The 16 types of depression. Find out who you’re dropping in for 15 minutes.

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Identify yourself to what type of depression you fall.

This is already possible! In the following lines, you can find out what forms of depression exist and decide which one applies to you. I will pay special attention to the lightest form of depression – dysthymia.

Depression can take many forms. What distinguishes these forms is the symptoms and circumstances associated with each of them, along with the duration and severity of the symptoms.

Often, however 16 types of depressionthere is no clear boundary between the different types of depression. They sometimes have many common features. It is also possible that a person has more than one type of mood disorder. The following classifications will help you get a better perspective on depression issues.

In order to determine what treatment best suits your symptoms and circumstances, mental health professionals classify the various forms of depression. Classification begins with the main categories of depression:

Clinical depression


Adaptation disorder

Bipolar disorders

Clinical depression

Clinical depression is the most common clinical depressiona form of depression. It is characterized by a mood swings lasting more than two weeks and including one or more of the main signs of depression:

You feel a sad feeling of sadness or sorrow

You lose interest or pleasure from usually enjoyable activities.

Often (even every day) you experience at least four of the following signs and symptoms:

Significant weight loss or weight gain

Sleep disorder

Slow or restless movements

Fatigue or lack of energy

Low self-esteem or feel guilty of things that do not really exist.

You feel they are useless

You feel helpless or that everything that surrounds you or you do is meaningless

It’s hard to think or focus

You lost your sexual desire.

It is possible that you have only experienced a clinical depression once in your life, but the disease may return again. After the first onset of clinical depression, the likelihood of getting sick again is 50%. This percentage increases with each subsequent episode. If you had two attacks, the likelihood of the disease returning is 70%.

If not treated, episodes of clinical depression usually last for six to 18 months. Early treatment can prevent disease worsening and supportive treatment can prevent it.

Clinical depression may occur along with other mental illnesses, such as anxiety or eating disorders. The first unlocking of the disease can occur at any age, but the probability of this is greatest between 25 and 44 years. Clinical depression is more common in women. Stress and negative life events twice as much increase the risk of this type of depression.


I’ll tell you how my client copes with dysthymia. SS left her home where she had a close relationship with her family and a few good friends to attend a school in a city where she did not know anyone.

She did not have much confidence in her ability to win friends, and her first attempts to do so failed. She felt lonely and isolated. There were problems adapting to the new environment.

She had several symptoms of depression: she was easily crying, her sleep was upset, she had no appetite, and showed a tendency to shut up in her room. Besides, he did not find much satisfaction in the activities he had enjoyed before.

SS visited my office and I used interpersonal therapy to help her overcome this change and build communication and self-confidence skills. After two weeks, the client’s symptoms began to dull.

What you will read below will help you deal with your dysthymia yourself. First, you need to improve your communication skills and raise your self-esteem. This will be as follows:

Just show interest in other people. Every day you enter the store – do not overlook the cashier and talk about the new kind of cheese or what it looks like – compliment her.

Then try the same with one of the neighbors you meet in front of your home. You will see that the people around you are not so different and strange – maybe you will even become interesting. Try within 3-4 days to communicate with 30 to 50 people – familiar and unfamiliar (ask something, exchange a few words). You will find it easier to find a common language.

Enrich your social experience and become more committed – for example, you can sign up for a course. You do not have to meet only people of your age or your interests: curious interlocutors can be also the 2-year-old and the 80-year-old old man on the bench. Soon you will feel that you have gained a lot of experience in a variety of styles of communication and you no longer have difficulty talking to strangers.

If you are a teller , be more a listener than a spokesman. Be tolerant and respectful – do not respond to the opinions or habits of other people disapprovingly. Try not to be a focus – this will teach you to listen, it will give you the opportunity to watch your interlocutor. And so you will have the opportunity to get to know the manners of your interlocutor and to understand them better.

If you are more shy , you will have to practice the opposite: talk as much as possible. Because you know – the inability to talk to people with you is a typical style of behavior, not a coincidence. That’s why your acquaintances are so few. Nothing prevents you from trying to conduct simple conversations on a very common topic – if you will even for the time. Or about your bus going … A few words are enough to talk to an unknown interlocutor.

You can have an official tone or not. It all depends on the situation. It’s a good idea to stop shrinking when you meet or introduce someone to your acquaintances. Forget the stupid situations of childhood and pay attention to the more important – the desire to establish contact.

Sometimes things just start with a more formal tone, but then they relax. But being too serious and official when you go on a trip or at home you have a master is absolutely unnecessary – you need a minute or two to find out for sure what the situation is and what is the right tone to make you feel awkward.

If you’re wondering what to say in your unofficial contacts, it’s always good to talk about time, pet, and everything that does not involve the conversation too much.

For each of us remains the question: how long to wait before we worry and seek specialized help? But to go back to the dysthymia, which we often saw is related to the loss experience.

Dysthymia is a form of mild depression with a long duration characterized by persistently pessimistic thoughts about life.

It lasts two years and sometimes more than 5 years. This condition usually does not lead to disability, and periods of dysthymia can alternate with short episodes of normal self-esteem.

Dysthymia can affect your work and your social contacts. Many people in this state are starting to get away from people, the ability to work decreases. If you suffer from dysthymia, the risk of getting depressed by clinical depression is rising. When clinical depression arises as a complication of dysthymia, the condition is called double depression.

The signs and symptoms of dysthymia are similar to those of clinical depression, but are not so intense and only some of them may appear. These may include:

Difficult concentration or decision making

Isolation from people


Restless or slow movements

Sleep problems

Lose or gain weight.

Some sufferers of dysthymia recall that the first manifestation of the disease was in childhood or adolescence. In a few people, the disease occurs after 50 years of age, often after a physical illness. At least 75% of dysthymia suffer from other health problems.

Adaptation disorder

They often precede clinical depression. Suppose your marriage fails, your business falls or you find cancer. It is quite understandable to feel tense, sad, depressed or angry.

Ultimately, most people deal with the lasting effects of these life stresses, but some fail. This condition is known as an adaptation disorder – when the reaction of stress in a certain situation causes signs and symptoms of depression, but these signs and symptoms are not sufficiently expressed to meet the criteria for clinical depression.

Doctors generally use the following criteria to diagnose an adaptation disorder:

Emotional or behavioral symptoms that result from a particular event that occurred as a result of a particular event over the last three months.

The reaction to the event is more burgeoning than normal.

Symptoms are not due solely to mourning

Adaptation disorder can get everyone. These disorders often occur at times of your life when you are better off when you are separated from your parents or at the end of your professional career.

Age is also important. For example, your business’s collapse at the age of 30 may not be such a stress for you than if it happened at the age of 50 when job opportunities were limited. Some people experience an adaptation disorder in response to a single event. For others for a whole lot of reasons.

There are several different types of adaptation disorders. The acute disorder is about signs and symptoms lasting less than six months. When the symptoms persist, the condition is referred to as a chronic disorder of the adaptation. Adaptation disorders are classified according to the main symptoms:

Disorder of mood swings adaptation

Anxiety adaptation disorder

Mixed anxiety disorder suppressed mood disorder

Adaptation disorder with mixed emotional and behavioral disorder.

What type of behavioral disorder is involved is the age of the patient. Adults usually become depressed and anxious. Adolescents tend to react subconsciously to their problems. This may include missing school hours, drug use, property damage, or some other uncharacteristic behavior.

Bipolar disorders

Some patients with depression are experiencing a cyclical repetition of depression with mania / euphoria. This disease covers both poles of mood and is also known as manic depression or as a manic-depressive disorder.

Unlike depression, people with a manic phase feel energetic and tireless. He can spend an unjustified amount of money or make mistakes that he would not have taken before.

It is possible to have ideas of greatness, as a result of which you can make bad deals or have indiscriminate sexual contacts. Some patients during the manic phase have an increased creative potential and productivity.

Signs and symptoms of mania include:

Unhealthy or excessive mood

Significantly increased energy

Reduce sleep time

Unrealistic beliefs about our own powers.

Tendency to many social contacts and bitterness

Accelerated thought process

Weaknesses in judgments

Increased libido

Provocative, intrusive or aggressive social behavior

Abuse of alcohol or other drugs, including increased smoking.




Bipolar disorder is less common than clinical depression or dysthymia. The risk of illness is the same for men and women. Usually the disease is triggered in adolescent or juvenile age and is a chronic disease. There is also a tendency for a family history of the disease. About 80-90% of patients with bipolar disorder have a close relative with some form of depression.

There is a tendency for signs and symptoms of bipolar disorder to worsen over time. It is possible that the disease begins with depressive, manic or mixed episodes separated by remissions.

Over time, bipolar episodes become more frequent and light periods shorten. Severe depression or euphoria may be accompanied by psychotic experiences, including hallucinations and delusions. It should be borne in mind that untreated depression can cause bipolar disorder.

As with other forms of depression, it is crucial to obtain appropriate treatment for bipolar disorder in order to prevent worsening of the disease and reduce the risk of suicide.

There are three types of bipolar disorder:

Bipolar disorder, first type. This bipolar disorder almost always involves one or more periods of clinical depression and at least one manic or mixed episode. It can begin with both clinical depression and mania. If the first manifestation of the disease is depression, the manic episode usually lasts 1-2 years later.

Bipolar disorder, second type. In this form of the disease, one or more episodes of clinical depression and at least one episode of hypomania have a mild and softened elevation state. The peak manifestations of the disease are not as extreme as the first type of bipolar disorder. Another difference is the length of intervals between episodes.

In the second type of bipolar disorder hypomania occurs immediately before or immediately after a period of clinical depression. There is usually no period of remission between the two phases.

Cyclothymic disorder. This is a mild form of bipolar disorder with chronic leakage. It is characterized by fluctuations between short periods of mild depression and short periods of hypomania. Mood swings can alternate over several days, with cycles lasting at least two years. In cyclothymia, the symptoms never disappear for more than two months, but the likelihood of clinical depression is also less.

In addition to finding out what type of depression you are suffering from, your doctor will ask you to understand the severity of your illness and the characteristic set of symptoms in your case. This helps determine the most effective form of treatment. Depression has several subtypes. Some are common and some are rare.

What is a nervous breakdown?

The term nervous breakdown is often used by laymen in relation to a person suffering from a severe mental illness. More often, the person alleged to have a nervous breakdown is experiencing an episode of clinical depression or mania.

Symptoms are so pronounced that a person is unable to function normally and can even be admitted to a hospital. Because symptoms can sometimes occur suddenly, the apparent impression is that the person collapses. Severe depression or mania can be accompanied by hallucinations and delusions.

Fortunately, with proper diagnosis and treatment, many people who have suffered a nervous breakdown are able to recover and regain their previous quality of life.

Mild to severe depression

Clinical depression is within the range of mild and severe depression. Slight depression is manifested with symptoms that are not intense and very little disturb your everyday life and relationships.

Moderate depression includes more intense symptoms and more disruptive work, schooling, family, and relationships. Severe depression implies a high number of depressive symptoms and significant impairment of daily activities. In extreme cases, those suffering from severe depression are unable to work and take care of themselves.

Suicidal depression

Suicidal depression is associated with such severe symptoms that the individual is contemplating or attempting suicide.

Acute or chronic depression

Depression can be categorized according to the duration of symptoms. If the symptoms continue for a short, clearly defined period, depression is called acute. If the symptoms persist for more than six months, depression is considered to be chronic.

Single episode or recurrent depression

Depression is also characterized by the course of the disease over time. A single episode of depression means the absence of a previous episode. As its name suggests, recurrent depression implies more than one depressive episode.

Both the single depressive episode and recurrent depression can be triggered by a specific event.

Melancholic Depression

Melancholy is a term for a type of clinical depression with certain characteristics. These include the impossibility of experiencing pleasure in everyday activities – even if something good happens, loss of appetite, early morning waking, slow movements and unjustified guilt.

Catatonic depression

Catatonia is a rare condition that may occur during the course of depressive illness. In severe depression or melancholy, some people experience moments in which they get stuck on the ground or move a lot, take up unusual poses and talk very little. The other features of the catatonia include gaze, grimacing, and meaningless repetition of words and expressions.

Atypical depression

Those suffering from atypical depression have preserved their ability to enjoy, albeit superficially, somewhere. These patients are very sensitive if they are rejected, fed and sleep more than usual, and are constantly tired. The first attack of atypical depression usually occurs in adolescent or juvenile age, and the disease can be chronic.

Psychotic depression

Psychotic depression is a rare form of the disease. Patients with psychotic depression may see or hear non-existent things or have misconceptions that are very persistent, despite evidence to the contrary. You may have an increased anxiety and irrational fear, often with traces of persecution thoughts and / or accompanied by a conspiracy belief. This is a disease state in which one feels that someone constantly follows and persecutes him.

Depression after birth

Many women experience temporary feelings of sadness after childbirth. These feelings gradually resolve and usually do not require treatment. However, in some women, post-partum deploys a true clinical depression. Compared to the transient feelings of sadness, the symptoms are more severe and lasting. A depressed episode after birth increases the risk of recurrence of the disease after other births or at other times.

Seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a term used for seasonal depressive periods. No one knows what the cause of this disorder is. Scientists first believed that reduced sunlight increased the levels of melatonin in the brain.

Melatonin is the hormone of mood, which normally occurs at night. However, studies on the role of melatonin did not lead to any conclusions. Some researchers are convinced that the lack of sunlight changes the sleep / wake cycle. It is possible that the hypothesis is true, as seasonal affective disorder is most common in places where the day is shorter.

Those suffering from this type of depression usually notice changes in their mood at the end of the fall and improve in the spring, but some experience summer depression, which usually begins late in the spring or early summer. SAR is seen four times more often in women. The average age at onset of the disease is 23 years and the risk decreases with age.

You may be sick with SAP if you suffer from depression and the symptoms associated with it during at least two consecutive winters followed by periods without depression in the spring and summer.

Physicians also use other terms to establish and diagnose based on the origin and relationship of depression with other diseases. According to the relationship and origin, depression may be secondary and comorbid . Secondary is not the primary health problem, but rather a symptom of another body disease. It may be due to a thyroid problem or adrenal gland. It may also be related to the persistent effects of heart disease, diabetes.

Comorbid is depression when accompanying another mental illness. For example, depression and anxiety are often seen together. When combined, they can cause more severe signs and symptoms than they do individually, and the treatment of both diseases can be a great challenge.

Sometimes determining the type of depression in a person is quite easy. Signs and symptoms, as well as the circumstances of the individual’s life, point to the type of depressive illness.

In other cases, when several symptoms overlap or individual life circumstances are more complex, determining the type of depression can be difficult.

To effectively treat your illness, it is important for the doctor to know what kind of depression you are suffering from. Some drugs and therapeutic methods better affect certain types of depression. In addition, if your depression is accompanied by another mental illness, your doctor should take measures to treat both conditions.

Depression-only treatment may not cure the other disorder, but if it remains untreated, the risk of depression increases.

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