Should I Take Drugs for My Depression?
Depression has been a mystery despite deep investigation. Previously believed to be the result of supernatural influences, infections or even the cycle of the moon, depression has been studied by the medical and mental health communities. Issues that were once chalked up to magic are now understood to be directly related to a complex chemical system in the brain that regulates emotions, motivation, impulse control and much more. Imbalances in that system cause an array of psychological disorders including depression. Those imbalances can be treated through a variety of therapies including counseling and medications. Unfortunately, the most effective anti-depression medications are very addictive.
Risks Associated with Depression Medications
The most popular medications for treating depression are called benzodiazepines. They work by enhancing the effects of natural “feel good” chemicals in the brain. Not only can they alleviate the symptoms of depression, they often give the user a mildly euphoric high when first taken. While these drugs are in a person’s system, her body will stop producing the natural chemicals her brain needs. While addiction is unlikely to be a problem for patients who have no history of substance abuse and who follow their doctor’s instructions meticulously, fully one third of people who take benzodiazepines will become dependent on them. Getting clean from these drugs can be dangerous physically and psychologically.
What to Consider before Taking Depression Medication
Before taking any depression medications you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Have you consulted with your psychologist or psychiatrist and been completely honest about your symptoms?
- Do you have any history of drug or alcohol abuse or dependency?
- Are you willing to follow all of your doctor’s instructions diligently and get off of the meds as soon as possible?
It is absolutely imperative that you are completely honest and open with your doctor, sharing any history you have of substance abuse or addiction. There are also other aspects of depression treatment beyond medication and it is important for you to engage all of them completely.
Recovery from Addiction to Depression Medication
If you have already developed an addiction to benzodiazepines we can help. It is not recommended for you to try to get clean on your own. When you quit taking the drug your system is likely to experience some potentially powerful withdrawal symptoms – some of which may be life-threatening. Comprehensive treatment programs will help you detox under close supervision and will treat the psychological symptoms of addiction through fully integrated rehab. The most effective programs take the necessary time to diagnose all underlying or co-occurring disorders that lead to addiction in the first place. Conquering a benzodiazepine addiction is extremely difficult, if not impossible, without experienced professional help. Our job is to get you that help.
Learn More about Depression and Medication
Call our 24 hour toll-free helpline any time, and let our specially trained counselors answer your questions about depression, medication abuse and addiction recovery.