September 04 2021
Depression is a feeling which can affect adults, children as well as adolescents. The condition of being sad all the time and having no interest in carrying out the daily activities which persist for a longer duration and it is then classified as depression.
Signs and symptoms
Some of the most prominent symptoms of depression include having a depressed mood, decreased interest in carrying out day to day activities that were once pleasant, absent sexual desire, loss of appetite, unexplained weight loss or weight gain, excessive sleep, or lack of adequate sleep, decreased range of speech or movement, fatigue, feeling unworthy, loss of energy, difficulty in concentrating, thinking and planning by making decisions and suicidal tendencies.
In females, the symptoms that manifest more commonly include irritability, anxiety, extreme mood swings, fatigue, and dwelling on negative thoughts. Postpartum depression and premenstrual dysphoric disorder are examples of tyres of depression that are detected exclusively in females. In males, the symptoms of depression include avoiding social gatherings, non-stop working without taking a break, showing characteristics of abusive and controlling behaviour as well as neglecting family responsibilities.
In students, depression may be associated with symptoms such as not able to study with concentration, insomnia, excessive sleeping habits, loss of appetite or excessive appetite, and avoiding social gatherings. In children, depression may be manifested by symptoms such as crying, decreased levels of energy, exhibiting clingy behaviour, and extreme outbursts of defiance and anger.
Causes of depression
Some of the various causes of depression may include the presence of family history, trauma during the earlier stages of childhood, history of drug abuse or alcohol addiction, alterations in the neurotransmitter levels in the brain, history of entail illness, environmental trigger factors, presence of medical conditions such as bipolar disorder and several other psychological and social factors.
Treatment of depression
Depression can be effectively treated by a timely intervention which includes support therapy such as involving practical solutions to alleviate the symptoms associated with depression and treating the underlying causative factors which may be acting as triggers for depression. Psychotherapy involves talking therapy such as counseling and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Medications such as antidepressants can be used for improving the mood and reinforcing positive thinking.
Medications for the treatment of depression include various categories of antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI), monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI), tricyclic antidepressants, atypical antidepressants, and selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI). These medications such be continued as per the dosage prescribed for the recommendation duration as stopping the medications in between may lead to a relapse. Some of the side effects of these antidepressants may include nausea, constipation, diarrhea, low blood sugar levels in the body, drastic and unexplained weight loss, the formation of rashes, and sexual dysfunction.
For the treatment of mild to moderate depression, some individuals use natural remedies such as herbal supplements. Some of them include St. John’s wort which is considered unsuitable for those people who are suffering from health disorders such as bipolar disorder. Ginseng supplements have been traditionally associated with the treatment of depression such as Alvizia triple ginseng energy booster capsules supplements which promote mental clarity and also play an important role in reducing stress thereby relieving the symptoms of depression.
Chamomiles have potent antidepressant properties due to the presence of compounds called flavonoids. Lavender is beneficial in the treatment of depression as it helps in reducing the symptoms of anxiety and insomnia which can occur as a result of depression.
Non herbal Supplements and dietary modifications
For the treatment of mild to moderate symptoms of depression, non-herbal supplements can be used effectively. Some of the non-herbal supplements include S- adenosyl methionine (SAMe) which are manufactured forms of a naturally synthesized substance in the body. 5- hydroxytryptophan helps in promoting the production of the neurotransmitter known as serotonin which alleviates the individual’s mood thereby related to the symptoms of depression.
Regular intake of excessive sugar-loaded foods and processed foods can play a major role in triggering a series of various physically debilitating health disorders which may in turn cause damage to the mental well being of the individual. Some of the foods which have been found to decrease the symptoms associated with depression are fresh fruits and vegetables, intake of fish, and olive oil.
Psychotherapy includes talking and taking other therapies for the treatment of depression such as counseling, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), interpersonal psychotherapy, and problem-solving treatment. The major goal of interpersonal therapy is to help the individuals battling depression to identify their causative factors that may affect their relationships, how to improve the communication, how these underlying conditions have an impact on the mood, and a solution to overcome the feelings of being lost in association with depression.
Exercises that are considered to be highly beneficial in alleviating the symptoms associated with depression are those which can increase the endorphin levels in the body and also cause the stimulation of norepinephrine which is an essential neurotransmitter that is responsible for alleviating the mood which may in turn help in reducing the feelings of gloom in those individuals suffering from mild depression.
Brain stimulation therapy
Some of the brain stimulation therapies which can be applied in the treatment of depression include repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation which is associated with the transmission of magnetic impulses throughout the brain and may be beneficial in the treatment of depression. In the absence of any significant improvement in the conditions associated with depression during medical management, the use of other ways of treatment such as electroconvulsive therapy is recommended. Also known as ECT, this treatment modality is consumed to be highly beneficial if there is the presence of psychosis associated with the symptoms of depression.