Depression treatment and help

Whilst everyone can feel upset or sad from time-to-time, when these feelings are persistent, overwhelming or are affecting your ability to function on a daily basis, it may be that you have developed depression. It is important to know that you don’t have to suffer with depression - effective, established treatment is available. Priory has a number of clinics that are able to provide world class depression help, support and counselling.

What is depression?

Depression is a mental health condition and not a sign of weakness; nobody is immune to depression and people can experience it at any point in their lives. Depression is characterised by individuals experiencing such crushing low moods that their ability to function is impaired. These ongoing and debilitating feelings of sadness can lead to a reduction in motivation which can have a profound effect on your mental and emotional wellbeing as well as your behaviour.

It is estimated that around 10% of men and 25% of women will develop depression at some point in their life. Although you might find it hard to believe now, you can tackle your depressive illness and achieve positive mental wellbeing again.

At Priory we offer bespoke depression treatment programmes for individuals, which are tailored according to their medical history and personal experiences. A specialist consultant will oversee your treatment, which will usually include a course of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and may also include medication.

Our holistic approach to depression treatment includes varied exercise programmes as well as a nationwide network of support groups. We also encourage healthy eating and other positive behaviours to promote your long term recovery.



Types of depression

There are several types of depression which are classified based on the symptoms that they cause you to experience. These include:

• Severe depression
• Severe depression with psychotic symptoms
• Moderately severe depression
• Bipolar depression
• Dysthymia
• Recurrent depression

These are outlined in more detail on our depression types page.

Depression outpatient package

Priory also provides a tailored 1:1 outpatient therapy package for depressive disorders. Our packages offer certainty of price for a set amount of 1:1 therapy sessions, including discounted rates. The amount of sessions that we recommend within each package is based on national guidelines. Depressive illness is treatable; that’s why over 93% of those receiving treatment for depression at a Priory hospital or clinic in 2016, showed improved mental wellbeing.

Causes of depression

For many people, depression is triggered by:

  • A stressful life event – bereavement, divorce or social isolation

  • Alcohol or drug use (including prescription drugs)

  • Physical illness

  • Other mental health conditions

Treatment for depression

Although it may be hard for you to believe, you can overcome your depressive illness by receiving tried and tested depression treatment. The treatments most commonly used for depression include:

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). CBT is a type of psychotherapy that aims to tackle the negative thoughts that are associated with your depression. For example, when something negative happens in daily life, depressed people often blame themselves. However, when a positive occurrence takes place, they tell themselves that they've just been lucky. Depressed people may also incorrectly assume that other people are reacting negatively to them. CBT helps people to think in a more balanced way and challenges a person's assumptions about their lives. It aims to identify and change aspects of behaviour that may cause or prolong symptoms of depression.

  • Antidepressants. Antidepressant medication will be the first line of treatment for depression if:

  • Your depression is severe or comes and goes

  • You have responded well to medication in the past

  • You have not responded well to psychotherapy in the past

  • There is a history of depression in your family

Both methods have been found to be successful in combating depression.

How is depression diagnosed?

Just as a patient sees a doctor about a physical illness, a psychiatrist will look at your symptoms of depression and explore how they have developed.

A psychiatrist will aim to discover what makes you likely to suffer from a depressive illness. Are you generally more negative or do you suffer from low self-esteem? Does the condition run in your family? Are there unresolved long-term problems? The use of alcohol and drugs, both medicinal and recreational, can also significantly influence an individual’s mood. You will also be asked to provide information about your medical history, as some physical illnesses, such as an underactive thyroid, may cause depression. Understanding your full medical history helps the psychiatrist to decide what treatment is most suitable for you.

The psychiatrist will look for a wide range of psychiatric symptoms. One of the most important first steps is to determine whether you are experiencing suicidal thoughts as a result of your depression, and take appropriate, immediate action.

For further details on how Priory can provide you with further assistance regarding depression treatment and help, please call 0800 787 0691. For professionals looking to make a referral, please click here

FAQs about depression

Should I go into care for depression?

Most people can be treated for depression as an outpatient. However, some people want more intensive treatment and support within either a day-patient programme or as an inpatient, at least until they feel signs of improvement.

What change will CBT have?

By helping you to change the way that you think about life, you'll be able to accept failures more easily and take credit for your achievements. CBT aims to give you skills for life, reducing the likelihood of you becoming depressed again.

Will CBT work for all cases?

Although CBT is likely to form the basis of a psychotherapy programme, other forms of therapy may also be helpful. For example, if you were abused as a child, or you are finding it difficult to come to terms with bereavement, this would need to be dealt with in its own right.

Which antidepressants will I be given?

There are many different antidepressants which can be useful in treating depression. The choice of medication is based on a number of factors, and we will discuss this with you and possibly members of your family.

How long will antidepressants take to work?

Antidepressants take time to have an effect, often a number of weeks, because they're helping nerve cells to recover and resume their usual role in regulating mood.

Are antidepressants dangerous?

Antidepressants are not dangerous, so long as you take them as prescribed. They are not addictive and can relieve your depression effectively.

7 tips for dealing with the initial stages of depression

  1. Admit that you have a problem and commit to working positively towards a better state of mind
  2. Speak to a family or friend about your emotions – it is often the case that a problem shared is a problem halved
  3. Write down three positive things every evening before going to sleep and reflect on these first thing in the morning
  4. Make a plan of ‘where you want to be’ emotionally, mentally and even physically, and lay out  small steps of how to get there
  5. Have a positive daily routine, for example cook at certain times of the day and have time set aside to exercise outdoors,  if at all possible
  6. Avoid alcohol, drugs and any negative influences
  7. Make a ‘problem list’ then try and tackle the things on it one by one

For further details on how Priory can provide you with further assistance regarding Depression treatment and help, please call 0800 840 3219. For professionals looking to make a referral, please click here

More Info

How does CBT work in the treatment of depression?

CBT tackles your negative thoughts. For example, when something negative happens in daily life, depressed people blame themselves. However, when a positive occurrence takes place, they tell themselves that they've just been lucky. They also assume that other people are reacting negatively to them. CBT helps people think in a more balanced way and challenges a person's assumptions about their lives. It aims to identify and change aspects of behaviour that may cause or prolong symptoms of depression.

What change will CBT have?

By helping you change the way you think about life, you'll be able to accept failures more easily and take credit for your achievements. CBT aims to give you skills for life, reducing the likelihood of you becoming depressed again.

What are antidepressants?

Antidepressant medication will be the first line of treatment if:

  • Your depression is severe or comes and goes

  • You've responded well to medication in the past

  • There's a hitory of depression in your family

  • You have not responded to psychotherapy

Self-help for living with depression

Self-help can make a difference. Joining a self help group is a great way to discover that you are not alone and are not the only one to suffer from self-blame, rage and despair. Try to eat regularly and have a good diet, including fresh fruit and vegetables. Exercise will help relieve stress and tension, whether aerobic exercise such as jogging or more relaxing exercise such as yoga.

Please remember the following:

  • Depression is an illness, not a sign of weakness
  • Treatment is effective and there are many treatment options available
  • There is a suitable treatment for every person
  • The aim of treatment is to get 100% well and stay well

 

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