Health Conditions - For Everyone

Conventional Treatment of Depression
   print page print the page   Email email the page Follow VitalHealthZone on Twitter Bookmark and Share





Conventional treatment of depression

Treatment may include a combination of medication, individual therapy and community support. Some medical experts believe that electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can be helpful for depression that has been unresponsive to any type of medication therapy.

The conventional treatment of depression depends on the severity of the symptoms.

Mild depression

Mild depression is often only treated with the following therapies (medication is not normally given for people with mild depression that has not occurred previously):


Moderate depression

Moderate depression is often treated with the following therapies, either independently or in combination, based depending on diagnosis of symptoms:

Severe (major) depression

People with severe (or major) depression will be offered the same medications as people with moderate depression (above), but at higher doses.

People with really severe depression that has not responded to any form of medication or other therapy can also be offered electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a procedure where the person's brain is hooked up to electric wiring and a level of electric currents is passed through the wires to the brain. This form of "electric shock" therapy will cause a brief seizure, which also causes some changes in the brain chemistry. The person will be anaesthetised first, to prevent any pain from this procedure before the electric current is allowed to pass through the brain. ECT normally occurs over two to three treatments (sometimes more for really severe cases).

Proponents of ECT suggest that it helps to alleviate symptoms of certain mental illness in people, as it uses precisely calculated electrical currents that are administered carefully by specialists and aims to provide benefits with little risk.

Despite this, ECT remains a very very controversial therapy, even since it was introduced over 70 years ago as there are a number of possible side effects and risks following the procedure, including:

The depressed people who are in any of the following groups only are offered electroconvulsive therapy (ECT):


^ top

Sections: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12

   < 8: diagnosis                                            10: alternative treatment >

  Last reviewed: 24 January 2009 || Last updated: 21 March 2009


Related Articles


NOTE: Mega doses of any type of vitamin, mineral, amino acid or herbal supplement cannot cure illnesses and in fact can be very dangerous and produce toxic side effects and interfere with medicine you are taking. Always ensure you consult your doctor before taking any type of complementary supplements.
Disclaimer: This guide is not intended to be used for diagnostic or prescriptive purposes. For any treatment or diagnosis of illness, please see your doctor.


^ top