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SSRIs For Depression: No Longer a Huge Social Stigma

 

 There is often a social stigma associated with clinical depression, that a person who suffers from depression has a certain negative personality or is a loner, etc. But this stigma is quite far from the biological truth. By understanding the biological mechanism of depression and the role of serotonin and the medications used to treat it, SSRIs, (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) can help to dismantle this notion.

You see, there are brain chemicals called neurotransmitters associated with depression, including the neurotransmitter serotonin and some research suggests that abnormalities in neurotransmitter activity affect mood and behavior as in depression. What SSRIs do is relieve symptoms of depression by blocking the reabsorption (reuptake) of serotonin by certain nerve cells in the brain, leaving more serotonin around in the brain. This enhances neurotransmission, the sending of nerve impulses and improves mood. SSRIs are called selective because they seem to affect only serotonin, not other neurotransmitters.

SSRIs For Depression: No Longer a Huge Social Stigma

| 07/20/2009 – There is often a social stigma associated with clinical depression, that a person who suffers from depression has a certain negative personality or is a loner, etc. But this stigma is quite far from the biological truth. By understanding the biological mechanism of depression and the role of serotonin and the medications used to treat it, SSRIs, (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) can help to dismantle this notion. You see, there are brain chemicals called neurotransmitters associated with depression, including the neurotransmitter serotonin and some research suggests that abnormalities in neurotransmitter activity affect mood and behavior as in depression. What SSRIs do is relieve symptoms of depression by blocking the reabsorption (reuptake) of serotonin by certain nerve cells in the brain, leaving more serotonin around in the brain. This enhances neurotransmission, the sending of nerve impulses and improves mood. SSRIs are called selective because they seem to affect only serotonin, not other neurotransmitters.

Antidepressants may also play a neuroprotective role in how they relieve anxiety and depression by increasing the effects of brain receptors that help nerve cells keep sensitivity to glutamate — an organic compound of a nonessential amino acid — in check. This increased support of nerve cells lowers sensitivity to glutamate and provides protection against the glutamate overwhelming and exciting key brain areas related to anxiety and depression.

Antidepressant medications are often the first treatment choice for adults with moderate or severe depression, sometimes along with psychotherapy. Although antidepressants may not cure depression, they can help you achieve remission — the disappearance or nearly complete reduction of depression symptoms. SSRIs approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) specifically to treat depression, with their generic, or chemical, names followed by available brand names in parentheses include:

Citalopram (Celexa)

Escitalopram (Lexapro)

Fluoxetine Prozac , Prozac Weekly)

Paroxetine (Paxil, Paxil CR, Pexeva)

Sertraline ( Zoloft )

© 2006 Wikio

Reviewed by Lindsay 02-22-10

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