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Affective disorders are psychiatric mood disorders. Three main affective disorders stand out – anxiety disorder, depression, and bipolar disorder.
A psychiatrist or any other mental health professional that has been
Affective disorders can affect your day to day activities and life generally.
There are time proven treatments that are available to handle all of the affective disorders.
It could come in any of these forms – medication, psychotherapy or both.
Types of affective disorders
Anxiety disorders, depression, and bipolar disorder are the three primary types of affective disorders.
Each of these disorders has sub types and severity variations.
Depression (major depressive disorder), is defined by extreme feelings of hopelessness and sadness. Depression has episodes that can last for more than two days. It can take weeks and this could be either mild or severe inform. When depression comes in a very mild form, it is called dysthymia. There are at least 264 million depressed people globally.
When you have bipolar disorder, you simply are having alternating moments between mania and depression.
If you have mania, you feel extremely active, hopeful, and joyful. Although this sounds good, mania can also make you get irritated, delusional, impulsive, and aggressive.
Bipolar disorders come in different forms based on how severe the depression and mania are.
The frequency of occurrence of mood swings also determines how a bipolar disorder will be classed.
Anxiety disorder has different types. And each one of them is characterized by fear, nervousness, and anxiety. The types include:
- social anxiety: it is an outcome of social interactions
- Post-traumatic stress disorder: it is an outflow of traumatic events. This kind of disorder comes with fear, anxiety when you have flashbacks of injurious events
- The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder, 5th Edition, classed this disorder otherwise but the fact remains that people with PTSD suffer so much from anxiety.
- Generalized anxiety disorder: is characterized by two major symptoms – fear and anxiousness. It has no distinct cause.
- Panic disorder: It is anxiety that brings on panic attacks.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder: It is associated with obsessive thoughts that can stimulate compulsive actions and anxiety.
Learn more >>>> Panic Disorders: Signs, Symptoms & Treatments
Symptoms of affective disorders
The symptoms of mood can most times vary. Each has distinct symptoms as you are about to read next.
- unusual and prolonged mood swings
- loss of interest in normal activities
- major changes in sleeping and eating habits
- lack of energy
- guilty feeling
- pains having no physical explanation
- prolonged sadness
- difficulty concentrating
- suicidal thoughts
- during the depression: the symptoms are similar to those for depression
- during mania: irritability, recklessness, less sleep, self-importance, exaggerated feelings of self-confidence, aggressive behaviors, impulsiveness, and delusions.
- constant worry
- shortness of breath
- trouble concentrating
- obsessive thoughts
- difficulty sleeping
- rapid heart rate
Causes of affective disorders
Not a single cause can be held responsible for the development of affective disorders although neurotransmitters have a vital role to play in influencing mood.
When neurotransmitters become faulted in some way, or fail to convey in your brain, a mood disorder will occur.
Life events can also bring about mood disorders. For instance, traumatic events or personal losses can cause you to develop depression or any other mood disorder. Alcohol, genetic, and drugs can also be risk factors. If you have family members that have once suffered from mood disorders, you might be at risk of having the same condition. It’s not altogether conclusive that you will have a mood disorder because someone in your family has it.
Diagnosis of affective disorders
No medical tests are available for the diagnosis of affective disorders. What will rather be used to diagnose you is what is called a psychiatric evaluation. This evaluation will be done by a psychiatrist or any available mental health doctor. You will be asked questions as they pertain to your symptoms. They usually have a guideline they follow.
Treatment for affective disorders
Two main treatments exist for mood disorders and they are therapy and medication. The two can be combined. Different antidepressant medications are available. You might have to try a couple of the medications and therapy before you will find one or two that can help you relieve symptoms with minimal side effects.
Psychotherapy is as important medications. It will help you learn how to adapt to the symptoms that come with mood disorders.
The outlook for affective disorders
When the appropriate treatment plan is adopted and strictly followed, the outlook for recovery is a very good one. It’s vital to know that in most instances, affective disorders are chronic in nature. This means that they will have to take a very long period of time for treatment to be completed.
While it is true that some cases can are severe, affective disorders patients who are undergoing treatment can still lead normal lives.
Tonika Bruce, also known as The Network Nurse, is a multi-talented individual with a career spanning over 20 years. She’s a Registered Nurse, speaker, author, and advocate for change, excelling in business building and team development. Tonika holds two Master’s degrees in Nursing and Business Administration, (MSN & MBA) and is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Nursing Practice in Executive Leadership.
Her expertise extends to various fields such as nursing, entrepreneurship, business, basketball coaching, and executive leadership. She is a published author of “Relentless Pursuit: Proven Tips for Unlocking Your Potentials, Limitless Success and Post COVID Syndrome: A Guide to Repositioning the Nursing Profession for A Post COVID Era”. Currently, Tonika is working on Thrudemic, an anthology examining the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on medical professionals and patients.