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Recognize a Trazodone Overdose: Symptoms & What to Do Next

Too much trazodone can trigger an overdose. Symptoms include vomiting, breathing problems, heartbeat irregularities, and seizures.

If you suspect an overdose, call 911 immediately.

Emergency Symptoms

According to MedlinePlus, the following are symptoms that a person is in immediate danger from a trazodone overdose:

  • Collapse
  • Seizure
  • Trouble breathing
  • Coma

If any of these symptoms are present, call 911 immediately.

What Is Trazodone?

Trazodone is an antidepressant that should only be taken as prescribed.
It is important to make sure the doctor prescribing it is fully aware of any drugs you have taken recently. Trazodone can have severe and dangerous reactions if mixed with certain other drugs, especially monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors.

Trazodone can also interact strangely with grapefruit and grapefruit juice. Do not consume these without first discussing it with a doctor.

Like many antidepressants, trazodone can cause suicidal thoughts in some patients. If experienced, these thoughts should be reported to the prescribing doctor immediately.

Generally, the maximum daily dose prescribed is 400 mg, given in a divided dose, meaning it is not all taken at once. In severe cases, as much as 600 mg per day is prescribed, also in a divided dose.
Never take more trazodone simply because you are especially depressed or feel the current dose is not working. Discuss any concerns with your doctor.

Other Overdose Symptoms

Some less severe symptoms of trazodone overdose represent a need for aid as soon as possible. The following are additional symptoms of overdose:

  • Vomiting
  • Drowsiness
  • Changes in heartbeat
  • Painful erection that does not go away

If you notice any of the above symptoms, immediately call the prescribing doctor. They may tell you to go to the hospital.

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Steps to Take

After calling 911:

  • Report your location to the operator immediately, and describe the situation as accurately as you can. If the person overdosing is still conscious, try to find out how much trazodone they took and if they took any other drugs.
  • Monitor the person’s breathing and heart rate. Follow any instructions you are given by the 911 operator.
  • If they have stopped breathing or their heart has stopped, begin CPR immediately. CPR works a little differently depending on the person’s age.
  • Stay with the person until help arrives.

If the situation doesn’t feel like an emergency, you can call Poison Control.

  • To the best of your knowledge, be ready to report:
    • The person’s age, weight, symptoms, and health history
    • Exactly what they took and how much
    • Your relationship to the person, phone number, and current zip code
  • Follow the operator’s instructions carefully. In some cases, they may instruct you to hang up and call 911.

Suicide Attempts

Accidental overdose can happen with any drug. People may inadvertently take too much because they forget when they last took the drug. They also may accidentally combine the medication with other substances, and this can lead to overdose.

Since some people on trazodone may experience suicidal thoughts, overdose can be a sign they are acting on those thoughts.
They are there around the clock to talk to anyone who is contemplating suicide or self-harm.

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Taking Quick Action

If you witness someone experiencing a potential overdose on trazodone, don’t hesitate to call for help. Quick action will reduce the likelihood of serious harm and could save a valuable life.

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