Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Depression Could Be Fatal If Left Untreated by Andy Guides Jr

Did you know that women experience depression at a rate of 2:1 as compared to men? The reason for this, at least in part, is the large hormonal fluctuations women have throughout their lives. Men can become depressed, too, but it tends to look differently. Men usually become hostile and angry, not withdrawn and inward. They also are prone to avoiding treatment. Men commit suicide at a rate of 4:1 compared to women. The elderly also fall ill and often fail to get treatment. Well-meaning family members may think that the behavior of their elderly relative is just due to the aging process. This is not necessarily the case.

Some people still think that if a person thinks positively enough they can talk themselves out of being depressed. This myth is patently false. Depression is caused by having a trauma history, a physical illness like low thyroid, certain medications, chronic pain and even grief.

In depression, neurotransmitters are ineffectively passing messages between neurons either because there are not enough neurotransmitters or they are too weak. This chemical malfunction in the brain is similar to talking on a cell phone with a poor connection. Treatment can help strengthen the connection.

If you or someone you know experience any of the symptoms for more than a two-week period of time, seek medical attention. Some of the symptoms of depression include lack of interest in previously enjoyable activities, isolation, difficulty concentrating or remembering, being irritable, feeling worthless and hopeless, gaining or losing more than 5% of your weight on a month, lack of energy, sleeping too much or having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, thinking about death and suicide, physical pain, digestive problems, headache and hurting all over.

Children can become depressed, although they show their depression through behavior, not necessarily through words. This is why changes in the behavior or a child should be paid attention to. Postpartum depression happens to new mothers, probably due to the huge hormone fluctuations following birth. This is one of the more guilt-producing types of depression and women may think that they are the only ones experiencing this feeling. Seasonal affective disorder occurs in winter, mainly in people who live in the northern latitudes. Bipolar disorder, formerly known as manic depression, runs in families and is identified by its extremely moody highs and lows.

The good news is that treatment is possible. In fact, about 80% of people respond to treatment. The most effective treatment is a combination of behavioral therapy and medication. Stress management, meditation, eating right, exercising and taking time to do enjoyable activities act as preventatives.

Depression is not just a harmless illness. It can be fatal if left untreated. It is nothing to be ashamed of and it certainly is not your fault anymore than it is the fault of a diabetic for needing insulin. If someone you know or if you experience any of the symptoms of depression for two weeks, seek medical advice.