Talking treatments for depression

Talking treatments are referred to psychotherapy and counselling and these are of several kinds. CBT, cognitive behavioural therapy, is a common and rather new method of psychotherapy in the treatment of depression. This therapeutic intervention focuses on the thoughts and how it is possible to change the depressed feelings by developing and altering the thoughts.


This treatment is typically given individually, but can also be given in groups. The effects of CBT are well established and with a growing number of qualified CBT-therapists, the method is becoming more available.


Therapy methods for depression


Two special subtypes of CBT should be acknowledged:

MBCT is a combination of mindfulness and CBT (mindfulness-based cognitive therapy). It is a method for the prevention of new episodes of depression in patients who suffer from relapsing depressions. The treatment is given to groups of patients. MBCT prevent depressive relapse and it presumes to have the  same preventive effect as drugs.


Internetbased CBT is a valuable treatment, especially for patientens who don't have the option to visit a psychotherapist. The therapy is given online, step by step, in programs that are designed for this special kind of consultation. There are several studies demonstrating good and even excellent effects of internetbased therapy for depression.


Psychodynamic therapy is based on the principles of psychoanalysis. Its focus is on emotions and on traumas and experiences in the childhood as causes of a vulnerable personality. Depression can from a psychodynamic point of view in many cases be explained as aggression turned against the self, instead of against other people and objects. The therapy can help the patient become conscious about this unconscious mechanism.


The patient can then, by understanding this, develop ability to express her or his aggressions in more healthy and helpful ways and, by doing so, get rid of the ongoing depression and avoid further ones. Psychodynamic therapy is the traditional kind of psychotherapy and the original ”talking cure”. It is given individually.


Interpersonal therapy is another option that focuses on relationships with other people.

A depression is a serious and sometimes life-threatening condition. It must be treated only by qualified and experienced therapists. Also there must be a continuous awareness and evaluation of the risk for suicide and other kinds of self-destructiveness, during the therapy.


Make sure that the therapist is qualified!