Symptoms of Depression
Do you suspect that you or someone you know might be suffering from
depression? If so, you may wonder if depression is really present, or if you or a loved one are just just
feeling a bit down.
Here are the major symptoms of depression – if you notice several of these signs, it may be more
than just a case of the blues.
• Persistent sleep problems. People who are suffering from depression
often either can’t sleep, or they have trouble resisting the urge to sleep all day. The person may perpetually
appear tired, even if they are getting enough rest.
• Loss of interest in day to day activities. A depressed person will frequently lose interest
in hobbies and daily activities, even those that they once thoroughly enjoyed. Even sex may hold no interest for a
person who is suffering from depression.
• Changes in appetite. Generally, people have one of two appetite-related responses to
depression – either thay eat continually (usually choosing junk foods such as potato chips or ice cream over
healthy alternatives), or they do not want to eat at all. Either way, a marked change in appetite is a tell tale
sign of clinical depression.
• Difficulty focusing on the present. A depressed person will likely be able to concentrate
on daily activities, even important ones such as driving. He or she may easily become sidetracked, often by his or
own negative thoughts and emotions.
• Loss of energy. Depression can be exhausting – people who are depressed often feel as
though they simply have no energy. This symptom often creates a downward spiral – depressed people don’t get out
and participate in physical activity because they have little energy, yet their energy continues to wane because
they are not getting any form of exercise.
• Pervasive feelings of hopelessness. When most people get a case of the blues, they know
that even though they feel bad at the moment, things will soon get better. When a person is suffering from
depression, though, he or she may feel like there is no chance of life ever improving. A depressed person also
typically feels as though he or she is powerless to change the situation.
• Significant weight changes. If a person’s weight changes by more than about five percent in
a short period of time, it can be a sign of depression, particularly when other symptoms are present as well.
• A preoccupation with death or suicide. If a person is dealing with severe depression, death
may seem like the only solution. It is very important that you do not downplay or ignore this symptom, because it
can be a sign that the person is desperately in need of help.
If you notice several of these symptoms in yourself or in someone you know, it is not
safe to assume that they will simply go away. Depression is a very real, serious illness that requires targeted
psychological and/or medical treatment. Fortunately, though counseling, medication, and other techniques,
depression can be overcome.
Tagged with: Depression
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