It’s normal to feel a little down every now and then, but when feelings of sadness and depression interfere with your life for a prolonged period of time, you may have clinical depression, a more serious mental health issue that affects over 3 million Americans. Steven R. Kafrissen, MD, offers expert psychiatric treatment and care to help you manage your well-being. If you live in the Kingston, Pennsylvania area and are concerned about depression, call or make an appointment online today.
Depression, known clinically as the major depressive disorder, is a mental health issue that inhibits your feelings, actions, and thought processes. It’s characterized by prolonged periods of sadness and depression and a loss of interest in hobbies and other regular daily activities. The condition can interfere with your relationships with friends and family and your performance at work or school.
Depression causes a wide range of symptoms along with a spectrum of severity. For a clinical diagnosis of depression, you need to display symptoms for at least two weeks.
Anyone can develop depression, even if on the outside it looks like everything is fine. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, it’s currently believed that depression is caused by a combination of factors.
Depression is linked to abnormal brain chemistry, particularly in relation to your serotonin and dopamine levels. Your body may not produce enough of these chemicals or there may be an abnormality in the way these chemicals connect with their receptors in your brain.
If a member of your family has depression or mental health issues, your chances of developing a mental health concern increase.
Depression can be triggered by conditions or events in your environment. For example, if you have frequent or constant exposure to violent, abusive, or neglectful situations you may be more vulnerable to depression. There is also a link between poverty and depression.
Some people are psychologically predisposed to depression. For example, if you have low self-esteem, are pessimistic, or if you don’t deal with stress well, you may be more likely to experience depression.
Dr. Kafrissen offers psychiatric care, customized to meet your individual needs. Treatment often includes a combination of tactics like medication and talk-therapy. Medication can regulate your brain chemistry to even your emotional response while therapy teaches you to respond to your thoughts and feelings in healthier and more constructive ways.
If you’re concerned about depression, call or schedule an appointment online today to meet with Dr. Kafrissen.