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Major Depression (Clinical Depression): Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Major Depression

Major depression, also known as clinical depression or major depressive disorder (MDD), is the most severe form of depression. Victims of major depression experience a constant state of hopelessness and despair. The symptoms are much more severe than those experienced by people who suffer from chronic depression. They often have significant difficulty sleeping, eating, working, and even enjoy the company of family and friends. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that up to 06.07 percent of the population is affected by major depression at least once in their life, sometimes multiple times.


Anyone can be at risk of developing major depression. Indiscriminately it affects young and old, men and women. Women are more than twice the risk of developing major depression than men do, based on figures relating to those seeking treatment. It is believed that this is due to fluctuating hormone levels that women often experience typically begins with the onset of puberty. For all demographic groups, various types of environmental stress and life can be major contributors to depression.

Depression in men is greatly under-reported. Men have a tendency to play down the intensity of emotions they feel. They are often reluctant to seek medical help because they fear they will be judged as weak. Due to the fact that women are much more likely to seek help, it is possible that the frequency of depression among men and women may not be as big as people think.

Symptoms of Major Depression

There are many signs of major depression we should consider. Not all signs will necessarily be present in each individual, but may include irritability, anger, drug or alcohol abuse as an attempt to self-medicate, and violent behavior. They also often results in suicidal and homicidal tendencies and increased disease.

  See also: Symptoms of Clinical Depression

What Causes Major Depression

Major depression can be caused by many things. The loss of a loved one through death or divorce is one of the main causes. It can also be caused by feelings of social isolation or depravity, major life changes, relationship conflicts and sexual, emotional or physical abuse.

Major Depression Diagnosis

Major depression is usually diagnosed by a doctor after examining the individual’s symptoms, and personal and family history of emotional disorders. There is no proof that you can run to determine if a person is suffering from depression, or if the symptoms are caused by another disease, such as hypothyroidism. Doctors frequently order a blood test to rule out other causes. They will also make an assessment of the medications you are using, and possibly adjust the dosage or prescribe alternative medicines because it has been shown that certain types of drugs cause feelings of depression in people.

Major Depression Treatment

Treatment is possible through psychotherapy, medication, or a combination. Unfortunately, all that two-thirds of people who are diagnosed with some form of depression every year not seek further treatment for various reasons. Patient surveys have shown that 80% of treated patients reported significant improvement in their quality of life. If you or a loved one will display any symptoms of depression, please seek help immediately. Studies have shown that the earlier the treatment is started and more effective the treatment will be successful. (See also: Most Common Treatments for Depression)

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