For those suffering from an anxiety disorder or depression, sometimes seeing a therapist isn’t enough. This is when medication can be beneficial. Patients may often be prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, which work by increasing serotonin levels in the body. Serotonin is a crucial hormone affecting mood, sexual desire, appetite, sleep, and memory. Lower levels of serotonin can lead to depression, anxiety, suicidal behavior, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. SSRIs are not addictive and are typically started at a low dose then gradually increased over time. Although side effects may occur, including nausea, muscle weakness, dizziness, and dry mouth, most people tolerate them well. SSRIs differ in their potency but are generally safe for most people.
If you can’t tolerate one SSRI, you may be able to tolerate a different one, as SSRIs differ in their potencies at blocking serotonin reuptake and in how quickly the body eliminates (metabolizes) the drug. Which antidepressant is best for you depends on a number of issues, such as your symptoms and any other health conditions you may have.
P.S. It’s essential to take SSRIs as prescribed.