What is depression?

Depression is a common but serious mental health condition that is characterized as negative thoughts about oneself, others, and the world.  Individuals with depression have a persistent sad mood. Depression symptoms can vary from mild to severe.  Some types of depression are Major Depressive Disorder, Persistent Depressive Disorder (Dysthymia), Post Partum Depression , Seasonal Affective Disorder, Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder.


What does depression feel like?

Depression symptoms can look and feel like persistently feeling sad. An individual with depression has a negative internal  dialogue about oneself, others, and the world. They can experience feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness and tend to socially isolate. They tend to lose interest in activities they used to enjoy. An individual with depression can experience changes in appetite , sleep disturbances - including insomnia and excessive sleeping.  They tend to lose energy and feel fatigued.  Individuals with depression report difficulty thinking, focusing or making decisions.  In more severe cases, an individual may experience suicidal thoughts or self harm. Symptoms must last at least two weeks and must represent a change in your previous level of functioning for a diagnosis of depression.

What does the treatment process look like for depression?

Typically, treatment entails a combination of pharmacology and psychotherapy.  Types of medications to treat depression include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), Selective serotonin & norepinephrine inhibitors (SNRIs), Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs),Tetracyclic antidepressants that are noradrenergic and specific serotonergic antidepressants (NaSSAs) drugs with unique mechanisms such as bupropion. For treatment resistant depression, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) Receptor Antagonist, such as esketamine (Spravato) is utilized here at Philadelphia Integrative Psychiatry. Our medical providers can determine which drug is right for you. Remember that medications usually take four to eight weeks to become fully effective.  Medical providers also take an integrative approach by recommending therapy, nutritional counseling and use of supplements. In addition labs may be ordered to rule out any medical condition that may mimic depression. Psychotherapy may include individual, group, or family therapies.  

Our therapists utilize many different modalities to treatment including techniques grounded in evidence-based approaches. Therapists will target interpersonal interactions, trauma, cognition as well as behaviors that maintain depression

Here at Philadelphia Integrative Psychiatry, we will also offer TMS or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, a treatment that is utilized for depression in those who have tried multiple medications without benefit.

Providers who specialize in treating depression

David Danish MD

Joseph Gagnon Jr CRNP

Maria Capriotti, CRNP

Amber Donnelly, MS, RDN, LDN

John Guardiani, MA, LPC

Kristen Ott, MA, LMFT

Diana Capriotti, LCSW

Nate DeSantana, MS

Dominic D'Angelo MS, LPC

Mark Agnew MS

Alexa Gavrilov, LSW