Friday, April 25, 2014

Treatment for Anxiety and Depression - What's the Best For You?

Treatment for anxiety and depression varies depending on the individual patient, the depression type and the cause of the disorder. Medication and psychotherapy are commonly combined. What other treatment modes are there?

Options Available For You

In treating anxiety and depression, one starts looking at the medication types involved. Then you start looking at dietary supplements that augment the medications. Then there is psychotherapy that many espouse as the more effective means for treating depression permanently.

There are also other trends in treating anxiety and depression that include transcranial magnetic stimulation, vagus nerve stimulation, and electroconvulsive therapy. Alternatively, one can also opt for acupuncture, light therapy, and even meditation and physical exercise. Or would you go for deep brain stimulation? And ultimately, when all else fails, would you like to just go self-medicating?

Let's look at these treatment schemes and how they stack up against each other.


Starting off with medications, there are a lot available in the market. Each one will brand itself as the best medication there is to treat anxiety and depression. While most of these medications have been available for decades, they have not changed nor evolved, and as before, are always the first lines of defense for anxiety and depression treatment. These medications include SSRIs or selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors like Celexa, Prozac fluoxetine, Paxil paroxetine, and Zoloft sertraline. But can you depend on medication alone sans the psychotherapy?

Change In Diet And Supplements

Diet regimens including dietary supplements may augment the medications used. Supplements are known to add to the provision of the body's natural raw materials for serotonin which is essential in mood control and depression treatment. Methionine derivatives like the SAM-e or S-adenosyl methionine are also used as prescription antidepressants in the US and Europe. Omega-3, the fatty acid found in fish, hemp seeds and walnuts is also being used as a supplement to antidepressants to improve efficacy. Another supplement is the DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone. Magnesium is also used to supplement if not treat depression outright.


Psychotherapy comes next. Basically this is counseling where the depressed or anxious patient is advised or counseled on problems and how to deal with them as these problems or conditions result in depression. This may be done one-on-one with a psychiatrist, or through a support group of family or friends and conducted and facilitated by medical professionals.

Psychotherapy aims to improve personal bearing, well being, and social functioning. Some psychotherapeutic approaches include CBT or cognitive behavioral therapy wherein therapy that is usually combined with behavioral advice and therapy focuses on self-worth and self-recognition and relating with others. Therapy improves relating skills and allows the patient to overcome aversion or social phobia and reduce depression brought about by feelings of worthlessness or guilt.

Other Treatment Methods

Other treatment methods for anxiety and depression include the rTMS or repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, the vagus nerve stimulation, the more invasive electroconvulsive therapy and electroshock.

Alternative treatments include acupuncture, light therapy, meditation, deep brain stimulation, and aerobics exercises.


This is one of the oldest ways persuading oneself to be "someone," yet this is one of the most effective methods of molding the mind.

A person fails to bounce back from a depressed state when he doesn't have enough defense mechanism to do so. Thus, in order to prevent anxiety and depression from getting worse, you must think of ways of how to protect your mind.

Self-conditioning is another treatment for anxiety and depression that works as though you were "brainwashing" your own mind. You teach your mind to think this or that way by consistently telling it what it should feel. A simple example is if you fear heights, you will tell yourself everyday that, "I am safe in a building even if it is tall. I am safe in an airplane. I am comfortable with heights."

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