What is Depressive Disorder?


Los trastornos depresivos son un conjunto de enfermedades que tienen como síntoma en común la presencia de tristeza patológica. En medicina se define el síntoma de tristeza como la presencia de un sentimiento de pena más intenso de lo esperable y que limita de forma mantenida que una persona pueda rendir en sus actividades habituales.

Types of Depressive Disorder

Based on the most frequent symptoms, the response to the various existing treatments and the short, medium and long-term prognosis, depressive disorders are divided into:

Depressed mood adjustment disorder is characterized by:

The patient himself identifies a recent trigger (stressor) as the source of current symptoms.
The triggering stressor (or its direct consequences) is still present.
Exposure to intense environmental situations temporarily leads to adequate performance. In other words, if the person affected by an adjustment disorder is shown an intense stimulus (for example, a funny video of his grandson) he can pay attention to the new focus and express the logical feeling in front of that situation.

Depressive Disorder and Anxiety Disorder: Are They the Same?

The target symptoms that motivate disability in a depressive disorder are loss of illusion and / or loss of self-confidence. On the contrary, in anxiety disorders there is no alteration of mood as the primary symptom;

In anxiety disorders, the characteristic initial symptom is the sensation of loss of control, either in the physical sphere (due to unfamiliar bodily symptoms -generalized anxiety disorder- or of sudden onset and of short duration, but recurrent in the time -panic disorder-), either in the cognitive field (for presenting repetitive unwanted threatening thoughts -obsessive compulsive disorder, hypochondriac disorder, dysmorphophobic disorder-) or in both areas (any of them when they have been suffering for months or years ).

How many people does Depressive Disorder affect?

According to data published by the World Health Organization (WHO), in Spain each year 5.2 people per 100 inhabitants have a depressive disorder.

The prevalence of depression varies slightly from one area of ​​the world to another; the lowest rates are observed in the Western Pacific Region (3.6 individuals per 100 inhabitants) and the highest in Africa (5.4 per 100 inhabitants).

Depressive disorders are approximately twice as common in females as in males. Likewise, the prevalence varies according to age. The older you are, the greater the risk of suffering from these types of diseases. The highest incidence is among women over 55 years of age (7.5 per 100). Depressive disorders also affect children and adolescents, although their prevalence is lower than among adults.

What is spring asthenia?

In medicine, asthenia is defined as a sustained feeling of fatigue and generalized lack of vitality, both physical and psychological, which is accompanied by a loss of motivation and interest in the environment. Some people with the arrival of spring have what is popularly called spring asthenia.


There is no objective test to make the diagnosis of spring asthenia. Carrying out an adequate medical history and a correct physical examination are the key factors in reaching a diagnosis.

The professional who diagnoses spring asthenia is the family doctor based on the personal history of the patient, the evaluation of the intensity of symptoms and their duration and, if necessary, carrying out the relevant complementary examinations.


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