Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a serious challenge that requires professional treatment (see What You Can Do). It often takes time and patience to overcome. However, while there are no simple cures for this mood disorder, an MGH expert points out that there are commonsense steps you can take that … Read More
Q: A friend of mine takes an antidepressant that affects serotonin. What is serotonin, and what does it do?
A: Serotonin is a neurotransmitter—a chemical that transmits messages between neurons in the brain and to the central nervous system. Serotonin has been described as a “feel-good” neurotransmitter, since it is believed … Read More
Almost twice as many women as men suffer from depression, and about one in five women develop depression at some point in their lifetimes. However, many women do not seek help.
“Often, people don’t recognize that they may be suffering from depression,” says Susan Evans, PhD, Professor of Psychology in Clinical … Read More
Depression—a mood disorder that affects an estimated one in 10 Americans at some point in their lives—is a complex mental health condition that comes in a variety of forms, each with distinct characteristics.
“The concept of ‘depression’ is actually a broad category that includes multiple diagnoses,” explains Andrew A. Nierenberg, MD, … Read More
More than 16 million U.S. adults ages 18 or older—nearly seven percent of the adult population—have at least one major depressive episode a year, according to the most recent Na-tional Institute of Mental Health estimates. Unfortunately, those individuals rarely suffer alone: Depression often deeply affects close family members, too, as … Read More
Depression associated with higher incidence of heart attack
Women age 55 and younger may be twice as likely as men to have a heart attack if they also suffer from depression. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (June 18, 2014) suggests that depression may be a … Read More
The herb St. John’s wort has a 2,000-year tradition of use for depression, pain, and insomnia. It started to become popular in the late 1990s, when studies showed the herb worked as well as antidepressants (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs) at treating mild-to-moderate depression. St. John’s wort also had … Read More
Researchers from Warwick University, UK, and Fudan University, China, have identified the areas of the brain that are affected by depression.
At any given time, more than one out of 20 Americans 12 years of age and older report moderate to severe depressive symptoms, according to CDC statistics from 2009-2012. Almost … Read More
The winter months bring shorter daylight hours and more time spent indoors, both of which restrict your exposure to light. This loss can trigger a condition called seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a type of seasonal depression caused by deficient light exposure. “Older adults need to be mindful about SAD as … Read More
Chronic loneliness—even though other people may be present in one’s life—can increase a person’s chances of premature death by 14 percent, is twice as likely to cause early death as obesity, and can be as damaging as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
It also can impair sleep and aspects of thinking, … Read More