The Most Common Forms Of Treatment For Depression

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Treatment for depression usually comes in the form of psychotherapy, medication, or a combination of the two.  Psychotherapy seeks to address the psychological causes through the relationship that the therapist develops with the client, and medication seeks to address the biochemical causes of the patient’s depression.  Both have their advantages, and both are effective in many patients.


This sort of talk therapy begins with giving support.  It attempts to alleviate some of the suffering that goes with depression symptoms and attempts to address the painful feelings that go along with it.  The beginning stages of therapy seek to build trust with the patient so that the patient feels safe enough to address deeper issues.

It often then moves on to a cognitive approach.  This approach has to do with identifying and changing self-defeating thought patterns.  Depressed patients are overly self-critical, pessimistic, and have a distorted view of life in general.  This re-evaluation of one’s viewpoint helps the patient to recognize cognitive distortions and to build a more accurate and more positive view of life.

Once the cognitive distortions have been addressed then growth becomes the focus of treatment.  This aims at further building the patient’s self-esteem as well as creating goals for the future based on this more positive outlook.  The therapy continues to include honest appraisal of the patient’s circumstances and the patient’s view of himself or herself.

Other treatment modalities may be utilized to address specific areas that need improvement in a patient’s life.  Some examples are relationships, general coping skills, and stress management.


Medications offer the patient help in controlling symptoms and allow the patient to feel better.  They are often helpful as an adjunct to psychotherapy.

Medications do not offer a cure for depression.  They only seek to correct chemical imbalances in the patient’s brain.  They are, in many cases, optional and not a necessary part of treatment.

In some cases, however, they are necessary.  The symptoms of depression can interfere with daily life as well as the ability and the desire to make the changes to one’s life that will end the depression.  Medications allow a patient to make the changes that will prevent the depression from returning even after the course of medication treatment has come to an end.

Depression treatment can be carried out through psychotherapy or medication.  Both aim to ease suffering and help the patient toward a healthy, productive life.  They may have different means, but they have the same goals.

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