Sexual Side-effects of Antidepressants

Sexual side-effects of antidepressants are very common. Statistics show that an average of 60% of patients report sexual complaints. Thus, it’s advisable for patients to stay tuned with the latest changes, and to quickly notice any dysfunction like changes in their desire for sex, erectile, and satisfaction problems among their sexual behavior patterns.

Studies show that, depending on patient’s physiological make up, sexual side-effects of antidepressants may show up within few months of starting medication.

It is believed that, antidepressants like SSRI’s inhibit the sexual response system by increasing the level of Serotonin, a neurotransmitter which poses a negative impact on the arousal phases of the sexual response cycle i.e. desire, arousal, orgasm, and resolution.

Read also : 5 Consequences of Low Self-Esteem

In a 2001 study at the University of Virginia, that was carried out to ascertain the sexual side-effects of antidepressants on antidepressant users. Drug classes known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) were recorded with a higher rate of sexual dysfunction. While other antidepressants: bupropion (Wellbutrin) and nefazodone (Serzone) had lower rate. This study was presented at the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting in the same year.

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