Mood Disorders

The Myths and Realities

Myth: Depression is just a feeling; you can snap out of it if you try hard enough.

Reality: Depression's cause is actually a physical problem in the brain. There is not enough serotonin in the brain so even if the person suffering wanted to they wouldn't be able to snap out of it.

Myth: Depression only occurs when bad things happen.

Reality: Depression can actually be cause by many things. Along with tragedy, it can also be caused by genetics and chemical inbalance in the brain.

Myth: Post partum depression is an excuse women use for being bad mothers.

Reality: It is actually a mood disorder where the mother feels like she could harm the baby. She also has intense worry about the baby and can even have thoughts of suicide.

Myth: There's nothing you can do to treat depression.

Reality: There are actually many ways to treat depression. A person suffering can be treated through psychotherapy and by antidepressant medication. Both of those treatments work well but usually medications have the most help.

Myth: Antidepressants and lithium can help anybody with a mood disorder.

Reality: Though these medications can be very effective, they do not work for everybody. For those that the medication does not work, psychotherapy is the best option.

Myth: There are no outward signs of depression.

Reality: Depression has many different symptoms. Some of these include feelings of hopelessness, loss of interest in behavior, persistent thoughts of death, and an overall change in behavior.

Myth: Having mania is fun.

Reality: Though mania can seem like it's fun, once someone begin to spiral out of control it can become very dangerous to the person suffering and people around them.

Myth: No one hallucinates while suffering from a mood disorder.

Reality: Hallucinations are actually a symptom of bipolar disorder and can be magnified with the use of medication in some cases.

Myth: Everyone who has a bipolar disorder experiences the disorder in the same way.

Reality: There are two main types of bipolar disorder. One is where the person is in the manic phase for long periods and the depressed phase for short periods. The second phase is where the person is in the depressed phase for long periods and the manic phase for short. Along with this, there are rapid and ultra rapid cycling where the person switches between the phases more often.

Myth: Only people suffering from depression are suicidal.

Reality: Anyone with a mood disorder can be suicidal. 15% with bipolar disorder try to commit suicide.