Dealing with Clinical Depression: A Rough Idea

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Dealing with Clinical Depression: A Rough Idea

Life is full of ups and downs. Every individual experiences mood changes, which are mere reaction to everyday experiences. The loss of a loved one might produce sadness while graduating from school might elicit happiness. Likewise a sunny day might make you smile while; a gray day in the winter might produce the “blues.” And yet, these reactions are normal, although by no means experienced by all whose lives are touched by the events. The blues are usually short-lived, hours to a few days in duration. They rarely disrupt ability to work and are rarely seen by outside observers as a marked shift in behavior ((2)). Yet the occasional blues is very different from the persistent “down,” that people with depression experience.

It is estimated that in the United States about 19 million people or one in ten adults experience depression each year. Nearly two-thirds do not get help for the disease and or receive the treatment they need. They might be too embarrassed or ashamed to get help or they may not realize that they are depressed and need help. Others think that depression is just part of life and their feelings of sadness will pass in time. While most people experience depression at some time during their lives, depression that last more than a few weeks requires treatment (2).

That is the odd thing about depression. Few of us think twice about going to the hospital to set a broken limb, because we know a health-care professional can help us. It is the same for depression. There is a long-running controversy about the cause of depression, which means no one, knows for sure: some say our personal history or experiences (psychology) cause depression, others say brain chemistry causes depression. Yet others say that depression is caused by genetic predisposition (4). Though all theories are valid and supported by various scientific findings, defining the cause of depression is complicated. Obviously, no two individuals become depressed in the same way. For example, one might become depressed from stress while another person might have a genetic predisposition to the disease. To add to the complication of depression, there are various types of the illness. Furthermore, various combinations and severity of symptoms can cause depression and many people suffer only some traits associated with depression ((2)).
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