Depression is the most common of the mental disorders, but is very treatable. It is more than a feeling of sadness, but a combination of symptoms that continues for a period of time and interferes with one's life. Depression can range from mild to severe.
In any given year more than 17 million people suffer from clinical depression. Unlike feeling "down in the dumps" for a few days or grieving over a loss, clinical depression can last from as little as a few weeks to as long as several months or even years and significantly affect daily living.
Depression affects our minds, emotions, moods, social activity, and bodily functioning. Depressed people begin to think the future is hopeless and feel helpless to make positive changes in their predicaments. They worry, can be easily angered, and are sometimes irritable. Their moods can be so negative that they do not want to bathe or change their clothes. They withdraw from others and may feel others do not care about them and they may push away the very people they want to have assisting them.