Sertraline, often sold under the name of Zoloft, belongs to the class of medications known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), and is used to treat several psychiatric disorders.
What is Zoloft?
Zoloft (sertraline) is an antidepressant belonging to a group of medication called Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs).
SSRI affects chemicals within the brain that will be unbalanced in individuals with depression, panic, anxiety, or psychoneurotic symptoms.
Zoloft is prescribed to treat depression, anxiety disorders, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD).
Before taking this medication:
Ø You should not use this SSRI if you’re allergic to other SSRIs, or if you are taking diphenylbutylpiperidine.
Don’t use the liquid type of Zoloft if you’re taking the medicinal drug (Antabuse) otherwise, you might have a severe reaction to the medicinal drug.
Ø Do not take it fourteen days before or fourteen days after you are taking an MAO inhibitor. A dangerous drug interaction might occur.
MAO inhibitors include, linezolid, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, and monoamine oxidase inhibitors.
Ø Taking a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor medicine throughout pregnancy could cause serious respiratory organ issues or alternative complications within the baby.
However, you might have a relapse of depression if you stop taking your medicine without consulting a doctor first.
Tell your doctor quickly if you become pregnant. Don’t begin or stop taking SSRI during pregnancy without your doctor’s recommendation.
Ø It is not known whether or not SSRI passes into breast milk or if it might hurt a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you’re breast-feeding a baby.
Ø Do not offer an SSRI to anyone younger than eighteen years old without the recommendation of a doctor.
SSRI is FDA-approved for kids with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). It’s not approved for treating depression in children.
What are the uses of Zoloft?
Ø Sertraline is used to treat depression, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder (social phobia), and a severe type of premenstrual syndrome (premenstrual dysphoric disorder).
Ø This medication may improve your mood, sleep, appetite, and energy state and can restore your interest in daily living.
Ø It should decrease worry, anxiety, unwanted thoughts, and therefore the variety of panic attacks.
Ø It should additionally scale back the urge to perform perennial tasks (compulsions like hand-washing, counting, and checking) that interfere with daily living.
Ø It works by reviving the balance of a natural substance (serotonin) in the brain.
How to use Zoloft:
Read the Medication Guide and, if provided, the Patient Data Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you begin using sertraline and whenever you get a refill.
If you have any queries, raise them with your doctor or health professional.
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, sometimes once daily either within the morning or evening.
The pill or liquid variety of this medication could also be taken with or without food.
The capsule type is typically to be taken with food. Swallow the capsules whole. Don’t crush or chew the capsules.
The liquid variety of this medication should be mixed with another liquid before use.
Simply before taking, rigorously mix sertraline with the medication eye dropper provided.
Don’t use a house spoon as a result of you’ll not get the proper dose. Combine the dose with a cup (4 ounces/120 milliliters) of water, ginger ale, lemon-lime soda, lemonade, or fruit juice. Don’t use alternative liquids to combine this drug.
The mixture could seem cloudy, which is normal and harmless. Drink all of the mixture at once. Don’t prepare it to drink it at a later date.
If you’re taking this medication for emission issues, your doctor could direct you to take this drug on a certain day of the month or for under the two weeks before your amount till the beginning of your amount.
The indefinite quantity relies on your medical condition and response to treatment.
To cut back your risk of maleffects, your doctor could direct you to begin this medication at a smaller dose and bit by bit increase your dose.
Follow your doctor’s directions rigorously. Take this medication often to induce the greatest benefits of it.
To help you to remember to take it, take the medication at a similar time daily.
Keep taking this medication although you are feeling well. Don’t stop taking this medication while not consulting your doctor.
Some conditions could deteriorate once this drug is suddenly stopped. Also, you’ll experience symptoms like mood swings, headache, tiredness, sleep changes, and transient feelings like an electrical shock.
To stop these symptoms when you’re stopping treatment with this drug, your doctor could scale back your dose bit by bit.
Report any new or worsening symptoms directly to your doctor.
What are the common side effects of Zoloft?
Speak with medical personnel if you have signs of an allergy to Zoloft: skin rash or hives (with or while not a fever or joint pain); issues breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
If there are signs such as mood or behavior changes, anxiety, panic attacks, trouble sleeping, or if you’re feeling impulsive, irritable, agitated, hostile, aggressive, restless, overactive (mentally or physically), very depressed or have thoughts regarding suicide or killing yourself talk to your doctor.
Call your doctor promptly if you have:
Ø A seizure (convulsions)
Ø Blurred vision, visual impairment, eye pain or swelling
Ø Low levels of iron within the body – headache, confusion, memory issues, severe weakness, feeling unsteady
Ø Wild episodes – spontaneous thoughts, doubled amounts of energy, uncommon risk-taking behavior, extreme happiness, being irritable or talkative.
If symptoms of serotonin syndrome, such as agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, quick rate, muscle stiffness, twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, or looseness of the bowels are shown talk to your doctor.
Common SSRI side effects could include:
Ø Tiredness, feeling symptom, anxious or agitated;
Ø Upset stomach, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite;
Ø Tremors or shaking;
Ø Sleep issues (insomnia); or
Ø Bated drive, impotence, or issue having a climax.
How should I take Zoloft?
Take SSRI precisely as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label.
Your doctor could sometimes amend your dose. Don’t take this medication in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than suggested.
Ø Zoloft can be taken with or without food. Attempt to take the medication at an equivalent time day after day.
Ø The liquid (oral concentrate) type of this SSRI should be diluted before you are taking it. To take care you get the proper dose, measure the liquid with the medication pipette provided.
Combine the dose with four ounces (one-half cup) of water, ginger ale, lemon/lime soda, lemonade, or fruit juice.
Don’t use other liquids to dilute the medication. Stir this mixture and drink all of it quickly.
To form the most positive results, get the complete dose, add a bit of water to an equivalent glass, swirl gently and drink quickly.
Ø Zoloft will cause you to possess a false positive drug screening in some cases.
If you give a urine sample for drug screening, tell the laboratory workers that you just are taking this SSRI.
Ø It may take up to four weeks before your symptoms improve. Keep up with use of the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms don’t improve.
Ø Do not stop using this SSRI suddenly; otherwise, you might have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.
Speak to your doctor about a way to safely stop the use of this medication.
What are some things I should know before taking Zoloft?
Before taking sertraline, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you’re allergic to it; or if you have got any other allergies.
This product could contain inactive ingredients (such as latex found within the drugs dropper), which might cause hypersensitivity or alternative issues.
Visit your health professional for a lot of details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or health professional your anamnesis, particularly of: personal or family history of bipolar/manic-depressive disorder, previous injuries, liver unwellness, seizure disorder, thyroid unwellness, personal or case history of glaucoma (angle-closure type).
Sertraline could cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation).
The risk of QT prolongation could also be accrued if you have medical conditions or are taking alternative medication that will cause QT prolongation.
Before using Zoloft, tell your doctor or health professional about all the medication you’re taking and if you have got any of the subsequent conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), case history of heart issues.
Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood can increase your risk of QT prolongation.
This risk could increase if you utilize certain medications (such as diuretics/”water pills”) or if you have got conditions like severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting.
Visit your doctor concerning using Zoloft safely.
This drug could cause you to be dizzy or drowsy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) will cause you to become very dizzy or drowsy when taking this medication.
Don’t drive, use machinery, or do something that desires alertness till you come off of it safely. Avoid alcoholic beverages.
Visit your doctor if you’re using marijuana (cannabis).
The liquid variety of this medication contains alcohol. Caution is suggested if you have diabetes, alcohol dependence, or liver disease.
Some medications (such as metronidazole, disulfiram) will cause a significant reaction once combined with alcohol.
Speak with your doctor or health professional concerning using this product safely.
Older adults could also be a lot more sensitive to the effects of this drug, particularly loss of coordination, or QT prolongation (see above). Loss of coordination will increase the danger of falling.
Older adults may have a lot of possibilities to develop a sort of salt imbalance (hyponatremia), particularly if they’re taking “water pills” (diuretics).
Children could also be a lot more sensitive to the effects of the drug, particularly loss of appetite and weight loss.
Monitor the weight and height of your child when taking this drug.
During pregnancy, this medication ought to be used only if required. It could hurt the baby.
Since untreated mental/mood issues (such as depression, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder) are often a significant condition, don’t stop taking this medication unless directed by your doctor.
If you experience other changes in your mental health, become pregnant, or suppose you’ll be pregnant, see your doctor directly for the advantages and risks of using this medication throughout pregnancy.
This drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Zoloft:
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you realize that you missed a dose.
Skip the missed dose if it’s almost time for your next regular dose.
Don’t take additional medication to make up for the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Get emergency help immediately.
What should I avoid while taking Zoloft?
Do not drink alcohol.
Zoloft could impair your thinking or reactions. Watch out if you drive or do something that needs you to be alert.
What alternative medications can affect Zoloft?
Taking SSRI with alternative medications that causes you to fall asleep will worsen this impact.
Speak to your doctor before taking a tab, narcotic medication, muscle agent, or medication for anxiety, depression, or seizures.
Other medications could mix with SSRIs, together with prescription and over-the-counter medicines, and vitamins.
Speak with your doctor regarding all of your current medications and any medicine you begin or stop using.
Here are some links to books about Zoloft that can be found on Amazon:
- Coming of Age on Zoloft: How Antidepressants Cheered Us Up, Let Us Down, and Changed Who We Are
- The Zoloft Treatment – A Guide to the Antidepressant Sertraline
- I Am Not Silent: Our Zoloft and Depression Story
What we recommend for depression
If you are suffering from depression then ongoing professional counselling may be your ideal first point of call. Counselling will utilize theories such as Cognitive behavioural therapy which will help you live a more fulfilling life.