1) Always check with your doctor to determine if these treatments are right for you and if they can be used together -- especially if you are already taking antidepressants.
2) Psychotherapy can help alleviate symptoms caused by depression (such as hopelessness and anger) so that you can regain a sense of happiness and control in your life. The key to psychotherapy is to find what works for you and your condition.
3) St. John's wort, an herb, and SAM-e, a synthetic form of a chemical that occurs naturally in the body, are effective in managing depression. Consult your doctor before taking these dietary supplements because they can have adverse interactions with some medications.
4) Exercise has been found to work as well as medications for mild to moderate depression, but it may take longer to take effect. And it has been found to be better than medications in preventing a recurrence of depression.
5) Foods rich in B vitamins and omega-3's may boost your mood -- whether you've been diagnosed with depression or not. Make sure that you consume enough omega-3's by eating two servings of seafood per week or by taking fish oil supplements. Salmon, tuna and trout are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
In my opinion, the above drugs should only be used as a very last resort to treat depression which is severe and chronic, i.e. when the person's day to day functioning is badly affected and where the problem is not responsive to any other forms of treatment. Many times, however, prescription drugs are the first line of treatment and this often becomes an obstacle in the patient's road to health and empowerment. In the extreme, it can lead to addiction and more problems than the patient started out with.