Pediatric and Off-Label Indications for Doxepin

How Doxepin Works

Doxepin is a tricyclic antidepressant. Tricyclic antidepressants are an older group of medications that have been used to treat depression for many years. Even though doxepin has been around for a long time, it is not entirely clear how it works. The medication affects several chemicals in the brain, including serotonin and norepinephrine. It is thought that perhaps doxepin allows these chemical to stay in the brain longer, which can help with depression symptoms and anxiety. Doxepin can also block histamine receptors, making it useful as an antihistamine.
 
It is thought that doxepin works for insomnia treatment mostly by blocking histamine receptors in the body. Specifically, it blocks a certain type of histamine receptor known as the H1 receptor. Although drugs that block H1 receptors are used for a variety of different purposes, most of them also cause some degree of sleepiness.
 

Doxepin Use in Children and Teens

Although doxepin is not approved for use in children or teens, it may be used "off-label" in these age groups. However, the medicine is not recommended for use in children under 12 years old. Antidepressants have been shown to increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior in short-term research studies involving children and teenagers (see Doxepin and Suicide for more information). Talk to your healthcare provider about treatment options for childhood or teen depression or anxiety.
 
It is thought that doxepin works for insomnia treatment mostly by blocking histamine receptors in the body. Specifically, it blocks a certain type of histamine receptor known as the H1 receptor. Although drugs that block H1 receptors are used for a variety of different purposes, most of them also cause some degree of sleepiness.
 
Healthy Pet, Healthy You

Doxepin HCl

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