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Mental Health: Do Antidepressants Have Side Effects?

In this article, we discuss some of the common symptoms of antidepressants.

Mental Health: Do Antidepressants Have Side Effects?

Some antidepressants can disrupt sleep patterns, causing difficulties falling asleep or sleeping too much

Antidepressants are medications used to treat depression and other mood disorders. They work by balancing chemicals in the brain that affect mood and emotions, such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. These medications can be prescribed by healthcare professionals and come in various forms.

Antidepressants can have side effects, although they vary depending on the specific medication and the individual. Understanding these side effects can help one better prepare for a treatment of antidepressants. Continue reading as we discuss some of the common symptoms of antidepressants.

13 Side effects of taking antidepressants:

1. Nausea and vomiting

Many individuals experience stomach upset and may feel nauseous or vomit shortly after taking antidepressants.

2. Headaches

Headaches are a common side effect, often observed during the initial stages of antidepressant use. They generally subside with continued treatment.

3. Insomnia or sleep disturbances

Some antidepressants can disrupt sleep patterns, causing difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night.

4. Weight gain or weight loss

Certain antidepressants are associated with changes in appetite, leading to weight gain or loss. This can vary depending on the individual's response to the medication. Certain antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), are known to cause weight gain in some individuals.

5. Sexual dysfunction

Antidepressants can impair sexual desire, arousal, and performance, leading to sexual dysfunction in both men and women.

6. Insomnia or drowsiness

Antidepressants may disrupt sleep patterns, leading to either difficulty falling asleep or excessive drowsiness during the day. Many individuals experience increased fatigue or drowsiness when starting an antidepressant regimen. This can impair their daily functioning and productivity.

7. Anxiety or worsening of existing anxiety symptoms

In some cases, antidepressants can temporarily increase anxiety symptoms before they start showing improvement. This is more common in people with pre-existing anxiety disorders.

8. Dry mouth

Dry mouth is a common side effect of several antidepressant medications. This can cause discomfort and increase the risk of dental issues.

9. Sweating

Some individuals may experience excessive sweating while taking antidepressants. This can lead to feelings of discomfort and self-consciousness.

10. Emotional blunting

A subset of individuals may experience emotional blunting or a decrease in emotional intensity while on certain antidepressants. This may result in reduced ability to experience pleasure or exhibit emotions.

11. Agitation or jitteriness

Certain antidepressants can cause feelings of restlessness, nervousness, or irritability. This may also affect relationships with others.

12. Dizziness or lightheadedness

Feeling dizzy or lightheaded, especially when standing up or changing positions, is a potential side effect of antidepressants.

13. Increased suicidal thoughts

Although rare, some individuals may experience an increase in suicidal thoughts or behaviors when starting or changing doses of antidepressant medications. Close monitoring is crucial, especially in younger individuals.

Most side effects are temporary and tend to subside as the body adjusts to the medication. However, if any side effects become severe or persistent, it is important to inform your healthcare provider for further guidance. Additionally, antidepressants may have potential interactions with other medications, so it's crucial to discuss your medical history and any other medications you are taking with your doctor.

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Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.


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