A diagnosis of major depression is usually conducted by a trained general practitioner, by a psychiatrist, or by a psychologist.
Either professional is capable of recording the person’s current circumstances, biographical history, current symptoms, and family history.
The goal of the mental health professional is to review relevant biological, psychological, and social factors that may have an impact on an individual’s mood and discuss the individual’s current mechanisms for regulating their mood such as using alcohol or abusing drugs.
The assessment includes a mental state examination, or an assessment of the person’s current mood, particularly giving attention to thoughts of hopelessness or pessimism, self-harm or suicide, and lack of positive life planning.
Raphael, t. Cassileth, j.