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What Is Depression?

Posted Jun 04 2009 12:51am

Depression is a syndrome (group of symptoms) that reflects a sad and/or irritable mood exceeding normal sadness or grief. More specifically, the sadness of depression is characterized by a greater intensity and duration and by more severe symptoms and functional disabilities than is normal.


Depression is very common and affects as many as 1 in 8 people in their teen years. Depression affects people of every color, race, economic status, or age; however, it does seem to affect more girls than guys.


Depression is a psychiatric mood disorder that can vary from person to person. The effects and symptoms all vary between patients, but some of the common ones include prolonged negative moods and suicidal thoughts and behaviors. There are various treatments available on the market, with antidepressant medication being among them.


Prozac (generic name Fluoxetine) is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor used as an antidepressant. This medication has an effect on various chemicals and biochemical compounds that may become unbalanced, causing depression, panic, anxiety, or obsessive-compulsive symptoms. Prozac is generally used to correct the imbalances, and is therefore used to treat conditions such as major depressive disorder, bulimia nervosa, panic disorder, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

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