Recognizing the dangers of anti-depressant drugs
According to the FDA several recent scientific publications suggest the possibility of an increased risk of suicidal behavior for people who are being treated with antidepressant medications. This concern lead the FDA to mandate black box warning labels on all antidepressant drugs disclosing the increased risks of suicidal thinking and behavior, known as suicidality. It has now very important to begin recognizing the dangers of anti-depressant drugs.
The purpose of SSRI drugs is to prevent serotonin from being reabsorbed. Serotonin, also known as the “happy drug”, is thought to be contrived of chemicals that our body creates to keep our spirits up. One of the major problems with the use of SSRI drugs is that they can result in serotonin syndrome. This syndrome is caused by over stimulation of the neurons associated with serotonin, which can lead to changes in mental status, restlessness, abnormal body movement, tremors, high fevers, and agitation which may lead to suicide.
SSRI drugs have gone through tedious testing under the care of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); however, the testing of new drugs is not done by the FDA, it is actually the pharmaceutical company that supports, funds, and carries out the drugs testing. The FDA relies on the pharmaceutical company's validity of research, which then results in an approval by the FDA.
Recognizing the dangers of anti-depressant drugs can be important for those taking such medications. Some side effects can include, nausea, constipation or diarrhea, heart palpitations, loss of appetite, loss or gain of weight, memory impairment, blurred vision, headaches, confusion, burning and tingling in extremities, muscle twitching, dry mouth, dizzy, chills, fatigue, mood swings, anxiety, sexual dysfunction, impulsive behaviors, suicidal thoughts and completed suicide.
There is much debate on the placebo effect and antidepressants. Through a Freedom of Information Act request, two psychologists obtained 47 studies used by the FDA for approval of the six antidepressants prescribed most widely. Overall, antidepressant pills worked only 18% better than placebos.
It is important that people considering a medication approach to treating symptoms of depression to do research before deciding to take a certain medication and recognizing the dangers of anti-depressant drugs. Patients should have a list of questions to ask their doctors before agreeing to medications. More and more people are recognizing alternative treatments for mild to moderate depression can be helpful and do not carry high risk factors or side effects.
SSRI’s can be good for some people. Many have reported “gaining their lives back again” after being on SSRI’s such as Celexa, Lexapro, Paxil, Prozac and Zoloft. What is important to remember is people considering a medical approach to their depression should pay attention to the dangers of anti-depressant drugs.