- By sahlhealth
- May 18, 2021
- 27 views
Any type of depression can make you feel sad and keep you from enjoying life. However, Atypical Depression â€” also called depression with atypical features â€” means that your depressed mood can brighten in response to positive events. Other key symptoms include increased appetite, sleeping too much, feeling that your arms or legs are heavy, and feeling rejected.Despite its name, Atypical Depression is not uncommon or unusual. It can affect how you feel, think and behave, and it can lead to emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and sometimes you may feel as if life isn’t worth living.Treatment for atypical depression includes medication, talk therapy (psychotherapy) and lifestyle changes.
Symptoms of atypical depression can vary from person to person. Key signs and symptoms may include:
- Depression that temporarily lifts in response to good news or positive events
- Increased appetite or weight gain
- Sleeping too much but still feeling sleepy in the daytime
- Heavy, leaden feeling in your arms or legs that lasts an hour or more in a day
- Sensitivity to rejection or criticism, which affects your relationships, social life or job
-For some people, signs and symptoms of Atypical Depression can be severe, such as feeling suicidal or not being able to do basic day-to-day activities.
-These exams and tests can help your doctor rule out other problems that could be causing your symptoms, determine a diagnosis and check for any related complications:
- Physical exam. Your doctor may do a physical exam and ask in-depth questions about your health to help determine what may be causing your depression. In some cases, depression may be linked to an underlying physical health problem.
- Lab tests. For example, your doctor may do a blood test called a complete blood count (CBC) or test your thyroid to make sure it's functioning properly.
- Psychological evaluation. To check for signs of atypical depression, your doctor or mental health professional will talk to you about your symptoms, thoughts, feelings and behavior patterns. He or she may have you fill out a questionnaire to help answer these questions.
- DSM-5. To help make a diagnosis, your mental health professional may compare your symptoms with the criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), published by the American Psychiatric Association.
-Medications and talk therapy (psychotherapy) are effective for most people with depression, including atypical depression. Your primary care doctor or psychiatrist can prescribe medications to relieve symptoms. However, many people with Atypical Depression benefit from also seeing a psychologist or other mental health professional.If you have severe depression, you may need a hospital stay or you may need to participate in an outpatient treatment program until your symptoms improve.
-Here's a closer look at treatment options.
-Types of medications for Atypical Depression can include:
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). MAOIs are the oldest class of antidepressant medications, but they can have serious side effects. However, some experts feel that MAOIs, especially phenelzine (Nardil), can be effective for atypical depression. They may also help with anxiety, panic and other specific symptoms. Using MAOIs requires a strict diet because of dangerous (or even deadly) interactions with certain foods and some prescription and over-the-counter medications, such as decongestants and certain herbal supplements. MAOIs can't be combined with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
- Other antidepressants. SSRIs, most notably sertraline (Zoloft) and fluoxetine (Prozac), can be an effective alternative to MAOIs. Tricyclic antidepressants are not as effective, but may be an option for treating atypical depression. Other antidepressants may be beneficial, but have not been systematically studied for atypical depression.
-Discuss possible benefits, risks and side effects of medications with your doctor and pharmacist. You may need to try several medications or a combination of medications before you find one that works. This requires patience, as some medications need several weeks or longer to take full effect and for side effects to ease as your body adjusts.
-Psychotherapy â€” also known as talk therapy â€” is a general term for treating depression by talking about your condition and related issues with a mental health professional.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), as well as other types of psychotherapy, can help you:
- Learn how to identify and change unhealthy behavior or thoughts
- Explore relationships and experiences
- Find better ways to cope and solve problems
- Set realistic goals for your life
- Regain a sense of satisfaction and control in your life
- Help ease depression symptoms such as hopelessness and anger
-As part of your treatment, it's important to also address other conditions that often accompany Atypical Depression, in particular anxiety and drug or alcohol misuse, as they can make your depression more difficult to treat.