Today, The Pharmacist on Mental Health writes a small piece,
if you have been following my Twitter this week, you’ll know that it exploded . I got messages from Twitter itself asking did I need a hand with notifications! Over the short term future, you’ll see a number of blog entries where contributors answer in 140/280 characters how their Mental Health condition is (at the time of writing).
Hundreds of replies, so a few blogs over a few days!
There was 1 controversial issue-
“Are anti depressants addictive”?
Now over to The Pharmacist on Mental Health, my best friend on Social Media, Laura
Over the last several days there has been quite a debate on Aidan’s Twitter regarding whether or not antidepressants are addictive. And some people, quite frankly, have been downright nasty. As Aidan and I were discussing this, we decided that the definition of “addiction” needed to be addressed.
According to The National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), addiction is defined as: “A chronic, relapsing brain disease that is characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences.” Substances they list as addictive drugs are:
Hallucinogens (Ecstasy, LSD, PCP, Psilocybin)
If antidepressants are suddenly stopped, it’s true that there may be some unwanted effects such as anxiety, insomnia, headache, flulike symptoms, nausea and even a worsening of depression. But for it to be a true addiction, the patient would make it a priority to obtain this drug without regard to consequences.
Both explanations ARE very similar, but it’s important to make the distinction. The easiest way to remember is that addiction involves cravings, irrational behavior and a focus of obtaining the drug without concern of harm it may cause anyone.
As with any medication, discontinuation should ALWAYS be done under a doctor’s supervision.
The Pharmacist on Mental Health