Depressing Antidepressants

Depression hurts, or so they say.  We all say, actually, because if you haven’t been depressed yourself, odds are someone close to you has.  If you go to a doctor nowadays, mention that you’re depressed, and wait about thirty seconds, he or she will have his prescription pad out to write you a prescription for one of the drugs mentioned in this infographic.  Who knows if that drug will work for you, or if your body will have an adverse reaction to said drug?  It’s a crapshoot, and far too many doctors are quick to dole out pills instead of trying to get to the root of a problem.  It goes beyond depression, and into every other type of ailment you can imagine.  Whatever is wrong with you, they’ve got a pill for it, but, like this infographic says, the medicine can be worse than the ailment itself.  But I digress…

The information given in this infographic is:  who is at higher risk for depression, the drugs prescribed for depression and other mental illnesses, statistics on the use of antidepressants, the levels of depressions, the symptoms of depression, and the side effects of antidepressants.

Who Is At Higher Risk for Depression?

The top of the infographic features a picture of a sad woman, and tells us that 60% of depressed Americans are women, and that woman between 45-64 are at the highest risk for depression.  Also, multiple races and previously married or divorced women are at a higher risk for depression.  To the left of this information, there is a paragraph on the types of antidepressants that are usually prescribed, and how they might be bad for people.  The background color is a somber blue/gray, and the sad lady looks really sad.  The facts about those at a higher risk for depression are sort of coming out of different parts of the lady’s head, which is a little odd, but it works alright.  The type is very small, which is not always good for an infographic.


This section of the infographic is probably the best, visually.  It shows a line drawing of each of the medicines most commonly prescribed, has a graphic for each that shows the percentage rating of the drug, and there is a small description of each drug underneath the little picture.

Depression Levels, Depression Symptoms, and Statistics on the Effectiveness of Antidepressants

That heading is so long and confusing for a reason.  The depression levels and depression symptoms should have come before the breakdown of the different types of drugs prescribed, so that once the drugs were broken down, the reader would already know the symptoms and levels of depression.  I know why they did it they way they did, and it is because they made a symbol for each symptom, and they used those same symbols with the drug side effect section in order to drive the point home that the side effects of the drugs can behave in the same way as the symptoms of the disease.  Visually, I suppose they wanted those two sections to be close to one another, so that the viewer could see them in one glance, but I don’t know how much that visual trumps the importance of organization.

Side Effects

As I mentioned before, the little images used for the symptoms of depression match the side effect images, which is a great visual tool.  Sure enough, the side effects of antidepressants are VERY similar to the symptoms.

Design:  C

While I think there were some great ideas here, I think that the organization of the information should not be sacrificed for a cool visual idea.  There had to have been some way to implement the cool visual idea AND organize the information better.

Information:  A+

This offered so much good information on the negative points of antidepressants that once the organization issue is addressed, it should probably hang on the wall of every doctor’s office.  People trust their doctors to prescribe drugs that help, and these can, clearly, hurt you.

VIA: ADrugRecall