Depression Treatments: Information & Services

Dealing with depression is something that touches the lives of many in the UK, affecting around 1 in 6 of us. These are not just numbers; they represent our individual struggles, and those of people we know and care about in our communities.

Although it can be a tough mental health problem to treat, depression can be overcome/managed with a range of treatments that are currently available in the UK. You are not alone in this.

Learn more about the disorder, available depression treatments, including therapies and medications, and support groups here at Maudsley Private Care.

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What is Depression?

Depression, also known as clinical depression, is a common and serious mental health condition that goes beyond the normal ups and downs we experience in life, and can significantly impact a person's thoughts, emotions, behaviours, and physical well-being.

Just as each of us is unique, so are our experiences with depression. The symptoms can vary in intensity, duration, and impact on our daily lives. This means that, for each person struggling, their journey through depression is deeply personal.


Depression is a complex condition with various contributing factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, life experiences, and stress levels. It can affect people of all ages and backgrounds, and it can vary from mild to severe.

Here are some of the most common symptoms to look out for:

  • Persistent Low Mood: One of the hallmark symptoms of depression is a pervasive feeling of sadness or low mood that lasts for most of the day, nearly every day, for at least two weeks.

  • Loss of Interest or Pleasure in Life: Those with depression often lose interest in activities they used to enjoy, including hobbies, social interactions, and personal relationships.
  • Fatigue and Low Energy: Even after a full night's sleep, you may frequently experience fatigue and may have a lack of energy to carry out daily tasks.
  • Changes in Appetite or Weight: Depression can lead to changes in eating habits, resulting in either significant weight loss or weight gain.
  • Sleep Disturbances: Some people may experience insomnia (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep), while others may sleep excessively (hypersomnia).
  • Feelings of Worthlessness or Guilt: People with depression often have low self-esteem and may experience persistent feelings of worthlessness or a deep guilt over issues that are smaller than they may feel.
  • Difficulty Concentrating: Concentration and decision-making can become challenging, causing trouble focusing on tasks and decisions making.
  • Physical Symptoms: Depression can manifest with physical symptoms, too, like headaches, digestive problems, and general aches and pains.
  • Suicidal Ideation: Some people may have recurrent thoughts of death, dying, or suicidal thoughts.

If you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of depression, it's important to seek help from a healthcare professional. Our team of psychiatrists and therapists are here to listen with empathy, and without judgement, to provide an accurate diagnosis and a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.

Suicide Helplines 

  • Samaritans. To talk about anything that is upsetting you, contact Samaritans 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can call 116 123 (free from any phone), email or visit some branches in person. There is also a Samaritans Welsh Language Line on 0808 164 0123 (7pm–11pm every day).
  • National Suicide Prevention Helpline UK. Offers a supportive listening service to anyone with thoughts of suicide. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Helpline UK on 0800 689 5652 (6pm to midnight every day).
  • Shout. If you prefer not to talk, but want some mental health support, you text SHOUT to 85258. Shout provides a confidential 24/7 text service, offering support if you are in crisis and need immediate help.


Treatments for Depression

Although it may feel like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel, it’s important to remember that depression is a treatable condition, and you deserve help. Many people who receive the right level of compassionate treatment and support can experience significant improvement in their symptoms and quality of life.

Bespoke treatment for depression often includes a combination of approaches:

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a widely used and highly effective form of psychotherapy for treating depression. It’s a practise based on the principle that our thoughts, feelings, and behaviours are interconnected, and aims to help people identify and change negative thought patterns and behaviours that contribute to their depression.

CBT helps to treat depression by:

  • Identifying negative thoughts
  • Challenging negative thoughts
  • Setting realistic goals
  • Behavioural activation (encouraging individuals to engage in activities they once enjoyed, or that stir a sense of well-being)
  • Developing coping strategies
  • Monitoring mood and progress
  • Relapse prevention
  • Goal setting and assignments
  • Empowerment and self-management

Interpersonal Therapy

Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) is a structured and time-limited psychotherapy that focuses on addressing interpersonal issues and relationship problems as they relate to depression. IPT is based on the premise that difficulties in relationships and life changes can contribute to or exacerbate depressive symptoms. 

IPT helps to treat depression by:

  • Assessing interpersonal issues
  • Identifying problem areas
  • Setting treatment goals
  • Outlining interventions and strategies
  • Exploring emotions
  • Implementing relapse prevention strategies
  • Monitoring progress


Antidepressant medications, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs),may be prescribed by a healthcare provider to help alleviate symptoms.

For your safety, medication is always prescribed and monitored by a qualified medical professional, usually a psychiatrist.

Lifestyle Changes

Engaging in regular physical activity, maintaining a balanced diet, getting adequate sleep, and reducing stress through relaxation techniques can be beneficial, when combined with other treatments, such as talking therapies.

Support Groups for Depression in Adults

There are a number of local and nationwide groups dedicated to providing a safe space for those suffering with depression, and their families, to form a community that provides emotional support and an opportunity to share and listen to experiences.

Visit the Mind website for information about support groups in your area, or, you can ask your GP/therapist for guidance in the right direction.

 If you're a carer and affected by depression, ring the Carers UK helpline on 0808 808 7777 to find out how to meet other carers.


How to access depression treatment in the UK

One of the most common ways to start the process, is by talking to your GP, who will go through a standardised test with you to assess your symptoms. From there, they will refer you to, either, the NHS, or a private psychiatrist. Or, you can get in touch with us directly for a consultation and assessment.

At Maudsley Private Care, we offer comprehensive in-person and online private depression assessments and treatment plans for UK residents, adults and children, carried out by one of our experts.

You might want to go private if

  • the waiting list for an NHS treatment is too long, and you would like to talk to a healthcare professional quickly.
  • you're looking for a more varied choice of specialist treatment.
  • you need sustained, reliable support over a long period of time.

Our team of psychiatrists and therapists are trained to the highest standards, with decades of experience in assessing and treating people suffering with depression, from unique and complex backgrounds.

You can get in touch with our dedicated team directly on 020 3228 9880 for more information about depression treatments and therapies, and the assessment process.

Meet our Depression Clinicians

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