Major depressive disorder, also known as depression, is characterized by symptoms like loss of interest, low energy, and feelings of guilt or helplessness that have persisted for longer than 2 weeks. Antidepressants are frequently used to treat it in conjunction with talk therapy. If you or a loved one suffers from depression, you may have considered taking medication. But which antidepressants are the most efficient given the wide range of options? Here, we’ll talk about the best medicine for depression in pakistan and how you and your doctor can pick the one that’s right for you.
- Antidepressants work to treat depression signs and symptoms but they may cause some side effects.
- The most frequently prescribed antidepressants are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
- Bupropion (Wellbutrin) and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) are also frequently prescribed.
- Changing to a different type of antidepressant as per your doctor’s advice may help alleviate any side effects you are experiencing.
What is the best Medicine for Depression?
Antidepressants aid in reducing the signs and symptoms of anxiety and depression. They function by reversing chemical imbalances in the brain’s neurotransmitters. These drugs help to regulate behavioral and emotional changes.
Numerous antidepressants have been compared in studies over the years. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) concluded after reviewing the available research that no antidepressant was more effective than others at treating depression.
Instead, antidepressants are typically prescribed based on things like their costs, side effects, and whether you’ve previously had success with a particular drug.
A selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor or a serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor will typically be the first medication taken. Compared to other antidepressants, these drugs are typically better tolerated.
What are the different types of Medicine for Depression?
One of the following five categories of drugs includes antidepressants:
- Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)
- Atypical antidepressants
- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
- Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
We’ll go over a few well-known antidepressants and their drug classes. For more information on your specific medication, you may consult a psychiatrist too.
1. Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)
According to studies, there are three well-known SNRIs that are FDA-approved to treat depression:
- Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq)
- Duloxetine (Cymbalta)
- Venlafaxine (Effexor)
They are thought to function by increasing levels of serotonin and norepinephrine. Norepinephrine promotes focus and alertness. These drugs may take two weeks to start working and four to eight weeks to properly reduce the signs and symptoms of depression.
Side Effects of SNRIs
The side effects of SNRIs include;
- Dry month
- Excessive sweating
2. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
The five well-known, FDA-approved SSRIs used to treat depression are;
- Citalopram (Celexa)
- Escitalopram (Lexapro)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Paroxetine (Paxil)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
When treating depression, SSRIs are regarded as the “first-choice” medication.
Serotonin is a hormone that aids in mood regulation, and it is thought that these medications function by increasing serotonin levels in the brain.
It usually takes them about 2 weeks to start working and 4 to 8 weeks to feel their full effects, even though they are effective for treating depression.
Side Effects of SSRIs
The side effects of SSRIs include;
- Feeling agitated
- Feeling or being sick
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- Blurred vision
- Dry mouth
3. Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)
TCAs come in a variety of forms, but four are most frequently employed:
- Desipramine (Norpramin)
- Nortriptyline (Pamelor)
Depression may be treated with TCAs by increasing serotonin and norepinephrine levels in the brain.
According to some studies, for some people with severe depression, they might be more effective. However, they also run a higher risk of negative side effects.
Healthcare providers frequently prescribe them after you’ve tried other medications first because they aren’t as well-tolerated as previously listed antidepressants.
Side Effects of TCAs
The side effects of TCAs include;
- Dry mouth
- Slight blurring of vision
- Problems passing urine
- Weight gain
- Excessive sweating
4. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
The following MAOIs have FDA approval for treating depression:
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan)
- Phenelzine (Nardil)
- Selegiline patches (Emsam)
- Tranylcypromine (Parnate)
MAOIs assist in increasing levels of norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin by inhibiting the protein monoamine oxidase which is responsible for reducing the level of these chemicals in the brain.
Alert – Due to their potential for serious side effects, the need for dietary restrictions, and numerous drug interactions, MAOIs are typically not advised for the majority of people with depression.
Tidbit – The term “treatment-resistant depression” refers to depression that does not get better with other antidepressants, but studies have shown that MAOIs can be helpful in this case.
Side Effects of MAOIs
The side effects of MAOIs include;
- Dry mouth
- Nausea, diarrhea, or constipation
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Skin reaction at the patch site
5. Atypical antidepressants
Antidepressants that don’t fall under other medication classes are included in this group. Five notable atypical antidepressants that are frequently prescribed are:
- Bupropion (Wellbutrin)
- Bupropion/dextromethorphan (Auvelity)
- Esketamine (Spravato)
- Mirtazapine (Remeron)
- Trazodone (Desyrel)
It’s unclear exactly how some of these antidepressants function. SSRIs and SNRIs are comparable in effectiveness to bupropion and mirtazapine.
According to American Psychiatric Guidelines, both are regarded as first-choice options for treating depression. However, if a person has both depression and insomnia, trazodone might be a better option.
Side Effects of Atypical antidepressants
The side effects of atypical antidepressants include;
- Dry mouth
Which class of antidepressants is the most commonly prescribed?
The most frequently prescribed class of antidepressants is SSRIs, as they are effective, well-tolerated antidepressants with fewer side effects.
SSRIs are typically less expensive and for similar reasons, SNRIs and bupropion are also popular options
A healthcare professional’s choice of antidepressant for you may depend on a number of factors.
These include factors like past success with an antidepressant, potential additional medical conditions, and side effects you’re worried about.
It’s always a good idea to start with an antidepressant if you’ve used one successfully in the past. A medication that has previously produced positive results is more likely to do so for you.
Healthcare professionals frequently consider the likelihood of side effects when selecting a medication if you have never taken medication for depression before.
As a result, it’s crucial that you consult a psychiatrist before using any antidepressants.
1- What is a happy pill for depression?
Prozac also referred to as fluoxetine, was the first “happy pill.” This drug was the first of its kind to be widely prescribed and marketed, having received approval for use in 1987.
2- Can antidepressants make you more depressed?
There is no evidence that taking an antidepressant will make your depression worse. However, it can have negative effects that are strikingly similar to depression. Antidepressants may make you feel tired, impair your ability to concentrate and alter your sleep and appetite patterns.
3- How do you know if you need antidepressants?
Your doctor may prescribe you antidepressants if your depression or anxiety has not improved with time and psychotherapy. Especially if your symptoms are getting worse.