Depression is a normal response as part of our daily lives such as the loss of s job, the death of a love one, and illness. Over 30 million Americans suffer from depression and the amount is increasing in an alarming rate. Depression may be a mental health disorder that can affect the way you eat, sleep, and the way you feel about yourself. The mild case of depression can be defeated by a variety of self-care techniques. Others require the treatment of medication, such as antidepressant medications and psychotherapy that help to reduce and sometimes eliminate the symptoms of depression. According to the National Mental Health Association, one in every eight women can expect to experience clinical depression during their lifetime. In gender perspective, women are twice at risk to develop depression than men.
Women and depression
In an article of Why Women Experience Depression More Than Men, by Susan
Nolen-Hoeksema, Ph.D., Carla Grayson, Ph.D. & Judith Larson, Ph.D.,
the experts wrote that researchers have known for years that women
experience depression more often than men do, but the reason for this
gender difference has not been clear. A study published by researchers
provides some answers by showing how social conditions and personality
characteristics affect each other and contribute to the gender
differences in depressive symptoms.
A. In conventional medicine perspective
A.1. Non Pharmacologic treatments
1. Behavioral intervention
The purpose of behavioral intervention is to reinforce the positive
behavior and avoid bad behavior regardless the environment influence.
2. Relaxation therapy
relaxation therapy is a form of treatment by enhancing the person into a
relaxation stage quieting the mind to allow thoughts to flow in a
smooth and induce the relaxation response.
3. Cognitive-behavioral therapy
In this therapy, you learn to recognize and change thought patterns and
behaviors that can lead to anxious feelings, by uncovering the thought
processes that cause the negative thoughts associated with depression.
A.2. Pharmacologic treatments
a. Antidepressants such as selective serotonin
reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), selective serotonin and norepinephrine
reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) have been use effectively by keeping
increased levels of serotonin and norepinephrine available in the
brain.in treating depression with some side effects.
b. Risk and side effects
b.1. Bladder problems
b.2. Loss of libido
b.3. Dizziness and drowsiness
b.4. Inability to achieve an orgasm
2. Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
Electroconvulsive therapy believes that depression is caused by
neurotransmitters’s inability in transporting messages and information
from one brain cell to another. If these neurotransmitters can function
normally, it can make the brain cells work better, thus reducing the
risk of depression. After using of anesthesia to put you asleep, an
electric pulse last only 1-2 seconds applies to your head to produce a
seizure to change the behavior of neurotransmitters after an episode of
abnormal electrical activity in the brain. Usually 6 to 12 treatments
are needed to relieve depression and 3 times a week, depending to the
stage of depression.
b. Risks and side effects
b.1. Temporary short-term memory loss,
b.5. Heart palpitation
3. Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS)
a. In 2005, the FDA approved the use of VNS for treatment-resistant
depression, it is designed to treat depression by sending regular, mild
pulses of electrical energy to the brain via the vagus nerve with the
use of an implanted device.
b. Risks and side effects
b.1. Decreased respiratory flow during sleep
b.2. Increase in vagal tone
b.4. Tingling in the neck and
b.5. Problems swallowing.
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