Depression is a medical condition that can cause a wide variety of emotional and physical symptoms.
Extreme sadness is often the most pronounced symptom. Depression can be distinguished from occasional blues and grief because depression is persistent, often interfering with daily activities and relationships.
Depression occurs commonly; the risk of suffering from a depressive episode at some time is up to 20 percent of the population and usually a little more for women. The condition can affect people of all ages, including children and older adults. Depression is a treatable condition.
Cause of Depression
Although the exact cause of depression is still uncertain studies suggest that depression results from an imbalance of neurochemicals in the brain, including serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. These neurochemicals allow cells to communicate with each other and play an essential role in all brain functions, including movement, sensation, memory, and emotions.
The risk of depression is not related to any specific disease type or organ system. Depression can worsen the outcome of many conditions. This may be related to the fact that some people with depression are not motivated to take their medications on schedule, attend medical appointments, and/or exercise.
However, recognizing and treating depression can improve a person’s sense of
Health and well-being, and can also improve interest in caring for themselves.
Symptoms May Include:
- Sadness most of the day, particularly in the morning
- Markedly diminished pleasure or interest in almost all activities nearly every day
- Significant weight loss or weight gain
- Insomnia or excessive sleep
- Agitated movements or very slow movement
- Fatigue or loss of energy
- Feelings of worthlessness or guilt
- Impaired concentration and indecisiveness
- Recurring thoughts of death or suicide
If you are feeling depressed it is best to have a talk with your doctor.