Recently, you feel like your depression has been at an all time high. After silencing it internally for years, you decide it is time to seek the help you need and deserve. You’re new to the process of mental health support. You feel you have left your depression untreated for long enough. The question comes up, should I start with medication or therapy?
Some friends struggling with depression are on medications, such as SSRIs. This can help in managing depression. You may have some friends solely in therapy with no medication. Or, you know of someone who’s on medication and in therapy.
Common medications for mental health include antidepressants or antianxiety pills. It can seem attractive to get started on medication if you are feeling out of control with your mental and emotional state. The thought of a pill being able to take away the pain makes you interested in learning more.
Now, it’s important to understand the difference between someone who prescribes medication and someone who administers psychotherapy. Often times, professionals do not provide both.
Therapy can seem like an overwhelming, draining process. You don’t want to rehash the negative moments of your life, open up about your trauma or depression. Maybe you feel like you don’t need therapy, and just want minimal assistance.
Depression therapy in Simi Valley, Ca, can help provide you with coping mechanisms alongside medication management.
What’s the difference between a psychiatrist and psychologist?
A psychiatrist is the doctor who is able to prescribe medications and deem which medications are best for you. A psychologist is a licensed therapist who helps you work through issues to prevent them from growing in the future.
Psychiatrists usually do not provide any form of psychotherapy and hold consultations to hear about your symptoms and concerns. They may ask personal questions to get to know you and your life better. As a matter of fact, psychiatrists are highly educated in chemistry and biology. Therefore, they understand how medications will interact with your brain.
Psychologists provide psychotherapy where you have a session with them to talk about what’s going on in your life. Whether it be present events causing you stress or past events that have caused you trauma. Talk therapy helps provide you with new perspectives, coping mechanisms, and to work on specific goals for yourself.
Psychotherapy is all about growing, improving, and strengthening your connection with yourself or those around you. They are able to assess if medication would be a good supplement to your therapy journey.
Psychiatrists and psychotherapists can work together for one client. They can share information with each other about symptoms, progress, and treatment plans. This is the best way for them to figure out the best route of care for you.
Why do medication and therapy go together?
Medication works for depression and anxiety by helping you process information you otherwise couldn’t. You may be in a depressive episode, where you don’t know how to talk about it, and are unmotivated to.
Essentially, medication makes it so that you can work through therapy better. The medication will suppress certain areas of your brain that are hyperactive and make you stressed out. It may bring you great distress to talk about trauma. Therefore, medication can help level you out to work through it.
Depression therapy for teens near Thousand Oaks, Ca, can provide clarity in the best steps to take for treatment.
Will medication solve my problems alone?
This is definitely something to talk about with your physician or psychiatrist. Medication is thought to be supplemental to the therapy you are receiving. If you are struggling with depression and anxiety, the medication would work best if you are able to seek out therapy as well.
Psychologists may encourage you to look into the idea of speaking with a psychiatrist about your concerns. The use of cognitive behavioral therapy with medication has been proven to be very efficient in treating depression or anxiety.
Do I have to take medication?
Regarding the presenting mental health concern, medication can be optional. Just know that in the end, you don’t have to take medication. For concerns such as eating disorders, schizophrenia, or bipolar, medication may be necessary.
The best route to approach looking into medication is to consult with a therapist first. This way, they can determine if medication is even necessary for you. You may be able to treat your mental illness simply from therapy and see massive progress.
Therapists and psychiatrists tend to have connections to each other. It’s likely that if you already see one of those professionals, they’ll recommend you to see the other as well. Having both professionals makes for a great support system.
Always consult with a medical professional or psychologist for further questions or concerns regarding medication treatment.