Depression can make you feel as if there is a dark cloud always hovering over your head. It is a prevalent mental health disorder where you may always feel sad and lose interest in daily activities. Common symptoms include sleep problems, loss of appetite, feelings of guilt, low self-image, and suicidal thoughts.
But the good news is that even the most severe forms of depression are treatable. So, if depression is preventing you from living the life you want, ask for help immediately. But there is no “one size fits all” for depression treatment. What works for you may not work for someone else.
You need to be well informed about the treatments. This article will help you figure out the depression treatment that will help you live a happier and fulfilling life.
The Different Options for Treating Depression Are:
- Group Therapy
- Hospitalization or Residential Depression Treatment
- Other Ways to Deal With Depression
This is the most common way of treating depression. Here, you talk about the issues that are affecting your mental health with a specialized doctor. It is also known as talk therapy. Psychotherapy aims to identify the issues of depression, what triggers it, and other related aspects. This approach helps you reframe your negative thinking and combat depression.
The different ways in which psychotherapy can help you cure depression are:
- Identify negative emotions and replace them with positive ones
- Address current difficulties that are bothering you
- Enhance your relationships
- Reduce feelings of anger and hopelessness
- Set positive life goals
- You will be better at accepting and handling distress
Different modes of therapy are available. These include cognitive-behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, social skills therapy, problem-solving therapy, and psychodynamic therapy. Doctors often use a combination of these depression treatment techniques to cure you.
- Interpersonal Therapy
This identifies your relationships as the root cause of your depression. The approach helps you enhance your communication and conflict resolution skills. This form of therapy is focused on 4 areas:
- Addressing interpersonal issues such as unfruitful relationships
- Unresolved grief that can be due to the loss of a loved one or some tragedy
- Life transitions such as relocating to another city, divorce or retirement
- Personal conflicts between family members, partners, and co-workers
The therapeutic process takes around 20 weeks. The doctor will conduct your interview. Based on the results, he or she will form a treatment outline. The doctor will focus on your depression at present and how it is affecting you. It focuses on how some of your immediate difficulties are causing the symptoms of depression.
After analyzing you, the doctor will help you equip yourself with strategies to tackle stressful emotions positively.
- Cognitive-behavioral Therapy
This kind of treatment allows you to understand your feelings can influence your behaviors. Here, the doctor will help you to focus on and solve a specific issue. It can help you to cure anxiety, depression, phobias, and addiction.
In this process, the doctor will try to identify the negative thoughts that are troubling you. After identification, the doctor will try to figure out the actual behaviors that are causing mental problems. You will be taught skills and strategies that can be applied to tackle these emotions in the real world. The entire process takes time, but the doctor will play a very active role throughout the session.
- Psychodynamic Therapy
In this therapy, the goal of the doctor is to help you heal emotional wounds from your past. This will help you make your present more happy and productive.
Therapy generally makes you think that about a one on one session with the doctor. But it is not always the case. In group or family therapy, the doctor may talk to multiple members of your family who may be suffering from depression. This therapeutic approach focuses on improving interpersonal relationships. This approach also treats couples.
In a group therapy session, you listen to your partner or a family member. Listening to their problems will help you realize that you are not the only one who is being affected by depression. In this form of therapy, the doctor will analyze whether the family member has any role to play in your depression.
Group members may share their experiences and mental issues. They might also share the ways they have overcome their mental issues. This will allow you to look at your own problems with a different perspective. This depression treatment procedure also helps you to build a stronger bond with the other members of the group. It also helps you enhance your communication skills.
Medication is another extremely common way to cure depression. It may help you relieve some of the symptoms, such as sleep disorders and appetite problems. But it is not always successful in treating the underlying conditions of depression. Moreover, some anti-depressants may have side effects.
Medication may be prescribed to you, along with therapy or counseling sessions. Some of the popular medicine that works as depression remedies are-
- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) – Doctors usually start with these as they are safer. They have lesser side effects than other antidepressants
- Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) – The TCAs are one of the earliest antidepressants to be developed. They have more side effects than modern medicines. But on the other hand, they are very effective for some patients
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) – These are one of the older antidepressants. You have to maintain a strict diet and certain restrictions if you are prescribed this form of medication. This is because these medicines might lead to high blood pressure. They can be helpful in cases where depression treatment is difficult. Examples of MAOIs include Marplan, Parnate, and Nardil
- Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) – This is a newer type of antidepressant which is similar to SSRI. The medications in this category are – Effexor, Cymbalta, and Pristiq
Hospitalization or Residential Depression Treatment
There may be a case when a person might be suicidal and can potentially harm others. You might be confused about how to treat depression in such cases. At this point, hospitalization is the best way to prevent any unfortunate incidents. Psychiatric treatment at a hospital may help the patient calm down and stay safe.
Hospitalization might include individual therapy sessions and group therapy. The patient may be prescribed medication if necessary. When the doctor declares the concerned person safe to be discharged, an outpatient program may also be recommended. Also known as partial hospitalization, these programs will take place each day for a few hours. These are counseling sessions that help in recovering from depression quickly.
Other Ways to Deal With Depression:
Other depression remedies include ways to address the condition without medication. To be mentally healthy, you can practice these techniques for relaxation:
Yoga helps you reduce anxiety and depression. There are different yoga poses that will help you. For example, the Balasana pose will help you to relax your body to tackle depression better. Halasana enhances the strain on your back, improves your posture, and reduces insomnia. All this helps you to reduce stress.
Tai chi is a martial art that is practiced for self-defense and meditation. Learning the basic Tai Chi movements has helped many patients to stay calm, focused, and reduce the symptoms of depression.
This is a form of traditional Chinese medicine where needles are inserted in specific points of your body. This helps to cure imbalances and negative emotions of your body that can cause depression.
Mindfulness meditation helps you to focus on the present and avoid overthinking about past or future events. This can help you relax and reduce anxiety.
During a massage therapy session, a therapist will massage your muscles and soft tissues. This will help you relieve fatigue, joint pain, back pain, and sluggishness. The blood circulation in your body increases and you feel relaxed. It can help you sleep better.
In a music therapy session, the combination of harmony, melody, and rhythm relaxes the mind. It stimulates your senses. Combined with talk therapy, it can boost your levels of dopamine – making you feel happier.
The kind of music used in these sessions is usually tailored for those particular patients.
Another one of the most crucial depression remedies is exercise. Exercising regularly, such as running and jogging, will increase the release of feel-good chemicals in your body. Exercise also enhances your blood circulation and help your nerve cells to grow and make more connections. Together, all these factors help you in treating depression.
These are some other measures that you can take to fight depression:
- Set goals that you can complete to gain a sense of achievement
- Get adequate sleep and maintain your sleep schedule
- Spend time with people you love and those who lift you up
- Practice being in the present and try to stop thinking about past events that have hurt you
The best way to fight depression is to believe in yourself. Try to take it easy on yourself and treat this condition as any other health ailment. Always talk to your doctor openly about anything that might be bothering you.