Are Antibiotics Making You Anxious or Depressed?

Antibiotics Making You Anxious Or Depressed
Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

With our busy schedules, it seems almost impossible to let our bodies recover and fight by themselves with all those dangerous diseases which are so easily speared. That is the reason why most people gladly refer to their doctors with the hope of getting a prescription of the proper drug that will help their body to heal as quickly as possible so that they could get back to their routines. The fact is that we no longer have enough time to let our bodies recover using natural remedies and instead of we refer to the many pharmaceutical brands for help! Antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed medication to treat* different medical conditions. It is not uncommon to get surrounded by people’s opinions on how to recover more quickly and what you should and what you must not use in your treatment plan. Maybe you have heard people saying that antibiotics may cause depression and anxiety. Hearing this may get you worried, especially if you have a medical history including depression and anxiety and you are fearing that the symptoms might get back. That is why we conducted a research in order to find out what is up with this common saying. Are you ready to find out the truth?

Can Antibiotics Really Cause Depression and Anxiety?

Antibiotics, also known as antibacterials, are a type of drugs which are used in the treatment of different bacterial infections. They are considered to work by stopping or completely killing the growth of bacteria. As we mentioned before, antibiotics are one of the most commonly used medications among people all around the world.

Nobody is trying to cover the fact that the antibiotics, as every medication is known to men, causes certain side effects. In fact, the doctors inform you about the potential side effects that you can expect so that you will be able to report their presence as soon as possible to the doctor. Most of the side effects are physical, for example, an allergic reaction is one of the most common side effects among people. However, along with the physical side effects, many antibiotics cause psychological side effects as well.

Cause Anxiety and Depression

Although there are no specific causes which are known to cause anxiety and depression, a study done has confirmed that antibiotics do increase* the risk of anxiety and depression and because of that are commonly mistaken for a cause of depression and anxiety. The trick is in your gut flora. When you are consuming certain medications, your gut microbes are changing – meaning that their composition is changing and their levels are declining. A decline in bacterial diversity increases* the risk of anxiety disorders.

The most common psychological side effects of antibiotics are dizziness and gastrointestinal issues, in which you can recognize anxiety and suicidal thoughts which are a characteristic symptom of depression. But, most of the medications which cause this kind of symptoms, have noted them on their label so that you would be able to get consulted with your doctor if you have any worries.

However, these side effects have not been reported commonly. Most of the people are able to complete their course and recover without the need to change their therapy during the treatment. If you are still worried you can ask your doctor for a prescription of probiotics which may help you restore the balance in your gut. As soon as you recover, all of the symptoms, including the symptoms of anxiety and depression, will clear out. But, if you have a medical history of many mental illnesses, especially depression and anxiety, you must inform your doctor so that he/she could consider that while prescribing you a proper therapy. A medical history including any mental illness, especially depression and anxiety increases* the risk of anxiety and depression symptoms as potential side effects from the use of antibiotics. Depression and anxiety have been listed as risk factors for the most kinds of antibiotics.

kinds of antibiotics

Conclusion

Most of us have an experience using different brands of antibiotics in order to treat* all kinds of bacterial infections. Antibiotics have been used for years now, mostly because they do not usually cause any dangerous side effects.

However, people are still worried about the potential side effects, the physical and especially the psychological side effects. You may have heard that the use of antibiotics has been listed as a possible cause for depression and anxiety, although their specific cause remains unknown even though many studies have been performed. We must admit – we were interested to know if antibiotics really do cause depression and anxiety, mostly because antibiotics are represented as most commonly used medications among people. Luckily we found a study which confirmed our suspicions. After being analyzed, antibiotics have been shown to increase* the risk of depression and anxiety. However, these psychological side effects have been considered unlikely to occur.

That is why you do not have anything to be worried about. The doctor will prescribe the most proper medication according to your medical history, condition, and symptoms and you will be able to recover quickly and go back to your everyday routines in no time!

References

  • http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Antibiotics-penicillins/Pages/Introduction.aspx
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26580313

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Author

Expert Author : Dr. Ahmed Zayed (Consumer Health Digest)

Dr. Ahmed Zayed Helmy holds a baccalaureate of Medicine and Surgery. He has completed his degree in 2011 at the University of Alexandria, Egypt. Dr. Ahmed believes in providing knowledgeable information to readers. Other than his passion for writing, currently he is working as a Plastic surgeon and is doing his masters at Ain shams University.