8 factors that doctors take into consideration when recommend you an antidepressant

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Detailed knowledge of the evolution of depression may help your doctor choose an antidepressant drug that will work best for each person.

Psychiatrists and other doctors who prescribe antidepressants will recommend the perfect dose and type of drug substance depending on several factors.


1. Overview
2. Criteria for selection of antidepressants

Criteria of selection of antidepressants


1. Diagnosis – Some drugs work better for some specific symptoms and types of depression. For example, some antidepressants are indicated when insomnia is a problem. The severity of this condition or anxiety, obsessions, compulsions may dictate the choice of a drug in preference to another.

2. Side effects – You probably want to know the side effects of a drug to avoid them. Antidepressant medications can have various adverse reactions such as sexual disorders, weight gain or sedation.

3. Age – As people grow older the body tends to decompose drugs more slowly. Thus, older patients may need lower doses of drugs. For children there are very few antidepressants that have been studied carefully.

4. Overall health – If you have any health problems, it is best to avoid certain medicinal substances. For example, the doctor needs to know the presence of heart disease, of the neurological disorders, when he must recommends a product. Therefore, it’s very important to discuss medical issues with your doctor or psychiatrist before starting treatment with antidepressants.

5. Drugs, supplements and diet – when combined with certain drugs or substances, antidepressants may not work or may cause dangerous or disturbing effects.

For example, the combination of an SSRI with another type of antidepressant, such as monoamine oxidase (MAO), can stimulate the serotonin to dangerous levels and even fatal. Also, mixing St. John’s wort with some medications, including those related to control HIV infection, cancer drugs, contraceptives could reduce the effectiveness of the latter.

6. Alcohol or drugs – alcohol and other substances can cause depression and diminish the effectiveness of antidepressants. Doctors often treat alcohol or drug addiction in the first place, if they believe it could cause depression. Often done simultaneously for addiction and depression therapy.

7. Personal mental health and family history of drug use – If you or your family member have had a positive response to a drug in the past, this information could guide the choice of doctor.

Depending on the evolution and natural course of depression (including its duration or if this is difficult to treat) may need a higher dose or a combination of drugs. This may be also true if an antidepressant is no longer be effective, situation that may occur when the drug is used for a long time or if treatment was stopped and restarted.

8. Cost – Because most antidepressants contain about the same active ingredients and are as effective, you do not risk if you try for the first a more affordable medicine.



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