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Question
Posted by: John | 2011/09/15

The role of meds and CBT in depression management

It is well known fact that the best approach in treating depression and/or anxiety is a combination of anti-depressants and CBT. Is it then reasonable to say that medication alone falls short in managing the symptoms of depression? If I have sufficient energy, good appetite, healthy libido and good sleeping habits but still experience bouts of dark moods and especially struggle with irrational thinking habits could you conclude that the meds are working but I still need some serious CBT councelling to get out of the hole of depression? What I basically asking is this: which symptoms should one expect to be managed by medication and which symptoms by CBT?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I suppose it depends, in part, in what one means by "symptoms." But in my view, yes, medications and CBT would be the best approach. Drugs can be really useful in bringing specific symptoms and the broad areas of depression under control. But where as is ofen the case, a person has a wide range of unpleasant problems in real life, either contributing to the depression, or caused by it, it is naive to expect the chemicals alone to sort everything out.
And as in the situation you describe, there is a major element of what we could call negative and gloomy habits of thought, then CBT is clearly called for, and the combination should be much more likely to be sucessful.

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Our users say:
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/09/17

I suppose it depends, in part, in what one means by "symptoms." But in my view, yes, medications and CBT would be the best approach. Drugs can be really useful in bringing specific symptoms and the broad areas of depression under control. But where as is ofen the case, a person has a wide range of unpleasant problems in real life, either contributing to the depression, or caused by it, it is naive to expect the chemicals alone to sort everything out.
And as in the situation you describe, there is a major element of what we could call negative and gloomy habits of thought, then CBT is clearly called for, and the combination should be much more likely to be sucessful.

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