Depression – One of the most common mental illnesses of the 21st century. Many people are subject to it, regardless of age – adolescents, adults and the elderly. For depression may be mistaken for a short-term deterioration of mood. Some people do not consider it a serious disease, believing that this is a consequence of whims, laziness, or poor parenting. Patients suffering from this disease are not always in a bad mood, and can not speak openly about the unwillingness to live, so as not to upset loved ones.
Depression and its perception
When a person is in a good mood, others are drawn to communicate with him. But not everyone can withstand communication with patients with depression. For a long time, the image of a person suffering from mental illness as dangerous and subject to isolation from society was fixed in the public consciousness. Treatment of depression or other mental illnesses implied registration in a psycho-neurological dispensary. This closed access to career advancement and damaged public image.
Today, fewer and fewer people treat psychological help as something shameful. But many still believe that depression is a result of laziness or licentiousness, and is easily cured by physical labor or new impressions. But all the recommendations to “think positively” or “change your attitude towards life” can only cause irritation.
In some cases, a depressed person does not tell others about his condition for fear of grieving them or “loading” them with their problems. Outwardly, he may even seem joyful and active. But, remaining alone with himself, he may experience apathy, unwillingness to do even favorite things, constantly cry or show suicidal moods. Many patients with depressive conditions resort to “rescue” with the help of alcoholic beverages.
Depressive disorders are divided into endogenous and reactive. Endogenous can be caused by metabolic neurotransmitters – substances responsible for the transmission of nerve impulses in the brain. Reactive develops as a result of reaction to stress – the loss of a loved one, divorce or separation, dismissal from work.
Causes of depression: stress, emotional turmoil and others
Contrary to popular belief, “causeless” depressive disorders do not exist. This is not just a “bad mood” that “will pass quickly.” The true causes of their occurrence surrounding can not guess. The cause of a depressive disorder can be not only recent events, but also stress, experienced in childhood, the effects of which continue to this day.
When forcibly displacing traumatic situations from the subconscious, the problem is not solved. The patient only “clogs” them inside, but they sometimes make themselves felt in the form of inexplicable anxiety, anxiety, dark thoughts, and have a serious impact on attitudes towards life and people. It is difficult to get rid of deep mental trauma on your own, so the patient may need the help of a psychotherapist.
Depressive disorder can develop under the influence of the following factors:
- emotional problems – feelings of guilt, ignoring your own experiences, shifting responsibility for your problems to others;
- poor health caused by a sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy diet, or lack of sleep;
- psychological trauma or stress resulting from the loss of a loved one, separation from a loved one, conflicts with parents, troubles at work;
- loneliness and lack of communication with friends and like-minded people;
- severe diseases.
Among the most common signs of depressive disorder, depressed mood, feeling of unexplained anxiety or fear, pessimistic perception of life, low self-esteem, suicidal thoughts are noted. If the patient’s close people notice them, they should support him and convince him to start treatment of depression.
How to behave with the patient and help in the treatment of depression?
Unfortunately, misconceptions about depressive disorders cause people to isolate themselves from the problems of the patient. Close people may not attach much importance to the disease. At best, they recommend doing some useful work, physical activity, or learning to “look at life positively.” Such a reaction is a consequence of low psychological literacy and attitude to depressive disorders as a “whim” or a whim.
In the meantime, depressive disorders can end sadly – patients often commit suicide. His reasons may be incomprehensible to others, especially if the person did not look depressed or dejected. Therefore, for the patient it is important, first of all, close attention to his thoughts and problems.And especially suicidal thoughts can become an alarming signal.
Serious signs of a depressive disorder are hard to miss. The patient may lose his appetite, have difficulty sleeping, have problems with alcohol. At the same time, he himself may not recognize the fact of the disease and ask only one thing – to be left alone.
A common problem for many families is poor communication. People may be married or in relationship, but they do not discuss each other’s feelings. Therefore, it is important to learn to talk with each other not only about positive, but also about negative life moments.
If the patient knows that there are people near him who are always ready to support him and will not be condemned for a bad mood, then it will be easier for him to be convinced of the need to start treatment for depression. Today it does not always include hospitalization and placement in a psychiatric clinic. There are many modern methods of psychotherapy or drug treatment.
It is often difficult for patients to admit the very fact of having a depressive disorder and to contact a psychotherapist or psychiatrist. The most important thing is the support of close people who are convinced that a person with a mental disorder needs help no less than a person suffering from another disease.