Depression causes ongoing feelings of sadness, guilt, and hopelessness, along with a wide range of physical symptoms. To treat these problems, people sometimes undergo psychotherapy or use antidepressant medications. Yet there are no guarantees that psychotherapy, antidepressants, or a combination of the two can help depression patients cope with their symptoms.
Now, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy provides an alternative or augmentation to psychotherapy and antidepressants for severe depression. To learn more about the use of TMS to treat severe depression, let’s look at how TMS therapy changed one woman’s life.
How TMS Therapy Helped a Woman Manage Her Depression Symptoms
Prior to undergoing TMS therapy, Terry called depression “the greatest thief ever.” She noted that depression robs a person of life, happiness, and joy. After undergoing TMS therapy to treat her depression symptoms, Terry got results. In fact, Terry said she started sleeping better within one week of undergoing TMS therapy.
What Can People Coping with Depression Learn from Terry’s TMS Therapy Experience?
Terry is just one of many people who has undergone TMS therapy and used it to help manage depression symptoms. Terry’s experience shows that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to cope with depression symptoms. Some depression patients benefit by looking beyond psychotherapy and medication to manage their symptoms.
With TMS therapy, individuals can stimulate neurons in the brain responsible for mood. Dr. Aron Tendler, Chief Medical Officer at BrainsWay, a company that provides a TMS therapy device, told CBS News that certain areas of the brain become underactive when an individual is dealing with depression. By undergoing TMS therapy, an individual can use magnetic pulses to create electrical activity to stimulate areas of the brain that don’t fire normally due to depression.
What Is TMS Therapy, and Is It an Effective Treatment for Depression?
TMS therapy is an FDA-approved depression treatment covered by most major insurance carriers. Patients who want to undergo TMS therapy for depression should learn as much as possible about the treatment to understand how TMS therapy works, find out if they qualify for TMS insurance coverage, and make an informed treatment decision.
TMS therapy requires 20-minute treatment sessions conducted five days a week over the course of six weeks. During a treatment session, a TMS patient is seated and a TMS device is placed on his or her head. Next, magnetic pulses are delivered to the brain via the TMS device. Upon completion of a TMS treatment session, a patient can resume his or her normal activities.
Although the impact of TMS therapy depends on the individual, over 70% show a significant reduction in depression symptoms, and 49% of those TMS patients are in remission with an absence of depression symptoms at treatment completion. Because TMS therapy is a noninvasive treatment, it does not cause systemic side effects such as weight gain, dry mouth, or other side effects commonly associated with depression medications. TMS therapy results are enhanced for a patient who chooses to combine psychotherapy and/or medication with his or her TMS treatment.
Is TMS Therapy Right for You?
At Achieve TMS, we want to help people coping with depression find the right treatment based on their individual needs. We offer a treatment consultation that allows us to learn about a patient and find out if he or she is a good candidate for TMS therapy.
Dr. Manish Sheth, Medical Director of Achieve TMS Centers and one of their practicing physicians, is licensed and board-certified in psychiatry and addiction medicine. He has worked with many patients dealing with depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, and other mood disorders, and applies his extensive medical background and knowledge to assist those who are considering TMS therapy for depression.
Dr. Sheth and the entire team of Achieve TMS providers perform an in-depth review of each patient to learn about his or her depression symptoms, and offer a personalized treatment recommendation. If we believe a patient can benefit from TMS therapy, we provide him or her with a tailored treatment program.
Conversely, if a patient does not qualify for TMS therapy, we provide insights into other available depression therapies. We sometimes recommend TMS therapy be performed in combination with the use of psychotherapy, antidepressants, or both.
Schedule a TMS Therapy Consultation with Achieve TMS
TMS therapy is one of several treatment options available to depression patients, and it has helped Terry and many others cope with their symptoms. If a depression patient finds that his or her use of psychotherapy and/or medications is ineffective or less effective than needed, exploring TMS therapy may prove to be a safe, effective way to manage his or her depression symptoms.
Achieve TMS is available to teach patients about TMS therapy and help them decide if TMS therapy is the right choice for their depression management. To learn more, please contact us online, or call us today at 877-247-0101.