What Causes Depression
When investigating what causes depression, it will be important to first understand that there is no single reason or cause, but that several factors combined can contribute to a depressed episode. Studies and research in the fields of psychiatric medicines have several theories that point to multiple factors and experts agree that family history plays a significant role. Perhaps more important than finding an exact cause is understanding depression. When those who suffer learn more about this disorder and comprehend that much of what is happening is not at their own fault or lack of spiritual maturity, then positive steps can be taken towards getting help for recovery. Knowing the prevalent symptoms and recognizing the onset of an episode will allow for taking immediate action in defending against this debilitating emotional disorder. There are several different avenues of treatment, and like the complexity of contributing risk factors, a combination of drugs and life-style changes can help those with moderate to severe depression battle this disorder effectively.
There is no blood or lab test that can determine if a person has depression or is at risk for this emotional disorder. What causes depression is best understood with theories and several proven theories do exist. Imaging has shown that the brain does have certain chemical changes during a depressed state. Scientific research proves that certain neurotransmitters that are believed to affect mood levels are low in those who struggle with emotional disorders. While correcting these levels with medication will not always render effective treatment, drug therapy is the most widely used form of treatment today. Genetics also play a part in determining the level of depressed states experienced by some. If a parent was predisposed to bouts of depression, then one or more of the children will likely follow suit. Circumstances or traumatic situations can also be attributed to feeling low or struggling to function day to day. Most experts agree that a combination of genetics, psychological factors, and environment are the most significant risk factors for depressive disorder and when knowing many elements can contribute, there is a way for understanding depression.
Psychologist make most of their diagnosis for this disorder based on a screening test that involves answering questions. What patients report about their moods and about themselves will determine the course of action or treatment plan prescribed. Questions will reveal to doctors what symptoms the patient is experiencing. Understanding depression will mean recognizing symptoms which include lethargy, disrupted sleeping patterns, a disinterest in activities, and low motivation. Irritability, anxiety, and a sense of gloom are some of the emotions experienced. Depression can range from mild, with low self esteem to severe, with thoughts of suicide. There are also several different mental diagnosis that can be associated with these same symptoms. And, other physical illnesses can lead to similar symptoms making it necessary for patients to undergo complete physical and mental evaluations to determine what causes depression in each particular circumstance and rule out other diseases.
Treatment plans will always start with professional help. Doctors can determine what medications will be most effective by evaluating the history of the patient and the symptoms being experienced. There are also natural treatments that can help boost vitamin deficiencies that are thought to be contributing factors in what causes depression. Those who struggle, regardless of the degree of severity, will want to take any natural remedies while under a doctor's care. Some natural elements can be toxic when taken in large quantities and can also be harmful when mixed with prescribed medications. Receiving counseling and obtaining new coping strategies can also help patients with understanding depression and how to initiate these coping techniques.
Jesus is referred to as the Mighty Counselor and the Prince of Peace in the book of Isaiah when the prophet foretold of the coming Messiah. "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace." (Isaiah 9:6) Praying to Christ, the greatest counselor who ever lived, will give those who suffer with emotional disorders the power that He freely offers to combat all diseases of the heart.
When one struggles with understanding depression, there can be confusion about spiritual matters. Often, and wrongly, there is a stigma attached to those who are depressed. This stigma seems to indicate that the depressed are less spiritual, less mature, or weaker than average people. This is simply not true. Even the most spiritually mature and balanced person can have a dive into a down mood or experience a sense of hopelessness. King David, one who is known for understanding God's heart and ways experienced depression, as did many other important Bible characters. Perhaps learning more about what causes depression and how to effectively treat this complex disorder can will give those struggling a healthy perspective and the confidence to approach life as the special person that they truly are.
Types Of DepressionTypes of depression include major, atypical, psychotic, dysthymia, and maniac ranging from mild to very serious. It is imperative when one suspects that they may be suffering from depression, no matter how mild, that help is sought out as soon as possible. Some people are unaware of the disease because they simply have always felt the way they do and think it is normal. Others are experiencing an onset of symptoms due to a trauma suffered or stress related problems. Bipolar manic depression is usually caused by a chemical imbalance within the brain and can be treated with medication. Someone suffering from this disorder often experiences extreme highs and lows within a short period of time. Click here to read more about what the Bible says about depression.
Major depression is usually evident with someone who carries the weight of the world on their shoulders and feels hopeless and extremely disinterested. Feelings of overwhelming sadness are not normal and any individual experiencing this sort of overwhelming emotion should seek help. Many support groups are available through various nonprofit organizations and church counselors can offer some substantial help as well through Biblical teachings offering hope through Christ. In some cases individuals suffering with major depression may also suffer from bipolar manic depression. An individual suffering with this disorder needs to be evaluated properly so a diagnosis can be made and treatment can begin to bring some relief. "And the way of peace have they not known" (Romans 3:17). If this describes you, please understand that there is peace available to anyone who asks, through Christ.
Atypical disorder is one of the types of depression that is somewhat different, to the extent that someone suffering from this usually experiences moments of happiness but symptoms cause fatigue, oversleeping, and overeating or weight gain. Someone suffering from this disorder is strongly affected by outside events and what is happening in their life at the time. Some people experiencing this type of disorder see themselves as typically normal and do not realize that they're suffering with depression.
Psychotic disorder usually refers to individuals who see and hear imaginary things or people that are not there. They often suffer with hallucinations that are usually very real and frightening. There are some resources online that might help to bring some light to persons who are dealing with someone suffering from psychotic disorder. Types of depression vary in severity and symptoms and treatments will vary as well. A diagnosis should be made by a professional in order for treatments to be successful.
Someone suffering with dysthymia disorder is usually always melancholy and thinks it is normal to feel this way, as it is their way of life. Being melancholy all the time is simply not normal and can be controlled with medication. A diagnosis needs to be made through an evaluation done by a professional who understands the different types of depression. Always remember that with God a situation is never hopeless. "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people" (Matthew 4:23).
Someone who is manic depressive has a disorder that is often referred to as being bipolar. The individual suffering with bipolar disorder often has extreme mood swings in a short duration of time. Bipolar manic depression is very serious and people suffering with this should get treatment as soon as possible, since there is a high incidence of suicide associated with it. The disorder can affect every aspect of life through thoughts, feelings, perceptions about life, and behavior. This can also be a genetic disease that occurs within families. Some of the symptoms associated with this are sleeping a lot, or being tired all the time and unable to sleep, having extreme episodes of uncontrollable crying, not being able to concentrate on daily activities, feeling hopeless and helpless, being unable to make decisions, and having thoughts of suicide.
In addition to depressive symptoms suffering with manic disorder may include periods of mania in which a person may think that they are over their episode but instead it is part of the illness. Suffering from mania includes many symptoms that may seem good compared to depressive episodes. Being overconfident and feeling like an individual can do absolutely anything is a symptom of mania. Other symptoms include never feeling tired nor needing sleep, spending money recklessly, experiencing hallucinations, and experiencing an overabundance of energy. A less degree of mania may include symptoms that are considered mild compared to full blown mania including feelings of creativity, brushing off problems to the extreme, and feelings of overabundant joy. Bipolar manic depression can involve a variety of symptoms and diagnosis can range from severe to less severe.
Remember that mental problems and suffering with types of depression is not normal. When feeling overwhelmed with sad thoughts and not being able to concentrate or thinking about hopelessness, remember that with God, a situation is never hopeless. Learning to ask him and trust him for the answers will bring some relief and putting faith in him to overcome the battle is possible. Ask a Christian counselor with a church or nonprofit organization to provide some Biblical teaching and principles that one can use to help in times of need. Believe God and what he says in his word. He told us that he will never put more on us than we can bear. He also told us that we can take our burdens to him and leave them there.