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    Taking legitimate antidepressants for years
    An_254613 posted:
    I am 62 years old, and was diagnosed with MDD when I was only 17. I am beginning to wonder what effect takinf different antidepressants for years is having on any natural occuring mood elevating neurotransmitters in my brain, and how on earth can I find out as the depression was so severe I have been afraid to try to "taper" and my psychiatrist does not appear interested in discussing this with me? What if I live another 30 years, (which is common in my family,) Is there a safe way to find out if I still need to take all of this medication: Wellbutrin XL, Depacote, Remeron??

    What would ahppen (if that's possible to answer) if I gave my brain the chance to function normally. I am afraid and tired of being dependent on drugs in order to function, and really wonder if I really still need to, as they aren't even sure how they work? Pls, I need feedback!
    maydog responded:
    I'm very interested to hear peoples responses to this post as well. I've been diagnosed with depression from a very early age also (probably familial) yet I never stay on medication for any length of time as I am constantly worried about the long term effects of the meds. I wish I could help but I seem to be in a similar conundrum.
    Thomas L Schwartz, MD responded:
    Hi- if you have had 3 or more clear depressions then many guidelines would say to take meds and do psychotherapy til you are well. After that stay on the meds that got you well forever unless there are major side effects. The risk of depression coming back is very high in those with many previous depressions...this is not set in stone but a guide. If you haven't had depression in 10 yrs, did some therapy, have many protective and positives in your life now, then maybe not lifetime for antidepressants. Sounds like you need a doc who will discuss pros and cons....
    jim531 responded:
    I'm 60 and have been on antidepressants for about 10 years. If you have some natural mood elevating things in place you might try lowering the doses and see how you you feel. The 2 most powerful natural things you can do are to get a lot of sunlight and daily aerobic exercise. I'm a runner and there is a big difference in how I feel after my daily run. Good luck!!

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