Does Coricidin interact with Zoloft? (3+ side effects)

In this article, we will discuss the interactions between Coricidin and Zoloft. We will also discuss what side effects one may experience by combining these two medications and how to manage the side effects associated with their combination.

Does Coricidin interact with Zoloft?

Yes, Coricidin does interact with Zoloft. Coricidin is a combination medication primarily used to treat colds and flu. It has a first-generation antihistamine, chlorpheniramine as an active ingredient, which is sedative in nature, a pain reliever (acetaminophen) and a cough suppressant (dextromethorphan).

Zoloft (Sertraline), on the other hand, is the most commonly prescribed antidepressant which is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI).

Since both medications can cause dizziness and drowsiness, combined use of these two medications can lead to an increased risk of these side effects.

It is important to note that Zoloft does not cause sedation as a side effect in all individuals as individual responses to the antidepressant medication can vary.

Therefore people experiencing sedation as a side effect of Zoloft are more susceptible to increased dizziness and drowsiness resulting from combined use of Coricidin and Zoloft.

What are the potential side effects of taking Coricidin and Zoloft together?

Coricidin is a sedative in nature. Like Benadryl, Coricidin may interact with Zoloft and increase the risk of side effects (1,2) including:

  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Impairment in thinking and motor coordination

These side effects vary among individuals and are dependent on factors such as the dosage of the medication and genetic differences in individuals.

These side effects are more prominent in the elderly population as their bodies eventually become slow in drug metabolism and excretion. Additionally, the combined use of Coricidin and Zoloft influences serotonin levels in the brain.

Serotonin levels may increase to toxic levels due to Serotonin reuptake inhibition leading to a potentially life-threatening condition known as serotonin syndrome characterized by symptoms such as confusion, seizures, high blood pressure, rapid heart rate, blurred vision, agitation, and tremors (3).

Precautions for taking Coricidin and Zoloft together

The following precautions should be taken while using Coricidin and Zoloft together:

  • Do not engage yourself in activities requiring mental alertness or concentration like driving because of reduced focusing ability.
  • Do not consume alcohol while undergoing treatment with these medications as it may lead to worsening symptoms like difficulty concentrating and dizziness.
  • Consult your healthcare provider to monitor your response to the medications closely. They may adjust the dosages or recommend alternative medications to avoid any adverse effects.

Alternatives to Coricidin while taking Zoloft

If you are taking Zoloft for depression and need an alternative to Coricidin for treating cold and flu, there are alternative over-the-counter (OTC) medications you can consider that may have fewer potential interactions or side effects.

It is essential to consult with your healthcare provider before starting any new medication to ensure it is safe for you. Here are some alternatives to Coricidin that your healthcare provider may suggest:

Second-generation antihistamines: These medications, like Claritin (Loratadine) and Zyrtec (Cetirizine), are considered safe for managing allergy symptoms as they are not associated with drowsiness as a common side effect and they have a long duration of action which allows single daily dosing to relieve allergy symptoms(4).

Decongestants: If you have nasal congestion, use decongestants like Pseudoephedrine or Phenylephrine. However, consult with your doctor while using these decongestants as they may increase blood pressure.

Saline nasal spray: They can help relieve nasal congestion without the use of oral medication. They are generally considered safe when used as directed.

Throat lozenges or sprays: You can use OTC throat lozenges and sprays that contain soothing agents like menthol for sore throat.

Natural remedies: Sometimes, natural remedies like steam inhalation and honey water can help relieve the symptoms of cold and flu.


Individuals undergoing dual therapy with Coricidin and Zoloft should establish a routine of periodic check-ups and communicate with their healthcare provider. This helps in the careful management of the medication combination to achieve the best possible outcome while minimizing the potential risks.

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Coricidin HBP Chest Congestion-Cough 10 Mg-200 Mg Capsule Expectorants – Uses, Side Effects, and More [Internet]. [Accessed 2023 Sep 25].

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