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Atypical Depression - The Most Common Form of Depression

Atypical depression, a subtype of major depression, is the most common form of depression today. People who suffer atypical depression exhibit all the normal symptoms of depression but they also react to external positive experiences in a positive way. Atypical depression sufferers respond to their environment, enjoying the company of friends but slipping back into deep depression when alone or faced with a stressful situation. It is this aspect of atypical depression that differentiates it from melancholic depression in which external positive experiences still result in depressed feelings.

Studies have also found that atypical depression begins earlier in a person’s life than other forms of depression with most sufferers beginning to show symptoms in their teenage years.

People who suffer from atypical depression also exhibit other symptoms that aren't normally associated with "normal" depression including:

 

• Increase in appetite with a weight gain of ten or more pounds.

• Hypersomnia -over sleeping of more than 10 hours per day.

• Leaden paralysis of the arms and legs

• Long term pattern of sensitivity to rejection in personal situations that causes social or work related withdrawal.

 

In 1998 Dr. Andrew A. Nierenberg, associate director of the depression clinical and research program at Massachusetts General Hospital, published a study that found 42% of participants suffered from atypical depression, 12% had melancholic depression, 14% had both depression subtypes and the remaining did not suffer from depression.

 

Treating atypical depression is an ongoing process. Research has shown that MAOIs such as Nardil or Parnate work reasonably well as do the newer SSRI medications (Lexapro, Prozac, Zoloft). Most patients prefer the SSRIs because they do not exhibit the unpleasant side affects of the MAOIs.

 

It is also important that if you or someone you know suffers from atypical depression that you or they seek psychiatric help. Atypical depression is not easy to diagnose the treatment choices can vary from patient to patient. A general care practitioner does not have the expertise to differentiate between the subtypes of depression and may not know the best course of treatment for their patient.

 

Andrew Bicknell is a writer and Webmaster of Depression and You.com. Visit his website for more information about Atypical Depression and other depression disorders.

 

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Treating Depression Successfully Without Drugs

 

In the past treatment of depression was done by many different types of talk therapy by psychologists. There are over 250 psychotherapy "techniques", and NONE of them have been proven to work any better than any other.

 

The APA has neatly classified several different types of depression (manic, bipolar, unipolar, post-partum, grief, etc - mostly for the purposes of legally making them covered by health insurance.)

 

But, the fact remains that very few depressed patients were ever "cured" by talk type psychotherapy. As a matter of fact, it has been shown in several studies that talking to a sympathetic friend, even a bartender, or almost anyone who will listen is about as good as talking to a clinician (at $100 up per hour).

 

Psychiatrists would seem to have somewhat of an advantage here. They have the battery of drugs that "seem" to help depressed persons at least get thru life without too many suicides from depression. Here's another fact. Nobody ever got depressed because of poor toilet training as a child. Freud had a lot of good ideas, but this wasn't one of them. There's been a lot written about stress causing depression, and stress is a component (as poor toilet training may be). But, it doesn't CAUSE depression directly. So, just what does cause depression?

 

The Orthomolecular Theory and my experience in taught me that there were three basic causes of depression. Clearing up these "stresses" cleared up the patient's ability to withstand the normal stress of everyday living as well as the heavy stresses put on some at times.

 

These three basic causes are:

• Mineral Toxicity (perhaps 10-15%)

• Nutritional Deficiency (perhaps 15-20%

• Allergies and Other Stress Factors (perhaps 75-85%)

 

The following is pretty brief, and my book “The Health Revolution” has much more information and actual case studies of many different types of depression and anxiety, etc. It also describes the actual therapy I used in each case, and how it worked. This book may be found at: http://Alternate-Health.com/health.html

 

Mineral Toxicity

There are several minerals that may cause depression (at toxic levels) directly. These include toxic levels of mercury, copper, lead, and others. (In the case of copper, medium toxic levels of copper can cause depression, and higher levels may cause schizophrenia.) Lead is still a problem, but becoming less likely due to removing it from gasoline and paint. I even had one patient with arsenic causing depression.

 

Nutritional Deficiency

As mentioned above, almost every kind of stress causes the body to use up various vitamins and minerals faster. This means that when you are under unusual stress, you should be taking more vitamins.

 

Allergies and Stress

Now we come to the real meat. Allergy! Or, more precisely, both allergies and/or food/chemical sensitivities. To allergists, they are two separate problems, and until recently, few MD allergists even considered food sensitivity at all. Both allergy and sensitivity can cause all the same symptoms/disease as the other. Ranging from schizophrenia and depression to hyperactivity and bedwetting, arthritis and skin itching. The list of potential symptoms of allergy and/or sensitivity is as long as your arm.. It surprises many people that most of the "brain problems" of depression, ADD/ADHD, schizophrenia, epilepsy, etc can be, and often are caused by allergy and/or sensitivity.

 

Talk about stress. Either allergy or sensitivity causes huge stress to the body, and stress is additive. So, if you have an emotional strain in your life at the same time as an allergen is affecting you, the overall stress becomes much more, and your body needs much more in the way of good nutrition to help get thru this stressful period. Post Partum Depression and PMS are often examples of additive stress.

 

In virtually every depressed patient I ever saw in my practice the depression "lifted" when the combination of stress from allergy and/or mineral toxicity was dealt with. (I estimate about 80% allergy/sensitivity and 20% mineral toxicity with a lot of overlap.) By curing the underlying physical problem, the "ordinary" stress of modern life can be dealt with. I should mention at this point that whenever I saw a depression patient for the first time, I immediately started them on what I called "Immediate Relief". This was a combination of 500 mg of Tryptophan, and 500 mg of Tyrosine - from 1-3 times per day along with at least 50 mg B complex at the same time. None of these cause any side effects (unless you are allergic to capsules or some of the "fillers" used.) This helped to lift their depression during the search for the underlying problem, and helped defuse thoughts about suicide. There are now nutritional supplements with these combinations on the market.

 

Neu-Becalm'd is the one that I recommend. Info about Neu-Becalm’d can be found at: http://www.StressTalk.com

In April 2002, I leased two EEG biofeedback units to two different people that have reported back to me. One, was a suicidal and depressed young man. With 40 1/2 hour sessions, he has completely turned around, and is quite normal. No depression symptoms at all. The other was an older woman, and she reported that after training her son (ADD/ADHD), she felt much better just watching him train, so she did sessions herself. She didn't report how many, but not only was her son free of his ADD/ADHD symptoms, but her depression was gone as well. (Since that was written, many more cases have been successful.)

 

Dr Von Hilsheimer reports 100% success with all types of depression in his biofeedback practice in Orlando Florida. How does it work? My theory first voiced to Dr Von in 2000 is that this EEG BF training somehow trains the brain to change the effect of some allergens on the brain/body. My first test of the Bate Auditory Training system proved that this theory is at least partially correct. Many of the people in this test lost several allergies/sensitivities.

 

The Bate Auditory BrainWave Training System

In 2004, I realized that if EEG Biofeedback (neurofeedback) could solve various “brain problems” such as: ADD/ADHD, Autism, depression, insomnia, etc, by simply changing some specific brain wave bands, then it should be possible to do the same thing using passive audio. I made up a test audio, and tested it on over 40 volunteers (who all paid to take part in this test). The results were mixed, but overall it proved that raising one brain wave (called SMR) did change the allergen effect(s) on the brain. Every depressed person, and every person with Insomnia who used the audio for more than a month solved their problems. (Insomnia/sleep problems is often a component of depression.)

 

Since I only used the audio message to raise the SMR brain wave, there were some ADD/ADHD persons who did not get as much benefit as hoped. (Included in this test were 3 kids that hadn’t been helped by EEG biofeedback, and they weren’t helped by this audio either). (I knew that NASA had found that lowering the Theta brain wave increased attention/concentration.) In 2005, I devised a new audio that included lowering of the Theta brain wave as well as raising the SMR brain wave. This was also tested on over 40 participants, most of whom paid up to $100 each. Every ADD/ADHD person tested, (who used the audio for over 6 weeks) improved dramatically. Even some autistic kids did very well, and the parents are continuing it’s use. I cannot, and do not claim that the Bate Auditory BrainWave Training system will “cure” any brain problems, but to date, I can state that this system has solved a very high percentage of such problems, comparable to EEG biofeedback (estimated by most at around 85%) at a fraction of the cost.

 

Phil Bate PhD - Retired Orthomolecular Psychologist
Inventor and Patent Pending Holder for Brain Wave Amplitude Changing via Auditory Training
http://Alternate-Health.com
http://AuditoryBrainWaveTraining.com

 

Depression and Weight: An Undeniable Connection

There has been some recent press about the long speculated correlation between one's weight and depression, or state of mind. Well, new studies are showing that overweight or obese people are significantly more prone to depression and mood disorders, which is contrary to the popular myth of the "fat and jolly" individual.

This newest study, which consisted of more than 9,000 adults of both male and female sex, found that obese individuals were approximately 25 percent more likely to suffer from depression than their slimmer counterparts.

Not only that, but contrary to earlier theories that obese women may have been more prone to depression than overweight men, the newest findings show that both men and women suffering weight problems are equally as likely to battle depression. But the question still remains, why is depression more common in the obese segment of the population, and what are some of the theories as to why this is the case?

 

While these new studies provide almost irrefutable evidence that obesity is strongly linked to depression and other mood disorders, there are unfortunately no definite answers as to why exactly this is true. There are theories of course, and there are also many documented cases of patients who are obese or simply over a healthy weight standard that are also suffering from depression and mood swings.

 

I'm sure if you think about it, you may be able to come up with someone in your life who you can make this correlation with. It may even be you. As I previously mentioned, there are a number of theories as to why depression occurs so much more often in people who are obese or overweight. One common sense theory is the simple fact that an individual may feel inferior or out of control if they have lost control over their weight.

 

They may emotionally beat themselves up over and over because they view themselves as "fat", which has a direct impact on their every day interactions with people, their self esteem, and therefore leads to depression and feelings of sadness, lethargy and hopelessness. This may seem the most obvious of all theories, and it is, but it nonetheless is a very valid theory.

 

Another theory, which has been discussed in numerous diet and health books is the link between depression and weight through blood sugar and other key chemicals in the body and the brain which can be upset by the presence of obesity and a poor diet. The blood sugar link is the one I believe is most likely to be true, as I know from a personal perspective for me, when my blood sugar is bottoming out, I am the last person you'd want to be around.

 

Not only am I unpleasant, but I start to have feelings of despair, anxiety and anger for no apparent reason. Then, once my blood sugar is regulated again through means of "healthy" food, I'm back to my pleasant self, and those much-needed feelings of well being. This is not to discount other theories, as I think they all kind of work together. Weight and depression can become a vicious cycle for many of us.

 

When we're thinner, we tend to feel better about ourselves, which produces more endorphins and feelings of happiness, which happens to also suppress our appetite, which in turn keeps us on the "thin track", and vice versa. When we feel down or depressed, we may tend to overeat or binge on comfort foods as a temporary means of feeling good again, which in turn makes our weight balloon, which in turn makes us feel bad about our body image.... and so on and so forth.

 

You get the picture. Weight and depression in itself can become a vicious cycle, if we don't learn to harness the power of our mind and take control of our bodies and our health. Not only will it lead to a more slender, heart healthy and longer-living you, but chances are, it will also lead to a much happier, mentally alert and content you. And that's worth more than any size five jeans in my book.

 

Danna Schneider is the co-founder of the online magazine for weight loss and dieting, including diet and fitness product reviews and alternative ideas for weight management and mood management called Dieting Magazine : Weight Loss. You may also find valuable information on depression and natural remedies for correcting and avoiding depression here Herbal Remedies : Mood Enhancers.

Suicide, Facts, and Depression

Thoughts of suicide is most likely the worst type of depression. Suicide is " The act or an instance of intentionally killing oneself." (See Sources Below)

 

Suicide is considered the highest level of depression, usually thoughts leading to death. This sign of depression was the 11th leading cause of death in the United States, taking the lives of 30,622 people in 2001 alone. It outnumbered homicide 3 to 2. 55 percent of suicides were commited with a firearm and it is said that the older the person, the more likely they are to commit suicide. This form of depression was the 8th leading cause death of males, and 19th death of females.

 

So what are some risk factors and possible signs of this depression? Take a look at them:

* Previous suicide attempt(s)

* History of mental disorders, particularly depression

* History of alcohol and substance abuse

* Family history of suicide

* Family history of child maltreatment

* Feelings of hopelessness

* Impulsive or aggressive tendencies

* Barriers to accessing mental health treatment

* Loss (relational, social, work, or financial)

* Physical illness

* Easy access to lethal methods

* Unwillingness to seek help because of the stigma attached to mental health and substance abuse disorders or suicidal thoughts

* Cultural and religious beliefs—for instance, the belief that suicide is a noble resolution of a personal dilemma

* Local epidemics of suicide

* Isolation, a feeling of being cut off from other people

(See Sources Below)

As to most depressions, there are solutions. Suicide has prevention strategies as well. The NCIPC came up with this one as seen on their site-"This strategy results from collaboration among several federal agencies (including CDC), coalitions, community-based organizations, practitioners, and other partners. As conceived, the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (NSSP) requires a variety of organizations and individuals to become involved in suicide prevention. The NSSP emphasizes coordination of resources and the application of culturally appropriate services at all levels of government—federal, state, tribal and community—and in the private sector. The NSSP represents the first U.S. attempt to prevent suicide through such a coordinated approach. Information about NSSP is available from the Department of Health and Human Services website."

 

http://www.signofdepression.blogspot.com

Sources- Dictionary.com, National Institute of Mental Health, CDC.gov, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control

Bipolar Disorder and Manic Depression

If you already are not aware of this condition, bipolar disorder is "a diagnostic category describing a class of mood disorders where the person experiences states or episodes of depression and/or mania, hypomania, and/or mixed states."(Look at Sources Below)

Bipolar disorder is also known as a manic-depressive illness, which can suddenly shift a person's mood, energy, and their ability to function. As in every person, someone with bipolar disorder has their up's and down's to a much higher level. This is a very serious condition, which can lead to depression.

 

Those who suffer from atypical depression are also at greater risk of suffering from other mental disorders such as social phobias, avoidant personality disorder or body dysmorphic disorder. Atypical depression is more prevalent in females than males as well, with nearly 70% of it's sufferers being women.

 

A sign of this disorder can range anywhere from an usual damaged relationship with a person who is close to you, poor school/job performance, or even thoughts of, or actual suicide. Major mood swings from extreme happiness to extreme irritability (or vice versa) are the most common symptoms of this manic depression. A sign of depression can also be little sleep or even unrealistic beliefs in one's ability. Other commons signs are spending sprees, denial, poor judgment, and increased sexual drive. People with manic depressions can also abuse medications, drugs, and alcohol. The signs of the depression are the about the same as those listed in the previous posts.

 

So who can get bipolar disorder or manic depression? Just about ANYONE, including kids, teenagers, and adolescents. If any of the signs and symptoms occur for longer than a week's period, consulting a doctor is recommended.

 

Although bipolar illness is a long term illness, there is hope for controlling the episodes (high and low points). Long-term preventive treatment (medication and psychosocial) is strongly suggested. Also a chart of sleeping patterns, treatment, and daily mood symptoms prove helpful. Another form of treatment that can be considered is anitdepressant medication.

 

http://www.signofdepression.blogspot.com

Sources- Wikipedia.com, National Institute of Mental Health

 

Related Cure Help Health Tips articles on Depression

 

Symptoms of Depression - When you love someone who suffers from depression or bipolar disorder you may find yourself frustrated, angry or losing your ability to tolerate their behavior towards yourself, your children or other friends and family.

After Child Birth - Sometimes women suffer with depression immediately after child birth and this depression is known as postpartum depression. There are five kinds of postpartum depression, any of which can occur after child birth; however similar depression can also occur before or during pregnancy as well.

Although Bipolar Illness - Never give up in try to find ways to overcome your depression, anxiety or fears. At times, you may feel overwhelmed and feel that there is nothing else you can do. The fact of the matter is that there are ways in getting rid of your depression and anxieties.

Amplitude Changing Via - It is not easy to deal with depression and anxiety in the business world. Getting help from a professional should be the first thing you do if you deal with depression. Many companies nowadays have different programs for their employees.

Anti Aging Treatment - One of the most destructive states for your mind and body is strongly represented by depression. It is a phenomenon that affects millions of people around the world, no matter what culture they belong to. The triggering elements of depression are infinite and they vary from case to case.

Antidepressant Side Effects - Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a very misunderstood illness and this is perhaps why there are so many myths about it. Perhaps the most common myth about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is that it is effectively a mental condition, and another name for depression.

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Depression-A Brief Overview - As long as I live, I'll never forget the feeling of my mouth wrapped around the cold blue steel of the 6 in. barrel of my Ruger Blackhawk .357 single action revolver. I was so close to pulling the trigger. And nobody ever knew.

Depression After Divorce - Living your life together with another person, for a short time, or for a long number of years, can leave your feeling empty if you are going through a divorce. Divorce is a reason why many men and women alike find their selves fighting depression. Depression is a problem when you rely on another person, and your marriage ends.

Depression During Menopause - Depression is the most common psychological disorder in the US. Those who suffer from depression usually have physical and psychological symptoms, like insomnia and fatigue. Scientists agree that depression is linked to heredity, illness, certain medications, and pregnancy.

Depression During Pregnancy - Solaray - began manufacturing and selling herbal products in 1973, originally as a pioneer in formulating and marketing blended herbal products that contain two or more herbs with complementary effects.

Depression Glass Pieces - Anxiety and Depression are different forms of behavioral disorders that affect the whole life of a person. Anxiety is an emotional disturbance caused due to imbalance in the body system of a person.

Depression However Could - Being lonely is a normal part of our everyday lives... We get sad when we fail in our exams, when we're rejected by the person we love, or when someone very close to us passes away.

Taking Powerful Drugs - A recent research showed that the brain activity is totally different during sexual activity. That is why men with depression have difficulty in having satisfactory life. The serotonin level in depressed patients is lower than normal adults.

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