If you feel as though you’re living under a gray cloud, you’re not alone. One in 4 Americans currently suffers from mental illness, and the majority of those cases are classified as anxiety and mood disorders.
Unfortunately, we tend to treat mental illness as something that the sufferer can just “snap out of” rather than regarding it the way we would a physical disorder such as diabetes or heart disease. So, if any of the signs and symptoms listed below look familiar, please call a professional and get started on the road to recovery.
If you’re not suffering from depression but know someone who is, the following is a great article from Psych Central that walks you through 9 ways you can help someone who is going through it.
Signs and Symptoms of Depression (from the Mayo Clinic)
• Feelings of sadness or unhappiness
• Irritability or frustration
• Loss of interest or pleasure in normal activities
• Reduced sex drive or erectile dysfunction
• Insomnia or excessive sleeping
• Changes in appetite (either decreased hunger accompanied by weight loss or increased cravings for food accompanied by weight gain)
• Agitation or restlessness
• Drug or alcohol abuse
• Angry outbursts
• Persistent feelings of stress or anxiety
• Slowed thinking, speaking, or body movements
• Indecisiveness, distractibility, and decreased ability to concentrate
• Fatigue and loss of energy — even small tasks may seem to require a lot of effort
• Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures, or blaming yourself when things aren’t going right
• Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions, and remembering things
• Frequent thoughts of death, dying, or suicide
• Crying spells for no apparent reason
• Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches
Even if you do not exhibit one or more of the above symptoms of depression but feel you may be depressed, do not hesitate to contact a professional.