Wellbutrin, also known by its generic name, bupropion, is a medication prescribed to patients who are experiencing depression. Bupropion can also be used to help patients quit smoking and to alleviate the depressive effects of seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Like many types of medications, bupropion has the potential to produce common side effects. These more common side effects include nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, headache, constipation, increased sweating, joint aches, sore throat, blurred vision, strange taste in mouth, diarrhea, and dizziness. Tell your doctor if these side effects persist or get worse.
It is important to let your doctor know if you begin to show signs of more serious side effects such as chest pain; fainting; a fast, pounding or irregular heartbeat; hearing problems or ringing in the ears; severe headache; mood changes; hallucinations; memory loss; uncontrolled movements; unusual weight fluctuation; and muscle pain, tenderness or weakness.
Even though it is rare, Wellbutrin has the potential to cause seizures in some patients. If you experience a seizure while taking bupropion, stop taking the medication immediately and seek medical attention right away.
If you are thinking about discontinuing your Wellbutrin treatment, talk to your doctor about gradually tapering off your dose over time. Bupropion should never be stopped cold-turkey unless you experience a seizure while taking Wellbutrin. Gradually taking less and less Wellbutrin gives the body time to respond to smaller amounts of the medication. Tapering over a longer period of time will also reduce the potential for serious withdrawal symptoms. Lowering your bupropion dose should be done only under your doctor’s supervision.
Common withdrawal symptoms of Wellbutrin include irritability, dizziness, headaches, aggression, flu symptoms, anxiety, depression, sleep changes, nausea, cramps, tremors, suicidal thoughts, excessive sweating, trouble balancing and difficulty tolerating warm temperatures.
The amount of time one experiences bupropion withdrawal symptoms varies from person to person. Some patients may recover from bupropion withdrawal within just a few days, while others may take several weeks. The amount of time you were taking Wellbutrin affects how long the medication will take to clear from your system. Someone who has taken bupropion for 10 years will need longer to recover from Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms than someone who took Wellbutrin for only a few weeks.
Although Bupropion withdrawal symptoms are not life-threatening, they can still be unpleasant. If you are having difficulty managing Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms, a medically assisted detoxification program may be right for you. Medical professionals will be able to help you cope with your Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms during this process.
Be sure to keep a list of your medications, as well as nonprescription drugs and herbal products, so you can talk to your doctor about how Wellbutrin may interact with them. Taking bupropion with other medications may increase your risk of certain side effects.
Some medications that may interact with Wellbutrin are codeine, pimozide and tamoxifen. Certain MAO inhibitors should be avoided when taking Wellbutrin, as their interactions may cause a serious or even fatal interaction. These include isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, safinamide, selegiline, and tranylcypromine.
Bupropion also has the potential to interfere with some medical or laboratory tests and cause false results. These tests include brain scanning for Parkinson’s disease and urine screening for amphetamines. Be sure to let all your doctors and any appropriate laboratory personnel that you are taking Wellbutrin.
Choosing the right treatment center is an important step for your recovery. Before you decide to detox from bupropion, talk to your doctor about what you are looking for in a Wellbutrin center. Every patient has specific needs, and these should be considered when choosing a bupropion center. Although recovery may be difficult, The Recovery Village is here to help you on your journey to a happy, Wellbutrin-free life.
If you or your loved one is suffering from Wellbutrin addiction or another type of substance use disorder, contact The Recovery Village to learn more about the resources available to you during your Wellbutrin recovery process.
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.