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What You Need to Know About Mood Disorders

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A lot of people experience mood swings at some point in their life. Some days you may feel great, then not so great, then suddenly back to feeling great. For some people, it can really seem as though you spend your days riding an emotional roller coaster and questioning, “Are these changes normal?” Long story short, the answer is “maybe” – so long as they don’t dramatically disrupt your life or the lives of people around you. If they do seem to have a drastic impact, however, it’s possible you could be suffering from a mood disorder. When correctly diagnosed and treated, people with mood disorders can live, stable, productive, healthy lives. Here’s what you need to know about mood disorders:

What Are Mood Disorders?

Mood disorder” is a broad mental health class that health professionals use to describe all different kinds of depression and bipolar disorders. Anyone from children to adults can have mood disorders, although they may present differently, symptomatically speaking.  John’s Hopkins identifies these as the most common types of mood disorders:

  • Major depression. Having less interest in usual activities, feeling sad or hopeless, and similar symptoms for at least 2 weeks.
  • Dysthymia. A Chronic, low-grade, depressed, or irritable mood that lasts for at least 2 years.
  • Bipolar disorder. Periods of depression alternating with periods of mania or elevated mood.
  • Mood disorder related to another health condition. Many medical illnesses (including cancer, injuries, infections, and chronic illnesses) can trigger symptoms of depression.
  • Substance-induced mood disorder. Symptoms of depression due to the effects of medicine, drug abuse, alcoholism, exposure to toxins, or other forms of treatment.

A lot of different things could contribute to or cause such mood disorders – the most common of which is an imbalance of brain chemicals. Other contributing factors could be stressful life changes or family history.

What Are They Not?

Mood swings can be a resulting symptom of a mental illness, but they could also be a clue that something else is happening in your body. For example, because of body rhythms, most people feel upbeat and energetic around noon but tend to have more negative feelings during the early afternoon or evening. Day-to-day hassles and unexpected surprises can also definitely affect your mood. Stress and anxiety may also cause changes in mood, but don’t necessarily fall under the “mood disorder” category. They may make you feel uneasy, fearful, and worried even when there may be no good reason. Lack of sleep, a common complaint of people under stress, also doesn’t help. Sex hormones are also tied to your emotions, so changes in your hormone levels can lead to mood swings. For women, PMSpregnancy, menopause, and perimenopause can lead to unpredictable moods, and for men, they can be triggered as testosterone begins to gradually decline with age.

What Treatment is Available?

When your mood swings get in the way of your job, your relationships, or any other part of your life, make an appointment with your doctor to sort out what’s going on. Simple changes may help you handle any sort of mild, uncomfortable, or annoying mood swings, like regular exercise, improved sleep schedules, cutting back on caffeine, or music therapy. However, for the more severe cases considered to be mood disorders, treatment may include antidepressants and mood stabilizing medicines in conjunction with psychotherapy or some other form of therapy. For those who have tried (but have not responded) to other medication and are looking for a new depression treatment, Ketamine Infusions can help. Numerous studies at world-renowned institutions and over 7 years’ worth of treatment experience in our offices show that safe, low-dose Ketamine Infusions alleviates suffering in over 70% of patients. And unlike other anti-depressant medication, which can take 6-8 weeks to take effect, Ketamine can begin to work quickly, sometimes after just one or two treatments. Over 2,000 patients thus far have experienced some form of relief from Dr. Brooks’ unique, next-level protocols and compassionate, personalized care. Visit www.albanyketamine.com to schedule your free consultation today!

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