Sertraline and pregnancy - risk vs benefit

(8 Posts)
3rdtimemomma Tue 17-Nov-20 16:56:09

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to know anyone who is in or has been in a similar situation.

Prior to conceiving I was on 50mg of sertraline so a low dose for anxiety for around 4/5 months and it really helped me!

My partner and I decided to let nature take its course with regards to conceiving and I took my self instantly completely off them after reading and googling risks etc. I didn't want to take any percent chance no matter how low.

I know this was a very very silly thing for me to do as they advise not to do this, i fell pregnant 2 cycles after coming off them and I absolutely started to feel the affect plus hormones!

Had my 16 week midwife app today and I completely broke down as I feel I'm rly struggling and my anxiety has gone through the roof.

My midwife reassured me today and explained sertraline is safe in pregnancy and I could take a very very low dose.
I want to on one hand as I feel it would help me be a better mother, girlfriend and overall help me cope with day to day life and ease the anxieties.

But I feel completely selfish on the other hand and am also scared to take it as I know small amounts pass through and I'd never forgive myself if anything happened to my baby.

Has anyone had any experiences with this?

Thankyou xxx

OP’s posts: |
physicskate Tue 17-Nov-20 21:43:53

Why is it selfish to take care of yourself at almost zero risk of harm to the unborn foetus. Motherhood will make you feel enough of a martyr as we give up so much (mostly willingly!!) for our children. Your sanity really doesn't need to be one.

SnickersBloom Tue 17-Nov-20 22:04:13

Hello @3rdtimemomma smile Like you, I found Sertraline worked wonderfully for me but when I got married with plans to start a family I stopped too. Biggest regret ever. I suffered terribly during my pregnancy and by the time my little girl was born I wasn't in a good place. There were other factors involved but I did feel disconnected from her for a long time because I was in my bubble of anxiety. It was only when I was going back to work that I thought I needed to get it sorted. I think I worried that people would think I was struggling with being a mum, rather than with a mental health issue that I've neglected. Anyway, my GP was utterly amazing and listened to my reasons for stopping and spoke me through the risks associated with Sertraline and helped me consider the benefits. He recommended that should I have another baby, I stay on the medication as it will help. I'm now 8 weeks with baby number 2 and have no intention of turning into the person I was in pregnancy and early motherhood with my little girl. I honestly cannot believe what a nicer person, better wife and mummy I am on 50mg a day. And happier because I am all those things. I hope you come to the right decision for you xx

3rdtimemomma Tue 17-Nov-20 22:30:39

@SnickersBloom Thankyou so much for this post!

It's really made me think how much I need to be the best mum and girlfriend I can be. I am very connected to my baby and I love my unborn baby ridiculously and I'm scared to have any issues after birth with attachment and for my mental health to deteriorate.

My midwife said I can evan go on less than 50mg, I was on 50mg before and honestly made my life, my work life and my relationship so much less stressful and I was relaxed and didn't over think and have irrational thoughts.

I definitely think I need to perhaps take the plunge and so what's right by everyone and myself to allow myself to be a better person x

OP’s posts: |
IvanTheDragon Tue 17-Nov-20 22:45:25

The thing to remember is that the medication might involve some very tiny risks of some bad outcomes, but untreated mental health problems also have risks. It’s easy to think about it just as the pros and cons of medication, but there are also pros and cons of having an untreated health condition.

It isn’t selfish to look after your health needs. Being a good mum means looking after yourself.

I took sertraline throughout pregnancy and continue to take it now while breastfeeding. My baby’s health hasn’t suffered in any way as far as I know! And our time together has been much happier and more stable with me mentally well.

bumblenbean Tue 17-Nov-20 23:02:59

I was put on sertraline after the birth of DS for PND / anxiety. I had similar concerns when I became pregnant with DD and discussed it with my GP. She advised that it was a matter of weighing up risks and benefits and that sertraline is relatively low risk in pregnancy. Given how much i’d struggled after DS was born she advised me to continue.

I decided that overall I would be better off to continue on the drug in order not to become massively anxious / depressed when heavily pregnant and dealing with DS (they’re only a year apart so was pretty intense!).

No regrets - my MH was very well controlled during the pregnancy and beyond and DD is absolutely fine.

Good luck!

HotGlueGun Tue 17-Nov-20 23:42:44

I started taking sertraline just before I conceived with my second. I debated coming off it but knew in my heart that I needed to stay on it for my crippling anxiety. It was the right decision for sure but please be aware that your baby may go through withdrawal once born. It only lasts for a few days but it's something to be aware of. 18 months on from the birth, I'm still breastfeeding and taking the medication. No ill effects on my baby as far as I'm aware.


Baker0104 Wed 18-Nov-20 19:05:34

@3rdtimemomma completely understand the worries but you need to look after you too. Before I started ttc I had a chat with my gp as I was on fluxetine for my depression and anxiety, she changed me over to sertraline 50mg and I've been taking them and they're working well. I got my bfp yesterday and I'll continue taking them as I think, happy mummy happy baby! X

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