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Tips on Detecting Antidepressant Abuse

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Antidepressant abuse is often a complicated issue since people often does
not think of medicines as addictive. This article provides an overview of
antidepressant abuse and insights and information on the possible effects
of long-term antidepressant abuse and some tips on detecting it.

antidepressant abuse

Article Body:
Treatment for depression and other anxiety disorders frequently calls for
a prescription for antidepressants. However, using antidepressants is a
double-edged sword. While it may reduce symptoms of depression and
ultimately get rid of it, antidepressant use over a long period can cause
the body to depend on it for stabilization. As such, people who have used
antidepressants often have averse reaction to withdrawal or reduced
dosages. The unpleasant symptoms triggered by reduced dosages or
discontinuation like dizziness, nausea, insomnia, irritability, and body
pains, among others are enough to make people abuse their antidepressant

Effects of Antidepressant Abuse

Despite the severity of these withdrawal symptoms, the side effects of
antidepressant abuse are more sinister. Some of these effects include:

    *   infertility
    *   emotional disturbance
    *   addiction
    *   hallucinations
    *   paranoia
    *   digestive problems
    *   death

Tips on Detecting Antidepressant Abuse

Antidepressant abuse occurs when one does not follow and often exceeds
intake of antidepressants in terms of dosages and frequency. People who
continue taking the medicine long after the treatment period has elapsed
is also a prime candidate for antidepressant abuse. If you suspect that a
friend or family member is suffering from antidepressant abuse, here are
some tips on detecting it:

1. Observe for secretive behavior.
People who suffer from antidepressant abuse are aware of the wrong nature
of their behavior. They will use all means necessary to keep their
continuous intake of antidepressants secret. Some of the most popular
techniques include keeping antidepressants in unlabeled or mislabeled
bottles, taking medicines in unholy hours, and keeping mum about doctor
visits or treatment updates.

2. Take note of mood swings.

Although mood swings are stablilized by antidepressants, people who are
abusing these drugs often exhibit surprising changes in disposition
especially if they are running low on antidepressant supplies. For
example, your mild-mannered friend may turn excessively irritable once
her antidepressant bottles are empty.

3. Track treatment schedule.

Irregular visits to the doctor may signal antidepressant abuse. People
who are heavily dependent on antidepressants may often find ways of
postponing doctor visits and prolonging intake of the drugs. Sometimes,
patients switch doctors in order to get another prescription for the
drugs especially if their previous doctors have denied their requests.

4. Look out for insistence of the need for the drugs.

Antidepressant abusers often insist they they need the drugs. Expressions
like “I can't live without it” or “It's my lifeline” are telltale signs
that a person is hooked too much on antidepressants to care. Casually
pointing out they they seem to be better and can get off the
antidepressants may cause extreme reactions.

These are just four ways of detecting whether one is an antidepressant
abuser. However, if you can persuade the person to come right out and
confess about the abuse, do this as the first option. Most of the time,
people who abuse antidepressants are aware that what they are doing is
wrong; they are just waiting for a push in the right direction. Try
talking them into undergoing therapy and counseling instead of relying on
drugs for their well-being.