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Depression has been part of the human condition since the dawn of history. In biblical times, the book of Job describes a clear depressed person, who views his depression to be a battle between G-d and Satan for his soul. By the Middle Ages depression was thought to be caused by evil spirits and the treatment was (logically) exorcism. More recently, Freud postulated that depression is ‘anger turned inwards’. By the 1960’s behavioral psychology had developed an animal model of depression, and it was conceptualized as ‘learned helplessness’. By the 1970’s and 80’s cognitive theory had grown out of Freudian theory and concluded that depression is the result of distorted thinking patterns. Concurrent to cognitive behavioral developments, psychobiology (built on psychopharmacological observations) took center stage and declared depression to be a dysregualtion of neurotransmitters. Clearly then, every era has attempted to explain this syndrome. If you think about it, you will notice that the explanation always is a reflection, or an extension of the prevailing culture.
Broadly speaking, the causes of depression can be grouped into the bio-psycho-social-spiritual model. The treatments are a logical extension of the clinician’s model. In Whole Psychiatry, we continually work to assess all possible causes, and use the treatments that flow from the findings of the very thorough evaluation.
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