Could You Be Depressed and Not Know It?
WebMD can help you recognize depression - and find relief
What Are the Causes of Depression? continued...
For many people, antidepressants are very effective in treating depression,
particularly when depression is severe or persistent. We don't completely
understand how antidepressants work, but we do know that they readjust the
balance in brain chemicals known as neurotransmitters. There are currently many
different types of antidepressants on the market, so be sure to work with a
psychiatrist who can help you find the medication that is most effective for
While you are seeking help for your depression, remember to take care of
yourself. Avoid alcohol and drugs, and be sure to get enough sleep. Exercise
can be surprisingly helpful in boosting your mood. If your depression is mild
to moderate, it can cut symptoms nearly in half, research from the University
of Texas Southwestern Medical Center notes, making it just as effective as
Whatever you do, don't sit back and wait for depression to abate on its own.
If you are depressed, it is nothing to be ashamed of -- and you don't have to
continue to suffer. Depression is one of the most treatable conditions in all
of medicine, according to Kornstein. Unfortunately, it continues to be under
diagnosed and under treated.
It is also important to get help because depression affects more just than
your mood, says Harvard assistant professor Alice D. Domar, PhD, co-author of
Self-Nurture. While you procrastinate, hoping to get better on your own,
depression can wreak havoc on your health, raise your risk of heart disease and
infertility, and suppress your immune system. Perhaps even more important,
experts now know that, left untreated, depression is likely to recur and to be
more severe and difficult to treat with each recurrence.