We all suffer from the occasional bad day. No matter how happy and energetic everyone is around you, you simply do not have the energy and enthusiasm to match. It is a normal part of life we all have felt. However, it can be an indicator of a larger issue if the feeling does not subside. Depression is a debilitating condition that can affect all aspects of your daily life.
Your physician may diagnose you with depression and develop a treatment plan with medication. Many medications have been shown to be effective against depression. I have seen many pharmacy patients take these medications and find at least some level of relief. Many patients are only on depression medications for a short period of time, others take them consistently as part of a long-term treatment plan. Educating yourself on the common medications used to treat depression can help you get a leg up on dealing with depression.
First, you will want to know how many of these medications work in your body:
Two substances in your body (more specifically in your brain) very important to your mood and motivation are serotonin and norepinephrine. For some people, these two chemicals have reduced activity at nerve sites in the brain. Some medications, called Serotonin-Specific Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) and Serotonin-Specific Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SSNRI) can help to increase the amount of serotonin and norepinephrine for healthy brain function. These medications have become a very popular treatment for depression.
These medications are usually taken once daily and can produce an anti-depressant effect in patients within 2-4 weeks. Unfortunately, many of the medication side effects become apparent after the first few weeks of taking the medication. The side effects can decrease after some time.
Common side effects include:
The bottom line on depression medications is they can indeed help some individuals. The unbalanced chemistry in the brain can be augmented with these medications, resulting in increased mood. Come up to Dougherty’s Pharmacy for specific questions regarding these medications including prescription medication interactions and traditional, herbal supplements found useful for treating depression. Our team of health care providers and pharmacists will aid you on the path to optimal mental and physical health!