Sexual "dysfunction" and anti-depressants

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    May 06, 2014 10:59 PM GMT
    I was taking Prozac for about a year and a half for depression/OCD, and my doctor added Effexor in as of this January. I noticed that while on these medications, my sex drive went down quite a bit. I was able to get an erection but only if I masturbated...I wasn't as turned on visually by watching porn, etc. like I normally was or just by thinking of sex.

    Since stopping the Prozac a couple of weeks ago, I'm still experiencing this problem, perhaps even more severely. I've heard that these medications can permanently damage your sex drive, but I've also heard that Prozac in particular has a long half life and can sometimes take 2-3 months to completely get out of your system.

    I'm pretty nervous, because I really don't like the feeling of having no sexual desire. I don't really feel human, and just kind of "blah".

    Anyone know anything or have any experience with this?
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    May 06, 2014 11:46 PM GMT
    Swapping from Prozac to Effexor isn't going to get rid of sexual side effects. Effexor is renowned for being the modern anti-depressant with the worst side effects of all.

    As long as you're on a therapeutic dose of an anti-depressant that boosts serotonin but not dopamine, causing an imbalance, you'll get sexual side effects.

    Treatment of Antidepressant-Induced Sexual Dysfunction
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    May 07, 2014 1:20 AM GMT
    owl_bundy saidthat's why i would never recommend anybody to get on that shit. was on zoloft last year for 6 months for ocd/major depressive disorder. 6 months of the sexual "dysfuctional" side effects and it wasn't worth it at all.


    Aurorix has no sexual side-effects. Not sure how useful it is for OCD though.
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    May 07, 2014 2:30 AM GMT
    th3ro saidSwapping from Prozac to Effexor isn't going to get rid of sexual side effects. Effexor is renowned for being the modern anti-depressant with the worst side effects of all.

    As long as you're on a therapeutic dose of an anti-depressant that boosts serotonin but not dopamine, causing an imbalance, you'll get sexual side effects.

    Treatment of Antidepressant-Induced Sexual Dysfunction


    I didn't switch from Prozac to Effexor, my doctor added Effexor in addition to the Prozac, so I was taking both.

    A few weeks after stopping the Prozac, and my libido is still pretty much missing. I can get an erection and ejaculate if I masturbate, but I kind of have to "force" myself to...I just find that I have little to no sexual interest and can't get horny like I used to lol. icon_sad.gif
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    May 07, 2014 3:14 AM GMT
    Ungh an ex was like this - he is so much more enjoyable since he dropped the stuff he was taking anti-depressants to endure... Only ex I would talk to b.c hes not a wet rag of fail.

    Change of lifestyle is my advice.
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    May 07, 2014 3:23 AM GMT
    Two things: As you mentioned, Prozac has a very long half-life. Give it time and don't obsess over it (which I know is asking a lot given your condition.) Secondly, worrying about it can create a mental block that will serve as a self fulfilling prophecy. Remember, stress is the worst thing for men sexually, so take up meditation or some other form of stress relief.

    And speaking of meditation, it can be just as effective as SSRI's. Have you tried meditating on a daily basis?
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    May 07, 2014 3:28 AM GMT
    th3ro saidSwapping from Prozac to Effexor isn't going to get rid of sexual side effects. Effexor is renowned for being the modern anti-depressant with the worst side effects of all.

    As long as you're on a therapeutic dose of an anti-depressant that boosts serotonin but not dopamine, causing an imbalance, you'll get sexual side effects.

    Treatment of Antidepressant-Induced Sexual Dysfunction


    Talk nerdy to me icon_biggrin.gif
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    May 07, 2014 3:37 AM GMT
    Get off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!
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    May 07, 2014 3:44 AM GMT
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!


    Unless you're a doctor, that's not something you should ever tell someone. We don't know how severe his condition is or what else is going on besides the OCD. Believe it or not, even OCD can be debilitating if it's severe enough. He should ask his doctor if getting off medication is wise or not. I'm not a big fan of drugs either, but the truth is, there are some people who would be dead were it not for "chemicals."
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    May 07, 2014 3:47 AM GMT
    I was on Prozac for about 12 years.....for depression/OCD. My libedo dropped to almost nothing and I rarely got erections, let alone hard enough to really use for penetration. Not even to JO....
    I was weaned off of the med over a year....I was changed over to Lexapro and Wellbutrin....and have been on them for several years. My erections are back and FREQUENT...I forgot what a teenage boy goes through with "wood" at inopportune times....LOL!...Also I found that cleaning up the diet and adding a good balance of exercise, makes me horny!....I recovered from the Prozac impotence.....everyone is different, because doctors are not 100% clear on how or why these SSRI's work.
    If you smoke and eat like shit, or if your blood sugar or blood chemistry is out of whack....Willie won't be happy! Get you blood work done and start examining more than just blaming the med....everything is synergistic in the body...and your blood may show what it is.
    Good luck.
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    May 07, 2014 3:53 AM GMT
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!

    You can't be "CHEMICAL FREE!" unless you open up your skull and pour out all the runny stuff.
    You see, mental disturbances are CAUSED by chemicals---chemicals that are not in balance the way they are with most people. This is no one's fault---it's genetic---but the cure to chemicals being out of balance is usually chemicals that bring them back into balance.
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    May 07, 2014 4:05 AM GMT
    ElectroShark said
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!

    You can't be "CHEMICAL FREE!" unless you open up your skull and pour out all the runny stuff.
    You see, mental disturbances are CAUSED by chemicals---chemicals that are not in balance the way they are with most people. This is no one's fault---it's genetic---but the cure to chemicals being out of balance is usually chemicals that bring them back into balance.


    Sorry Sir, I do have a far reaching and different opinion.
    Exercise
    Meditation
    Yoga
    Hypnosis
    ANYTHING BUT man made chemicals.
    You might have to endure it, but there are many more NATURAL and HOLISTIC cures and this I have seen first hand. I just don't want to write to much....lol
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    May 07, 2014 4:12 AM GMT
    Scruffypup said
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!


    Unless you're a doctor, that's not something you should ever tell someone. We don't know how severe his condition is or what else is going on besides the OCD. Believe it or not, even OCD can be debilitating if it's severe enough. He should ask his doctor if getting off medication is wise or not. I'm not a big fan of drugs either, but the truth is, there are some people who would be dead were it not for "chemicals."


    I think we need to wake up!! Read the book "dead doctors don't lie". True, I am not a certified physician, but I will say READ ABOUT THE ALTERNATIVE!!! You go in and come out with staff, you go in to be cured of cancer and die of radiation poison, you take pills and jump off bridges. I think Doctors are quacks! So go to a herbalist or a medical doctor who has a knowledge of NATURAL CURES.

    Oh, disclaimer. You might be cured.
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    May 07, 2014 4:19 AM GMT
    2Bnaked said
    Scruffypup said
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!


    Unless you're a doctor, that's not something you should ever tell someone. We don't know how severe his condition is or what else is going on besides the OCD. Believe it or not, even OCD can be debilitating if it's severe enough. He should ask his doctor if getting off medication is wise or not. I'm not a big fan of drugs either, but the truth is, there are some people who would be dead were it not for "chemicals."


    I think we need to wake up!! Read the book "dead doctors don't lie". True, I am not a certified physician, but I will say READ ABOUT THE ALTERNATIVE!!! You go in and come out with staff, you go in to be cured of cancer and die of radiation poison, you take pills and jump off bridges. I think Doctors are quacks! So go to a herbalist or a medical doctor who has a knowledge of NATURAL CURES.

    Oh, disclaimer. You might be cured.


    I agree with this for sure. There's plenty of help out there outside your conventional medical doctors. No one gets better from medications alone.

    -But-

    Finding the root cause and sorting it out takes time and often medication is needed in the interim, although it's not helpful for everyone and often not pleasant to take long-term.
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    May 07, 2014 4:34 AM GMT
    Hi ant811, I was on several antidepressants over about 10 years. All of them caused side effects, none of them completely relieved the depression. I don't believe your sex drive becomes permanantly affected by these drugs, however, when I got out of a stressful job for an easier one, I was able to go off all meds and got a year of normal life, with one exception. A tingling all over my body started and has never stopped. So please look into getting rid of stress at work, negative people in your life, etc. Talk therapy is often more helpful than meds. Eating alot more fruit and vegetables. Exercising, stretching, walking, biking, weight lifting many days a week, gives you feel good benefits. Start taking baby steps to slowly change your eating and exercise habits. These things should help you become well, along with the other guys advice.

    ps. the side effects I suffered from were not wanting to take a shower, or eat, both I had to force myself to do. Also suddenly liking heavy metal guitar music which I usually hate. So I realized that these meds can temporarily change my personality to someone I don't want to be. Medication can be a great help, but medication alone cannot fix bad diet, sedentary lifestyle, negative circumstances you tolerate in your life. Also start a journal of important events and your doctor visit discussions. Periodically or at least once, ask to read what you doctor writes about what you tell your doctor. You might be surprised at what they miss or focus on that they want to do but is not what you want or not even what you have said! Hope you have a good doctor.
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    May 07, 2014 2:45 PM GMT
    I know what you're talking about. I'm on prozac and the same thing happens to me. I recently dramatically decreased my dose and not much change happened. I hoped to go off it completely but it was clear I needed to stay on it.

    I find that after a while your sex drive gradually goes back up. Give it time?

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    May 22, 2014 6:52 AM GMT
    2Bnaked said
    ElectroShark said
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!

    You can't be "CHEMICAL FREE!" unless you open up your skull and pour out all the runny stuff.
    You see, mental disturbances are CAUSED by chemicals---chemicals that are not in balance the way they are with most people. This is no one's fault---it's genetic---but the cure to chemicals being out of balance is usually chemicals that bring them back into balance.


    Sorry Sir, I do have a far reaching and different opinion.
    Exercise
    Meditation
    Yoga
    Hypnosis
    ANYTHING BUT man made chemicals.
    You might have to endure it, but there are many more NATURAL and HOLISTIC cures and this I have seen first hand. I just don't want to write to much....lol


    Sure tell a Type-1 diabetic to stop taking their man made biosynthetic "human" insulin. If you want to spout your holistic cures to a Type-2 diabetic that has diabetes due to obesity, sure go ahead.

    I really believe in balance and science doesn't hold all the answers for the human soul or wellbeing, but I side with ScruffyPup.

    They can already tell through QEEGS that depressed individuals brains function differently -- was it the chicken or the egg. I think and know it's both. Similar to nature vs. nurture. For most people their personalities are both genetic and environmental BUT if someone was born with mental retardation or was severely abused as a child, their personality would mainly stem from one end of the spectrum. My point is you have no right giving medical advice even if this is a gay men's "health" forum.

    To Ant8111 you seem like an okay guy -- so here's some advice, take some of the things guys tell you on here with a grain of salt. You don't need this site to determine your life's future. Talk to your doctor if you want to get off Effexor if your doctor doesn't take the time to listen to your concerns or doesn't have the same views when it comes to "being in the mood" (maybe he's 80, just wants to retire, or is a jerk -- doctors can be jerks*) find a new doctor. Go walk around Tanger Outlets, see a movie, and ENJOY LIFE. You're young dude.


    *My general doctor throughout middle school and high school was letting his son take over his practice. His father (my doctor) was great, his son was one of the rudest most arrogant jerks in the world. He assumed I was sick because I must work in a Chinese food place preparing meat. He knows damn well my mother and father are white and I worked part-time in a craft store during high school, which I'm pretty sure was on my chart. The crap he said while playing with his damn phone.

    My point is doctors can be incompetent and like anything it's a relationship -- you sometimes have to find the right one.

  • May 24, 2014 6:58 PM GMT
    Sharkspeare said
    2Bnaked saidGet off all medications, live a clean life and work hard. Soak in the sunshine and hike naked as much as possible and find someone to hold or grab a hold of and you'll be fine for life and.....CHEMICAL FREE!

    You can't be "CHEMICAL FREE!" unless you open up your skull and pour out all the runny stuff.
    You see, mental disturbances are CAUSED by chemicals---chemicals that are not in balance the way they are with most people. This is no one's fault---it's genetic---but the cure to chemicals being out of balance is usually chemicals that bring them back into balance.
    Oh goodness. Sure, any experience is mediated by neurochemical changes in the brain, and there is a genetic component to mental disorders, but to say only biological factors are at work denies the complexity of the human organism. Psychiatric symptoms may have their causes on higher cognitive levels, levels which are emergent from biological components. So, approaches that work on these cognitive levels (psychotherapy, meditation, etc.) are useful because they work at the level at which the disturbance functions, rather than the lower biological levels of which the higher levels emerge.

    Biological psychiatry has been extremely helpful for millions of people (myself included), but this doesn't mean we fully comprehend the causal forces behind mental disturbance (and some neuroscientists in the field abandon ideas of causality altogether because matters simply get too complex).

    @op, I was on Prozac for about half a year and had the same loss of libido. A few months off of medication and I was back to normal. (My libido was almost non-existent prior to medication, though.)
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    May 24, 2014 7:17 PM GMT
    ant811 saidI was taking Prozac for about a year and a half for depression/OCD, and my doctor added Effexor in as of this January. I noticed that while on these medications, my sex drive went down quite a bit. I was able to get an erection but only if I masturbated...I wasn't as turned on visually by watching porn, etc. like I normally was or just by thinking of sex.

    Since stopping the Prozac a couple of weeks ago, I'm still experiencing this problem, perhaps even more severely. I've heard that these medications can permanently damage your sex drive, but I've also heard that Prozac in particular has a long half life and can sometimes take 2-3 months to completely get out of your system.

    I'm pretty nervous, because I really don't like the feeling of having no sexual desire. I don't really feel human, and just kind of "blah".

    Anyone know anything or have any experience with this?


    Effexor, in particular, is a huge libido reducer. And it can also take quite a long time to get out of your system. The fact you were double backing both Prozac and Effexor? It could very possibly extend the time before things return to normal.

    You're just going to have to be patient. Give it a few months. Even up to 6 months, for your body to not just get the meds out of your system but --also-- to get itself balanced out once they're completely gone.

    ----------------------------------------------------

    I would like to also put a note for those saying that everyone can be "chemical free".

    I have dealt with severe clinical depression all of my life, including suicidal urges and self destructive/self harm tendencies. I have tried diet, exercise, therapy, meditation, yoga and a wide variety of "alternate" methods.

    But the fact is? Until I started taking Prozac, I couldn't get rid of the suicidal thoughts and urges.

    I take a child's dose of Prozac and it levels me out so that I no longer deal with the severe depressive episodes I had before, AND it removes my urges for self harm and suicide.

    Some people really -do- need that extra push. Not everyone is the same, yeah?

    Just sayin'.

    Did I survive without the meds? Yeah, I did manage it. But my quality of life is -MUCH- better with them as a part of my life.