Major depressive disorder is a type of depression characterized by intense feelings of sadness, a loss of pleasure, and an overall feeling of hopelessness. Someone who suffers from this disorder will typically go through multiple “episodes” of major depression.
For a clinical diagnosis of this disorder, the person must feel persistent symptoms for at least two weeks and there must be a drastic change in behavior and overall functioning at the onset of the depression.
Writing Major Deppression Disorder
A character suffering from major depression will be plagued by feelings of sadness most days, will have a change of appetite and sleep patterns, and will feel the emotions of guilt and worthlessness.
Your character may go through multiple episodes throughout the year. It is often the case that major depressive episodes are followed by long periods of Dysthymia (a less intense type of depression).
An episode can be triggered by things like excessive use of alcohol and drugs, medication such as steroids, and medical conditions.
Other Types of Depression
When writing about characters that suffer from depression, it is important to keep in mind that there exist different types of depressions that one can suffer from.
Here are some of the types of depressive disorders you can write about:
Persistent depressive disorder
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder