Depression is a mental health problem that can affect anyone at any age, but it is most common in women. It may be triggered by a range of factors, including stress, a change in life circumstances, or a physical illness. It can lead to symptoms such as feelings of sadness, irritability, low self-esteem and weight loss.
There are many ways to treat depression. Treatment usually involves taking medications and talking to a therapist. It also can involve reducing your stress and getting support from friends and family.
The main thing is to get help as soon as you start feeling depressed. If you don’t, the symptoms could last a long time and cause you to feel even worse.
You should always talk to someone you can trust if you think you or a loved one are feeling suicidal. You should also make sure that the person who is thinking about suicide stays with you until you can get them to a doctor or hospital.
Symptoms of depression vary depending on the individual and can include feelings of sadness, irritability, loss of interest in activities, feelings of worthlessness or anger, aches and pains, poor sleep, and trouble with relationships with others. In children and teenagers, the symptoms may include clinginess, poor performance or attendance at school, feeling misunderstood or extremely sensitive, using recreational drugs or alcohol, eating too much, self-harming, and having thoughts of suicide.
It is very important to treat your depression because it is a serious condition that can be life-threatening. You should seek immediate treatment if you are experiencing moderate or severe depression, so that your condition doesn’t worsen and cause you to harm yourself or die (suicide).
A diagnosis of depression is made after taking into account the severity of the symptoms, how they affect your daily activities and the impact on your health. This is done by a doctor, psychiatrist or other health professional.
Your doctor can do a physical exam, a mental health evaluation and lab tests to help determine the cause of your depression. They use the criteria listed in the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” published by the American Psychiatric Association to make the diagnosis.
People with depression have physical changes in their brains, which may be related to the way they think and feel. The significance of these changes is still uncertain, but they may eventually help us pinpoint the causes of depression.
There are also biological differences between people with depression and people without it. These differences are thought to be caused by different chemicals in the brain.
These hormones control your mood and behavior. They affect nerve cells in your brain and how they work together.
The amount of these hormones can change during a variety of situations, such as pregnancy and during the weeks or months after delivery. These changes can also be triggered by certain medical conditions, such as thyroid problems and menopause.
The most effective treatments for depression are often a combination of medication and psychotherapy, but each has its own benefits. These can include helping you to understand your depression, learning how to manage it, or coping strategies.