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Treatment usually involves medication, psychotherapy or a combination of both. Other treatments may include electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), light therapy and alternative treatments.

There are more than 20 antidepressant drugs currently available. Antidepressants correct the chemical imbalance in the brain. Because a variety of drugs target different neurotransmitters and imbalances of these neurotransmitters can vary from patient to patient, some drugs may be more effective than others for any individual. Sometimes a combination of drugs is best.

There are four (4) groups of antidepressant medications most commonly used to treat depression:
Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) which include Elavil, Janimine, Tofranil, Pamelor, and Norpramin. TCAs work by slowing the rate at which neurotransmitters (chemical messengers) re-enter brain cells. This increases the concentration of the neurotransmitters in the central nervous system which relieves depression.
Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) include Nardil and Parnate. MAO is an enzyme responsible for breaking down certain neurotransmitters in the brain. MAOIs inhibit this enzyme and restore more normal mood states.
Lithium carbonates, including Eskalith and Lithobid. Lithium reduces excessive nerve activity in the brain by altering the chemical balance within certain nerve cells. This drug is effective is treating bipolar disorder.
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) include Prozac, Zoloft and Paxil. SSRIs act specifically on serotonin, making it more available for nerve cells, thus easing the transmission of messages without disrupting the chemistry of the brain.
Medication usually produces a marked improvement by six weeks, but may require up to 12 weeks for full effect.

Psychotherapy involves talking to family doctor, counselor or therapist about things that are occurring in a person's life. The aim of psychotherapy is to remove all symptoms of depression and return a person to a normal life.

There are three psychotherapies available to treat depression: behavioral therapy, cognitive therapy or interpersonal therapy. Behavioral therapy focuses on current behaviors, cognitive therapy focuses on thoughts and thinking patterns, and interpersonal therapy focuses on current relationships.

Although psychotherapy may begin to work right away, it may take eight to 10 weeks to show a full effect for some people.

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)
ECT, also called electroshock treatment, is used for severely depressed patients and/or those who have not responded to antidepressant medication and/or psychotherapy. During this therapy, an electric current travels through electrodes placed on the temples, causing a generalized shock that produces biochemical changes in the brain.

Light Therapy
In light therapy, a special kind of light called a broad-spectrum light, is used to give people the effect of having a few extra hours of daylight each day. Light therapy is helpful in treating people with seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD is a serious depression that recurs each year at the same time, starting in fall or winter and ending in spring.

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Dr. Ben Umeze MD a Medical Doctor. Medical Doctor office at 1423 Glover Str., BRONX, NY, 10462. Dr. Umeze is easy reachable from
Bronx, New York, College Point, Mount Vernon, Whitestone

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