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If you are suffering from depression you are not alone – 1 in 10 Australians will suffer from depression at some point in their life.
Depression can be a disabling condition. It can impact your studies, work, and relationships. For some, it will resolve over months but for others, it is a lifelong health condition.
Common symptoms of depression are:* low mood or a loss of interest or pleasure in things you used to enjoy* a change in your weight or appetite (an increase or a decrease)* insomnia, or sleeping more* feeling restless or slowed down
* fatigue or loss of energy* feelings of worthlessness, or excessive or inappropriate guilt* problems concentrating or making decisions* recurrent thoughts of death, or thinking about or attempting suicide.
The best thing you can do if you are feeling depressed is to talk to someone, whether it be a friend, family member or Health Professional.
There are effective treatments for depression, but there is no single treatment that is right for everybody. It’s important to find a treatment that works for you, and this may take some trial and error. Medications can help but they aren’t the only answer. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has been shown to help, and for mild to moderate depression, it is as effective as medications.
When it comes to medications to treat depression there are several different groups of antidepressants. They are about as effective as each other overall, but some people will respond to one antidepressant better than another. The type and severity of side effects can also be quite different between these groups of antidepressants.
Antidepressant medicines change the levels of specific chemicals in the brain. These brain chemicals are also called neurotransmitters.
Serotonin is one of the neurotransmitters that transmit signals between cells in your brain. Serotonin, along with other neurotransmitters such as noradrenaline and dopamine, are thought to have an important effect on mood and anxiety. At Pharmacy For Life, our pharmacists are trained to help explain your medications to you and support you with your treatment.
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