Depression

Steven L. Saunders, MD, LLC

Internal Medicine located in Milford, CT

Depression isn’t merely a case of “having the blues.” It’s a severe medical illness that affects one in six adults at some point in their lives. If you feel sad, hopeless, or indifferent more often than not, Steven L. Saunders, MD, MBA, FACP, in Milford, Connecticut, can help you get the treatment you need to restore your mental health and get you back on track. To learn more, call Steven L. Saunders, MD, LLC, or schedule an appointment online today.

Depression Q & A

What is depression?

Depression, otherwise known as clinical depression or major depressive disorder, is a severe mental health condition that can have a powerful and overwhelmingly negative effect on how you feel, what you think, and the way you behave.

Depression is not the same as worry, loneliness, fear, or sadness — these feelings are perfectly normal mental and emotional responses to life’s routine stresses and surprises.

For people living with depression, the intense feelings, thoughts, and behaviors it produces often interfere with their ability to perform routine tasks and get through their usual daily routine.

What are the symptoms of depression?

Common signs and symptoms of depression include:

  • Lack of interest in normal activities
  • Fatigue, exhaustion, or general lack of energy
  • Feelings of emptiness or worthlessness
  • Feelings of sadness or hopelessness
  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Anger, irritability, and frustration
  • Dramatic increase or decrease in appetite

 

Because these symptoms can make it harder to think clearly and make decisions, it’s not unusual for a depressed person to miss work, stop going to school, and avoid social activities. At its worst, depression can also give rise to thoughts of death or suicide as well as suicide attempts.

What causes depression?

As is the case with virtually all mental health disorders, researchers haven’t been able to uncover any specific underlying factor or set of factors that lead to depression. They have learned, however, that depression can affect anyone, regardless of their individual set of circumstances or personal risk factors.

Some of the factors that may be involved in the development of depression are:

Brain chemistry

Changes or differences in certain brain chemicals may contribute to depression.

Family history

People with depression are more likely to have a close family member who has also experienced the problem.

Personality traits

People with low self-confidence, who are easily overcome by stress, or who are often pessimistic seem to be more vulnerable to depression.

Environment

Sustained, long-term exposure to violence, neglect, abuse, or poverty has been linked to depression.

How is depression treated?

Left untreated, depression almost always worsens; it can also lead to other physical, emotional, and behavioral conditions and disorders that can take a further toll on your health.

Depression treatment at Steven L. Saunders, MD, LLC, combines the most effective approaches. Dr. Saunders customizes care to an individual’s needs and symptoms, drawing from treatments that up to 90% of people with depression respond well to, such as:

  • Therapy
  • Antidepressants
  • Healthy lifestyle changes
  • Consistent medical care

 

If routine depression treatment is not effective for you, Dr. Saunders finds alternative therapies that can help end your depression and get you back to enjoying life to the fullest.