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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Depression: Treatment & Monitoring
      Category : Health Centers > Depression


Depression | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What are the treatments for the condition?

The two most common ways of treating depression are with antidepressant medicines and psychotherapy. Often a combination is used. Occasionally, a person must be hospitalized for intense treatment or for his or her own safety.

Antidepressant medicines are effective in:

  • increasing the person's ability to function in daily life
  • lowering the risk of suicide
  • making the person feel better
  • The following types of medicines are used to treat depression:

  • monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), such as phenelzine sulfate and tranylcypromine sulfate
  • other antidepressants, such as nefazodone and venlafaxine
  • selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), including paroxetine HCl and fluoxetine HCl
  • tetracyclic antidepressants, such as maprotiline HCl and mirtazapine
  • tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), including amitripyline HCl and desipramine HCl
  • Psychotherapy can help people:

  • cope better with having depression
  • feel less alone
  • improve relations with family, friends, and coworkers
  • learn about depression and how it affects them
  • learn to recognize and avoid situations that can bring on a depressive episode
  • learn to view the world and others more positively and more realistically
  • positively address problems that they may be facing
  • stop episodes of depression early by recognizing warning signs and symptoms
  • What are the side effects of the treatments?

    Antidepressants may cause mild and usually temporary side effects in some people. The most common side effects are:

  • agitation
  • constipation
  • dizziness
  • drowsiness
  • dry mouth
  • nausea
  • What happens after treatment for the condition?

    An individual can help prevent relapses by living a healthy lifestyle. Some important parts of the healthy lifestyle include:

  • avoiding alcohol, illegal drugs, and smoking
  • doing regular exercise
  • eating a balanced diet, following the food guide pyramid
  • finding a support system for dealing with depression
  • finding ways to manage stress
  • getting enough rest
  • How is the condition monitored?

    Once a person has an episode of depression, he or she is at higher risk for further episodes. Any new or worsening symptoms should be reported to the healthcare provider. The provider may recommend regular visits to monitor symptoms. The provider may also order blood tests to monitor the levels of medicines.

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    Depression: Prevention & Expectations


    Author: Ann Reyes, Ph.D.
    Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
    Date Reviewed: 04/26/01

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