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Depression

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					Fariha Rizvi Period 2

DEPRESSION
  History of Depression
 The ancient Greeks recognized depression as a
  medical condition, but did not distinguish it from
  other forms of mental disturbance. This attitude
  persisted right through to modern times.
  Europeans in the 17th and 18th century frequently
  used the word melancholia to describe a whole
  range of mental illnesses.
 Through the 19th Europeans sought the 'water cure'
  (sometimes called hydrotherapy) - believing that
  drinking and bathing in waters which were rich in
  mineral deposits would being them relief. In some
  cases it might have worked - spa water is often rich
  in potassium, iodine and iron, and all of these
  substances can be in short supply in the bodies of
  people with clinical depression.
History Cont.
 Early treatments for depression at the beginning of the
  20th century involved dosing patients with barbiturates,
  keeping them unconscious for several days, in the hope
  that sleep would restore them to a healthier frame of
  mind.
 1970s to present day: By 1974, American scientists were
  testing a drug which prevented the neurons from
  reabsorbing serotonin, while not preventing the
  absorption of other brain chemicals, such as
  noradrenaline Its name was fluoxetine. In tests, they
  discovered that it provided rapid relief from the
  symptoms of depression, without any of the unpleasant
  side-effects associated with older drugs.
 By 1987, the drug was being prescribed to people as
  Prozac. By 1994 it was the number 2 drug in the world.
  Symptoms of Depression
According to the DSM-IV the common symptoms of
  Depression are:
 Depressed mood most of the day; feeling sad or empty,
  tearful
 Significant loss of interest or pleasure in activities that used
  to be enjoyable
 Significant weight loss (when not dieting) or weight gain;
  decrease or increase in appetite
 Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
 Agitation; or slowing down of thoughts and reduction of
  physical movements
 Fatigue or loss of energy
 Feelings of worthlessness or inappropriate guilt
 Poor concentration or having difficulty making decisions
 Thinking about death or suicide
  Etiology of Depression
Genetic
 While there is no definitive cause of depression there is some
   evidence that one etiology of depression is inherited. Depression is
   more common in those with biological family members who also
   suffer from some form of depression
Biochemical
 Evidence from high-tech brain imaging shows that persons with
   depression have physical changes in neurotransmitters. Hormonal
   imbalances are also thought to be a cause of depression and are
   currently being researched.
Environment
 Environment is believed to be a possible cause of depression, as high
   stress situations such as loss of job, death of a loved one or financial
   difficulties have been shown to trigger bouts of depression.
   According to the US Surgeon General, other factors that have an
   impact on developing depression include having been neglected as a
   child, sexual and physical abuse either as a child or in adulthood.
   Likewise, some major illnesses such as cancer and heart disease can
   cause clinical depression in the patient.
  Treatment and Therapy
The kind of depression treatment prescribed,
depends on the type of depression exhibited.
 Some patients with clinical depression are
  prescribed antidepressants. Others are
  prescribed antidepressants and psychotherapy.
 Others may undergo electroconvulsive therapy
  (ECT), also called electroshock therapy. This
  treatment may be used with patients who do
  not respond to standard depression treatment
  options.
 Psychotherapy & Depression
There are a number of benefits to be gained from
  using psychotherapy in treating clinical depression:
 It can help reduce stress in your life.
 It can give you a new perspective on problems with
  family, friends, or co-workers.
 It can make it easier to stick to your treatment.
 You can use it to learn how to cope with side effects
  from depression medication.
 You learn ways to talk to other people about your
  condition.
 It helps catch early signs that your depression is
  getting worse.
   What Kind of Psychotherapy?
 Cognitive therapy, behavioral therapy, and cognitive
  behavioral therapy all focus on how your own thoughts and
  behaviors contribute to your depression. This therapy helps you
  learn new ways to react to situations and challenge your
  preconceptions.
 Interpersonal therapy focuses on how your relationships with
  other people play a role in your depression. It focuses on
  practical issues. You will learn how to recognize unhealthy
  behaviors and change them.
 Psychodynamic therapy is a more traditional form of therapy.
  You and your therapist will explore the roots of your depression.
  You might focus especially on any traumas of your childhood.
 Individual counseling is a one-on-one session with a
  professional therapist with experience in treating depression
  and other mood disorders. Your therapist can teach you more
  about depression and help you understand the diagnosis. You
  can discuss new strategies to manage stress and to prevent
  your depression from worsening or coming back.
  Current Research
 In recent years, the search for a single, defective
  gene responsible for each mental illness has given
  way to the understanding that multiple gene
  variants, acting together with yet unknown
  environmental risk factors or developmental events,
  account for the expression of psychiatric disorders.
  Identification of these genes, each of which
  contributes only a small effect, has proven
  extremely difficult.
 However, new technologies, which continue to be
  developed and refined, are beginning to allow
  researchers to associate genetic variations with
  disease, such as unraveling the human genome.
  Current Research Cont.
 The hormonal system that regulates the body's
  response to stress - the hypothalamic-pituitary-
  adrenal (HPA) axis - is overactive in many patients
  with depression.
 Research suggests that persistent overactivation of
  this hormonal system may lay the groundwork for
  depression. The elevated CRF levels detectable in
  depressed patients are reduced by treatment with
  antidepressant drugs, and this reduction
  corresponds to improvement in depressive
  symptoms.

				
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