Can Luvox Cure OCD?
Did you know that anxiety disorders, like OCD, are the most common mental health conditions in the U.S.? And, that OCD affects both males and females at roughly the same rate? It’s true.
Approximately two million American men and women suffer from OCD.
What does that mean? It means it is a prevalent mental health condition that can cripple you – if you let it. The good news is you don’t have to allow it to keep you from experiencing the joy that comes with the freedom of being able to move around and do what you want to do without mental and physical restraints. With the right OCD treatment, you can get relief from your oppressor – OCD. There is life outside of constant obsessions and compulsions. All you have to do is ask for help.
If you are tired of being robbed by OCD, look no more because help is on the way – in the form of this article.
What is OCD?
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) involves unwelcomed and undesired thoughts, fears, and beliefs (obsessions) that can coerce you into engaging in repetitive behaviors (compulsions). Obsessions and compulsions can wreak havoc on your life and cause significant emotional and physical distress. When you have OCD, trying to stop, ignore, or dismiss your obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors can increase your stress, angst, and discomfort.
The only way you can rid yourself of these negative emotions (obsessions) is to perform certain acts (compulsions). So, even if you try to ignore or dismiss those unpleasant thoughts or urges, they will return – until you seek proper OCD treatment for them. The result? A vicious cycle of obsessive thoughts and ritualistic behaviors.
It is important to understand that OCD usually involves certain patterns or habits, such as being excessively worried that you did not lock the door, thereby, inviting someone to break in and rob you (obsession). To ease your fear, you may double-check that you locked your door several times (compulsion), causing you to be late for work. Or, being deathly afraid of germs and contracting Covid-19 (obsession) that you excessively wash your hands and slather on hand sanitizer until they crack and bleed (compulsion).
But if you are struggling with OCD, you don’t have to be afraid, ashamed, or embarrassed by your thoughts and behaviors, because there are effective treatments available. One such treatment that can help you control your OCD symptoms is Luvox.
What is Luvox?
Luvox or fluvoxamine (generic name) is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). SSRIs are antidepressants commonly used to treat mental health conditions, like obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). SSRIs, like Luvox, are usually the first-line treatment for mental health conditions because they are safer and more effective than most other antidepressants.
SSRIs, like Luvox, boost the serotonin levels in your brain. Serotonin is a hormone/neurotransmitter or chemical messenger in your brain that transmits signals or “messages” throughout your body. According to researchers, low serotonin levels can trigger repetitive thoughts (obsessions) and compulsive behaviors, possibly leading to OCD.
Keep in mind that OCD is an anxiety disorder, which means that relapse is always possible, especially in stressful or overwhelming situations. Thus, if you have OCD, you may need to take Luvox or another SSRI indefinitely. However, the best scenario is one that combines cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) with medication. It is also extremely important that you attend all psychiatrist appointments and counseling sessions and refrain from abruptly stopping Luvox.
So, can Luvox cure OCD? No. However, it can ease your symptoms and help you effectively manage your condition, so that you have a happy and productive life outside of OCD.
What Forms Does Luvox for OCD Come In?
Luvox comes in two forms – tablet and capsule.
Tablets (immediate release) – 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg
Capsules (extended release) – 100 mg, 150 mg
Can Luvox Be Used to Treat Other Conditions?
Yes, it can.
Luvox can be used “off-label” to treat major depressive disorder (MDD), moderate-to-severe depression, panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and eating disorders (bulimia and binge-eating). What does “off-label” mean? It means that Luvox is not FDA-approved for the other conditions, however, your doctor may still prescribe it, if he or she believes it will help your condition.
Who Can Use Luvox for OCD?
Luvox is FDA-approved for adults and children, over the age of 7, who struggle with OCD.
When Can I Expect to See Results from Luvox?
You can expect to see a noticeable improvement in your sleep, energy, and appetite within the 1st or 2nd week after beginning the medication. If you experience improvement in a physical area, it is a good sign that the medication is working. However, it may take 6-8 weeks to see significant improvement in your mood and OCD symptoms (i.e., obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors).
How Long Can I Take Luvox for OCD?
What Does It Feel Like to Take Luvox for OCD?
Listed below are Luvox for OCD reviews:
“I have now been on 65-75 mg of Luvox for about 3 years for OCD, which I have suffered from intensely since childhood. I was put on everything under the sun, but I was mostly treated with less specific, but more well-known medicines that mainly focus on depression and anxiety, although they were used for my OCD symptoms.
Luvox has changed my life. I went from having constant ruminating thoughts to not having any worrying signs of OCD. I, at first, felt the severe side-effects consisting of fatigue, a tingly body, anxiety, and the need for total silence. It was a weird 2 weeks. But as soon as that passed, it has been the miracle I prayed for. I hope it can do the same for you.”
“Luvox changed my life. It took away the guilt I have felt my entire life. Remember, it is important to go to therapy before starting a medication. I specifically went to exposure and response prevention therapy for 8 months before starting this drug. This medication is a miracle for those experiencing severe OCD and more specifically, intrusive thoughts.
What this drug does is lessen the number of intrusive thoughts you have and allows you to have a normal reaction to the thoughts. Please note that it does not take the thoughts away completely, it is not meant to. This drug also works very quickly. I personally find it important to gradually increase the dose every few weeks to a month. I have had no side-effects, except for some difficulty falling asleep. I am so grateful I found this. I highly recommend it!”
“I had horrible side-effects on Luvox. Some of which I had to willfully snap out of. Side-effects for me were sweating, aggression, impulsiveness, nausea, and memory issues. Doctors suggested that I could try tapering the dose and I did, but the side-effects became worse. I missed a dose and went into extreme withdrawal. The side-effects gave me a nervous breakdown. I cried for help. I got confused. My arms tingled badly and I hyperventilated. I felt like I needed a cool bath to calm down.
Some studies have found that Luvox causes aggression, impulsiveness, and other side-effects. This information appears to be hidden. Some doctors believe the FDA. It may work for you. But find something else, if Luvox is not for you. Do not blame yourself for Luvox’s side-effects or for your mental illness. You are not your disease.”
“I was prescribed Luvox when I was 14-years-old for OCD and panic attacks. During my time on Luvox, I took between 150 mg and 200 mg and had a very negative reaction. The medicine made me unbearably tired, so much so that I experienced visual hallucinations due to extreme exhaustion.
I now have major gaps in my memory from that time. I think Luvox can be effective, but be careful with it, especially if you’re young and/or very small (I was less than 100 pounds at the time so you can imagine how I reacted to a dose like that). It got rid of many of my anxiety and OCD symptoms, but at what cost? It is by far the strongest SSRI I have ever taken. Tread carefully.”
“I have obsessive-compulsive disorder and social anxiety and I have taken Luvox for two years. I have been on 100 mg for a year and I think that the pills do work for anxiety and OCD. My social anxiety is almost gone. The problem is that Luvox made me gain a little bit of weight and it’s really hard to lose the weight. I have reduced my calorie intake and I’m going to the gym but I still can’t lose any weight. I have tried to for the past two months. Luvox is really stopping me from losing weight. My depression hasn’t got any better either. It’s still the same.”
“I have used Luvox for over a year now. Before I was taking Effexor and it made me angry, so I had to switch. I started at 100 mg then gradually went to 200 mg. At 200 mg I found the most relief for my OCD but I didn’t want to do anything. I had no motivation to clean my house, do the laundry, or even take a shower. I just didn’t care.
As a mother of 4 that was a huge problem. I gradually decreased my dosage back down to 100 mg and not I have motivation back. I still have the rituals and things that completely drive me up the wall. I had them at 200 mg too. I’m thinking about trying a new medication because this one works for a bit, but doesn’t give me the relief I need. I have to take Klonopin to calm my brain down at night so I can sleep.”
What Will Happen If I Miss a Dose of Luvox?
Missing a dose of Luvox can increase your risk of experiencing an OCD relapse. If you miss a dose of Luvox, take the missed dose as soon as possible except when it is close to your next dose. If so, skip the dose and continue as normal. Do not, however, take two doses at one time.
What Will Happen If I Decide to Stop Luvox?
Can I Take Luvox While Pregnant?
Yes, you can – under the supervision of your doctor. However, it is important to talk with your doctor, if you have concerns about taking the medication while pregnant.
Keep in mind that untreated OCD can put you and your growing fetus at risk for complications. Researchers have found that less than 1% chance of babies born to women, who take SSRIs, like Luvox, during their pregnancies, develop persistent pulmonary hypertension.
Persistent pulmonary hypertension is a potentially fatal condition that is linked to taking an antidepressant during the second ½ of a pregnancy. Researchers also suggest that women, who stop taking Luvox during their pregnancies are 5x more likely to experience OCD relapses than women, who continue with Luvox throughout their pregnancies.
Therefore, it is important that you thoroughly discuss the risks and benefits of using Luvox while trying to become pregnant and while pregnant with your doctor and loved ones.
Note: Research suggests that women, who take SSRI antidepressants, like Luvox, from the 13th week of pregnancy to the end of their pregnancies (second and third trimesters) are at risk of delivering their babies prematurely (before 37 weeks).
Should I Take Luvox If I Am Breastfeeding?
Although you can take Luvox while breastfeeding, it is important to use caution when doing so, because SSRIs, like Luvox, can pass into your breastmilk.
I Am an Alcoholic – Can I Take Luvox for My OCD Symptoms?
Luvox, like an antidepressant, should not be taken with alcohol or illegal drugs because it could have adverse effects, such as low inhibitions or poor judgment, sleepiness or grogginess, mental confusion, etc. It could also decrease the effects of Luvox – i.e., worsening your OCD symptoms.
Are There Side-Effects When Taking Luvox for OCD?
Yes, Luvox comes with a host of common and rare or serious side-effects.
The most common side-effects include:
- Dry “Cotton” Mouth
- Sleepiness, Grogginess, or Dizziness
- Excessive Perspiration (Sweating)
- Sleeplessness or Insomnia
Note: These common side-effects will most likely improve or completely disappear a week or two after you start taking Luvox for OCD. Keep in mind that you could also experience sexual side-effects, such as orgasm issues, premature ejaculation, or erectile dysfunction, which may not improve or go away over time.
Rare or serious side-effects may include:
- Low Sodium Blood Levels (i.e., Headaches, Weakness, Difficulty Concentrating, and Memory Problems)
- Glaucoma (i.e., Eye Pain, Vision Changes, and Eye Swelling or Redness)
- Serotonin Syndrome (i.e., Shivering, Diarrhea, Mental Confusion, Extremely Tight Muscles, Fevers, Seizures, and Possibly Death)
- Severe or Life-Threatening Bleeding or Hemorrhaging (i.e., gums, nose, and gastrointestinal tract)
Does Luvox Have a “Black Box Warning?”
Yes, there is a “Black Box Warning” linked to Luvox for OCD.
The FDA has determined that Luvox can cause suicidal thoughts or attempts in both children and adults.
Luvox can also cause disturbing thoughts, uncharacteristic behaviors, and intense mood swings in people with OCD and depression during the 1-3 months after starting the medication. This risk can persist until remission is achieved.
Researchers have found that children, adolescents, and young adults, who take antidepressants for depression or anxiety, have an increased risk of becoming suicidal. However, this risk does not appear to extend to people over the age of 23. Researchers also discovered that the risk of suicide substantially declines in people over the age of 64.
Still, regardless of the age, people with OCD, their loved ones, and caregivers should be on the lookout for certain Luvox side-effects, such as increased anxiety, restlessness, crankiness or irritability, aggression, anger, and sleeplessness or insomnia.
If you start to experience any of the side-effects listed above, contact your doctor asap or call 911.
Are There Any Self-Help Tools That Can Help Control OCD Symptoms?
What is Impluse? It is an online program that offers a full-course OCD treatment designed to reduce or eliminate your OCD symptoms. Impulse can aid a prescribed treatment plan or be used prior to seeking OCD treatment. Some of the perks that come with enrolling in this OCD recovery course are testing to determine the type of OCD you suffer from, 60+ audio therapy sessions, 100+ mindfulness meditations, and other tools and resources that can help you get on the path to recovery. Thus, with Impulse’s expertise and support, you can stop the obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors for good.