How do I know if I need an antidepressant?

One out of six people in the United States have experienced clinical depression.  However, only 50 % of people seek treatment – thinking they can “tough it out.”  So how do you know if you are depressed and need treatment? The typical signs and symptoms of depression include sleep difficulties -typically,  sleep interruptions during the night, changes in appetite, lack of libido, difficulty concentrating, irritability, feelings of worthlessness, guilt or hopelessness.  The good news is that depression is treatable by the use of  antidepressants and psychotherapy.  An antidepressant can be prescribed by either a psychiatrist or a psychiatric nurse practitioner and there are many effective antidepressants to choose from. Most of the newer antidepressants are well tolerated with few if any side effects.   The combination of medication and psychotherapy has been shown to be the best treatment approach for depression.  The good news is that help is available and you will be feeling significantly better – there is no need to suffer.

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