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Lack of Pleasure & Prescription Meds

answered 11:09 AM EST, Wed May 21, 2014
anonymous anonymous
I broke my collar bone last week and got a 2 weeks supply of Percocet for my pain which is good since sleeping is torturously painful. I have been on setraline for 8 months for depression after I switched from fluoxetine which had unpleasant side effects that I did not enjoy. The setraline has definietely helped. I am responsive to it, but the Percocet has made me realize that I was still living without much joy in my life. Is there a way to keep on the Percocet/setraline combination as a long term treatment? I feel like if I ask my doctor for this he may look at me like I am a drug addict. I do not have any interest in getting high I just want to feel pleasure again.

Sandi Wiggins Says...

There are two issues here. Are opiates and other drugs addicting and do they lead to drug seeking? Can depression be overcome without drugs?

I am not a medical doctor or pharmacist, so I cannot comment on specific medications. However, my experience tells me this. Using opiates, including Percoset, leads to tolerance. Tolerance means that you need more of a drug to continue the same effect. This can lead to a pattern of drug seeking. This is not a matter of "will power;" this is the way opiates work. Pain meds can lead to abuse and dependence, which just compounds your problems.

Antidepressants aren't as physically addicting, but people can come to rely on them. That isn't necessarily a bad thing. If a person has high blood pressure, we wouldn't tell them to stop taking their medicine! Some people need antidepressants for a time and should always consult a physician about using them.

The core concern here though is how to overcome depression and feel pleasure again. One characteristic of depression is not being able to enjoy life - especially previously enjoyable activities. There are many causes for depression, in addition to biological ones. There may be unresolved - even undiscovered - childhood trauma. Difficult life circumstances can overwhelm someone's capacity to cope. If this might describe you, I strongly encourage you to seek individual therapy from a qualified counselor.

Overcoming depression is never simple! Utilizing drugs alone is not a long-term solution. Finding a reliable therapist can help you discover and overcome your personal roadblocks to happiness.

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Page last updated May 21, 2014

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