Do You Really Need to be On Anti-Depressants?

“Wife just left you? Daughter has run off with a rock musician? Is life just one big bummer and you feel like ending it all?” These words to an old Cheech and Chong track may be somewhat humorous in context, but dealing with depression is no laughing matter. In fact, clinical depression can be a very serious condition and those suffering from depression may find anti-depressants are the only way to deal with the problem.

Unfortunately, many doctors are suggesting these pills are being over-prescribed, being offered to those who do not need them. Since many point out the negative side-effects caused by the drugs often prescribed for depression, it is important you realize these pills are not the only option. Before you take the plunge and accept your clinical diagnosis, you might want to see if there are other ways to approach the issue.

Side Effects of Anti-Depressants

One of the biggest issues people have with anti-depressants are the many side-effects associated with them. It is important to remember depression is caused by an imbalance in the chemicals your brain naturally produce. These drugs work by trying to correct the imbalances by imitating the natural chemicals or causing the brain to produce more of them. Unfortunately, this can also lead to a dependency, which makes it difficult to stop taking the drugs.

In addition to this, there are various side effects related to the different types of anti-depressants. Somewhat “normal” conditions like diarrhea and nausea are common issues. It goes much deeper than this though, with many causing sexual issues, sleep problems, insomnia, weight gain, blurred vision, and more. Sometimes, they even report a complete change in your personality.

Horror Stories of Depression

Of course, if the drugs work, they are definitely worth it. With the way depression is approached today, many do not realize there is a big difference between clinical depression and just “feeling sad.” When you are really depressed, you don’t just feel like laying around in bed and watching Netflix. You may be really sad after an event, but this should not be confused with actual depression.

Instead, depression is a serious condition that does not go away. It does not just result after one event, but rather is an ongoing feeling. When people are depressed, they can become physically ill, feel physically immobilized, lose their appetite, perhaps throwing up at the mere thought of a situation, etc. Living with clinical depression can be a real horror story and if you really need prescription drugs to help stabilize your emotions, then you should consider them. Despite this, there may be other ways.

Natural Ways to Improve Your State

Before you consider taking an anti-depressant, there are a variety of other options you can consider. As discussed above, you may not be in a state that really requires you to take medicine. Even if you are clinically depressed, there are some healthier ways to help improve your mental state. For starters, regular exercise will help increase dopamine production in the brain. This neurotransmitter will help better your mood and may help you avoid that unshakable feeling of depression.

Beyond this, you might consider other natural remedies.  Many suggest the food you eat can actually influence your mood, adding omega-3 fatty acids and folic acid has been known to help. If you haven’t heard of it before, alternative treatments methods might also be effective in your case. There are suggestions that St. John’s Wart is an herb which helps as well.

Regardless of how depressed you might be, remember there are other options out there. Depression is an imbalance that starts in the brain, so sometimes the best solution is also in your own mind.

 Do you or someone you know closely take anti-depressants? What else do you recommend to help overcome symptoms of depression? 




Joseph Macolino
Joseph Macolino
When Joseph is not writing for his Evorath fantasy series, he tries to spend time honing his physical prowess to one day become the Punisher. Most of the time, he just ends up perfecting the art of procrastination by watching Netflix, reading other good fantasy books, or playing some mindless game. Follow him at Evorath