Do you know what depression is, what its symptoms are, and how it is treated? Depression is one of the most common mental disorders that is not limited to feeling sad or experiencing life crises and requires early diagnosis and appropriate treatment. If the disease is diagnosed in the early stages, the person will improve significantly depending on the doctor’s prescription through medication, attending psychotherapy sessions, or even lifestyle changes. But if no action is taken to cure the disease, it can have catastrophic consequences not only for the individual but for the whole family. be with us. In this article, we want to see what depression is and how it is treated.
What are the symptoms of depression?
1. Sleep changes
Many people with depression experience changes in their sleep patterns. Changes in sleep patterns sometimes occur in the form of insomnia and sometimes in the form of more and more sleep than usual. Waking up very early in the morning is one of the most common symptoms of major depression.
2. Appetite changes
Sometimes people with depression develop an eating disorder or overeating as part of their coping mechanism. This change in appetite can lead to weight loss or severe weight gain.
3. Lack of focus
Some people with acute depression are unable to concentrate ( lack of concentration ). Sometimes they read in newspapers or follow the adventures of the TV series also are in trouble and decision-making, even trivial decisions is difficult.
4. Lack of energy
People with depression often feel very tired, slow to think, and unable to perform normal daily activities.
People with depression may lose interest in normal daily activities or lack the capacity to experience pleasure. These people may even have anorexia or lack of sexual desire.
6. lack of self confidence
One of the symptoms of depression, low self-esteem is. People with depression constantly think about their shortcomings and failures and feel very guilty and helpless. Thoughts like “I’m a loser.” Or “The world is a very scary place.” It overwhelms the minds of these people.
Depression causes a person to feel that nothing good is happening. Suicidal thoughts often follow this negativity and should be taken very seriously.
8. Motor changes
Some people with depression become physically weak or have difficulty moving, for example, they may wake up very early in the morning and walk around the room for hours.
9. Physical pain
Some people with depression often complain of headaches or stomach problems instead of talking about their sad feelings.
Diagnosing depression is a complex issue, as periods of depression are sometimes part of bipolar disorder or other mental illness. But how a depressed person describes his or her symptoms often has cultural roots. In Western societies, people with depression often talk about their moods or feelings. But in Eastern societies, physical pain is commonly referred to. For this reason, it is recommended that people consult a therapist who is of their own culture or has a high understanding of the patient’s cultural background.
What are the causes of depression?
Depression is not limited to one specific cause. Sometimes it occurs as a result of life’s troubles, physical illnesses, or other stimuli, and sometimes it appears suddenly without being associated with any of these. Scientists believe that many factors play a role in depression. Some of the causes of depression are:
Experiencing trauma or trauma at an early age can lead to long-term changes in the type of brain response to fear and stress. Because of these brain changes, people with a history of childhood trauma are more likely to develop depression.
In some cases, mood disorders and suicidal ideation may have a genetic basis, but genetics is just one factor in increasing the risk of depression. 100% of identical twin genes are similar, while only 30% are more likely to be depressed. Symptoms of depression in people with a genetic predisposition usually appear at a younger age. It goes without saying that in addition to the genetic factor, other factors such as living conditions and events are also effective in causing depression in these people.
3. life conditions
Marital status, financial status, and place of residence are among the factors influencing the incidence of depression. But there is always the hypothesis that, on the contrary, depression can be considered the cause of unfavorable living conditions. For example, the prevalence of depression is higher in homeless people, but in some cases, depression itself may have been the cause of displacement.
4. Brain structure
The study of brain images shows a decrease in the activity of the frontal lobe of the brain in patients with depression. It is also said that the brain patterns of these people during sleep are different. Depression also changes the way the pituitary gland and hypothalamus respond to hormonal stimuli.
5. Other medical conditions
People with a history of sleep disorders, chronic pain, anxiety, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are more likely to develop depression.
6. narcotic substances
Drug addiction increases the risk of depression.
Who gets depression?
Depression is not specific to a particular group and affects people of all ages, races, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds. But the experience of this disease is different in different people.
Men are usually more embarrassed about their depression for cultural reasons and therefore try to cope with the illness or, as they say, treat themselves with drugs. Failure to treat depression in men can have catastrophic consequences, as the number of suicides leading to death is higher in men.
Various factors such as genetics, biology, fertility, hormonal changes, and interpersonal relationships are involved in women suffering from depression.
Many women experience behavioral and physical changes during menstruation, such as feelings of depression and irritability. Many depressed women experience more severe symptoms in the premenstrual period. In people with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), the symptoms of depression gradually become more severe by the time menstruation begins. Researchers are trying to find out how changes in hormone cycles affect the chemical structure of the brain in people with depression.
Many women also develop transient mood disorders after giving birth. These mood disorders include postpartum depression. This complication, which occurs shortly after pregnancy, causes anxiety, insomnia, crying, or thoughts such as harming oneself or the baby, making it difficult for a person to perform normal daily activities.
Depression in the elderly usually remains untreated, as many see depression as a natural consequence of aging and a natural response to the physical, mental, and social issues associated with aging. Symptoms of depression in the elderly may be different from those seen in younger people. Some examples of depressive symptoms in old age include memory disorders, dull aches, and hallucinations. Depression can also be a side effect of some medications, such as blood pressure medications, heart attacks, strokes, pelvic fractures, or macular degeneration, which are commonly prescribed in old age and are associated with depression.
children and teenagers
All growing children naturally experience emotional crises at times, but sometimes these crises lead to depression in some children. Risk of depression in children and depression in adolescents with attention deficit disorder, hyperactivity, learning disorders, anxiety disorder, and anxiety confrontational defiance (ODD) more. As well as extreme stress, trauma, or a family history of mood disorders, including factors that increase the risk of depression at an early age.
Depressed children often complain of pain and talk less about their feelings, but the symptoms of depression are different in adolescents. Aggression, high-risk behaviors, drug use, academic failure, and running away are examples of these symptoms that should be taken seriously. Suicide rates are higher in depressed teens. According to the World Health Organization, suicide is the third leading cause of death among 15- to 19-year-olds.
What is the treatment for depression?
Depression is a debilitating illness that usually responds to treatment, you just need to go to the medical centers to follow up on your illness.
- Medications: Antidepressants , mood stabilizers and antipsychotic drugs (anti- psychotic )
- Psychotherapy: Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) , family-centered therapy, and interpersonal therapy
- Brain Stimulation Therapy: Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) and Repetitive Skull Magnetic Stimulation (RTMS)
- Phototherapy: In this method, a person is exposed to a full spectrum of light using a light box to regulate the secretion of the hormone melatonin .
- Alternative therapies: Acupuncture , meditation and nutrition therapy
- Self-management strategies
- Mind / body / soul approaches: Meditation , faith and prayer
Addictions and illnesses such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are some of the conditions that make depression more difficult to treat than usual. However, if any of these are successfully treated, the symptoms of depression will usually improve.