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Magnets vs Medication For Treatment of Depression

Updated on April 5, 2012


Depression affects million of individuals each year. Roughly fifteen percent off all people will be effected by depression at some point during their lives. When individuals become depressed they typically meet with psychiatrist who treat depression with medication. Why do these doctors treat with medication? Is it because it is effective or because pressure has been put on by pharmaceutical companies and the insurance industry to treat with drugs with major side effects. Then answer may surprise you.

Signs of Depression

Feeling of sadness

Loss of interest of pleasure in normal activities

Reduced sex drive

Suicidal thoughts

change in appetitie

Feeling of worthlessness

these are just a few of the key signs that might mean you have depression


Medications have been the most commonly used "treatment" for depression over the years. When a medication doesn't work the dose is increased a need medication is added on or they take he individuals off medications. But people have forgot to ask one thing, are the medications effective. Recent studies have shown anti depressant medications work no better then the placebo. If this is true why do doctors keep prescribing? The basic thought is the medication must be helping some. Well research dictates it doesn't. A new treatment option exist with better results then medications and ECT

Medication Research

New outcomes from research looking at antidepressant medications show that they work no better then the placebo. This essentially means you could give out a sugar pill and get the same results as medications that bring in over 11 billion dollars a year for the pharmaceutical industry. The research concluded that the chemicals in anti depressants did not improve the patients outcomes but instead the expectation of the treatment working did. In reality this make sense. Unless you are using medication for a known chemical imbalance say Bi Polar for instance how do you know a medication works. Also think about the concept of a medication. You put a pill in your mouth as it enters your system it is dispersed throughout your entire body with only a minimal amount actually getting to the appropriate ares it needs to treat. So what does work for depression?

Transcranial Magentic Stimualtion

TMS for short uses magnetic energy to treat depression. A coil is place on the left or right pre frontol cortex and the magnetic energy enters to the part of the brain that is associated with depression. The treament is 5 days a week for six weeks. TMS has fewer side effects then medcation and more research to support its outcome. Roughly 70 percent of people respond while 40 percent reach full remission. Meaning the treatment actually works. TMS also has gone through more research then 8 of of the top 11 medications on the market. Since TMS is only treating a specific area of the brain the full intensity of the treament is hitting its target location versus medication which is dispensed throughout ones entire body.

Other Options

Therapy. Meet with a therapists sometimes talking is all you need. Exercise, meditation and yoga all can help reduce depression. Now studies are being done on the affects of yoga on depression. Creating balance provides internal change which can reduce depression. Light therapy. Many options exist to help people wth depression medications should not be the only choice


Medication is the most commonly used outcome to deal with mental illness. The problem is medication is being shown not work effectively. This doesn't mean it desn't help the patient it just means it is helping the patient based on the placebo effect. New treatment such as TMS are aiming to be the first step in treating illness directly at the source. Outcomes are better and side effects are minimal


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    • smcote profile image

      smcote 6 years ago from RI

      Research dictates that medication does not produce any better outcome for depression then a sugar pill. Meaning what s working is the exectation of success verse the cemicals in the medication itself.

    • silentnomore profile image

      silentnomore 6 years ago from Normal, Illinois

      I am on many prescribed medications to deal with my mental illness. I not only see a psychiatrist for these medicines but I also see a chiropractor that uses alternative medicines and supplements to help me with my illness. The supplements she gives me is to support the things that the prescriptions take out of my system. I think it is important to put together a team of professionals that are there to help you with your mental illness. I have a team made up of: My general physician, my psychiatrist, my chiropractor, my counselor, my husband, my adult son and my best friend. These are all people that I look for when I am having a hard time with my mental health and they all work together to help me. These people are up to speed on my health and they know what needs to be done to help me if I get in a bad situation. While most people shy away from prescription medications, they are important to help you when you are in a bad way with your mental health. When I was and have been suicidal, my psychiatrist has been there for me every step of the way. It is important to put together a team of people you trust and go to one of those people when you are having a bad day so that you can get the help you need.

    • Parks McCants profile image

      Parks McCants 6 years ago from Eugene Oregon U.S.A.

      I'm all for alternatives to drug medications.

      well done.