Depression is a mood disorder causing a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Causes may include a chemical imbalance in the brain and stressful life events, such as the loss of a loved one. The persistent feeling of sadness or loss of interest that characterizes major depression can lead to a range of emotional and physical conditions. These include the inability to sleep or concentrate on tasks. Changes in appetite, decreased energy level and thoughts of suicide are also seen. The mainstay of treatment is talk therapy with a trained psychologist or psychiatrist. Medications (for example citalopram and paroxetine) that act on the chemical imbalance in the brain are also useful treatments for major depression.
HOW IS DEPRESSION DIAGNOSED?
Psychiatrists and psychologists can diagnose depression based on your symptoms. They may examine your medical history and evaluate your changes in behavior through a questionnaire. In order to determine if depression is associated with other health conditions, the doctor may order for blood tests and imaging studies like CT scan and MRI of the brain
HOW IS DEPRESSION TREATED?
Treatment for depression focuses on providing psychological counseling to patients. Antidepressant medications also help in combating with symptoms like sleeplessness.
DID YOU KNOW?
For some people, the reduced daylight hours of winter lead to a form of depression known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
Feeling a bit low from time to time is pretty normal and may happen when there is some sort of temporary pressure in life. But when you constantly feel stressed out and experience the emotions of hopelessness and despair all the time, you may have a problem. This condition is called depression. Depression can make your daily activities of life very problematic, and sometime even make it difficult for you to get through the day. It is known to be a common mood disorder, which affects about 350 million individuals across the world.
The kind of depression one suffers from generally varies from individual to individual. Some common symptoms of depression include-
• Feeling desperate and helpless
• You may lose interest in day to day activities
• Loss of appetite or increase in hunger pangs (resulting in excessive weight loss or gain)
• Changes in sleep pattern
• You may become short tempered and irritable
• You may feel tired and lethargic
• You starts self-loathing
• You may experience problems with concentration
• Aches and pain becomes common
• Obsessive compulsive disorder
Depression has been characterized into 5 different types namely-
1. Persistent depressive disorder
2. Perinatal depression
3. Psychotic Depression
4. Seasonal affective disorder
5. Bipolar disorder
Among the mentioned types of depression, bipolar depression is slightly different. The initial symptoms of a patient with bipolar disorder is very similar to that of depression. Thus, many a times the condition may be misdiagnosed.
If you suffer from any of the above symptoms of depression be sure to visit a doctor. Initially your doctor may recommend some depression tests, which includes blood tests, CT scans and ECG. These tests are generally done to rule out the possibility of any physical problem which may be causing your depression.
Once your doctor diagnoses the cause of depression he may prescribe medicines or psychotherapy sessions with a psychologist or psychiatrist, who will help you figure out how to overcome depression. In case of many individuals suffering from depression a combination of both is recommended.
Depression is not a condition which affects adults only, your child may also be susceptible to depression, which may have grave consequences in his social and personal life. If your child shows symptoms of persistent sadness and lack of interest in things, take him to a counsellor who specializes in child psychology. Regular counselling may do wonders for your child’s health and emotional state.
It is best that you seek treatment for depression as soon as possible. If left untreated this condition can lead to serious consequences.
Lybrate offers a great opportunity to consult the top psychologists and psychiatrists and seek their help either through online means or face to face. Through Lybrate you can choose and consult the top doctors all across India. Locate the top psychologists, psychiatrists and general physicians in Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon, Indore, Jaipur etc. Lybrate.com is a great platform which offers online support to your medical issues. Subscribe to Lybrate.com and contact the doctor of your choice for tips on how to overcome depression and Bipolar disorder.