Monday, November 18, 2013

How a Depression Test Can Help You

A depression test can be beneficial if you are experiencing depression symptoms and wonder if you might have a form of clinical depression. There are a lot of depression tests online. However, when taking one it is imperative to ensure that it is legitimate and reliable. As you can imagine, there are many "rogue" tests out there that were not professionally developed. In which case, there are only a few tests online that are legitimate and worth your consideration so proceed with caution when taking these tests. In most cases, the tests are designed to test for a specific type of depression such as Geriatric depression, Bipolar Disorder, and Major Depressive Disorder

Personally, in my practice, I use the Beck's Depression Inventory. It is an "oldie but goody" and was very well developed and is a great diagnostic tool to determine if my clients are depressed and, if they are, how serious it might be. The Beck Depression Inventory is protected by a copyright so you will not find it legally available on the web. Rather, only mental health professionals can administer and score the test. This is important because you don't want to be misdiagnosed.

When a depression test is legitimate it is a great test and proven to be statistically relevant in determining whether the test taker may or may not be depressed. The key to a legitimate test is to ensure that it meets the "Standards for Education and Psychological Testing". This way you are ensured that the test is professionally developed, statistically relevant and the results - reliable. It would not be a good thing to have a depression test indicate you are depressed when you are not or vice versa - that you are not depressed when in fact you really are. In the latter case, a misperception can lead to the person suffering needlessly and never getting the help that they need!

I have used several tests in my practice and have found some available online that are legitimate and meet the standards. With some research you can find legitimate tests as well. Take one of them or take all of them. It doesn't really matter. The key when taking a test is to use the results as an indication as to whether you might be depressed. It's important to note that these tests are not to be used for formal diagnosis. Rather they are simply an indicator as to what might be going on.

If you feel you might be clinically depressed then you are encouraged to seek out a professional that give you a proper diagnosis and, together, you can determine the best treatment plan so you can feel better as soon as possible. Did you know that over 19 million Americans suffer with depression and, of that 19 million only 30% ever get the help they need? What's more is that once they begin treatment 80% of them will feel better in just a couple of weeks! Depression is very treatable. The key is early detection and an appropriate treatment plan and you'll be well on your way to recovery!

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