It’s not uncommon for friends and loved ones of those
affected by depression to feel that their companions’ moods are more within
their control than they let on. If you’ve personally experienced depression,
however, you know it’s nearly impossible to “snap out of it,”
especially if you’ve undergone years of different treatments to no avail.

What if I told you there is an
answer that, compared to endless trials of medication and talk therapy, feels
like a snap. Well, read on.

It’s not uncommon for friends and loved ones of those
affected by depression to feel that their companions’ moods are more within
their control than they let on. If you’ve personally experienced depression,
however, you know it’s nearly impossible to “snap out of it,”
especially if you’ve undergone years of different treatments to no avail.

What if I told you there is an
answer that, compared to endless trials of medication and talk therapy, feels
like a snap. Well, read on.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (or TMS) is a non-medication,
non-invasive treatment for depression, involving a short outpatient procedure
performed under the supervision of your psychiatrist while you remain awake and
alert.
 Patients
who’ve responded well to this treatment report feeling remarkably better after
only a month and a half of treatment, with zero medication. TMS is the only
scientifically proven cure for depression.

TMS works by delivering mild, painless, electrical pulses through a
plastic-coated wire coil placed on the head, to the prefrontal cortex of the
brain.
 This
area of the brain plays an important role in mood regulation and is often less
active in people who are depressed. These pulses, administered over a short
period of time, have a lasting impact on the brain’s function, ultimately
stabilizing one’s mood the way medication might. The difference with TMS is
that it is targeted and therefore elicits a more effective and quicker response
than medication with none of the side effects. The typical course of treatment
is shorter, too, initially about 37 minutes, 5 days a week, for 4-6 weeks.

While anti-depressants work
for many people with depression, it is very common that patients don’t respond
to medication at all, or that medication that once worked could lose its effectiveness
over time. Treatment failure is a dangerous thing and can lead to
self-medication or even thoughts of suicide, which can take a patient even
further off his or her track to recovery. I have witnessed the success of TMS
on many patients who haven’t responded well to medication, even those with such
severe depression that they previously required hospitalization and suicide
watch under other treatment regimens.

Research has repeatedly
confirmed the durability and effectiveness of TMS. It is currently being used by major hospitals including The Mayo
Clinic and Walter Reed Hospital.
Not only is it FDA-approved
for the treatment of depression, ongoing studies support its efficacy in the
treatment of a wide range of other brain related disorders including, but not
limited to, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, anxiety disorders, Attention
Deficit Disorder, chronic pain, migraine headache, Parkinson’s Disease,
Tinnitus, and even Autism-spectrum disorders.

For patients and families
who’ve felt the effects of such debilitating illnesses, TMS is a truly
miraculous treatment alternative. So while being told to “snap out of
it” is never comforting or helpful, I hope you find solace in knowing that
there might be an easier answer out there than you initially thought.

Originally published on YourTango.

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