There are times when we feel sad and low, and we don’t know the reason for this feeling. While you can easily cope with this feeling, some are experiencing it for longer periods. This condition is called depression.

According to World Health Organization, there are more than 350 million cases of depression worldwide. All age groups are affected by this illness. This is considered as a serious illness that can lead to suicide. This article provides the facts about depression you might not know before.

What Is Depression?

Depression is a condition that causes an intense feeling of sadness. It affects a persons emotions, thinking and behavior. It is considered normal if a person is able to let it pass, and it is considered as a disorder if it affects a persons daily routine and functioning. Read these facts about depression below so you’ll know when to seek for a professionals help.

What Are The Signs Of Depression?

A depressed person may experience four or more of these symptoms for more than ten days:

  • Persistent sadness
  • Lack of sleep
  • Irritability
  • Changes in appetite
  • Digestive Problems
  • Headache
  • Inability to focus
  • Fatigue
  • Suicidal Thoughts

The symptoms above can affect the person’s work and daily routine. He should be able to see a specialist if he suspects that he is suffering from depression.

What Causes Depression?

Several factors may cause depression. They are the following:

a. Age – Older people have a feeling of worthlessness and they are likely to feel sad and depressed.

b. Gender – Women suffer from hormonal changes on some stages of their life like pregnancy and menopause. They may experience mood swings and depression more likely than men.

c. Presence of other diseases – Depression is often associated with heart diseases, lung diseases and cancer. People with these diseases may feel that they are worthless and depression may occur to them.

d. Medications – Some medications are proven to cause depression.

e. Situations – An experience of loss like divorce and death of a loved one can trigger depression for everyone.

Who Are At Risk For Depression?

You are likely to experience depression if:

1. Your family has a history of depression.

Genetics is one of the factors that may put you at risk for depression.

2. You have lost a loved one.

It is normal for everyone to feel sad and to cry over the death of a loved one, but there are people who cannot handle their emotions. Such people are at risk for depression and suicide.

3. You have been physically or sexually abused.

Depression comes along with their feelings of embarrassment. They may also suffer from trauma and nightmares which can both contribute to depression.

What Is The Treatment For Depression?

There are different types of treatment used for depression. They include the following:

1. Medical Treatment

Antidepressants are used to treat depression. It helps in improving the patient’s mood, appetite and sleeping pattern. They are usually taken for nine months or more to prevent the reoccurrence of depression.

2. Psychological Treatment

It involves different therapies to help the patient cope with their problems and alter their negative thinking. It helps in recovering and preventing depression from occurring again.

The following therapies are examples of psychological treatment:

a. Cognitive behavior therapy
This therapy is done with the help of a professional. It is also called as the talking therapy. For each session, the patient will talk to the therapist about his problems and the therapist will guide him on choosing which problem he would like to work on. The discussion lasts for 30 minutes to an hour.

b. Interpersonal therapy
This type of therapy lets the patient discuss about what he feels toward his family, friends and colleagues. The therapist will suggest ways on how to deal with these problems and they will set intended outcomes for each.

How Can Depression Be Prevented?

Depression, if left untreated, may lead to suicide. This condition is hard to prevent, but changes in your lifestyle can somehow help improve your coping skills. The following tips may help you in dealing with depression:

1. Get yourself involved.
Staying active makes you busy and can help you prevent negative thoughts. Engaging yourself in different physical activities like exercises is very helpful in improving your mood and anxiety.

2. Always talk to your friends and family.
Your loved ones can help you stay positive. Talking with your friends can also decrease your feeling of loneliness and sadness. You will feel that you are an important part of their lives.

Depression is a preventable illness, but many cases are left untreated and led to suicide. The facts about depression that are shown on this article tell you that you can prevent depression by staying active and connected with your friends and family. If you are experiencing symptoms of depression, do not be afraid to tell it to your loved ones because they can help you in dealing with the situation.