Are you suffering from Zoloft withdrawal symptoms or other side effects? Do you want to learn how to stop taking this SSRI antidepressant? If you are suffering from Zoloft (Sertraline) discontinuation syndrome, or just want to know more about this topic, keep reading. Learning how to come off this medication is not hard. The following information can help you avoid many undesirable side effects and unnecessary pain.
It is known that this antidepressant has a half-life of around one day. In simple words, the levels of medication in your blood will drop by 50% for each day you stop using Zoloft. For example, if you quit using this antidepressant for one day, the levels in your blood will drop by 50%, after 2 days 25%, then 12.5% and so on until it is completely out of your system. So, in just 1-2 week you can eliminate the drug from your body, and for this reason it is not considered an addictive antidepressant, but beware because if you stop taking this SSRI drug too quickly severe withdrawal symptoms from Zoloft will appear.
People who are coming off Zoloft usually want to know the duration of the withdrawal side effects. Common withdrawal symptoms of Sertraline typically last for 1 or 2 weeks, but in some cases these could slowly decrease over an interval of 4 weeks. It’s normally advised that you taper off the antidepressant progressively and always under professional supervision. You can talk with a doctor to obtain more details.
How to stop the symptoms when quitting Zoloft
Quitting Sertraline is not easy. If you already discontinued the usage of this antidepressant and are presently suffering from Zoloft withdrawal side effects, we will give you some recommendations to reduce your discomfort. Is true that stopping Zoloft can be a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be more painful than necessary.
How long does Zoloft withdrawal last?
- Decrease tension from your muscles: If you are suffering from a lot of muscle tension while weaning off this antidepressant, then you can get a massage from a professional or someone in your family. This is a nice treatment that is going to relax your muscles and calm your mind.
- Avoid over-stimulation: If you are suffering from “electrical zaps”, you should avoid places with bright lights or a lot of noise. In those type of places, the brain has to process all the distractions from the environment, which may increase the chance of headaches and similar problems. For this reason, you should try to stay in a tranquil place for at least the first 2 weeks. This is one of the side effects of Zoloft that people find more bothersome.
- Beware of depression: You and your loved ones should be aware that a rebound depression may happen after Zoloft discontinuation. Always stay alert for any symptoms of depression. If you do a daily exercise routine, you can prevent a rebound depression from happening or reduce its effects. Many studies have shown that exercise alone is able to reduce this condition significantly.
- Keep your blood sugar under control: While tapering off Sertraline, avoid any type of junk food. If you do not watch the sugar and carbohydrates in your diet, your blood sugar may begin to fluctuate, causing an emotional imbalance. A healthy diet will make wonders for your general health and will reduce the symptoms of Zoloft withdrawal. Try to avoid alcohol as well.
- Be patient and don’t lose hope: Do not feel terrible if you have to increase the dose for a couple of days. This is normal when you are experiencing a stressful situation.
Symptoms from Discontinuing Sertraline
Have you been taking Sertraline over a long period of time? Then, you may experience strong discomforts and health problems once you discontinue its use. For this reason, it is recommended to read about the proper Zoloft dosage.
In a research made about SSRIs (Sertraline is included in this group of drugs), it was found that 60% of the people who stopped using this medication experienced antidepressant withdrawal, also called SSRI discontinuation syndrome. The most common side effects of coming off Zoloft include:
- Sexual dysfunction
- Insomnia and/or restlessness
- Electric shock-like sensations
- Muscle pains
- Paraesthesia (unexplained skin sensation such as burning, tingling or prickling)
Remember that if you suddenly stop taking this medication, it is almost certain that you will suffer from some of these Zoloft side effects. In order to reduce the intensity of the symptoms, you should slowly taper off its usage.
Getting Off Zoloft when Pregnant
If you are expecting a baby and fear the Zoloft birth defects you don’t have to worry too much, but be extra careful during the withdrawal process and follow the instructions from your doctor.
Now that you understand how to quit this SSRI antidepressant in an adequate manner, you need to make a plan and be mentally prepared. Remember that there is no hurry to get off this medication. Don’t try to rush your body or you may suffer severe Sertraline withdrawal symptoms. In case you are experiencing any type of severe symptoms, you must contact your doctor right away.