Serious mood disorder
Depression is a common but serious mood disorder. It causes severe symptoms that affect how people feel, think, or handle their daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working. Before depression can be diagnosed, one would have had the symptoms for at least two weeks. Most people go through periods of feeling down, but when one is depressed, they feel persistently sad for weeks or months, rather than just a few days. Some people think depression is trivial and not a genuine health condition. The benefit of this article is to educate all that depression is a real illness with real symptoms. It is not a sign of weakness and with the right treatment and support, most people with depression can make a full recovery.
Signs and symptoms
Signs and Symptoms: persistently feeling sad or anxious. Feelings of hopelessness, or pessimism, irritability, feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness, loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities, decreased energy or fatigue, moving or talking more slowly, feeling restless or having trouble sitting still. Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions, difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping, appetite and/or weight changes, thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts, aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment.
Who is at risk
Depression can happen to anyone at any age, but often begins in adulthood. Depression is now recognized as occurring in children and adolescents, although it sometimes presents with more prominent irritability than low mood. Many chronic mood and anxiety disorders in adults begin as high levels of anxiety in children. High risk in people with personal or family history of depression, major life changes, trauma, or stress, certain physical illnesses and medications.
What to do
What do you do when you realise you have depression?
Consult your Doctor!
Main ways of treating depression are use of antidepressants and therapies.
Antidepressants help improve the way the brain uses certain chemicals that control mood or stress. Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is where electrodes are placed on your head through which a small electric current is delivered to your brain.
Things you can do beyond Treatment. You can try to be active and exercise. Also set realistic goals for yourself. Make sure you spend time with other people and confide in a trusted friend or relative. It is very important not to isolate yourself, even though you will probably feel like that. You can also give help to people and let others help you.
Expect your mood to improve gradually, not instantly. Also postpone important decisions, such as getting married or divorced; or changing jobs until you feel better. Discuss decisions with others who know you well and have a more objective view of your situation. Educate yourself about depression. Consider Cognitive Behavioural therapy (CBT). CBT is a talking therapy that helps you understand your thoughts and behaviour and how they affect you. Also Counselling involves talking to a trained counsellor in confidence about how you feel about yourself and your situation will help you understand your problems and find ways of dealing with them.