Zoloft numbness and tingling (All you need to know)
In this blog, we will talk about zoloft induced numbness and tingling sensation, which is often called paresthesia. We will also shed some light on what researchers have to say about it.
Zoloft induced numbness and tingling
People using zoloft have reported side effects like numbing and tingling or pins-and-needles sensation, with or without redness and burning sensation. Some people have also experienced facial and genital paresthesia.
What does research suggest?
One study concluded that Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are indeed associated with numbness and tingling sensation. The same study also revealed that zoloft can cause numbing sensation in male and female genitals.
This side effect was reported by many people, and in some cases, it resulted in zoloft withdrawal. One team of researchers studied the relationship between zoloft and numbness.
The team studied these effects on a group of people, men and women, and concluded that zoloft induced numbness and tingling sensation is more common in women, mostly 40-50 years old.
This side effect tends to develop with more than one month of zoloft use. One study found that zoloft is capable of producing numbness and tingling sensation on your face, but this one is rarely reported.
Another study concluded that numbness and tingling sensation is more common in people withdrawing zoloft. It more commonly occurs to people who’re stopping zoloft as compared to those who continue to take it.
Another study revealed that a group of people complained about experiencing numbness and tingling sensation in their arms and legs, just after using zoloft for 10 days and some have experienced numbness in their joints, specifically knee joints.
Does zoloft induced numbness and tingling sensation go away?
It typically takes 2-4 weeks for Zoloft induced side effects to subside. Your numbness and tingling will start to fade away on its own once your body adjusts to the medication. Your doctor might recommend you to hang in there and give your body enough time to get used to the med.
If your numbness and tingling sensation is severe, especially in lower extremities and you feel heavy or find it difficult to walk around, talk to your healthcare provider. Either your dose is too high or zoloft is just not the right choice of antidepressant for you.
What can you do to help relieve your numbness and tingling sensation?
There are a few things you can try on your own to help relieve the effects of paresthesia. Make sure, your side effects are manageable and not severe, because severe side effects require immediate medical attention. A few things that can help you out with your numbness include:
Massaging is one of the best ways to increase blood circulation. Try massaging with warm oil on the affected area followed by a warm press. This will increase blood circulation which can take some of your numbness away.
If you experience numbness and tingling sensation, especially in your lower extremities, make sure you stay rested. If it’s difficult to move or your legs feel too heavy to walk around, avoid unnecessary movement and stay rested. If it’s too severe, contact your healthcare provider.
Exercise is also one of the best ways to increase blood circulation. Opt for low intensity, relaxing exercises like yoga or pilates. Increased amount of blood circulation helps to relieve numbness and tingling sensation.
Try to avoid panicking if you feel numbness. Stress can often make your side effects more heightened. Try to stay calm and it’s bothering you, talk to your doctor. Mild tingling usually goes away within 3 to 4 weeks of treatment.
Make sure you add plenty of good, nutritious foods in your diet. Good diet helps you a lot in boosting your immunity, which helps you recover, fight against infection, repair your damaged cells and replace worn out cells.
Your healthy lifestyle requires you to cut back on alcohol. Alcohol is known to contain toxic substances which can damage your nerve cells and cause numbness all on its own. Make sure you avoid alcohol, especially when you’re battling with antidepressant induced side effects.
Maintain a good posture
Postural changes can cause or make your existing numbness even worse. Try stretching to fix your bad posture. Keep your back as straight as you can while sitting or walking.
Underlying health conditions which can cause numbness and tingling sensation
There are a few underlying health conditions which can silently contribute to your zoloft induced numbness and tingling sensation. These include:
Unmanaged diabetes can silently cause nerve damage, a condition often called diabetic neuropathy. This can contribute to your numbness and tingling sensation. Make sure you keep your blood glucose level within the normal range to avoid further complications.
Sciatica is well known for causing numbness and tingling sensation in your lower back and legs. Make sure you rule that out in case of experiencing numbness in lower extremities with pain
Excessive alcohol intake can result in nerve damage. Experts revealed that too much alcohol consumption is linked with vitamin B complex deficiency, which leads to potential nerve damage.
Make sure you cut back on alcohol as alcoholism is indeed a disease in itself, which can also make your other health conditions worse.
Benign or malignant tumors
Certain kinds of tumors are associated with nerve damage. This can also lead to the numbness and tingling sensation. Make sure you talk to your doctor and rule out the possibility of any tumor inside your body.
Other medications that may cause numbness and tingling sensation
Certain medications can cause the same exact side effect. Sometimes, the combination of medications end up causing synergistic side effects. Make sure your meds are compatible with one another, even your over-the-counter drugs.
According to a research article, following medications can cause numbness and tingling sensation:
- Chemotherapeutic or anticancer drugs, including vinca alkaloids (Vincristine and vinblastine), taxanes (pacitaxel and docetaxel), thalidomide etc.
- Psychotropic drugs, including other antidepressants, anxiolytics and illicit substances like marijuana, amphetamines etc.
- Anticonvulsants, including carbamazepine, sodium valproate etc.
- Antibiotics, including fluoroquinolones like ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin etc.
- Cardiovascular drugs, including antihypertensives and drugs to lower cholesterol levels.
When to call your doctor:
Call your healthcare provider if:
- Your numbness and tingling sensation does not go away, even after 5 to 6 weeks of treatment.
- You find it difficult to walk or feel heaviness in your lower extremities
- You experience numbness in your joints along with burning sensation.
- You experience facial numbness
- You experience skin allergy, which could include Stevens-Johnson syndrome. You might notice red, swollen, or blistered skin, with or without fever.
- You experience symptoms like confusion, agitation, inability to understand. This could indicate low sodium levels in your body
- You are in your third trimester or a nursing mother on zoloft.
Make sure you use zoloft properly.
- Take zoloft as directed by your healthcare provider.
- Do not share medications. You might think your conditions match but oftentimes they don’t. It’s actually pretty dangerous.
- Take your tablet with or after food. This can help avoid zoloft induced acid reflux.
- If you fail to understand how to use the drug properly or have any other question, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
- In case of overdose, immediately reach out to the hospital. Make sure you properly guide them about how much drug you have taken and when.
- The oral liquid preparation of zoloft contains alcohol. Consult your doctor if you suffer from alcoholism, diabetes or liver failure.
Common side effects of Zoloft include:
- Loss of appetite
- Feeling angry or agitated
- Weight gain
- Inability to digest food
- Loss of libido
- Sweating/Night sweats
- Tremors or shaking
- Decreased sex drive
- Inability to ejaculate
Zoloft, sometimes, causes serious side effects. Consult your healthcare provider as soon as you can if these symptoms occur:
- Eye pain with vision problems
- Memory problems/Dementia
- Severe weakness and inability to move
In this blog, we discussed zoloft induced numbness and tingling sensation. It is a side effect that can develop just after using zoloft for 10 to 12 days. Studies indicated that this side effect is more common in women as compared to men.
Zoloft can cause numbness and tingling in your lower and upper extremities, face, joints, and genitals. Studies have also revealed that this sensation is pretty common in patients who withdraw from zoloft.
Make sure you consult your healthcare provider if your numbness sensation is severe. In such conditions, your doctor might tone down the dose or taper off zoloft if it’s not the right choice of antidepressant for you.
Mild sensation will begin to fade away on its own, once your body adjusts to the medication. Either way, it is not advised to stop your antidepressant without your doctor’s approval.
FAQs: zoloft numbness and tingling
Can Zoloft cause tingling sensation?
Yes, zoloft can cause tingling, burning or pins-and-needles sensation.
Can Zoloft cause numbness in limbs?
Yes, zoloft can cause numbness in your upper or lower extremities, lower back, face and genitals.
When do Zoloft side effects go away?
Zoloft induced side effects usually begin to subside within 2 to 3 weeks of your treatment, but it is different for everyone. Some people tolerate zoloft pretty well and recover from side effects within a few days, while some people struggle with side effects for a long time.
What is the best antidepressant for neuropathy?
Researchers have revealed that duloxetine, a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), is the best antidepressant for neuropathy.
How do you calm down neuropathy?
- Exercise and stretching
- Maintain your blood sugar level within normal range
- Cut back on alcohol
- Stop smoking
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle
- Get a proper diagnosis
How do you know if you have neuropathy?
Neuropathy is associated with symptoms like numbness, tingling or pins-and-needles sensation, burning, pain etc. Consult your healthcare provider and get a proper diagnosis.
- Samir K Praharaj – Serotonin reuptake inhibitor induced sensory disturbances https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1884649/
- Mark R. Jones, Ivan Urits, and Omar Viswanath – Drug-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy: A Narrative Review https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7365998/
- Wolfgang Grisold, Guido Cavaletti, and Anthony J – Peripheral neuropathies from chemotherapeutics and targeted agents https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3480245/
- P Decina et al. Am J Psychiatry. (1992) – Painful sensory symptoms in neuroleptic-induced extrapyramidal syndromes https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1353315/
- S Baldini et al. Ital J Neurol Sci. (1992)- Peripheral neuropathy caused by antiepileptic drugs. Neurophysiological study of the A delta and C fibers https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1320594/
- Praharaj, Samir Kumar MD, Arora, Manu MD – Sertraline-Induced Facial Paresthesia https://journals.lww.com/psychopharmacology/Citation/2007/12000/Sertraline_Induced_Facial_Paresthesia.33.aspx#:~:text=These%20sensory%20disturbances%20have%20been,due%20to%20a%20hyperserotonergic%20state.&text=Nevertheless%2C%20many%20patients%20have%20reported,upper%20legs%20and%20orofacial%20regions.