Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy for Anxiety And Depression
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a safe, effective, and FDA approved treatment for depression that delivers magnetic pulses to stimulate nerve cells in specific regions of the brain in order to treat the symptoms of depression. In addition to being a safe and effective depression treatment, TMS is now used for treating anxiety.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy is an FDA-approved, noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of depression.
Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
When you are depressed, it’s as if the neuroreceptors that carry emption signals through your brain have been clogged, making it impossible for you to feel normal. Typical first-line treatment options for depression are antidepressants and psychotherapy, however some people do not achieve relief of depression symptoms from either.
TMS therapy uses a series of magnetic pulses to stimulate the exact areas of your brain that have been effected by depression. Transcranial magnetic stimulation can painlessly revitalize areas of the brain responsible for mood control while improving communication within the central nervous system.
Why TMS for Depression?
TMS Therapy is associated with very few risks and side effects. While antidepressants can chemically alter your brain, TMS therapy uses magnetic fields to stimulate underactive nerve cells.
TMS therapy is a completely non-systemic treatment. This means that meaning nothing enters the bloodstream at anytime. Unlike the side effects of some medications typically used to treat depression, there are no side effects like weight gain, drowsiness, sleeplessness, stomach upset or sexual problems. Additionally, there is no sedation involved in TMS treatment. The patient stays awake and alert the entire time, with zero post-treatment down time needed.
Treatment Resistant Depression
TMS is typically used when other depression treatments haven’t been effective. Studies on TMS therapy to treat depression have shown results in lasting, positive effects on brain function in people who have otherwise experienced a form of treatment-resistant depression.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety is currently the most commonly diagnosed mental illness in the US. Anxiety affects approximately 40 million people in the United States. Common anxiety disorders include:
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
- Panic disorder
- Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
There are many forms of anxiety, and symptoms may vary within disorders. Common mental and emotional symptoms of anxiety include:
- Excessive worry
- Difficulty regulating thoughts and emotions
- Avoidance of anxiety triggers
- Racing thoughts
- Experiencing a regular sense of impending doom/danger
Anxiety symptoms are not just emotional. Common physical symptoms of anxiety include:
- Increased heart rate
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Difficulty sleeping
Comorbidity is a medical term that describes the existence of more than one condition within your body at the same time. Comorbidity of psychiatric syndromes is extremely common. Studies show that in a 12-month period, almost 50% of adults in the United States with any psychiatric disorder actually had 2 or more disorders. Anxiety and depression are commonly linked to each other in comorbidity, and the impact of one on the other is substantial. Situational difficulties caused by each disorder individually appear to be risk factors for the development of comorbid anxiety and depression.
Can TMS Therapy Help Anxiety Disorders?
In addition to being used in the treatment of depression, TMS is now a treatment option for anxiety as well. There are many resources for treating anxiety. Often, it is possible to reduce symptoms of anxiety with a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. However, this is not always the case. Traditional forms of treatment do not work for everyone. TMS therapy is commonly used when an individual is not responding to other forms of treatment.
Studies have shown that those with anxiety disorders who receive TMS therapy report a decrease in the following symptoms:
- High blood pressure
- Difficulty sleeping
- Shortness of breath
- Muscle tension
- Headaches and migraines
- Excessive sweating
- Difficulty concentrating
- Digestion issues
How TMS Therapy Helps Anxiety
Typically, people who struggle with anxiety have some abnormality in the prefrontal cortex of their brain, causing their symptoms. TMS therapy works by stimulating the prefrontal cortex of the brain with a series of magnetic pulses. The magnetic pulses serve to activate areas of the prefrontal cortex that naturally do not activate themselves.
Why Does it Work?
Anxiety causes hyperactivity in the amygdala, which plays an essential role in processing emotions. The amygdala plays an important role in stressful or dangerous situations by triggering the fight or flight response.
A hyperactive amygdala can cause excessive and disruptive stress, worry, or even panic for those with anxiety. Transcranial magnetic stimulation treats anxiety by lowering neurons to normal activity levels.
Why Choose TMS?
The side effects of TMS therapy are generally mild and improve with every session. The most common side effect of TMS Therapy is headaches, and there is some potential for scalp discomfort both during or after treatment. There is no reported evidence that suggests TMS therapy has any effect on a person’s long or short-term memory.
There is no post-treatment recovery time required for TMS therapy, and patients are able to return to their daily routines immediately following their treatment. Each patient’s treatment plan will vary based on frequency, intensity, and the range of stimulation needed.
Oasis TMS offers a safe, welcoming environment where providing non-medicated, results-orientated relief from depression and anxiety is our only priority. Start by taking the first step toward feeling better. Call us today at (502) 742-8182. Oasis TMS is here to help.