How can I improve TMS outcomes?
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) represents a cutting-edge approach to the treatment of symptoms associated with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). For many individuals coping with depression, conventional methods have not been sufficient, and TMS has emerged as an alternative therapy with promising results. While this method can provide effective relief on its own, integrating complementary therapies for TMS can enhance its effectiveness and contribute to patients’ overall well-being.
In this Integrative Healthcare Center blog, we will address the question, “How can I improve TMS outcomes?” by exploring five complimentary therapies for TMS treatment.
We understand that coping with a mental condition such as depression is challenging, and we recognize that everyone deserves a personalized approach to begin their journey to recovery and a depression-free life. Those in the New England area seeking a treatment alternative for MDD can contact our clinical center in Nashua, NH, by calling (855) 599-9987. Our staff is ready to guide you in accessing TMS therapy and other complementary therapeutic options for depression treatment that suit your needs and preferences. You are not alone!
Enhancing Recovery with Complimentary Therapies for TMS
Treatment for depression using TMS involves the use of a coil that emits gentle magnetic pulses. The physician directs these pulses to the prefrontal cortex of the brain, which is responsible for regulating emotions and mood, areas that, in people with depression, may be less active. Thus, these magnetic pulses help activate these areas. Approved by the FDA for treating depression, TMS is a non-invasive procedure with minimal or even no side effects.
Individuals who undergo TMS therapy can experience significant improvements in mood, as well as a reduction in depressive symptoms, such as fatigue, loss of interest in activities, changes in appetite, sleep disturbances, and difficulty concentrating. In addition, further benefits of TMS include improvements in cognitive function and memory and even a possible decrease in the need for antidepressant medications.
It is crucial to keep in mind that results may vary from person to person, and some may require multiple TMS sessions to achieve maximum benefit. In addition, combining TMS with other complementary therapies can boost treatment results for depression. Below, we will explore five complementary therapies to TMS:
Combining TMS with Psychotherapy:
Psychotherapy includes variants such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and talk therapy. CBT can identify and change negative patterns of behavior and thinking, while talk therapy focuses on talking about emotional problems to find solutions and relief. Both approaches to psychotherapy are effective in treating various mental disorders, including depression.
Research from Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews supports the idea that combining psychotherapy with TMS may help improve treatment outcomes for depression by addressing both biological and psychological factors. Integrating psychotherapy into the therapeutic process allows for addressing the patient’s specific emotional and mental goals, significantly managing mood, and reducing other depressive symptoms.
Another advantage of including complementary therapies for TMS, such as psychotherapy, is the ability to customize treatment to fit the patient’s individual needs. Personalization includes adjusting the therapeutic goals, frequency and duration of sessions, and psychotherapeutic approach according to the patient’s preferences and response.
- Complementing Therapy with Mindfulness and Meditation:
The practices of mindfulness and meditation help foster the capacity to be conscious of our feelings and experiences as they occur, free from analysis or bias. During mindfulness practices, individuals observe their thoughts, emotions, physical sensations, and surroundings without trying to change or critique them, leading to a deeper self-awareness and comprehension of the world they inhabit. This practice enhances mental sharpness, alleviates stress, and fosters emotional wellness. Patients can incorporate mindfulness into various daily activities such as meditating, coloring, walking, yoga, doing chores, or simply spending time outdoors.
Meditation, conversely, is a mental discipline that involves focusing on an object, thought, word, or breath to soothe the mind and foster mindfulness. Both mindfulness and meditation serve as potent tools for encouraging relaxation, diminishing stress, enhancing focus, and attaining mental clarity.
Patients incorporating complementary therapies for TMS treatments, like meditation and mindfulness, can experience easing symptoms of depression and anxiety, providing a more inclusive and holistic therapeutic plan. By addressing both the biological and psychological elements of mental wellness, this integration offers a more comprehensive approach to boosting mental health and emotional well-being.
- Integrating Acupuncture with TMS:
Acupuncture refers to a traditional Chinese medical practice that aids in balancing the body’s energy flow by painlessly inserting thin needles into specific points. Combining TMS treatment with acupuncture can enhance recovery from depression. Acupuncture can reduce stress and anxiety, and when coupled with TMS, it can improve this effect. In addition, this technique promotes energetic balance, promoting an overall sense of well-being and vitality, which, when combined with TMS, enhances energy levels and promotes physical and emotional harmony.
Studies supported by the National Center for Biotechnology Information confirm the efficacy of acupuncture in relieving both chronic and acute pain. By integrating it with TMS, patients can experience better physical well-being, which is essential for those who experience pain as part of depression or as a side effect. In addition, the combination of acupuncture and TMS can have positive effects, as both stimulate the release of neurotransmitters that can improve mood and alleviate the more severe symptoms of depression.
- Physical Activity and Lifestyle Changes to Enhance TMS:
Physical activity and a healthy lifestyle involve moving the body regularly through activities such as walking, running, swimming, dancing, playing sports, or exercising at home. It also consists of making positive choices for the body and mind, such as maintaining a balanced diet, staying adequately hydrated, getting enough rest, avoiding tobacco and excess alcohol, healthily managing stress, and cultivating positive social relationships.
Combining complementary therapies for TMS, such as integrating physical activity and a healthy lifestyle, can provide several benefits to improve treatment outcomes for depression. These activities promote the release of endorphins and other mood-enhancing neurotransmitters, thus enhancing the effect of TMS and promoting optimal emotional balance.
In addition, Frontier’s studies have linked regular physical activity to the promotion of brain plasticity and the growth of new neurons, which may complement the effects of TMS therapy in modulating brain activity. Quitting smoking and minimizing alcohol consumption can improve brain health and increase the effectiveness of TMS treatment. Furthermore, exercise can lead to better sleep hygiene, improving overall well-being and promoting optimal cognitive function.
- Combining TMS with Nutritional Support:
A professional offering nutritional support provides care and guidance by devising a meal plan filled with essential nutrients aimed at fostering health and well-being. Combining TMS with nutritional guidance can enhance brain function and mood management. A nutrient-dense diet, abundant in vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, omega-3s, and amino acids, can bolster optimal brain activity and enhance the efficacy of TMS in regulating brain signals. Furthermore, research from Sage Journals indicates that specific nutrients like tryptophan and folic acid may play a role in mood regulation and the synthesis of neurotransmitters like serotonin. Hence, integrating complementary therapies for TMS, like nutritional support, could offer a holistic approach to treating depression, tackling other biological elements of the condition, such as nutrient deficiency in the body.
Integrative Healthcare Center and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
At Integrative Healthcare Center, we recognize that transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy is an optimal option for those who have not experienced significant improvement with conventional treatments, such as medications, or who have experienced unacceptable side effects. Fortunately, effective alternatives such as TMS are available.
In the journey of treating depression, it is critical to understand that each individual is unique, and their needs differ; what may be effective for one may not be effective for another. It is worth noting that methods like TMS have been proven to be effective in a majority of patients and typically come with minimal side effects. The effectiveness of this method can even be enhanced when used in conjunction with complementary therapies for TMS. Therapies such as psychotherapy, mindfulness, acupuncture, physical exercise, and nutritional support offer different approaches and diverse benefits, allowing the patient to choose those that best suit their needs and preferences.
If you are ready to take a step towards a more fulfilling life, combining TMS with therapies that maximize results, we are here to guide you throughout the process. Feel free to schedule a free consultation through our website or visit our blog for more information about depression and transcranial magnetic stimulation.