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When does TMS start working

When does TMS start working

When does TMS start working

Published: July 7, 2022


Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a procedure that utilizes magnetic fields, stimulating nerve cells and improving depression. TMS can be effective in treating depression that cannot be treated with antidepressants and other treatment methods.

In a TMS session, an electromagnetic coil is placed on your scalp, near your forehead. The TMS device then delivers a magnetic pulse that stimulates nerves in your brain that are involved in depression and mood control. It can activate parts of the brain that reduce depression.

How Long Does It Take for TMS to Start Working?

Most people will start to see improvements in their symptoms after about a week of treatment. However, the full effects of TMS therapy may not be seen until several weeks of treatment have passed. Some people may need additional sessions to achieve the best results.

Speak with GIA Miami to gain a better understanding of how long it will be before you begin to experience reductions in your experience of depression.

How Long Until I Feel Better with TMS?

Most people who receive TMS therapy for depression will start to see some improvement in their symptoms after about a week of treatment. However, the full effects of TMS may not be seen until several weeks of treatment have passed. Some people may need additional sessions to achieve the best results.

How Do I Know if TMS Is Working?

Your doctor will probably ask you to rate your depression symptoms on a scale before treatment and then periodically during treatment to see if there's been any improvement. Other measures, such as how well you're functioning at work or home, may also be used. Often, you are able to feel the difference after having a few sessions.

How Many Sessions Are Required for TMS Treatment to Work?

The number of transcranial magnetic stimulation sessions needed varies from person to person. Most people will need between 4 and 6 weeks of treatment, with 5 sessions per week, to see significant improvement in their depression symptoms.

How Long Do TMS Therapy Results Last?

There's currently no way to know how long transcranial magnetic stimulation results will last. Some people may experience long-term remission of their symptoms of depression, while others may need periodic maintenance treatment.

Can You Drink Alcohol During TMS Therapy?

It's generally recommended that you avoid alcohol during transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy. Alcohol can interfere with the effects of the treatment and may make your symptoms of depression worse. If you do drink, be sure to talk to your doctor about how much is safe to consume.

What Is Transcranial Therapy Used For?

TMS therapy is primarily used to treat depression. It can also provide symptom relief from other conditions, such as anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and migraines.

How Does TMS Treatment Work?

TMS treatment uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerves inside the brain. This stimulation during the TMS treatment process appears to impact how the brain is working, which in turn seems to reduce symptoms of depression, improving the patient's mood.

What Are the Risks of TMS Treatment?

The risks of TMS therapy are generally low. The most commonly-seen side effects are headache and scalp discomfort at the site of the magnetic coil. Some people may also experience lightheadedness, dizziness, tingling, or twitching during treatment. These side effects are usually mild and go away on their own.

How Do I Prepare for TMS Therapy?

You'll probably need to undergo a psychiatric evaluation before starting a TMS treatment session. This evaluation will help your doctor determine if the treatment is right for you. You might also need to stop taking certain types of medication, such as antidepressant medications, before beginning transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy. Be sure to talk with your doctor about any specific preparations you need to make.

What Is Major Depressive Disorder?

Major depressive disorder is more than just sadness. It’s one of the serious mental health conditions that can have a profound effect on every aspect of your life—from how you think and feel to how you handle day-to-day activities. Depression symptoms can vary from mild to severe and include:

  • Persistent feelings of sadness, anxiety disorders, or emptiness
  • Loss of interest in hobbies or activities you used to enjoy
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Sleep problems, such as insomnia or sleeping too much
  • Loss of energy or increased fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, or making decisions
  • Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, or guilt
  • Thoughts of death or suicide
  • Unexplained aches and pains

Depression is caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Biological differences. People with depression may have differences in their brains or in the way their brains work.
  • Brain chemistry. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that act as messengers between brain cells. An imbalance of these chemicals may be linked to depression.
  • Inherited traits. Depression is more common in people who have a family history of the condition.
  • Environmental factors. Some life events or experiences, such as the death of a loved one or financial problems, can trigger depression.

While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for depression, there are a number of things you can do to ease your symptoms and improve your mood. These include:

  • Getting regular exercise
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Limiting alcohol consumption
  • Avoiding illegal drugs
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Spending time with friends and family
  • Participating in hobbies or activities you enjoy
  • Talk therapy

If your depression is severe, your doctor may also recommend medication. There are a number of different types of antidepressant medication, so it may take some trial and error to find the one that works best for you. It’s important to keep in mind that it may take several weeks—or even longer—for medication to start working. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see an improvement in your mental health right away.

Read more: Why someone might say TMS made me worse

What Is Treatment-Resistant Depression?

Treatment-resistant depression is a type of depression that does not respond well to traditional antidepressant medications or talk therapy. If you have this kind of depression, you may feel like you’ve tried everything, but nothing seems to work.

There are a number of different factors that can contribute to treatment-resistant depression, including:

  • Biological factors. People with treatment-resistant depression may have differences in their brains or in the way their brains work.
  • Medication side effects. Some people may not respond to medication because of side effects such as weight gain, sexual dysfunction, or fatigue.
  • Psychological factors. Depression can be caused or aggravated by psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, or trauma.
  • Substance abuse. Alcohol and drugs often worsen symptoms of depression or make them more difficult to treat.


If you’re struggling with depression, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) may be a treatment option worth considering. TMS therapy uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells within the brain and has been shown to be effective in treating depression. While it’s not a cure-all, TMS therapy can provide relief from symptoms for many people.

If you’re considering TMS therapy, speak with GIA Miami. We have seen countless people come through our doors and experience a lift in their depression. Contact us today to find out how we can help you get your life back.

Read more: Can TMS be used for teen depression?

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