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If the numerous TV commercials don't make it clear, Americans are being prescribed and are taking antidepressant medication in greater amounts than ever before. The increase in antidepressants occurred in the 1990s, with the development of a new class of antidepressant drugs called SSRI. Examples of these drugs are Zoloft, Paxil, and Prozac.
These drugs are considered safer and have less side effects than other kinds of antidepressants, such as tricyclic and MAOI antidepressants. Because RNs are often involved in the administering, dosing, and maintenance of patient's drug care, it is important for registered nurses to be aware of these trends in increased antidepressants to keep patients' health care as effective as possible.