Depression is a very complicated mental health disorder, in that, there are several types, each producing unique symptoms but also types that produce different levels of intensity. Although depression of any kind is difficult to live with, someone with major depression literally becomes debilitated. Because this is a very serious issue and also very important to know how to treat this depression, we wanted to provide an overview of what this type is but more specifically, a review of major depression symptoms.
What is Major Depression?
The official name of major depression is Major Depressive Disorder or MDD. The symptoms are what make this so unique to other forms and what makes it such a serious concern. Not only is the individual greatly affected but family members and friends are also impacted by the manifestation of symptoms. For someone with MDD, life as it was once known comes to an end. Literally every aspect of a person’s life changes but unfortunately, not for the good.
In addition to Major Depressive Disorder being difficult to live with, it is also one of the more challenging forms of depression to diagnosis. For an individual to be given a firm diagnosis, a medical doctor or mental health professional would have to rely on information provided by the patient such as emotions, feelings, and even experiences. However, most professionals also turn to close family members and friends to gain their perspective of how the illness has affected the individual.
Even though there have been tremendous medical advances, currently no test exists that can provide confirmation regarding a person having Major Depressive Disorder. For that reason, medical experts must depend on the information they receive and because someone dealing with major depression is dramatically affected both physically and mentally, it becomes imperative for other people to participate in the diagnosis process.
Common Major Depression Symptoms
As states, Major Depressive Disorder is the most severe form of depression and therefore, it makes sense that major depression symptoms would be harsh. This particular illness usually develops between the ages of 20 and 30 and although an individual would recognize that something had changed, this is also the time in a person’s life that dealing with a serious illness such as this is most difficult.
One of the biggest challenges of Major Depressive Disorder has to do with mood. Once this illness begins, an individual would begin to experience significant lows that soon impact every aspect of life. No matter how hard the individual tries to pull out of the black hole they were dropped in or what family members and friends do to help, symptoms tend to broaden and worsen.
Another one of the main symptoms is the inability to enjoy things that an individual once found pleasurable. This could be an activity, hobby, job, school, or even person but regardless, the individual with this type of mental health disorder could no longer experience joy. Making this even worse, friends and family will try to encourage the person to get involved or get out but this increases the level of frustration already being felt.
Additional symptoms include poor concentration and focus, disrupted sleep, poor appetite, issues with memory, increased or decreased weight, isolation, reduced libido, chronic fatigue, low stamina, problems with digestion, headaches, and the list goes on. However, the worst part is when thoughts of suicide, harm, or homicide creep into the person’s mind. At that point, immediate intervention becomes critical.
Remember, while there is a typical pattern associated with Major Depressive Disorder, every person is different so one individual might experience every symptom at an intense level while another person may only have five and at a more moderate level. No matter how someone’s life changes because of MDD, this and other forms of depression should never be taken lightly.
For the most part, an individual with Major Depressive Disorder would be treated with antidepressants although there are times when psychotherapy and/or counseling would be recommended as well. However, because people with this type of depression often struggle with negative thoughts that include suicide, personal harm, bodily harm to others, and even homicide, hospitalization and more drastic treatments are also used.
While most people go through the same symptoms, everyone responds in a unique way. For this reason, a medical expert might need to try several different treatments before honing in on the one that provides the best relief. This can be a frustrating process but with good support and encouragement, an individual with Major Depressive Disorder would know there are better days to come. Even though major depression symptoms are debilitating, viable treatment options are available.
Treatment for Depression – My Recommendations
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3. Book: The Mindful Way through Depression: