How is depression diagnosed?
Depression is diagnosed based on a person’s symptoms.
The diagnosis is usually made by a GP or a psychologist. If symptoms are unusual or severe, the person may be referred by a GP to a psychiatrist to make a diagnosis.
The doctor may not make a diagnosis right away. Sometimes they might want to see how the person goes over time, before making a diagnosis.
How is depression treated?
The treatment that's right for you will depend on how bad your depression is, your symptoms, what is happening in your life, your preferences, and your personality.
Mild depression is usually treated with psychological treatments (talking therapies). Medication is not normally needed.
Moderate depression can be treated with psychological treatments or medication.
Most people with more severe depression will need a combination of antidepressant medication and psychological treatment.
More about treatment of depression
Recovery from depression
Depression is a treatable illness. With treatment, most people can recover from a period of depression within 3–6 months.
Some people take longer to recover. In some cases of severe depression it might take several years.