Q. Is it common for depression to worsen after taking a new antidepressant for 2-3 weeks?

Doctor Answer is medically reviewed by SecondMedic medical review team.

Answered by Seconmedic Expert

Experiencing a worsening of depression symptoms after starting a new antidepressant is something that can happen, although it's not uncommon for some individuals. It's essential to understand that the effects of antidepressants can vary widely from person to person.


In some cases, when beginning a new antidepressant, there can be an initial period of adjustment during which the brain and body are adapting to the medication. This period is sometimes referred to as the "therapeutic lag," and it can lead to temporary changes in mood, including an exacerbation of depressive symptoms before improvement occurs. This can be distressing, but it's important to give the medication time to work and consult with your healthcare provider if the symptoms persist or worsen significantly.


However, if the worsening of your depression is severe or persists beyond a few weeks, it's crucial to contact your healthcare provider immediately. They can assess your situation, consider adjusting the dosage or changing the medication, or explore other treatment options. Communication with your healthcare provider is key to ensuring that your treatment plan is effective and tailored to your specific needs.

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