TMS Treatment for Moderate Depression

TMS Treatment for Moderate Depression from NYC Psychiatric Associates in New York, NYTranscranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, is a non-invasive, drug-free treatment option for depression. Depression is a prevalent and frequently severe psychiatric illness that affects millions of people in the United States (Centers for Disease Control). It creates emotions of deep melancholy, as well as a range of physically incapacitating symptoms.

Although the causes of depression and other mood disorders are not fully understood, the activity levels and functioning of the brain tissues that influence mood have been linked to depression.

The need for TMS treatment

Depression is often treated with medication and psychotherapy, and combining the two has shown the most potential for moderate depression. Medication, however, does not always provide meaningful relief from depression in some persons. Medication takes time to act, with an antidepressant taking an average of four to six weeks before any noticeable improvement.

Antidepressant medications may also have undesirable side effects like nausea, agitation, daytime, sleepiness, insomnia, and headaches. These side effects are often temporary and disappear within a few weeks, but they might be severe enough to necessitate a switch to a different treatment. TMS treatment may help with depression in this situation.

An overview of TMS therapy

Transcranial magnetic stimulation, a kind of brain stimulation treatment, treats moderate depression by stimulating the brain's neurons, especially a region of the prefrontal cortex, with intense and precise magnetic fields. TMS is a non-invasive treatment that does not require anesthesia. Repeated pulses of magnetic energy are used to activate the brain area responsible for mood regularly. TMS is sometimes referred to as rTMS due to the repetitive nature of the pulses.

Undergoing TMS treatment

Patients will need to visit the psychiatrist's office for TMS sessions. A patient is seated in a chair, and a magnetic head unit with an electromagnetic coil is put on the patient's forehead. The coil sends a strong and targeted magnetic pulse into the brain, stimulating the mood-controlling regions of the brain.

The length of treatment varies per patient, although it normally lasts roughly six weeks with five sessions per week. The patient is awake and aware throughout each session, which is about 20 minutes. TMS does not interfere with a person's everyday activities and does not cause sleepiness, allowing patients to go about their daily routines and activities as usual. While receiving TMS, some patients continue to get more traditional depression treatment, such as psychotherapy.

About a third of persons who undergo TMS therapy have complete and long-lasting remission from their depression symptoms, while 58% report considerable relief. A recent study of persons with severe treatment-resistant depression who underwent TMS therapy found that 68% of subjects were still demonstrating substantial improvement after one year (Harvard Medical School Publishing).

Check out what others are saying about our TMS services on Yelp: Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in New York, NY

In conclusion

TMS is a non-invasive treatment. There is no surgery, no drugs, and no risk of drug interactions. It also has minimal adverse effects, with minor headaches, scalp tingling, and lightheadedness as the most prevalent. TMS can be a convenient and effective treatment for moderate depression.

Request an appointment or call NYC Psychiatric Associates at 917-391-0076 for an appointment in our New York office.

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