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    Includes Expert Content
    How do I know when I no longer need an anti-depressant?
    Anon_40802 posted:

    I am very satisfied with my anti-depressants and how they are working. However, I was thinking there may be a time when I no longer need them. How will I know when to stop taking them?

    MarySings responded:
    If you had diabetes and you felt really good because you took Metform, would you decide to go off the Metform? No, because you would know that the Metform is what it takes to keep your sugar levels even.

    If you are on anti-depressants and they are making you feel good, why would you want to stop taking them? Your brain is missing chemicals necessary for you to keep your mood swings under control. The anti-depressants are helping you. Like diabetes, you may need to take the anti-depressants for the rest of your life.

    And if you feel any shame because you are still taking meds for depression, stop. There is no shame in taking medicine for you feel better.

    I'm strong willed and I tell it like it is. I make mistakes, I'm sometimes out of control, but I love and give with all my heart. Have patience with me as I heal.
    soaringsparkles replied to MarySings's response:
    Hi Mary:

    You are right there is no reason to take a person off anti-depressants if they are working. However, sometimes a person may no longer be depressed and no longer need to take the anti-depressants. When do you if this is the case?

    Thomas L Schwartz, MD responded:
    Basic rules are
    if this was your 1st depression ever and you have been symptom free greater than a year, consider a slow taper
    if this is 2nd depression and free greater than 2-3 years consider a taper
    if this is your 3rd or more depression, consider much longer term treatment\
    Obviously every person's depression and risks are different, so speak with your doc as these guidelines are often modified...

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