Depression: Recognizing Unusual Symptoms
One reason depression can be hard to identify is that its signs can vary widely from person to person and sometimes be masked by atypical symptoms. For example, some people who are depressed may show it by acting disgruntled, resentful, or irritable. In fact, aggression including outright acts of violence can be indicative of hidden depression, according to a February 28, 2017, report in Psychiatric Times. Depression masquerading as anger may seem surprising at first, but not when you consider that several underlying factors, including alcohol or substance abuse and childhood trauma, have been linked to both.
Similarly, although its not clear why, a person who experiences anxiety is at high risk for developing depression, and vice versa. The National Alliance on Mental Illness reports that as many as 60 percent of people with anxiety will also have symptoms of depression the same goes for people with depression having symptoms of anxiety. Experts say there is often a genetic predisposition for these co-occurring disorders.
Depression may also manifest psychosomatically, meaning that instead of presenting first and foremost as a mood disorder, the dominant symptom may be things like vague aches, dizziness, headaches, digestive problems, or back pain, according to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. Complicating matters is that its often hard to know whether depression is causing the physical symptoms, or if the physical symptoms are causing depression.
Youre Always Just One Step Away
Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction. Erich Fromm
If you are someone who is always one step away from being satisfied, this may be hurting your chances for happiness.
If everything is just out of reach, you will never experience the fun you can have in every moment given to you.
If there is always something you need to fill up your life, when will this end? Most people who think this way dont realize that they will never be able to satisfy the greed monster inside. They truly believe their own self lie that if they just have this one last thing, happiness will find them.
Those who learn to embrace the joy of the moment, instead of putting it off to a distant future that will never happen, will find that they love life so much more than those always trying to fill the bottomless pit.
You Dont Think You Deserve Happiness
We all of us deserve happiness or none of us does. Mary Gordon
Some people have the warped idea that they dont deserve happiness. They may have guilt about their past and feel they should be punished, or just dont feel that they are worthy of such an emotion.
Happiness is something everyone should experience. If you dont feel you are worthy of it, it is time for a re-adjustment of perspective. Give yourself permission to find your happy place.
Also Check: Can You Be Happy If You Have Depression
How Is Depression Diagnosed
These days, a routine doctors visit with your general health practitioner may be all it takes to receive a diagnosis. Standard screening tools like the Patient Health Questionnaire a survey of yes, nine items, that physicians use to assess the severity of depressionare becoming widely used in primary care settings to screen for the condition.
In fact, most patients with depression are going to be diagnosed and treated by primary care doctors, not specialists or psychiatrists, says James Murrough, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the Depression and Anxiety Center for Discovery and Treatment at Mount Sinai.
Depression is mainly diagnosed by history and clinical presentations, or a specific pattern of symptoms, says Dr. Murrough, which is to say theres no blood test for MDD. But if you have symptoms like changes in sleep or appetite, your doctor may look into other conditions unrelated to mental health .
The first thing your doctor might do is order blood testsnot to make the diagnosis of depression, but to rule out things that could be masquerading as depression, explains Dr. Murrough. For example, an underactive thyroid can present as low mood and feeling sluggish, and iron deficiency anemia is another reason why some people might have low energy.
You Seek Materialism Over Everything Else In Life
Many people are so poor because the only thing they have is money.
While money certainly is a great gain in this life, it doesnt bring happiness.
Think about how you would feel if tomorrow was your last day to breathe. Would you really want to make more money, or would your focus turn to connecting with people or having certain experiences?
If you live by your values, you will find more fulfillment than materialism could ever bring. And this Motivation Engine will help you figure out the values that are truly important to you.
You May Like: Is There Such A Thing As Mild Depression
Depression And Gender: Is It Different In Men And Women
When it comes to depression, there is a distinct gender gap. Depression is nearly twice as common in women as in men, according to data from the National Center for Health Statistics. Hormonal and other biological factors play a role in this disparity. After all, only women can have premenstrual or postpartum depression. The same is true of antepartum depression depression during pregnancy which the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists estimates affects one in seven women.
But women also have higher rates of seasonal affective disorder, depressive symptoms in bipolar disorder, and persistent depressive disorder, note Harvard Health experts. The reasons for this are cause for speculation. Some researchers believe that environmental factors, such as the different stressors and expectations that society places on women, are an important factor. Others theorize that men and women actually have depression at similar rates, but that women are more likely to talk about their feelings and seek help.
Should You Worry About Antidepressant Withdrawal
No, but its easy to see why some people might think so, because of a medical condition called antidepressant discontinuation syndrome , which can occur if you abruptly stop taking medication rather than tapering off as is generally advised. ADS is marked by a wide range of responses, including but not limited to flu-like symptoms, insomnia, worsening mood, and stomach distress, according to a March 11, 2019, report in Psychiatric Times.
Current estimates are that about 20 percent of patients whove taken an antidepressant for at least a month will experience ADS symptoms if they abruptly stop their medication instead of lowering their dose gradually. Tapering under the care of a doctor can prevent ADS by allowing the brain to adjust to changes in neurotransmitter levels.
More to the point, while you should slowly stop your antidepressant with the help of your doctor, antidepressants do not cause dependence and withdrawal like other substances. Unlike substances that are known to cause addiction, such as alcohol, opioids, and barbiturates, people don’t crave antidepressants. You dont get high from them, and they arent intentionally or compulsively overused. Serious reactions like the seizures and agitation that can follow sudden withdrawal from addictive substances are unheard of when these antidepressants are tapered gradually, note the authors of the Psychiatric Times report.
Don’t Miss: Causes Of Depression Scholarly Articles
Are The Signs Of Untreated Depression In Men Different From Those In Women
Men who have untreated clinical depression may exhibit more anger, frustration, and violent behavior than women. In addition, men with untreated depression may take dangerous risks such as reckless driving and having unsafe sex. Men are not aware that physical symptoms, such as headaches, digestive disorders and chronic pain, can be symptoms of depression.
We Can Cultivate Honesty
Depression tricks me into hating myself, but it also manipulates how I feel about the world.
When doubts about loved ones creep in, I take a moment and ask myself if I honestly believe they would want anything other than what was best for me.
When depression is pulling me under, trying to drown me, its whispering that those around me dont want to help.
Deep down, I know this isnt true. Our loved ones want us to be happy, healthy, and successful. Many of them would sacrifice for us to have the best of the best.
You May Like: Can Self Care Help With Depression
You Have No Real Friends
Making a hundred friends is not a miracle. The miracle is to make a single friend who will stand by your side even when hundreds are against you.
While your world may be full of acquaintances, if you dont have a few close friends that will stick by you no matter how rough the storm is, you will find yourself in a sad state.
Life is about connecting with people, and if you arent sure how strong yours are, it may be time to find some friends who will always be there.
You will feel more confident in your future by knowing that you will always have support.
What Customers Are Saying:
I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly.Thank you very much
Corrie MollPretoria, South Africa
I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information andconfirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for theexamination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you aswell!
Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion.
Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor’s appointment next week.I feel better already! Thank you.
Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem.
You have been more help than you know. I seriously don’t know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions.
John and StefanieTucson, AZ
I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!!
Janet VPhoenix, AZ
Don’t Miss: List Of Coping Strategies For Depression
Psicologa Psicoterapeuta Psychotherapist Psychologist Counselor
Licensed Professional Counselor
I feel my work as my personal mission and I love it. My work with clients is nonjudgmental, supportive. I am a very good listener. I use several approaches. Amo il mio lavoro.
Top Rated Answers
Anonymous – Expert in Depression
How Does Untreated Clinical Depression Affect Physical Health
There is mounting evidence that clinical depression takes a serious toll on physical health. The most recent studies exploring health and major depression have looked at patients with stroke or coronary artery disease. Results have shown that people with major depression who are recovering from strokes or heart attacks have a more difficult time making health care choices. They also find it more difficult to follow their doctor’s instructions and to cope with the challenges their illness presents. Another study found that patients with major depression have a higher risk of death in the first few months after a heart attack.
Recommended Reading: Ways To Snap Out Of Depression
You Hang Out With Unhappy People
When you have to start compromising yourself and your morals for the people around you, its probably time to change the people around you.
You are the sum of the five people you spend the most time around. If your friends are constant sources of negativity in your life, it may be time to find more positive people.
You Dont Take The Time To Set Goals
Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible. Tony Robbins
An aimless life is the source of disappointment and frustration in life.
Instead of just letting things happen to you and trying to keep up, create your own future by setting goals and following through on them. One of the greatest joys in life is seeing a goal come to fruition.
Recommended Reading: How To Combat Depression Naturally
You Hold Onto The Perceived Idea Of Control
As your faith is strengthened you will find that there is no longer the need to have a sense of control, that things will flow as they will, and that you will flow with them, to your great delight and benefit. Emmanuel Teney
At times, people seem to believe that they stepped straight out of a superhero comic book. They believe that they can control everything very well and things will just turn out exactly what they planned. What a burden to carry!
You would certainly need supermans strength to pick up that weight. However, the reality is that we dont have the ability to control anything else other than ourselves. Once you make peace with this, you find the pressure is off and you can start to enjoy the scenery of the journey, instead of plotting the impossibility.
What Are The Symptoms Of Depression And How Is It Diagnosed
The NHS recommends that you should see your GP if you experience symptoms of depression for most of the day, every day, for more than 2 weeks.
Doctors make decisions about diagnosis based on manuals. The manual used by NHS doctors is the International Classification of Diseases .
When you see a doctor they will look for the symptoms that are set out in the ICD-10 guidance. You do not have to have all of these to be diagnosed with depression. You might have just experience some of them.
Some symptoms of depression are:
- low mood, feeling sad, irritable or angry,
- having less energy to do certain things,
- losing interest or enjoyment in activities you used to enjoy,
- reduced concentration,
You may also find that with low mood you:
- feel less pleasure from things,
- feel more agitated,
- find your thoughts and movements slow down, and
- have thoughts of self-harm or suicide.
Your doctor should also ask about any possible causes of depression. For example, they may want to find out if youve experienced anything traumatic recently which could be making you feel this way.
There are no physical tests for depression. But the doctors may do some tests to check if you have any physical problems. For example, an underactive thyroid can cause depression.
On the NHS website, they have a self-assessment test which can help you to assess whether you are living with depression: www.nhs.uk/mental-health/conditions/clinical-depression/overview/
You May Like: Can Depression Run In Your Family
It May Be Time To Make Some Changes
As much as depression is an internal war, like any battle, the landscape in which we fight matters.
When I look at the things and people around me, I ask myself if theyre contributing to my feelings of depression. This can be a very emotional process. The last thing I want to do is ride the anxiety of change and drift toward the unknown.
Sometimes, however, this is the only way.
Why Is It Hard To Admit That You Have Walking Depression
You may recognize many of these signs in your life but still be slow to admit that you are depressed. Why is that?
Because it feels presumptuous to put yourself in that category when youre still getting by. You feel like it would be insulting to those who are much worse off than you. You may feel like you have no real reason to be depressed.
Because your pride and your identity take a hit. You have to admit vulnerability and allow that you are not the all-conquering superhero you thought you were.
Because you realize that you and your life need to change, which feels like more work piled on your plate.
Because you are admitting your own responsibility for your unhappiness and that can trigger self-judgment.
Because you might uncover grief or anger at those around you for not seeing and taking better care of you.
Recommended Reading: Can You Have Depression As A Child
You Havent Discovered Your Purpose
Trying to be someone else is a waste of the person you are.
So many people have subscribed to the lie that their life purpose is to make it to the weekend. No wonder there are so many miserable clock punchers in the world!
Find your passion and purpose and pursue them, despite the fact that it may turn the mundane inside out and terrify you.
Discovering your part in the story is one of the best pieces in lifes adventure!
You Dont Make Time For The Right Things
When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you.
We all lose our focus at times. However, keeping your activities aligned with your values is helpful in keeping a positive perspective.
One good exercise is to list your values and rank them by their importance to you. Then, see how many of your daily activities actually align with your values. Is there a disconnect? If so, what can you do to change it?
But still, the best thing to do is to understand how to prioritize your life and do what matters to you most. Heres how:
Read Also: How Long Does Postnatal Depression Last