“Depression, even the most severe cases, can be treated.
The earlier treatment begins, the more effective it is.
Depression is usually treated with medications…”.1

Umbrella
What may the Depression Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Black Dog
  • Clinical Depression
  • Depression
  • Depression the Serious Clinical Illness
  • Depressive Disorder/Episode/Illness
  • Dysthymia
  • Dysthymic Disorder
  • Major Depression
  • Major Depressive Disorder/Episode/Illness
  • Minor Depression
  • Nervous Breakdown
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD)
  • Unipolar Depression

Definition

What is depression?

DotS the definition of depression may vary. In A-Z Topics: Categories – D. Depression the (United Kingdom) Mental Health Foundation’s (MHF) definition is:

“We all have times when we feel down, but depression is about more than feeling sad or fed up for a few days. Depression causes a low mood that lasts a long time and affects your daily life”.2

In Depression: Overview the (United States) National Institute of Mental Health’s (NIMH) definition is:

“Depression (also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression) is a common but serious mood disorder. It causes severe symptoms that affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working.

To be diagnosed with depression, the symptoms must be present for at least two weeks”.3

Sadness or Depression

Is sadness the same as depression?

In Depression In Women: 5 Things You Should Know the NIMH note:

“Being sad is a normal reaction to difficult times in life. But usually, the sadness goes away with a little time. Depression is different—it is a mood disorder that may cause severe symptoms that can affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities such as sleeping, eating, or working. Depression is more common among women than men, likely due to certain biological, hormonal, and social factors that are unique to women”.4

Nervous Breakdown

Is a nervous breakdown the same as depression?

In Nervous Breakdown: What Does It Mean? What Does It Mean To Have A Nervous Breakdown? the (United States) Mayo Clinic explain:

“The term “nervous breakdown” is sometimes used by people to describe a stressful situation in which they’re temporarily unable to function normally in day-to-day life. It’s commonly understood to occur when life’s demands become physically and emotionally overwhelming. The term was frequently used in the past to cover a variety of mental disorders, but it’s no longer used by mental health professionals today”.5

Bipolar Disorder

Is bipolar disorder the same as depression?

DotS bipolar disorder may be described as a type of depression, however bipolar disorder is not the same as depression the serious illness or clinical depression. In Bipolar Disorder: Overview the NIMH’s definition is:

“Bipolar disorder (formerly called manic-depressive illness or manic depression) is a mental illness that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, concentration, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks”.6

Mild, Moderate or Severe

How can depression be categorised?

In Depression: Symptoms and Patterns the World Health Organization (WHO) explain:

“A depressive episode can be categorised as mild, moderate, or severe depending on the number and severity of symptoms, as well as the impact on the individual’s functioning”.7

Symptoms

What may be symptoms of depression?

In Depression: What Are the Symptoms of Depression? the NIMH explain:

Depression“If you have been experiencing some of the following signs and symptoms most of the day, nearly every day, for at least two weeks, you may be suffering from depression:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, or pessimism
  • Feelings of irritability, frustration, or restlessness
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, or feeling “slowed down”
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Difficulty sleeping, early morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Changes in appetite or unplanned weight changes
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause that do not ease even with treatment
  • Suicide attempts or thoughts of death or suicide”.8

Cause

What may cause depression?

The WHO explain:

“Depression results from a complex interaction of social, psychological, and biological factors. People who have gone through adverse life events (unemployment, bereavement, traumatic events) are more likely to develop depression. Depression can, in turn, lead to more stress and dysfunction and worsen the affected person’s life situation and the depression itself.

There are interrelationships between depression and physical health. For example, cardiovascular disease can lead to depression and vice versa”.9

Common or Not

How common is depression?

Globally, according to statistics quoted by the WHO:

  • “Depression is a common mental disorder. Globally, it is estimated that 5.0% of adults suffer from depression”.10

In the United States according to statistics quoted by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) in Depression: What Is Depression?:

“264 million people worldwide live with depression.

In 2017, around 17.3 million adults age 18 or older in the U.S. had experienced at least one major depressive episode in the last year (6.7% of adults in the U.S.)”.11

In England in Depression, the MHF note:

“In England, 3 in every 100 people will experience depression in any given week. Even more – 8 in every 100 – will experience mixed depression and anxiety”.12

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder

Is premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) a type of depression?

In Depression: Depression and Anxiety Disorders: Types of Depression the ADAA elaborate on:

“Premenstrual dysphoric disorder is another manifestation of depression which is a severe and sometimes disabling extension of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Although regular PMS and Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) both have physical and emotional symptoms, the mood changes in PMDD are much more severe and can disrupt social, occupational, and other important areas of functioning”.13

Anxiety

Is there an association between anxiety and depression?

In Depression: Depression and Anxiety Disorders: Not the Same the ADAA explain:

“Depression and anxiety disorders are different, but people with depression often experience symptoms similar to those of an anxiety disorder, such as nervousness, irritability, and problems sleeping and concentrating. But each disorder has its own causes and its own emotional and behavioral symptoms.

Many people who develop depression have a history of an anxiety disorder earlier in life. There is no evidence one disorder causes the other, but there is clear evidence that many people suffer from both disorders”.14

Menopause

Is there an association between menopause and depression?

On page one in Menopause and Depression: Recognizing Depressive Symptoms and Depression the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) explain:

“It is important to note that not all midlife women experience mood problems, but some women are more vulnerable than others to developing either depressive symptoms or an episode of clinical depression during the menopause transition, especially those women who have had depression previously”.15

Treatment

How can depression be treated?

In Depression: Treatment and Therapies the NIMH elaborate on:

“Depression, even the most severe cases, can be treated. The earlier treatment begins, the more effective it is. Depression is usually treated with medications, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. If these treatments do not reduce symptoms, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and other brain stimulation therapies may be options to explore”.16

In Depression: Treatment and Therapies the NIMH also include:

“Quick Tip: No two people are affected the same way by depression and there is no “one-size-fits-all” for treatment. It may take some trial and error to find the treatment that works best for you”.17

Online Resources, Programs, Apps and e-therapies

Are online depression online resources, programs, Apps and e-therapies available?

Depending on Your Country, depression online resources, programs, Apps and e-therapies may be available.

Your health care provider or local community health center may know of your Country’s recommended depression online resources, programs, Apps and e-therapies, similar to the (Australian) Department of Health’s Head To Health Search for Digital Mental Health Resources and the (Australian) Macquarie University Health Sciences Centre’s mindspot.org.au: Who We Are:


“We are a government-funded non-for-profit mental health service. Our team of experienced mental health professionals, including clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, and mental health nurses, have supported more than 180,000 Australians”.18

Health Care Provider

What if I think I have depression?

If you think you have depression, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this urgently.

In Get Immediate Help the (United States) MentalHealth.gov elaborate on:

“People often don’t get the mental health services they need because they don’t know where to start.

Talk to your primary care doctor or another health professional about mental health problems. Ask them to connect you with the right mental health services”.19

In Depression In Women: 5 Things You Should Know – 1. Depression Is A Real Medical Condition: Most People With Depression Need Treatment To Feel Better the NIMH explain:

“If you think you may have depression, start by making an appointment to see your health care provider. This could be your primary doctor or a health provider who specializes in diagnosing and treating mental health conditions (for example, a psychologist or psychiatrist). Certain medications, and some medical conditions, such as viruses or a thyroid disorder, can cause the same symptoms as depression. A health care provider can rule out these possibilities by doing a physical exam, interview, and lab tests. Your health care provider will examine you and talk to you about treatment options and next steps”.20

In Find A Mental Health Professional: What Are Mental Health Professional Services? Finding the Right Professional for You the (Australian) Beyondblue note:

“It’s important to find someone you feel comfortable with. While some people find a practitioner and treatment that works for them first time, for others it can take a few tries. The main thing is to persevere – try not to let one bad experience put you off getting support”.21

In Depression: How Health Professionals Can Help the (Australian) Jean Hailes for Women’s Health remind us:

“Remember:

  • Depression is common
  • It is not a sign of weakness
  • It is nothing to be ashamed about
  • It can be treated”.22

Health Topics A-Z

Where may I find Health Topics related to Depression

In Health Topics A-Z you may find:

Links

Where may I find Links related to Depression?

Your Country may have Links similar to:

Sources

Where may I find the Sources quoted?

You may find the Sources quoted at:

Sources

  1. Depression: Treatment and Therapies. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part_145399 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  2. A-Z Topics: Categories – D. Depression. Last Updated 18 February 2022. Mental Health Foundation https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/explore-mental-health/a-z-topics Accessed: 24 October 2022
  3. Depression: Overview. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part_145398 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  4. Depression In Women: 5 Things You Should Know. Revised: 2020. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression-in-women-tr-16-4779/index.shtml Accessed: 24 October 2022
  5. Nervous Breakdown: What Does It Mean? What Does It Mean To Have A Nervous Breakdown? 26 October 2016. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/expert-answers/nervous-breakdown/faq-20057830 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  6. Bipolar Disorder: Overview. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/bipolar-disorder/index.shtml#part_145402 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  7. Depression: Symptoms and Patterns. 13 September 2021 World Health Organization https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  8. Depression: Signs and Symptoms. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part_145398 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  9. Depression: Contributing Factors and Prevention. 13 September 2021. World Health Organization https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  10. Depression: Key Facts. 13 September 2021.  World Health Organization https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  11. Depression: What Is Depression? This Page Was Updated: 16 September 2022. Anxiety and Depression Association of America https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  12. Depression. Last Updated 18 February 2022. Mental Health Foundation https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/a-to-z/d/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  13. Depression: Types of Depression. This Page Was Updated: 16 September 2022. Anxiety and Depression Association of America https://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  14. Depression: Depression and Anxiety Disorders: Not the Same. This Page Was Updated: 16 September 2022. Anxiety and Depression Association of America https://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
  15. Menopause and Depression: Depressive and Menopause Symptoms. 2018: 1. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/docs/default-source/default-document-library/menonote-menopause-and-depression.pdf Accessed: 24 October 2022
  16. Depression: Treatment and Therapies. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part_145399 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  17. Depression: Treatment and Therapies. Last Reviewed: September 2022. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml#part_145399 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  18. MindSpot: Who We Are. Macquarie University Health Science Services https://mindspot.org.au/ Accessed: 24 October 2022
  19. Get Immediate Help. Last Updated: 06 September 2022. MentalHealth.gov https://www.mentalhealth.gov/get-help/immediate-help Accessed: 24 October 2022
  20. Depression In Women: 5 Things You Should Know – 1. Depression Is A Real Medical Condition: Most People With Depression Need Treatment To Feel Better. Revised: 2020. National Institute of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression-in-women/index.shtml#pub1 Accessed: 24 October 2022
  21. Find A Mental Health Professional: What Are Mental Health Professional Services? Finding the Right Professional for You https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/find-a-mental-health-professional Accessed: 24 October 2022
  22. Depression: How Health Professionals Can Help – Remember. Last Updated: 07 December 2020 | Last Reviewed: 10 March 2014. Jean Hailes https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/mental-emotional-health/depression Accessed: 24 October 2022
Topic Last Updated: 01 December 2022 – Topic Last Reviewed: 24 October 2022

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