Diagnosis of Clinical Depression
A doctor may be the best person to diagnose depression. He will be able to help you by asking your medical history and symptoms. Routine laboratory tests like blood and urine tests are performed to rule out other conditions. Apart from, this having a thorough conversation with the person suffering from depression and the family members helps in diagnosing depression.
A depression diagnosis is often difficult to make because of the multiple manifestations of clinical depression. For example some individuals may show symptoms of irritability while others seem to lack interest in any activity. A doctor then makes a thorough assessment of the symptoms by questioning the person regarding the onset of depression. The questions normally would include-
- Do you experience bouts of gloom almost everyday?
- Do you have difficulty in sleeping or are you sleeping too much?
- Do you lack interest in doing any activity?
- Are you unable to focus and concentrate?
- Do you have repeated suicidal thoughts?
- Are you feeling physically drained out?
- Do you have loss of appetite?
- Kaplan and Sadock's Synopsis of Psychiatry, American Psychiatric Association third edition.