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Zoloft Side Effects: What to Expect in the First Week

Updated on November 29th, 2022

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Do you suffer from a depressive disorder, anxiety, or an eating disorder? If so, your doctor may have prescribed Zoloft to help relieve your symptoms. You may wonder about Zoloft's side effects and what to expect in the first week of taking Zoloft.

We'll answer that question in this article. But first, we'll discuss just what Zoloft is used for. We'll also consider some alternatives available if the symptoms are too severe.

The Many Uses of Zoloft

Zoloft is the brand name of the generic medication sertraline. It belongs to a group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) - antidepressants that increase levels of serotonin in your brain.

Zoloft is available in tablet form or as an oral solution. When taken correctly, it can improve your overall health and wellness in several ways, such as:

  • Improved sleep quality.
  • Increased energy levels.
  • Improved appetite.
  • Restored interest in daily activities.
  • Reduced panic attacks, compulsive urges, and unwanted thoughts.
  • Lessened feelings of fear or anxiety.

Prescription Uses

Zoloft is one of the top ways to treat several disorders, including:

  • Major depressive disorder (MDD)
  • Panic disorder
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

Off-Label Uses

Zoloft also has some off-label uses such as:

  • Bulimia nervosa
  • Binge eating disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Body dysmorphic disorder
  • Hot flashes during menopause
  • Premature ejaculation

Zoloft Side Effects in the First Week

Zoloft side effects may appear in the first week even if you follow your doctor's orders to the letter.

Common Side Effects

Some most common side effects that show up during your first week of taking Zoloft include:

  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Drowsiness
  • Sleepiness
  • Xerostomia (dry mouth)
  • Nervousness
  • Restlessness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Decreased libido
  • Dizziness
  • Weight gain
  • Increased sweating
  • Loss of appetite

Severe Side Effects

Though it's rare, Zoloft can also cause more severe side effects like:

  • Low sodium levels
  • Allergic reactions
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Increased bleeding risk
  • Manic episodes if you have bipolar disorder
  • Seizures
  • Eye pain as a result of angle-closure glaucoma

Most side effects go away within a week or two, but some may last longer.

Zoloft Alternatives

If you can't handle the side effects of Zoloft, you may ask your doctor to change your prescription.

Thankfully, there are several other SSRI medications you can fill at your local pharmacy.

Celexa (Citalopram)

Celexa is used to treat depression and help alleviate symptoms of anxiety.

Lexapro (Escitalopram)

Lexapro is used to treat major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.

Prozac (fluoxetine)

Prozac is a well-known SSRI used to treat several conditions, including:

  • OCD
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Bulimia nervosa

Save Money on Your Medications

Zoloft and other SSRIs are an important part of treatment for various depressive and eating disorders. But these medications can be expensive and searching for cheaper alternatives may increase your anxiety.

Thankfully, you can easily access savings for your prescriptions through discount cards from RxLess. Our free savings cards are accepted by pharmacists and pharmacies nationwide like Rite Aid, Walgreens, and CVS. Visit our website to search for your medication and start saving money today.

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