As the Summer takes hold, people often find their mood improves, particularly if they suffer from depression. In fact, one type of depression—seasonal affective disorder (SAD)—is believed to be triggered by Winter weather. It’s thought that reduced sunlight may decrease the production of serotonin (a neurotransmitter that has a soothing … Read More
About 5.4 million Americans are thought to have some degree of dementia, and its destructive effects on our cognitive abilities come at huge cost to our overall wellbeing, and that of our loved ones. “The decline in reasoning and memory that accompanies dementia impairs our ability to carry out everyday … Read More
Bipolar disorder is a crippling, chronic, severe mental disorder characterized by manic highs and crashing lows. During the high points, people with bipolar disorder may be almost euphoric—happy, full of energy and activity, sleep little or not at all for days on end, or engage in reckless behavior, have intense … Read More
Conditions such as anxiety and depression do not discriminate based on age. They can affect teenagers as well as older adults. The difference, however, is that seniors need to be careful about the kinds of therapies that they use to treat their illness. Not all antidepressants are created alike, and … Read More
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