Depression is difficult for medical professionals to diagnose, mostly because the struggling individual must actively solicit help, which is a very hard step for many individuals to take. The people affected by such intense melancholy might even consider themselves not worth saving. Others however, may consider themselves “too good for” depression, and brush off their symptoms as nothing more than a few bad days. No matter the circumstance, we know that 1 in 8 adolescents are diagnosed with depression each year, and an estimated 6.7% of adults in the United States suffer from severe or major depression. But we also know that fewer than 50% of Americans with depressive symptoms are undiagnosed and do not seek treatment.
When an individual is suffering from depression or suicidal thoughts and a doctor asks them about their symptoms, it often leads to a painfully awkward discussion. The patient may not fully disclose their feelings or symptoms, just to avoid such a conversation and keep their appointment moving forward. But what if there were an intelligent machine that could identify depressive patterns in a normal conversation between the patient and doctor? All of this without the need for direct questions or any other background information. At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have been developing a method to do just that. Their machine has been through a series of tests, and has learned to detect vocal patterns and words typically associated with individuals who suffer from depression. All it needs is raw text data and/or audio from an interview with the patient. Amazing, right? Of course, the research team needs to refine and test the machine further before it can become available to medical professionals, but the developing technology is exciting!
Yes, anew age of diagnosis is upon us…
…and a new age of depression treatment is also upon us.
There are a wide array of treatments and methods to help individuals cope with depression and get back to their everyday lives. For example: support groups, talk therapy, counseling and various anti-depressant medications. Any of these are a substantial foundation for depression treatment, and ketamine infusions are available to those patients who are resistant to any of the above treatments.
Ultimately, if researchers and medical professionals continue to invest resources and time into developing more efficient ways to diagnose and treat depression, we may eventually change the lives of many who suffer in silence. For now, we are dedicated to keeping you updated on developments in mental healthcare, depression treatment and the science behind ketamine infusions. Stay tuned to our blog for more information.
Contact Miracle Hills Ketamine
If you or a loved one is suffering from depression, please talk to your primary care physician about your symptoms, or contact us via the brief form below to learn more about ketamine infusions and find out if you’re a candidate.