What doctor to go to with depression: a look from all angles

Which doctor can help if I am depressed?

All people go through periods of sadness, depression, and loss of energy. But depression is more than feelings of sadness, sadness, and devastating fatigue. Depressive disorders mean persistent bad moods, lack of interest in activities, and decreased energy potential, which are observed for a long time and affect a person’s daily life.

Symptoms of depression range from mild to severe. Mild affective disorder manifests itself as a veil of longing, depression, apathy. With minor depressive disorders, changing lifestyles, talking to a psychologist, and simple self-help techniques can escape the captivity of moping. Severe depression is accompanied by feelings of hopelessness, own worthlessness and ideas of guilt. In some cases, the disorder pushes the person to suicide.

With prolonged disorders, symptoms of high intensity, it is impossible to improve the condition independently.

Important! Timely referral to a doctor, following the recommendations of a psychotherapist or psychiatrist is a chance to restore mental health and often

Thereby saving your life.

Any changes in well-being, the emergence of unusual thoughts, strangeness in behavior – alarming signs, informing of the need for medical consultation. Depression affects people in different ways, so a person who does not have special training is not able to diagnose the disorder, much less prescribe treatment.

Only a competent, experienced professional – psychiatrist or psychotherapist – can determine an accurate diagnosis, make a differential diagnosis, and create an individual plan of care.

Signals indicating the need for examination by a mental health professional – decreased mood in the form of sadness, melancholy, sadness; – grief due to insignificant reasons; – desire to cry; – feeling of guilt; – conviction of his uselessness, uselessness; – anxiety, irritability due to small things; – inability to control emotions; – feeling of inner emptiness, “emptiness” in the head; – lack of self-confidence, low self-esteem, lack of self-esteem; – inability to enjoy activities that used to bring joy; – lowered efficiency, difficulties in performance of daily activities; – absent-mindedness, inattention, forgetfulness; – thoughts of death, desire to harm oneself. Often physical symptoms are more distressing to the person than emotional and behavioral changes.

Body signs informing the necessity to consult a psychotherapist or psychiatrist: – insurmountable fatigue, persistent lack of energy, lack of physical strength to perform habitual actions; – sluggish movements, slowed rate of speech, difficulty in finding the right words; – changes in eating behavior – increased or lack of appetite; – sleep disorders – drowsiness or insomnia; – constipation or diarrhea; – lack of libido; – unusual pain unexplained by medical cause.

Often the person does not pay attention to the changes that have occurred, but relatives or friends notice “oddities” in behavior. A visit to a psychiatrist or psychotherapist should be made immediately if a loved one:

– Avoids communicating with other people; – Prefers to spend time alone; – Does not show interest in family life; – Does not participate in social activities that used to fascinate; – Makes rude mistakes due to inattention; – Has difficulty completing a task; – Feels difficulty making decisions; – Is unable to think clearly, to articulate their ideas; – Talks about death, studies literature on the topic; – Says that they see no point in further existence; – Is studying options

Separate forms of depressive disorders that require different programs and lengths of treatment are distinguished. Only a qualified psychiatrist or psychotherapist can diagnose the type of depression and determine its severity. Diagnosis is based on the complaints described by the patient, objectively defined disorders, and the background against which the illness has developed.

After testing, studying personal and family history, the doctor will diagnose a specific type of depression, such as:

– dysthymia – a mild chronic mood disorder that lasts for several years; – seasonal affective disorder – psycho-emotional disorders that arise and pass at certain times of the year; – postpartum depression – a condition that some moms face after having a baby; – bipolar disorder – an illness that manifests as two polar stages (manic and depressed); – anxiety depression – a disorder in which along with depressed moods

In addition to a depressed mood, there is also pronounced irrational anxiety.

Affective disorders are complex clinical conditions that differ by etiological factors and mechanism of development. It is difficult to independently determine the causes and provocateurs of the illness, since biological, environmental and personal components are intertwined in the picture of depression.

A careful examination by a psychiatrist or psychotherapist will provide an opportunity to identify the conditions that led to depression, among which are:

– Genetics. Unfavorable heredity means that a person has a close relative who suffers from depression or other mental illnesses. – Physical health problems. Certain bodily illnesses, such as thyroid dysfunction, trigger a cascade of depressive reactions. – Negative experiences growing up. Negative childhood experiences such as abuse, adult neglect, and bereavement act as foundations for depressive disorders. – Chronic or one-time intense stress. Traumatic life events such as unemployment, the breakup of a personal relationship, bullying

from a partner can set in motion an affect disorder.

The first step to recovery is to talk to a competent doctor who specializes in mental health problems. These specialists are a psychiatrist or psychotherapist. A psychiatrist usually deals with patients who are severely ill and at risk of committing suicide. A psychotherapist works with neurotic level disorders, which includes most depressive disorders.

The usual treatment of depression includes a combination of self-help methods, lifestyle adjustments, psychotherapeutic measures, and the use of medications. The type and duration of treatment depends on the type of depression, its severity, psychological characteristics of the patient, his preferences,

general health.

Mood disorders are unlikely to pass without the competent intervention of a specialist. If the problem is ignored, depression can last for months and sometimes years. An untreated disorder causes many negative consequences, both in health

and in all areas of a person’s life.

Psychotherapy is recognized as an effective way to help depressed patients. Psychotherapists help change the way of thinking from pessimistic to objective. During sessions, the patient improves coping skills, learns how to cope with life’s stresses in a constructive way and avoid conflicts. There are different areas of psychotherapy, including: – cognitive-behavioral; – interpersonal; – behavioral.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is recognized as a proven and safe method of treating depression. It is most often used in clinical practice. The method is based on the identification of stereotypical attitudes, useless thinking patterns, and dysfunctional ideas. The therapist explains how certain thoughts trigger specific emotional reactions and influence behavioral patterns. The therapist helps the client change negative thought constructs into ideas that allow him to develop resistance to stressful situations.

The traditional way to treat depression is to take antidepressants. These medications affect the brain systems that are responsible for the emotional realm. Antidepressants can be prescribed along with psychotherapy when a patient is experiencing a moderate to severe episode of depression. These remedies are not used in the mild form of the disease, when there is a high probability of recovery through psychotherapeutic intervention.

Important: Patients with severe forms of depression (such as bipolar disorder) are usually treated with several groups of medications. The medication regimen may include a combination of mood stabilizers, neuroleptics, antidepressants. Many types of antidepressants have been developed today, with different mechanisms of action and different side effects. Deciding which medication will best meet the patient’s needs is a complex issue.

The choice is made only after a careful assessment of the risks and benefits available. Antidepressants do not show an immediate response. They must be taken for several weeks before they begin to work. As with any pharmacological product, there are side effects when taking antidepressants, including: – nausea; – headache; – restlessness, fidgeting; – increased sweating; – dizziness; – increased appetite, weight gain; – dry mouth; – intimate difficulties.

Important: If taking antidepressants demonstrates a pronounced side effect, it is necessary to inform the doctor. The attending doctor will revise the treatment regimen, suggesting options to minimize the negative effects. The duration of the course depends on the severity of the condition and the therapeutic response to treatment. Although antidepressants are safe, effective, and not addictive, you should not interrupt their use or reduce the dose yourself because of the threat of the return of depressive symptoms. The medication should be stopped gradually, under the supervision of a qualified doctor.

A person who is depressed should take steps to improve their mood and speed up recovery. The basic rule is to give yourself time to heal, do not expect instant improvement. Depression is a severe disorder that requires patience, courage, and consistency to overcome.

Doctor’s advice: – Talk about the experience. A heart-to-heart talk with someone you trust will alleviate the severity of mental suffering. – Improve your social circle. Try to be in contact with people who have wisdom and optimism. Spend time with those who appreciate every moment of life. – Make a smart daily routine. It is reasonable to combine mental stress, physical activity and quality rest. Avoid monotonous and exhausting activities. Try to fill the day with pleasant, simple activities. – Consider how to organize your leisure time. Vivid impressions can help you escape from the captivity of moping. Travel to new places, excursions, visiting the theater and movie, a good dinner at a restaurant will improve your mood. – Eat a balanced diet. For your body to work properly, it should get good quality food. Eat at least four meals a day at regular intervals. Give preference to fresh, local foods. – Be physically active. Physical activity has a favorable effect on psycho-emotional status if it is done regularly and in moderation. Choose activities that do not cause a feeling of fatigue, but bring pleasure. – Spend time in nature. Fishing, hunting, active games with children in the fresh air, a walk with the dog rewards a feeling of happiness, makes you feel that life is full and valuable.

Depression is a common mental disorder. A psychiatrist and psychotherapist treat affect disorders. Only an experienced professional can accurately identify the problem and make a step-by-step plan of action for full recovery.

Few private psychiatric clinics in Moscow offer truly qualified treatment for such an extensive list of conditions, as does our clinic “Gospitalnaya”.

  • Anorexia
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Delirium disorder
  • Bulimia
  • Hallucinations
  • Voices in the head
  • Dementia
  • Depressive psychosis
  • Hypochondriacal neurosis
  • Manic depressive psychosis
  • Obsessive states
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Neuroses of various etiologies
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Panic attacks
  • Psychoses
  • Eating disorders
  • Rehabilitation after Covid 19
  • Somatoform vegetative disorders
  • Fears and Phobias
  • Suicidal behavior
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Schizotypal disorders
  • Schizophrenia
  • Encephalopathy
  • Apathy towards life
  • Insomnia
  • Lingering depression
  • Hysterical neurosis
  • Nightmares and terrors in their sleep
  • Obsessive thoughts
  • Nervous breakdowns
  • Nervous tics
  • Pathological sleepiness
  • Psychosomatic illness
  • Stress disorder
  • Enuresis and encopresis
  • Initial stage depression
  • Childhood trauma
  • Unhappy love
  • Low self-esteem
  • Loss of a loved one
  • Divorce
  • Solution of inner problems
  • Family problems
  • Difficulties in communication
  • Autism
  • Dysarthria
  • Mental retardation
  • Delayed speech development in a child
  • Treatment of Aggression in Adolescents
  • Treatment of anorexia in adolescents
  • Treatment of teen depression
  • Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Adolescents – how to treat the disorder

If you are looking for an answer to your question, simply write to us about what you are experiencing, our specialists will forward your message to a Doctor who specializes in your particular issue. We will promptly prepare an answer and send it to you.

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If you are looking for an answer to your question, simply write to us about what you are experiencing, our specialists will forward your message to a Doctor who specializes in your particular issue. We will promptly prepare an answer and send it to you.

If you’re depressed: What to do and who to go to

Suppose you are experiencing symptoms of clinical depression.

You are sad, life seems meaningless, you have problems with sleep and eating, thoughts seem to move in a fog, and every morning you are overtaken in turn and in any sequence of despair, the inability to answer the question “Why should I get up?” and all-consuming fatigue.

And this dubious pleasure does not last the first month. At the same time your life may well be objectively not so bad, and you do not understand yourself.

You try to treat everything positively, to think about the good and smile to people, but it does not help. Relief does not come. At some point you decide to give yourself up into the hands of professionals.

The question first: where and who to go?

Most likely, in your district clinic is a psychiatrist or psychotherapist to whom you can go free of charge, the MHI. What is the difference between them?

A psychiatrist has a medical degree and specialization, which allows him to diagnose and treat the disease with medication.

Psychotherapist – has worked as a psychiatrist for at least three years, was retrained and can use both medication and psychotherapeutic methods.

In practice, due to the limitation of appointment time, there is no significant difference between these specialists in the state institution, and both use psychopharmacology as their main weapon.

Read also: Anxiety and depression

If your clinic does not have either of these specialists, the next destination is the PND, aka psychoneurological dispensary, where you can also go for free.

But do not panic, visiting a psychiatrist/psychotherapist has long been no longer shameful.

I assure you, you will see a lot of people in line at PND, and you will not be able to suspect mental illness at first sight.

Question two: Will they put me on the register?

No, they won’t. The very concept of “registration” has long been non-existent. There are two databases – for “light” patients and for those who are potentially dangerous to society. A depressed person is definitely not in the “dangerous” category.

If you are still afraid of being in such a database, you can either use the possibility of anonymous admission in the same PND (this will have to be paid), or go to a private clinic.

No one will report your condition to your work or inform your family, you will not be prevented from obtaining a driver’s license and will not limit your ability to act.

How does the appointment work?

You will simply be talked to and questioned about your symptoms and circumstances. Be honest, straightforward, and don’t worry that your symptoms won’t seem like enough reason for the doctor to see you.

The doctor knows what to ask and what to clarify, and will structure your conversation. Everything you say in the doctor’s office, and the fact that you go to him falls under doctor-patient confidentiality, and therefore will not go outside the office.

And finally, about the pills.

After the interview and diagnosis, you may be given a prescription. One or more. In the case of depression it will be antidepressants.

Don’t be afraid to take them, they won’t change your mind or make you a different person. They will just put your world back into place.

They will restore your serotonin levels to normal and allow you to live a normal life again. Not fine, not better than everyone else, but normal. Like you used to, before you were depressed.

Antidepressants usually need to be taken for a long time – at least a year. Take them even when you feel better, and even when you feel completely well. During this time, the body will get used to maintaining normal levels of “happiness hormones”, and, after proper withdrawal, will cope on its own.

The withdrawal schedule is also prescribed by a psychiatrist. If you notice any side effects from taking medication (drowsiness, insomnia, decreased or increased appetite, changes in libido, etc.), do not rush to label them “did not fit”.

Side effects from antidepressants usually wear off within a few weeks. Those same few weeks it takes for the drug to take effect.

If the side effects are severe, see your doctor again and tell him about them so you can get another prescription. Psychiatrists, alas, are no wizards or wizards, and it’s not certain that the doctor will immediately guess the right drug for you. But cooperation with a doctor will considerably increase the chances of successful treatment.

Anastasia Makarieva, psychologist, PhD Photo depositphotos.com The author’s opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board

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