Psychotherapy is a type of treatment for depression that can help relieve symptoms and sometimes help identify the root of a person’s depression so they can function better, heal and find emotional well-being.
It can help you learn about your depression and ways to manage your symptoms. Several forms of psychotherapy have been developed and refined over the years to address this condition. The two most widely recognized forms of psychotherapy for depression are Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Interpersonal Therapy (IPT). According to the American Psychiatric Association, about 75% of people who enter psychotherapy show some benefit from it.
CBT is a structured and short-term psychotherapy that focuses on identifying and changing negative thought patterns and behaviors that contribute to depression. This approach is rooted in the understanding that one’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are interconnected.
Numerous studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of CBT in treating depression, making it one of the most widely used therapeutic approaches. in fact, when researchers compared Cognitive behavior therapy with medications as the first treatment for depression, they found that it works as well as antidepressants to improve symptoms.
CBT helps individuals with depression. Your therapist will help you learn how to make positive changes in your thoughts and behaviors. In each session, they will help you:
- Focus on how negative thoughts affect your mood and challenge and modify distorted and negative thought patterns.
- Learn problem-solving skills to cope with life stressors.
- Engage in pleasurable and rewarding activities.
- Learn relaxation techniques to help manage anxiety and physical symptoms associated with depression.
CBT can help to reduce your distress, provide a new perspective on your problems, and teach you how to deal with your problems.
Interpersonal Therapy is another evidence-based psychotherapy for depression, with a focus on how you relate to others and how to make positive changes to improve your personal relationships and communication. It is based on the idea that interpersonal conflicts and disruptions can contribute to or exacerbate depressive symptoms.
IPT aims to help individuals with depression by:
- Identifying and addressing problematic interpersonal issues.
- Improving communication and conflict resolution skills.
- Enhancing social support networks.
- Reducing isolation and loneliness.
IPT is particularly useful for individuals whose depression is closely linked to relationship difficulties or major life changes.
Beyond CBT and IPT, there are several other therapeutic approaches that can be effective in treating depression, depending on the individual’s needs and preferences. These include:
- Psychodynamic Therapy: This approach delves into the unconscious processes and past experiences that may contribute to depression. It focuses on gaining insight into these underlying issues to promote healing and personal growth.
- Mindfulness-Based Therapies: Mindfulness-based approaches, such as Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), combine mindfulness practices with cognitive techniques to help individuals manage depressive relapse and symptoms.
- Behavioral Activation: This therapy emphasizes increasing engagement in positive activities to counteract depression’s tendency to lead to withdrawal and inactivity.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT): Originally developed for borderline personality disorder, DBT incorporates elements of mindfulness and emotional regulation to help individuals with depression manage intense emotions.
Mercie Health is a psychiatric and wellness clinic in Katy, Texas. We take a humane and personalized approach to treating mental health disorders. Stigma is associated with mental health disorders and can keep a person from seeking help. Don’t let stigma create self-doubt and shame. You will always be treated with respect and dignity at Mercie Health. Contact us to schedule a consultation to learn more about depression, receive the correct diagnosis and all your treatment options.
At a Glance
Dr. Sylvia Udokoro Nwakanma
- Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
- Double Board Certified in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) and Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP-C)
- SAMSHA Certified Addictions Nurse Practitioner
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