Here is an overview of five major types of depression. If you feel any of these are occurring with you, seek out help. Don’t feel the pressure that you are required to handle everything that life throws at you. Talk to your doctor or find a good therapist to talk to.

Symptoms to be on the watch for include but are not limited to: sadness, irritability, rage, anxiety, apathy, guilt, loss of interest or pleasure in activities, mood swings, fatigue, change of sleep patterns, and change of eating patterns. Not all symptoms are experienced by everyone and everyone handles symptoms differently.  

  1. Major Depression (Clinical Depression)

Major depression or clinical depression is a type of depression that occurs more often in women than men. Women suffering from major depression endure a multitude of symptoms that will leave you feeling unable to cope with anything. Typically, anxiety also comes along with depression and is one of the leading causes of disability in the United States.

You may wonder what is the difference between major/clinical depression and depression. Clinical depression is a debilitating disease that is ongoing for months or even years. Depression is typically an episode lasting a few weeks occurring with a death or occurring with a medical condition but can continue and become clinical depression.

2. Manic Depression (Bipolar)

Bipolar disorder is a psychiatric disorder, diagnosed by an episode of mania. In some people with bipolar disorder, they may experience major depressive episodes. The condition typically begins in young adulthood and tends to be life-long. Medical News Today

There are a few different types of bipolar including bipolar 1 and bipolar 2. Women are more often than men to have bipolar 2. Hormones can play a huge factor in women with pregnancy, menstruation, and menopause.

3. Postpartum Depression

Postpartum Depression also known as PPD can have serious effects on you,  your partner, and long term effects on your child. In the US, approximately 1 in 9 moms suffer from PPD (postpartumdepression.com) Please know that this is not your fault. There is no known cause as to why this happens but there may be some factors that play into it such as a history of depression, new stressors, and hormones. If the signs are there, ask for help. If your doctor only tells you it’s just the stress of being a new mom, seek help elsewhere.

4. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is a very severe form of PMS. This condition is typically self-diagnosable. PMDD is not in your head. PMDD causes extreme physical and behavioral symptoms including but not limited to sadness, hopelessness, irritability, rage, all while on top of common PMS symptoms. It typically dissipates with the onset of your period but if doesn’t, you may be suffering from another form of  depression.

5. Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D. or Seasonal Depression)

Yes, this is real. For most women, SAD begins in the fall and typically lasts throughout the winter months. The lack of sunshine may mean less vitamin D; you can always have your vitamin D tested to see if you need to take supplements during the winter months. Vitamin D plays an important role in regulating your mood and fighting off depression. Many doctors recommend light therapy or getting out early in the morning when the sun is out to soak up some rays – during the winter months though, that can sometimes be impossible. Some theories suggest it may also have to do with hormones and circadian rhythm dysregulation among other things. If you’re feeling down for weeks on end during this time of year, seek help. Treatment includes antidepressants, light therapy, and/or talk therapy.

If you are thinking about suicide or self-harm, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text the Crisis Text Line, a free text message service available 24/7, at 741-741.

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