Depression - Medicines
Antidepressant medicines may improve or completely relieve the symptoms of depression. Whether you need to take medicine depends on your symptoms. You and your doctor can decide if you need medicine and which medicine is right for you.
Antidepressant medicines work in different ways. No antidepressant works better than another, but different ones work better or worse for different people. The side effects of antidepressant medicines are different and may lead you to choose one instead of another.
You may have to try different medicines or take more than one to help your symptoms. Most people find a medicine that works within a few tries. Other people take longer to find the right one and may need to take the antidepressant and another type of medicine, such as an antiseizure, mood stabilizer, antipsychotic, or antianxiety medicine.
Together you and your doctor will decide if you need medicine, what things you'll need to think about if you need medicine, and which medicine is right for you.
Depression: Should I Take an Antidepressant?
Antidepressant medicines include:
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), such as fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline (Zoloft).
Tricyclic and tetracyclic antidepressants, such as doxepin (Sinequan) and nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor).
Other antidepressants, such as bupropion (Wellbutrin, Wellbutrin SR), mirtazapine (Remeron), trazodone, and venlafaxine (Effexor, Effexor XR).
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine sulfate (Nardil), and selegiline (Emsam).
Side effects and safety
Antidepressant medicines have side effects. You may notice the side effects before you notice that the medicine is helping you. Side effects vary depending on the medicine you take.
People who are taking medicines for other health problems need to know about medicine interactions. Talk with your doctor about the best way to track whether a combination of medicines is harming you. People who are taking a lot of medicines also are more likely to have harmful side effects.
Depression: Dealing With Medicine Side Effects
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