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Medicine Doesn't Work Anymore

Question:

I have been diagnosed with major depression about 7 years ago. the doctor put me on Prozac and that has seemed to help me. later he changed the medication to Paxil and I’ve been on that medicine for 2 years now. all along the therapy I’ve had months where I felt good and then I had a sudden depression and the doctor had to temporarily increase the dosage. Now however I’ve been feeling OK for approximately 1.5 years and just recently I started experiencing severe depression again along with periods of panic and anxiety, worry, and fear. my doctor increased my dosage again but I’m still not feeling fine. I wonder what guidance you can give me on this subject.

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Answer:

I have two pieces of advice for you. The first is, Go back and see your doctor again. S/he works for you and not the other way around. If you aren’t doing as well as you believe you are capable of on medicine, go back and tell him/her about it and see what can be done.

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p> The second piece of advice I have is that you explore alternative ways of managing your depression besides just medicine: Cognitive behavioral psychotherapy for one, regular physical exercise for another, and involvement in a social community on a regular committed basis (for instance, through working on something you love, coaching a team, reading to elderly persons in a nursing home, etc. All can be helpful (Therapy probably most of all) as ways to combat a negative, paralyzed mood. A bonus is that none will cause side-effects.

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