Trazodone

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Overview: Trazodone is an antidepressant of the Atypical class. Trazodone is used to treat Depression and Anxiety. Trazodone has helped many people recover from their mental health problems – and is a good alternative for when patients fail to respond to SSRI or SNRI antidepressants. Trazodone is only available on prescription.

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Key Facts: Trazodone will normally take around 4-6 weeks to take full effect. Minor improvements might be visible after around a week. There are some side effects to Trazodone, and some cautions too. Trazodone should be used without interruption – you shouldn’t suddenly stop taking the medicine. The medication should help jump start your mood, and slowly make you feel like your old self again.

 

How do they work?: Unfortunately, it isn’t entirely known how antidepressants work. Atypical antidepressants work by changing the levels of some neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters are linked to mood and emotion. How the exact process works and links together isn’t entirely known, but antidepressants have a proven track record of working.

 

Dosage: The normal dosage of Trazodone is 150mg per day. Trazodone doesn’t upset the stomach, and can therefore be taken with or without food. If there is no response to the regular dosage, titration can take place. The maximum dose per day is 600mg. It can take some time to find the correct dose. A typical treatment course of Trazodone is nine months, though a longer treatment cycle is common.

 

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Side Effects

With each box of Trazodone, there will be an information leaflet enclosed. This will provide an exhaustive list of side effects. Side effects from Trazodone should only last a few days, though can cause issues. It is natural to experience some side effects as your body gets used to the medication.

 

Common side effects of Trazodone include blurred vision, dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, nausea and excessive sweating. Trazodone doesn’t cause sexual dysfunction, and very rarely causes suicidal ideation.

 

Serious side effects include suicidal thinking, seizures, chest pain and psychosis. An overdose should be avoided, as it can cause the potentially fatal Serotonin Syndrome and cardiovascular problems. You should contact your doctor if any of these serious side effects take place.

 

 

Cautions

You should always read the information leaflet that comes with your medication as it will include important information. You should tell your doctor if you are taking any other medication. It is important that you don’t use the herbal remedy St. Johns wort. Always ask your doctor if you are unsure on combining medicines. Do not combine MAOI antidepressants with Trazodone. Some antipsychotics, sedatives and opiods aren’t recommended to use alongside Trazodone.

 

Exercise caution when considering combining an SSRI or SNRI with Trazodone. It is recommended to try both at a low dose, and ask your Doctor’s advice.

 

Alcohol acts as a depressant, therefore it is recommended that anyone taking an antidepressant stays away from drinking alcohol. Combining Trazodone with recreational drugs is also not recommended.

 

Trazodone is not recommended in pregnancy or the breastfeeding stage. Antidepressants are generally considered unsafe to use in pregnancy.

 

Trazodone is not normally prescribed to anyone under the age of 18. Instead, some form of psychotherapy is recommended. Younger people have been shown to be more vulnerable to suicidal thoughts when using antidepressants. In the case that an antidepressant needs to be prescribed, Fluoxetine will instead generally be prescribed.

 

Other Atypical Antidepressants:

 

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