Treatment-Resistant Depression Alternative Treatment


Having a ‘regular’ depressive disorder is already a burden; the weight becomes heavier when the depression is resistant to treatment.  This is the situation millions of people are experiencing all over the world. Maybe you are one of them.
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Would you like to know how to deal with treatment-resistant depression, which has failed to response to proper therapies? Is your case chronic, and has dragged on for two years, despite taking medication properly? Keep reading this article; it may help you.

Drug Treatment

The first attempt to fight treatment resistant depression is often a combination of two antidepressants in order to increase the therapeutic effects of the drugs. Your physician can combine antidepressants with other psychotropic medications (mood stabilizers, antipsychotics ...) or non-psychotropic (thyroid hormones, anti-inflammatory) depending on the characteristics of the symptoms you are experiencing.

Psychotherapy can be crucial in these cases. Along with it, here are some alternative therapies often used to treat severe depression symptoms.

Brain Stimulation

The fact that about 45% of patients do not response at all to drug treatment, direct approaches on the brain can be helpful. In this case, brain stimulation can bring a significant improvement in reducing the symptoms. The brain stimulation technique works by ‘awakening’ the brain areas 'sleeping' by the depression using an electric current or a magnetic field. This may sound shocking, but the procedure is painless and risk free. The best known and most feared is electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), a therapeutic procedure performed under general anesthesia used mostly in severe cases of depression.

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

ECT treatment session usually lasts a few seconds and performed under general anesthesia. It does not cause generalized convulsion or major side effects. During the procedure, low electrical current passes the brain creating a seizure in the brain only. This treatment is cumbersome the fact it requires anesthesia. In addition, it is associated with few side effects: headaches, confusion, and sometimes transient memory disorders. After ten sessions over several weeks, ECT can be performed monthly in order to consolidate the results. It works well in many treatment-resistant depressions.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
This technique is available only in some hospitals and centers in the country. During the procedure, the patient is seated and conscious. A magnetic ring is placed next to specific areas of the brain and delivers a powerful magnetic field to rebalance the neural flow. It usually takes ten sessions of 30 minutes over 2 weeks to get good results.

Along with these therapies, a depressed patient must play his part in recovering from the depressive disorder. Healthy lifestyle and diet, along with regular exercise, is indispensable. No one can completely recover from treatment-resistant depression if he keeps doing the same thing that caused it in the first place. In addition, be positive and hopeful to make the depression treatment works better.