The popular belief was that depression was due to a chemical imbalance, but research has shown that depression is a complex condition with multiple causes. While a chemical imbalance in the brain can contribute to depression, other factors, such as genetics, stress, and life events, also play a role in the development of depression and its classification.
It is essential for individuals who are experiencing symptoms of depression to seek help from a mental health professional for proper diagnosis and treatment. Treatment for depression caused by a chemical imbalance may include medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes.
Types of depression
While clinical depression is characterised by prolonged periods of low mood and intense sadness, there are some crucial differences between each type of depression. Subtypes of clinical depression include:
- melancholic depression, which includes physical and emotional symptoms;
- psychotic depression, which can involve hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia;
- bipolar disorder, where a person can experience extreme mood swings and manic episodes;
- cyclothymic disorder, similar to bipolar disorder, but the duration of mood swings wildly vary;
- dysthymic disorder, where symptoms are less severe and are generally shorter;
- seasonal affective disorder, episodes of depression or mania affected by seasonal patterns; and
- perinatal and postnatal depression, which occurs during pregnancy or after the birth of a baby.
No specific tests can accurately determine if a chemical imbalance is causing your depression. Depression is a complex condition with multiple causes, including biological, psychological, and environmental factors.
Rather than just searching online for ‘What is chemical imbalance depression?’ or ‘What does depression mean?’ The ideal way to determine the cause of your depression is to consult a doctor for a proper evaluation. They can conduct a comprehensive assessment and use the information to determine the cause of your depression and develop an appropriate course of action.
Symptoms of depression
While only a doctor can diagnose depression clinically, several symptoms may indicate depression. The symptoms of depression can fall into one of four categories:
- Behaviour. This is characterised by social withdrawal, isolation from family and friends, and loss of interest in enjoyable activities.
- Feelings. A person may experience intense, recurring feelings of guilt, irritation, overwhelmed, misery, and unhappiness.
- Thoughts. Depression may also cause a person to conjure negative thoughts about themselves and their situations, which may also form self-harm ideation.
- Physical. It is common for a person experiencing depression to experience low energy, recurring headaches, sleeping disturbances, loss of appetite, and sudden weight change.
If you are experiencing symptoms of depression, it is essential to seek help as soon as possible. It is possible to manage depression and reduce its symptoms with proper treatment.
Therefore, it is crucial to not self-diagnose yourself by merely looking up terms like ‘How to know if you’re depressed?’ or ‘What is chemical imbalance depression?’ Instead, you should leave that to a doctor to assess. If you think you are experiencing symptoms, connect with a doctor through Mosh today.
Whether you are searching for treatment options for enquiries related to ‘What is chemical imbalance depression?’ or ‘How to treat depression?’ there are three main approaches to treating depression after you get your diagnosis.
You can treat depression individually by eating healthier foods, exercising more frequently, fostering more meaningful social interactions, and spending time outdoors more often. According to emerging studies, lifestyle changes can help with treatment and prevention efforts for depression.
Other medical pathways (such as medication and therapy) may still be necessary, in addition to lifestyle changes in preventing depressive symptoms.
Researchers find that psychological treatments (such as cognitive behavioural therapy or interpersonal therapy) are more effective and last for longer periods of time than drugs. They can also be applied differently and individually. Therapy can be used to treat suppressed or underlying issues in your life that may be affecting your mental health.
Lastly, the medication approach refers to the consumption of antidepressant medications that may be prescribed to you by your doctor as a way to manage your depressive episodes and emotions. While the medication approach is effective in treating depression, the medications prescribed can vary for each person’s case.
These approaches, however, are not mutually exclusive – you can combine them if recommended by your doctor.
The treatment of depression should be tailored to each patient’s specific concerns and enable them to achieve their desired results. Regardless of the chosen treatment approach, you consult a doctor first. You can learn more about each treatment approach from a doctor and how it may affect your depression by talking with them.
Whether you are trying to figure out ‘What is chemical imbalance depression?’ or ‘How is depression diagnosed?’, depression can be triggered for various reasons that may be out of your control; it is not a lifestyle choice.
You do not have to deal with depression alone. When you are wondering ‘How not to be depressed?’, talk to a Mosh doctor and receive science-backed and personalised advice.
Depression is not something to be ashamed of. Our only concern at Mosh is helping you get back on your feet and prevent it from affecting your daily life.
If you need help understanding ‘What is chemical imbalance depression?’ or ‘How to cope with depression?’, Mosh is here to help you understand mental health and depression.
Talk to a Mosh doctor today.