Tricyclic Antidepressants

Important Info For Users By Dr. Kensington

Common tricyclic antidepressants include Sinequan/Adapin, Anafranil, Elavil, Ludiomil, Norpramin, Pamelor/Aventyl, Norpramin/Pertofrane, Surmontil, Tofranil, Asendin, and Vivactil.

Tricyclics are an older class of antidepressants that were developed in the 1950's.

They predate other classes of antidepressants and are rarely used to treat depression anymore because they tend to cause more side effects than newer classes of antidepressants.

However, while they are not primarily used to treat clinical depression anymore, they still retain some medical use.

For example, they are still used in small doses to treat conditions such as chronic pain, sleep disorders, and other conditions.

Tricyclic Antidepressants: Side Effects

Side effects of antidepressants may include dry mouth, drowsiness, constipation, dizziness, increased appetite, weight gain, and blurry vision.

If you experience any side effects, report them to your doctor immediately. If you experience any severe reactions while taking this medication, seek immediate medical attention in order to stabilize your symptoms. After, follow up with your prescribing doctor.

In addition, antidepressants may cause weight loss or weight gain in a small percentage of folks who take them. See this guide to antidepressants and weight changes.

Suicide Warning

There may be an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviors when taking antidepressants, especially in children, teens, and young adults. For more information, read this important warning about antidepressants and suicide.

As a result, you should immediately report any feelings of suicide, hopelessness, or worsening depression to your doctor and loved ones. If necessary, contact 911 or visit the nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any suicidal thoughts or behaviors. 

Birth Defects

In addition, there may be an increased risk of birth defects and health issues to newborns in women who take this medication during pregnancy. For more information, read this important warning about antidepressants and pregnancy.

Mixing With Alcohol

Antidepressants should not be taken with alcohol. In addition to the numerous health risks caused by drug interactions, alcohol is a depressant and should not be used by folks who already suffer from depression.

Also, both alcohol and antidepressants hinder ones' ability to drive and operate heavy machinery. Therefore, for those taking either antidepressants or alcohol it is not advisable to drive due to an increased risk of accidents and fatalities.

For more information, read this warning about mixing antidepressants and alcohol.

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