A lof of people like to say that they are "depressed" when they feel sad or just a little out of mood. Sadness and not always being in the best mood, happens to all of us, is totally natural and usually goes away itself. However, depressive disorder - clinical depression - is far more serious than a little bad mood and unfortunately, it doesn't go over quickly.
What exactly is depression?
According to MediLexicon's Medical Dictionary, depression is "a mental state or chronic mental disorder characterized by feelings of sadness, loneliness, despair, low self-esteem, and self-reproach; accompanying signs include psychomotor retardation (or less frequently agitation), withdrawal from social contact, and vegetative states such as loss of appetite and insomnia."
Common symptoms of depression:
- a depressed mood during most of the day, particularly in the morning
- fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
- feelings of worthlessness or guilt almost every day
- impaired concentration, indecisiveness
- insomnia (sleeplessness) or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping) almost every day
- markedly diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities nearly every day
- recurring thoughts of death or suicide
- a sense of restlessness - known as psychomotor agitation - or being slowed down - retardation
- significant weight loss or gain (more than 5% of body weight in a month)
How to know if You suffer from depression or not?
It is possible that you are suffering from depression if you have at least five of the nine symptoms (see above: common symptoms) at the same time.
Don't get alarmed if you have experienced at least five symptoms at the same time for a short period of time. But You should start to worry if you have been experiencing at least five of these symptoms for over two weeks.
What to do when You think you might suffer from depression?
Depression is a serious illness. Therefore the most important step on fighint depression is getting professional help. In addition to professional help, a lot can be improved with communicating and some changes in your everyday life. Exercising and eating healthy food can do miracles.You can read more about winning the fight against depression on here.