Most everyone is familiar with the feeling of sadness or grief. Feeling upset over a breakup, a test grade, or the death of a loved one is completely normal and is part of a healthy grieving process. For many people, most bouts of sadness will be brief. However, some individuals struggle with a mental disorder called depression. In any given year, depression affects about 6.7% of adults, and 16.6% of the population will experience depression at one point in their lives.
Generally, depression first arises during the late teenage years into the mid-20s. Men and women are at risk of developing a depressive disorder, however, women tend to be more likely to experience these symptoms. While depression is common amongst populations worldwide, the positive news is that it most definitely is treatable. Between 80 and 90% of individuals treated for depression respond well and gain relief from their symptoms. There is no one specific method that will work for everyone, treating depression is often done using a combination of lifestyle changes, medication, and professional help.
What Is Depression?
To begin understanding how to beat this disorder, it’s best to understand exactly what it is. According to the American Psychiatric Association, depression is a mental illness that causes low moods, a loss of interest in activities, and low self-esteem. Everyone gets upset from time to time, but major depressive disorder is characterized by experiencing these symptoms for over two weeks. Other symptoms of depression may include changes in appetite, disordered sleep patterns, fatigue, trouble with decision-making, being less concentrated (known as brain fog), or suicidal thoughts.
How Is Depression Diagnosed?
Many factors can play a role in the onset of a depressive disorder. Differing hormone levels in the brain, genetics, natural personality, or environmental factors such as an unhealthy home life all may contribute to an individual’s likelihood to develop a depressive disorder. If an individual begins experiencing symptoms, a health professional will then conduct a diagnostic evaluation. The evaluation is then utilized to make a specific care plan that may include multiple different treatment options, which will hopefully help the individual beat depression!
Tips to Beat Depression
As mentioned, there are many different treatment options for those struggling with a depressive disorder. These 9 tips are some of those options that can be integrated into daily life in order to treat or aid depression, but remember that a health professional’s word is always best, and if these methods aren’t working, visit a doctor to develop a more intense and proactive plan.