Psychiatric Diseases, Disorders, and Drugs

Psychiatric Disorders, Diseases, and Drugs


Whether it be a mild and fleeting case of the downs or a severe and overwhelming since of despair, depression is something that all people encounter during some point in their lives.   When a person suffers from clinical depression, he or she may have difficulty performing even the simplest of tasks.   Maintaining a job, supporting the family, or just getting out of bed in the morning can become impossible.

Depression is usually separated into two categories.   When depression becomes triggered by a negative or traumatic experience, such as the death of a loved one, it is called reactive depression.   When a person’s depression has no apparent cause, it is called endogenous depression (Pinel, 2007).

There is a definite link between affective disorders, such as depression, bipolar disorder and unipolar disorder, and genetics.   Twin studies on affective disorders have shown that about 60% of identical twins and 15% of fraternal twins suffer from the same disorder, regardless of whether reared together or apart (Pinel, 2007).

The role of stress has also been a focal point of research on affective disorders such as depression.   Studies have concluded that stressful experiences can trigger attacks of depression in already depressed individuals (Pinel, 2007).   One study showed that over 84% of patients seeking treatment for depression had experienced severe stress in the preceding year, in comparison to 32% of controlled subjects (Brown, 1993 as cited in Pinel, 2007).   It is however, difficult to link stressful experiences occurring during youth with the increased likelihood of developing depression later in life (Kessler, 1997 as cited in Pinel, 2007).


A disorder that opposes depression is mania.   Mania is the affective disorder characterized by overconfidence, impulsivity, distractibility, and high energy (Pinel, 2007).   Those with mania tend to be highly energetic, enthusiastic, and...