It seems that all too often people do not take seriously the fact that others have difficulties in their lives that can lead to a depressive episode. The difficulties can be caused by loss, illness, divorce or even birth. But whatever the cause of a persons depression it must be treated seriously and with compassion. Those who are HIV positive are too often assumed to be depressed because of the diagnosis.
It is assumed that anyone learning that they have this life threatening illness would naturally become depressed. But the fact is that is not necessarily true and depression in the AIDS sufferer must be looked at as a separate problem to be fair to the patient. A good and observant physician should recognize this.
No Easy Choices
When treating someone with HIV/AIDS who is depressed the treatment must be chosen wisely. It is important to pick something that will not interfere with any of the other medications that are being taken. Antidepressants are something that can be taken by the patient without much worry about being difficult on their bodies. As well, it would be a good idea to suggest counseling since dealing with too much can make getting through anything much more difficult.
Some of those suffering from depression may choose to go the route of using natural remedies. But it is important that this is discussed with their health care providers first since they must be more careful about what they put in their bodies.
For example, St. Johns Wort which has good success as a natural remedy for depressives affects protease inhibitors and this is very bad. It can make the HIV/AIDS virus stronger and more resistant to other drugs. So St. Johns Wort must not be used to treat depression in those with HIV/AIDS.
It is often suggested that treating depression in those with AIDS or HIV should be a managed issue where a combination of health care providers work together to ensure the right care and the right treatment. There are actually physicians who specialize in treating those who are suffering life threatening illnesses who also are suffering an episode of depression. Whichever route the patient chooses they must choose someone who will know the right answers. They do not want to treat one problem only to make the other one worse.
No matter who you are recovering from a depressive episode does not happen quickly. But it will happen with the right treatment. Do not decide that because the HIV or AIDS is difficult to deal with that depression is a natural extension of being ill or that it will not get better. A positive attitude helps with fighting HIV/AIDS.
There is unfortunately so much more that can cause depressive episodes aside from the common chemical imbalance of a depressive. This includes the loss of close friends or family who also are lost to AIDS. Nonetheless if you are depressed do not let your illness prevent you from getting care to ease the symptoms of your depression.