There are a number of treatments available to sufferers of depression who are looking for more help than using antidepressants alone in fighting depression. Treatments ranging from herbs and acupuncture to guided imagery are all finding their place in an ever-modernizing approach to treating depression. Although this field of medicine is vast, it is worth looking at treatments that are becoming increasingly popular with those looking to help them deal with their depression.

There are a number of herbal treatments available all claiming to relieve the symptoms of depression. Very few of them, however, do as most are unstudied or have had limited studies into their effectiveness.

Art Therapy

Drawing, painting, and sculpting help many people to reconcile inner conflicts, release deeply repressed emotions, and foster self-awareness, as well as personal growth. Some mental health providers use art therapy as both a diagnostic tool and as a way to help treat disorders such as depression, abuse-related trauma, and schizophrenia. You may be able to find a therapist in your area who has received special training and certification in art therapy.

Animal Assisted Therapies

Working with an animal (or animals) under the guidance of a healthcare professional may benefit some people with mental illness by facilitating positive changes, such as increased empathy and enhanced socialization skills. Animals can be used as part of group therapy programs to encourage communication and increase the ability to focus. Developing self-esteem and reducing loneliness and anxiety are just some potential benefits of individual-animal therapy

Acupuncture

The Chinese practice of inserting needles into the body at specific points manipulates the body’s flow of energy to balance the endocrine system. This manipulation regulates functions such as heart rate, body temperature, and respiration, as well as sleep patterns and emotional changes. Acupuncture has been used in clinics to assist people with substance abuse disorders through detoxification; to relieve stress and anxiety; to treat attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder in children; to reduce symptoms of depression, and to help people with physical ailments

Yoga/meditation

Practitioners of this ancient Indian system of health care use breathing exercises, posture, stretches, and meditation to balance the body’s energy centers. Yoga is used in combination with other treatment for depression, anxiety, and stress-related disorders.

Guided Imagery or Visualization

This process involves going into a state of deep relaxation and creating a mental image of recovery and wellness. Physicians, nurses, and mental health providers occasionally use this approach to treat alcohol and drug addictions, depression, panic disorders, phobias, and stress.

Technology-Based Applications

The boom in electronic tools at home and in the office makes access to mental health information just a telephone call or a “mouse click” away. Technology is also making treatment more widely available in once-isolated areas.