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First Aid Management: Depression

First Aid Management: Depression

Depression is a serious medical disorder involving the brain. It is commonly characterized by constant sadness, loss of interest in activities, energy loss, and suicidal thoughts, among others. Depression is more than feeling “blue” or the sadness over everyday matters. Depression symptoms do not disappear easily. There are intense feelings of sadness and worthlessness that interfere with daily life. Genetic,environmental, psychological and biochemical factors are attributed to the variety of causes. Eight percent of Canadians will experience a major depression in their lifetime (Canadian Mental Health Association (ND). This does not count the people who will experience bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders and other mental disorders that may lead to depression.It is more common in women and typically begins sometime between ages 15 and 30. Forms of Depression There are several different forms of depressive disorders than an individual can suffer: Major Depression or Major Depressive Disorder Affects everyday functions that may disable a person May be experienced once only but often occurs multiple times Dysthymic Disorder or Dysthymia Chronic symptoms (lasting for more than two years) Not disabling a person but may prevent normal functioning May experience one or more episodes of major depression during their lifetime Minor Depression Symptoms may last for two weeks or more but not severe enough to meet full criteria for major depression Forms of Minor Depression: Psychotic depression: severe depression accompanied by a form of psychosis (e.g. having delusions or hallucinations) Postpartum depression: occurs in mothers who have recently given birth due to hormonal and physical changes in the body Seasonal affective disorder (SAD): onset of depression occurs during the winter months,...