Major Depressive Disorders Essay

2205 WordsAug 21, 20129 Pages
Major Depressive Disorders Depressive disorders, which include major depressive disorder (unipolar depression), dysthymic disorder (chronic, mild depression), and bipolar disorder (manicdepression), can have far reaching effects on the functioning and adjustment of young people. Among both children and adolescents, depressive disorders confer an increased risk for illness and interpersonal and psychosocial difficulties that persist long after the depressive episode is resolved; in adolescents there is also an increased risk for substance abuse and suicidal behavior 1,2,3. Unfortunately, these disorders often go unrecognized by families and physicians alike. Signs of depressive disorders in young people often are viewed as normal mood swings typical of a particular developmental stage. In addition, health care professionals may be reluctant to prematurely "label" a young person with a mental illness diagnosis. Yet early diagnosis and treatment of depressive disorders are critical to healthy emotional, social, and behavioral development. Although the scientific literature on treatment of children and adolescents with depression is far less extensive than that concerning adults, a number of studies-mostly conducted in the last four to five years-have confirmed the short-term efficacy and safety of treatments for depression in youth. Larger treatment trials are needed to determine which treatments work best for which youngsters, and studies are also needed, however, on how to best incorporate these treatments into primary care practice. Someone who has a major depressive disorder has experienced one or more depressive episodes without ever experiencing a manic or hypomanic episode. Summarizes the criteria for this diagnosis. At least half of the people who experience a major depressive episode will later have a recurrence of major depression (Thase
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