Understanding Post Stroke Depression

Post stroke depression is considered as one of the most frequent and common psychological consequence of stroke. PSD strikes almost one third of people who have experienced stroke which usually leads to major depression. Not only that, PSD can also have a serious effect on cognitive function and may hamper a person’s functional recovery.

Types of post stroke depression

Post stroke depression is also considered as a mood disorder that is brought about by a general medical condition which, in this case, is a stroke. The condition can either develop as a minor or major type of depression in stroke victims.

A minor depression is experienced by about 30 percent of stroke patients that exhibits a depressed mood and loss of interest but shows less that four of the known symptoms of major depression.

The occurrence of the post stroke depression can vary over time but usually peaks from three to six months after the stroke. In the case of patients with major depression, the natural course of remission from the condition can take from one to two years.

Causes of post stroke depression

As to the cause of post stroke depression, doctors are divided on two different views. There are those that believe the depression to be caused by a malfunction of neural circuits in the brain as a result of the stroke.

Others on the other hand believe that the primary cause may be due to certain psychological and social stressors that stroke patients go through.

How to treat post stroke depression?

Treating post stroke depression can be closely similar to how doctors treat depression in other people. But in this case, great care may need to be taken considering the type of condition the stroke patient may be in.

Antidepressant medication may play a big role in even prevent the onset of PSD in stroke patients. Psychiatric therapy can also greatly help people with PSD cope up better with their condition.