THE MANY FACES OF DEPRESSION: DYSTHYMIA

from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), Press Release   March 13, 2012   

Persons suffering dysthymia (dis THIGH me ah) experience a persistent low-level depression in which their actions and reactions to life are muffled and dull, even indifferent. 

Though it’s less crippling than major depression, unlike major depression, dysthemia lasts for an average of at least five years.

Though persons may carry out daily responsibilities, they never experience their full capacity for happiness, fulfillment or productivity. 

The depressed mood doesn’t lift for more than a month or two at a time.

Persons experiencing dysthemia have at least two of the following symptoms:

1)  overeating or loss of appetite

2) insomnia or sleeping too much

3) tiredness or lack of energy

4) low self-esteem

5) trouble concentrating or making decisions

6) hopelessness

At times an episode of major depression occurs on top of dysthymia and is known as double depression.

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