I don't think depression is disease

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by Viktor, Sep 23, 2014.

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  1. Viktor

    Viktor Well-Known Member

    Depression isn't flu. Depression is reaction for your current situation or to what is happening to you or around you or happened to you and it's also natural reaction. Now, i know there are people among you that are depressed and doesn't actually know why. But i think there is always a reason. I am making a separate thread for this rather then writing that as a reply to someone who is in pain, because i know how people can be sensitive when they are in psychical pain. I know it from myself. And i don't wanna hurt anyone. But depression without a cause? I'm sorry, but i don't believe that. I think many of you have read my thread about the world's system and what opinion i have on it. And i think that if you don't know why you are depressed, then the reason can pretty much be the system. You may suffer from stereotype for example and you don't even know it. You are going to work every day, doing the same things every day, but somewhere inside you, you want more from your life. But as your brain is so much sucked on the system and you see that as the most common thing to do, you simply can't see that it could be the problem. Then you are trying to get medication? But to what actually? To your feelings? To your emotions? Because that's what depression is built off. But emotions are natural feelings. I think there is always reason why you are depressed. May the reason be what i mentioned above or something else that is so common in every day's life that you may not even see it as a reason.
  2. FMyLife

    FMyLife Chat Buddy

    It's amazing how far medical research has come since the first cases of depression were noted. Since they began studies they have found many differences int he brain of a depressed person versus the brain of someone that does not. The hippocampus, which is responsible for the storage of memories, tends to be smaller in the brain of someone with depression or history of depression than one that has never been depressed. And what is the point of this? A smaller hippocapus has fewer serotonin receptors. Serotonin is the major neurotransmitter that allow the brain to communicate with itself. And as most know depression is a huge side effect of decreased serotonin.

    Now this is where your thoughts COULD be right. As scientists aren't exactly sure of the reason for the abnormally small hippocampus, there is no way to say if it is caused by stressors or if being prone to depression is a genetic defect. Some theorize that cortisol has a toxic shrinking effect on the hippocampus and its development but there is no proof of that. And some experts believe that some people are just born with the abnormality. There is no way to be sure. There is also the fact that just about every brain region plays into depression so its really hard to narrow it down to a genetic level.

    That being said, as serotonin, or lack of plays the most major chemical reason for depression, let me give you this. There are people in the world that don't produce it, and suffer memory loss, depression and many other things from it and actually have prescription serotonin that they have to take. What caused that? Certainly not situational.

    So yes, depression is a disease, but it can also be a situational response.

    Disease - a disorder of structure or function in a human, animal, or plant, especially one that produces specific signs or symptoms or that affects a specific location and is not simply a direct result of physical injury.

  3. random33

    random33 Well-Known Member

    Interesting topic and great reply FMyLife, with all the brain imaging technology at our disposal today it is a fact that depressed people have indeed abnormalities in the brain, so in that sense it is a disease, the brain just does not function the way it should.

    The cause is the interesting topic here, stressors may have an effect indeed, exposure to prolonged and intense stress can trigger depression so the cortisol theory makes sense, I also believe that genetics has a major role in this, is not uncommon for depression to "run in the family". Probably some people are born predisposed to depression and stressors trigger it, offcourse that extreme stressors, like the death of a child, war and so on can cause depression even if there is no predisposition I believe.

    I remember feeling scared, that what I felt was normal, that life was supposed to be like that, it was a bit overwhelming, I'm not "fixed" yet, probably never will, but knowing that the way I feel is a symptom of a disease just makes things a bit easier for me, at least it gives me hope that a cure can be found one day.
  4. FMyLife

    FMyLife Chat Buddy

    The meds are out there to alter the effects that stress has on the brain chemistry, but as the stressors effect multiple different parts of the brain, there is no clear cut cure. But as many people who suffer from depression can attest to, there is relief, once you find what fits. I'm still looking for the combination of meds that works best for me, but then again, depression isn't my major issue.
  5. Viktor

    Viktor Well-Known Member

    I know this theory. Well if someone doesn't produce serotonin, then you probably can call it disease, but if you can produce it, then there is no such thing as a depression without reason. Even happiness is caused by something in your brain. But first you need to have some reason to be happy and then that something will trigger the happiness in your brain. Same goes to depression. You first get the reason to be depressed and then it will effect your serotonin and then your hippocampus to shrink. I simply don't like depression being called disease so easily and that everyone who shows already small symptoms of depression should start taking some pills. Every person should be treated individually, because as i said, depression isn't flu which is always treated the same way. Depression can be simply cured by support from a friend. And if person can get rid of depression because he got support from friend, than that person didn't have any disease. Depression is not disease as a disease. And if you present depression as a disease to everyone who didn't experience any depression yet, then you are educating those people to think about depressed people that they are sick and need to be locked down on psychiatric clinic.
  6. FMyLife

    FMyLife Chat Buddy

    If you look at the literatures regarding depression, as well as talk to those that deal with depression on a daily, you will find that no person is treated the same and even though 90% regard it as a disease, there are plenty of people walking around not locked up.

    Also there is a difference between situational sadness, and clinical depression. Situational sadness (those cutesy little signs that someone might be depressed) need not be treated with pills. In fact, most can get over it with support, like you said, or therapy. But the long term, those with genetic predispose to it, may need further assistance such as medication or therapeutic intervention. At no point in time, did I ever express that people with depression need to be locked up in the psych ward. Cancer is a disease. Do we lock them up?

    I am going to reiterate that everyone is treated differently. Most depression is treated based on what works for that individual. Doctors are trained to identify the symptoms and find the right medication fitting to the individual.

    Also, the shrinking of the hippocampus due to stress is a theory. It is not proven. It is more likely that the brain was formed like that. You did notice that i said it was theorized, right?

    Basically, I think it's naive to think that it isn't a disease, considering that if you look at the definition that i kindly posted for you, depression has a major effect on the brain and if the cortisol theory is true, and cortisol is shrinking the hippocampus, then yes, it technically would a disease. Arguing that point is like saying HIV doesn't cause aids. One illness causing another. Stress being the first illness playing a toll on the mind turning it into clinical depression. Depression isn't something that just goes away as by the time a state of clinical depression is identified, the damage is done, and it wasn't through accidental injury.

    I think the "situational" things you are talking about pertain to occasional states of sadness. Not clinical depression.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2014
  7. alexis

    alexis New Member

    If depression is a 'reaction for your current situation or to what is happening to you or around you or happened to you', then why is there no correlation between my life circumstances and my being depressed? I suffered a fairly major relapse recently with absolutely no triggers from my external environment. Obviously you know more about this than I do, so could you please explain? Thanks! :)
  8. Viktor

    Viktor Well-Known Member

    Situational sadness is actually called depression too. But maybe not clinical. But you guys are advising 80% of people that comes here to say their story that they should seek out for help (good part) and get some medication (not always good part). Because different people are coming here with different problems. Someone lost their loved ones = situational sadness, someone feels lonely like me = situational sadness, someone is pre-screwed because they are running out of money because they are jobless like me = situational sadness. Yet i see "medication" word at about 80% of such cases. Make no mistake, i know you are trying to help and it's awesome from you guys, but trying to advice everyone into taking some pills, isn't just always the good way ;)
    But cancer is a physical disease. Everyone knows cancer and how it works even if you never experienced it yourself. But psychical stuff like depression is a problem. People that never experienced them are foolish about them. And i know that many people think that if you suffer from depression, there is something wrong with you. Not just the way you described about depression, but more. People tend to taking it as a mental disorder or something like that. Which is not good and definitely not helpful fro those who suffers from depression. That's why people should be more careful with calling the depression disease.
  9. FMyLife

    FMyLife Chat Buddy

    Maybe you are right about recommendation of meds. I recommend someone speak to someone usually as my type of depression is just a symptom of my disease. I don't know much about clinical depression besides the science behind it therefore I think that its very important for someone to speak to a trained professional for treatment, no matter what the given treatment is for that particular person. Treatment doenst always consist of medications.
  10. Danialla

    Danialla Well-Known Member

    Viktor, just because your depression may be caused by your life circumstances does not mean that everyone follows that same pattern. Many people have the bottom fall out on them without any warning, it is then that there life circumstances take a nose dive. I have a depression that just blindsides you when you least expect it. I hate the fear of not knowing when it will hit again so I take medication regularly, not unlike a person with a seizure disorder. That person too can be seizure free for a long time, but if they stop their medication they risk having another seizure. I have tried it without medication, I won't again. Do I have a "disease"? i don't know, but I sure do feel I give my life more of a fighting chance when I am on medication. Good luck to whatever works for you.
  11. random33

    random33 Well-Known Member

    Advicing someone to seek medical help does not mean that the person will need medication, I think most of us here are not medical professionals, and never I never saw anyone prescribing drugs, it will be up to the doctor to decide what's better for that person, medication or other form of therapy.

    It is very dangerous to think that depression/clinical depression or whatever you want to call it, is not a disease, he makes the affected person feel worse and even more helpless, thinking they are just not strong enough or good enough, making depression worse and if treatment is not seeked this can lead to suicide, so even if I see cases where I think it is "just" situational sadness I still urge people to seek help, a doctor can assess the situation better than I can and refer the person to proper treatment.

    Clinical depression is a serious disease, it's not something someone can recover from with support of a friend or family, support is offcourse very important, as it is in every disease and that's the reason this forum exists, so people who suffer from similar problems can support each other, vent and get advice.

    We don't live in the dark ages, where depress people get locked up, I have chronical depression, have been through several major depressive episodes, had once to call the emergency services to get help, because I was feeling suicidal and never in my life was I locked up, the diagnosis was always the same, but I was never told I was insane and could not live in society, I get medicated because I have to be, if I had a choice I wouldn't but without them I would not be able to function, even with medication depression still lingers, but is much more manageable.

    Telling a person with clinical depression to snap out of it, to just be normal, to be strong is the same thing as telling someone with diabetes to just control his insulin levels.
  12. Viktor

    Viktor Well-Known Member

    I would never say to depressed person to snap out of it. I created thread before that speaks against it.

    Have to admit that you might be right about the clinical depression. It's in the head after all and if your head is messing up with you just because, then you can have depression without a cause. I am depressed for a reason, means my depression is situational.

    So, my apologies. There are actually two types of depression. One of them can probably be called disease.
  13. Danialla

    Danialla Well-Known Member

    Thank you random, you said it much better than I could.
  14. Doomandgloom

    Doomandgloom New Member

    I dont think support from a friend cures depression. Never worked for me. Maybe friends can offer some support and comfort during times of saddness.everyones different so depression comes and goes. Some people are chronically depressed, and alot of people usually have other mental health issues like PTSD or BIpolar disorder, learning disabilites, schizophrenia and others. These are diseases. Well not PTSD thats a condition. My point is depression is more of symptom than a disease. Either way its an awful feeling.
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