Most important aspect in the treatment of depression is to find out the cause of depression and treat the cause. However in case there is no cause, available options are : psychological and pharmacological modalities of treatment.
The treatment plan has to be individualized and the course of action can only be decided after careful evaluation by a psychiatrist. The heartening fact is that depression is effectively treatable even though the person very often feels that he cannot be cured.
Objectivesof treatment are:
- Relieving symptoms
- Restoring normal function
- Prevention of new episodes
- Preventing psychosocial consequences (e.g. marital discord, job difficulties etc)
- Educating the person and family
The various modalities involved in treatment are:
- Medication (drugs)
- Counseling techniques(Analytic & Interpersonal Psychotherapy)
- Cognitive therapy
- Alternative therapies
- Electroconvulsive therapy / Shock treatment (ECT)
- Dietary Management of depression
Consequences of depression
The following maybe the end results if the condition is left untreated :
- Substance abuse and dependence; commonly alcohol.
- Weight loss/ weight gain.
- Loss of job, occupation and education.
- Disharmony in relationships.
- Marital Discord.
Both drug and non-drug (psychotherapies) forms are available and are almost equally effective. The choice of treatment form depends on the nature and cause of the illness and is tailored as per the need of the patient.