Clinical depression. There are different types of clinical depression:
Major Depression. People who exhibit depression symptoms for 2 weeks are longer can be diagnosed with major depression. The symptoms to look out for are
sudden weight loss or gain,
trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep,
feeling extremely tired all day,
feeling restless, agitated, sluggish,
feelings of worthlessness,
trouble making decisions,
thoughts of suicide.
There are different levels of major depression, mild, moderate, and severe. Where someone fits in on this scale will determine their treatment. All need to talk to a professional to help them obtain the tools to battle depression. Some will need extra pharmaceutical help to balance brain chemistry or hormones.
Positive thinking is not a treatment, so stop asking a depressed person to think positively, they can’t. Depression is not sadness, it’s not the blues, it’s not something they can control.
Persistent Depressive Disorder (previously called chronic). People who suffer from this type of major depression have been battling it for over two years. This is where I get slotted in because there is a chemical imbalance within my brain causing my depression and medication does help to keep me in battle ready condition. Those who have this type of depression cannot just be happy. They have a serious physical issue inside their skull, so stop telling them to get over it, be happy, and stay positive.
Psychotic Depression. This is major depression with hallucinations thrown in for *hits and giggles. Those suffering from this type of depression can see things that aren’t there, are delusional, or paranoid. This type of depression is very serious and needs to be taken seriously by loved ones who are in a supportive role.
Bi-Polar Disorder. Those who suffer from bi-polar disorder, otherwise known as manic depression, have extreme mood swings, which lead to self-destructive behaviours on both sides of the pendulum. When they are in a manic phase, they feel invincible, have big ideas, and a truckload of energy. They don’t sleep when experiencing mania and they don’t have normal reactions to situations. A serious illness in a loved one won’t phase them because they can fix anything. Then the fall comes and suddenly they can’t do anything, all their plans and efforts go up in smoke as they hide from the world. For people suffering from this illness, the treatments are more complex than straight up depression.
Situational depression. Most people who experience depression at some point in their lives have this type of depression. It is triggered by an event they have no control over and causes them a great amount of grief. At times they have lost their purpose, their reason for living, and feel like they no longer matter in this world. Once the situation has resolved itself or enough time has passed, the depression lessons and they can lead normal lives again. Some people will need a mild anti-depressant to help them get through this time.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). We all can suffer from seasonal depression if we move to the north pole between October and May without any Vitamin D supplements. Those who live in places where the sun doesn’t shine for months on end, like Vancouver in the winter, seasonal depression can settle in, especially if your body lacks Vitamin D. With a special bright light and some Vitamin D pills, most people are able to get out of their funk during the long dark winter.
Postpartum depression. This occurs in mothers who struggle after childbirth for a lot of different reasons, hormones, anticlimactic expectations, lack of support, life changes, lack of confidence, lack of sleep, and a number of other reasons. Mothers who are not bonding with their babies, cry all the time, or want to do nothing but sleep need to see a doctor, even if they don’t feel like it. They won’t feel like it. They might need someone to take control and get them help by taking them to the doctor and explaining what they are witnessing.
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD). This occurs in women monthly before their periods and can be hard to diagnose because there could also be PMS symptoms masking this problem. If you find yourself getting sad, disinterested, really tired, anxious before your period every month, you may need pharmaceutical help to manage your hormones or brain chemistry.
To get more details and a better understanding of these different types of depression, go to web md.