Recovery from depression how long does it take?

In this article, we will answer the question, recovery from depression how long does it take. We do this by looking into the term for recovery from depression, the reason why it takes longer. In addition, we will explain, what is depression, what are the symptoms and signs. The blog will also give you a clear understanding of treatment for recovery from depression. We will look at the different therapy methods as well as medications, mainly antidepressants used for the treatment. Finally, we will look at the risk of relapse after the treatment. 

How long does it take to recover from depression? 

It takes a minimum of 3 to 6 months to recover from depression. However, it might take longer for certain individuals on the basis of the type and severity of depression. There are various methods to get over depression. However,  each method takes its own time to work. It was seen that around 40 to 60 percent of people showed improved symptoms after either the medications or psychotherapy, in comparison to 20 to 40 percent who did not receive any medications. 

In general, a major depressive episode may last for at least 4 to 8 months. Therefore, it might have impacted a major portion of your life, if left untreated. 

Like any medication or treatment takes a minimum amount of time to recover or cure, so does depression. If you are physically hurt, the wound might heal in 6 days or 15 days bases on the severity and the cause of it. Similar to depression and other mental health conditions that can be treated, it takes a couple of months to recover from them. This is mainly because, by the time to receive professional treatment, your symptoms might have gotten worse. For psychotherapy to work, your therapist needs to start with understanding who you are. It is not like fever or throat infection. Your therapist cannot just prescribe medications like antibiotics. They need to administer you as well as make sure there are no side effects of the same. 

Psychotherapies do not happen in a jiffy. They take time, but they are effective. Hence it is important to be patient if you are looking for recovery from depression. 

What is depression? 

Depression is a serious mental health disorder. It is one of the most common mental health conditions prevalent in the 21st century. Depression is something other than feeling down or low. It is normal to incidentally feel ‘sad occasionally, particularly in the event that you are experiencing a change, misfortune, or distressing circumstance. A few people allude to this as ‘feeling depressed’. Notwithstanding, if these emotions are extraordinary and continue over weeks or months, and in the event that they stop you appreciating or in any event, doing your ordinary exercises, almost certainly, you have depression. Depression is not something, you just snap out of. It is something that needs to be treated and dealt with with proper care. 

Signs of depression

  • extreme irritability over seemingly minor things
  • anxiety and restlessness
  • The trouble with anger management
  • loss of interest in activities, including sex
  • fixation on the past or on things that have gone wrong
  • thoughts of death or suicide
  • insomnia or oversleeping
  • debilitating fatigue
  • increased or decreased appetite
  • weight gain or loss
  • difficulty concentrating or making decisions
  • unexplained aches and pains

Ways to recover from depression 

We are fortunate that we live in a time when recovery from depression is actually possible. Thanks to the great minds, we have antidepressants and psychotherapies today. Various professionals believe that the best recovery for depression is the combination of medications and psychotherapies. 

Around 50 percent of the population dealing with depression received treatment. The treatment includes medications or, psychotherapies or both.


There are different sorts of antidepressants, and at times what works for one individual doesn’t work for another. It’s normal to need to attempt more than one prescription to locate the one that turns out best for you, too. 

Antidepressants can include: 

  • specific serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) 
  • serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) 
  • tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) 
  • atypical antidepressants 
  • monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) 

Some of the time a mix of medications may be utilized, just as anti-anxiety prescriptions, contingent upon your circumstance. On the off chance that one medicine doesn’t work, your primary care physician may attempt another that may be more qualified for you. 


Psychotherapy, or treatment, for the most part, alludes to “talk treatment” with an advisor. 

Numerous individuals see a specialist for an assortment of reasons, regardless of whether they have depression. It very well may be useful to discuss issues emerging in your existence with an individual who is prepared for emotional well-being proficient. 

There are various types of psychotherapy, including dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).

Treatment can help you: 

  • recognize “triggers” that cause sensations of sadness 
  • recognize hindering convictions that you hold 
  • make new, positive convictions 
  • give you adapting techniques for negative occasions and emotions 

Psychotherapy is custom-made to every individual, and by discussing your objectives and assumptions with your specialist, they’ll have the option to work with you to help you manage your downturn. 

Electroconvulsive Therapy

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) isn’t broadly utilized, and it’s not ideal for everybody. In any case, it very well may be successful in treatment-safe, repetitive extreme depression. 

The treatment comprises of the utilization of an electrical flow to invigorate a seizure while an individual is under broad sedation. 

It’s regularly utilized when different medicines haven’t been viable. It isn’t utilized as a first-line treatment, since it has some critical results like cognitive decline. 

It is anything but a fix, and support treatment, similar to the medicines referenced above, is fundamental. 

With these, there is also Transcianl Magnetic Stimulation that is used for the treatment of depression. Like ECT it is not used regularly, because usually, talk therapies are sufficient. It is only in extreme scenarios where nothing has worked, a therapist might think of TMS. This method uses magnetic pulses to stimulate the parts of your brain that regulate mood.

In addition to these therapies, there are various lifestyle changes that one needs to incorporate. 

  • Have a treatment plan and follow it. Make sure you take the medications regularly and do everything that you are asked for. 
  • Avoid alcohol and other drugs. Make sure you do not consume the in general or with antidepressants as they might have a counterproductive effect that is not helpful. 
  • Add exercise or any other physical activity to your day to day routine. Get some fresh air. Go out to the park or take your pet for a walk. But do not end up staying in the bed all day. 
  • Sleep properly. It is very important to rest your body. This will help you restore your energy and engage in certain activities. 
  • Eat healthily and regularly. Having a nutrient-rich diet is seen to be very helpful in those who are dealing with depression, Mediterranean cuisine, omega 3  rich food, good carbs are all healthy and give us the energy we need. Therefore cut down the junk, and look forward to the greens. 
  • Try to engage in activities and other hobbies. Make sure you have time in your day for things you love, by doing this, you may add some meaning to your life, which is very important when it comes to dealing with depression. 

Risk of relapse. 

Having cured depression is a great deal. But post-recovery care is also important because of the risk of relapse. Relapse basically means that depression might come back. This is in fact very normal but not out of reason. Relapse occurs as a result of a trigger or something that the patient might not be able to handle. Treatment cures depression but does not prevent relapse. What will happen in your life after the treatment cannot be known and therefore, relapse is possible. However, psychologists try to prevent relapse during psychotherapies by teaching the client methods of positive and efficient coping.  

According to the American Psychiatric Association, at least 50% of people who have an episode of major depression will go on to have a second. And about 80% of people who have two episodes will have a third. However, this does not mean that you are going to be depressed all your life. Depression is treatable, be it as a result of replacement or not. If it is a relapse, we know the symptoms and we know the drill. So make sure you take basic care of yourself. 

Moreover, research shows that psychotherapy was found to have a significantly lower rate of relapse (26.5 percent) than medications (56.6 percent). The study also found that psychotherapy had lower dropout rates than medication regimens. 

BetterHelp: A Better Alternative

Those who are seeking therapy online may also be interested in BetterHelp. BetterHelp offers plenty of formats of therapy, ranging from live chats, live audio sessions and live video sessions. In addition, unlimited messaging through texting, audio messages and even video messages are available here.

BetterHelp also offers couples therapy and therapy for teenagers in its platform. Furthermore, group sessions can also be found in this platform, covering more than twenty different topics related to mental health and mental illness. The pricing of BetterHelp is also pretty cost-effective, especially considering the fact that the platform offers financial aid to most users.


In this article, we have answered the question, recovery from depression how long does it take. We did this by looking into the term for recovery from depression, the reason why it takes longer. In addition, we explained, what is depression, what are the symptoms and signs. The blog will also give you a clear understanding of treatment for recovery from depression. We have looked at the different therapy methods as well as medications, mainly antidepressants used for the treatment. Finally, we have looked at the risk of relapse after the treatment. 

FAQs: Recovery from depression how long does it take

What does long term depression do to the brain?

Depression does affect the brain to a great extent. New studies have found that long term depression has neurodegenerative reactions in the brain. This means that if depression is left untreated it can reduce the quality of the brain by haring the cognitive part of the brain. 

How long does long term depression last?

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, an episode of major depressive disorder lasts for 2 weeks, while long-term depression known as persistent depressive disorder lasts for 2 years straight. 

How does depression change your personality?

Depression impacts the personality to a great extent. A person who is depressed becomes irritable, angry, frustrated, and impulsive. They never can be cal and likelable. A person who was once a very friendly person might just push everyone away as a result of depression and become completely lonely. This is associated with high risks of suicide, other forms of self-harm or violence towards those who may be perceived as the cause.

Is long term depression curable?

Yes, even if it is recurrent, it does not mean that it is permanent. Long-term depression, with the help of the right treatment and medications, is also curable. 

Is major depressive disorder permanent?

The official term of a major depressive episode is 2 weeks according to DSM-5. However, these episodes can reoccur and last for months or even years if left untreated.