Don’t believe the common misperception that only medications can successfully treat depression.
Boston, MA (Vocus/PRWEB) March 31, 2011
For the nearly 15 million Americans—and 120 million people worldwide—who suffer from depression, the prognosis for recovery can be rather depressing. Nearly a quarter century after the widespread introduction of SSRIs, the “gold standard” treatment, only one-in-three patients enjoy relief from their depressive symptoms. Even for the lucky one in the three, there’s a 70% chance that depression will recur.
“Don’t believe the common misperception that only medications can successfully treat depression,” advises Dr. James M. Greenblatt, a psychiatrist specializing in the treatment of children and adults with depressive disorders. “There are many factors involved in depression, ranging from diet and lifestyle to genetics. The good news,” Greenblatt proclaims—with 20 years of proven clinical experience—“is that patients can, indeed, escape the roller-coaster ride of frustration and cynicism caused by ineffective antidepressant regimens and their attendant side effects.”
In his new book, The Breakthrough Depression Solution: A Personalized 9-Step Method for Beating the Physical Causes of Your Depression, Greenblatt, who is also an assistant clinical professor at Tufts Medical School, lays out a clear, scientifically backed method for identifying and treating the physical contributors to depression. Greenblatt’s practical approach goes beyond traditional strategies for dealing with depression. “In order to treat depression effectively,” he argues, “clinicians must understand the connection between mind and body in the genesis and treatment of depression. Each depression, like each person, is unique. If we’re ever to have success over depression it will entail looking for and identifying the unique biochemistry of each individual, including physical factors such as nutrition, genetics, hormones and stress.”
In laying out a plan that accounts for individual differences in biochemistry, Greenblatt invokes the metaphor of the zebra. “No two zebras have the same stripes,” he says of the pharmaceutical industry’s approach to treating all minds as similar. Depression is a personal disease. What it requires is personalized medicine. To emphasize the idiosyncratic nature of the disease—and the need for individually tailored treatments to address it, Greenblatt proposes what he calls the ZEEBrA approach—emphasizing hormones, zinc, essential fatty acids, exercise, B Vitamins, and rEEG, a breakthrough technology for guiding medication selection.
The cost of depression is hardly trivial. Over the next twenty years depression is projected to become the number-one cause of disability in high-income countries such as the U.S., and the number-two cause of disability worldwide.
This is not that surprising taking into account all the health issues associated with depression. Depression is strongly associated with heart disease. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), people with depression are four times more likely to have a heart attack than those with no history of depression. Depression also leads to significantly higher risk of alcohol or drug abuse. The predominant factor in suicide is depression; over 90% of suicides are correlated with depressive symptoms.
The good news? There’s hope. The Breakthrough Depression Solution offers simple, effective strategies for sustained recovery from depression. Greenblatt’s embrace of personalized medicine means personal success for people struggling with the debilitating—and sometimes lethal—effects of coping with depression.
The Breakthrough Depression Solution: A Personalized 9-Step Method for Beating the Physical Causes of Your Depression
By James M. Greenblatt, MD
Sunrise River Press
ISBN: 978-1-934716-15-1; softbound, 288 pp., $16.95
About the Author
James M. Greenblatt, M.D., a dually certified child and adult psychiatrist, is a pioneer in integrative medicine. He has lectured throughout the United States on the scientific evidence for nutritional interventions in psychiatry and eating disorders. In addition to being the chief medical officer of Walden Behavioral Care, Dr. Greenblatt is the founder and medical director of Comprehensive Psychiatric Resources, a private integrative psychiatric practice. Dr. Greenblatt also serves as an assistant clinical professor at Tufts Medical School. After receiving his medical degree and completing his psychiatry residency at George Washington University, Dr. Greenblatt went on to complete a fellowship in child and adolescent psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Medical School. Dr. Greenblatt is the author of Answers to Anorexia: A Breakthrough Nutritional Treatment that Is Saving Lives.