Zoloft is the brand name of the prescription drug Sertraline. The drug can also be habit-forming and might require you to have Zoloft detox to safely live drug-free.
It is an antidepressant that belongs to a class of medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
Zoloft is used to treat major depressive disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, PTSD, social anxiety disorder, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder.
SSRIs like Zoloft have long been associated with withdrawal symptoms when the use of the drugs is stopped or diminished abruptly.
Recovery professionals recommend facing Zoloft addiction with a long-term treatment plan that promotes positive decision-making and improvements to overall health.
This will all start by undergoing medically assisted Zoloft detox.
According to the US Food and Drugs Administration , taking this drug may cause serotonin syndrome, a potentially life-threatening condition.
Completing Zoloft detox with professional assistance can decrease your risk of relapse, enhance your comfort, and prepare you for entry into a rehab program if you intend to continue with your addiction treatment after detox.
This drug may also increase the risk of bleeding.
Taking it with aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may increase the risk.
Antidepressant drugs may increase suicidal thoughts in people 24 yrs. of age and below, especially within the first few months of treatment or when the dose is changed.
Common Side Effects of Zoloft
Loss of appetite
Change in sleep habits
Tremor or shaking
Tiredness and fatigue
More Serious Side Effects of Zoloft
Acting on dangerous impulses
Aggressive or violent behavior
Thoughts about suicide or dying
New or worse depression
New or worse anxiety or panic attacks
Agitation, restlessness, anger, or irritability
Seizures or convulsions
Changes in appetite or weight
An increase in activity or talking more than normal
This condition is one of the many serious side effects of using this drug and it can be life-threatening. Symptoms can include:
Loss of consciousness
Fast heart rate
Changes in blood pressure
A Zoloft overdose can become serotonin syndrome. Serotonin syndrome is a medical emergency that causes fever, muscle tightness, confusion, and potentially lethal seizures; find out a medical-assisted Zoloft detox program.
Symptoms of an overdose of this drug can include:
Fast heart rate
When you start the Zoloft detox process, withdrawal is a form of SSRI Discontinuation Syndrome. This condition will affect about 20% of people who use an SSRI.
Zoloft has a short half-life. Therefore its effects quickly wear off. Typically, drugs with a shorter half-life may indicate more potential withdrawal problems.
When a person suddenly stops taking this drug, their serotonin levels will abruptly decline. As a result, a person may experience physical as well as mental effects.
It is important to consult a professional, to begin with, Zoloft detox by gradually reducing the number of drugs until the individual stop completely.
This method is sometimes called tapering.
The length of time a person has been taking Zoloft will usually determine the length of the tapering strategy.
Typically, tapering lasts four weeks, but a doctor may suggest tapering the medication over 6–8 weeks to reduce the risk or severity of symptoms.
Possible symptoms of Zoloft withdrawal are:
Lack of concentration
Nausea and vomiting
Recurring nightmares and vivid dreams
Tingling sensations in the skin
Zoloft Withdrawal Timeline
24 – 72 hours
The first symptoms are felt within the first 24-72 hours after discontinuation. Usually, the first few days without Zoloft feel very uncomfortable.
Flu-like symptoms, mood swings, and racing or erratic thoughts are a few of the symptoms. Also, feelings of anxiety and strong craving tend to occupy the mind.
Seizures may occur in the first few days of Zoloft withdrawal. This is another reason why all cases of drug withdrawal should be medically supervised.
In the first week after coming on Zoloft Detox, mood swings, fatigue, muscle tension, and even feelings of dissociation (that you are disconnected from your body) may occur.
The presence of medical professionals who follow the health condition and can provide either medication or psychological support is very important.
The symptoms are at their peak during the first few weeks.
Therefore the individual should try to endure the powerful cravings and find something that will occupy time and keep thoughts away from Zoloft.
The second week is much easier compared to the first week. When a person reaches this period of withdrawal, the physical symptoms typically subside.
However, one may still struggle with insomnia or have vivid dreams or nightmares. These things will subside with time.
The most common symptoms after three weeks include weight gain, rebound depression, and overall feelings of malaise.
At this phase, the biggest challenge would be gathering the strength to carry on and live life without the need to use Zoloft. The most critical symptom at this period is depression.
Having low levels of motivation is the common trigger for relapsing back into the old patterns of use, but one must remain strong and find the will to beat this challenge.
Medically Assisted Zoloft Detox and Treatment
Many forms of treatment are available, but the first step towards a successful Zoloft recovery is detox. Withdrawal from this drug requires care from Zoloft detox specialists.