Depression Definition


At least one third of the world’s population will be affected by depression at some point in their life. Depression definition according to psychiatry is a feeling of sadness that lasts longer than is reasonable despite the reason. It involves withdrawal, dullness and inactivity. The various depression definitions agree that it is characterized by changed sleeping and eating patterns, loss of energy, chronic pain and suicidal thoughts.

The various types of depression include manic depression, postnatal depression and seasonal affective disorder. Depression may occur after a viral illness and present symptoms likely to suggest a thyroid condition. For this reason one must always consider this physical cause of depression. Depression may also be brought about by alcohol, drugs and chronic illnesses. It is actually quite difficult to put a finger on the cause of depression. Depression definition states that depression occurs from a combination of factors which include genetics, body chemistry and life’s occurrences.

Although depression can occur at all ages, most adults face depression during midlife. However, depression is much more common after a loss such as death, divorce, illness and loss of a body part. Prolonged stress is often followed by depression which is also known as reactive depression. Endogenous depression is a situation whereby one has the tendency to be depressed every now and then for no apparent reason. This kind of depression results from hormonal changes in the human body.

Depression definition divides the causes of depression into three. These are psychological, physical and social causes. Psychological causes refers to life events, physical causes refers to hormonal changes in the body and social causes refers a reduction or complete loss in activity such as retirement. It is advisable to seek help sooner than later. However, the shame that is associated with mental illness keeps most people who suffer from depression from seeking treatment.

Depression is more often than not under-diagnosed or misdiagnosed since the symptoms of depression are difficult to identify. Depression may be treated by counseling. This is especially effective for mild cases. In the event of clinical depression counseling is combined with medication. Sufferers will most of the time begin by visiting a general practitioner who then refers them to a psychiatrist where necessary. Another effective way of getting rid of depression is through persistent exercise. Many a times a general practitioner will refer the patient to a gym.

Depression is dangerous to human health. Depressed teenagers are more likely to be obese than their counterparts. Depression also affects how the body functions sometimes much more than hypertension or coronary artery disease. On the other hand it increases the chances of developing asthma and coronary artery disease. It increases the rates of morbidity and mortality from other diseases including diabetes, hypertension and other chronic illnesses.

Depression at times occurs in combination with other mental illnesses therefore aggravating the situation. Depression occurs more often in elderly males than any other age group. For this reason, suicide rates by elderly white males are extremely high.