We all experience events in our lives related to failures and lose, such as the death of a loved one or failing an exam. Most of us can manage successfully these feelings within days or weeks; while for others, the depressive symptoms can affect all the areas of their lives (cognitive, emotional, behavioral and physical). As a result, these symptoms can prevent people of living their daily life.
Depression symptoms can appear without precipitating life events, but in both cases, we can talk about a case of depression. Depression is a mood disorder that involves cognitive, emotional, physical and behavioral symptoms such as the following:
- Having negative thoughts
- Thoughts about death or suicide
- Feeling less confident
- Feeling anxious
- Feeling alone even if there are people around
- Feeling guilty, irritable, sad or angry
- Loss of interest in daily activities
Bodily and physical signs:
- Weight loss (not as a result of dieting)
- Sleep difficulties
- Poor appetite
- Feeling tired
- Physical aches and pains (digestive problems, headache)
- Poor enjoyment of daily life activities
- Loss of energy
- Decreased ability to think and concentrate
What causes depression?
There is no single cause of depression, but there is a combination of biological, genetic and social factors. The studies have suggested that there is evidence for genetic components, abnormalities in the brain neurotransmitters levels, and abnormal activities in some brain areas. Some psychological theories explain depression as a reaction to loss, or the effects on people of a lack of reinforcement for positive behaviors; as well as negative schema, and negative views about themselves, their future and the world. Major depression is more common in women than in men; however, men can have depression.
What are the treatments for depression?
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Social skills training
Behavioral activation therapy
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT)
How can we cope with depression?
- Challenge the negative though, look for the evidence for it, and use it to think positively. You can also distract yourself by
- Engaging in breathing exercises
- Practicing sports
- Going for a walk
- Listening to music
- Trying new hobbies
- Practicing Mindfulness, mindfulness
- Talking to your family members and friends about what you are going through
- Seeking attention from professionals if you are not feeling better
- Maintaining a schedule with pleasant, varied activities during the day and incorporate physical exercise
- When you feel you are having negative thoughts, look for the evidence of these thoughts
- Creating a comfortable place to sleep
- Avoiding excessive consumption of caffeine, alcoholic drinks, food and smoking