In this blog, we will be giving you information related to depression, signs, and symptoms, and causes of depression, treatments available and provide you helpful resources where you can receive more information. One in twenty Australians is affected by depression. It is a common serious medical condition that affects the persons physical and mental health. Depression can happen to anyone.
What is depression?
We all feel unhappy, moody, sad, low or withdrawn. It is natural to have these feelings from time to time, especially if the person is going through turmoil, loss or a stressful circumstance. If these feelings are intense and persist over weeks or months, negatively affects how the person is feeling, thinking and thoughts. It’s likely that the person is going through depression. This could have a great impact on the person’s daily activities, such as their ability to work, engage in satisfying relationships, school and other daily activities. Some individuals define depression as a numb feeling, a low mood that doesn’t go away and being in a dark place. Depression is a serious mental health problem, but it is also a treatable one. It’s important to get help to manage depression.
Signs of depression
Feelings of sadness and unhappiness are long-lasting and affect how the person is thinking, feeling and thoughts. This may last for weeks, months or even an extended period of time.
Symptoms of Depression
These are just some of a number of symptoms that may be experienced. It’s important to remember that we are all different and may experience some of these symptoms listed below from time to time, and it may not necessarily mean we’re depressed. Likewise, not everyone who is experiencing depression will have all of these symptoms listed below.
What causes depression?
Depression is a complex mental illness, that medical professionals are unable to define what the cause is. The mixture of psychological, social, genetic and biological factors can contribute to a person developing depression.
Some people have an increased risk factor for depressive disorders, this being due to their genes, biology or personality type. However, these risk factors do not mean, people will inevitably develop depression (dealing with life events are more likely to trigger an episode of depression).
- Genetics: A history of depression in close family members.
- Recent events: adverse events in the person’s life recently e.g. victim of a crime, having an accident, death or serious illness in the family, trauma.
- Personality: Being a more sensitive, emotional and worried person.
- Alcohol and substance use: Depression and substance abuse often occur together and can worsen depression and might lead to a vicious cycle used as a coping mechanism.
- Serious Illness: Long-term or serious illness might lead to depression.
- Having another mental illness such as anxiety disorder, psychotic disorder or substance use disorder.
Treatments for depression
There are a range of effective treatments for most people with mental health problems. Most people recover from depression, and it’s different for everyone. It is important to find the right treatment and the right health professional to assist you.
Below are the range of effective treatments:
|Phycological Treatments||Medical Treatment||Complementary Therapies|
|Cognitive Behaviour Therapy||Antidepressant medication||Exercise|
|Interpersonal Psychotherapy||Antipsychotic medication||S-Adenosylmethionine|
|Behaviour Therapy||Mood stabilisers||Light therapy|
|Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy||Electroconvulsive therapy|
|Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation|
It is recommended that individuals consult their medical specialist to identify the best and effective treatment for depression.
If you have family members, friends, loved ones or colleague going through mental health problem, would like to support them and want to know more about Mental Health Problems, I would suggest you to attend Mental Health First Aid Training. Mental Health First Aid training will provide you the knowledge on how to start a conversation, support a person who is going through difficult times.
We provide Mental Health First Aid training across QLD, and have public training scheduled at Brisbane, Toowoomba and Townsville. We are also conducting In-house MHFA training.