What Are SSRIs?

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (or SSRIs) are a class of antidepressants prescribed for depression and anxiety disorders. They work by increasing the amount of the neurotransmitter serotonin. First developed in the 1970s, allegedly with fewer side effects than their predecessors, they continue to generate controversy. Like most antidepressants, the SSRIs are most effective when used in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy and other forms of therapy

Recent posts on SSRIs

Happines Comes From Within

By Elena Blanco-Suarez Ph.D. on January 18, 2018 in Brain Chemistry
Serotonin, the brain chemical that is involved in "happiness," also influences our decision-making and our behavior toward others.

(The Modern) Mother's Little Helper

Stressed out? There is help for anxiety.

Antidepressant Not Working? You Could Be a "Nonresponder"

By Christopher Bergland on December 29, 2017 in The Athlete's Way
Why do some antidepressants work for one person but not another? The answer to this question has baffled psychopharmacologists for decades. Finally, a new study offers fresh clues.

DHEA Improves Depressed Mood But Not Cognitive Functioning

Have you read about DHEA for depressed mood or cognitive problems? There are positive findings for depression but most studies on cognitive decline and dementia are inconclusive.

Paying With Pounds for Relief of Depression

As the holiday season approaches, some may begin antidepressant therapy. Weight gain may be an unpleasant surprise side effect.

St. John's Wort for Depressed Mood?

Considering trying St. John's wort for your problem with depressed mood? Some people respond well, however, research findings are mixed and there are outstanding safety problems.

Omega-3s in Mental Health Care: Part 1

Curious about the evidence for omega-3s for depressed mood? Many studies report beneficial effects but more research needs to be done.

What Causes Brain Zaps?

Brain zaps can be an unbearable side-effect of discontinuing an antidepressant. Although these brain shocks are often described as harmless, they may in fact be minor seizures.

Lose Sleep, Feel Better?

By Susan McQuillan M.S., RDN on September 29, 2017 in Cravings
Can sleep deprivation improve the symptoms of depression?

Want to Feel More Upbeat? Here Are 8 Natural Antidepressants

By Susan Heitler Ph.D. on September 07, 2017 in Resolution, Not Conflict
Try this formula to ease mild to moderate depressed moods.

Moods for Overeating: Good, Bad, and Bored

We all overeat for different reasons.

Help! My Antidepressants Aren’t Working

Are your antidepressants not working? Adding talk therapy may help.

27 Facts About the Best Ways to Treat Depression

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on June 30, 2017 in Think, Act, Be
Depression is a common and highly impairing condition that often requires professional treatment. Find out what the research shows about what works and what doesn't.

Do You Need Drugs for Your "Chemical Imbalance"?

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on June 22, 2017 in Think, Act, Be
Research reveals some surprising news about the role of serotonin in depression—and suggests millions of Americans taking drugs for depression would do just as well on placebo.

Early Diagnosis of Alcoholism

By Fredric Neuman M.D. on June 14, 2017 in Fighting Fear
Alcoholism tends to run in families. It is often possible to recognize a vulnerability during adolescence by the way that your loved one drinks.

Which Type of Therapy Works Best? New Study Calls It a Draw

In the timeless battle over which type of psychotherapy is superior, a new meta-analytic study find psychodynamic therapy to be equivalent to CBT for adults.
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Is Trazodone the New Brain Wonder Drug?

Will an old, cheap drug end Alzheimer's?

Is Yoga an Effective Antidepressant?

By Linda Wasmer Andrews on April 14, 2017 in Minding the Body
Yoga contains at least four “active ingredients” that could help it work as an antidepressant, says yoga researcher and integrative psychiatrist Dr. Sudha Prathikanti.

Are You Taking an Anti-Love Drug?

Before writing off the idea of a love drug, you might be surprised to learn how some common drugs are already affecting the bio-chemical bases of love.

The Use of Ketamine as an Antidepressant

Little is known about the effectiveness or safety of repeated use of ketamine in treating depression. Recent recommendations urge caution.

Machine Learning and Antidepressant Response

By David Hellerstein M.D. on March 14, 2017 in Heal Your Brain
Machine learning offers a powerful new method of exploring response to antidepressant medicine and a host of other treatments throughout medicine, a JAMA Psychiatry report shows.

Genetics Play a Role in Social Anxiety Disorder, Study Finds

A new study has pinpointed a genetic link between social anxiety disorder (SAD) and a serotonin transporter gene called "SLC6A4."

Clinical Trial Finds Diet Works for Depression

By Georgia Ede MD on February 17, 2017 in Diagnosis: Diet
Groundbreaking research proves that dietary choices have the power to help reduce and even reverse depression.

Are Antidepressant Withdrawal Symptoms Worth the Cure?

The lens of depression clouds your everyday view.

Number One Reason SSRIs Take Four to Six Weeks to Work

It is peculiar that the common antidepressants SSRIs do not kick in for a long time. There is, however, a good scientific explanation of why they do not.

The Pit In Your Stomach is Actually Your Second Brain

By Richard E. Cytowic M.D. on January 17, 2017 in The Fallible Mind
Feeling low? New research says: Try a pickle. Gut feelings are more real than you think, and intestinal bugs influence your mood as well as your waistline.

Asking Why You Can’t Lose Weight After Medication?

At this time of year, try to see that your new beginning to try to lose the weight, is perhaps best commenced during a sunnier time.

Is an Elder You Care About at Risk for Depression? Do This!

Research has confirmed the potency of this remarkable antidepressant.

Medication Overuse, Underuse, or All of the Above?

By David Rettew M.D. on December 28, 2016 in ABCs of Child Psychiatry
It seems like we have the capacity to care about medication overuse or a lack of psychiatric treatment. Why not both?

Integrative Treatments of Depressed Mood

If you are currently struggling with depression and taking a medication that isn’t working, or you're experiencing side effects it's time to consider alternative therapies