View Full Version : Strattera and Setraline, want to know other people's experience, making a choice

03-20-16, 05:44 PM
<style type="text/css">p { margin-bottom: 0.1in; line-height: 120%; }</style> Hey everyone.

Basically I'm looking for anyone's experiences and advise relative to their use of Strattera and Sertraline (Zoloft) especially if they had been prescribed both at the same time. I will be seeing a psychiatrist in the near future to talk about it with her, but any first hand experience would be extremely beneficial.

I ask because, although I had been on a strattera/zoloft combo for nearly a decade, from age 15-25, I have been completely unmedicated for over a year, during which time I have made some significant social and goal orientated improvements, but have also regressed in concentration and can't really do anything.

Ok, this is gonna be a bit of a life story, but I think the added context is important, as it describes my moods and thoughts. If you want the tl;dr version skip to the bottom.

a bit of a life story

I was diagnosed with PDD-NOS at a young age, then was diagnosed with ADHD Combined at a later age, I think 6-7. As a child I was put on Ritalin. At some point during Junior High or early High School (I really should have this documented somewhere but I have no idea where said information is) my parents changed psychiatrists and I was put on a plan of 200mg of zoloft and 120mg of Strattera a day. I was also prescribed Risperadol.

Concentration improved and sensitivity to stimuli became manageble . I wasn't crying uncontrollably or experiencing borderline paranoia anymore, which was good. Unfortunately I was very numbed out. I did not feel the need to seek out any social experiences. I also didn't feel the need to set goals or try to achieve anything. Mostly I played an unhealthy amount of video games, and read a lot. I had somnolence but it was manageable. Holding part-time jobs were difficult.

As a sophomore in college I had a nervous breakdown because I didn't know why I couldn't seek out friendships, set goals or make plans for myself. I was much more social and friendly as a child. I still wanted fulfilling relationships, both platonic and romantic, but was at a complete blank on how or why to do it. I became depressed, it affected my grades and I was placed on academic probation.

I changed psychiatrists and started regularly seeing a therapist. My new psychiatrist took me off Risperadol and suggested actually reducing my dosages might show some benefits. I was out of the dorm and had rented an apartment, which was great because it gave me a place to be alone and recharge. My social experiences improved. I was more willing to talk with my peers in and out of class, and got involved with some student groups. Concentration was down, but still manageable and I was completing high level coursework. I still felt detached and had issues setting and completing goals but there was an overall improvement.

Over holiday break I left campus and visited my folks for a couple weeks. I forgot my medication at the apartment and… kind of just stopped taking it (I know, very dumb.) In the past when I had missed a dosage, I would have panic attacks and have extremely bizarre and vivd dreams when I slept. I didn't really have that when I missed my dosage at home so I just flat out stopped.

My last semester and a half on campus was… an experience. While off the meds my concentration was pretty shot. It was like having a mental plug. When I try to write or read or get work done and I can only muster enough focus to do it in fragments, then it just goes caput and I need to do something else. I would get angry at myself.

However, I was also much more socially and mentally aware of my surroundings. I got more involved with my groups, I was picking up on social cues, not at normal levels mind you but more than I had ever done in my life. I changed majors to English, started practicing creative writing. I was setting goals and trying to build relationships again (awkwardly.) Near the end of the semester I contacted my best childhood friend who I had kind of lost contact with as a teenager. I hadn't hung out with him for like 5 or 6 years. We went bowling. It was fun. I never would have considered trying to do that while medicated. I actually re-signed up for the dorms as a senior for my last semester to try and build some connections, have a little more fun. Basically I wanted to try and make up for lost time.

That semester was hard. It was like going back to school as a freshmen and you are still an adolescent. I had to relearn how to socially interact. I finished with great grades, but I didn't feel like I deserved them. I felt disconnected from my work. Writing all those essays took up almost all of my time and I needed extensions to get most of them in.

I love to write. It's what I want to do with my life. Writing is very hard with untreated ADHD, as I'm sure many of you are aware of. So, I'm seeing a psychiatrist for a re-evaluation.


I used to take strattera and sertraline. Now I don't. I am wondering if I should take them (particularly strattera) again.

My experiece...
Medicated: Able to concentrate, stable, but flat moods. Lack of want to set and complete goals. Lack of want of social interaction. Low situational and social awareness

Not Medicated: Poor concentration, irritability, varied but normal enough moods. High sensitivity. Want for social interaction, want for goals, difficulty in achieving them. Higher situational and social awareness.

I've wondered what the roll of the sertraline played here, and whether It did more harm than good. Obviously I'm not a doctor, that's why I'm going to see one, but is there anyone who has taken this combination and had similar experiences?