How long does Ozempic take to start working? 

How long does Ozempic take to start working? 

Ozempic (Semaglutide) may start to lower your blood glucose levels within a week or two, but it can take up to 8 weeks to see the full therapeutic efficacy of the drug. 

Ozempic is an antidiabetic medication which is also used for the purpose of obesity comorbid with diabetes (1,2). Ozempic works at different rates in different individuals because the dosage strength of the medication is determined based on the severity of the symptoms. 

Ozempic is administered in the form of injection weekly and is a long-acting medication and taking it more than once a week can cause side effects, without accelerating the therapeutic benefits. The dose of the drug is usually kept low during the initial few weeks of the treatment to help your body adjust to the medication. 

According to experts, the maximum efficacy could take up to 12 weeks in some people. In the case of weight loss, Ozempic can take even longer than that (1,2). 

This is why it’s best to go for weekly Ozempic injections on time and don’t miss a dose. You will eventually start to see results. However, if you’re allergic to this medication or if it causes dangerous side effects in you, your doctor will most likely switch you to another medication. 

Just make sure you don’t give up without giving this medication enough time and don’t stop your treatment halfway. 

What to do if Ozempic fails to manage your health condition?

If Ozempic fails to effectively manage your diabetes or weight, it is crucial to communicate this to your healthcare provider right away. Your doctor needs to know about any ongoing symptoms or issues you are experiencing so they can reevaluate your treatment plan.

Your healthcare provider may decide to adjust the dosage of Ozempic or explore alternative medications or treatment options that may better suit your needs. They might also recommend combining Ozempic with other medications or lifestyle changes to enhance its effectiveness.

Remember, it’s essential not to make any changes to your medication or dosage without consulting your doctor first. Abruptly stopping or altering the treatment plan can lead to complications or worsen your condition. 

Always follow your healthcare provider’s advice and stay in close communication with them throughout the process.

Alternatives to Ozepmic for diabetes and weight management

If Ozempic is not suitable for diabetes and weight management or does not work effectively for you, there are other treatment options available. Your healthcare provider may consider prescribing different medications that target diabetes and weight management. Some alternatives include (3):

  • Metformin: Metformin is a common oral medication used to manage type 2 diabetes. It helps lower blood sugar levels and can also support weight loss.
  • Glipizide: Glipizide is another oral medication that helps lower blood sugar levels by increasing insulin release from the pancreas.
  • Pioglitazone: Pioglitazone is an oral medication that helps improve insulin sensitivity, making it easier for your body to use insulin effectively.
  • SGLT-2 inhibitors: Medications like canagliflozin, dapagliflozin, and empagliflozin work by reducing glucose reabsorption in the kidneys, leading to lower blood sugar levels and potential weight loss.
  • GLP-1 receptor agonists: Similar to Ozempic, other GLP-1 receptor agonists like Victoza (liraglutide) and Bydureon (exenatide) can help control blood sugar and support weight loss.

Remember, the best alternative for you depends on your individual health needs and medical history. Your healthcare provider will carefully evaluate your condition and recommend the most suitable treatment plan to help you manage diabetes and support your weight management goals effectively. 

Was this helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!



Andersen A, Knop FK, Vilsbøll T. A Pharmacological and Clinical Overview of Oral Semaglutide for the Treatment of Type 2 Diabetes. Drugs. 2021 Jun;81(9):1003-1030. doi: 10.1007/s40265-021-01499-w. Epub 2021 May 8. PMID: 33964002; PMCID: PMC8217049.


Andreadis P, Karagiannis T, Malandris K, Avgerinos I, Liakos A, Manolopoulos A, Bekiari E, Matthews DR, Tsapas A. Semaglutide for type 2 diabetes mellitus: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2018 Sep;20(9):2255-2263. doi: 10.1111/dom.13361. Epub 2018 Jun 10. PMID: 29756388.


Imam K. Management and treatment of diabetes mellitus. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2012;771:356-80. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4614-5441-0_26. PMID: 23393690.