Zoloft is the brand name for sertraline, which is an SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) antidepressant.
It’s normally prescribed to treat conditions like depression, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Zoloft effectively treats mood and anxiety disorders because it rebalances chemicals in the brain, like serotonin, that affect mood. Serotonin is the main hormone that stabilizes mood, feelings of well-being, and happiness. It enables the communication between brain cells and other cells in the central nervous system, contributing to functions like sleeping, eating, digestion, learning, and memory. SSRIs like sertraline (Zoloft) work by preventing serotonin reuptake by nerves and increasing serotonin concentration within nerve synapses (the space between two nerves). While Zoloft is an effective medication for depression and other similar conditions, it can also produce some unsightly symptoms. Our Boca rehab center is diving into Zoloft's side effects and why this medication can be dangerous.
What Are the Side Effects of Zoloft?
Zoloft is one of the most commonly prescribed antidepressants on the market, making it easy to misuse. Sertraline HCL does have a potential for abuse, though this is understudied. Because Zoloft improves mood and decreases symptoms of depression, many users become psychologically dependent on the drug. Physical addiction to Zoloft is not as common as psychological addiction. People who suffer from mental disorders like OCD, PTSD, depression, and anxiety often turn to substance abuse to feel better and escape their symptoms, so it’s understandable why they may become mentally reliant on their medications. While Zoloft is meant to mitigate the symptoms of certain mental disorders, it can actually worsen them and even produce the same side effects users are trying to avoid.
Some common side effects of Zoloft include:
- Serotonin syndrome
- Neuroleptic malignant syndrome
- Abnormal bleeding
- Nausea and vomiting
- Stomach pains
- Nervousness or anxiety
- Skin rash
- Dry mouth
- Extreme changes in appetite and weight
- Decreased sex drive
- Erectile dysfunction
Zoloft’s bad side effects also include stiff muscles, fever, confusion, hallucinations, shallow breathing, and fainting. Individuals who take high doses of antidepressants, like sertraline, in an attempt to experience a high increase their risks of experiencing weird Zoloft side effects as well as overdose. The medical drug detox in Florida offered at Banyan Treatment Centers Boca is an effective and safe way to flush these drugs out of a person’s system and control their withdrawal symptoms.
How Long Do Zoloft Side Effects Last?
Zoloft’s initial side effects usually begin after 4 to 6 weeks of use and will remain consistent for as long as the individual takes it. Because its side effects aren’t immediate, people who want to get high on Zoloft take large doses to speed up the process, increasing their risk of overdose. People may misuse Zoloft by crushing the pills and inhaling or snorting them or by taking several pills at once. However, there’s no evidence to prove that Zoloft produces a high. While some users may experience no feelings at all, others may experience painful and uncomfortable symptoms.
Because Zoloft addiction and abuse have not been as thoroughly studied as abuse of other drugs, there’s still much to learn. Even so, we do know that the abuse or misuse of any drugs – illicit and prescription – can result in severe problems. Not only does drug abuse affect the individual physically, but it can also affect their performance in their relationships and careers. Many individuals with drug addictions and alcoholism struggle with relationship and financial problems on top of the physical ailments these substances often produce when abused.
If you’re suffering from the physical and emotional effects of drug addiction, we can help. Banyan Boca offers the comprehensive treatment methods patients need to recover from a life of addiction and move forward. Call us now at 888-280-4763 to learn more about our drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs in Florida.