Long-term antidepressant users are risking permanent damage to their bodies, according to leading medical experts. Dr Tony Kendrick, a professor of primary care at the University of Southampton, says more urgent action needs to be taken to encourage and support long-term users to come off the medication.
Do SSRIs permanently change your brain?
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) such as Prozac are regularly used to treat severe anxiety and depression. They work by immediately increasing the amount of serotonin in the brain and by causing long term changes in brain function.
Can antidepressants cause permanent brain damage?
We know that antipsychotics shrink the brain in a dose-dependent manner (4) and benzodiazepines, antidepressants and ADHD drugs also seem to cause permanent brain damage (5).
What are the long term side effects of SSRIs?
During long-term SSRI therapy, the most troubling adverse effects are sexual dysfunction, weight gain, and sleep disturbance.
Can antidepressants have permanent effects?
Do they cause permanent changes? There is no evidence, and little reason to believe, that the commonly prescribed antidepressant medications cause any permanent changes to the brain or have any persistent side effects.
Can your brain recover from antidepressants?
The process of healing the brain takes quite a bit longer than recovery from the acute symptoms. In fact, our best estimates are that it takes 6 to 9 months after you are no longer symptomatically depressed for your brain to entirely recover cognitive function and resilience.
What’s the best natural antidepressant?
- SAM-e. S-adenosylmethionine (SAM-e) naturally occurs in the body. …
- St. John’s Wort. …
- Omega-3 fatty acids. Some types of fatty fish, such as tuna and albacore, contain omega-3 fatty acids. …
- Lavender. …
- 5-HTP. …
Do antidepressants shorten your lifespan?
The analysis found that in the general population, those taking antidepressants had a 33 percent higher risk of dying prematurely than people who were not taking the drugs. Additionally, antidepressant users were 14 percent more likely to have an adverse cardiovascular event, such as a stroke or a heart attack.
What happens if you take SSRI without depression?
There’s a word of warning after research on monkeys finds that an SSRI antidepressant may alter brain architecture if taken by those who aren’t really depressed. There is new reason to be cautious about using popular antidepressants in people who are not really depressed.
How long is too long to be on antidepressants?
Clinicians generally recommend staying on the medication for six to nine months before considering going off antidepressants. If you’ve had three or more recurrences of depression, make that at least two years.
How long after stopping antidepressants before I feel normal again?
In studies on adults with moderate or severe depression, 40–60% report improvements within 6–8 weeks. Those who wish to come off antidepressants because they feel better should ideally wait for at least 6–9 months after complete symptom remission before stopping their medication.
What happens when you stop taking SSRIs?
Quitting an antidepressant suddenly may cause symptoms within a day or two, such as: Anxiety. Insomnia or vivid dreams. Headaches.
What is the safest SSRI for anxiety?
Readers rate antidepressants
|Drug class||Effectiveness||Side affects|
|Helped a lot||Difficulty stopping the drug|
|SSRIs (Celexa, Lexapro, Prozac, Zoloft)||53%||8%|
|SNRIs (Cymbalta, Effexor)||49||13|
How long does it take for serotonin levels to return to normal after SSRI?
In cases where serotonin syndrome is only present in a mild form, symptoms may be alleviated within 24 hours of discontinuing the medication causing the uptake in serotonin. However, some antidepressants can cause symptoms to last longer as serotonin levels may take weeks to return to normal.
Do antidepressants affect memory?
Tranquilizers, antidepressants, some blood pressure drugs, and other medications can affect memory, usually by causing sedation or confusion. That can make it difficult to pay close attention to new things. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you suspect that a new medication is taking the edge off your memory.
What is the best antidepressant with the least side effects?
Antidepressants with the lowest rate of sexual side effects include:
- Bupropion (Wellbutrin XL, Wellbutrin SR)
- Mirtazapine (Remeron)
- Vilazodone (Viibryd)
- Vortioxetine (Trintellix)