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A Guide to Understanding Depression

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Mental health has been getting a lot of awareness in recent times. Many people are now very much invested in not just taking care of their physical health but also maintaining good mental health. Yet, depression still happens to be one of the most prevalent conditions in the country and even the world at large. According to WHO, about two hundred and eighty million people suffer from depression globally. 

Sadly, despite how common this condition is, not everybody fully understands it. We are here to remedy that with this brief yet informative article. Here, we will be talking about important things you need to know about depression. 

Depression – What exactly is it?

Depression is a type of mood disorder. This condition makes those suffering from it to be less interested in life and always have a constant feeling of sadness. It is also called a major depressive disorder. 

This disorder is not to be confused with the occasional feeling of being sad. Sometimes, life’s challenges or certain types of loss can make a person feel depressed or sad; this does not necessarily mean they are depressed. 

However, when the person starts to feel intense sadness accompanied by a feeling of hopelessness, helplessness, or even worthlessness, which lasts for more than a few days, they may have this condition. This is especially true when the condition prevents them from living their lives the way they normally would. 

depressed man
Image by Holger Langmaier from Pixabay

Is it Curable?

Luckily, clinical depression is a treatable disorder. While it is not curable, people with this disorder can live a long, fun-filled, and healthy life with the proper depression treatment and care. Even though the condition will not go away, proper treatment over time will make the symptoms go away. 


A person suffering from major depressive disorder would typically have about five or even more of the following symptoms: 

  • A depressed mood almost all through the day (this may be more noticeable in the mornings)
  • Sudden weight gain or loss
  • A feeling of restlessness
  • Having thoughts about suicide or death 
  • Loss of interest in activities that they used to love doing
  • Having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Having difficulty remembering details, deciding, or focusing
  • A feeling of hopelessness
  • Feeling guilty or worthless
  • Constantly feeling tired 

They may also experience the following: 

  • Feeling restless or cranky 
  • Overeating or loss of appetite
  • Headaches, cramps, digestive issues, or pains that refuse to get better even after treatment

These are the common symptoms of depression; however, not everyone suffering from this disorder has the same symptoms. The severity and occurrence of the symptoms can also differ. Some person’s symptoms may have a reoccurrence pattern. For instance, some persons may experience their symptoms as the seasons change. This is known as a seasonal affective disorder. Read this article to learn more about this condition. 

People suffering from depression may also have some physical signs, like back pains, sleep trouble, appetite change, etc. This is because the chemicals in the brain associated with depression (especially norepinephrine and serotonin) are active influencers of pain and mood. 


Depression is of several types, some of which are: 

  • Bipolar Disorder: People suffering from this condition tend to get very happy at some point and then alternate this mood with depressing episodes. 
  • Persistent: before a person can be diagnosed with this condition, they most likely would have been depressed for two or more years. This disorder may also be referred to as chronic depression or dysthymia. 
  • Peripartum: some women experience this condition some weeks or months after giving birth. Some men may also experience this condition. It is characterized by trouble concentrating, anxiety, irritability, and mood swings. 
  • Depressive psychosis: Sometimes, persons experiencing major depressive disorder may also have psychosis episodes. 
  • Seasonal affective disorder: some persons experience major depressive disorder during a particular season.
  • Atypical: this disorder goes away when positive events happen. 
  • Situational: this is usually triggered by certain happenings such as when a close friend or family dies, serious illness, divorce, being unemployed, and so on. 

It often does not matter the type of major depressive disorder you have. All of them are treatable. However, understanding depression is the first step to getting its ugliness behind you. You would also need to work with your doctor and help them to help you. 

This condition’s exact cause or causes has not been found, so curing it is not yet possible. But, if the proper treatment is given, someone suffering from it can still live a fulfilled life. 


Depression is a common mental health disorder suffered by many across the world. It creates a deep feeling of sadness and hopelessness in its victims. While this condition is not curable, it can be managed to ensure people suffering it can live a good life. 

Featured Image by Darkmoon_Art from Pixabay