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What is Depression? What are the symptoms?

Depression is a disorder that negatively affects an individual's life and prevents him from controlling his mood. Depression is an important mood disorder that can affect a person's daily life, causing a feeling of negative affect, negative thoughts, and decreased activity. We can examine depression in three different categories as severe (major), moderate and mild, this depends on how much of the depression symptoms the individual has and how often they do it.


What Are the Symptoms of Depression?

The presence of a depressive mood is defined as the patient's being sad, exhausted, alienated from the social environment, bored, depressed, helpless, vacant, angry, pitiful, disappointed, etc. Loss of energy, which does not go away with rest and even increases, and fatigue are present in 97% of the patients. Inability to concentrate thoughts on a particular subject due to slowdown in thinking or complexity of thoughts, little talking, interest, anxiety, indecision and obsessions can be seen. Eating changes in the person are usually seen as a decrease in appetite, 80% of people with depression have insomnia (insomnia), as well as excessive sleepiness. Feelings of worthlessness, alienation from society and even from family and close circles are seen, pessimism and hopelessness even thoughts of death may also be present in the patient. Some or all of the symptoms listed here can be seen in individuals with depression. If you see depressive mood symptoms in yourself or someone close to you, applying to psychotherapy before these symptoms become chronic will allow you to reach a much easier result for diagnosis and therapy.

What Are the Symptoms of Depression in Children and Teens?

Although depression is generally thought to be experienced by adults, it is a problem experienced by children as well. Since children are completing their development, each time they encounter a new developmental step, they encounter a different problem that they need to solve there. If the abilities they have acquired in coping with these problems do not satisfy the child, they will have problems in the process of adapting there. It is known that approximately 5% of children and 5-10% of adolescents suffer from depression. The symptoms of depression seen in children and adolescents can be very different compared to adults, social isolation, irritability, difficulty in attending school or low achievement scores, rejection or hypersensitivity to success are just a few of the symptoms. In the intervention of depression in children and adolescents, the person and their environment are evaluated as a whole. The child, family, teachers at school, school counselor and psychologist should cooperate. Depending on the child's condition, play therapy, individual therapy, family therapy and family counseling can be applied.

What are the Symptoms of Depression in Old Age?

The science of psychology examines human life in five stages, and the last stage of them is the old age stage. Each period carries different responsibilities that have difficulties and must be dealt with, but the old age period is perhaps the most difficult period since it is the last stage of human life theoretically. Depression is a disease that people of all ages can experience. But depression, especially in old age, is a disease that is very important to focus on. Because symptoms such as fatigue, reluctance and sleep problems that occur during the depression period are seen as natural reflections of old age, they can easily be ignored. For this reason, depression in the elderly can be seen as normal by the relatives of the person, but this makes the diagnosis and treatment process difficult. It has been learned as a result of scientific research that 14 out of 1000 people over the age of 65 have depression. Psychotherapy is a very effective method for children, adolescents and adults, as well as for the elderly, especially those who have lost their spouse and have heavy sources of sadness in their lives, and they should start psychotherapy without delay, since the social support they receive from their relatives will be insufficient and depression will become chronic in older people.

How to Fight Depression?

People with depressive mood symptoms generally do not seek therapy because the person does not want to leave the house, does not want to talk, or is not generally conscious of the symptoms in himself, so it is necessary to encourage and support him to go to therapy. One of the most important criteria for people diagnosed with depression is to diagnose and start therapy before it's too late. The indisputable first thing in the fight against depression is to direct the person to psychological support before their mood becomes chronic.

Psychotherapy in Depression:

As with other psychological disorders, there are various psychotherapy methods in depression. Let's talk a little about them:

1- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy:

Basically, it aims to eliminate the irrational thought patterns that lead the person to depression. Individuals develop certain schemas due to their negative experiences in childhood. The schemas formed in this early life may rise to the level of consciousness in the form of depression with the experiences that trigger it in the future. CBT consists of four basic phases:

  • To make a cognitive-behavioral formulation of the problem.

  • To prepare the treatment in accordance with this formulation.

  • To inform the individual about the cognitive-behavioral approach.

  • To determine whether the individual is suitable for treatment.

2- Interpersonal Therapy:

In this therapy method, the therapist focuses on the person's relationship with those around them. They mostly work on the fact that improving thought and behavior patterns, strengthening social relationships and strengthening coping skills have a great effect on reducing depressive symptoms. There is a belief that the deterioration in social relationships causes depression.

3- Psychodynamic Therapy:

In this therapy, the subconscious conflicts, defenses and settled beliefs of the depressed person are studied. It aims that the depressive person's feelings of guilt and worthlessness stem from traumatic experiences in early childhood. In therapy, especially childhood, unresolved origins of behavior are traced.

4- Humanistic Existential Therapy:

According to this school, the depressed person is not free because he does not take on his responsibilities in life. However, a person is a person who chooses to live according to their wishes and desires by ignoring their own wishes and loving him/her with all his/her energy. The feeling of guilt, which is often seen in depression, is actually an existential guilt feeling arising from this reason. In this therapy, the individual works by focusing entirely on himself, his desires and wishes.

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