In the United States, erectile dysfunction (ED) is most often discussed in terms of its association with diabetes and heart disease. But did you know that ED is one of the most common consequences of depression? A lot of men experience this type of sexual dysfunction, and for those who do, there are plenty of effective remedies. One of the most popular and well-known anti-depressants, sertraline (Zoloft), is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). It is currently available in either 25 mg or 50 mg forms for oral administration.

When used for depression, sertraline is generally prescribed to be taken once or twice a day. Although it is a non-toxic drug and relatively safe when used at approved doses, it can be toxic if used inappropriately. Fortunately, the side effects associated with sertraline are usually fairly mild. The most common side effects include gastrointestinal discomfort, dizziness, and drowsiness. These side effects usually disappear once the medication is started and then gradually decrease in severity as the medication is taken regularly.

If you or a loved one is experiencing sexual problems, depression might be to blame. Even if you don’t recognize it, your mental health is crucial to your overall physical health and well-being. If you’re not taking care of your mental health, it’s basically like trying to fix a car that you’ve thrown away. Trying to find an alternative route when the roads go nowhere can make you feel like you’re in a fight for your life. Luckily, there are always options. In this case, there’s more than one option and combining medications might actually be the best solution. Let’s examine whether or not combining Viagra with an SSRI is a good idea.

Should You Combine Viagra With An SSRI?

It is important to keep in mind that not all anti-depressants are created equal. Some are better than others at treating depression and anxiety, and one of the most promising new medications is Viagra. This potent drug was originally designed to be used by people with ED caused by cardiovascular disease or diabetes. But in the last couple of years, it has been shown to be quite effective for treating mild to moderate depression and anxiety disorders as well.

When used in combination with an SSRI, Viagra can enhance the effectiveness of the anti-depressant by boosting neurotransmitter levels in the brain. The two work best when given in tandem because they target different parts of the brain, and thus, increase the likelihood of clinical improvement.

But just because they work well individually doesn’t mean that they work well together. Some SSRIs, such as fluoxetine (Prozac), can cause significant side effects when given in combination with Viagra. The most common is a marked increase in blood pressure. In some cases, this spike in blood pressure is so pronounced that it’s been known to be dangerous. While this can be a side effect of the medication, it’s also something you need to be aware of before you take it in combination with Viagra.

Are There Any Side Effects Associated With Combining Sertraline & Viagra?

Although both sertraline and Viagra are generally considered safe and effective medications, there are some caveats that need to be kept in mind. First of all, make sure that your doctor knows what medication(s) you’re already taking. Second, be certain that you’re not taking any supplements containing ephedra, yohimbe, or ma huang. These are some of the most common and well-known supplements that can cause significant problems when taken in combination with anti-depressants and/or other medication(s).

One more thing, if you’re going to be taking Viagra, make sure that you consult with your doctor before you start using it. Just because a medication is widely available and relatively safe when used on its own doesn’t mean that it’s safe to use with other medication(s) or supplements. There have been some case reports of men experiencing sudden and complete loss of vision while taking Viagra. The condition, called color photoinduced angiitis, is thought to result from an allergic reaction to a medication or supplement that was triggered by the acid in the semen.

Is There Any Evidence That Sertraline & Viagra Together Work Better Than Either One Used Individually?

There is preliminary evidence that combining Viagra and an SSRI can be more effective than either of those medications used individually. In a small study, researchers gave either fluoxetine (Prozac) or sertraline to 20 depressed men and then combined the two for greater efficacy. It turns out that both of these medications are effective at relieving depression and anxiety when used individually, but the combination is more effective than either of the two medications given separately. This particular study suggests that combining medications can be a good option for some people who struggle with depression.

When Should You Not Take Sertraline & Viagra Together?

As we’ve established, Viagra can increase the effectiveness of an SSRI. But what if you’re taking an SSRI and you want to try a different class of medication? One study from 2014 examined the interactions between several antidepressants and Viagra when used in combination. They looked at different doses of 12 anti-depressants and found that while Viagra generally had some beneficial effect on the medications, it did not always improve things greatly. The authors of the study suggest that clinicians consider the potential risk of drug-drug interactions when prescribing these two medications together.

On the other hand, they also found that a medication known as ketamine, which is used as an anesthetic and in the treatment of depression, had a potent and beneficial interaction with Viagra. This potentially interesting interaction between an anti-depressant and a medication that enhances brain function should be further explored, especially in light of ketamine’s demonstrated ability to treat depression and its favorable side-effect profile. It is also noteworthy that this particular study enrolled only men in the 18 to 50 age group. More research in women and older populations is certainly needed as well.

The bottom line is that while there are certainly advantages to combining medications, you need to be aware of the risks and side effects that accompany this approach. Most people, particularly those with depression, will experience benefits from at least one of these medications, and it’s always an option to try a different drug or combination of drugs before resorting to a supplement.

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