Mood Disorders Specialist

Mood Disorders services offered in Somerset, NJ and Mystic, CT

Mood disorders include mental health conditions that cause extreme changes in emotions that affect thoughts and behaviors. At RK Psychiatry Associates in Somerset, New Jersey, and Mystic, Connecticut, board-certified psychiatrist Renée Kohanski, MD, specializes in diagnosing and treating mood disorders. For help managing a mood disorder, call the office nearest you or book an appointment online today.

What are mood disorders?

Mood disorders refer to a group of mental health conditions that affects how a person feels, causing extreme sadness or happiness. These disorders include various types of depression and bipolar disorder, such as:

Major depressive disorder (MDD)

Major depressive disorder or clinical depression is a common mood disorder that causes extreme and prolonged feelings of sadness that affect how you feel and behave. MDD makes it hard to manage daily routines like going to work or spending time with friends.

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)

SAD is a type of depression that occurs during the months when there’s less sunlight. Symptoms usually appear in the late fall or early winter and disappear during the spring or summer. Symptoms of SAD are similar to major depressive disorder. 

Persistent depressive disorder

Persistent depressive disorder is a chronic type of depression that lasts two or more years. This type of depression causes a low mood, but it’s less severe than MDD. However, people with this type of depression may have episodes of MDD.

Bipolar disorder 

Bipolar disorder is a type of mood disorder that causes emotions to rapidly and unexpectedly shift between periods of depression (emotional lows) and periods of mania (emotional highs). These shifts in mood affect thoughts and behavior.


Cyclothymia is a milder form of bipolar disorder. People with cyclothymia have ongoing mood changes that cycle between emotional highs and lows, but symptoms are mild to moderate. For a cyclothymia diagnosis, you must have these mood changes for two or more years. 

What are the symptoms of mood disorders?

Mood disorder symptoms vary depending on the type. However, they may include symptoms of depression or mania.

Depression symptoms

With depression symptoms, you feel sad almost all of the time and have little energy or desire to engage in everyday activities. You may sleep more than usual or struggle with insomnia. 

Mania symptoms

Mania symptoms are emotional highs, causing feelings of elation and euphoria. However, these emotional highs may also cause irritation, restlessness, and racing thoughts. People with bipolar disorder have mania (severe emotional highs) or hypomania (mild to moderate emotional highs).

What treatments benefit mood disorders?

At RK Psychiatry Associates, Dr. Kohanski takes an individualized approach to care and customizes treatment for mood disorders after a comprehensive initial evaluation. She closely examines your medical and mental health history to fully understand your needs and the types of treatments that work best for you.

Many mood disorders benefit from medication management. Dr. Kohanski uses genetic testing to find the right medication to ease symptoms without causing serious side effects. 

In addition to medication management, Dr. Kohanski offers psychotherapy.

For expert care from a mood disorder specialist, call RK Psychiatry Associates or schedule an appointment online today.