A Guide To Medicine For Depression In India
A Guide To Medicine For Depression In India
05 Feb 2024

A Guide To Medicine For Depression In India

If you have depression, you are probably aware that medicine is often recommended for treatment. But which medicines are most effective for treating this condition?

In this blog, we let you know all about medicine for depression in India, so you can make an informed decision regarding your mental health.

If you have depression and are looking for depression support, we can help. Contact us today to find out more.

Types Of Medicine For Depression In India

There are a few different types of medicine that are effective for treating depression. These are all now readily available in India

Serotonin System Reuptake Inhibitors

This medicine for depression in India works by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin in the brain. Normally, after serotonin is released into the brain, it is reabsorbed by neurons. SSRIs block this reabsorption process, allowing serotonin to remain in the crucial part of the brain for a longer time. This increased availability of serotonin helps to contribute to mood stabilization.

Several SSRIs are commonly prescribed, each with its unique characteristics and considerations.

Fluoxetine (Prozac)

One of the earliest SSRIs, known for its long half-life and versatility in treating various conditions, including depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and bulimia nervosa.

Sertraline (Zoloft)

Often prescribed for depression, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder, sertraline is well-tolerated and has a favorable side effect profile.

Escitalopram (Lexapro)

Recognized for its efficacy in treating both depression and generalized anxiety disorder, escitalopram is a commonly prescribed SSRI known for its favorable side effect profile.

Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors

Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs) are a type of medicine for depression in India designed to address a range of mental health conditions, particularly depression and certain anxiety disorders. These medications impact both serotonin and norepinephrine, and offer a broader spectrum of action compared to some other antidepressant classes.

SNRIs work by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain. By blocking the reabsorption of these neurotransmitters into nerve cells, SNRIs increase their availability in the synaptic gap. This dual impact on serotonin and norepinephrine is believed to contribute to the antidepressant effects of these medications.

Venlafaxine (Effexor)

This medicine for depression in India is effective in treating major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and panic disorder, venlafaxine is often prescribed in an extended-release form for better tolerability.

Duloxetine (Cymbalta)

Widely used for major depressive disorder, fibromyalgia, and chronic musculoskeletal pain, duloxetine is known for its dual efficacy in managing both mood and physical symptoms.

Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq)

A derivative of venlafaxine, desvenlafaxine is used to treat major depressive disorder and has an extended-release formulation.

Tricyclic Antidepressants

Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs) represent an older class of medicine for depression in India that have been historically used to manage depression. While they have been largely surpassed by newer antidepressant classes like SSRIs and SNRIs due to their side effect profile, TCAs remain a valuable option in some cases.

The mechanism of action is similar to that of SSRIs and SNRIs, albeit with a broader impact on multiple neurotransmitters.


Often prescribed for major depressive disorder, amitriptyline may also be used off-label for conditions like chronic pain and migraine prevention.


A metabolite of amitriptyline, nortriptyline is used primarily to treat depression but is also prescribed for certain anxiety disorders.


One of the earliest TCAs, imipramine is used to treat depression, panic disorder, and enuresis (bedwetting in children).

Which Depression Medicine Should I Use?

As all of these medicines are available for depression in India. The choice of which to use is down to you and your doctor. Note that it is common for doctors treating general ailments in India to have limited understanding of depression medicines, and you should instead see a mental health specialist to help you select a medicine.

Everyone’s brain chemistry is different, and it can sometimes take trying a couple of different medicines to find one that works for you. The aim is to find a medication that both treats your depression and comes with minimal or no side-effects.

What Causes Depression?

Depression is a complex mental health condition influenced by a combination of biological, psychological, and environmental factors. Understanding the multifaceted nature of depression is essential for addressing its causes and developing effective treatment strategies. Here are some key factors that contribute to the development of depression:

Brain Chemistry

Imbalances in neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers that transmit signals in the brain, play a role in depression. Disruptions in the levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine are commonly associated with depressive symptoms.


There is evidence to suggest a genetic predisposition to depression. Individuals with a family history of depression may be at a higher risk of developing the condition.

Trauma and Stress

Experiencing significant trauma, such as abuse, loss, or a major life event, can contribute to the development of depression. Chronic stress, whether related to work, relationships, or other factors, can also be a trigger.

Personality Traits

Certain personality traits, such as a tendency toward negative thinking patterns, low self-esteem, or a pessimistic outlook, may increase vulnerability to depression.

Cognitive Factors

Distorted thought patterns and negative cognitive biases can contribute to the maintenance of depressive symptoms. This includes patterns of thinking that reinforce feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.

Social Isolation

Lack of social support and feelings of loneliness or isolation can contribute to the onset and exacerbation of depression. Positive social connections are crucial for mental well-being.

Financial Stress

Economic hardships and financial instability can contribute to chronic stress and increase the risk of depression.

Occupational Factors

High levels of job-related stress, job dissatisfaction, or unemployment can be linked to depression.

Health Issues

Chronic illnesses, pain, or other health problems can contribute to depression. Similarly, certain medications may have depression as a side effect.

Hormonal fluctuations Changes in hormonal levels, such as those occurring during pregnancy, postpartum, menstruation, or menopause, can influence mood and contribute to depression.

Samarpan Health Depression Treatment

At Samarpan, we believe that depression medication can play an important role in treating depression. But we are also certain that it is crucial to treat the underlying causes of depression.

Using medicine alone acts like a band-aid, and the likelihood of relapse into depression after medication use has ceased is high.

For lasting relief from depression, we treat our clients with a range of talk therapies, as we have found that these are the most effective way of helping you overcome your depression and thrive.

For more information on our approach to treating depression, contact us today.

Samarpan is a leading international standard counselling centre, which is staffed by experienced and qualified professionals from India and overseas. The counselling centre offers One to One Counselling, Intensive Outpatient Programs, Peer Support Groups, Family Support Groups, Psychological Assessments, Psychiatric Assessments and Psychiatric consultations.

Located in Churchgate, Mumbai – Samarpan caters to clients in a modern, confidential and well equipped centre – which is easily accessible. On-Line sessions can also be offered.

For information and how to book an appointment we contactable on Phone or WhatsApp on +91 81809 19090.

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