Major depressive disorder, or clinical depression, is characterized by constant feelings of hopelessness, despair, sadness, and a general loss of interest in life. In addition to its psychological effects, major depressive disorder can also cause physical symptoms. Severe cases can cause people to lose their jobs and even become suicidal. This condition, however, can be treated both through medication and through a variety of other therapies. If you experience any of the following, you may have major depressive disorder.
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About Major Depressive Disorder
While it is sometimes simply referred to as "depression," major depressive disorder is different than other types of depressive disorders. In contrast to bipolar disorder, it is not characterized by episodes of depression and mania. It is also not caused by a specific situation such as the loss of a loved one, as some other types of depression are. Different types of depression will require different treatments, so it's important to distinguish between each of them and work on a case-by-case basis. Major depressive disorder refers to a medical condition that is characterized by a constant, enduring sense of depression and sadness.
Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder
Clinical depression can be treated with medication, and through other forms of therapy such as psychotherapy, counselling, and recreation therapy. The most common form of medication prescribed for depression is the SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor). These drugs work by preventing the reabsorption of serotonin, thereby allowing it to stay active for a longer period of time. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is thought to contribute to feelings of happiness and well-being. Cognitive-behavioural therapy has also proven to be highly effective in treating depression. This form of therapy involves identifying negative thoughts and beliefs, and then changing them into positive ones. Finally, electroconvulsive therapy may be prescribed to patients for whom other treatments have failed. ECT works by running very small electrical currents through the brain. ECT has proven itself to be extremely effective in treating cases of depression that are highly resistant to conventional treatment. Due to its side effects, though, ECT is widely considered a last-resort treatment when all other therapies have failed.
Post Rehabilitation of Major Depressive Disorder
Some patients are able to successfully recover from major depressive disorder, while for others the issue becomes a chronic illness. If you have overcome major depressive disorder, you are at risk of relapsing. In order to prevent a relapse, you should be aware of the causes and symptoms of major depressive disorder in order to avoid them in the future. You should also follow your doctor's advice with regards to medication, and continue to check in with a health professional. For those who are dealing with chronic clinical depression, you can continue to take steps to improve your overall health and well being. Continuing with therapy and treatments can help to lessen the effects of major depressive disorder over the long-term.
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