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Helpful Facts about Depressive Illnesses

On this page I have tried to put together some helpful facts on Depression that I have found throughout the internet on other sites.  I have a few links on this page that you may want to check out if you feel you or someone you know is going through Depression.  I hope this page helps some of you to see your not alone.  I hope that if you are depressed you will get the help you need.

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Many Suffer Needlessly

Depression Often Is Not Treated. Even though effective treatments are available, only one in three depressed people gets help. Most people with a depressive illness do not get appropriate treatment because their symptoms:

Depressive Illnesses Are Serious

Depression Affects the Whole Person. Serious depressions are "whole body" disorders, affecting body, feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. They are not the temporary blues or the passing sad moods that everyone experiences after a loss.

Depression Sometimes Can Disable. Depressive illnesses involve a set of painful symptoms that can last for months, sometimes years. They change people. Sometimes symptoms are so disabling that they interfere with the ability to function. Some who suffer severe forms of depression are unable to eat or get out of bed. An estimated 15 percent of people hospitalized for depression eventually take their own lives.

Depressive Illnesses Come In Various Forms

Depression Can Occur More Than Once. Some people have one episode of depression in a lifetime; many have recurrent episodes. Others have ongoing, chronic symptoms.

Depression Can Involve Mood Cycles. Almost two million people experience cycles of terrible "lows" and inappropriate "highs." This emotional roller coaster is called "bipolar disorder" or "manic-depressive illness."

Causes Of Depression

Causes Are Not Always Known. In some cases, symptoms appear suddenly for no apparent reason. In others, the symptoms seem to be associated with a life crisis, stress, or other illness. Research shows that depressive illnesses run in families.

An Accurate Diagnosis Is Needed

Diagnosis Involves a Good Checkup. To diagnose clinical depression and rule out other problems there should be:

Know The Symptoms Of Depression

Depression Hurts. Symptoms of depression can include:

Know The Symptoms Of Mania

Effective Treatments Are Available

Treatment Is Needed. When four or more of these symptoms last longer than 2 weeks or interfere with ordinary functioning, professional treatment is needed. Research Has Improved Treatments. There are effective medications and psychological treatments that often are used in combination. A number of short-term talk therapies to treat clinical depression have been developed in recent years.

Several types of medications are available. People with severe depression respond more rapidly and more consistently to treatment with medication. Those with recurring forms of depression, particularly bipolar disorder, may need to stay on medication to prevent or lessen further episodes.

Many patients need psychotherapy to deal with the psychological or interpersonal problems typically associated with their illness. Electroconvulsive treatment (ECT) may also be a very effective treatment for the most severe depressions. Research is being done on light therapy, as an adjunct to other treatments

Nearly Everyone Can Be Helped Quickly

Depression with Other Illnesses: Depression often co-occurs with medical, psychiatric, and substance abuse disorders, though it is frequently unrecognized and untreated. This can lead to unnecessary suffering since depression is usually treatable, even when it co-occurs with other disorders.

Individuals or family members with concerns about the co-occurrence of depression with another illness should discuss these issues with the physician.

Symptoms Can Be Relieved in Weeks. With available treatment, 80 percent of the people with serious depression can improve and return to daily activities, usually in a matter of weeks.

Encourage Anyone Who Is Depressed To Get Help

Depressive Illnesses Sap Energy. The very nature of a depressive illness can interfere with a person's ability or wish to get help. Depression makes a person feel tired, worthless, helpless, and hopeless.

People with serious depression need encouragement from family and friends to get an accurate diagnosis and to seek the treatment that can ease their pain. Some people need even more help; they become so depressed that they must be taken for treatment.

Seek Treatment Or Referral

You Can Get Help From:

In addition to treatment, joining a support group may be helpful.

Mutual and Family Support Groups. In addition to professional treatment, many people benefit from joining mutual and family support groups. For a list of groups in your local area, contact:

National Alliance for the Mentally Ill
Colonial Place Three
2107 Wilson Blvd., Suite 300
Arlington, VA 22201-3042
1-800-950-NAMI (6264)

National Depressive and Manic Depressive Association
730 North Franklin Street, Suite 501
Chicago, IL 60610
1-800-826-DMDA (3632)

National Mental Health Association
1021 Prince Street
Alexandria, VA 22314-2971
1-800-969-NMHA (6942)

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Here are just a few links I have found on Depression that may help. Please take the time to look through them.

This is a wonderful site with lots of helpful links!
http://www.teleport.com/~skerlin/depress.html

Are you Depressed? Take the test to see.
http://www.med.nyu.edu/Psych/screens/depres.html

I will be adding more links at a later time.

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