MOOD DISORDERS

“Mood disorders” is an umbrella term used for a group of mental illnesses that are characterized by chronic dysregulation of emotions.  Mood disorders can greatly interfere with one’s ability to function effectively in day-to-day life and can be identified by emotions that are not appropriate or consistent with the current environment or circumstances. As suggested by Mayo Clinic, please make an appointment with your doctor or a mental health specialist if you are concerned that you may have a mood disorder.

CLINICAL DEPRESSION

Clinical depression affects 7.1% or 17.3 million American adults and around 1.9 million children. Symptoms may include severe sadness hopelessness, irritability, crying, loss of interest, agitation, guilt, anger, mood swings, anxiety, isolation, and heaviness. There may be some disturbances in sleeping and eating behaviors as well. Women are twice as likely to have depression compared to men. Depression often co-occurs with other illnesses and medical conditions and is also the leading cause of disability worldwide and causes over 2.3 of the 30,000 suicides reported each year.

BIPOLAR DISORDERS

There are four types of bipolar disorders including bipolar 1, bipolar 2, cyclothymic disorder, and bipolar due to another medical or substance abuse disorder. Bipolar disorders affect 2.6% or 5.7 million American Adults, the median age is 25. Around 1/3 or 3.4 million children and adolescents with depression in the United States may actually be experiencing early onset bipolar disorder. It is more difficult to determine a diagnosis within adolescents than adults because the symptoms tend to differ. Adolescents are irritable instead of euphoric during mania compared to adults and the irritability can be mistaken for symptoms of puberty. Gender bias also exists as women are more inclined to be misdiagnosed.

 

SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER

Seasonal affective disorder is sadness that occurs during specific seasons. An example is depression that occurs every winter when the climate changes and there is less sunlight but leaves when the climate reverts to longer and brighter hours of the day. SAD may occur in summer and/or other seasons as well. It may be related to anniversary dates or have no correlation or reason at all. (MHA) Impairments may include sadness, hopelessness, tirades, low self-esteem, loss of interest, avoidance, irritability, poor sleeping, poor appetite, and trouble concentrating. 4/5 people with SAD are women. It is speculated that the further you are from the equator, you are more at risk for SAD. 0-10% of the population are affected by SAD depending on geographic region(NIMH).

        PREMENSTRUAL DYSPHORIC DISORDER

PMDD is characterized  by extreme shifts in mood that occur during the premenstrual phase of a person’s menstrual cycle and goes away when their period begins. Symptoms of PMDD may include mood swings, irritability, depression, and anxiety. It is estimated that 6 million people or 1 out of 20 people worldwide have PMDD, which means that  2-8% of people with periods experience the condition. 30% of people with PMDD attempt suicide (recovery village).

PERSISTENT DEPRESSION

Persistent depressive disorder is a long term form of depression that is characterized by depression with varying intensities that comes and goes over a period of years (Mayo Clinic).
Impairments may include sadness, hopelessness, tirades, low self-esteem, loss of interest, avoidance, irritability, poor sleeping, poor appetite, and trouble concentrating. 1.3% of US adults have experienced PDD sometime in their life (NIMH).

 
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