What is depression?
Depression is a disorder known as major depressive disorder, a mood disorder that negatively affects over 10%of the world’s population.
It affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act, and also loss of interest when it comes to daily activities such as (sleeping, working, and eating)
People who experience depression may cause emotional and physical issues and can reduce their ability to work or be productive in life.
Depression affects one in 15 adults in any given year, which is 6.7%, it can occur at any time, but usually, it appears during the late teens to mid-20s. Studies show that women are more likely to experience depression than men.
The great depression was a rough worldwide economic depression in the industrialized world’s history; it started in 1929 and lasted till the late 1930s.
It was the longest, deepest, and most global depression in the 20thcentury. It was commonly used as a sample of how enormously the global economy can decrease. It caused the stock market crash on October 29, 1929 (known as the black Tuesday); it also had devastating effects on rich and emerging countries (the fall of international trade, the rise of unemployment.
Common types of depression:
• Major depressive disorder: affects brutally seven percent of the nation’s population at any given time. Some of its symptoms: extreme sadness, fatigue, irritability, and low energy, also affect sleeping patterns.
• Dysthymia: a lenient form of depression, people who suffer from dysthymia, have a continuous gloomy mood that lasts from one to two years, leading to significant depression.
• Seasonal Affective Disorder: it is associated with variations of light. People who suffer from this will encounter mood swings, anxiety, sleeping problems, and overeating.
• Atypical depression: people experience symptoms of depression, yet their mood is elevated with positive news. When feeling low, depression may become severe, and people may think that life is not worth living.
as stated by the DSM-V (diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorder), to have a major depressive disorder, you must encounter five or more of the symptoms listed below for two following weeks.
• Feeling depressed and primarily sad every day.
• Loss of interest in enjoying daily activities
• Less sleep or too much
• Feeling guilty and worthless.
• Feeling anxious
• Concentration difficulty
• Thinking about death or suicide
• Losing or gaining weight
• Having pains, headaches, or cramps
These symptoms are common, but not everyone with depression will experience them all. Some will share a few of them, and some will have many more.
The seriousness of symptoms and how long they will last will differ depending on the individual and their specific illness. Symptoms may also change depending on the stage of the disease.
Alcoholism and Depression:
The relationship between alcohol and depression is undeniable.
Sadly, when people feel depressed, they drink alcohol to cope with their depression, believing that it’s a kind of medication; however, relying on alcohol can worsen.
Understandably, people with depression may seek the temporary relief that alcohol can give however it simply combine depression.
Alcohol abuse brings a brutal cycle of severe symptoms and grave coping mechanisms.
It’s not clear which first comes, depression or alcohol abuse, a study that was conducted concluded that the abuse of alcohol puts a person at significant risk to develop depression, therefore alcohol abuse can reduce depression and vice versa.
Alcohol use can cause symptoms of depression or make them even worse; treating both disorders will facilitate their symptoms.
With your doctor or psychologist’s help, you will create a treatment that will address both issues.
Depression and drug abuse:
Depression and substance abuse usually go hand-in-hand.
Many people tend to self-medicate themselves with drugs and alcohol to cope with their depression and getting away from problems instead of seeking proper professional help.
Drugs affect a center in the brain with pleasure, and they release a chemical called dopamine which is “the feel-good chemical” that can make you feel high instantly. There are two primary groups of these chemicals:
• First, there are stimulants (cocaine, methamphetamine) that get you up, and a person with depression is attracted to these drugs.
• Second, there are the downers (opiates, alcohol, marijuana) that calm people down.
When it comes to the results, they are instant. Unfortunately, they cause significant problems, couple of these problems are short-term and that the brain gets used to these drugs, then a phenomenon occurs, which is called dependence or tolerance and requires more and more to feel high.
Depression and drug abuse can be a dangerous combination, and if you or someone you love is suffering from, you need to seek immediate professional help.
You can use ways to change the brain chemistry that may be more subtle than drugs and alcohol and help you out more in the long run, and won’t get you to addiction.
Living with depression can be challenging, but the proper treatment can help you in the process of recovery.
Don’t hesitate to seek help. There are several treatment options available, from medication to therapy.
Your doctor may prescribe:
• Antidepressants such as :
Serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs): used to treat major depression and mood disorders; it elevates serotonin and norepinephrine levels (two neurotransmitters in the brain that play a crucial role in stabilizing mood).
– Tricyclic antidepressants(TCAs): used to treat depression, some types of anxiety, and others; they can help control chronic pain.
– Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs): commonly prescribed before introducing SSRIs, it is generally saved for cases where other antidepressants have not worked.
• Antipsychotic medications.
• Other medications: your doctor may suggest combining or adding medication like antipsychotics or mood stabilizers. Stimulant medications and antianxiety also may be added for short-term use.
With the assistance of a therapist, you can learn skills to help you cope with your negative feelings.
It helps in:
• Treating depression by talking about your situation and associated issues with a mental health professional.
• Helps you in setting realistic goals for your life.
• Find more significant ways to cope and solve problems.
• Replace negative beliefs and behaviors with positive and healthy ones.
All of these depression treatments might take time, and it might feel frustratingly slow and overwhelming, but it’s normal because recovery ordinarily has its ups and downs.