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10 Interesting Facts About Treatment-Resistant Depression


Doctor talking to patient

Depression affects millions worldwide, making it one of the most common conditions affecting individuals today. Since its classification in the 1930s, science, and medicine have made incredible strides in understanding depression. This way, more and more people with treatment-resistant depression can seek effective treatments and improve their lives significantly.

Facts About Treatment-Resistant Depression

Despite this, there is one type of depression that evades first-line antidepressants and medications. For those suffering from treatment-resistant depression, it may prove to be a long and challenging process to find the proper treatment. Since this is the case, doctors and psychiatrists are working hard to understand this condition; fortunately, they have already seen successful ways to manage it. Along the way, they have discovered exciting information shedding light on the disorder. Discover the top ten facts below!

1. Treatment Resistant Depression Is Common 

Treatment-resistant depression is one of the most dominant forms of depression today. In fact, as many as 30% of depressed patients do not respond appropriately to antidepressants or medications. They may continue to experience chronically low moods, negative or suicidal thoughts, and overall poor quality of life.

2. Age, Gender, and Socio-Economic Status Affect Risk

There are no concrete causes for depression or treatment-resistant depression. However, scientists discovered a link between specific ages, gender, health, and socio-economic categories and treatment-resistant depression. In particular, these groups are older adults, women, and people with low social support and economic resources.

3. Poor Antidepressant Management May Increase Risk

A history of antidepressant mismanagement may contribute to the chance of developing treatment-resistant depression in the future. Scientists speculate that receiving the wrong type or dose of antidepressant, going off an antidepressant medication before its full effect, taking incorrect amounts, or skipping doses can all increase risk.

4. Treatment Resistant Depression Can Lead to Other Mental Health Conditions

It is important for anyone suffering from treatment-resistant depression to continue seeking helpful treatment. Unmanaged or untreated major depressive disorders can increase the risk of developing other mental health conditions. In particular, they may be more likely to develop an alcohol addiction or a substance use disorder.

5. A Great Number of Sufferers Achieve Remission

Treatment-resistant depression does not mean sufferers will not encounter a successful treatment; it simply means that their doctors have not found the right approach or combination of methods yet. 30% or more sufferers achieve remission, but the rest require further assistance with their symptoms.

6. Psychotherapy Can Help Significantly

Patients who take antidepressants or medications that offer inadequate relief from symptoms may be discouraged by their results. However, it may be crucial for individuals with treatment-resistant depression to try a multidisciplinary approach. Studies find that psychotherapy or psychological counseling can be a practical addition to traditional antidepressant treatment. They often decreased or eliminated depressive symptoms in as little as 6 to 12 months.

7. There are Plenty of Excellent Treatment Options

Individuals should be aware there are plenty of strategies, approaches, and methods available to them. Doctors should focus on every patient as an individual, putting together an appropriate and personalized treatment plan. It may involve changing classes of antidepressants, switching brands, increasing or decreasing doses, or combining antidepressants with other medications. Additionally, doctors may prescribe psychotherapies or somatic therapies to alleviate symptoms and improve the condition.

8. Somatic Therapies Are Increasingly Popular Treatments

Since treatment-resistant depression is a severe issue, scientists and doctors have become more interested in somatic therapies. Electroconvulsive Therapy, Magnetic Seizure Therapy, Vagal Nerve Stimulation, and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) may be helpful as a last line of treatment.

9. TMS Is One of the Safest Somatic Treatments

TMS is a non-invasive electromagnetic technique offering a safe option for treatment-resistant depression sufferers. While providers will cover the benefits and risks with each patient, reports show that only rare complications are associated with the procedure.

10. TMS Shows Promising Results

TMS has shown incredible results for sufferers who do not receive results from traditional approaches. In fact, up to 60% of depressed individuals may benefit from the therapy, and up to 30% may experience remission. Likewise, when coupled with psychotherapy, remission may rise as high as 66%.

Find Solutions for Treatment-Resistant Depression

People with treatment-resistant depression no longer need to suffer in silence. If antidepressants or medications are not working, turn to BrainHealth Solutions. Our caring team would be happy to help you find a treatment that works for you and alleviates your devastating symptoms. Contact us today to learn more about our services.

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