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Students With Depression Likely To Drop Out Of School

Posted Jul 10 2009 11:34pm

University students with depression are twice as likely as their classmates to drop out of school, new research shows.

Two core symptoms of depression were noted in the study. The loss of interest in activities and depressed mood. But only the loss of interest was associated with lower grade point averages and the drop out rate.

I can attest to this. Nearly thirty years ago, I had to take a leave of absence in my second year of university because of depression. And like the trend in the current research, it was when my fatigue and lack of interest surged that I couldn't complete assignments. Then I couldn't make it to classes. And finally I had to take a medical leave to get treatment. I think the only reason I was able to tend to my depression so quickly was that I was a psychology major and recognized the symptoms.
But for the most part, the general population, as well as college age students with depression, do not seek out treatment for their conditions.

"Maybe the biggest reason is only about 50 percent of people with depression say they think they need help," said Dr. David Eisenberg, lead researcher from the University of Michigan. "College students in particular may feel that stress is normal." Stigma walls people in too.

Below is a list provided by All About Depression that describes the various kinds of depressive disorders according to the DSMIV -TR. If you think you are experiencing any of the symptoms below, contact a professional. There's no need to suffer in silence or endure such difficulties.

* Major Depressive Disorder: This illness impairs a person's ability to work, sleep, eat, and function as he or she normally would. It keeps people from enjoying activities that were once pleasurable, and causes them to think about themselves and the world in negative ways. Major depression is often disabling and may occur several times in a person's lifetime. For more information go to Diagnosis: Major Depressive Disorder

* Dysthymic Disorder: A milder yet more enduring type of major depression. People with dysthymia may appear to be chronically mildly depressed to the point that it seems to be a part of their personality. When a person finally seeks treatment for dysthymia, it is not uncommon that he/she has struggled with this condition for a number of years. For more information go to Diagnosis: Dysthymic Disorder

* Bipolar Disorder: Also known as manic-depression or manic-depressive disorder. This condition is characterized by mood that alternates between periods of depression and periods of elation and excitable behavior known as mania (see symptoms below). For people who have bipolar disorder, the depressions can be severe and the mania can seriously impair one's normal judgment. When manic, a person is prone towards reckless and inappropriate behavior such as engaging in wild spending sprees or having promiscuous sex. He or she may not be able to realize the harm of his/her behavior and may even lose touch with reality. For more information go to Diagnosis: Bipolar Disorder

* Cyclothymic Disorder: A milder yet more enduring type of bipolar disorder. A person's mood alternates between a less severe mania (known as hypomania ) and a less severe depression. For more information go to Diagnosis: Cyclothymic Disorder

* Mood Disorder Due to a General Medical Condition: Depression may be caused or precipitated by a known or unknown physical medical condition such as hypothyroidism. For more information go to Diagnosis: Mood Disorder Medical

* Substance-Induced Mood Disorder: Depression may be caused or precipitated by the use or abuse of substances such as drugs, alcohol, medications, or toxins. For more information go to Diagnosis: Substance-Induced.

* Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): This condition affects people during specific times or seasons of the year. During the winter months individuals feel depressed and lethargic, but during other months their moods may be normal. For more information go to Diagnosis: Seasonal Affective Disorder

* Postpartum Depression: A form of depression occurring in women within approximately one week to six months after giving birth to a child. For more information go to Diagnosis: Postpartum Depression

* PremenstrualDysphoric Disorder: This is type of depression affecting a small percentage of menstruating women. It is a cyclical condition in which women may feel depressed and irritable for one or two weeks before their menstrual period each month. For more information go to Diagnosis: PremenstrualDysphoric Disorder

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