What To Know About Antidepressants
With depression being such a wide-spread and severe form of mental disease that it is, we are very fortunate to live in the age that we do in which we can go and acquire medication to aid in our battle against it. The proper anti-depressant at the right time can mean the world of difference between someone who is improving in their condition and someone who’s getting progressively worse. Find out what to know about antidepressants below.
Anti-depressants aren’t a miracle drug by a long shot which one reason why there’s so many of them and they fall into different sub-categories. And more often than not, aside from self-help and therapy, sometimes you will not take additional medication with your anti-depressant before you begin to see results, such as antipsychotic or a mood stabilizer.
Below are what to know about antidepressants including the positives and the negatives.
1 – They Are Not a Cure
First, with what to know about antidepressants, you have to realize their limitations. Anti-depressants are a treatment for depression, not a cure for depression. Of course, it would be more than lovely to be able to take a prescribed pill for about a month and then have your depression be cured, but sadly this just isn’t the case yet, but with the advancements in the medical profession it helps to remain hopeful. Currently, however, the role of the anti-depressant is only to aid the present chemical imbalance in the brain and act as a supplement to other depressive treatment.
2 – All Shapes and Sizes
There are way over several dozen kinds of anti-depressants that are spread across three main types. These types include SSRIs, SNRIs, and NDRIs. SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) are the most commonly prescribed anti-depressants out there, at least initially. These include anti-depressants such as Celexa, Lexapro, Luvox, Paxil, Prozac, and Zoloft. The next type, SNRIs (Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors), is a more new type of anti-depressant including the medications Cymbalta, Effexor, Khedezla, Fetzima, and Pristiq. The last type, NDRI (Norepinephrine and Dopamine Reuptake Inhibitors), only have one named drug that’s widely distributed and that is Wellbutrin.
3 – We Don’t Exactly Know How, But We Know That They Can
One thing to remember about anti-depressants is that they are in fact a drug. Meaning that they come with side effects. As if the sheer thought of side-effects weren’t worrying enough, they’re a drug that alters brain chemistry. This is an important thing to note for the simple reason of reminding you that we do not understand as much about the brain as we might think we do.
So by then creating a drug or chemical to alter something that we barely understand, we have in turn created something that we barely understand. Anti-depressants apparently work by altering the communication lines between your neurotransmitters in your brain. In layman’s terms, they basically block signals in the brain that would make you say “Everything is terrible and life is miserable”, and instead send signals like “Things aren’t that bad.”
But other than that we have no real explanation of how anti-depressants work just like we have no real foundation of the causes of depression nor do we know the full extent of how it can affect an individual. Simply put, the medical profession and pharmaceutical companies have no real idea how these things tend to work, but as we’ve seen and as they continue to assure us, they definitely can work. And sometimes that’s all that’s important.
4 – They Take A Long Time to Work
Anti-depressants don’t act as an emotional pain-reliever, although that would be great if they did. Instead, it may take you weeks or months to start feeling the effects of anti-depressant. Because of the nature of this those prescribed anti-depressants more often than that stop taking them halfway through because “They’re not doing anything.” When the side effects are more prevalent than the effects of what the medicine was prescribed for, it can be difficult to want to continue it.
5 – Genetics Play A Part
Depression has hereditary tendencies at times. If someone in your immediate family has or has had depression, you are more susceptible to developing it as well. Although it’s not a full blown thing that’s able to be passed down, your genes still play a part. Thankfully, that really isn’t all bad. This also means that if an anti-depressant works on your family member, it’s also more likely to work on you too.
6 – Risk of Withdrawal
One of the lesser known things about anti-depressants is that they have to be weaned off, in order to lower the risk of withdrawals. After taking anti-depressants for an extended period of time over six-weeks withdrawal becomes a very real situation you can find yourself dealing with. In a lot of cases when you’re changing up medications, your prescriber will first lower the dosage of your current medication for you to take temporarily at the same time you start your new one.
7 – They Come in Natural Forms Too
Look outside the box as you explore what to know about antidepressants. Not all anti-depressant need a prescription and have a scientific name you can’t pronounce. There are a few of natures miracles that can produce effects similar to the Rx drugs with fewer side effects. One source of these natural anti-depressants includes EGCG, a compound found in green tea. Drinking green tea daily can reduce your risk of depression by 44%. A couple of other sources include fish oil, saffron, and arctic root.
In Conclusion-What To Know About Antidepressants
Depression in any form it shows itself and with any amount of symptoms, can be a serious illness to deal with that can completely destroy a person’s life. Thankfully, there are more than enough medicines and treatments that can aid in making sure that it never has to come to that.