I'm in the process of TTC and I wondered the same thing. I suffer from anxiety and take 75mg of effexor and .5 mg of clonazepam.
I have done some research and it has been known to cause birth defects.
So I can't help but wonder how my anxiety will be once I am pregant?
Thanks, Yes my doctor said the risk isn't very high if I take 75mg of effexor.
However, she would like me to stop taking the clonazepam. However that seems to be what helps me the most when I start to feel the anxiety come on.
Paxil (paroxetine) is not safe, new research has now implicated it in congenital heart defects in newborn babies. The actual incidence of heart defects in the normal population is 8 in 1000 (less than 1% not 2%); previously it was thought to be safe but in the past 2 years it's been linked to heart defects. Psychiatrists are moving away from prescribing the SSRIs to women who are trying for a baby, it's not good clinical practice. My doctor took me off paroxetine and put me on amitriptyline instead. It's been around 50 years and has the best safety profile of any anti-depressant medication in pregnancy. It does make you drowsy though. I found that 50mg helped me. I've now managed to wean completely off anti-depressants, valium, and beta-blockers with the help of daily walking, yoga (at home), and omega-3 fish oil. The omega-3 I take is called Eskimo-3. It's around £20 per bottle, you take 7mls a day for anxiety/depression. A bottle lasts me a month. It has changed my life and, even better, it's really good for foetal development of brain and eye. Yes you can get cheaper brands, but I like Eskimo-3 because it has the lowest amount of heavy metals, which is really important if you are TTC. And, get this, babies born to mums who take omega-3 supplements (DHA type) have a higher IQ. But it's also really important your omega-3 supplement contains EPA as this is the mood-lifting component. I can't believe what a difference the omega-3 has made to my life. I used to also suffer horrendous panic attacks/health phobias/constant low mood. Now my life is on the up and up. And I've had anxiety/depression since my 20s and I'm now 41, so I've not got a mild case. A lot of people don't know about omega-3 and take anti-depressants which are not safe in pregnancy. I have had 2 miscarriages while on anti-depressants, one on paroxetine, one on amitriptyline. Maybe it's a concidence but I don't think the medication helped. Also if you have an anxiety disorder it will be very hard to not worry about any effects your medication might have on foetal development. Doctors can only tell you which drugs are not known to cause foetal abnormalities, but they cannot give you a 100% guarantee there will be no long-term perhaps more subtle effects on the child's development. For me it wasn't worth the chance. It's been a 3 year battle but finally I'm getting better, despite the 2 miscarriages I've had over the past 2 years. For me exercise also really changed my life, it's proven to cure mild to moderate cases of depression and anxiety, so far too many people are prescribed meds when the GP should be encouraging exercise programmes. I'm not saying it's easy to exercise when you have a mental health difficulty, far from it, but, by God it helps! There should be a GP at your surgery who specialises in mental health, and that doctor should be well informed of the risks of SSRIs in pregnant women. Plus don't worry about stress and TTC. I was totally stressed and having panic attacks when I conceived the last pregnancy, I had been weaning off a load of anxiety meds and was having constant palpitations, plus I was 40 then. Stress really isn't an issue, I reckon it all comes down to timing! I am not recommending you stop taking your meds, but give the Eskimo-3 a go and then if you're feeling a lot better after 1-2 months you could always discuss weaning your anti-depressant with your doctor. It takes about 4 weeks to start taking effect and the most benefit occurs after 3 months. Good luck and babydust all round.
Hey lesley576 This may not help at all but I have a sever anxiety disorder and mild depression. I have had both for approx 6 years now and when i became pregnant last year with my daughter my doctor told me there were drugs with less risk but none had no risk. My anxiety is part hypochondria(worrying about health and drug intake) so when he said that i opted to get off all medication and just continue seeing a counselor more often(went from once a week to twice a week) The drug he had told me had less risk were ones i had tried already and they didnt work for me anyways. I got through the pregnancy with lots of help and was fine. I chose to bottle feed after so i could get back on my medication and not have to worry as much about PND( post natal depression) since i was at higher risk of getting it because i already suffered from depression. I dont remember the name of any of the drugs i was offered tho it was almost a year ago. I am now on citalopram but i know that is one you cant take during pregnancy. feel free to pm me or just ask on here is you have any more questions.
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