Treatment Plan

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Diagnosis: 

To make a definite diagnosis of the depressive illness, it is important to know the signs and symptoms of the disease that are evident in various studies  (“HelpGuide.org,” 2019). Mental disorders show a plethora of symptoms, and the signs and symptoms may vary in various patients.  Many patients suffering from depressive illness may not show all the symptoms that are usually seen in depressive disorders. Following are the symptoms that are frequently found in patients of depressive illness (“HelpGuide.org,” 2019):

  • Off mood
  • Amotivation
  • Losing interest
  • Hopelessness in behaviour
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Emotional changes
  • Diminished appetite
  • Delineated thoughts (the patient may experience suicidal thoughts)
  • Physical manifestations: Headache

The clinical diagnostic criteria of the depressive disorder are explained by the American Psychiatric Association (Depression, 2020). In order to make the clinical diagnosis of depression, the patient must report at least five symptoms present simultaneously over a period of at least two weeks, and one of the major symptoms should be depressed mood or low interest/feeling of pleasure:

  • Depressed mood or irritability in children or young teenagers
  • Anhedonia- diminished interest or pleasure feelings
  • Loss of appetite resulting in weight loss
  • Suicidal thoughts, thoughts about death or attempt to exterminate one’s life
  • Insomnia or hypersomnia
  • Psychological retardation 
  • Fatigue or lethargy
  • Feeling of worthlessness
  • Lack of ability to focus or loss of concentration

Not only the depressive disorder manifests differently in various individuals but also overlies with various other illnesses. Depressive disorders are linked with a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, social phobia and anxiety disorders etc. (Fulghum, 2008). Anxiety may be seen in patients of depressive illnesses. Still, the depressed mood is the major symptom is a depressive disorder, but anxiety is associated with tachycardia, shakiness and sweating etc.

Depression links with social phobia such that the depressed patients feel repulsion when they come to the society. These patients are found to be abandoning social gathering. Depressed patients avoid social interaction (Fulghum, 2008).

The depressive illness causes patients to panic more frequently than normal patients. Depression is linked with an irritability that leads to panic (Fulghum, 2008).

Depression has links with the society. The social support is important to prevent and cure depression. Certain studies show that the people that are closely linked to other members of society are less vulnerable to depression (“Gulf Bend MHMR Center,” 2020). Physical and mental reassurance in events of crisis and panic is valuable in the prevention of depression. Cultural setups are related to mental disorders. Ethnomedicine is the specialized field that deals with the impact and implications of cultural factors on the mental and psychological health and well-being of a person. Ethnomedicine specialists suggest that the combined or nuclear family systems, individuality, modes of earning, social role and responsibilities are important factors that shape the mental pathways and determine the vulnerability of an individual to the mental illnesses (“Gulf Bend MHMR Center,” 2020)

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