Lifestyle Health and Wellbeing 02 Apr 2018 Anti-depressants eff ...

Anti-depressants effective on mental health, finds study

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | SHWETA TRIPATHI
Published Apr 2, 2018, 6:07 am IST
Updated Apr 2, 2018, 6:07 am IST
Psychiatrists welcome the study and discuss the significance of mental health in medical discourse and the need for medication for their treatment..
Representational image
 Representational image

Chennai: The effectiveness of anti-depressants may have always remained debatable but a recent global study published in the medical journal Lancet advocates the effectiveness of anti-depressants.

The comparative study on anti-depressants with placebo pills says that anti-depressants are very effective in the clinical management of depression and other mental disorders. The Lancet study analysed data from 522 trials of 21 common anti-depressants and revealed that most medication is more effective at reducing symptoms of acute depression in adults, as compared to a placebo.

 

Psychiatrists welcome the study and discuss the significance of mental health in medical discourse and the need for medication for their treatment. Depression can be mild, moderate or severe as categorised for its clinical management.  “While mild depression can be treated with counselling and cognitive therapies, moderate and severe depressions are most effectively treated by anti-depressants.A depressed person turn unresponsive to therapy and counselling in case of severe or moderate depression, as they also contemplate suicides,” said N Jessie, senior psychiatrist.

 

Anti-depressants are most commonly prescribed medications in western countries, when compared to painkillers and antibiotics, for the only reason that they work. However, depression still being a taboo in the country, anti-depressants also has many misconceptions associated with its effectiveness.  As per data from National Mental Health Survey of India, 2016, 85 per cent of people suffering from clinical depression in the country remain untreated. 
“People usually have a misconception that severe depression with severe suicidal ideation can be treated by counselling alone, which might be a grave mistake. Research says that the number needed to treat is much lower for anti-depressants when compared to commonly prescribed medications because anti-depressants are much effective than what is perceived,” says Dr Vivian Kapil, consultant psychiatrist at SRM Institute for Medical Science.

 

This study necessitates the fact that anti-depressants are one of the safe efficacious treatment modality available for depression which has been long advocated by psychiatrists around the world as they see quite a number of patients getting better with pharmacological treatment in their clinical practice, he added.

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