Antidepressants - a group of medicines for the treatment of psychiatric disorders such as depression, dysthymia, anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, as well as some hormonal disorders - eg, dysmenorrhea. Antidepressants affect neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for human emotions
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In the treatment of certain diseases antidepressants combined with the use of other medications. Thus, for example, in conjunction with certain anticonvulsants or Tegretol type Depakote antidepressants are prescribed for the treatment of attention deficit disorder
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and hyperactivity. To antidepressants acted need some time, therefore, as a rule, use of these drugs last from several months to several years.
As is the case with most other drugs, all antidepressants have side effects. At the initial stage of antidepressants in patients frequently observed fatigue, sleep problems, pain in the abdomen. When any side effects while taking antidepressants should immediately consult a doctor.
Types of Antidepressants
Depending on the mechanism of the effect on neurotransmitter antidepressants are subdivided into several major types:
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
: This type of antidepressants prescribed to patients with an inadequate level of serotonin, a chemical compound used by the brain to send signals to the neurons. These drugs normalize serotonin levels in the brain. Among the most common antidepressants of this group include:
- citalopram (brand name: Celexa)
- escitalopram (brand name: Lexapro)
- fluoxetine (brand name: Prozac)
- paroxetine (brand name: Paxil, Pexeva)
- sertraline (brand name: Zoloft)
Antidepressants, belonging to the group of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, are characterized by having fewer side effects than other antidepressants. At the initial stage of use of these drugs may experience dry mouth, increased nervousness and irritability, insomnia, loss of appetite and sexual activity. However, the formation of these side effects habituation disappear.
Norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and serotonin
: A relatively new group of drugs that affect both norepinephrine and serotonin, chemicals in the brain responsible for mood and emotions. The group of these drugs include:
- Venlafaxine (brand name: Effexor)
- Duloxetine (brand name: Cymbalta)
- Desvenlafaksin (trade name: Pristiq)
- Milnacipran (trade name: Ixel)
Noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors and serotonin can cause nausea and loss of appetite, increased irritability
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and nervousness, headache, insomnia and increased fatigue. In addition, fewer side effects of such drugs include dry mouth, constipation, weight loss, lack of sexual desire, palpitations, increased cholesterol levels.
One of the oldest types of antidepressants, tricyclic antidepressants block the reuptake of neurotransmitters - norepinephrine and serotonin. Today, these drugs are not practically used because they were replaced by a much more effective and safe antidepressants. The group of tricyclic antidepressants include:
- Amitriptyline (brand name: Elavil)
- Desipramine (trade name: Norpramin)
- Imipramine (brand name: Tofranil)
- Nortriptyline (brand name: Aventyl, Pamelor)
The standard side effects of tricyclic antidepressants include dry mouth, blurred vision, increased fatigue, lack of sexual desire, heart palpitations, difficulty urinating. Overdosing tricyclic antidepressants fatal, but some such drugs are still in use because of the high efficiency - e.g., in severe cases of depression.
Norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, dopamine:
these drugs slow the reuptake of dopamine and norepinephrine, chemicals that are used to transmit neural signals. The most common antidepressant - bupropion (trade name - Wellbutrin, Zyban). Associated with use of these drugs side effects - nausea, headache, loss of appetite, insomnia, high blood pressure.
Monoamine oxidase inhibitors:
most rarely used class of antidepressants, prescribed only when other antidepressants are not effective. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors block the enzyme monoamine oxidase, is split into the neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. Such drugs include:
- Isocarboxazid (brand name: Marplan)
- Phenelzine (trade name: Nardil)
- Tranylcypromine (brand name: Parnate)
Serious side effects caused by taking such medications include weakness, headache, dizziness, tremors. In combination with other classes of antidepressants and some medicines for colds and flu can cause a dangerous reaction to health. Prescribing antidepressants, monoamine oxidase inhibitor class, the doctor usually recommends the abolition of the use of certain types of foods and drinks, in response to which the drug can enter.
Antidepressants and weight gain
Weight gain - the most common side effect associated with the reception of certain types of depressants such as tricyclic antidepressants and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. However, some selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor and bupropion (Wellbutrin) less likely to cause an increase in weight compared with other antidepressants.
There is no clear explanation as to why the use of antidepressants cause weight gain, there is - although it is assumed that these drugs are somehow influence the metabolism and appetite. Although weight gain - a possible side effect of antidepressants, after receiving it stops. To reduce weight gain, taking antidepressants, you must follow the standard weight loss strategies - follow a healthy diet and a regular exercise regime.
Antidepressants and pregnancy
Although it is believed that the use of antidepressants during pregnancy is safe for health and the future mother and baby, recent studies have shown that antidepressants are a class of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (Prozac, Zoloft, Luvox, Paxil, Celexa and Lexapro) are relatively safe at reception during pregnancy.
The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that children whose mothers during pregnancy, especially during the third trimester, have used anti-depressants, developed pulmonary hypertension. However, such instances are rare.
Another study, published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, found that nearly a third of newborn infants whose mothers drank during pregnancy antidepressants are a class of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, suffering from neonatal abstinence syndrome. Some of the symptoms of this disorder include constant crying, tremors, sleep disturbances
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Problems with the gastrointestinal system, hypertonicity. Although medical intervention in such cases is not required, this syndrome nekomforten for baby and parents.
Antidepressants and alcohol
During the reception, the majority of drugs - and especially antidepressants - you must avoid alcohol, since a combination of alcohol and antidepressants can worsen the disorder and cause health hazards response. Thus, for example, tyramine contained in beer and wine, in combination with a monoamine oxidase inhibitor class of antidepressants leads to a sharp rise in blood pressure, which in turn leads to a stroke.