Can Depression Go Away On Its Own?

Can Depression Go Away On Its Own?

Author: GIA Miami
Published: June 23, 2022

Coping With Depression

If you or a loved one is suffering from depression, you may be wondering if things will always be this way. This is a challenging thing for anyone to face, but the good news is that it is treatable.

 There is no simple answer to this question, but some types of depression can go away on their own. For others, it is a matter of finding the right treatment.

 There are several types of treatment for depression. The first step is finding out what type is present, what caused it, and how severe it is.

What Is Depression?

Depression is a mental illness and is the most common mental health disorder. Approximately 280 million people worldwide suffer from it. Beyond experiencing a low mood, it can also affect your thoughts, feelings, and behavior.

The Symptoms of Depression

If you are suffering from depressive episodes, you may experience symptoms such as:

  • Excessive sleepiness or insomnia
  • Lack of energy
  • Lack of interest in usual activities
  • Lack of concentration
  • Recurrent thoughts of suicide
  • Loss of self-worth
  • Lack of hope for the future
  • Excessive guilt
  • Extreme weight loss/ weight gain

 Those who suffer from depression may even experience physical symptoms, reporting aches and pains. A person in a depressive episode may have angry outbursts. They are also at a higher risk of using recreational drugs.

It is important to seek professional medical advice if you are experiencing these symptoms, and not leave them untreated. For a medical diagnosis, the symptoms of depression must be present for at least two weeks. It is much more than just one episode.

Depression is treatable, and help is available. If you or someone you love is suffering from severe depression symptoms, such as suicidal thoughts, The National Institute of Mental Health has immediate help here.

What Are The Different Types of Depression?

 There are different types of depression, ranging in severity. Understanding the type present can help you find the right treatment. It can also provide some insight into how long the condition will last; some types can last for several weeks or months, while others just a few weeks.

 Some forms of depression may even go away on their own. Examples of common forms are: 

  • Postpartum depression
  • Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) 
  • Major depressive disorder / Clinical depression

Postpartum Depression

 Many women experience a change in mood after giving birth, but one in seven will develop a more serious mood disorder known as postpartum depression. This form of depression can affect any mother, of any age.

It is treatable, but it won't go away on its own. Postpartum depression often shows many of the same symptoms as general depression. If these symptoms last for at least two weeks, it is vital to seek professional medical advice. 

Seasonal Affective Disorder

In general, most types of depression require treatment, but some pass with time. For example, seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type which affects people in the winter months. 

The symptoms of this condition should ease as spring approaches. While it may be possible to wait it out, it is important to seek treatment where there are thoughts of suicide. 

 Major Depressive Disorder

 Major depressive disorder, sometimes known as clinical depression, is a severe form of the condition. This type inhibits a person’s daily functioning and requires long-term treatment.

While major depression won’t go away by itself, a combination of therapy, medication and lifestyle changes can improve depression symptoms. Patients often find it could take several weeks to notice a change in their mood.

 What Causes Depression? 

 Understanding the cause of depression can help ​​determine how long depression lasts. It can also help to find the proper treatment. Some common risk factors include: 

  • A family history of depression: If a parent suffers from this condition or other mental health issues, such as mood disorders, it increases the likelihood. It is unclear if this is a result of social factors, or simply genetics. 
  • Grief: While everyone experiences difficult emotions after the loss of a loved one, in some cases a person can develop persistent depression. It is important to practice self-care when grieving a loss. 
  • Trauma: Traumatic events, such as car accidents, can trigger the onset of depression.The condition can often accompany trauma-related mental health issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). 
  • Substance use: recreational drug use and alcohol consumptioncan cause feelings of despair. If a person has untreated depression, they may use substances to self-medicate. Substance use will impact a person’s mental health, and exacerbate the depression symptoms. 
  • Change: Sometimes even positive life events, like moving to a new city, can cause a person to experience depression. 
  • Other mental health problems: Depression can be caused as a result of other mental health issues. Depressive episodes are common for people suffering from a mood disorder or trauma-based disorder such as PTSD.
  • Physical health problems: Physical and mental health are linked. Cardiovascular disease can cause depression, while people with depression are at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease. Dealing with illness can cause a person to develop the condition, or depression may be a side effect of some medications.
  • Abuse: If a person experiences physical, sexual, emotional or psychological abuse, they could develop depression. 

Finding The Right Treatment

 If depression symptoms last at least two weeks, it is vital to seek proper treatment.  There are different options to treat the condition, but the treatment method will depend on its form, severity and cause of it. 

 If left untreated, depression can cause other mental health problems. For example, the symptoms, such as weight gain, can create weight gain anxiety. Treatment works, but treatment may look different for everyone; it is not one-size-fits-all. Some depression medications can cause side effects and you may need to have your treatment frequently medically reviewed.

What Is The Right Depression Treatment For Me?

There is a range of depression treatment options. One may require lifestyle changes, therapy, medication or a combination of the three. Some medically reviewed treatment options are: 

  • Self-care
  • Medication
  • Therapy (talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, TMS).

Self-care

It is no secret that physical health impacts mental health, and vice versa. Peer-reviewed studies have found that making adjustments to one’s life can improve symptoms of depression. Making changes such as healthy eating, cutting down on alcohol, meditating, exercising and getting enough sleep can improve your mental health. 

 Sleep can play a large role in depression. To help relax before bed, many cultures use herbal remedies such as lavender or chamomile tea.

Medication

 Major depressive disorders are often the result of a chemical imbalance in the brain. A doctor can discuss medication options with you. A person with depression might seek other treatments as well as take medication.

Other medications, such as anti-anxiety medications may be prescribed alongside anti-depressants. It can take some time to find the correct medication, so don't give up hope. Using anti-depressant drugs can improve symptoms after several weeks.

Therapy 

 Therapy can help with depression that won’t go away on its own. Therapy may be used in addition to medications. Some forms of mental health therapy include talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

Get Help Today

Having a severe mental health disorder can be very distressing for the person affected and their family members. If you are looking for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment - GIA Miami is here to help. We are a clinical practice that can help you find a treatment plan at one of our treatment facilities. You can read more about treatment options on our website.

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