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Which Antidepressant Is Best For Menopause

Antidepressants For The Treatment Of Menopause

Menopause and Depression: Are Antidepressants making you worse?

Menopausal symptoms including hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, depression, anxiety and reduced libido, are caused by decreased estrogen levels and are referred to as vasomotor symptoms. These types of symptoms are the most common symptoms associated with menopause. Non-vasomotor symptoms include lighter or heavier periods and less frequent menstruation.

Antidepressants are currently being used to treatment these menopausal symptoms in some women. While the way in which antidepressants help to manage symptoms remains unknown, they have been shown to be effective at reducing certain characteristic menopausal symptoms, most notably, hot flashes. Antidepressants that have successfully helped to reduce hot flashes in menopausal women include paroxetine, citalopram, sertraline and fluoxetine.

Before you hit the pharmacy shelves, get to know what these supplements to take during menopause can do for you.

How To Choose The Best Menopause Supplements

Because most BDS for menopause symptoms rely on similar ingredients, youll want to focus on the product manufacturer and quality when choosing your product.

When choosing top rated menopause supplements, make sure that the product manufacturer is reliable and trustworthy. You can easily determine a manufacturers trustworthiness by looking at the info provided on their website.

Is there a physical address and contact information?

Are there any details regarding product manufacturing?

The more information was given, the higher the possibility that you are dealing with a responsible company that does not sell ineffective and contaminated products.

You also need to look carefully at the product description, the ingredients listed, and the studies behind their efficiency. When it comes to buying health products, taking safety precautions is of utmost importance.

Alternative Treatments For Menopausal Mood Changes

For most women experiencing low mood, anxiety, irritability, or mood swings, it is a combination of approaches that works best. There are lifestyle factors that can really help you feel better and on a more even keel.

Eating healthily with lots of fruits and vegetables and limiting overly processed foods, excess salt and sugar and white refined carbohydrates, can be beneficial. Foods high in essential fats such as Omega 3 oils, and those rich in B vitamins, calcium and vitamin D can also help improve your mood.

Taking exercise regularly, such as swimming, brisk walking, jogging or an exercise class, boosts endorphins hormones that relieve pain and reduce stress as can activities such as yoga and tai chi. Talking therapy such as cognitive behavioural therapy has been shown to help with menopausal low mood and anxiety, and interestingly, even physical symptoms such as hot flushes. These alternative treatments are even more important for women who do not wish to, or cannot take, HRT.

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Could Antidepressants Make Menopausal Symptoms Worse

Anne explains, “There is evidence that SSRI antidepressants can exacerbate some menopausal symptoms, particularly poor libido and weight gain, which are very common due to the hormonal shifts. They are also much less effective at controlling menopausal mood disorders than is generally recognised.”

Diane agrees, “Many women say that antidepressants when prescribed for the psychological symptoms of menopause simply dont help, or make them feel numb or flat.”

“Antidepressants didnt help at all they just made me feel a bit numb and slightly disconnected from everything.”

Katie Taylor described her experience using antidepressants during the peri-menopause, she said, “I was offered antidepressants during the four years when I was suffering with terrible peri-menopause symptoms, which were misdiagnosed as depression. Antidepressants didnt help at all they just made me feel a bit numb and slightly disconnected from everything.”

After visiting agynaecologist, Katie was diagnosed with peri-menopause and prescribed HRT. She said, “I was like a new woman and back to the old me within a month. I set up my online platform The Latte Lounge so that no other woman would waste good years of life trying to figure out what was wrong with them.

Possible side effects of antidepressants

Cardiovascular side effects and gastrointestinal side effects

Nervousness, insomnia, restlessness and nausea

Weight gain and headaches

Dry mouth, nausea, constipation, diarrhoea and appetite problems

How The Intervention Might Work

Antidepressants For Menopause Mood Swings

The exact mechanism of SSRIs and SNRIs in decreasing menopausal symptoms is unknown . Decline in oestrogen is associated with a decrease in level of endorphins which is associated with a reduction in the level of norepinephrine and serotonin levels and an increase in norepinephrine and serotonin receptors in the hypothalamus . A reduction in endorphin production decreases the set point of the thermoregulatory centre in the hypothalamus . Studies have demonstrated an increase in norepinephrine levels in the brain both prior to and during a hot flush. Oestrogen enhances the synthesis of serotonin and endorphins and serotonin and endorphins are believed to inhibit the production of norepinephrine. In women with underlying depression, and with vasomotor disturbances and depression due to menopause, antidepressants might improve their ability to cope with their hot flushes along with depression . Thus agents that increase oestrogen, serotonin, and endorphin levels or that decrease central norepinephrine release would be expected to reduce hot flushes. SSRIs block serotonin receptor subtype 2a and stimulate receptor subtype 1a, thereby increasing serotonin levels. This prevents hyperthermia and inhibits hypothermia, providing a potential mechanism by which SSRIs reduce hot flushes. Maintaining serotonin levels would attenuate the rise in norepinephrine associated with hot flushes .

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When To Take Antidepressants Off For The Elderly

There is no consensus about whether long-term treatment with antidepressant medication is appropriate in this age group. Most experts only treat depression in the elderly for six to 12 months. Reynolds says many older patients are taken off antidepressant drugs within six months or a year of initial treatment.

However, one of the nice things about is that it is excellent for treatment of depression, , and anxious depression. Since middle-aged and older women are more likely to experience anxious depression, particularly around the transition of menopause, it is likely to be a useful agent to try for these patients, says Burt,

Bipolar depression: Sertraline 6 and older: OCD: Antidepressants can also be used for other conditions. The antidepressant imipramine is approved by the FDA to treat daytime or nighttime involuntary urination in children 6 years of age and older.

Ongoing Treatment And Follow

Any treatment for hot flushes needs to be evaluated periodically. Before switching from one treatment to another there may need to be a gradual tapering of medication.

Content updated August 2016

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Hot Flashes And Antidepressants: What Are The Risks

Sexual disorders. Loss of libido and inability to reach orgasm can occur with SSRI or SNRI treatment, although women also report those problems during menopause. Speak with your physician if you experience a change in sexual desire or performance after you start taking the drug.Serotonin syndrome. This rare but life-threatening reaction happens most often when two drugs that raise serotonin in the brain are used at the same time, causing confusion, hallucinations, loss of coordination, fever, rapid heart rate, and vomiting. Avoid the use of older antidepressants such as monoamine oxidase inhibitors, migraine headache medicines called triptans , tryptophan supplements, herbal products like St. John’s wort, over-the-counter cough medicines containing dextromethorphan, and prescription painkillers like meperidine .Suicidal behavior. Antidepressants can increase the risk of suicide in people younger than 25. But no matter what your age, if you are thinking about hurting yourself, talk with your doctor.Common side effects. They include headaches, nausea, anxiety, dry mouth, fatigue, insomnia, drowsiness, and dizziness, but they might be temporary.

Sexual Side Effects Of Antidepressant Drugs

When To Use An ANTIDEPRESSANT for HOT FLASHES at menopause

While women in peri- and menopause may already be suffering from sexual dysfunction symptoms due to reduced hormones, the addition of SSRIs may have some sexual side effects that include diminished sexual desire, trouble achieving and maintaining arousal, and difficulty achieving orgasm. Depression can be both a cause and a result of sexual problems.12 About 50% of people taking SSRIs report some sexual dysfunction, but some SSRIs cause less sexual dysfunction than others. Some SSRIs actually increase sexual drive and arousal in women. Ask your doctor about which medication is best for you.

SSRIs can also cause drug interactions that should not be taken lightly. Always consult a physician before taking prescription medications, changing dosages, or considering stopping. This is a delicate balancing act. Any changes in antidepressant therapy or dosing should be done only in consultation with your healthcare provider. Be sure to ask your healthcare provider about which SSRI might be best for you.

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What Is The Best Menopause Treatment

Since every woman has to go through menopause at some stage in her life, hundreds of clinical trials and research studies are continuously being conducted in order to find the most appropriate method for these women to manage the symptoms they experience during this time in their lives.

This has led to the development of many different treatment measures that women can now utilize to help them overcome the unpleasant menopause symptoms.

WebMD explains that the specific type of treatment often also depends on some factors related to the woman who is experiencing these symptoms.

When it comes to a pharmaceutical approach, a woman who still has a uterus will often receive combination HRT , while a woman who does not have a uterus anymore may only be prescribed a dose of estrogen.

A lot of women do tend to experience adverse reactions to these particular treatment options.

This is a particular reason why natural supplements for menopause are becoming more-and-more popular these supplements often provide relief of the symptoms experienced by the woman going through menopause, without causing the dreadful side-effects often associated with hormone replacement therapy.

What Is An Antidepressant What Is The Best Antidepressant For Menopause Depression

Beyond hormone replacement therapy to treat menopausal mood changes, anxiety and depression, there is also the option to choose non-hormonal drug therapies which have been shown to reduce some of the more frustrating symptoms of menopause.8 The most commonly talked about non-hormonal drugs used as antidepressants include gabapentin, pregabalin, and clonidine which can also help to reduce hot flashes, night sweats, and insomnia.

There are several classes of antidepressants, but the most often used are serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors , and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors . They are the most well-investigated group of non-hormonal antidepressants for the treatment of hot flashes. SSRI antidepressants work by increasing levels of serotonin within the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is often referred to as the âfeel-good hormone.â SNRIs are effective at treating depression, anxiety disorders, and long-term pain.

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Can Supplements Ease Menopause Symptoms

There have been countless studies on menopause supplements conducted over the past 50 years. According to one systematic review of the effectiveness of BDS in the treatment of menopausal symptoms, the most extensively studied ingredients for menopause symptom relief are black cohosh and soy.

The efficiency of these ingredients is believed to be due to their estrogenic effect, but recent studies show that this is not the case with black cohosh.

Instead, black cohosh seems to alleviate menopause symptoms by affecting serotonin receptors and thus improving vasomotor functioning and mood.

Soy, on the other hand, contains high amounts of phytoestrogens which are believed to counteract estrogen deficiency seen in menopause.

However, the mechanism of action of these phytoestrogens is unknown, and studies on their effectiveness are inconclusive. Other ingredients that may offer relief to some women are red clover, dong Quai, evening primrose, hops, Ginkgo Biloba, Ginseng, valerian, lemon balm, licorice root, and many others.

These ingredients were less studied than black cohosh and soy so their efficiency remains unknown.

Is The Antidepressant Effexor Good For Older Women

Antidepressants for Menopause: Benefits, Types, Side ...

However, one of the nice things about is that it is excellent for treatment of depression, , and anxious depression. Since middle-aged and older women are more likely to experience anxious depression, particularly around the transition of menopause, it is likely to be a useful agent to try for these patients, says Burt,

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What Is The Best Antidepressant For Menopause

The best medication for menopause-related depression will depend on many factors. Its a good idea to discuss your medication options with your provider. Medications that may be used to treat menopause-related depression include:

Alternative Or Herbal Therapies

  • These may include herbal or plant supplements and have been marketed as skin creams and foods with the key ingredient being phytoestrogens.
  • Little solid scientific evidence exists to support claims for alternative therapy benefiting menopausal health.
  • Black Cohosh has been shown in some trials to reduce hot flushes in peri-menopausal women3. However there have been reports of liver damage with its use which is likely to be due to contaminants in certain products.

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What Are The Different Types Of Antidepressants

There are four main types of antidepressants:

  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors . SSRIs increase the amount of the neurotransmitter serotonin in your brain. Doctors often prescribe these first because they cause the fewest side effects.
  • Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors . SNRIs increase the amount of serotonin and norepinephrine in your brain.
  • Tricyclic antidepressants. These keep more serotonin and norepinephrine available in your brain.
  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitors . Serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine are all monoamines. A monoamine is a type of neurotransmitter. Your body naturally creates an enzyme called monoamine oxidase that destroys them. MAOIs work by blocking this enzyme from acting on the monoamines in your brain. However, MAOIs are rarely prescribed anymore, as they can cause more serious side effects.

Antidepressants may provide relief from vasomotor symptoms of menopause. Vasomotor symptoms involve the blood vessels. They include things like:

  • hot flashes

80 percent of menopausal women experience these symptoms, notes a 2014 study.

Studies suggest that low doses of SSRIs or SNRIs may help reduce vasomotor symptoms, especially hot flashes and night sweats. For example, a found that a low dose of the SNRI venlafaxine worked almost as well as traditional hormone therapy for reducing hot flashes.

Antidepressants can cause a range of side effects. SSRIs generally cause the fewest side effects. Your doctor might suggest trying this type first.

Benefits Of Antidepressants With Menopause

New treatment for women suffering from menopause-related depression

Troublesome vasomotor symptoms, aka âhot flashes and night sweats,â can interfere with your quality of life. While hormone replacement therapy is the mainstay treatment for hot flashes and night sweats, it might not be enough, or it might not be the right fit for you.4

While HRT is more effective than antidepressants for women who are experiencing hot flashes during their perimenopausal or early postmenopausal period, some may also benefit from antidepressants. For those who cannot take hormone replacement therapy because of medical concerns , antidepressants can serve as an alternative to hormone therapy. Antidepressants are widely used and have a good safety record.

Many studies have shown the relationships between poor sleep, hot flashes, anxiety, sexual disorders, depression, and lowered hormone levels with menopause.7-11 Although the exact mechanism of how antidepressants improve these menopause symptoms is unclear, many have demonstrated their effectiveness. By normalizing the levels of hormones and treating depression, women can feel the benefits rather quickly after starting both HRT and antidepressants.

It is also common for women to experience insomnia during perimenopause partly because of nighttime hot flashes but also because of stress, anxiety, or mood changes. Poor sleep can make you up to 10 times more likely to become depressed.3 Both HRT and antidepressants are highly effective at treating sleep disorders that can lead to depression.

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Do Menopause Supplements Work

As already mentioned, menopause supplements may work for some women, but because the studies on these products and their ingredients are inconclusive, we cannot know for sure.

What we do know is that women taking these supplements claim they offer relief and these claims often come from clinical trials.

Menopause supplements containing black cohosh are most likely to work, but so are those containing other botanicals that affect the hormones, and neurotransmitters.

Some of the botanicals used in menopause supplements address anxiety and depression symptoms, which might directly impact the severity of menopause symptoms.

This is because the severity of hot flashes and night sweats can become worse as a result of depression and anxiety as found in one study published in the journal Menopause.

Is Moclobemide A Good Antidepressant

Adverse effects. The incidence of adverse events is not correlated with age however, adverse events occur more often in females than in males. Moclobemide is regarded as a generally safe antidepressant and due to its favorable side effect profile, it can be considered a first-line therapeutic antidepressant.

Similar to B vitamins and vitamin D, magnesium shortage is really common in people experiencing depression, and low degrees might be connected to depressive signs and symptoms. Brief for 5-hydroxytryptophan, 5-HTP is an amino acid that your body utilizes to produce serotonin, whose label is the pleased chemical. Like serotonin, your body produces 5-HTP normally. Your body uses it to generate serotonin, which assists enhance your serotonin levels, which, in turn best depression medicine for menopause, can elevate your mood. However when taken as a supplement for depression, evidence is limited as to its performance. Not only are they not FDA-approved, theyre known to create extreme neurological conditions, among other major negative effects. Alterations in intestinal vegetations have been linked in mood problems, although the system is unclear.

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Hot Flashes And Antidepressants: Lifestyle Changes You Can Try

Avoid potential hot-flash triggers such as alcohol, caffeine, hot or spicy foods, hot drinks, and cigarette smoking. Also avoid using hair dryers and taking hot showers.Wear loose-fitting cotton clothing in layers that can be removed.Keep ice water at hand. Lower room temperatures or use a fan.To help alleviate night sweats, take a cool shower before bed. Wear light cotton pajamasthey’re easier to change than sheets. Use cotton sheets only and layered bedding that can be peeled off during the night. Keep a frozen ice pack under the pillow, and turn the pillow often so your head rests on a cool surface.Try paced respirationslow, deep abdominal breaths in through your nose and released through your mouthonce or twice a day or at the beginning of a hot flash.

Bottom line. Newer antidepressants might be an effective treatment for moderate to severe hot flashes. Currently published studies support the use of paroxetine and venlafaxine as first-line choices among those drugs. Our advice: Talk with your doctor about your symptoms and all available treatments. If you’re concerned about using hormones, consider newer antidepressants only after their risks and benefits have been thoroughly explained to you.


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