Depression is one of the most common psychological illnesses today. Like a healthy mood, depression is also a state of mind. Depressive episodes are often characterized by hyperactivity, irritability, and agitation.
What Is A Depressive Episode
The most common type is a depressive episode. A depressive episode can start quickly in a few days or more slowly over a few weeks, this also usually lasts for several weeks or months. Some of the depressive symptoms must be present continuously for at least two weeks to be able to consider it as a depressive episode.
Intermittent Depressive Disorder
When there is a recurrence of a depressive episode, it is known as a recurrent depressive disorder.
Dysthymia is characterized by a less severe depressive symptomatology in comparison to a depressive episode or intermittent depressive disorder. Despite this, the disease usually begins in adolescence and is persistent, since the symptoms typically last from at least 2 years or more. Some people with this disorder sometimes suffer from a depressive episode as well.
Bipolar affective disorder or also known as the manic-depressive disorder is known to be a severe disorder. It is less frequent than unipolar disorders. There are two different forms: bipolar I and bipolar II. Patients with bipolar I suffer manic depressive episodes. Manic episodes may appear after several depressive episodes. So the initial diagnosis of unipolar episodes can also change to bipolar disorder. This sudden mood change can occur very quickly (overnight) after a depressive episode or after months or years of no disturbance. However, hyperactive individuals often face restlessness, irritability, loquacity, and insomnia.
Mania affects thinking, judgments, and social behavior, causing severe problems and difficulties to a person. Indiscriminate and insecure sexual practice or reckless financial decisions are some of the usual behaviors of a mania phase.
Bipolar disorder II happens if the manic symptoms are less pronounced and do not cause psychosocial problems. This is a manic episode referred to as hypomanic. Sometimes, hypomanic episodes occur immediately after a depressive episode.
Psychotic or delusional depression involves the appearance of false ideas or thoughts (delusions) and sometimes also hallucinations. Delusions mean disproportionate feelings of guilt. A delirium of poverty or fear of suffering from an incurable disease falls under this category. Patients with psychotic depression often suffer from suicidal tendencies. Such a condition can appear in both unipolar and bipolar depression.
Patients who are suffering from this have the same symptoms as patients with typical depression. There are only two exceptions though. While patients with typical depression experience a lack of appetite, insomnia and rapid weight loss, patients with atypical depression show increased appetite and food intake. They also have hypersomnolence or an increased need for sleep. This type of depression can occur in both unipolar and bipolar cases.
Seasonal Affective Disorder
Patients with seasonal depressive disorder, or more commonly known as SAD, show the atypical symptoms and suffer only during a particular season of the year, in most cases autumn or winter. Usually, when the depressive phases end, the person returns to his or her usual mood and attitude.