As Science Searches for Answers on Depression, What Should Patients Do Today?

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ngd-This situation is what comes from confusing symptom reduction with condition causation. There are a LOT of examples of this, particularly in psuchiatry, psychology, autoimmune disorders, and similar chronic, subtle, and complex forms of lived experience…

Summary: Researchers critique the latest findings on serotonin’s role in depression and report people should maintain their current therapies to help control their symptoms of depression.

Source: University of Michigan

Right now, more than 1 in 10 Americans take medicines for depression — a number that has risen during the pandemic.

But how do those drugs work – and why don’t they work for everyone? And why do people get depression, anyway?

Experts still don’t know all the answers to these questions. After all, the brain is a complicated place. But they do know that depression has its roots in everything from the genes we’re born with, to the experiences we had in our early years, to what’s happening in our lives right now. 

At the same time, they do know that a lot of people with depression get help from antidepressant drugs – and from talk-based therapy, better sleep, exercise, more social interaction and, in severe cases, treatments like ketamine and ECT.

The critical thing is for people with depression symptoms to reach out for help and keep trying until they find something that works for them.

That’s why the director of the nation’s first Depression Center, Srijan Sen, M.D., Ph.D., is concerned about the impact of a new study about the role of serotonin in depression that’s getting a lot of attention.

He worries that over-simplified news stories and social media posts might make some people question whether they should keep taking depression medications that target the brain’s serotonin system.

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