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missb89 09-19-2010 01:20 PM

Who has taken antidepressants?
 
I am starting to think that they may be beneficial for me. I am scared though, as I don't want to feel that I am dependent on a pill just for my brain to function normally. I am scared of adverse side-effects as well. For those of you who have taken them, did they help? Are they something you have to take forever after starting, or can you stop, and still be happy? Any other input about them would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, :grouphug:
Sarah

LexieCat 09-19-2010 01:57 PM

I've never taken them, myself (other than Wellbutrin when I tried to quit smoking), but we went through all KINDS of meds with my older son. I've read a lot of experiences with antidepressants.

The most important thing to know, IMO, is that getting the right medication is almost a complete crapshoot. The same med that is a literal lifesaver for one person might cause another person to have seizures or to become suicidal. The last doctor my son went to used neurobiofeedback that was supposed to suggest what medication might be effective based upon EEG monitoring that showed where various brain activity was or was not occuring, which in turn suggested which medications might be effective. I can't vouch for whether it's any more effective than the "dartboard" approach most doctors seem to use--where they try one, see if it works, if not, try another in a different "family".

It's worth discussing with a QUALIFIED doctor--I wouldn't trust a GP to be prescribing them for ME. I'd want an experienced doctor who will very carefully monitor your initial reactions to the medication, alert for any symptoms of problems resulting from the medication itself.

veryregretful 09-19-2010 01:59 PM

I just started taking Zoloft last week. I feel the anxiety I'm feeling and sadness because my AH has been gone (well, even before that) I decided I needed something to help me function and not dwell and wallow in my self pity.

I know it's probably mind of matter right now but I've only taken them a week and feel some anxiety has lifted on some level and feel I'm getting out of my rut. I guess they say it usually takes a few weeks for them to be effective. I'm hoping that with taking them it will make the next few months more manageable. I don't want to take them the rest of my life so I'm planning on stopping them sometime. Don't know when.

I've heard people take them to help them cope with what's going on in their life at the moment and then they get off them. 6 months, a year. They have said they were fine when they stopped taking them. They just needed help during a hard time in their life.

I think my anxiety and depression right now is situational. I've always wanted to do things and never felt depressed. I'm hoping that during my transition with my AH gone and getting used to him being gone the zoloft will help me function and not be depressed and so anxious.

I'm nervous about taking them but to me, it's worth a shot. Maybe with being on them my future won't seem so bleak as it is now.

Learn2Live 09-19-2010 02:07 PM

Antidepressants literally changed my life. They helped me to maintain emotional stability, which helped me to be able to see and understand things more clearly, and to make better decisions for my life.

Only a physician can determine whether or not you have depression. You should know that there are different classes of antidepressants and some types may not be effective and some you may not be able to tolerate. Absolutely, there is short-term treatment as well as long-term but you should never discontinue a medication without direct supervision by your doctor.

Good Lord, do I sound like a pharmaceutical commercial? Comes from reading so many Patient Inserts that come with prescriptions! LOL

bookwyrm 09-19-2010 03:26 PM

Anti-depressants lifted the fog of depression, helped me get out of bed in the morning and enabled me to start making decisions for my life. I've been on different types with different doses and it did take a while before we found one that worked.

Please go see your doctor and get assessed. They've helped me keep putting one foot in front of the other when everything felt so overwhelming!

fourmaggie 09-19-2010 03:55 PM

after my husband died and then taking care of the kids...I slowly started to decline...
anxiety started and then BOOM a big panic attack, thank god for my mom...I have been taking CELEX for 4 years now...and thank god, what a difference...I FEEL NORMAL...and not one side effect...

It started with my balance going off, i would fall and stuff, doctor was monitoring me...he knew...just wanted to make sure...

HealingWillCome 09-19-2010 04:03 PM

I had all the same questions you're asking when I felt like I wasn't going to be able to get through another day without having a nervous breakdown or being able to uncurl from a fetal postion just to get out of bed and face the world.

I made a choice to wait on the meds, to see if I could get through the worst of my depression without trying anything. People kept recommending I try something, but I just didn't want to. I'm glad I waited. The fog has finally lifted for me (it's been 6 months since my break up). What got me through it was a lot of support from family and friends, counseling, SR, prayer, going NC, learning about addiction and codependency, facing my abandonment issues, staying busy, exercising, my job, doing things with my kids, home improvement projects...

You have a baby to care for which changes the equation (maybe there is some post-partum depression adding to the difficulties), and if I remember right, don't you live in your parents' home with a difficult father? Sorry if I'm getting that wrong...but what I'm trying to say is your situation is unique to you. Some people truly need anti-depressants, so it really is a decision to be made with an experienced doctor. I hope you find the best answer for you! Hugs to you!

missb89 09-19-2010 04:03 PM

Thank you for the responses. I don't know if I would be able to go to a doctor who specializes in this, seeing as how I am on state aid I think they want me to always go to my GP, but I'm not sure. I do believe that I need them, as I think I have been in a depression for the past few years and just hadn't realized it because I was so emeshed in it. Now I realize that my lack of desire to do much of anything is definitely not normal, and I am wanting to change that. I would not be suprised if it was truly a chemical inbalance because as I have said I have done plenty of drugs in my past, including ecstacy which I know is VERY harmful for the seratonin receptors in the brain.

I also have panic attacks some times, mostly when I am driving on the interstate. I get terrified and think I am going to die, and get a strong urge to pull over to the side of the road. I am starting school in March and it is a 40 minute commute through the busy highways of St. Louis, so I am going to have to conquer that fear as soon as possible. I don't want my travel every day to be such a battle. I need to be a better role model for my young daughter. I do take care of her very well, but I don't do all the things that I should to take care of myself at all.

I don't know how much of my depression is situational, as I do feel that I would feel much better if I wasn't living in the chaos of a house with an active alcoholic in it. These are all things I guess I should discuss with a therapist.

Babyblue 09-19-2010 04:39 PM

I have to take them for long periods in my life. Meds literally saved my life. The trick is to find a doctor who is knowledgeable in the differences in each med. GP's in my experience have a very limited knowledge on how to manage those meds in their patients. But they will generally start you on a low dose. You can get off of them. I have but then a death in the family occurred and I found myself feeling those dark thoughts again so I wasted no time in starting back up. It isn't the cure all though, meds with therapy work best.

Oh and panic attacks and depression go hand in hand. I had horrible ones. In your case, I would definately suggest looking into medication. Only those who get them really understand how awful they feel. Like I said, you most likely will be able to get off meds, many people do. You may be like me and need them when huge stressors start taking over your life.

good luck

Learn2Live 09-19-2010 05:48 PM

You can just call the GP and ask if you need to make an appointment with him or her to get a psych referral. It is probably covered under the state plan.

Jazzman 09-19-2010 06:30 PM

I was diagnosed with depression when my first marriage was falling apart, (well duh) and was prescribed wellbutrin. That was when I realized that my crappy marriage was bad for my health and instead of taking ADs I gave up on saving my crappy marriage. I felt much better after letting go of that crappy marriage. Years later during a particularly stressful time at home and work, during a routine physical I mentioned in passing the stress I was under and my GP wrote out a prescription for something without batting an eye, I forget what it was. I never filled that perp and got another job instead. The next time I was depressed was when my second marriage was falling apart. I didn't even bother getting a perp I would never fill. I knew what I had to do so I let my marriage go instead. In my case I didn't need them but they did serve the purpose of being a wake up call that I need to point my a$$ in healthier direction.

missb89 09-19-2010 07:49 PM

I think I am going to try some natural remedies first, maybe a multivitamin, some 5-htp and making sure I get some exercise. I think that my depression is probably made worse because I don't make myself do anything. I do not make myself exercise, I do not make myself clean, I do not make myself eat properly, I do not do the normal things that I need to force myself to do, even if I don't feel like it. Also, regularly attending Al-anon, church, get some more self-help books, and hopefully finding a state appointed counselor.

If after all of that, things still aren't improving, then I will look into the meds. I have just been browing about them online and the information I got really discouraged me on them. So many people have to try a million different ones until they find one that remotely helps. The bad side effects, withdrawals, suicidal thoughts. I think if I can help myself naturally I will try. I do believe a lot of it is situational considering the bad breakup, living with my AF, being overweight and a single mother where my daughter's father has never even met her. We will see what happens.

blackstrat6 09-19-2010 08:00 PM

More power on the natural way, thats where i go first but in your case sometimes there is more going on than we realize that can make us feel down. A doctor visit will give you a much clearer picture and he/she can also let you know what kind of interactions and side effects to look for. In my experience sitiuational depression will possibly mean temporary meds if you and your doc decide on that path. But I am not a doctor.
I have taken anti-dep and stabilizers for years but its for another reason and EVERYBODY is different.

I think I am saying even if just for your for peace of mind, see your doctor and go from there.

wicked 09-19-2010 08:20 PM


Originally Posted by blackstrat6 (Post 2713335)
More power on the natural way, thats where i go first but in your case sometimes there is more going on than we realize that can make us feel down. A doctor visit will give you a much clearer picture and he/she can also let you know what kind of interactions and side effects to look for. In my experience sitiuational depression will possibly mean temporary meds if you and your doc decide on that path. But I am not a doctor.
I have taken anti-dep and stabilizers for years but its for another reason and EVERYBODY is different.

I think I am saying even if just for your for peace of mind, see your doctor and go from there.

Please see your GP, get a referral to psychiatrist, it will be available through the state. Effexor saved me. Prozac worked first for many years.
I have a major depressive disorder, chronic, treatment resistant, so, if I can be helped, anyone can.
:c031:

missb89 09-19-2010 08:28 PM

My only issue is that I feel like the majority of doctors are prescription happy and are ready to write a script without putting hardly any consideration into it. I feel like even if I may not need to take meds, I would be prescribed them anyways for the doctors own gain. This is just a personal opinion, and I have been researching on cchr.org and am becoming kind of discouraged.

blackstrat6 09-19-2010 08:34 PM

Missb89, I am sure there are those kind of doctors out there but not all of them are like that. Myself, I have gotten really good care from several doctors through the years and I know they aren't pushing rx's because I get them from the drug companies on rx plans.
My Doctors make no money on my rx's.
I would never tell anyone to go on meds or not to go on meds, I am just giving you my thoughts.
Hugs hang in there it will get better!

chicory 09-19-2010 08:37 PM

Missb89,
I took wellbutrin for anxiety , i had road anxiety, too. i was afraid of driving over bridges. that came on during my last marriage, and the stress of the things happening made me have panic while driving.
the wellbutrin helped me so much, and it works for depression, too, if i remember right. i took it for about 3 years, and then stopped . and no bad side affects for me either.

i took antidepressants in the past, and got off them after short periods of time.
the wellbutrin was really effective for me.

You could do some research, if you cant get a specialist. being informed might ease any worries, and being informed is always a good idea.

good luck , and good for you, for taking care of your needs. that road anxiety is no fun, and mine went away, and even tho i dont take the wellbutrin now, i am fine.

hugs,
chicory

missb89 09-19-2010 08:49 PM

Thank ya'll. I value everyone's opinions! :thanks I have been doing some research and have found a supplement called Amoryn, which contains a derivitive of St. John's wort and 5-htp. Both have been proven very effective in treating depression. The reviews are wonderful, so I think I shall try this first before going on the rx route. I am going to read about it some more just to make sure, but it sounds like a great thing.

MissFixit 09-20-2010 06:08 AM

Situational depresion is very real and meds help many people.

I tried to get through it without drugs for the first 2 months after my exA left. I was a bumbling mess who had lapses of uncontrollable crying. I literally could not control my crying. I started on Citalopram for depression and Lorezapam for the crying spells (later I found out I was having panic attacks). After several months I switched to Lexapro for depression. The Citalopram sent me into a zombie like state. I took it for about 11 months and then didn't need it anymore. I have been off it since last holiday season.

I still have a bottle of Lorazepam for panic attacks, but luckily have not had to use it since last winter.

Please see your doctor. When this type of upset happens our bodies become really out of whack. It is not something we can control. Some might tough it out, but others need help. Nothing wrong with that.

If you have no health insurance to pay for a psychiatrist, then try the county mental health clinic. Most counties have one and they usually have someone on staff to prescribe and manage meds.

XO


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