Can TMS Depression Therapy Work For You
Anyone who has experienced the debilitating effects of major depressive disorder (MDD) understands the determination to find symptom relief. More than 16 million American adults suffer annually with an MDD, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, making depression one of the most common mental health disorders in the U.S.
Although the standard treatment protocol for depression is a combination of antidepressants and psychotherapy, this treatment relieves symptoms in only about half of those who suffer from MDD, while the remainder continues to struggle. Side effects from the antidepressants can be intolerable for many, with weight gain, sexual dysfunction, and sleep disturbances causing them to abandon treatment. A recent entry into the realm of depression treatment is giving new hope to these medication-resistant patients: Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS).
What is TMS Depression Therapy?
TMS falls within the category of brain stimulation therapies for treating MDD. TMS was FDA-cleared to treat medication-resistant MDD in 2008. TMS is a noninvasive electro-magnetic therapy that uses the power of magnets to modify brain chemistry in the prefrontal cortex of the brain, also referred to as the mood center. TMS requires no sedation and is very well tolerated, with no down time required.
TMS works by delivering repetitive magnetic pulses through a coil that targets the limbic region, inducing an electrical current that then stimulates sluggish or inactive brain cells. The series of treatments eventually resets the brain chemistry, normalizing the neuro-pathways and relieving many of the symptoms of MDD, such as fatigue, brain fog, low mood, problems with concentration and decision-making, and sleep disturbances.
What to Expect in a TMS Depression Therapy Session
When it has been determined that you are a good candidate for TMS depression therapy, the actual treatments are very straightforward. You will be seated comfortably and a coil will be placed against the scalp. During the TMS session, which lasts about 40 minutes, you will be free to watch television or listen to music through the duration of the treatment.
After the session has ended, you are free to return to drive back to home or work to resume normal daily activities. The treatments will be prescribed 5 days per week for 4-6 weeks, by which time depression symptoms will likely be substantially reduced or eliminated. TMS is well tolerated with few, if any, adverse side effects. Because no general anesthesia is needed, there are few risks associated with TMS depression therapy.
Effectiveness of TMS Depression Therapy
Studies continue to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of TMS therapy for depression. According to study out of Brown University School of Medicine in 2013, data on 257 patients revealed that 68% of the participants improved and 45% had complete remission after one year. Study investigator, Linda L. Carpenter, stated, “I think this will really be impressive for confirming the long-term durability of this effect to potential payers. This is exciting times for psychiatrists and patients, who have a new treatment option to pursue.”
For patients will MDD who are treatment-resistant, TMS offers new hope for an alternative therapy to deliver positive results. As ongoing studies continue to look at long-term outcomes, TMS is increasingly becoming a viable option for the treatment of persistent depression.
The Treatment Specialist Will Locate TMS Depression Therapy Near You
The Treatment Specialist is your one-stop resource when seeking out TMS treatment for depression. The compassionate specialists understand how frustrating and life-impacting long-term depression is, and will guide you or your loved one toward expert mental health providers who specialize in TMS therapy. For more information about this promising new treatment for MDD and depression rehab options, please contact The Treatment Specialist today at (866) 644-7911.