Dysthymic disorder, or dysthymia, is a long lasting, mild form of clinical depression.
The symptoms of the disorder are much the same as for other forms of depression...sadness, emptiness, loss of interest and pleasure, irritability and anger, changes in appetite, sleep problems, restlessness, slow movement and thinking, fatigue, worthlessness and guilt, poor concentration, thoughts about death and suicide.
The differences between dysthymia and other forms of depression are the length of the episodes of depressed moods and their level of severity.
Dysthymic episodes last for years. They often begin in childhood, but may begin in adulthood. Many people with this disorder say that they don't ever remember a time when they didn't feel depressed.
Sometimes the disorder is intermittent...That is, there are periods of time when the person doesn't have a depressed mood. These depression free periods seldom last more than a few months, however. More often, they last only a few days or weeks.
The second characteristic which distinguishes dysthymia from other clinical depressions is the severity of the symptoms. Dysthymic symptoms are mild or low grade. Nevertheless, they may be severe enough that they interfere with the person's ability to function and carry out normal everyday activities.
A person can have dysthymic disorder and another clinical depressive disorder at the same time. If this is the case, episodes of the other disorder will occur from time to time, but the dysthymic symptoms will remain more or less constant.
For example, a person may experience chronic, low level depressive symptoms (dysthymic disorder) and occasional brief periods of severe depressive symptoms (major depressive disorder) or periods of manic highs (bipolar disorder).
Psychotherapy is considered the treatment of choice for dysthymic disorder. Cognitive therapy has been found to be most helpful. In addition, medication may be needed.
If you are experiencing dysthymic disorder, The How To Transform Your Life E-Workshop may help you significantly. I encourage you to register for this workshop. To learn more, click here.
The E-Workshop is not intended as a treatment for dysthymic disorder or any other medical or psychological disorder. Thus, it should not be used as a substitute for psychotherapy or psychiatric treatment.
You should seek help from a qualified psychologist or psychiatrist. Take action to self help your dysthymic disorder by calling and scheduling an appointment today.
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