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  • Tanisha Herrin

Dealing with Depression: Four Key Points You Need to Know about Antidepressants

Depression is a common yet treatable condition. Medication prescribed can be effective by helping alleviate related symptoms. There are many types of depression medications (antidepressants) available to learn and the more you know, the better the results. Gaining useful knowledge through personal research and talking with your doctor will help you find a safe option while learning how it will help your specific needs. Here are four things to remember about antidepressants.

1. More medications see improved effectiveness when used with another drug option. When it comes to using medication people will experience different results. Some may feel better within the first or second dose, while others may see improvement after trying something different or combining drugs. There are options that help you maintain progress from another drug if you are already prescribed medicine, so you achieve further results to improve more of your symptoms.

2. You may not feel the effect of the medication right away. Patients may be quick to say they aren’t feeling better when they start taking antidepressants. Selecting the right antidepressant is important, but many don’t realize it can take time before experiencing results. Many can take up to six weeks before they kick in. Give it time and have patience. Follow directions for your medication and take as directed. Research is ongoing to develop faster-acting antidepressants which may help people experience relief sooner.

3. Don’t let potential side effects turn you away from taking them. Some admit they don’t like the idea of experiencing potential side effects, but for many, they don’t last long, or they are light to mild. Side effects subside after a few weeks, but you can discuss them with your doctor if they become bothersome.

4. Avoid abruptly ending or stopping intake of your medication. Don’t stop taking your medicine without getting in touch with your doctor. Whatever the reason (budget, side effects, etc.) your doctor can work with you to find something else. Also, don’t change the dose. You could make yourself ill if you stop taking your medicine all of the sudden

What else you need to know about antidepressants

Antidepressants don’t cure depression but with other treatment options, and making healthy lifestyle changes (meditation, yoga, exercise, healthy foods, etc.), they can help you feel better and maintain results. Keep your appointments with your doctor so you can follow-up and track progress.

You don’t have to stay on antidepressants forever; depending on your progress you and your doctor can choose to discontinue them when you are ready. People think addiction is a possibility if prescribed for an extended period, but some can lead to withdrawal symptoms when you stop. Remember, you do have the ability to stop taking them.

Side effects may not be so bad, but for some, they can be a problem. They range from insomnia, weight gain or loss, diarrhea, and low libido to name a few. Antidepressants can help you function and get back to things you enjoy. Your personality and who you are as an individual won’t change.

Studies are still conducted to learn how antidepressants affect the brain and how to achieve better results. Deciding to take medication for depression may not be easy, but it is a step in the right direction to control depression symptoms.

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