Do you feel flat? Tense? Sad? Perhaps you are suffering from a temporary depression. However, if your symptoms have been present for a few weeks already, there is reason to wonder about the cause of this discomfort. You might be suffering from the little-known and dreaded disease of depression.
Depression: an illness that can be treated
Our hectic pace of life and our desire to perform can lead us to certain exhaustion. Worse yet, if other factors are present, this state of mind can turn into depression. No one is immune to this very real disease which hurts, which affects our mind and our body, and which also affects our loved ones. Fortunately, depression can be treated, and it is important to obtain an early diagnosis and prompt treatment in order to remedy this health problem.
WHY DOES DEPRESSION OCCUR?
The most likely cause of depression is undoubtedly an imbalance of certain chemicals in our brains that act as messengers. Other factors can help trigger depression, such as heredity, illness, stress, drug or alcohol abuse, and the occurrence of significant events. That being said, it is clear that the ideal treatment will be the combination of antidepressant medication and personalized psychotherapy.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, depression is the most treatable of mental illnesses. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, your doctor will make a treatment plan based on your symptoms and condition.
Antidepressants are drugs that work by restoring the balance between different chemical messengers in the brain. They are classified according to the substance on which they influence in order to normalize your mood. Simply put, we are trying to protect and even increase the amount of “messengers of happiness” in your brain.
Far from being a sign of weakness, the use of antidepressants is rather an essential tool in the fight against depression. These medications are designed to eliminate symptoms of depression and will allow you to resume your activities and get back to your normal state more quickly.
Antidepressants can cause side effects such as the following:
insomnia or drowsiness;
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
These discomforts are often transient and there are different ways to remedy them. However, if you are worried or have any questions, consult your pharmacist. They can educate you and help you find ways to minimize side effects, or suggest treatment alternatives to your doctor.
FIDELITY TO TREATMENT: AN IMPORTANT ISSUE
Adherence to treatment is an essential concept which, simply defined, is to be faithful to the treatment offered by the healthcare professional and to take an active part in it. This notion is particularly important in the treatment of depression, since it takes a few weeks before you notice the beneficial effects of antidepressants. You may also need to try different products and even drug combinations before you find the treatment that’s right for you.
Take your medicine every day, not just when you feel the worst. The maximum effect will appear after regular daily intake. Then, in order to avoid relapses, you should take the antidepressants for several months, even if you feel better, and never stop the treatment suddenly. Never stop your treatment without first talking to your doctor or pharmacist. If it turns out that stopping your medication is appropriate, they will tell you how to avoid the inconvenience of withdrawing too quickly.