New types of treatment could help sufferers and save a lot of money
Depression and anxiety are the most common types of mental disorders. With the increasing incidence of these psychiatric disorders, there is a growing need for professional treatment methods. However, these are often expensive and therefore not possible for everyone concerned. Researchers have now discovered that there is a treatment method that is not very expensive and yet effective. Simple conversations with the patient can be as effective in treating depression as conventional cognitive behavior therapy.
A team of British scientists has now found out in an investigation that talking to depressed patients can reduce symptoms. The type of treatment is simple, effective and, above all, inexpensive. Talking to other people can be as effective for people with depression as conventional cognitive behavioral therapy, the researchers report. Another advantage of this treatment is that it does not require highly qualified experts and thus saves money. The doctors published the results of their study in the journal "The Lancet".
Enormous cost to treat depression and anxiety
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the treatment and health effects of depression and anxiety cost the world's economy around $ 1 trillion a year, the study authors report. Depression and anxiety are common among both men and women. Women suffer from anxiety disorders twice as often as men.
Unfortunately, treatments for these types of diseases are usually quite expensive. Usually, experts rely on so-called cognitive behavior therapy to tackle depression. However, talking to affected people can treat depression, anxiety, and psychosis similarly well, the scientists add.
What to do if you have depression?
Depression is a mental disorder. Those affected often suffer from a negative mood and the loss of joy, interest, drive and performance. Similar symptoms sometimes appear in healthy people. However, a so-called depressive syndrome lasts longer. There are different types of treatment for these diseases. For example, severe depression can be treated with fungal agents or a new type of virtual treatment can reduce the symptoms.
Of course there are also many classic treatments such as cognitive therapies and treatment with antidepressants. Alternatively, sport and constant yoga training work well for mental illnesses. Successful treatment can massively improve the quality of life of the people affected.
What is Behavioral Activation?
According to the British researchers, non-professionals can also help people with depression to deal better with their condition. Anxiety and depression can easily be reduced without the treatment costs being a disruptive factor, the authors say. Behavioral Activation (BA) is the type of treatment. This treatment focuses on how the person affected by depression thinks, the scientists explain.
Talks as an alternative to cognitive behavior therapy
Conventional cognitive behavior therapy is also a treatment in which therapists focus on the patient's way of thinking, explains the author Professor David Richards from the University of Exeter. However, the results of the study show that normal conversations can be a real alternative to cognitive behavioral therapy, adds the professor.
Behavioral activation is a simple, inexpensive and effective form of treatment
We were able to find out that BA is a simpler psychological treatment than cognitive behavioral therapy and can also be carried out by medical personnel without complete training, the researchers report. An effective psychological therapy for depression can therefore be carried out inexpensively and without highly trained specialists, say the authors of the study.
Depression and anxiety are increasing dramatically
The World Health Organization (WHO) said that the number of people suffering from depression and anxiety doubled between 1990 and 2013. The number of patients with depression and anxiety was 416 million in 1990. In 2013, there were already 615 million people affected, the doctors explain.
About ten percent of the world's population is currently suffering from depression and anxiety. Mental disorders account for about 30 percent of the worldwide burden of non-fatal diseases, the scientists add. (as)