Where Can I Find Clinical Trials For Depression
Clinical trials are research studies that look at new ways to prevent, detect, or treat diseases and conditions. Although individuals may benefit from being part of a clinical trial, participants should be aware that the primary purpose of a clinical trial is to gain new scientific knowledge so others may receive better help in the future.
Researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health and around the country conduct many studies with patients and healthy volunteers. Talk to your health care provider about clinical trials, their benefits and risks, and whether one is right for you. For more information, visit NIMH’s clinical trials information.
Severities Of Clinical Depression
Clinical depression can often come on gradually. So it can be difficult to notice when something is wrong. You might try to cope with the symptoms without realising you’re unwell. It can sometimes take a friend or family member to suggest something is wrong.
The severity of clinical depression depends on how much impact it has on your daily life:
- mild clinical depression has some impact
- moderate clinical depression has a significant impact
- severe clinical depression almost impossible to get through daily life
You can have clinical depression and other mental health disorders. For example, anxiety, psychosis or other difficulties.
So Depressed I Cant Function
Anyone who has ever suffered through a bout of prolonged depression can attest to how depleted it makes you feel. In what seems like an instant, you feel so down that you say I am so depressed I cant function. Even the most mundane tasks are so hard to complete.
The effects of the depression touch all aspects of life. Unable to function at work, coworkers will complain that you are not pulling your weight. Loved ones will feel they are being neglected. Even your health will begin to suffer. Depression is a serious mental illness that should not be ignored.
Crawling out of the dark hole of depression takes effort. When in the thick of it you might not feel you can muster up the strength to beat it. But with expert psychiatric help, and lots of patience, daily functioning and quality of life will be restored.
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Antenatal And Postnatal Depression
Women are at an increased risk of depression during pregnancy and in the year following childbirth . This time frame may also be referred to as the perinatal period.
The causes of depression at this time can be complex and are often the result of a combination of factors. In the days immediately following birth, many women experience the baby blues, which is a common condition related to hormonal changes, affecting up to 80 per cent of women who have given birth.
The baby blues, or the general stress of adjusting to pregnancy or a new baby, are common experiences, but are different from depression.
Depression is longer lasting and can affect not only the mother, but her relationship with her baby, the childs development, the mothers relationship with her partner and with other members of the family.
Up to one in 10 women will experience depression during pregnancy. This increases to 16 per cent in the first three months after having a baby.
What Causes ‘your’ Fatigue
Many physical and mental illnesses, as well as lifestyle factors, can cause your fatigue, and that can make it hard to diagnose. In some cases, it might be something simple and easy to fix, like having caffeine at bedtime. But other causes, like heart disease or COPD, are serious, and you may need to start long-term treatment right away.
Your doctor can help you sift through your health issues, as well as diet, exercise, and other lifestyle habits, in order to zero in on the cause and help you on the road to recovery.
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You Can Struggle To Focus And Feel Like Youre Not Performing To The Best Of Your Ability
âSometimes, nothing gets done. I can be in a long drawn out daze all day, or it takes all day to complete a few things. Since Iâm in public relations and I work with individuals and companies that champion a great cause, which often pull at peopleâs heartstrings, my work can take me into an even deeper depression.
âI can be working on a story, and while Iâm typing I have tears streaming down my face. That may actually work to the advantage of my client because I have so much heart and passion around meaningful stories, but itâs pretty scary because the emotions run so deep.
â Tonya, publicist, California
How Can I Take Care Of Myself
Once you begin treatment, you should gradually start to feel better. Go easy on yourself during this time. Try to do things you used to enjoy. Even if you dont feel like doing them, they can improve your mood. Other things that may help:
- Try to get some physical activity. Just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood.
- Try to maintain a regular bedtime and wake-up time.
- Eat regular, healthy meals.
- Do what you can as you can. Decide what must get done and what can wait.
- Try to connect with other people, and talk with people you trust about how you are feeling.
- Postpone important life decisions until you feel better.
- Avoid using alcohol, nicotine, or drugs, including medications not prescribed for you.
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You Feel Zero Sense Of Accomplishment
Sure, you may be able to knock out your to-do list while living with high-functioning depression. But that doesnt mean you necessarily feel good or accomplished when its done.
Throughout the day, you transition in and out of tasks, feeling distressed by how emotionally disconnected you are. You wait for the feeling to kick in some interest, excitement, anything, said Greg Kushnick, a licensed psychologist in New York. You settle for a mild sense of engagement when a task successfully distracts you from your negative thoughts.
Carrie Krawiec, a licensed marriage and family therapist in Troy, Michigan, agreed, adding that people with depression often do not feel joy, even from activities that once brought them joy.
They resent their depression for robbing them of joy and it creates anger and negativity to do a once beloved task and feel nothing or worse miserable, she said.
Take Care Of Your Body
A healthy body can help you manage stress. Get 7 to 9 hours of sleep, eat healthy food, stay hydrated and exercise regularly. Go easy on the caffeine. Shorting yourself on sleep, and especially pulling an all-nighter, robs you of energy and your ability to concentrate. A healthy diet improves your ability to learn. Don’t skip breakfast.
Truths Only People With High
When we think of depression, we might imagine a person clutching a box of tissues and completely unable to make it out the front door. But that stereotype is fundamentally untrue. Depression can manifest in many different ways, including what some people refer to as high-functioning depression.
Experts say high-functioning depression often isnt noticeable to most people. If you live with it, you know how true this is. Most days, you plaster a smile on your face, excel at work and even maintain successful relationships. This, however, doesnt mean that you arent struggling with the debilitating symptoms of depression each and every day.
Sound familiar? Here are a handful of things that people with high-functioning depression can understand better than anyone, according to experts and other people who have been there.
What To Do When Youre Too Depressed To Work
Are you too depressed to work?
Everyone gets sad from time to time, but the major depressive disorder is a serious mental illness
If you have DMM, there are massive consequences.
Your symptoms of depression can be crippling, and the statistics back it up!
The World Health Organization lists depression as the leading cause of disability worldwide.
If youre having trouble working during a depressive episode, dont beat yourself up over it. This is not something you can snap out of with willpower.
Mental health issues can be just as detrimental to your ability to work as physical health conditions.
Thankfully, there are options available for what to do, to get you back on your feet and confident at work.
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Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder
Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder is a condition that occurs in children and youth ages 6 to 18. It involves a chronic and severe irritability resulting in severe and frequent temper outbursts. The temper outbursts can be verbal or can involve behavior such as physical aggression toward people or property. These outbursts are significantly out of proportion to the situation and are not consistent with the childs developmental age. They must occur frequently and typically in response to frustration. In between the outbursts, the childs mood is persistently irritable or angry most of the day, nearly every day. This mood is noticeable by others, such as parents, teachers, and peers.
In order for a diagnosis of disruptive mood dysregulation disorder to be made, symptoms must be present for at least one year in at least two settings and the condition must begin before age 10. Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder is much more common in males than females. It may occur along with other disorders, including major depressive, attention-deficit/hyperactivity, anxiety, and conduct disorders.
Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder can have a significant impact on the childs ability to function and a significant impact on the family. Chronic, severe irritability and temper outbursts can disrupt family life, make it difficult for the child/youth to make or keep friendships, and cause difficulties at school.
Treatment typically involves and/or medications.
Life Events And Depression
Research suggests that continuing difficulties, such as long-term unemployment, living in an abusive or uncaring relationship, long-term isolation or loneliness or prolonged exposure to stress at work can increase the risk of depression.
Significant adverse life events, such as losing a job, going through a separation or divorce, or being diagnosed with a serious illness, may also trigger depression, particularly among people who are already at risk because of genetic, developmental or other personal factors.
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How Is Depression Treated
Depression treatment typically involves medication, psychotherapy, or both. If these treatments do not reduce symptoms, brain stimulation therapy may be another treatment option. In milder cases of depression, treatment might begin with psychotherapy alone, and medication added if the individual continues to experience symptoms. For moderate or severe depression, many mental health professionals recommend a combination of medication and therapy at the start of treatment.
Choosing the right treatment plan should be based on a persons individual needs and medical situation under a providers care. It may take some trial and error to find the treatment that works best for you. You can learn more about the different types of treatment, including psychotherapy, medication, and brain stimulation therapies on the NIMH’s depression webpage. For information on finding a mental health professional and questions to ask when considering therapy, visit NIMHs psychotherapies webpage.
Causes And Risk Factors
Depression is not a mood you can just get over. It is a disease in which the brain ceases to register pleasurable activities, says Angelino. Indeed, MRI studies with depressed people have found changes in the parts of the brain that play a significant role in depression.
Women are about twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression. Youre also more likely to develop depression if you are between ages 45 and 64, nonwhite, or divorced, and if you never graduated high school, cant work or are unemployed, and dont have health insurance. Other risks for depression include factors such as these:
- Experiencing stressful events in your life, such as losing your job, having problems in your marriage, major health problems, and/or financial challenges.
- Having a bad childhood, such as one involving abuse, poor relationships with your parents, and/or your parents own marital problems.
- Certain personality traits, such as getting extremely upset when youre stressed.
- A family history of depression, which can increase your own risk three or four times.
Depression is far more common than you might think, with nearly one out of 10 adults depressed at any time, about half of them severely.
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Does Depression Look The Same In Everyone
Depression can affect people differently, depending on their age.
Children with depression may be anxious, cranky, pretend to be sick, refuse to go to school, cling to a parent, or worry that a parent may die.
Older children and teens with depression may get into trouble at school, sulk, be easily frustrated feel restless, or have low self-esteem. They also may have other disorders, such as anxiety and eating disorders, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, or substance use disorder. Older children and teens are more likely to experience excessive sleepiness and increased appetite . In adolescence, females begin to experience depression more often than males, likely due to the biological, life cycle, and hormonal factors unique to women.
Younger adults with depression are more likely to be irritable, complain of weight gain and hypersomnia, and have a negative view of life and the future. They often have other disorders, such as generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, panic disorder, and substance use disorders.
Middle-aged adults with depression may have more depressive episodes, decreased libido, middle-of-the-night insomnia, or early morning awakening. They also may more frequently report having gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea or constipation.
Heart Disease And Fatigue
Symptoms: Fatigue from an activity that should be easy
If youre exhausted after an activity that used to be easy — for example, walking up the steps — it may be time to talk to your doctor about the possibility of heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in women. If your fatigue is related to your heart, medication or treatments can usually help correct the problem, cut the fatigue, and restore your energy.
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Depression And Doing Nothing
I am depressed. I’ve been depressed for a long time. My doctor and I working on my not being depressed but these things are interminably slow.
And, as is the case so much of my depressed time, doing anything is painstaking for me. I have to work up an absolute lather to do the tiniest thing. I don’t care about anything and I certainly don’t care about doing anything.
I cannot express just how much energy and will it takes to move and just how little I want to. It’s horrendous.
And the thing is, exerting all that energy to do things really does hurt. It really does make my depression symptoms worse. This is why it’s called a disability. I’m simply unable to do things.
So, clearly, the answer would be to do nothing, right?
Well, yes and no.
Difficulty Experiencing Joy Or Connection
When were depressed, it can take all of the enjoyment out of the things we love and make it more difficult for us to connect to those closest to us. We may begin to lose interest in hobbies, friendships, schoolwork, social activities, sex or life in general. When this happens, we may find ourselves feeling isolated from friends, family members or others who care about us.
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This Quiz Will Help You Figure Out What’s Going On
- Have you experienced any kind of change, loss, or trauma recently?
More Than Sad: Depression Affects Your Ability To Think
- By James Cartreine, PhD, Contributing Editor
ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
When you think of clinical depression, you probably think of feeling sad and down for long periods of time losing your energy and your interest in things you used to enjoy sleeping too much or too little, or eating too much or too little. But besides these, depression can actually change your ability to think. It can impair your attention and memory, as well as your information processing and decision-making skills. It can also lower your cognitive flexibility and executive functioning .
For people with severe depression, medications can provide some relief of low mood and energy, bolster the motivation to engage in enjoyable and important activities, and help people return to normal sleeping and eating patterns.
But we dont know whether antidepressant medications treat cognitive impairment related to depression. Recently, an international research team attempted to answer this question as part of a larger study on depression treatment. Their results were published in The Lancet last month.
How Do You Motivate Yourself To Do Something You Don’t Want To Do
Self-will is strong, and sometimes it may be weak when you don’t feel like doing something. For this reason, you may have found it difficult to motivate yourself to do certain crucial things. In some cases, your lack of self-will may result from substance abuse, which is detrimental to one’s behavioral health. For instance, if you need to go to a close friend’s birthday party, but you don’t want to, that may need some extra motivation. Sometimes, it may be as little as getting house chores done. No matter what it is that you’re having a hard time with, you can motivate yourself. So, when you find yourself saying, “I do not want to do anything,” it’s crucial that you try to think differently.
In most cases, self-motivation is effective when the root cause of your feeling isn’t a medically reviewed mental illness like depression. In simple terms, depression is a mental illness characterized by persistently depressed feelings, mood, or loss of interest. Depression may also be due to traumatic stress or substance abuse that affects one’s behavioral health. You may need to consult a therapist first to diagnose any mental illness and provide mental health treatment. A good idea of helpful tools for self-motivation is reading a book. It doesn’t have to be one with long stories you may go through a short one.