Depression is an incredibly debilitating mental disorder that can make you feel hopeless, isolated, and take a toll on every aspect of your life. But there is hope, and the caring, compassionate professionals at NeuroSpa Therapy Centers are here to help you find your way back to the happiness you deserve.

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What is Depression?

Depression is a common, but very serious medical illness that primarily results in feelings of sadness, hopelessness, loss of interest in activities once enjoyed and even suicidal thoughts. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), “depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) causes severe negative symptoms that affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working”. This often leads to emotional or physical problems that can inhibit your ability to function properly, affect your work and relationships, and lead to relationship problems. To be diagnosed with depression, the symptoms must be present for at least two weeks.

Is Depression a Disease, Illness or Disorder?

If you are looking for depression treatment in Tampa, you may want to start by learning exactly what depression is first; “Is Depression a disease, illness or disorder?”

The answer to this has been of some debate. While many professionals argue otherwise, depression is not officially considered a disease. The American Psychiatric Association defines depression (major depressive disorder) as a serious medical illness, not as a disease as a “disease” is defined as a “definite pathologic process with a characteristic set of signs and symptoms (NIMH)”. 

According to the Royal College of General Practitioners, a disease is an abnormality in the structure and function of body organs and systems. Diseases are the named pathological entities that make up the medical model of ill-health, which can be specifically identified and described by reference to a certain biological, chemical or other evidence. 

An “illness”, by contrast, is the subjective response of the patient to being unwell; how they, and those around them, perceive the origin and significance of this event; how it affects his behavior or relationships with other people; and the steps he takes to remedy this situation.

Finally, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) defines mental disorders as a clinically significant behavioral or psychological syndrome or pattern that occurs in an individual and that is associated with present distress (e.g., painful symptoms) or disability. Essentially, it is the irregularity of bodily structure and function.

Symptoms of Depression

If you or a loved one is suffering from depression, you may notice some of the following signs and symptoms throughout the day, nearly every day, for at least two weeks: 

  • Sad, anxious, empty, tearful or hopeless feelings
  • Feelings of guilt, helplessness or worthlessness
  • Irritability, angry outbursts or frustration, even over small matters
  • Speaking or moving more slowly
  • Difficulty focusing, remembering or making decisions
  • Restlessness or having difficulty sitting still
  • Trouble sleeping, waking up or frequently oversleeping
  • Changes in appetite—weight loss or gain
  • Unexplained aches or pains such as back pain, headaches,  cramps, digestive problems
  • Loss of interest in activities, hobbies and interests
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
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Symptoms of Depression

Most people who suffer from depression do not experience every symptom listed above, but typically have experienced a number of them. In order to conclude a diagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder, your doctor or health care professional will examine whether or not you have experienced several symptoms for at least two consecutive weeks. Additionally, one of the symptoms experienced must be a low mood or a loss in interest or pleasure in activities for this diagnosis. Everyone is different and so are the severity and symptoms each individual endures. Symptoms also can vary according to the stage of the illness.

These symptoms inhibit the individual’s ability to perform normally at work, in school, or daily life, and cannot be explained by outside factors such as a medical condition or substance abuse. A health care professional will classify a disorder as mild, moderate, or severe based on how many of the above symptoms have been experienced.

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It’s Not Just “In Your Head”….

Anyone who has suffered from depression will likely agree that it is not something you can simply snap yourself out of, or recover from by “not thinking about it.” While experiencing depression, your body experiences and exhibits key physical differences that go hand-in-hand with your mental state. Depression is frequently identifiable as a chemical imbalance of the brain, though some studies have also found that the brain’s hippocampus is smaller in individuals with depression.

Given the multiple factors which can contribute to the disorder, it’s often hard to pinpoint the exact cause of depression. There are certain aspects, however, that put an individual at a higher risk for developing symptoms of depression. Some examples include:

  • Generational, systemic, or situational trauma
  • Genetic predisposition (other family members who have                  experienced depression)
  • Individuals with lower self-esteem or those who are easily                overwhelmed
  • Certain physical illnesses that can trigger depression (such as          cancer, Parkinson’s, or diabetes)
  • A stressful event, such as a divorce or death of a loved one.
  • Hormonal imbalances which can sometimes be a result of                menopause or pregnancy

How to Get Back to Your Best Self

Before undergoing any form of depression treatment, it is crucial to consult a professional and receive a proper diagnosis of your symptoms. Every individual is unique and will respond differently to different forms of depression treatment. Prescription medications are a commonly used method to reduce symptoms of depression, but can also be accompanied by uncomfortable side effects that may cause individuals to forgo treatment altogether. 

Though prescription medication may not be for everyone, there are other depression therapy solutions like talking therapy with a depression specialist, light therapy, or brain stimulation therapies like TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation). 

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What is TMS Therapy?

One form of depression therapy that has proven incredibly useful in the treatment of depression and other mental disorders is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, otherwise known as TMS therapy. This non-invasive, FDA-cleared, and insurance-covered  procedure works by directing targeted magnetic pulses to stimulate nerve cells in specific areas of the brain that regulate your mood and emotions.

TMS Therapy as a Medication Free Treatment for Depression

TMS therapy allows patients the opportunity to receive medication-free treatment for their depression and to experience healthy brain function in just a few weeks! Antidepressants and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can cause numerous side effects. Although magnetic stimulation may initially sound intimidating, TMS therapy can be completed without the risk of harmful side effects associated with other treatment methods. Just sit back, relax, and let the magnet work its magic to treat your depression. Unlike ECT, TMS does not require sedation, post-therapy downtime and comes without any memory or cognition side effects. TMS is a great option for someone worried about the possible side effects that come along with antidepressant medications.

TMS therapy is FDA cleared and covered by most major insurance companies, meaning treatment could come at no cost at all! If you live in the Tampa area and want help with your depression, reach out to the professionals at NeuroSpa TMS® in Tampa, Florida for more information on how TMS therapy can bring you back to your best self once again.

Functional Medicine

At Neurospa, we believe in a holistic, integrative approach that identifies and addresses not just the neurological, but also physical, root causes of a mental health condition. Our aim is to promote the best practices to increase the chances of faster, more pronounced and longer-lasting depression and anxiety relief—that’s why we encourage our patients to learn more about incorporating supplemental vitamins and minerals into their primary therapy under the close administration and observation of our certified clinicians.


We’ve partnered with WholeScripts to bring you a range of 8 essential supplements to help you get the most out of your treatment.”

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