Depression is an illness that causes a person to feel sad and hopeless for much of the time. It is different from normal feelings of sadness, grief, or low energy.
People who are depressed may also:
Depression affects men and women of all ages and has often been shown to run in families. A person can have one or many episodes of depression in a lifetime. Each episode of depression makes a person more likely to have another episode of depression.
Most people who are depressed get better with medicine, counseling, or a combination of the two. Some people with depression may need to be hospitalized.
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