Do Your Symptoms Warrant A Depression Diagnosis?

June 27, 2010

in Depression, Depression, Sleep-affecting Disorders, Videos

In past decades, various forms of mental illness were all lumped together resulting in a generalized diagnosis. Today, mental health professionals are able to pinpoint symptoms enabling a specific type depression diagnosis. The term depression is actually an umbrella categorization which includes several types of depression within it. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is one form of clinical depression which occurs only during certain times of the year. Bipolar disorder, otherwise known as manic depression, is a depression diagnosis relating to those who experience rapid and dramatic mood swings. A chronic depression diagnosis indicates the condition is projected to remain static unlike the SAD variety of clinical depression.

Whereas most doctors utilize high tech machines and blood tests to diagnose physical ailments, mental health professionals must derive their depression diagnosis from a review of your symptoms, case history and results of verbal interviews. In many respects, depression screening is as much of an art as it is a science. This is due to the fact that clinical depression manifests itself differently within individual patients. While some suffering from depression become detached, withdrawn and apathetic, others act out with irritability and rage. Practitioners must look at the totality of your symptoms in order to determine whether you have clinical depression — and if so, which form of depression has beset you.

Seeing that clinical depression can have genetic roots, a part of the depression diagnosis regimen is to review your family history. Many patients wonder what their sibling’s or parents’ mental health history has to do with anything, but these questions are asked for a good reason. A history of clinical depression within your family can be a vital clue within the depression diagnosis process. Your appetite, work performance, relationship statuses and personal financial situation can all also provide clues enabling a correct depression diagnosis — which explains why your practitioner is asking these seemingly random questions.

Your sleep habits also can serve as the proverbial canary in the coal mine when it comes to making a depression diagnosis. Insomnia, restlessness and wakeful early hours can all be signs of clinical depression. Conversely, some with clinical depression experience the opposite symptoms being unable to get out of bed in the morning and sleeping during large portions of the day. Although there could be a variety of causes of insomnia, clinical depression is among the most salient and widespread.

Those who are experiencing persistent feelings of hopelessness — or have violent mood swings — could be afflicted with clinical depression. The good news is that there are a variety of excellent treatments now available ranging from pharmaceuticals to therapy. The most important first step is to receive an accurate depression diagnosis enabling you to embark upon your road to recovery.

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