What is Zoloft?

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What is Zoloft?
Zoloft (sertraline hydrochloride) is a drug, which is prescribed by doctors as remedy for depression and other social anxiety disorders. The drug is created and produced by the well known pharmaceutical company, Pfizer. Zoloft is actually an antidepressant drug, which is included in group of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or the SSRIs.

What does Zoloft do?

Sometimes there are occurrences when certain chemicals in the brain become unbalanced. This chemical imbalance may cause panic, depression, obsessive-compulsive symptoms and anxiety. Other disorders that are approved for treatment using Zoloft are panic disorder, premenstrual dysphoric disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder. However, Zoloft may also be used for treatment of other disorders not mentioned above. In 1991, Zoloft was approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration as remedy for depression.
Zoloft, like many other drugs may have side-effects and therefore must be taken properly and as prescribed by your physician. Below are some important facts you might need to know about Zoloft.

Zoloft must not be taken at the same time with pimozide (Orap), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI)such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate) or seleginine (Emsam or Elpedryl). The general rule is that if you have taken Zoloft, you must not take MAOI until after 14 days of stopping Zoloft and the same goes when you first taken the MAOI.

People under 24 years of age that may have taken antidepressant usually have thoughts of committing suicide. Although Zoloft is approved by the US FDA for treating obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in children, it is not approved to be used as treatment for children with depression. The patient must be checked by the doctor regularly. It usually takes 12 weeks of treatment at the least.

If you have already taken Zoloft and you noticed or you feel worsening or new symptoms, immediately consult your doctor. Some of the symptoms that you may feel are anxiety, panic attacks, changes in mood or behavior, aggressiveness, trouble in sleeping, feeling of impulsiveness, irritable, hostile, agitated, mentally or physically hyperactive, hurting yourself or thoughts of committing suicide.

Zoloft is also known to affect newborn babies whose mothers may have taken the drug at the time of their pregnancy. The babies are said to be prone to lung problems, which may be threatening to the life of the newborns. On the other hand, mothers who suddenly stopped taking Zoloft due to pregnancy may have depression relapse. It is advised to consult first with your doctor if you are thinking about stopping your Zoloft medication during pregnancy.

Before taking Zoloft, you must advise your doctor if you have a history of drug abuse and suicidal thoughts. If you have seizures or epilepsy, liver or kidney disorders, and bipolar disorder or manic depression, it is very important that you tell your doctor prior to taking the medication.

While taking Zoloft, you are prohibited drinking alcoholic beverages. Alcohol may increase the side effects of the drug.

If you are currently taking other drugs, tell about it to your doctor to avoid some other side effects associated with Zoloft.

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