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Study: Antidepressants May Increase Diabetes Risk

admin - January 13, 2014

Antidepressants and diabetes risk.

See if you can answer this question: what is the leading cause of disability among Americans ages 15 to 44? If you guessed heart disease, diabetes, or even cancer, you guessed wrong.

The correct answer is depression.

Depression affects about 14.8 million American adults over age 18 every year – or 6.7 percent of the population. There is a higher usage of antidepressants (medications prescribed to treat depression) now than ever before. Approximately 11 percent of Americans are taking some form of antidepressant and this number continues to increase.

One new study found, however, that taking antidepressants could increase risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Diabetes screening and glucose screening are recommended for those taking such medication whether it is for a short or long period of time.

The studies indicate that not everyone who takes antidepressants will end up with diabetes. Antidepressants do not share a causal relationship with diabetes. However, there are specific drugs that are linked to increased risk, including Tricyclic Antidepressant (TCA) and Selective Serotorium Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI). Some doctors may feel it necessary to take these two drugs together which tends to increase the chances of developing diabetes.

Because antidepressant can cause weight gain, and weight gain is a major risk factor for diabetes, the link between the two arises. In most cases, a person suffering from depression may need help from their doctor. This typically leads to taking antidepressants on a daily basis to help maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Adults and children who face depression are in most cases taking antidepressants to avoid further health issues. This type of medication helps balance levels of neurotransmitters that are natural chemicals in the brain.

Individuals with depression who do not seek help or take the proper medication may face problems such as continuous health issues, personal and professional problems, and in severe cases, death. About two thirds of those struggling with depression are not getting help for it. The recent conclusion that antidepressants are linked to increased diabetes risk should not prevent individuals from discussing their situation with their doctor and getting help.

If you’re worried about your risk for type 2 diabetes, talk to your doctor or consider a diabetes screening.  Life Line Screening is here to help give you the tools you need to be proactive with your health.


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