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Mental Health Concerns
162
Psychotropic medication is one proven treatment. It often
takes two to four weeks for antidepressants to start having
an effect and six to twelve weeks for antidepressants to have
their full effect. Education about how these medications
work and the risks of inconsistent use is an essential part of
the treatment plan.
Psychotherapy is another effective treatment and has been
shown to be particularly effective in relapse prevention after
medication has been discontinued. Cognitive-behavioral
therapy (CBT), interpersonal therapy (IPT) and behavioral
activation all have been found to effectively treat MDD.
More severe MDD may be more likely to respond to a
combination of psychotherapy and medication. Additionally,
peer education and support can promote recovery. Attention
to lifestyle, including diet, exercise and smoking cessation,
are also important aspects of recovery.
Resources:
Self-Assessment:
mentalhealthscreening.org/screening/default.aspx?&n=1
Understanding Major Depression and Recovery,
nami.org
National Institute of Mental Health,
nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression/index.shtml
Esperanza—Hope to Cope with Anxiety and Depression,
hopetocope.com
The Depression Sourcebook
. Quinn, Brian P. 1997.
The Peace of Mind Prescription. Charney, Dennis S., M.D. and
Charles B. Nemeroff, M.D., Ph.D. with Stephen Braun. 2004.