Can Weight Gain Caused By Antidepressants Be Prevented
It may be possible to prevent weight gain that results from treatment with antidepressants.;
Some medications, as noted above, are less likely to cause weight gain, so switching to one of these medications may help some patients. Lowering the dose of the medication may also help.;
However, not all medications work the same way for each person, so it is important to stay on the medication that works best for you. Taking a;nutritional supplement that is designed to support a healthy metabolism and balanced brain chemistry;may also help.
What It Means For You
Before taking an antidepressant, make sure you’re familiar with the possible side effects as well as the proper method of going off of them. Know that you may need to try several drugs before finding the best one for you.
While you’re on the medication, stay vigilant for side effects, and weigh how significant they are versus how much the drug helps you.
You should involve your doctor in any decisions you make regarding antidepressant use. That said, you’re the only one who can decide whether the benefits of taking a medication outweigh the drawbacks.
How Does Anxiety Medication Work
Written by Casa Palmera Staff
Anxiety disorder can be very crippling, an obstacle to carrying out necessary everyday functions and leading a fulfilling life. While anxiety can be useful in helping us survive potential threats to our safety and well being, anxiety disorder takes it to the extreme. This type of anxiety occurs not only during times of perceived stress, but in other times when there typically would be nothing to fear. Whats worse is that if it is left untreated, anxiety disorder can worsen and become even more pervasive. In those cases, the struggle with anxiety disorder can be debilitating.
That is why it is critical to treat cases of anxiety disorder in order for patients to gain some semblance of a more normal life. One of the most common methods of treatment is the use of medication. It can be a valuable tool to help regain balance in life, either used on its own or in conjunction with therapy. Here is a closer look at how anxiety medication works in treating this disorder.
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How Fast Do Anxiety Meds Work
It depends on what type of medication you are prescribed. There are many different types of anxiety medications, and they all work differently.
Drugs in this category are taken daily and typically take 4 to 6 weeks for people to notice a difference. There are many different types of antidepressants, and they all work a little differently. Some work better for anxiety than others.
Benzodiazepines are taken for anxiety and panic attacks as needed. They;work rapidly . Benzodiazepines are associated with risk for abuse and dependence.
Antihistamines can be taken for anxiety and panic in the short term, as needed, and works rapidly. They are typically used in the treatment of allergies. Vistaril is an example of an antihistamine used for anxiety.;;
Beta-blockers, which treat;high blood pressure;and heart conditions, have been used help address physical symptoms of anxiety . Theyre;not associated with the risks for dependence and abuse seen in benzodiazepines. They are used off-label, which means theyre not approved for anxiety by the FDA.
Other medications sometimes used to treat anxiety buspirone, atypical antipsychotics, and anticonvulsants are also taken daily and typically take 4 to 6 weeks for an individual to notice a difference.
Questions To Ask Your Doctor
- How can I know if I have depression?
- Are there ways to treat depression that dont involve medicine?
- If I am depressed, should I also be talking to a mental health professional?
- Are there coupons I can use to help lower the cost of antidepressants?
- How long will it take to get the dosage right for my medication?
- Are there any special genetic tests I can take to see which antidepressant is right for me?
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Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors
SSRI drugs are the most commonly prescribed antidepressants and are often considered the first line of defense against depression. They increase your brain’s level of a neurotransmitter called serotonin. This neurotransmitter is associated with feeling happy and content. SSRI side effects tend to be mild, and depression symptoms improve significantly for about 60% of people with moderate to severe depression.
What Is Samhsas National Helpline
SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations. Callers can also order free publications and other information.
Also visit the online treatment locators.
If You Experience Depression
If you experience depression, you may:
- feel very down a lot of the time
- no longer enjoy the things you usually enjoy
- find it hard to talk to people about how you feel
- find it hard to look after yourself and carry out day-to-day tasks
- self-harm or experience suicidal feelings, especially if you have severe depression.
Taking antidepressants may help to lift your mood. This can help you feel more able to do things that dont feel possible while youre depressed. This may include using other types of support for your mental health. See our page on;treatments for depression to find other options which may help.
If you feel unable to keep yourself safe, it’s a mental health emergency.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence produces guidelines on best practice in healthcare. This includes guidelines for prescribing antidepressants for people with different levels of depression. These guidelines suggest the following:
Older Antidepressants: Tricyclics And Maois
These drugs were among the first to be used for depression. Although they’re effective, they can have serious side effects and can be especially dangerous in overdose. Nowadays, many doctors only turn to these drugs when newer — and better tolerated — medicines haven’t helped. Tricyclics and MAOIs might not be the best approach for someone who was just diagnosed. But they can sometimes be very helpful for people with treatment-resistant depression, or certain forms of depression .
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How Different Medications Work Against Depression
Many researchers believe that the benefits of antidepressants stem from how they affect certain brain circuits by modifying the neurotransmitter levels. Were talking here about serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine.
Different types of anti-depression medications seem to affect the level of these neurotransmitters in various ways. Lets see how they do it.
When To See A Doctor
If your depression symptoms return for more than a few days, it’s time to see your doctor. But even if you feel like your antidepressant isn’t working, it’s important to keep taking it until your doctor advises otherwise. You may need a dosage increase or a slow tapering off process. With many antidepressant medications, stopping their use too quickly can cause withdrawal effects such as:
- Greater anxiety
- Suicidal thoughts
Early warning signs of breakthrough depression are the symptoms you typically experience when an episode of depression is coming on, says Nestadt. Depression symptoms vary from person to person, but signs include:
- Low mood
- Changes in sleep or appetite
- Loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities
If your symptoms return, don’t worry adjusting the dose or switching to another antidepressant often solves the problem.
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What Should You Consider When Deciding Whether Or Not To Take Antidepressants
Whether antidepressants are an option will depend on things like the severity of the symptoms. Other aspects can also play a role in the decision:
- Are you going to psychotherapy or are you planning to?
- Have you taken antidepressants before and did they help?
- How bad do you think the potential side effects are compared to the possible benefits?
The question of side effects can also be key when choosing which drug to take: Some people might be more keen to avoid digestion problems. Others might prefer to avoid dizziness, decreased sex drive or erection problems.
It only makes sense to use antidepressants if the is correct. Specialists believe that some people are prescribed antidepressants unnecessarily. The fact that a lot more people take antidepressants nowadays suggests that this is true. They are sometimes already prescribed for milder symptoms, even though it’s not clear whether they help in mild .
But it’s still important to make sure that severe is diagnosed and treated properly. Antidepressants can be helpful here, and for some people may be the only way that they can get back into a daily routine or start going to psychotherapy.
Tricyclic Antidepressants Side Effects
Tricyclic antidepressants are a class of antidepressant associated with sedation, dry mouth, blurred vision, constipation, urinary retention, and increased pressure in the eye. They are also associated with hypertension, abnormalheart rhythms, anxiety, insomnia, seizures, headache, rash, nausea, and vomiting, abdominal cramps, weight loss, and sexual dysfunction. Tricyclic antidepressants rarely cause liver failure.
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Antidepressants Compared To Therapy
A 2015 review by University of North Carolina Evidence-based Practice Center compared second-generation antidepressants to cognitive behavioral therapy . They found similar symptomatic relief for both groups. While CBT has much fewer side effects than SSRIs, it has a few disadvantages as well, including:
- High cost, which may not be covered by insurance
- The task of finding a therapist, and particularly the right therapist, can be difficult; plus, therapy is time-consuming.
Its no surprise, then, that most people are prescribed medication, which takes seconds every day, can be inexpensive and is covered by most insurance plans.
Is Brand Name Better
Generic Is the Same, Usually
The US Food and Drug Administration says that the safety, strength, and quality of generic drugs are equal to those of brand-name drugs. However, in practical experience, some people notice that they do not experience the same benefits from a generic drug compared to the brand-name version. Results of some studies suggest generic medications may be absorbed and used by the body slightly differently than brand-name drugs. If you notice a generic medicine is not working as well as a brand-name medicine did for you, tell your physician.
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If Your Antidepressant Works Immediately
If your antidepressant works right away within the first couple days that you take it, you may be on a fast-acting medication like Paxil or Effexor. ;These medications tend to work quickly, but end up reaching a plateau within a few months. ;Following this plateau you may experience a gradual poop out. ;In other words, the medication will eventually stop working. ;Anyways, it is important to realize that general practitioners and standard medical doctors are fairly uneducated when it comes to mental health medications. ;Most just follow the literature instead of following peoples actual experiences. ;This is unfortunate because when a drug kicks in right away, the patient may not know what to expect.
It is more realistic for doctors and psychiatrists to say that a medication should reach its peak effectiveness within 4 to 8 weeks not that it takes that long to work. ;Im sure some doctors and psychiatrists are up to date on these medications and how their patients have been affected. ;Just keep in mind that if your medication works right away, its not all in your head and you may not be experiencing any type of placebo that just shows you how powerful antidepressants can be.
Reuptake Inhibitors: Ssris Snris And Ndris
Some of the most commonly prescribed antidepressants are called reuptake inhibitors. What’s reuptake? It’s the process in which neurotransmitters are naturally reabsorbed back into nerve cells in the brain after they are released to send messages between nerve cells. A reuptake inhibitor prevents this from happening. Instead of getting reabsorbed, the neurotransmitter stays — at least temporarily — in the gap between the nerves, called the synapse.
What’s the benefit? The basic theory goes like this: keeping levels of the neurotransmitters higher could improve communication between the nerve cells — and that can strengthen circuits in the brain which regulate mood.
Different kinds of reuptake inhibitors target different neurotransmitters. There are three types:
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How Long Will You Have To Take Antidepressants
Usually, these drugs must be taken regularly for at least 4 to 8 weeks before their full benefit takes effect. You are monitored closely during this time to detect the development of side effects and to determine the effectiveness of treatment.
In order to prevent a relapse of depression, medicines are generally prescribed for 6 to 12 months after a first-time depression. When you and your provider determine that you are better, you should expect to continue the medication for at least 4 to 6 additional months. After this, your provider may gradually taper you off your medicine.
Some Cough Medications Dont Mix With Depression Meds
One of the reasons why MAOIs are prescribed much less these days is that they have adverse reactions to a number of other common drugs. If an;MAO inhibitor is mixed with drugs;like Alka-Seltzer and Dayquil, for example, the user will find that they get extremely drowsy very quickly. This can be particularly dangerous if the user is driving or needs to operate heavy machinery.;SSRIs, as well, can have negative interactions with over-the-counter cough and cold medications. Sertraline and citalopram, for example, dont mix with anti-inflammatory medications. While the combination may not kill you, mixing Lexapro,
Prozac or Zoloft with aspirin can take a pretty serious toll on your liver. Because the liver is the place where SSRIs are processed, throwing anti-inflammatory drugs into the mix can cause it to work far harder than it should be. Over time, this can lead to liver damage, disease, and internal bleeding.
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How To Take Antidepressants
Antidepressants are usually taken every day. It can take 1 or even 2 months to see the full results. You may need to try different kinds or amounts to find the antidepressant that works best for you.
Your doctor will let you know how long to take your antidepressant. If this is the first time you have been treated for depression, you will probably continue to take this medicine for at least 6 months after you begin to feel better. If this is the second time youve been depressed, you might keep taking the medicine for at least a year.;Depression;that comes back a third time may require you to continue taking an antidepressant for a longer time.
You can get unwanted side effects if you stop taking your antidepressant suddenly. If you want to stop taking your medicine, talk to your doctor first. He or she can try to help you avoid these side effects.
Combination Treatment Is Best
Results of several studies suggest that a combination of antidepressant medication with psychotherapy is the most effective treatment for depression. Mental illness is serious. It is important to take depression medication as directed and to see a therapist regularly. Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. Millions of people suffer from depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders. People should feel comfortable seeking help for mental health disorders just as they would for other organic medical conditions like heart disease or diabetes. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps monitor and change unwanted thoughts and behaviors. Interpersonal therapy helps patients have better and more effective relationships with others.
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How Do Mao Inhibitor Antidepressants Work
Monoamine oxidase inhibitor antidepressants are medications prescribed to treat depression. MAO inhibitors improve mood by increasing the concentration of chemical substances released by nerve cells in the brain, which include dopamine, serotonin, epinephrine, and norepinephrine.
Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that regulate physiological functions such as breathing, heart rate, and digestion, and are also responsible for learning, memory, sleep, emotions, and behavior. Neurotransmitters are normally broken down and reabsorbed by the neurons after the transmission of neural signals.
Monoamine oxidase is an enzyme that is responsible for the breakdown of neurotransmitters. MAO inhibitors block the activity of monoamine oxidase, which results in an increase in neurotransmitter levels in the brain.
How Well Can Antidepressants Prevent Relapses
Antidepressants are usually taken for one to two years, and sometimes longer, to prevent relapses. Relapse prevention may be a good idea for people who
- have already had several relapses,
- absolutely want to avoid a relapse, or
- have chronic .
Studies involving adults have shown that taking commonly used antidepressants such as TCAs, SSRIs or SNRIs can lower the risk of relapses, but can’t completely prevent them:
- Without preventive treatment: About 50 out of 100 people who took a placebo had a relapse within one to two years.
- With preventive treatment: About 23 out of 100 people who took an antidepressant had a relapse within one to two years.
In other words, taking an antidepressant over a long period of time successfully prevented a relapse in an average of 27 out of 100 people.
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Antidepressants And Other Medicines
Antidepressants can have an effect on many other medicines. If youre taking an antidepressant, tell your doctor about all other medicines you take, including over-the-counter medicines and herbal health products . He or she can let you know if your regular medicines may cause problems when combined with an antidepressant.
How Do Antidepressant Medications Help
Antidepressant medications help reduce the symptoms of depression, such as: feeling extremely sad for no clear reason; loss of interest or pleasure in things you usually enjoy; sleeping too much or too little; feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt or worry, and difficulty in thinking, making decisions or concentration. Antidepressants may also be helpful in the treatment of anxiety-related disorders, such as generalised anxiety disorder and eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, social phobia, and post-traumatic stress disorder.Discuss with your doctor what the best treatment for your symptoms is likely to be, any side-effects as well as benefits of treatments, and other factors such as foods which may need to be avoided.
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