Don’t be surprised if a doctor prescribes an antidepressant medication to treat a condition totally unrelated to depression. Certain medical conditions and/or the symptoms caused by them are responding well to treatment with antidepressant medications. These are a few conditions for which a patient might be prescribed an antidepressant medication and why the medication works for these conditions.
Cymbalta (Duloxetine) Helps Ease Diabetic Nerve Pain
The antidepressant medication, Cymbalta, helps ease the pain of diabetic peripheral neuropathy and other chronic pain that some diabetics experience. The antidepressant medication works by adjusting the chemical response the brain is receiving regarding the nerve pain being felt. The chemical adjustment allows the pain to be perceived as less severe so the diabetic peripheral neuropathy eases in severity.
Prozac (Fluoxetine) Helps Prevent Binge Eating
Patients with an eating disorder that causes them to binge eat are often prescribed the antidepressant medication Prozac. Prozac balances serotonin in the brain to help the brain recognize when the body has had enough to eat. The feeling of having eat enough helps stop the binge eating cycles.
Effexor (Venlafaxine) Keeps Menopausal Hot Flashes Cooled Down
One of the primary complaints of menopausal women are the hot flashes which disrupt everyday life and night time sleep. The antidepressant, Effexor, is sometimes prescribed for menopausal women to cool down the hot flashes and are especially usefull for menopausal women who can not or will not take hormone replacement therapy. Effexor works by re-balancing the serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain which will prevent the internal thermostat from thinking the body is overheating.
Wellbutrin And Zyban (Bupropion) Helps People Stop Smoking
The antidepressants Wellbutrin and Zyban are often prescribed to patients as an aid for smoking cessation. Both of these antidepressant medications affect the levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain which in turn reduces the craving for a cigarette and reduces the nicotine withdrawal symptoms. Neither Wellbutrin or Zyban contain nicotine, which is a plus for the medication’s use as apart of smoking cessation program.
All medications have side effects, these antidepressants included. Cymbalta, Prozac, Effexor, Wellbutrin and Zyban are SSRI’s, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and patients need to be monitored closely during the time the medications are being taken and patients must be gradually taken off the antidepressant medications. Talk with your doctor to discover if treatment with antidepressants will work for your condition.