Depression, often referred to as major depressive disorder, is a mental health condition characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyed. It goes beyond the usual fluctuations in mood and can significantly impact daily functioning, relationships, and overall well-being. Symptoms of depression can vary but may include changes in appetite, sleep disturbances, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, and even thoughts of death or suicide. Depression is a serious condition that can affect people of all ages and backgrounds, but with proper diagnosis and treatment, it is manageable and treatable.
A key component to treatment outcomes at Redeemed Mental Health, located in Newport Beach, California, is the use of measurement-based indicators. It is essential that your treatment team utilize evidence-based tools to determine your individual symptoms severity to measure, over time, your symptoms. This assists your team in identifying areas in your treatment which need improvement and what appears to be working for you specifically.
Depression is a complex and serious mood disorder that can affect various aspects of a person’s life, including their emotions, thoughts, and physical well-being.
Depression treatment typically involves a combination of approaches tailored to the individual. It’s important to consult with a mental health professional to determine the most suitable treatment plan for your specific needs. Here are some common treatment options for depression:
Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, involves working with a trained therapist to explore and address the underlying causes of depression. Different types of therapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), interpersonal therapy (IPT), and psychodynamic therapy, may be used to help individuals develop coping strategies, challenge negative thoughts, and improve relationships.
Antidepressant medication may be prescribed by a psychiatrist or other medical professional. Common types of antidepressants include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), and tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). These medications can help balance brain chemicals involved in mood regulation. It’s important to note that medication should be prescribed and monitored by a healthcare professional, as they can have side effects and require careful management. This is an effective treatment to reduce symptoms with more rapidly.
Certain lifestyle modifications can contribute to managing depression. These may include regular exercise, adequate sleep, a balanced diet, and reducing stress. Engaging in activities you enjoy, maintaining social connections, and
practicing relaxation techniques can also be beneficial.
Having a strong support system can provide emotional support and understanding. This can involve reaching out to friends, family, or participating in support groups where you can connect with others who have experienced or are experiencing depression.
Some individuals find complementary or alternative therapies helpful in managing their depression symptoms. Examples include acupuncture, yoga, meditation, and mindfulness practices. While these approaches may not be a substitute for evidence-based treatments, they can be used as adjuncts to traditional therapy and medication.
TMS is a non-invasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate specific regions of the brain. It has been approved as a treatment for depression when other treatments have not been effective. TMS is typically administered in a clinical setting under the supervision of a healthcare professional.
It’s important to remember that depression treatment is not one-size-fits-all, and what works for one person may not work for another. A mental health professional can assess your specific needs and develop a personalized treatment plan. If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, I encourage you to reach out to a healthcare professional for support and guidance.
Therapists may also integrate different approaches and techniques based on the individual’s unique needs and goals. It’s important to work with a qualified mental health professional who can assess your specific situation and recommend an appropriate treatment approach.
Join the Journey to Healing
Corrections of dysfunctional thinking patterns may reduce depressive symptoms and moreover the likelihood of future relapse into depressive episodes (Beck, Rush, Shaw, & Emery, 1997). CBT is delivered in a structured and collaborative manner, wherein both patient and therapist are active in all treatment phases. The alternative treatment option for depression is antidepressant medication. Psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy have shown comparable effects in the treatment of depression (Cuijpers et al., 2013; Kappelmann et al., 2020). Evidence has been found that combined treatment of depression is superior to pharmacotherapy alone, but that psychotherapy can be as effective as combined treatment in the long-term (Karyotaki et al., 2016).