After being diagnosed with a mental illness you may be given the option of taking medications. It can play a big part in your recovery. The common prescribed medication are-
SSRIs, SNRI, anti psychotics , benzodiazepines , mood stabilizers, anticonvulsants , stimulants, tri-cyclics etc .
Unfortunately still there are so many myths about them.
1. You will become dependent on them- most of the psychiatric medications doesn’t cause dependency. Your emotions are still yours . And no, it doesn’t mean once you started them you will need them always to feel normal. They are just part of your treatment . Once better you won’t require them . Some medication does cause withdrawal symptoms if you stop them abruptly but your doctor will safely taper you off and the symptoms would go away in few weeks.
2. You will feel better instantly- unlike painkillers , psychiatric medications take some time to build up in your system and start working. Generally after 2-6 weeks you can analyse the effects from them. Don’t assume that you popped up the pill and in next few minutes you will be symptom free.
3. Medications are not necessary- some people believe the myth that only therapy will be enough. These medications are unnecessarily prescribed. Definitely psychological tools are going to be a big help in coping . But many people do need medication to lead a normal day to day life.
4. If one medication didn’t work others won’t work too likely- it’s very common that start away the medication may not work or you may experience some adverse effects. But there are so many options available. Don’t lose hope and stop taking medicines. It takes time to find the right medication and dose to function well for someone.
5. If you are feeling better you can stop them- please avoid taking this decision yourself. Any psychiatric medication shouldn’t be stop abruptly without the guidance of your doctor. You need to taper them off safely.