Contrary to what many people think, depression is a classified mental illness. It is an illness that can affect people of any age, gender, race or religion. Its implications can be quite serious, which is why treatment for this illness is exceptionally important.
Do you suspect that you or a loved one may be suffering from depression, but you’re not 100 percent sure? Here is a look at some of the signs and symptoms of this illness that will help you determine whether or not depression is present:
Signs and Symptoms of Depression
- Constant feelings of sadness and unhappiness
- Heightened irritability concerning minor issues
- Disinterest in things that you once enjoyed doing
- Slow response time in both thinking and actions
- A fuzzy, or blurred train of thought
- Excessive tiredness
- Inability to make decisions
- Reclusive behavior
- Sudden change in appetite and weight loss
- Feelings of being sick, though there is no known illness present
- Chronic melancholy
- Thoughts that the world would be better off without you
If you or a loved one is experiencing some or most of these symptoms, there is a very good chance that this is a case of depression. Depression affects people in different ways and the symptoms manifest themselves differently. In order to be certain that this is truly the case, a mental health care provider will have to assess and diagnose the issue.
Treatment for Depression
When depression is the diagnoses, the only way to combat the illness is with proper treatment. There are a number of treatment options, including prescription medications, out-patient therapy and in-patient, or enrollment in a residential treatment facility.
- Prescription Medications: There are several types of prescription medications that are used to combat the symptoms of depression. These medications aim to inhibit certain receptors in the brain. When these receptors are blocked, those symptoms of depression are reduced and the patient experiences a more positive, up-beat outlook.
- Out-Patient Depression Therapy: This type of therapy involves seeking the guidance and support of a mental health care provider in an out-patient setting. That is, the patient visits the doctor at a facility, where counseling sessions take place, but the patient lives in his or her own residence.
- In-patient, or residential treatment: This type of treatment involves receiving treatment while living within a mental health facility. Continuous care is provided and treatment is highly structured and in-depth. This type of treatment is usually reserved for those who suffer from severe depression.