Anxiety, depression, signs of depression, therapy- the terms that we hear so often around us these days. The chaos due to depression that our family members, friends, colleagues are giving in to, the day by day increasing suicidal rate. Nobody is immune to it, people of all ages, races, and socioeconomic statuses are at risk of developing depression at some point in their lives.
Along with it is the urge to raise awareness about mental health and the immense pressure to save people from falling into this pit. But what is depression, what are signs of depression you must know or how do you assist someone in seeking therapy? If you do not know what depression is then how are you going to assist someone going through this dark period of life?
This article could be your guide to depression and major signs of depression you must know which would help you spot depression in a closed one.
Depression is a major mental health disorder that affects a person’s feelings and perceptions of himself, his life, and his environment. Progressively, it has some serious detrimental physical effects along with mental ones. Misconceptions and inaccurate information have contributed to many people misunderstanding the condition and how it affects them. Following are some major signs of depression you must know:
Signs of depression you must know:
Normally, we have several emotions that keep on switching during the day from one to another, at a time you might feel sad, sometimes later you are happy. Hopelessness is taken over by hope and tranquility replaces grief. If you see someone who is a lot sadder, grieved or pessimist and hopeless about the life you might want to check him for depression. It is one of the earliest signs and at the same time most misunderstood sign too. Too much sadness or low mood and feelings without a cause and inability to shake them is not a usual sad episode but might be depression
Loss of interest in daily activities:
We all have our off days, feel lazy, unmotivated, and uninspired from time to time but in a person with depression, it could be more than just exhaustion and burnout. They cannot snap themselves out of it by the usual tips and tricks such as setting goals or listening to motivational talks and other productivity hacks. A friend with depression might not be able to function in daily life tasks like we all do and cannot help it despite the immense pressure of work life.
What is the one thing that cheers up the most in life or activities we look forward to in life? Yes! that is our hobbies but sadly with people in depression, it might not be the same. It is one of the most common signs. They do not find their hobbies interesting anymore, their might lose interest in their favorite shows, music, books, or outings. If you find a friend snapping out of his favorite tasks it might be a sign of depression.
Changes in sleep and appetite patterns:
Sleeping and eating are a major part of our life and balance are essential for our physical and mental health. Changes in sleep and appetite patterns are considered major signs of depressive disorders and also lead to the progression of the state. Sleeping too much or too little may point to some mental disturbances which affect sleeping habits. Also, eating too little or too much may be an important sign in diagnosing depression in a friend.
Lack of self-care:
You might notice a friend who’s not taking care of himself and his personal hygiene. It may include a lot of things such as not taking a shower, shaving, or brushing their teeth. This is due to their fatigue and loss of motivation.
You might notice your friends get irritated by small things. Everything seems to get on their nerves and they feel tensed all the time. Little things feel incredibly annoying. This might lead to decreased communication and social activities.
We have seen above that a low mood is a sign of depression, but a severe sign can be a flat mood where the person cannot feel happiness or sadness but just a numb feeling. This situation might be misconceived by family and friends around and leads to unexplained isolation from society and feelings of loneliness.
You might notice a friend or family member being less confident and putting them down. depression makes people see only negative things about themselves and downplay achievements in life. This is one of the important signs of depression you must know.
Do you feel that a friend is being very forgetful these days and struggling with his memory even for minor stuff? Yes, with other signs it might be a possibility that this leads to depression because constant depression affects a person’s mind and memory.
This is one of the major signs that can also be counted as a warning sign of depression. Being suicidal is having thoughts or wanting to end one’s life to put an end to the suffering of life. Noticing your friends or people around talking about suicide is of immediate attention an indication of a severe depressive episode. This is one of most important signs of depression you must know and should never go unnoticed.
This is not a diagnostic criteria but these are signs of depression you must know and pull your attention towards a persons’ mental health. Your immediate next step should be to seek professional help.
How do you help a depressed friend?
Firstly, you need to reach out to your friends, listen to them, help them seek support, and encourage them in this journey.
Several websites offer questionnaires to scale the degree of anxiety and depression and the level of concern it needs.
The next step would be to consult a medical professional to help out with depressive disorder either with medication or therapy.
Along with offering help, you must set boundaries for yourself because this journey might be toxic for you. Practice self-care, and take care of your mental health.