Depression: What it is and how to help

Warning: This article talks about depression and the symptoms of depression, including self-harm. If you do not feel comfortable with these sensitive topics, then don’t read this article. Also, there is a list of symptoms of depression, so please don’t self-diagnose yourself if you relate. If you think you have depression, talk to a doctor. Now, onto the article.

Depression is a disorder that we hear about a lot. You hear it from a friend who says that they are depressed or that something is depressing. The real question is, what exactly is depression? Is it just a synonym for the word sadness or does mean something more than that? In this article, I will be discussing what depression really is and how we can support a person who is diagnosed with clinical depression (or also known as a major depressive disorder).

So, what exactly is depression? According to the Mayo Clinic, depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and a loss of interest. Depression will affect how you feel, think, and react to some things. This mood disorder isn’t something that will heal quickly, but it takes time to heal with medication, psychotherapy, or both. Teens with depression may include the following things:

  • Poor performance or poor attendance in school
  • Feeling misunderstood and extremely sensitive
  • Tiredness and loss of energy
  • Agitation or restlessness
  • An ongoing sense that life and the future is hopeless
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities
  • Trouble thinking, concentration, making decisions and remembering things
  • Fixation on past failures or exaggerated self-blame or self-criticism
  • Extreme sensitivity to rejection or failure, and the need for excessive reassurance
  • And other various changes that can show

Depression has been recognized as a mental illness for a few years. The first earliest account of depression appeared in the second millennium B.C in Mesopotamia, according to Very Well Mind. Depression was thought to be caused by demonic possession and they were treated by priests, not physicians. They would treat the patient by beating them, physical restraint, and starvation. The ancient Greeks and Romans thought about the issue and the doctors considered it a biological and psychological illness. According to Very Well Mind, the doctors would use therapeutic methods such as gymnastics, massage, diet, music, baths, and a medication containing poppy extract and donkey’s milk to treat their patients.

What does it feel like to be diagnosed with depression or a disease that is like it (ex. anorexia)? Well, depression can be difficult to have and can really infect a person’s mindset. An example of this is a famous YouTube animator by the name of Jaiden, also known as JaidenAnimations. She has anorexia and a voice in her head brought her down. She starved herself so she could be better. This voice in her head told her that she was not good enough and that it needed to listen to her. She told no one about her condition and she had to fix it herself. Jaiden felt as if she was in the ocean and that she was disappointing them. Just from looking it through Jaiden’s view, it’s difficult having these mood or mental diseases.

Jaiden Animations

Depression can be a tough thing to deal with for people. So, what if we are not diagnosed with clinical depression? What can we do to help the people that could or have depression? Well, we must treat them as equal people and be there for them in their time of need. We need to support them since they are suffering inside. They need a good friend who supports them and understands them. If you support someone who has depression, let’s all be a good friend and help them. Anything bad could affect their lives and if we stay good friends with people who have depression then our world could be better.

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/teen-depression/symptoms-causes/syc-20350985

https://www.verywellmind.com/who-discovered-depression-1066770

Watch Jaiden’s video:

 

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