All depression is not equal. In fact, there are several types of depression, including major depressive disorder. Most types of depression differ due to intensity and length of time endured.
In the case of major depressive disorder, a person has to suffer from depression for a minimum of two weeks and display at least five of the symptoms of depression, according to Medline Plus. This is one of the more severe and longer-lasting of the depression types.
The behavior of people with major depressive disorder may change, including the way a person sleeps or eats, according to Medline Plus. Some common symptoms of depression are negative feelings (sad, hopeless, worthless, etc.), fatigue, suicidal thoughts, etc.
Though the statistics may vary, according to www.mentalhealth.com, “Lifetime prevalence for this disorder in the general population is 10 to 25 percent for women and from 5 to 12 percent for men.” The percent is lower when just looking at a typical year, with 5 to 9 percent of women having it at some point during the year.
Depressive episodes can occur at different times during major depressive disorder. According to the Web site, there can be long stretches between episodes, there can be a grouping of episodes at a certain time or there can be consistent episodes (or a variation of all these types).
Of course, considering this is one of the more severe types of depression, there is a 15 percent “success rate” in suicides for people with severe major depression. This can increase when these sufferers grow older as well.
Another name for major depressive disorder is clinical depression, according to www.psychcentral.com. The site stresses that in order for a person to have major/clinical depression, he or she must not be suffering from depression related to grief over a lost loved one. This might take around two months to recover from, but after that, if the symptoms still show, the person might have major depressive disorder or another type of depression.
Episodes can sometimes last from six to nine months, according to www.healthyplace.com.