How to Treat Someone with Severe Depression

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What is Severe Depression?

Depression affects all personalities and can look very different in various people.

Severe depression is a mood disorder.

It is not a character flaw or weakness.

It affects your appetite, how you think, feel, and function. Not everyone who has depression will share the same symptoms.

The symptoms of depression occur along a spectrum.

Depending on the stage of the illness, some will experience mild symptoms, whiles others experience severe depression.

Depending on the induvial the severity and frequency of the symptoms will vary.

One call to Resurgence Behavioral Health can help you determine where you fall on the depression spectrum and the best course of action to treat severe depression.

What Depression is Not

Someone with severe depression can’t just get over it.

Common misconceptions on how to treat someone with severe depression are telling them to think happy thoughts, eat, exercise, and go to church.

True, these are excellent recommendations to live a healthy lifestyle.

Someone with severe depression has a complex brain disorder that involves disruptions of brain neurochemicals and thought patterns.

Depression is real, and it can kill.

Neurochemicals Responsible for Depression

Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers in the body. There are many different types of neurotransmitters in your brain. Each one plays a significant role in emotions, motivation, and mood.

Serotonin – Helps improve willpower, motivation, and mood.

Norepinephrine- Aids in higher thinking, attention, and coping with stress.

Dopamine- Process feeling of pleasure and enjoyment and essential for changing habits Oxytocin- Also known as the love hormone, it promotes feelings of connection, trust, and reduces anxiety.

Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid or GABA- Helps regulates mood by decreasing feelings of anxiety and promoting relaxation.

Melatonin- Responsible for sleep

Endorphins- Work to relieve pain and promote happiness. This chemical is responsible for the “runners high,” during intense workouts.

Endocannabinoids- Responsible for appetite and peaceful feelings

Forms of Severe Depression

There isn’t a formal mental health diagnosis for severe depression. Rather, it refers to more debilitating depression. Severe depression requires medical interventions. These are the 4 most common forms of depression.

Persistent Depressive

Someone who has persistent depression last more years. A person experiencing this form of depression alternates between major depression and periods of fewer server symptoms.

Postpartum depression

This is a form of depression that is exclusive to pregnancy and childbirth. An individual that experiences postpartum depression experience full-blown major depression. This can happen before delivery up to a year after birth.

Psychotic depression

This rare and severe form of depression involves disorganized or disordered thinking. A person experiencing this type of depression may have paranoia and hear or see things that are not there in addition to the depressive symptoms. The focus of the delusions is centered around hopelessness and failure.

Seasonal affective disorder

This depression begins in the winter months when an individual is exposed to less sunlight. This form of depression generally resolves itself during the warmer months. This form of depression is also referred to as winter depression. Individuals typically withdrawal, sleep more, and weight gain. As the name suggests, seasonal affective disorder returns every year. Seasonal affective disorder is linked to lower levels of serotonin.

Bipolar disorder

Severe depression from bipolar disorder are periods of extremely low moods that meet the criteria for major depression.

Signs and Symptoms

Brain scans of depressed brains look no different from someone who doesn’t. There is no medical test that diagnoses depression definitively. Unlike other brain disorders, depression is not clearly understood. Depression is a diagnosis based on the individual’s observations. If you think you have severe depression some signs and symptoms can help determine if you are affected. If you experience the following symptoms nearly every day, all day and for at least two weeks, you may be suffering from depression:

  • Persistent feeling of sadness
  • Hopelessness
  • Irritability
  • Feelings of shame
  • Loss of interest
  • Fatigue
  • Sluggish movements and speech
  • Restlessness
  • Loss of concentration
  • Oversleeping or not sleeping at all
  • Increase or decrease in appetite resulting in weight gain or loss
  • Suicidal idealization
  • Body aches

How to Treat Someone with Severe Depression

Today there are many different ways to treat someone with severe depression. Resurgence Behavioral Health can help you make an informed choice about how to treat your severe depression.

Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral Therapy used to treat someone with severe depression involves talking to a skilled psychotherapist. Often this treatment can often help ease depressive symptoms. Cognitive and Dialectal behavioral therapy are highly effective to treat someone with severe depression.


Medication is the most common way to treat someone with severe depression. Treating someone with severe depression with medications help by changing the chemical activity in the brain. Antidepressants can take many weeks to have any effect. When treating someone with severe depression additional forms of therapy are important. Taking medication for severe depression may seem like an easy solution but in truth, it’s very complex. When treating someone with severe depression increasing the level of anyone’s chemical may be one part of the solution. However, like any drug that you introduce in the brain, all chemicals react differently once inside the body.

Brain Stimulation Therapy

Brain stimulation is the best-studied brain therapy. It has a long history. If someone being treated for severe depression is not responding to traditional forms of treatment, brain stimulation can be tried. Treating someone with severe depression with this therapy involves electricity that activates or inhibits the brain. Examples of these therapies include:

  • Electroconvulsive therapy
  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation
  • Vagus nerve stimulation

Inpatient Depression Treatment

In extreme cases, treating someone with severe depression may include inpatient care. Treatment for severe depression can be more effective when the environment is controlled. Inpatient care allows 24/7 monitoring to ensure when treating someone with severe depression they are safe and positively responding to care. It allows them to make any necessary changes should your depression not initially respond or become worse.

Finding the Right Place to Treat Severe Depression

Besides modern medicine, other ways work alongside evidence-based practices. Holistic treatments are effective ways to treat someone with severe depression. At Resurgence, we treat your severe depression with alternative methods that are proven to increase feelings of satisfaction and happiness.

Exercise is the best way to help increase chemicals in your brain that are responsible for lifting your mood. This is why we provide access to the best exercise equipment for our clients to help treat their severe depression. Besides exercise is providing healthy nutritious meals is very beneficial when treating someone with severe depression. Often when treating someone with severe depression exercise and healthy meals help increase satisfaction quickly.

Often People with severe depression think of themselves as damaged with different brains that don’t work. That couldn’t be farther from the truth, in fact, you can do something about your severe depression when you seek proper care. Because of neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to physically change form and function based on thoughts, behaviors, and experiences, it’s possible to change your brain to become happier and healthier.

A Surge of Happiness

There are many ways to treat someone with severe depression, choosing the right course of action can seem difficult to do alone.

Resurgence Behavioral Health is here to treat your severe depression.

We accept major insurance carriers and provide an online insurance check to get you started.

Reach out today to take back your life from severe depression.

Addiction Treatment that
Just Works

Individualized treatment programs delivered in a comfortable, relaxed setting promote healing in your recovery journey.