Zoloft (Sertraline) Withdrawal And Detox

Those taking sertraline, also known under the brand name Zoloft, for major depressive disorder (MDD) should continue their regular prescribed dosage, even if they feel better. Missing doses of sertraline run the risk of relapsing into the symptoms being treated in the first place. Discontinuing sertraline abruptly can cause withdrawal symptoms like irritability, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, nightmares, headache and a prickly, tingling sensation on the skin known as paresthesias.
Zoloft (Sertraline) Withdrawal & Detox
Even without abrupt discontinuation of sertraline, withdrawal symptoms may still occur to some extent depending on the time span of use, dosage, individual physiology and the length of time taken to taper off sertraline. These include all the withdrawal symptoms above and may also include concentration problems, bouts of crying, depression, fatigue, diarrhea, memory problems, mood swings, suicidal thoughts and weight changes. These symptoms will generally subside within a month, though doctors say that they can last up to 90 days.
Around 1/5 of people who take sertraline more than six weeks may experience withdrawal symptoms from abruptly stopping the medication. Gradually tapering off Zoloft under a doctor’s supervision can reduce or avoid the symptoms altogether. Still, even tapering off sertraline slowly does not guarantee the symptoms will not occur. Withdrawal symptoms from sertraline can vary in severity and duration based on the time span of use, dosage, individual physiology and the length of time taken to taper off.

Discontinuing use of Zoloft typically means reducing the dosage in increments with two to six weeks (or longer when necessary) between dose reductions. Your doctor will instruct you in tapering your dose of sertraline gradually based on the duration of time you’ve been taking sertraline, your current dose and any symptoms you have experienced from previous medication changes. Tapering off Zoloft can be possible in only weeks; while for others, it may take months or even up to a year, and this is normal.

A gradual reduction in sertraline dosage will be most effective for managing and controlling withdrawal symptoms. Reducing the sertraline dosage slowly allows your brain to gradually adjust to lower amounts of medication, finally adapting to no medication at all.

Understanding what to expect in terms of symptoms will also help in managing Zoloft withdrawal. Many symptoms are normal, and knowing which ones those are will reduce anxiety about those symptoms, making them easier to deal with mentally.

Talk therapy and other non-medication treatments should be continued normally to treat both the psychological withdrawal symptoms of sertraline.

Exercise is generally helpful in managing the symptoms associated with Zoloft withdrawal. Exercise is widely known to improve mood, reduce anxiety, improve sleep and improve overall health.

Eating a healthy diet can also assist in managing Zoloft withdrawal. Avoiding foods that are known to increase anxiety and consuming more foods that are known to boost mood can help. Eating a nutrient-rich, well-balanced diet can help alleviate both physiological and psychological issues associated with sertraline withdrawal.

Zoloft (Sertraline) Withdrawal & Detox
Sertraline, also known under the brand name Zoloft, is an antidepressant medication prescribed by doctors to treat major depressive disorder (MDD), posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), panic disorder and social anxiety disorder.

Detoxing from sertraline involves gradually reducing the dosage of the medication, allowing it to leave the body in a healthy fashion to reduce withdrawal symptoms.

Sertraline and other antidepressants are widely prescribed, which means thousands of people have been in or are currently in your shoes. You are not alone in dealing with this withdrawal.

There are many professional support groups out there for dealing with Zoloft withdrawal. Ask your doctor for support groups in your area. Also, there are many helplines you can call 24 hours a day that are available to help you at a moment’s notice.

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a 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 provider.