Withdrawn behaviour

Author Bruce Stutz writes about his experience of depression, stopping antidepressants and the science of SSRI withdrawal in an article for the New York Times.

Withdrawal from SSRI medication, a group which includes drugs such as Prozac, Seroxat and Zoloft, is known to cause considerable discomfort in about 1 in 5 people.

It’s been spun as a ‘discontinuation syndrome‘ by the drug companies, as ‘withdrawal symptoms’ sounds a bit too much like what drug addicts have.

Although SSRIs are not addictive in the sense that they don’t cause a strong desire to take more, the brain does go through a significant period of readjustment when the drug leaves the body.

The NYT article examines Stutz’s experience of treatment for depression, and how he coped with the withdrawal symptoms that he was unlucky enough to experience.

The piece also takes a look at the neuroscience of serotonin and mood, with a more critical analysis than is often found in some mainstream science articles.

Link to NYT article ‘Self-Nonmedication’.

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