It’s difficult to understand depression until you’ve lived through it. The challenges can be immense. Thankfully, even the most severe depression is treatable.

If depression is keeping you from living the life you want, don’t hesitate to seek help. While medication is the most common treatment today for depression, it is rarely an ideal first choice, and has been shown to be more effective when combined with therapy. Many scientific studies support the idea that therapy can be a powerful treatment for depression. One recent large-scale trial involving more than 400 patients with treatment-resistant depression found, for example, that the use of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helped to significantly reduced depression symptoms.

What you learn in therapy gives you skills and insight to help prevent depression from coming back. There are many types of therapy available. In my practice, I incorporate methods from both cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal therapy (IPT), which together comprise two of the most scientifically well-supported depression treatments. One of the hallmarks of depression is feeling overwhelmed and having trouble focusing. I teach my clients practical techniques on how to reframe negative thinking and employ behavioral skills in combating depression. Therapy can also help you work through the root of your depression, helping you understand why you feel a certain way, what your triggers are for depression, and what you can do to stay healthy. Three of the most common “big picture” themes that I emphasize are relationships, setting healthy boundaries, and handling life's problems.