It’s hard to believe that by altering the bacteria in your gut, you can better handle stress, improve your mood, and even treat your anxiety or depression. But an explosion of research into the fascinating world of the gut-brain connection is showing just that. We now know that you can … Read More
Depression varies in severity. For some people, the feeling of sadness is mild and relatively fleeting. Others feel depressed day after day with no reprieve. More severe depression that does not let up is referred to as clinical depression, or major depressive disorder. Nearly 7 percent of Americans have clinical depression, making it one of the most common mental health issues.
To be diagnosed with clinical depression, you need to have a depressed mood or lack of interest in activities you once enjoyed, plus four or more of the following symptoms, for at least two weeks:
? Decrease or increase in appetite ? Weight loss or gain ? Trouble sleeping or getting too much sleep ? Agitation or restlessness ? A feeling of slowing down ? Fatigue or lack of energy ? Feelings of worthlessness or guilt ? Trouble thinking, concentrating, or making decisions ? Thoughts of death or suicide
Everyone experiences depression differently, but to qualify for a diagnosis of clinical depression, the symptoms must be significant enough to interfere with your day-to-day life. Clinical depression makes it more difficult to go to work or school, and interrupts your normal social activities. Some people experience sporadic episodes of clinical depression, while for others, the condition is more continuous and persistent.
Although clinical depression is a more severe form of depression, it does respond to treatments. The first step is to see a mental health professional for a diagnosis. During the evaluation, the doctor can rule out other conditions that can mimic clinical depression, including thyroid disorders or substance abuse.
Once clinical depression has been diagnosed, it can be treated with medications and talk therapy. Antidepressant drugs alter levels of brain chemicals that influence mood. These include selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) like fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), and paroxetine (Paxil), and serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) such as venlafaxine (Effexor) and duloxetine (Cymbalta). These medicines may be paired with psychotherapy, which teaches strategies to manage depression.
Research shows that when you're consistently sad, pessimistic, or moody you may have a serotonin deficiency that you can treat yourself by using serotonin supplements. The four natural serotonin supplements presented here have all been shown to help treat serotonin deficiency symptoms such as depression, insomnia, and more by increasing … Read More
When we think about depression, lack of motivation, or difficulty focusing and concentrating, the well-known brain chemical serotonin often comes to mind. While it’s true that serotonin deficiency is a problem for many people with depression and other mental health issues, researchers have known for years that other neurotransmitters such … Read More
You’ve heard of it, but you still may be wondering, “What is dopamine?” Its reputation centers around its reputation as the “feel-good hormone.” Dopamine is associated with feelings of euphoria, bliss, motivation, and concentration, yet there’s more to it than that. Like serotonin, dopamine is a type of brain chemical … Read More
Depression is a disorder that negatively affects mood, thoughts, and behavior. It is also known as “major depressive disorder” or “clinical depression,” and for a diagnosis to be made, symptoms must have been present for at least two weeks. It is a common but serious mood disorder, but with appropriate … Read More
There has recently been an explosion of research in the area of meditation and depression, just as meditation’s popularity is rapidly expanding across the globe. A growing number of people suffering from depression, anxiety, stress, and other psychological problems are turning to meditation, particularly mindfulness meditation, to feel better both … Read More
One of the oldest poisons known to humans is increasingly being found in high levels in wine. A new study of wines produced in the United States is the latest to show elevated levels of arsenic. This toxic heavy metal is linked to health risks even at low exposures. And … Read More
Depression is miserable and debilitating. It can rob you of your motivation, energy, and zest for life. The goal of treating depression is simple—to feel better! With more than 10 percent of the population taking antidepressants, it seems prudent to ask, “Do antidepressants really work?” Antidepressants are the second most … Read More
Even those of us who don’t have clinical depression or anxiety could use a little mood boost. Wouldn’t it be great if we could feel more calm and content by regularly consuming something as delicious and satisfying as chocolate? A new study reveals that dark chocolate with a high percentage … Read More
Am I depressed? That question is posed somewhere in the world countless times each day. Even though depression is widespread and considered a serious condition, it can manifest very differently in men and women. While most statistics indicate that depression occurs twice as frequently in women as men, some experts … Read More