Update: Prozac, Conzac – Spilling the Anxie-Tea

I was put onto Fluoxetine (Prozac, 40mg x 1 a day) about two months ago now and I thought it was about time to give you guys an update. You can view my original post here. I was prescribed Prozac to help my mild depression and moderate anxiety disorder, as in the months leading up to my prescription I had massively regressed. My attendance to Uni dropped, I stopped being social and I found it hard to find any energy at all. I cancelled my gym membership, ate a load of crap and gained hella fat. I was having regular panic attacks and could barely leave my bed some days.

Prozac takes around 6-8 weeks to fully kick in which is why I waited so long to give you guys an update. Basically- I am feeling a heck of a lot better! I have had only one mini panic attack during this time, my attendance is back up again and I have started going to the gym again (not as frequently as I like but certainly more than before). I feel generally happier and like a weight has been lifted off of me. I have been a lot more social, and have started being healthier. I don’t feel the need to binge on junk as much, and I find it easier to sleep!

Some cons are that ever since the day I started taking Prozac I have found that I have been rather drowsy 24/7. This does make sense I suppose as it is stopping my anxiety. I mentioned it to my GP and they said it was nothing to worry about and hopefully should pass. It is not as intense as the first month I was on Prozac, but I would say I am certainly feeling drowsy. Additionally, I had my first ever migraine. I am not sure if this is due to the Prozac, but I had never had one before and suddenly 2 weeks into taking Prozac I was awoken at 5am to the sensation that someone what gouging my eyes out and burning the sockets. I couldn’t open my eyes and despite having the curtains closed, lights off, under my covers with sunglasses on everything was still too bright for me. It eventually subsided and after a quick google search I found that this was fairly commonplace for people who have just started Prozac, and I have not had a migraine since.

Overall, I would say that being on Prozac has been a largely positive experience for me. My anxiety and depression have subsided (although they are of course not totally eradicated), and I am finding everyday life more manageable and enjoyable. Of course, this is my experience, and it may be different for everyone, so I would suggest talking to your doctor to see what path they think is best for you. It took me years to be prescribed Prozac, and I am so happy to now be nearly back to normal. I will give another update in a few months (or sooner if anything major happens!)

And now I give the conversation to you guys. Have any of you been put on Prozac, and if so then how was your experience? What non-medicinal methods/treatments do your recommend to me or anyone else suffering with chronic Anxiety and Depression? Let me know your thoughts down below in the comments!

 

Love from Evie x

Prozac, conzac – Spilling the Anxie-Tea

This term at University has been undeniably difficult and taken its toll on my anxiety. Not only am I now in second year so the modules are more challenging and require a great deal more reading and studying, but health issues concerning members of my family and my friends have caused it to go a bit haywire. Panic attacks on the daily, poor sleep, weight gain- you name it, ya girl had it. I felt like a snowglobe that had been shaken up, and even once the initial events resolved themselves, all my glittery bits of snow hadn’t quite settled yet.

Fortunately, I managed to get help from my University. They have given me an extra week to complete my essays from now until the end of my degree, allowed me to have extra time in my exams and get to do them in a small private room rather than a large exam hall, and have let all of my tutors know what is going on. All I had to do was submit a letter from my doctor as proof that I have been suffering with Anxiety for over a year (of course, most people suffer with spouts of anxiety, especially while at uni. They want to make sure that only the people suffering with the long-term condition are granted this extra help). It really has taken such a weight off of my shoulders and given me more confidence with my degree.

About 2 weeks ago I started on Prozac (Fluoxetine in the UK). I was hoping to start it sooner however my doctor warned that some people can react badly to it initially and get even more anxious so he suggested waiting until I got home to start it. I am on 20mg and I simply take one a day. My anxiety has been low since then but this may only be because it coincided with Christmas which is my favourite time of year. Prozac, different from my previous medication which only deals to alleviate symptoms of anxiety, is more of a mood stabiliser. On my other medication which I have been on for years it may stop my body from being physically anxious (high heart rate, sweating, shaking), whereas hopefully this will stop me from feeling so anxious in the first place!

There are meant to be some side effect to Prozac (hence the very clever pun in the title- thank you). It can be addictive, cause weight gain/loss, make you nauseous, increase anxiety in the first few weeks, suicidal thoughts, dizziness, etc. But I was so tired of being scared all of the time that I had to try it! Plus, the two women on the podcast I listen to (Adult Sh1t- give it a go, it is very funny and informative) are both on it and claim it is the best thing that has happened for them. The GP I had was very good and I have an appointment to see him again in a few days as he wants to check up on me before we continue with the medication, so I will give you all an update. Prozac is mean to take 6-8 weeks to fully get into your system and feel the full effects, so when I do notice anything I will let you know!

I just wanted to update you all on my little journey, and also explain why I was not able to write as much as I wanted to. If you have any questions or comments or advice for me then please do let me know! I would love to hear your experiences.

Lots of Love, Evie x