What is Depression?
Depression is a mental illness in which a person constantly feels sad, anxious, hopeless, angry, and worthless. Regardless of age, this mental instability can affect any person at any time.
Types of Depression
People experience this mood disorder in different ways. On the basis of seriousness, the two most common types of depression are Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD).
Major Depressive Disorder (MDD): Also known as Clinical Depression, this condition is regarded as the most severe form of depression where people experience a constant state of sadness and grief for at least two weeks. MDD can seriously affect your health and your day-to-day activities such as eating, sleeping, working, and socializing.
Symptoms of clinical depression:
- Feeling depressed the entire day
- Loss of interest in regular activities
- Significant weight loss or gain
- Sleeping too much or much less than usual
- Difficulty in making decisions
- Feeling extremely tired or restless most days
- Feelings worthlessness or guilty
- Loss of concentration and thinking ability
- Frequent thoughts of death or suicide
Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD): Also known as dysthymia, this is a mild but chronic condition that lasts longer than MDD. The condition can typically persist for at least two years and may have any of the abovementioned symptoms.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): Also known as MDD with seasonal pattern, this type of depression usually occurs at a certain time of year, often in winter when there is less natural sunlight.
Bipolar Depression: Also known as manic depression, this condition is a mental illness marked by serious shifts in moods, energy, and behavior. It is much more severe than any other depression and can negatively affect relationships, career prospects, and academic performance.
Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder:
- Unrealistic beliefs about one’s abilities or powers
- Acting hastily without thinking about the consequences
- Feeling unusually optimistic or extremely bad-tempered
- Sleeping much less, but feeling extremely energetic
- Talking so swiftly that others can’t keep up
- Racing thoughts
- Impaired ability to make decisions and impulsiveness
- Unable to concentrate
- Hallucinations and Delusions in severe cases
Treatment of Depression
The causes and symptoms of depression differ depending on the individual. Some suffer from mild distress, while the condition in others becomes so intense that they start experiencing constant thoughts of committing suicide. In the same way, the treatment methods vary from person-to-person. Any form of depression can be treated using psychological therapies or medications. The psychological therapies may include Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), which can be a simple act of talking to the patient about his or her problem and extending some sort of help. The medications may include anti-depressants or elective-serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) prescribed by a qualified healthcare professional.