Does chamomile interact with Zoloft? (5 benefits)
In this article, we will discuss whether chamomile can interact with Zoloft – a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). We will also discuss some research studies and the potential benefits and risks of this combination.
Does chamomile interact with Zoloft?
No, chamomile does not interact with Zoloft. It’s a herb used to remedy several ailments and is considered safe. It does not affect the metabolism of Zoloft or how your body processes this antidepressant.
This is why chamomile is generally considered safe to use with Zoloft, which is an SSRI antidepressant primarily used to treat conditions like depression, anxiety, OCD, etc (1,2). However, it is important to note that the doses of chamomile and Zoloft that you are taking concomitantly can make a difference.
If you’re on a high dose of Zoloft, let’s say 100 mg, and you start taking a relatively higher dose of chamomile, let’s say more than 1000 mg, it may cause side effects. It is also important to note that people are different and can respond differently to such combinations.
Some people could be sensitive to the effects of Zoloft or chamomile, and taking them together may affect such people differently. It’s best to discuss the use of chamomile and Zoloft together with your prescribing physician.
What does research suggest?
There is limited research on the effects of Zoloft and chamomile on the body. However, research studies do indicate that antidepressants like Zoloft can sometimes be paired with natural remedies, like chamomile, passion flower extract, etc., to manage depression and anxiety in a better way (3).
Chamomile is believed to have anxiolytic properties and can help with sleep. One research study indicated that chamomile is a valuable herbal option that can effectively manage the symptoms of anxiety comorbid with depression (4).
Another research study indicated that chamomile can be used safely for the long-term in the management of anxiety and depression, as it does not typically cause side effects and is well-tolerated (5).
The exact mechanism through which chamomile can help manage these mental health symptoms is not clear, but it is believed that it somehow affects the neurotransmitters in the brain and calms people down (6).
What are the benefits of taking chamomile with Zoloft?
The following are the benefits of taking chamomile with Zoloft:
Improved management of anxiety and depression
Chamomile, when combined with Zoloft, may offer additional support in managing anxiety and depression symptoms. Both Zoloft and chamomile are believed to have calming effects, potentially enhancing the overall mood-regulating effects on the body.
Enhanced sleep quality
Zoloft can sometimes lead to insomnia in people. Chamomile is known for its mild sedative effects, which may prevent Zoloft-induced sleep disturbances by promoting better sleep. Incorporating chamomile into your routine may contribute to a more restful night’s sleep.
Immunity boosting effects
Chamomile is known for its immune-boosting properties. When taken concomitantly with Zoloft, it may contribute to overall wellness by supporting the immune system and can reduce the risk of infections.
Chamomile has anti-inflammatory properties that could complement Zoloft’s therapeutic effects. This combination may have potential benefits in addressing inflammation-related conditions.
Menstrual pain relief
For individuals experiencing menstrual pain while on Zoloft, chamomile may offer a natural remedy. Its soothing properties may help alleviate cramps and discomfort associated with periods.
Are there any side effects of taking chamomile and Zoloft together?
Combining chamomile and Zoloft is generally considered safe, and they do not interact with one another. However, it’s essential to look out for potential individual reactions. Some side effects that are common to both may affect you more prominently.
Both chamomile and Zoloft are known to cause side effects, such as nausea, dizziness, GI discomfort, etc. While these side effects are typically mild, taking both chamomile and Zoloft at the same time might affect some people more. It’s best to monitor your side effects and report them to your doctor.
What to do if chamomile and Zoloft are not working well for you together?
If you think taking Zoloft and chamomile together is not providing you with any additional health benefits or if you’re experiencing any unusual side effects, please reach out to your healthcare provider.
Chamomile typically does not interact with Zoloft and may cause some additive side effects; however, such cases are not commonly reported. It is also important to note that Zoloft takes 4-6 weeks to take effect. If you’re in the early course of treatment, you may not find it helpful enough.
This is because antidepressants take time to make noticeable changes in your brain, and your body also takes time to adjust. Taking chamomile until Zoloft kicks in can help some people feel better but might not be sufficient to deal with the symptoms, especially if your mental health condition is severe.
The best course of action in this case is to give Zoloft some time to work. Once it kicks in, it will start to manage your symptoms effectively. However, if you find Zoloft ineffective or taking chamomile is also not paying off, talk to your doctor.
They will properly evaluate your symptoms and consider alternative treatment strategies if possible. There are plenty of medications that can replace Zoloft, and many prescription meds are used as anxiolytics if chamomile is not efficient enough. Just trust your doctor’s expertise and follow their directions properly.
- Singh HK, Saadabadi A. Sertraline. 2023 Feb 13. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan–. PMID: 31613469. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK547689
- The Food and Drug Administration (FDA). HIGHLIGHTS OF PRESCRIBING INFORMATION. ZOLOFT (sertraline hydrochloride) tablets, for oral use. Available from: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2016/019839s74s86s87_20990s35s44s45lbl.pdf
- Nojoumi M, Ghaeli P, Salimi S, Sharifi A, Raisi F. Effects of Passion Flower Extract, as an Add-On Treatment to Sertraline, on Reaction Time in Patients with Generalized Anxiety Disorder: A Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study. Iran J Psychiatry. 2016 Jul;11(3):191-197. PMID: 27928252; PMCID: PMC5139955. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5139955/
- Amsterdam JD, Li QS, Xie SX, Mao JJ. Putative Antidepressant Effect of Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla L.) Oral Extract in Subjects with Comorbid Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Depression. J Altern Complement Med. 2020 Sep;26(9):813-819. doi: 10.1089/acm.2019.0252. Epub 2019 Dec 5. PMID: 31808709; PMCID: PMC7488203. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31808709/
- Mao JJ, Xie SX, Keefe JR, Soeller I, Li QS, Amsterdam JD. Long-term chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla L.) treatment for generalized anxiety disorder: A randomized clinical trial. Phytomedicine. 2016 Dec 15;23(14):1735-1742. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2016.10.012. Epub 2016 Oct 24. PMID: 27912875; PMCID: PMC5646235. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27912875/
- Jia Y, Zou J, Wang Y, Zhang X, Shi Y, Liang Y, Guo D, Yang M. Action mechanism of Roman chamomile in the treatment of anxiety disorder based on network pharmacology. J Food Biochem. 2021 Jan;45(1):e13547. doi: 10.1111/jfbc.13547. Epub 2020 Nov 5. PMID: 33152801. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33152801/