Can depression be treated without drugs?

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Virginia Beach, Va. - Rana Culotta Simpson has suffered from depression most of her adult life.

“I would sleep three days, at times 2-3 days not getting out of the bed,” says Culotta.

This made it hard for the 35-year-old Peninsula resident to keep her job as a newspaper reporter.

“I was socially anxious. I was phobic, paranoid. It was very hard to focus,” says Culotta.

She`d tried antidepressants, but she wasn`t getting better. Eventually, she was placed on work disability.

Then she found Dr. Katharine Heatwole at Ocean Psychiatric Group in Virginia Beach. It’s one of only 2 or 3 clinics in Hampton Roads treating patients with transcranial magnetic stimulation or TMS.

“It’s pulse magnetic energy to the front left part of the brain, and that stimulates a little electrical current to the neurons or brain cells,” says Dr. Heatwole.

“During my 1st treatment, I actually felt like there was someone tinkering or tapping on my head,” says Culotta.

“That has a stimulation effect on the mood circuit so that it releases the neurotransmitters that are involved in mood,” says Culotta.

“It is based on neuroplasticity and training the neurons to do what they are supposed to do in the first place,” says Heatwole.

The treatment is five days a week for 6 weeks.  Each session lasting 38 minutes. The result?

“Now that it’s at the end my days sparkle,” says Culotta.

Rana`s back to doing one of her favorite things, writing.

“I journal every day and I have every intention of keeping a blog after this treatment is over, like after TMS and how wonderful it is,” says Culotta.

10 comments

  • Nicole

    Why don’t you educate yourself about depression and the “sorcery” used to help, before you talk about it. You seem like you have an underlying issue you need counseling for considering you took time to make an rude and demeaning comment toward someone else. I’m sure you don’t look like no gem jerk.

  • JJ

    Sorcery? Well America (merrica) if you are dying and need some sort of health science to keep you alive make sure you let them know you don’t want any sorcery around you.

  • Constance Orlando

    Ever heard of if you can say anything nice don’t say anything at all?! As you hide behind your computer and a fake name.

  • Betty

    At least she has the courage to get help and put herself out there for all too see. You hide at home making hateful comments on peoples weight and have the audacity to use “Merrica” (southern slang for America) as your name. People like you are the ignorance of America and a disgrace. I’m sure your not brave enough to put yourself out there as she has and post your real name or link to a photo or video of yourself.

  • Yolanda

    Each time I read about someone being depressed it makes me sad, because there are natural cures for depression.
    It’s just that not many people know about it, so they have to pay for antidepressants that are both dangerous
    and not-so-effective. Moreover some people suffering from depression don’t want to take drugs and that’s
    completely understandable.
    I’m 25 years old and I’ve been battling depression for years but I looked hard and I found some natural depression cures.
    If you want to know if you’re depressed there’s a free self-assessment “Am I depressed” test here, and they also talk about natural depression remedies: http://depressioncure.me.pn

  • Brad

    Unbelievable the ignorance! Tom Cruise….is that you? It is so sad that someone has nothing better to do at 4am than to slander! Depression is a real and horrible thing, unlike your fake name, Murrica. It can make you feel like your in the darkest pit of hell….you’d better hope that when you’re there, and you will be, that “sorcery” will save your butt from Satan violating you with his pitchfork, loser!

  • prob

    Looks like Murrica infuriated all the Ugmos. Nice job, be gentler next time for they have soft feelings

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