9 Depression Types You MUST KNOW About

Depression Types by Perfect Health Magazine

Depression Types - Quick 30 Seconds Summary

  • Depression is a complex mental health issue that should be treated by professionals. 
  • Globally 5% of adults suffer from depression but a fraction of them actually seek professional help. 
  • There are many different types of depression. The type of depression defines how much and what treatment will be prescribed by medical professionals. 
  • Major Depressive Disorder, Persistent Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorder and Psychotic Depression are some of the major types. 
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder, Post Partum Depression, Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder and Atypical Depression are the minor types. 
  • Get professional help on time if you experience any symptoms.

Depression - Meaning & Overview

Depression is a serious mental health issue that needs medical attention and treatment. According to the World Health Organisation, approximately 5% of adults globally are affected by Depression. 

Depression is a mood disorder that causes persistent feelings of sadness and gloom in patients. These feelings are so deep-rooted that it hinders the day to day activities of the patient. In mild to moderate intensity, most people ignore the signs of depression and in most severe cases depression may cause suicide.

In this article, we will cover the various types of depression found in humans all over the world. It is important to understand that every type of depression is different and the course of treatment prescribed by the doctors will depend on the type of depression diagnosed in the patient.

Types of Depression

While most people believe that depression has no sub-types, the reality is quite the opposite. There are many different types of depression. Depression type gives the hint to the causes of depression. Depression is triggered by events in life, upbringing, bad experiences, trauma, grief, and so on. 

Following are the different types of depression:

1. Major Depression or Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)

This type is usually present in patients if they feel depressed most of the time for most of the days of the week. It can present itself in various forms amongst different people. 

Depending upon the specific symptoms Major Depressive Disorder can be of these subtypes – Anxious Distress, Melancholic or Agitated. 

The Doctor, based on your symptoms, classifies you in one of the above. The depression is also further categorised into – mild, moderate or severe and then the treatment begins.

2. Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD)

Medically Persistent Depressive Disorder is referred to as dysthymia. If a patient has a depression for 2 years or longer, then it is classified as Persistent Depressive Disorder. 

PDD is not as serious as Major Depression, however, since it acquires the nature of an incessant illness it starts affecting the patient’s personality. The patient finds it difficult to do day to day activities and may not even be able to become happy on joyful occasions. 

Long term therapy and medication is the treatment for PDD.

3. Bipolar Disorder

Earlier Bipolar Disorder was called ‘Manic Disorder’. It is a type of depression when the patient suffers from mood episodes that range from extremes of high energy with an ‘up’ mood to a low ‘Depressive’ mood. 

Patients with Bipolar Disorder experience mood swings that affect their sleep, energy, activities, judgment, behavior, and the ability to think clearly.

Medications are used to bring your mood swings in control. These medications are known as ‘mood stabilizers. Bipolar Disorder is a lifelong health condition that needs to be carefully managed and regularly monitored by qualified medical experts.

4. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

This type of Depression is sometimes referred to as Seasonal Depression or Winter Depression. Patients with SAD experience the symptoms of depression during the months of winter when the days are shorter and you get less sunlight. SAD typically goes away once spring and summer arrive. 

However, the symptoms of SAD can cause the patient to feel extremely distressed and overwhelmed. They may stop their daily routine in bits and pieces or completely due to this depression. 

It is treatable and can easily be cured with help from the right doctors and medical professionals.

5. Psychotic Depression

In Psychotic Depression, people suffer from Major Depressive Disorder and additionally have “psychotic” symptoms as well. 

The first thing recommended by doctors worldwide in the treatment of Psychotic Depression is hospitalization and immediate treatment procedures to take control of the depression. 

Psychotic symptoms include hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there) and delusions (false beliefs) and paranoia (wrongly believing that others are trying to harm you)

A person suffering from Psychotic Depression experiences agitation at the most trivial things, anxiety, constipation, sleeplessness, lack of rational thinking and unexplained physical immobility. 

This type of depression is hard to diagnose since the patients feel ashamed and try to hide it from the doctors.

6. Postpartum Depression

Only women experience Postpartum Depression. Postpartum Depression occurs immediately after a woman experiences childbirth. 

A lot of people call it “the baby blues” but Postpartum Depression is much more than that. Some women experience it only for a couple of days after childbirth and some women experience it for a longer duration. 

It is best to get help and treat it in a timely manner.

7. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)

PMDD is a severe extension of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS), which can sometimes be disabling. PMDD causes extreme mood swings that can disrupt daily life and damage relationships. 

In both, PMS and PMDD, depression symptoms can begin as early as 10 days before your period and continue for the first few days of the period.

8. Atypical depression

As per psychiatry.org, 1 in 3 people who are treated for depression, have to be tried with different methods of treatment, since they have Treatment-Resistant Depression. 

One of the various reasons for this is that there may be other underlying conditions along with your depression, which makes it difficult to treat. Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) may be helpful in such cases.

9. Treatment Resistant Depression

Atypical depression is a subset of Major Depressive disorder. Most people who experience Atypical Depression have experienced Major Depression earlier in life, especially during their teenage years. 

This type of depression is different from the persistent feeling of sadness in other forms of depression. If you have Atypical depression, a positive event can temporarily uplift your mood.

Depression - Concluding Remarks

Depression is a complex issue that needs proper diagnosis, care and treatment. The type of depression and the severity of the condition are defining factors in the course of treatment. Mental health is as important as physical health. Any signs of depression or anxiety should not be ignored. Seek help and stay positive.