What is Major Depressive Disorder?
Major depression, also known as unipolar or major depressive disorder (MDD), is characterized by a persistent feeling of sadness or a lack of interest in outside stimuli. Depression is a serious mood disorder and it presents with a spectrum of symptoms that can affect the quality of life of a person.
Approximately, more than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression worldwide. It is a leading cause of disability worldwide and also a major contributor to the overall global burden of disease.
Depression is the cumulative outcome and a complex interaction of social, psychological and biological and environmental factors. Some of them are-
- Personal or family history of depression
- History of any adverse life events like unemployment, psychological trauma etc.
- Physical illness (Cardiovascular diseases, Parkinson's etc.)
Types and symptoms of Depression
The depressive episode can be categorized as mild, moderate or severe depending on the severity of symptoms. In Recurrent depressive disorder, the person experiences a depressed mood and loss of interest with reduced energy for at least two weeks. Anxiety, disturbed sleep and loss of appetite are also found. In Bipolar affective disorder, both manic and depressive moods are present with periods of normal mood intermittently.
The diagnosis must be made by a specialist only by undertaking physical examination of the patient (in case of any physical illness), routine laboratory investigations and psychiatric evaluation through different questionnaires.
Various modes of treatment are available as per the patient's need and the intensity of the symptoms of depression. Health care providers offer therapies like Behavioural activation, Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) etc. along with medications. Self- medication in depression is not recommended.
Warning: Above information provided is an overview of the disease, we strongly recommend a doctor's consultation to prevent further advancement of disease and/or development of complications.
Disclaimer: The information provided herein on request, is not to be taken as a replacement for medical advice or diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. DO NOT SELF MEDICATE. PLEASE CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN FOR PROPER DIAGNOSIS AND PRESCRIPTION.
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