“For many people, finding the right depression treatment is a trial-and-error process. “The largest study that looked at effectiveness of antidepressants, the STAR*D Report, found that only 37 percent of people experienced relief of their depression symptoms [known as remission] after trying one antidepressant,” says board-certified psychiatrist Joseph Hullett, MD, senior medical director for OptumHealth Behavioral Solutions in Minnesota. “And even after trying four different depression treatments, only 67 percent of people experienced remission.”
The odds can seem somewhat stacked against you as you search for the right depression medication. To improve your chances of finding the treatment that works best for you, look for these nine signs your antidepressant isn’t working, isn’t working well enough, or is no longer working like it should:
1. You feel better right away. “If you respond to an antidepressant very quickly, that’s actually a bad sign,” Dr. Hullett says. Antidepressants work by increasing and balancing feel-good neurochemicals in your brain, including serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, a process that takes some time. Depression relief from an antidepressant usually takes two to 12 weeks to set in, with a peak at six to eight weeks . “So if you feel different immediately after starting a depression treatment, it’s either a side effect of the depression medication or a placebo effect,” Hullett says.
2. You skipped a dose — or several. Lack of adherence to antidepressant medication can be a reason medications don’t work, as well as a major barrier to depression treatment.
3. You experience no relief from depression symptoms after a few months. “You should see some improvement within three months of starting an antidepressant,” explains Zinia Thomas, MD, a psychiatrist at Spectrum Psychiatry in St. Louis, Mo. “If you have been on an adequate dose of a depression medication for three months, and you don’t get results, it’s probably time to try something new.”
These and more are all reasons that your antidepressants aren’t working, however, with Clinical Research Trial’s, we are constantly finding new, alternative care options for those struggling with mental health disorders. Check out our enrolling studies at www.segaltrials.com/enrolling-studies/
Article Link: https://www.everydayhealth.com/depression/signs-your-antidepressant-isnt-working.aspx