Trouble squashing some side effects related to anxiety and addiction

I've noticed that sometime after the honeymoon period, and sometime probably around shut down, all of the ruminating thoughts and underlying anxiety I've had my whole life just vanished. And then they came back, but slightly worse. It's not unbearable, but I find myself more prone to anxiety, and having a lot more trouble not drinking. I even spoke to my doctor (not my TRT doctor though) about it the other day. Naturally they suggested an SSRI which I firmly declined. I'd at least like to exhaust other options.

I know you can't chase the honeymoon period, but that week or two that I felt GREAT felt very natural. Honeymoon felt like I was cracked out on drugs. Even after raising my dose from 150 to 200, I felt a little cracked out, but there was absolutely none of that anxiety free, perfectly level period again.

I've wondered if it's something with pregnenolone/progresterone. Apparently both are involved in anxiety and I found some studies showing an effect on cravings for addictive substances.

Also, I've always been prone to extreme anxiety after drinking, which has gotten worse over the years, but now it's at the point that drinking will lead to a panic attack. Makes me wonder if not having some of these hormones is related.

Aside from trying pregnenolone, and other suggestions? Am I just chasing something that I'll never have again?
 

Vince

Super Moderator
It sounds like testosterone replacement therapy isn't for you. I would stop right now, otherwise you may have even more issues.
 

Nelson Vergel

Founder, ExcelMale.com
What TRT dose and frequency are you using? Did you have anxiety before TRT? What other meds do you take? What are your thoughts when you get anxiety?
This was a great discussion of 5 pages that discussed treatment options:
Best medication for anxiety?
 

Systemlord

Member
Also, I've always been prone to extreme anxiety after drinking, which has gotten worse over the years, but now it's at the point that drinking will lead to a panic attack.
Sounds like you need to give up drinking, why torture yourself? It also sounds like perhaps your TRT dosage may have been a little high, but a lot of times guys don't give each protocol nearly enough time for things to balance out.

If you are suffering from memory problems and anxiety, maybe your pregnenolone levels are low. I tried pregnenolone once without lab testing, I regretted it because my heart raced all night long and couldn't wait for it to wear off!
 

DragonRider

New Member
I'm curious if you are a beer drinker? I am convinced that anxiety can be a symptom of excess estrogen levels for many men. By raising your TRT amount, it is possible that more test is being converted to estrogen and causing anxiety. Beer is also highly estrogenic. One reason that drinking too much can cause ED and weight gain is around the waist line.
 
It sounds like testosterone replacement therapy isn't for you. I would stop right now, otherwise you may have even more issues.
I've seen a bunch of benefits from it still, so really trying to stick to it and sort stuff like this out if I can.

What TRT dose and frequency are you using? Did you have anxiety before TRT? What other meds do you take? What are your thoughts when you get anxiety?
This was a great discussion of 5 pages that discussed treatment options:
Best medication for anxiety?
Great link, thanks Nelson. Trying to figure out if it's possible to get back to that anxiety free state that happened for a while, it felt so much more natural. When I've taken a benzo or anything else in the past, it always feels like putting a blanket over the fire rather than putting the fire out. That is, the anxiety is still there but doesn't bother me.

Sounds like you need to give up drinking, why torture yourself? It also sounds like perhaps your TRT dosage may have been a little high, but a lot of times guys don't give each protocol nearly enough time for things to balance out.

If you are suffering from memory problems and anxiety, maybe your pregnenolone levels are low. I tried pregnenolone once without lab testing, I regretted it because my heart raced all night long and couldn't wait for it to wear off!
I entirely agree on giving up drinking. Trying to find the root of that though as it's become actually difficult to stop. In the past I enjoyed it, but with some willpower and commitment, I went years without a drink.

I think I'm going to commit to a few days or a week on pregnenolone and see how I end up feeling. It seems to make a huge difference for a lot of guys. It sucks it didn't go so well for you.

I'm curious if you are a beer drinker? I am convinced that anxiety can be a symptom of excess estrogen levels for many men. By raising your TRT amount, it is possible that more test is being converted to estrogen and causing anxiety. Beer is also highly estrogenic. One reason that drinking too much can cause ED and weight gain is around the waist line.
I try to avoid beer for this reason, and it feels noticeably worse than other alcohols. The face puffiness gets to the point I can barely see out of my eyes in much shorter time with beer than anything else.
 

wondering

Active Member
Dr. Mariano used to post that ACTH can be reduced by TRT. In some that is beneficial. In others problematic - why he always said treat in order 1) Adrenals (HPA) 2) Thyroid 3) Testosterone.

When I first started T it sent me into a downward spiral of anxiety. Hydrocortisone 20mg daily saved me from he77. I stopped TRT fro awhile as I wasn't getting any benefit for libiso and ED. I felt worse, so started up again and same thing happened...downward spiral.

You may need to give your HPA support - HC, yoga, stress reduction, meditation, nutritional support etc.
 
Well after a few days on pregnenolone...I suspiciously have a REALLY high heart rate and worsened anxiety. Couldn't sleep for the life of me last night either. @Systemlord we may be in the same boat man.

I'm going to wait a couple weeks, let everything else level out, and try a lower dose and see how it goes.
 
I mean trt in general, I'm struggling badly with anxiety and I even take an ssri. My anxiety was fine before trt.
I feel for you man. I've read of some others having that trouble too. I'd say by no means is mine better. But the added confidence it helped with does help. Sometimes I think the anxiety comes from being actually awake mentally and recognizing the problems in my life (like major job issues right now) and feeling the need to fix them not just hope they go away.

What sort of dose are you on? Bloodwork? Which SSRI? I'm no expert but I'm sure some of the guys here will chime in too.

I feel a LOT better after going from 200mg/week to 150. MUCH calmer.

Hang in there, you're not alone with the TRT related anxiety.
 

Josht9210

New Member
10mg of paxil. Been on for 10 years. I wanted to get on trt to counteract some of the side effects from paxil but at this point it seems futile. I'm on 140mg split in 20mg daily. My bloods were good, doc advised me to add dht and pregnenolone which I did. I've been patient and on for 2 months. I've had few ups so far, mainly downs with the constant anxiety.. Its not even about anything, its just a really uncomfortable feeling.

My anxiety has been worse, but this is close to it. This feeling is the main reason I started my ssri/therapy 10 years ago.
 
10mg of paxil. Been on for 10 years. I wanted to get on trt to counteract some of the side effects from paxil but at this point it seems futile. I'm on 140mg split in 20mg daily. My bloods were good, doc advised me to add dht and pregnenolone which I did. I've been patient and on for 2 months. I've had few ups so far, mainly downs with the constant anxiety.. Its not even about anything, its just a really uncomfortable feeling.

My anxiety has been worse, but this is close to it. This feeling is the main reason I started my ssri/therapy 10 years ago.
How were you before the DHT and pregnenolone? I'd consider dropping those and see how you feel. I'm not a doctor, but that'd be something I'd try first.

For me I didn't start to feel good until right around 3 months in. But I also kept screwing it up playing with AIs. Caught myself drinking more too, and that didn't help.

Are you on an AI? I felt way more anxious when my E2 was low (9 on a blood test).

Do you have access to your bloodwork? I felt pretty rough when my TT was around 1200. Much better around 700. Still have to experiment some more still.

Don't rule out trying a new doctor either. It seems all too common that guys get a doctor they like but who doesn't know what they're doing, and they feel worse. Dr Saya has been great to me, I feel really comfortable with him, and like he's looking out for my best interests. I strongly prefer him over his PAs, I will say that. During our last consult he went as far as to help me sort out my low calcium even. My PCP looked at my bloodwork (from Labcorp, which shows it in the middle of a green bar if it's anywhere in range), and said "LOOK, SMACK DAB IN THE MIDDLE!" It was .1 away from being out of range. Ugh.

Any other habits you can think of that might cause it? TRT isn't everything I've learned. I'm not 20 again, I still have to take care of myself or I don't feel well.
 

Josht9210

New Member
I use dr saya lol. He advised me on the preg and dht via cream. Yeah I have access to everything as I use defy, however dialing this in is a real pain for me
 
I use dr saya lol. He advised me on the preg and dht via cream. Yeah I have access to everything as I use defy, however dialing this in is a real pain for me
Oh...shit lol.

You said you've been on it 2 months, have you talked to him a second time yet? Sucks he's usually booked a ways out. The PAs I've talked to in between have been super nice, but it almost feels like they follow a flow chart for some things (high E2 = you get AI etc). Dr Saya has been much more in depth in our discussions. I haven't talked to Dr Calkins yet but I've heard positive things.
 

wondering

Active Member
I use dr saya lol. He advised me on the preg and dht via cream. Yeah I have access to everything as I use defy, however dialing this in is a real pain for me
Perhaps 10mg of Hydrocortisone as soon as you wake up? Since starting on TRT, it's the only thing that helps me.
 

SilverSurfer

Active Member
I feel for you man. I've read of some others having that trouble too. I'd say by no means is mine better. But the added confidence it helped with does help. Sometimes I think the anxiety comes from being actually awake mentally and recognizing the problems in my life (like major job issues right now) and feeling the need to fix them not just hope they go away.

What sort of dose are you on? Bloodwork? Which SSRI? I'm no expert but I'm sure some of the guys here will chime in too.

I feel a LOT better after going from 200mg/week to 150. MUCH calmer.

Hang in there, you're not alone with the TRT related anxiety.
Drinking alcohol to excess causes anxiety, much like a rebound headache after pain meds wear off. If you’re like me and a lot of others who have struggled with addiction and alcohol use/abuse, alcohol has been your “solution”. You need it after a long day or stressful day. It’s become a “go to” solution to calm your nerves, and make you feel better. I’d encourage you to talk to your doctor about Vivitrol or google the Sinclair Method. You might want to make an appointment with an addiction mental health professional. You’ll be glad you did, especially since you’ve said you have been struggling to quit and can’t. I’ve been there.

Anxiety and Alcohol: How They Are Linked
 
Drinking alcohol to excess causes anxiety, much like a rebound headache after pain meds wear off. If you’re like me and a lot of others who have struggled with addiction and alcohol use/abuse, alcohol has been your “solution”. You need it after a long day or stressful day. It’s become a “go to” solution to calm your nerves, and make you feel better. I’d encourage you to talk to your doctor about Vivitrol or google the Sinclair Method. You might want to make an appointment with an addiction mental health professional. You’ll be glad you did, especially since you’ve said you have been struggling to quit and can’t. I’ve been there.

Anxiety and Alcohol: How They Are Linked
Thanks man, I didn't see this reply, but it's really helpful.

I actually went and got some naltrexone, but it seems to squash all "satisfaction" for me when I take it. I'm scared to try it again. It was weird, I just felt down and flat for close to a day. I was really sold on the whole concept too.

I've noticed if I can avoid stressful triggers, I do better. And the further I get from that last drink, the better I'm able to handle those triggers without resorting to a drink. Slippery slope would be the best term here I suppose.
 

SilverSurfer

Active Member
Thanks man, I didn't see this reply, but it's really helpful.

I actually went and got some naltrexone, but it seems to squash all "satisfaction" for me when I take it. I'm scared to try it again. It was weird, I just felt down and flat for close to a day. I was really sold on the whole concept too.

I've noticed if I can avoid stressful triggers, I do better. And the further I get from that last drink, the better I'm able to handle those triggers without resorting to a drink. Slippery slope would be the best term here I suppose.
I’ve read about 30% of people who try naltrexone have that same issue, unfortunately. It works wonders for that other 70%. I’ve gotten much better with meditation. I have an alarm set on my cell phone that prompts me to do a quick 5 to 10 minute meditation session during the day. Helps me purge built up stress and remind me to stay focused on the here and now.

Plus as a recovering addict, I shifted my drug of choice to endorphins. I’m up at 5 am every morning and hit the gym. Exercise and meditation are my one, two, punch for maintaining my sobriety.

Best of luck.
 
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