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Treating depression when all other options fail

Since finishing his last TMS session, Matt G. wakes up each day without any negative thoughts

Considering himself to be the man of the house, Matt G. struggled to admit to himself that he was depressed.

He felt strongly about putting his family’s needs before his own, which worked well until 2017 when his mother passed. Then, a few years later, he suffered the loss of two friends who died by suicide.

Things had begun to decline during that time, but he was so busy caring for others that he overlooked that he was struggling.

“Throughout the years, I kept thinking I was getting better, but I was just fooling myself,” Matt said.

Matt was always active and energetic, but something changed after the unexpected losses. He lost his motivation to stay physically active and became short-tempered. Even leaving his home and being around people became overwhelming for him.

As time passed, he found himself pretending that everything was okay when it wasn’t, and he realized that he was no longer true to himself or those closest to him.

“I didn’t let people know that I was deeply hurting inside,” Matt said.

Wanting to do better for his family, he tried to tackle his depression with medication, but nothing seemed to work. He decided to conduct his own research to find an alternative to manage his treatment-resistant depression.

He learned about Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, a noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of major depression. Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, TMS usually is used only when other depression treatments haven’t been effective.

He contacted Connection Counseling, a specialty group of Rosecrance Therapies, to see if he might be a candidate for TMS therapy. As he was going through the process of ensuring he could access the care he needed, he had a moment where he nearly convinced himself not to go through with the treatment.

“I remember I was mowing my lawn and started to have second thoughts on it. One of my favorite artists put out an album that day, and he has a song called ‘Running’ that’s pretty much about his depression. I thought this was a sign, and I had tears coming down my face,” Matt said.

Matt committed to making each of his appointments when he received the call that he was able to move forward with TMS. About four weeks into his treatment, he realized he didn’t need to convince himself to go, and the fog he had previously seemed to have lifted. Most importantly, he didn’t have negative thoughts any longer.

Ever since finishing his last therapy session, he wakes up each day without any negative thoughts. His relationship with his family has improved, which was a significant motivation for Matt to seek treatment for his symptoms. He feels like he has regained his true self and actively tries to help others who are going through similar struggles.

“Not all roads are closed,” Matt said. “If you’re down to that point where it’s a dark place, you can’t be scared to reach out like I was. Take chances.”

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