Depression is a mood disorder that holds a person physical, emotional and mental being. It effects everyday lives, it doesn’t stop you leading a normal life, but it does make everything harder to do. In some cases, it can severely hold people back from living the life they may want. It causes a persistent feeling of sadness and a lack of interest. There are many different treatments to treat depression depending on the seriousness of the situation. For example, electroconvulsive therapy, cognitive behaviour therapy and medicine that is used for patients with different levels of depression as some may be more severe than others. Psychological research of different treatments for depression has made it easier to allocate which treatments and medicines to different types of patients on what would benefit them the most.
Psychological research has shown that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is not only used for depression but also anxiety and other mental and physical health issues. This is a talking therapy and helps manage the patient’s problems as it changes the way they think and behave. It deals with overwhelming problems which gradually improves the patients state of mind and how they think on a daily basis as well as viewing difficult situations. During these sessions the patients will develop new ways to change unhelpful thoughts and behaviours, they will start to apply this to their daily life and decrease the negative impact in their life. This is a non-medication approach; the think patterns are the ones causing the negative thoughts and emotions as it can lead to unproductiveness and then anxiety can also become as issue (Ford-Martin, n.d). Christian Jarrett in August 2018 held “Interviews with 100 CBT-therapists reveal 43% of clients experience unwanted side-effects from therapy”. This shows that CBT has more effect than other therapies, it also shows that is more effective than a drug treatment whereas on the other hand it can come with some unwanted effects. From this the researchers found that 43% of the patients could have experiences at least one of the side effects (suicidal, breakups, negative feedback, withdrawal from family, shame, guilt, crying and emotional during sessions). During these sessions it is focused on patients’ problems which can make them feel exposed or emotional which can make the patient depend on the therapist and their support. It is said that “the longer the patient has been in therapy the more likely they were to have experienced one or more side-effects.” From the interviews held it is still worthy of having CBT if needed as the side-effects, even though aren’t the best, can improve the state of mind of the patient and improve the sessions. This has contributed to our understanding of treatments for depression as it is clear which patients should be using CBT as well as what some of the negative aspects are for this. The psychological research, being the interview, has shown that patients are easily dependable in a vulnerable state as well as that CBT is more effective than other forms of therapy.
Similarly, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is for patients that have had talking therapy or have used medication and it has not improved their symptoms. ECT has been proved to have been successful in treating cases of highly severe depression. There is a small study that shows that when patients undergo ECT the grey matter increases in the amygdala (emotional processing in brain). This improved their symptoms and also improved the superficial nuclei (forms facial expressions). This had helped the patient’s social abilities because of the facial expressions and it shows that the study suggests that ECT helps neuronal growth. This helps with social situations as there is a theory (Emma Young 2018) that suggests that facial expressions are not only to show emotion but are also “tools for social influence”. When undergoing ECT, it causes a short seizure by sending shocks this could cause memory problems, but the majority have said that the symptoms have made improvements. From a Chinese study published, Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, this is where it showed the patients had an increase in grey matter, this shows that they have had improvements with their emotional processing. This came from a study that was performed on 12 women that were all of the age of 39 and have similar background to each other. They all suffered from major depression and may even have had suicidal thoughts. All of these women all have medication and other treatments that hadn’t worked for them as much as ECT had. The results of this study were positive for the patients and shows that the psychological research had helped the understanding of treatments for depression as this was a way to improve patients when nothing else responded with them. It also helps other researchers understand what is needed for patients when nothing responds with them, this study hasn’t made ECT the most effective treatment for depression, but it has had positive effects on those who don’t respond to talk therapy, and medications. For this treatment there was a huge controversy about whether the procedures effects where positive before studies where accurately analysed, this was because of how little researcher knew about how the procedure treats depression. Whereas now there is scientific backing for this procedure as we now know it has positive effects to the brain which will create positive outcomes in the patient’s day to day life.
Additionally, a very popular way to help treat depression is the use of medication. Patients use medication as is works to improve the regulated moods, a study shows that the antidepressants (medication) are effective to the patients. As depression is the largest challenge for people’s lives, that being the rich world and the developing world. It is said that the rich wold receive more professional treatment as it is “one in six”. Medication is highly popular in this world as the talk therapies take a lot of people’s valuable time and taking medication only takes mere seconds. There was a lot of thought about how effective the drugs were for patients, it could be seen as a placebo effect. As it carried out it showed that antidepressants did work better than a placebo ‘dummy’ given to participants. There were (500 trails) comparing the difference between the two. This proves that sometimes it on occasion the patient’s thoughts and how they really think and act if they believed the placebo. Whereas it also makes the point that the use of antidepressants is one of the most effective drugs to use and treatments to take if suffering from this mental illness. More so that it is more popular than the other treatments, this has contributed to the understanding of treatments for depression as it makes it clearer how people think about the treatment as well as themselves because of the placebos.
To conclude the psychological research to the understanding of treatments for depression it is clear to see that there are many different, effective, ways to help patients that are suffering from this mental illness. It all depends on the seriousness of the depression and deciding which route the patient should take to treat it. All forms of treatment have proved to be majority effective, but all forms have different ways of treatment and the patient needs to be comfortable with side effects as every treatment has them, more severe than others.