Treatment of Depression in People with Asperger's Syndrome
Asperger's and depression are a common combination, but there are ways to help sufferers overcome their problems. In some cases, family and friends can help them out of depression, but in other cases, professional help is needed. Here are some ways to approach the problem of depression:
Family and friends of a depressed person with Asperger syndrome can encourage them with words of reassurance, love and affection. Distraction may also help to take their focus off the negative aspects of their lives. Fun activities and humor can be effective in some cases.
Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) can be used to treat depression in people with Asperger's syndrome. It has been proven as an effective treatment to change the way a person thinks and the way they respond to emotion. CBT for aspies may involve learning about emotions and using therapies such as scrapbooking to express their feelings. Other tools include enjoyable social activities with a person who accepts them for who they are, and the pursuit of a special interest.
Discussing depression with the Asperger person may be enlightening if they can express what is causing the sadness and lethargy. If it is poor social skills or a lack of acceptance, it can help to work on these areas with a trained therapist.
Medication is often prescribed for people with Asperger's syndrome with the focus on providing a way to help them manage emotions. While medication has proven benefits, it can also cloud a person's mind and affect quality of life by reducing energy. In some cases it may be used until CBT has had a chance to have an effect.