depression

What is Depression?


You may be interested in trying to relieve depression symptoms with complementary or alternative medicine strategies. These include nutritional and dietary supplements and mind-body techniques.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Also known as blues, Depressions, sadness, gloom, melancholy, discouragement, mood changes
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Depression information from trusted sources:

Psych Central - Depression Screening Test

Test your depressive feelings today and track them over time.

Read more on psychcentral.com

Depression self-assessment - MayoClinic.com

Take this depression self-assessment to see whether you have symptoms of depression.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com

Depression - American Diabetes Association

Studies show that people with diabetes have a greater risk of depression than people without diabetes.

Read more on www.diabetes.org

Major depressive disorder - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Major depression significantly affects a person's family and personal relationships, work or school life, sleeping and eating habits, and general health. ...

Read more on en.wikipedia.org

Depression

Throughout the course of our lives, we all experience episodes of stress, unhappiness, sadness, or grief. Often, when a loved one dies or we suffer a personal tragedy or difficulty such as divorce, loss of a job, or death of a loved one, we may feel depressed (some people call this "the blues"). Most of us are able to cope with these and other types of stressful events.

NAMI | Depression

Major depression is a serious medical illness affecting 15 million American adults, or approximately 5-8 percent of the adult population in a given year. ...

Read more on www.nami.org

Depression Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments Including Clinical and ...

Nov 25, 2010 ... Clinical depression information: symptoms, treatment, antidepressant medications , and depression support groups. Read details about the ...

Read more on www.medicinenet.com

Depression

Depression may be described as feeling sad, blue, unhappy, miserable, or down in the dumps. Most of us feel this way at one time or another for short periods. True clinical depression is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, loss, anger, or frustration interfere with everyday life for an extended period of time. See also: Adolescent depression Depression in the elderly

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov

Depression Basics - Depression Center - EverydayHealth.com

Depression affects millions of people each year, but it is treatable. Learn about depression causes, symptoms, treatment, and prevention at ...

Read more on www.everydayhealth.com

NIMH · Depression

A detailed booklet that describes Depression symptoms, causes, and treatments, with information on getting help and coping.

Read more on www.nimh.nih.gov

Contents

Causes
It's not known specifically what causes depression. As with many mental illnesses, it's thought that a variety of biochemical, genetic and environmental factors may cause depression: Biochemical. Some evidence from high-tech imaging studies indicates that people with depression have physical changes in their brains. The significance of these changes is still uncertain but may eventually help pinpoint causes. The naturally occurring brain chemicals called neurotransmitters, which are linked to mood, also may play a role in depression. Hormonal imbalances also could be a culprit. Genes. Some studies show that depression is more common in people whose biological family members also have the...

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Complications
Mental disorders, particularly depression and substance abuse, are associated with more than 90% of all cases of suicide.

Read more on www.nhs.uk
Considerations
Depression is generally ranked in terms of severity -- mild, moderate, or severe. The degree of your depression, which your doctor can determine, influences how you are treated. Symptoms of depression include:Trouble sleeping or excessive sleeping; A dramatic change in appetite, often with weight gain or loss; Fatigue and lack of energy; Feelings of worthlessness, self-hate, and inappropriate guilt; Extreme difficulty concentrating; Agitation, restlessness, and irritability; Inactivity and withdrawal from usual activities; Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness; Recurring thoughts of death or suicide; Major depression -- five or more symptoms listed above must be present for at least 2 weeks, but major depression tends to continue for at least 6 months. (Depression is classified as minor depression if you have fewer than five depression symptoms for at least 2 weeks. In other words, minor depression is similar to major depression except it only has 2 - 4 symptoms.); Atypical depression -- occurs in about a third of patients with depression. Symptoms include overeating and oversleeping. These patients tend to have a feeling of being weighed down and react strongly to rejection.; Dysthymia -- a generally milder form of depression that lasts as long as 2 years.; Postpartum depression -- many women feel somewhat down after having a baby, but true postpartum depression is rare.; Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) -- depressive symptoms occur 1 week prior to menstruation and disappear after you menstruate.; Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) -- occurs during the fall-winter season and disappears during the spring-summer season. Likely to be due to lack of sunlight.

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Coping and support
Coping with depression can be challenging. Depression makes it hard to engage in the behavior and activities that may help you feel better. Talk to your doctor or therapist about improving your coping skills, and consider these tips to cope with depression: Simplify your life. Cut back on obligations when possible, and set reasonable schedules for goals. Consider writing in a journal to express pain, anger, fear or other emotions. Read reputable self-help books and consider talking about them to your doctor or therapist. Don't become isolated. Try to participate in normal activities and get together with family or friends regularly. Take care of yourself by eating a healthy diet and getting...

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Diagnosis
If you think you have depression, you should visit your GP. Your GP may give you a physical examination and do some blood or urine tests to rule out other conditions that have similar symptoms, such as under-active thyroid.

Read more on www.nhs.uk
Home Care
If you are depressed for 2 weeks or longer, you should contact your doctor, who can offer treatment options. Regardless of whether you have mild or major depression, the following self-care steps can help:Get enough sleep.; Follow a healthy, nutritious diet.; Exercise regularly.; Avoid alcohol, marijuana, and other recreational drugs.; Get involved in activities that make you happy, even if you don't feel like it.; Spend time with family and friends.; Try talking to clergy or spiritual advisors who may help give meaning to painful experiences.; Consider prayer, meditation, tai chi, or biofeedback as ways to relax or draw on your inner strengths.; Add omega-3 fatty acids to your diet, which you can get from cold-water fish like tuna, salmon, or mackerel.; Take folate (vitamin B9) in the form of a multivitamin (400 to 800 micrograms).

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov
Lifestyle and home remedies
Depression generally isn't an illness that you can treat on your own. But you can do some things for yourself that will build on your treatment plan. In addition to professional treatment, follow these self-care steps for depression: Stick to your treatment plan. Don't skip therapy sessions, even if you don't feel like going. Take your medications as directed. Even if you're feeling well, resist any temptation to skip your medications. If you stop, depression symptoms may come back, and you could also experience withdrawal-like symptoms. Learn about depression. Education about your condition can empower you and motivate you to stick to your treatment plan. Pay attention to warning signs....

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Medical advice
It's perfectly normal to occasionally feel sad or upset, or to be unhappy with situations in your life. But with depression, these feelings linger for weeks, months or even years. And these feelings also are much more intense than "just the blues" and can interfere with relationships, work and daily activities, and even your ability to eat and bathe.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Prevention
To deal with depression, and help prevent repeated bouts of depression, you should...

Read more on www.nhs.uk
Risk factors
Although precise statistics aren't known, depression is considered relatively common. In any given year, about 12 million adults in the United States have depression. Depression cuts across all racial, ethnic and economic divides no one is immune from the risk of getting depression.

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Side effects
You may experience some side effects when you start taking SSRIs, including...

Read more on www.nhs.uk
Symptoms
Symptoms of depression include: Loss of interest in normal daily activities; Feeling sad or down; Feeling hopeless; Crying spells for no apparent reason; Problems sleeping; Trouble focusing or concentrating; Difficulty making decisions; Unintentional weight gain or loss; Irritability; Restlessness; Being easily annoyed; Feeling fatigued or weak; Feeling worthless; Loss of interest in sex; Thoughts of suicide or suicidal behavior; Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches

Read more on www.mayoclinic.com
Treatment
Chronic mild depression (present for two years or more) is called dysthymia. This is more likely in people over 55 years and can be difficult to treat. If you are diagnosed with dysthymia, your GP may suggest that you start a course of antidepressants.

Read more on www.nhs.uk
What to Expect at Your Office Visit
Depression is generally ranked in terms of severity -- mild, moderate, or severe. The degree of your depression, which your doctor can determine, influences how you are treated. Symptoms of depression include:Trouble sleeping or excessive sleeping; A dramatic change in appetite, often with weight gain or loss; Fatigue and lack of energy; Feelings of worthlessness, self-hate, and inappropriate guilt; Extreme difficulty concentrating; Agitation, restlessness, and irritability; Inactivity and withdrawal from usual activities; Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness; Recurring thoughts of death or suicide; Major depression -- five or more symptoms listed above must be present for at least 2 weeks, but major depression tends to continue for at least 6 months. (Depression is classified as minor depression if you have fewer than five depression symptoms for at least 2 weeks. In other words, minor depression is similar to major depression except it only has 2 - 4 symptoms.); Atypical depression -- occurs in about a third of patients with depression. Symptoms include overeating and oversleeping. These patients tend to have a feeling of being weighed down and react strongly to rejection.; Dysthymia -- a generally milder form of depression that lasts as long as 2 years.; Postpartum depression -- many women feel somewhat down after having a baby, but true postpartum depression is rare.; Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) -- depressive symptoms occur 1 week prior to menstruation and disappear after you menstruate.; Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) -- occurs during the fall-winter season and disappears during the spring-summer season. Likely to be due to lack of sunlight.

Read more on www.nlm.nih.gov