Must-Know Signs of Depression
It is common to feel sad or “blue” as we experience the normal ups and downs of life. However, if there is a feeling of emptiness and loss of hope that is taking a toll in your life for a period exceeding two weeks, you probably are suffering from depression.
Signs of depression to watch for…
With depression, you may not function properly or enjoy life like you once did.
But regardless of the severity of depression, you can still overcome it. By understanding the signs, symptoms, causes, and treatment of depression, is the first most important step towards the recovery journey.
Are You Suffering From Depression?
If you identify a combination of the following signs and symptoms, and that they just won’t disappear, chances you have clinical signs of depression:
- You are unable to sleep, or you are sleeping too much.
- Inability to concentrate and previously easy and enjoyable tasks are becoming too taxing.
- Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.
- Inability to control negative thoughts, despite trying.
- Change in appetite whereby you are eating very little or excessively.
- You have become too irritable, short-tempered, or more aggressive than usual.
- You are overindulging in alcohol than normal, or you have developed reckless behaviors.
- Thought about life becoming not worth living (Seek immediate help).
Signs and Symptoms
Signs and symptoms of depression vary in different people, but there are some common ones. It is important to be aware that these symptoms could be marking a normal low mood or feeling.
However, it is easier to distinguish depression from stress depending on the severity of the symptoms, their number, and their duration. If these symptoms become severe and overwhelming, seek immediate help.
Helplessness and hopelessness
You may feel that things will never improve and that there is nothing you can do about them. There is a tendency to think that even those around you can do anything to help overcome your current condition.
You are not even willing to share or discuss your predicament in thinking that you will look inferior.
Loss of interest
The daily activities you are accustomed to becoming no longer enjoyable. These include hobbies, sports, social activities, or sex. You hardly can find joy or pleasure in doing them.
However much you try, you can’t find the pleasure you once got from doing anything meant for fun. Your start dodging your friends and instead prefer to live in isolation.
Changes in appetite and weight
Depression affects appetite in one way or the other. Some tend to overeat, and as a result, they gain weight. Others lose appetite and shed noticeable pounds within a short time.
If you notice a change in weight about 5% in a month, there is a need for concern.
Changes in sleep pattern
You are either suffering from insomnia, or you are sleeping too much. With insomnia, you may find yourself waking up very early in the morning, unable to sleep or stay asleep.
In some cases, there are sleep interruptions at the night. Sleeping too much is also referred to as hypersomnia.
Lack of energy
You may feel fatigued, slothful, or drained physically. Your body feels heavy and completing smaller tasks is now taking you longer than usual. Procrastination and delegation of duties to others can become the trend.
You develop strong feelings of worthlessness or guilt. You are constantly blaming yourself for the apparent mistakes and failures.
To escape from your troubles, you resort to reckless activities such as speeding, substance abuse, dangerous sports, compulsive gambling, or engage in unhealthy sex with multiple partners.
Lack of concentration
It is difficult to pay attention, focus, and recall thoughts. Sometimes, due to a lack of self-confidence, you find it hard to make simple decisions on your own.
Pains and aches
There is an increased physical pain whose source you can’t tell, such as a headache, muscular pain, back pain, and stomach pain. Digestive problems can also strike leading to constipation or diarrhea.
Since you are in deep despair and hope is gone, you may become suicidal as the only solution to run away from your troubles. Suicidal or death thoughts mark a serious symptom of depression.
These thoughts should not be taken lightly. They clearly indicate that the patient is asking for support.
These signs and symptoms do not necessarily mean that you are suffering from depression.
It could be another mental condition, and they should be taken with a lot of seriousness.
All may not be present to pinpoint depression, but a combination of at least three could mean the mental disorder. The good news with depression is that once diagnosed, especially at early stages, it can be treated. Treatment involves medication, therapy, or a combination.
Additionally, some supplements effectively help in coping with depression.
It is important to consult with your doctor before resorting to supplements or alternative treatment options especially if you are under medication for symptoms and signs of depression.
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