Doctors who have specialized in the field of psychology often treat
individuals for depression. Many people don’t understand that this is
actually a chemical imbalance within a person’s brain, but it is
treatable. Family members of sufferers of this malady may not
understand that this isn’t just your average “bad mood.” This is a
tough animal to deal with. Here are some symptoms and things to think

– The individual suffering from this condition may experience irritable snits over seemingly small problems.
– They may feel intense sadness.
– Their sex drive may disappear or decline substantially.
– Sleep patterns may change – this includes sleeping too much or too little.
– Pacing, wringing of hands.
– Weight gain or loss. Changed appetites.
– Extremely tired for no apparent reason.
– Inability to concentrate or focus.
– Crying jags which are unexpected and for small reasons.
– Inability to make decisions.
– Suicidal thoughts – major red flag!
– Self blame to an extreme degree.
– Low motivation
– Physical pain for no apparent reason.

If an individual or one of their loved ones experiences several of
these symptoms, they should make an appointment with a psychiatrist or
therapist in order to sort out the problems. A screening by a
professional should determine whether the individual has situational or
clinical depression.

Situational is a response to a difficult situation and may be resolved
with therapeutic counseling or lifestyle alterations. Some typical
examples of this classification may include individuals who are going
through a divorce, job loss or having health problems. Clinical is more
severe and is more related to chemical imbalances in the brain.
Sometimes situational can slip into the more serious clinical variety
so it’s important to seek help in order to remedy the malady.

Depression can affect people that are young or old. Even children may
become situationally or clinically sad. Family members or caregivers
should be on the lookout for alterations in sleeping, eating or
thinking patterns. Kids and teens with ADHD may be at more risk than
other children or adolescents. These kids may have self esteem issues
that are exacerbated by the disease. Elderly people may feel bored and
without purpose which can bring on a bout of the malady.

If a person becomes suicidal, it is important to seek help as soon as
possible. Calling a friend, minister or therapist may help initially.
It may be necessary to take the person to the hospital for immediate
treatment. A 911 call may even be necessary. Threats of suicide should
always be taken seriously. They are always a call for help.

A doctor of psychiatry is a medical doctor who has specialized in
illnesses of the human mind. He or she is different from a psychologist
because of the ability to dispense prescription medications. Both
psychiatrists and psychologists have received doctorate level degrees
but their training is a bit different. A therapist usually has a
Masters Level degree in either counseling, behavioral health or social
work. Each practitioner may be able to help depressed patients in their
own ways

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