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Depression Symptoms: What You Need to Know?

We all experience phases of sadness, low energy, or feeling overwhelmed. These are normal emotions that come and go as part of life. However, sometimes these feelings can become persistent and interfere with our daily lives. This could be a sign of depression, a common but serious mental disorder.

Depression can affect anyone, regardless of age, race, or background. While it can feel debilitating, the good news is that depression is treatable.

The first step towards getting help is recognising the signs and symptoms. Here are 10 common signs of depression to look out for in yourself or someone you care about:

1. Constant Low Mood

Feeling down, sad, or hopeless is a hallmark symptom of depression. This low mood isn’t just a fleeting sadness; it’s a persistent feeling that lingers for most of the day, nearly every day, for at least two weeks.

This persistent low mood can drain your energy and make it hard to find enjoyment in activities you used to love.

2. Loss of Interest

Things you once enjoyed now seem dull and unappealing. Hobbies, social activities, even spending time with loved ones feels like a task. This loss of interest or pleasure can affect anything from watching your favourite movie to playing a sport, cooking that special meal, or just scrolling your phone.

It’s important to note that this isn’t due to external factors like financial troubles or relationship problems. It’s a lack of motivation or enjoyment stemming from within.

3. Significant Changes in Appetite or Weight

Depression can affect your appetite in different ways. Some people experience a loss of appetite and unintentional weight loss, while others crave sugary or fatty foods and experience weight gain.

These changes in appetite can be due to hormonal imbalances caused by depression.

4. Sleep Problems

Sleep disturbances are another common symptom of depression. You might struggle to fall asleep at night, wake up frequently throughout the night, or sleep for extended periods but still feel tired.

Whereas, some people with depression experience excessive sleepiness during the day. These sleep disruptions further contribute to fatigue and low energy often associated with depression.

5. Agitation

This symptom refers to either a noticeable increase or decrease in physical activity. Some people with depression experience agitation, restlessness and are unable to even sit still.

Others experience behavioural retardation, feeling lethargic and slow in their movements and speech.

6. Fatigue or Loss of Energy

Feeling tired all the time is a major symptom of depression. Even simple tasks like getting dressed or taking a shower can feel overwhelming.

This fatigue isn’t relieved by rest and can significantly impact your daily functioning.

7. Feelings of Worthlessness or Guilt

Depression can distort your self-perception. You might constantly criticize yourself, overthink about past mistakes or failures.

Feelings of worthlessness and excessive guilt can be overwhelming and contribute to suicidal thoughts.

8. Difficulty Concentrating or Making Decisions

Finding it hard to focus, remember things, or make decisions is another common sign of depression.

You might find your mind racing with negative thoughts, making it difficult to concentrate on tasks or complete projects. Simple decision-making, like choosing what to wear or what to eat for dinner, can become overwhelming.

9. Physical Aches and Pains

Depression can manifest physically as well as emotionally. You might experience unexplained headaches, stomach aches, muscle cramps, or back pain. These physical symptoms can be real and can further worsen your overall well-being.

10. Recurrent Thoughts of Death or Suicide

Having thoughts of death or suicide is a serious symptom of depression. These thoughts can range from a general feeling of wanting to “disappear” to specific plans of self-harm.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, it’s crucial to seek immediate help.

Depression is a common condition and millions of people have successfully overcome it.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to a friend, family member, or your nearest hospital for additional support.There is help available and there is hope for a brighter future.

Don’t fight depression alone. Saksham offers resources and tools to monitor your mental health. Download now to know more.