Does Dramamine interact with Zoloft? (+1 interactions)

This article will discuss the question, “Does Dramamine interact with Zoloft? We will discuss the potential interactions between Dramamine and Zoloft, the effects of combining the two medications, and special considerations and precautions one should consider before using the medications. 

Does Dramamine interact with Zoloft? 

Yes. Dramamine (dimenhydrinate) interacts with Zoloft (sertraline) to increase the side effects of both medications. 

Dramamine (dimenhydrinate) is an over-the-counter medication commonly used in the treatment of motion sickness and nausea (1). The medication is also used in the treatment of vertigo and dizziness associated with inner ear problems. Dramamine belongs to the pharmacological class of antihistamines.

It works by inhibiting the action of the neurotransmitter histamine on H1 receptors responsible for sleep, feeding and thermoregulation (1). This action reduces the stimulation of vomiting centers which alleviates symptoms of motion sickness. 

Zoloft (sertraline) on the other hand, is a selective serotonin reuptake receptor inhibitor (SSRI) medication that is used in the treatment of psychotic illnesses like depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (2).  It works by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin at the neuronal synapse which increases the availability of the neurotransmitter in the brain. The high availability of serotonin in the brain decreases depression symptoms. 

What are the adverse effects of using Zoloft and Dramamine? 

Potential adverse effects of Zoloft include:

  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Sleep disturbances which include insomnia or drowsiness
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Dizziness

Dramamine may cause side effects (1) which include: 

  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Constipation
  • Difficulties in urination
  • Confusion and disorientation

These two medications have common adverse effects whose impact is more pronounced in patients who are using the medicines simultaneously. These synergistic adverse effects include: 

  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Impaired cognitive function
  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Urinary retention 

Taking the two medications together could also cancel adverse effects which include: 

  • The prevention of sertraline-induced nausea by Dramamine
  • The prevention of sertraline-induced insomnia by Dramamine 

Who is at risk? 

Although side effects due to interactions between Dramamine and sertraline may affect patients of different demographics, certain people are more predisposed than others. For instance, the young and elderly may be more susceptible due to the difference in metabolism and organ function. People with other comorbidities like impaired liver and kidney functions may also have difficulties metabolising this medication thus increasing their likelihood of experiencing adverse effects. 

Polypharmacy is another risk for interactions. Taking several medications simultaneously increases the risk of interactions and side effects. Some people are also prone to medication side effects due to genetic factors. 

Are there Potential interactions between Dramamine and Zoloft?

Looking into the pharmacology of these two medications could provide insight into specific interactions that potentiate the mentioned side effects. 

Interaction #1: Central Nervous system CNS depression

Both medications have been seen to individually induce adverse effects associated with CNS depression. Sertraline is known to induce drowsiness in some individuals while Dramamine has potential sedative effects (1,2). When sertraline gives you drowsiness, adding Dramamine to the therapeutic regimen will likely increase the drowsiness effect. In such a case, combining these two medications can be risky.

It is important to consult a healthcare provider before using the medications to understand the potential risks and receive guidance on their safe use. If you notice any concerning symptoms or if you are feeling excessively drowsy, seek medical advice promptly. 

Interaction #2: Serotonergic effects of Dramamine

Dramamine acts by reducing the constitutive activity of the H1 receptor. It also affects the activity of serotonin receptors through inhibition.  Combining sertraline and the medication increases the risk of serotonin syndrome. This symptom is characterized by excessive serotonin activity, evidenced by symptoms such as confusion, rapid heart rate and an elevated body temperature.

While the H1 receptor inverse agonist action of Dramamine can influence the serotonergic system, the clinical significance of this interaction is not well documented (3). The potential impact on metabolic pathways could therefore vary between individuals. 

What are the precautions when taking Dramamine and sertraline together?

When taking Dramamine and sertraline together it is important to first discuss the use of these two medications with a doctor or pharmacist. The healthcare providers can provide specific guidance based on your medical history, current medications and individual health factors. They can also help you adjust dosage timings to minimize the intestacy adverse effects. 

When using these medications, it is also advisable to follow the prescribed dosages strictly. Avoid altering the dosages without consulting your healthcare provider. You should also be cautious of CNS effects like drowsiness and dizziness especially when operating machinery or driving. Monitor any side effects and notify your healthcare provider immediately. 

What should you do when you suspect an interaction? 

In case you experience severe symptoms of a suspected interaction, seek emergency medical attention immediately. These symptoms include confusion. In case of less concerning symptoms,  talk to a healthcare provider about the medications you’re using, the symptoms and when you first noticed them. Refrain from additional doses of sertraline or Dramamine until you have consulted a healthcare provider. This consultation should be prompt. 


This article has addressed the question, “Does Dramamine interact with Zoloft?” From this overview, it is evident that the two medications interact to dampen CNS-related adverse effects which include; dizziness, dizziness, urinary retention, blurred vision, dry mouth, impaired cognitive function, and difficulties in concentrating. Dramamine can also be used as adjuvant therapy in the treatment of sertraline-induced nausea, vomiting and insomnia. 

I strongly advise against taking sertraline and Dramamine without a valid doctor’s prescription. 


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Saborio OE, Hines BK, Wesselman J. Safe Management of Nausea and Vomiting During Pregnancy in the Emergency Department. Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal. 2019 Oct 1;41(4):336-47.


Singh HK, Saadabadi A. Sertraline.


Halpert AG, Olmstead MC, Beninger RJ. Mechanisms and abuse liability of the anti-histamine dimenhydrinate. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews. 2002 Jan 1;26(1):61-7.

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