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As humans, it is normal to experience ever-changing emotional states. Those who struggle with mental illness, however, may experience chronic, unpleasant emotional patterns that interfere with their ability to function normally in daily life. Major depressive disorder (MDD) is one type of mental health disorder that is known to trigger this interference. Despite its high prevalence, many people may not know what MDD is or what treatment options are available for recovery. Thus, by understanding MDD as well as its warning signs and symptoms, individuals can identify the need for themselves or a loved one to participate in professional treatment for healing. 

At CCM, we understand how difficult it can be to accept one’s need for professional treatment and recovery. Fortunately, we offer holistic behavioral health solutions throughout the entire continuum of care. We bridge the gap for clients seeking rehabilitation treatment by providing the most appropriate concierge services and long-term wellness options to fit clients’ unique needs and goals for recovery. Whether an individual is struggling with mental illness or behavioral health disorders like substance abuse, we have what clients need to establish lasting recovery from distressing conditions and their associated symptoms. 

Understanding Depression and MDD

According to the publication titled Major Depressive Disorder by authors Bains and Abdijadid, “Major depressive disorder (MDD) has been ranked as the third cause of the burden of disease worldwide in 2008 by WHO, which has projected that this disease will rank first by 2030.” Truth be told, untreated mental illness only worsens with time. By becoming informed about diagnoses like MDD, individuals and families can pinpoint warning signs that may empower loved ones to seek out professional guidance and support and, in turn, reduce the prevalence of MDD worldwide.

It is common for individuals to reference MDD solely as “depression.” However, it is important to differentiate occasional feelings of sadness from depression and its various subtypes, as depressive disorders require professional treatment to overcome. As explained by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “Depression is a disorder of the brain” that can greatly affect how an individual thinks, feels, behaves, and connects with the world around them. In addition to major depressive disorder, some of the most common types of depression include persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia), postpartum depression, psychotic depression, seasonal affective disorder, and bipolar disorder.

Further, depressive disorders are mood disorders, as they primarily interfere with an individual’s emotional state. Like other mental health disorders, the etiology of MDD is multifaceted, meaning that it can be triggered by genetic, biological, environmental, and psychosocial risk factors or a combination of factors therein. Some common risk factors for MDD and other depressive disorders include trauma and adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), family history of depression, undergoing major life changes with no reliable coping mechanisms or support systems, chronic stress, and physical illnesses.

Warning Signs and Symptoms

As noted by the National Insitute of Mental Health (NIMH), some warning signs and symptoms of depression include persistent low mood, feelings of hopelessness, changes in appetite or sleep patterns, feelings of irritability and frustration, and a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed. Additionally, symptoms can also include difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions, physical aches, pains, or digestive problems without another identifiable cause, and suicidal ideation and self-harming tendencies.

Most depressive and mood disorders share similar warning signs and symptoms. However, the main indicator of MDD is experiencing a minimum of five depressive symptoms nearly all day, every day, for a minimum of two weeks. Furthermore, “One of the symptoms must be a depressed mood or a loss of interest or pleasure in almost all activities,” as explained by the NIMH.

Moreover, it is essential to understand that the symptoms of depressive disorders can affect people differently, with age playing a critical factor in how symptoms may surface. For instance, children with depression may appear anxious or clingy, whereas adults may experience more frequent depressive episodes and possess a negative view of life and their future. 

Effective Treatment Options for MDD

It is important to recognize that MDD is treatable. With professional guidance and support, many people with MDD and other depressive disorders learn how to regain control of their lives and their symptoms to live happy and worthwhile lives in recovery. 

Individuals who feel as if they meet the criteria for MDD should begin the treatment process by seeking out a professional diagnosis. Working with clinicians will help individuals receive a proper diagnosis and, in turn, allow clients to work with a professional in curating an appropriate treatment plan to address their unique needs and goals for recovery. 

Treatment for depression typically involves a combination of pharmacological and psychotherapeutic approaches. Antidepressant medications are the most common pharmacological approach, used to treat unpleasant symptoms of MDD and other depressive disorders by uplifting mood, enhancing concentration and focus, and mediating sleep. Additionally, psychotherapeutic approaches like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) may be used to help address unhelpful patterns in thought and behavior. When medications are used in tandem with psychotherapy approaches like CBT, it can increase the effectiveness of treatment and thereby enhance treatment outcomes. 

CCM’s Concierge Services for Treating Mental Health Disorders

At CCM, we provide concierge services to connect clients with all types of treatment and wellness options, helping clients to establish and sustain long-term recovery. Although MDD can present challenges for treatment and recovery, healing is possible, and we have the services that individuals and families need to achieve lasting recovery from MDD. Some of the services we offer for clients seeking recovery from mental health and behavioral health disorders include treatment consultations and intervention services, private intensive case management services, recovery specialists, concierge logistics, and teletherapeutic support.

While clients have to be the ones to make the first call, once a call is made to us, we take it upon ourselves to connect clients with best-fitting solutions and suggest the most appropriate next steps. 

Although MDD is one of the most common mental health disorders, leaving it untreated can pose complex challenges for daily life. If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of MDD or other mental or behavioral health disorders, it is crucial to seek out professional treatment and support as soon as possible. At CCM, we offer professional concierge services to connect clients with the most appropriate treatment and ancillary services to fit their unique needs and goals for recovery. To begin your first phone call with a CCM principal to learn more about our organization, discuss how we can meet your needs, and help you overcome current crises, call (855) 467-3226 today.