Where to Go for Depression Treatment


For those who are seeking treatment for symptoms of depression, there are many choices. Even if you lack health insurance or money, there is help available.

Get Some Help

First, if you are feeling suicidal, please call 911 or go straight to your local emergency room. The physicians there can provide you with temporary help, and can recommend where to seek further services. Some hospitals even offer psychiatric emergency rooms.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and unable to seek help, enlist a friend or family member to help you. The search might entail several phone calls, including checking with your insurer, and a friend could handle this for you, with your permission.

Traditional Providers

Most insurance companies can provide you with a list of mental health treatment providers. Since these are providers approved by your insurer, this might be a good place to start.

Yellow pages are another source of listings. Look under “Mental Health”, “Psychologists”, “Psychiatrists”, “Physicians”, “Hospitals” or “Social Workers.” Local medical or psychiatric societies are a source of care providers as well. If you are calling on behalf of someone who you believe might be suicidal, you can look for “suicide prevention” or “crisis intervention services.”

A lack of money or insurance does not mean you cannot access services. Many communities offer publicly-funded outpatient mental health services. If you don’t have insurance you might be able to seek help there. Check with your local social services agency, mental health association, or with your physician for a referral.

Less-Traditional Providers

Colleges that offer graduate programs in psychology or clinical social work sometimes have on-campus clinics staffed by interns who offer free or low-cost services. These interns are well-trained, and oversight is provided by their supervising instructors.

If you are employed by a mid-to large-sized company, your Human Resources department might offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) as one of your benefits. These programs are designed to make available professional services for employees who are dealing with personal problems that can impact their job performance. The personnel in the HR department can recommend providers and the program often covers certain costs of treatment.

Finally, many churches offer pastoral counseling programs, including an assortment of support groups. Check with your pastor or talk to people who attend different churches for referrals.

With so many organizations and facilities offering services, there is no reason not to seek help. If the first provider you meet with is not a good fit, then find another. Don’t give up. Remember that you are your own best advocate, and that there is no reason to continue to suffer with depression.

Sources: HelpGuide.org and PsychCentral.com

Image courtesy: Balanced Life Institute


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