How to know whether your depression treatment is working?

Introduction

In the United States, Major depressive disorder (MDD) is one of the most common mental health disorder and it is also called unipolar depression, clinical depression, or major depression.

One of the best ways to assess the success rate of your treatment is to measure the symptoms and side effects of the depression are being managed. Even though you are taking medications and stick to your treatment plan, there are chances of experiencing the depression symptoms which include less interest in activities, low energy levels, poor concentration levels, difficulty sleeping, headaches, pains, cramps, digestive problems and changes in appetite.

The following are the questions you can ask yourself in order to know whether your treatment is working or if you have a major depressive disorder.

Are you consulting the right physician?

This mental health condition can be diagnosed by primary care physicians (PCPs), but you need to opt for an expert in that field as there are a lot of differences between the experts and the primary care physician’s such as the way they treat the patient, and their choice of prescribing medications to their patients.

One of the best ways to reduce the symptoms of these mental health disorders is to choose a physician or doctor who is having a vast experience in that field because only they are able to control the symptoms of depression by following a correct procedure.

The following are the health care providers you need to look for in order to treat your mental health condition. They are

  • Psychiatrists
  • Mental health counselors who are able to perform a variety of psychotherapy methods and techniques
  • Psychologists

You should be aware of your primary care physician who is prescribing you antidepressants regarding whether they are licensed to prescribe your medicines because most of the psychologists and mental health counselors are not authorized.

Is your physician only giving you one form of treatment?

People who are suffering from depression will see the desired results only if they are followed by a combination of treatments such as medication and psychotherapy. Your mental health condition may not get better if you are taking treatment by following only one type of treatment. It’s better to talk to your doctor if you are not responding to the treatment or if you have any second thoughts. By asking the questions and taking proper care will ultimately result in your recovery or will increase the success rate of your treatment.

You have to take a combination of treatments because in most cases the people who are suffering from depression are not get benefitted by taking only one type of treatment. Living with depression is not as easy as you think, sometimes it can be painful. That is why, you should aware of your condition, and the treatment you are taking.

Do you have any unresolved symptoms even after you took the treatment?

The main goal of any combination of treatment is to reduce the symptoms of depression such as

  • Irritability
  • Restlessness
  • Hopeless
  • Loss of interest in sex (erectile dysfunction in men)
  • No longer finding pleasure in favorite activities and hobbies (such as playing cricket, and video games)
  • Unable to concentrate on the things
  • Difficulty in completing the tasks
  • Delayed responses during conversations
  • Excessive sleepiness or difficulty in sleeping such as insomnia
  • Feeling sad
  • Maintaining low levels of energy
  • Increased cramps (especially in women)
  • A decline in school performances in children
  • Digestive problems

If you are still suffering from the treatment even after taking the treatment, discuss it with your health care provider about them. They may adjust the dosage of your medications or implement any changes to your treatment plan.

Did you notice any changes in your sleep pattern?

You should stick to one sleep routine after taking the treatment. But if you are facing any difficulties in adjusting to your sleeping pattern, it means that you are not treated properly. Insomnia is a common problem we can see in the people who are suffering from mental health disorders.

Whereas, people with depression also suffer from hypersomnia, a condition in which people go through feeling that they didn’t get adequate sleep even though they had a sound sleep for several hours.

Talk with your doctor if you think your sleeping pattern is changing or if you notice any sleeping problems such as insomnia or difficulty in sleeping. Also, you should discuss with your doctor about the symptoms of your problem and the course of action you have in your mind.

Do you have any thoughts of committing suicide?

It has been observed that most of the people who are committing suicide are suffering from depression or other mental health conditions. If you notice that a person is going to commit suicide or your dear ones have conveyed their ideas of committing suicide, seek help immediately.

Threats or comments about killing themselves, dramatic mood swings, aggressive behavior, social withdrawal from friends, family, and community, impulsive or reckless behavior, increased alcohol and drug use, talking about suicide all the time, sleeping too much or too little, and searching for a means of doing personal harm, such as buying a gun are the warning signs of a person who are having a plans of committing suicide.

Are you facing any difficulties relating to the depression which is not treated?

It will be difficult for a person to survive in their life if the depression problem remains untreated. Alcohol abuse, immune disorders, substance abuse, suicide, disorders related to anxiety, work or school-related problems, unable to maintain the family relationships or family conflicts, and social isolation or difficulty in building their careers are the complications of depression on people both physically and emotionally.

Are you following the right procedure and taking the correct medication?

There are several types of antidepressant medications available in the health stores to treat this mental health condition. Antidepressants work by increasing the serotonin levels in the brain and it will be a time-taking procedure for your physician to decide which type of antidepressant works best for you. Your physician may ask you to try different types of antidepressant medications and will keep you in observation for 5-7 days. Your health care provider will monitor your condition to see whether you are experiencing any side effects.

Conclusion

Never ever forget to evaluate your condition. After taking the treatment from your health care provider and it will be your turn to take care of your condition. Keep asking questions about yourself and noticing the improvements and changes in your body will increase your confidence levels and prevent the symptoms of your mental health condition.