What is tDCS? How can tDCS reduce pain?
Do you suffer from depression? If you do, you are not alone. The Depression and Bipolar Alliance states that 14.8 million American adults are diagnosed with major depression in a given year. What is tDCS? And how can it help? More on this alter.To make it worse, while a child should be happy and care-free, many children are suffering from clinical depression. The statistics is staggering. As many as one in 33 children and one in eight adolescents have clinical depression (Depression and Bipolar Alliance, 2021). Sadly, it has been noted that people with depression are four times more prone to developing a heart attack than those with no history of the depression. Following the first heart attack, depression sufferers are at a significantly increased risk of death or a second heart attack (Depression and Bipolar Alliance, 2021). Depression sufferers take many actions to control their symptoms and keep their depression under control. Such actions include either seeking professional help from a psychiatrist who prescribes them anti-depressants or even counseling services. However, although medications and counseling are often effective solutions to treating depression, they are extremely time-consuming; sufferers have to remember to take their medication in addition to taking time out off their busy day to go to counseling appointments. Fortunately, there is a product that takes these time-consuming depression treatment solutions away. It is called tDCS. What is tDCS? Read on!
Symptoms of Depression
There are many depression symptoms that can be extremely debilitating to an individual’s mood, such as:
- Frequent feelings of sadness and crying
- Inability to sleep
- Anger and irritability
- Pessimistic attitude
- Lack of energy
- Guilty feelings
- Cannot concentrate
- Loss of pleasure in activities
- Thoughts of death or suicide
(Depression and Bipolar Alliance, 2021)
Getting the right kind of treatment in order to alleviate these depression symptoms is extremely important. A person’s life is at serious risk if these symptoms are not dealt with in a timely manner.
The Brain and Depression
Before we get to the topic of tDCS and how it can help with depression, let’s begin by covering on the brain and depression. Understanding depression takes understanding the functions of neurons and neurotransmitters, which are chemicals that are part of the brain. Neurotransmitters, which travel from neuron to neuron, carry out messages such our reactions, thoughts, and emotions. Of the thirty neurotransmitters in the brain, there are three that are linked to depression–serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. All three of these neurotransmitters regulate emotions, reactions to stress, and the physical drives of sleep, appetite, and sexuality.
“Theories about how neurotransmitters may be related to a person’s mood have been based upon the effects that antidepressant medications can have on relieving depression in some people. It is believed that these medications are effective because they regulate the amount of specific neurotransmitters in the brain” (All About Depression, 2021). In other words, when anti-depressants regulate the amount of specific neurotransmitters in the brain that are linked to depression, treatment is successful. The depression symptoms of the individual is then under control.
“Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a form of neurostimulation which uses constant, low current delivered to the brain area of interest via electrodes on the scalp….When applied following established safety protocols, transcranial direct current stimulation is widely regarded as a safe method of brain stimulation, causing no apparent short-term harm”
How tDCS Works
tDCS works by first ensuring a strong connection between the skin and the electrode. This is especially important for the success of the tDCS treatment. Once the electrodes are placed correctly, the stimulation begins. During the stimulation process, the tDCS device sends constant, low direct current through the electrodes. “[The] current flow then either increases or decreases the neuronal excitability in the specific area being stimulated based on which type of stimulation is being used. This change of neuronal excitability leads to alteration of brain function, which can be used in various therapies” (Wikipedia, 2021). So getting back to the topic of neurotransmitters, the increase of neuronal excitability regulates the amount of neurotransmitters in the brain, essential for positive thoughts, reactions, and mood overall.
Benefits of tDCS
- inexpensive: take the expense of paying for antidepressants and therapy away
- non-invasive: there are no complex tools required
- painless: the stimulation successfully offers a pain-free treatment
- saves time: no more having to remember to take antidepressants and take time away from a busy schedule for a counseling session
Different kinds of tDCS Devices
TheBrainDriver v2. tDCS Digital Precision + Safety Features
This particular device allows you to select current levels of either 0.5mA, 1.0mA, 1.5mA, or 2.0mA. Its newly designed circuitry is the right size to fit in your pocket, making it portable for travel. There is a safety shut-off when not in use.
As a 9-volt system, there is a built-in analog meter, which is a wanted feature for tDCS devices because it allows you to know the rate of stimulation instantly. A professional grade ElectroSquare electrodes are included. You can also safely put it in the dishwasher due to its rust resistant attribute.
Thync: The first wearable for relaxation and energy
This wearable device enhances calmness and energy. By using three to five sessions per week, it has been clinically proven to improve sleep, balance stress, and manage energy levelsWith so many depression treatment alternatives out there, do not allow yourself to fall victim to depression any longer. tDCS is an inexpensive, painless, and time-effective technique to manage your depression symptoms. With tDCS, you will be on your way to leading a stress-free, productive life.