Depression Specialist

Patricia G. Gao, MD

Primary Care Physician located in Glen Burnie, MD

The frightening, debilitating symptoms of depression can disrupt your life. Dr. Patricia G. Gao is qualified to prescribe a variety of mood-lifting medications. Family support, counseling, and the caring guidance from Dr. Gao and staff can help you get back to your normal life. Dr. Gao serves the residents of Glen Burnie, Maryland.

Depression Q&A

What is depression?

Depression is an illness related to brain chemistry imbalances. Factors such as genetics, changes in hormone levels, stress, and difficult life circumstances can affect your brain chemistry.

What are the symptoms of depression?

The bothersome symptoms of depression include:

  • Feeling exceptionally sad or anxious
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Feeling worthless
  • Sleeping too little or too much
  • Loss of energy
  • Uncontrollable weeping
  • Trouble concentrating, thinking, or making decisions
  • Fluctuations in appetite causing weight gain or loss
  • Stomach ache
  • Headache
  • Digestive issues
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Can you have depression and anxiety at the same time?

While anxiety and depression are different conditions, they may occur simultaneously. Anxiety can be a symptom of clinical (major) depression. Depression can also be triggered by a type of anxiety disorder such as separation anxiety disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, or panic disorder.

When should you seek help for depression?

If your mood is interfering with your job performance, family life, and social functions, it requires interventions.

How is depression treated?

Psychotherapy is often recommended to treat mild and moderate types of depression. During counseling sessions, you focus on behaviors, ideas, and emotions that contribute to depression. Identifying and understanding life problems that impact your illness can enable you to recover a sense of control. Depending on your particular situation, Dr. Gao may recommend individual or group, counseling sessions. Often, inviting spouses and other family members to psychotherapy is beneficial. In addition to psychotherapy, she might suggest you take medicines to help treat your depression.

Dr. Gao bases the selection of medications on patients’ symptoms, other medical conditions they suffer from, and other medicines they’re currently taking. If you’ve experienced depression in the past, Dr. Gao may prescribe the same medicine that helped you recover previously. Typically, you must take antidepressants regularly for 4-8 weeks before you experience the full benefit of them. Dr. Gao monitors you closely during this time to determine the effectiveness of your treatment. After you begin to feel better, she may recommend antidepressants for an additional 4-6 months. This action can help prevent a relapse of your condition.

If you’re suffering from any of the symptoms of depression, schedule an appointment with Dr. Gao at Patricia G. Gao MD LLC today.

Insurance

We accept the majority of health insurance plans. Please contact our office if you do not see yours listed or have any other questions.

AARP
Aetna
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
APWU
Assurant Health
Bankers Life and Casualty Company
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal
Blue Cross Blue Shield Horizon
Care Improvement Plus
CareFirst
CHAMPVA
Cigna
CoreSource
Corvel
Coventry Health Care