Mood & Anxiety Disorders

Mood & Anxiety Disorders

Mood and anxiety disorders encompass many conditions under the broad category of mental health disorders. Common mood disorders are represented by several types of depression and related conditions. Mood disorders are more difficult to diagnose, especially in children or adolescents, because of how the symptoms crossover, and those symptoms are sometimes hard to express. 

Common Mood Disorders

There are many mood disorders, though you may be most familiar with those listed below. Symptoms may overlap, and you can have more than one mood disorder at a time. This can make treatment complicated, but one option worth considering is ketamine therapy, particularly in the case of depression.

  • Major depression means you have less interest in everyday activities, feel sad or desperate, and may experience other symptoms for two or more weeks.
  • Bipolar disorder I and II encompass a condition where someone has episodes of depression alternating with instances of elevated mood or mania.
  • A mood disorder caused by another health condition, like cancer, injuries, infections, and chronic illnesses. All of these can trigger depression symptoms.
  • Seasonal affective disorder is a kind of depression closely associated with months when there are fewer hours of natural daylight, generally in the fall and winter, with symptoms beginning to fade with warmer weather and longer days.

What causes mood disorders?

Depending on what disorder you suffer from, there could be several basic factors. Factors related to genetics, biology, your environment, and others have been identified as triggers for mood disorders.

Risk factors:

  • Family history.
  • You’ve had a mood disorder before.
  • Trauma and significant life stressors.
  • You were sick or were prescribed certain medications. “Depression has been linked to major diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and heart disease.”
  • Brain construction and how it works, particularly regarding bipolar disorder.

Common Anxiety Disorders

Occasional anxiety is an expected part of life. You might feel anxious when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision. But anxiety disorders involve more than temporary worry or fear.” If you have anxiety that doesn’t go away and the symptoms worsen over time – affecting daily life, including job performance, schoolwork, and relationships – then you may be suffering from a more serious anxiety disorder.

Types of anxiety disorders include:

  • Agoraphobia, characterized by fear and avoidance of places or situations that might trigger panic and induce feelings of being helpless, trapped, or embarrassed.
  • Generalized anxiety disorder includes consistent and extreme anxiety and worries around ordinary, everyday activities or events. The worry is often out of proportion to actual danger.
  • Panic disorder is characterized by recurrent instances of unexpected feelings of deep anxiety and fear that reach peak intensity within minutes (commonly known as panic attacks).
  • Separation anxiety disorder, mostly in children, is extreme anxiety for a child’s developmental level and is linked to separation from someone charged with parental roles.
  • Social anxiety disorder, or social phobia, involves high points of anxiety, avoidance, and fear of social settings because of feelings of embarrassment, worry about being unfairly judged or viewed negatively by someone else, and self-consciousness.

Anxiety disorders could be caused by:

  • Chemical imbalances in regions of the brain which control your mood.
  • Environmental factors and trauma.
  • Anxiety disorders may run in your family and be passed down from a biological relative.

Know the symptoms

Ketamine therapy can often treat anxiety and mood disorders symptoms, but it’s a good idea to know what they are before agreeing to treatment.

  • You feel sad nearly every day or almost all the time 
  • Low energy or feeling sluggish
  • Feeling hopeless or worthless 
  • Lack of appetite or binge eating
  • Unexplained weight gain or loss
  • Feeling fidgety, wound-up, or on-guard
  • Being easily tired
  • You feel out of control, and experience many other symptoms

Diagnosis & Treatment

A healthcare provider or a mental health specialist can diagnose mood and anxiety disorders. It normally involves a physical examination to look for an underlying medical cause for your symptoms and document personal and family medical history. Talking with someone who specializes in mental health has the same goals but focuses on your thoughts, feelings, and behavior as triggers for your condition. Your personal and family history of mental illness will also be explored, with your symptoms compared to specific mood and anxiety disorders criteria.

If you suffer from either condition, ketamine therapy may help control the symptoms, but your healthcare provider will also probably recommend psychotherapy and certain other medicine.