I thought I'd mention this:
I came across this blurb from the BBC, Antidepressants "may harm sperm", and I couldn't resist commenting. One because it is informative (sort of) and two, well, I don't know, it was just too interesting to pass up! (I trust that we're all grown up enough to use the word "sperm" without giggling . . . well, that's all right. If you laugh no one will know. You can pretend you were mature about this in the comments.)
Basically the article talks about a study that found that men who were on antidepressants had a higher rate of defective sperm. The sperm in question weren't lower in quantity, just quality. That is, men who take antidepressants have a higher percentage of sperm with damaged DNA.
Now, reel in your disaster-scenario-seeking brains (my brain isn't the only one that does that, right?), because that actually means very little. The study was so small that it in no way supports conclusions like "men who take antidepressants have lower fertility" or even "ALL men who take antidepressants have harmed sperm". I repeat: those conclusions cannot be drawn!
Here are few facts worth keeping in mind:
*The study only looked at Paxil and other antidepressants in that family. It didn't look at any other type of mood disorder meds.
*The study didn't examine if the damaged sperm actually had an effect on fertility.
*The study didn't look if the effects were reversed when the medication was stopped.
So what to take away from all this? I think the one thing this new information points to is that antidepressants do a lot of things scientists and doctors don't understand. We need more research behind the meds and more research into treatments for mood disorders and into mood disorders themselves.
Also, keep in mind that past studies have shown that people with high stress levels (like depressed people) do have lowered fertility rates. If you are worried about fertility talk to your doctor (obviously!), but an antidepressant probably isn't a big factor.
Other things to remember: When it comes to serious illnesses like depression, OCD, anxiety, or any mix thereof, it is probably safer to side with taking the medicine if you need it. Since the Surgeon General required the "black box" warning to be put on antidepressants prescribed to teens, teen prescriptions rates have gone down and teen suicide rates have gone up. Nobody wants a crazy dad. Or a dead dad. And that's just the facts.