Dysthymia: what it is and how to treat it

Written by: Dr. Alfonso Prieto Rodríguez
Published: | Updated: 17/11/2018
Edited by: Top Doctors®

chronic depression dysthymia Dysthymia is a chronic mood disorder depressive character, characterized by low self-esteem and appearance of a melancholy, sad and sorry mood. Nevertheless, the symptoms do not meet all standards of diagnosis for depression.

This condition suffer from 3 to 5% of the population. Its etiology is complex and multifactorial, given the various biological, psychological and social mechanisms involved. Developmental psychosocial factors influence the uprooting, lack of incentives and recognition in childhood, among other causes.

In the latest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) dysthymia is modified by persistent depressive disorder.


Symptoms of dysthymia

The main symptom is persistent state of dysthymic mood almost daily over at least two years. Other symptoms that experts set Psychiatry can be:

Eating disorders: anorexia or binge eating.

Sleep disorders: insomnia or hypersomnia (wakes several times)

• Feeling deficit of vital energy (asthenia), tiring, continuous fatigue

disorders of memory and ability to concentrate.

Low self-esteem, feelings of inadequacy, feelings of hopelessness, pessimism

Inability to decision making


Diagnosis and treatment of dysthymia

Dysthymia diagnosis is based on the presence of the main symptom with any side persistently stable. However, patients may experience changes over time in the intensity of symptoms.

Without treatment, dysthymia usually evolves into a more serious depression, because it is a disease with a tendency to chronicity and incomplete recovery.

Most often, the treatment (psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological) significantly improve the clinical symptoms. The most effective treatment is a combination of antidepressant medication with psychotherapy psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, interpersonal orientation, etc.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Alfonso Prieto Rodríguez

Prestigious specialist in Psychiatry, Dr. Prieto Rodríguez has a degree in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Valladolid and a Specialist Doctor in Psychiatry at the Dr. Villacián Psychiatric Hospital by the University of Valladolid since 1982.

Throughout his career, he has gained experience in the Management and Management of Health Services, in addition to having been Head of the Mental Health and Psychiatric Assistance Service at the Castilla y León Board.

Currently, he works as a doctor in the psychiatric hospitalization unit of the Virgen del Rocío University Hospital in Seville. He combines his assistance work with teaching, as Associate Professor of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Seville.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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