Depressive disorders range in seriousness from mild, temporary episodes of sadness to severe, persistent depression. Doctors use the term “clinical depression” to describe the more severe, persistent form of depression.
Signs and symptoms may include:
- Loss of interest in daily activities
- Persistent sadness or feeling of emptiness
- Sleep disturbances
- Significant weight loss or gain
- Loss of concentration
- Suicidal thoughts or behavior
Treatment for depression depends on many factors, including the severity of the condition, the persistence of the symptoms, and the person’s personal history with the illness. For many forms of depression, a combination of psychotherapy and antidepressant medications can be an effective treatment. Antidepressant medications can relieve symptoms of depression, while psychotherapy may help you cope with ongoing problems that may trigger or contribute to depression.
For the more serious cases of clinical depression, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can be helpful for people who haven’t responded to other treatments or who can’t tolerate antidepressants for other reasons. During ECT, an electric current is passed through the brain to induce controlled seizures. Experts aren’t sure how electroconvulsive therapy relieves the symptoms of depression. However, it’s believed the procedure may affect levels of neurotransmitters in your brain.
~~I was medication resistant and my psychiatrist decided on ECTs as the route to go; they did zilch for me and the final outcome was long-term memory loss.
Source for medical information: MayoClinic.com