Why I’m happy to take anti-depressants
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Though depression is also an isolated illness in its own right, it is also a common side-effect of many other psychological conditions, including other forms of mood disorder, anxiety disorders, OCD and eating disorders.
With counselling and other forms of talking therapy critically limited, anti-depressants are often the primary point-of-call for a vast number of mental health sufferers, as an often temporary means of coping their condition. But for many, this quick-fix solution is not quite as simple as it might first appear. I was first offered anti-depressants by my GP a whole two years before I started taking them. At the bottom of a three-month waiting list for a place at an eating disorder clinic at the time, my mood constantly at rock bottom. I should have leapt at the idea that popping a pill could open the curtains I had drawn around myself, even if just as a temporary solution; however, having an already heightened anxiety about putting anything into my mouth which I wasn’t one-hundred-percent sure of, it goes without saying that I refused the offer without a second thought.
When I later came to do my standard Google search, in the same vain that I did with all my food at the time, I came to the solid conclusion that I had had a lucky escape, and didn’t think on them again. Anti-depressants do not have a good name for themselves online. Believe me - I must have read every blogsite out there, and there is not a single strain of mood-enhancing medication which does not come with an encyclopaedia of side-effects including: fatigue, blurred vision, dizzines, nausea, stomach pains, increased anxiety, heart palpitations and (wait for it…) increased appetite and weight gain. Who gives someone with an eating disorder a tablet which lists weight gain as a side effect, and expects them to swallow it twice a day? But now, two years and six months down the line, I’m here to tell you that the only people who write on online forums are the 1-6% who have a bad experience. I mean, when was the last time you wrote a review on a product that actually works? Oh, yes this kettle heats my water nicely. It took me three attempts to find a strand of anti-depressant I felt safe taking. The second time I went back to my GP with a full box of tablets I expected him to give up and throw me out for time wasting. But he didn’t. In fact, he sat and went through all the different strains of antidepressant, explaining how they worked and what they were going to do to the chemicals in my body. This was a great comfort to me. I can work with science. Science is logical. It has rules that are followed, and his rules made sense.
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