case Prozac doesn't work for me.sad I don't really feel any different at all after four weeks on it. sad
The only one that really did work was Citalopram but I can't face the sluggishness and lethargy. There must be one that doesn't make you tired.

VeronicaDinner Thu 11-Feb-16 14:50:47

What is your morning routine?

I have so many energy boosting vitamins to fire me back up. Berocca, Pro Plus (I hate coffee), expensive multi-vitamins with all the trimmings. I also try to exercise for twenty minutes to shake off the groggy feeling. And hot shower.

I can appreciate that all sounds a bit much. But I don't think it's bad to jump start yourself in the morning.

I am struggling at the moment though. I had so much caffeine yesterday that I couldn't sleep a wink last night. Today is a write off!

cherrytree63 Thu 11-Feb-16 15:01:56

Interesting thread nota, I had Fluoxetine when I was peri menopausal as I'd completely lost the plot, it helped a lot, but I couldn't handle the dreams I on it.
Citalopram and Sertraline made me feel like I'd been steam rollered and I couldn't function physically.
I'm seeing my GP tomorrow to ask about counselling and will ask if there's anything else I can try.

willowcatkin111 Thu 11-Feb-16 15:41:47

Give it a bit longer giraffe and try an increased dose. Took a while for me and nothing seemed to happen then after the increase it slowly seemed to work. Trouble is i can only see that with hindsight having stopped in Nov (kept forgetting it then entered the 'what's the point' phase). Have you tried escitalopram? It is a better version of citalopram and worked for me for 18 months after citalopram stopped working (after 5 years).
Cherry Tree - there is mirtazapine which is supposed to be good but a significant number report weight gain. I also had duoloxetine which is similar to fluoxetine but not for long enough to know if it worked.

notagiraffe Thu 11-Feb-16 21:20:27

willow thanks. Not tried escitalopram. That sounds hopeful as Citalopram really was the answer to my prayers for a long time. It made me very peaceful. But will persist with the fluoxetine on higher dose if GP suggests it.
Veronica - I like you style. grin I have a morning routine of sorts - walk in fresh air every morning and a shower/dress/make up on. But after that I feel ready for a long sleep. Maybe I'll try Berrocca etc too.

notagiraffe Thu 11-Feb-16 21:31:51

willow thanks. Not tried escitalopram. That sounds hopeful as Citalopram really was the answer to my prayers for a long time. It made me very peaceful. But will persist with the fluoxetine on higher dose if GP suggests it.
Veronica - I like you style. grin I have a morning routine of sorts - walk in fresh air every morning and a shower/dress/make up on. But after that I feel ready for a long sleep. Maybe I'll try Berrocca etc too.

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