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SSRIs for Depression

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) can balance certain brain chemicals (neurotransmitters). When these brain chemicals are in proper balance, the symptoms of depression may be relieved. SSRIs have become the first choice for the treatment of depression for many doctors because they are proven effective and have few side effects.

SSRIs medications include:

  • fluoxetine hydrochloride (Prozac)
  • sertraline hydrochloride (Zoloft)
  • paroxetine hydrochloride (Paxil)

Typical side effects of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors:

  • Nausea, loss of appetite, diarrhea.
  • Anxiety or irritability.
  • Problems sleeping or drowsiness.
  • Loss of sexual desire or ability.
  • Headaches or dizziness.

Facts about SSRIs:

  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) can take 4 to 6 weeks to start working, although they may be effective much sooner.
  • SSRIs can be safer than tricyclics because they do not cause death if taken in large quantities.
  • SSRIs usually are well tolerated and effective.
  • SSRIs also may be safer for older adults because the side effects are more tolerable.
  • Sexual dysfunction can be a significant problem for people taking an SSRIs.