I can be a bit (okay more than just a bit) of a geek, and one of my big interests is how medications work. Throw in the fact that I’m a mental health nurse, former pharmacist, and person who has tried piles of different psychiatric medication, and you get someone who will quite happily watch hours of continuing education webinars on the topic.
It can be really useful to understand how medications work, because it can make both the therapeutic effects and side effects make more sense. This is the first of a series of psych meds 101 posts I’m going to write that will break down different classes of medications.
Mechanism of Action
Most antidepressants affect the three major neurotransmitters implicated in depression: serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Nerve cells (neurons) communicate with other neurons via connections known as synapses. The neuron sending the signal is referred…
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