Depression – Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments
Depression is a serious mental health disorder that affects around 7% of adults in the United States each year. It is a common condition that can be caused by genetics, early childhood experiences, stress, and other factors. It can also be triggered by life-changing events, such as the death of a loved one or loss of a job.
Symptoms Attack Medication
If you think you might have depression, talk with your doctor. They can do a physical exam and do lab tests to help them make the diagnosis. They can also use questionnaires to help you explain your symptoms.
Some signs of depression include a change in the amount of sleep you get, weight changes, appetite changes and feelings of worthlessness. You may also experience fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and thoughts of suicide.
The exact cause of depression is not known, but researchers believe that changes in brain chemistry and hormones can trigger or contribute to the disorder. This includes a reduction in the level of brain chemicals such as serotonin and norepinephrine, which are thought to play an important role in mood regulation.
Brain structure and neurotransmitter function
People who have a reduced amount of activity in the frontal lobe of the brain (the area of the brain responsible for thinking) are more likely to develop depression than those with more active brain areas. It is also possible that a reduction in the amount of brain cells, known as neurons, that produce and respond to certain brain chemicals can be involved.
Some hormones, such as melatonin, affect your mood. These hormones can be altered with pregnancy, menopause, thyroid problems and other medical conditions.
A person’s social environment can also have a large impact on their depression. If you’re surrounded by people who are unhappy or who don’t care, you may be more likely to have depression.
Family history of depression
If you have a first-degree relative (biological parent or sibling) with depression, you’re about three times as likely to develop it yourself. It’s also more common in women and people assigned female at birth, but depression can occur in anyone at any age.
A healthy diet, plenty of exercise, and a positive outlook can help reduce depression. They can also be used in combination with medication and psychotherapy.
Self-help activities, such as reading, writing and other activities that allow you to express your emotions are also helpful. They can help you cope better with stressful situations and can give you something to do during the day when you’re feeling depressed.
It’s also a good idea to stay connected with friends and family. They can help you feel less isolated and support you when your depression gets worse.
Avoiding substances and alcohol can help you feel less depressed and improve your mental well-being. They can also help you recover faster from depressive episodes.
Don’t let your depression keep you from the things you enjoy doing. Trying new things can be difficult and take time, but it’s important to do them.