Depression is a mental condition that affects 6.7% of adults in America and is characterized by sadness, hopelessness, lack of motivation and disinterest in the things that make our lives enjoyable. Though everyone experiences feelings of sadness and discouragement at times, it becomes clinical depression when those feelings stretch out over weeks or months and cannot be controlled by the patient alone. There are a variety of medications and treatments available for patients that suffer from depression. One such treatment is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.
What is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation?
The process of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation or TMS, involves using a noninvasive technique of stimulating nerve cells in the brain by use of magnetic fields. This treatment is generally reserved for when other medical treatments have failed to correct the depression. When used for depression, TMS requires repetitive magnetic pulses, so it is often called Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, or rTMS.
Benefits of TMS
Though the exact biology of TMS is not fully understood, this treatment affects the area of the brain that regulates mood and helps to alleviate the symptoms of depression. TMS has many benefits over medications as it has a much lower impact on daily life. It can often take a long time to figure out the proper dosage necessary and medications can be hard to get used to at first. TMS can be done in the doctor's office and generally takes little more than half an hour. The patient is kept fully awake during the treatment and can return to work or other daily activities without impairment as soon as the appointment is over. It generally takes 5 visits a week for 4-6 weeks to benefit from the treatments.
If you suffer from depression, it is important to seek a doctor's help immediately. If left untreated, the effects of depression can be devastating to the patient and their loved ones. Patients are encouraged to research all treatment options including therapy, medication, and possibly transcranial magnetic stimulation.
If you or a love one needs help battling depression, you are not alone. Click HERE to schedule an appointment!