Amanda Seyfried has opened up about why she’ll never come off the antidepressants, which help to keep her mental illness in check.
The 30-year-old actress said she takes Lexapro, which is typically used to treat anxiety and depression, to help her manage obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and the debilitating feelings of anxiety that come with it.
She explained that she has been taking the drug since she was 19 years old and is now on the lowest dose.
“I’ll never get off of it,” she told Allure. “I don’t see the point of getting off of it. Whether it’s placebo or not, I don’t want to risk it. And what are you fighting against? Just the stigma of using a tool?”
Seyfried continued: “A mental illness is a thing that people cast in a different category [from other illnesses], but I don’t think it is. It should be taken as seriously as anything else.”
The actress said you might not be able to see mental illness, “but it’s there”.
“Why do you need to prove it? If you can treat it, you treat it,” she said.
Seyfried said she suffered with bad health anxiety as a result of her OCD, which made her believe she had a tumour in her brain. After undergoing an MRI scan, she was referred to a psychiatrist.
She said that as she has aged, her compulsive thoughts and fears have diminished “a lot”, and added that knowing many of her fears are not reality-based “really helps”.
It’s not the first time Seyfried has spoken out about mental illness. In an interview with Vogue last year, she spoke about her paralysing fear of being on stage in front of an audience.
“I have a lot of anxiety that I’ve been struggling with my whole life,” she said. “I have been working through it. I’m terrified, but this [career] is exactly what I wanted.”