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Sertraline is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant. Just like other SSRIs, it is often used for premature ejaculation to delay orgasm. But does sertraline work for premature ejaculation and how effective it is in helping men last longer in bed by delaying climax?
If you are planning to use sertraline to overcome premature ejaculation, you must know the ins and outs.
Table of Contents
What is Sertraline?
Sertraline (sold as Zoloft) is an antidepressant that belongs to the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) group of drugs. An SSRI is a prescription drug used to treat depression and other psychological issues.
Sertraline is used to treat depression, panic attacks, anxiety, compulsive disorders, social disorders, and other related conditions. It increases the serotonin levels in your brain which is a mood-enhancing chemical. It, therefore, improves mood, energy level, anxiety, and unwanted thoughts.
Like any other antidepressant, sertraline has multiple side effects including difficulty in breathing, skin rash, bleeding, vision issues, seizure, manic episodes, increased sweating, and sexual problems.
A key side effect of sertraline is delay in ejaculation. It is, therefore, prescribed to cure premature ejaculation in men.
Does Sertraline Work for Premature Ejaculation?
Based on scientific data, sertraline helps with premature ejaculation. Several studies found sertraline effective for premature ejaculation.
A study tested the impact of sertraline on 46 potent men and found it to be effective in increasing the ejaculatory interval significantly. All the participants started with sertraline 25 mg per day. The dose was increased to 50 mg after 3 weeks and to 100 mg after another 3 weeks. The mean ejaculatory interval of the participants at the start of the experiment was 1 minute.
The 25 mg sertraline increased ejaculation time by an average of 7.6 minutes, 50 mg increased ejaculation time by 13.1 minutes, and 100 mg increased ejaculatory interval by 16.4 minutes.
A single-blind placebo study found sertraline to be effective in treating premature ejaculation in men. A total of 37 potent men with PE received 50 mg per day of oral sertraline for 4 weeks. The average pretreatment ejaculatory latency time was 0.3 minutes which increased to 3.2 minutes after 4 weeks.
A study that measured the effectiveness of sertraline on premature ejaculation found it to be significantly helpful in increasing ejaculation latency time. Twenty-four participants took 50 mg of sertraline daily at 5 PM for 2 weeks and then the dosage was adjusted (50 or 100 mg) for the day of intercourse only.
The average initial ejaculation time was 23 seconds which jumped to 5.9 minutes after 2 weeks. It increased to 4.5 minutes after 4 weeks when the participants took sertraline on the day of intercourse. The side effects experienced were fatigue, numbness, and intermittent excessive delay of ejaculation.
Another study found similar results. Sertraline increased the ejaculation time by 81% of the participants in 4 weeks. However, the premature ejaculation condition of 66% of the participants worsened after 6 months of the experiment when they stopped using sertraline.
A study compared the effectiveness of sertraline and citalopram for premature ejaculation. The participants received drugs once a day for 8 weeks. Both drugs were found to be equally effective with no reported side effects for premature ejaculation.
Almost all the studies, except a few, highlighted the side effects of using sertraline including fatigue, dizziness, diarrhea, and anxiety. However, no serious complications were reported.
These studies make it clear that sertraline works for premature ejaculation and is quite helpful in increasing ejaculation time.
When to Take Sertraline for Premature Ejaculation?
Multiple studies show that the best time to take sertraline for PE is 4 hours before sexual activity instead of taking it daily.
A study compared the effectiveness of on-demand (taken 4 hours before intercourse only) and daily use of sertraline for premature ejaculation. One group took 50 mg of sertraline daily for 8 weeks and the second group took 50 mg of sertraline 4 hours before sexual intercourse.
The ejaculatory time for the group that took sertraline increased to 353 seconds after 8 weeks from 102 seconds before the experiment. The Intravaginal ejaculation latency time for the group that took sertraline only on the day of sexual intercourse increased from 101 seconds pre-test to 265 seconds after 8 weeks.
The side effects were higher in the daily use group than in the on-demand group.
You should, ideally, take sertraline only on the day when you expect to have sex. This has two key benefits:
- It will increase ejaculation time and help you last longer in bed
- You will experience fewer side effects both in the short and long run.
Taking sertraline daily has one major benefit: It increases ejaculation time significantly and much more than taking it on-demand. However, it comes with a high risk of side effects.
Sertraline for Premature Ejaculation Dosage
The ideal sertraline dosage for premature ejaculation is 25 mg per day. It can be increased progressively to 50 mg and 100 mg per day based on results.
One of the first studies on the effectiveness of premature ejaculation recommended that 25 mg per day should be taken for 2-3 weeks after which it can be taken on-demand 4-6 hours before sexual intercourse.
In case 25 mg doesn’t work for you, you can switch to 50 mg per day dosage and can further increase it to 100 mg per day if needed.
A study measuring the right dosage for sertraline found that 50 mg per day for 8 weeks helps improve premature ejaculation and significantly increases the ejaculation time. Patients who don’t respond to this dosage can switch to 100 mg per day for another 4 weeks to see better results.
So, you need to start from 25 mg and stick with it for up to 4 weeks. If you don’t notice a significant improvement in ejaculation time, switching to 50 mg per day is a nice idea. And once you have found the right daily dose that seems to work, you need to switch to on-demand.
It is recommended in several studies that daily use must be avoided to stay safe.
Can You Take Sertraline as Needed for Premature Ejaculation?
Yes, you can. In fact, you should take it on-demand as this is the best way to delay ejaculation and minimize its side effects.
A review study that discussed the efficacy of sertraline in the treatment of premature ejaculation highlighted several studies that suggest on-demand use.
On-demand refers to taking sertraline 4-6 hours before sexual intercourse. This is a better approach as opposed to taking it daily and even on days when you don’t have sex.
Taking sertraline on-demand helps you delay ejaculation significantly and it minimizes side effects. Consistent use of sertraline daily and then stopping it at once worsens premature ejaculation. This was reported in a study where participants relapsed after 6 months of using sertraline for 4 weeks.
It is recommended to use sertraline as needed for premature ejaculation to increase ejaculation time, stay safe, and avoid the deteriorating effect.
How Long for Sertraline to Work for Premature Ejaculation?
Sertraline works in 2-4 weeks and then it works at least 4 hours before sexual intercourse.
If you are using it for the first time, you need to use sertraline daily (preferably 25 mg) for at least 2 weeks to see initial improvement. Continue using it for 4 weeks (recommended) and once it improves ejaculation time significantly, you can switch to the on-demand dosage where you should take it 4-6 hours before sexual activity only.
This means once your body gets used to sertraline, it only needs 4 hours to show results.
Is Sertraline Approved by FDA for Premature Ejaculation?
No, sertraline is not approved by the FDA for premature ejaculation. However, sertraline is an FDA approved drug for anti depression.
The FDA has allowed using sertraline (under the brand name Zoloft) as an antidepressant. It is used for premature ejaculation due to its side effect of delaying orgasm.
Being an FDA approved drug, sertraline is safe for use for premature ejaculation.
Other Treatment Methods for Premature Ejaculation
Using sertraline is one of the many options available to treat premature ejaculation:
- Use OTC tablets such as ProSolution Plus are known to reduce premature ejaculation by 64%
- Numbing products that are approved by FDA such as delay condoms, delay sprays, and delay wipes
- Natural and safe ways to hold back cumming
- Squeeze technique is the best behavioral technique to delay ejaculation and treat premature ejaculation
- Use foods for premature ejaculation.
Sertraline might not be one of the best methods to treat premature ejaculation, but it is one of the most common methods used by physicians due to scientific evidence. It is a prescription drug so you can only use it if your physician recommends it.
Considering its side effects, sertraline should be used with caution. In case of issues, you must consult your doctor immediately.