Identifying Major Depressive Disorder

We, as human beings at some point would feel low, unstable and sometimes would not know how to exactly describe what we feel bout certain things. Most often it is unknown to us that we are maybe suffering from mood disorders, we become unaware of ourselves. Mood disorders are portrayed by having wide swing of emotions; it ranges from deep depression to extreme excitement, exhilaration or euphoria and agitation. There are actually two forms of mood disorder; the first one is depression and the other is bipolar respectively.
Mania is characterized by intense and or unrealistic feelings of excitement and euphoria, and depression involves feelings of extraordinary sadness and dejection. In some cases wherein mania and depression comes together it is known to be bipolar, in which a person with this disorder would have to feel extreme excitement and deep sadness simultaneously. When depression exists for the longest time it is called dysthymia. It is known to be similar with major depression but it is a long term disorder, it is mild and not an acute (Dinsmoor., December, 2002).
Symptoms of depression

The symptoms of depression can be manifested easily in a person. These symptoms are actually various and it can be easily recognized. A person with a depression would have the symptoms of having difficulty in sleeping; they do not get their sleep easily because their minds are restless and due to this they would feel stressed or fatigued. It can also be the other way around; people with depression can also be recognized if they sleep excessively.
They would also loose their appetite and would usually loose weight or they would do excessive eating and gain weight. It can also manifest in their activities; people with depression would loose their attraction in their activities that they do find pleasurable. Major depression disorder can also come with the loosing the appetite for sex or having sexual problems; it can also be accompanied by headaches. There is also the feeling of guilt, hopelessness, helplessness, worthlessness and one of the hardest manifestations is that they find concentrating on certain things too difficult (Association, 2000).
Is Katherine suffering from major depressive disorder?
Katherine has been experiencing the symptoms engaged in the mood disorder which is called major depressive disorder, in which she often wishes she were dead, she feels sad all day long and cries several times a day, she experiences disturbed sleep and, as a result, she feels fatigued all day long, she has absolutely no interest in sex or even spending time with friends, she finds it extremely difficult to concentrate at work and just does not want to be around people.
If these feelings and wide variety of undeniable changes are not induced by alcohol or any drink that would make her feel down, if they are caused by a difficulty in her functions in her work or at home and if they were not caused by great sorrow I can make a systematic statement that Katherine is really suffering from major depressive disorder. And since Katherine has more than five of the symptoms attached with major depressive disorder I can say that she is really suffering from it.
Katherine needs to be treated while she is still in the early stage of her depression or while she still can handle her situation. If she would not be immediately treated she might at some point make an attempt to kill herself or commit suicide.
Treatments for major depressive disorder
There are several treatments for a patient who has a major depressive disorder. There is psychotherapy or counseling for people who have depression disorder and there are various medications or drugs used in treating people who are afflicted with this disorder. Numbers of medicines are used in the cure of major depressive disorder, these actually falls into the category of anti-depressants and are further categorized into a more particular drug or medicine.
Among the anti-depressants are Tricyclic anti-depressants or TCA’s which can actually relief depression by increasing the neurotransmitters’ concentration in the central nervous system. Another one is the Monoamine oxidase inhibitors or MAOI’s acts as an agent in helping break down a particular neurotransmitter which would help regulate the mood of a person to become stable or normal.
The third kind of anti-depressant is the Lithium carbonate which helps in reducing the activities of the nerves in the brain; it alters the chemical balance within a particular nerve in the brain. And the last kind is the serotonin which helps in transmitting messages without interrupting the brain chemistry.
Treatment for Katherine
In the case of Katherine she can be treated by using both psychotherapy and medication. I would use the interpersonal and or behavioral therapy on her for me to know what triggered her depression. I need to have a background of her present relationships; her relationship with her family, her relationship with her current boyfriend, her relationship with her friends, her relationship with her officemates and her other relationships. And after having analyzed her relationship patterns I would focus on her current behaviors. I would be able to know what triggered her present behaviors also by her past behaviors or the things that had actually happened to her that might have contributed to her behavior now.
Aside from these two psychotherapy some activities might help in diverting Katherine’s emotions by encouraging her to try to involve her self in activities that would be pleasurable to her, like talking to a friend to release some of her emotions or going out with someone who is sensible and nice so that she can enjoy and forget about her depression. In her medication I would just give her an anti-depressant that would suit her because it might cause further complications if I would give her inappropriate medicine.
Psychotherapy and the use of medicine would result to a more improved and satisfying results rather than using therapy or counseling alone and or just by giving medications. It is really hard to know if someone is suffering from a major depression because one might not notice the symptoms right away. The most important thing is to give ones self a chance to know his or her self more.
Association, A. P. (2000). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders- Fourth Edition American Psychiatric Publishing, Inc.
Dinsmoor., R. S. (Ed.) (December, 2002) Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Gale Group.
[Electronic Version] Retrieved March 05, 2008 from

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