Depression is a psychiatric disorder that is a lot more common than one might think. Recent studies show us that 10% to 35% of the general population suffers from this disease. In order to accurately diagnose depression it was created the table shown bellow. A person suffering from this disease must have at least five of the symptoms listed, and one of them is mandatory: being depressed or discouraged to do daily tasks, for a period of at least two weeks.
Criteria to diagnose depression
(according to the DSM-IV, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition)
- Being depressed: feeling discouraged most of the time;
- Isolation: difficulty fitting into social groups or with other individuals;
- Anhedonia: Diminished interest or lack of pleasure to perform daily routines;
- Feeling of inutility or excessive guilt;
- Lack of concentration: ability to think or focus frequently diminished;
- Fatigue or lack of energy;
- Trouble sleeping: insomnia or hypersomnia on a daily basis;
- PPsychomotor problems: agitation or psychomotor retardation;
- weight variation without changing your diet;
- Recurring thought of death or suicide.
According to the number of symptoms, the depression stage can be classified in three groups:
- Slight depression (light): 2 to 4 symptoms, presented for two or more weeks, including being depressed or anhedonia;
- Dysthymia (moderate): 3 to 4 symptoms, including being depressed, throughout two years the least;
- Major depression (serious): 5 or more symptoms, presented for two or more weeks, including being depressed or anhedonia.
The depression symptoms interfere drastically on one’s life quality, and are associated with high social costs: loss of days at work, medical attendance, medication and suicide. At least 60% of people that took their lives presented symptoms correspondent to the ones that characterise the disease.
Risk factors for depression:
- Family history;
- Sexuality problems;
- Age-related questions;
- Social pressure issues;
- Past episodes of depression;
- PRecent delivery;
- Stressing events;
- Drug dependency;
- Negative beliefs.
OThe number of depression cases with woman doubles the ones with men. It is unknown if the difference is due to social pressure, psychological differences or both. Feminine vulnerability is bigger post-labor: around 15% of woman report symptoms of depression up to six months after the birth of a child.
The disease is recurrent. People who’ve had an episode of depression in the past present 50% chances of repeating it. If two episodes have already occurred, the probability of relapse can go up to 90%; and if they already had three episodes the probability of a fourth one is over 90%.
As it is known, depression episodes can be triggered by psychosocial problems, like the loss of a loved one, loss of a job or a breakup. However a third of the cases are associated with a medical condition.
A great number of prescription drugs of continued use can provoke a depression episode. Among them there are anti-hypertensive (for high blood pressure), amphetamines (included in many formulas to control appetite), benzodiazepines, and drugs to treat gastritis and ulcers (cimetidine and ranitidine), oral contraceptives, cocaine, alcohol, anti-inflammatories, and cortisone derivatives.
Tantric therapy is applied in individual sessions or in Workshops, to help control light and moderate cases of depression. Deva Nishok's Method, used in Metamorfose Centre offers the advantage of not using drugs and lowering the risk of relapse, since a person learns to use some resources to know and deal with problems related with depression.
Severe cases of depression must be directed to individual assistance. We do not recommend group work until the person develops an emotional support to endure his participation in the proposed work dynamics. We don’t recommend by any chance the sudden withdrawal of medicine without proper medical supervision.