Reasons People Stop Taking Depression Medicine
Depression can be brought on by life circumstances, by genetics or a combination of both. Doctors can prescribe medicine to treat the symptoms of depression, but medicine alone may not be effective. Physicians want to find an effective treatment for the patient, but this cannot happen if a patient decides to quit or stop taking their depression medicine. Patients do this frequently, delaying their recovery and endangering themselves in the process. Common reasons people give for stopping their depression medication early include the following:
- I feel better already
- I did not like the side effects
- I don’t think the medication was working
- I’m afraid I may become dependent on or addicted to my medication
- I do not like the feeling or idea of relying on drugs
- I can overcome these feelings on my own
- This medication interferes with my drinking or other drug use
What Happens when You Quit Using Depression Medication?
No matter the reason, a person wanting to quit using depression medicine must contact his or her doctor for assistance. The body can experience withdrawal, if the medication is suddenly discontinued, and a physician can safely taper an individual off depression medications.
Individuals who are unsatisfied with their current depression medication, do not like the side effects, fear addiction or do not like being on medicine altogether can find another form of treatment. For serious instances of depression physicians usually recommend using more than one method of treatment. Untreated depression can lead a series of catastrophic consequences. The disease can lead to patterns of self-destruction, violence, substance abuse or suicide.
Treatment Options for Depression besides Medication
When individuals believe medication, or medication alone, is not the solution to their depression, other treatment methods can be administered. Because depression can be caused by many things, treatment will vary depending on the individual. Other treatment options include:
- Psychotherapy or talk therapy including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, rational emotive therapy or family therapy. During therapy therapists focus on behaviors, emotions and ideas that trigger symptoms of depression. Patients also learn what events, problems and stressors may be causing their depression and then work on how to avoid these triggers. Patients discover that they have the ability to control and prevent depression from taking over their life.
- Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) or electroshock. This is a procedure that works to repair chemical disturbances in the brain. This form of treatment sends an electric current through the patient, causing a seizure-like reaction. ECT is used for severe cases of depression.
- Alternative treatment including acupuncture, yoga, massage, herbal remedies, hypnosis, aromatherapy and self-help skills. These therapies promote healing, relaxation, relief and overall well-being from the symptoms of depression.
Need Help Finding Treatment Solutions for Depression?
If you are struggling with depression and do not feel like you are healing under your current treatment, we can help you find a treatment option that will fit your individual recovery needs. Anyone looking for help with depression or concerns about medication use can call our toll-free helpline. Counselors are available 24 hours a day to answer all of your questions and find a treatment solution that will work for you.