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Understanding your Depression: Talking Treatment

There are a number of different talking treatments that are available to depression sufferers. Often, a combination of medication and talking treatments is prescribed to treat a condition more effectively. The NHS (2009) provides descriptions of the three main types of talking treatments:

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) - CBT works on the principle that the way we feel is partly dependent on the way we think about things. The therapy teaches you have to challenge negative thoughts and channel more positive emotion. Your GP would normally recommend a fixed number of sessions with a qualified counselor to undertake CBT.
  • Interpersonal therapy (IPT) - IPT focuses on your relationships with other people and on specific problems or issues that you might be dealing with. There is some evidence that IPT can be as effective as medication or CBT, but the research is not conclusive.
  • Counselling - Counselling is a form of therapy that helps you to think about the problems you are experiencing in your life, in order to find new ways of dealing with them. Counsellors help to support you in finding solutions to problems, they do not solve the problem for you.

The website (2009) identifies an additional two types of talking therapy:

  • Psychodynamic therapy - This type of therapy links depression to traumas and conflicts that happened earlier in your life, especially during childhood. It can be a short-term treatment, although it is often a longer process.
  • Group therapy - Group therapy allows you and other people with depression - or people with the same issues that contributed to your depression - to meet together with a therapist and share experiences.

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