De­pres­sion treat­ment misses mark

North West Telegraph - - Telegraph News - Claire Tyrrell

Peo­ple with clin­i­cal de­pres­sion are manag­ing the ill­ness with a hit-and-miss ap­proach, mix­ing med­i­ca­tions that do not al­ways work.

First data from the world’s big­gest ge­netic in­ves­ti­ga­tion of clin­i­cal de­pres­sion showed ge­netic pro­fil­ing would help pro­vide more ef­fec­tive in­di­vid­u­alised treat­ments to peo­ple with de­pres­sion.

The Aus­tralian Ge­net­ics of De­pres­sion Study found more than two-thirds of Aus­tralians with de­pres­sion used mul­ti­ple anti-de­pres­sants to treat their ill­ness.

Re­search author and Univer­sity of Syd­ney Brain and Mind Cen­tre health and pol­icy co-di­rec­tor Ian Hickie said the med­i­cal in­dus­try had reached its limit of knowl­edge in treat­ing clin­i­cal de­pres­sion.

Liz Nis­sen, 25, a hos­pi­tal­ity worker and hon­ours stu­dent, has bat­tled clin­i­cal de­pres­sion all her life, but chooses to man­age it through life­style choices.

“Anti-de­pres­sants only work on a small por­tion of pa­tients and for some they can make the de­pres­sion worse,” she said.

“I have learnt non-med­i­cal ways to han­dle my de­pres­sion, through lots of ex­er­cise, a healthy diet, reg­u­lar sleep, a healthy so­cial life and be­ing aware of your ill­ness.”

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