Human beings are complex. It is natural to assume that at some point in life depression and anxiety are possible, particularly as people face greater challenges brought on by stress, aging, unresolved familial or relational issues. Life’s challenges can cause us to suffer
By some counts, more than 350 million people around the world struggle with depression each year. It is a common mood disorder that can cause serious symptoms in many individuals. Depression and anxiety can often make daily activities a difficult struggle, and require proper diagnosis and treatment from a specialized psychotherapist. At its worst, depression or anxiety can be completely debilitating.
What is Depression?
Depression is a mood disorder and affects and influences how we feel, process, and behave in life. As there are many reasons why people become depressed here are various theories to explain their causation and numerous approaches and treatments available.
Depression can be a manifestation of psychological issues resulting from guilt, internalized anger, self-blame, struggles, or losses in relationships or symbolic losses stemming from what we feel has been denied, withheld or taken from us. Depression is often related to events, circumstances and relationships from the past whose effect is felt in the present and remains ongoing and into the future.
What Can Cause Depression?
There is a multitude of triggers that can cause depression. There is no exact cause of depression, and this mood disorder may arise at any age. Most often, depression is first diagnosed in early adulthood, and may be influenced by the following factors:
- A biological root that has been handed down from generation to generation.
- Major trauma like sexual, physical or emotional abuse will cause someone to become depressed. Trauma assaults the psyche and devastates one’s ability to feel internally at peace or have a sense of well-being.
- Depression can be linked to psychological or relational issues around anger, guilt, dissatisfaction, or loss.
- Learned over time; if a parent is depressed and acts depressed, a child can grow up similarly.
Sexuality and gender issues may cause someone to be depressed as they confront feelings of isolation, social stigma, shame, and guilt.
What are Common Symptoms of Depression?
Although many individuals can feel depressed for short periods of time, depression is a persistent feeling of sadness or a lack of interest. People who struggle with depression may feel apathetic, and they may stop enjoying their favorite hobbies or pastimes. When someone is clinically depressed, they may not be able to find joy in any area of life. Many people generalize depression to be a lingering feeling of sadness, but depression can include many specific symptoms, such as:
- Loss of Interest in enjoyed activities
- Unexplained tearfulness
- The feeling of hopeless or helplessness
- Thoughts of death or suicide
- Intense fatigue
- Difficulty in concentrating or frequent forgetfulness
- Trouble sleeping or excessive sleeping
- Ruminating on mistakes, failures, self-recriminating thoughts
- Feeling routinely guilty
- Feeling frequent anger or agitation
- Changes in appetitive (eating issues or eating disorder)
- Physical discomforts like back pain or recurring headaches (Irritable Bowel Syndrome is linked to Depression)
Not every individual will experience symptoms of depression in the same way. These unique variances may include several of the symptoms listed above, which may range in severity from one person to another. In order to be officially diagnosed with depression, an individual must experience symptoms consecutively for at least two weeks.
What are the Different Types of Depression?
Depression can be characterized in several unique ways. Dysthymia, Cyclothymia, or Persistent Depressive Disorder symptoms are manifested by the feeling that a chronic and unrelenting gray cloud is overhead for a longer than six months period of time. Sometimes the depressive feelings intensify followed by a period of lessening symptoms depending on the specifics of the diagnosis.
Psychotic Depression can occur when a person experiences psychosis usually caused by a deeply disturbing revelation or delusion. Psychosis can occur in people with Depression and
generally abates after treatment. This type of psychotic reaction does not mean that someone has a Psychotic Disorder.
Postpartum Depression is a serious form of depression beyond just the “blues” experienced by women in the first few months after childbirth manifested by extreme sadness, fatigue, inability to bond with their newborn, or anxiety.