Every year, more than 17 million individuals in the United States deal with depression. Depression, characterized by disruptions in a person's emotions, behavior, and thoughts, deprives a person of their ability to experience pleasure in life. Patients often experience a state of near-total numbness or persistent grief. The psychiatrist will typically recommend the proper treatment…
TMS Therapy When Traditional Depression Treatment is Not Effective
Depression, temporary or situational, is something many people will have to cope with at some time in their lives. A setback in one's profession or the death of a loved one are examples of situations that might trigger a brief bout of depression. Having down and gloomy feelings is common, but most people can find their way back to a more positive mental state without needing depression treatment. Major depressive disorder, on the other hand, is a major mental illness.
The need for depression treatment
Major depression is a chronic health issue whose symptoms can significantly impact the quality of life. The condition affects 7.1 percent of adults in the United States. Major depressive disorder is characterized by persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness that can last for months or even years and by several other symptoms, including:
- Reduced enthusiasm for or engagement in most activities
- Alterations in eating and sleeping habits
- A dip in energy or fatigue
- A terrible sense of shame and remorse
- Inability to focus
Even if the diagnosis is recent, many persons with major depression have suffered from it for quite some time. Others, however, cannot find relief from their symptoms with more conventional treatments like antidepressants or talk therapy. Patients whose depression has not responded to more traditional therapies may benefit from transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).
The Food and Drug Administration has authorized transcranial magnetic stimulation for major depressive disorder. This outpatient depression treatment involves delivering non-invasive magnetic pulses to the part of the brain linked with mood regulation and depression through an electromagnetic coil.
The thought of having magnetic pulses applied directly to the brain may make patients nervous and discourage them from trying TMS, but rest assured that the magnetic energy utilized is the same as that used in an MRI, just concentrated on a smaller region of the brain. TMS is a safe and effective therapy for depression, often combined with other treatments. Psychiatrists employ the lowest possible magnetic stimulation dosage to achieve each patient's desired result.
How effective is TMS?
It is understandable to be skeptical about TMS as a therapy for depression after trying several other methods without results. While each person's response to the TMS treatment process will be unique, many people have reported feeling much better after receiving these magnetic pulses. TMS is beneficial for treating depression in around half to two-thirds of patients who have not responded to antidepressants.
In addition, studies have shown that the side effects of TMS are less common than antidepressants and do not significantly impair patients' quality of life. Most patients describe mild to moderate scalp pain, which generally fades after the first few treatments. Mild adverse effects, such as headaches, are possible but usually temporary and may be mitigated by modifying the treatment.
Reach out today
Like any depression therapy, TMS does not intend to eliminate depressive symptoms. Instead, it is one of several treatments available to help people with severe depression cope with their symptoms and lead more fulfilling lives. TMS is just one component of a larger strategy for depression treatment. Call us today to learn more about our services or to book an appointment.
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