When seeking treatment for clinical depression, it is critical to find the right healthcare provider. Patients engage with two main types of mental health professionals: psychologists and psychiatry doctors.
While both offer effective treatment options, they differ in approach. However, psychiatrists have a medical degree and a specialization, while psychologists do not.
Psychologists or counselors may have a Ph.D. or any related degree in their field. Psychiatrists can prescribe medication to support your treatment, along with other types of therapy.
The Current State of Depression in India
Per reports, over 43% of people in India suffer from serious depression. There are several underdiagnosed and untreated cases, especially in women. One of the main reasons for this overwhelming number is lack of awareness.
There is also the stigma associated with seeking treatment for mental health issues. Added to this, women don multiple roles in their daily life and face high levels of stress.
In the absence of comprehensive management, the number of depressions-induced suicides is on the rise.
Causes of Depression
Many factors can play a role in causing depression, such as:
Genetic Factors: An individual that has a family history of depression may likely develop depression. Since genes can decide the traits that get passed onto the next generation, it is highly probable.
Personality Traits: People with insecurities, those prone to panic attacks or anxiety very often can become depressed. Unreasonable criticism of yourself can lead to low self-esteem.
Environmental Factors: Social life, financial issues, work-related problems, childhood trauma, repressed memories, etc., can contribute to emotional distress. When you don’t express or resolve these problems in time, stress can turn into depression.
Other than these, medical issues like cancer, diabetes can also cause undue stress. Excessive use of alcohol and drug dependence can lead to depression.
How Psychiatry Doctors Can Help?
Depression symptoms include mood extremities, lethargy, indifference, and extreme weight gain or loss in a short time. If you have noticed drastic behavioral changes, insomnia, or suicidal thoughts, consider them signs of depression. Make an appointment with a psychiatrist who can treat you and help prevent depression from returning.
Once the therapist rules out the chance of underlying medical causes of depression, they use talk therapy. Psychotherapy or talk therapy is an effective treatment that gives you the needed skills and insight.
There are several types of depression treatment options, including medication, cognitive behavioral therapy, and psychoanalysis. More often than not, doctors use a blend of these approaches.
Individual vs. Group Therapy
There are two types of psychotherapy: individual and group. One-on-one sessions can help you be open with your therapist, as the meetings are confidential. You get individualized attention and will be free to talk about sensitive matters.
On the other hand, being in a group may give you more strength. Listening to others’ experiences and how they cope can build your self-esteem. These sessions can also help you expand your social network and be more active and fearless.
Medication for Depression
Although you are entitled to choose from the available treatment methods, they may start with talk therapy. Additionally, psychiatrists may recommend that you begin taking medication. Indeed, chemical imbalances in the brain may cause moderate to severe depression. Medication is not the only solution, but it can help relieve the symptoms.
It may not be a long-term treatment option for certain mental health issues. Using antidepressant medications for years on end may raise some safety concerns, including withdrawal. So, doctors always explain the risks and side effects associated with the use of certain medications. With this knowledge, you can make an informed decision regarding your healthcare plan.
Benefits of Psychotherapy for Depression
You learn practical techniques to combat depression: Therapy involves learning about reframing negative thoughts and accurately employing behavioral skills. You can work on the root cause of your depression and understand why you behave as you do. Find out what triggers your emotions and how to react rationally.
Improve your relationships. Your depression may have been a cause for concern for your family, friends, or coworkers. Once you start treatment, you begin to change the way you act and build better relationships. You stop feeling alone and reduce getting into circumstances where you remain isolated. You can receive social support that goes a long way in preventing depression.
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Handling life’s problems. Talking to a trusted psychiatrist and following the treatment guidelines can help you address life’s challenges. You will learn to set healthy boundaries at work and in personal life to help relieve stress. Saying no to uncomfortable situations and anxiety triggers can save you from repeating old patterns.
Do not mistake depression for mood swings, stress, or common sadness. If you have been feeling alone and hopeless for a while, it is time to see a specialist.