depression, bipolar, anxiety, types of depression, how to deal with depression

Depression EXPLAINED: Different Types of depression and How to Recognize Them

We often feel low, moody, or anxious… but that clearly does not show that we’re depressed! Depression is a mental health condition that requires proper diagnosis and treatment. Depression is not only about feeling sad but it is accompanied by various symptoms like irritation, hopelessness, self-loathing, and more. Undiagnosed or untreated depression can progress with time from mild to severe.

The fact is that depression is not the same for everyone, it can hit differently to everyone, some people might struggle with mild depression or some might struggle with chronic, severe, or clinical depression based on its severity, cause, symptoms, and more.

Depression is the strong or intense feelings of sadness that directly affects the way we think, feel, or behave. Such feelings can result in various physical and mental health problems. According to psychology, depression can be classified as mild, moderate, or severe. Each of these classifications can affect your life in different ways.

TYPES OF DEPRESSION

1. CLINICAL DEPRESSION /MAJOR DEPRESSION

This type of depression is characterized by persistent and severe depressive symptoms that last for at least two weeks or longer. It can significantly impact a person’s ability to function in daily life.

Some of the major features that could be noticed are:

  • Lack of sleep
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Unnormal sleeping patterns
  • Persistent sadness
  • Guilt or unworthiness
  • Body fatigue and restlessness
  • No interest in daily activities
  • Suicidal thoughts

2. Persistent depressive disorder (PDD)

This type of depression can also be referred to as Dysthymia. Dysthymia is a chronic form of depression that lasts for an extended period, typically lasting for two years or more. Although the symptoms may be less severe than those of major depression, they can still interfere with a person’s quality of life. Some common features of Dysthymia include:

  • Hopelessness
  • Gloomy behavior
  • Appetite changes
  • Unable to enjoy occasions
  • No concentration in any work
  • Staying away from society and social circle

Seeking help from an expert or psychologist is one option to be considered. Various therapies are applied for this depression type as required and also depending on the severity.

3. Bipolar disorder and Manic disorder

Bipolar disorder involves cycles of depressive episodes and periods of mania or hypomania. During manic episodes, individuals may experience elevated mood, high energy levels, impulsivity, and a decreased need for sleep.

SIGNS OF BPOLAR
MANIAHYPOMANIA
Extremely high energyOverwhelming sadness
High levels of self esteemSense of personal worthlessness
Loud and rapid speechTalking less
Very little need of sleepOversleeping
Engaging in reckless acts
e.g. drunk driving and high octane activities
Suicidal thoughts
  
 
a table representing the symptoms of bipolar.

Extreme mood and behavior fluctuations describe bipolar disorder. A person seems to be very happy at one moment but the very next moment they are extremely depressed. This mood swings may occur within a week or even within a year.  Some of these symptoms may be very persistent hence needing urgent medical attention. Individuals with bipolar disorders tend to be very suicidal hence making this type of depression have a high rate of suicide and suicide attempts. It should be noted that, there is no cure for this type of depression, but a doctor’s assistance and prescription is able to manage it mostly.

4. Postpartum depression (P.P.D)

depression bipolar, postpartum depression, trauma, child hood trauma

PPD is a type of depression that affects some women during a pregnancy and after childbirth. In most cases PPD can begin shortly after delivery or even up to a year later. This type depression is contributed by hormonal changes and only a few of them suffer severe case of depression. Some common symptoms include:

  • Persistent sadness or low mood
  • Loss of interest or pleasure
  • Difficulty in bonding with the new born baby
  • Lack of appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Thoughts of self-harm or harm to the baby
  • Irritability
  • Body pains
  • Poor decision making etc.

The most effective way of dealing with P.P.D is through Counselling, sometimes therapy for hormones are pretty effective with the help of doctor. The use of anti-depressants is not advised unless a doctor prescribes its use.

5. Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D)

seasonal affective disorders depression
dealing with depression therapy trauma

SAD is a type of depression that typically occurs during specific seasons, usually in the fall and winter when there is less natural sunlight. The exact cause of SAD is not fully understood, but it is believed to be related to changes in daylight exposure and can affect both adults and children. Symptoms may include

  • low energy
  • changes in sleep patterns
  • weight gain
  • general feeling of sadness
  • Body fatigue

Treatment for SAD may involve a combination of therapies, such as light therapy (exposure to bright light), psychotherapy, and sometimes medication. Additionally, lifestyle changes, such as increasing physical activity, spending time outdoors, and maintaining a healthy diet, can be beneficial in managing SAD symptoms. Talking to family members or friends may be the viable and the most effective way of dealing with SAD

6.Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (P.M.D.D)

P.M.D.D is a severe form of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) that causes significant emotional and physical symptoms in the days leading up to menstruation. P.M.D.D cyclical and is based on hormonal imbalances in women. Only 5% of women face this type of depression. Some common symptoms of P.M.D.D include:

  • Fatigue, anxiety and irritability
  • Severe mood swings
  • Hopelessness and sadness
  • Food craving or increased appetite
  • Body aches

A person can overcome this type of depression by practicing mindfulness, doing yoga, lifestyle changes and having a support system. Antidepressants recommended by doctors is one other way to fight such depression type. Till then, keep yourself occupied with good thoughts and lots of positive energy.

7. Situational depression

this is a type of depression that comes from a particular situation account to SD. Reasons like loss of loved ones, terminal illness, divorce, abusive relationships, or even financial difficulties can cause the same. Symptoms that are seen in people include:

  • Insomnia
  • General body fatigue
  • Loss of interest on things
  • Loss of social skills
  • Sadness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Inability to concentrate

The most effective way of dealing with situational depression is by trying to bring out your social skills and begin to meet people you love. In case you are taking care of someone who is suffering a situational low period, make sure that he/she is being cared more or else it can lead to severe depression as well. Consider visiting a nearby psychologist for more help.

let’s break the stigma

In conclusion we should remember that depression knows no boundaries; anyone any one can be affected, regardless of age, gender, or background. By embracing empathy and understanding, we can create a space where open conversations on depression thrive, and those burdened by depression find the solace of support. Together, we can dismantle the stigma, dispel the myths, and foster a society that nurtures mental well-being with compassion and care. Let us stand united, breaking the chains of stigma, and paving the way for a world where seeking help for depression is met with encouragement, not judgment. It starts with us, each voice adding to a chorus of understanding leading the way towards a brighter and a stigma-free tomorrow.

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