Endogenous Depression: Signs, Symptoms And Treatment

Endogenous Depression: Signs, Symptoms And Treatment

Do you ever suddenly feel down in the dumps, uninterested in anything, and generally sad for no specific reason? If so you may be suffering from endogenous depression (melancholia).

Endogenous depression is an atypical subclass of major depressive disorder (MDD), better referred to as clinical depression, and is a sudden mental health disorder that is triggered without any specific motive. The term endogenous depression is less likely to be used in mental health treatment today and is now commonly addressed as MDD.

But what is the cause, and should you be concerned? This article looks at identifying the signs and symptoms and the best route of action to help treat this mental health condition.

What Are The Causes Of Endogenous Depression?

This MMD manifests without any influence from external triggers, and its origin is attributed to internal biological or genetic causes.

Because it is an internal factor, it produces constant sadness accompanied by mood disorders and social withdrawal for no apparent reason and can interfere with a person’s responsibilities and daily activities.

Many people who suffer from endogenous depression describe these melancholic and subdued feelings as coming from within. To understand better how this is caused, it is generally a result of chemical changes in the brain.

The production of endorphins that are responsible for feelings of pleasure becomes inhibited by these changes leading to emotional disorders without the need for external triggers.

How To Recognise Signs And Symptoms Of Endogenous Depression

How To Obtain A Diagnosis Of Endogenous Depression

You may consult with your GP or healthcare provider about your symptoms, who can assess the depression but will more than likely refer you to a specialist, generally a psychiatrist, who is competent and skilled in diagnosing and treating mental health illnesses.

Getting a diagnosis for this condition usually involves several key issues and specific criteria used by medical and mental health professionals to ensure correctly identifying the type of depression and which effective treatment should be applied.

You will be asked a series of questions about your feelings and emotions, your usual daily routines such as work and social activities, whether you are already taking medication or other substances, and if there is a history of mental illness within your family.

A specialist will ask about how you see a normal day and what it entails for you emotionally and will, importantly, enquire into the possibility of having suicidal thoughts or wanting to harm yourself. Your GP or doctor will also carry out a physical examination, taking blood samples or other laboratory tests to rule out any prevailing medical ailment that could be causing these symptoms.

A diagnosis of endogenous depression is made when someone has suffered from intense sadness and lack of motivation or interest for at least a two-week period and also shows other signs such as poor concentration, disturbed sleep patterns, or significant changes in appetite and weight.

Because individuals are so different and can respond in diverse ways, a diagnosis may change now and again, especially if depression treatment is not working, and your specialist may need to reevaluate findings and symptoms should other mental health conditions be prevalent, such as bipolar disorder.

Bipolar disorder is another mental health illness with similar symptoms of extreme mood swings, and intense emotional highs and lows that can significantly have an impact on a person’s daily functioning.

What’s Involved In The Treatment Of Endogenous Depression

Because of the genetic and biological factors involved, it is not an easy task to overcome endogenous depression but symptoms of MDD can be treated using a combination of medication and practical therapies.

Understanding the disorder characterized by feelings of sadness and feelings of depression without reason can help in recognising changes in mood and behaviour and why it is happening rather than trying to find an external cause such as a stressful or traumatic event when it doesn’t exist.

Prescribed Medicine

Inhibitors are the most widely used medications in treating endogenous depression. These types of medications work by raising the levels of certain chemicals in the brain that help reduce depressive symptoms. 

Therapy Sessions

Typical standard talking therapy or psychotherapy involves attending regular sessions with a highly skilled therapist. These types of therapies provide help in coping with the condition and dealing with the associated issues.

The most common practices employed are Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Interpersonal Therapy (IPT).

Other Treatment Options

Following a treatment plan of medication and therapy, most people will notice an improvement in their condition although it may take several weeks, and may possibly have to experiment with different types of antidepressants to find the one most suited.

However, In the event that treatment using medication and therapy fails, another approach may be considered.

Use Of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT):

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is another form of treatment that may be used. Electrodes send electrical pulses to the brain, causing a brief seizure. This type of treatment may seem terrifying but it is not as frightening as it sounds, and the application has greatly improved. The effects of ECT can alter chemical interactions in the brain.

Changing One’s Lifestyle:


Depression can be torture for those suffering from it but for those suffering from endogenous depression, it must be a nightmare as there is no obvious external reason it should occur, and it can last indefinitely if left untreated.

However, the good news is that this terrible mental illness can be successfully treated.

The length of recovery depends on how quickly treatment can be given but upon receiving the appropriate treatment, symptoms can disappear between two to three months. It is crucial to continue taking medication as prescribed until told not to do so, even if symptoms improve, otherwise by terminating treatment too quickly there is a chance of experiencing withdrawal symptoms and more risk of relapse.

Where To Get Help For Endogenous Depression

If you or someone you know shows signs of experiencing major depression but has not been involved in situations of stress or trauma or other external circumstances that could be the cause, their symptoms may probably require a more thorough investigation and assessment to diagnose endogenous depression.

Here, at PROMIS, we understand the challenges of mental health conditions and how symptoms often jeopardise a person’s lifestyle and interfere with daily activities, as well as the worry and concern of family and friends wanting to help but don’t know who to turn to.

We can provide world-class treatment for a wide range of mental health-related illnesses and offer depression treatment as part of our comprehensive treatment plans.

We ask you not to leave this condition untreated, there is no reason for someone to extend their misery, instead, simply give us a call and we will provide you with all the information you need and offer advice and guidance on how to effectively resolve this devastating illness.

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