Sometimes, when thinking of topics for these blogs, I miss the most obvious. Maybe it’s because they seem so talked about already that I forget there may be a need for some basic information or review.

Depression is part of our daily lexicon. People throw it around and reference it all the time. People say they are depressed when in fact they may just be feeling down, sad, a bit lethargic or perhaps experiencing appropriate grief. Everyone experiences sadness, irritability or low energy from time to time but depression is different from these occasional feelings.

It’s appropriate to feel depressed or sad at the loss of someone or something or when people disappoint us. Generally, with time and processing we get through these times. When that doesn’t occur, however, then someone may be in a depressive episode. That's a whole other thing.

In the field of mental health, depression is a very specific disorder outlined by a cluster of several possible symptoms, and distinguished by length of time experienced and intensity.

Depression can interfere with job, relationships, your perception of the world and make it difficult to participate in everyday activities. Depression also affects people in different ways; not just mood, but body, thoughts and behaviors. If you are experiencing any of these you may want to read more or seek help from a professional to determine if you are suffering from depression.