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What is depression?

Depression is an illness that affects the body, mood and thoughts. It is not just a blue mood that a person can will away and it is not a sign of personal weakness.

Depression is an illness in the same way that cancer, heart disease and swine flu are illnesses. Without treatment symptoms can last for weeks, months or years. Depression does not discriminate. It can affect anyone at any time.

The good news is that depression is treatable so if you think that you, or someone you know is suffering from depression, get in touch with your doctor or other health professional for advice or guidance.

Principal types of depression

Major depression – Depression that last for at least two weeks and interferes with daily life.

Dysthymia – Chronic depression that is less severe than major depression but can last for years.

Bipolar Disorder – Depression that causes extreme mood swings between depression and mania.

Last updated on the 9th May 2016