March 16, 2006

Antidepressants Treatment for Depressions

Posted in Category : Depression

Continuing with my previous blog on depression, I am listing down possible treatments for depressions.

Depression if ignored and undiagnosed can make life of an individual as well as the family, friends and caregiver a miserable one. Recognizing the illness and deciding to get treated is the first step in that direction of depression treatment.A psychiatrist or psychologist will do a thorough diagnostic evaluation of symptoms related to depression i.e. when they started, how long they have lasted, how severe they are, whether the patient had them before and, if so, whether the symptoms were treated and what treatment was given, etc. Evaluation will also include questions on alcohol, drug use, death or suicide, family history, and many other examinations will be conducted to determine the type of treatment.

Antidepressant medications and psychotherapy (talk therapy) are the standard treatments for depression. In past few years, herbal therapy which recommends use of herbs in the treatment for depression has been in the limelight. If you’re diagnosed with less severe form of depression, talk therapy might help alone; antidepressants work fine for moderate to severe forms of depression. A combined treatment of medications for quick symptom relief and psychotherapy to learn more on effective ways to deal with life’s problems that leads to depression.

The type of treatment is dependent on the patient’s diagnosis and severity of symptoms analyzed by the therapist.

There are several types of medications available to treat depression. The therapist starts by recommending permutations of antidepressants before finding the effective combination. Depending upon the severity of the problems, dosage level may vary. Antidepressants don’t work at the first go. Improvements will be seen after approx 3-4 weeks or more. Regular checkups are a must till the medication course is not over. Just because one feels fine after few weeks, they should still continue to take medications as described by the therapist to prevent a relapse. The therapist monitors the patient and checks for effectiveness of the dosage. Mostly medications of all kinds have side effects. While on medications, the diet should be balanced and effective. If you take alcohol, drugs, etc, medications will not be effective.

Side effects to antidepressants could be temporary and mild, though there could be cases where medications have had adverse effects on the people. Dry mouth, constipation, bladder and sexual problems, blurred visions, dizziness, drowsiness, headache, insomnia, agitation, etc are different types of side effects. Any unusual reactions should be reported to your therapist immediately.

Read about psychotherapy and herbal therapy in the upcoming blogs on depression.