"It's not your situation that really matters."
The question then is, what is it?
"It's your reaction to the situation."
According to the DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), a major depression is marked by a combination of symptoms that occur together, and last for at least two weeks without significant improvement.
Symptoms from at least five of the following categories must be present for a major depression, although even a few of the symptom clusters are indicators of a depression, but perhaps not a major depression.
--Feeling worthless, helpless, or
experiencing excessive or inappropriate guilt
Other symptoms that are not
necessarily DSM specific criteria include, but are not limited to: work problems
such as absenteeism, decreased production, lack of concern about work and
accidents at work.
--decreased need for sleep
And of course alcohol and drug abuse. Dr. Nathan S. Kline(1) once remarked that:
"The problems of alcoholism and
drug addiction have strong links to depression. The search for highs may often
begin as a flight from lows."
If you think you are depressed, please avoid self-diagnosis and self-medication with questionable and sometimes dangerous 'alternative' solutions. Consult with your doctor and discuss all possible solutions including alternative answers that have solid documentation.
(1) Dr. Kline may not be a well-known person to most but, his story is interesting. Click here to learn more about Dr. Kline.
Exciting News! A significant study (below) shows that for depressed patients achieving stable or unstable clinical remission, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (meditation) offers protection against relapse/recurrence on a par with that of maintenance antidepressant pharmacotherapy.
Antidepressant Monotherapy vs Sequential Pharmacotherapy and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, or Placebo, for Relapse Prophylaxis in Recurrent Depression
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2010;67(12):1256-1264. doi:10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2010.168
Date of last update: March 9, 2011
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