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What Depression is....

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Avatar for KenJackson
Written by   10
5 months ago

When we talk about Depression, what are we talking about? Feeling sad, lonely, hopeless or just anti-joyful? These are, what could be characterized to be normal feelings or reactions that everyone or most people have ever felt at some point in their lives in response to something tragic or uncomfortable that occurs at some point in their lifetime. A lot of times, these feelings persist over a relatively short period of time, after which they get on with the everyday business of living. But when we talk about the condition of Depression, it's far more severe and if left untreated or unchecked, it causes a great deal of harm than expected.

Depression is defined as, according to the course on Mental Health on Alison Courses , a mental state characterized by feelings of sadness, despair, worthlessness and hopelessness. As usual and normal as these feelings may seem, they are experienced at a much more severe level, they persist for much longer and it pushes the victim to making, at worst, life-threatening choices. What this means is that the victim or sufferer loses the zeal and desire to live and would display a complete apathy towards living. In a lot of cases, the victim has suicidal tendencies. The drive to live is completely lost and the need to survive becomes not important anymore. According to TedED, if the feelings of despair, sadness, and hopelessness persist for more than 14 days, then such a person is depressed or suffers depression.

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What Depression is, is a condition that can be triggered by certain events and/or it can occur as a result of an alteration in one's brain chemistry- lack of supply of dopamine and serotonin. It's characterized by a number of symptoms which include and are definitely not limited to weight loss, suicidal tendencies, retardation in thought, sadness, lack of reaction to the environment ad infinitum. There are a large variety of symptoms associated with Depression and it's very possible that no two people suffering depression may display the same symptoms. So arriving at a conclusive diagnosis, one must be careful. To be on the safest possible side, it's best to carry a professional along before coming to a conclusion. 

Now that we have an idea about it, is there a way to come back from the condition? Is there a cure? Can it be managed? Yes and there are quite a number of ways this can be achieved.

Firstly, open up. This is, a lot of times,  the hardest step a lot of depression sufferers have to make and it's also the most important step. It takes a lot of courage and strength to admit to a personal issue one has or may suffer from. Talking to someone,a friend or someone you consider a safe space for you would do such a person a lot of good and it's okay.

Photo credit: Unsplash.

Another is seeking professional help. Depression is a mental health condition that requires the aid of a psychologist who could provide the necessary tools needed to manage the situation. In more extreme cases, antidepressants could be prescribed and even shock therapy(which involves passing a level of electricity to your brain to help trigger the release of the "happiness" hormones-Dopamine and serotonin). 

In a world with a lot of stressors and triggers, our mental health could be at risk of suffering some damage that affects the way we think and feel about ourselves. That's why it best that we take our mental health seriously and for those experiencing these issues, I wish for you all the help that you need. I hope you get better and please speak up. 

Also know that you're not alone. 

Thanks for reading. 


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Avatar for KenJackson
Written by   10
5 months ago
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