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What About the Risk of Suicide on Antidepressants?

Many people have heard about the suicide warnings that the Food and Drug Administration ordered antidepressant manufacturers to post on their package inserts. The package inserts note that children, adolescents, and young adults with major depression or other psychiatric disorder who take antidepressants may be at increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior, especially during the first month of treatment. They should be monitored carefully.

No increased risk has been seen in older adult patients. And if you are over the age of 65, you may actually have less risk of suicide when taking antidepressants.

Having suicidal thoughts while taking an antidepressant is a serious side effect. It needs the attention of your doctor as soon as possible. Please don’t try to deal with those feelings alone.

Remember, most people with depression get better. You may need to try a few different antidepressants to find the right one for you. And getting talk therapy at the same time is the most effective treatment for depression, studies show. Work closely with your doctor, and give your treatment time to succeed.

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