There are a lot of signs and symptoms of depression. But it is important to know that one alone is not a sign of depression. Also, it is very important to know that there are different types of depression and the following signs are the most common signs. In this article, I won’t write about the different types of depression and it is very important to get an appointment with your physician, psychiatrist, and psychologist to be sure of the type and origin of your depression. Internet or blogs are not the places where you can diagnose yourself with something, this is just a checklist to make sure that you or someone close to you have the signs and symptoms of depression.
Depression comes from the Latin word de primere that means pressing down. I would say that depression is the opposite of aggression, because a depressed person avoids being connected, is withdrawn from his own feelings and the environment. Depression is not a weakness or a personality trait. Depression is a mental disorder, disruption of mental and physical functioning. The most asked question probably is what is depression? When we speak about mental disorders it’s very hard to give a precise definition. Depression is a condition that occurs for various reasons and it is very important to identify where it has begun. Usually, it is a matter of changes in brain chemistry and occurring changes in hormonal levels, often after grief, stress and/or significant life changes.
Depression is a common mood disorder that can occur in every one of us, regardless of age and gender. Unfortunately, the number of cases of depression increases, but fortunately, the ways of dealing with her and the awareness of its existence are increasing too.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF DEPRESSION
Something I realized when in contact with people with depression is that they “disappear”. That means that sometimes it’s very hard to recognize it in your loved ones. They maybe look happy with a big smile on their face but if you pay attention to the symptoms you may realize that something is wrong.
The most common signs and symptoms of depression are:
Every one of us sometimes feels depressed. It is important to remember that depressed mood it’s not a depression! Women usually feel depressed in PMS. I feel depressed on a rainy day etc. When in depression, the person almost always feels depressed, even on a sunny day, birthdays, celebrations, big happy life events etc. This sign alone is almost never a sign of serious depression. Many people think they are depressed but they only have depressed mood which is very normal and common.
Lack of interest in activities
While young, we tend to choose and found out what we love. We lose interest in activities, but we found new ones. When depressed, the person tends to “do nothing”. He doesn’t enjoy the morning coffee anymore, daily walks in the park or with his pet, he doesn’t enjoy going out with friends, family dinner etc. This is something which is very common in depression and maybe the easiest sign you can notice in you or in someone close to you.
Weight loss or weight gaining
It is very common in depression to lose or gain weight. Food disorder is very common and a person can stop eat and lose his appetite or vise-versa, he can start to eat too much, maybe sugar, to somehow “Feed his empty soul”. Fast changes in weight are almost always signs of some illness or depression. This is also a sign that something is wrong, but if the person loses weight because is on a diet don’t rush with conclusions.
Slow motor movements
Not only slow motor movements but also and mental. A depressed person is slow in speech, in movements, in thinking etc. And sometimes a person can be agitated.
Feeling agitated is also a sign of depression. Not every depressed person will feel like this but this is a serious sign.
Lack of energy/fatigue
Insomnia or too much sleep is a common sign of depression. So a depressed person would feel a lack of energy and fatigue even after a good night sleep. This is also why they have slow motor and mental movements.
Low self-esteem/ feeling of guilt
This is something a depressed one would feel and live. Low self-esteem doesn’t mean you have depression but in combination with 4 other criteria, it is a big possibility.
Reduced concentration/ indecision/ can’t make decisions
Suddenly, you don’t know what to eat, where to go, what to dress, what to do with your life. You don’t know or you don’t care. Depression is not the time for bringing big life decisions, exams, learning and making a career.
This is a red warning!
To diagnose a major depressive disorder, a person must have at least 5 of these criteria.
It is very important to consult with your doctor about treatments. I think that psychotherapy is a must, just to stay in contact with yourself and your feelings.