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Depression affects more than 200 million people around the world and in extreme cases could lead to suicide.

Major Types of Depression

Circumstantial or Situational depression: Situational depression is short-term and can occur in the aftermath of various traumatic events like divorce, retirement, loss of job and the death of a relative or close friend. Other situations that can potentially overwhelm your normal coping mechanisms include surviving a major disaster like a hurricane, a serious accident, a major illness or even marriage. Doctors sometimes refer to the condition as an adjustment disorder.

Hormonal depression: Biological and hormonal changes cause this depression, especially in women. Many new mothers experience the “baby blues”. This is a normal reaction that tends to subside within a few weeks. However, some women experience severe, lasting depression. This condition is known as postpartum depression.

How & Why

  • Depression can affect people of all ages and backgrounds.
  • Depression does not affect the individual alone; it has repercussions on one’s family, friends, and work.
  • Depression is the leading cause for disability all over the world.
  • People with a family history of anxiety, despondency, bipolar disorder or suffering from an alcohol or drug abuse problem are more likely to develop depression.
  • The condition also has a propensity to worsen as time progresses.

Symptoms & Diagnosis

Symptoms may include a persistent feeling of sadness, isolation, emptiness, spells of crying, irritability, lack of interest, lack of energy, excessive sleepiness or sleeplessness, decreased sex drive, hopelessness, a feeling of dread, backache, headache, digestive problems and muscular cramps.

  • Your doctor will diagnose depression on the basis of common signs and symptoms.
  • Your doctor will enquire about any drug or alcohol abuse and physical illnesses that may have led to the depression.
  • In case of chronic depression, your doctor may refer you to a psychiatrist who will look into experiences that may have had a bearing on how you feel about yourself and others.
  • Blood tests may be required from women patients when there is a suspicion of hormonal disorder.


Thirty-five-year-old Jayanti was suffering from depression for over five years and was on anti-depressants. She was listless, not interested in any activity and would sit near the window, gazing at the horizon for hours. She was aloof towards her husband and two children. On analysing her case we found she had developed depression following a surgery which involved the removal of her uterus due to a tumour. Since the ovaries were also removed with the uterus, she developed a hormonal imbalance, causing ‘a feeling of a void’ which subsequently led to her depression.

We prescribed the homeopathic remedy, Sepia Officinalis, based on her listless indifference towards her loved ones, coupled with her hormonal imbalance. After 5 months she was a changed woman. She started taking interest in her daily activities and was more loving and caring towards her family.

Most individuals with depression have common symptoms but the cause for these symptoms varies from case to case.

The homeopathic remedy, Aurum metallicum, which is prepared from the metal gold is used to treat mental disorders such as depression.

The homeopathic remedy, Ignatia, is used to treat depression and anxiety caused by an unexpected event such as the death of a loved one or losing one’s job.

Homeopathy is safe and free from medicinally induced side-effects. When treating depression, the homeopathic doctor always looks at each patient holistically and identifies the cause based on the patient’s personality and history before choosing the right homeopathic remedy.

By Dr Mukesh Batra, Padma Shri Recipient