How Psychiatrists Approach Treatment for Depression

If you are suffering from depression, it is vital to seek treatment. Psychiatrists can help with psychotherapy and medications. They can start by conducting a thorough diagnostic evaluation, including an interview and physical exam. This will help to identify specific symptoms, medical and family history, and environmental and cultural factors.

Medication Management

Many people with depression need medication to relieve their symptoms. Psychiatrists usually start with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), such as citalopram, escitalopram, or sertraline, or serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs, such as duloxetine and venlafaxine). Some patients may also require antipsychotic medications.

depression psychiatrist near me can also prescribe antidepressants for anxiety and sleep problems associated with depression. They can also recommend other psychiatric medications that work on different parts of the brain.

Psychiatrists will consider a patient’s full medical history, including any past depression episodes and other mental health issues that could be contributing to the current episode. They will also look for any physical causes of depression, such as thyroid disorders or vitamin deficiencies. In very severe cases, a psychiatrist will assess whether a patient needs to be hospitalized for depression. This might be necessary if the person has suicidal or homicidal thoughts, catatonic symptoms, or poor physical health and is at risk of harming themselves.


While psychiatrists can treat depression through psychotherapy, they also have the medical knowledge to prescribe medication. They may be able to recommend a more effective medicine or change your dosage, depending on the type of antidepressant you are taking. Antidepressants help about 70% of people who take them. They can relieve symptoms within weeks, though full benefits may not be seen for two to three months. Newer drugs, like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), are more effective and well tolerated than older ones. They work by inhibiting the breakdown of certain natural mood-altering chemicals in your brain. If the first antidepressant you try doesn’t help, don’t give up. Approximately 50% of people who have depression need to try more than one medication before finding relief. Other drugs, such as mood stabilizers and antipsychotics, can be used to treat more severe episodes of depression. They are usually prescribed in combination with psychotherapy.


Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, can be used in conjunction with medication to treat depression. The goal of therapy is to identify the negative patterns of thought and behavior that lead to depression and find ways to replace them with healthier ones.

A therapist can help you explore the causes of your depression, whether they stem from early life experiences or current events. Typically, sessions last an hour or more and occur weekly. They may include discussion, role-playing, and other methods of communication.

Types of psychotherapy for depression include cognitive behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, and psychodynamic therapy. Interpersonal therapy focuses on resolving conflicts in relationships to address depression. In contrast, psychodynamic therapy seeks to understand the deep-rooted causes of behavior by helping people become more aware of their emotions, including contradictory and troubling ones.

Behavioral Therapy

Psychiatrists use psychotherapy (also known as talk therapy or counseling) to treat depression along with medication. This treatment method helps patients discover emotional connections, insights, and solutions that help them manage their symptoms.

During the initial session, your psychiatrist will ask questions about your medical history and your day-to-day life to understand what’s causing your depression. Once the psychiatrist has ruled out any possible medical issues, they will begin creating your depression treatment plan.

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