Depression is categorized as a mood disorder that affects more than 15 million children and adults annually in the United States and is the leading cause of disability for individuals’ ages 15-44 years. Every individual deals with symptoms of sadness throughout their lifetime, but it is when these feeling don’t dissipate after a few days and rather linger for weeks/ months and effect the individuals everyday activities that proper treatment needs to be sought. Depression is a serious mood disorder that begins in the command center of the human body, the brain. Researchers are currently doing several studies of the functions of the brain through the limbic system and neurotransmitters in relation to depression, so it is important to note that depression is not to be perceived as a sign of personal weakness but rather a disease of the brain. There are several forms of depression:
- Major Depression- This serious medical condition has several symptoms that appear to overrun one’s ability to function daily (affecting sleep, eating habits, workforce).
- Dysthymic Disorder (Dysthymia)- Known as Neurotic Depression, this chronic form of depression is less acute and severe as major depression but last a long time (2 years or longer).
- Minor Depression- This mood disorder is similar to the above listed disorders but the symptoms are far less severe and don’t last as long (2 weeks or less).
The chronic illness of depression affects individuals differently- no one sufferer has the same identical symptoms of another. There are several signs and symptoms of depression to detect within the disorder:
- Feelings of sadness, hopelessness
- Loss of interest in everyday activities
- Fatigue or constant state of exhaustion
- Inability to concentrate or focus on memory recall
- Sleep deprivation/ insomnia/ or sleeping too much
- Eating disorder signs (compulsive overeating or anorexia- refraining from nutritional intake)
- Suicidal tendencies
Without knowing a direct cause of the onset of the illness of depression (stress, brain chemistry, etc.),one must take the first step towards recovery by seeking help. Depression is a life-threatening mood disorder, that is categorized as the eighth leading cause of death in the United States due to its relationship to suicide. Mental Health America stated “On average, people living with depression go for nearly a decade before receiving treatment, and less that one-third of people who seek help receive minimally adequate care”. As a comprehensive health center for the treatment of behavioral health issues, Brookhaven Hospital helps individuals that seek direction and fulfillment in their lives by maximizing their capabilities. Our Inpatient Care programs create an opportunity for individuals to address their immediate mental health needs; while our Outpatient Care programs provide confidential, therapeutic guidance and medical consultation without a hospital stay. Currently our Outpatient Care program offers a therapy group focused on Depression/ Anxiety that meets every Tuesday at the facility from 12-2 pm and allows clients to experience a full spectrum of healing through balance and hope. If you or someone you know are suffering from any form of depression, contact one of our Admission Counselors to acquire the guidance you/ they deserve today by receiving an evaluation.