Do you suspect you may have depression and you’re looking for possible treatment options should you indeed get diagnosed with the condition? Maybe you were already diagnosed and you want to learn more about your options?
Depression is a condition that can disrupt your life in more ways than one. It can keep you from living life to the fullest as you fail to enjoy every activity that you do. It can also cause a strain on your relationships at home, work, and social circle.
The importance of proper diagnosis cannot be stressed enough. Without one, you will remain in the dark as you are unable to get the right treatment. If you think that the sadness and hopelessness you feel are beyond normal, it won’t hurt to consult a mental health professional.
This article will discuss the treatment options available to manage depression and keep it from controlling your life.
Top 4 Depression Treatment and Management Options
There are several ways to combat depression. Please be reminded that this article simply aims to inform readers as to what each depression treatment and management method entails in general. The only reliable way to know which will work for you is by working with a mental health professional.
- Lifestyle Changes
Making certain lifestyle changes is recommended for people dealing with depression. For some, these seemingly simple changes are effective enough on their own. By making some lifestyle adjustments, it can be easier to improve and eliminate depression symptoms and keep them at bay. Here are some lifestyle change techniques you can try:
- Exercise. Physical activities such as exercise can boost levels of happy hormones such as endorphin and serotonin. They trigger the development of fresh and healthy brain cells, similar to how antidepressants work. A simple 30 to 60-minute walk or light workout can already make a difference.
- Diet and nutrition. When a person is depressed, it can be a challenge to maintain good eating habits. However, having a well-balanced diet composed of nutritious meals can help keep your energy levels up and your mood swings under control. It’s also nice to avoid food with so much sugar.
- Sleeping habits. One of the warning signs of depression is fluctuating sleeping patterns. If you try to maintain good sleeping habits, you can avoid sleep deprivation, which triggers moodiness, irritability, and fatigue. Make sure you get enough sleep and that you follow a consistent sleeping schedule.
Moreover, it is also important to rule out medical issues that may be causing depression symptoms. Usually, medical or physical issues can be improved by the lifestyle adjustments suggested above. However, if you feel as though your symptoms and emotions are not improving, it may help to consult your general practitioner to check your physical health.
If it is found that you don’t have any underlying conditions that could be causing depression symptoms and lifestyle changes have little to no effect, psychotherapy may prove more helpful. There are several types of psychotherapy, including interpersonal therapy, psychodynamic therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy. Typically, a combination of these options is utilized.
Interpersonal therapy is the most common. Also known as talk therapy, this is the type of depression treatment wherein a patient is encouraged to share their thoughts, ideas, and feelings with a mental health professional (one-on-one) or with other people (group sessions).
Psychotherapy, in general, aims to help reframe your mind. It teaches patients techniques to combat negative thoughts. It also helps get to the root of the depression as the therapist tries to analyze a patient’s situation as they share their thoughts during sessions.
Many experts concur that depression is a condition caused by a chemical imbalance in one’s brain. Depression medications are designed to keep that imbalance in check. A mental health doctor may prescribe antidepressants to patients who really need it. This is why it’s highly necessary to consult a doctor as they are the only ones authorized to recommend treatment and prescribe medications.
In general, antidepressants can help alleviate symptoms of depression, especially when used in combination with other depression treatment methods.
- Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Therapy
Those who suffer from major depression and do not respond well to therapy and medication might be candidates for TMS therapy. It is a non-invasive therapy that utilizes magnetic energy pulses that are directed to regions of the brain that are responsible for mood manifestation. TMS therapy stimulates the targeted brain cells, which in turn can improve the connection between parts of the brain.
Depression doesn’t have to be a lifelong struggle. By seeking help early and getting the right treatment for you, it will be easier for you to cope and find joy in life again.