Depression is a low mood state commonly experienced in response to loss, failure, disappointment, or hardship. Key symptoms include pervasive sadness, an inability to experience pleasure, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, and physical symptoms like loss of energy and disturbances in sleep and appetite. Depression can be associated with anxiety, alcoholism, and substance misuse, and if left untreated, it can lead to suicide and death.
Depression can affect individuals from any social, cultural, or economic background. It often manifests between the ages of 20 to 40, but children and the elderly can also be affected. A family history of depression increases the risk, and an estimated 5.8% of the Singapore population suffers from depression.
Depression can result from various environmental and situational factors related to relationship difficulties, financial problems, or work stressors.
Research indicates that depression may involve structural, functional, and neurochemical changes in the brain. Psychological development problems and negative thinking patterns are often present in depressed individuals.
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