When I was prescribed antidepressants, I was willing to try anything to make me feel better but a few days in I was convinced that they were making me worse – they weren’t. Nothing could have made me worse.
Hint 1 – Don’t google the medication
I knew how antidepressants worked in the body but I made a huge mistake of googling for side effects. If you think you’ll get a side effect, you’ll probably think yourself into getting it because your brain is a powerful thing – so don’t google it. A lot of horror stories also came up related to the medication and although there was little basis for the claims and the stories had all been sensationalised by the media, it will still play on your mind.
Hint 2 – Don’t listen to other people’s opinions
Some people are really against medication, for example people leaving their children (and other immunosuppressed people as a result) susceptible to preventable and deadly diseases like measles and rubella. Some people are terrified of taking painkillers incase it rots their stomach. Personally, I understand the necessity of healthcare but at the same time I still felt uneasy about taking medication for my brain – so opinions can put doubt in your mind. I’ve had a few people tell me that I shouldn’t take antidepressants and I will be cured if I go vegan?
All that’s important is that you are doing what’s best for you. Some people think the earth is flat – so stick with the medication that has a lot of evidence to back up that it helps with treating depression.
Hint 3 – If you don’t like the medication you can come off of it
This is not a life-long choice you are making, you are just trying out a new medication so don’t worry that this is a permanent decision. It’s quite common to take it short term or even stop it if it gives you a side effect.
Hint 4 – It won’t change who you are
I was terrified that antidepressants would make me a different person but all they have done is make me less depressed – which is amazing. It will not change your identity overnight and always remember you can stop taking them if you don’t feel they are working out, after you have given them a proper chance to work.
Hint 5 – They won’t work overnight
Trying medication definitely exacerbated my anxiety, however, I attributed this to the medication taking effect. This was literally impossible since it takes a few weeks to have a therapeutic effect but I had convinced myself these pills were detrimental – remember be logical and trust science.
I have been embarrassed to admit that I take antidepressants due to the stigma surrounding it, however, I am so glad I made the decision to keep taking them as I feel a lot better. I don’t know if the medication is exactly responsible for making me feel better, but it certainly hasn’t hurt and the placebo effect is very strong! You might feel extremely apprehensive about trying this, but you get to a point where you would try anything so give it a go. The medication will help to remove the anxiety you feel about taking it along with the rest of your anxiety and depression. Do what’s best for you.