Depression is a medical illness that affects both the mind and body; it affects how you feel, think and behave. Depression is more than just a bout of the blues: it is a chronic condition that usually requires long-term treatment. The good news is most people with depression feel better with counseling or another form of treatment...
Feelings of sadness and grief are typical responses to tough life events - loss of a loved one or job, news of a chronic illness, disappointment, devastating world events, and many other causes. Depression is different from sadness - it persists and can debilitate.
Depression doesn’t discriminate based on age, race, income, or religion. In fact, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (2017), approximately 16 million adult Americans have experienced a major depressive episode within the past year.
Depression isn’t obvious. Depression is not the same as “feeling depressed”. People with depression may have:
(Source: NIMH, 2018)
A licensed mental health professional or physician can diagnose depression. You may be asked about the above symptoms or given screening assessments to assure an accurate diagnosis.
Genetics, brain chemistry, and/or stressful life events can contribute to depression. Depression is often treated with antidepressant medications or psychotherapy (counseling), or a combination of the two. Because brain chemistry and genetics do contribute to depression, the type of antidepressant prescribed can vary. (Source: NIMH, 2018)
If you are having suicidal thoughts, contact The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, available at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or you can visit www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org or call 9-1-1.