Americas TMS Center
TMS Specialist & Psychiatry located in Irvine, CA
Depression is a serious mental health condition, and if you’re severely affected, it can take all the joy and happiness out of your life and leave you feeling like there’s no point continuing. If you’re experiencing symptoms of depression, Americas TMS Center can help. Americas TMS Center in Irvine, California, specializes in using both established therapies and innovative new treatments, including transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Find out what the practice can do for you by calling today or book an appointment online.
What is depression?
Depression is a mood disorder, which is a type of mental health condition that affects how you feel. Everyone gets depressed and has bouts of low mood now and again, and it’s normal to feel sad and unhappy after a traumatic event, but these feelings should pass. When you have clinical depression, you constantly feel low, and rather than getting better, your sadness is likely to get worse over time.
Without treatment, clinical depression turns your world into a bleak, hopeless struggle that makes it impossible to maintain a career or relationships. At this stage, you might begin to have thoughts of self-harm and suicide, believing it’s the only solution to your pain.
At Americas TMS Center, the team offers hope for people who have depression, using proven therapies such as transcranial magnetic stimulation.
If you feel you may be experiencing any symptoms of depression, Americas TMS Center provides an online version of the commonly used Depression Screening tool called the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9). The questions on the PHQ-9 are based directly on the nine diagnostic criteria for major depressive disorder in the DSM-IV.
What causes depression?
Clinical depression is thought to be linked to an imbalance in the brain chemicals serotonin and norepinephrine. This imbalance makes it impossible for you to simply shake off your low mood, any more than you could heal a broken bone by the force of your will.
The trigger for this chemical imbalance often begins with an emotional upheaval in your life, such as:
- Chronic pain
- Relationship breakdown
- Job loss
Even happy life events like moving home or having a baby can bring on depression. You’re more likely to suffer from depression if there’s a history of it in your family or you have a problem with substance abuse, but depression can affect anyone at any age. In many cases, there doesn’t seem to be a trigger for clinical depression, and it arrives seemingly from nowhere.
What are the symptoms of depression?
Symptoms of clinical depression can vary between people, and everyone’s experience of depression is unique to them. However, if you have depression, it’s likely you feel worthless and desperately sad and have very low self-esteem. Other typical symptoms of depression include:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Sleeping problems
- Changes in appetite
- Memory problems
- Loss of interest in your usual activities
- Absence of pleasure or happiness
- Suicidal thoughts
If you have clinical depression, these feelings are constant, worsening at times but never going away. This can go on for months and even years.
What treatments are there for depression?
In the earlier stages, depression can lift if you make lifestyle changes such as improving your diet, getting regular exercise, and reducing stress. If these changes don’t help or your depression reaches a more serious stage, you might need counseling and antidepressant medication.
Patients at Americas TMS Center experience significant improvement in their depression after undergoing a course of FDA-approved transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). TMS is a painless, noninvasive therapy that’s safe and effective, and works by helping to correct imbalances in your brain. TMS uses pulsed magnetic fields to stimulate the parts of your brain that regulate your mood. The repetitive nature of TMS pulses is what reprograms the brain long after the treatment is complete.
If you have depression, TMS can offer relief even when other treatments aren’t helping. Call Americas TMS Center today to find out more, or book an appointment online.