Immediate Action Required: Call 999 Or Go To A& e Now If You:
- get chest pain or pressure, or shortness of breath
- get headaches, have trouble focusing, have memory problems, cannot think clearly, have weakness, have a seizure or fit, or lose your balance â these can be signs of low sodium levels
- have thoughts about harming yourself or ending your life
- get severe dizziness or pass out
- get painful erections that last longer than 2 hours â this may happen even when you’re not having sex
- get any heavy bleeding or bleeding that you cannot stop, such as cuts or nosebleeds that do not stop within 10 minutes
You Should Only Take Sertraline As Agreed With Your Doctor
You will get the best effects from your medicine if you take it every day at the dose prescribed by your doctor.
Make sure that you know your dose. If it is not written on the label, check with your pharmacist or doctor.
You will usually take it once a day. When you start treatment, it is recommended that you take it in the morning and not at night, in case it affects your sleep.
To help you to take you tablet regularly you should choose a time that you will remember. This could be a mealtime or when you brush your teeth.
You will start with a low dose, which will be increased slowly to a dose that is effective for you. This may take several days or weeks.
You can take it with or without food.
Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water – it tastes bitter if you chew it.
Do not drink grapefruit juice while you are taking sertraline – the juice increases the amount of sertraline absorbed from your gut.
How Does Zoloft Work
SSRIs control depression and other mental illnesses and have been around since the early 1980s. Today, they are the most prescribed class of antidepressant medication on the U.S. market. They are popular mainly due to the fact that they have fewer side effects than other types of antidepressants. SSRIs work by controlling the brains level of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter thought to affect mood, sleep and learning.
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Can Stopping Zoloft Treatment Cause Withdrawal
If you suddenly stop taking Zoloft , you could experience discontinuation syndrome. These are withdrawal symptoms that can occur after stopping selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors such as Zoloft. Weaning off Zoloft over time can help prevent side effects of stopping Zoloft.
Withdrawal symptoms after suddenly stopping Zoloft can include:
Because stopping Zoloft can cause discontinuation syndrome, its very important that you dont suddenly stop taking Zoloft. Instead, you and your medical professional will work together to lower your dosage slowly over time. This is called a drug taper.
If youre interested in stopping Zoloft, its advised that you speak with your medical professional. They can help plan a drug taper thats specific to you and your dosage. Its important to not stop taking Zoloft without first speaking with your medical professional.
Strategy No : Systematically Assess Comorbidities
One reason for a patient to have a suboptimal response to therapy is an incomplete diagnosis.1,22 Patients with panic disorder commonly have other comorbidities including mood and anxiety disorders, and substance use.23 Because these disorders may be associated with panic attacks and anticipatory anxiety23 and may require distinct treatments,4 the diagnosis of panic disorder should consistently trigger a systematic search for other anxiety disorders.22 Because the common comorbidities of panic disorder respond differentially to antipanic treatments, knowledge of these comorbidities also helps in treatment selection.
Unfortunately, most commonly used diagnostic and screening tools for mental health disorders in the primary care setting are not sufficiently comprehensive the less familiar Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview ,24 which takes less than 20 minutes to complete, is a more effective screening tool. Finally, it is important to assess the risk of suicide in all patients who have panic disorder.18
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Side Effects Specific To Women And Men
Some side effects of Zoloft may be more common in males* than in females.*
For example, sexual side effects of Zoloft can vary between males and females. Males taking Zoloft may experience:
- erectile dysfunction
- problems with ejaculation or inability to ejaculate
In both males and females taking Zoloft, a decrease in libido was also reported, although it wasnt common. More males reported decreased libido than females.
If you have questions about your risk for side effects of Zoloft, you can talk with your medical professional.
* Throughout this article, we refer to someones sex assigned at birth by using the terms male and female. To learn about the difference between sex and gender, you can refer to this article.
How Long Does It Take For Zoloft To Treat Anxiety
Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor that works by blocking how your bodys nerve receptors typically reabsorb, or reuptake, serotonin.
Although SSRIs begin to work immediately, it takes a while for your body to get used to its new, rebalanced neurochemistry. Your brain needs time to build the new receptors that can absorb the increased serotonin in your body.
Until it can do so, you may have boosted your neurotransmitters, but have no way to take full advantage of them.
Some patients report feeling better after their first few weeks on Zoloft, but on average it takes 6-8 weeks on the medication to experience significant improvement.
If you have been taking Zoloft as directed for two months or more and have not experienced a change in your mood or other symptoms, talk to your healthcare provider.
They may need to adjust your dosage or change your medication for you to feel better.
Never stop taking Zoloft suddenly without your doctors express permission.
Abruptly changing your dosage can cause an adverse reaction called discontinuation, or withdrawal syndrome.
Symptoms include anxiety, irritability, agitation, muscle tremors, dizziness, hallucinations, insomnia, headache, fatigue, nausea, excessive sweating, and seizures.
These symptoms should generally improve after taking a dose of the medication.
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Who Shouldnt Take Zoloft
While Zoloft can offer some good anxiety-reducing effects, there are some people for whom the drug may not be a good match.
Conditions that can impact the effect of Zoloft include:
People with angle-closure glaucoma
People with angle-closure glaucoma conditions can experience an increase in glaucoma attacks if they take Zoloft. Therefore, they should talk to their doctor to determine if the SSRI is appropriate.
People with seizure conditions
Since seizures are already a potential side effect of Zoloft, the medication should be considered carefully in people with a seizure condition lest it increases their frequency or severity.
People with liver issues
Patients with liver problems should take care when starting Zoloft as they can experience stronger doses than normal due to their livers inability to break down the medication.
People with bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder is a possible complication of Zoloft as you can experience a higher risk of manic symptoms.
Is 25mg Of Zoloft Enough For Anxiety
According to a health report, 31% of adults experience anxiety at some point in their lives. To some people, anxiety might sound like a hoax. But the sufferers know how it feels to live through every single day.
Over time, many medications and methods have been developed to help anxiety disorder patients to relieve the tension. Zoloft drug serves a similar purpose. 61% of Zoloft consumers have reported a positive impact of this medicine.
Now, what dosage of the medication will be perfect for you? Is 25mg of Zoloft enough for anxiety? What are the side effects of this drug? All these questions are vital if your doctor has prescribed you Zoloft. Read on to the article to get an overall idea of this medicine.
Table of Content
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Antidepressants And Suicidal Thoughts
In addition, there is a complex relationship between anidepressant’s potential to contribute to symptoms of activation syndrome, hypomania or mania, and their risk of increasing suicidal thoughts and behaviors in some individuals.
Children, teens, and young adults are most prone to this. In 2007, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration updated the black box warning required on all antidepressants. The new information includes the added risk for developing suicidal thoughts and behaviors during the early stages of treatment.
The FDA further recommends that any child, teen, or young adult who is beginning treatment with an antidepressant be carefully observed for any signs of unusual behavioral changes, worsening depression or suicidality. Help should be sought immediately if any of these do occur.
If you are having suicidal thoughts, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 for support and assistance from a trained counselor. If you or a loved one are in immediate danger, call 911.
For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database.
Cost Availability And Insurance
Both medications are available in most pharmacies in brand-name and generic versions. Generics are generally cheaper than brand-name products. At the time this article was written, the prices for the brand-name and generic versions of Lexapro and Zoloft were similar, according to GoodRx.com.
Health insurance plans typically cover antidepressant medications such as Lexapro and Zoloft, but prefer you to use the generic forms.
The charts below list examples of side effects of Lexapro and Zoloft. Because Lexapro and Zoloft are both SSRIs, they share many of the same side effects.
|Common side effects|
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Get A Prescription For Zoloft Online
Did you know you can get a refill prescription for Zoloft online* without having to go to a providers office? With GoodRx Care, you can connect with a licensed healthcare provider for a virtual visit from the comfort and privacy of your home. And with GoodRx Gold Mail Delivery, you can order your Zoloft prescription and have it mailed right to your door.
Connect with a provider within minutes
Pick up your prescription at your pharmacy or get it discreetly delivered
No insurance needed
* Zoloft is a refill-only medication. We cant start you on Zoloft if you dont have an existing prescription.
Frequently Asked Questions About Taking Zoloft
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about Zoloft treatment:
What should you ask your medical professional?
Its common to have questions about your treatment plan for Zoloft. Your medical professional is there to work with you and help address any concerns you have.
To help guide your discussion, here are some suggestions:
- Try writing down questions you have before your visit. For example, How will taking Zoloft affect my mood, body, and lifestyle?
- Think about asking a loved one or friend to come with you to your appointment. Having in-person support may help you feel more at ease.
- Keep in mind that if your medical professional says something thats unclear, you can always ask them to explain it.
Working with your healthcare team may help you stay on track with your treatment. The team wants you to get the best care possible.
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Zolofts Impact On Anxiety
Aside from its ability to improve the symptoms of depression, studies have shown that Zoloft significantly reduces¹ anxiety symptoms.
Importantly, this research also showed that Zoloft is still an effective treatment for depression and anxiety regardless of any other psychiatric conditions. This means that Zoloft provides clinical benefits² for patients with depressive symptoms in primary care.
The anxiety-reducing properties of Zoloft
One study³ investigated the effectiveness of Zoloft in the treatment of anxiety disorders in older adults. The study compared the effects of Zoloft to cognitive behavior therapy and a waitlist control group.
All patients in the study were 60 years of age or older and had a diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, or social phobia.
The study found that patients who received both Zoloft and cognitive behavior therapy saw a significant improvement in their anxiety, worry, and depressive symptoms immediately after treatment and at a three-month check-up.
When used with cognitive behavior therapy, Zoloft can generate significant results.
An option for hard-to-treat anxiety
Zolofts anxiety-reducing properties also seem to work for people with hard-to-treat anxiety, like panic disorder.
Around 50% of people with a generalized anxiety disorder will not respond to standard treatments, meaning that medication options that help these hard-to-treat conditions are desperately needed.
What Is The Most Important Information I Should Know About Zoloft
You should not use sertraline if you are allergic to it, or if you also take pimozide. Do not use the liquid form of sertraline if you take disulfiram .
Do not use sertraline within 14 days before or 14 days after using an MAO inhibitor. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, tranylcypromine, and others.
Tell your doctor if you also take stimulant medicine, opioid medicine, herbal products, or medicine for depression, mental illness, Parkinson’s disease, migraine headaches, serious infections, or prevention of nausea and vomiting. An interaction with sertraline could cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome.
Tell your doctor if you have ever had:
- bipolar disorder
- heart disease, high blood pressure, or a stroke
- liver or kidney disease
- bleeding problems, or if you take warfarin
- long QT syndrome or
- low levels of sodium in your blood.
Some young people have thoughts about suicide when first taking an antidepressant. Your doctor should check your progress at regular visits. Your family or other caregivers should also be alert to changes in your mood or symptoms.
Sertraline is approved for use in children at least 6 years old, only to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder but not depression.
Taking this medicine during pregnancy could harm the baby, but stopping the medicine may not be safe for you. Do not start or stop sertraline without asking your doctor.
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Zoloft Dosage For Anxiety
Zoloft is available as a tablet and as an oral solution.
Generally, doctors will start by prescribing 25-50 mg of the medication daily to treat adults with anxiety disorders, while children receive lower doses.
Usually, patients take their medication once daily by mouth.
If you believe you might benefit from Zoloft, you must first talk to a healthcare provider about your anxiety symptoms.
If they agree that the medication is appropriate for you, they will prescribe a recommended dose that considers your individual needs, health history, medical conditions, risk of drug interactions, medication tolerance, and more.
You should follow your doctors medical advice when taking Zoloft increasing or decreasing your dosage without their permission can lead to serious side effects and withdrawal symptoms.
How Long Does Zoloft Take To Start Working
Zoloft takes around two to six weeks to show positive symptoms in the body. In order to completely eliminate the anxiety issues, you must take the dose at the same time of the day as prescribed by the doctor. In case you skip a dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, dont overdose the medicine.
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When Does Zoloft Start Working For Anxiety
Psychiatric medications arent like pain killers, as they tend to take a few weeks to kick in.
If youve started Zoloft, you can expect to see a reduction in your anxiety symptoms after roughly two to six weeks.
Zoloft doesnt start working for anxiety immediately after the first dose. It takes a while for the medication to start to block the process of recycling serotonin out of your system.
Zoloft and other SSRI antidepressants affect serotonin reuptake more and more over time . This means that your anxiety symptoms should gradually reduce as you continue to take Zoloft.
Its important to remember that Zoloft works gradually and builds up, so you shouldnt take more than your recommended dose if youre not experiencing the results you want.
Talk to your doctor if you feel that your symptoms are not improving after 12 weeks. Theyll be able to advise you on the appropriate dosing.
Do You Take Zoloft For Other Conditions
In addition to certain types of anxiety, Zoloft is also approved to treat the following conditions:
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder . Zoloft is prescribed to treat OCD in adults, as well as children ages 6 years and older. With OCD, you have obsessions and compulsions .
- Major depressive disorder . Zoloft is prescribed to treat MDD in adults. MDD may also simply be called depression. MDD causes feelings like anger, loss, and sadness that interfere with your daily life on most days. Other symptoms can include digestive problems, trouble concentrating, and feeling more tired than usual.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder . Zoloft can be used to treat PTSD in adults. This condition is caused by exposure to a perceived or real threat. PTSD may cause you to re-experience a traumatic event over and over again. This may cause symptoms such as nightmares, intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, and intense feelings of guilt or sadness.
- Premenstrual dysphoric disorder . Zoloft is used to treat PMDD in adults. With PMDD, you have symptoms that begin just before your period, and end when your period ends. Symptoms may include depressed mood, feeling very agitated or anxious, and being more angry or irritated than usual. Changes in sleep and appetite can also be symptoms.
Your medical professional or a pharmacist can help you if you have questions about taking Zoloft for any of the above conditions.
Below we share answers to some commonly asked questions about Zoloft.
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