A recent piece In the Washington Post, explained that “minor” depression (which is described as “subsyndromal” depression or an episode that does not fully meet the diagnostic criteria for “major depression” – – the technical term for the diagnosis people are referring to when they talk about “chemical depression” or just “depression” in general) should not go untreated in older adults. The piece referenced a 2006 study in the American Journal of Psychiatry that linked untreated subsyndromal depressive symptoms with later development of major depression. Though the article did not generalize beyond the senior population, it is likely that this is relevant to younger adults and adolescents too. In other words, minor depression or perhaps early signs of depression, can signal an increased likelihood of major depression, and as such such syndromes should be treated sooner rather than later.
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