Depression - What is it


Depression has many names, sometimes Clinical, sometimes major and sometimes biological.  Whatever the name it means the same thing,    
But all of these names refer to the same thing: feeling sad and depressed for weeks or months on end — not just a passing blue mood of a day or two. This feeling is most often accompanied by a sense of hopelessness, a lack of energy and taking little or no pleasure in things that once gave a person joy in the past.  We use the word Depression too easily when we mean fed up or down for a day or two.But, depression is much more and far worse.  

Depression does not stop after a day or two. It will continue on for weeks, interfering with the work or school, relationships and the ability to enjoy life and just have fun.  Some people feel like a huge hole of emptiness inside when experiencing the hopelessness associated with this condition.
Modern anti-depressant medication can mask up to seventy percent of symptoms.  Removing the worst part and allowing the person to function, even if a little less than they would normally.  But, medication alone is not usually enough and research suggests that a two pronged approach of medication and a talking therapy is the best approach to recovery.

Warning Signs/Symptoms

Not everyone who is depressed experiences every sign/symptom, some people get very few but the overriding symptom to acknowledge is being sad, empty and probably tearful that persists for more than a few days.

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or empty mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, being “slowed”
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Disturbance or sleep (Too much or too little)
  • Disturbance of food (Eating too much or not enough)
  • Restlessness, irritability
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain

In order for depression to be diagnosed, the person must experience these symptoms every day, for at least 2 weeks.
Depression has many causes.  A major loss in life (job, loved one etc.). Caused by a major illness, a traumatic situation, Winter and lack of sun or post-natal.  In its mildest form, it can be called dysthymia which can be a chronic long term existence of just below normal functional level but unhappy, sad and irritable

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