Why Does Depression Sometimes Come And Go
Depression can seem to come in waves, and there can be many reasons for this. For some, chemical imbalances in the brain can result in great feelings of depression while the brain attempts to re-regulate itself or find some kind of homeostasis. For others, outside stimuli can influence ones mood and prompt feelings of depression to come and go. Outside stressors can also make an individual more susceptible, such as work-life imbalance, overwhelming or unfair expectations, or financial and relationship stresses. Other health conditions can also contribute to ones mental health. Illness or injury can affect a persons mind as well as their body, and can cause an individual to experience the effects of depression. While an injury itself can increase the chances of experiencing a depressive episode, likewise, a healthy body can create a healthy mind and help an individual begin to escape a depressive episode, as well.
Major Depression Vs Dysthymia
Major depressive disorder and dysthymia overlap in some ways. But there are key differences.
Dysthymia, now usually called persistent depressive disorder , involves fewer symptoms. But they last longer, at least 2 years. You can be diagnosed with MDD if you have symptoms for 2 weeks.
Both mood disorders are serious. Sometimes dysthymia can disrupt your life more, even with fewer symptoms.
Which Types Of Psychotherapy Work Best
Psychotherapy always includes talking with a trained professional focused on helping you make positive changes in your thoughts and behaviors to ease your symptoms. But theres some evidence that certain types may be more effective for depression than others, notes the NIMH. These include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy , a systematic approach aimed at identifying and altering negative thought patterns
- Dialectical behavioral therapy , which emphasizes psychotherapy and group classes in new skills, such as mindfulness, to help make life feel worth living
- Interpersonal therapy , which focuses on increasing happiness by improving how you interact with others
- Psychodynamic therapy, which aims to reduce the negative influence of past life events and traumas through insight into how they affect your current behavior
- Accelerated experiential dynamic psychotherapy , which teaches patients to view depression as a defense against core emotions, including sadness, fear, anger, sexual excitement, and disgust, so that fully feeling those emotions can help restore hope and optimism
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What You Can Do Now
To treat depression effectively, its important that you reach out to your doctor for a diagnosis. They will work with you to determine the right treatment measures. Treatment may include SSRIs, herbal remedies, CBT, or lifestyle adjustments.
Its especially important to contact your doctor in cases of mild to moderate depression, as the symptoms may not be noticeable to others. Though it may take time for treatment to make a noticeable difference, reaching out to your doctor is the first step toward feeling better.
If youre dealing with thoughts of suicide or acts of self-harm, call your local emergency services or a crisis hotline right away. You can try the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
Symptoms Of Major Depressive Disorder
These are some of the symptoms of major depressive disorder you may experience:
- Feeling sad or low
- Having difficulty paying attention, remembering, or making decisions
- Having difficulty sleeping, waking up too early, or oversleeping
- Experiencing unplanned changes in eating habits and weight
- Experiencing headaches, cramps, digestive issues, or other aches and pains that dont have a clear cause and dont get better with treatment
- Talking about death, having thoughts of suicide, or attempting self-harm
Everyone experiences depression differently. While some people may have a few symptoms, others may have many. The frequency, severity, and duration of the symptoms can also vary from person to person.
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What Treatments Make Depression Go Away
Clinical depression is a serious medical condition. It’s unlikely that depression will go away on its own. Without treatment, the symptoms might become much worse.
Like many other medical conditions, early treatment can result in a better outcome. With treatment, your depression symptoms can become easier to manage. Treatment can also shorten the length of your depressive episodes, or even prevent them from happening again.
There are many treatment options for depression. None of these options are guaranteed to make depression go away, but they may help you find relief and build skills to manage symptoms more successfully. Some treatment options include:
Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most common type of therapy recommended for people with clinical depression. It can help you challenge negative thoughts associated with depression, and create new, healthy thought patterns and beliefs. CBT can also reduce the chances of experiencing another depressive episode³.
Finding the right medication, dosage, and combination can take time, but there are many options available for the treatment of depression. You can work with your health care provider or a psychiatrist on finding the medication that works best for you.
Look for ways to expand your support network, either through family and friends or by joining a support group.
Prevalence Major Depressive Disorder
Depression is the leading cause of disability for individuals aged 1544 in the United States.4 Based on 2017 surveys, it was estimated that more than 17 million adults experienced at least one major depressive episode in the past year in the U.S. alone.5 According to the American Psychiatric Association, one in 6 individuals will experience depression at some point in the lives.6
Women experience this disorder more frequently than men. Women more frequently have internalizing symptoms of depression , while men tend to have externalizing symptoms, such as reckless behaviors and substance abuse.4,7
Children and teenagers also tend to experience certain symptoms of depression. In a younger child, depression can present itself with symptoms such as clinging to a parent, acting sick, refusing to go to school, and worrying about their parent dying. In older children and teenagers, depression may manifest as irritability, sulkiness, problems at school, or drug/alcohol use.8
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Is Major Depressive Disorder The Same As Bipolar
Major depressive disorder is not the same as bipolar depression but they do share some challenging symptoms. The hallmark of bipolar depression is periods of mania along with periods of low mood. MDD does not include mania but both illnesses include depression. As with MDD, there are effective treatments for bipolar. It’s important to seek professional treatment when you live with a serious mental illness. Many people with MDD and bipolar attend school, obtain college degrees, work fulltime, enjoy happy relationships and live full lives.
Tips For Living Well With Major Depressive Disorder
Living with major depression can feel lonely. People may be fearful or ashamed of being labeled with a serious mental illness, causing them to suffer in silence, rather than get help. In fact, most people with major depression never seek the right treatment. But those struggling with this illness are not alone. Its one of the most common and most treatable mental health disorders. With early, continuous treatment, people can gain control of their symptoms, feel better, and get back to enjoying their lives.
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What Is Used To Treat Major Depression
Sometimes people feel scared by how dark their thoughts can becomethoughts they have never had before. This is a symptom, not you. If you even feel like hurting yourself or someone else, call 911 or go to your local emergency room and ask for the psychiatrist on-call. Dr. Wegner
Treatment may include a combination of therapy, medications, and lifestyle changes. The good news is that 80% to 90% of people with depression eventually respond well to treatment.
Recognize The Importance Of Self
Self-care is essential for good physical and mental health. Self-care activities are any actions that help people look after their wellbeing.
Self-care means taking time to relax, recharge, and connect with the self and others. It also means saying no to others when overwhelmed and taking space to calm and soothe oneself.
Basic self-care activities include eating a healthful diet, engaging in creative activities, and taking a soothing bath. But any action that enhances mental, emotional, and physical health can be considered a self-care activity.
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Genetics Biology And Environment
- Genetics: Like other mood disorders, genetics can cause clinical depression. People are more prone to the disorder if members of their family experienced it.
- Biology: According to a 2018 article , changes in brain structure can occur as a person ages. This may increase the risk of depression.
- Environment: Environmental factors such as trauma or a significant loss may trigger stress, anxiety, and depression in people who have genetic features that increase their risk.
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What You Can Do On Your Own
Having major depression is not something you can just beat with willpower. But you can tweak your lifestyle to find some relief.
Seek out friends and family. It may not come as a surprise that loneliness increases the risk of depression. The importance of social support is not talked about nearly enough, says Dr. Landau.
Eat healthier, nutrient-rich foods. A growing body of research suggests that what you eat can affect your mental health. For example, a study published in October 2019 in the journal PLoS One found that symptoms of depression dropped from the moderate to normal range among a group of young adults who followed a Mediterranean-style pattern of eating for three weeks, increasing their intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, unsweetened dairy, fish, nuts, seeds, and olive oil.
Be more physically active. Research indicates that exercise can help prevent and treat depression. For instance, an analysis published in May 2018 in JAMA Psychiatry looked at more than 30 previous studies and concluded that resistance training is associated with a significant reduction in depression symptoms.
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms
Major depression symptoms vary from person to person. To receive a diagnosis of major depressive disorder, some of these signs and symptoms must be present for at least two weeks. Anyone who has questions should consult their doctor.
- Continued feelings of sadness, hopelessness, pessimism, emptiness
- Fatigue, lack of energy
- Insomnia or other sleep issues such as waking up very early or sleeping too much
- Anxiety, irritability, restlessness
- Lack of interest or joy in hobbies and activities
- Changes in appetite, leading to weight loss or weight gain
- Moving, talking, or thinking more slowly
- Trouble concentrating, thinking clearly, or making decisions
- Vague aches and pains, such as headaches, joint pain, back pain, or digestive problems
- Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
Understanding Manic Episodes Of Bipolar Disorder
The way bipolar disorder symptoms manifest, the duration of symptoms, and the overall effect on a person may vary greatly from person to person. The manic symptoms of bipolar disorder may be especially difficult for some people to understand as people may react differently during these episodes. For example, when manic episodes occur, one person may experience mania or hypomania episodes with feelings of frustration or irritability while another may exhibit a decreased need for sleep, accelerated thinking, or hyperactivity.
When manic symptoms of bipolar disorder emerge, its not uncommon for one to experience feelings of creativity, heightened energy, or euphoria. Some people may feel they are destined for greatness or are invincible.
While the overall feeling of increased energy and euphoria may feel good at first, manic episodes can cause a spiral in emotions. For instance, during this phase, some people engage in dangerous or inappropriate behavior. They may become sexually promiscuous, gamble, or go on spending sprees. Some people are easily angered, may start fights or lash out at others, or blame those who criticize their behavior.
Some common symptoms of manic episodes include:
- Sleeping less, but feeling extremely energetic
- Racing thoughts that jump from one subject to another quickly
- Talking rapidly
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What Does Your Brain Look Like When You Have Depression
Grey matter in the brain refers to brain tissue that is made up of cell bodies and nerve cells. People with depression were shown to have thicker grey matter in parts of the brain involved in self-perception and emotions. This abnormality could be contributing to the problems someone with depression has in these areas.
What Are The Symptoms Of Depression
Depression can affect your emotions, mind and body. Depression symptoms include:
- Feeling very sad, hopeless or worried.
- Not enjoying things that used to give you joy.
- Being easily irritated or frustrated.
- Eating too much or too little.
- Changes in how much you sleep.
- Having a difficult time concentrating or remembering things.
- Experiencing physical problems like headache, stomachache or sexual dysfunction.
- Thinking about hurting or killing yourself.
If you or someone you know has thoughts of hurting themselves, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255. This national network of local crisis centers provides free, private emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
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Does Depression Go Away On Its Own
While more severe cases of depression usually require professional mood disorder treatment to see improvement in symptoms, some depression may go away without treatment. This is usually the result of more mild cases or types of depression that tend to only be temporary such as postpartum depression or seasonal affective disorder.
Although there is a chance that some depression will go away without treatment, the best way to decrease the amount of time that depression lasts is to get professional help. Especially in the case of major depressive disorders, a professional inpatient mental health treatment could reduce the severity and duration of symptoms drastically. Treatment usually includes a combination of psychotherapy techniques and medications.
Track Triggers And Symptoms
Keeping track of moods and symptoms might help a person understand what triggers a depressive episode. Spotting the signs of depression early on may help them avoid a full-blown depressive episode.
Use a diary to log important events, changes to daily routines, and moods. Rate moods on a scale of 1 to 10 to help identify which events or activities cause specific responses. See a doctor if symptoms persist for 14 days or more.
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Why Treatment Is Key
Getting help for depression can improve health and level of functioning. Treatment can also reduce the amount of time that depression lasts along with reducing the severity of symptoms and the risk of recurrence.
There is no single effective treatment for depression and the success rate of each treatment varies from person to person. Some people might respond well to medication, while others may see more improvements through online counseling and therapy. Successful treatment for depression may require trying several different options.
Depression is serious and can impact every aspect of a persons life. However, depression is treatable and there is hope for recovery.
If youre looking for healthy ways to manage depression, the Nobu app can help. It is free and for anyone that is looking to reduce anxiety, work through depression, build self-esteem, get aftercare following treatment, attend teletherapy sessions and so much more. Download the Nobu app today!
What Is Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is a chronic or episodic mental disorder. It can cause unusual, often extreme and fluctuating changes in mood, energy, activity, and concentration or focus. Bipolar disorder sometimes is called manic-depressive disorder or manic depression, which are older terms.
Everyone goes through normal ups and downs, but bipolar disorder is different. The range of mood changes can be extreme. In manic episodes, someone might feel very happy, irritable, or up, and there is a marked increase in activity level. In depressive episodes, someone might feel sad, indifferent, or hopeless, in combination with a very low activity level. Some people have hypomanic episodes, which are like manic episodes, but less severe and troublesome.
Most of the time, bipolar disorder develops or starts during late adolescence or early adulthood. Occasionally, bipolar symptoms can appear in children. Although the symptoms come and go, bipolar disorder usually requires lifetime treatment and does not go away on its own. Bipolar disorder can be an important factor in suicide, job loss, and family discord, but proper treatment leads to better outcomes.
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How Long Does Depression Last Does It Go Away
Depression is a complex and debilitating disorder that plagues many people. The overwhelming feeling of depression can affect every aspect of a persons life, from their relationships to the professional sphere. It is a considerable weight that can leave a person feeling sad, hopeless, and can even compromise their own self-image. It is critical to address depression, but depressive episodes can still surface, even while receiving care. Asking, Does it ever go away? is a fair question with two distinct interpretations. However, the answer is yes, it can go away whether a person is looking to address the particular depressive episode they feel stuck in, or thinking about addressing their depression as a whole.
Symptoms Of A Mixed Episode
A mixed episode of bipolar disorder features symptoms of both mania or hypomania and depression. Common signs of a mixed episode include depression combined with agitation, irritability, anxiety, insomnia, distractibility, and racing thoughts. This combination of high energy and low mood makes for a particularly high risk of suicide.
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How Is Depression Diagnosed
Depression can happen along with other medical conditions. These include heart disease, or cancer, as well as other mental health conditions. Early diagnosis and treatment is key to recovery.
A diagnosis is made after a careful mental health exam and medical history done. This is usually done by a mental health professional.