What is Depression?

Depression: Causes and Treatment


What is a major depressive disorder? What causes depression? Is depression curable? How to come out of depression? These are some of the most commonly asked questions by people who are generally diagnosed with clinical depression or people who want to learn more on this topic. 

In this blog, we shall target all of the generally asked queries regarding depression.

Depressive disorder or clinical disorder is a medical ailment that adversely affects the way you feel, the way you perceive things, and the way you react to things. Generally, clinical depression is described or explained by common people as a consistent feeling of sadness that never goes. Feeling too lazy (basically demotivated) to perform everyday activities, immense loss of interest in the things that once had your interest and a constant lingering hollowness within. It is generally also asked how to differentiate between just being plain sad or being clinically depressed. Being sad is a normal, healthy hormonal response of our body to any challenges and hardships we have to endure in life. It lasts for a while and then we feel our normal happy selves again. But depression is the feeling of sadness, helplessness, and worthlessness that lingers on for too long. At this point, it is considered a medical ailment. Depression often starts from emotional and mental distress but then begins to affect your physical health and level of productivity equally.

What are the 5 main causes of depression?

Psychologists and Psychiatrists suggest that depression occurs from the chemical and hormonal imbalance in our body. To comprehend this point one must understand that our human emotions, moods and reactions are governed by the hormones of our body. When the secretion of these hormones is disturbed due to any reason their production could become anomalistic. This imbalance of hormones in our body could primarily cause clinical depression in healthy individuals. Such manipulation or abnormal behavior of hormones could occur due to several reasons

  1. Defective mood regulatory by the brain
  2. Genetic transfer 
  3. Diet (Yes! Our diet could affect our mental state and hormones majorly too)
  4. Consistently stress-inducing life events
  5. Unresolved trauma (could be both conscious or subconscious)

Depression is a complex mental issue and simply assigning one cause as the reason for it would be inadequate. Multiple causes could simultaneously or individually plunge a healthy person towards crippling depression and anxiety.

Do I have depression?

Back in the day suffering from mental health issues wasn’t taken seriously enough but considered a delusion of one’s mind. Luckily we are living in an era where people are gradually releasing the importance of mental health and not denying the occurrence of mental health issues anymore. 

Sometimes we are unable to detect if what we are enduring is depression or just a random wave of sadness or stress. Differentiating between the 2 states can be a bit tricky at times. Here is a list of signs and symptoms of depression that are most likely for a depressed person to experience.

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Depression is more common than most people think it is. Various surveys suggest that 1 in every 10 people is suffering from depression and there is no age limit to it. Scientists and researchers suggest that by the age of 14, more than 56% are battling a mental health issue of some type.

Many signs and symptoms could suggest that a person is depressed. Some of the most common ones are:

  • Constant lingering feeling of sadness
  • Constant feeling of hollowness
  • Agitation and frequent mood swings
  • Losing interest in all of your previously favorite activities
  • Insomnia
  • Hypersomnia
  • Immense demotivation and inability to do even the most basic tasks (often mistaken for laziness)
  • Overeating leading to obesity
  • Undereating leading to weight loss
  • Lack of concentration
  • Contemplating death or suicide
  • Unnecessary sense of guilt
  • Restlessness and anxiety
  • Decline in sense of self-worth and self-belief 
  • Inability to make decisions or functioning healthily
  • Random body aches

Depression is an ailment that occurs irrespective of one’s age or gender. Both men and women could be equally affected by it. Even children and teenagers are not spared from it.  Despite that, sometimes not only the signs and symptoms of depression may vary in men and women but they may also have different coping mechanisms to deal with this issue.

Depression Symptoms in Men

Depression may go more unnoticed in men than it goes in women because the issue of depression is usually downplayed in men. Men are usually expected to bottle up their sentiments and be brought up with the mindset that showing their emotions is a sign of weakness. Hence men are more commonly found to show reluctance toward the treatment of depression. Usually, signs of depression in men are

  • Substance use disorder
  • Abusive tendencies
  • Irritability
  • Physical medical problems
  • Frequent random outbursts 

Depression Symptoms in Women

While men tend to express their depression in behavioral issues women usually exhibit their depressive symptoms emotionally as per various

. This is the major contrast between the signs of depression between men and women. Some of the signs of depression in women are

  • Lonesome
  • Inability to make even the easiest decisions
  • Symptoms of Withdrawal 
  • Lower self-esteem
  • Frequent episodes of crying

Stressed or Depressed? Know the Difference

People are often found conflicted between being able to tell whether they are enduring depression or simply going through regular stress and sadness. It could be very hard to tell at times what you are going through and even though both the situations could be very similar here’s how one might be able to detect the problem.

Signs and symptoms of stressSigns and symptoms of depression
Lack of concentration1. Lack of concentration
Random aches2. Unable to sleep
Lack of sleep3. Inability to socialize
Temporary memory issues4. irritability
Lack of motivation5. Hopelessness and despair
Being overwhelmed6. feeling suicidal
mood swings7. Guilt 

What is the most common side effect of depression?

Enduring depression for a long time without getting it treated could result in several side effects later. A lot of times physical ailments occur as a result of not getting mental health issues and disorders treated. Depression is the most overlooked cause of various diseases. Depression can also make healing from an already existing medical ailment very difficult. Here are some of the most common side effects and diseases that one may acquire after enduring long-term depression:

  1. Insomnia
  2. Ulcers
  3. Obesity
  4. Digestive problems
  5. Heart diseases
  6. Cancer
  7. Diabetes
  8. Arthritis 

Can you cure depression?

Despite untreated depression having a multitude of repercussions for a person to deal with and might disrupt the normal healthy dynamics of one’s life, most of our readers would be glad to know that depression is very much treatable and curable.

5 Ways to Cope With Your Depression

Luckily Depression happens to be one of the most curable mental health disorders. Psychiatrists and Psychologists suggest that more than 80% of people’s mind and the body responds positively to the treatment of depression. But that is obviously in case they do not discontinue or leave their treatment midway.

The patients should undergo mental health tests and evaluations conducted via their respective mental health specialists to deduce the level of mental health problems they are enduring and adequate treatment for that.

Here are some of the most suggested treatments

  1. Drugs and Medication
  2. Psychotherapy
  3. Electroconvulsive Therapy
  4. One’s own determination to self-help
  5. Improving one’s diet and lifestyle (the most underrated low-cost treatment of depression)


No doubt that Depression is very much a real illness and needs timely treatment as much as any other physical ailment or disease requires. In today’s day and age where there is ample awareness regarding mental health, it is simply ignorant to not take the signs and symptoms of depression seriously. Everyone needs to address their mental health needs and get them treated properly.

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