From University of Tsukuba 18/09/23

Credit: Getty

Depression is a common but serious mental disorder that requires early diagnosis and treatment; however, it is currently difficult to do so.

Electroencephalogram (EEG) is a test that easily measures electrical activity, and the equipment is relatively inexpensive, such that it may be used to promote the early detection and treatment of depression.

Brainwave (EEG) activity pattern known as phase resettting reflects depressed mood. Credit: University of Tsukuba

However, such a method has not been developed.

The participants of this study were instructed to measure their EEG for 1 min every day at home across two to four weeks to investigate its relationship to the intensity of their depressed mood.

Obtained data. Daily changes in depressed mood (a). Credit: Nature

The results demonstrated that the occurrence of phase resetting for many participants, in which brain waves from different brain regions synchronize, increased with high levels of depressed mood at certain frequencies but decreased at other frequencies.

These results indicate that changes in depressed mood can be objectively measured using EEG for 1 min in a resting state and are expected to facilitate the early detection of depression and the development of novel treatment in the future.

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