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Personalized Plans for Severe Depression Treatment

Personalized Plans for Severe Depression Treatment

Severe depression treatment is liable to include any number of different depression therapies and intervention strategies that can help the individual find some relief and build momentum toward a more positive mental health outcome. More than just severity rating, the entire course of the clinical depression should be taken into account when building a treatment plan. Just because symptoms are severe at the onset of the depressive episode doesn’t mean the individual won’t respond to less intrusive, first-line therapies. Likewise, substantially disruptive symptoms of depression that persist for a long period of time or which do not respond to common therapies may require their own tailored interventions.

As you consider what treatments might be relevant in your case, we suggest you keep in mind that treatment outcomes are rarely all good or all bad. Some people find immediate and nearly complete cessation of depression symptoms only to relapse in some number of weeks, months, or years. Other people may find more mild but consistent relief when receiving treatment. For some, there is little effect; for others, seeking treatment is truly a life-saver. With this in mind, here is an overview of the common types of severe depression treatment.



This is the catch-all phrase for the cognitive, behavioral, psychoanalytic, and client-centered or humanistic approaches that constitute talk therapy. This therapy may be administered by a wide range of mental health professionals, including mental health counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, and licensed clinical social workers.

Given the right circumstances, even severe cases of depression may be treated with psychotherapy alone. On the other hand, with an aggressive combination of cognitive and behavioral therapies administered through an intensive psychotherapy program, this treatment bears little resemblance to the “in-and-out” office experience that many people associate with psychotherapy.


Antidepressant Medications

The jury is still out on how effective antidepressants are. Yet, certain types of severe depression offer some of the strongest evidence that these medications outperform placebos. In the state of Utah, you need to see a medical doctor—most likely a primary care physician or a psychiatrist—to get a prescription for antidepressant medications.

Some people go to see their doctor solely to get a prescription, but it’s just as important to get a physical examination that may identify a medical condition as the potential cause of the depression symptoms. Likewise, whether it’s a new or refilled prescription, it’s crucial that any side effects are closely monitored.


Depression Clinics and Specialized Protocols

Both short-term inpatient care and longer-stay residential treatment centers may be an appropriate outlet for severe depression treatment. It’s especially important to use these care facilities for anyone who poses a serious risk of harming themselves or someone else. Another common reason to seek out these clinics is the inability to perform essential tasks of daily living.

Electroconvulsive therapy and transcranial magnetic stimulation, on the other hand, are more common for persistent depression that does not respond to other forms of treatment. Results vary, but these treatments are often effective for approximately six month—while potentially impairing memory or creating other side effects.


Develop a Severe Depression Treatment Plan

Common for severe forms of depression, combination treatments are any strategy that uses more than one therapy in concert with one another. But again, it’s important to find one or more health providers who can first evaluate the symptoms and individual case history. Then, collaboratively, you and your health provider can develop a personalized treatment plan.



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