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Major Depressive Disorder Treatment

Major Depressive Disorder Treatment

Everyone knows what it feels like to be “sad,” “down,” or “blue.” We all know what it is like to experience sadness, disappointment, guilt, regret, and loss. Sometimes, we know why we are feeling “down” or “depressed” and sometimes we do not.

Often, feeling bad for a while helps us to understand that something is wrong, that we have a problem that needs to be solved, or that we need to make a difficult decision. In fact, feeling a little bad for a little while can help us solve problems.

However, depression is different. Major depressive disorder (MDD) often occurs after a person has experienced a loss, rejection, or defeat. However, MDD is characterized by strong and persistent negative feelings much stronger than simply being “sad” or “blue” that interfere with our ability to cope and make decisions.

If you have been experiencing several of the following symptoms for two weeks or more then you may be suffering from MDD:

  • Persistent sad, depressed mood;
  • Loss of interest, pleasure or enjoyment;
  • Anger or irritability;
  • Loss of energy or fatigue;
  • Difficulties with memory, attention and concentration;
  • Changes in appetite;
  • Weight loss or weight gain;
  • Sleeping more or less;
  • Feeling of hopeless, helpless, worthless or guilty;
  • Negative thoughts about the future; and/or
  • Thoughts of death or suicide.

People who are depressed are usually feeling overwhelmed and hopeless and often view seeking help as an admission of failure. We all must fight this stigma. Depression is not a sign of weakness or a personal or moral failure. People who are suffering from depression can’t just “tough it out” or “pull it together” and hope to get better. Without adequate treatment, the symptoms of depression can last for many months or many years.

Fortunately, there is effective treatment available. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) has been demonstrated to be one of the most effective available treatments for MDD. MDD often accompanies other kinds of problems, including anxiety. A proper and thorough differential diagnostic assessment by a psychiatrist or psychologist is the first step towards effective treatment.

Dysthymia (a milder but more chronic form of depression)

Simply put, dysthymia is a slightly milder but more chronic form of major depressive disorder (MDD). People can suffer from symptoms of low-grade depression for years but never quite meet the diagnostic criteria for MDD. However, even being “almost clinically depressed” for years can be pretty miserable. In fact, most people with dysthymia will also experience MDD at some time in their lives.

Dysthymia may not be quite as distressing and disabling as MDD, but it certainly interferes with functioning and well-being. People with dysthymia may sometimes feel “okay” or enjoy something they are doing, but they will often describe themselves as never being very happy for very long. People with dysthymia are often feeling so bad for so long that they start to think that the problem is their personality and that they are just unhappy, miserable people.

Fortunately, there is effective treatment available. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) has been demonstrated to be one of the most effective available treatments for dysthymia. As with MDD, a proper and thorough differential diagnostic assessment by a psychiatrist or psychologist is the first step towards effective treatment.

Major depressive disorder

Major depressive disorder (MDD) often occurs after a person has experienced a loss, rejection, or defeat. However, MDD is characterized by strong and persistent negative feelings much stronger than simply being “sad” or “blue” that interfere with our ability to cope and make decisions.

If you have been experiencing several of the following symptoms for two weeks or more then you may be suffering from MDD:

  • Persistent sad, depressed mood;
  • Loss of interest, pleasure or enjoyment;
  • Anger or irritability;
  • Loss of energy or fatigue;
  • Difficulties with memory, attention and concentration;
  • Changes in appetite;
  • Weight loss or weight gain;
  • Sleeping more or less;
  • Feeling of hopeless, helpless, worthless or guilty;
  • Negative thoughts about the future; and/or
  • Thoughts of death or suicide.

People who are depressed are usually feeling overwhelmed and hopeless and often view seeking help as an admission of failure. We all must fight this stigma. Depression is not a sign of weakness or a personal or moral failure. People who are suffering from depression can’t just “tough it out” or “pull it together” and hope to get better. Without adequate treatment, the symptoms of depression can last for many months or many years.

Fortunately, there is effective treatment available. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) has been demonstrated to be one of the most effective available treatments for MDD. MDD often accompanies other kinds of problems, including anxiety. A proper and thorough differential diagnostic assessment by a psychiatrist or psychologist is the first step towards effective treatment.


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FAQ
Why choose CBT Associates?

CBT Associates is a large, well-established and rapidly-growing network of clinics that provides evidence-based psychological services to children, adolescents, adults of all ages, and couples.

We are a highly-qualified group of over 50 psychologists and psychological associates who provide personalized, compassionate, respectful and discreet treatment with the highest level of... Read More

What is the policy for cancelled or missed appointments?

To help us reliably meet the needs of all our clients, we must ask you to provide 24 hours’ notice when cancelling or rescheduling an appointment. Appointments without sufficient notice will be charged the full fee.

Read More
What is a psychologist?

Psychologists:

  • Are registered healthcare professionals who are regulated like physicians, surgeons, and dentists.
  • Work with individuals, groups and organizations to promote positive change by assessing and treating psychological problems.
  • Are trained to assess problems accurately using psychological tests and semi-structured interviews.... Read More
What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychiatrist?

Psychologists are closely aligned with psychiatrists as both are highly-trained professionals. Psychiatrists are oriented toward pharmaceutical solutions (some illnesses in fact lend themselves to medication versus talk therapy, such as severe depression or schizophrenia); while psychologists are oriented toward talk therapy as a solution.

Psychologists and psychiatrists both undertake... Read More

What is the difference between a psychotherapist and a psychologist?

The first important difference between psychotherapists and psychologists is the number of years of education and training required to register by each college. The College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario requires members to complete an undergraduate degree that includes 360 hours (total) of training and education. In contrast, to become a psychologist in Ontario the... Read More

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