Major Depressive Disorder, also known as just depression, is a mental disorder that affects the mood of a person and makes them feel down. Everybody has times of sadness, but depression has to be a pattern throughout your life in order to be diagnosed. Other specific criteria also have to be met. Some symptoms of depression are depressed mood most of the day, loss of interest in activities (including ones you loved before), fatigue every day, sleep issues, problems thinking clearly, and thoughts about death or suicide. There are several ways you might go about treating depression.
If you go to see a psychologist and are diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, you might be referred to see a psychiatrist. A psychiatrist will evaluate you and diagnose you himself, and he might recommend medication. You do not have to try medication if you don't want to, but it is a treatment than works for many people. There are things to be mindful of when taking medication such as side effects and intolerance to some medicines, but your psychiatrist will help you through all this.
Counseling is another treatment for depression that is widely effective. Counseling is attending regular meetings with a psychologist, where you will be talking through your problems, practicing coping skills, learning about yourself and your disorder, and much more. Counseling is often even more effective in combination with seeing a psychiatrist. Counselors are people you can trust, and they are only allowed to reveal information about you if it's ordered by court or if you pose a danger to yourself or others.
Self-Help Books are enough for people to recover from mild or moderate depression. These books can be found at bookstores or ordered online. They often provide impressive insights into life, behavior, and human thought patterns. Some are more effective than others, so you may have to read many before you find self-help books on depression that "speak" to you.
Spirituality and Religion help millions of people with both temporary and recurring depression. Your religion's god or your spiritual leader, such as a pastor, can be your spiritual guide for depression. Spiritual practices such as prayer and meditation may help you work through your sadness, and you may find comfort in other practices such as reading from your religion's holy book if applicable. A lot of people believe they need help from a god to get through depression, and it turns out that religion can improve their quality of life.
Diet and Exercise should not be overlooked in any discussion about depression. Regular exercise is good for the mind and body in many ways, and it often lifts mood by releasing endorphins in the brain. There is a lot of speculation about how diet can help or hurt mood disorders such as depression. There is a lot that is still unknown, but state of mind is better when the body is receiving enough of the right nutrition. If you need help with choosing healthy food, you can consult dietitians or do your own research. Gyms can help you with exercise, and you can also benefit from having a buddy to exercise with.Share