The Effects of Depression
Depression is one of the most common psychological problems. Each year over 17 million Americans experience a period of clinical depression. Thus, depression affects nearly everyone through personal experiences or through depression in a family member or friend.
Depression can interfere with normal functioning, and frequently causes problems with work, social life and family life. It causes pain and suffering not only to those who have a disorder, but also to those who care about them. Serious depression has been known to destroy family life as well as the life of the depressed person.
According to Psychology Information Online, depression is a psychological condition that changes how a person thinks and feels, and it also affects their social behavior and sense of physical well being. Depression has been called a "whole body" illness because of the many things the illness affects.
Depression affects everyone. According to Psychology Information Online, women are more at risk for depression. This is due to factors that are directly related to women such as reproductive, hormonal, genetic or other biological factors; abuse and oppression; interpersonal factors; and certain psychological and personality characteristics. In general, it has been found that people who have low self-esteem, who consistently view themselves and the world with pessimism, or who are readily overwhelmed by stress are more prone to depression. Psychologists often describe social learning factors as being significant in the development of depression, as well as other psychological problems. A serious loss, chronic illness, relationship problems, work stress, family crisis, financial setback, or any unwelcome life change can trigger a depressive episode. Very often, a combination of biological, psychological, and environmental factors are involved in the development of depressive disorders, as well as other psychological problems (Psychology Information Online).
It has been suggested that depression comes from a chemical imbalance in the brain, but now it seems the opposite is true. According to Psychology Information Online, the chemical imbalance is a result of the depression. It has been found that the chemical imbalances that occur during depression usually disappear when the patient completes psychotherapy for depression, without taking any medications to correct the imbalance.
The symptoms of depression may vary from person to person, and also depend on the severity of the depression. According to drkoop.com there are nine classic symptoms of depression:
1. Depressed mood for most of the day
2. Disturbed appetite or change in weight
3. Disturbed sleep
4. Psychomotor retardation or agitation
5. Loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities; inability to enjoy usual hobbies or activities
6. Fatigue or loss of energy
7. Feelings of...