Everyone experiences a case of “the blues” from time to time. Moods can fluctuate depending on life situations (or even factors like the weather). But, if sadness lasts more than a couple weeks—and impacts your ability to function at school, work, home or in relationships—you may be experiencing clinical depression. Continue reading to learn more about this serious illness, including the many treatment options available.
Major depressive disorder affects 17.3 million American adults (about 7% of the U.S. population) in a given year. To be diagnosed with this leading cause of worldwide disability, an individual would need to have five or more of the following symptoms in the same two-week period:
- Depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day
- Loss of interest or pleasure in previously enjoyable activities
- Changes in weight and/or appetite
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Fatigue or loss of energy
- Feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt
- Decreased ability to concentrate or make decisions
- Unusually slow or agitated movements
- Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide (Get help now if feeling suicidal!)
Additionally, for a diagnosis of clinical depression, these symptoms must not be caused by another medical condition. You can also take this scientifically-validated depression screening to help determine whether your symptoms indicate clinical depression.
If you believe you might be struggling with major depressive disorder, the good news is that many effective treatments exist. Travco Behavioral Health, for example, offers:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: focusing on changes in thought processes, which in turn, influences behavior
- Art Therapy: using the creative process to help individuals express/explore emotions and improve well-being
- The ABC Model: helping individuals cope with/restructure thoughts and attitudes about an Activating event, Belief about the event and Consequence of the event
- Medication Management: psychotropic medications—including Spravato—are prescribed and monitored to reduce symptoms
Travco ensures that treatment is tailored to each individual’s unique needs. For some, therapy or medication alone will provide adequate relief from symptoms of depression. For others, a combination of the two can be more effective.
Reach out to the experienced, compassionate mental health clinicians at Travco to learn more about how we can help!