Depression: What Can I Do For Depression?
The first step is identifying the illness. Depression is more that just feeling sad for a few days. Depression means weeks of being so sad, you start having trouble working or going to school. You start having problems in relationships. Problems develop in just taking care of you.
People with depression have two types of symptoms. The first type is psychological. The second type is physical. Psychological symptoms are sadness, lack of desire for fun, hopelessness helplessness, despair, worthlessness, guilt, thoughts of death and dying. The physical symptoms are changes in appetite and changes in weight. Problems with sleeping develop. Usually individuals wake from sleep easily. Problems with concentration and cognition develop. Individuals become agitated or irritable. Problems dealing with stressors and making decisions.
That’s enough about symptoms. Once you see you or a loved one has depression help is crucial. See a mental health professional. Things can be done right away if you are depressed. One important thing is to start exercising everyday. Stop drinking alcohol or using non prescribed sleep aids. Start eating a healthy diet. That means lean meats, fresh chicken, fruits, vegetables and nuts. No sugar, salt or complex carbs. Complex carbs are anything from a bakery. You know cakes, cookies, candies, breads and processed foods. That’s what individuals can do for themselves. Then it might be helpful to see a psychotherapist. That’s where you sit and talk to someone. Seeing a psychiatrist is also helpful.
The psychiatrist makes a diagnosis of depression and can begin medication to treat depression. There are medications which can be effective without causing many side effects.
The medications antidepressants start working in a week or two and may take up to two months. Anti-depressants commonly used are Wellbutrin, Prozac, Zoloft, Lexapro, Paxil, Remeron, Effexor and Pristiq. There are also many other choices. The choice of antidepressants is one in which side affects play a key role. All antidepressants work about the same.
Wellbutrin is unique in that is causes no weight gain, no sexual dysfunction or drowsiness. Wellbutrin has no withdrawal syndrome and may help attention deficit disorder. Problems with it may cause is anxiety, headaches and problems sleeping. This trade off exists with all medication.
Lexapro is another good drug. Tolerated well but has issues with decrease in sexual drive and delayed orgasm. May have a withdrawal syndrome. Minimal changes in weight.
The above two are commonly used. The other top choices are Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil, Effexor and Pristiq. They all have good and bad.
Another issue to consider if you have tried one drug and failed on it you need another drug from a different class.
There are classes:
1.) SSRI- Lexapro, Prozac, Luvox, Paxil Zoloft
2.) SSNRI’s- Pristq, Effexor, Cymbalta, Savella
3.) MAOI’s- Nardil, Parnate
4.) Serzone, Deseryl
5.) Wellbutrin class
6.) Remeron class
Moving from class to class is critical and has risks and benefits.