When Do You See A Doctor If You Have (Or You Think You Have) Depression?
By Dr. Isaac Schumann
If you have depression, or at least you think you have one, you must realize that you should not diagnose yourself. You need to have a healthcare practitioner that is skilled to give you a correct assessment and professional diagnosis of your condition.
There is absolutely no reason to feel shy or embarrassed when talking to a healthcare provider regarding any symptoms of your condition. There are many healthcare professionals that are very understanding of your problem. After all, they were trained to study and treat depression.
If you have symptoms like these, do not hesitate consulting a medical practitioner. Before getting any actual help or treatment for depression, you must need to first have a diagnosis that is correct.
You see, these symptoms are also symptomatic of other problems. For example, weight loss, fatigue and sleeping patterns may not be caused by depression, but by some medical problem. Other symptoms like losing interest in activities that you previously enjoyed or problems with attention or memory may not be related to depression at all but may be indicative of a undiagnosed medical condition.
You need to consult a doctor so that you can make sure that the symptoms you are experiencing are actually a result of your depression and from there, you can start what the best treatment for you individual case. The doctor might ask you to answer questions to fully assess and help determine if you actually have depression and possibly conduct tests to determine that your symptoms are a result of some other health issue.
Depression is a medical condition that is real. Remember that having depression is not something that you want to have. You probably would not think less of someone who has influenza or is suffering from heart disease. In the same manner, you must not be ashamed or feel guilty that you suffer from depression.
Depression will not go away by "toughing it out" or "being strong." Being weak in your will does not instantly cause you to be depressed. Most cases of depression can't simply go away just by trying to cheer up. You can't simply make it go away by doing exercises, taking vitamins or going on a vacation. Treating your depression requires professional help - you can't do it alone. Like any other serious illnesses, depression needs professional treatment from a healthcare practitioner. When you are suffering from depression, you need to ask for help to make the problem go away.
Your feelings might change when treatment comes along. You should be pleased to know that depression has proved to be one of the most easily treated conditions.
When you are seeking treatment for your depression, what type of healthcare professional should you see?
Although there are some issues raised on what treatment is the best for depression problems (whether it is drugs, therapy, or if it is a mixture of both), there is actually a type of healthcare professional that is highly qualified to help you recover from depression and various mood disorders that use medications or drugs: a psychiatrist.
Psychologists, in fairness, are also highly qualified to cure depression problems, but they are not medical professionals and as such, cannot prescribe medications. You should realize that psychologists specialize in therapy, especially talk therapy. If you do not know if you need drugs or medications, it might prove best to start your treatment of depression under a psychiatrist's care.
If you think you might also have a good chance of eliminating depression through talk therapy, many psychiatrists can also be good in this, although there are some that may refer you to more experienced therapists. More on this in an upcoming article.
About The Author
Dr. Isaac Schumann brings to you a life time of experience in the mental health field.