Am I depressed?

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What Is Depression?

Depression’ is a serious mood disorder that affects one’s moods, thought process, feelings and behaviour. It can cause severe distress and severely interfere with one’s day to day functioning. There are different types of depressive disorders. While these can cause feelings of sadness, depression is not limited to feeling sad. While there are several physical conditions with telltale signs and symptoms and clear-cut tests to indicate the presence of certain conditions, it can sometimes be more difficult with mental health conditions. This is because; there may be a number of seemingly well-functioning individuals who may look fine on the outside but may be experiencing severe distress or emotional numbness on the inside.

Here are some of the common symptoms of depression

  • Low mood

  • Feelings of sadness, pain or emptiness

  • Loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities

  • Sudden weight loss/ gain

  • Poor  appetite

  • The decrease in energy levels

  • Disturbed sleep/ inability to sleep

  • Lack of concentrate

  • Feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness and guilt

  • Restlessness

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Not all symptoms may manifest in everyone suffering from depression. There may be individual differences and variations- some may experience only a few symptoms while others may experience many symptoms. However, if a lot of these symptoms are present in an individual, most of the day, nearly every day and have been persisting for 2 weeks or more then, it indicates that the person may be suffering from depression.

If you notice these symptoms in you, it is important that you reach out to a professional and seek help. You could reach out to a psychiatrist, therapist, counsellor or join support groups.

Some of the depression coping techniques

  • Talk to an adult you trust- this could be a parent, teacher, counsellor anyone you trust. They will be able to help you come with more healthier and constructive ways of dealing with the concerns you are facing.

  • Adopt healthy lifestyle changes- try to eat healthily and get more physically active. Physical activity helps release chemicals in your body that helps you feel better.

  • Opposite action- as much as you feel like you want to isolate yourself and withdraw socially or not want to participate in any activities. Attempt to go against these urges. While you may not feel motivated to engage in any of these, giving in to these urges for long can only worse depression. Alternatively, acting against these urges will eventually help you feel better. Try to engage in activities you used to enjoy or try to spend time with those around you.

  • If you have suicidal thoughts-

  • Tell yourself that you can’t take any action in the heat of these strong emotions. Give yourself 24 hours of time before you take any action. This will give the time for the emotions to cool down a bit and think more clearly by distancing yourself from these emotions.

  • Call someone you trust or reach out to helplines in times of crisis.

  • If you are aware of your strong urges, make sure you don’t isolate yourself and stay around people.

While depression is not a condition that would appear and disappear in a day or two like flu, it definitely is a treatable condition.  The treatment option for depressive symptoms ranges from psycho pharmacological treatment options (antidepressant medications) to psychotherapy and counselling to neurofeedback for certain individuals with drug-resistant depression.

Know more about Depression Treatment, visit MindTalk. You can also mail your queries to us at Alternatively, call at our helpline number- +91 95131073735.