Out of many mental and psychological disorders, depression is one of the most common, and the symptoms of depression are experienced by almost everyone. However, the case of depression as a mental illness delves deeper than the temporary down or depressing mood swings.There are also a few different forms of depression, some with more severe symptoms and differing effects. One of these other mental disorders that is important would be bipolar disorder, which is commonly misunderstood. While it is not a direct form of depression, it does play a large role in understanding the symptoms and effects. People suffering from depression have their lives heavily altered and controlled by the disturbance, and it can often lead to more serious issues and illnesses.

General clinical depression, or major depressive disorder, can be known as a case of mental illness where a patience experiences depression like moods and show multiple symptoms of depression for more than two weeks. These symptoms include persistent sadness, anxiety, an empty feeling or a feeling of hopelessness, constant fatigue, lost in interests, difficulty sleeping, increased irritability, appetite loss and a distancing from peers and family. In severe cases, thoughts of suicide and death occur to patients as well. While people may experience these emotions and symptoms, patients with depression constantly suffer from multiple if not all the symptoms at once. In addition, while common moods change easily, symptoms of depression patients extend over a much longer period of time.

Bipolar disorder is a variant of depression that, while different in ways, share some symptoms to depression and is also worth noting. Bipolar disorder patients feel episodes, or periods of extreme mania, often followed by periods of extreme and severe depression. During the depression episodes, a patient will experience the symptoms of depression. On the other hand, during the episodes of mania, a patient suffering from bipolar disorder will endure symptoms that are completely opposite to depression. Mania episodes depicts patients showing increased hyperactivity, reduced self composure and self control. In addition, patients will have increased energy levels, and tend to think a lot faster than usual. Also, patients during mania episodes tend to practice reckless behaviour, without having conscious thought of the consequences. There are also episodes for bipolar disorder patients where they feel both depression and mania symptoms simultaneously, or have episodes where they are in a completely stable mood. Episodes for people who suffer from bipolar disorder are unpredictable and can last for a various amount of time.

The research and knowledge that have been learned and gathered about depression and depression related mental illnesses are still limited and vague. Since many symptoms and cures lie within human emotions and moods, it is difficult to research and advance in this field of study. Nonetheless, there is treatment for depression and like disorders, such as bipolar disorder. The main suggested treatment is consulting a guidance councillor and seeking professional therapeutic assistance. It is also crucial to understand that often patients do not recognize their own symptoms, and it becomes the responsibility of their family or close friends to seek guidance. In more serious cases of depression or bipolar disorder, medication and medical help can be introduced into the treatment of a patient. Chemical medication that reduce norepinephrine, a chemical found to increase activity can be introduced to mania patients in the most drastic of cases, and alike with drugs that increase serotonin levels for patients suffering from depression.

Depression still has many unexplored factors to it, and many researchers hope to learn more about this disorder to combat its effects in patients who suffer it. From the information already known, it is established that depression is more than a mere sad mood, and bipolar disorder is much more than mood swings. While it is common, it nonetheless causes serious harm to patients suffering from these mental illnesses.


For my research of this presented article, I took information from a variety of sources on the internet. There were sources that were created by companies who specialize in the treatment of the illness, as well as ones that are purely information and inquiry websites. I also took data from an informative video by a trusted source on the topic to gain a better understanding.

The online resources I used are as follows:

Video* Depression and Bipolar Disorder-CrashCourse

NIMH-Depression

NIMH-Bipolar Disorder

CMHA-Depression and Bipolar Disorder

CMHA-Children, Youth, and Depression

HelpGuide.Org-Depression

I did find other sources and information, however, I did not use them in my final presentation.

Source #1: CrashCourse: Depression and Bipolar Disorder

This resource was one of the first I consulted after choosing my topic of research. I began my research through this video since the author/creator (Youtube channel) is known to create videos that are concise yet able to explain a topic thoroughly in a short amount of time. In addition, I found that the information is usually always correct, and even when there are controversies they often state it in the video. However, in this particular piece, I found that there were some bias to the information. The points and material presented from the video seems to be gathered from only one source/author, and it does not cross reference many other authors and studies. The author of this resource is a very respectable and trusted creator, and I have often seen their production used in classrooms. In addition, they do not seem to be strongly affiliated with any profitable private company, and seem to operate as an independent group, which helps cut out biases. They are funded through viewer support but not any other organization which may influence them to skew their information. The video was also posted in 2014, and since my presentation was more on the general points of this topic, the source provided me with current data. By doing referencing and looking through other studies and sources, I found that this provided valid and correct information on the topic.

Source #2: NIMH-Depression & NIMH-Bipolar Disorder

From my second source, I was able to use two of the articles found on the website for my research. From searching through the resources section on other websites and articles, I noticed that this site was referenced quite a bit, thus that informed me it was a trusted and useful database for this topic. For biases, I could not notice any that are prominent throughout the site and its pages. It is a research and study based site, and its material is for application uses, thus it gives out truthful and factual information. The site is known to be a trusted organization and provided of medical studies and information. They are also not heavily tied with many outside influences so I believe that their information would not be affected in that way. They are supported and work with the National Institute of Health, and the U.S. Government’s Department of Health and Services. On the pages, it was stated that their last revision was of April to May of this year, 2016. Thus I came to believe that they had up to date and current information. Lastly, since many other sources draw upon this site, and they have studies that are properly referenced, I would say that they are constant in their information.

Source #3: CMHA-Depression and Bipolar Disorder & CMHA-Children, Youth, and Depression

For my third source, I looked at a more local source and one that is more relevant to myself. This source originated from Canada and it seems to be a trustworthy site. There were some biases that I found while visiting this website. It does seem like the organization is a profit organization and that it is trying to provide services that related to mental health issues. With that, some of the information are leaning more towards swaying you towards their provided services. It is however, a trusted source, and by cross referencing, I found that it provided facts and correct information on the topic. It did not state the publishing date of the article, thus I was not able to ensure the currency of the facts.

Source #4: HelpGuide.Org-Depression

The final resource I used for my research was more for referencing and confirming facts. I found that the site itself didn’t look as professional or as well put together as some of the other sources I used. In terms of the biases, since it was a profit organization and it looked to push services and products regarding medical conditions, some of the information was more targeted to inform the audience and push them into buying their goods. However, they did have respectable authors write and create the article and referenced them. Also, the organization is self and publicly funded by the general mass, and thus does not have a solid affiliation with any large company. In addition, they were open with the publication information for their resource, and stated clearly when it was published and revised. Lastly, I found that their facts and information were quite constant to other sources, though a little lacking in detail and further information, they did provide all the basic material.


From researching and writing about this topic, i was able to learn a lot more about this topic and gain insight on the effects of this specific mental illness. I also was able to have a clearly definition of what the disorder actually is and what it means to be affected by it. From learning about depression and bipolar disorder, I can now identify symptoms of each and support peers or family who I notice show those symptoms. I also not know how to deal with the symptoms and also where to look for help if needed. In addition, this information has brought reassurance since now that I know I am educated on the topic, it would be less frightening to deal with. Lastly, by knowing this information I can help teach others who may want to know more about the topic or may suffer for the illness.