Your Appetite Drastically Changes
You may either be eating more than usual or, more commonly, have no appetite at all.
Its an easy to overlook because we live in a society that values diet culture and values restriction as a sign of control and discipline, Castro said. That says something good about your character if youre not gorging on food. I think that it can be easily missed and it can be praised as that person somehow has it together, and theyre doing well.
But dietary changes depend on the individual. It plays out differently because of our temperaments and preferred ways of coping, Castro added. If you have more depletion of serotonin levels, then you may be someone who is more inclined to seek comfort in food.
Signs Of Depression In Children
Younger children can also experience depression. However, because their behavior may change as they go through different childhood stages, and because they may exhibit different signs of depression compared to adults, it can be difficult for caregivers to recognize that a child is depressed.
Signs of depression in children may include:
- Clinging to caregivers
- Experimenting with alcohol or drugs
- Displaying a lack of care for things they used to value highly
Other more typical signs of depression in adults, such as sleep disturbances, tiredness, changes in appetite and loss of interest in activities that were once pleasurable, may be less commonly present in children with depression.
The symptoms of depression may interfere with the childs ability to partake in social activities, complete schoolwork and enjoy family life.If a caregiver notices that their childs behavior and day-to-day functioning has changed significantly, it is recommended that they speak to a healthcare professional.
Like people of other age groups, children can show signs of suicidal thoughts or actions. If a caregiver suspects that a child is at risk of harm, they should contact a healthcare professional or suicide prevention helpline immediately.
Are There Other Therapies To Treat Symptoms Of Depression
There are other treatments your doctor may consider. Electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, is a treatment option for people whose symptoms don’t get better with medicine or who have severe depression and need treatment right away.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, involves using a noninvasive device that is held above the head to induce the magnetic field. It targets a specific part of the brain that can trigger depression.
With vagus nerve stimulation, or VMS, a pacemaker-like device is surgically implanted under the collarbone to deliver regular impulses to the brain.
Recommended Reading: Going Through A Depressive Episode
Signs You Have Depression
Everyone reacts to depression in ways that are unique. How you react could be a product of your personality, overall health, and other factors. Many signs and symptoms of depression respond favorably to conventional therapy, but if you suffer from long-term or treatment-resistant depression, your healthcare provider may recommend ketamine infusion therapy for your depression treatment. Only a doctor or mental healthcare specialist can accurately diagnose a case of depression, but there are things you can watch for on your own.
Signs to watch for:
Diagnosis & Treatment
Depression can coexist with other medical or mental health conditions. It could be paired with heart disease, cancer, or another mental health condition like bipolar disorder. The first step in managing your condition is early diagnosis and finding the right treatment for your condition.
A diagnosis happens after a thorough mental health assessment and medical examination has been done, either by a medical doctor or mental healthcare professional using tests and diagnostic procedures. Symptoms are then compared to criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition. Treatment may include psychotherapy, self-help, medicine, or ketamine infusion therapy.
Signs Of Depression In Teens And Young Adults
Teenagers can also experience depression, but it may be difficult for their caregivers to recognize the symptoms, and many cases go undiagnosed and untreated.Signs of depression in teens and young adults may differ somewhat to those in adults, and may include the following:
- Seeming annoyed by everything and everyone
- Being argumentative and picking fights
- Responding to minor provocations with emotional outbursts
- A much stronger than usual need for social connection and social validation
- Promiscuity, substance abuse and risky behaviors
- Difficulties with school work
- Sleep disturbances, particularly sleeping too much
Other, more typical signs of depression, such as fatigue and loss of interest in activities that were once pleasurable, are very often present. It is important to distinguish normal teenage behaviors from teen depression. Significant changes in mood, together with changes in functioning, like serious social or school problems, indicate that a healthcare professional should be consulted.
If a teenager shows signs of suicidal thoughts or actions, it is vital to take these seriously, and it is of the utmost importance to call a healthcare professional or suicide prevention hotline without delay.
Signs That You May Have Moderate Depression
Understanding the Signs and Symptoms of Moderate Depression
Depression is common and becoming an ever more widespread feature of our modern society. While the reasons and causes of depression are not fully understood, we are becoming increasingly more skilled at treating and identifying the various types of depression.
The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 6.7% of U.S. adults had at least one major depressive episode in 2016. These numbers are expected to be significantly higher in 2020.
Since the understanding of depression is continuously evolving, there are various classifications of depression. The type of depression often includes the severity of either mild, moderate, or severe and a descriptor of causes. Examples would include severe postpartum depression, or perhaps moderate seasonal affective disorder.
In this article, we are going to be focusing on the typical symptoms of moderate Major Depression and what the current science has to tell us about it. By the end, you should be able to differentiate the various severities of depression and what they mean.
What is Moderate Major Depression?
While this phrasing may seem strange, diagnosable general depression is officially referred to as Major Depression in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders . The severity of symptoms is rated as mild, moderate, or severe. So when you have Moderate Major Depression, you have unspecified depression with moderate symptoms.
Feeling Guilty Or Worthless
Thoughts like Im a failure, Its my fault or Im worthless are all possible signs of a mental health disorder, such as depression. Your friend or loved one may need help if theyre frequently criticising or blaming themselves. When severe, a person may express a feeling to hurt or kill themselves. This feeling could mean the person is suicidal and urgent help is needed. Call Triple zero for an ambulance immediately.
Recommended Reading: Anxiety And Depression Self Assessment
You Experience Energy Level Changes That Impact Your Self
Are you forgoing your beloved skin care routine more often? Have you lost interest in your weekly video game nights?
Depression is a loss of vitality, your energy, your pulses, all of that is depressed … the lights have been dimmed, Castro said. If youre someone whos usually very vivacious, and you have energy and verve, youll start having less of that. The signs of that are how you care for yourself, how you care for your space. Do you make time for yourself?
If the answer is no, you might want to take a hard look at your mental state.
Who Is At Risk For Depression
Depression can affect anyone, no matter their age, gender or circumstances. About 16 million Americans experience depression each year.
Women may experience depression more often than men. And your genetics or other health conditions can increase the likelihood that youll have at least one depressive episode in your lifetime.
Read Also: Lamictal For Treatment Resistant Depression
Who Can Diagnose Depression
Primary care providers often diagnose depression. They may refer an individual to a mental health professional such as a psychiatrist or psychologist for treatment. Typically, says Steven Hollon, PhD, of Brentwood, Tennessee, a professor of psychology at Vanderbilt University, the provider uses the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to make a diagnosis.3 They go through the criteria in the DSM to see how many criteria the person meets, Hollon says.
Six Signs That You Might Have Depression
Its normal to feel sad after grieving, being lonely, or going through other difficult situations. In challenging times or after a traumatic event, it is common for people to feel a great deal of sadness. The emotions of grief and sadness, while powerful, are not the same as those of clinical depression. What is the difference between sadness and depression?Depression can mimic expressions of sadness, but they dont go away over time. Some of these symptoms include:
Also Check: Understanding Depression In Your Spouse
Depression And Suicide Risk
Depression is a major risk factor for suicide. Deep despair and hopelessness can make suicide feel like the only way to escape the pain. If you have a loved one with depression, take any suicidal talk or behavior seriously and watch for the warning signs:
- Talking about killing or harming ones self.
- Expressing strong feelings of hopelessness or being trapped.
- An unusual preoccupation with death or dying.
- Acting recklessly, as if they have a death wish .
- Getting affairs in order .
- Saying things like Everyone would be better off without me, or I want out.
- A sudden switch from being extremely down to acting calm and happy.
If you think a friend or family member is considering suicide, express your concern and seek help immediately. Talking openly about suicidal thoughts and feelings can save a life.
If you are feeling suicidal
When youre feeling suicidal, your problems dont seem temporarythey seem overwhelming and permanent. But with time, you will feel better, especially if you get help. There are many people who want to support you during this difficult time, so please reach out!
What Are The Causes Of Depression
Experts say that depression is caused by an interaction of genetic factors and real life triggers. Because depression often runs in families, experts believe that genetic factors make some people more vulnerable to than others, because of their individual brain chemistry.
Depression triggers can include:
* Situational factors: Major problems and life crises — a romantic break-up, job loss, or the death of a loved one, for example — are often the immediate, most obvious causes of depression. But ongoing life challenges like poverty, unemployment, and social isolation, as well as childhood trauma, also put people at higher risk for depression.
* Medical factors:Chronic pain or illness can lead to depression. Certain medical conditions — including hypothyroidism, cancer, and hepatitis — can cause depression. Nutritional deficiencies and some medications are culprits as well. Therefore, it’s important that treatment for depression include a medical evaluation.
* Gender: Women are twice as likely as men to experience depression, a discrepancy likely due in part to the tremendous hormonal shifts that accompany menstruation, child birth, and menopause.
* Stress: A connection between chronic stress and depression has been established and could explain why stressful life situations, like poverty and unemployment, put people at far higher risk for depression.
Treatment for Depression
Also Check: Blood Test To Determine Depression
Other Types Of Depression
There are different types of depression, and some conditions where depression may be one of the symptoms. These include:
- postnatal depression sometimes new mothers, fathers or partners develop depression after they have a baby this is known as postnatal depression and it’s treated in a similar way to other types of depression, with talking therapies and antidepressant medicines
- bipolar disorder also known as “manic depression”, in bipolar disorder there are spells of both depression and excessively high mood the depression symptoms are similar to clinical depression, but the bouts of mania can include harmful behaviour, such as gambling, going on spending sprees and having unsafe sex
- seasonal affective disorder also known as “winter depression”, SAD is a type of depression with a seasonal pattern usually related to winter
Thoughts Of Harming Yourself
Suicidal ideation is an immediate cause for concern. If you or someone you love has expressed having thoughts of suicide or of not wanting to be alive, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or text HOME to 741741.
The lifeline provides 24-7 access to free and confidential support from trained professionals and even provides a convenient online chat if you feel more comfortable communicating that way.
For additional suicide prevention and crisis resources, check out our page on suicide prevention.
Does any of this sound familiar? Have you been trying to shake these persistent feelings for weeks, but they just dont seem to go away?
Then what youre experiencing may be depression.
Remember that although depression has a range of symptoms, the presence of depressed mood, lack of interest, feelings of worthlessness, poor concentration, and thoughts of death are all serious signs that it may be time to consider seeking help.
Ways To Identify The Conditions
If you are experiencing signs and symptoms of anxiety and depression, one place to start is to speak with your primary care doctor. They can do an initial screening and may look for medical conditions that could be contributing to your symptoms. You will likely then be referred to a mental health professional for an official clinical diagnosis.
The mental health professional will use the standard reference manual for diagnosing recognized mental illnesses in the United States, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition .
The DSM-5 diagnostic criteria for depression and each anxiety disorder are different. A diagnosis might be harder to make when anxiety and depression overlap.
Change In Weight And Appetite
Depression alters the way you feel and act. It also impacts your diet, food cravings, and eating habits. You may find yourself reluctant to eat or cook for yourself . You may also find yourself eating foods or using substances that are determinantal to your health. It is also common for depressed individuals to stop eating normally, choosing to skip meals frequently due to lack of hunger and disinterest in food. If you notice yourself losing or gaining weight due to lifestyle changes brought on by frequently feeling sad or hopeless, it could be depression.
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What Treatment Should I Be Offered
The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence writes guidance on what treatment doctors should offer you. But your doctor does not have to give you these treatments. And the treatments may not be available in your area.
Different treatments may be available in your area. Your doctor might think these suit your symptoms more than the recommended treatments.
NICE recommend that depression is treated in different steps depending on how severe the condition is for you. The steps are as follows.
Step 1: Everyone who may have depression
Your doctor should offer you:
- an assessment of your symptoms,
- support, such as regular appointments in person or by telephone,
- information on how to deal with your symptoms,
- monitoring of your symptoms and follow-up, and
- referral for further assessment and treatment if needed.
Step 2: Mild to moderate depression
Your doctor may offer you:
- low-intensity interventions, such as self-help guided by the doctor or computerised cognitive behavioural therapy ,
- physical activity programmes,
- group cognitive behavioural therapy ,
- medication if you have a history of moderate or severe depression, or you have had symptoms for a long time, and
- referral for further assessment and treatment if needed.
Step 3: Moderate to severe depression, or mild to moderate depression when other treatments havent worked
Your doctor may suggest:
Step 4: Severe and complex depression or if your life is at risk Your doctor may suggest:
Signs Of Depression In Women
Females seem to be more likely than males to experience depression, probably due to biological, hormonal and social factors, and some of the signs of depression may differ between the sexes. For example, women with depression may be more likely than men to experience the symptoms of excessive guilt and anxiety.
Other signs of depression that may be more likely to be present in women include:
- Increased appetite
- Sleeping too much
- Lack of energy
Some types of depression are unique to women. These include depression experienced as part of premenstrual dysphoric disorder and perimenopausal depression. Perinatal depression, including postpartum depression, is strongly associated with women, though new parents of any gender can experience it. Women experiencing symptoms of depression are advised to consult a medical practitioner about treatment options, including psychotherapy and medication.
Read Also: Cbt For Teenage Depression Worksheets
When To Seek Professional Help
If support from family and friends and positive lifestyle changes arent enough, it may be time to seek help from a mental health professional. There are many effective treatments for depression, including:
Therapy. Consulting a therapist can provide you tools to treat depression from a variety of angles and motivate you to take the action necessary. Therapy can also offer you the skills and insight to prevent the problem from coming back.
Atypical Depression: Whats in a Name? Article on the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of atypical depression.
Depression and Other Illnesses An overview of the mental and physical illnesses that often co-exist with depression, and how this impacts treatment.
Depression support & suicide prevention help
India: Call the Vandrevala Foundation Helpline at 1860 2662 345 or 1800 2333 330
Suicide prevention help
In the U.S.: Call National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255
UK and Ireland: Call Samaritans UK at 116 123
Australia: Call Lifeline Australia at 13 11 14