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1110049 tn?1409405744

Why Does It Take So Long for Anti-Depressants to work?

I am back on Efexor 75mg again after taking myself off same a year ago.  I am in an awful state, and want to know how I survive the two to three weeks before the medication has any effect?  
5 Responses
Avatar universal
This is the case with almost all antidepressants. Reason is that they take time to build up to theraputic levels in the blood stream.

A couple exceptions are MAOI such as Parnate and Nardil which act much faster.

You said 75Mgs of Effexor? Last time I checked thats not even a theraputic dosage.
You may find that you require a much higher dosage. Effexor XR doesn't even produce Norephinepherine effects in the brain below the 225Mg mark. Below 225 your simply taking a weak SSRI.

Avatar universal
As per Hensley's advice, it's unavoidable. The thing with any meds and changes of meds is to always plan ahead. Don't wait until things are so down it's desperation. Learn to recognise the signals and have a plan to avoid the depths.

It took me a long while to learn that but once learnt you are always prepared.

Agree too with Hensley on 75mgs of Effexor. Small dose, longer time to get anywhere, if it helps at all.

Best way to deal with bad times? Sleep a lot, get the doc to prescribe something to help there. Depends on your lifestyle, family and commitments of course.

Focus on it being temporary and use the experience as a learning process to ensure you don't go down that far again. Having depression once means it's likely to happen again in the future and multople events really tells us it is getting shortter between periods. Thuis the need to have a plan in place and don't float after stopping treatment. Be aware and react when you feel it coming. You know you do so listen to the signals OK.

Wishing you the best and hope it's brief for you.
Avatar universal
There are some people that do get relief from very small dosing, I'm just saying that the level of relief they get with such a small dosage may not be enough to feel comfortable with their progress.

Most people find that they get the same adverse side effects from low dosages as they do from moderate dosages.

As far as Effexor goes 150 to 375 is the normal range to produce positive effect.
My Doctor is a very good Psychiatrist and he said he's never kept anyone on a dosage lower than 150Mgs of Effexor.

There are people that go as high as 450Mgs a day, but I don't know if I would be comfortable with that. 600Mgs and above can be toxic.
1110049 tn?1409405744
Thank you for your kind comments.  Before my doctor started me off on 75mg and then upped it to 150mg.  I think that is what will happen this time.  I am to go back in two months to update him on my progress.  I have depression on and off for over 20 years and should never have stopped last year.  I was on 150mg Effexor for over two years and it suited me.  I have just got to hang on in there, but it is really hard.  I will never stop taking meds again.  I know I need them to function.
Avatar universal
There are so many people that make that same mistake. They feel better and assume that the beast of depression is gone so they stop their meds. It's not gone, but rather just waiting on you to make a mistake such as stopping your meds. Then you allow it out of the cage to destroy everything you have worked so hard for.

What most fail to understand is that Major Depression almost never just goes away. Without anything to keep it in check it will find a way back out.

The one thing you can count on with Major depression is that it doesn't like to release it's hold on the brain.

The best way to avoid a relaps is to keep up with your meds. Just because you feel better is no indication that it's gone.
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