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Bupropion is a slow-acting medication that takes weeks to enhance patients’ health, therefore patients typically use Wellbutrin for a long time. Because Bupropion stimulates the secretion of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, some people become addicted to it, which can lead to Wellbutrin addiction. It can be a huge shock to the body systems if you stop taking Wellbutrin abruptly. Antidepressant discontinuation syndrome, often known as antidepressant withdrawal, causes mild to severe symptoms of withdrawal in the person withdrawing from the medication.

Antidepressant discontinuation syndrome is a possible side effect of taking an antidepressant. It occurs when a person develops a physical dependence on a substance and the medication is abruptly withdrawn without tapering or deliberately lowering the amount. Antidepressants function by affecting the brain’s neurotransmitter levels. These are the substances that bind to neurons and cause them to activate various bodily activities. 

Antidepressants cause neurons to become acclimated to a specific level of these neurochemicals in the body after long-term use. The body adjusts to these levels of neurochemicals, and abrupt shifts can result in a variety of unpleasant side effects, particularly sexual Wellbutrin side effects.

Dopamine is released in the brain as a result of this prescription drug. This hormone is also referred to as the reward hormone, and it is linked to feelings of well-being and joy. Once the body has become accustomed to the drug, it requires a specific amount of the drug to create even the usual level of epinephrine or dopamine. When someone takes bupropion for a long time, they experience withdrawal symptoms. 

Drug abuse, which involves taking more than the authorized amount for an extended period of time, can lead to physical dependence. It means that a greater dose is required to have the same effect. When a person abruptly stops taking Bupropion, the body reacts with a range of symptoms. The withdrawal effect is what it’s called. Withdrawal symptoms can occur in 20 percent of individuals who have been using it for a long time. As the duration and dose of drug misuse increase, so do these statistics.

Antidepressants are responsible and notoriously known for having withdrawal symptoms, making it difficult to stop taking them and break free from their addiction. The majority of these symptoms of withdrawal are linked to changes in hormone production and rapid changes in neurotransmitter levels. Changes in norepinephrine and dopamine levels are mostly linked to Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms. There are both psychological and physical signs and symptoms. They aren’t life-threatening, but they can be quite unpleasant. Some anecdotal accounts of Wellbutrin missed dose symptoms have also been reported. 

When tapering off Wellbutrin, individuals may experience some or all of the following key Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms:

Symptoms related to the digestive system

  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Symptoms related to the central nervous system

  • Headache
  • Vivid dreams 
  • Insomnia
  • Changes in perception or vision 
  • Hallucinations 
  • Mood swings 
  • \numbness 
  • Crying episodes

Symptoms related to poor balance and movement

  • Dizziness, 
  • Loss of balance, 
  • Vertigo, 
  • Uneven stride, 
  • Tremors
  • Incoordination

Warning Signs

Although Wellbutrin is not closely linked with withdrawal symptoms, it does come with a strong FDA warning concerning its relation to suicide ideation in children, teenagers, and young adults, as do all antidepressants.

When changing your dose, you should proceed with caution. Suicidal thoughts and feelings are much more common in young adults under the age of 24 and children, but they can strike anyone.

If you are suffering from any of the following symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.

  • Suicidal or self-destructive thoughts
  • Thoughts about how you might commit suicide
  • Extreme enthusiasm or severe restlessness
  • irrational behavior
  • Acting without considering the consequences
  • Extreme anxiousness or concern
  • Anxiety attacks

Suicidal thoughts and actions are uncommon, yet they do occur in certain persons. Before you stop taking Wellbutrin, talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits. If you decide to stop taking your medication, a quick taper may be the best option.

When patients are suffering severe discontinuation symptoms from antidepressants, it is frequently noted that quitting this drug becomes difficult. As a result, it is advised to contact a qualified doctor or go to a rehab center as soon as possible to prevent the person’s health from deteriorating, as only a doctor can advise on possible pharmaceutical alternatives, such as Wellbutrin versus Prozac.

Patients are normally started on modest Bupropion doses and gradually increased until the appropriate dosage is reached and the symptoms of the condition are controlled or minimized. However, each increase in dosage carries the danger of overdosing on Wellbutrin. It’s possible that the medication’s full effect won’t be felt for up to 4 weeks. When someone wants to stop taking Bupropion, doctors may advise them to taper doses down for 2 weeks before stopping completely.

It is critical to understand the timeline of the withdrawal process as one begins to quit Bupropion treatment. This includes understanding how long Wellbutrin withdrawal can last and how long Wellbutrin stays in the body. Also, how long will it take to be completely free of the adverse effects?  Antidepressant withdrawal times are determined by the drug’s half-life, the individual using it, and the length of time they were taken.

Drugs with a short half-life leave your body systems more quickly, causing serious side effects and undesirable reactions like weight loss with Wellbutrin use. Because Wellbutrin has a prolonged half-life than other antidepressants, the time it takes to withdraw from it is shorter. It indicates that it stays in the body for longer and has a milder drug discontinuation effect.

The half-life of bupropion and its bioactive components is longer than that of several antidepressants. Because bupropion has a half-life of 14–21 hours and its derivatives have a half-life of up to 33 hours, the effects may be milder. Withdrawal from Wellbutrin often lasts one to two weeks. Although it has a 3- to 4-week effect on a person’s physical and mental health, this is a rare occurrence. Discontinuation symptoms will emerge quickly, but they will fade as the body adjusts to a new dose of medicine. Symptoms normally go away after three weeks if left untreated. Discontinuation syndrome is not fatal, and severe symptoms normally go away in three days or fewer because 99 percent of the drug is excreted from the body in that time.

Causes Of Withdrawal

To get a “high,” some individuals may abuse huge doses of Wellbutrin. This practice of use can soon result in physical dependence, in which your body becomes accustomed to having a particular level of the drug in it. When you stop using, your body responds with withdrawal symptoms.

Those who use the drug within specified limits can also acquire dependence and suffer withdrawal symptoms when their use slows or ceases.

In general, as your body adjusts to life without the drug, your symptoms will fade. This approach, however, takes time and patience. Detox and professional assistance for bupropion withdrawal may assist you in transitioning more smoothly and provide help as you recover.

Understanding how long Bupropion remains in the system is important because it allows the patient to know how it works inside the body and how long it’ll take for potential Wellbutrin side effects to subside. Also, keep in mind that how long a medicine lingers in the body is influenced by personal circumstances.


Bupropion’s principal urinary metabolite is a glycine conjugation of meta-chlorobenzene acid. According to studies, more than 60 percent of Bupropion is excreted and detected in urine within the first 24 hours, with a total of roughly 90 percent eliminated and found in urine by the 4th day. It means that if someone is suspected of abusing Wellbutrin, a urine drug test could identify it up to 4 days after the previous dose.


Bupropion can still be present in the blood after 4.4 days since the last Bupropion dose, according to researchers. A blood test to check for Bupropion in one’s system isn’t routinely done. It is more commonly done in the event of an emergency or an overdose on the drug to determine the current quantity in the system.


For this medication, saliva tests are rarely used. Because the time Bupropion could be detected in the saliva had a significant link with the time it can be found in the plasma and urine, the time it could be found in the saliva is also approximately 4.4 days. Bupropion concentrations were also observed to be greater in saliva and urine than in plasma.


Bupropion, like every other medication, should be stopped for at least 3 months before going for a drug test, as any substance taken can stay in hair cells for up to three months. Drug detection can last up to 90 days with routine hair drug testing.

There are a variety of reasons why someone would want to stop using Bupropion, including the drug’s risk for addiction, side effects such as hair loss from Wellbutrin, tolerance, or the fact that they no longer require it. Although, the longer a person is on antidepressants and the higher the dosage given, the more difficult it is to discontinue taking Bupropion. When a patient decides to stop using Bupropion, they may have withdrawal symptoms if the dose is not reduced properly.

Stopping Wellbutrin Cold Turkey 

If someone has been using Bupropion for depression for some time and is thinking about stopping, it’s important to remember that discontinuing Wellbutrin cold turkey has to be the worst way to go about it. Severe  Wellbutrin adverse effects can occur if you stop taking it suddenly. As a result, practically all medical specialists advise against it.

Tapering Off Wellbutrin

The safest way to wean yourself off of Bupropion is to taper your doses very slowly. This strategy is considered the easiest and safest because it decreases the consequences of Wellbutrin withdrawal experience, but discontinuing Wellbutrin cold turkey may cause symptoms of depression to resurface at any time. A healthcare expert should also provide proper information and assist an individual through the full process of withdrawal from the drug, as well as screen and monitor patients’ progress.

Despite the fact that bupropion withdrawal effects are rarely life-threatening, you could still benefit from a detox program. You can be monitored and tapered off Wellbutrin with the help of a medically assisted program. It can also assist you with detoxing from alcohol or other illicit substances.

To lessen the chance of relapsing into drug use, it’s critical to seek continued addiction treatment following detox, regardless of the sort of program you choose. Many people start with detox before moving on to a residential treatment program. They can continue their rehabilitation and recovery in an outpatient setting or through group or individual counseling after completing residential treatment. Many people also use 12-step or self-help programs like Narcotics Anonymous or SMART Rehabilitation to enhance their recovery.

The following are some therapy options that help with Wellbutrin withdrawal and addiction:

Detox. Wellbutrin detox facilities can help you in weening off of Wellbutrin, as well as any other alcohol or drugs, gradually. Detox is a brief treatment that is usually the initial step in the recovery process. It isn’t intended to deal with the social and psychological issues that contributed to the addiction. 9 You will most likely enter an outpatient or inpatient program to continue your rehabilitation after detox.

Treatment In Inpatient Settings. Inpatient drug treatment centers provide a structured atmosphere as well as a high level of care and supervision. They can last anywhere from 28 days to months. You live in a residential treatment facility and take part in detox, group therapy, and individual counseling. The 12-step model of Alcoholics Anonymous is used in many inpatient recovery programs.

Treatment On An Outpatient Basis. Outpatient rehab allows you to stay at home while receiving therapy at a recovery clinic one too many times each week. In many cases, outpatient programs will give therapies that are identical to those provided in inpatient facilities. Partial hospitalization (PHP) is an outpatient therapy option for persons who require a modest level of assistance. Medical supervision, psychiatric services (if needed), life skills training and more traditional behavioral strategies for addiction therapy are all included.

Medications for Wellbutrin Withdrawal

The use of medicine to alleviate Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms has received little scientific attention. Several clinical research back up the idea of gradually weaning yourself off the medicine. Consult your prescribing doctor or a physician at a treatment program to determine the best course of action.

People using Wellbutrin as recommended should follow a tapering strategy, according to a Harvard Medical School report. The recommended dosage is 300 mg, followed by 200 mg, 150 mg, and finally 100 mg. However, the tapering timeline should be customized and changed based on the amount of medication you’ve been taking.

Bupropion is linked to body mass changes, and the first step in coping with this is for a patient to understand his or her side of the drug’s modifications effect: Will the patient be okay if he or she loses weight while taking Wellbutrin or gains weight after stopping Wellbutrin? If the patient is concerned about the link between Wellbutrin and weight changes while taking Bupropion, the following health advice may be useful:

  • Start with a low dose of Wellbutrin so generally, the adverse effects could be minimal
  • Slowly taper off the medication over many days
  • Dietary changes, including management of total carbs, protein, and fat intake. This would indeed be possible with the help of a dietitian.
  • Regular physical activity is essential. While tapering off the drug, any sort of physical activity would be fruitful as it would also help cope with rebound depression.
  • Alleviation of stress is another great way to manage your weight changes. Stressful activities like in the workplace, school, or family issues should be avoided or kept to a minimum.

Although some patients may tolerate weight gain, it is critical to conduct regular mass monitoring to ensure that the immune response and overall health are not harmed by this medicine.



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