More than a quarter of Americans on antidepressants haven’t been diagnosed with depression, anxiety order, or any other condition that the drugs are intended to treat, a study finds. That means millions could face side effects without getting the drugs’ benefits, a researcher tells Reuters. In surveys of more than 20,000 people between 2001 and 2003, one in 10 people said they were on the medications, yet 26% of them hadn't been diagnosed.
“These individuals are likely approaching their physicians with concerns that may be related to depression,” such as “trouble sleeping, poor mood, difficulties in relationships,” the researcher notes. “Although an antidepressant might help with these issues, the problems may also go away on their own with time, or might be more amenable to counseling or psychotherapy.”