The brand name for the generic drug sertraline, Zoloft is an antidepressant included in a group of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). The medication is used to treat depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD).
To achieve its intended effects, Zoloft impacts chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause depression, panic, anxiety, or obsessive-compulsive symptoms. Zoloft works to balance those chemicals to keep the individual on a more even keel mentally.
Zoloft does have potential for abuse, especially when it is taken with other drugs or alcohol. Patients have been known to abuse Zoloft when they take the mediation for an extended period of time as dependence can develop.
A person who has taken Zoloft has likely done so for an extended period of time as this is normal in a doctor-prescribed situation. As a result, an abrupt cessation is likely to induce some uncomfortable and potentially dangerous Zoloft withdrawal symptoms, also known as SSRI discontinuation syndrome.
Withdrawal symptoms associated with Zoloft can include, but are not limited to:
- Burning or tingling sensation
- Sexual dysfunction
- Insomnia and/or restlessness
- Profuse sweating
- Emotional instability
Zoloft withdrawal can cause potentially dangerous symptoms, making it important that Zoloft users or addicts seek personal care from a board-certified physician and board-certified addiction psychiatrist.