Depression is a mental illness that is a kind of affective disorder (mood disorders)
According to the DSM, the symptoms of depression can be divided into basic (typical) and additional. For the diagnosis, the patient must have two main symptoms and at least three additional symptoms.
The main symptoms of depression are:
-hypobulia (decreased motor activity)
– bradifrenia (slowing down of mental processes)
– decreased mood
Additional symptoms of depression:
• Pessimism is a gloomy, negative outlook on life.
• Decreased self-esteem.
• Feelings of guilt, fear, anxiety, own uselessness.
• Inability to make decisions, concentrate on what is happening.
• Suicidal thoughts.
Also in most cases there are not only mental symptoms, but somatic such as:
-reduction of heart rate
– Sleep disorder (insomnia or pathological drowsiness)
Depression can be unipolar and bipolar: Bipolar affective disorder (BAD) is characterized by alternating manic (hypertension, euphoria and motor excitement) and depressive episodes. Unipolar depression occurs 3.5 times more often. They can be mild, moderate or severe, include anxiety or other symptoms, but do not have manic episodes. Nevertheless, almost 40% of the time people with BAD spend in the depressive phase, because unipolar and bipolar depression is difficult to differentiate.
According to DSM-5, unipolar depression often occurs in the following forms.
• Major depressive disorder is a clinical depression that lasts more than 2 weeks and meets all DSM criteria.
• Resistant depression is a major depression that does not respond to treatment at least after 2 courses of antidepressant treatment.
• Minor depression is a mood disorder that, according to severity or symptoms, does not reach the DSM diagnostic criteria.
• Atypical depression is a form of mental disorder in which the typical (major) symptoms of depression coexist with specific: increased appetite, weight gain, increased drowsiness, a feeling of heaviness in the limbs, a rejection of interpersonal relationships, a violation of social activity.
• Postpartum depression – postnatal depressive disorder, which develops after delivery in 13% of mothers, due to changes in the hormonal background
Recurrent depressive disorder is depression, episodes of which last from 2-3 days to 2 weeks, but repeat throughout the year about once a month. Recurrent depression should not be confused with premenstrual syndrome in women: the diagnosis is made only if the decrease in mood does not depend on the menstrual cycle.
• Dysthymia is a chronic mood disorder that lasts at least 2 years and shows less pronounced symptoms of clinical depression. It is difficult to diagnose dysthymia, as it often begins at a young age, and a person mistakenly mistakes it for the characteristics of its nature. Can be combined with other mental disorders: panic attacks, generalized anxiety, social phobia, alcoholism, dependence on drugs and so on.
Today, depression is effectively treated with pharmacotherapy psychotherapy and social therapy. There is no method that is equally effective for all patients. That’s why the management of a depressed patient should be handled by a specialist who will try out different approaches and choose the most effective and safe.
PSYCHOTHERAPY FOR DEPRESSION
Treatment of mild to moderate depression often begins with psychotherapy. With severe depression, doctors usually combine it with pharmacotherapy. To treat depression, psychotherapists usually choose cognitive-behavioral, existential, interpersonal and psychodynamic therapy. These methods help the patient to correlate their lifestyle and behavior that supports depression, rejection of a pessimistic outlook, learn to overcome depression in the future. A study conducted in 2013 The British scientist has shown that in various cases cognitive behavior therapy helps to cope with the symptoms of depression and improve the quality of life even when antidepressants are useless. Psychotherapy is especially important when working with suicidal patients: the doctor helps to cope with feelings of hopelessness , loneliness and fear.