Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation: A Non-Medication Therapy for Depression and Suicidal Thoughts
We have found that depression can arise months or even years after sustaining a traumatic brain injury (TBI) that was not deemed severe enough for a trip to a doctor or hospital.
How Many Suffer from TBI?
According to the Brain Trauma Foundation:
• At least 5.3 million Americans, or 2% of US population live with TBI-related disabilities
• 30% of soldiers admitted to Walter Reed Army Medical Center have been diagnosed as having had a TBI
• It is believed that 10-20% of Iraq veterans (150,000-300,000 service members) have some level of TBI
A study from 2011 found that 30% of adult TBI patients—about 360,000 people annually—suffer depression after a brain injury. Of course, depression may lead to suicidal thoughts if left untreated. According to Suicide Awareness Voices of Education(SAVE), an astounding 15% of people who are clinically depressed commit suicide.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)
One highly effective non-medication treatment used for TBI and depression is a form of “brain stimulation” called transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, in which a pulsed magnetic field is focused on areas of the brain that control mood.
What We Know
Now comes a study published in the journal Brain Stimulation, in which researchers enrolled 41 adult inpatients who had been admitted to a hospital in “suicidal crisis” [All participants had co-existing PTSD and/or mild traumatic brain injury]. They were then randomly divided into two groups: one group received three 30-minute TMS sessions daily for three consecutive days, and the other group a sham treatment.
Scientists found that the patients who got the TMS treatment experienced rapid decreases in suicidal thoughts. After the first day, the active treatment group showed a greater than 50% decrease in suicide ideation scores. Furthermore, the high dose TMS sessions were also found to be safe and free of adverse side effects.
Imaging Changes Everything
At Amen Clinics, we can help you and your loved ones overcome the stigma and suffering associated with ADD/ADHD, anxiety, depression, brain injury, weight loss, addictions, memory issues, brain fog, and other emotional and cognitive issues. If you are ready to regain control over your life or help a loved one do the same, call us at 1-888-288-9834 or click here to ask a question.