If you and your doctor have decided that a depression medication could help you overcome depression, congratulations on seeking help and taking the first major steps in depression treatment. Although they can be incredibly helpful and are scientifically proven, antidepressants are not a quick fix. This article will shed some light on how to take depression medication so they work best.
You will need to adhere to your treatment plan, continue working with your doctor and/or therapist and be committed to getting better for the long haul. To increase your chances of success with antidepressants, consider the following tips on how to take depression medication.
How to Take Depression Medication: 7 Tips for Success
- Be patient. Successful depression treatment does not happen overnight. Finding the right medication, the proper dosage or the perfect combination of medications for your personal treatment plan can be a long process. Also, not all antidepressants begin working right away, and you might need to try several medications before you see the desired results.
- Avoid drinking alcohol. Alcohol and antidepressants do not mix. Not only will alcohol worsen symptoms of depression and hinder your treatment progress, it can also be extremely dangerous – even deadly – when combined with these types of medications.
- Expect some side effects. The main goal of antidepressants are to help you overcome depression. So, these medications are not without side effects. You will probably not experience every side effect on your medication’s list of potentials, but you will likely develop some. Consider your goals for treatment, the types of side effects you can tolerate and talk with your doctor about what you should expect.
- Don’t stop treatment on your own. The decision to stop taking a depression medication should be made in tandem with your doctor. To stop taking some medications safely, you might need to ween yourself off by progressively reducing your dosage. Talk with your doctor about the reason(s) you want to go off the medication and ask about the healthiest way to do so.
- Continue taking medication – even when you feel better. Antidepressants do not work like an antibiotic, with which you complete the prescription and pleasantly find your ailment eradicated. The process of antidepressants is more comparable to that of supplements, which need to be continued until you have worked out other issues in your life which might be compounding the medical condition. If you feel better, that’s great! But have a serious conversation with your healthcare provider before deciding to go off medication.
- Don’t give up if the medication you are trying does not help. Sometimes, finding the right antidepressant can take several attempts with different medications or combinations of medications. If the first (or first few) types of medications you try don’t deliver the desired results, talk with your doctor and try again.
- Take medication exactly as prescribed. With depression medication, adherence is vital to achieving a successful outcome. Ask your doctor about the best time of day to take your medication, whether it should be taken on an empty stomach or with food and find out if it will interact with any other medications or supplements. To ensure your medications work the way they are intended and to give yourself the best chance of beating your depression, follow your doctor’s prescription-related orders and never miss a dose.