Dark Places: Atypical Depression

Atypical Depression is a type of depression that is defined by the feeling of being positive for a short time in a response to a positive event that changes your mood. Usually the two changes that follow this occurring is over eating or a feeling of heaviness in our body parts, such as chest, arms, legs, or head. This is the most common subtype of depression. It usually starts as early as teenage years. When these teens experience it, it’s usually linked with other diagnosis like social phobia, body dysmorphic disorder, or avoidant personalities. Some common signs is weight gain, excessive sleep, feeling weak in the limbs, intense sensitivity to rejection (like breaking down into tears immediately), or strong reactive moods. Treatments for this include monoamine oxidase inhibitors. Usually SSRI’s aren’t the best option when it comes to treating this. Also, cognitive behavioral therapy, which is,
sychotherapeutic treatment that helps patients understand their thoughts and feelings that influence their behaviors that they are experiencing. I have definitely gone through this. When I was on the nexaplanon birth control it had a major factor in the way I was behaving. I wasn’t myself at all. I definitely experienced the struggle of having heavy limbs. It feels as if you can’t get out of bed. You’re physically tied down and can not escape. Another time I have personally experienced this, was when I was raped. There was a huge change of my behavior outside of certain environments like school. I wasn’t happy at all. I put on an act in front of my entire school. I struggled being who I was. I was constantly scared to speak to my superiors because of what they would say to me. For example, I played high school soccer. I was terrified to talk to my coaches because of that fear of rejection or their feedback. It is scary, but it has to be done in order to get out of that comfort zone. We all may have experienced this, but aren’t even aware of it. I know people who go through this. As I look back on my life and reflect on how people were acting, especially in high school, it’s crazy to think those whom you’ve grown up with experience this, but they’re not aware of it. It’s okay to speak up when you’re not feeling yourself. You would be surprised with how much you actually have in common with someone else. Atypical depression maybe not a serious form of depression like postpartum or major depressive disorder, but we should still be aware of it. Especially if you’re a parent to a teen.

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