We all are likely to feel sad as it is an inevitable experience for us all at some time or the other in our lives. And though we may frequently label such an experience as being depressed, almost everyone goes through the blues or through a low mood that is of a passing and transient nature. However, in such situations after some time has passed things get back to normal and we fall into our daily routines. These situations in themselves don’t warrant the utilisation of the services of a professional to help deal with the low moods.
Dr. Samir Parikh Psychatrist at Fortis hospital, says that by depression, we refer to a mood state that goes well beyond just feeling the blues. Depression is a condition which involves recurrent and persistent low moods which last for at least two weeks and interfere with the affected individual’s daily life and activities such as work as well as maintaining relationships with friends and family.
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Symptoms of depression can include loss of interest in activities, not being able to derive pleasure from activities, a sense of helplessness and hopelessness about the future and negative thoughts relating to the self. There can be complaints of tiredness and fatigue along with a withdrawal from social activities as well. It can also interfere with appetite and sleep patterns.
The Following Are Some Of The Warning Signs Of Depression:
- Sadness of mood
- Social withdrawal
- Sudden increase or decrease in appetite
- Sleep disturbances
- Less interest in previously enjoyed activities
- Feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness
- Difficulty in attention and concentration
- Difficulty in decision making
- Suicidal ideation
- Frequent and unexplained somatic complaints
Dealing With Depression:
Depression is a diagnosable and treatable illness. It is not due to a character weakness or laziness, which can be overcome by will-power, or can pass out over time. Depression requires adequate and timely medical and psychological interventions. Professional help including psychiatric medications and psychological counselling is irreplaceable.
If untreated, depression can last for weeks, months and even years, significantly impacting various spheres of the affected individual’s life. Furthermore, taking a glance at the alarming rates of suicide today, with depression being the leading cause of teenage suicide in the world, it becomes all the more important to ensure the earliest identification as well as intervention.
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