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Medications to treat depression between positive and side effects

Depression is a mental health problem that begins in early adulthood and affects women more commonly than men.


Nevertheless, a person can deal with depression at any age by finding drugs to treat and alleviate its severity, so what are the drugs that have a role in that? What are its side effects?

Clinical manifestations of depression?

Depression is defined as a psychological disorder in which a person temporarily loses his ability to be happy and enjoy life, making his mood, thoughts, body and mind sick, but not all depression is depression.

 To be able to say you have depression, symptoms must last more than one to two weeks.

Depression is characterized by a person suffering from severe sadness, a feeling of hopelessness (depressed mood), loss of motivation and decision-making, a decrease in the feeling of happiness, eating and sleep disorders, bad thoughts and the impression that there is no value for him as an individual, and in the most severe cases depression can lead to suicide.

The main feature of clinical depression is:

  • Bad mood.
  • Lack of interest and pleasure as a person with depression cannot enjoy anything, including work, special tastes, individual relationships, and sexual activity.
  • Feeling of hopelessness and pessimism Feelings of hopelessness can be so strong that the sufferer may think that he will not get rid of this situation.
  • Depressed patients have difficulty performing simple daily activities.
  • The casualty has a very low energy level.
  • Anxiety of everything he does.
  • He feels that life is no longer of value.
  • Most depressed patients have mood changes, appetite, and weight loss.
  • Sleep disturbance is a common symptom of depression.
  • The victim can feel forgetful.

Medicines to treat depression

Depression affects the mind and therefore the drugs that are used to treat depression can affect the brain so that they can be useful in treatment. Also, commonly used antidepressants can help relieve symptoms as there are many different options available to the patient.

Treatment is applied using these drugs by balancing neurotransmitters, which are some chemicals in the brain, which helps in returning to their normal functions and relieving or eliminating depression.

Medicines used to treat depression work in different ways to relieve symptoms.

Types of depression medications

Most of the drugs for treating depression fall into the following categories, including but not limited to:

  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
  • Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs).
  • Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs).
  • Tetracyclic antidepressants.
  • Dopamine reuptake inhibitors.

First: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)

SSRIs are the most common class of antidepressants where the imbalance of serotonin plays an important role in the development of depression.

Serotonin: It is a single neurotransmitter that is synthesized in serotonin neurons in the central nervous system, and it plays an important role in improving a person’s mood (the hormone of happiness) and also plays a role in sexual desire and migraine disease.

These drugs fight the symptoms of depression by reducing the absorption of serotonin in the brain and thus they provide more neurotransmitters (serotonin) in the mind, which relieves depression.

Common side effects of SSRIs are:

  • nausea.
  • Sleep disturbance.
  • irritation.
  • Chills and cold.
  • Sexual problems.

Second: serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)


It is a hormone, and it is a natural, unprocessed substance that is sorted from cells connected to the nervous system and nerve receptors and affects greatly on many areas of the body and its role lies in the issuance of some nerve signals that are an opposite reaction to situations that occur with us, as well as affect the heart rate and high pressure .


SNRIs help improve serotonin and norepinephrine levels in the mind and brain and restore normal nervous system functions, which reduces depression symptoms.

  • Duloxetine.
  • Venlafaxine.

In addition to treating depression, duloxetine can relieve pain, for example, which is important because chronic pain can lead to prolonged or worsening depression.

In some cases, people with depression feel more pain, and medication that treats depression and pain such as duloxetine can be helpful in such cases.

Common side effects of SNRIs are:

  • nausea.
  • Drowsiness and tiredness.
  • Constipation.
  • Dry mouth.

Third: tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)

Tricyclic antidepressants (TZA) are a group of mind and brain drugs that have mainly antidepressant activity and have a mood-enhancing effect and are among the most commonly used in the treatment of depression.

Tricyclic antidepressants block the absorption of the neurotransmitters serotonin and aid the release of dopamine in nerve cells in the brain. The purpose of the increased availability of the sending substances is to compensate for the relative deficiency of those substances that cause depression.

All of the active ingredients in tricyclic antidepressants have a depressive effect that usually starts after 2-4 weeks, depending on the patient’s individual symptoms.

TCAs are often prescribed when other antidepressants have become ineffective.

TCAs include:

  • Amitriptyline.
  • Desipramine.
  • Doxepin.

Common side effects of TCAs include:

  • Constipation.
  • Dry mouth.
  • fatigue.

Among the more serious side effects of these drugs are:

  • Reduction of Blood pressure.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Fits of anxiety and despair.

Fourth: quadricyclic antidepressants

Quadcyclic antidepressants such as Maprotilin are used to treat depression and anxiety, and it also balances neurotransmitters to relieve symptoms of depression.

Common side effects of this drug are:

  • drowsiness.
  • weakness.
  • Dizziness.
  • a headache.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Dry mouth.

Fifth: dopamine reuptake inhibitors

Dopamine: is a substance in the brain that affects many feelings, behavior, sensations, attention, and in moving and directing the body, and it also greatly affects the sense of happiness and pleasure.

Bupropion is a mild inhibitor whose main role is to restore dopamine and norepinephrine and is used to treat depression and seasonal affective disorder, as well as to quit smoking.

Common side effects include:

  • nausea.
  • vomiting.
  • Constipation.
  • Dizziness.
  • Blurred vision.

Important note:

  • Our goal is to provide you with more accurate and up-to-date information, and to familiarize you in general with medications for treating depression, not to take them alone, but under the supervision of a specialist.
  • However, because medicines affect everyone differently, we cannot guarantee that this information contains all of the possible side effects.
  • Also, this information is not a substitute for medical results.
  • Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare professional who knows your medical history.
  • Consult your healthcare professional before taking any action.
  • If you start taking medication for depression and with medical supervision, it may take at least six weeks for the antidepressant to work properly.
  • Ask your doctor about the duration of the medication, and if your depression symptoms do not improve, talk to your doctor, as he or she may recommend another medication that may be more effective in relieving your depression.
  • Failure to stop taking the drug after recovery because one of the most important causes of depression recurrence and the return of symptoms is incomplete treatment and the duration of treatment for the first time takes about one year, and if there are symptoms remaining at the end of this period, the treatment period is extended for each case.


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