Clinical Depression

also known as major depression

What is Clinical Depression?

Clinical Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and a loss of interest or motivation. It affects how you think, feel, and behave. It can also lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. Depression isn't a weakness and you can't simply "snap out" of it. Depression may require long-term treatment. Treatments can include medication, psychological counseling, or a mixture of the two. Clinical Depression can affect anyone of any age, including children.

Symptoms.

Symptoms may include:


  • Depressed mood. Such as feeling sad, empty or tearful. in children and teens depressed mood can appear as constant irritability.
  • Significant weight loss when not dieting, weight gain, and the increase or decrease of appetite. In children it's the failure of gaining weight as expected.
  • Insomnia or increased desire to sleep.
  • Restlessness or slowed behavior that is noticeable by others.
  • Fatigue or loss of energy.
  • Feelings of worthlessness or excessive/inappropriate guilt.
  • Trouble making decisions or trouble concentrating .
  • Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide.
  • Suicide attempts.

Causes

  • Abuse. Past, physicall, sexual, or emotional abuse can cause future depression.
  • Medications. Some drugs such as accutance (used to treat acne.), the antiviral drug interferon-alpha, and corticosteroids, can all increase your risk for depression.
  • Death or loss. Sadness or grief from the death or loss of a loved one, though natural, can increase risks for depression.
  • Genetics. A family history of dpression can increse your risk for depression. It's thought that depression is a complex trait that may be inherited across generations, although the genetics of psychiatric disorders are not as simple or straight forward as purely genetic diseases such as cystic fiberosis.
  • Major Events. Even a good event such as starting a new job, graduating, or getting married can lead to depression. Bad events such as moving losing a job, getting a divorce, losing income, or retiring, can also lead to depression.
  • Other personal problems. Problems such as social isolation due to other mental illnesses, birth of a child, or being cast out of a family or social group, can lead to depression.
  • Serious Illness. Sometimes depression co-exsists with a major illness or is a reaction to the illness.
  • Substance Abuse. Nearly 30% of people with substance abuse problems also have clinical depression.

Diagnosis

Usually doctors use specialized blood tests or other expensive laboratory tests to help them make a diagnosis. However, most laboratory tests are not very helpful when it comes to diagnosing depression. In fact, talking with the patient may be the most important diagnostic tool the doctor has.To effectively diagnose and treat depression, the doctor must hear about specific symptoms of depression. While a physical examination will reveal a patient's overall state of health, by talking with a patient, a doctor can learn about other things that are relevant to making a depression diagnosis. A patient, for example, can report on such things as daily moods, behaviors, and lifestyle habits.

A depression diagnosis is often difficult to make because clinical depression can manifest in so many different ways. For example, some clinically depressed individuals seem to withdraw into a state of apathy. Others may become irritable or even agitated. Eating and sleeping patterns can be exaggerated. Clinical depression may cause a person either to sleep or eat to excess or almost eliminate those activities.

Treatments

You can be treated with a variety of ways for Clinical Depression and in most cases you can self treat. In a simple form of Clinical depression a simple life cleanse and reduce of stress may be what is best for you. However, in a more moderate case depression may be treated with medications. Even more serious cases depression can be treated with psych therapy or a mix of therapy and medications.

Prevalence

Nearly 6.7% of the U.S. adults are depressed.

Approximately 20% of teens will experience depression before reaching adult hood.

About 15% of teens will be experiencing depression at any one time.

Prognosis

Approximately 60 percent of depressed people experience a second episode, and there is a 20 percent chance for chronic depression. Depressed people suffer an average of five or six episodes during a 20-year period, with an increased risk for recurrence in men. Given the average duration of an episode, chronic depression can affect about one-quarter of a person's lifetime.

Ongoing research

The only ongoing research I could find was to clear up the fogginess of genetically distributed depression. Simply because it is not a physical disease but a mental one and there is no real blood work a doctor can do to find traces of the disease in the blood.

Controversies

There is a current controversy over types of treatments for clinical depression. This is regarding a type of electroshock treatment to the patients. This is causing an uproar because of the dangers that aren't being clearly stated, such as permanent damage to the brain.