Do Antidepressants Cause Suicide?

Do Antidepressants Cause Suicide?


By: Kennedy Shelley

Unfortunately, some depressed people kill themselves, but the rate is increasing.  It has increased a staggering rate of 33% since 1999.

We are at the highest levels since WWII.  The rate is sadly going up fastest within young people.

This corresponds with a spike in the use of antidepressants especially with young people.

A new report shows that when adults start using antidepressants, they are 2.5 times more likely to attempt suicide than those who do not.

This makes people wonder, is it the drug or the depression that causes this?

The study shows that 1 in 200 people who are prescribed these drugs will attempt to take their own lives.

The Center for Evidence-Based Psychiatry looked at the data from the FDA and said the government is woefully under-reporting the dangers of these drugs.

What makes it worse is that most people are prescribed these drugs by their family doctor, and not in a clinical psychiatric situation.  This means that primary care doctors are not aware of the potential risks associated with SSRIs such as Zoloft and other drugs.

How does an antidepressant make depression even worse?

Well, very few people realize that antidepressant medications do not automatically work.  In most studies the drug works only slightly better than a placebo.

Often you have to change medications to find the one that actually works for your brain.  Which requires careful monitoring.

What also is important is how many people need to be treated before a medication works.  For most antidepressant medications, you have to give the drug to 10 people before one of them feels better.

That means nine people are getting no help at all from the drug.

That means someone who is already depressed might feel worse because they felt they were promised some relief and are not receiving it from the drug.

Why do we think the drugs are creating the problem?  In studies where one patient received an SSRI and the other got a sugar pill, those getting the drug were three times more likely to try to kill themselves.

Why did these drugs get approved with this type of danger?  Mostly because the trials were short-term, only lasting weeks or months.

When patients were tracked further, the risk of suicide became apparent.

Dr James Davies, co-founder of CEP, says:

It is known that antidepressants increase the risk of suicide among young people and adolescents, and for this reason their use is restricted among these patient groups.

However, this research indicates that suicide risks also occur for some adults. This new evidence should now be reviewed by regulators, reflected in clinical guidelines and brought up in conversations between doctors and their patients.’

It is probably past time to start re-looking at the use of antidepressant medications which are so widely prescribed.

More and more evidence suggests that these medicines do little to relieve depression; for some these drugs can mask real pain that should be handled with a therapist, and may alter the brain chemistry which may make the matter worse in the long run.

To learn more about some of the other dangers associated with antidepressant medications see this article in Freedom Health News.

This does not mean there is no hope.  Many natural remedies seem to help people with depression including changing diets, talk therapy and various non-pharmaceutical herbs.

This article should not be a reason to stop taking a prescribed medication, but a warning that there is no magic pill out there that will help everyone beat depression.  It requires qualified medical support, but there are other options out there including changing your gut health.