The ‘official’ word regarding Zoloft and alcohol says -
“Although sertraline (Zoloft) did not potentiate the cognitive and psychomotor effects of alcohol in experiments with normal subjects, the concomitant use of sertraline (Zoloft) and alcohol in depressed patients has not been studied and is not recommended.”
In plain English – they doped up normal people with Zoloft and alcohol, and nothing happened.
But they never mention the HIDDEN DANGER to some patients taking Zoloft.
Are YOU at risk?
Get this: If you want to learn more about the effects of combining Zoloft and alcohol, you should be able to ask your doctor….
But with the lack of clinical testing, doctors must learn from their patients who take Zoloft and then drink alcohol.
Ironically, this anecdotal evidence – the only evidence available – is so often dismissed.
Zoloft inhibits your brain’s ability to reabsorb serotonin, a neurotransmitter that sends nerve impulses between nerve cells and influences mood.
Alcohol also affects serotonin levels in your brain. Using these two drugs together could produce unexpected and unwanted emotions.
Effects of Combining Zoloft and Alcohol
First, taking Zoloft and alcohol together may enhance the effects of the alcohol. One drink could have the effect of two drinks, for example. The chance or severity of side effects such as drowsiness, slow reflexes, or clouded judgment may be increased, perhaps suddenly and without warning.
If you usually feel tired, or even a bit depressed after drinking, then you might feel even more so if you’re on Zoloft.
Zoloft can also produce sedative effects; and since alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, lowered heart rate and blood pressure changes are possible. This becomes even more likely as the quantity of alcohol consumed increases.
Other symptoms, including headaches and sexual dysfunction, are also sometimes associated both with medications used to treat depression (such as Zoloft) and drinking alcohol.
The Hidden Danger Nobody Talks About.
Some patients taking Zoloft develop an almost overwhelming craving to drink massive amounts of alcohol.
(The same thing happens with drinking alcohol while on Paxil.)
Could it be that Zoloft, being a mood altering substance, removes the self-imposed barriers that individuals place upon themselves to stop their additions?
Certainly recovering alcoholics would be most at risk, but even those with little or no previous contact with alcohol have been known to develop this problem.
Perhaps Zoloft activates the insular cortex – also called the insula – a section of the brain related to the limbic system that may control addictive behavior.
Another theory states that because these drugs have such a strong adverse effect upon the pancreas, a disruption in the body’s blood sugar balance produces a “craving” for alcohol as the body reaches out for a “quick fix” to raise the blood sugar level. This triggers a vicious self-perpetuating cycle as the alcohol pushes the blood sugar level even lower after the brief high it produces.
Reports vary widely as to how commonplace this side effect is, but one study has demonstrated that increasing serotonin by any means produces a craving for alcohol, as well as producing anger and anxiety.
It’s also important to understand the underlying causes that would lead you to drink alcohol and take Zoloft in the first place.
Also, if you need help with Zoloft withdrawal, then check out this page for the best free information.
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