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Assignment: Depression in Adults Essay

Assignment: Depression in Adults Essay

 

Introduction

In this paper, the author will discuss depression in adults by first defining depression, its epidemiology, and clinical presentations. The author will further discuss the complications of depression and how the condition is diagnosed in adults.

Definition

Major depressive disorder also referred to as depression is a common psychiatric disorder in adults characterized by mood disorders where an individual’s mood and affect are altered. Depression is classified into major depressive disorder, persistent depressive disorder, postpartum depression, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (Olfson, Blanco & Marcus, 2016). The typical features of depression are sadness, emptiness, somatic, and cognitive changes, and decline in the functioning capacity of an individual. It is caused by biological factors such as genetic factors and decreased levels of norepinephrine and serotonin neurotransmitters in the brain (Olfson, Blanco & Marcus, 2016). In addition, psychological factors also contribute to depression and they include work-related problems, rejection, or the presence of a chronic illness.

Epidemiology

According to a research conducted in 2009-2012 by the World Mental Health Survey, 1 in 20 adults reported to having experienced depressive symptoms. In the United States (US), 7.6% of Americans above 12 years had a depressive symptom (Bandelow & Michaelis, 2015). A survey conducted in 2013-2016 by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey reveals that women are highly likely to have depressive symptoms compared to men with 10.4% of women reporting to have had a depressive episode compared to 5.5% in men. Females and individuals between 40-49 years had the highest prevalence of depression. Generally, depression had the lowest prevalence among non-Hispanic Asian adults with 3.1%, while Hispanic Asians had a prevalence rate of 8.2% (World Health Organization, 2017). Moreover, non-Hispanic whites had an occurrence rate of 7.9% while non-Hispanic blacks had 9.2% in both males and females.

Depression mostly affects people living in an urban setting and is also more prevalent in people of lower socioeconomic status (Bandelow & Michaelis, 2015). According to the WHO (2017), depression is the 4th leading cause of disability in the world, and it is estimated that it will be the 2nd leading cause in 2020. It also significantly affects an individual’s quality of life and life expectancy and accounts for about 50% of consultations in the psychiatric clinics and 12% of hospital admissions.

Clinical Presentations

Patients presenting with depression either present with a depressed mood or loss of interest in most activities most of the day and

Assignment Depression in Adults Essay

Assignment Depression in Adults Essay

almost every day (Olfson, Blanco & Marcus, 2016). Other symptoms include sleep disturbances such as hypersomnia or insomnia, fatigue, and low energy levels, and appetite change, which results in significant weight changes. Besides, an individual has a decreased ability to concentrate and think and also has repeated thoughts of death, suicidal ideas, or suicidal attempts (Kuo, Tran, Shah & Matorin, 2015). A patient may also complain of frequent headaches, constipation, dry mouth, low libido, and abnormal menses for females (Olfson, Blanco & Marcus, 2016). The number and severity of the patient’s symptoms determine the depressive episode as major, or minor.

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Complications

Depression is a leading cause of morbidity in both men and women and the health burden is twice higher in women than in men. Post-partum depression is a significant cause of maternal mortality and poor growth in newborns since women having depressive symptoms are not able to adequately breastfeed (Gelaye et al., 2016). Furthermore, suicidal thoughts and attempts are complications of depression among both adults and adolescents, and it is estimated that about one million people commit suicide yearly (Kuo, Tran, Shah,  & Matorin, 2015). Depressive symptoms may become chronic and affect a person’s ability to perform self-care activities. Lastly, abnormal menses may result in amenorrhea and female infertility.

Diagnosis

Depression is diagnosed based on the patient’s history and by use of depression screening instruments. There are currently no available laboratory tests that can precisely diagnose depression. However, there are focused laboratory tests that are performed to rule out medical conditions that present with symptoms of depression (Kuo, Tran, Shah & Matorin, 2015). Self-reporting depression screening tools include PHQ-9, which consists of 9 items with a score of 0-3 for each and a total score of 0-27. The PHQ-9 tool measures the degree of depression as none, mild, moderate, and severe. Other self-reporting screening instruments for adults include the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, and Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression Scale (Olfson, Blanco & Marcus, 2016). Nonetheless, there are screening tools used by health care providers such as the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale as well as the Geriatric Depression Scale used for older adults.

Conclusion

Major depressive disorder is a mental disorder characterized by an altered mood and affect and loss of pleasure. It is a major cause of morbidity and is more prevalent in females than males and mostly affects people living in urban areas and with low socioeconomic status. Clinical presentations include a depressed mood, loss of interest, sleep disturbances, appetite and weight changes, poor concentration, and suicidal ideations. Complications from depression include disability, female infertility, maternal mortality, poor infant growth, and suicide. Furthermore, depression is diagnosed in adults via the patient’s history and by use of depression screening tools which range the severity of depressive symptoms. However, whereas pharmacotherapy manages the symptomatology of depression, exercise has also demonstrated effectiveness. Therefore, whether it can sufficiently manage the condition or not is investigated using the PICOT question below:

PICOT QUESTION: In adult patients, how effective is exercise as a treatment for depression when compared to pharmacological treatment over a period of 6 months?

PICOT question (200 points) Submit to Project
To complete this week, after reading chapter two in Melnyk and reviewing the lectures you submit a 2-3 page paper that explores the background of your issue. For this paper #1 you will be defining this issue or disease using the literature. It will end with the PICOT question. The parts of your paper should include:
Introduction
Definition
Epidemiology
Clinical Presentation
Complications
Diagnosis
Conclusion with PICOT Question

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