February 26, 2017 – Health Talk: Causes Of Depression & Useful Treatment Options
What Causes Depression
Medical experts believe depression is due to a combination of different factors including:
(1) Your Brain structure
The way certain nerve pathways or circuits in your brain send information may not work properly. Scans show that the parts of your brain involved in mood, thinking, sleep, appetite, and behavior look different when you’re depressed, but scientists aren’t sure why.
Scientists are studying certain genes that may make you more likely to get it. But even if you have them, you may not get depressed. And depression can happen in some people even when they don’t have that genetic makeup.
Depression can run in families, but that doesn’t mean you’ll develop depression just because someone you’re related to has it. And you may have the condition even if no one else in your family has it.
(3) Life events
Something disturbing that happens to you may trigger depression. It may be the loss of someone close to you, a difficult relationship, or a stressful situation. Other things, like your finances, where you live, and whether or not you’re married may also have an impact. But remember, there doesn’t have to be a “reason” for your depression. Sometimes it happens without an obvious cause.
(4) Childhood problems
People who have disturbing experiences in childhood are more likely to have depression. It may be from brain changes caused by trauma at a young age.
Other Conditions That Cause Depression
- Drug or alcohol abuse
- Long-term pain
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
If you think you are battling depression, please do not battle it alone. Ensure you see your doctor.
There are lots of treatment options available for you.
Depression Treatment Options
Your treatment plan for depression will depend on the type you have and how severe it is. Some people get psychotherapy. Others also take antidepressants or get other treatments. Exercise can also be part of the plan.
If those don’t give you enough relief, there are more options. For instance, your doctor may suggest brain stimulation techniques such as electroconvulsive therapy (also called ECT or electroshock therapy), transcranial magnetic stimulation, or vagus nerve stimulation.
If you have bipolar depression, your doctor may prescribe different types of medicines, such as mood-stabilizing drugs or certain antipsychotic medicines, instead of antidepressants.
Everyone is different. It may take some trial and error to find the treatment plan that works best for you.
It also takes time for an antidepressant to have its full effect. You may meet with several doctors or therapists before you find the one you want to work with.
Be patient and tell your doctor how you’re doing. Your openness is the key to your healing.
[Credit: Web MD]