A look at different medical treatments for depression and other alternatives.

This paper examines how treatments for depression are generally divided into two groups: talking therapies and physical therapies. Physical therapies include both drug therapies and electroconvulsive therapy. The three most commonly applied talking therapies are cognitive-behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, and family therapy. These five treatments are each described individually.

Drug Therapies
Electroconvulsive Therapy
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
Interpersonal Therapy
Family Therapy
“Electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, refers to a therapy that involves passing electrical current through the brain, with this current producing a shock or convulsion. ECT is performed under general anesthesia. This treatment is normally used only for severe cases of depression and especially for cases where there is a serious risk of suicide. In addition, this treatment is normally only used either when drug therapies have failed, or when drug therapies are not suitable due to other conditions the individual has. ECT generally requires from six to twelve treatments to be effective and can result in complete remission of symptoms. In other cases, drug therapy is needed after ECT to manage depression.”

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