Treatment-resistant depression can be a complex condition to manage. Definitions for a treatment-resistant disorder may vary slightly by the specific disorder. However, it is generally when a condition isn't responding to the first or second lines of treatment as expected. Typically, it is in reference to disorders that use medication as one of the first lines of therapy, like depression. Still, many conditions may become treatment-resistant, like mood and anxiety disorders, substance use disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder and eating disorders.
If you find it hard to cope with this kind of depression and traditional treatments aren't working, other evidence-based approaches may help.
Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP)
ISTDP is a powerful clinical treatment for people facing treatment-resistant depression. This form of psychotherapy allows patients to restructure their thoughts and behaviours, creating an environment that promotes personal development and growth. ISTDP uses an in-depth look at past experiences to identify underlying issues contributing to current challenges and reinforcing maladaptive thought patterns. The therapist works collaboratively with the patient to explore conflicts, build insight, heal past wounds, and create new strategies for coping. Although it can be challenging work at times, ITSDP empowers individuals to make permanent and meaningful changes in their lives so they can live a more fulfilling life without being held back by treatment-resistant depression.
Direct Neurofeedback is a form of electrical stimulation that can treat treatment-resistant depression. This therapy works by sending mild electrical signals to specific areas in the brain and has been linked to improved moods and reduced feelings of sadness and despair. Direct Neurofeedback also has the potential to make therapy more accessible. With Direct Neurofeedback, the focus moves from talking about past experiences and painful memories. Instead, it relies on electrodes connected directly to the brain. This new form of therapy is gentler yet just as effective.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
EMDR shows great promise for helping people with treatment-resistant depression. EMDR is an evidence-based therapeutic approach that has been proven to help reduce the symptoms of treatment-resistant depression. It is a technique that helps reframe negative memories, so they are less emotionally disruptive and intrusive. It does this by combining talk therapy with eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation that focus on identifying and resolving troubling thoughts and traumatic memories while providing a sense of resolution. EMDR is a safe, effective tool for helping individuals manage their experiences of treatment-resistant depression.
Every patient is different. At Nomina Integrated Health, our highly skilled registered psychotherapists are very familiar with treating treatment-resistant disorders and will work with you to determine the best treatment option for you.