Why is it so Hard for Doctors to Diagnose Anxiety and Depression?

Depression…what exactly is it?

Depression is a type of mood disorder that is exhibited through a variety of constant and intense negative emotions. Physical symptoms can also exhibit themselves, such as lack of appetite. Sudden negative events, such as the loss of a loved one, can trigger a depressive episode. Symptoms can also develop out of nowhere. Symptoms can include: feeling sad often and seemingly for no reason, muscle tension, chronic fatigue, digestive problems, pessimism, insomnia, shortness of breath, loss of interest in everyday activities, achiness, unexpected poor academics, headaches, and/or social isolation. Depression is genetic and runs in families, therefore people that have immediate family members that have depression are at risk of developing the disorder themselves. Depression is a medical condition that can be alleviated with the support of medical doctor / psychiatrist.

Understanding anxiety

Anxiety is a medical condition that often exhibits the symptoms of trouble concentrating, worrying, nervousness, excessive sweating, feelings of impending danger or paranoia and/or rapid breathing. Anxiety is not exclusive to adults, and can be found among children and teens as well. Around 8% of children and teens have anxiety according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Types of anxiety disorders

The overlap

As previously mentioned, depression and anxiety share a variety of symptoms. For example, shortness of breath is a symptom of both disorders. So, how do you know which disorder you have?

To obtain an accurate diagnosis of either anxiety, depression, or both, it is important that you see a doctor who specializes in mood disorder and psychiatric conditions. If you think that a loved one might be struggling with one of these medical disorders, please find a psychiatrist that specializes in these conditions. If you have any questions about anxiety or depression, please don’t hesitate to call the Dr. Sambunaris & Associates at 770-817-9200.

Author
Angelo Sambunaris, M.D.

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