My feed

to access all these features


To ask for your experiences with Steraline?

30 replies

Blueskyformiles · 04/01/2024 13:23

I have been so depressed and anxious for so many years (I’d say probably the last 10-12 years) and it’s finally now reached crisis point. I had a baby last year and have intrusive thoughts everyday.

I have huge social anxiety now and am such a moaning, negative person. I’ve become eeyore. There’s hardly anyone that I feel I like anymore or that I have anything in common with anymore and it’s making me want to retreat from everyone.

Now - the reason why I’ve not sought help (or medicated help anyway) sooner. I do like a social drink and when I do get together with friends it is manly for dinner or drinks/ a night out. I don’t drink during the week at home but do enjoy a couple or glasses of wine on a Friday and Saturday night if I’m at home.

In short, could I go without it, yes, I sometimes go weeks without drinking, but do I want to go without alcohol, especially in social situations? No I don’t.

Do you really have to give up alcohol on steraline?

I’m also terrified of weight gain, I work hard to keep the weight that I am and I’ve heard horror stories of people piling on the lbs on steraline. Is it better to weigh more and be happier? Well yes, obviously but I also know putting on a load of weight would make me really unhappy too!

It’s these two things that have put me off going to the drs and asking for help (I would also ask for CBT or some sort of therapy too) but I just hate who I am now and know I can’t put off the inevitable anymore.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

9 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
MereDintofPandiculation · 04/01/2024 13:25

Do you mean sertraline? or steraline?

Blueskyformiles · 04/01/2024 13:27

Oh god, sorry. Yes I mean Sertraline!

OP posts:
pinguins · 04/01/2024 13:28

Given that Steraline isn't a drug that was a dick comment by 1st PP.
OP I never gained weight on it.

Locutus2000 · 04/01/2024 13:28

Have a look here?

I've been on the max dose for years, has never stopped me doing anything.

My sex drive disappeared around the same time though.

Common questions about sertraline

NHS medicines information on common questions about sertraline.

Ladyj84 · 04/01/2024 13:29

Been on sertraline years probably about 8. Never had a problem with drinks,pregnancies, weight.They tried other anit depressants but none worked for me. These have kept me stable and upped after giving birth then lowered a while later. So yes my experience is good

Blueskyformiles · 04/01/2024 13:31

Thank you. I had a baby last year and my anxiety has been through the roof ever since (and it was bad anyway) Constant intrusive thoughts about something happening to the baby, all day, everyday. I don’t want to live like this anymore.

OP posts:
honeyytoast · 04/01/2024 13:32

Sertraline changed my life instantly. I was warned about it taking a while to work, making you feel worse before you feel better, might take a bit of playing around with different medications/strength etc etc, but honestly it was like a snap of a finger and the heavy depression just lifted.

I found I was no longer capable of crying, at all (previously I was crying all day everyday) so it did numb me a bit but I didn’t mind. I also remember dreaming more (exhausting dreams but not disturbing or anything).

im still on it years later and haven’t noticed any long term effects like weight gain. And you’re not supposed to drink when you’re getting used to it but I did and was fine (never been a heavy drinker though).

it’s 100% worth a try but don’t be disheartened if you don’t feel better immediately, I think I was very lucky. Also mine was more for depression than anxiety

AdamRyan · 04/01/2024 13:33

I've been on them for 10 years 😮(only just realised)
No weight gain, and I do drink. They were awful for the first 2 weeks and been fine ever since. Best ones I've tried.

Dotjones · 04/01/2024 13:40

Been on sertraline for over a decade. It doesn't make me feel different in a way that I notice, as in, I don't feel "doped" or "drugged" or like I'm "on" something. I'm more positive (well, less negative). When I started other people started commenting on my seeming happier/more positive/better able to cope with challenges, even if I didn't notice it myself. (People who didn't know I was on it, like my manager, made the comments.)

I still drink. It didn't make me put on weight - although I also started taking mirtazapine a bit later, which definitely did.

In my experience sertraline is a very "mild" antidepressant in that it doesn't seem to dull my senses or brain in the way I'd been told antidepressants worked.

SoundTheSirens · 04/01/2024 13:46

I was on sertraline for about 9 months a few years ago. I’m not a big drinker anyway but I didn’t have to give up alcohol while on it, I had the occasional glass of wine or G&T, but it would literally just be one or at most 2 each time , so I can’t comment on how it might affect you if you were having a night of cocktails, for example.

I don’t remember any significant weight gain, maybe a couple of pounds? But I’m quite sedentary so might have put that weight on anyway.

The things I remember most clearly about being on it were: 1) it gave me back my ability to make decisions without spiralling into anxiety and ending up paralysed by doubt, and it lifted the oppressive “what’s the point?” black cloud. 2) It also suppressed positive emotions to an extent; I could function much better, but it felt like I was at one remove IYSWIM. I didn’t feel depressed, but I didn’t feel anything else very much either. But being able to do more and think more clearly got me “unstuck” and the ability to feel positive emotions returned - without the return of the negative stuff - once I started tapering off. 3) I lost the ability to orgasm while I was taking it. Again, that returned once I stopped. 4) Madly vivid dreams and a bit of a dry mouth, both just for the first few weeks of taking it then they settled down.

Overall for me it was a good thing, not without some drawbacks but they were “liveable with”. I wouldn’t hesitate to take it again if I needed it.

I hope you feel better soon, OP.

CissOff · 04/01/2024 13:51

Game changer for me. I’ve been on them for about 11 years now. I’ve never had to stop alcohol and I’m fairly certain the weight I’ve gained has nothing to do with the Sertraline and everything to do with wine and carbs. I certainly didn’t put on any weight for the first few years when I drank less…

The relief you feel when you’re no longer having intrusive thoughts is absolutely wonderful. You get your life and headspace back. I would never come off them as they give me the ability to function. I did have some mild nausea when I first started taking them but I switched to taking them at night initially and that sorted the problem.

ActDottie · 04/01/2024 13:56

I was on another SSRI and I had alcohol. My best friend is on sertraline and has alcohol so as far as I know you can drink on it.

My friend also hasn’t gained weight on sertraline so don’t think it’s a given.

GlitterDragon · 04/01/2024 14:00

Sertraline changed my life almost immediately. Couldn’t stop crying or worrying a few years ago related to a stressful work / home situation. Now 6 weeks postpartum with a healthy happy baby and my mental health has never been better. Can’t say I’ve noticed weight gain (besides from growing a baby) and wasn’t even aware you shouldn’t drink. However, I’m not a big drinker. No longer able to cry. I would say it’s like treating your brain to a holiday. Give it a go OP, you have nothing to lose

CocoPlum · 04/01/2024 14:00

Been on sertraline since 2009! It's been game changing. I still drink, and no weight changes on it (but I have had body changes post 2nd child 10 years ago and going on pill).

I hear the first couple of weeks are rubbish but tbh both times I've started it (paused it during my 2nd pregnancy although my GP was happy for me to carry on), I was just post partum so I didn't really notice tbh.

Idtotallybangdreamoftheendlessnotgonnalie · 04/01/2024 14:06

I had PPD and sertraline was amazing for me- I remember taking it the first night and being shit scared of the results, and then the next morning waking up and bracing myself for the thoughts and feelings to come crashing down on me... and they never came. That was at a 25mg dose as well.

Didn't realise you couldn't drink on it though! Oops.

trevthecat · 04/01/2024 14:15

I'm just starting month 3 on 50mg. Firs week was tough, felt spaced out, sick, paranoid. But now I feel so much better, in control, level. My sleep was great but now I'm struggling to sleep at all. But changing the time I take it may help.
And yes, you can have alcohol with them

trevthecat · 04/01/2024 14:16

Oh and no weight gain, I've actually lost weight. I've almost no appetite

LolaJ87 · 04/01/2024 14:17

I'm afraid I'm going to go against the grain here and say I didn't get on well with drinks while I was on Sertraline. Drinks didn't do much and I got wicked hangovers, it was easiest to pretty much just stop drinking while I was on it. TBH alcohol and it's after effects aren't good for anxiety anyway, I didn't miss it much.

I've been off Sertraline for a couple of years but still don't drink like I did before it.

Overall it was amazing and a real boost for managing my mental health and I'd recommend giving it a go to anyone. Most of the side effects, if you have them, are very short term.

ManateeFair · 04/01/2024 14:26

I've been taking Sertraline for four years now. It's helped me a lot.

You can drink alcohol with it. I would wait a few weeks until you've adjusted to the drug, but once you're settled it should be fine to drink alcohol. Take care at first as you may find the alcohol affects you a little more, but you should be fine.

Sertraline itself is unlikely to cause weight gain. People who experience weight gain on this type of drug are usually gaining weight because of changes in appetite, not because of the drug itself. I was actually on a weight loss programme when I started taking Sertraline and it didn't hinder my weight loss t all.

When I first started taking Sertraline I did experience side effects (mainly feeling a bit sick and light-headed) but that went away after a two or three weeks and I haven't really had any adverse side effects since then (whereas I had some pretty significant side effects when I was on Citalopram that lasted the whole time I was taking it).

Hatchibombatar · 04/01/2024 14:28

Sertraline has given me my life. (Note I’m not saying ‘back’ because I actually feel that I am living for the first time now I am taking it).

I’m like a different person and many people have commented on it to me. I am not constantly scared, unhappy, snapping at people, terrible social anxiety etc etc etc. I only wish I’d started taking it before.

re weight gain, my appetite has increased a lot since I’ve been taking it, but I’m not comfort eating any more. I didn’t used to do much exercise because I felt so drained and listless - now I have so much more energy. So I’m hoping it will even out the extra food!

RobertaFirmino · 04/01/2024 14:31

pinguins · 04/01/2024 13:28

Given that Steraline isn't a drug that was a dick comment by 1st PP.
OP I never gained weight on it.

Not a 'dick comment' at all.

When talking about medication, it is essential that the correct names are established. Given the sheer amount of meds on the market, it is entirely feasible that the poster did not know Steraline is not a drug.

DewHopper · 04/01/2024 14:35

It helped me short term but the side effects were too much for me to countenance taking it for more then a few months. Weight gain, inability to orgasm and loss of libido, a horrible 'wired' feeling all of the time and disrupted sleep.
It did help my intrusive thoughts and social anxiety though which was helpful but it left a sort of numbness in its place.
Pros and cons of all meds I guess.

Hatchibombatar · 04/01/2024 14:37

And just to add more I honestly feel like I’m high on drugs (which I guess I am in a way!) but I’m a totally positive way - totally in control and not in such a way that I’m not in the real world, quite the opposite - I feel like I’m seeing the world finally in the way everyone else sees it, not full of threats and dark and depressing but a place for me, where I am in control of how I feel and I belong and deserve to feel happy.

my family have all been so much happier and content too - I never realised how much my constant low mood and anxiety was rubbing off on them.

i am honestly having to stop myself telling everyone I know to start taking it, have to keep reminding myself that most people don’t actually need antidepressants, this is just a normal way to feel!

and on side effects, I felt such and dizzy for a few days, then really euphoric, and now - normal. I’ve never drunk much anyway but have continued to drink and no problems

DewHopper · 04/01/2024 14:39

I feel like I’m seeing the world finally in the way everyone else sees it, not full of threats and dark and depressing but a place for me, where I am in control of how I feel and I belong and deserve to feel happy

I do remember that feeling too.

DewinDwl · 04/01/2024 14:57

I've been on sertraline twice, and I've come off it twice. Overall I was on it for years. I took it for anxiety.

The first week was always difficult, I was violently sick and nauseous 24 hours a day for days.

The first time I took it I suffered from severe insomnia for a couple of weeks but I wasn't bothered.

It did stop intrusive thoughts and ruminating pretty quickly. It slowed down my thoughts and feelings quite noticeably.

Overall it made me quite numb - mercifully anxiety-free but not bothered about anything either. Would feel suicidal sometimes, in a passive, what's-the-point way. Remember I was taking them for anxiety not depression.

It became pretty much impossible to orgasm.

I lost all sensation of being full and felt a compulsive hunger- I put on a stone pretty quickly, then another half a stone more slowly.

It gave me very sore boobs and severe night sweats - I have only had these whilst on sertraline and they vanished as soon as I came off it.

Studies have found that sertraline and similar antidepressants are effective against anxiety. Against depression they are as good as placebo for most people, and things like yoga might be better. The way it works is not understood by scientists.

Coming off sertraline is difficult. If people knew how hard it is they would think twice about ever starting. I found it okayish but know people who cannot give it up due due to the severity of the physical and mental withdrawal symptoms - OP please research this. It's a medical scandal that GPs don't explain withdrawal symptoms before writing that first script.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.