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Affective Disorders.

Affective disorders are described by marked disruptions in emotions (severe lows called depression or highs called hypomania or mania). These are common psychiatric disorders leading to an increase in morbidity and mortality

Major depressive disorder:

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), commonly known as depression, is a mental health condition characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness, and a lack of interest or pleasure in activities. It's more than just feeling down or having a bad day; it's a serious medical condition that affects a person's thoughts, feelings, behaviour, and physical well-being.


  • Depressed Mood 

  • Anhedonia 

  • Significant weight changes 

  • Sleep disturbance 

  • Psychomotor Agitation or Retardation 

  • Fatigue or Loss of energy 

  • Feeling of worthlessness or Excessive Guilt 

  • Difficulty concentrating 

  • Suicidal Thoughts or Behaviour  


Treatment for Major Depressive Disorder typically involves a combination of psychotherapy (talk therapy) and medication, such as antidepressants. Lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise, a balanced diet, and adequate sleep, can also have a positive impact on managing depression. It's essential to seek help from mental health professionals if you or someone you know is struggling with depression, as it is a treatable condition. 

Persistent Depressive Disorder (Dysthymia): 

Persistent Depressive Disorder, formerly known as Dysthymia, is a type of mood disorder characterized by long-term, chronic symptoms of depression. It falls under the category of depressive disorders in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), which is a widely recognized classification system for mental health disorders. 


Individuals with Persistent Depressive Disorder experience symptoms similar to major depressive disorder, but they are usually less intense. These symptoms can include persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, low self-esteem, lack of energy, poor concentration, changes in sleep and appetite, and a lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities. 


Treatment for Persistent Depressive Disorder usually involves a combination of psychotherapy (talk therapy) and medication. Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), in particular, has been shown to be effective in helping individuals manage their symptoms and improve their coping skills. Antidepressant medications, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), might also be prescribed to alleviate symptoms. 

It's important to note that seeking professional help is crucial if you suspect you or someone you know is experiencing Persistent Depressive Disorder. A mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist, can provide a proper diagnosis and develop a personalized treatment plan based on the individual's needs and circumstances. 

Seasonal Affective Disorder: 

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of mood disorder characterized by the onset of depressive symptoms that occur seasonally, typically during the fall and winter months when there is less natural sunlight. It's considered a subtype of major depressive disorder or recurrent depressive disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). 


The symptoms of SAD are similar to those of major depressive disorder and can include feelings of sadness, hopelessness, low energy, irritability, changes in sleep patterns (sleeping too much or too little), changes in appetite (overeating or loss of appetite), difficulty concentrating, and a loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyable. 

  • Light Therapy (Phototherapy): This involves exposure to a bright light that simulates natural sunlight. Light therapy is usually administered in the morning and can help regulate the disrupted circadian rhythm associated with SAD. 

  • Psychotherapy: Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) and other forms of talk therapy can help individuals learn to cope with and manage their symptoms. 

  • Medication: Antidepressant medications, especially selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), may be prescribed to alleviate symptoms. Medication can be particularly effective when combined with other treatments. 

  • Self-Care: In addition to formal treatments, individuals with SAD can benefit from practicing self-care strategies such as getting regular exercise, maintaining a healthy diet, managing stress, and engaging in activities that bring joy and relaxation. 

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