Depression is commonly treated with antidepressant medications.
Antidepressants work to balance some of the natural chemicals in our brains. These chemicals are called neurotransmitters, and they affect our mood and emotional responses. Antidepressants work on neurotransmitters such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.
The most popular types of antidepressants are called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). These include:
- Fluoxetine (Prozac)
- Citalopram (Celexa)
- Sertraline (Zoloft)
- Paroxetine (Paxil)
- Escitalopram (Lexapro).
Other types of antidepressants are serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). SNRIs are similar to SSRIs and include venlafaxine (Effexor) and duloxetine (Cymbalta). Another antidepressant that is commonly used is bupropion (Wellbutrin). Bupropion, which works on the neurotransmitter dopamine, is unique in that it does not fit into any specific drug type.
SSRIs and SNRIs are popular because they do not cause as many side effects as older classes of antidepressants. Older antidepressant medications include tricyclics, tetracyclics, and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). For some people, tricyclics, tetracyclics, or MAOIs may be the best medications.*
Do not feel like posting today. Exhausted. Didn't go to bed til 3am, worked two hours late, came home and made baked potato soup and apple pie. Going to bed. More tomorrow.
*"NIMH · Mental Health Medications." NIMH · Home. Web. 26 Oct. 2010. <http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/mental-health-medications/complete-index.shtml#pub5>.