What is Depression?

What causes depression results from a variety of factors. The depression symptom you're experiencing may be due to your brain chemistry.

Clinical depression is more than just the "blues," being "down in the dumps," or experiencing temporary feelings of sadness we all have from time to time in our busy and hectic lives. It is a serious condition that affects a person's mind, body and general well being. It impacts all aspects of everyday life including eating, sleeping, working, relationships, and how a person thinks about himself/herself. People who are clinically depressed cannot simply will themselves to feel better or just "snap out of it." If they do not receive appropriate treatment their symptoms can continue for weeks, months, or years.

Depression affects everything from physical health and emotions to relationships and even work. It fact 1 out of every 5 people suffer from depression. It is not something you can prevent but it can be treated. The biggest barrier is recognizing the condition. What causes depression are usually genetics, the environment and chemical imbalances. In this video, Dr. Holly Atkinson explains how your brain works and what depression symptom may be experienced.


Holly Atkinson, MD

This video features Holly Atkinson, MD. Dr. Atkinson specializes in internal medicine and is an award-winning medical journalist.

Duration: 3:39. Last Updated On: April 16, 2018, 4:34 p.m.
Reviewed by: Suzanne Friedman, MD, Preeti Parikh, MD . Review date: Sept. 19, 2014
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