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الفبای زندگی - Depression
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Clinical depression goes by many names -- depression, "the blues," biological depression, major depression. But it all refers to the same thing: feeling sad and depressed for weeks or months on end (not just a passing blue mood), accompanied by feelings of hopelessness, lack of energy, and taking little or no pleasure in things that gave you joy in the past. A person who's depressed just "can't get moving" and feels completely unmotivated to do just about anything. Even simple things -- like getting dressed in the morning or eating -- become large obstacles.

Depressed? Take the Quiz NowWe've compiled a library of depression resources for you to explore. We encourage you to take your time with these resources, print out things you'd like to read more carefully, and bring anything you have additional questions about to your family doctor or a mental health professional.

Depression is readily treated nowdays with modern antidepressant medications and short-term, goal-oriented psychotherapy. Don't be put off by the amount of things written about depression -- because it's so common, a lot has been written about it! Read what you need, and leave the rest for another day.


The Causes of Depression


The key understanding about depression causes — and, in fact, causes for any mental disorder — is that we still do not know what causes these mental disorders. It is generally believed that all mental disorders are caused by a complex interaction and combination of biological, psychological and social factors. This theory is called the bio-psycho-social model of causation and is the most generally accepted theory of the cause of disorders such as depression by professionals.

Some types of depression run in families, suggesting that a biological vulnerability can be inherited. This seems to be the case withbiplorer disorder. Studies of families in which members of each generation develop bipolar disorder found that those with the illness have a somewhat different genetic makeup than those who do not get ill. However, the reverse is not true: Not everybody with the genetic makeup that causes vulnerability to bipolar disorder will have the illness. Apparently additional factors, possibly stresses at home, work, or school, are involved in its onset.

In some families, major depression also seems to occur generation after generation. However, it can also occur in people who have no family history of depression. Whether inherited or not, majordepressed disorder is often associated with changes in brain structures or brain function.

People who have low self-esteem, who consistently view themselves and the world with pessimism or who are readily overwhelmed by stress, are prone to depression. Whether this represents a psychological predisposition or an early form of the illness is not clear.

In recent years, researchers have shown that physical changes in the body can be accompanied by mental changes as well. Medical illnesses such as stroke, a heart attack, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and hormonal disorders can cause depressive illness, making the sick person apathetic and unwilling to care for his or her physical needs, thus prolonging the recovery period. Also, a serious loss, difficult relationship, financial problem, or any stressful (unwelcome or even desired) change in life patterns can trigger a depressive episode. Very often, a combination of genetic, psychological, and environmental factors is involved in the onset of a depressive disorder.

Shown here is a PET scan revealing "hot spots" of increased activity in a non-depressed brain.

How to Help Yourself if You Are Depressed

depresseve disorders make one feel exhausted, worthless, helpless, and hopeless. Such negative thoughts and feelings make some people feel like giving up. It is important to realize that these negative views are part of the deprretion and typically do not accurately reflect the situation. Negative thinking fades as treatment begins to take effect. In the meantime:

  • Set realistic goals and assume a reasonable amount of responsibility.
  • Break large tasks into small ones, set some priorities, and do what you can as you can.
  • Try to be with other people and to confide in someone; it is usually better than being alone and secretive.
  • Participate in activities that may make you feel better.
  • Mild exercise, going to a movie, a ballgame, or participating in religious, social, or other activities may help.
  • Expect your mood to improve gradually, not immediately. Feeling better takes time.
  • It is advisable to postpone important decisions until the depression has lifted. Before deciding to make a significant transition–change jobs, get married or divorced–discuss it with others who know you well and have a more objective view of your situation.
  • People rarely “snap out of” a depression. But they can feel a little better day by day.
  • Remember, positive thinking will replace the negative thinking that is part of the depression and will disappear as your depression responds to treatment.
  • Let your family and friends help you.

How Family and Friends Can Help the Depressed Person

The most important thing anyone can do for the depressed person is to help him or her get an appropriate diagnosis and treatment. This may involve encouraging the individual to stay with treatment until symptoms begin to abate (several weeks), or to seek different treatment if no improvement occurs. On occasion, it may require making an appointment and accompanying the depressed person to the doctor. It may also mean monitoring whether the depressed person is taking medication.

The depressed person should be encouraged to obey the doctor’s orders about the use of alcoholic products while on medication. The second most important thing is to offer emotional support. This involves understanding, patience, affection, and encouragement.

Engage the depressed person in conversation and listen carefully. Do not disparage feelings expressed, but point out realities and offer hope. Do not ignore remarks about suicide. Report them to the depressed person’s therapist. Invite the depressed person for walks, outings, to the movies, and other activities. Be gently insistent if your invitation is refused. Encourage participation in some activities that once gave pleasure, such as hobbies, sports, religious or cultural activities, but do not push the depressed person to undertake too much too soon. The depressed person needs diversion and company, but too many demands can increase feelings of failure.

Do not accuse the depressed person of faking illness or of laziness, or expect him or her “to snap out of it.” Eventually, with treatment, most depressed people do get better. Keep that in mind, and keep reassuring the depressed person that, with time and help, he or she will feel better.

By JOHN M. GROHOL, PSY.D.







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شنبه 29 بهمن 1390
چهارشنبه 7 تیر 1396 05:23 ب.ظ
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