Today, there are three main types of depression pills. They are tricyclics, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. TCAs (tricyclics) include such depression pills as imipramine (Tofranil®), clomipramine (Anafranil®) and amitriptyline (Elavil®). This type of antidepressants is the oldest one. MAOLs (monoamine oxidase inhibitors) are rarely used today, because they have severe drug side effect. Health professionals prefer to prescribe other antidepressants. Moreover MAOLs taking requires a rigid diet. SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) are the most popular depression pills today. They increase levels of a mood-related neurotransmitter called serotonin. Fluoxetin (Prozac®) produced in 1988 was the first SSRI. After it such antidepressants as paroxetine (Paxil®), escitalopram (Lexapro®), fluvoxamine (Luvox®), sertraline (Zoloft®), citalopram (Celexa®) and many other depression pills were introduced.
In these latter days, lots of new and safer antidepressants appeared at the market. In any case, it is better to know all pros and cons of their use, before taking them.
Depression pills side effects
As TCAs cause such side effects as bladder problems, dryness of the mouth, retention of feces, drowsiness and dizziness, blurred vision and sexual dysfunction, they are rarely prescribed. Of course, SSRI depression pills are not absolutely safe, but the risk experience their side effects are much lower. Sexual dysfunction and weight gain may be caused by SSRIs.
Depression pills are aimed to relieve depression symptoms. Most antidepressants slow down removal of neurotransmitters from the brain and help to restore its chemical balance. For example, norepinephrine and serotonin are classified as neurotransmitters. These chemicals are responsible for normal functioning of the brain and they control mood. They are also responsible for such functions as eating, drinking, thinking, pain and sleep. There are various types of antidepressants and all of them are effective, but some of them work better in case of certain depression forms. For example, stimulating pills will suit better for a patient who is withdrawn, and depression pills that calm down will suit the agitated patient more.
Use of antidepressants
Depression pills not only reduce symptoms of depression, but help people to recover from this mental disorder. This is not a panacea and the pills should be taken only, if they were prescribed by the doctor. As neurotransmitters are involved in eating, pain, drinking, sleep and drugs, depression pills can be prescribed in case of eating disorders, headache, bed-wetting, etc.
Antidepressants are usually taken during 4 or 6 months. In any case, duration of medication is determined by the doctor.
Before starting taking them, you have to read not only about their benefits, but their side effects, as well. Do not wait, you will be better in a day or two, after you began taking depression pills. Do not interrupt the treatment course, if you do not want undesired health problems. Such symptoms as headache, nausea and problems with sleep can occur, if you stopped antidepressants taking suddenly. Depression pills must be taken regularly. Perhaps, you will need months to achieve desired effect.
In any case, consult the health professional, before starting or stopping depression pills.
Interaction of depression pills with other drugs
When taken together with other drugs, antidepressants may cause serious health problems. That is why, before starting to take depression pills, tell your doctor what drugs you are taking. Do not forget to mention herbal preparations and drugs available without a prescription. As the following medicines may cause severe complications, avoid taking them together with depression pills. They are: lithium, cocaine, ecstasy, hypericum, dextromethorphan, buspirone, diethylproprion, selegiline, anti-epileptics (Teril, Tegretol and Carbium), tryptophan, analgesics (tramadol, pethidine, pentazocine and fentanyl), appetite suppressants (e.g., fenfluramine, phentermine).
Natural alternatives of depression pills
A lot of people prefer to take natural alternatives of antidepressants, because of their price and in order to avoid side effects. Of course, some natural depression supplements work very well and have fewer s/e than antidepressants. However, if you decided to try the natural depression supplements, choose only high-quality and proven ones.