If you are a victim of depression, or are a relative or friend of someone who suffers from depression, you might know that sometimes, medication and counselling might not be able to cure depression. Not counting the fact that the road to recovery is a long one when it comes to psychological disorders, accepting the fact that sometimes, a cure is not easy to find is indeed hard. Regardless, when discussing treatment options, you might have heard of some additional treatments that could be tried when all else fails.
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is one of the treatment options that therapists often propose as last-resort options. This is more because they yet lack significant research in their favour – rather than the misguided public opinion that they have serious side effects (which can easily manifest). TMS features the application of magnetic impulses to the prefrontal cortex of the brain in hopes that it is stimulated and leads to improved emotion and mood regulation. More often than not, when it comes to last-resort treatments for depression, ECT or electroconvulsive therapy (the sending of small electric shocks to the brain under anaesthesia) is the better-known option. Psychiatrists Sydney recommend ECT – due to its quick effect – to patients who suffer from the more dangerous forms of depression, such as the manic, psychotic and catatonic forms. In these cases, the patient is likely to harm himself or herself (or even suicide), or pose a threat to surrounding individuals and the environment, and quick treatment is a priority. However, because ECT requires general anaesthesia, many patients who suffer from related conditions besides depression may not qualify for the procedure – in which case rTMS comes to prominence. Accordingly, rTMS is often the go-to treatment type to the less severe forms of depression, and to the severe forms only when accompanied by other conditions that bar the patient from ECT. It is, however, important to understand that not all patients who are suffering from depression can elect to undergo rTMS treatment. For example, rTMS is fundamentally an electromagnetic treatment, and the presence of metal in the head (e.g. metal plates; braces and fillings are fine, though) can bar you from receiving the treatment. Furthermore, since there is a small chance of rTMS inducing seizures, the treatment is also off-limits to any individuals who have a history of suffering from seizures.It should be also understood that even if you are allowed to undergo rTMS, there are instances where the treatment might not have any results for you. Given the fact that the process is lengthy – as well as costly – these factors should be carefully considered before making a decision; however, it never hurts to