5 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression

In the wake of one of the biggest catastrophes of our time, mental health issues remain prevalent even two years after its end. In their latest estimates the World Health Organization (WHO) identified that a resounding 5% of the global population suffers from depression (or related disorders). 

Depression is a very common mental condition contrary to popular belief, these disorders or no myth, I assure you. From erratic mood changes to sad feelings in family, professional, and community life, depression can lead to severe outcomes.

But we must remember that millions today are waking up to the effects of the illness while there are multiple avenues of depression disorder treatment available today, thanks to the rise in global awareness about its symptoms.  

Let’s take a moment to better understand clinical depression, its leading symptoms and what to do to counter the illness when confronted by various types of depression. 

What is Clinical Depression

Depression is known by several names including major depression, major depressive disorder, or commonly as clinical depression, discusses the National Institute for Mental Health.

The primary effect of this disorder are feelings of sadness and pessimism, leading to a decline in interest in activities that a person once wholeheartedly enjoyed. Depressive disorder causes emotional instability and also physical problems. It reduces the ability of affected individuals to function in social constructs like at home or work, the American Psychiatric Association identifies.    

As a serious mood disorder, it can cause major symptoms that can affect how a victim of the illness thinks, feels, interacts with daily life, and conducts their daily life. Depression can have noticeable effects on a person’s mental health, sleep, eating routines, and work. 

The great news is that clinical depression is treatable and there are several avenues for support available for affected individuals. 

The Causes of Major Depression Scientifically Explained

The John Hopkins Institute of Medicine (JHM) explains that major depressive disorder is caused due to imbalance of brain chemicals. While other factors are also at play, the JHM discusses the illness can be hereditary. Traumatic life events, certain illnesses and even the absence of a trigger can possibly cause clinical depression in affectees.   

11 Common Symptoms of MDD Everyone Should Know About 

Those affected by major depressive disorder can display one or more symptoms identified by leading mental health associations and the WHO. 

  • Most prominently sufferers demonstrate persistent sadness, anxiety or an empty mood (a sense of being lonely, confusion about life, demotivation, lacking energy and hopelessness)
  • Having negative beliefs & outcomes in every situation (pessimism), and feelings of hopelessness (alienation, forsakenness, lack of inspiration, thoughts of doom,  powerlessness, limitedness)  
  • Being easily irritated, frustrated and constantly feeling restless
  • Feeling guilty, worthless, or helpless 
  • Feeling detached or disinterested in previously enjoyed activities and hobbies
  • Increase in fatigue, decreased energy, and laziness 
  • Problems in concentrating, remembering, and decision making
  • Erratic sleep habits e.g. loss of sleep, waking up at odd hours, and oversleeping
  • Disturbances in appetite, eating habits, and weight changes
  • Physical effects including aches, pains, headaches, cramps, digestive issues, and other physical ailments without cause immune to treatment 
  • Thoughts of suicide, self harm, death and at the extreme attempted suicide.

8 Major Types of Clinical Depression and Their Symptoms 

The WHO reports that close to 300 million people around the world suffer from various types of depression classes. Stemming from a variety of factors namely biological, physiological, hereditary or environmental, depression has been proven to statistically affect women 50% more than men.   

Major Depression 

Major depressive disorder, aka clinical depression, is a state of persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest in routine activities. Sufferers demonstrate symptoms including loss of enjoyment in activities, feelings of worthlessness, pessimism and negative thoughts, irritability, and other signs. 

WebMD discusses that depending on the severity of symptoms, treatment can involve psychotherapy, antidepressant medication, cognitive behavioral therapy, behavioral therapy, counselling, or a combination of two or more of the above.  

Dysthymia (Persistent Depressive Disorder)

Dysthymia or persistent depressive disorder has been discovered to be a long term illness that can last for years. It can affect daily life and relationships of those affected, leaving them without feeling happy even during joyous events/occasions. 

Professionals at John Hopkins Medicine discuss that curing persistent depressive disorder requires administering antidepressant medicine, cognitive behavioral or interpersonal therapy. Treatment for this type of depression is generally long term, since this condition lasts longer among individuals.  

Postpartum Depression

Unique to women, postpartum depression occurs post-childbirth and can have serious effects on the mother. Women affected can feel extremely sad, anxious, and exhausted. There is a mix of symptoms including mood swings, inability to bond with the baby, and thoughts of harm to themselves or the baby. 

The NIH and many other mental health institutes discuss cognitive behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, hormone therapy, medication, support groups, and increase social support as suggested remedies for the illness.  

Seasonal Affective Disorder 

The Harvard Medical School explains that seasonal affective disorder is attributed to changes in seasons. Professionals explain that the illness typically begins in the fall or winter seasons. Sufferers tend to experience fatigue, helplessness, and a loss of interest in activities they previously enjoyed. 

Some of the most common treatments for SAD are cognitive behavioral therapy, medication, psychotherapy, light therapy, and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). 

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder causes mood swings from extreme highs to extreme lows. Affected individuals with manic bipolar disorder tend to experience ideas of grandiose and high self-esteem, whereas the lows have depressive moods similar to those of major depressive disorder. 

Professionals discuss that the most ideal treatment for bipolar patients include antipsychotic & antidepressant medication, cognitive behavioral therapy, bipolar mania treatment, psychotherapy, mood stabilizers, and interpersonal therapy.   

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)

PMDD is explained as a severe type of premenstrual disorder that causes severe mood swings before menstruation in women. This disorder can cause fatigue, appetite changes, disturbed sleep patterns, and irritability as most common symptoms. 

The most popular treatments include increasing protein and carbs intake while decreasing use of sugar, salt, caffeine, and alcohol. In addition, professionals recommend regular exercise, meditation, Vitamin B6, magnesium, calcium, Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), and in some cases birth control pills.

Situational Depression

Situational depression as the  name suggests is caused by certain events in life e.g. death of a friend or family member, job loss, or other traumatic situation. 

Professionals have discussed that situational depression is not an official mental disorder, rather an adjustment disorder with depressed moods. This means sufferers find it difficult to accommodate their behaviour after experiencing traumatic events in life. 

Psychotherapy is considered one of the top treatments for this disorder, while medication and selfcare (mindfulness, personal safety, personal health management) are also deemed very effective remedies. 

Atypical Depression

Atypical depression is explained as a subcategory of major depressive disorder. A person diagnosed with atypical illness has previously in an early age experienced depression. Ing Affectees can demonstrate increased appetite, weight gain, excessive or recessive sleeping habits, fatigue, weakness, sensitivity to criticism, and reactive moods. 

Professionals recommend psychotherapy and antidepressant medicine as the ideal treatment for this type of depressive disorders. 

Where to Get Help For Clinical Depression 

If you or a loved one experiences any types of depression we discussed above, it is recommended to seek professional help. Yes, depression is a common mental health issue and thousands of people are actively seeking help & treatment around the world. 

New Day 2Day helps you transform challenges into triumphs! We believe that every disorder treatment has its unique treatment depending on the individual. Equipped with successful wellness training courses, transformational therapy, and counselling, your mental wellbeing becomes our top priority.  

Schedule a consultation with New Day 2Day to begin your mental health wellness journey and seek guidance for disorder treatment.

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