--Original published at Sierra's College Blog
How do you know whether to use medication or psychotherapy for mental health treatments? This is a controversy in the US for the most common mental illness: major depressive disorder. Major depressive disorder can be effectively treated with both types of therapies; however, many people do not know which one will be superior. Medications, or prescribed drugs, work on the mind and behavior, while psychotherapy works with the use of counseling. Now, I will take a look at a few different viewpoints to see which therapy may be the best.
Psychotherapy and counseling are one of the leading treatments for major depressive disorder. The American Group Psychotherapy Association (AGPA) has published “The Benefits of Psychotherapy,” an article describing why this treatment is successful and beneficial for many clients. They describe how this approach can be an alternative to medication, where a patient can trust his or her therapist. The therapist closely listens to the patient’s stress and everyday situations. The therapist helps find solutions, gives advice, and allows the patient to connect with others. Not only does this article explain the benefits of psychotherapy, but it also describes different examples of this treatment. Some examples of different therapies include cognitive therapy, psychodynamic therapy, family counseling, and group counseling sessions. Therapists can help determine the underlying stress in a patient’s life, work on the family relationship, and support the patient through communication activities within social interactions.
I believe this article is credible because it is published by the American Group Psychotherapy Association and relates to the information I have learned through class. This article gives various reasons why psychotherapy is beneficial and works compared to medication. I also find this article credible because it not only describes the benefits and how to find a therapist, but it also showcases some of the criticisms of psychotherapy too. Even though this article may be credible, I am curious how accurate the information is because there are no research studies connected to the article and the five critical questions cannot be answered here.
“Depression Treatment: Therapy, Medication, and Lifestyle Changes that Can Treat Depression” is another article published on a website as a guide for mental health. For this article, many options are presented to overcoming depression, including life changes, therapy, and medication. Psychotherapy is highly recommended, and is successful when there is a trusting and good relationship between the patient and the therapist. This article explains the different therapy options for treatment as well. Cognitive, behavioral, interpersonal, and psychodynamic therapy are the ones most beneficial. With this approach, the therapists are able to help decrease the chances of depression from returning to the patient. The therapists helps the patient understand why he or she may be feeling depressed thoughts, work on relationship skills, and create healthy lifestyles. This article also describes the importance of finding the right therapist for each person as a crucial aspect. This article explains how drugs are not a long-term or reliable treatment for many patients. They even explain if you use medication, look at other options and treatments for the best results.
With this article, I believe people can find the conclusions credible. This website is a guide to many mental health issues, and provides references for the information in the article. Here readers could look more deeply at the sources if they want to further clarify any specifics found in the article. Even with this in mind, I am not able to answer the critical questions of research.
Even though some people believe psychotherapy is more beneficial for depression, others find medication as the best form of treatment. The article, “Depression: Should I Take an Antidepressant,” shows the significance of medication and the risk factors as well. Medication will work more effectively on getting one back to normal lifestyle if the patient has a severe case of the mental health problem. Medications need a few weeks before a patient sees any changes in his or her mood, and may try different doses to find the right fit. Antidepressants can decrease depression significantly and do not change one’s personal characteristics. This use of treatment is beneficial for those who are struggling every day, and help people feel relaxed and more social. This article gives a chart comparing medications to regular therapy, gives personal stories, and allows users to assess his or her own current feelings.
This article seems credible because it is on the HealthLink BC. This is a website that brings together British Columbia’s services and provides health guides, files, services, and resources. This article has references as well for the audience to make sure the information is accurate. The article is also reviewed by two primary medical reviewers and a specialist medical reviewer. The information seems very accurate and corresponds to other information from previous research I have seen.
Lastly, “Teen Depression: The Pros and Cons of Medication” allows people with depression to see the many benefits of medication. Here, the author talks about the seriousness of depression for teens in society. Many factors can cause depressions for teens, but medications are one form of treatment to help teens battle this mental illness. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and atypical antidepressants can help teens and only have few side effects. Some advantages with medications include decrease suicidal thoughts, increase self-esteem, and help appetites improve. The article states medication and therapy can be the most beneficial as well. Even though medication, and therapy, is beneficial, medications have side effects. You want to be aware of suicidal thoughts at all times, dizziness, and nausea. Medications need longer time, about five weeks, to start working for patients as well. Lastly, there are multiple different medications, so people can use and try different ones.
I believe this source is credible because it provides reliable information by Katie Hurley. I have looked at this author’s background to see how credible or knowledgeable she is in the subject of depression. I have found this writer is an author, therapist, and has a practice for psychotherapy. There is no direct research in this article; however, Hurley explains both the advantages and disadvantages within the article.
After considering which mental health treatment will be better for people with major depressive disorder, I believe medication will work more effectively for severe cases. Medication is easier and probably less expensive to receive, compared to therapy expenses. Medication allows for higher self-esteem, more energy, and other benefits. I believe this treatment is best for older adults, who have tried therapy and have not had success. Younger children should go through therapy, before trying medications. Also, I believe the patient must be willing to go through trial and error with different medications. This process may take a while; however, this will produce the greatest outcome. Even though I believe this option will be better for most people, I still think there should be an incorporation of both therapies for the best outcome for the patients. Having an incorporation of both therapies allows the patient to decrease the amount of time at each specific treatment option. This may likely lead the person to have a well-rounded therapy approach. Lastly, I believe finding the right medications, or therapy, which are covered by insurance will lead to being most effective.