Our mind is a complex system. And anything complex could never have an easy outlet. Mental health problems have existed for over a lifetime. But until now people were scared to acknowledge it and let it be treated.
Most people when people feel sad it is just grief but when a line is crossed, it could easily be classified as depression. In that case, we need to treat it as any other disorder or condition which could provide some relief.
This blog will elaborate on the condition of depression, its causes, symptoms, and types. Read on to learn more about this common yet elusive health condition.
What is depression and what are its causes?
In layperson terms, it could be explained as a mental disorder that concerns a human’s emotional well-being. It could involve one’s feelings or emotions and is often known to be a sophisticated disease. Some of its major causes include,
1. Biological Factors
Certain biological factors can affect the presence of depression in a human. Firstly, it could include the role of genetics. When someone in your family is associated with depression, chances are you will also develop it in later stages of life.
Moreover, there are studies to suggest that chemical imbalances can change the way one is depressed. When neurotransmitters like Serotonin and Norephedrine are not found at the levels they should be, it can lead to mood fluctuations.
2. Psychological Factors
So how do people without biological factors find themselves depressed? That is because depression can be triggered when you go through a major life change like an accident or a loss of life.
Additionally, people who suffer from incessant pain or are perhaps suffering from a life-threatening disease like Cancer could find themselves depressed. This is due to the uncertainty they are facing. Lastly, people’s attitudes toward certain values in life can also influence their mood.
3. Environmental Factors
These factors depend on the surroundings in which a kid or adult is in. For instance, anyone who is exposed to abject poverty, violent outbursts, or neglect as a child can develop depression. Drug abuse or isolation could also be just as harmful.
Symptoms Of Depression
Now let’s look at the symptoms of depression and how we could identify the changes in ourselves or our loved ones. So the major symptoms include-
1. Emotional Symptoms
In the beginning, the symptoms are visible emotionally. This is when the individual is subjected to constant feelings of grief or disappointment.
They also stop enjoying the hobbies that they once used to find pleasure in. A constant linger of hopelessness and uncertainty dooms over them which keeps them on their toes.
2. Cognitive Symptoms
Contrary to popular thought, depression can arise as symptoms affecting cognitive behaviors in a human being. They not only have a very short memory but also find it difficult to concentrate or pay attention to even day-to-day activities.
3. Physical Symptoms
The physical symptoms are not hard to notice. Mostly it is seen that the person gains or loses a huge amount of weight in a very short time. Once vivacious, they often end up curling on the bed as they lack energy.
4. Behavioral Symptoms
This could mean a change in the way one deals with problems including anger and irritability. More often than not, they are unhappy and find themselves locking horns with people.
Types Of Depression
Multiple types of depression have been diagnosed in human beings. Some of the major ones are-
1. Major Depressive Disorder
Apart from damaging the ability to carry on with daily life activities, the disorder also makes you sad for no apparent reason.
2. Persistent Depressive Disorder
This could be the former but for a short period.
3. Bipolar Disorder
Patients with this condition often find themselves juggling between feelings of high and low.
4. Seasonal Affective disorder
As its name suggests, seasonal disorder affects only during a particular season, especially winters.
5. Postpartum Depression
Postpartum depression is a depressive episode suffered by new moms due to the multiple changes in their lives. It can also be attributed to the fluctuations of hormones.
Treatment For Depression
Treatment for depression includes a combination of various strategies or in some cases one in particular so that the patient feels like himself/herself. It could include-
This means cognitive behavioral therapy to help them wade the dark waters of life. Interpersonal therapy is also suggested so that they can mend their relationship with their close one or may even initiate one if possible.
It can be immensely helpful for people with BPD who are known to have violent outbursts and have difficulty continuing with a relationship.
As popularly known, some mental health conditions can only be improved with the help of medications. Doctors suggest SSRIs help the patient’s brain develop enough neurotransmitters, the lack of which is often found to be the cause of distress among them.
However, the dosage and the kind would depend on the type and intensity of your condition.
3. Lifestyle Changes
Only therapy and medication can bring no change in your life. Therefore one must also include some healthy habits for them to get out of the hole. This includes regular exercise, meditation, or a healthy diet. You can also opt to go for dieting.
4. Electroconvulsive Therapy
Those who don’t respond to traditional ways can look into ECT.
Depression affects every walk of our lives. The moment it finds us there is no going back without proper therapy or treatment. However, we must not lose our hearts and try to fight it off with all our might.
The best way to do it is by understanding the condition and knowing how it can alter the situations around you and your loved ones. Finding an anchor in life to lean on or being an anchor to someone with depression can be rewarding.
If you are the primary caregiver, patience should be your crown jewel as they are suffering from a condition and nothing is personal.
- Depression. National Institute of Mental Health. https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml. Accessed Jan. 23, 2017.
- Chand SP, Arif H. Depression (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430847/). [Updated 2022 Jul 18]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Accessed 1/13/2023.
- Children’s mental health: Anxiety and depression. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/depression.html#depression. Accessed. Jan. 23, 2017.