Depression: Dealing With Depression

Are you one of those people who often find themselves saying, “I feel sad all the time,” or, “My life is definitely not worth living anymore,” or worse, “I hope I would just die”? Then, you must know that you might be experiencing what psychologists refer to as clinical depression.

At first you might think that it’s just your average mood swing, but major depressive disorder (as it is medically termed) is actually a serious medical condition that is manifested in a lot of symptoms. Symptoms can be emotional or physical and sometimes both. Emotional signs of depression include feelings of sadness, worthlessness, anxiety, restlessness, difficulty making sound decisions and trouble focusing. Physical symptoms on the other hand are exemplified by fatigue, changes in eating habits, lack of energy, difficulty sleeping or sometimes its opposite – oversleeping. Other indications of depression may include irritability, unclear aches and pains and thoughts of death or committing suicide.

clinicaldepression There have been a lot of studies conducted to explore the causes of depression. One of the widest known causes of depression is an imbalance of some naturally occurring substances in the nervous system which functions to control mood and affect.

Statistics say that depression is fairly common. About 121 million people worldwide suffer from this mood disorder. This illness can generally affect all people – people of different races, income levels, ethnicities and ages. Research has found out though that women are twice as likely to develop depression as men. It has also been seen that people who have incapacitating or chronic medical conditions are at risk of getting depressed. In an evolutionary take on depression, those with a family history of depression are predisposed to develop the disorder. So you guessed it right, depression is indeed a “hit” with us humans.

Although many people suffer depression, only a few of them actually know that they are depressed and thus, many people do not get the help they need. Some of you may have an idea that you are going through a depressive phase, but are just ashamed to ask for help. You may even be tempted to think that your symptoms are not really that severe. But, you must take note that depression is not just “all in your head.”

If you think that you are depressed and you want to do something about it, the first step that you should take towards healing is to talk with your doctor or to a counselor. Your doctor will be able to tell if you really are going through depression. He can then walk you through various treatment options.

Some doctors treat depression like any other disease – give out medications. Meds for depression usually help increase serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain and spinal cord. Serotonin and norepinephrine are one of those naturally occurring substances referred to earlier that controls your mood in the level of the nervous system.

Since depression can make you feel and think negatively, thus, one way of learning to cope with depression and relieve your symptoms is to talk, talk and talk. It is rightfully called talk therapy. Your doctor will facilitate a talk session with you. You can expect to be talking about the most mundane things to the most complex – especially if they have anything to do with what you are feeling. This treatment can go for several weeks or may even last for a year or two, depending on the severity of your depression and how you’re responding to the therapy.

Your doctor may also ask you to change some aspects of your life which he may see as a factor to your depression. They may recommend exercise, revamping your diet, taking on a hobby or adopting a pet, the possibilities are endless.

Whether you are going through depression or not, it is important for you to know that talking to a loved one or a close friend can be a matter of life and death. Don’t wait forever to realize that depression is treatable and that it should be treated.