Finding the best depression treatment option for you can quickly become overwhelming. Evaluating treatment options, side effects, insurance coverage, and personal convenience can seem like a full-time job by itself. Not only are there newer treatments available, but there are also multiple treatment delivery options, such as in-home treatment, online treatment, and treatment in a psychiatrist office.
Fortunately, we’ve done the research for you. Continue reading to discover which depression treatment options will work best for you and your circumstances.
Depression Treatment Categories
Broadly speaking, there are three distinct categories for depression treatment: therapy, medication, and interventional psychiatry. Within each broad category there are multiple treatment options available. While having choices in mental health care is fantastic, it can often make it daunting to find the right depression treatment option that will work best for you.
Each category has its own strengths and limitations, so it’s important to evaluate all your options when choosing how to treat your depression. Let’s look at each option to see which one is the best depression treatment option for you right now.
Therapy for Treating Depression
Psychotherapy – also referred to as “therapy” or “talk therapy” – uses guided conversations with a trained therapist to uncover and address mental health issues. There are many different therapy options available, including individual therapy, group therapy, and intensive outpatient programs (IOP).
Online therapy has become a popular option recently. During the pandemic, most therapists began offering online sessions. Many therapists have continued to offer online sessions as an option. Online sessions offer the ultimate convenience of being able to participate in a therapy session from anywhere.
Success Rate of Therapy for Treating Depression
A meta-analysis research study published in 2021 found a 41% response rate for therapy when treating depression. Response rate, as defined in the study, means at least a 50 percent reduction in depression symptoms as measured by a standard depression rating method. In other words, 59% of patients using therapy to treat depression do not achieve at least a 50% reduction in severity of symptoms.
Insurance may cover mental health visits as a covered benefit. Even if therapy visits are covered, it can sometimes be a challenge finding a therapist who accepts your insurance plan.
Antidepressant Medication for Treating Depression
Antidepressant medication is a well-known and popular depression treatment. Antidepressants are prescribed to more than 33 million adults in the U.S.
A prescription can be obtained from a primary or urgent care provider, or from a mental health provider such as a psychiatrist or psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, making antidepressants relatively easy to obtain. There are hundreds of medication options available, which can sometimes result in a trial-and-error approach until the right medication is found. These multiple trials and failures can be frustrating for patients.
Success Rate of Antidepressants for Treating Depression
The largest antidepressant trial, the STAR*D trial, found a 33% success rate for patients with the first antidepressant tried, meaning two-thirds of patients did not find adequate relief. About 25% of patients found adequate relief with the second antidepressant tried, for a combined 58 percent success rate with two medications tried – leaving 42% of patients without a successful result from antidepressants after two attempts. With each subsequent medication attempted, the chances for a successful outcome dropped significantly.
Antidepressants are covered under your insurance plan’s prescription drug benefit. Deductibles, co-pays, and medications covered will vary widely based on plan benefits.
Interventional Psychiatry for Treating Depression
Interventional psychiatry uses the latest technological advancements to treat depression. One of the most promising interventional psychiatry depression treatments today is transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).
This revolutionary approach to managing depression targets the neural circuits in the brain by using magnetic pulses. The electromagnetic pulses are delivered with precision to activate specific regions of the brain linked with mood regulation. By targeting specific brain regions like the prefrontal cortex, TMS can increase neuronal activity and improve connectivity between various parts of the brain.
TMS is well-tolerated and has no systemic side effects, making it an especially attractive treatment option for patients who experience side effects from antidepressants.
Success Rate of TMS for Treating Depression
In clinical studies, TMS has shown an impressive 60% response rate (meaning at least a 50% reduction in symptoms). This success rate is higher than therapy and compares favorably to medication treatment. However, many of the clinical studies for TMS are conducted on treatment-resistant patients who have already failed prior treatment efforts. In a normal patient population (i.e. not just the hardest cases), TMS performs much better. Many TMS clinics report an 80-90% patient response rate.
Most major insurance plans include coverage for TMS for depression treatment.
Which Depression Treatment Option is Best in 2023?
With so many options available for treating depression, patients can easily become overwhelmed with choices. But sticking with the familiar treatments of therapy and medication may not be the right choice. Newer treatment options, such as TMS, may be the best option for treating your depression.
With few to no side effects, an impressive track record, and treatment covered through insurance – TMS has a lot to offer those looking to finally break free from depression.
TMS Treatment at Ampelis Health
For patients looking for depression treatment in Utah, Ampelis Health is a preferred TMS provider. Our psychiatrists and psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners have deep expertise in all forms of depression relief and can recommend the right treatment for you. That treatment plan may include therapy, medication, TMS, or a combination of treatments to achieve the best result possible.
To learn more about the best depression treatment option for you, call us today at 435-776-5909 or submit an appointment request. We look forward to helping you achieve a happier, more meaningful life!