Healthy Living

Understanding why Depression is Associated with Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's Disease :Identifying Depression

Identifying Depression

Depression is not easy to identify, research shows that even the best of specialist fail to identify every second case of depression in Parkinson’s disease (2).A depressed person suffers from low mood for most of the day and everyday. There is a loss of interest in every activity, even those that a person used to enjoy earlier. Another notable change is in dietary habits, a person may either start gaining or losing weight. A person may feel agitated for no obvious reason. There is also a sharp fall in mental abilities, failure to concentrate, difficulty in doing everyday tasks. Sleep pattern is also altered in depression, a person may fell sleep late and may wake up early, while some may sleep more than normal. Finally, some people may start feeling that they are worthless, with loss of interest in life. Some of them may even have suicidal thoughts (3).

A person suffering from Parkinson's is usually on several drugs, thus it is important to exclude the side effects related these medications. Some of these side effects may resemble depression. Also in severe cases of depression, one must differentiate depression from other mood problems or difficulties in adjusting to the disease. Grief or guilt-related to disease like Parkinson's is a very different health problem and would require a different approach (4).