If you’ve suffered from depression, you know how hard it is to imagine feeling normal again. Is depression curable? In the midst of it, it’s hard to think so. The great news is there are things you can do to prevent a relapse and live the rest of your life depression free. It just comes down to finding ways to spot the beginning of a relapse and stop it before it can take over.
The Truth Behind Depression
Depression is a problem that looms large in the modern world. According to reports from Mental Health America, over 21 million people battle depression every year, most without any expert treatment.
Knowing this, it’s hardly surprising that relapse rates are high. In fact, some experts suggest that you have a 60 percent chance of suffering a second depressive episode after your first, then a 70 percent chance of going through a third, and a 90 percent chance of suffering from a fourth.
If relapse rates are so high, is depression curable at all?
For many people, that depends on the cause of their symptoms in the first place. Some people who experience depression are triggered by life stressors that don’t go away, leading to constant temptation to return to the depressive state. Other people fail to seek appropriate treatment for their first bout of depression. They simply bury the triggers inside themselves letting them lie dormant before they become stressed again.
In some cases, people have a biological predisposition to reoccurring depression, meaning that despite their best efforts to deal with their triggers, they are continually at risk. Finally, many people with depression end their treatment prematurely because their symptoms go away, even though they haven’t adequately dealt with the underlying issue.
How to Prevent a Depression Relapse
In light of these difficulties, the standard for depression treatment today is changing. The aim of treatment is less about curing symptoms and more about preventing relapse in the first place.
Experts answer the question of ‘is depression curable’ by recommending that patients stay with their treatment regimen for a minimum of nine months and experience at least two months of general well-being before stopping their treatment completely. For sufferers of chronic depression, the timeline is even longer. Experts recommend that people who experience depression for two years or more stay in therapy for a minimum of two years before considering themselves cured.
Keeping depression away comes down to maintenance. Individuals who are susceptible to depression should plan to manage their triggers for the rest of their lives to prevent a relapse. Staying involved in productive activities, staying close with friends and family, and regularly talking with your doctor are all ways to help you keep depression at bay so that you remain healthier in the long run.
If you need help with depression, please give us a call. We would love to help you get to a better place.