Can prozac cause night sweats?

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In this blog post, we are going to answer the question, “Does prozac cause night sweats?”. This blog will cover how prozac can induce night sweats and what are the consequences associated with it. We will also discuss what you can do to get rid of them. 

Can prozac cause night sweats? 

Yes, prozac can cause night sweats. Night sweats or nocturnal hyperhidrosis is a condition associated with nighttime excessive sweating. It is a well known side effect of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), including Prozac (fluoxetine). 

SSRIs increase serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin can affect hypothalamus, which is responsible for regulating your homeostasis. It can have an impact on your body temperature and your ability to sweat. 

Abnormal sweating, is in fact, a very common side effect of SSRI antidepressants, occurring in around 10–20% of patients. It usually sticks around, or even worsens. 

Antidepressant-induced sweating is different for everyone. For some people, it is so severe that they need to find a different drug, or quit antidepressants altogether. 

Excessive sweating is quite a disturbing condition. In short, it is disabling. It affects the quality of life as it ends up disturbing people more than they could imagine. It becomes socially embarrassing for them, and in some cases, they are embarrassed in front of their spouses as well. 

Prozac induced sweating is irrespective of the outside temperature. You can suffer from this side effect at any time of the day or any season. Night sweats not only ruin the quality of your sleep but also mess up your hygiene. 

Prozac induced sweating is more prominent in the upper body, face, scalp, neck and chest. Do not wait for it to subside on its own. This does not go away that easy. 

What options do you have to get rid of prozac induced night sweats? 

If the night sweats are disrupting your life that terribly, one of the few things might help:

Dose reduction

Dose reduction can be considered, if possible. If there’s a chance of your condition worsening with a lower dose, then this option is not so helpful. But if there is a chance to minimise side effects by reducing the dose, without affecting the therapeutic response, this might help. 

Consider changing antidepressant

If feasible, you can switch to a different SSRI or any other class of antidepressant (except bupropion, which has a higher rate of night sweats as compared to any other antidepressant). 

For example, if prozac (fluoxetine) is inducing night sweats in you, ask your healthcare provider to prescribe another antidepressant of the same family (SSRIs), which might help you with depression without inducing excessive sweating. 

Give your body time

Your body might need some time to adapt to the presence of prozac. These meds affect your brain and alter the amounts of excitatory neurotransmitters, to get rid of your anxiety and depression. It can not happen overnight. 

Side effects associated with prozac start to fade away within a few weeks. Make sure you give your body enough time to adjust. Do not stop your med abruptly.

What are the pharmacological treatment options for excessive sweating? 

Medications used to reduce excessive sweating include:

Terazosin 

Terazosin is an alpha-1 adrenergic antagonist, generally used in the treatment of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia and management of hypertension. 

In a study conducted in 2013, it was observed that in the beginning of the study, 48.5% patients suffered from high grade sweating. After 14 days of treatment with terazosin, the percentage reduced down by half.

This concludes that terazosin is effective in decreasing sweating severity in patients using prozac (fluoxetine).

Side effects of terazosin 

As it’s nothing new to know that every medicine has its own side effects. Let’s take a look at side effects associated with the use of terazosin. 

  • Chest tightness and pain
  • Dizziness/lightheadedness/vertigo
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Unconsciousness 
  • Arrhythmia or irregular heartbeat.
  • Swelling of lower extremities
  • Impotence (inability to have an erection)
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea
  • Stuffy or runny nose

One thing that I always try to tell my readers is, every human body is different, and no I don’t mean physically or the way we look, I mean internally! Just like every human being reacts differently to different situations.

Similarly every human body reacts differently when they are exposed to medications. Every single individual out there has a different physiological composition. A certain medicine might be beneficial for one but ends up producing serious side effects in another. 

Glycopyrrolate and oxybutynin

Glycopyrrolate and Oxybutynin are also known as ‘The sweat pills’. Glycopyrrolate (sold under the brand name Robinul) is one of the anticholinergics used most often in the treatment of excessive sweating. 

The effectiveness of glycopyrrolate is often related to the dose a patient is able to handle, and obviously how the patient responds to the drug. Studies suggest that glycopyrrolate reduces sweating efficiently but it is not tolerated by some people because of its side effects.

  • Side effects of Glycopyrrolate 
  • Side effects include:
  • Dry mouth (the most common side effect) 
  • Dry eyes or decreased lacrimation
  • Constipation
  • Nausea 

Drinking more water, mints, eye-drops and increased fibre consumption might help fight these side effects.

Sometimes, excessive sweating can be a sign of serotonin syndrome. The basic cause of this condition is the serotonin overload and the antidepressants are considered the main culprit for this condition. 

The syndrome is pretty rare, so it is unlikely to occur when a patient is sticking to the dose recommended by the healthcare provider. 

Sometimes, they combine the use of these types of medications, for the sake of achieving better results, so if you are already on a stable dose but you combine prozac with other medications. 

Other non psychological medications, which somehow increase the amount of serotonin in the body, it also results in serotonin syndrome.  

Additional side effects of prozac 

Common side effects of prozac include:

  • Restlessness 
  • Anxiety 
  • Drowsiness 
  • Dizziness 
  • Skin rash
  • Muscular pain
  • Joint pain
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting 
  • Tiredness  
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Loss of sexual desire 

Prozac is also associated with some serious side effects, which often require immediate medical attention. These include:

  • Allergic reaction associated with symptoms like redness of skin, itching, burning sensation, blisters, blue-purple patches, tightness of chest, wheezing, difficulty in breathing, hoarseness etc. 
  • Convulsions 
  • Dark grey-brown colored vomiting
  • Tarry or bloody stools
  • Eye problems including pain, swelling, redness, vision changes etc. 
  • Abnormal mood changes including, excitement following by sudden sadness, erratic behaviour, paranoia etc
  • Kidney function abnormalities, including severe pain, elevation of serum creatinine, difference in urine output and colour, blood urea nitrogen levels etc. 
  • Suicidal behavior 
  • Excessive muscle tremors 

Conclusion 

In this blog post, we have talked about prozac induced night sweats. This antidepressant is associated with profuse sweating, especially at night. This is indeed a pretty depressing condition, as it decreases the quality of life. 

We have also discussed the options you have if you’re going through this problem. You can either reduce the dose or change the kind of antidepressant you’re on right now. If that doesn’t solve your problem, then terazosin and glycopyrrolate are prescribed to take your excessive sweating down a notch. 

In the end, always look out for serotonin syndrome. Immediately notify your healthcare provider, if you feel excessively increased heartbeat, chills and fever along with sweating. 

FAQs: prozac night sweats

Why does prozac make me sweat at night?

Prozac increases serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin can affect hypothalamus, which is responsible for regulating your homeostasis. It can have an impact on your body temperature and your ability to sweat.

Abnormal sweating is, in fact, a very common side effect of SSRI antidepressants, occurring in around 10–20% of patients. It usually sticks around, or even worsens. 

Antidepressant-induced sweating is different for everyone. For some people, it is so severe that they need to find a different drug, or quit antidepressants altogether. 

How do I stop night sweats from antidepressants?

  • Dose reduction can be considered, if possible. If there’s a chance of your condition worsening with a lower dose, then this option is not so helpful.
  • If feasible, you can switch to a different SSRI or any other class of antidepressant (except bupropion, which has a higher rate of night sweats as compared to any other antidepressant). 
  • Your body might need some time to adapt to the presence of prozac. These meds affect your brain and alter the amounts of excitatory neurotransmitters, to get rid of your anxiety and depression. It can not happen overnight. 

How do you get rid of night sweats?

Following medications are used to treat excessive sweating:

  • Terazosin is an alpha-1 adrenergic antagonist. It is effective in decreasing sweating severity in patients. 
  •  Glycopyrrolate and Oxybutynin are also known as ‘The sweat pills’. Glycopyrrolate (sold under the brand name Robinul) is one of the anticholinergics used most often in the treatment of excessive sweating. 

How long do night sweats last with prozac?

It depends on the dose you’re prescribed. Antidepressants usually take 4 to 6 weeks to produce their effects, as well as side effects. Most probably, these side effects subside when your body adapts to the presence of the med. 

Some side effects don’t. Make sure you discuss the do’s and don’ts with your healthcare provider. 

What should I avoid while taking Prozac?

  • Monoaminoxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). The combination use can increase the risk of serotonin syndrome. 
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). The combination use can increase the risk of bleeding. 
  • Pimozide. The concomitant use can increase the plasma concentration(availability of a drug in the blood) of pimozide to much higher levels. It can result in life-threatening arrhythmia.
  • Controlled substances, including all narcotic analgesics. The concomitant use can cause severe psychological side effects. 
  • Mood stabilisers 
  • Alcohol 

Is it better to take Prozac in the morning or at night?

It depends on what kinds of side effects you’re going through. 

  • If it causes insomnia, morning is preferred.
  • If it causes drowsiness, night time is preferred.
  • If it causes nausea, night time is preferred.
  • If it causes urinary problems, morning is preferred.
  • If it causes loss of libido, morning is preferred.
  • If it causes loss of appetite, bedtime is preferred. 

References 

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