One in five people will suffer from major depression during their lifetime, yet two thirds are not getting the help they need. Widespread myths and misinformation are partly to blame; but the public stigma is the main problem. Most won't even talk to a family member or friend about their illness, let alone a family doctor or mental health professional.
Mental health experts believe that much of the misinformation stems from the ambiguity of the term depression. "Depression" is used to describe everything from a sad mood, discouragement, heartbreak, mental and emotional fatigue, disappointment, PMS, and grief -- to clinical depression, a neurobiological disease of the brain.
Many people think that all depression is the same. They equate the normal sadness we all experience at one time or another with clinical depression, forming the attitude: “I was depressed, and I got over it. What’s the matter with you?"
Clinical depression is not the blues, sadness or grief. It is a biological brain disorder with complex and debilitating physical, mental and emotional symptoms. Depressive illness requires medication to restore brain function; delaying treatment can destroy brain cells.
The human brain contains approximately 100 billion nerve cells. It should come as no surprise that this complex, intricate organ is vulnerable to illness just like any other part of the body.
Read more about Clinical Depression and its causes and treatment
Read more about non-clinical depression; the causes and recovery strategies
Depression has dozens of potential causes and a one-size-fits-all treatment approach not only doesn’t work, it is dangerous. Yet this is exactly the approach taken today towards depression.
To overcome depression, you must understand what caused it. It may be just one thing, such as a recent loss. Many physical disorders can cause depressed moods, including thyroid disease, infections, pernicious anemia, liver or kidney disease, nutritional deficiency, Parkinson's disease and other illnesses. Some people experience depressed mood as a side effect of certain medications, such as beta-blockers, high blood pressure drugs, some Parkinson's medications, calcium channel blockers, estrogens, and benzodiazepines (anti-anxiety pills and sleeping medications). This is not a complete list. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about any medications you are taking.
This website is designed to give you general information about the many types of depression; the possible causes and treatment. It should not be used to replace the advice of a medical doctor
Read full disclaimer
For easy navigation, DepressionFree.com divides depression into two main categories and numerous sub-categories. In real life, depression is complex and many factors can interact to cause depressed moods. You will get the most out of this site by perusing all the pages.
Includes information on: major depressive disorder, bi-polar disorder, anxiety disorders, and post-partum depression.
Includes information on depressed mood stemming from chronic stress and adrenal exhaustion, painful life events, childhood trauma, female hormones, mental and emotional habits, and lack of a life purpose..
Warning: If you are experiencing the symptoms of depressive illness, see your medical doctor for a complete examination. If you are having suicidal thoughts, call an ambulance or go to the nearest emergency ward. The information on this website is not intended to replace the advice of a medical doctor or mental health professional.