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Clinical Depression

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Rachael West

on 12 June 2013

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Transcript of Clinical Depression

DEPRESSION Over 17 million Americans suffer from clinical depression annually, and women are affected twice as often as men ("How to beat depression: experts say you can" 102+)! Why is Depression important? Depression is very common, one of the most common medical conditions in the world and almost everyone can get it at any point in their life!
Who does depression affect? MAIN POINTS What are the causes and symptoms of depression? What are some treatments and preventions for depression? There are a few different causes and signs of depression. A genetic connection has been found to explain the causes of depression. Close relatives with depression give people a higher risk of having at least one depressive episode in their life (Arbetter, 4+). Trauma/ stress, family history, pessimistic personality and physical conditions all contribute to the causes of depression (Rifkin, 30+). "Stress can cause physical changes in your body, including your brain, causing depression. Issues like financial problems, the breakup of a relationship, or the death of a loved one can bring on depression.... People who have low self-esteem and a negative outlook are at a higher risk of becoming depressed... Serious medical conditions like heart disease, cancer, etc. can contribute to depression" (Rifkin, 30+). There are many symptoms and signs of depression to look for. Once a variety of symptoms are shown for two or more weeks, clinical depression is diagnosed. These symptoms include a loss of interest in what used to be enjoyable, difficulty sleeping (insomnia), unintentional weight loss or weight gain, feeling fatigued, restless, irritable, etc., frequent crying, difficulty doing daily work or maintaining relationships and thoughts of suicide ("Clinical Depression" 4). Depression affects anyone; men, women, the elderly, and children at anytime. Women are more likely to experience depression than men. "Studies suggest that women experience depression up to twice as often as men. Hormonal factors may contribute to the increased rate of depression in women such as the menstrual cycle changes, pregnancy, miscarriage, postpartum period, pre-menopause, and menopause" ("DEPRESSION" n.p.). The elderly can also get depression; but it is not normal for them to feel depressed. Sometimes depression is just thought of as aging ("DEPRESSION" n.p.). "Depressed elderly persons usually tell their doctor about their physical symptom but may be hesitant to bring up their emotions. Some symptoms of depression in the elderly may be side effects of medication the person is taking for a physical problem, or they may be caused by a co-occurring illness" ("DEPRESSION" n.p.). Men can get depression but usually it is covered by drugs and alcohol or working long hours ("DEPRESSION" n.p.). "Rather than feeling hopeless and helpless, men may feel irritable, angry and discouraged. Even if a man realizes that he is depressed, he may be less willing than a woman to seek help" ("DEPRESSION" n.p.). Children also get depression; in different ways and at different ages (Beck, D.1). "Young children tend to have anxiety first, then develop depression around puberty, then start substance abuse by late adolescence, says Myrna Weissman, an epidemiologist at Columbia University who has long studied depression in families" (Beck, D.1). Depression has many effective treatments as well as some prevention methods. The major types of antidepressant medications are SSRIs, TCAs, MAOIs, and the atypical antidepressants (Edwards, n.p.). "SSRI medications affect levels of serotonin in the brain" (Edwards, n.p.). These medications are the first choice because of the effectiveness and safeness. The MAOIs or TCAs are sometimes prescribed when SSRIs dont work, but are not commonly used (Edwards, n.p.). Cognitive therapy (negative thinking patterns) and interpersonal therapy (problems in personal relationships) are other efficient treatments for depression (Johnson, 14). With these therapies "a patient can work to understand the illness, solve problems and manage stressful situations, avoiding another episode" (Johnson, 14+). "Some people with clinical depression need long-term individual psychotherapy" (Johnson, 14+). "A complete examination by a doctor or a mental health specialist is necessary to make correct diagnosis and to eliminate the possibility of other medical conditions" (Johnson,14+). Some forms of depression may not be preventable but new medical studies confirm otherwise ("Depression Prevention Tips and Strategies" 1). "...Depression may be triggered by a chemical malfunctioning in the brain" ("Depression Prevention Tips and Strategies" 1). However, sometimes with good health habits, this can be prevented ("Depression Prevention Tips and Strategies" 1). "There is much evidence to suggest that reducing biological and psychosocial risk factors can prevent depression" ("Burden of depression: Strategies for prevention." n.p.). Depression is very common, one of the most common medical conditions in the world and almost eveyone can get it at some point in their life! (SSRIs) Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, such as fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil) and sertraline (Zoloft), have become the first-line treatment for depression because they have fewer serious side effects. They work by increasing the availability of the neurotransmitter serotonin in peoples brains ("Depression" 1-8). "Among tricyclic antidepressants are amitriptyline (Elavil, Endep), desipramine (Norpramin) and nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor). Tricyclic medications are also used to treat chronic pain, headache syndromes, fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome" ("Depression" 1-8). MAOI drugs, include phenelzine (Nardil) and tranylcypromine (Parnate), which prevent the breakdown of neurotransmitters. "These drugs have potentially serious side effects and are rarely used. They're typically prescribed for chronically depressed people who eat or sleep excessively" ("Depression" 1-8). Causes Causes Causes Causes Symptoms Symptoms Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Who's Affected Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Treatments Preventions Preventions Preventions Findings of a genetic connection have supported the biological explanation of depression (Arbetter, 4). Thesis Thesis MAIN POINTS The Causes and Symptoms of Depression Who Depression Affects Treatments and Preventions for Depression Think about all the people affected by depression and how they might feel.

Will Depression get worse or better in the future?
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