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The Side Effects of this Anti-Depressant are Worse than You Know
Millions of Americans are taking an anti-depressant that has some serious side effects, some of them even possibly life threatening. Knowing this, doctors continue to prescribe it today, along with a wide selection of other anti-depressants that are known as SSRI’s. (Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)
This anti-depressant is escitalopram, more commonly known as by its brand name of Lexapro. This drug works by changing your neurologic process along with your brain chemistry, for the process of making your brain more properly process serotonin. Serotonin is a naturally chemical that your body makes that gives you those happy, positive feelings. For those suffering with depression, serotonin is either not used properly or the body does not make sufficient amounts, which causes feelings of anxiety and depression, which may be stubbornly persistent. Read more about top 10 things that bring on chronic stress.
When these anti-depressants were first introduced, they were touted as the perfect drug for those who suffer from anxiety and depression that was related to problems with serotonin. However, as more and more people were given these drugs, the side effects of these drugs became obvious. There are several studies that show that Lexapro’s side effects are quite severe, especially for person who take this anti-depressant for long periods of time.
The truth is, the severity, as well as the number, of side effects reported became so common that even the FDA took notice. In 2005 and in 2007, the FDA required that companies manufacturing Lexapro, as well as other SSI’s, add a “black box” type of warning label to their product. This is the most significant type of label that the FDA can require of manufacturers. This label must warn people about the side effects of this drug, especially about the possibility of it causing suicidal thoughts and/or actions.
The FDA, along with the NIH (National Institutes of Health) each provides lists of possible side effects including:
- Violent or aggressive behavior
- Manic behavior ( such as excessive talking)
- Reckless behavior
- Panic attacks, anxiety, deepening depression symptoms
- Unexplained feelings of anger, irritability, or agitation
- Sneezing or flu-like symptoms
- Dry mouth
- Heart burn
- Painful, prolonged menstrual periods
- Increased appetite
- Increased perspiration
- Stomach pains
- Changes in sex drive, or even in the ability to have sex
- Severe muscle stiffness
- Extreme excitability
- Visual or auditory hallucinations
- Irregular heartbeat
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The FDA lists these as “serious” side effects:
- Suicidal thoughts or actions ( especially in children or young adults or when the dosage is changed)
- Sudden changes in moods or behavior
- Violent or aggressive behavior
- Reckless behavior
Also the FDA warns that the use of this anti-depressant could result in an allergic reaction that could involve swelling of the throat, tongue, face, throat, cause skin rashes or hives, fever or joint pain, or difficulty breathing. Find out how to treat depression naturally.
Lexapro, along with all SSRI medication, has the potentially life threatening risk of something called serotonin syndrome. This condition can cause:
- Seizures or convulsions
- Profuse sweating and fevers
- Severe agitation
- Vomiting, diarrhea, or nausea
- Feelings of severe agitation
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Changes in mental conditions including coma
- Racing heartbeat
- Extremely low or high blood pressure
- Muscle rigidity
- Uncontrollable muscle twitches or coordination problems
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Elderly people who use this drug can develop low levels of sodium in their blood which can create memory problems, confusion, weakness, and headaches.
Teenagers and children who take Lexapro might have increased feelings of thirst, agitation, nose bleeds, or difficulty urinating. Lexapro can also delay a child’s growth.
Now it’s true that depression and feelings of anxiety have harmful effects of their own and these types of feelings should never be ignored. Unfortunately most doctors or other health professionals won’t tell you that there are alternatives to these dangerous pharmaceuticals. There are holistic ways of managing feelings of anxiety and depression that can help you feel better without risking all those dangerous side effects.
You might want to try some dietary changes that include specific vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are well known to enhance your mood. Other lifestyle changes include adding or increases aerobic activity or practicing yoga or meditation.
Depression, just like any other type of medical condition, is all about knowing your available options when it comes to managing your depression.