What Kind of Doctor Should You See for Your Depression?

If you believe that you have depression, you might not be sure what to do.  Where should you  seek treatment? Who should you see?  Do you need to be on medication?  It can all be very confusing.  Here is a guide on who you should see to help you with your depression.

Family Physician

Your first visit should be to a family doctor for a checkup.  There are numerous medical conditions that can result in symptoms similar to depression that can be determined by a family physician.  These symptoms can be caused by vitamin and nutrient deficiencies, female hormonal changes, and thyroid issues.  Also, if you are on any prescription drugs it may cause depression symptoms.  Many medications have symptoms of depression as a side effect.

If your family physician does suspect depression, they may offer to prescribe an antidepressant.  However, he/she is not the best-qualified physician to treat depression and prescribe antidepressant drugs.  It is best to be referred to a psychiatrist or psychologist.


For patients who are experiencing depression for the first time, a visit to a psychologist for a mental health test is necessary.  Visiting a psychologist is a great first step for people who have depression issues.  A psychologist will be able to provide talk therapy to help patients


Even though your psychologist is capable to treat you, do not be shocked when he refers to a psychiatrist.  A psychiatrist is a type of doctor who can prescribe drugs to help you with your depression.  For those who suffer from depression as a result of a chemical imbalance, simply speaking to a psychologist/counselor will not help. Medication is needed.  A psychiatrist can help do the following:

  • Provide psychotherapy
  • Prescribe drugs
  • Diagnose certain mental health conditions

Combination Treatment

In most cases a combination of medication and counseling helps patients.  Psychiatrists concentrate on the prescription drug portion of treating depression.  They usually have to try different drugs on a patient to see what helps.  Often times, it is a cocktail of drugs that help relieve the symptoms of depression.  Psychologist can assist with the talk therapy and behavioral intervention treatment.

The most important thing to do if you suffer from depression is to seek help.  There are many options when looking for therapy ranging from a family practitioner, counselor, psychologist, or psychiatrist.  If you feel like you are suffering from depression, then seek help today.  A better tomorrow is not far away.


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