The National Institute of Mental Health explains that depression is a serious mood disorder which impacts the way a person feels and how well they are able to function in society. Individuals who suffer from depression regularly take hits to their self-esteem, quality of life, and how they are capable of managing themselves. Depression is very different from sadness, and it's not something that someone can simply shake off or get over. A professional diagnosis of depression generally follows once someone ongoingly experiences multiple symptoms of depression for two weeks or longer.
Depression Can Be Difficult To Navigate On Your Own
A Closer Look At Depression
The experience of depression varies from person to person. Not everyone will experience depression in the precise manner of someone else, and that's to be expected. Each human being is unique with their circumstances, body chemistry, and other factors which impact their experiences. Sometimes, depression can vary in degrees, although the longer it lasts, the worse it tends to get. This is because depression creates a pit where people feel like they are trapped and unable to get out.
Symptoms Of Depression
Presently, there are a variety of symptoms which are associated with the existence of depression. These symptoms have emotional, mental, and even physical impacts. Knowing the symptoms of depression matters and is something which all people should be aware of. If someone suddenly begins acting in ways which conflict with their normal personality, this could be a sign of depression. So many lives and relationships have been lost because the people around a depressed individual were unable to recognize what they were going through.
Some common signs of depression include feelings of emptiness, changes in sleep patterns, loss of interest in normally enjoyed activities, restlessness, and withdrawing from others. Many people who find themselves battling depression may also struggle with concentration, experience massive gains or losses in weight, and even experience thoughts of suicide. Again, the specific symptoms and degrees can vary, but if someone is habitually evidencing multiple depressive symptoms, this could be a clear indicator.
In this day and age, there are multiple factors which are linked to the development of depression. Falling into one or even more than one of the upcoming criteria does not automatically mean that a person will undergo depression. However, the likelihood increases. Each is different and has a tolerance threshold. Nevertheless, understanding the causes of depression can make a significant difference when it comes to prevention measures and clinical treatment after the fact.
Individuals who are genetically related to others who have previously struggled with depression may be more vulnerable to this mood disorder. Scientists are largely investigating more details into the reason why this link exists, but as of now, it is well-documented as a cause of depression. Of course, not everyone with relatives who have struggled with depression will share this struggle. Still, recognizing genetics as a potential cause makes a difference, especially if someone falls into other risk factor categories.
The quality of a person's lifestyle is another common cause of depression. Someone who is constantly under stress, pressure, and exposed to environments which are not good for them may develop depression over time. This is why being extremely conscious and vigilant of what's happening in our lives is so very impactful. Getting swept up is so easy, but at the end of the day, each person's mental health and wellness should always come first, even if that means letting go of other things.
Traumatic experiences which a person goes through yet does not properly deal with can also cause depression in certain cases. This is a prime example where depression serves as a symptom of a greater problem which lurks beneath the surface. The fact that unresolved trauma can trigger depression in human beings is a prime example of why people need to address issues as they arise. This may not be initially easy or comfortable, but in the long run, it always pays off.
Finally, clinical illnesses and even certain medicines can alter an individual's brain chemistry and engender depression. Again, this is another risk factor which varies according to the individual's brain chemistry and potential other circumstances. If you or someone you know begins to experience depression as a result of a health issue or after certain medication, contacting a physician immediately is critical.
The Psychology Of Depression
The American Psychiatric Association explains the extent to which depression impacts people. Unlike sadness and grief, depression is deeper and longer and not necessarily situationally based. This is why people tend to withdraw from others, behave in manners which are abnormal from their usual personalities, and even lose interest in life. It's not uncommon for people who are experiencing sadness or grief to claim that they are feeling depressed. In the majority of cases, this is not clinically accurate. However, ongoing sadness and grief which is not managed can turn into depression.
Some people question the clinical legitimacy of depression and how it impacts people around the world. At this point, there is research across the board, which affirms the seriousness of depression and it's emotional, physical, and psychological impacts. Understanding mental health matters because it impacts how society views and treats people who are working to overcome depression and other psychological issues.
Depression Can Be Difficult To Navigate On Your Own
Treatment Options For Depression
Depression is a very serious mental health issue, but with the proper assistance and guidance, depression is very treatable. Depression does not mean the end of an individual's story. As a matter of fact, many people have experienced depression, gotten the necessary treatment, and come back stronger than ever. There is always hope and room for rehabilitation and improvement.
Psychotherapy is one of the leading treatment options for depression, as noted by the American Psychological Association. This manner of treatment is effective because it involves an individual working with a therapist who can get to know them, learn about their depression, and potential underlying factors. Once these things have been established, the psychotherapist can then begin helping their patient develop strategies, action plans, and techniques to overcome the disorder.
When going through the process of psychotherapy, it's important for patients to remain open and receptive to feedback. Sometimes, the therapist may make statements or ask questions which are unexpected or surprising. Many times, therapists want to provoke new thoughts and ideas. A certain level of trust is important to the therapeutic process. It is the job of the therapist to establish a safe environment where everyone is free to be honest.
Individuals who are going through depression may also be prescribed medication. The specific medication which is prescribed can vary from person to person. Whenever medication is involved, especially for treating depression, it is paramount that only a licensed doctor prescribes this medication. Under no circumstances should someone who is not a licensed doctor administer medicine to someone who is going through depression. This has the potential to exacerbate depression and any ongoing symptoms.
Knowing That You Are Not Alone
Whenever an individual is faced with depression or another challenge, it can be easy to feel all alone in the world. As a matter of fact, this feeling is one of many reasons why isolating oneself from others is a common indicator of depression. However, no matter how scary things may seem, you are not alone. Many amazing people in this world can be there for you and help you if you allow them to do so. This is relevant, regardless of whether you are dealing with depression or something else entirely. Hard times and obstacles manifest in different ways for various individuals.
If you're interested in getting help and having a proven, trusted confidant, then you will be thrilled to learn about BetterHelp online therapy. At BetterHelp, we prioritize the provision of help and guidance above all. Everyone experiences challenge at one point or another but having the right support system and people to count on during these times makes all the difference in the world. Online therapy is a proven method which can reach all people and ensure that anyone interested in professional care has access to it.
What is the definition of depression in psychology?
Depression is one of the broadest mental health conditions in the DSM-V. The psychological definition of depression, or depressive disorder, is relatively simple despite all those variables. It’s categorized by a persistent depressive state, feelings of sadness, and a general loss of interest in life. In severe cases, the symptoms of depression may also trigger feelings of worthlessness and/or thoughts of death.
What are the three forms of treatment for depression?
Because there are so many different types of depressive disorder, and because everyone experiences and copes with it differently, there are also many different types of depression treatments available. First, patients should consult with a health care provide to discuss possible risk factors. Those experiencing overwhelming feelings of sadness, thoughts of death, or premenstrual dysphoric disorder are encouraged to seek professional help as a step toward suicide prevention.
People with depression most commonly find solace in one (or all) of these three therapies:
Many times, persistent depressive disorder is met with a mix of different treatments. In cases of major depressive disorder, more invasive options such as medication, group therapy and/or electroconvulsive therapy may be used instead of or in addition to other therapies. The side effects of these treatments vary greatly, so talk to a mental health care provider for more guidance.
What are psychological treatments?
Psychological treatments are remedies, therapies, and/or cures to well-known mental health conditions. They reveal the risk factors of depressive disorder in a person’s life and aim to serve as first-line suicide prevention. People with depression often suffer from weight gain, seasonal affective disorder, and other medical conditions. So, therapists generally work closely with patients to develop a treatment plan that works for them.
How does music therapy work with depression?
Research suggests that music can help with major depressive disorder in several ways. This is especially true for people who have difficulty concentrating due to racing thoughts and/or anxiety. That’s because music can clear the listener’s mind and uplift their mood, thereby erasing some of the most difficult symptoms of depression, including feelings of sadness and trouble making decisions. In fact, certain melodies have been shown to make a positive change in the listener with seasonable affective disorder, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, or severe depression.
According to studies, the primary cause of this phenomenon is still shrouded in mystery. Many speculate that music acts as a mental “safe space” for processing difficult thoughts and feelings. It thereby triggers the centers of the brain responsible for interest or pleasure, relaxation or pain. That, in turn, causes some of the symptoms of persistent depressive disorder to go away, at least temporarily.
Thus, music therapy is often used by psychiatrists to alleviate anxiety and open up the mind for free association and psychoanalysis. Some experts warn than certain lyrics or melodies might trigger negative emotions. So, it’s always best to use music therapy under the guidance of a professional.
What is the cause of a feeling of depression in human beings?
Depressive disorder in human beings can be caused by a wide variety of different things, all depending on how the sufferer processes and copes with their life experiences. For example, less severe cases of the blues involve temporary conditions such as postpartum depression and seasonal affective disorder. More severe bouts often involve a complete loss of interest or pleasure, or even suicidal ideation.
However, research shows that depression is curable with the right therapies and lifestyle changes. Since a majority of people with persistent depressive disorder report feeling that way because of stress or trauma, many health care facilities offer suicide prevention services without a doctor’s visit. But because depression can also be caused by other things such as genetics, medication, or medical issues, it’s important to see a doctor if you’re feeling low.
What are the 4 types of depression?
Although the mainstream assumes there are only four main types of depressive disorder in human beings, there are actually many more. Major depressive disorder is an extremely complex condition, so the term is often used as an umbrella to describe several different symptoms. Meanwhile, the disorder itself can be broken down into at least 7 separate subcategories:
Be sure to see a doctor for a diagnosis before making decisions about your mental health and/or the treatment thereof. Some treatments can be extremely invasive, such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), for example. It’s commonly used in cases of several psychotic depression but it’s a good option for people with seasonal affective disorder or the baby blues.
Does depression count as a disability?
Major depressive disorder is considered a psychiatric disability in the United States. Thanks to updated regulations from the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), people with severe depressive disorder may be eligible for benefits from the American government. That’s because the condition classified as a substantial mood disorder, known to interfere with how some people live their lives or make money.
However, qualifying for psychiatric disability may be tough for some people. First, the patient must exhibit persistent depressive symptoms. Conditions such as postpartum depression, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and seasonal affective disorder aren’t usually classified by the ADA as life-threatening disabilities. But, if you’ve ever had to use a suicide prevention hotline, then you’re most likely eligible for psychiatric disability. So, see your therapist for more information.
How do I know if I’m bipolar?
The best way to find out if you’re bipolar is to speak to a mental health professional as soon as you start to question your thoughts, feelings, or behaviors. There are many types of mental illness, and the symptoms of depression are rather broad. However, bipolar (or hypomanic) disorder is unique because of its peculiar symptoms, which often include the following:
Bipolar and depressive disorder usually go hand-in-hand, often walking alongside anxiety too. So, talk to your doctor right away, especially if you have dangerous mood swings or need help from a suicide prevention hotline. NOTE: The signs of bipolar disorder may vary based on a person’s sex, age, health, or lifestyle.
What is the difference between a mood disorder and depression?
The difference between a mood disorder and a major depressive disorder is the polarity. In other words, people with depression generally have no “up,” while people with a mood disorder often swing from one extreme to another. Depressive disorder is therefore unipolar, while the other is bipolar.
What is the number one cause of depression?
Contrary to popular belief, there is no singular cause for major depressive disorder. In fact, most experts take a more multi-faceted approach to understanding the diagnosis. That’s because studies suggest there are numerous issues that can afflict someone enough to cause depression. Among the most common are genetics, stress, trauma, medication, health problems, money shortages, and relationship woes. In general, depressive disorder develops once numerous triggers combine to negatively affect a person’s outlook on life.
What is the result of depression?
Major depressive disorder can have many consequences, including negative changes to the mind and body, especially if it’s left untreated. Even less severe cases of seasonal affective disorder and/or premenstrual dysphoric disorder can cause serious problems in a person’s life. The symptoms associated with this type of mental illness include risky behaviors, substance abuse or addiction, relationship toxicity, employment issues, and even health problems. In extreme cases, some people may even need suicide prevention services.
Which type of depression is the most common type of mood disorder?
According to Johns Hopkins, major depressive disorder (MDD) is the most common type of mood syndrome in the world. It’s characterized by a persistent depressive mood and may require suicide prevent if the symptoms are left unmanaged. The second most common type of mood malady is bipolar disorder. It’s characterized by extreme mood changes and manic behaviors. Fortunately, both disorders can be treated with intense cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), and/or medication.
What age group has the highest rate of depression?
While many suicide prevention hotlines deal with adolescents and young adults struggling with seasonal affective symptoms or an age-related dysphoric disorder, middle aged and elderly adults are at risk of developing depression too. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that nearly 9% of all adult females can be diagnosed with a persistent depressive syndrome of some kind. Nearly 6% of adult males were susceptible to it as well.
However, people between the ages of 18 to 25 had the highest rates of depression overall. According to some psychiatrists, the natural progression of premenstrual dysphoric disorder should be classified as a hormonal disorder and not depression. Either way, an age-related dysphoric disorder can result in severe depression if it’s left untreated.
Can a neurologist help with depression?
Since depression is a neurological disorder that requires tailored treatment plans, neurologists often jump in to help treat mental illness. So, while they may not work directly with suicide prevention like a therapist, they can help pinpoint any neurological problems happening behind the scenes.
First, you must set up an appointment to get an accurate diagnosis. It’s important to know whether you’re dealing with major depression or another form of it such as seasonal affective disorder or premenstrual dysphoric disorder. That’s because a hormone-related dysphoric disorder may require different types of treatment, including psychoanalysis or psychotherapy. The good news is that neurologists can prescribe depression medication.