Zoloft pros and cons (a comprehensive List)

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In this complete guide, we will be discussing the pros and cons of Zoloft. Zoloft is an antidepressant that comes under the category of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor class and is a variant of sertraline. In this article, we will be examining the uses of Zoloft, it’s basic side-effects, the benefits, and drawbacks of the drug, and interactions with other medications.

Finally, we will also be answering some questions related to Zoloft and it’s medicational properties. 

Zoloft pros and cons

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The main pros and cons of Zoloft are as follows:

Pros:

This class of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors has the least side effects while compared to other drugs of the same class. It helps those people who suffer from mild or chronic depression. It helps in alleviating the intensity of symptoms of depression and anxiety to a great extent. 

It helps in the improvement of general mood, appetite, sleep, and it can help in gathering some level of energy. It improves your day to day functioning and kicks start into those behaviors we call “behavioral activation”.  This promotes a sense of well-being and helps to combat depressive episodes with the help of exercises such as cardio exercise, socializing humor, and exposure to the sun for vitamin D. This is also the only drug that can be considered for consumption if you are expecting a baby. 

The other advantages of the drug are affordability of the drug and it’s generally safer for younger people to use than the other classes of drugs. 

Cons

Zolof can cause a variety of side effects that differs in manifestation from person to person.  It depends upon the dosage and the physiology of the individual. Some of the side-effects include jitteriness, anxiety, insomnia, or the opposite which is somnolence. Other problems include severe headache, dry mouth, constipation, sweating, dizziness, and sexual dysfunction. 

It also leads to cravings for carbohydrates and makes some people feel extremely tired. 

Zoloft ( the working)

Zoloft, otherwise known as sertraline, is a medication that is usually prescribed to treat several psychiatric disorders that includes depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and social anxiety disorder. It is also commonly prescribed for people who suffer from frequent panic attacks or have been diagnosed with panic disorder. This drug has been used for the treatment of depression since the nineteen hundreds. At that time, this drug was found to be highly effective for the treatment of panic attacks and depression. Additionally, it was also used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Zoloft is a drug that belongs to a category of medication which is known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Examples of other such drugs are Prozac (fluoxetine), Paxil (paroxetine), and Lexapro (escitalopram). These drugs work by increasing the level of serotonin in the brain. 

Serotonin refers to a chemical that carries signals between brain cells or in other words, it is called a neurotransmitter. Serotonin helps in regulating mood and it is associated with positive emotions. In fact, because of this particular property, it goes by the name “feel-good chemical”.

As Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, it does exactly what serotonin does to the brain. It helps in blocking the process of reabsorption or uptake of serotonin in the brain, which leads to more serotonin in the brain. In fact, taking fifty to one seventy-five milligrams of Zoloft can help in reducing the severity and frequency of panic attacks and baseline anxiety. Zoloft is also known to be as effective as cognitive-behavioral therapy. 

Zoloft pros and cons (a comprehensive List)

Side effects of consumption of Zoloft

Zoloft has got side effects. However, these side-effects will differ from person to person. No two people will necessarily have the same set of side-effects. Also, consuming Zoloft won’t help you in getting relief right away. It takes time to act on your system before you feel the full intensity of the effects. Some of the common side-effects you may experience by consuming Zoloft, before feeling a little better are as follows:

  • Blurred vision. For some people, the eyesight gets affected which in turn impacts the vision
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Severe headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea (nausea can be avoided by taking your medication along with your food)
  • Nervousness
  • Agitation, irritability
  • Restlessness

Sexual side effects are also common with the consumption of Zoloft. This is one of the most potential and bothersome side-effects of Zoloft and other selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.

These include problems such as reduced intimate desire, or difficulty in reaching intimate pleasure, or less frequently inability to maintain an erection which is otherwise known as erectile dysfunction. These side-effects can be very disturbing and anxiety-provoking for some people and as a result, they stop taking their medication and suffer from their psychiatric symptoms.

Below given are some tips that can be followed, before quitting the medication if consumption of Zoloft has interfered with your sex life:

  • Try adding a second antidepressant: you can try including another antidepressant in addition to Zoloft such as Wellbutrin or Bupropion. It has been found to sometimes counter the sexual side-effects of medications that are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. 
  • Incorporate adjustments in your dosage: if the side-effects of Zoloft are bothering you too much, then consider consulting your concerned doctor and discuss adjusting the dosage of your drug. The doctor may ask you to lower the dosage or stop taking the medication for some time. However, with a lower dosage, you will still be able to entail the benefits of the drug as well as reduce the impact on your sexual dysfunction.
  • Give it some time to wear off: sometimes, in some cases, the sexual side effects of Zoloft wear off on its own, without any sort of intervention or additional treatment options. You will just need to give it some time to get things back to normal.
  • Take medication to improve sexual functioning: there are certainly certified medications that can be used to improve sexual health and function in men. These medications are approved by the U.S. food and drug administration department. These medicines are sildenafil, Cialis (tadalafil), or Levitra (vardenafil). Some studies have also proven that sildenafil can improve sexual issues caused by antidepressants in some women.
  • If none of the above measures work, then you can resort to the decision of changing your medication and switching to another drug that does not have serious side-effects and that will not impact your sexual functioning adversely. 

Chronic side-effects

If you are experiencing any of the given side-effects due to consumption of Zoloft, you must immediately consult your doctor or call emergency in serious situations. 

  • Allergic reactions like hives, rash, difficulty swallowing or breathing, and swelling of the face, mouth, tongue, or throat. 
  • Persistent and unexplained confusion that affects daily functioning
  • Extreme and unmanageable nervousness, anxiety, and irritability. 
  • Rapid heart rate, heartbeat, and irregular thumping of the heart
  • Frequent episodes of seizures
  • Chronic vomiting
  • Chronic inability to sleep and sleep disorders. 
  • Frequent episodes of breathlessness

Serotonin high 

In some cases, Zoloft can cause high levels of serotonin to build up in the body. This mostly occurs in those situations where there is another medication being consumed at the same time, along with Zoloft, that can increase the level of serotonin in the body. 

Thus, it is very important to inform your doctor, if you are consuming any other medicine, including over-the-counter drugs and any other kind of supplements. This will help the doctor to decide the dosage and the period for consumption of Zoloft for you. 

Conclusion

In this article, we discussed the pros and cons of Zoloft, which is an antidepressant drug. We discussed the various pros and cons of the drug and its nature, working, acute and chronic side-effects, and the harm caused by the condition of serotonin high, in some cases. 

FAQs: Zoloft pros and cons

How does Zoloft make you feel?

Zoloft does contribute to its share of benefits. Those who consume Zoloft have reported evident improvements in mood cycles, general appetite, sleep quality, and quantity, energy level, and daily interest in everyday activities. Many people have also reported feeling less anxious and experiencing fewer panic attacks. Since Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, it blocks the reabsorption or reuptake of serotonin in the brain and this leaves more of the chemical inside the brain for use. 

Can Zoloft change your personality?

yes, Zoloft can change your personality as any form of medication has the power to change people’s personality and can even change quite substantially. Antidepressants and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors such as Zoloft and Prozac are likely to have the same effect on personality. They mainly later two key traits related to depression are neuroticism and extraversion. The more drastic the personality shift, the less likely the depressed patients were to relapse. 

Can Zoloft make you gain weight?

Yes, Zoloft can make you gain weight. Up to twenty-five percent of most medications including the popular selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, drugs like Lexapro, Paxil, Prozac, and Zoloft can cause a weight of ten pounds or more. However, this weight gain will be evident only after about six months of consumption of these drugs. Other antidepressant medicines like tricyclics and MAO inhibitors may also cause patients to gain weight with both long-term and short-term use. Both appetite and metabolism get affected. 

These medicines sometimes bring about a carbohydrate craving that gets hard to control. Also, while consuming antidepressants, everything can seem more pleasurable and hence you might tend to overeat which could go unnoticed. 

Does Zoloft fatigue go away?

Though dealing with the fatigue and tiredness caused by Zoloft can be frustrating and tiring, it usually passes after a point. This will happen once the medicine reaches a stable state inside your body and its effects become less pronounced on your energy levels. Once the side effects fade completely, 

Is Zoloft good for anxiety?

Yes. Zoloft is good for anxiety up to an extent. It helps in reducing fear, anxiety, unwanted thoughts, and the number of panic attacks. It also reduces the urge to perform repeated tasks and compulsions such as hand-washing, counting, and checking that interfere with daily living. It helps you to calm down and reduces the activity level of your brain. This is because sertraline or Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor. 

Can sertraline make you feel emotionless?

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants are at times associated with something known as emotional blunting. These are mainly feelings of apathy and indifference. All these symptoms lead to feelings of inability to cry and to experience the same level or degree of positive emotions as one normally would. 

Does Zoloft make you feel weird?

Zoloft or Sertraline can cause insomnia or another kind of sleeping difficulties for some people, while on the other hand, it can cause drowsiness and tiredness in some others. The effects differ from one individual to another. If you experience sleeping difficulty, it is better to take Zoloft in the morning. 

References

https://www.verywellmind.com/zoloft-sertraline-2584329

https://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-you/mental-health/the-pros-and-cons-of-some-common-antidepressants/

https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-pros-and-cons-of-taking-sertraline-Zoloft-for-depression

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