Overview

Change Language

Major Depressive Disorder: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects

What is the treatment? How is the treatment done? Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?) Who is not eligible for the treatment? Are there any side effects? What are the post-treatment guidelines? How long does it take to recover? What is the price of the treatment in India? Are the results of the treatment permanent? What are the alternatives to the treatment?

What is the treatment?

Depression refers to a perpetual state of unhappiness and is a fairly common ailment. It affects both, men and women, though women are usually more susceptible to suffering from it. Depression is often accompanied with other symptoms like lethargy, listlessness, suicidal thoughts and feelings, and a general sense of doom. This ailment is very well known and there are many different treatment options that can be offered to a patient. Therefore, it is considered a highly treatable ailment and patients should not worry or stress over their depression.

One of the most common ways to treat depression is through medication. Antidepressants work in many different ways but they are all essentially designed to increase the serotonin in the body, leading to more balanced moods and feelings. Therapy is also another way to treat depression and can be accompanied with taking medication. The goal of therapy is to essentially understand the underlying cause of the depression and help patients navigate through the ailment. It also arms patients with the knowledge they need to combat depression in the future, if they feel it coming on again.

Finally, in extremely cases where neither medication or talking helps, electro convulsive therapy is a form of treatment that can be administered. This helps to stabilize the electrical synapses in the brain and lead to a more balanced outlook.

How is the treatment done?

Major depressive disorder is diagnosed through physical exams, psychiatric evaluation, and tests and once it is confirmed, your doctor will prescribe the correct medication for you. Most antidepressants increase the serotonin levels in the system and such medications are referred to as SSRIs. They are the first line of defence and often do work. If SSRIs don’t work, you may be prescribed a tricyclic depression, MAOIs, or other types of mood stabilizers to help combat the depression. Since treatment is unique to each patient, it can take a while to find the correct combination of medicines.

Once the correct medication is determined, you will be advised to visit your doctor at least once a week, or once in two weeks, depending on how severe your ailment is. This is to determine whether or not there are any side effects and to gauge the suitability of the medication as, often, these pills take a while to take effect. You will be recommended a therapist if you don’t already have one and will be advised to undergo talk therapy. This is to help you develop your own coping mechanisms and understand what triggers you have. During the therapy process, the treatment is often at a slow pace and gradual as the goal is not to push you when you are still too emotionally vulnerable. The treatment essentially includes a lot of analysis and introspection. It is an important aspect of getting the major depressive disorder treated.

In extreme cases, patients undergo electro convulsive therapy. During this, you will be sedated and a bite will be inserted into your mouth to prevent you from harming your tongue. The shocks are administered to the temple and you will be unconscious while it happens.

Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)

If you have been suffering from depressive for at least a month, or three weeks, you are eligible to seek treatment. One of the first things you will be asked by your doctor is how long you have been feeling this way. People who have developed depression due to other physical ailments that they may be suffering from are also eligible to seek treatment. Depression is quite common in cancer patients, amputees, HIV patients, and other patients with severe conditions.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

Life is filled with ups and downs and it is natural to occasionally feel sad over something. This does not necessarily mean that you have depression. If your sadness is not accompanied by any of the other symptoms of depression, and if it occurs over specific, natural events (such as losing a competition, or a traumatic event) and then goes away just as naturally, then you do not have depression and do not need to seek treatment for it.

Are there any side effects?

Antidepressants often have certain side effects to be vary of. Some of the common ones are insomnia, irritability, shifts in mood, shifts in appetite, and even an increase in suicidal thoughts in the beginning. You must report all side effects that you may be experiencing to your doctor as they can hint at bigger issues to be addressed. Electro convulsive therapy also has certain side effects. It can lead to confusion and problems with the memory (though memory problems do go away a few months after the treatment is over), headache, jaw pain, nausea, and muscle aches. These can be treated with the help of medicines.

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

One of the most important post treatment guidelines for major depressive disorder is to maintain a positive outlook. Though this may sound easier than it is, it is vital to continually monitor and regulate your moods, understand your triggers, and resort to the coping mechanisms you may have learnt in therapy. Another post treatment guideline is to simplify your life and ensure that you face less stress. Even if your work is stressful, your home environment should be calm and peaceful so that your mind is at ease at the end of the day. Finally, it is important to regulate your sleep cycle and your food habits as fluctuations in the same can also lead to depressive feelings. By following the specific post treatment guidelines given to you by your therapist or doctor, you can not only prevent sliding into depression again but also learn how to control it before it gets too bad.

How long does it take to recover?

With most problems related to mental health, the recovery time really depends on the patient. With the constant use of medication, therapy, and other behavioural and lifestyle guidelines that are meant to help the patients, the frequency of the episodes can be largely reduced, and, if possible, eliminated entirely over a period of time. Patients suffering from the same disorder and taking the same medication can have varying recovery periods. In the case of mental health, it can be harmful to expect to get better by a specific time as it leads to undue pressure on the patient, leading to more stress and further problems.

What is the price of the treatment in India?

Most medications that your doctor may prescribe to you can range from Rs 150 – 300 for a single leaf. Medications that are designed for mental health are often more expensive than the ones designed for physical health and it’s a cost that one should be prepared for. The cost of therapy in India ranges from doctor to doctor however, it can fall anywhere from Rs 1,500 – 5,000 per hour, depending on who you are seeing. The cost of electro convulsive therapy ranges from Rs 500 – Rs 1000 per dosage and many private psychiatrists also administer this procedure in India.

Are the results of the treatment permanent?

With a positive outlook, the results of the treatment can be permanent however, with most mental health problems, the key is to be continually aware of what you are feeling. It is natural to feel sad occasionally, and that does not mean that your depression is back, however, being able to monitor your emotions and understand where they are coming from can help you prevent them from escalating into major depressive disorder.

What are the alternatives to the treatment?

Learning about depression is the first step to treating it with home remedies or any alternate treatments. Some of the commonly used alternate treatments include St John’s Wort, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, and SAMe (which is a dietary supplement that helps with depression). Furthermore, herbalists also recommend the use of certain essential oils as they have antidepressant properties. Burning them in a diffuser in your home can really help you manage and control your depression. Some of the oils that you can use are the oils of clary sage, lavender, and myrrh. Practising yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises can also help you stabilise your mood.

Popular Questions & Answers

I'm on fluoxetine since last 4 months currently taking 80 mg/day but my mood isn't improving, previously I was taking amitriptyline my mood was much better back then. What should I do?

MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MD psychiatry, C Diabetes
Psychiatrist, Gopalganj
Low mood can be seen in variety of diagnosis. You need to be re-evaluated. Often comorbid physical illnesses and other psychological factors hinder in treatment response. They need to be ascertained and addressed. In most cases supportive and solu...

Hi all, I am suffering from anxiety and related depression for long time. Went to many psychiatrist but no one able completely make me comfortable. Currently I am having daxid 100 twice, toficalm 50 twice provanol 0.5/20. Thrice. And mirnite 15 half at night. I am still feel a unknown. Fear all the time which trigger my anxiety. I never feel fresh and happy pls advise so that even I can live a normal life without any fear.

Reparenting Technique, BA, BEd, Transactional Analysis
Psychologist, Bangalore
Sir, the mere use of medication is not sufficient to solve your problems. Please visit a counselor and get some help regarding your depression and anxiety. In counseling you will learn a lot of tools, skills, and techniques to deal with your life ...

Medicines mainly used for anxiety-depression since last 22 years- amitriptyline, serta 0.5 mg. Nexito plus, paroxetine and others. Relapses occurs. Temporary relief, doctor recommended cbt sessions for overcoming negative thoughts to modify the irrational core beliefs. Mainly I have money worries, money anxiety, passion deficiency disorder. Please suggest advance medicine if any, also so tired due to my wife's borderline personality disorder. Now I am on alprazolam 0.5 mg.

Post graduation, Post Graduate Diploma in Healthcare Management (P.G.D.H.M)counseling and family therapy, Certification in addiction management, Certification in career counseling
Psychologist, Kanpur
No medicine can change your thought and main problem is how you see the situation so change your perception and life style, that is permanent and along with pharmacological treatment if you take cbt session it will help you a lot.

Hello doctor mujhe bipolar disorder hai kafi time se pareshan hun mujhe divalproex sodium tablet 500 mg 1 and lamotrigine 75 mg 1 and olanzapine 1.25 mg and chloridediaz 10 mg 1 tablet evening me leni hoti mera behaviour angry loss of interest h or memory problem or sleep nhi aati hai.

MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MD psychiatry, C Diabetes
Psychiatrist, Gopalganj
You are on suboptimal prophylactic dosage of medicines, possibly you are experiencing subsyndromal affective symptoms. Medicines need to be titrated in you which is possible only with consultation. Moreover you need to learn chronological and beha...

Popular Health Tips

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder - Ways It Can Be Managed!

International Certified Addiction Professional
Psychologist, Mumbai
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder - Ways It Can Be Managed!
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an abnormal condition of the mind that develops when a person is exposed to certain traumatic events in life such as accidents, sexual assault or warfare. The major symptoms of PTSD are: Reliving the trauma...
5522 people found this helpful

Chronic Pain - How To Manage It With Rehabilitation Psychology?

PHD Psychology
Psychologist, Chennai
Chronic Pain - How To Manage It  With Rehabilitation Psychology?
Pain is an all-too-familiar problem and perhaps one of the most common reasons that people visit a physician. Alleviating pain, unfortunately, is not always easy. Chronic pain caused by a sprain or injury is more complex, as it lasts for weeks to ...
3013 people found this helpful

Can Social Media Really Cause Depression?

PhD - Psychology
Psychologist, Raipur
Can Social Media Really Cause Depression?
Social media is one thing that we all are hooked to. Well, almost all of us. It is a millennial thing. 94% of teens across the world actively use social media. They probably spend hours chatting with their loved ones on Whatsapp and Messenger, scr...
1085 people found this helpful

Somatic Symptoms - When To Consult A Psychiatrist?

MBBS, MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Mumbai
Somatic Symptoms - When To Consult A Psychiatrist?
Somatic Symptoms is also known as Somatization Disorder or Somatoform Disorder. It is a type of mental disorder which causes many bodily symptoms. The symptoms may or may not be noticeable for medical treatment. However, they normally cause excess...
3724 people found this helpful

Rehabilitation Psychology In Management Of Multiple Sclerosis!

PHD Psychology
Psychologist, Chennai
Rehabilitation Psychology In Management Of Multiple Sclerosis!
Multiple sclerosis refers to disabling disease of the central nervous system, where the body s immune system eats away the protective layer sheathing the nerve fibres and disrupts communication between the brain and the rest of your body. Often, m...
3110 people found this helpful
Content Details
Written By
Post Graduate Diploma In Counselling Psychology,Masters of Counselling Psychology,CE in Cognitive Behavior Therapy
Psychology
Play video
Homosexuality & Depression - Is There A Link?
Depression is a mood disorder that involves a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. It is different from the mood fluctuations that people regularly experience as a part of life.
Play video
Stress - How To Avoid It?
Hi, I am Dr. Devendra Save, Psychiatrist, practicing in Mumbai for the last 20 years. Today I will talk about a very common thing which we use almost every day called stress. When I used to sit in a group and asked about who all are under stress, ...
Play video
Bipolar Disorder
Hi, I am Dr. Devendra Save, Psychiatrist, practicing in Mumbai for the last 20 years. Today I will talk about bipolar disorder. It comprises of 2 parts out of which one is almost known to all of us which is called depression. Depression means feel...
Play video
Troubled Teenagers - How To Identify It?
Hello! I am Dr. Amulya Shetty. I am a consultant psychiatrist. I am practicing currently in Malad, Borivali and Kandivali. Today I am going to be talking about troubled teens- how to identify troubled teens and how parents can help the troubled te...
Play video
Depression At Workplace - How To Handle It?
Hi, I am Dr. Chinmay Kulkarni, Psychiatrist. Today I will talk about depression at the workplace. Some of the known symptoms of depression like sadness, crying, helplessness, worthlessness or suicidal ideas and most of the people think that this i...
Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice