Affective Disorder Definition - What is Affective Disorder?

Affective disorder is a pattern of troubled behavior characterized by exaggerated emotional responses and disturbance of mood.
The three common moods of sadness, grief, and elation—when expanded beyond a normal duration, so as to become so entrenched that a normal day's activity is disturbed, or when inappropriate to the stimulus, or when triggered without a stressful life event—become anxiety, depression, and excessive elation.
These can grow into clinical disorders if untreated by psychological counseling.
There are two major affective disorders that can expand into chronic melancholia or psychosis.
The conditions are either unipolar (depressive only) or bipolar (manic-depressive). Of the two, depression is the more common.
It is estimated that 20 percent of the population suffer from some form of affective disorder during their lifetimes.
However, only 15 percent of those affected become chronically ill with a clinical disorder.
Treatment always involves either psychotherapy or drug therapy or a combination of both.