Premature ejaculation is likely to show up among one in three adults (men), in the age group of 21 to 60 years. If left untreated, this condition can have a telling effect on your sexual health and mental wellbeing. It is hence a good practice to seek needful clinical support. Often, a comprehensive treatment plan is prescribed to treat such conditions. Plans include behavioral treatment as well as administration of drugs. Among the various types of drugs taken to treat premature ejaculation, is antidepressant meds such as sertraline widely prescribed? It is a wise thing to know more on this before stating your treatment plan.

An untimely discharge of semen much earlier while you are having sex is a medical condition. In clinical terms, it is known as premature ejaculation. Of late, this is fast becoming a common sexual health concern. You may need to see a qualified medical specialist if you are almost always ejaculating within 1 to 2 minutes after penetration and if you are feeling low or down when such spells occur. In sum, those who have this condition are unable to postpone ejaculation during sexual intercourse.

This condition is attributed to both mental as well as physical factors. Those who have a low self-image about their body, men who have experienced sexual abuse as well as being depressed are more likely to ejaculate prematurely. Also, those who are living with erectile dysfunction or relationship related problems with their sexual partner may witness it. Biological factors include inflammation of urethra, genetic factors and an imbalance of hormones.

A combination of behavioral treatment and drugs is often recommended to treat premature ejaculation. Most commonly used techniques include pelvic floor exercise (which help tighten the muscles of your pelvic floor) and a pause-and-squeeze approach (here, you can squeeze your penis’ head till the need to ejaculate ceases to show up). There are also specially designed condoms which can numb your penile region, and thus help postpone ejaculation. In this milieu, drugs such as antidepressants – especially, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are widely used.

Sertraline for treating premature ejaculation

Sertraline is essentially an antidepressant; this is taken for managing and treating mental conditions such as depression, anxieties and bipolar conditions. In many regions of the world, this drug is taken as a first line of treatment to delay premature ejaculation. These may take about 7 days to start functioning. On the whole, you may need to take this drug for 20 to 24 days to witness better results.

Research done on the efficacy of sertraline to treat this complaint has shown a few positive results. These findings suggest that intake of this drug can extend the average time of ejaculation from 60 seconds to as high as 6 minutes. Such an extension was achieved with a basic dose of 25 milligrams (mg) of this antidepressant med. On the other hand, an enhanced dose of 50 mg led to a further extension of ejaculation time to more than 12 minutes. Intake of a 100 mg dose resulted in a noteworthy delay in ejaculation to the tune of 15 minutes and even more.

Use of sertraline among adults (men) has also triggered a few adverse side effects. These include difficulties to discharge semen (in medical terms, this condition is called anejaculation), increased levels of anxiety, feeling drowsy or dizzy, spells of erectile dysfunction, etc. In as many as 65% men, premature ejaculation recurred after some 5 months of the last dose of this SSRI drug. This led to an as-needed (or, an on-demand) mode of administering this drug; in such instances, this drug is taken 4 to 5 hours prior to having sex. This use is found to trigger much lesser side effects. This mode of intake is also tolerated with relative ease.

Precautions associated with the intake of sertraline

Those who have had a track record of suicidal instincts or self-harming tendencies may need to keep away from this drug. It is highly recommended to tell your doctor about such thoughts; in such cases, your caregiver may prescribe safer alternatives. Also, those living with gastric conditions such as ulcers or internal bleeding / bruising need to tell their caregiving team about such ailments. Intake of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen, naproxen or aspirin can be harmful; this practice may aggravate the risks of internal bleeding as well as bruising.

Those who are living with low level of sodium may need to be additionally cautious as this med may further lower the level of sodium in blood. Moreover, watch out for toxicity of serotonin as this drug may lead to an increase in the availability of brain chemicals. Your caregiving team may also prescribe other forms of selective serotonin reuptake inhibiting drugs such as paroxetine, citalopram, fluoxetine, etc. In order to avoid toxicity, the caregiving team may advise the intake of alpha blocking drugs; a key side effect of these drugs is anejaculation i.e., difficulties to discharge semen.

It is not a good practice to discontinue the intake of this med in an abrupt manner. A sudden stop is likely to cause withdrawal related symptoms. Common among these withdrawal effects are sleeping difficulties, tremors, shaking, headaches or migraines. In some instances, abdominal discomforts such as nausea, vomiting as well as indigestion have also shown up. Your caregiver may advise tapering off the use of sertraline in a gradual fashion.

In sum, sertraline is an antidepressant med used for treating depression, bipolar disorders as well as anxieties. This med can also be used to delay premature ejaculation. A dose of 50 mg of this med yielded a delayed ejaculation, postponing it to more than 12 minutes. However, intake of sertraline may also cause a few adverse reactions such as difficulties to discharge semen, dizziness, erectile dysfunction, anxieties, etc. Possibility of a relapse of this condition is more likely in many men; this relapse may show up after 5 to 6 months from the date of your last dose of this SSRI med. A few caregivers may advise to use it as and when it is required i.e., prior to having a sexual intercourse. In such uses, it is recommended to take it a few hours prior to having sex. In order to get more details about the use of sertraline, you are advised to talk to your treating doctor and / or pharmacist.

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