The truth about antidepressants

The Medical Journal of Australia recently published an article that confirms something those of us who work in the mental health profession already know from our daily practice––that antidepressant medication is less effective than it was once believed to be.

While it is still recommended for moderate to severe depression, it tends to work more effectively in conjunction with psychotherapy.  Australians have one of the highest rates of antidepressant use in the world, and it seems that the take-up rate of psychotherapy is dropping, which is a shame, in the face of the medical evidence and the availability of a Medicare rebate for psychological assistance.

The MJA notes that the benefits of psychotherapy should not be overstated, which is also something those of us who practise it should be careful to remember.  However, psychotherapy does provide an opportunity to take an active role in understanding and overcoming depression, and it does so without side effects, which is much to be thankful for!