Steve Ilardi earned his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Duke University in 1995, and has since served on the faculties of the University of Colorado and (presently) the University of Kansas. The author of over 40 professional articles on mental illness, Dr. Ilardi is a nationally recognized expert on depression. His work has been honored by the American Psychological Association’s prestigious Blau Award for early career contributions to the field, and his research on the neuroscience of depression has been funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH).
Dr. Ilardi has also received several major teaching awards in recognition of his dynamic, engaging classroom presence. Recently, he was selected from a pool of over 2,000 instructors as the recipient of the school’s highest instructional honor, the HOPE Award for teaching excellence. He also maintains an active clinical practice, and has treated several hundred depressed patients over the course of his career. Dr. Ilardi lives in Lawrence, Kansas with his wife, Maria and daughter, Abby.
Here’s some excerpts from a recent article in Psychology Today authored by Dr. Ilardi … LINK
Got Chemical imbalance? What Big Pharma Doesn’t Advertise
Published on August 10, 2009 by Stephen Ilardi, Ph.D. in The Depression Cure
A prospective patient recently asked me if her depression might involve some form of chemical imbalance. Like most Americans, she had seen hundreds of drug ads trumpeting the idea, but they filled her with a deep sense of helplessness. “I really don’t want to take antidepressants,” she explained. “And yet if there’s truly something wrong with my brain chemistry, I’d pretty much have to get on meds, wouldn’t I?”
She had aptly framed the conventional wisdom: Got chemical imbalance? Then you need to ingest some chemicals.
But the conventional wisdom is misguided. Yes, depression entails striking neurochemical abnormalities, but this fact – in and of itself – tells us nothing about how best to treat the disorder. That’s because there are numerous ways of altering depressive brain function, and most of them have nothing to do with psychotropic drugs.
And he goes on to cite studies about how exercise, diet, bright light (sunlight) and “changing the mind” all have powerful anti-depressant effects.