causes and prognosis of long term depression

simply stephen / January 18, 2011

This is part 2 of 3 in a series on long term depression

part 1 – how to cope with long term depression

part 2 – causes and prognosis of long term depression

part 3 – what can you do to help with long term depression

Today we are going to talk about the causes and prognosis of long term depression after determining what long term depression looks like last week.

possible causes of long term depression

There are many reasons for depression to hit.

That’s right hitbecause it hits you like the fury of a storm and doesn’t give up easily. It is relentless.

Why does it happen?

There is no exact formula but here’s a few potential reasons

  • Psychological– where a stressful event can lead to depression. Possible events:
    • death of a love one
    • child abuse (or any other kind of abuse)\
    • attachment (removal of child from parent – as in an adoption)
    • unwanted or overwhelming change such as moving
    • bullying
    • financial issues
  • Physical– sometimes the body is reacting to a variety of things and the levels of chemicals in your brain can affect your mood, and in some cases, imbalances can cause depression.
    • A biological predisposition – family history
    • existence of other disorders such as anxiety, social phobia or other traumatic events
    • chronic or severe illness
    • sometimes it is a side effect from a medication (perhaps after a severe illness)
    • alcohol or drug related problems
  • Socialogical– going out less and doing fewer activities can lead to depression, but can also be a symptom of the illness (such as a divorce)
    • divorce or marital issues
    • job loss, unemployment, layoff
    • retirement
    • injury that prevents you from doing your favourite activities (or way of life)

The three main groups really do overlap. Any combination or just one of the above could be strong enough to cause a long term (or many other kinds) of depression.

Personally, I’ve suffered from multiple forms of mental trauma and mood disorders because of many factors including family history, adoption attachment issues, child abuse, bullying, job loss, divorce, unwanted change, financial issues and social dysfunction. There is only so much one body can take before it cracks in some manner.

what is the prognosis for long term depression?

People that have suffered abuse or trauma have an increased chance of long term chronic depression. While most people are able to function in every day living, they do so with a lack of purpose and enjoyment.

While physical tendencies can be the sole cause, it is likely that an event or series of events pushed someone over the edge.

Chronic depression is usually resolved over time, whether treated or not.

If you avoid treatment it just increases the length of time and amount of pain you will suffer.

yep pain…real pain

This isn’t about sadness in a traditional sense of the goldfish died…it’s pain…gut wrenching, two-by-four on the head, I can’t stand up today pain.

If the rest of the world would take a more understanding approach and treat it like any other disease that requires serious effort, time and treatment the patient would have a much steadier, healthier and happier recovery.

It is likely that without treatment you will have several more episodes in your lifetime. With treatment it can be possible to eliminate, or at least learn to deal with the causes when or if future outbreaks occur.

The relationship between depression and the social support networks will greatly increase a full and steady recovery. So if you seek help and try to surround yourself with loved ones and remain socially active, your recovery will be less painful and probably a lot quicker.

Join us next week as we discuss what can you do to help with long term depression.

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