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Depression – What is It?
Depression is a serious mental health condition that can affect the lives of millions of people worldwide. It causes feelings of sadness and loss of interest or pleasure in most of the day. Often, it is accompanied by physical symptoms like sleep problems and pain. It can also interfere with relationships, work and family life. It may cause difficulty with mood regulation and even suicidal thoughts.
Depression can be caused by many factors, including genetics, life events and environmental factors. Some people are more at risk for depression than others. For example, people who have a history of depression in their family or who have experienced a severe stressor in their lives are more likely to develop it.
In general, depression can be cured. However, it is important to get diagnosed by a qualified healthcare professional who can evaluate your symptoms and determine the cause of your depression. This will help you find the most effective treatment.
Depressive disorder is a serious and chronic mental health condition that is treatable with medication or psychotherapy. Talk with your doctor and therapist to find out what will be the best choice for you.
Symptoms of depression can range from mild to severe and sometimes include feelings of hopelessness or helplessness, sleeplessness or appetite changes. They can also include feelings of irritability, fatigue and a sense of worthlessness. Some symptoms can be so intense that they interfere with daily living and lead to serious problems, including suicidal thoughts or actions.
The signs and symptoms of depression vary among people, but most people with this illness have a combination of symptoms. The most common are feeling sad or hopeless, low energy, trouble sleeping, poor concentration and lack of interest in normal activities.
When these symptoms last more than two or three weeks, they are considered to be a major depressive episode. If they are affecting your ability to function at work, at school or in your relationship, it is important to see a healthcare provider immediately.
Antidepressants are drugs that can help with the symptoms of depression. They help restore the brain chemicals serotonin and norepinephrine, which can reduce the intensity of your depression symptoms. They can also be used to help you manage other problems that are contributing to your depression.
Your doctor will prescribe a medication that is right for you. They may start you on a small dose and gradually increase it until you reach the correct dosage. It may take six or more weeks for the medicine to be fully effective. Some antidepressants can have side effects, so you will need to tell your healthcare provider if you have any concerns about using them.
Medication may also be combined with therapy or other treatments. For example, some antidepressants are combined with exercise and behavioral therapy. In this form of treatment, you work with your therapist to change negative patterns in your life. You learn new ways to handle situations and emotions, which can decrease your depression.