Depression is a severe condition that negatively affects how a person thinks/ feels/acts/ behaves. Depression invites feelings of sadness/ sorrow/ hopelessness/ loss of interest in activities (engaged earlier)
Conclusively, depression is different from the fluctuations in mood (that people experience as a part of a healthy life). For instance, temporary emotional responses (to the challenges in everyday life) do not constitute depression. Likewise, even the feeling of grief resulting from the death of near and dear ones cannot be termed ‘depression as it is in general, not persistent.
The causes of depression are not fully understood. It occurs due to a complex combination of factors. The causative factor behind recession is changes in brain chemistry (Clinical depression is thought to be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. In many cases among depressed patients, there is found a reduction in the number of certain neurotransmitters—such as serotonin).
Issues like Depression and mental Anxiety can result from a host of factors, as stated below.
Other non-chemical environmental sources include: Noise pollution, Electrical pollution, Natural disaster
The following symptoms are observed in the case of the patients having Depression.
Diagnosis is the procedure to identify the root cause of the disease through applying various tests (to ascertain the signs) /observing the symptoms/ interrogating the patient (about his feelings/ family history/ personal history including the lifestyle)
Diagnostic tests are essential for providing safe/ secure/ effective treatment. Diagnostic tests start only after freely consulting with the doctor/ mental health specialists and other specialists.
To attain and assess the diagnostic test results correctly, medical experts have designed some questionnaires to assess the severity of Depression.
The HDRS (Hamilton Depression Rating Scale) is one of the most widely used assessment instruments in the world. The HDRS contains 21 questions.
HDRS (Hamilton Depression Rating Scale)
(Patient’s name, address with the date of assessment)
(The score ranges from 0- 4 under varying conditions)
|1||Depression Mood (gloomy attitude/pessimism/sadness/tendency to weep)||
|2||Feeling of guilt||
|4||Insomnia (difficulty in falling asleep)||
|5||Insomnia (Feeling disturbed and restless during the night)||
|6||Insomnia (waking up during sleep and unable to fall asleep again)||
|7||Interests in work||
|8||Retardation (Slowness in thought/ speech/activity)||
|9||Agitation (restlessness associated with anxiety)||
|11||Anxiety (somatic: urinary, respiratory, and gastrointestinal problems/indigestion)||
|12||Gastrointestinal symptom (loss of appetite/heavy abdominal discomfort)||
|13||Somatic symptoms (General: fatigue/headache/backache/loss of energy)||
|14||Genital symptoms (Menstrual disturbance)||
|15||Hypochondriasis (fear of prolonged serious illnesses despite medical assurances)||
|18||Diurnal variation (Symptoms get worse in morning or evening time)||
|19||Depersonalization and de-regularization (feeling of nihilistic ideas)||
|20||Paranoid symptoms (intense and irrational mistrust/suspicion/fear)||
|21||Obsessive thoughts and compulsions (against which the patient struggles)||
5.1) Depression affects the whole body. An even milder form of depression and mood disorder can affect the quality of life. Serious health complications may arrive in the form of heart disease/ stroke/ diabetes/ cancer.
Additionally, Depression dampens the urge for eating / sexual desire/ job performance/ quality of sleep.
5.2) The brain stores memories and regulates the production of hormones called cortisol. The body releases cortisol during the time of physical and mental stress, including Depression. This can lead to a memory problem (such as forgetfulness/ concentration).
Over and above, Depression makes it difficult to concentrate and focus on the tasks/ make correct decisions/ think clearly/ behave rationally
5.3) Depression can cause mental suffering significantly and uncontrollably. At its worst, depression can lead to suicide.
Identifying the type is quite remarkable. Because treatment procedure largely depends on the nature of the disease. Various types of depressive disorders are stated below
Unipolar Depression can involve Anxiety and other symptoms, but no manic episodes. In the case of unipolar Depression, the dominant feature is a depressed mood (it is a normal temporary reaction to life events, such as prevention in romance and love affairs. Depressed mood is also a symptom of some physical diseases as well as side effects of some drugs and medical treatments).
It is a mental health condition that involves changes in moods and other mental conditions.
There may be different types of bipolar Depression, depending on the patterns of mood swings. The condition is characterized by both manic as well as depressive episodes (manic episode includes clinical Depression as part of the diagnosis. On the other hand depressive episode is characterized by feeling sad and unhappy at least for two weeks continuously ). Bipolar Depression is separated by periods of normal moods.
Conclusively, It is important to seek timely treatment as the impact of bipolar Depression on health and quality of life can be severe.
The condition is characterized by depression accompanied by psychosis (it is a severe mental disorder in which emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality).
Psychosis can involve false belief /detachment from reality/ sensing things that do not exist/ delusion and hallucination (Delusion is a symptom of mental disorder with impression maintained despite being contradicted by rational argument. And the illusion is an experience involving the apparent perception of something not present).
It is also known as postnatal depression, which may be severe. Women had this condition experience baby blues with newborn babies.
The postpartum or postnatal period begins immediately after the birth of a child.
‘Baby blues’ refer to the babies that are born with blue eyes. The condition occurs due to the lack of ‘melanin pigment.’
The condition is related to the reduced daylight of winter. Depression occurs during the season and is responsive to light therapy (it is also known as photo-therapy. It is a method to treat the seasonally affected disorder by exposure to artificial light).
Conclusively, the patients in countries with prolonged or severe winter, are affected more.
It is characterized by a low mood involving uneasiness and anxiety.
It is a condition with frequent changes in attitudes and behavior. The fluctuating emotions occur displaying regularity.
After surgery, it is quite common to lose hope and feel mentally depressed.
The surgery may also be invasive (It is a surgical procedure which is carried out by entering the body through the skin or anatomical opening, allowing the smallest possible damage to the structures. Most of the surgical procedures administered are minimally invasive).
The cost of surgery ( in terms of worries caused by not having good health) may aggravate the feelings of depression and despair.
Depression is a treatable mental illness. There are three main components of the treatment plan. Also, other treatments are applied, as stated below.
The treatment procedure ranges from discussing the problems with the solution to educating the family members
The treatment procedure includes interpersonal therapy and CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a form of psychotherapy that treats the problem affecting mental stability. The treatment is done by modifying dysfunctional emotions, behaviors, etc.).
In mild cases, psychotherapies are the 1st option for treatment. CBT may be effectively delivered to the patient in several ways, as stated below :
Interpersonal therapy is used to identify the problems that affect relationships and communication.
Antidepressants are drugs used for the treatment of major depressive disorder. The doctor prescribes these only for the adolescent (and not for the children).
Several medications are used for the treatment, which are stated below.
Conclusively, each class of antidepressants acts as a different neurotransmitter. The drugs prescribed should be continued even after the symptoms have improved.
Aerobic exercise help against mild depression. Because it stimulates the neurotransmitters which are related to mood. Aerobic exercise is also known as the cardio exercise of low to high intensity. The practice primarily depends on the aerobic energy-generating process.
In contrast, anaerobic, i.e. ‘without oxygen’ exercise is a physical activity that causes one to be quickly out of breath, such a lifting a heavyweight.
Examples of aerobic exercises include
And neurotransmitters are endogenous chemicals that enable neurotransmissions. It is a type of chemical messenger that transmits signals across a chemical synapse ( such as neuromuscular junctions-- from one neuron to another).
It can play a crucial role in treating specific mental disorders. The treatment procedure involves activating or inhibiting the brain directly with the use of electricity. The electricity can be given directly by an electrode implanted in the brain.
To date, several randomized controlled trials have shown the efficacy of RTMS in the treatment of major depressions. The treatment procedure has been proved effective in patients with resistant unipolar Depression.
It is one of the safest, cheapest, and yet effective treatments in psychiatry. It is the most consistently effective treatment for severe depression.
Sleep is essential for every living being (including man and animal) to stay healthy and energetic. For an adult, daily 7- 9-hour sleep is necessary to remain active and energetic. However, it does not mean that one should sleep longer than needed. Neither under rest nor oversleep is good for health.
It is essential to set a sleep schedule and adhere to it. Maintaining a regular schedule (for bedtime and waking up) may help the patient to feel better and free of stress and anxieties. More importantly, it is recommended to follow a healthy lifestyle through consuming healthy foods and drinks (in addition to avoiding unhealthy foods as well as expensive bad habits like smoking and alcohol).
Ans (A patient is diagnosed with Depression if at least five symptoms are experienced for two consecutive weeks. Of the five signs, one must be either depressed mood or loss of interest and pleasure )
Ans (After attaining puberty, girls become more likely to experience depression than boys. Biological/psychological/hormonal factors operate uniquely in girls during puberty. This leads to an increased rate of Depression in women )
Ans. (Menopause is the time in most women’s lives when the menstrual period stops permanently. Women with menopause are no longer able to bear children. Menopause occurs at 49- 52 years of age. Such women experience increased risks of Depression)
Ans. (Older people suffer from restricted blood flow called ischemia. At this stage, the changes in brain/ body may occur. Overtime blood vessels become less flexible. This may harden and prevent blood from flowing normally to the body organs, including the brain. The condition may result in vascular Depression in older people).
Ans. (Brain imaging has confirmed the biological nature of many psychiatric illnesses over the past 30 years. In the mid-1990s, Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging was used to identify structural brain changes in depressed people).