I don’t feel well… Am I depressed? Depression is specified within the DSM IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) as one of the mood disorders. The indicators to know if the person is going through a period of depression are:
- Depressed mood, as indicated by the person himself or the observation made by others (family, friends, etc.)
- Loss of interest or ability for pleasure
- Low self-esteem
- Weight loss or weight gain
- Loss or increase of appetite
- Insomnia or hypersomnia almost every day
- Psychomotor agitation or slowing
- Fatigue or loss of energy
- Feelings of worthlessness or excessive and inappropriate guilt
- Decreased ability to concentrate or make decisions
- Recurring thoughts of death or suicidal ideation
If at least 5 of these symptoms occur, with intensity and for a period of at least 2 weeks in a row, where these indicators are present every day, it is recommended to turn to a mental health professional. It should be noted that the diagnosis of depression is ruled out if these symptoms are due to the effects of a substance or if they are due to the direct physiological effects of a medical illness.
How does depression appear?
The cause of depression is varied and depends on each individual case, each personal life experience. It is very important to know the psychopathological history in the family of the affected person since it may contain a genetic factor. Therefore it can have a genetic, environmental, external or internal cause.
Psychosocial events play an important role in the precipitation of depression, since it can arise after severe psychosocial stress such as the death of a loved one, a divorce and different situations that are stressful for the person, feeling that the situation it strongly impacts your internal and external world. It should be clarified that this impact varies from person to person, considering the internal and external resources that each one has.
This disorder can begin at any age, but statistics show that the average age of onset is from the 3rd decade of life.
How does depressed mood affect health?
it can be associated with chronic medical diseases, including cancer, since the immune system is depressed, generating physiological consequences. The whole organism is destabilized, the person does not rest as he should, nor does he eat properly and healthily, among others, which directly affects his health.
People with depressive disorder have more pain, more physical illnesses, and poor personal and social physical activity
The first and essential recommendation for a person suffering from depression is to consult a mental health professional (Psychologist or Psychiatrist). This is essential to promote recovery.
There is no single way, or a general formula to treat depression, it depends on the patient, their family history, their diagnosis and their prognosis. Each case is unique and therefore each treatment is also unique.
There are cases that with psychotherapeutic interventions can succeed and there are also those who require a psychiatric evaluation, since depression may be due to the little segregation of some chemical components.
An important factor to take into account is what the family and friends of the person who is depressed usually do, they ask him to get out of that state, for example: “come on”, “Get out”, “have fun”, “laugh “,” Does things. A person who is really depressed does not have the energy, the desire and the strength to do this, so we only make them feel demanded by their environment, little understood in their state and frustrated for not complying with the times of others or with what others want from her. In no way should the person be left alone and not encouraged, simply keep in mind that this is done little by little respecting the patient’s rhythm, little by little we ask him to leave, little by little to enjoy such activity, from to little, at your own time and at your own pace, activities with more people (dinners with friends, social events) etc. This is achieved by generating empathy with the person.
Consultation with the mental health professional is essential, who will also guide the patient’s family in their actions.