Ask an expert

17 Feb 2009

Whendo you know
When do you " know" its the right time to start taking anti-depressants. What should you consider before taking them, and what are the implications if you do not take them - and receive no councelling
Does taking antidepressants without going for councelling serve any benefit
Answer 346 views

01 Jan 0001

Its not some mystic internal message that arrives. Evidence shows that antidepressants alone do help many depressed people, even without counselling. The reason why I and others emphasize the importance of having CBT tyope counselling as well, is that the antidepressants obviously can only correct the chemical imbalances, not solve the life probnlems which may help create and prolong a depression. Antidepressants ( ADs ) need to be prescribed, so should come from a psychiatrist in the first place, and a GP perhaps on a continuing basis. The prescription should follow a proper assessment and a diagnosis based on internationally recognized criteria for Depression. WHen they are prescribed, the doc should discuss this with you, and explain side-effects, risks, and bnefits, how it will take 2 weeks or more for them to produce their full potential benefits, why one needs to remain on them for months, even after one starts to feel better, so that the recovery can become more stable and lasting, and when and how to plan to come off them gradually.
We know that if there is a true significant depression, properly diagnosed, without treatment, by AD plus/minus counselling, there is a higher risk of suicide, and the prospect of a year or more of unrelieved misery, even if there may be a spontaneous relief of the specific depression eventually. It also appears, from the research, that the longer an initial depression remains untreated, the more likely subsequent episodes become, the worse they may be, and that they may become more difficult to treat the longer depression has remained untreated in the past 9 this applies to numerous psych conditions ).
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
33% - 9321 votes
67% - 18660 votes