2 Indications and current treatments
2.1 Depression is a common disorder that can have a debilitating effect on a person's life. It is characterised by persistent sadness, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or low self‑worth, disturbed sleep, appetite and libido, tiredness and poor concentration. It is also often accompanied by feelings of hopelessness and suicidal thoughts, and can lead to suicide. Depression can last from weeks to years, and can be recurrent. It can substantially impair an individual's ability to function at work or cope with daily life. Treatments for depression include a range of psychological therapies and antidepressant medications. In severe depression that has not responded to other treatments, electroconvulsive therapy is sometimes used.