Exploring the Side Effects of Depression Treatments

Depression is a common mental health condition that affects millions of people all over the world, many of whom experience debilitating symptoms.

While there are many treatments available for depression, it is important to understand both the potential benefits and the potential depression treatment side effects of each option.

In this article, we’ll discuss the side effects of three common depression treatments: antidepressant medications, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), and psychotherapy.

This information can help you and your health care providers choose a treatment option that’s best for you.

Common Depression Treatments and Their Side Effects

See below for a breakdown of three common depression treatments and the possible side effects that patients may experience while undergoing them.

Antidepressant medications

Antidepressant medications are a common treatment option for depression. There are several types of antidepressant medications, each of which interacts with brain chemistry in different ways.

Your doctor may give you serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), or monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) based on what is best for you and your symptoms.

Each type of antidepressant works slightly differently and has its own set of side effects.

Side effects of antidepressant medications

Common side effects of antidepressants include reduced sex drive, upset stomach, drowsiness, nausea, loss of appetite, dizziness, and headaches.

Changing the dosage or adding another medication can help manage these side effects.

However, there are also rare but serious side effects of antidepressant medications that can be life-threatening. Serotonin syndrome is a condition that some experience when there is too much serotonin in the brain.

Patients with serotonin syndrome and depression often experience restlessness, high blood pressure, confusion, fast heart rate, and stiff muscles.

It’s important to pay close attention to any side effects and talk to a doctor about them right away. This can help to ensure that the benefits of the medication outweigh the risks and that the treatment plan is changed accordingly.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)

TMS is a depression treatment method that is done by sending magnetic currents through the brain to stimulate nerve cells.

Researchers believe that TMS stimulates activity in areas of the brain that regulate mood control. These procedures are often performed in a doctor’s office and don’t require anesthesia.

TMS is used to treat severe cases of major depression, along with anxiety, bipolar disorders, and other mental health conditions.

Side effects of TMS

Some of the most common side effects of TMS are headaches and scalp tenderness where the treatment was applied. You may also feel lightheadedness and tingling in the facial muscles.

However, these side effects are temporary, and typically disappear within a few days. Many patients don’t experience any side effects at all.


Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, is one of the most effective ways to treat depression. Psychotherapy is working with a mental health professional to discover what negative thoughts, feelings, and actions contribute to depression and how to change them.

Side effects of psychotherapy

For most people, therapy is a side-effect free treatment for depression.

Some people may feel emotional pain or have to face upsetting memories and feelings during therapy.

Although, these side effects can be managed with support from a skilled therapist.

The benefits of psychotherapy for depression are numerous. Psychotherapy can help improve mood, coping skills, and can lead to a long-term resolution of depression symptoms.

How NeuroSpa Can Help With Depression

If you’re struggling with major depression, visit our healthcare professionals at NeuroSpa. As Tampa’s number one mental health clinic, we’re proud to offer a wide range of treatments that can improve your quality of life.

Over the years, our mental health professionals have helped countless people with depressive disorders reclaim their lives from the symptoms of depression with custom treatment plans tailored to their needs.

Learn more about our depression services and book a free consultation today.

This blog post is meant to be educational in nature and does not replace the advice of a medical professional. See full disclaimer.

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