Patient Comments: Depression - Treatments

Question:

What kinds of treatments have been effective for your depression? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Vicki54, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 13

Electric shock therapy; it pulled me out of severe depression when pills wouldn't even help.

Comment from: David M., 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: December 30

While there are many issues I could get into (and have) with a psychotherapist, medication has been the most effective, practical treatment. SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) are most effective.

Comment from: 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: December 29

I'm an 18-year-old female who has been in and out of various hospital wards for bipolar disorder with atypical psychotic tendencies and suicidal tendencies. The first drug I was on was Seroquel, which didn't suit me at all. It made me drowsy all day long at a mid-range dose (250mg). After I stopped that, I went on Risperidal, which caused increased appetite and drowsiness, but these side effects dissipated in the first month of treatment. The doctors added fluvoxamine (Luvox/Movox) into the mix to help conquer the severe depression. All medication was stopped after my final exams. Bad move. I was then shortly tried on Olanzepine, but was quickly removed from it when it made me constantly hungry -- this was only a few weeks ago. Now Im being trialed on a combanation of Risperidone and escitalopram with the thought of adding a mood stableiser into the mix in mid january.

Comment from: olmsted73, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: December 29

I have suffered severe depression, anxiety, panic disorder, and insomnia for many years. I've tried Cymbalta, Paxil, and Effexor. Recently, my doctor prescribed Prozac, Ambien, Abilify, and Xanax. This combo seems to work well, although I still have severe insomnia. I'm hoping he can suggest something in combination with the Ambien or increase the dosage; otherwise, the symptoms have dramatically decreased for me.

Comment from: olivegirl, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: December 29

I am 21 years old and genetically predisposed to clinical depression/major depressive disorder. All my life, I've suffered from it, but the symptoms became more obvious when I was 13. It was then when I was diagnosed. I was prescribed Prozac, but I did not take it as my mother was concerned about its side effects. A few years later, I visited another therapist who prescribed me an SSRI called Cipralex. It did not suit me at all. I gained a lot of weight, felt anxious and groggy all day long, had disturbed sleeping patterns and lost a lot of hair. Last year, I began treatment with another therapist who prescribed me one of the milder SSRIs called Cipram and advised me to exercise for at least half an hour daily. I take half a tablet every evening after supper. It has helped immensely and suits me well. I used to cry for hours every day, but now I don't even remember the last time I did! As far as the side effects are concerned, I am only prone to occasional mild headaches, decreased appetite (but not so much) and drowsiness at night after I've taken the dose. I hate to admit that I don't exercise at all these days, but when I used to, I felt a rapid improvement in my life. I intend to start exercising once again. I must mention that my two best friends and my boyfriend have provided me with unconditional emotional support, which is virtually half the treatment. For all those in the same boat as me who are reading this, my therapist said, "Fake it until you make it." As weird as it may sound, it actually does help! I wish each and every one of you the best of luck with your treatments. If I can “make it,” so can you.

Comment from: anxiet eating stress, 35-44 Female (Caregiver) Published: January 09

Here is the life style you need to follow for depression. Clinical depression needs medication. First of all drink only mineral water or boiled water or reverse osmosis filtered water. Sleep before 12 am and wake up between 6 am and 7:30 and have a warm water bath. At 8 am take a glass of milk and add 4 dates in it and make a shake of it, then drink it slowly. At 10 am eat 1 egg white plus 3 slices of brown bread and a cup of green tea. At 3 pm eat a meal full of fiber. At 6 pm go for a 20 minute walk and then do some exercise like sit-ups, stands and pushups. At 7 pm drink a nutrition shake or meal replacement. At 9 pm eat a light dinner and take a 10 minutes' walk after. You have to follow all these steps specially sleeping and waking routine is required.

Comment from: lostandalone, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: February 18

I am on Effexor 225 mg, Valium, Klonopin, amitriptyline, verapamil, propranolol, tizanidine, and Ambien, which made life tolerable but now I have recently learned my mother has a terminal lung disease and has around six months to live. I feel when she goes I want to go too. I am too tired to carry on and act like nothing is wrong and I have to be the strong one. I am done. I have the major depressive disorder and also have debilitating arthritis in my back. One knee has been replaced and the next needed, for arthritis. Plus I have kidney problems. What is here for me but more pain every day, even with pain medicines! Norco is what I take.

Comment from: ashley, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 17

I'm on medication, but it doesn't seem to be helping any with my depression. I'm very depressed about something that happened to me when I was young.

Understanding Depression Slideshow
Comment from: bubbly, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 14

My doctor took me off of a 5 mg of Xanax once a day for depression, to 50 mg of Trazodone. It was the worst. I slept for 36 hours and woke up with bags under my eyes. Don"t take it!

Comment from: HappyCat, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 07

I've struggled with depression since my late teens and at 38 have finally begun to feel really good. I've tries a lot of different meds but for me, a low dose of the new drug, Cymbalta, works for me. I have combined this with daily walking of at least 1 mile and regular games of basketball, volleyball, or football tossing with my son. I was the most sedentary woman on the planet for a long time and it just made my depression worse, not to mention the fact that I gained a lot of weight. I used to hate the people that said, "Exercise! Exercise! You'll feel gooood." LOL, now I have become one of them because it's true. My 11 year old son is my best motivator because he loves the new me and makes me go with him every single day to do some type of activity. Fortunately we just moved to a great new house beside a large city park and both the move and the proximity to the park have to change me dramatically for the better. All I can say in closing is find a really good doctor and be honest with him/her. I adore my doc and he's a PA but better than any MD I've ever seen. I trust him and feel very "safe" discussing anything with him. Take your meds regularly and don't be afraid or intimidated by doctors. They're just guys who do all the same things we do, albeit wealthier most times, but if you find the right one you'll know it. I hope this helps someone. Don't give up. I've finally found the sunshine after so many years of dark clouds and tears. If I can pull out of it, anyone can.

Comment from: dil, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 15

I have been on duloxetine now for about a year and I have been a lot better on this than venlafaxine. I also take Seroquel at night to help me sleep better. I still feel tired all the time, but I don't feel so depressed.

Comment from: Fern, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 12

I'm a 48-year-old female, suffering from depression and anxiety for more than 20 years. I have tried Prozac, Paxil, Effexor, Depakote, Xanax, Klonopin, Wellbutrin, Lexapro -- hmmm -- think I covered it all. Oh, I also take Ritalin because I read that it can help -- and it does (sometimes). My problem is that stuff stops working after two years. I'm currently retrying Prozac and am thinking of also taking a mood stabilizer. I'm not manic in the sense that I have highs, but I'm either normal or very depressed. As you all know, it's a hard life. I sleep a lot, and I have trouble wanting to do anything. It's as if I have no energy. I have been in therapy for years with a wonderful person and have a new psychiatrist. The frustrating thing is that no one can really say what's going to work. I hope that in the near future they'll be able to do blood work and figure out the right cocktail.

Comment from: tps154, 13-18 Male (Patient) Published: December 12

I was depressed all throughout high school, beginning really in eighth grade. After a rough few years, capped off by a season-ending injury in football, my mom was concerned about me and decided it was time to try a medication. I was started on Prozac 10 mg, which was then upped to 20 mg after three months. It seemed to be just what I needed; I basically cared less about, well, everything. Nothing would faze me; I was a walking zombie. At the time, maybe it is what I needed. However, I did not want to live my life with no emotion. I didn't cry the entire time on Prozac. When I decided to stop taking it (without doctor approval – I should not have done), I cried hysterically about anything and everything. I needed emotion back in my life, and it felt good to care about family, friends, and life in general. The thing I want to stress most about the medicine is that the depression never really went away, for me at least. The thoughts of accepting death, the worthlessness, the fear, the pain ... it all remained. I just simply didn't care about it. I was a zombie. I would rather live life feeling the emotions, good and bad, than floating through it with no feelings. I do not regret taking it; however, I probably did need it at the time. Just make sure you know what you're getting into when you do decide to try a medication.

Comment from: British expat, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 24

I am a 54-year-old female who has suffered with depression all my life. I have only really found Prozac to be effective. In fact, I would say it saved my life. I also take Abilify in conjunction with Prozac and have regular therapy with a wonderful psychotherapist. For me, it is there all the time and comes and goes to varying degrees. Menopause did not help! Get help: The modern drugs are good. There's no need to suffer. It is not a weakness to have depression. It often affects "strong" characters. So get diagnosed, and get your life back!

Comment from: DariusRK, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: October 13

I am a 45 year old male and have been depressed most of my life. I have had great success with Paxil, which I was on for over 10 years and Zoloft which I took for more than 11 years. Recently the Zoloft stopped working and am being taken off the Zoloft very slowly. You should never stop taking any antidepressant unless your provider instructs you on how to do it. I am now taking Wellbutrin. I have only been on it for a few weeks, so right now I'm not sure if it'll work or not but, I do feel better than I did when the Zoloft quit working. One great thing about these new depression drugs are that there are so many that may help. So, if one doesn't work, try something else! Good luck!

Understanding Depression Slideshow
Comment from: Tess, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 26

Those of you with teenagers that are having issues with depression/”the blues", please get them to a doctor for a diagnosis. One little pill can make a big difference in their lives! Depression hit me in my 20s and also my son. We both are on medications and thrive much better in our lives now. I currently work 2 jobs and love my life!

Comment from: lej2012, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 02

I recently read a book that helped me a lot with my depression. I think the main point of it was really helpful. That the sufferer should first and foremost seek help and then take an active approach to make sure that they are healing along with finding a partner to help them on their journey. Also, it kind of opened my eyes to the different foods that can really worsen people's depression because of the different chemicals in the foods and how they can affect you. It teaches you a lot about the natural methods to get you through your depression. I know it doesn't seem like it but what I've discovered is that the little things all add up and can have a big impact on the way you feel.

Comment from: cookie61, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 09

I lost my husband very suddenly three years ago. I went into major depression. I was given amitripylin, which I think worked well after 18 months. However, I went off of it then without my doctor knowing. Big mistake. I feel worse than ever.

Comment from: 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: September 26

I have found that for me the best treatment for depression revolves around aerobic exercise, cycling being the best. In winter months I try to walk and to overcome the affects seasonal affective disorder. I will use a tanning bed two or three time a week if possible. If I start getting to that point where I start having any thoughts of suicide I seek anti-depressant therapy from my family physician.

Comment from: Nani, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: September 23

For my depression, I was given the maximum dose of Effexor XR and began to partake in therapy. I stopped taking my antidepressants once I finished my therapy (which should never be done without your doctor), although in my case, I never needed to return to medication. It did help me resist depression and suicide.

Comment from: ashley- the new me, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

I have been depressed for a long time. I'm only 19 years old and I don't even want to get out of bed half the time. It has gotten so bad in the past couple of months that I've tried to commit suicide more than once. But after reading your comments on how you deal with your depression I am confident that I can get help and live my life again thank you all so much your comments really helped.

Comment from: 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 14

I have major depression and severe recurrent PTSD. My doctor has put me on Effexor XR Seroquel Ativan and Ambien CR. They all seem to help fine although I have gained weight because of the seroquel. My flashbacks and depression has decreased greatly.

Published: July 17

I was in a coma 6 years ago and almost died. I was an alcoholic and used drugs. I had a great job and I can't work anymore. I stay home every day, and have not much to do. I feel useless. I can't even take any medications because of my liver. I just feel alone!

Published: June 17

I waited until I was totally burned out in my job and then just "lost it." What has helped me the most is a good counselor who MAKES me face the truth, do what I need to for myself, and stay as active as possible to fight the loss of serotonin. I would warn others to watch for signs of burn out and catch it before it's too late.

Published: May 28

What has helped me tremendously was getting help with a psychiatrist and psychologist. The medication I received (trazodone and Wellbutrin) helped in small doses, but most of my depression was due to insecurities. Talking with a professional helped to give me affirmation, which I could use on a daily basis if need be to get me through one day, because it gave me positive thoughts and from that it gave me good energy. The attitude may take a little more time, but for now, I beleive there will always be room for improvement.

Comment from: Puppymama, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 13

I focus on not letting myself go "there.” It's not that easy, I know, but I do encourage people to remember that it does loosen its grip. Eat well, fruits especially, move around, when you can and stay up when you finally get there. Don't LET it suck you under. After an entire life of depression they still called it Manic Depression back when I was diagnosed. I still get tired sometimes and I just SLEEP. I work hard otherwise, another good remedy. A sense of worth is essential. I'm glad I didn't act out on my suicidal thoughts and, at 41, I'm so glad I stayed!

Understanding Depression Slideshow
Comment from: MAXINE1, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 13

Seroquel has helped a lot also Xanax, Wellbutrin, and a sleeping aid tempazam, but still goes on in different degrees. Seroquel is expensive and I try to cut it as much as I can. I also take generic Prozac. It never really goes away. I have ups and downs. I guess the medicine helps.

Comment from: ET, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 17

No antidepressants have had a positive effect for me. Anti-anxiety medications actually cause me to have increased anxiety. The only drug that I have taken on a regular basis that has helped with both stabilizing anxiety and depression, decreased the need for the use of Valium, and has helped with problems with sleep is Topamax. I have tried most SSRI anti-depressants, medications for bipolar disorders and am currently discontinuing Risperdal because it is similar to Ritalin with many more negative side effects. My diagnosis is PTSD, ADHD, and Major Depression.

Published: July 28

My psych doctor and I are still trying to figure out the right combination. So far, I am on Lamictal 250 mg and Geodon 160 mg for mood stabilization (which really works), alprazolam 0.5 mg twice daily as needed for anxiety, Concerta 72 mg for ADD, as well as Ambien CR and temazepam for sleep disturbance. We are still trying to find a good antidepressant. We were trying Pristiq but I discovered my insurance company does not cover it, so we are back to the drawing board. We are also trying to find a generic for Lamictal because it is very expensive. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Published: July 24

I have dysthymia and major depression and have tried everything from antidepressants to ECT's and going off all medication. I believe that patience and faith in the psychiatrist and therapists that work with you are so important. My depression was diagnosed by my regular doctor. It took some time to find the right professionals in the field of psychiatry to work with me, but now with the right combination of medication, therapy, and communication between the doctor, therapist and me, I am doing much better.

Understanding Depression Slideshow
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