General OverviewDepression is a mental illness characterized by feelings of profound sadness and lack of interest in enjoyable activities. It may cause a wide range of symptoms, both physical and emotional. Unlike a blue mood, depression can last for weeks, months, or years, and rarely subsides without treatment.More
- What is depression?
- What are the risk factors?
- How is it diagnosed?
- How is it treated?
- What are the screening tests?
- How can I reduce my risk?
- What questions should I ask my healthcare provider about depression?
Find answers in our in-depth report on depression:
Living With DepressionDepression in collegeHere’s what you need to know about how to prevent and treat depression while you or your child is in college.Depression in men: how is it different?Depression in men is often overlooked, but it is a very serious problem.Depression in the workplace: tips for managersRead here to find out how to recognize when an employee might have a problem with depression and what you can do to help.In her own words: living with depressionRead one woman's account of her more than 40-year struggle with depression.
Treating DepressionCan folic acid help ease depression?Folic acid, the B-vitamin that is famous for its role in preventing birth defects, is now under scrutiny for its effects on another devastating condition—depression.How to choose a therapist or counselorPerhaps you have a chronic or difficult problem, or maybe you feel depressed or sad. Before you jump into therapy, there are important issues that you need to consider.Just “the blues” or clinical depression: making the distinction to get the help you needBy making the distinction between “the blues” and clinical depression, you can take the appropriate actions that may help improve your mood and quality of life.Mental health practitioners: who’s who?Whether you or someone you love needs therapy, it helps to know the difference between the types of mental health professionals.
Treating Depression (Continued)Support groups: how do they help?Find out how a support group may help you and how to find the right one.
Special TopicsCould your depression be related to your medication?After two weeks of taking Accutane, an acne medication, 19-year-old Joe began experiencing fatigue, lack of motivation, sleep problems, and crying spells. He was diagnosed with depression—something his healthcare provider eventually believed was related to his use of Accutane.Creativity and depression: is there a link?History is filled with writers, poets, artists, musicians, composers, and other creative people who wrestled with mood disorders. But is this portrayal just a stereotype, or is there really a link between creativity and depression?Depression and chronic illness: which comes first?Which comes first—depression or chronic illness? While the connection works both ways, one thing's for sure: treatment can make a difference.Depression screening advised for all adultsSoon your doctor may start asking more questions about your mental health. Prompting these changes are innovative new recommendations from the US Preventive Services Task Force on screening for depression in adults.Hopelessness and the heart attack: the role of depression in heart diseaseSeveral medical studies have found an association between depression and a higher risk for heart complications including death.The role of depression in adolescent obesity About 5% of children and adolescents in the Unites States suffer from depression. Could this put them at increased risk for obesity? A study from the journal Pediatrics explores the possible link. Understanding seasonal affective disorderDo you feel the effects of shorter winter days? Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can cause sadness, fatigue, weight gain, and depression.
True or False?True or false: depression and suicide rates rise during the holiday seasonMany people believe that depression, anxiety, and suicide rates rise during the holidays. Is this true?
- Bipolar disorder
- Postpartum depression
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- Social anxiety disorder
Natural and Alternative Treatments (By Condition)
National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association
National Foundation For Depressive Illness, Inc.