Depression is a state of low mood and aversion to activity. Classified medically as a mental and behavioral disorder, the experience of depression affects a person's thoughts, behavior, motivation, feelings, and sense of well-being. The core symptom of depression is said to be anhedonia, which refers to loss of interest or a loss of feeling of pleasure in certain activities that usually bring joy to people. Depressed mood is a symptom of some mood disorders such as major depressive disorder or dysthymia; it is a normal temporary reaction to life events, such as the loss of a loved one; and it is also a symptom of some physical diseases and a side effect of some drugs and medical treatments. It may feature sadness, difficulty in thinking and concentration and a significant increase or decrease in appetite and time spent sleeping. People experiencing depression may have feelings of dejection, hopelessness and suicidal thoughts. It can either be short term or long term.
|Lithograph of a man diagnosed as suffering from melancholia with strong suicidal tendency (1892)|
|Symptoms||Low mood, aversion to activity, loss of interest, loss of feeling pleasure|
|Risk factors||Stigma of mental health disorder.|
|Diagnostic method||Patient Health Questionnaire, Beck Depression Inventory|
|Differential diagnosis||Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, Borderline personality disorder|
|Prevention||Social connections, Physical activity|